1. People will tell you to sleep when the baby sleeps...
This one is freakin' hilarious! Sleep when the baby sleeps! I don't think the people that say these words have actually met a baby! My health visitor said this to me and I thought 'aww isn't that nice, I'll be able to nap during the day!" HAHAHA!
When Teddy sleeps I sprint (quietly) to the shower, have a 10 second wash (only the important bits matter) then I have to wash bottles, tidy the bomb site and sort the dog out who has been abandoned to fend for herself all while doing intervals of shovelling washing into the machine and checking that he is still breathing!
I'm sure there will be people out there that do sleep when their babies sleep but I prefer to use that time to get organised so I can enjoy spending time with my baby when he is awake in a tidy house and feeling fresh(ish)!
2. Having a baby changes your body and there's no way around it!
Throughout pregnancy my body completely transformed and I tried my best to prevent stretch marks and weight gain but being sober and not eating cheese for 9 months SUCKS!
I ate! Once the morning sickness wore off, which for me was around 20 weeks, my appetite exploded and even though I had severe heartburn I powered through, chasing Subway foot longs with Greggs and ice cream! One week I ate coco pops for every meal! So there isn't a moisturiser out there that could have saved me!
Wether it's self inflicted or not, expect to gain a bit of weight, experience a bit of swelling, see a few stretch marks and not look or feel yourself for a while but trust me on this, the small sacrifice you have made will all be worth it.
3. Friends without children can become a little bit distant.
I thought that having a baby wouldn't change any of my friendships, but having a baby changes ALL OF THE THINGS! I think that some childless people think that parents are dull, unsociable, unavailable and only able to talk about their babies! For the most part that is spot on! You will find that some of your friends are on board and some just aren't. Some friendships will become stronger, some become weaker and some will vanish never to be seen again! Aw well, thats life, Hakuna Matata...
4. The topic of conversation when pregnant is pregnancy.
I loved this. Talking about my pregnancy, discussing names, nursery themes and dreams. I never grew tired of updating people when they asked! To me it made the whole experience more exciting and I loved the cooing and the ahhhhing!
I was roughly the size of a humpback whale at 30 weeks pregnant and then you want to throw your gingersnaps at anyone who mentions the size of your bump, face or butt!
Be warned of the bump invaders! These are the people who without warning will touch your "bump". When I got bigger a woman at work actually almost entered me! Emmmmmmm thats my vagina!
5. Don't panic when your baby cries...
This one was really hard for me. I felt so anxious everytime he cried for the first few weeks, especially if anyone else including my husband, was holding him and failing (in my opinion) to comfort him. It felt like a chemical reaction in my brain causing my body to panic! This eased off and I reminded myself that it is just their way of communicating. How would you communicate that you were hungry or annoyed if you couldn't talk?
It is also worth knowing that they will go through something called a leap which is a sudden change in their mental development. These fussy periods make your baby more clingy, crankier and cry more! Each leap gives your baby a new type of perception of the world. - Check it out here.
6. Breast feeding can be really hard so don't be hard on yourself!
I know that by breast feeding you are giving your baby the best start in life. I was adamant that I wanted to breast feed. I attended the classes, read the books and searched the internet for advice! I felt so prepared! But there are some ugly truths about breast feeding that they don't tell you in ante natal!
Your baby might not take to breast feeding.
You may not be able to produce enough milk for your baby.
Breast milk digests faster than formula thus making your baby hungrier and needing to feed more often.
Until your milk comes in they have an instinct to demand feed. They know the more they are on the breast the quicker the milk will come in. This results in hours and hours of feeding and it HURTS!
Nobody warned us about cluster feeding! This is where the baby bunch feeds close together and leaves a couple of hour gaps in between. This happens in the first 2 weeks, at every growth spurt and can last up to 4 months.
I'm not trying to put anyone off breast feeding. I was devastated that we stopped but it was the right decision for us! Hats off to you breast feeding Mums, you guys are shero's and to the formula mamas, don't beat yourself up, you have to do what is right for you and your family!
7.Your first shower after birth is the best!
You will get to understand this! Make sure you pack a nice shower gel and a loofa - trust me!
8. You will make friends because of your baby.
I have made a lot of new friends through classes and groups I have attended and I've grown closer to my friends who already had babies. Its an amazing community and is like being a member of the most exclusive club in the world. I have days where I love lounging in the house with Teddy but it can be quite isolating if I go more than a day or two so I like to pad our week out with activities. If you're a new Mum thinking about doing a class or two, DO IT! It's the best thing you can do for you and your baby!
9. When your baby kicks off in public people aren't judging you as much as you think.
All mothers have been in that situation, my last episode was only yesterday! Walking around the supermarket with my car seat on top of the trolly, Teddy luring me into a false sense of security, sleeping like an angel until all hell broke loose.
Teddy 1 Mummy 0.
Learning from past mistakes I had thrown my baby carrier into the trolly. This is a life saver when they wake up and want carried (Teddy is 5 months and weighs 19lb!).
You learn not to panic and to just focus on your baby and ignore everyone else. Some ignorant people will throw you the odd look or be annoyed at the noise but it's not everyone. Don't let it put you off taking your baby out with you. If you're feeling stressed out about doing the food shop take someone with you for the first few times. Learn what kind of baby trollies they have, where they are, where you can park and where the baby change is.
10. You will be HOT!
Regardless of what season it is you will be as hot as a mother! I was pregnant in summer and OMG! It starts with the cracking of a window at night and quickly turns to sleeping naked, no covers, with a fan blasting and all the windows open with your Husband shivering in thermals and a sleeping bag to stay warm.
There came a point when enough was enough! Imagine Lee's face when he came home from work to find me in the garden in an 8ft paddling pool from B&M Bargains!
It took me hours to assemble the stupid thing and it flooded the garden twice but oh my goodness it was worth it!
If you have any other tips or tricks worth sharing with Mums to be please leave a comment below.
Peace and love,