What did the ideal mother look like to you, what were you going to do right and what were you afraid of doing wrong? What advice would you give yourself now if you could go back and warn yourself? What would you do differently?
Here are some things I wish I knew:
- Your body will be squishy, dimpled, wobbly and stretched.
A lot of people talk about the baby when you’re pregnant, but no one really prepares mothers for what happens to them. How their breasts will be sore, how the stretch marks can be overwhelming or how the wobbly or stretched skin can be hard to accept. These are the truths but what I discovered afterwards is most mamas face the same aftermath and these are our battle scares that we should be proud off, these are our scars of motherhood and it is totally okay! Wear them with pride!
- Not everything will come naturally to you.
You will stumble across a million things you will not know how to handle, not everything will come naturally – it is very hard, but you just figure it out in the end! There is no right or wrong way, there is just your way. Don’t be afraid of what you don’t know! We have been designed in an incredible and resilient way, we have been designed completely capable, trust in your ability!
- There will not always be an instant mother and baby connection.
I expected that when bub was born, she would instantly know me, want me, love me but it was really two strangers meeting for the first time. The truth is that the connection takes time, your love is instant, and instincts kick in instantaneously but the mother and baby bond grows stronger over time.
- Is it more important to speak up when you are down and seek help then try to hide it.
Don’t EVER feel ashamed to ask for help, you are no less of a mother by needing help, even if it is a simple venting to someone close to you. You need to do what works for you, that will enable you to push through and be the best version of yourself for your family. Speak up if you need help. PND is a very common and serious issue! Throw away mum guilt and keep your tribe close. It is a lot harder than we think to put our hand up and say I need help but for so many reasons it is super important. Without a healthy state of mind, we are no good to our families regardless.
- You and your baby are unique, and you cannot compare your child and your mothering abilities to other mums and bubs.
There are no two people that are ever the same, no child is ever the same, no mother is ever the same, so how do mothers compare their journeys? Stay focused on you and your situation, don’t look around and question – those distractions will bring you down!
- Figuring out how to accept unwanted advice makes your life easier
OHHHH how I wish I knew this one. Also, how to politely reject advice is a motherhood super skill! Everyone will reflect on their own experiences and try to help you in their own way, the intentions may well be good but to much of this can be overwhelming.
- Use the belts, creams and do the exercises you think are overrated.
Please do the exercises, try the creams, wear the post-delivery belts and make a conscious effort to try post-delivery remedies. Most issues can be fixed soon after delivery but get harder to fix later. These underrated things work for some and even if it works for some of you it is one less mental and physical battle you will need to deal with as a result of putting a bit of effort.
- Breastfeeding is SUPER HARD and doesn’t work for everyone. That’s okay!
Okay so if there was a instruction manual for motherhood, the first chapter would explain that breastfeeding is super hard and impossible for some, that is so totally okay! it doesn’t mean your child is better or worse of, in fact it is healthier that your child is fed as opposed to starving them to keep trying for days. Do what works for you! What works for you will work for bub. Again, consider the unnecessary added stress if you push yourself to far!
- You are not as different as you think to other mums, most mums are going through the same motions.
We are all so different and there is no such thing as a true comparison in motherhood! Keep your attention focused on being the best you can be for your family and that can mean what ever you need it to mean. The second you look around and feel distracted you loose focus on what’s important.
- Things will get easier in one way but harder in another
There will be moments when you think, “oh I really wish you could talk already, walk already, go to the toilet already …..”. Don’t wish away now, today is better then tomorrow, every stage has a different obstacle to face. The truth is it is actually easier when they are younger so just learn to enjoy it all!
The biggest thing I want you to remember is stop and just simply enjoy every age! Every age is beautiful for different reasons, but they are never as cute, angelic or heart-warming as what they are as newborns and toddlers!
I play with my girls as much as I possibly can and cherish every moment. We dress up in matching mother and daughter dresses and play with dolls, we put the music loud and dance around, we make a mess to bake a cake… do it all! Afterall the beauty in the chaos is enjoying all those little moments! Yes it’s daunting but after everything you just read, know and believe it is all worth it, knowing that will carry you through the hard times.
Take your journey one day at a time.
Owner of KoKo Adora
Transpiring a mothers love into fashion through matching mum and daughter clothes