exhausted, family, Happy momma happy baby!, look back, mum, sleepless nights, So happy, This too shall pass, Toddler, What will make me happy, where has the time gone!

5 things that surprised me about becoming a mum

1) I called my baby the wrong name for a good few weeks

Naming your baby is so much pressure. We spent weeks ruling out names due to sound, or negative associations, or because you are pregnant and you just don’t like it. 🙂 We narrowed it down to a short list of 3 names and we waited to see our little boy, to make sure the name suited him. When he arrived, that was it, the name matched, we were happy and announced his name to the families. We proceeded to call him by his cousin’s name (born 6 months earlier) for a few weeks….. oops!

2) Baby’s have an ability to poo at the worst time

It is incredible how babies have this built in awareness of the worst timing to do a poo. You are running late and rushing to leave the house and then you smell it……poo! You are just nipping to the shops quickly, no need to bring the nappy bag. You arrive and then you smell it…….poo! You just change his nappy, which is a battle at the best of times and next thing you smell it…… poo!

All you can do is laugh at his cutie face and get out the changing mat again.

3) Mums are meant to have all the answers

I had this realisation the first time our little one was sick. His temperature had spiked and wouldn’t come down. My husband looked at me with concern, what will we do, and I thought I have no idea. Let me ring mum and there it was. My first instinct, ring MY mum. And now I am the mum, I am somehow meant to magically know the answers. Luckily I have great support from two amazing mums in my life, which is great, as I have a lot to learn! I feel like I should have mummy L-plates on half the time so at least people will know not to expect all the answers, I might just have to ring my mum!

4) The nights are long but the years are short

I heard this phrase recently and I think it’s so appropriate. When you are up in the middle of the night trying to settle a hysterical baby, the nights are long. When you are up feeding for the third time that night while you hear your other half fast asleep beside you, the nights are long. When your little one decides they want to wake every 45 minutes throughout the night, the nights are long.

But you have to remember that this too shall pass. Many people told me things only get harder, which I don’t really believe. They are different, but not harder. Instead of exhausted from lack of sleep you are exhausted from running around after your little one. Nothing is harder than being terribly sleep deprived. But remember, it will pass.

When I look back on the last year, it really does fly by and I have a feeling the years will just get quicker. We gotta make the most of it while we can.

5) It takes a village to raise a baby

I have no idea how people live far away from their families or move to new places with newborns. Whether its friends or family, we all need support. Especially in those early years. Having someone around to watch your little one while you nip out to the shops, grab a shower or just have a night out to unwind is so important. Having those sanity breaks is so important for our own mental health and wellbeing. So it really does take a village to raise a baby. Remember happy parents mean happy babies!

Girly shopping day
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Back to work, exhausted, miss him already, settling in, Sickness, Uncategorized, What will make me happy

My return to work

It’s been way too long since I last wrote, primarily because the last 6 weeks have just been a whirlwind. I am back in work roughly 10 weeks (but who is counting) and in the time we have had 1 stomach bug, one vomiting bug, countless colds and coughs and one particularly bad virus.

At the same time I have faced a pre-busy season in work. I am an auditor by trade, so I work in a very male dominated industry. There are not many mommas at my level right now (actually I am the only one at my level but there are a few above and below). To put it into perspective, the department has 200 people, so it’s not a small department!

Finding the right work life balance is so hard! Before my little one arrived, I could easily do on average 12 hour days, ramping that up in busier periods and working my weekends. But I have had a major shift in priorities. I now not only have mothers guilt but guilt I let my team down in work too! I am in charge if pickups from Creche. So I go in early and leave early. If I miss a pick up as I have late meetings, the guilt I feel is just awful. And it’s not just that, it’s that I miss my little one.

I was hoping to hold off writing this post until I had all the answers, until I had achieved the perfect balance and I feel I could provide people with great advice. But the reality is, there is no perfect balance.

I have been stressing over trying to get this balance right, but in the last two weeks I have come to the conclusion that you can’t really have it all. But the important thing is to know what you need to prioritise at different times.

When I feel the guilt, I try and ask myself what will make me happy. Will attending this meeting make me happy, will getting to creche make me happy, will meeting my deadline make me happy? A happy momma is a happy family. A happy worker is a more productive worker. So what will really make me happy????

It changes and flexes every day. But that’s ok too. Achieving things in work is important, but so is being there when your baby needs you.

A sicky baby

Some things I have done that help me:

1) Get a cleaner – you have enough to be doing working and looking after a family, so getting help with the big cleaning jobs is so important

2) be disciplined – I block off my calendar when I am due to go, to avoid meetings going into it.

3) when you feel the guilt, check in and see what makes you happy

4) when you see issues coming up, raise them early, you know when things will become unmanageable!

Finally remember, we are all human, and we are doing our best. That’s all we can do!