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You learn a lot in becoming a mum.
Pregnancy and birth in particular teach women heaps about our bodies' capabilities.
I learned that whilst pregnant your nipples can alter from a nice shade of pink blush, to a choc-chip cookie nipple overnight.
I also learnt how disgusting (and equally amazing and intriguing) your ‘plug’ is when it comes out during labour. Maybe this was amplified for me when it plopped out when I least expected it.
It was so gruesomely-cool!
Some of my pregnancy and labour realities are lessons I will most certainly never forget.
But when I reflect back upon my first 12 months of motherhood the list of lessons is simply endless.
I thought I’d give you my top six mummy lessons that the past year of motherhood has taught me.
1. Never ever take advantage of your support network.
You need people to support you so be kind to the people who offer.
Parenthood is hard, and if you have reliable family and friends around you who support you and want to help out, then please let them.
Allow your sanity what it deserves. The smallest break can literally feel like you’ve taken a month’s holiday.
2. You won't always like your child
Yes, you will love your child with more passion than you’ve ever felt before, but in reality, sometimes you won’t like them.
Some days they annoy the living hell out of you.
They are so sweet, and your own little bundles of perfection, but some days you will literally count down the seconds until your partner walks in the door because you're DONE, and it’s not even 10am!
Parenting a full time job, and really, who likes going to work EVERYDAY?!?
3. Nothing will faze you.
You're sitting down for the first time since yesterday morning and you smell poo.
"Is it on my hands?" you wonder. But you’re so sure that you washed your hands after changing that last nappy.
"Nope, there it is!" of course it was on your elbow!
"Oh well, who cares? I’m getting to sit down with my cuppa and my raisin toast and NOTHING will stop me!"
Life is now way too short, and babies only nap for so long!
4. Your relationship needs more work.
I’m not saying that it all turns to shit – my relationship is actually 100 times stronger than before my son's arrival.
But when you haven’t seen each other all day, by the time the baby goes to bed it’s VERY easy to both fall into a zombie state and zone out for a few hours before someone says, "bed?"
Before you know it, it’s the morning and you didn’t even talk.
5. You’ll cry. A lot.
If you’re like me, you’ll actually cry at everything.
From hearing about a mutual friend’s cousin’s older sister who is expecting her first baby, to hearing about a husband and wife being killed in a car accident on the news.
The old Sophie would have acknowledged how sad that was, but really given it no more thought. But now that I'm a mum I melt inside.
I wonder if the lady killed had kids or grandkids. She was most likely someone’s mum, someone’s sister, someone’s daughter. She was loved and now she’s gone.
"What if I one day suddenly get killed in a car crash? Bobby wouldn’t have a mum."
And so the tears begin.
6. Being an adult sucks.
Bills are never-ending, your house never seems clean, and it’s no longer acceptable – nor possible – to sleep-in til 2pm and only rise at the idea of a cheeseburger before returning to your bedroom to catch up on all Netflix has to offer.
You now have responsibilities – for life.
The reality is that sometimes life with small kids just plain sucks!!
Written by Sophie Shaw. Mum and blogger at The Young Mummy.