1. It might not be love at first sight. Let’s get the tough one out of the way first. When my newborn daughter was first placed in my arms, I did not feel love. I felt relief. I also felt drained, sore and ever so slightly traumatised. The birth didn’t really go as I had hoped. The love part came a few hours later, when we were alone and I could hold her in my arms without having someone inspecting my lady bits! 

  2. Nothing can prepare you for the sleep deprivation. I had heard life with a newborn baby is tiring but wow, I have never, ever felt exhaustion like that before. The good news though is that they eventually sleep through the night and you will feel human again… eventually…

  3. Newborns can be furry! I had no idea that some babies are born with super fine hair over their back and shoulders so I was slightly horrified when I my daughter came out resembling a gorilla! After frantically googling ‘why is my newborn baby SO hairy’ I was reassured that it’s totally normal, it’s called lanugo and it will fall out over the next few weeks (phew!). 

  4. Newborns are so noisy. My newborn didn’t really cry but she made lots of little squeaks and funny sounds. This was totally unexpected and slightly unnerving. Now I see it as an adorable newborn trait and love listening to squeaky babies when they come for their newborn shoots. 

  5. Your hormones will go WILD. This is not an understatement. You will cry at anything and often you won’t even know why you’re crying. It’s normal and usually settles down after 6 weeks or so. If you’re worried, speak to your health visitor.

  6. Newborns LOVE to be swaddled. I read a little bit about this while pregnant but it wasn’t until I became a newborn photographer, and learned how to swaddle, that I saw what a huge difference it makes. It’s all to do with making them feel secure and like they are back in the womb. You can swaddle your baby with a blanket or just a large muslin although it will take a few attempts to get it right. Alternatively, you could treat yourself to a swaddle blanket like THIS 

  7. Your breast-feeding plan might get thrown out of the window. I had fully intended to breastfeed my daughter. So much so that I refused to even look at bottles, formula or sterilisers because I didn’t even want them to be an option. And then my daughter wouldn’t latch. I felt like a total failure as a mother. It ruined the early days of motherhood. After a few days I very reluctantly admitted defeat and started formula feeding. I wish someone had told me “breastfeeding can be hard but here’s what you can do to make it easier” instead, I was told: “breast is best” and “it’s the most natural thing in the world” and (my favourite) “if she’s not latching then you’re doing it wrong” which just makes you feel like the worst mum in the world. Do yourself a favour, book a breastfeeding class with The Daisy Foundation and prepare to overcome the many obstacles that may come your way. 

  8. Dummies are actually amazing. While pregnant I was adamant that my baby wouldn’t have a dummy. I’m not sure why, maybe I thought there was some kind of stigma attached to them. Then, on day 3, at 2am, both my partner and I were googling the benefits of a dummy and we were amazed. Did you know that they reduce the chances of SIDS? That alone sold it for me. Yes there are downsides but honestly, you do what you gotta do to get through them early days and a dummy can be a total lifesaver (literally!). 

  9. Mum guilt is real. And it sets in immediately. I felt guilty for not loving my baby the moment she was placed on my chest and for worrying that she was a gorilla and for not being able to breastfeed and countless more things. The mum guilt never goes away. 

  10. The first 6 weeks are the hardest. And 6 weeks can feel like an eternity when you’re fumbling through parenthood and things aren’t quite as you imaged but honestly, it gets easier! 

If you would like to capture your newborn in their early days then contact me for a Newborn Shoot. All newborn photoshoots take place in the comfort of my lovely studio where you will be invited to sit back and relax while I work my magic. Find out more HERE