“Oh, (laughing) things are gonna change now!”
“Life will never be the same”
“Get all the sleep you can now, you’ll not get the chance in a few months”
“You’ve no idea what’s in front of you”
“That’s the end of the nights out and social life”
Just some of the things that are said to a mum when she announces she’s pregnant. When you move onto your second pregnancy you get hit with, “You thought it was busy with 1, just wait until this one arrives!” or “Now the fun really starts”. Why is it some people are so negative about the wonderful miracle that is the addition of a little one into a family? There are so, so many articles written and shared on the internet that give the ‘honest, warnings’ about how difficult being a mum is, how hard the first year can be, and yes, it IS hard, and yes your life does change, but you know what – IT.IS.OK. In fact, it’s more than ok, it is wonderful. And YOU.WILL.DO.IT. And while you’re doing it, you might even kind of enjoy it a little!
I try so, so hard to not say any of the clichés to friends when they tell me the wonderful news that they are going to have a little one. I am pretty sure that they know already it is going to be hard, they know already that there will be sleepless nights, they aren’t daft. I mean, I knew. I knew there would be days I wanted to cry, there would be times I would not have a clue what I was doing. But ya know what? I did it. I made. I got through that ‘first year’ and. dare I say it, I loved it. Was it what I thought it was going to be? Sure it was, Were there times I wondered what is wrong with this child?!?!? How do I do that? Of course there were. But this little miracle was given to me as a gift from God and I took delight in him. They DO grow up so quickly. Those times when it is hard, really hard, will pass, yeah it feels like they won’t but they will and they do.
So, my ‘advice to new mums’ would be – get excited! It is wonderful that you are pregnant. What a blessing. What a gift. It is the best thing that will ever happen to you (after getting married!) Enjoy every minute of pregnancy. Don’t worry too much about the labour – deal with that when it comes.
My top 10 things to look forward to in the first 12 months of pregnancy.
1. That moment when you hold you baby for the first time and get to say “Hi” face to face, looking into each others eyes, knowing that right then you have fallen even more in love than you ever thought possible.
2. When you get to bring your baby home – the car journey will probably be the slowest and most cautious one that you have ever been on, you will look round at the car seat every other minute just to make sure everything is ok. And you will probably be a little terrified too, in a good way, thinking HOW are we going to do this, are we really taking this child home to look after all by ourselves?? Wow. I don’t think we’re ready.
3. The first smile that your little one will give you – that isn’t ‘wind’ or pains. That is a genuine, real smile. Be prepared – your heart will melt.
4. When you life them up out of their moses basket/car seat/bouncer and their wee bum sticks out, their arms are all curled up, their wee heads are a little floppy and they are still all squished up….enjoy those days, they definitely don’t last long. Enjoy having that tiny wee head, fitting in just perfectly under your chin. Look forward to those evenings when you’ll lie on the sofa with your tiny bundle lying on your chest sleeping.
5. When they roll over for the first time and you genuinely think your child is a genius!!!!
6. Those moments in the middle of the night, when the house is so, so quiet and it’s just and your little one having a cuddle during a feed – those moments can be beautiful. (I know they can be exhausting, but there will be at least once when you will take a big deep breath, cuddle them in tight and smile).
7. When they first eat from a spoon and enjoy finger foods – suddenly things just got a little easier when you head to a coffee shop or restaurant – finger foods are great for keeping them entertained!
8. When they wake up in the morning and are absolutely over the moon to see you – their arms and legs will flap uncontrollably, they will squeal and laugh with excitement and you will feel amazing! It’s like you haven’t seen each other for weeks!!!
9. Look forward to each and every milestone that they reach – sitting up on their own, clapping their hands, waving bye bye, crawling, pulling themselves up, ‘cruising’, climbing. walking, saying da-da, ma-ma ….there are so many. And each time, you will swell with pride, tell everyone you know, take pictures, clap and cheer like they have just won an Oscar – treasure those moments.
10. That moment when it hits you. YOU.ARE.A.MUMMY. Someone’s MUMMY. There is NO greater job, Be excited.
So mum to be / new mum. Congratulations on your wonderful news. You are going to love it. Yes it’s going to be hard, BUT it is going to be even more wonderful with so many moments of complete joy. I wish you every blessing.