I can’t believe how fast time has actually flown by! 6 of the most intense, emotionally overwhelming, no-idea-what I’m doing months I’ve ever experienced, yet now it literally feels as though I blinked and we’re here.
I half-heartedly believed everyone during that first month when they said it got better and easier lol the first milestone to reach was the 6 week mark. “it gets better at 6 weeks, then you’re in the clear. Your body heals and you build a routine”, then it was the 3 month mark, “isn’t it so much better now?!” and now the 6 month mark “that’s it, she’s grown. It’s not that bad is it?!” ufft.
It’s definitely been a lot, a lot of the best and a lot of the not-so-best, but I wouldn’t change it for the world alhamdulillah! She has quickly taken over our hearts and our lives and we are so so in love with her xxx literally last night we both sat staring at her as she fell asleep on my chest and just talking about how scary it is to be a parent because your heart is literally beating outside your chest and you never ever want this part of you to experience pain or sadness or to have their feelings hurt. (the heart beating outside your chest thing as a parent is probably the most truest thing ever. I used to think it was a cheesy line but nope, very true!) and then I started crying because I realized one day she won’t need us or rely on us for things and she’ll be too big to sleep on my chest and questioned if she would ever remember these precious moments and how much we adore her xxx and then it made me think about how once upon a time our parents felt the exact same way about us and then we grew up and what that must have felt like for them and they wanted to keep us safe and protected but we were in a hurry to grow up too and ufft, it was an in-your-feels evening haha xx
I’ve learnt a lot in 6 months, and tried and tested a lot in 6 months, so wanted to share some of these learnings and experiences with you! Going to post this in two parts so it doesn’t get super long for you to read! As always, these musings are solely based on our experience and our bubba so feel free to take what you want, but also remember everyone and every baby is different and not everything and every tip will work for you and your family and that’s completely okay!
6 things I’ve learnt post-partum
1. Stop weighing yourself – I was doing this at the start and feeling super discouraged every time the number refused to change, especially if I felt I had a good couple days of walking and no sugar etc. It just so happened that our battery died in the scale and we never replaced it haha but it helped me stop weighing myself and obsessing with that number! Because if I was consciously doing small things to make myself feel ‘healthier’ and active and I felt better about myself, why was I counting on a number to confirm if I was allowed to feel good or not?! This obviously took some time, but I’m learning to focus on the small wins and choices we make each day xx
2. Those that get-it, get it, and those that don’t, don’t. and that’s okay! – this has taken some time and is still a work in progress, but #sorrynotsorry those friends and people in your circle who either don’t have little kids or have not been around children don’t get that your life is now different. And it’s kind of lame and sucks a lot of the time and the dynamic in your friendships and relationships is going to change a bit, but I guess that’s just how it is..(I don’t have a solution or the right answer for this lol) I have to be mindful of what times I leave the house now, prepare mentally for whether I have to feed before I leave or when I get home, or while I’m outside, and whether there will be space for me to feed and change diapers or will I have to put up a cover and feed in the car, and do I have enough diapers with me, have I run out of wipes, is the place stroller accessible, are babies even allowed, will there be parking close by etc etc etc. and even if you plan for everything in advance, you can expect a massive blowout which will throw you completely off course and you’ll realize you’ve packed everything in your suitcase of a diaper bag except for an extra pair of clothes lol and the thing is, only your other mom/dad friends will get it!
I’m learning to be okay with people not getting it, which is hard because you presume your friends of all people would get it, and some will and some won’t but it’s okay and it doesn’t mean they love you any less, but their lives are still carrying on as is yours, it’s just a little different and that’s okay! I literally reply to some of my heart peoples messages a month later apologizing for the delay and there’s no love lost because I know they understand lol
3. Lower your expectations – this is a work in progress also and I need to be reminded of this every so often lol but don’t expect anything so you won’t be disappointed. It’s easy to feel a certain way because you feel some things are just the norm and that you would treat situations differently, but people are different and show they care in different ways, and the sooner you accept that, the sooner you stop feeling some type of way about certain issues. This goes for family too, I think I presumed and expected that just because people were family they would naturally and/or instinctively help with baby and diapers and be okay with getting milk spilt on them, or soothing my crying baby, but it’s not always the case (which I’ve had to learn lol) Knowing who your support circle is and who you can rely on and trust to just take the initiative and help you when needed without being asked, and being content with that circle, is something I’m learning to be okay with!
4. Live in the moment – maybe it’s because I’m a first-time parent lol but I’m loving being a mama xxx enjoying all the small things and changes and firsts she’s doing and experiencing and I keep reminding myself that she isn’t going to be this small forever and to just take it all in as it happens and I love it xxx especially being on maternity leave from work, I keep reminding myself that there’s no rush, that the purpose of being on leave is to enjoy my baby and spend time with her so why am I antsy to do that and then some?!
5. Be gracious with your spouse/partner – this has been a little difficult, especially at the start when I realized that my life had changed way more than his did. He could still go out with friends as he did before and didn’t have to think about feedings (as much), and one he was back to work and meetings etc. it truly felt like I got handed the short end of the stick with this entire parenthood thing. Finding that balance that works for both of you and your new little family definitely takes time, and lots of communication in order to avoid that buildup and then the outburst when your cup is full (we’ve had some of those lol) but alhamdulillah we’re getting better at it and finding a groove which works for us! I try to see it from his point of view too in terms of he doesn’t get the chance to spend every second with Nunu and bond with her in the way I do and get all the smiles and giggles because he has to work and that he’s doing it all for us and our family. When you think about it logically it 100% makes sense lol but finding the time to think about it logically is a whole other thing! Just remember you’re both in this together and trying to navigate parenthood so be patient and gracious with both yourself and with each other.
6. The rule of ‘one’ – this is so important to remember and my sister had to constantly remind me of this: one activity at a time, one chore at a time, one day at a time. Mama (or Baba), you will not get to everything every single day and that is 100% okay! The faster you learn to accept this, the less pressure you’ll put on yourself to be Wonderwoman/Wonderman and the less disappointed you’ll be at not completing all your tasks!
I was literally trying to do the most with Noura at the beginning and then feeling so burnt out every evening from feeling like I had to do everything in one day or else everything would fall apart. Laundry and cooking dinner and vacuuming and grocery shopping and going to a baby class and taking a walk and writing a blogpost and and and and ufffft! I know most of it was for myself and to make myself feel like I could still do everything plus look after a newborn, but the reality is that you’re still healing. Mentally, emotionally, physically, it’s all different and trying to get back in sync whilst you have to constantly attend to the needs of this little human who yes, at the beginning literally sucks the life out of you. Take. It. Easy. If you give baby a bath, that’s your activity for the day. Dressing him/her up to take a cutesy monthly photo, that’s your activity for the day. Doctors appointment, taking a walk with bubba, one load of laundry, going grocery shopping, one event/activity for the day until you’re ready to make it two. Remember, there’s no real award for best mom/best dad ever. You burning yourself out isn’t going to benefit anyone, especially yourself and baby so take it slow!
There you have it, 6-for-6 xx check back for part 2 where we share 6 things we’ve love loved for Noura over these past 6 months! I
Anything you’d like to add or that you found as a new parents?! Share your sharings in the comments below as I love hearing from you! xoxo