Advice to Princess Kate from the Queen of Late Night

By Kathy Zucker

Dear Kate (we’re on a first-name basis, right?),

royalbirth-thumbnailThe entire world woke up today to the news that you are in labor. Congratulations on undertaking such an exciting journey! No, I’m not talking about your tour of the US and Canada (how was LA?) or your trips to Africa (sorry to hear about the poachers invading your engagement cabin – hat tip to Prince William for picking such a romantic setting to pop the question!)

I’m talking about the journey that turns your life upside down – parenthood. I am sure you and the palace staff have been planning how things will go for at least two years. But the thing about parenthood? It’s unpredictable. You already had a taste of that in your first trimester – I and the rest of the world were relieved to see you recover quickly and have an uneventful six months. I hear you have opted for a natural birth and do not plan on having a nanny. No amount of classes or research can prepare you for the real thing – I wish somebody had told me that epidurals make you itch.

I am sure Prince William is over the moon about the baby and will be incredibly helpful with diaper changes and late night feedings. But after he heads back to work in two weeks and everybody gets back to their regular lives, you might experience a letdown from the new baby high. Waking up every two hours gets old after a while, and walking around with leaking, swollen breasts is no fun. Be prepared to get no sleep for years – my oldest kid just turned seven and I still get woken up in the middle of the night.

So my advice to you is the same as I gave to Marissa Mayer – be kind to yourself. When you are exhausted, hand the baby to your mom or Camilla and take a nap. Skip a breastfeeding session every once in a while to get some sleep – I promise it won’t hurt your milk supply. A tip I learned with my third child? Feed on one boob and pump the other. It helps build a freezer stash right from the start and keeps your supply high for the voracious four month period – I always used to worry my baby was hungry but she was too young to eat solids. A hefty freezer stash also makes it so much easier to head back to work or go on date night with Prince William – with my first kid I used to ration that stuff like liquid gold. And one of the best benefits of breastfeeding? Bouncing back to your pre-pregnancy weight.

Good luck today, fingers crossed that things go smoothly!


More – Letter to the Duchess of Cambridge from a Hyperemesis Mom

kathyzucker_roundKathy Zucker, CEO of Metro Moms Network, mother of three young children and winner of the New York Life Keep Good Going Shorty Award, writes about juggling career and family in an urban setting. Read her MomCondoLiving blog, follow her on Twitter (@KathyZucker), or friend her on Facebook.

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