I must admit, I have been SO excited for William and Kate since the announcement that they were expecting. One of the things I have learned since becoming a mother is that the tribe of motherhood is strong, and we love to share our advice with one another. So I thought it would be fun to post some advice for Kate – and all new mamas out there.
Here are a few thoughts from me, and then from some dear blogging friends:
My advice would be to Kate to take in all the little moments. You don’t realize with your first how quickly the time flies and how fast that little love is going to grow. So do all you can to savor the night time rocking sessions, the feedings, the little noises, the smells – everything.
Also, take lots of pictures and write down as much as possible, even if it is just a few words a day. You won’t remember as much as you think you will and everything you do to document the little years will be a gift to you – and your son. (You might want to check out Project Life.)
Kate, you have captured the world with your beauty and your kindness. You are going to be a great mom. We can’t wait to watch from the sidelines.
And from my friends…
Go easy on yourself, new mama. No one is keeping score. In spite of appearances, you may not feel like yourself for six months, nine months, even a year. But you will, and you’ll be an even better version of you. Stronger and softer at the same time. You’ll see.
Laura Tremaine, Hollywood Housewife
You will NOT break your baby. Seriously. You won’t. Beyond that…just enjoy every moment of it because it’s precious and fleeting and it’s over in a heartbeat. And you will look back fondly on all of it. Even the moments that make you want to scream.
Stephanie Howell, Just Me, My Soldier and Our 4 Little Chicks
Don’t feel like you need to occupy the baby all day. There are only so many things you can do with a tiny one. It’s okay to put them down sometimes. They are as occupied by the sound of you going about your day as they are by the fancy baby entertainment products. Also, learn to ditch the mom-guilt fast, if you don’t squash it when they are tiny it will haunt all your mothering.
Hayley Morgan, The Tiny Twig
My advice to a new mom–stop thinking about all the advice everyone has given you and take a few months to get to know your baby. Figure out what works for you, your baby and your family. Don’t worry about being the mom you think you should be and figure out how to be a good mom to this baby. It’s such an imperfect and beautiful journey. The more we let go of guilt and ‘shoulds’ the more we can embrace the moment.
Lisa Leonard, Lisa Leonard Designs
Don’t buy into the false guilt that seeps into mothering moments. Parent towards the big picture and know many of the things you fret over aren’t as important as they pretend to be. Give yourself the same grace God gives you because you’re doing beautifully!
Kristen Strong, Chasing Blue Skies
Cut yourself some slack. On the days you feel like you’re crazy, remember this: you’re not. You’re normal. You’re kind of a mess, but you’re not all mess. And you’re so very much not alone. Hang in there. You’re doing good work.
P.S. I promise you’ll sleep again. One day.
My best advice is to take your time getting to know the unique individual that is your new family member. Your new baby is a stranger to you and it will take time to get acquainted and learn what makes him or her tick. Don’t expect to be an expert on the baby right away. No one is. Whether you are a veteran parent, your baby has special needs, or you are adopting, give yourself and your baby time. Congratulations!
Joy Bennett, Joy in this Journey
Remember: you were a couple before this precious little wonder entered your lives and you’ll be a couple when your child moves out from under your roof. Invest the time to continue dating one another and don’t neglect simple courtesies and affection. It will serve your entire family well, and the effort will only strengthen your marriage. Trust me, this is easier said than done, and if you don’t make dating one another a priority, it’s not going to happen…and your marriage will suffer.
Robin Dance, Pensieve.me
Don’t forget who you are. It’s easy to get lost in parenting. For “you” to get lost. And I can only imagine that being in the Royal Family that might be an even harder struggle. But infuse Kate into everything about parenting. If you are spontaneous, whimsical, funny, then be so as a mom, too. It will help parenting and structure feel more natural…feel more you. Don’t lose you…infuse you.
Tam Hodge, InProgress
Enjoy taking as much time as you need while getting to know your new precious bundle. This baby is already the perfect mix of you and William; I know you’ll see that from day one. And perhaps the only advice to take? Nap. Nap as often as you’d like. xo
Maggie, Gussy Sews
My advice is the same to them as it is to everyone who has a baby, and that’s simply to let the other obligations wait and enjoy the baby. Make beautiful memories because time goes so fast.
Jo-Lynn Shane, Musings of a Housewife
Take time for self-care. A new mama is so needed by her little one, but being intentional about time for yourself is a huge thing that is often overlooked by new moms. Keep that royal masseuse on speed-dial.
Know that you are the very best parent to your little baby, and give yourself grace as you learn the ropes. Everything gets figured out eventually – so enjoy the journey along the way!
Arianne Segerman, Mabel & Riv
The time spent rocking that precious tiny baby is so precious and fleeting. Guard those moments fiercely. Never let busy work or busy bodies rob you of these moments that will only grow more tender with time.
Megan Tietz, SortaCrunchy
No one gets this parenting gig right. No one. Not even royalty.
In the back of my head and the bottom of my heart I always knew this was true, but I think I hoped to be the exception. I think I *thought* that parenting well was simply a choice, but I’m learning it is much more than that.
There are choices, yes, but there is also reality: we are all amateurs here. We are all learning as we go. You will get it wrong some days – many days! – and you will feel defeated. You will feel like you are not enough. You will worry that your “wrongs” outweigh your “rights.” I worry that, too. But it is a lie. We have to remind each other of the truth.
The truth is that screwing up is part of the job. Learning to love well in spite of it – that’s the beauty of the thing.
Give yourselves grace. Give your children grace. Let yourself mess up and then dare to admit it, and let them do the same. Prepare to have your heart stretched further than you ever imagined.
Also? Have a blast. Being a parent is the best thing you’ll ever do, and you’re gonna love it. Promise.
Amanda Williams, Life Edited
Soak in those precious moments with your little one, don’t rush them, but let them come to you one sweet moment at a time. Don’t be quick to pass your little one off to someone else because that lifetime bond with your baby begins from the moment they are born and first laid on your chest and will continue on as they grow older and become independent. Take a moment to see the world through their little eyes and your tired ones because you will be surprised by how new and different everything looks.
Alissa Circle, Rags to Stitches
Be sure to rest when you can. Sleep deprivation can certainly sneak up on you. Believe me I know! I’m currently loving a 5 month old. Take the help when someone offers it. Don’t be afraid to lean on friends and family when you need a minute to yourself. And embrace every moment of the chaos. All the crying and fussing may seem impossible to get through now while you are going through it. But when your baby becomes a tween… you will miss the newborn stage.
Vera Sweeney, Lady and the Blog
Take advantage of all the helpful hands you have around your little one to make sure you get your rest. Nothing is worse than being exhausted from trying to do everything for a newborn and then having a setback in your own wellness because you didn’t follow Doctor’s orders.
Victoria Pericón, Savvy Mommy
Your baby is going to puke on your designer clothes and destroy a onesie at least once a day. Royalty has no meaning for a tiny person whose only job is to grow and expel grossness from every orifice. But you will burn with love and you will make mistakes and you will be baffled by whatever comes next. It doesn’t matter. Your only goal is to raise someone who cares about others and can make good decisions. Do that and everything else is cake. Probably really good cake.
Sharideth Smith, A Woman’s Guide to Women: A Blog for Men
Sleep is your new best friend so seek it whenever possible. Even royal babies will shoot out some crazy projectile poop, so make sure that clean diaper is locked and loaded before taking off the old one. Take deep breaths and soak in that New Baby Smell. There’s nothing else like it on this earth. Take an inappropriate number of photos. They grow up so fast, you’ll be glad you did. Above all, rest in the grace that every parent needs. We all feel like we have no business to be doing what we are doing and that we must be messing it all up. Surround yourself with other parents who can build you up, reassure you, and swap stories (and babysitting) as needed.
Sarah Kooiman, Arena Five
Slow down the pace, the world can wait! No matter what anyone says this is your baby and your chance to mold an individual. You may be right or wrong but trust your gut and follow your heart. Cuddles rule the world!
Niri Jaganath, Mommy Niri
My advice for new parents: 1. If someone offers to help you, quickly and kindly accept the offer! Especially if they want to deliver a meal to you. 2. For moms, tinted moisturizer, two swipes of mascara, and lip gloss can make you feel like a real living human and less like a walking zombie. 3. Use Amazon Subscribe and Save for diapers, wipes, and coffee. You never want to run out of those three items. You will not survive without them.
Nina Helleny, According to Nina
Trust your gut. No one knows your baby the way you do, so have faith in yourself and believe your instincts.
Kate Marsh Lord, The Shopping Mama
And the best for last…
Dear Princess Catherine, Resist the urge to get the mom-bob. Or mum-bob, if you will. Your hair is way too pretty for that.
Emily Freeman, Chatting at the Sky
Photos of Elias, 10 days old, by Ulmer Studios. For more tips, check out this video from Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt.