I love to talk about the beauty of motherhood. I also love to talk about the reality of it, which is not always butterflies and roses. It is HARD. So hey mama – I get it. I’ve been there (still am tbh), and I want you to know it’s okay, and that you are most certainly not alone.
Sometimes I like to look back and think about when Ben was a newborn and I was a fresh mum. Swollen, achy, exhausted, emotional, scared, infatuated… so many feelings at the same time. I still feel the same sometimes, even well after a year. This week has been one of those weeks where merely surviving each day has felt like a big achievement. And it got me thinking about those first few delicate weeks postpartum, how hard and intense they were… and how sometimes all I needed was for someone to tell me that what I was feeling was okay. So I’m here to do that for you.
I know that everyone’s experience is different – but if you, my reader, are a new or soon-to-be mum – or heck just a mother at all, I’m sure that some of this would apply to you. ❤
Dear new mum,
It’s okay to have so many emotions that you can’t tell how you’re feeling. It’s okay to cry because you’re exhausted and also because you’re so in love.
It’s okay to not want anyone to touch your baby, or even come too close. It’s okay if you don’t want anyone around you right now.
It’s okay to feel like you have no idea what you’re doing, but follow your instincts because they’re there for a reason.
It’s okay to ask for help. It’s also okay to refuse the help you don’t want.
It’s okay to eat mostly just croissants and cereal for some time because that’s what you’re craving. It’s okay to listen to your body. Do drink plenty of water though, you need it.
It’s okay to feel like you need some space and time to yourself.
It’s okay to miss your freedom and to wonder if you’ll ever get to enjoy some sort of freedom again. That doesn’t make you ungrateful or a bad mum. It makes you human.
It’s okay to desperately want your baby to sleep, and then miss them the second you lay them down. It’s okay to do nothing but stare at photos of them while they rest.
It’s okay to worry about everything. You’re learning, slowly figuring things out. You’ll get there. You’ve got this.
It’s okay to be up at night, hoping your baby is okay and touching their chest to make sure they’re breathing. It’s okay to wish they slept more, and that you slept more.
It’s okay to not sleep when the baby sleeps – that advice is overrated. Do whatever you need to do to re-obtain some sanity. Take a shower, clean the kitchen, catch up on laundry, listen to music, scroll through social media, call a friend, do something creative, or indeed, sleep. Whatever it is, let it fulfil whatever need you have at that moment.
It’s okay to lose it sometimes. You’re doing your best – you’re human, you’re tired, and everyone has limits. This is really hard, but you’re doing great. Take a deep breath – you can do this.
It’s okay to look in the mirror and not like – or recognise – what you see. It will get better and easier. Give yourself time, and grace, and remind yourself what an incredible thing your body has just done.
It’s okay to feel upset or resentful about your pregnancy/birth experience or even feel jealous that others’ experiences were better than yours. Work on your healing – physically AND emotionally.
It’s okay to feel lonely. It’s okay to just desperately need a conversation with another adult. Call a friend or a relative – a quick chat can make a big difference.
It’s okay to cry. Let it all out.
It’s okay to be a sweaty, smelly, greasy, milk-stained mess sometimes. It’s okay to take a looong shower when someone else is with the baby. Enjoy the bit of alone time you have.
It’s okay if you want to kill anyone who complains they’re tired, anyone who asks you questions you’re fed up of answering, or passes comments you really don’t need right now.
It’s okay to leave messages unread on unreplied to. It’s okay to not be involved in group chats. These things require time, mental energy, and free hands – none of which you probably have right now. You don’t owe anyone anything. Take care of you.
It’s okay to have irrational, selfish, jealous thoughts sometimes. Just be sure to check in with yourself, and acknowledge where it’s all coming from.
Whatever you’re feeling… It’s normal, and it’s okay.
Motherhood is the hardest thing in the world – be kind to yourself.
From one mother to another, though, I will give you some advice, or even a request:
Take care of yourself. Monitor your mental health. Be on the lookout for signs of postpartum depression, anxiety, OCD, rage, or anything that may be affecting you. Speak up, reach out, seek professional help and don’t let it go uncared for. You can’t pour from an empty cup. Happy mama, happy baby. Remember that.
There’s a lot more that I can say, but I’ll leave it at that for now.
Oh, and mama… It WILL be okay. 🙂
I hope this post has in some way helped you, maybe taken off a bit of the weight that all the pressure of being “a perfect mum” puts on you.
Did any of these points resonate with you? Be sure to let me know, by commenting or getting in touch with me! I love to hear your feedback and experiences, and share these moments with you.
My goal is to help, inspire, and entertain people, and with your support, I’ll be able to! 🙂
Thank you for reading!
Until next time,