#1 You have just pushed an entire other person out of your front bottom! Or had them bodily removed through a big hole in your stomach! You are fricking amazing!
#2 It is entirely normal to feel so happy you could dance naked through the streets, or so emotional you feel you could give Gwyneth doing her Oscar speech a run for her money, or so exhausted you feel like you want to crawl into a dark cave and sleep for three years. Or sometimes all of these things simultaneously.
#3 The aftermath of childbirth is like some crazed serial killer took up residence in your front bottom, and this is also apparently totally normal, even though there is nothing normal about this entire experience AT ALL.
#4 Despite what you might hear, neither breast feeding (which is ridiculously hard: seriously, someone needs to take a look at that and work out some kind of hack to make it slightly less utterly impossible) nor bottle feeding will damage your baby for life. So long as you’re feeding your baby, then you’ve got this shit nailed.
#5 There is a reason they use sleep deprivation as a form of torture. If you’re thinking of attempting to do anything more taxing then cuddle your baby and drink a cup of tea (which will almost certainly be cold, as will every cup of tea you attempt to drink for the next five years) then you should think again and leave that for the days when you’ve had more than sixteen minutes’ sleep in total.
#6 All those other parents you see out there who seem to have this whole parenting thing nailed? Yeah. I’ll let you into a little secret. None of us have got a fucking clue what we’re doing either. We’re all muddling through this together. You are not alone.
#7 While, right now, if your partner emits one more snoring sound in the middle of the night while you are desperately trying to get your baby to consider, even vaguely, sleeping… then you feel like you will MAIM THEM… your relationship isn’t necessarily over for ever. Even if they follow it up with a sentence the next morning about how tired they are. There may still come a time when you look at them again and remember how much you love them. Probably in about four and a half years’ time.
#8 Your baby does not give a shit what you look like. How big your bottom is, how wobbly your tummy is, how saggy your used-to-be-breasts-now-look-like-pillow-cases are. To them, you are simply The Greatest Human Lady That Ever Walked The Earth. You should listen to them. They know what they’re talking about.
#9 Despite what the baby books might tell you your baby should be doing, or eating, or when they should be sleeping, or playing… your baby will do none of those things, because hey, guess what? Your baby hasn’t read those books! So neither should you, because they’ll only make you feel bad. You’ll figure it out together and one day you’ll suddenly realise that you almost feel like you know what you’re doing! (And then the next day they’ll throw in a curve ball which takes you right back to square one… but for a brief moment there, you totally had this!)
#10 Did we mention how amazing you are? Seriously: you rock. So don’t waste a single moment beating yourself up for all of the things you think you should be doing right now. You grew an entire other human being. You are AWESOME.