Snezana Markoski on why raising a newborn is very different to what it was 12 years ago.

Video by Mamamia Women's Network.

In October this year, Snezana Markoski and Sam Wood welcomed Willow Wendy Wood, who also just happens to be Australia’s first Bachelor baby, into the world.

It wasn’t Snez’s first baby, but we wanted to know how the mum to 12-year-old Eve was coping with a newborn and what she noticed had changed in the time since she’d been putting on nappies.

The mum-of-two told us everything she remembered, the couple of things she forgot, and how Sam and Eve are adjusting to their new roles.

It’s been 12 years since you had Eve. How are you finding having a baby the second time around?
Having another baby is fantastic and I feel I’m a lot more confident and relaxed the second time around. The challenge is that being a fair bit older I need to stay on top of my nutrition and exercise more closely in order to keep my energy levels up so I can run around after both girls on little sleep.

I also have two kids now not one. Having realistic expectations and not over-committing are my rules. Sam is a brilliant help too that I never had before.

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Is there anything you forgot about mothering newborns?
Most things came flooding back to me that very first night we had little Willow beside us, a night of sleeplessness. However, what I did forget was how long it takes to duck into the supermarket with a baby. What once took five minute now takes an hour. Eeeek.

There is a lot of new things out on the market that I find myself staring blankly at and asking “what’s this for?” Other than that I’ve always been fairly maternal and feel very relaxed and at ease in my role as a Mum.

What else have you noticed has changed since Eve was a baby?
It’s actually quite interesting how things have changed. Views on body image, breastfeeding and heading back to work after having a baby. There is pressure and expectation put on women to be at pre-pregnancy weight and back at work within a few weeks of having a baby. Then everyone is divided. They either praise you for a superhero effort or shun you for making others compare. You really can’t win. I try to ignore it as I believe every pregnancy and mum is so different that you need to do what feels right for you.

Listen: Hello Bump: The Pointy End is giving listeners a crash course in all things pregnancy and birth. (Post continues.)

How has Sam taken to his role as Dad? 
Sam has always been an incredible father figure to Eve but obviously, nappy changing was never part of that. Now being a first time dad of a newborn little baby girl he is definitely getting his hands dirty. He loves to be involved with the bathing, settling and feeding and doesn’t love but is definitely still involved in nappy changing. Sam has taken to fatherhood with a lot of ease and is experiencing every part of being a newborn parent including the sleepless nights. He is an incredible dad and partner and makes my heart want to explode knowing how much he loves us and is protective of his girls.

Is Eve enjoying being a big sister?
Eve is an amazing big sister who loves and adores Willow and much like Sam tends to wake Willow up just to kiss her and play. The age gap between Eve and Willow means that Eve is very helpful when it comes to caring for her baby sister. Eve has such big heart and has wanted a baby sister for so long and loves helping take care of Willow and Willow already is obsessed with her. Eve is also the only one out of all three of us that can get Willow to take the dummy.

How have you been spending any me-time you’ve managed to find? 
Finding me-time isn’t easy when you’re a new mum and even more so when you exclusively breastfeed. I’d like to say a day at the spa, but strangely enough, my favourite kind of me-time is cleaning. I like to put some music on (usually Beyonce’s ‘Lemonade’ on repeat) and just clean. There is something very therapeutic about cleaning.

????????????Sisterly Love…. @eve.victoria_ #sisters #love #eve&willow

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What’s been your post-pregnancy routine?
Routine is a very strong word to use when talking newborn babies and I’m sure most mothers will agree it doesn’t always go to plan. Now that I’ve been given the green light by my doctor it’s important that I take care of myself but there is no rush. I do my 28 workouts at home, see Sam at the gym when I can and go on lots of walks with Willow. It’s also important I eat a well-balanced diet which Sam makes easy for me with his 28 recipes. On top of this, I always make sure I take my Life-Space probiotics every morning. It’s really important to look after your gut health – probiotics can help strengthen your immunity and because I’m breastfeeding, it may also help Willow’s immunity.

Do you have any style tips for new mums? 
Having a new baby means less time spent in the bathroom getting ready. Sunglasses and ponytails or top knots are your best friend when you’re a new mum.

Of course, I have to ask, how does it feel knowing you had Australia’s first Bachelor Baby? 
At times I actually forget that Sam and I met on The Bachelor and Willow is the first Bachelor baby, it definitely seems like a lifetime ago when we were on the show.

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