The first few weeks following the birth of my first child are a total blur and if I’m honest, I don’t really remember much about them.
One thing that was not lost amongst the milk hazed chaos was how at certain points during those first intrepid weeks, me and my post baby self could have done with a list of new mum home truths that cut through the inertia of new mum bullshit and instead brought me and my over active worries back down to reality. A reality where I realised that myself like all other mums out there are doing a bloody good job.
So for all you new mums, mums to be and mums who have a new born again here is a reminder of why you should not be feeling shit about yourself (be sure to stick it up on your fridge and consciousness) – The no-bullshit-mum bits of advice I wish someone had told me when I became a mum:
1. The day you give birth is not the best day of your life.
Yes, shock, horror and may Mother Nature strike me down for admitting it, but let’s be honest here for a moment and ask ourselves what we prefer the thought of: A) A day at a spa pushing your body through the paces of a luxurious massage or B) A day of pushing what feels like an eight legged elephant out of a tiny hole in it?
YES, your own tiny bundle of humanness is the best thing ever but what you have to go through to meet them, not so much!
2. There is not always a sudden gush of love.
“The moment you see them you will be just overwhelmed by the most amazing gush of love.” Hmmm… or the most amazing rush of total and utter shock that you have just pushed a human out of your body, followed by the sudden gush of relief that what you have had to go through to get them here is now over.
The experience of bringing a child into the world is so individual and so unique to each woman going through it that the blanket generalisation of how you will feel once you have done it, is just plain inaccurate.
Yes, some people do feel that sudden gush of love. However, there are also a hell of a lot of additional strong emotions that childbirth conjures up and sometimes reign supreme. Therefore, please do not label yourself a freak of Mother Nature if your initial feelings after having a baby are utter shock and complete numbness and disbelief at what you have just achieved, rather than a gush of the overwhelming love variety.