Firstly, congratulations on your gorgeous new baby!
The nine-month-long pregnancy has come to an end, you've successfully given birth, and now (finally) it's time to go home.
To be perfectly honest, this is probably where the real panic will set in: "I cannot be left alone with such a precious little human... what if I break him/her?"
We have all been there, but there are a few tips and tricks that will help you get through your first few weeks at home with your baby.
Breastfeeding is not easy at the beginning, but we promise you will get the hang of it.
However, to avoid any confusion we suggest that you meet with a lactation expert post-delivery, and ask her to come to your house to help you get the hang of breastfeeding.
Remember: breastfeeding will not work out for every mum. If this is the case for you, do not feel bad; the important thing is that your baby is nourished, so consult with your doctor about the alternatives.
2. Sleep deprivation
Unfortunately, sleep deprivation cannot be avoided, because you will want to spend as much time as possible staring at the gorgeous baby you created.
That being said, you need to ensure you get as much sleep as possible, so we suggest sleeping when your baby sleeps. Your precious newborn will sleep quite a lot, but for short periods of time, so try squeeze in nap time accordingly.
3. Take all the help you can get
You will instinctively want to do everything on your own, but that is not always the best idea. If you have people around you that are willing to help, please let them.
Even if it is just small things, like your mum calling over for a bit to let you have a shower, it will make all the difference.
However, with this in mind, you must also be prepared to stand your ground and say "no" when you want to. Remember, this is your baby, so you make the rules.
We won't lie to you, the first few times you bathe your newborn will be terrifying. You can wash your little bub by holding them in plastic tub or by wetting a washcloth and cleaning them on a changing table.
Your baby needs a full bath only once or twice a week, but they need to be "topped and tailed" every day. This means washing the baby's head, face and bottom.
5. Make sure you eat
Fun fact - you will forget to eat on more than one occasion when you first return home with your baby. It is crucial that you maintain your personal wellbeing, and food is a pretty good place to start.
We are not expecting you to whip up a glorious gourmet meal every day, but perhaps try batch-cooking, or even treat yourself to a take away every now and again - you've earned it.
6. Your body is recovering
Whether you are prepared for it or not, your body will be quite sore when you get home from hospital with your newborn. Think about it logically - childbirth is no walk in the park, you need time to heal.
In time, your body will bounce back and you'll regain your strength, but while you're recovering, don't push yourself too much. Be careful.
7. Get dad involved
It can be pretty difficult to get the new father involved straight away, especially if they don't have the time off work to bond with their new bub.
Ask your partner to dive right in to baby-related tasks, and try not to judge them when they attempt tasks for the first time (nappies are hard, we can't deny it).
Expect to feed your gorgeous baby every one to four hours - that's counting from the start of each feeding.
It is important to note that during feeding time you're going to be bound to a couch, chair, or bed while your baby eats, so be sure to get as comfortable as possible.
9. The low-down on poop
OK, so we appreciate that this is not glamorous, but it is important to be aware of your baby's poop, and what it means.
Get ready for all colours of the rainbow. Their first poop, meconium, is black, tarry gunk; and as your baby eats more, their faeces will change from brown to green to a mustard yellow. But don't expect solid stool for a good few months.
If you see red in the stool, contact your doctor, as this could be blood. Colourless stool could indicate an underlying disorder, so be sure to keep an eye on what's going on in that nappy.
10. They will cry, a lot
This probably won't come as a shock to you, but newborn babies tend to spend their time eating, sleeping and crying.
Typically, your baby is crying for a reason, so be sure to check them out: are they hungry? Too cold or hot? Is the bedding or clothing tangled? Is the nappy dirty?
If you can't figure it out, we suggest you experiment to discover the most comforting way for them to be rocked, which should ultimately calm them.