I used to look at Mums with older babies and think “well you must be a pro”. Do I feel like a pro, with a baby who is nearly 1? Do I hell. Every day I make this mummying lark up, and I end each day with a metaphorical high-five. She’s fed, watered and happy: go me!
But I have read 2 articles today that have made me look back on this last year in 2 very different ways. They also made me a bit emotional, although that isn’t saying much; I cry at DIY SOS.
This post by a US Mum made me shiver at the memory of those early days with Bear. The colic, the constant feeding, the sleepless nights and the anxiety. It all felt like a bit of a blur at the time, and even now the memory isn’t much clearer. She writes: “I absolutely love parenthood……but being a first-time parent is truly something I’d never want to do again.” I used to look at those ‘pro Mums’ and felt outnumbered by people who seemed to just know what they were doing. Us? We felt like we were flailing around all over the shop. Perhaps we were more normal than we thought.
Then just as I was pulling myself together after that little trip down memory lane, I found this – Mommy, somebody needs you! Man alive, I almost wanted to be back there with a newborn baby!
It’s not easy to admit, but as we approach Bear’s 1st birthday I do feel quite sad. Not because I’m watching DIY SOS, but because I feel like I spent so much – too much – of her first year on this earth waiting for it to get easier. Paul and I don’t really remember the first 3 to 6 months, truth be told, but we do remember strangers in Tesco telling us to “enjoy these first months, because they go so quickly”. They were right, of course, but we’re only now starting to see what they mean.
I’m not stupid (contrary to popular belief) – I knew it would be hard, and I know it’ll never be easy. But I wish I had relaxed more in those tiny newborn days, enough to enjoy them.