While your newborn baby’s first Christmas is an exciting time for creating memories, it is also normal to have ‘butterflies’ in your stomach wondering how your baby will settle after being cuddled by so many relatives. This is especially true if you are a first-time parent. If you’re travelling somewhere for Christmas you might also wonder how your baby will settle in the car or if you yourself will get any sleep when your newborn is not in their own environment. While all these concerns are normal, you can help overcome any trepidation you may be feeling with a bit of planning. As the saying goes, if you’re calm your baby is likely to be calm. To help, we have put together a few tips as a guide.
Have a quiet Christmas
Socialising is good for the soul, however, if you are worried your family might be overstimulated from the partying, remember it is okay to say no. No excuse is needed, just a simple “thank you and I’m sorry we can’t make it this time” is fine.
Wear your baby
If you can see your baby is getting upset by all the family members who have been eagerly holding her or him, then grab your carrier or baby wrap. The cocoon feeling will help your baby feel safe and it signals to everyone that it’s time for baby to rest now. If you are in a room with no air-conditioning in the hot Australian summer it might not be so practical, so steal some moments away from the festivities for you and your baby to get some rest.
Feed baby alone
Babies find it hard to feed in noisy environments and it might be hard for you to concentrate and relax. Feeding time presents a great opportunity to seek out some alone time.
Prepare for sleep time
Have somewhere for baby to sleep already planned if you are going away. That way you are not worried about that when you get there. Port-a-cots can be purchased from all good baby stores. If there is likely to be noise or the party is being hosted at your own home, consider putting some white noise on in baby’s room.
Take deep breaths
If you are feeling overwhelmed, chances are your baby will sense it. You are their calm, loving space and they need your reassurance. Take some deep breaths or have some moments by yourself to feel centred again. Many people will give you advice about babies or parenting. They mean well but if you need to preserve your energy or don’t feel like defending your views it can be helpful to just say, “what a good idea” and then change the subject.
Soak up the atmosphere
It is your baby’s first Christmas and it is special. Enjoy being in the moment as much as you can. Your baby will be experiencing all the sights and sounds of Christmas for the first time. Enjoy!