EXPECTATIONS VS REALITY

YAY! We are now classed as mums – who would have known this comes with a whole lot of unrealistic standards. Not only from friends, family and other mums but also from our biggest critics, ourselves. It is amazing being a mum, I know all my fellow mama’s will agree but man, it has its challenges.

I did not realise how much of a controversial topic motherhood is until I became a mother. Many things come into this when you become a mum, even more so when you are a new mum. Some of them being-

  • Breastfeeding or bottle-feeding (Read my breastfeeding journey here.)
  • Co-sleeping or not co-sleeping
  • Cry it out method or cuddling method
  • Routines or no routines (Read about routines here.)
  • Solids early or solids at recommended age
  • Swaddle or not to swaddle

That is just a list of a few things, we all know there is plenty more though! The main thing to remember is – it is your baby, you know best. Don’t let people come in and give their 10 cents of what you should or shouldn’t be doing. Yes, its okay to give advice but no it is not okay to make someone feel like they should be mothering there baby a certain way! Society is a bitch, don’t fall for the tricks. You just do you.

So your biggest critic – yourself, will often have you questioning yourself. I think that a lot of this comes with the hormones and lack of sleep when you first become a mother but man, the things I would question if I was doing right when I first became a mum was unreal. Especially as a first time mum, because of the pressure from society, friends, family and social media. Do not beat yourself up, just take every day as it comes and live in the moment. Enjoy it all and take it all in while you can because before you know it, your newborn baby will be a toddler and you will enter a whole new ball game – one I am only just about to enter and learn about!

A big difference to parenting now to parenting 10 years ago is social media. We all love to keep up to date with our fav mum bloggers through snapchat and Instagram. While we also love joining all the helpful mum groups on facebook to ask all the questions we have. All of these definitely have some awesome benefits, being-

  • Support

The amount of support I see given on mum pages on Facebook is awesome! It is nice to know there is a place to go and ask your questions and get some advice for what you are going through.

  • Internet friends

I don’t know about you guys but, for me, I almost feel like mum bloggers allow us into their daily lives enough to feel as though we get to know them well enough to call them our ‘friends’. I know it is not a normal type of friendship but when you are busy with #mumlife, it may be your only escape. A day with just babies and no adult conversation can drive you a bit crazy until you find yourself on snapchat or Instagram, feeling like you are in a conversation with your fav mum bloggers!

  • Relatable

Some days you just need to feel like you can relate to someone and you find that in your Instagram followers from a post they have shared!

Now there is the ups but there is also the downs. Yes, like I said above it can be so relatable sometimes but at the same time, it can be very non-relatable. Some days, you will find yourself scrolling through your feed looking at everyone’s, what seem to be perfect lives in little squares. It can really get you down feeling so far away of what you have built in your head as the ‘perfect’ life.

I know if you are a fellow Instagram mama, you will be sitting saying to yourself ‘OMG I have definitely felt this feeling’. It may have only been once but we have all been there. It is hard to remember that everyone has bad days and not all of us chose to share our bad days. So, what we may think is such a perfect life, it may most definitely not be. However, I know that is easier said than done.

You can sit there scrolling and looking at all these perfect pictures of smiling happy babies when your truth is only that your baby has screamed all day long. You may see mums looking fabulous only a short few weeks after birth in amazing clothes while you haven’t managed to get out of trackies and hoodies for the last week. You may watch snapchats and Instagram stories of fortunate mums whose baby is sleeping 12 hour nights while your nearly one year old is still waking 5 times. You may watch as they prepare amazing dinners after spring cleaning their house while you can barely find the energy to whip something half decent up in your messy house.

It is super easy to fall into this trap of feeling not good enough, but please do not! I know that is easy enough said because the truth is, I find myself in this trap more than often! I am forever comparing myself to these awesome mama’s and forgetting about my own life. How do we try to stop this I hear you ask? We need to remember that what they are sharing is what they are choosing to share. They have bad days too; things are not always perfect, as it may seem in the little perfect Instagram squares. There is probably someone out there looking at your profile and feeling bad too – your life is likely to be better than someone is out there, we just do not realise it. Most of all though, take a step back and remember you are doing great! This mum gig is bloody hard but it is bloody rewarding too – It is one of the hardest things I have ever done, some days I find myself questioning my sanity. But, then that little girl with her big brown eyes looks up at me and gives me a massive smile and I remember why it is all worth it.

Try let social media be a benefit in your life. Don’t let it be a negative. Don’t let it give yourself unrealistic expectations of yourself. Just keep doing you and remember that it all comes down to perception! If your baby is dressed, fed, healthy and loved – you are doing something right and giving your child all they could possibly need!

Basically, what this blog post is about is learning the magic of not giving a fu*k! Do not fall into the dark traps of self-doubt and comparison with others. Everyone does this mum gig differently – you just have to find what the best is for you! Focus on the positives in life and what you are doing right! Block out the unwanted advice from friends and family. Give yourself a break and believe in yourself. Find yourself some real and raw mum bloggers to follow on social media and I guarantee they will help you remember that life is not all daisy’s and rainbows on those crappy days. There is always a light at the end of the tunnel mates! I hope this has given you all a little bit of perspective on all things unrealistic about motherhood. Come over and follow us on Instagram stories to see what we get up too during the week! Hope you are all back for next Sunday’s post!

Lace xxx

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SH*T PEOPLE SAY WHEN YOU ARE PREGNANT…

If there were one thing I have learnt from being pregnant and a new mum, it would be that people love to tell you a whole lot of shit. This shit generally consists of unwanted parenting advice, subtle blows at what you are so called ‘doing’ wrong and what you have to expect through pregnancy and mum life. Some people love it and some people dislike it. I do not hate hearing other people’s experiences or advice because yes, sometimes what people say is totally helpful and nice to hear. However, do not expect me to take on board what you are saying and I dislike it when someone preaches their advice on me.

Let us start at the beginning. All those awesome phrases people love to tell you while you are pregnant. I can guarantee you have been told at least two of the things on the list-

  • WOW! You are huge!

Such a common one people love to spring on you! Well no shit Sherlock, I am pregnant and growing a baby over here, no need to be reminded!

  • Are you sure you are even pregnant? It doesn’t look like it yet.

I got this a lot at the start of both pregnancies, I don’t actually find this offensive, I more see it as just a really dumb question. Obviously I am pregnant, I’m not going around telling everyone that for shits and giggles.

  • You are not having twins are you?

You know what is funny about this one, I had someone tell me how little I was one day and then the next asked if I was having twins – Hah! But really, do I have to explain this one?

  • Your way bigger than the last time I saw you.

Really? I thought I would be smaller since the last time we caught up.

  • You are much bigger then you were last pregnancy.

Maybe because I got pregnant three months after having Harlee so my body had no chance to go back to itself. And just imagine if we replied with something like this -Oh and you are much bigger than when you were last year, what’s your excuse?

  • Live up your free time now.

What? Are you telling me I actually will have to give all my time to my baby and not put them in a corner by themselves? Dam how did I not know this…

  • You have no idea what you are in for.

Funny how people tend to say this no matter what pregnancy you are up to. First time around it was the first time mum card, second time round it’s the, two is way harder than one card. Seriously we can never win!

  • You must be due any day now.

Reality is you are only 32 weeks but thanks for reminding me how far away my due date is…

  • Must definitely be a girl/boy the way you are carrying.

Oh awesome, I didn’t know there was so many baby gender gurus out there!

  • Oh you are having a girl, well remember the sonographer could have it wrong!

Yes this is true, but when did you get your special gift of knowing better than a sonographer?

  • You are far too young to be having a baby!

Oh thanks Nancy, even though I’m still with the father, we own our own home, we have our own car, we a financially stable, mentally stable and the only difference between me and that pregnant lady is I’m 22 and she’s 30. Never mind the fact that we are actually probably in a better position than some 35 year olds having babies… but hey that’s okay – keep reminding me I’m too young to be a mum!

That is just a list of the things that came off the top of my head. Do not get me wrong some of these are not really offensive, they are just dumb questions people feel the need to ask every time they see you. There is a couple on this list that get to me but, a lot of them just make me think ‘seriously’ and I have a little giggle to myself. We all know how quickly those good old pregnancy hormones like to change and throw us off though so maybe add these to the ‘things not to say to pregnant women’.

So, pregnancy is over and you have a new bundle of joy! You would think since pregnancy has left, the dumb comments would have too. I hate to break it to you but they do not! I am 10 months into mum life and 7 months into my second pregnancy and still cop the dumb comments/questions/advice for both!

So what is some of those dumb comments you get once you have your baby? Here is my list-

  • You look extremely tired.

Really? I guess I should be looking like I am full of energy after having 3 hours sleep every night for the last week!

  • You are not breastfeeding.

No, I am not and I do not need a lecture on why I should be nor do I have to explain to you why I am not!

  • Did you have a natural birth?

Actually yes I did but if I needed pain relief or a c-section I would have done that too because my only concern was getting my baby here safely!

  • She should be sleeping through the night.

Every baby is different and we all have different ways of doing things so this does not concern you!

  • She does not look anything like you!

So what are you implying? Was I meant to have a clone of myself? Or, are you questioning if she’s mine? Pretty sure I just pushed her out of my vag so she is definitely mine!  

  • When are you going back to work?

When I’m ready, that’s when. My job now is being a mum!

  • You should do this, this way…

Oh yes, you know my baby far better than me. I’ll change what she’s use to just for you!

  • I had no problems losing my baby weight.

Cool story bro. Are you calling me fat?

  • How do you handle being stuck at home?

Maybe if you had a baby who did not believe in sleep, you would understand being home is amazing.

  • You are so lucky you just get to stay home with a baby all day instead of working.

Oh, yes it is such a holiday being home with a baby and maintaining other mum duties! I have so much free time on my hands… NOT!

  • Enjoy it now because they will be grown up before you know it.

Thanks for being the tenth person this week to remind me that.

  • Don’t you think they need a bottle before you leave?

You are probably right. We have not been on a strict feeding routine for the last 5 months or anything…

  • Back in my day, we would have never done that…

Wow, crazy how times change isn’t it!

  • Doesn’t your mum always have your baby?

No actually, my mum may be around a lot but shes there strictly as a Nanny! Mum duties are my job. Thanks for the interest in who is around and who isn’t though!

These might seem like nothing to some but I am sure most mums agree they get these a lot. It is more the fact of hearing them all a thousand times over. Yes, I am a new mum but I am not dumb. I do have common sense and I will figure mum life out on my own.

It is not just these types of comments that I find annoying. It is also the ones when other people feel the need to burst your bubble of happiness about something. Like one of the following- (Me them)

  • YAY – First night sleeping through the night!

Do not get to excited, it will all change again soon.

  • She is crawling!

You will never be able to leave her alone, she will be into everything and it will only get worse once she is walking.

  • She said her first word!

It may be cute now, wait until she will not shut up though.

  • She had solids for the first time.

Wait until she refuses everything you feed her.

All of these comments leave me thinking – okay shut up and let me enjoy my happy moment and her milestones! Do people not have anything nice to say anymore? On the other hand, have we forgotten the number one rule of if you do not have anything nice to say, then do not say it at all. Everyone is entitled to opinions but you don’t have to be rude. Spread some love and kindness guys! It is not hard!

So the real point behind this post was to make all you mummas out there not feel alone when thinking, did she just really say that to me? Like I said earlier, sometimes those hormones over rule everything else and you cannot help but take what someone has said to heart. Try to laugh it off and remember people are just uneducated. There is always going to be someone who cannot help themselves and has to make that one dumb comment. There will always be dumb shit people say when you are pregnant, so the best thing to do is take it on the chin and be a little bit of a smart ass back. I can guarantee they will get a bit of a fright and be lost for words if you come back with something funny. Chances are it will give yourself a little giggle too and we all love to have a giggle!

So if you are or have been a fellow pregnant mumma, I hope this has been something you can relate to and if you are not pregnant or know someone who is maybe this has been a little bit funny and maybe a bit of insight of what not to say. I would love to have a laugh with you about dumb shit people have said to you while pregnant – go on and flick me a facebook message or Instagram DM! Catch you all next week team!

Lace xxx