Here are my tips-
* Make sure you read about looking after a baby whilst you are pregnant. Don't just read about the pregnancy and the birth like i did. Don't assume you can leave reading about babies until after the birth- you may not have the time. And by the time you do have the time, it will be too late to implement some of the advice you read about;
* Have your bags packed about five weeks before your expected due date- it can happen anytime (yes, even you might go in early);
* Eat well, take supplements with folic acid and other vitamins. Make sure you take in at least 400mcg a day- especially in those crucial first months;
* Rest as much as you can. Enjoy some sleep ins with your partner, you'll rarely get those again. Go out with your partner as much as possible;
* Be prepared for perhaps not being able to breastfeed. You may have a low milk supply, or perhaps your nipples may hurt. You are vulnerable after a first child- some nurses can be abrupt, don't let them be. And don't not let anyone throw your baby onto your breast- ask for step by step guidance, it's the best way for you to learn. If your nipples hurt in the beginning and you really want to breastfeed then use nipple shields or express- just remember to try and stop using nipple shields once your nipples have healed;
* Once your baby is born, you'll get lots of people trying to give you advice. You may have your mind made up as to what you want to do with your baby and feel that you don't want the advice. Don't get frustrated, simply nod your head and be grateful and pretend you will follow through with this adivice. At the same time, try and keep an open mind, you never know, someone might come up with some useful information;
* It's easy to say you won't use drugs. But it's better not to set this idea in concrete. If you suddenly feel the pain is too much, use them without feeling guilty;
* Remember that you are not alone and it can be difficult at times. Don't feel like a failure. Log onto huggies for any questions- we are all here to help each other.
Just one more thing- having a child is a wonderful experience- i would like to wish all first time mums the best of luck.