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I became a single mom four years ago, and there were a lot of things I didn’t know about parenting that I now know. I had support from my family and friends, and I devoured every article and piece of advice I could get my hands on. But in the midst of this, I failed to trust my instincts at times and it led to a lot of frustration for me. Around the same time, I was searching for work-from-home opportunities while revamping my blog. If you’re a new single mom, I am writing this to encourage and assist you in the new journey.
It’s Okay to Not Be Okay
As a new single mom, you’ll experience a range of emotions and sometimes you will not feel good emotionally.There will be times when your insecurities get the best of you, and you doubt yourself on some days. Maybe your child’s father has refused his responsibilities and you’re furious about it. It’s okay to feel that way too because his actions are not right. Or you’re being judged by family members or society, and you can’t stand it. You know that you’re doing your best but they disagree with your choices. Just know that with time, it will get better as you heal from those tough wounds. In fact, you’ll come out wiser and stronger as a mom.
Reach Out Often
My prideful attitude would sometimes cause me to not accept the help I was offered when I first became a mom. I believed foolishly that I could do it all, and I wanted to prove this to everyone. Over time however, I gradually realized that I needed a strong support system to get through those first few months of motherhood. If your relatives and friends want to help in any way, let them do it. Your dad might want to babysit your child while you take a good nap. Or your cousins might decide to bring freezer meals and clean up around the house.
Set a Flexible Routine
With a newborn, you’ll probably be up well into the overnight hours for feedings and comforting in general. It’s also important to know that newborns often confuse nightttime and daytime. As the newborn enters the older infant stage, this calls for the necessity of a flexible routine throughout the day so that he can distinguish between those times. Observe the times when your baby wakes up, when he naps, and when he falls asleep at night. This serves as your guide when deciding on a routine. If your baby usually wakes up around 8 a.m., then this can be the set time for starting your day together. Keep in mind that there will be times when your baby has a mind of his own as he grows. In addition, you might need to adjust your schedule periodically.
Make Time for Yourself
While caring for your baby, you don’t want to neglect self-care. I let myself go a little after becoming a mom, and as a result, I poured from an empty cup. My stress levels were higher, I was easily frustrated, and I burned out eventually. Nowadays, I’ve gotten better with taking good care of myself. While the baby naps,you can take a short relaxing shower or prepare your favorite meal for lunch. While feeding your baby, you can pray or watch some fun Youtube videos.
For many years, I was not the most organized person. But once I became a mom, I knew I had to step up my game in this area. You want to have a binder or folder where you maintain your baby’s birth certificate, child support order, custody agreement, your baby’s medical documents, and any other important documents. This comes in handy when you apply for services such as state child care vouchers or when it’s time to enroll your child in preschool. Have a designated area in the baby’s room for feeding supplies, diapers, everyday clothing, pajamas, and baby books.
Get a Financial Plan in Place
It’s no secret that parenting comes with high price tags, so it is vital that you plan ahead financially. You don’t have to go into debt to train for a new career. I have a short ebook titled Reinvent Your Career Debt-Free: Your Frugal Guide to Starting a New Chapter in Your Professional Life. This book can be purchased on Amazon, and it goes into low-cost methods of entering a new field. I also have some posts written on ways to earn money from home. These are:
It’s also important that you have an emergency fund in place as well as retirement savings. This reduces your need to go into debt for financial emergencies, and you’re able to plan for the day when you’ll no longer be employed. Determine your wants from your needs when shopping, and always look out for sales.
You Will Be Victorious
In spite of the emotional or financial struggles you face as a new single mom, know that you are doing an amazing job. You won’t be defeated forever and you will come out on top. You can win at single parenting, even when it doesn’t look like the way others think it should be.
Don’t Worry About Having a Pristine Home
As a new mom, you’re focusing mainly on meeting your baby’s needs and maintaining your sanity. Accept the fact that your home won’t look spotless during the first few months of the baby’s life. As you get settled into a regular routine, you’ll be able to clean in such a way that your home will look reasonably tidy. Give yourself grace regarding the neatness of your home.
Infant Carriers are Your Friend
For the days when you need to take the baby out for awhile, you should purchase an infant carrier because this makes your outings a little easier. Infant carriers are also helpful when you need to do cooking and housework while still tending to your baby.
In conclusion, life as a new single mom won’t always be easy. But with support and determination, you can thrive and create a healthy environment for your baby.