When you announce that you are growing a tiny little life, amongst the congratulations and celebrations, a different kind of comment sneaks in. Relatives, friends and complete strangers feel the need to inform you that your life as you know it, will change. And although this is true, these comments are often about how it will change for the worse.
‘Ha, you can wave goodbye to lie-ins.’
‘Better catch up on sleep now, you won’t get any when the little one arrives!’
‘Ooh, babies are SO expensive, you’ll never have any money again.’
‘Giving birth is awful, I tore…’
Now, after nine months of being Mum, I can say that some of the above is true. However, although I occasionally miss skipping out of the front door with just a tiny handbag, my life has irrevocably changed for the better. Instead of telling new parents about the ways their lives will be worse or harder, I want to share the eight ways my life is better post-baby.
This is a funny one because as a new parent you constantly doubt whether you are making the right decisions. But deep down, in my gut, I know that everything I have done has been the right thing for my baby and that has given me an inner confidence I just didn’t have before. Likewise, I care much less about what other people think of me because it just isn’t about me anymore. It’s refreshing!
A slightly frivolous one but, if you love shopping then shopping for tiny human clothes is just so much more fun. Freddie has a far better wardrobe than I do and that is because I just cannot resist tiny outfits.
Now that Freddie is nine and a half months we have started to creep into being able to do things like taking him to playgrounds, to soft play, and to events generally geared towards children. It is so much fun! As an adult, you can’t go to these places without looking like a weirdo but hey, even at twenty-six I love an adventure playground as much as the next person.
If I had thought that our wedding brought us together, having a baby created a sort of unspoken understanding that everything was different now. Although you’d think that a lack of sleep and a screaming baby might add more stress (and it has occasionally!) it also brings you closer after every hurdle you overcome together. We can’t be selfish anymore because we have a little person to consider and that has made us much stronger.
My labour was not how I had envisaged it, you can read more about that here. But afterward, I had this new respect for my body. Giving birth (although bloody painful!) was so empowering! I grew a baby, kept him safe for nearly nine months and then pushed him out. However your baby is born, your body still managed to do those things and that is amazing.
I am very close to my mum and my sisters so I have always felt like we had a secure family unit but when your own baby comes along that gets even stronger. Asking for tables for two plus a highchair still makes me feel a bit fuzzy inside, likewise buying family tickets. Whatever happens, you have this little person who is the center of your world and they see you as the center of theirs too. Seeing my sisters and my mum with Freddie makes me a bit emotional as well. It really is beautiful to watch.
Pre-baby, cleaning the house would have taken me an entire day. Doing the washing would have been an hour or so affair and don’t even get me started on the deliberations over the food shop. Having a baby makes you so productive! I can clean the house in an hour and a half, the food shop takes me twenty minutes online and the washing can be done in minute bursts in-between other things. I have never been so productive!
A slightly emotional one to end, but having a precious, little baby changes your outlook on life. I feel like I see everything through Freddie’s eyes now and that makes the world so much more magical. It forces you to take things in and to pay attention to what is going on around you. It’s hard to explain but if you have a baby, you will know what I mean. Watching him discover and explore is so incredible and I feel so lucky to be able to see him grow and change.
If you have a baby, do you agree with any of the above? If you are currently expecting your first baby, smile through gritted teeth when you receive negative comments and know that your life isn’t over at all, this is just the beginning.
Thanks for reading,