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Adefolake: 7 Lessons I Have Learned As A First Time Mum

It has been seven glorious months of being a mum to the amazing Oshea and I would not change it for anything. He is a breath of fresh air and definitely keeps me on my toes. I am no motivational speaker or orator but I believe sharing these lessons as a first time mum will help a new mom or a mom-to-be.

Lesson 1: Prayer is the Key

I know someone is wondering how this is a new lesson but trust me, I learned to pray in different ways. There is a song we used to sing growing up, “Prayer is the key, prayer is the key. Prayer is the master key, Jesus started with prayer and ended with prayer, prayer is the master key”. I tell you there are so many moments I just look up and say ‘God help me’. You know when the Bible says in season and out of season, that is prayer. No matter how much support one has from mothers and grandmothers, find comfort in speaking with God during those tough days.


Lesson 2: Never throw away the baby and the bathwater

The first few days were tough, not because of the process of giving birth and the reasons most people think. It was the continuous advice, from family, friends, and church members. Some were just plain ridiculous and some were really helpful. But I usually just smiled, nodded, and accepted whatever they said because I have learned never to throw away the baby and the bath water meaning throw the bath water and keep the baby. This implies that you take the important comments and trash the ones that you perceive are wrong or not applicable.


Lesson 3: Accept help

I do not have a problem accepting help from close friends and family but having Oshea has taught me to accept help from even strangers. Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying leave your child with a stranger or something but I will give one or two instances I learned to accept help. There have been times I am struggling in church and someone I have never spoken to offered help or gave a piece of advice. A good example is when Oshea’s skin was changing, someone suggested I use a particular product as opposed to the one I knew babies use. I changed to the new product and it worked like magic. Another instance is when he was going to start solids. I always knew baby food had to be mashed and smooth initially but I didn’t know there was such a thing as baby rice or baby porridge.


Lesson 4: Update your information storehouse

On a number of instances, my mum and I saw things differently not because she was wrong or I was right, it was because we are from two different times, different countries of childbirth. I had to do my research and ask the midwives and several people that gave birth in the UK to make sure I was up to date. Anything I was not sure of, I either researched or asked someone, I never assumed it should be how my mum had it decades ago or how it is in Nigeria. I remember someone advising that my baby should stay in his Bassinet in our room for six months. When my son turned four months, I noticed he was waking up frequently at night, I did a little research and saw the reason might be because the bassinet is too small for him and he needs to move into his cot bed. Need I tell you more, he started sleeping better. It does not mean the person that advised me was wrong, it means the information they had was generic and I had to do my research to get the one that suited my situation.


Lesson 5: Stand your ground

The first few weeks, I would let everyone and anyone carry him because I was trying to be polite. As time went on, I had to quickly nip it in the bud. But I still would change my mind from time to time until I let a teenage girl hold him and she held him wrong, that he almost fell down and not only that; he brought out his food after. That was the last day I let any young person hold him. I have learned to stand my ground, I politely find a way to say no. I am still learning this but I am definitely better than before.


Lesson 6: Do not compromise on certain essentials

‘He is a baby, he will not know if you buy cheap products, clothes, toys, etc.’ Yes and No. before he was born, I bought certain things I promised myself not to compromise on. His bed, car seat, highchair for feeding, pram, etc because these items would be used frequently and you need them to be durable. Also, with good quality, you are more relaxed about the safety of your child. When you compromise on the essentials, you tend to regret it because you quickly see reasons why people spend so much money on those items. Clothes are essentials but I mean, wherever you buy their clothes from it cannot have a lasting effect on them unlike certain items or products. So I learned not to compromise, and spend that money on what really matters.


Lesson 7: Pray some more

You can never over-pray, it is just not possible. There is a saying my grandmother had,

You pray to marry, then you pray to get pregnant, you pray to delivery safely, then you pray for mother and child to be fine, you pray for the child to grow well, then you pray for him or her to excel in school. You pray for them to graduate, then you pray they get a job, and you pray they get married. The cycle continues”.

You keep praying forever.


And there you have it, the lessons I have learned as a first-time mom. What did you learn your first time as a mum?

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