There is a lot about motherhood that can't be taught beforehand - you need to experience it to really understand it. The ups, the downs, the struggles and the wins. If you're reading this and you aren't a mom, then you may think some of my comments are ridiculous and what I have to say to you is: JUST WAIT. Come back and read this when you have a child and we'll see if you still think I'm wrong. Like usual, I turned to my panel of new moms and below is our list of the top 5 things you really only can understand once you're a mom:
1 - Babies and children can be assholes - Yes I just said it. Those cute little mini versions of ourselves can simultaneously be the love of our life and our worst nightmare. I never thought I could be defeated by a small 15 pound tiny human until I met my son. He manages to cry the second I sit on the toilet, to throw up on me the minute I've showered, and to stay awake screaming for a whole 5 hour road trip when normally driving makes him sleep. He is the ONLY person in the world who can pee on my face and then start laughing and still live to tell about it.
2 - The person that told you "You'll instinctively know what to do when you have a baby" is a LIAR - You will have no clue what to do most of the time but thankfully Google will have the answers. Google will become your best friend and I'm pretty sure it is the only reason I didn't make nightly visits to the emergency room with Zane. With your first baby, you have no idea what to do when feeding, changing and cuddling doesn't work. For the most part you will automatically assume the worst - Ebola or something just as scary, until you find the Q&As from other neurotic moms on Google and figure out that it is just diaper rash.
3 - Your Google history will be so disturbing to non-mothers - I never thought I would see the day that my browser history had search terms such as:
- What color is newborn poop supposed to be? - your baby's poop schedule also becomes a daily topic in your house
- Why is my husband such a pussy? - watching your husband change a poop-filled diaper will make you question his masculinity
- Baby peed in my mouth, will I die? - yes this can happen with boys, and yes it is as horrible as it sounds
- What do vaginas look like after delivery - Trust me... you'll be there with a mirror checking out the damage too
- Why am I still fat after giving birth? - It must just be swelling... right? I only had a cheeseburger every other day while I was pregnant - I showed restraint!
- Best divorce lawyers - If you haven't already, check out my blog post from last week: You Will Hate Your Husband Postpartum
4 - You may not love the 4th trimester - 4th Trimester is the first few months at home with the new baby... the ones we see filling up our Instagram feed that include perfect moments with a newborn and the sweet hashtags that go along with those moments such as #PerfectBaby, #SoInLove, #HappiestPersonEver. The hashtags that new moms often omit are the ones that really describe what so many of us go through: #WhatDoesSleepFeelLike #IMightDie #IHaveSpitUpInMyMouth #IHaventShoweredInDays #IKeepUglyCrying #ImSwollenLikeShamu #MyVaginaIsBroken #ImScaredToPoop #IHateEveryoneWhoIsSkinnyAndSleeping
5 - You realize that you never knew what being tired was until now - I used to think that the most tired I could ever be was at the end of exam week in university. Being a mom is like being in exam week FOREVER... except no one gives you an A+ at the end and you don't get to celebrate by drinking when it's over. You just hope you're doing it right, cry every once and a while in the shower, and pray you raise your child to be a good person and not an asshole.
Your entire life will change when this little person enters it. It's a strange feeling to look into the eyes of someone you've just met and immediately fall in love. Being a mom is the single best and most difficult job I have ever done and the love I have for my baby is the only reason I haven't quit. It's important to not focus on what you see online. Know that for every perfect Instagram moment, there were 20 others that were failures (you just don't see them). Know that you aren't alone and we are all suffering together for the first few months :)
I would love to hear what you learned when you became a mom for the first time! Tell me in the comments below.
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