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Time Management for New Parents

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  • #31
    Thanks for all of the tips. We are hoping to have several kids so trying to pick up good habits now in the first inning. Will try the behavioral training mentioned in the article. Alot to take in.

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    • #32
      Reading is good. When the child is put to bed, let the wife decide when and if anyone needs to go into the room. Probably the hardest point to both reach the same conclusion at the same time. If she says, “go check on the kid”, just do it. The second will be easier, but different.
      Trust a mother’s intuition.

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      • #33
        Originally posted by GIMD View Post
        We are expecting our first baby anytime now.
        My current schedule: 7:30-5 work, 6-9: dinner and wasting time, 9-11: inbaset, email, etc. Sat: family time, house chores. Sun: getting caught up with work.
        Fortunately for me, my wife will be working part-time or staying home. I have academic obligations that somemtimes require work from home.

        How will having kids change my schedule. Any tips on time management for new parents? Should I wake up an hour earlier and try to get more work done in the early morning? One of my colleagues stay after 2 hours at work and avoid going home; his wife is not too happy. Others try to work more in the weekends. Not sure what to expect.
        Expect the unexpected
        forget that your life is ever going to be the same again
        Put your time in silos , multi tasking rarely works

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        • #34
          Congrats! My wife is a PGY2 and we currently have an 8 month old. I will 2nd the solid starts page, been a great resource. We also got a lot of benefit out of Taking Cara Babies. While not all of it worked perfectly for us in those first few months it was a great resource with a lot of great ideas regarding sleep. We also followed the sleep training program when our girl was ~6 months old and it worked great for us.

          A big thing for us was learning to be a patient with ourselves and reset our expectations for what might happen in a day. What might have normally taken a few hours, like cleaning house, now is often a multi-day process.

          While there is lots of learning/struggle/frustration, nothing gives the feeling of when they smile, laugh, first roll/crawl, or light when we you go pick them up from a nap.

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          • #35
            Originally posted by MD & DPT View Post
            Congrats! My wife is a PGY2 and we currently have an 8 month old. I will 2nd the solid starts page, been a great resource. We also got a lot of benefit out of Taking Cara Babies. While not all of it worked perfectly for us in those first few months it was a great resource with a lot of great ideas regarding sleep. We also followed the sleep training program when our girl was ~6 months old and it worked great for us.

            A big thing for us was learning to be a patient with ourselves and reset our expectations for what might happen in a day. What might have normally taken a few hours, like cleaning house, now is often a multi-day process.

            While there is lots of learning/struggle/frustration, nothing gives the feeling of when they smile, laugh, first roll/crawl, or light when we you go pick them up from a nap.
            ^^^ this. Agree with all of this.

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            • #36
              Everyone tells you your life will change when baby arrives. When I was told that, I nodded, understanding, and then the baby arrived. It was a shock. My life was turned completely upside down in ways that I had never imagined.

              Being a parent can be one of the most wonderful things in life, but at times it can also be exhausting, frustrating, or overwhelming. Be sure to find some small, creative ways to take care of yourself and your spouse, despite life being turned upside down when that newborn comes home.

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              • #37
                Yeah, we have an 8 month old now.

                Any semblance of time you have for yourself is gone. At least for me.

                I've chosen to embrace it all, and I quit my job to be a stay at home dad for a while - it has been incredible. This financial independence stuff works, ha! I do have to seek gainful employment again (likely at some point this year) to make the budget work long term, but getting a year off during the first year, when the baby is small, not yet in day care, in a pandemic, has been incredibly rewarding. Also super challenging, ha! But yeah, germane to this forum is that we could afford for me not to work for a while, thanks to the many forum folks here, The White Coat Investor, etc. Cool. Yeah, the math says we'd have more in retirement if I'd worked now and let things compound... but the kiddo is only a newborn once, so why miss it?

                A few pro tips:
                1. I echo MD & DPT amp; with the https://takingcarababies.com/ link - this has changed our life for the better and let us all get on a healthy sleep schedule. It is worth every penny you'll spend on it.

                2. This is a great one for learning how to start feeding a baby real food: https://realfoodlittles.com/

                3. So, I'm not a super big social media person, but there are absolutely incredible parenting resources on instagram. There is new content shared daily from most places, and tips, and (yeah, links to sites like the 2 above which provide value for a cost), but I've been shocked at what is available free for new parents. It is really cool. So, might be worth checking it it out / adding some folks to follow. Pick a topic: feeding, diapers, emotional control, sleep, travel, etc and you'll find lots of folks sharing helpful information.


                You asked...

                Originally posted by GIMD View Post
                How will having kids change my schedule.
                ... you'll long for 5 quiet minutes to use the bathroom by yourself, or get some coffee.

                Originally posted by GIMD View Post
                Any tips on time management for new parents?
                for the first few months... "sleep when the baby sleeps" - that's the best advice we were given. ... and get/hire/ask for help when you need it. We needed some space so we could be a family ourselves (aka, we couldn't have grandma move in to help for a month), but help from cleaners / a nanny / meal delivery / friends is helpful.

                Have more than 1 changing table.

                ... costco has great diapers. They deliver too, ha!

                Spend the money to make meal prep shorter.

                You'll each need a break. Take the kiddo when you get home from work - let the other person shower, have a 5 minute break, etc.

                What can you cut from your schedule? Don't cut too much exercise, or try to sprint the stairs at work, or something. It has been really helpful for mental health.

                Originally posted by GIMD View Post
                Should I wake up an hour earlier and try to get more work done in the early morning? One of my colleagues stay after 2 hours at work and avoid going home; his wife is not too happy. Others try to work more in the weekends. Not sure what to expect.
                What do you usually do? One of us is a morning person, and the other is not, so we build some of the schedule around that...

                I'd also say, the second best advice we were given was to try and get a few hours to sleep (goal here is REM sleep...) during the first months. We started out trying to both be awake, or trade feedings, and no one slept more than 30 minutes the first week or few. Not ideal. After we each took a 4 hour turn, we could actually get some deeper/REM sleep (in another room is best!) and be much more helpful to each other. Even if breast feeding, bring the baby in, feed, and leave.

                Originally posted by GIMD View Post
                How will having kids change my schedule. Any tips on time management for new parents? Should I wake up an hour earlier and try to get more work done in the early morning? One of my colleagues stay after 2 hours at work and avoid going home; his wife is not too happy. Others try to work more in the weekends. Not sure what to expect.
                It's pretty fluid and dynamic, and the baby will have its own cycle, so it can't all be planned. So, be flexible, have a lot of coffee ready to go, see if you can take more days off than you'd otherwise planned. Talk about it together. And you might try something, and then have to change it. That'll be okay too. We had the "stay at work 2 hours and finish charting" conversation too. Sometimes there isn't an easy answer. Sometimes charting at home takes longer but might help the other person feel more supported.

                ... have fun!

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                • #38
                  Originally posted by White.Beard.Doc View Post
                  Everyone tells you your life will change when baby arrives. When I was told that, I nodded, understanding, and then the baby arrived. It was a shock. My life was turned completely upside down in ways that I had never imagined.

                  Being a parent can be one of the most wonderful things in life, but at times it can also be exhausting, frustrating, or overwhelming. Be sure to find some small, creative ways to take care of yourself and your spouse, despite life being turned upside down when that newborn comes home.
                  Agree. some examples of small creative things:
                  - take out tacos & NA margarita mix (there are NA tequilas too!)
                  - starbucks
                  - lululemon
                  - flowers
                  - baby clothes, toys, even if you use them only once - its the thought, etc.
                  - stroller / bassinet
                  - ice cream
                  - fancy honeys sampler pack for tea (savannah bee honey)
                  - Hanna Andersson pajamas (for everyone, and the dog too!!)

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                  • #39
                    We also did the Taking Cara Babies thing and, even though there were some regressions here and there, I think things overall went fairly well looking back.

                    I will say that it's much different being a physician and a parent. While I feel like I have a good grasp on pediatric emergency medicine, I had no idea on most day to day things like when to introduce new foods, etc. We're lucky that we have an early learning center/daycare associated with our hospital and they're fantastic. I would have no shame in asking what I needed to be doing. Those teachers have basically raised hundreds/thousands of babies so I would just keep my mouth shut and be all ears.

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                    • #40
                      Expect the unexpected.

                      We have a 16m at home. Breastfed. Started sleeping through the night (10-6) at 6-7 months. At 7-8 months stopped breastfeeding and inky wanted bottles and woke up every 2 hours. At 8-9 months no bottles and back to breastfeeding. Refused to sleep in crib, so slept in bed with us.

                      Went to bed at 8, woke up q4 hours. But slept 8-8. Month 12....for like 3 weeks, didn't want to go to bed until 10-11pm. Back to crib for month 13.

                      Now back in bed with us. Wakes up around 2 am. Sleeps 8-8 again. Last two weeks, only falls asleep if I carry him for 15 mins. Refuses to fall asleep for my wife.


                      ​​​Sooo... Don't expect anything.

                      My SIL... Their 16m old sleeps 8-6 since like 4 months.
                      ​​​​​

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                      • #41
                        I would avoid bringing the baby in your room at all costs. My wife and I have slept in chairs and on the floor in order to keep the kids in their room. So far it has worked. Seems like once they are in they never get out. At least from what I gather from other parents.

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                        • #42
                          Luckily when our daughter was a baby she could never fall asleep with us - she’d always want to play if we’re in the same room.

                          Now as a toddler she holds her poop in until her naptime because she does not want to poop in the potty and knows we’ll put on a diaper at night or during naps. She’ll then have an explosive poop that goes up her back, down her legs, and on the crib sheets.

                          I’m so glad she’s not sleeping with us.

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                          • #43
                            Originally posted by Dusn View Post
                            Luckily when our daughter was a baby she could never fall asleep with us - she’d always want to play if we’re in the same room.

                            Now as a toddler she holds her poop in until her naptime because she does not want to poop in the potty and knows we’ll put on a diaper at night or during naps. She’ll then have an explosive poop that goes up her back, down her legs, and on the crib sheets.

                            I’m so glad she’s not sleeping with us.
                            We have had similar experiences which reminds me that the OP should also budget time to do a lot of laundry! You can fit a bunch of stuff in the washer/dryer but it takes forever to fold all those little pieces!

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