Let’s give ourselves a break, and maybe a kitkat…..
I had a call this past week from a client, her newborn session was due to take place the following morning and I figured she wanted to chat last minute about styling, colours, what to bring etc. Nope. She was wanting to postpone the session as her wee man just wasn’t ready. Was I annoyed? Was I heck! We chatted for a good ten or fifteen minutes and she caught me up on how everything had been going, the birth, how different he was so far to her other kids, how he wasn’t settling and screamed more than she remembered them ever doing. Did I want her to suck it up and come in anyway so we could bash on arranged? Not a single bit. I wanted her to stay home, snuggle, feed, sleep and get to know him and let him get to know her. The only thing about her call that upset me was that she may have even worried that i would be upset in the slightest at having to change our planned session.
Babies are unpredictable little bundles. We never know when they’ll arrive, sometimes we don’t know what gender they will be, sometimes the surprise us with post birth complications that throw all our plans out the window. Sometimes they throw a major spanner in the works as in the case of one of my good friends and they have you on bed rest from 20 weeks and then pop out as teeny little preemies meaning you don’t even have the pregnancy you had planned never mind anything else!
Chatting with my client tonight made me think again about how much pressure we put ourselves under and have out on us by other people to be able to just sail through parenthood and for everything to magically fall into place easily. But thats just not reality, at least not for me or anyone I know.
My own wee bundle is now almost 3 months old and life is so much easier than in the first few weeks. We have a semblance of a routine (don’t get me wrong it can all go out the window at the drop of a hat, and will continue to for the next 3 years!) we sleep, albeit still broken by a feed at around 2 or 4am, not my favourite time of day by any means. But we get by. I even shower and manage to blow dry my hair most days 😉 My pre pregnancy jeans fit, but I still prefer my over bump ones as they’re so cosy and draught free! And I’ve even managed to enjoy the odd glass of wine with friends. So I feel much more like “me” again. But Im not the same old me that I was. I’m a new version of “me”.
Your baby is brand new. And so are you.
Babies change us. Even when we have done it before. This baby is different, YOU are different, the rules are different, it’s all new again and that can be terrifying. And nobody warns us. Nobody tells us that despite doing it before you are back at the start. If parenthood was a Monopoly board you’re sat on go, scotty dog at the ready, no streets yet purchased, no collecting £200. It’s all still to come. And every game is different.
We had an 8 year gap between our boys. Not by choice but by default of circumstances and those eight years were amazing. We found our way as parents, got to know our beautiful boy and watched him grow from this tiny little hungry bundle into a super chilled out caring and hilarious little dude that we genuinely love to hang out with. He got more and more independent, which is a double edged sword I struggle with. It’s awesome he can grab himself a snack, but it will kill me the day he refuses to hold my hand in public! It’s not happened yet but his peers have already done it and its only a matter of time…..
Eight years as a mummy is a fair bit of experience right? And I’ve worked with kids since I basically was one myself, starting my teaching degree at the ripe old age of 17. So I totally know my stuff yeah? Um, nope. You know the phrase “use it or lose it” well thats totally true of a lot of us with parenting brand new babies. I use the phrase “They are only this little for such a little while” in some of my marketing materials. Its not just a marketing phrase, its reality. They really are only tiny for a blink and you’ll miss it time frame. So its easy to forget. And easy to think it wasn’t so hard, they didn’t cry this much, they slept brilliantly etc etc etc.
Brand new babies are just that, they are brand new. They don’t know what they’re doing, they haven’t done the before and to all intents and purposes neither have you because you haven’t been mummy or daddy to THIS baby before. So don’t let anyone tell you you should have your sh*t together, should know what you’re doing, or make you feel any pressure to be sailing through without any bumps.
So thats my mantra through this muddy watered journey of new mummy hood. He’s brand new, and so am I.
* Not all blogs will have biscuit references, I do not accept any liability for the eating of biscuits as a result of reading this blog 😉