What I know about babies

This post is part of the baby daze series. In the annual survey I ran last year, when I asked what topics did readers want me to cover, the baby stage came up as a popular one. Over the next month, I will be sharing some of my experiences with babies and some collective wisdom from the readers of Planning With Kids on adjusting and coping with life with a new baby. You can find more posts in this series here.


The biggest thing I learnt about babies through giving birth to our five beautiful children is that every baby in unique. Every mother baby relationship is different and what might work for one baby might not for another. Our first and second son were (and it many ways still are) polar opposites. It took me a few weeks of unsuccessfully trying all the strategies that worked for our first baby on our second child before I realised that I needed to change my behaviour.

I needed to listen to my baby and follow his lead. I needed to try different strategies to calm him down, put him to sleep and interact with him. As I had more babies, I didn’t necessarily become an expert on babies. I became more experienced, but more importantly I became more confident in my parenting skills.

I often tell new parents that they should only do what they feel comfortable with when it comes to looking after their baby. Babies can smell fear! Babies can smell self doubt! Confidence in your parenting skills is super important. You will receive so much advice that your head will spin when you have your first baby. Find sources that resonate with you and the way you want to parent. Listen to lots of advice but filter out the information that doesn’t sit comfortably with you.

The baby stage of a child’s life may not seem to be doing so at the time, but it does go as fast as everyone says. To fully enjoy it you need to make decisions on parenting that will be right for baby and also make you happy.

I started writing this blog in 2008. At the time our fourth child was almost two years old. I kept blogging and then in 2009 we had our last beautiful baby boy. Knowing he was going to be our last baby, during his first year of life I wrote some reflection style posts so I could remember exactly how things were in reality. Time often changes the way we remember things!

I have listed those posts below along with some other baby posts I have written on the blog. If you have a new baby, remember when you read them, this is what worked for us – that doesn’t make it the right way or best way to parent – it is just one way to parent.

Do you have a newborn at the moment? If so how are you going with it all?