I’ve been thinking about this a lot recently, so thought I would take a break from craft (almost). Just for tonight.
2. Your greatest allies on this crazy journey are other mums. They are also capable of being your harshest critics. Hang on to the good ones, you’re going to need eachother.
3. You are going to look back at the early weeks one day and laugh/cringe at some of the crazy things you did! For me, it’s the video of us bathing Little Mr Toad for the first time – baby in one hand instruction manual in the other! I’m weeping with laughter inside just thinking about it!
4. It’s a huge secret, but babies don’t spend the nine months in the womb reading baby books. They can’t read and, if they could, they probably wouldn’t be reading the book you bought. That’s ok because they are as individual as you and me.
5. Breast feeding is (for all but the lucky few) hard. Really, really hard. The Mum feeding in the cafe may look like she has it sorted but, in all likelihood, she has spent hours and hours behind closed doors struggling to make it work and even now she’s afraid that she’s getting it wrong. She almost definitely isn’t.
6. You are going to become completely blase about wee, poo and vomit and will probably find yourself leaving the house wearing at least one, if not all three. More than once.
7. This little gummy bundle is going to teach you things you had no idea you needed to know. The greatest thing you will learn is how completely and utterly unconditional love can be.
8. A “mother’s instinct” is actually a thing.
9. “This too shall pass” – you’ll hear that a lot and that’s because IT WILL. Soon the baby days will be gone forever and you are going to miss them.
10. The early days are a crash course in extreme exhaustion. Tiredness like you have never, ever experienced before but it is so, so worth it. Few, if any, babies sleep through from the off, they aren’t made that way and that’s ok.
11. The answer to the question “how do you do it?” is L.O.V.E. In other words – I love this tiny human more than words can explain and would give my life for him*, he needs me.
12. Perfect parenting is a figment of imagination and exists only in the dreams of those who are yet to experience it for themselves. You are going to get it wrong sometimes, don’t be hard on yourself when you do. Tomorrow is a fresh new day.
13. Those leaky eye pregnancy hormones have done something crazy to your tear ducts because they will continue to leak at the drop of the hat. I’m willing to go out on a limb here and say that that isn’t going to change for the rest of your life.
14. No matter how exhausted you have been all day, you’ll wake up and develop a need to do anything and everything you can think of the moment the gummy wrinkly bundle is asleep. You’ll probably get fed up of hearing well meaning people telling you to “sleep when the baby sleeps”. One day you will realise that you should have listened to them and begin sharing that advice with all and sundry. You’ll actually do it (when you can) when baby number two comes along (and, if you can’t, wish you could jump back in time to the newborn days with baby #1 and go tell yourself to, for goodness sake, sleep when the baby sleeps!).
15. This is going to change you. Forever. For the better. It’s going to add new colours and shades to your life and that old life is going to feel monochrome by comparison – even tho leaving the house, with your partner alone or after dark is now almost completely a thing of the past.
16. You can do it and, if you are struggling, there is no shame in admitting it and reaching out for help. We all struggle sometimes – see ‘thing’ 12 above!
17. All you really need is nappies, clothes, a sleeping place and a supply of milk and love. The rest will take care of itself.
18.There are going to be good days and bad days, there are going to be days you feel like a total failure and there are going to be days that create memories that you will hold on to for the rest of your life.
19. It is possible to make peace with a ‘Mum tum’ and stretch marks.
P.S. 21. You’ll become so evangelical about it that a list of ’10 things that nobody tells a Mum to be, but probably should’ turns into a list of 20 (or 21) things quite by accident.
I’d love to hear what you would add to the list.
Thank you for reading.
* I am a Mum of boys