It’s the first month of the year and I want to make a tribute to the new mums. It’s not easy, especially if you had to prepare for the festive season carrying a load of weight. The extra baby weight and fat you gained in pregnancy is expected and you can prepare for that.
But when it comes to the truckload of hormones swirling around happily in your bloodstreams making you have such drastic mood swings you do not even recognise yourself, now that’s something even your doctor cannot prepare you for. So to all new mothers of 2014, congratulations! And no matter what any body else thinks or says, you are now officially SUPERWOMAN!
It is true that after your first baby is born your life changes forever. Physically your body has changed a lot, and not all the changes are reversible. Mentally and emotionally, you are now a mother, and even though your child will not always be dependent on you to meet every need as a new baby is, they will be your child for always.
‘Mum’ or mummy, mamma. That one little word carries a big meaning for most of us as well as a huge responsibility. That meaning partly depends on how we feel about our own mothers and grandmothers and also what our communities expect of mothers.
We each have different pictures in our heads about how we should be as mothers, or what kind of parent we want to be. Most mothers and fathers mostly learn as they go, influenced by the way they were brought up or by what they have read or watched others do.
Whatever the case, it is training on the job and there is no rulebook. The most important thing to remember is that we all have an inherent instinct for parenting; listen to yours! What works in my home for my child may not necessarily work in your home for your child.
The job that mothers and fathers do of shaping and influencing the life of another human being must surely be the most important thing that anyone can do. The feeling of responsibility for your baby’s life can be overwhelming at first. However remember that every first baby survived a new mother, and a clueless father, so yours will too.
Again, and I can say this over and over, IT IS NOT EASY! Don’t ever expect it to be. To be a mother once is to be a mother for life. Parents are parents forever. Running from the responsibility only makes you a lousy parent, but alas, you are still a parent.
Celebrate your role as parent; your responsibility to nurture and care for another precious life. Children are our blessings and to enjoy parenthood in my opinion is the highest form of gratitude we can give back.
All new parents need support and if you are parenting on your own this is even more important. Don’t be ashamed to say yes when anyone offers to help you. You must take care of yourself. Make sure you get as much rest as you can, get some exercise and eat well. Whenever you can, take some time out for yourself and to do some things with your partner or a friend.