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Monday, 28 March 2016

Two whole years

Last week marked two years since we discovered we were pregnant with our little bear.  I cannot believe two years has gone by since those two blue lines appeared and now we have a real life little human. In some ways those two years have flown by, and in other ways it seems like a lifetime has passed. I am a completely different person to the 21 year old girl I was.  I thought it would be nice to reflect on the roller coaster journey motherhood has taken me on.

I have dreamed of being a mum my whole life. I think I was almost 13 (okay, 14) when I finally put my dolls in the loft. I played the game of wanting to be a 'career women', said all the right things, followed the paths, was successful at interviews, secured a highly paid job at 20 years old but it was never really me.  I did enjoy my working life and I enjoyed the reaction from people when I answered the number one conversation starter of "What do you do?" but the passion for climbing the career ladder was never really there. If I didn't have Mr P and the security of our own home etc I would still be playing the career game I'm sure, but luckily for us things happened quicker than we expected, we bought our apartment just before my 21st birthday and only 5 months later, I was pregnant.

Before I was pregnant I knew it all.  I knew all about babies, I knew exactly what I would do when I was a mum and if I am going to be completely honest, I would sometimes judge other mums. "I wouldn't do it like that" Well habloodyha joke is on me, because no matter how much you think you know, you don't. you really really don't.

No matter how much I had dreamt of having a baby, the moment I saw those two lines I was absolutely panic-stricken. Suddenly the reality of having an actual human to look after became very very real.  When I look back at photos of myself then I don't recognise myself, I look so young and naive, and I know I was absolutely terrified.  I don't think I coped very well with the impending arrival,  I was so so excited but I felt so unwell throughout my pregnancy and actually, looking back,  I think I was suffering with crippling anxiety.  I am sure things will be very different second time around.  Seeing Chris and the rest of our family so so excited is what kept me sane I think. I cried ALOT during those 38 weeks, all the certainty I had about being a mum before I was pregnant was gone and replaced with so much self doubt, I wanted to be this perfect mum but as reality started to dawn on me I was so frightened and lacking in self confidence that I wouldn't be good enough. I think maybe everyone has those thoughts. 

To those around me I appear to be such a confident outgoing person, the life and soul of a party but that actually couldn't be further from the truth, I am so unsure and self critical but becoming a mum has been an amazing journey away from that.  I have so much confidence in my ability as a mum now, When Freddie was born my mother instinct kicked in straight away.  I felt so powerful going through the birth process, even thought it ended with a section, I felt so empowered. This was my baby and I knew what he needed. I was so lucky to have an amazing support network around me too which helped me and encouraged me to trust in myself.  There were nights where I would be crying on the nursery floor because he just-woudnt-sleep and days where I wanted to scream and exit by the front door and never return, But I did get him to sleep, I didn't run away, I didn't shout at my newborn, I just got on with it.  I powered through, even though some days it was like wading through mud but I did it. and now I have a bright, healthy, gorgeous 16 month old little boy and our bond is absolutely solid. Parenting can go from one extreme to the other so quickly, you can be having the worst day and then they smile and bam, your heart just exploded. Those reading this who don't have children yet, thinking how can you want to scream at your newborn, don't judge, just wait!

I think it's those hard times that teach us the most.  If parenting was easy what would we learn? Would we grow as people? I have learnt so so much about myself, I trust in my ability to know what my child needs and I know I will do whatever necessary to provide for him, I am calmer now, more patient and I think I am a kinder person.  I care more, I have time for everybody from every walk of life, becoming a mum has left my feelings and emotions raw and vulnerable but I like that. I feel more and relate to the world around me in a way I never knew possible.  Having Freddie has given life so much more of a purpose, Chris and I are more driven and ambitious than ever and our relationship is on a different level you dont even know exists until you become parents together.  It used to be so hard to get up for work, now I am back working 12 hours a week and it is easy to jump out of bed because I want to build a better life for Freddie. I no longer care about things that do not matter, the world is so beautiful and I never really saw it before. I have never appreciated how good a walk around the block can be. I see life completely differently to my fellow 23 year old party animal friends, and I absolutely love it. 

Becoming a mum has made me strong and independent. Its been the most incredible two years. The hardest two years and the best two years. A blur of sleepy cuddles, smiles and discovering I can survive on -38902 hours of sleep. I wonder where the next two years will take us.

Do you think you have changed since becoming a mum?

Thank you for reading my ramblings.

1 comment :

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