My Advice for New Mums

I remember those early days of parenting. The nights seemed long, my body felt broken and the baby was stuck in what seemed like a permanent routine of eat, sleep, poop repeat. I was tired, aching, overwhelmed and yet days previous I had been hopeful, excited and longing to meet my new baby. The thought of feeling this overwhelmed and scared made me feel guilty; surely all I should have felt was nothing but happiness now that my baby had arrived; yet I pondered when I would next have a hot cuppa and my favourite soap on the tele without a baby breaking the silence with a piercing scream every few minutes. Everything was new; good new and bad new. Overwhelmingly new. Scary new. What am I doing; am I doing this right?! new. 

Well, what advice would I give that young Mum I used to be? The young Mum that suffered such baby blues that I freaked out about cot death and rushed out to get an Angel Care monitor after having a big cry in the bath because I'd missed Eastenders all week, (a show I never get time for any more; but it was the second baby that broke that soap bond) 

I would tell myself not to worry and not to fret. Motherhood is an incredible, scary, exciting, draining, magical journey so of course and only naturally does it take time to adjust into this new way of life. 

People will tell you to treasure every second. They always tell you to treasure every second, every moment. This will at times annoy you. Especially when one of those seconds, you've bent down to do a nappy change and mustard colour poo squirts out your babies bottom and covers you and your hands. Or when it's 2am in the morning, you've done your third night feed and you've just got into bed when the bed squeaks and baby is once more awake and screaming. I know, I've been there, those moments are hard to cherish and hold on to. They make for good stories though, they make for a laugh later on. It's true though, and they're right. Cherish every single second. Even the ones you want to cry, even the ones where you feel like you've failed. I'll tell you, every single second, even the terrifying ones, the tiring ones make up your journey and your unique tale of motherhood. All of the experiences are worth it and grow you into a better, stronger woman. 

I only tell you to treasure every second because babies grow quickly. Super quickly. One minute you can't believe how tiny they are, how much they sleep and the next they don't sleep. They don't nap. Not even for a second, and they're huge. In fact, I blinked and my 4 month old, cute chubby baby went from rolling to starting school. How am I buying school uniform when yesterday I was soothing away his colic? I do already long for baby days again. As much as I love each stage of their life, there is nothing like smelling a fresh new baby and holding them so close and tightly. Treasure the bad, as much as you hate that moment when you are in it, it's all part of it. 

Friends will come and go, some of the sly snakes that are only after your cute baby and exciting moments of your life will eventually slither away. You'll wonder what you did wrong, why they've left now your children are older, less cute and your life is more boring. You did nothing, FYI. They were the shallow folk after a quick cuddle. Your life isn't boring and you'll be glad of finding out who your true friends are now as they will be the ones you can cry to when your child has hurled abuse at you for cutting their sandwich up wrong. Even the good friends can leave, but again its not you, or your kids, or your boring life. Let's face it, parenting and family life is far from boring, there's no time for it to be. Live your life for your family and your children, if toxic people suck the happiness out of your life, let them go and focus on the ones that bring happiness and boost your Motherhood journey. 

Each stage of your babies life will bring fresh worries and difficulties; but it will also bring so much excitement and joy. They do grow fast. Take snapshots of all of the important milestones and all of the little ones. Facebook Timehop is an amazing way of looking back and seeing how much they have grown. 

Don't compare yourself to others, we all parent differently because we all have different children that require different things. Don't hate yourself or feel you've failed if they aren't sleeping through at a set age, or you are weaning earlier than others. One huge thing I have learnt is to take on board advice but to trust your gut instinct and to do what is right for you and your family and baby. Celebrate your differences, respect them and don't gloat or compare. We are all on separate paths as we have different children, just walk the paths together. Support fellow Mummies as you never know the inner demons they could be battling. 

Worrying will never go. You will always worry. Always. I used to think once the certain age for cot death passed that I would stop worrying so much and could finally breath. It didn't. I still can't seem to breathe or sleep easy sometimes through worrying. Right now, my worries are on Zac starting school. I'm going to feel lost not knowing how he is doing. Alas, I diverted. Worrying won't go, its a part of the unconditional love package that comes with creating a human. Just know that it is natural. 

Never ever think you are a bad Mum. Babies can cry. A lot. It's nothing you have done, if you are worried phone your health visitor but you have not failed and you will never be a bad Mum. Funnily enough, I don't think Mums that WORRY about being a bad Mum can be one. Because the bad ones simply wouldn't care. 

If you are struggling, then seek help. From friends, family, medical professionals. Never feel ashamed or embarrassed. Open up and get help so you can have happier and healthier days ahead of you. 

Every day ahead of you on this new journey may seem daunting, or you may just be super excited. The best advice I can give anyone, including myself is to take one day at a time. Don't worry too far ahead, who knows what lies around the corner. Just look at that life you have created and know that you have done such a good job so far. Well done, enjoy it. 

What advice would you give to a new Mum? What advice did you get when you started on your parenting journey? Pop a comment below, I'd love to hear from you. 

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