Valorie Burton: It's this simple. Having a baby changes everything, and every parent can tell you that, that bundle of joy comes with a bundle of new responsibilities and challenges for expecting parents. Being proactive and learning what to expect can go long way to a smoother and less surprising journey.
Every woman knows there will be obvious changes in their body, or at least their belly, but others can catch them off guard. For instance, pregnancy can mean saying goodbye to a good night sleep, and yes, you may be eating for two, but many women find their favorite food suddenly unappetizing, replaced by out of the ordinary cravings.
Having a baby also leads to learning new skills for you and your spouse, like mastering car seat installation or even changing diapers. In fact, learning to properly care for a baby leads to a whole new list of do's and don'ts. Here is one must have on your do list, find help. Many hospitals offer classes that cover numerous aspects of baby preparation, safety and care. Let's talk to other parents you can confide in.
Having someone that can offer advise and answer questions makes a huge difference. Preparing for parenthood is an exhilarating mix of joy, anticipation and anxiety. Just like your baby gradually grows and learns, so will you. It's all about taking baby steps.