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Encouraging Heroes. You can be one too.

Being parents for the first time is certainly exciting. You’ll soon have a little bundle of joy to brighten your home, but the waiting period can be stressful. Going back to the basics and understanding what you should be prepared for can help relieve that stress and prepare you to enjoy this beautiful experience.

The Cost

Many people do not realize how expensive it is to have a child. It can be hard to budget for expenses you can’t anticipate, but it will save you a lot of stress to have a good idea what you will be spending. Start to look around at how much diapers, wipes, and other baby gear cost. Talk with friends who recently had babies to see what their budgets look like. Having a good budget will help take some of the stress off you once baby arrives.

Altering The Schedule

Some first time parents make the mistake of assuming their baby will quickly adapt to their schedule. The truth is however, your baby does not care at all about your schedule, and will need a lot of attention, especially at first. Yes, implementing regular patterns and routines is important, but be prepared for this little one to take up a lot of your time until you can find a good groove.

Don’t Wait to Get Out

It is easy to feel trapped as a new parent, especially when it is too cold to spend time outside.  Make sure you take some time to get out by yourself, and with your child. These outings might be difficult, but they can be a great break.  Look for some creative ways to get out with your newborn, like infant swimming lessons, play dates, and child care at the gym while you work out. This will help you ward off the postpartum blues, and bond better with your child.

The Sleepless Nights

Parenting is hard work, and you will probably feel overwhelmed regularly. It can be difficult to remain calm and be loving when you haven’t slept well. You may find you are better rested if you sleep when the baby is resting, and take advantage of all of the little naps during the day. Don’t be afraid to ask for help from trusted friends and family so you can take a break.

You will find that parenting is a very rewarding experience, and well worth all of the sacrifice.  As you take the time to set up some basic expectations and prepare, you can help relieve the stress and enjoy this special time with your child.