I think most of us had these beautiful, romantic images of what we would all be like as parents prior to becoming one, didn’t we? Those long summer days filled with picnics and games, carefully painting their hands and creating perfect keepsakes, holding them in your arms until they gently drop off to sleep, feeding them healthy, homemade meals… you get the gist and right now you are probably laughing and nodding along because let’s face it, parenthood is pretty different to all of that!
And I will admit it, becoming a Mum wasn’t what I had imagined. I mean it doesn’t help that in movies and on TV that they all make it look so easy, they all get their errands run with no strops from the kids, they keep their houses clean whilst the toddler plays quietly on the floor with a toy car, they organise their paperwork whilst they nap for hours on end and they have their hair and nails magically done too! Nothing was out there to fully set me up for what it was really like.
Becoming a Mum
Becoming a Mum was amazing. I adored Jake from the moment I saw him and that side of it all was great for me. Where I struggled was in different areas. I hated being out of routine, I couldn’t cope with my house being untidy, I felt disorganised and that would play on my mind. I wasn’t used to having a little person creating more mess as I tidied, I wasn’t used to the lack of sleep which affected my concentration and I didn’t know what stage was going to come next or how it was going to change my child’s behaviour, routine, sleep or attitude.
So, it’s safe to say that the first time around being a Mum I was a bit of a stress head. I tried far too hard to keep every plate balancing and to try and be the person I was before even though my life had completely changed.
And so I learnt the hard way. I slowly realised that I could only do what I could do and that the world wouldn’t fall apart if the hoovering wasn’t done. I learnt to just let things go a little more and adjusted to my new main role as Mum putting cleaner, life organiser and general housekeeper a bit further down my list.
Becoming a Mum the Second Time Around
And it’s Lucky I did because when a second child is thrown into the mix it’s a whole new ballgame! There is even less time, there is even more mess, there is more to do and suddenly you are torn between 2. I think the second time around most of us don’t really have much choice but to go with the flow because if we fought against it all the time we’d be rocking in the corner after a few months! You simply cannot be superwoman.
This time around I am calmer, I am more nurturing, I have co-slept, I have continued breastfeeding past 1, I am far softer, I am more patient and even though I do still get stressed it is for different reasons–usually because one child is winding the other one up! The biggest bonus of being a second time Mum is that you’ve already made the mistakes with the first one (sorry Jake!) which means you are far more prepared, you know what the products are, you know what will happen with teething, you know how to deal with weaning, you can read their signs and you don’t worry quite so much that you are doing things wrong.
I mean I am still learning and I always will be because as a child develops and hits a new milestone, they alter and they test me all over again but at least I’m not worrying that I can no longer see my desk which is hidden under 6 months worth of paperwork, that my bathroom is a bit dirty or that my flowers haven’t been watered in days because I know I physically cannot do it all. Those things will have to wait until my children are older, when they are a little more independent and when I have the energy again!!
Being a Mum the second time around has made me a better Mum. Yes, I am a more tired and haggard one but we’ll overlook that bit for now (I’ll attempt to fix that in the future too!) I just wish I knew all of this the first time around.
I wonder if it changes if you have more children…?
Let me know!
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