7 surprises parents discover in baby’s first year

Startling things new parents wish someone had alerted them to before baby arrived…

No matter how extensively you’ve prepped for this life-changing event, or how ready you think you are to handle an infant, caring for a new baby always catches new parents off guard.

You will be thrown head-first into this unknown world where you will encounter many unexpected situations and emotions you just haven’t prepared for. Read on to discover some of the surprises you’re in for!

1.      You might not fall in love with your baby immediately
We’re all too familiar with that labour ward scene in movies where a new mum bursts into tears of joy when the nurse passes her that little squirming bundle to cradle. While it’s true most parents will be thrilled to meet their tiny baby after gruelling hours of labour, don’t panic if you don’t feel this way! Everyone reacts differently, and it is perfectly normal not to feel excitement when you are exhausted, sweaty and sticky from hours of labour. Give it a few days hours (or days)...

2.      How much you can love another person
You’ll also be surprised at how intensely you can love someone you have only just met. You are willing to give up everything just to see him happy and healthy, and how fiercely you want to protect him. You’ll realise just why it’s said that there’s nothing stronger than a parent’s love for their child.

3.      You might not always feel happy
You might be psyched into believing that motherhood is a blissful experience, and that you should feel happy 24/7 with your child. But the reality is, it’s not easy having to suddenly make room in your life for that demanding little someone, so it is okay to feel down and stressed sometimes. It is extra hard when your little sprout starts crying and fussing. No matter how many parenting books you have read, it is natural to feel lost sometimes. We are all humans after all. But don’t worry, things will get better after a while, especially when you get used to having an extra person counting on you.

However, if you are still feeling down and depressed three weeks after delivery, make sure to check with your doctor that you are not suffering from postpartum depression.

It’s not easy having to suddenly make room in your life for that demanding little someone, so it is okay to feel down and stressed sometimes.

4.      You’ll get nervous and fret over the simplest things
What if I’m not good enough to be a parent? What if my baby is too warm, or too cold? What if I can’t earn enough to support my family? Oh no, baby just sneezed. Has bubba got a lung infection? What if my baby grows up to be a brat?

When you start worrying about everything under the sun ― your parenting abilities, your baby’s health, your financial status, and even ridiculous things like what if your kid hates your favourite food, all this overthinking can drive you up the wall. It might not be easy, but try not to stress out over small little things. Take breaks during the day to calm down and relax, and make sure to take care of your own health, too.

Click through for three more surprises to look out for in your first year as a parent…