I recently became a new Dad. It has been one of the coolest experiences every. It has also been one of the hardest things I have ever done. Here is a short list of mixed advice and product suggestions to help you make the transition.
- Sleep deprivation is a powerful thing. I now understand why the CIA uses this as a enhanced interrogation technique. Lack of sleep can really alter your mood and make things much worse than they are. Take turns getting up for changing and feeding your new baby. We traded off every other feeding, but also did many together for “moral” support.
- Buy Pampers. Huggies pretty much suck.
- Go buy the “Happiest Baby on the Block” DVD. These techniques seriously saved us from what was becoming an impossible situation. The tricks worked instantly and we slept well the first night we used the techniques.
- Go buy the Healthy Sleep Habits book. Read it. Super good advice here.
- The Diaper Genie is worth it. The refills can get pricey, but I would not go without this device.
- Not all kids like to be in a swing, so buy one used if you can. We have a standard swing, but are thinking the kid may like a side-to-side swing better.
- If you had a premie, adjust their age when you read about any advice. This was a huge frustration for us. We never quite knew if the developmental milestones we read about could be applied to our daughter since she was 5-weeks early. If your baby is 3 months old, but was born two months early, his adjusted age is 1 month.
- Our kid was fussy. No question about it. What finally worked was stuffing her full of food during day and swaddling the crap out of her for naps. It is true what they say, if your kid is fussy it is probably due to needing a diaper change or they are hungry.
- If they are already fussy and crying, you’ve missed your opportunity. Catch them BEFORE this happens, and they will go down to sleep much easier for you. Look for the signs of heavy eyes or a calm baby doing the 1,000 yard stare. This means they are ready to nap. Do it quick when you see this and you’ll be amazed how quick they fall asleep and stay asleep.
- Don’t play the game of trying to keep your kid awake longer to wear them out. They won’t sleep longer because of it. We tried this and it backfired big time. Keep a consistent feeding schedule as long as you can, but know they will eat when they want to.
- Take home the bottles you get in the nursery and ask for extras. The nipples are the best and don’t leak.
- If you have a summer baby, get lightweight swaddle blankets or swaddle sacks.
- Crying baby in the car seat? Turn your radio to a station of pure static and crank up that white noise.
That’s what I got for you so far. I hope this helps. If you have any other questions, let me know in the comments and I’ll do my best to answer. If you have any suggestions or tips, let’s hear them!