New Year’s resolutions: the new parent edition

Some of you will be ringing in 2017 as brand new parents — congratulations! This year will undoubtedly bring huge changes in your life and the life of your baby. New Year’s Eve will likely be very different this year than last, maybe even somewhat strange and surreal. My husband and I divide our life into BC and AC — “before children” and “after children” — because life truly is never the same once you are responsible for another human being.

So in the spirit of New Year’s Resolutions, here are a few for Bundoo’s newest parents!

Prioritize your own health! It may seem noble to put your little one’s comfort and wellness at the very top of your to-do list, but your health needs to be a close second. After all, you have become the center of your family’s well-being. Get a physical, make sure your own immunizations are up to date, and treat your body well. Parents cannot live on caffeine alone, so make an effort to incorporate healthy foods into your day. This does not have to be complicated. Starting the day with an apple (and some coffee) is just as easy as starting it without. Add whole fruits and veggies into every meal for an instant health benefit.

Pay attention to your mental health. Being a new parent is stressful. Addiction issues, depression, anxiety, and marital strife are unlikely to improve after adding a child into the mix. If you are experiencing addiction, depression, anxiety, or the like, please seek help. There is ample scientific evidence that the mental health of mothers and fathers directly impacts their young children. If you had strep throat, you’d seek an antibiotic. If you suffer from mental illness, seek a cure.

Life passes so quickly … resolve to slow down one day each week. Set aside work, social obligations and just spend time with your partner and your child. Go for a long walk, lie on the floor and play, turn off the TV and smart phones, and relax. Reconnect with your child by slowing down and observing their rhythm. Modern life moves so quickly and we often force our babies into that pace; slowing down once a week is a gift to your child. This is not easy and involves planning and preparation, but it is so worth it.

Form a network of trusted resources, then drown out the static. This one is tough. New parents are bombarded with information — so much that it can feel impossible to keep up. Find a pediatrician you trust and turn to them with questions. Use the web wisely and turn to one or two trusted sites for parenting and wellness information. Do not post questions about wellness, illness, or the like on social media — the information there is confusing, contradictory, and often wrong. Ignore the advice of well-meaning people who are not experts in what they preach. Smile and nod, and then take your queries to your doctor. You have no time to sift out what is correct from what is not.

Here at Bundoo.com we will continue answer your questions with well-written, factual articles. We look forward to engaging with you this year and hope that you know we are here for you. Our plans this year include expanding our library of articles beginning with pregnancy planning and leading you right through the first several years of your child’s life. We will focus on wellness and disease prevention and include topics on development, behavior, and mental health. We wish you all the best in 2017!

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