When I was a little girl, my family was blessed enough to have my mom stay home to raise us. She took us to school, she was there when we came home. She took us to go to our friend's house or whatever activity we were in at the time. It wasn't until my brothers and I were in school that she went back to work. Luckily enough my mom got a job at the school so she would be at home by the time we were done for the day.

This summer I was blessed enough to have my first child, Riley. She has been the light of my life and to be honest I do not know what life was like before her. My husband has made it possible for me to stay at home with her. It is something I have always wanted. To see everything she does and be her biggest fan.

When I got pregnant with her I didn't anticipate all the hard work raising our little girl would entail. Being a first-time mom you think of all the great moments you will capture and day-dream about who she will look like and all the great things having a baby does to your life.

1. SLEEP

What I didn't realize is how I will never sleep fully again. Probably EVER. When you first bring your baby home it is rough. You are up every 3-4 hours feeding, burping, changing and rocking back to sleep. By the time you get the baby to bed and you lie back down the baby is up again. It is so hard to adjust to becoming a zombie but somehow you make it through. As your baby gets older like my daughter is 4 months, I got her sleeping through the night. It is wonderful, but I still wake up to check on her to make sure she's alive and well. I think once you become a Mom you a programmed to worry 24/7.

2. FIND A ROUTINE

As best you can and for your own sanity try to find a routine. I started giving my daughter a bath every night around the same time. I think now she knows that once she gets her bath and nurses one more time it is time for bed. Even in the mornings, I have a little routine with her to help me get things done and help her get satisfied. It doesn't have to make sense to anyone but yourself.

3. COMMUNICATE WITH YOUR SPOUSE

I learned this the hard way. I was so emotional after having my daughter that I felt like I cried at everything. I cried at commercials to my dog sneezing it was just crazy. What I didn't do was communicate fully with my husband. There were times that I thought in my head he should just know what to do and when he didn't do it I would get so mad at him. I felt like he should read my mind. That is so unrealistic and unfair. The more I told him what I needed from him to do for me the more he did it. It was a magical thing.

4. RECOVER

Whether you have a vaginal birth or c-section take care of yourself. I had to have a c-section and the recovery time felt like it took forever. It was very painful and the stitches hurt very much. I was lucky enough that my husband helped me do everything from go to the bathroom to help me out of bed in the middle of the night to feed the baby. Do not feel like you have to be superwoman. Having a baby is so beautiful and you want to do everything for that baby but make sure you give your body enough healing time.


5. MAKE TIME FOR YOUR SPOUSE

As hard as it is having a baby make sure you take time for your spouse still. Both of you are adjusting to having a baby in the house. You both are tired getting up to feed or change the baby and its hard on both of you. Make sure to tell him you love him every day. How thankful you are for his help. Make sure to just let him know how much you love him and are grateful for him. He will feel left out and won't know what to do unless you tell him and reassure him.

Being a first-time mom really puts things into perspective. You never understood what your mom would mean when she would say things like "You will always be my baby". It is true I am forever grateful to my mom who spent the majority of her life caring for us. The sacrifices she and my dad made, she stayed home every day to take care of us and the years she went without so we could. I know what she meant. I would give anything so my baby will be happy. I will do anything to see that happen. Being a first time mom or a mom in general is the most amazing thing in the world. Its the greatest gift. Just remember to remember all the little things and cherish them if you are blessed enough to stay home with your little one.