HOW MOTHERHOOD HAS CHANGED ME - FOR THE BETTER
Before starting a family, I had no idea what to expect. I'd always wanted to be a mother, and having a family with Andy was something we'd always talked about, but, I'd never really spent any time with children. It wasn't until a few weeks before I gave birth that it dawned on me, there is no going back and suddenly my lack of experience became quite unnerving.
It's true what they say, 'motherhood does come naturally'
From the moment Knox was born, that protective side of me came out. Not having the maternal instinct was one of my biggest fears. But, I think the first thing I shouted was "he has tongue tie", I'd had so many of my friends tell me not to let him come home without having tongue snipped (if he had it) I became super paranoid. But, it wasn't until around 8hrs after I'd given birth that my instinct truly kicked it. I'd moved from the labour ward back to recovery and I could see there were moments he was struggling to catch his breath and something more than his tongue tie was causing him distress when trying to breastfeed. Every time, I'd called a nurse when he was panicking, he'd calmed down by the time (a few mins) they'd come to assess him, but, I was so adamant something serious was wrong with him, one of the breastfeeding consultants decided to monitor us to see if she could see a problem. Instantly she agreed there was. Within hours, Knox was receiving treatment, and monitoring for potential meningitis. As a mother, this is of course one of the most upsetting, confusing, heart breaking things that can happen. But, the strength that pulls you through is unimaginable.
There are so many difficult things to contend with as a first time mother, learning to breastfeed, and just finding the energy to care for and nurture your child after giving birth itself, it's so easy to accept the first response you get, but if there is any doubt in your mind, don't keep that inside. So many of my friends ended up being readmitted with issues that were initially missed, because they felt they couldn't speak up and didn't trust their instinct.
Patience is a virtue
Woweee, patience is essential when you have children. No one can prepare you for the tantrums, tears and hair pulling moments. But, something that I instantly got was patience. No idea where it came from, as I'm known for being rather short fused and feisty. Five out of seven days Knox is a dream, but when he's teething, poorly or tired, there is not a moment to take a breath. For either of us, ha!
As our first year together draws to an end, I appreciate all of the time I've spent playing with him and watching his personality grow. I'm lucky that I've been able to stay at home with him rather than head back to work, and I hope that I'll treasure the moments and tantrum face plants (with the help of an iphone and icloud) we've shared in years to come.
Let us find magic in all the little things in life
Its mad, ten years ago, I had no interest in appreciating the little things. I was so wrapped up in fashion, fun and...boys, I didn't stop to take any of it in. 'It' being life. Now, I can't help myself looking for the small things that are so easily lost, like Knox smiling at his grandparents, playing with his dada (apparently I make this happy hum when they play) or getting totally over excited about seeing a bird. He's affected us all more than he could ever imagine, and for me, I have this whole new appreciation for life. I don't care about nights out, fancy clothes or designer bags, in fact, I haven't really shopped since I've had him. Don't get me wrong, I still look at friends that have chosen a different route in careers, travel and socially. But for me, I think I've finally found my calling and now it's more about memories and taking our world in day by day.
Cold as ice
I've always been known for my reserved side on first impressions, cold, shy, whatever you want to call it. But since becoming pregnant, that icy personality has thawed in place of a "much nicer person"...apparently. Anyone who know's me, knows there isn't actually a mean bone in my body, but I guess I just like to sit back and take things in before I bounce around the room like a puppy trying to be everyones friend. Being pregnant, is almost like being enrolled in a special society. Anyone that's pregnant will nod at another expectant mother, smile with a telling look, ask about their experience and I guess that has just brought me out of my shell a little. In the most un-patronising way, no one, even I still, can understand the extraordinary power of creating a life unless they have been through it. It changes something in you. Makes you love in an unimaginable way, and I guess that is starting to show in me.