What I have learned from motherhood that I hoped I learned before giving birth was to set no expectations for myself or to have any expectations at all from anyone else.
I used to get frustrated because I wanted to achieve a lot in a day: pump 2 oz every two hours, eat breakfast on time, eat lunch, drink water, take a bath, sleep when the baby sleeps, clean up the mess, unpack the bags, sort the baby clothes, throw the trash, wash the dishes, etc. It was frustrating that even the most mundane task became unachievable.
I wish I came more mentally prepared. I didn’t realize giving birth and raising a child was like going to war — a psychological one. The books, which obviously weren’t tailored for Luna or any single baby, helped a bit. It gave me an inkling on what to expect—but my child, like any other person, was naturally different and had her own personality. She doesn’t function like clockwork. She has a somewhat predictable routine but she has her own ever-changing set of quirks too as the months go by.
Eventually, I learned (or I simply surrendered to the fact) that having no expectations for the day led to a focused and relaxed time with Luna.
Now that I have been spending more time with her, I realize that I haven’t been unproductive at all. My baby has been teaching me a lot about life and about going back to the basics of it.
- Greet every morning with a smile.
I’d wake up and say good morning to Luna and she’d reply with the sweetest smile. It doesn’t matter if she had woken up in the middle of the night or had a bad dream or a soaking wet nappy. No matter what kind of sleep she had, once she hears “Good morning!”, she willingly gives out her sweet smile.
- Smile often.
It’s not just smiling first thing in the morning. More importantly, it’s smiling often. Of course, she’s not happy every time but more often than not, you’ll find her smiling for the simplest of reasons. It doesn’t take much to cheer her up.
- Spend quality time with your loved ones.
Luna loves being around her primary caregivers. She expresses sheer delight and enthusiasm whenever we arrive or when we are around her.
- Ditch your gadgets
- Eat healthy and smell good.
- Sleep early to wake up early.
- Live in the moment. Enjoy the present.