Current mood? Nostalgic, drinking wine & eating powdered sugar donuts🙊 reminiscing about the past. My nanny days, early motherhood days, you name it. I’m tired as heck but can’t sleep fighting off bronchitis or whatever-the-hell it is, so I got up and did the dishes. Pro tip: going to bed with a clean sink is a heck of a lot better than waking up to dirty sink full of dishes. It really is. Okay so on to things no one told me about becoming a mom. [brace yourself, there’s a lot of evers/nevers coming up.]
1) You will love more than you’ve ever loved before. This is not to say you don’t love your husband/significant other with all you’ve got, I’m sure you do. But this kind of love is different and deeper: at times it feels like your heart might burst because it can’t hold all the love in.
2) You will question yourself more than you ever have in your entire life. But you realize that the questioning makes you a better parent, because the crappy parents don’t question themselves–they think they know it all and do things without ever second guessing. My OB-GYN told me at the beginning of my pregnancy that my worrying was a sign I was a good parent because I actually cared about all of these things. Obviously there’s such a thing as too much worrying, but that’s another topic for another time.
3) You have expectations going into motherhood that won’t be met. But sometimes life is a better teacher than anything you could imagine. I nannied kids of all ages for years and thought parenthood was going to be a breeze. And while it’s certainly easier since I have a ton of childcare experience under my belt, there’s nothing like being responsible for your own tiny human 24/7. Especially one made of your own dna. lol. I don’t regret a thing, but I sometimes silently judged the families I nannied for, for letting their kids watch tv etc. Now I’m like, any mamas want to share how they get their clingy teething toodler going through separation anxiety even when mom is just in the other room to let you make dinner without putting the tv on?! Let me in on your secrets.
4) The first year (or maybe more, I don’t know I’m just past the first year right now ha) of parenthood will be the hardest of your marriage. You’re both constantly sleep-deprived, hormonal (okay maybe that’s just me🙊🙈), and trying to figure out this parenthood thing and balancing your relationship and everything else. You’ll fight about stupid things and sometimes not even know why you’re fighting, but if you really love each other you’ll work it out. Try not to stress about the little shit and take advantage of grandparents who want to babysit–go on dates when you can and just spend some time sans kiddo enjoying each other’s presence.
5) You’ll forget to take care of yourself. The first few months of Riley’s life I didn’t EVER shower unless my hubby was home to watch her. I was paranoid she might need to eat or be held or might need me and couldn’t wait 5 mins for me to get clean. Which led to a dumb fight in #4 (me crying to my husband that he got to shower whenever he wanted). Then we got an infant rocker seat that was a gamechanger, I could put it in the bathroom with me and peep out the shower curtain to make sure she was okay. Seriously. That first shower I checked on her every .67 seconds, but a couple weeks later I could have her in there and shower without even sticking my head out. Be kind to yourself mama, but try to remember to take care of yourself too.
Okay, some of these things people maybe definitely told me before becoming a mom, but I’m the type of person who learns best through personal experience. And I’m still constantly learning and changing but that’s the beauty of human life. All I can say is if you’re about to become a new parent than don’t go into it thinking you know it all. Accept help from those who have been there beforehand because they’ve likely experienced something you will soon, and can offer advice. But also don’t think you have to follow any advice you hear. Parenthood is weird and believe it or not most of us are just trying to figure our shit out and you’ll get through it. Even when you don’t think you will. Hugs, mama. You got this! 👊