Tag Archives: first year

Lessons I Have Learned In The First Year of Motherhood

15 Mar

Before having children I think we all imagine the type of mother we will be. Saying I will do this or I will NEVER do that. Those are pretty bold statements to make before you actually have a child. As soon as you give birth and realize that you are responsible for this little life all the rules you set for yourself usually go out the window. It is definitely a learn as you go adventure and the learning is never over. Here are a few gems I have learned along the way.

It is way harder than I ever expected.

People can tell you til they are blue in the face that it is going to be hard. You can think you know but you never actually know until you are in the middle of it. Having a child is just a significant life change. One day you are only having to worry about yourself and then, BAM, you are responsible for a human being. There is nothing easy about that. Don’t beat yourself up over the fact that it is hard or that you weren’t prepared enough.

I ask for help when I need help.

In those first few months as a mother it was all very overwhelming Β and for a couple of weeks I had a battle with myself about actually admitting it. I was constantly surrounded by friends and family willing to do anything to help but some times I felt like I needed to do it all. You can’t do it all. If people are offering help, take it. I have called my mom more than once in the middle of the night asking for help, and she came every time. You can’t take care of a baby when you have food poisoning, I mean you can but not very well.

Don’t compare Lila to other children.

I had to learn this really quick. In the beginning I would get on the birth forum with many other mothers who had babies Lila’s age. Of course everyone wants to talk about their children’s milestones and accomplishments, which is great. However, you shouldn’t sit and think something is wrong with your baby because they haven’t smiled at you at 6 weeks on the dot. You can make yourself crazy doing this. Every child is different and they will do things in their own time. Let them develop in their own time.

The Dr. isn’t always right.

Just because the Dr. is the Dr. doesn’t mean his diagnose, opinion or suggestion is always the correct one. Sometimes your motherly instinct is better than what the Dr. tells you and you have to learn to trust yourself sometimes.

Me time is important

Whether it is 5 minutes outside, watching your favorite show once they are in bed, catching up on blogs, whatever it is, do it. It is easy to lose yourself in your new life and taking care of the little one. Just remember to cut out a sliver of time for yourself. It will re-engergize you and make you a better mom.

Quit with the guilt.

It is so easy to make yourself feel guilty when you become a mother. I never remember feeling guilt like this in my life. And seriously, some of it is over the pettiest most silly things. I didn’t keep up with the baby book, I took 5 minutes to take a shower, I’m not enjoying every moment and the list can go on forever…if you let it. Let me tell you, this is time wasted. Be the best you can be that day and go from there.

Take it one day at a time.

I have to be honest, when I look into the future and think about the what-ifs for Lila’s future it gives me anxiety. What if she is defiant, what if she doesn’t have friends, what if she has the wrong friends, what if she doesn’t want to go to college? Seriously? Yes, seriously. I have these thoughts all the time and many others. I shared this with my mom one day when I was particularly worried about something Lila may do when she was a toddler. She told me that is why we have today, to prepare us for when that day comes. We don’t’ have to have the answer right now and when the time comes we will probably know what to do from the experiences we have already had. My mom, she is smart as a whip! I repeat this to myself often.

Take lots of video.

I haven’t taken hours upon hours of video but I do have many good ones from the past year. I have loved going back and watching them and remembering the different stages she has been through. I imagine that I will cherish these even more the older she gets.

I am sure that I could think of many more important lessons that I left out but these were the ones that really stood out to me. I know it isn’t the same for everyone but this year has been eye-opening, life-changing, and wonderful. Even though it is difficult at times there is nothing I would trade it for.

What are lessons you have learned through motherhood?