Saturday 26 September 2015

Motherhood, what I didn't expect

When you become a Mum everything changes and I mean EVERYTHING. The way you think, the way you react to things and situations, the way you look and the way you act. These are some of the things I didn't anticipate changing after I had my baby. I can now look back on myself slightly bemused and at the same time amused with my rose tinted thoughts on parenting.

There are so many things I didn't know or expect when it comes to being a Parent. Let's just say becoming a Mother was a serious eye-opener for me and every day continues to be a journey!

Here are just a FEW of things I didn't expect when I became a Mother...

1. My body - I just assumed that after I had my baby I would be one of those Mums whose bodies would just bounce back straight away and I would look like my fabulously toned self - not straightaway of course but a few months after. Sure, I've lost the baby weight but what I didn't anticipate was that I'd be left with a stomach that is saggy and stretch marked beyond recognition. Yes, thanks to my beautifully big baby I was left with a tonne of stretch marks that will fade in time - but will never go away - and excess skin that will unfortunately never return to it's firm and tight former glory. Call me shallow but it makes me sad in a way that I never anticipated. I love my baby absolutely and I would never EVER change a thing but this is one thing that for me will take a long time to come to terms with, that my body will never really be my own nor the same again - especially when we have more kids.

2. Extreme tiredness - Ok, obviously being tired comes with the territory of having a baby - although, I think "tired" is putting it lightly, complete and utter exhaustion is probably more fitting. For us though, we were VERY lucky with the fact that Ella slept through from four months and is still sleeping through. What I didn't know though is that it seems to me that no matter how much sleep I get I am still absolutely exhausted by the end of the day and tired when I wake up in the morning. I think it's just the fact that there is no break from Mothering and you always constantly have to be on the go trying to keep them entertained or kept them fed and bathed etc. Mothering is a full time job that is definitely not recognised as being one.

3. My brain - Everyone jokes about suffering from baby brain but it's real, the baby brain struggle is REAL. It's the fact that my mind is filled with list upon list of things I need to get done in order for us to get through each day with some sort of routinely order, like - how much washing have I got left? is there enough food in the house? what am I going to feed Ella for the next week? what am I going to feed myself for the next week? when is she due a feed? what day did she last get bathed? come to think of it, when did I last shower? when is she going to run out of formula or nappies? THE LIST IS ENDLESS. So when It comes to trying to remember simple things such as where did I put my keys? or what did I walk into the kitchen for? There is just not enough brain capacity left to make room for those.

4. My appearance - Oh yes, my appearance! Gone are the days where I spent hours getting ready, painstakingly applying my eyeshadow or curling my hair - just for an outing to the supermarket. Never would I have been seen in my sloppiest clothes in town. These days though, i'm lucky if I can brush my hair or even shower somedays! Any spare time that I get is allocated to trying to do the washing or wash the dishes not primping or preening in order to leave the house. Priorities change BIG TIME when you become a Mum, your baby becomes your number one priority and everything else becomes unimportant.

5. My emotions - I never used to be an emotional person. It took alot to make me cry. These days though even a slightly sad movie, song or even advertisement can evoke a tear. It doesn't just stop there though, even just thinking about something sad or a sad song can turn my into a soppy mess. What's even worse is seeing the numerous sad posts on Facebook about children or animals - now that really gets me going! Moral of the story? Having a child turns you to mush! 

6. Guilt - Mummy guilt, it speaks for itself really but I never realised the amount of irrational guilt one person could experience and so often! Every decision made comes with guilt - second guessing myself and whether it was the right or wrong decision, like is she getting all the things she needs from me? Is she getting enough stimulation? Is she getting enough food or enough fluids? Is she getting the right foods? Is she meeting her milestones or developing properly? Are her teeth coming down straight? Am I letting her learn in her own time or am I doing too much for her? It's constant. A constant stream of questioning myself and EVERYTHING I do where she is concerned. Unfortunately, I foresee that it's never going to ease up, it'll always be there because we are always going to want to do what's best for them whether they are 2 or 20, I don't think that Mothering instinct will ever go away.  

There you have it. What did you learn about yourself when you first became a Mother?

P.S - For some reason most of my blog posts always seem to come across as warnings for expectant Mothers - I promise I'm not doing this on purpose - it's not my intent, but for those of you who like an HONEST opinion on what Mothering a child in the first year of it's life is really like then I hope my posts are of some use to you.

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