I have a 9 week old baby and it is pretty amazing. Actually, correction, he is pretty amazing, being a mummy is pretty amazing and it’s something I will never take for granted (given how long it took me to get here). Sometimes it can be challenging and hard which is slightly worrying as I’ve been told that this is the easy part…APPARENTLY?!).
Don’t people just love to tell you that… “it only gets harder” … “you think you’re not sleeping? Just you wait?!” ….What is that!?!? Why do people think telling you your life is going to be crap and get crapper is OK when it comes to having a baby!? Thinking about it, that was something I heard throughout my whole pregnancy… “you’ll never sleep again” (to be fair that’s marginally true), “your life will change forever”, “forget going out or having fun”, “forget enjoying a nice meal with your husband” (eye roll)!
I love being a mum so far, don’t get me wrong it’s early days and I don’t want to sound annoying or like I’m gloating, but I waited a long time to get pregnant so it feels like the right time for me. That being said I know many women who don’t feel like that immediately, who don’t bond with their baby straight away or feel like their lives have totally changed and that is OK too. Maybe in a years time come back to me and I’ll have changed my tune…who knows!? Just know, what ever your situation and story, one thing we can all agree on is that there’s good times and there’s hard times.
Some days I have my shit together and were both bathed and out of the house by 10am and some days I haven’t brushed my teeth by midday and my baby is still wearing last nights baby grow. I envy Mums on Instagram that look like they have their shit together all the time, the ones who attend a different baby class everyday of the week.
It’s the first time I really understood the term “Mum Guilt” that I’ve heard so many other mothers talk about. It’s so easy to compare yourself to other Mothers around you and constantly questions yourself; Am I doing enough with my child? Is my child learning enough? Are they developing at the right pace?
Some days I look at Instagram and Susie Smith has been to baby yoga, baby sign and baby massage all by 12pm on a Monday, while I’ve eaten half a chocolate cake, have Doritos in my hair and my baby has been sick 4 times in a row. No judgement here.
I remember when I bought him home from hospital I didn’t really know anything about newborns, don’t get me wrong, I read a lot and I have two sisters and friends who obviously gave me lots of great advice but you’re never really prepared until you have that little baby in your arms. The hospital says you can go home, good luck, good bye and you’re ushered away from the maternity ward. I remember going home with this little person and thinking is he happy? Does he like our house? Is he glad I’m his Mummy? (Crazy lady I know).
Another thing that seems to come with motherhood is all the advise people dish out before you become a Mum, things I didn’t believe would be true but have turned out to actually be spot on. Here are the main ones I was told over and over again that are definitely true:
1- Leaving the house is a military operation (this is so so true!!!). It takes hours and you have to plan way in advance. If I have to leave the house by 10am, I’m up by 7am, no rolling out of bed anymore and gone are the days when I used to pop to the shops for a quick errand. Taking my buggy in and out of the car is the biggest ball ache and now walking is actually more appealing than driving.
2- Having sick on your clothing all the time becomes fairly normal. Vomit pre-baby used to make me feel sick. I would say at least 80 percent of my clothing has been covered in vomit at some point. I used to change every time he threw up on me, now I wipe it down with a wet cloth and continue my day.
3- You change nappies all the time. This one I heard a lot but just presumed it was an exaggeration. How can anyone that small wee or poo that much but 10 times a day is no exaggeration.
4- You’ve never been so happy to hear a burp or discuss a poo. Me and my husband actually cheer when our baby burps! Pooing is a hot topic in our house now…has he done a poo today? Was it too runny? Was it too hard? Sexy talk hey! On the topic of poo no one actually prepares you for your first poo explosion and how the hell it reaches the back of their neck and all down their legs? Also why does it always happens at either 3am when your half asleep or just as you’re about to leave the house.
5- When they smile at you it is the best feeling in the world. I can confirm 100 per cent hands down the best thing in the whole world. Never gets old, even on bad days when I’m tired, that smile makes my life!
I’ve also learnt there are so many different views and opinions out there on hot topics such as bottle feeding, breast feeding, dummies, self soothing and with that comes a whole new level of self doubt that you need to face. That said, I just try to remember that I’m doing what works best for us, however I know as Mums we all have days where we question ourselves.
It is fast approaching the time of leaving my little boy for the first evening over night in a few weeks and I am already questioning if it’s too early or too soon. I did the stupid thing of goggling “when is it ok to leave your baby?” and it seems that there is no right answer. Lots of women said they did it after a few weeks, some a few months and some a few years and some still haven’t left their baby. Who am I to judge, I suppose it’s when it feels right for you.
So with 9 short weeks under my belt I’m going to make myself a promise; to remind myself daily that I am an awesome Mummy. To know that I love my little boy and he definitely loves me (judging by that big smile) and to step away from google at all costs!! Remember its not easy being a Mother, if it were easy Fathers would do it!