I still can’t believe my baby girl is ONE….everyone tells you how fast it goes but you don’t really get it until BAM its been and gone. What a year! Without a doubt my best year yet. Full of amazing memories, challenges, life lessons, endless love and those baby smiles and giggles.
Motherhood is an amazing journey one filled with ups and downs and a rollercoaster of emotion. I thought id share a few of the things I’ve learned in my first year as being a parent.
LOVE – at thirty years old its something you think you know a lot about but nothing prepares you for the love you have for your children. During my pregnancy i always felt that love and connection with Aria but until they popped her on my chest and i saw those first few blinks i had no idea how amazing one tiny human could make you feel. She has brought so much love and happiness to our household and i can’t wait for everyday of the rest of our lives. Its quite an amazing thought to know that you will always have them in your life, watching them grow, learn and become their own person. My lesson in love this year is that it is infinite and family is everything. The rest is just a bonus.
DISTANCE – the first 3 months. ‘They’ also say that the first 3 months is the hardest and once you get through it that it gets easier. A new baby brings with it huge changes. All the extra love and energy you used to give to your partner is given to your baby. Or was that just me?? Without even realising i became so focused on my new role as a mother i forgot how important my role as a partner was as well. I ended up sleeping in Aria’s room after the first night feed because it was just easier, was always tired, went to bed early and to be honest just felt like being alone. Its a big adjustment having a baby attached to you 24/7 and losing your personal space. The first few months can be tough on even the strongest relationships. Your whole world flips on its head and you can no longer just ‘DO’ things. Doing things and going places now requires planning and packing and carting half the house out with you. Once bubs started sleeping through ( or close enough ) and i got half my brain back i realised i needed to get my relationship back. Be more present and make more time for ‘us’. Rebuild the closeness, reconnect and be there not only for bub but for Shaun to. Remembering that our relationship isn’t the same, and it has evolved. So that if it doesn’t feel the same, it’s because it isn’t. We arnt the same either. We are parents and our priorities have shifted. Things run pretty smoothly now (most of the time) we have found our groove as a family of 3. I think as a new mama its easy to get caught up in the tiredness and challenging days and also easy to forget that your partner is out there working hard, missing moments dealing with your tiredness and missing you and your new bub. They are doing it tough too in a different way. Lesson being – you are both adjusting and adapting to parent life in different ways and to try and remember how differently males and females make sense of things. You are in this together.
FRIENDSHIPS – Life gets busy. Some of your closest friends seem to just disappear and you sometimes just forget to stay in touch with others. My circle of friends was all of a sudden the smallest it had ever been and i was in the baby bubble at home with my mini and the girls at the coffee shop were my daily social interaction. For months i didn’t even realise how isolated i had become, not venturing to far and just doing our daily routine. Making plans for play dates and not going because it was ‘to hard’ to work around schedules that change day in and out and holding a conversation is hard work when you have baby brain. Those mid sentence mind blanks hahah and my general loss of confidence in the adult world. This is where social media and technology have a place. I have had amazing support from my sister in law (your the best sarah) and have been able to sharethe whole journey step by step with two friends via messenger and a few play dates and i think this was a huge comfort and an amazing help through the good and tough times. Thank you! I also found there was a great supportive community of other mums online in the same boat. Sharing their experiences and reaching out offering advice. I have actually made some lovely new friendships this way and it pushed me to get back out in the real world again. It took me more then 3 months to get my head around the whole #mumlife thing outside the comfort of home. As soon as i took the first step in getting out again i wondered what the hell i had been doing. Funny that. Its also makes it a lot easier having your little safety blanket (bub) with you wherever you go and being around people who are on the same journey. Mums supporting mums ! Love it! My lesson in friendship is that it’s not about the quantity of times you see your friends it’s about the quality and becoming a mother has opened the door to some wonderful friendships that I am grateful for.
COMPARING – this is a biggie! Give yourself a break mama!! One thing i now know is that all the things you ‘think’ you need to have when you bring home your new baby….you actually don’t. Yes the perfectly styled nursery and designer outfits are nice, yes having every single swing, rocker and baby gadget might seem necessary but when your baby turns one you can reflect on how much did i really use or need it ???? We had the fancy swing she never really used, the mobile that was never turned on, buckets of toys, countless outfits that were never worn or ruined after one wear. Six different brand dummies thats she never took to haha the list goes on. Just because you see it on your instagram feed or your friends have it doesn’t mean you need it ( I’m talking to myself) Aria also spends very little time in her room. Besides when she is sleeping or getting a nappy changed. She would much rather be hanging off me or Shaun and following us around the rest of the house or outside. My advice would be less is more. This also goes for advice you can get a bit overwhelmed with all the advice thrown at you. Comparing your pregnancy, birth, recovery, feeding, sleeping and parenting style with ANYONE is just pointless. We are all different, so are our babies, our tastes our routines in our homes. Some houses sleep in, some are early birds (like us) and your little babes are just going to fit in on their own terms. No matter what the book says or she says or they say. If i could have read this month 1-4 i would have saved myself a lot or worry. Lesson being – no matter what you have all your baby really needs is your love and they will always (almost haha) have that cute little smile on their face and judging another parent for their parenting style is just saying its ok for them to judge you.
SELF CARE – You are now the carer, the cook, the cleaner, the teacher, the comforter the EVERYTHING in your household and your little bebe relies on you and daddy… but mostly you haha to attend all their needs. This is why its so important to take care of yourself too and give yourself the much needed ‘me time ‘ you deserve. It can be big or small depending on your circumstances. I know for me i like to pamper myself every friday night with a face mask, body scrub and then a glass of wine or two hehe. I also walk once or twice a day its great to get out and about and be in the fresh ocean air. Its very easy to forget about yourself when you have a new baby and when that pregnancy “glow” fades and your tired af, haven’t washed your hair, your eating shit because you don’t feel like cooking. This is when you start to pick on yourself and its no good for you emotionally or mentally. Whether its a hot bath, pamper mesh, online shopping (how good is it), gym sesh or a even a 10 min walk on your own. DO IT! Make the time and treat yourself, after everything you do day in and day out you deserve it. Believe me it puts a spring back in your step 🙂
APPRECIATION – for the creation of life. To be honest i was pretty clueless when it came to pregnancy, childbirth and parenting. I knew all the information i needed to know and never went past that as it was just a part of life in my head. Little did i know how fascinating and incredible we (humans) and in particular us women are. Our bodies are amazing changing, growing and becoming homes for our little babes. I loved using the pregnancy apps and learning what new things Aria was doing inside my belly each week, knowing what to changes to expect and found the whole process amazing. I truly loved being pregnant. I must say i didn’t experience to many off the not so nice side effects so for me it was lovely the whole way through. Until i was overdue haha I wasn’t a very patient person before Aria was born but that is something i have also learned. Patience. Childbirth is an incredible and wonderful experience something i again had no idea about. WOW. what the body can go through is amazing. Wether you give birth naturally, by C- section, use pain relief or not the outcome is still the same. You have brought your baby into the world and you should be extremely proud. I also got a whole new level of respect for all the mama’s out there, especially my mum. Until you go through it yourself you have no idea how much a mother sacrifices for her children. We all deserve medals. I am definitely on the #mumlife #girlpower #iamwoman #womensupportingwomen bandwagon now we are nothing short of AMAZING.
Enjoy the little things, enjoy the moments, a year goes so fast!
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