Becoming a mum has been the toughest, scariest but amazing journey I’ve ever been on.
I’ve always known I wanted children, ever since being a young girl I loved the thought of being a mum one day. Although I didn’t ever think I’d be married & a mum by the age of 21!
For the whole 9 months I was pregnant I had so much advice given to me (well..thrown at me) it was very overwhelming as everyone has different opinions on what you ‘should & shouldn’t do’ as a parent. I took it all with a pinch of salt.
My whole pregnancy I kept wishing it by and I couldn’t wait until the day my baby was born. The day finally arrived 11 days past my due date. I was due to be induced but I went into labour naturally a couple of hours before my induction, I was so relived he was finally coming and the day was here! Little did I know how much my life was going to change.
I was in the hospital for 3 days as I hemorrhaged pretty badly and although I kept begging to go home, in the back of my mind I dreaded leaving the hospital with a tiny baby who depended on me… what if i got it wrong & something happened because I didn’t know what I was doing?!?
Jack was a very difficult baby, he screamed 24/7, would only sleep on me & threw up constantly. About a week after he was born, I decided to cut out dairy from my diet as I was breastfeeding & wondered if he had a dairy intolerance ( his dad did as a baby until 1 year). After about 2 weeks of cutting out dairy he was like a different baby, no excessive screaming.. or vomiting!
I decided I really wanted to try to breastfeed Jack before he was born but if I couldn’t that was okay, as along as he’s fed that’s all that matters. Jack latched on really well to start with and the first night was great.
The second day however was awful, I was emotional, bed bound and in agony. Jack wanted to feed but couldn’t latch on, we were waiting an hour for a midwife to finally come & help us… I can see why people give up trying at this point.
For the first week I had different midwifes doing home visits, each telling me different things about how my latch was right then wrong, eventually we got there, but by week 2 my nipples were so cracked & bleeding. I tried expressing but couldn’t get to grips with it so I battled through. I used to dread feeding him, for many feeds I had tears pouring down my face as he fed due to pain & exhaustion, not to mention hormones!! Lansinoh Nipple cream was a lifesaver!! https://lansinoh.co.uk/product/lansinoh-hpa-lanolin/
By week 6 we were away & Jack was a boob pro! But he was far from an ‘easy baby’. Everyone I seemed to speak to would always ask ‘is he easy?’… but what defines an easy baby? I’m pretty sure most newborns are not easy right?
Being a parent is bloody hard work, its emotionally & physically draining. When I was pregnant I was told ‘it’s the hardest thing you’ll ever do but the most rewarding’ & I always brushed it off and thought, it cant be that hard as so many people have children & more than 1! Damn they were right!
You sacrifice so much & change so much as a person. Before Jack I was so body conscious, even towards the end of my pregnancy when I had hospital appointments I never wanted to take my trousers off…HA that soon changed in labour to being naked in front of about 6 people coming in & out of the delivery room looking like a cow mooing on the bed! If you are expecting a child be prepared to completely lose your dignity ( but that’s ok!)
Sometimes I look back and miss certain aspects of my life before Jack, like being able to just walk out the house & do something for the day without having to have any second thought of anyone else, or having a lie in on the weekend. But I wouldn’t change it for the world, I am the happiest I have ever been and cannot describe the love I feel for him.
I think the main advice I would give anyone would be, don’t compare yourself ( or your baby) to anyone else, we are all different and just because someone else’s baby is sleeping perfectly or hits a milestone before yours does not mean they are superior. Just do you, because you are amazing!
What was your experience like becoming a parent??
Was your newborn an ‘easy’ baby?
What would be your main advice for new mums & dads out there?