Dear first time Mum

Dear first time Mum, apologising to my baby

Your bundle of joy is here.  The hormones are rushing and it dawns on you that a little person is now relying on your for their everything.  It’s OK Mama, you’ve got this.  Hold him close, take in his milky goodness.

Accept those offers of help Mama, but don’t be afraid to put up boundaries.  Don’t let anyone else cloud your time with their demands.  It’s OK to say no.  You aren’t being unreasonable, being a Mama is exhausting.

It’s true, the housework can wait but sometimes it’s soothing to wake up to a clean house and to nap without worrying about the things you need to do.  Don’t be afraid to leave the house Mama, it will be your saving grace.  It’s OK to window shop just to get out of the house.

The instincts you feel are fierce Mama, if you let them.  Your mind can play tricks on you, telling you that you don’t have the answers.  When it’s 2am and no one has slept, it’s easy to feel like you are the worst mother on the planet.  Be assured in the knowledge that everyone has felt that gripping fear and loneliness.  You’ve got this Mama.

Throw out those damn books.  Trust yourself.  Learn to cherry pick the advice, for there will be gems among the stones.  It’s OK to say thanks but no thanks to the well meaning advice, even if that advice is given forcefully.

Find your tribe Mama.  It may take a few tries but that tribe is so important.  They are your sounding board and your safe place.  Being a parent can be isolating, especially if you are the first in your friendship group to have a child.  Don’t let the loneliness breed.

Don’t be a martyr, your baby won’t thank you for it.  It’s OK to admit that you aren’t finding things are going smoothly.  It’s OK to admit that you need help.  Your baby needs a mentally healthy Mama just as much as he needs anything else.

Take time out.  Don’t become one dimensional, it’s OK to like spending time on your own, away from your baby.  It’s OK to have interests that are just for you.  You don’t cease to exist as a person when you have a baby.  You aren’t a bad mother for desiring time out.

Most of all Mama, take it a day at a time.  Take it a minute at a time if you have to.

Much love,

A Mama who has been there.

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