Five Top Tips, For First Time Mums

Updated: Jan 14

One of the things I love to do is chat with my beautiful mama clients about how they are travelling - really travelling, in those first few weeks of having a newborn baby.

I remember what it was like {albeit 9 years ago} to feel like there was 65 spinning balls in the air I had to juggle on zero sleep, sore everything & feeling like I could never get enough water to drink.

So, as a seasoned first time mum myself, here are five top tips for looking after yourself after having your first baby.

1. Get Organised

First things first, have your partner help you in gathering everything you need close by. Things like snacks, bottles of water, nappies, wipes, cloth nappies, phone, remote controls, air conditioning remotes, tissues, socks and a warm blanky.

I recently went into an in-home session with a very organised first time mama, who had bought a small IKEA roller trolley (in the bathroom section of the store) that she had ingeniously filled with all these things. So, when she moved into the lounge, she rolled it with her. Bedroom? Same thing. It was a really clever idea. Because when you are in the middle of cluster-feeding chaos, the last thing you want to be doing is getting up every 5 minutes for something. Trust me, you will need something every 5 minutes!

Also, set up your phone chargers at various points around the house so you are always ready to share that little smile or tiny baby toes on the gram.

2. Find Your Zen

The person who thinks you can automatically sleep when baby sleeps must of been a husband because I know that this was the hardest thing as a first time mum I tried to do. When you are literally running on adrenaline, and are over tired it is near impossible to switch your brain off. If your baby was anything like mine, you would be lucky to get a 20 minute nap in anyhow.

So, find your zen. For me, I found an app {you can also find similar on YouTube} called "Yoga Nidra". Basically this is a meditative relaxation exercise which you listen to a comforting voice take you through a body scan. A 15 min Yoga Nidra can comfort your mind and body faster than trying to force yourself to sleep. Shop around to find a voice your find comforting here's a place to start: Yoga Nidra For New Mothers

Sometimes, I would put my headphones on and listen to some Bi-Aural Beats Sleep Music. The brain slips into Delta waves at the lowest point of sleep, and the music has an underlying tone of 3.4Hz which is said to replicate this frequency. I know this sounds a bit woo woo, but trust me this with a scented candle will help calm your frazzled mind. This is my favourite one here.

Back in those days I found a forum called the "What To Expect When You're Expecting" on Facebook which was a bunch of new mums in Melbourne that would share and ask questions about their experiences. This was an absolute lifesaver - the link should work to bring up a first time mums in Melbourne group you can look into. You will be put into a local Mothers Group at 6 weeks, which was also a lifesaver for me. Women supporting women going through similar experiences, coffee meet ups and just someone to talk to.

3. Essential Oils

These were life changing for me. My top three I used on an everyday basis were:

- Ylang Ylang, which is good for your heart, emotions and anxiety

- Lavender, which is soothing calming, anti-bacterial / viral & a staple for baby bath time

- Clary Sage, which its woody, centering scent helped me feel more grounded when I was having an attack of the blues or walking around like a zombie.

You can splurge and get the DoTerra brands of oils, but I loved the ones Nadine makes up in the Dandenong Hills in Emerald here. They also lasted for 5 years as I bought the bigger bottles. Keep your oils out of direct sun, dab neat on your wrist, in your bath, a few drops on the shower floor before a hot shower, on your pillow, in a diffuser - I put them everywhere and anywhere.

If using lavender for baby - dilute with a carrier oil like olive / coconut oil.

If your really want to treat yourself, or a first time mama - a small bottle of Rose Bulgaria 100% is the most uplifting scent you will own. Its expensive, as over 30,000 petals go into one 5ml bottle - but so so worth it.

4. Take Your Time

One of the things I love the most about my clients with Indian heritage, is meeting their nanu and nani! The grandparents will travel for miles from India to help assist the new first time mum for the first few months of babies life. Its so special to see the community of people around this new little baby and the load of cooking, cleaning etc really shared amongst the group. The new mama was able to take her time to re-appear back into the world.

As a Kiwi girl, having my first time mum experience here in beautiful Melbourne I had limited family here to help - so I understand that sometimes you might not have access to family close by. If you don't, you will need to take your time too.

If you do have people wanting to visit, it's ok to say no or suggest a time that suits you. It's also really ok to perhaps ask if they might pick up some groceries or help you with a few things around the house. People LOVE to help first time mums.

Embrace whatever community you have! If you are slim on the community side because you have moved to another country or town perhaps - hire yourself some help. Take a chunk of that baby bonus and invest in cleaner to help with the house, a home masseuse to come and give your feet a rub, order Coles or Woolies online and allow a nice gentleman to bring your some groceries. There is help all around you, and people love to be of service. It is a good feeling for them and for you new mama. Re-appear in the world when you are ready.

5. You Are Enough

When you become a first time mother, it's like a little switch comes on - worrying about if you are doing 'enough' being good 'enough' losing weight fast 'enough' spending 'enough' time with your family / partner, taking 'enough' time off etc etc etc.

It's called the 'Mother Guilts' and please just know - you are not alone if you feel this way. Unfortunately, I really don't feel that first time mums, or second & third, single or not are really supported in the way of some other cultures. It can sometimes feel that all your decisions are wrong, the way you raise your kids is wrong, even if it feels right to you. From the moment after the delivery, we are faced with a series of conflicting messages.

In my case, it was 3 different midwives, telling me three different ways to get my newborn baby to sleep in the hospital just hours after her birth. I paced up and down the ward, which I was told was wrong, had her next to me in the bed - wrong! Then next to me in the cot - which my baby thought was wrong too. I think it was the beginning of a trail of mixed messages from the outside that led to me second guessing and comparing myself to others.

If I could go back and tell my 30 year old first time mum self to meditate, and learn to trust my gut & keep what I was doing to myself a bit more it might of eased the mother load a bit in my weary mind.

I really enjoyed the book "Down to Earth" a Guide To Simple Living and actually have it at my editing desk right now. Learning to keep things simple, can really help you get through the first few months of being a first time mother. You have the universe in your womb, and have birthed life. You are a SoulMama and a goddess. That is enough.

With Love Always,

Sera xo

Drop a comment below if you have any tips you would like to share with your first time mum community!


Sera Williamson is an Ararat based family photographer that specialises in maternity and newborn photography for first time parents.

She has been working as a professional newborn and baby photographer for 9 years, in various studios and within her own business as an in-home baby photographer.

Recently, Soul Mama Photography has relocated taking the popular in-home newborn photography to the Wimmera Region, 3377 Victoria - at the foot of the Pyrenees Wine Region!

Sera travels for mobile Newborn Photography and Outdoor Maternity Photography and & is serving the Ararat, Warrak, Beaufort, Moyston, Stawell, Pyrenees, Wimmera, Elmhurst, Ballarat and some Grampions areas and has been called the best Newborn Photographer in Victoria.

To book or enquire about a Pyrenees maternity photoshoot or In-home newborn photoshoot enquire here!

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