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newborns

We're all winging it: the trials and tribulations of the first six weeks from someone who's heard it all

15/09/2021

A picture-perfect first six weeks with your newborn is what we all dream of, but sometimes the reality is far from it. The fourth trimester can be a challenging time and especially with your firstborn, everybody wants to give you their advice.

Guidance can be helpful – but when everyone has a different way of parenting and you’re trying to find out what works for you it can become a minefield. Not to mention having to deal with sleep deprivation and roaring hormones on top of it all!

Here, first-time mum Jordyn Gregory, host of Kiwi Birth Tales podcast and founder of her latest venture Your Birth Project, gives us an insight on the highs, the lows and everything in between along with her top tips for getting through those early weeks.

Self-care – what’s that?

It’s probably the most over-looked part of being a parent, but it’s so important. Everyone has those days where they feel really crap and inhuman, and often it’s a sign of needing ‘you’ time – whether that’s going for a walk, doing your skincare, eating well, drinking enough or just going for a drive to clear your head. Self-care means something different to everyone but it’s important to set non-negotiables with yourself and your partner. Just know that it’s perfectly fine in those first few weeks to put your baby down for 15 minutes (in sight) so you can have a wash!

Babywearing is A-OK

Never feel guilty for babywearing! Put bubs in a sling or carrier around the house - it will buy you those extra few minutes in the day to tackle any jobs you can bring yourself to do – whether that’s a pile of unfolded laundry, tidying a messy lounge or sorting a sink full of dishes. Also remember to pick your battles in those first few weeks and know that ticking one thing off the list a day is better than none. Remember that if there are two of you living in a space, you’re a team and live in it equally – sometimes you need to ask or lean on your partner to pick up the slack so you can focus on your baby. If a clean house keeps your mind at peace – invest in a stick vacuum that can be left in the lounge, you won’t regret it.

Enjoy the (not-so) guilty pleasures

Whether it’s breastfeeding treats, hours of reality TV or freezer meals – lap it all up and don’t feel guilty for doing so. The postnatal period is a whirlwind so take it slowly and don’t cave to the pressure of feeling guilty for doing absolutely nothing. Instead focus on your biggest task – caring for your baby. This might mean indulging in products for little one that you won’t feel guilty about, a real favourite of mine are the new biodegradable WaterWipes, gentle on the most sensitive skin and better for the planet.

Emotionally charged, sleep deprived talk is real

Stressed, emotionally charged and sleep deprived disagreements with your partner or those around you can be common when you’re not on the same page or you’re not feeling like yourself. We’re all guilty of nearly storming out just before dinner for maximum dramatic effect. The key is having the right conversations with your partner before your baby arrives so you can plan how you’ll tackle the unknowns such as breastfeeding, a potential colic baby and night feeds.

Thank you, next

Parenting 101 – take advice with a grain of salt. Everybody has an opinion and a story to tell however it’s your choice what you do with that information. It’s okay to tell others to mind their own business or politely say ‘thanks for your feedback’. Every baby is different, so it’s about finding what’s right for you even if it takes you a few (too many!) tries. There is value in hearing other mums’ experiences but go with your gut and trust your instinct – it’s the strongest intuition and often the one that’s right.

Jordyn Gregory is a first-time mum, soon-to-be second and the host of the popular podcast series, Kiwi Birth Tales. Having interviewed over 130 parents about their individual birth stories, she’s listened and witnessed experiences of families of all backgrounds. She’s also the founder of Your Birth Project a practical hypnobirthing course available to expecting mothers globally, helping women feel empowered, confident and informed ahead of labour and birth.

The opinions and viewpoints expressed by the author in this guide does not necessary reflect the views of WaterWipes and is intended as a general information resource. If you have any concerns about your baby, please consult a specialist or Healthcare Professional.

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