- 8 Amazing Truths I Learned Through Motherhood
- 1. Finding time for yourself is challenging
- 2. Every baby is different
- 3. Not every baby is born with hair
- 4. Breastfeeding might not be possible for everyone
- 5. You’ll be constantly worrying
- 6. Saying no is more difficult when it comes to kids
- 7. There’s not a lot of time for socializing
- 8. Every day is a learning curve
There are women who will experience motherhood in their lifetime. And while I would be the first to acknowledge that it’s not a woman’s sole purpose in life to have children, and some don’t want them at all, it can be a rewarding experience to bring life into the world.
However, the responsibility that comes with motherhood is no cakewalk. It’s something that has to be taken seriously and if it isn’t, chances are things can go seriously wrong. To say the least, it is a lot of pressure, especially for those who are just entering this chapter of their lives for the first time.
If you have one or two children under the belt, you know what to expect. For first-time mothers, it’s unknown territory.
Here are eight amazing things I did not know that I learned about looking after a baby as a first-time mother.
8 Amazing Truths I Learned Through Motherhood
1. Finding time for yourself is challenging
It seems a pretty obvious one but the reality of it is very different from what you’d expect it to be. When you have a baby, a lot of the free time you had for yourself is now gone. In fact, it can be near enough impossible to find time for yourself, especially if you haven’t got a partner to lean on or family/friends readily available should you need them.
In some cases, it might be that the only person that you can rely on to show up, is yourself. Even those with a strong network of family and friends can find it challenging to make time for themselves, rather than just being all about the baby. While the reward of having a baby is a wonderful thing, having some personal time to oneself is still important.
I am eternally grateful that I had a hands-on partner and also, my mom lived with us. She doted on her grandson and between the three of us, we got to enjoy the happiness of watching our son grow. And still found ourselves finding it hard to find time for ourselves!
2. Every baby is different
While we hear a lot of stereotyping about how babies behave and act, it’s important to remember that every baby is different. Not every baby is born with the same personality and habits, despite not really being aware of it themselves when they’re born.
Just because a friend or a family member has a baby that slept all the time, doesn’t mean you’re going to have the same experience. Chances are, your experience might be somewhat similar or the polar opposite. In fact, each child of yours is likely to be different –so brace yourself for the unexpected.
Case in point—my own experience of motherhood was pretty smooth I think, not considering the constant busyness. Our son was the most cheerful baby, hardly cried and slept well. We had nothing to complain about that other parents did.
3. Not every baby is born with hair
The truth is, even though we see babies with a full head of hair, your baby might have none. But there is no need to be alarmed. Some babies have hair that grows over the first few months after birth and others may struggle to grow any hair for the first year or so. Stay calm!
There are also some hair conditions in babies where they may lose part of their hair for a period of time. Don’t panic as this is often normal to happen and may be the case for your baby. It’s something that will be different for every baby, regardless of whether or not you had a baby already with a full head of hair! Newborn hair growth changes and is different for every baby.
4. Breastfeeding might not be possible for everyone
Breastfeeding is not for everyone and even those that want to breastfeed might not find it possible to do so. It’s important to understand what breastfeeding entails and how it will work or not work for your body.
Some mothers may find they cannot breastfeed due to the shape of their nipples and some babies will simply not attach to the breast. Both situations are common. In the case of formula feeding vs breastfeeding, you’ll never be able to tell which baby was formula fed and which baby was breastfed by just looking at them.
I was fortunate I was able to breastfeed my baby but my friend, who had hers at the same time could not due to various reasons and had to be assured that it was not her fault.
5. You’ll be constantly worrying
Motherhood comes with lifelong worry. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news but that worry you feel when you first see your baby is something that’s not going to go away – ever. As a mother, you’re responsible for that child and even when that child is 30 years old, they’ll still be your baby.
The constant worry is emotionally draining and for some, it will always hover in the back of a mother’s mind. Motherhood is an all-consuming role and even when the child has flown the nest, the sense of worry never goes away.
My son is studying on campus in a different country and even though I know he’s managing his life, I am never going to stop worrying!
6. Saying no is more difficult when it comes to kids
Saying no is a difficult one – especially when it comes to kids. You want to give your children the world but you don’t want them to become spoilt, regardless of how much or how little you can give them. No one should be saying yes to everything that their children demand because they’ll naturally grow up with a sense of entitlement, feeling they can get everyone and anything they want.
Motherhood puts the onus on you to be the best judge of when you should say no to your child.
Socializing is something that will become a distant memory for some time when your bring your baby home. Eventually things will get better but in those early days of motherhood, I can confidently say that even a quick trip to the supermarket and talking to the counter staff felt like socializing!
It helps when you have friendships who are also in the same place as you in life but that might not always be the case. You could be the first friend in the group to have a child, which can be challenging when you realize you can’t do everything you used to be able to do. But as they say . . . this too shall pass. Enjoy those precious moments with your baby!
8. Every day is a learning curve
With motherhood, every day is a learning curve. It’s important to be aware of the fact that no one knows everything they need to know about being a parent. In fact, a lot of it is about learning on the go. You’re bound to make mistakes and that’s okay. You’re certainly not alone. So, enjoy the process!
What I’ve shared is just the tip of the iceberg. There’s so much to learn and experience as a mother but most importantly, as I said earlier, it’s important to enjoy every moment.