Dear New Mums: We all don’t got it
Dear new mums, we are sorry
I know we have not represented motherhood as you are beginning to experience it, I know we have left out details that you wonder how comes no one told me this. I know we have made it look like the most glamorous moment in your life and to some extent it is, but this you will realise when you look back. So this is an attempt to give you a glimpse of the raw side that you will not read on social media.
You might not fall in love immediately, loads of moms upload a photo of their baby a couple of minutes after birth and say how they are in love with the baby, well, some of us wanted to just black out after giving birth, the labour took our every ability to function and so it is perfectly fine to just want to be. Some of us grow in love over time, it’s not that we can’t die for this baby but we are learning each other and in a couple of weeks, months, when all the new phase of motherhood is passed then the beauty, settles in.
Juggling between learning your baby, learning to breastfeed, learning to wake up every 2-3 hours, can take a toll on you. Give yourself the grace to know that we all went through it, we all struggled, we posted cute photos of our babies every other day, but we never told you that we were struggling to adjust to having sleepless nights. They do happen, the first 3 months can be exhausting, but when you get into a routine it will be pure bliss, you will stare at them as they sleep because they are oh! So! Cute!
When we say that our baby sleeps through the night and that we did not really suffer sleepless nights as many moms do, it also means we put in the work. We worked hard to find a routine that works for both the baby and I. It means we were consistent even when we did not feel like being consistent, we sacrificed those early days so that we could confidently say that baby has been sleeping through the night from 6 months. Motherhood is work.
I know I just said motherhood is work, here is the catch- there is no award for motherhood- award is different from reward, motherhood has its rewards and they are many and beautiful. Back to no awards, there is no award for those who suffered the most, those who had the worst nights, those who managed to still look alive even when the baby refused to sleep. If you can train your baby because that is rewarding, it’s rewarding in terms of a good night sleep, peace of mind.
Sorry, we never told you that breastfeeding which is usually perceived as the most normal part of motherhood is also not easy. Granted there are some babies who come and they latch immediately and the mother has milk gashing even before she gives birth, then there is us, who baby comes and you have no idea how to hold them, they have no idea of how to latch, they don’t want to open their mouth, you get sore nipples then engorged boobs, you will feel a lump and be so scared, then you will breastfeed through the cracked nipple and lump will be gone and it will be the most fulfilling thing to not have a full boob. There are amazing women called lactation managers, talk to them they are a gift from God to mothers.
Did you know that milk leaks almost all the time? Like you will leave the shower and as you oil yourself drip, drip, drip. Breast pads will be your best accessories the first couple of months and for those who have milk in abundance even up to 1 year.
Oh! The weight, the glorious baby weight. Do not be fooled by those models, you see Eniko Hart leaving the hospital no tummy whatsoever mama it doesn’t work like that like 99% of us are like Duchess Kate Middleton, still looking a couple of months pregnant. I have to admit this one caught me by surprise, the baby left and the tummy stayed, how now? Some breastfeed and the weight washes away, some of us have to work it out. Let it not worry you for the first 6 months, remember you are the sole provider in terms of food for this new soul.
As your kids grow I want you to remember that it is okay to prioritize you, you are more important. No matter how hard you love your children please do not get lost in this new role, enjoy everything to do with it, but remember you were before you became a mother and you will be even after they leave the house, yes 18 years looks far away but it isn’t. Time sure flies. Guard you heart (You) for it is the wellspring of life.
This here is the biggest secret of them all… we are all clueless, we all have got no idea how to go about this motherhood thing.
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