Most modern parents simply can’t imagine what parenting would be like without the internet.
Who would soothe your 4am parenting anxieties if it weren’t for the wonder of your smartphone?
Who could you ask those highly personal and deeply embarrassing questions if you didn’t have Google to rely on?
How would you know how many cups of coffee you can drown yourself in without access to the latest (and likely conflicting) studies?
Could you imagine if you lived in a time where information was neither immediate nor reliable? It doesn’t bear thinking about really, does it? Scary.
Thankfully, you don’t need to worry about any of that, because you are parenting in the information age.
7 Things Sleep Deprived Parents Google
You can search online for the answer to each and every parenting question which stumbles into your mind, for example:
#1: Is My Baby Too Hot?
After surviving years without so much as thinking about the optimum temperature for a room, you will become obsessive about the temperature as soon as you become a parent.
You will stay awake all night long on unusually warm nights, wafting the bedroom window in a desperate attempt to get some cooler air into the room.
If that doesn’t seem to be doing enough, you’ll wake your partner and have him fan the baby with his hands whilst you continue to open and close the window.
#2: Is My Baby Too Cold?
Ah yes, it’s not just overheating that sends fear into the hearts of new parents, you don’t want your precious newborn to be too cold either.
You’ll probably spend at least the first three weeks after the birth wondering whether your baby is dressed appropriately. After all, it’s not like she can tell you she wants to wear her cardigan, you have to just guess. And, no matter what you decide, there will be old ladies on the street who totally disagree with the clothes you’ve picked out.
“Ooh, that baby must be boiling in all those clothes!” “Put some socks on that poor little baby!” “I bet her hands are like ice!” Try not to let it get to you, remember, old people grew up before the internet and so had no idea what they were doing when they dressed their babies.
#3: Why Is My Baby Crying?
You will Google this approximately 18 times a day for a year, and you won’t ever find the answer.
The internet is amazing, it brings faraway friends closer, gives you the opportunity to learn about pretty much anything you want and is filled with adorable kitten videos.
But (and a big one) it’s not a parent. It can’t figure out what’s one with your baby, only you can do that. It can’t hold your baby close, gently rock her up and down and sing her a calming lullaby. Having a crying baby isn’t easy, but when it comes to figuring out what’s wrong, you’re the expert, not Google.
#4: Is My Baby’s Poop Normal?
Ah, baby poop. Before you had kids you probably had no idea that there was a whole corner of the internet dedicated to baby poop. There are whole online galleries featuring photos and descriptions of each and every type of baby poop out there.
There are articles telling you what’s normal and what’s not when it comes to baby poop. You probably never thought you’d be the sort of parent who becomes obsessed with poop, but it’s an inevitable part of being a new parent. The contents of your baby’s nappy are suddenly undeniably interesting and every single change must be Googled. Just incase.
#5: Why Do I Still Look Pregnant?
If you grew up surrounded by glossy magazines congratulating celebs on their perfect post-baby bodies just a few weeks after birth, you might be in for a shock.
Those celebs have probably been on pretty strict diets and have certainly been busy exercising during those newborn days. If you’ve been binge eating biscuits while watching daytime TV, you may not experience quite the same bounce back effect.
It can take months for your belly to shrink back down after having a baby, so don’t be surprised if you continue to look pregnant for a little while longer.
#6: How To Get A Newborn To Sleep Through The Night
I know it’s hard to see the funny side right now, but one day you will laugh (a lot) as you remember hopefully Googling this in your first few weeks as a parent.
Newborn babies don’t sleep through the night, no matter how hard you search the internet for hints and tricks to get them to sleep longer. Moving your baby into her own room won’t help her to sleep through the night. Feeding your baby with formula won’t help her to sleep through the night.
Obsessively googling at 3am won’t get your baby to sleep through the night. One day, your baby will sleep for longer stretches. Remember, these sleepless nights won’t last forever, not that that makes it any easier to deal with the exhaustion.
#7: When Will Life Go Back To Normal?
This is the question all parents ask themselves on a daily basis. You will start asking it a few days after the birth, when the exhaustion and hormones begin to get to you and you find yourself sobbing into a washable breast pad.
You won’t stop asking this question until your life is back to normal, or at least feels a little more normal, and that will be years into the future.
Life with small children is never normal. It’s exhausting, relentless and overwhelming.
How can life feel normal again when you have discovered a love so great it swelled your heart? How can life feel normal again when you have had only three hours sleep over the past eight weeks? How can life feel normal again now that you have a little baby who is completely and utterly dependent on you?
Life doesn't go back to what you experienced pre-baby, but the crazy stuff does settle down. Each stage brings its own challenges as well as it's own joys. But as your baby becomes more independent, there will be less pressure on you to be everything your baby needs. But, he'll always be your baby, even when he's 21 years old.
Embrace the changes and breathe in every moment you can, because it truly goes by WAY too fast.