Being a new mom is almost like a new title- it becomes your introduction till one day it dawns on you that you can’t say I am new mom anymore.
Some milestones that I hit me (in good humor):
- When you stop counting baby’s age in weeks and move to months
- When you forget how many weeks it is because you have stopped checking your apps
- When you start winging it- from measuring bath temperature with thermometer to elbow, filling a recipe to getting creative
- When your baby moves dress sizes: newborn to 3-6, 6-9… each bucket move is a new wave of realization
- When baby food and your food start looking and tasting more alike
- When your baby doesn’t want to cuddle and wiggles around because the world is far too interesting
- When your cozy home suddenly feels like a death trap and you have nightmares about baby proofing
- When your changing bag moves from sterilized bottles and feeding cover to rice cakes, bibs, and more
- When there is no good excuse for cake (no sleep sugar fix, feeding carb loading) 🙂
- When people start asking you about the next one
It’s Mother’s Day in U.K., and my first one as a mom. It’s only fair I sat down and penned my realizations from the journey so far:
- Nothing prepares you for motherhood, not the books, not the endless conversations with your friends; no amount of research prepares you for it.
- You end up with a lot more respect for your mother- as a child, you wonder why they are always so protective: “beta it’s cold, carry a sweater”, “call me if you are running late”, “you sound like you have a cold” and I get some of it even now :). I used to argue saying I have grown up now, so she doesn’t have to worry. But I got it during my first week as a mom, little one got jaundice and was in the hospital and I remember calling my mom and mother inlaw and saying I get it now- the constant worry, the panic when your child is unwell.
- Bollywood romanticized motherhood for me and reality was different. In the movies, you pick up the baby and you are instantly a mom. I found the first three months was a steep learning curve and a lot of second guessing- does she know I am her mother?, if the baby cries for a while and you can’t make her stop, you wonder if you are a good mom? It’s only after a few months that I felt confident and ready!
- I learnt to give up my ideal version of motherhood and go with the flow. For example, I read about nipple confusion in the first month and decided no bottles or pacifier. But when we were in hospital with jaundice, all my plans went out of the window: my doctor rightfully told me “baby being fed is important, how she is fed isn’t”. Sometimes we idealize what the experience should be and don’t realize each baby is different. I now focus on what works for us and our circumstances.
- A smile or cuddle makes a dull day better, back pain from sleeping on a chair go away, and fills you with so much joy you wonder why you didn’t have a baby sooner :). You don’t care if you are off key or shrill, because your singing gets the giggles! I always knew it’s an all consuming experience, but I had no idea how much it would change me!
Share your realizations from your first Mother’s Day in the comments below!