When a woman is pregnant for the first time, all she hears are the stories of how she will never sleep again because "newborns just don't ever sleep." What about the line that she will never have a second to herself because "newborns are attached to their mom's hip." Well, to all these moms-to-be, beware because the newborn stage is the easiest part, things only get crazier from there!
Think about it, newborns honestly don't do much other than sleep, eat, and create messy diapers. That's just the cycle of a newborn's life. They can't talk back. They can't run around completely naked after a bath, refusing to wear clothes. They don't need to have what they had for breakfast for the last week and a half. Newborns don't forget to turn the water off after brushing their teeth, they don't forget to flush, and they don't eat the cat's food as an afternoon snack. Isn't that what all moms simply ask for?
Actually, if anything, mothers of newborns are totally spoiled. Moms believe running on a few hours of sleep is worse than having to run around after a toddler who just hid the keys to the car and who can't (or won't) tell them where they put them. But, new moms, don't worry, the time will come. Just give it a few months.
It's time for new moms to sit back and enjoy the newborn stage, as she will miss these quiet moments sooner than she thinks. Think we're bluffing? Here's a list of 15 ways newborns are easy peasy!
15 Newborns Sleep A Lot
You might not realize it right now, but newborns sleep a lot. According to BabyCenter, newborns sleep up to 17 hours a day! Of course, the problem with that is they hardly ever sleep more than a few hours at a time, which can turn into challenges for a new mom who's still dealing with those pesky hormones, raw lady bits,
unwanted unexpected visitors, and all the other fun stuff that comes with having a new baby.
Treasure the free time, ladies!
Even if you’re tired and try to follow the “sleep when the baby sleeps” advice, you’ll still find that you have no time to take a shower, can't make it to the bathroom without a tiny human who just startled himself awake (again.) She may find it near to impossible to eat a proper meal — even if you meal prepped for the next month and a half. I think you know where we're going with this.
Ok, so really, 17 hours a day of sleep for the average newborn means a lot of time for new moms to take a nap, do some laundry, catch up with friends and family, do some online shopping… Those were the days. The more I go on, the more I want my kids to be newborns again, because who has that kind of time now? But since time machines haven’t been invented yet, I’ll have to live vicariously through all of my new mommy friends.
14 Newborns Can't Say "Mom" 2500 Times A Day
This one's a funny one because we as parents spend the first months of our child's life impatiently waiting for their first word. Of course, we worry about them hitting every single milestone, preferably a couple of months early, but we want those first words to come right now!
We read to them, talk to them, and vocalize as much as we can, just waiting for that nonsensical babble to turn into “mama” or “dada.” I remember both my kids saying mama around 8 months. I was so happy!
It took them a few years, but eventually, my happiness turned into anything but. I sound awful, I know, but trust me on this one. When you hear “mama” a gazillion times every single day, it gets old pretty fast. And, of course, they're never asking “dada” because it doesn’t matter how many things you’re juggling at the same time because according to kids, you’re the only one capable of pouring them a cup of juice, all while “dada” chills on the couch.
As if we, mamas, did not suffer through enough questions from others, according to The Telegraph, girls aged 4 ask an average of 390 questions each day. That's a lot of "why's, and what's"and puzzled looks on parents faces.
We're certain that parents can't wait to hear their baby's first words and they'll be ecstatic when that happens! But, for now, it's time to enjoy the peace and quiet.
13 Newborns Wear Diapers
Diapers may sound like a hassle right now. No one wants to change 6 to 8 diapers a day — even up to 10 according to New Kids Center. However, changing diapers is an easy breeze when they are still in the newborn stage.
For parents that are planning to go out all day, making sure to pack all the essentials is key.
The list of items for a diaper bag is normally ridiculous, however, we have shortened it! A quick trip requires a couple diapers, wipes and an extra outfit for those messy occasions. In addition, if you're bottle feeding, packing a bottle and formula is also necessary. Moreover, if this trip is likely to go longer than a few short hours, bringing extra blankets, hats, pacifiers and diaper cream can be handy to have. That’s literally all you need for a baby’s day out when you have a newborn. For those parents that have read articles with lists longer than a baby's entire body, scrap it. You don't need it and it just makes for extra weight to lug around, on top of the extremely heavy car seat and bulky stroller.
But when you have a potty-training toddler or even a young kid, going out all day is not as easy as it used to be. With children who don't wear diapers anymore, you can’t ever be more than a few feet away from a restroom. And even then, you still have to carry the toilet inserts so their little behinds don’t fall into dirty water or touch the even-dirtier public toilet seats.
There came a time when I saw a woman who had a tiny potty in the truck of her SUV, with her daughter sitting right on top, as casual as ever, before heading inside the grocery store. Literally the horror! But you gotta do what you gotta do to avoid those pesky situations.
12 Newborns Only Drink Formula Or Breastmilk
Every morning, the same battle arises with my preschooler. He doesn’t want to eat anything but blueberries, and he wants a cup of juice, a cup of milk, and a cup of water — in that specific order. If I try to trick him into eating something a little more substantial than blueberries, I get an instant tantrum.
But back in the day, when he was a tiny, preemie newborn, he would drink his milk like a champ. Seriously, he doubled his birth weight in like the first two months. He drank everything on sight. It was so easy! I would have to pop out of my shirt and let him eat until he fell asleep. I never had to think about kid menus at restaurants, no coercing him to eat, no bribing him with sweets or sending him to time out. I mean, newborns don't even need water or juice or anything other than their trusty b-friend or a couple scoops of formula, according to MayoClinic.
Sure, it is a pain when all they want to eat — which my 4-year-old still does, by the way. If he thought that he could wake up in the middle of the night for a snack, he probably would set his inner alarm clock. But, for parents of newborns, not having to worry about picky eaters and what to do in a restaurant, or being a snack slave just for kids to throw it on the floor because that's not what they thought a kiwi was, you've got it easy.
11 Newborns Can Sleep In A Stroller
I don’t mean that they can sleep in a stroller instead of a crib, I’m not that ridiculous. However, newborns are able to sleep wherever you and your stroller go. A newborn will be able to simply fall asleep. Think about it, if you were tired in the car or out on a walk, could you just close your eyes and snooze off? Absolutely not. The newborn stage means you don't have to go home early because your child needs a nap or it's after dark and now it's bedtime. While it’s important that kids have a schedule or a routine down the road to help them sleep better, newborns are still too little to be sleep-trained anyway, according to BabyCenter. Sleep-training should happen around 4-months-old.
So moms, take that stroller with you and be free!
Even if you have little to no desire to be around other people right now, just going out for a walk, or even walking around your home to help the little one fall asleep is easier to do when you have a newborn.
Just make sure you clear any outing with your OB and your paediatrician, especially when you want to go to a crowded place or do strenuous physical activity. But other than that, the fact that newborns can fall asleep in a stroller is seriously a blessing!
Starbucks run? Check. Quick grocery store trip? Check. Special occasion dinner and no sitter available? Check. Check. Check. You have all the freedom.
10 Newborns Can Be Held In Baby Carriers
I won’t deny that some newborns aren't as easy as others. Some of them like to be held 24/7 or won’t fall asleep unless they’re incessantly rocked, and by the time you think it’s safe to stop rocking, they’re up again. But newborns are usually tiny, which means you can pop them in a carrier or wrap (as long as it’s newborn-ready) and just go about your day baby wearing.
With the liberty of a baby wearing, you can do your house chores, spend time with older kids, and do everything you need to do while your hands are free to hold your phone and play Candy Crush or catch up on the group chat that you haven’t had time to ready since the baby was born. You can do all this and more while the baby is sound asleep, or just enjoy the bond between baby and mamma. Here's a bonus, according to KellyMom, it can reduce colic!
Now, try that with an older baby or a young toddler who refuses to stay still! Not only do they weigh a couple dozen pounds or more — I mean, hopefully not that much, but you get the idea. They also like to explore by themselves. For them, being attached to mom (or dad) is definitely not their favorite of moments. Have you ever held a 8-months old who just learned how to roll over? It's like holding an energizer bunny! And wait until they start crawling!
9 Newborns Don't Talk Back
As you may or may not remember from your teenage years, you probably used to talk back to your parents, teachers, caregivers, the cashier at Walmart, and anyone who would even dare say “hi” to you. Don’t try to deny it, we all did it at one point or another.
By the time your newborn turns 11 or 12, the annoying “mama, mama, mama” phase will (hopefully) be over, but in comes the “you can’t tell me what to do” phase, which is an issue all on its own.
Your sweet newborn doesn’t have a clue about life, just that you’re the greatest thing to have ever happened to them.
You’re the one with the milk producing bits or the scoops of formula. You're the one that smells like mommy and smiles back just by making eye contact. You're the one that makes everything better when they are sad, cold, hungry, or tired, which are all main reasons as to why newborns cry, according to Dr. Sears from Ask Dr. Sears.
However, before you know it, you’re the mean old lady who wouldn’t let them go out in shorts in 10 degree weather. You're also the one who won't allow them to have crackers for lunch or skip school to finish the video game level they just started. Needless to say, suddenly dad is their favorite, and they start talking back well, basically for the rest of their lives. So enjoy the silence while it lasts!
8 Newborns Don't Throw Tantrums
As much as your newborn may cry or want to feed again (even though it's only been 10 minutes since the last time they were fed,) they will never, ever be as bad as a toddler or preschooler throwing a tantrum — especially if said tantrum is being thrown in public.
When you don’t have kids, or only have a newborn, it’s easy to judge other parents who have screaming children and parents who just can't calm down their child. I know because I used to be one of those women who thought how terrible the parents must be behind closed doors if they were acting like that in public.
But, of course, as my own children left the newborn stage and were apparently possessed by a horrifying version of themselves, they started throwing tantrums left and right. It didn’t matter if we were at the grocery store, at the park, at church, at home, at the airport, on an actual airplane, at a restaurant… they would throw the loudest tantrum ever.
Since I know people around me will judge, just as I did before, whenever a tantrums happens, I try to go to a place where they won’t be heard as much, and just let them cry it out — even though you're not supposed to care about what other people think, according to Ask Dr. Sears. Because the alternative is buying them the family size bag of candy that they really want and you don’t negotiate with little terrors.
So, while newborns might be (slightly) annoying at times, at least they don’t throw tantrums! You're welcome.
7 Newborns Don't Wanna Take A Bite Of Whatever You're Eating
As I write this I’m realizing what a cliché of a mom I am. It’s confession time over here. I’ve always been a big snacker from chips to chocolate and candy. One of my guilty pleasures was eating junk food while watching old reruns of America’s Next Top Model— that was pre-kids, obviously.
Of course, now there’s no time for that. I’ve turned into the mom that has to hide in closets just to grab a bite. And forget about binge-watching anything while binge-eating anything! (I miss you, Tyra.)
I’ve learned that as soon as a bag of chips opens, a piece of chocolate or a bag of candy enters the front door (or the garage door, even) it’s fair game — at least that’s what my kids think.
So, if I really want to eat something, I better be able to finish it on the way back from the store, something similar to what the moms over at ScaryMommy do.
I should see this as a blessing in disguise really, because I can get rid of my mom pooch. But, unfortunately, kids aren't only into junk food. They literally want anything that you're having, except for veggies. It doesn’t matter if they have their own plate of pasta, they want mine.
So now I’ve resorted to basically eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner as I’m cooking it. That way at least I don’t go hungry. But I still hide in a closet from time to time.
6 Newborns Don't Demand To Have Electronics
Here’s the deal, I know I should be running around with them more, playing outside more, doing more crafts, and reading more books, but one can only do so much Play-Doh pasta before wanting to pull her eyes out of their sockets. So I probably resort to more TV time and screen time than what paediatricians recommend (which is around one hour per day for kids 2-5 year old and no TV at all until 2-years old, according to CNN.) My son was almost 3 when he first got a glimpse of what a tablet was. One day, I was home alone with my 3-year-old and my 5-month-old, not exactly an ideal situation. The baby was sick and the husband was out working (or so he says, I still believe he was just trying to escape.) The 3-year-old wanted attention. Unfortunately, with a sick baby who was still breastfeeding round the clock, I had to resort to an alternative situation.
I opened my drawer and there it was- my 6-year-old tablet (so, like 75 in electronic years) that I mostly used for reading while I was feeding the baby in the middle of the night. Without thinking too much about it, I turned it on, downloaded Netflix and put on a movie for my child. And that was the end of that.
Soon after he realized that mommy and daddy had been carrying mini tablets with them all the time, well of course, he just had to have them. So we surrendered our phones during doctor’s appointments, plane rides, long car rides, and… well, you get the drill.
Enjoy your devices while you can, and the lack of animated movies crowding your DVR, Netflix account, and your brain! Because, eventually, you'll be asking your adult friends do you want to build a snowman?
5 Newborns Don't Climb On Things
One of the things I used to worry about the most when my son was born was childproofing. I bought everything from the outlet covers to the little foam corners for the tables, to the straps that anchor furniture to the wall, and I installed everything even before the baby was born. We did the baby proofing 101 recommended by Parents.com.
As luck would have it, my son had absolutely zero interest in anything remotely dangerous -no climbing, no licking the sockets, no opening the medicine cabinet or trying to drink the cleansers. By the time my daughter was born, we had already moved houses 4 times (we like the change) and each piece of childproofing equipment had been left at each of our homes at some point. So, essentially, there was no childproofing for her but we thought we were overreacting with our first anyway.
You don’t need to worry about your newborn climbing on anything other than your girl bits, but it is extremely important to get the bigger furniture pieces anchored to the wall before they start pulling themselves up!
That was, of course, until one day we saw our 16-month-old climbing on top of the TV stand, trying to reach our anchored TV. I think she really wanted to touch Moana or something. That same day, we rushed out to buy everything we had before and childproofed every little nook and cranny of the house.
While we might have exaggerated with babyproofing everything the first time around, we definitely shouldn’t have waited that long the second time around.
4 Newborns Don't Make Outrageous Demands
I mentioned before that the first rule of parenting is to not negotiate with little terrors, but that doesn’t stop them from making the craziest demands. I’ve only been a mom for a little over 4 years and I’ve heard everything from “I don’t wanna go to bed today” to “I’ll run away if you don’t buy me a horse.” Keep in mind, dear readers, he is only 4. And while we do try to offer him acceptable choices, as recommended by PBS.org, things only seem to get worse from there.
See? This is why I’ve been telling you to treasure the precious moments you have with your newborn. Before you realize it, you will be hearing “I’m sleeping outside tonight,” “I’m only having ketchup for dinner,” “I need my own credit card,” “Santa better bring me my PS4 and tickets to the World Cup I asked him for,” “I refuse to board the plane unless you buy me my own." These may sound like exaggerations, but they will come out of their mouth at some point or another.
Just be thankful that you still have a few months before your newborn starts talking, and a couple of years before they actually start demanding anything.
3 Newborns Let You Dress Them However You Like
Ginormous bow? Yes. Matching clothes to dad and older brother? No problem. Pink camouflage tutu with tulle skirt? Bring it on, woman.
So make the most of this time. Buy them all the cutesy outfits, the ones with all the frills and lace. Buy them those tiny cowboy boots you saw with matching hat; a onesie to cheer on your team; a tiny, tiny bikini; an “I’m with stupid” tee, or one of those graphic onesies that say stuff like “mom’s stud or daddy’s little ballerina.” Buy them all the flowers, all the bows, all the cute, frilly socks, all the sailor outfits, all the costumes — including the pumpkin one because, classic…
Newborns don’t care what ridiculous outfits you put on them, they’ll still think you’re the best thing to ever happen to them — and to be fair, you are.
Otherwise, one day you’ll walk in their room to find them dressed with completely mismatched clothes that may include a skirt over jeans, pink cowboy boots, a tee full of glitter and a ski jacket — in July. Another possibility is that they’ll refuse to take off the princess costume or the Batman outfit for the next 3 days. You might think this is an exaggeration, but I can assure you, it’s definitely real. Still, it is important to let kids express themselves through their own clothes, according to Parent.com, so I guess there's no talking him out of that fourth consecutive week of shorts and rain boots.
2 Newborns Don't Prefer McDonald's To The Delicious Homemade Soup
Ugh, this is actually the worst. I’m not a great cook by any means. In fact, I am a very picky eater, so I’m sure I’m somehow being punished for hating every single thing my mom ever tried to feed me other than steak and pasta (I’m fancy like that.) Since I’m a picky eater, I don’t cook with a lot of ingredients — so you’d think my food is so plain that the kids would love it. But NOPE!
I’m lucky if my 4-years old and 18- months old wants to eat whatever I cook. If daddy cooks it, they’re fine — most of the time, anyway — but with me, I’m lucky if I get them to eat three bites of anything other than spaghetti with just butter. I've tried everything recommended by the American Heart Association for dealing with a picky eater, and so far, nothing.
The issue here is that it wasn’t always this way. A few months ago, my toddler ate everything. She’s always been a great eater since she was a newborn, and would go through bottles and purees, and everything else in her way in an instant. Now, she only shakes her head “no,” as I try to put the spoon near her mouth, and if I keep trying, the head shakes are even more violent.
The beauty of a newborn is not only that they don’t care who cooks, but also that you don’t have to crack your head finding new recipes for them to just fork-feed the dog your meatballs.
1 Newborns Give The Best Snuggles
There’s nothing better than newborn snuggles. Seriously. Nothing better. Stop looking for something better, because you won't find it. They are so tiny and helpless that thing they want to do is lay on your chest. Let’s stop for a second to realize just how precious and adorable that is. Every time you’re annoyed that the baby is “crying again” or that you haven’t had much sleep, or that they've gone through 3 diapers in 10 minutes, or that you haven’t been able to eat or shower in days - STOP. Breathe, sit back and relax for a minute or two and think about how amazing it is that you helped create that tiny little thing.
Newborn snuggles are not only adorable because they really enjoy them, but also because they are not big enough to kick you in the head as they’re sound asleep.
And can we take a second to talk about their baby smell? Where does that even come from? According to Women's Health magazine, one possibility is that it comes from the baby's sweat glands. It’s like this intoxicating smell that all newborns have. You just need to smell the top of their head to make any day better.
I’ve said enough throughout this list to make the most out of the newborn stage because it’s the easiest, and it truly is. But, even though the next stages to come are not as easy, they are the most rewarding. So keep it up, mamma! The best is yet to come.
References: BabyCenter.com, TheTelegraph.co.uk, NewKidsCenter.com, MayoClinic.com, BabyCenter.com, KellyMom.com, AskDrSears.com, AskDrSears.com, ScaryMommy.com, CNN.com, Parents.com, PBS.org, Parents.com, Heart.org, WomensHealthMag.com