You know when you become a Mum for the first time – you feel sheer terror like you’ve never felt before. Can I do this? Am I doing this right? What if someone does it another way and it works better? Will I hurt him? Am I gentle enough? How the fuck does this go on? What do people think of me? Etc etc.
Everything, for the first time, is terrifying.. But I was hyper-sensitive, on a next level. Here’s my little list of ‘First Time Mum Fears’
They’d been doing this so much longer than me. They had their shit together.
You know the type? The beautiful, slick back ponytail. The trim looking eyebrows. Casual dress coat, blouse and jeans paired with flats or ankle boots. You develop ‘MUMDAR‘ and you just fucking know she’s got matching underwear on – then there’s me.
Can’t find a pair of fucking matching socks, struggling to figure out what day it is and searching for the smell of baby shit.
It scared me. I cringed wondering what they’d think of me, praying they wouldn’t notice the 55 inch hole in the armpit of my comfiest cardigan.
- Unwanted advice
“He could be sat upright a bit more when you wind him”, “His head looks like it’s at an odd angle”, “You shouldn’t really lift him every time he cries”, “Slings will result in a clingy baby”, “that shirt isn’t very mumsy”.
So, Deborah, I’m basically, a sling wearing, clingy as fuck, over nurturing hippy that can’t do anything right, yep? OK. Those rhetorical questions people constantly asked / told me, really used to get my back up! As if figuring this shit out for yourself wasn’t hard enough. Now? I don’t bat an eyelid, I’ve realised, over time, it all comes from a good place and I usually just say thank-you, but it was once, a fear.
When you’re walking up the road and you get the onslaught of glares. Your MUMDAR kicks in and you fucking know they’re thinking;
“A kid having a kid”
“Another young Mother”
“The repercussions of a one night stand because she’s got no wedding ring”
“Why would she have a baby that young?”
Those glares, combined with those thoughts – terrified me. I didn’t go out for a long time because I feared it so much. Those pre-conceptions are such bullshit.
A) A few of my friends are ‘Teen Mums’ and they are beyond amazing at being a Mother and raising their children – age is just a number, it shouldn’t be a tool used to shame somebody.
B) So what if your baby is the repercussions of a one night stand? Does that mean you love your baby less? No way hosay.
C) No wedding ring.. Ah well. I’m not sat here singing Beyoncè – Single Ladies, so evidently I’m pretty comfortable with my relationship status.
D) Because I had a baby, ‘this young’ – now deal with it.
Personally? I don’t ever think there’s a right time to have a baby; I also don’t think, you’re ever really properly prepared for a baby. So why not, as long as your baby is clean, fed, clothed and happy, good for you Mumma! Fuck the preconceptions!
They were my biggest fears, when I became a First Time Mum, but hindsight is a wonderful thing and whilst I understood the reasoning behind those fears – they are no longer fears.
Some days, I wear matching underwear and I feel so fierce I could literally twerk my thong off in my mirror and pretend I’m a Victorias Secret Model, then I realise I’m more of a Victoria Sponge Cake and I go back to doing what I do best – being a Mum.
Some days, I receive that unwanted advice and realise it comes from a damn good place and I embrace it – because why not? Someone’s gone out of their way to pass a little piece of advice / knowledge on, I can now respect that enough to appreciate it.
Some days, when I see those ‘women’ that trigger my MUMDAR, I smile at them, in both awe of them and appreciation of them, because I now know, how damn hard it can be to have your own shit together, never mind your little persons – so yeah, have a smile pretty lady!
Some days, when someone’s glaring, I smile right back at them – because my life choices this far, gave me my beautiful little Bear and there’s no chance on this earth that I would take back any of them. In the order they happened, they led me to this point and I’m OK with that. I’m more than OK with that, I’m happy with that.
Be a Mum that’s proud of being a Mum. Be a Mum that smiles at the other Mums that are looking at you, in complete awe or in sheer terror. Be an advocate for being a Mum.
Cherish that secretly, we share similar fears and we’re not ashamed to say it.
As always, all my love, A.
Instagram ♔ @missr0we (with a zero)
This post was written exclusively for Bump, Baby and You, by Amber Rowe.
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- 40 Facts About Becoming A Parent - 6th December 2016
- Dear Mum - 2nd December 2016
- My First Time Mum Fears - 29th November 2016
- It’s MY Post-Partum Body, Why Are YOU Ashamed Of It? - 19th November 2016
- I’m Still Me, But ‘Me’ Is A Mum Now… - 16th November 2016