These are times when people want to show the world everything they do. Everyone wants to show the best version of themselves in each photo and video, and although that's not bad it seems that many times it exaggerates and idealizes many aspects of life. Motherhood can be something beautiful and it is an experience that definitely changes a woman's life, but moms often compare themselves with what they see on social networks. Many young mothers seem to portray a version too romanticized and perfect to truly represent what is it to be a mother.
Sometimes women embark on motherhood without taking the time to really find out what this entails. While they are already in the middle of the process they seem scared or clueless when facing things that they did not know would happen. They may find themselves feeling confused and maybe a little misled when discovering that the version of motherhood they've seen on the internet and from friends.
Everyone wants a fairytale life, but the truth is that real life is far from it. So, today I want to talk about those details that many mothers seem to omit in their speech of "perfect mother" and that some women seem to ignore before deciding to navigate the waters of motherhood.
20 Becoming Pregnant Isn’t as Easy as It Sounds
It is strange, but in our teenage years and early 20s we have the belief that getting pregnant is something so simple and fast, we just have to forget about the usual contraceptions. But unfortunately, it is not that easy, and although it is up to each woman, getting pregnant is not as easy as we thought.
Here is the thing: do not despair if you do not get pregnant during the first month. We must remember that stress plays a fundamental role in these processes. So, if the plan is to get pregnant during a specific period of time, either for work or for personal reasons, it is best to give yourself a long period of time because it may not happen in the first 3 attempts.
19 The Water Might Not Break Just Once
First of all, we must clarify that it does not look anything like what Hollywood has sold us in movies. Second, when the water breaks, specifically the amniotic fluid, that forms a protective sac around the baby. It feels as if you just wet yourself. It is a slow fluid running down your legs. And It doesn't happen only once, that's why pregnant moms will need a big maxi pad.
Of course, these maxi pads are special for this type of process, so it is best to be mentally prepared for this. And as uncomfortable as it seems, moms going into labor have to cope with the situation and be shameless.
18 Contractions May Be The Worst Part
Everything starts with cramps very similar to those women feel during menstruation, and although many women think that pushing the baby out is the worst part, in reality, it is not. The contractions can become a horrible odyssey that moves pain to the lower back and lower abdomen. So when the time comes to push, many women feel some relief, even when they are pushing something of the size of a watermelon through something the size of a lemon.
It is for this reason that many women decide to use the epidural. Although in their initial birth plan they did not want to, and this is because they can not handle the pain while waiting for the time to push. However, I must emphasize that this depends on the pain resistance that each woman has.
17 It Feels Like You Have To Number Two
The moment of pushing, that glorious moment where a mom finally reaches a full dilatation and she can expel the baby from her body. Usually, new mothers ask themselves "how do I know when is the time to push?" The answer is simple, a feeling similar to what it's like when you have to go #2.
When the baby has descended to the uterus it will begin to press the entire lower region, including the top, trying to get out, and this is why moms feel that need to go to the bathroom. Like previously stated, pushing is not as painful as contractions. It is more a pressure and discomfort feeling.
16 You Have To Deliver More After The Baby Too
Yes, as you read it, moms have to push out the placenta too. After getting the baby out of her body, someone will ask her to push a little more or "one more push" until the placenta comes out. Of course, this is the simplest part because after the baby is outside, expelling something amorphous does not require much effort.
However, I do not think moms should pay much attention to this detail because after going through hours of labor moms will be more focused on the baby and its well-being, and all the pain she went through will be a thing of the past.
15 You'll Need To Wear A "Mommy Diaper"
If you thought that the maxi pad would be forgotten after having given birth, unfortunately, I have to inform you that it doesn't work like that. Many nurses or doctors often call it 'a mommy diaper' that is basically a maxi pad or a real diaper filled with ice and tucked into their underwear after birth to provide some relief. A baby diaper also works like a maxi pad to deal with postpartum hemorrhage. But at least I can tell you that it is a worthwhile experience, because those small issues that moms will have to face in the day to day do not compare with the wonderful feeling that little baby gives mom.
14 The First Few Months Can Be Hard
Sometimes we scroll our Instagram feed and we see all these pictures of mothers looking so perfect, made up and dressed to the nines with their beautiful babies. I'm not saying it's impossible to be that mom, but real life is sometimes less glamorous and perfect, especially the first months with a newborn baby.
Mom's routine will change completely and it is a process of slow adaptation where she must learn to breastfeed properly, try to sleep, eat and try not to lose her mind. And although it may sound easy, after getting up every two hours trying to calm a baby that cries inconsolably it is normal to believe that she will lose her sanity. The best thing in these cases is to ask for help from a relative or hire a nanny to help during the first months at home.
13 Forget About Sleep
Something that many people seem to ignore is that sleeping is never the same again. Even after the infant and toddler stages, moms may have trouble sleeping, either because she does not have enough hours to rest or because she has children sleeping between her and her partner. And then in the morning she will face the odyssey of trying to wake up the children on time for school.
My advice? Never let your children get used to the idea of sleeping in your bed. Otherwise, it will become a routine and they will never want to sleep in their own room, which implies that mom will not be able to rest enough.
12 Breastfeeding Is Not As Easy As People Make It Look
People often talk about breastfeeding as a natural and easy action for all mothers, as if it were just holding the kid in mom's arms and putting their mouth in her chest and Eureka! But sometimes the reality is far away from that. Breastfeeding is not as easy a task as it is seen on television or in books, it is a process that takes time. And while it is easier for some women than others, each experience is different for everyone.
It takes time to achieve it, and sometimes there are many things moms do (without knowing) in their routines that make it more difficult. But with practice and researching some tips, over time she will achieve it.
11 You Don’t Need a Lot of Baby Stuff or Clothes
If a mom is pregnant with her first child it is normal to fall into the temptation of buying too many things for babies, especially after she sees those adorable outfits on Instagram. But the reality is that it is better to handle purchases in a smart way. After all, moms must remember that the baby is constantly growing and clothes will only be worn for a short time.
It is important to focus on the essentials, and that applies to car seats, playpens, swings, bouncy chairs, play mats, sleep hammocks, teething rings, bibs, burp cloths. But they do not need so many things. Infants pretty much just sleep, wake up and cry to be fed, then fall asleep after being fed again. Moreover, kids tend to discard even new toys quicker than it took parents to look for and buy them.
10 Children Are Really, Really Expensive
Yes, we know that babies can be expensive, but have you really sat down to look at the numbers with your partner? There is nothing more terrifying than having a tight budget for 2 people and adding a third member. Babies need too many things to have a healthy and normal development, from medical appointments, vaccines, food, and mountains of diapers.
But as they grow, more inexplicable expenses seem to appear, such as music lessons, school trips, children's medicines, more medical appointments, everything necessary for school. And what will consume the most expenses without any doubt is the cost of daycare.
9 You Should Work Out Those Arms Before The Arrival Of The Baby
And yes, this is one of those details that seem unimportant but that really matter. Today many experts talk about the importance of exercising and having a balanced diet during pregnancy, but usually they focus on training aspects such as walks and stretches for natural births, but one aspect that moms should focus on, especially if she is not a fan of doing some physical activity, it is in her arms. Why? The answer is simple, she will be carrying the baby 24/7 and as the baby starts growing bigger she will be more exhausted.
So, my suggestion is to start as soon as possible in those mommy biceps.
8 Don’t Keep It Too Quiet When Your Baby Sleeps
Most parents are concerned about creating the best environment for their children to sleep. Give them a comfortable crib/bed, warm light without too much noise around the house. But moms must be careful with that because otherwise they will create a reality that does not exist and that could then start to bother them.
First of all, I would like to clarify that when the baby is in mom's belly it is exposed to sounds such as traffic, music, and conversations of people, among others. So why keep everything in extreme silence when the baby has begun to sleep? Parents can continue with their routines as long as they do not make excessively loud noises that don't let the baby sleep.
7 People Will Give Tons Of Advice That You Didn’t Ask For
It seems that from the moment parents notify the world that they are pregnant and that they will be a mother, people think they have the right to give them advice that they are not asking for. And this is something that will happen quite often, so parents must learn to not become upset. It is best to breathe, smile and ignore these types of comments completely. Because otherwise, moms will find themselves in an unnecessary dispute.
According to Mom Junction, in these cases the best idea is to Listen, Smile and Forget, and go with your mommy instincts, even though it's going to be wrong 7 out of 10 times. In the wrong times go with Daddy instincts.
6 Postpartum Depression
These are words that nobody wants to hear, but the truth is that postpartum depression is quite common. Moms' bodies face too many changes after giving birth and having to take care of a baby that does not let them sleep. Moms must face the fact that they have to adapt to too many changes at the same time, which is so difficult. Therefore it is always suggested to moms to arrange ahead of time who will be with them helping with the new baby and all the things that must be done at home. Take into consideration this will make mom more bearable during the months after the arrival of the baby.
And in the case of suffering postpartum depression, the ideal is to go to the doctor for advice about what can be done.
5 Don’t Worry If Your Child Isn’t Reaching Development Milestones
This is a common thing when people first become parents. They begin to compare the progress of their kids with other children and what books stipulate as "normal", from the age to walk and talk, among other things. But there is no exact science, there are children who are slower at some things than others, and for them it takes more time.
Life Hacker explains that you should "try not to rush getting your child to talk, walk, run, or read. They grow up all too fast anyway. (By the way, I tried that “teach your kid to be potty trained in one day” mythical method, and it totally backfired. I should have just done what Walter did with his two kids and waited until she was obviously ready.)" So, take it easy and ask your doctor if you notice something really irregular.
4 Bring Out The Hand Sanitizer
Before reaching the wonderful world of motherhood it is normal to think that the use of disinfectant is unnecessary. But when you have a baby you will understand that it is not really such a crazy idea to carry a bottle of hand sanitizer with you.
In addition, these kinds of products are an ideal tool when family, friends and neighbors come to visit the baby. And it may sound a bit unpleasant to ask people to wash their hands or use hand sanitizer before touching the baby, but often people bring germs and bacteria that can make babies sick. So, the key in theses cases is not to obsess and just use it when it's necessary.
3 Going To The Bathroom In Peace Will Become A Thing Of The Past
A baby changes your life, and your routine will begin to revolve around their needs and not yours. What time he eat, what time he gets up, and changing diapers, among others, becomes your day to day, so get away and have 15 minutes of sleep (in peace) seems something that only happens in fairy tales or Instagram.
Do you remember those days where you could enjoy a deserved shower with hot water for 25 minutes or maybe go to the bathroom without hearing on the other side of the door baby cries? Sorry! But I have to tell you that those moments of peace will not be lived again for a long period of time, or until your kids are in school age.
2 Travel Is Not Going To Be The Same
Besides having children, something wonderful about life is being able to have the opportunity to travel and know different cultures. But when you decided to start a family and want to make the first family trip, you will realize that 'traveling light' does not exist anymore. When you are traveling with children you must be prepared for everything, from first aid kit, favorite toys, baby bottles, their formula, proper clothes for the airport, some medicines in case he get sick, stroller and endless things.
With all this I do not mean that it is impossible, because of course you can travel with babies, but it is more complicated than when you used to travel alone. Just try to explain to your toddler that you must wait 2 hours (or more) before arriving at the destination. Some kids handle it okay, others... well that's another story.
1 Finding Time With Your Partner Will Be More Difficult
This probably becomes one of the most difficult tasks after the arrival of the baby because when mom needs to rest, her partners will take care of the baby. So, those routines to go out on a Friday night to a restaurant will have to be postponed until the baby has a more stable sleep cycle.
Like everything else, this is not a 100% rule. It all depends on the baby's temperament, but it is important that at some point you try to find time to spend with your partner again. Either ask a favor of a relative or pay for a nanny who can care for the baby during one night. And according to Life Hacker "if you manage to get out for a date night alone with your significant other, you’ll probably spend all of the time talking or worrying about your child". It just takes time to adapt to the new parent life.
References: cosmopolitan.com, lifehacker.com, and momjunction.com