Being a mum is a whole load of swings and roundabouts emotions. It’s a constant up and down from the moment you have your baby. A lot of people suddenly have an opinion on your business. It’s like the world now has the right to chip in about how you adult your children. And what with being judged, there’s also us judging ourselves. With Social Media now there’s a lot to compare ourselves too. You can’t but help look at that ridiculously smiley, perfectly edited family on Instagram and wish your child would just bloody well sit still for a photo, wearing those hilarious comedy glasses you bought. Social Media can at times make us think that our lives aren’t pastel enough, colourful enough, or fun enough!! Argh!! You can also (without meaning to) spend a lot of time comparing yourselves to other mums that you meet, at playgroups, softplay or at the school gates. This post is about not being that mum who seems to have it all.
Us mums can sometimes get a bad wrap, and I’m not talking the sandwich variety here. If we’re not hating each other, we’re being too smug, we’re being too competitive, we’re not good enough, we drink too much coffee and wine, or we dare enjoy just being ‘mums’ and not working! All these traits tend to be banded about in the media I hasten to add, I don’t believe any of this rubbish. We are what we are, us mums, and I think that truth be told, the majority of us are doing a damn good job, even if we do happen to feed the kids beige food three days in a row (*cough, that definitely wasn’t me, cough*) Being a mother is incredibly hard at times but it’s also hugely rewarding. It’s a large amount of good with a dose of bad thrown into the mix. So let’s get down to the nitty gritty, what’s the real truth about being a mum and what are the bits that people might fail to tell you about?
The words to this letter have whirling around my head for a while now my, really since the day you were born, but the time hasn’t felt right to put those words down until now. I wanted to write you a letter at each birthday but I think this one alone will hopefully cover the last two years of your busy little life. I’ve got so many things to say to you, to tell you and to let you know about, but I’ll try to keep this simple and not prattle on too much. I’ll get the slushy stuff out of the way first, okay?
No amount of information or advice from friends or family really, truly prepared me for having a baby. I read every book going, did NCT and even did the free NHS classes too. I was a complete swot and asked lots of questions and wrote a whole heap of notes. All in preparation for becoming a ‘parent‘ (dun, dun, duuueeerrr!) I was ready, like a runner lining up in the starting blocks, or so I thought. But when my baby arrived, everything I’d learnt or read went out of the window. Funnily enough never at one point did I refer back to my trusty ‘notes’. The last thing you think about doing during a 3am feed followed by a ‘poo-splosion’, is consulting your pages and pages of handwriting. You genuinely have to wing a lot of it. There were some very confusing moments when my baby was new (often involving poo or sick) but I got through those dark times and hey presto, I came out the other side having learnt a new skill, wahoo! (to any potential or new parents, you will at one point be stood covered head to toe in sick, holding a baby also covered in sick and you literally won’t know where to start) Here are a few truths for you, a few things that I’ve discovered along the way.