What completely neurotic, fussy, overprotective, OTT things did you do as a first-time parent that you wouldn’t dream of doing now?
It’s easily done – as soon as you have a baby you’re suddenly thrust head first into a whole new world, where you have little or no clue what you’re doing and there’s a steep and screamy learning curve, a small margin for error and definitely no instruction book. It’s easy to over think things (I think…right?).
I’m fairly relaxed – well, my husband definitely is – but even so, I look back now on some of the things we did as new parents and kind of cringe. And there’s nothing like second baby perspective to make you realise the error of your first-time ways.
So here are some of mine:
- When Eliza was a newborn we had the heating on full blast, 24 hours a day. It was winter and we did live in a draughty flat, but I’m not sure quite what we thought would happen if the temperature dropped a degree below tropical. My friend came to visit and politely made a comment about the summery atmosphere, as she sat there in a vest top
- More temperature control – we had an electric thermometer on our baby monitor, but I was deeply suspicious that it might not be exactly right. So just on the off-chance it wasn’t I had a separate thermometer propped up against it. And another one in the cot
- I obsessively Googled and diagnosed every possible thing that could be a thing, usually at 3am (don’t ever do this – step away from Dr Google). Without exception all of these ‘things’ turned out to be absolutely nothing
- You know the tiny blister babies get from vaccinations? I worried for ages about Eliza’s. Everyone told me it was fine. So I went to Baby Clinic specifically to ask the Health Visitor about it. She told me it was fine
- I then went back to Baby Clinic the next week after to get a second opinion from a different Health Visitor. Guess what she told me? And guess what? You can’t even see it now
- And my favourite…the first time we left Eliza was when she was six months old, and my parents came up to babysit so we could go to the Olympics. Despite the fact we were only gone for a couple of hours and there was mobile reception even in the remote location of east London, I wrote a six page document outlining everything my mum might possibly need to know about my child, from comforting to feeding and naps. Because clearly my parents had never looked after a baby before.
Oh dear. Anyone else have any shockers?