Your life will take on a whole new meaning the moment you lay eyes on your newborn child. The future is wide open, and there’s a world of possibilities for the both of you, with many beautiful memories just waiting to be made. However there’s also a sense of concern, as you think about all the mistakes you made in your younger days, and the hope your child won’t follow in those footsteps. What other problems will your child face that you never even had to think about?
Before having a baby, it’s important to be prepared for the emotional roller coaster you’re getting ready to board. There are many challenges, some expected and some not, so it will be important to be centered. A calm mind will make calm decisions. You owe it to your future family to make the best choices available, not just for them, but yourself as well.
Ready Your Emotions
You’re about to be in charge of another human being. Some might call it a sacred duty, others might say it’s just part of life. Either way, it’s a big deal, and likely the biggest responsibility you will ever have. That’s why it’s important to understand that you will experience a plethora of emotions, from the highest highs to the lowest lows. It’s understandable to be nervous, unprepared, or even scared.
Have an open talk with your spouse or partner. Discus your expectations for your growing family and your feelings on parenting. Simply speaking aloud your thoughts about being a future parent will make you feel more emotionally prepared. The more you confide with your partner the more you two will be on the same page when you decide to grow your family.
One of the more difficult things to prepare for is heartbreak. Some people will have a very easy time getting pregnant and others will not. You might consider meeting with a fertility doctor before trying so you can learn more about what you can do to make it happen. Beyond that, pregnancies can fail for various reasons along the way, so it’s important to approach the process with great care and cautious optimism. Be sure to communicate your feelings and build a support group.
Remember Your Relationship
Make future plans to remember your marriage or relationship. Having a newborn in the house throws off the balance of a home. There will be a new balance that needs to be figured out.
The new mommy will need time with her child. The new daddy still needs to have time with mommy. If there are older children they need time to come to terms with a new sibling, but will also need bonding time with parents. Established routines will change overnight, and emotions may be tender.
Gentleman, you will have to tone down your passion once the baby arrives. There will be a break from intimacy with your wife or girlfriend until she is ready to begin again. It may seem like forever, but intimacy will return between you two. Look for opportunities to remind your wife or girlfriend that you love her, and that your relationship is more about physical intimacy.
Prepare Your Parenting Skills
The needs of a tiny baby are enormous. There will be many late nights and early mornings. Any sleep you get will most likely be interrupted, and your waking hours will be filled with feedings, changings, and doctor visits. A happy and content baby will ease some of these burdens.
For example, learn what techniques are useful to calm a crying baby. Swaddling, sucking, jiggling, and shushing are good ways to help a newborn stop crying. There are many resources to help you prepare for handling a baby, such as books, videos, and most importantly, friends and relatives who have had kids.
Prepare Your Home
A new baby can find an infinite amount of ways to get into trouble. There are choking, poisoning, and falling hazards all over your house. Fortunately, there are numerous resources available online to help you baby-proof your house in anticipation for your new arrival. It helps to go over one room at a time, making a list of all the changes that need to be made in order to have a safe house for your newborn.
Readying yourself mentally and emotionally will help ready you for the huge toll that a newborn child will take on your life. A little preparation now can go a long way in the future. Remember, you’re not just getting ready for a new child, you’re getting ready for a new life.