We all know that being a mum is going to change us. Nothing has more impact on your life than the arrival of those little people. Nothing will ever be the same again. Of course, you prepare for that fact. But, no amount of preparation gets you ready for facing the realities. The most noticeable change is that you go from caring for yourself to caring for another. You could say that we do that when we meet a lover, but it’s nowhere near the same. It’s not just a case of caring about your children and doing what you can for them. It’s a case of their every need (at least for their first years) falling on your shoulders. Every big decision during those years falls to you and your partner. And, it’s not only the responsibility that’s different, either. In fact, what may be most surprising about motherhood is the mental impact it has.
The mental change is what takes mothers most by surprise. You can prepare for practical changes in your life all you like. You can buy baby bits on sites like http://www.toysrus.co.uk/babiesrus and baby proof your home. You can even get the nursery ready for when your little one needs it. But, you’ll never be able to foresee how different your thinking will become. You’ll never be able to prepare for how fiercely your child will change your priorities.
During your pregnancy, you may make the most of nights alone, watching what you want on television. You may take long, luxurious baths like they’re going out of fashion. Pregnant women make the most of these things because they don’t think they’ll have time to do them once the baby arrives. Which is, of course, true. But, what many women don’t realise is that their desire to do these things will lessen once they become a mother. Few of us mums hate the sound of kids television and wish for those days when we could watch any trash we fancied. Instead, we embrace the change, and we embrace motherhood. Because, when you have a child, your past life and hobbies lose all relevance.
One thing that’s a little more expected is the amount of worry motherhood brings. What you may not expect is how fierce those worries are. Safety hazards that never occurred to you before will keep you awake at night. Every time your child leaves the house, you’ll imagine all the bad things that might befall them. You’ll see hazards where you never saw them before. And, it’s not only your children that you’ll worry about. Your safety, and that of your partner will become much more important, too. You’ll find yourself researching life insurance policies, like the one reviewed at insurancehero.org.uk/compare-life-insurance/what-is-post-office-life-insurance.html, and thinking about your will. You’ll want to do everything possible to ensure the future of your child. All this is normal and necessary. Motherly instincts are there for a reason. They help us to protect what’s most important. But, they can also take over if we allow them to.
So, how can you deal with the changes without going crazy? One thing is to try your best to rationalise your fears. There’s no denying that this won’t be easy; that’s why they call if baby brain. But, if you let irrational fears take over, they’ll lead you on a downward spiral. It can help to take a step back from your worries. Looking at them from an outside perspective will help you break them down to size. This is more important than for your sanity, too. Ridding yourself of irrational worries will help you focus on the risks that your child is facing for real.
It can be a huge help to talk things through with someone else. Your partner should be your first port of call. If you’re concerned that you’re worrying too much, discuss your fears with them and see what they say. Bear in mind that they may also be stuck in the worrying spiral. If they don’t offer quite the help you need, don’t be afraid to turn to someone else. Your mum will be your lifesaver at this stage. She’s been through it, after all. Don’t be afraid to be honest about how you’re feeling, and ask if she experienced the same thing. Chances are, she did. She’ll be able to ease your fears and help you move forward. The main thing to remember is that you don’t have to deal with these unexpected obstacles alone!
T, A & H xxxxxx
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