When people find out you're pregnant, they're more than willing to hand out parenting advice – whether you want it or not. But in some instances, the tips they give is more helpful than you could have ever imagined.
Sure, you're going to go out and buy all the pregnancy books you can, probably as soon as you start taking your prenatal vitamins, but sometimes there's nothing like a few tips here and there from the people who matter most.
It's never too early in your pregnancy to hear a few words of advice, especially since becoming a mother can be an overwhelming time in your life and leave you feeling like you can't even hear yourself think.
Here are some tips you'll be glad you had when that time comes around:
Don't schedule appointments on Monday: When planning ahead for your well visits, never schedule them on a Monday because that's when you can expect to see all those that were sick over the weekend in the office.
Be sure to buy a reusable water bottle: Keeping a water bottle around is a good idea for moms who are nursing. In order to produce the milk you need to keep baby satisfied you have to be getting plenty of fluids, and a reusable water bottle is an inexpensive, environmentally friendly way to do so.
Talk to other moms and strangers: Other people love babies and they're probably going to come up to you while you're walking around the grocery store to see your bundle of joy. You'll also see other moms who have babies that are the same age as yours so let them interact – it's also really cute to see how babies look at each other.
Believe it or not, they will stop crying: It can be really hard to believe that your baby will stop crying eventually. This is especially true on those nights after three straight hours of non-stop screaming leading up to 2 a.m., but they will. Have your partner take over for a little while so you can get away or call a loved one to see if they can watch the baby so the both of you can get out of the house.
Don't compare yourself, or your baby, to others: This one can be a little difficult. In a world where beauty and self worth are often attributed to how we look on the outside, remember that the baby weight isn't going to melt off. Of course you'll drop some serious pounds right after baby is born, but the rest will take some work. You should also remember not to compare your baby's development to your friends' babies. These little creatures develop at their own pace and just because your baby isn't crawling by eight months doesn't mean she isn't going to at all.
Don't forget to take care of yourself: When you're taking care of a newborn, you may sometimes forget to care for yourself. Believe us, a few days may pass by before you realize that you can't remember the last time you showered or ate. Don't let this become too common – make time for yourself to shower, eat a hot meal and even get out of the house to be alone. Just because you're a mom now doesn't mean that you have to devote all of your time to taking care of your little one with no regards for yourself. Don't torture yourself by setting impossible hurdles, and you should most definitely never skip out on going to the bathroom when you've got to pee!
You know what's best for your baby: Be sure not to judge your parenting style against other moms. Each mother out there knows what's best for her baby, so don't look down on her or think that the rest of the world is scrutinizing all of the things that you do for your little one.
Parenthood has its extremes: There will be times when you're extremely frustrated. There will also be moments when you think it's impossible to feel anymore love for your baby. Of course you'll feel guilty about the times you were frustrated when you see them sleeping peacefully.
You're doing the best you can: Always remember that you're doing the best you can with parenthood. There's no perfect way to raise a child and you just have to take it one day at a time.
Want to share some words of advice your family and friends have offered? Join in the discussion below!