Having your first child should be a joyous memorable time. There’s a special bond between parents and a child that starts long before birth and lasts a lifetime. It is good to keep that in mind, especially if your new baby’s grandparents are still around. Grandparents, friends, siblings and even strangers can make the time through the birth of your first child a thrill ride of surprises and potential speed bumps. Becoming a parent? Hold on!
The Baby’s Gender
How new parents treat the gender of their new baby has changed, sometimes dramatically through the years. There was a time when parents didn’t know the gender of a child until he or she was born. The technology simply didn’t exist. When it did exist, many still chose not to know. Then there was a period when almost every new parent wanted to know in advance. We’ve recently gone through a period of “gender reveal” celebrations, and now, the trend is turning slightly to keeping gender a mystery once again. This is why you will find resistance no matter how you decide to handle it. Virtually everybody around you has experienced it differently, both good and bad, and they are all experts.
Have You Picked a Name Yet?
Let’s be clear. Unless you are naming the baby after them, most people will not agree with your choice of names for the baby. Oh, and no matter how hard you try, there will still probably be two or three kids with that name in first grade. Some parents address this by keeping potential names close to the vest (not easy for nine months). Others by throwing out multiple options, even if a final decision has been made. Many have found a solution in saying they are waiting to see what the baby looks like first. If you have firmly decided on a name early on, be ready to defend it with reference to your family tree, beloved relatives, your royal lineage, DNA and other evidence that shows you considered all options sufficiently. You’ll still get suggestions.
“Oh, Just Wait Honey…”
Of course, you are not the first to have a baby. What people don’t seem to understand however, that it is STILL special for you. Experiencing back pain in your five months? “Oh, just wait honey…”. Due in August and it is only May? “Oh, just wait honey…” Hit that seventh month and you are just SO ready? “Oh just wait honey…” Your time will come. The trouble is you just have to wait, honey.
“Uh, EXCUSE Me?”
Something odd happens to people when they see a pregnant woman. Subjects that would never be brought up to a stranger in public somehow are no longer off limits. Sex? Bathroom habits? Breastfeeding? Then there are the belly-rubbers. Uh, excuse me?
“You Look Glowing”
It is said that a woman’s blood flow increases by 50% during pregnancy. Scientifically, this causes the blood vessels to plump, smoothing out wrinkles and even helping to create a pinker, fresher appearance. Many refer to this by saying “You look glowing.” Ok, it could be worse. But what about “Radiant”, “Beautiful”, “Adorable”, “Awesome”. When you feel huge, uncomfortable, ill, achy and tired, sometimes all at the same time, “glowing” just ain’t cutting it Becky.
Having a baby is a deeply personal experience. Enjoy the attention and the fact that so many people care. Be respectful, smile, and listen. Then, honey, do it your way.