1 Year, 1 Candle and Many More.

My honey-bun has officially turned one! The cake has been eaten and the candle blown out (by an adult) for the celebration of her first year being alive in the world! All day I have been thinking back to how much my life has changed now that I am a parent and it is really true that nothing will ever fully prepare you for how much life changes. This time last year I had a block of ice down my pants, a newborn chomping on my boob and the most blissful feeling of happiness that she was finally in my arms.

It all feels like a bit of a blur but there are some moments that have been filed away, such as watching my husband learn how to do a diaper like he was defusing a bomb; begging for more disposable underwear because the nurses stowed them away like treasure and bursting into tears when the breastfeeding specialist labelled me an unfit mother with her judgmental eyes. Those first few days are such a mixture of joy, pain and tiredness, that it is probably a good thing I can only remember snippets. It also makes me very thankful for the technology we have now as I can look back at pictures and videos of that time and be instantly transported to that precious moment.

My two sleepyheads ❤so much love for them

And out of everything; the unwanted parenting advice people give, the unbearable pain of birth and the endless breastfeeding torture, the one thing I regret over this past year is not taking more pictures. Now believe me, my phone is filled up with cute photos but I still feel that there are moments that I missed because I couldn’t be bothered to take a picture. Now that she is a year, I can look back and treasure all the unique moments we had together and know that she will never be that small and vulnerable again. Now she can bite my finger, throw her water cup at me and shout “Momma” louder than I like but she will never be the tiny little baby that slept in my arms for hours without moving.

I guess that is why people start considering having another child when their first is a year. We wish that our first child could have stayed a baby a little longer and that we might enjoy the baby phase more with a second child but I don’t think it works out like that. The baby moment I miss the most, is being able to nap beside my little girl. She would lie still and peacefully sleep on her side of the bed and I wouldn’t have to worry about her moving while I slept on my side. I would wake up next to her pudgy cheeks and smell her sweet head as she sucked her lips in and out as though she was feeding. If I do that with her now, she rolls around, slaps me in the face and sticks her fingers in my eyeballs!

So to anyone reading that is due a little bundle, enjoy every moment while you can, take pictures every second and ignore all the other nonsense!

9 Months Later

It’s been nine months since the arrival of my little honey-bun and what a whirlwind it has been. There have been many tears, giggles, and dirty diapers but every second (except the birth) has been a Godsend. I look down at my little bundle of joy as she plays happily with my shoe and wonder how I ever existed without her and at the same time I would give anything to sleep in!

When you become a parent you start to understand the full meaning of being sleep deprived and how you can endlessly prod your partner saying, “It’s your turn.” For me, I found the first few weeks the hardest as she only slept in three-hour intervals which inevitably meant that I didn’t sleep longer than two hours at a time. We took turns while my husband was off work so that we could try and stretch it out to three or four hours but that only lasted until he returned to the day job. I remember a close friend came over and offered to babysit so that we could go out but instead we headed straight to the bedroom to sleep. We curled up under the covers, wrapped our arms around each other and I immediately burst into tears from sheer exhaustion.

My husband stared at me blankly while my hormonal overload manifested as a water filled meltdown, sobbing that we didn’t snuggle anymore. The poor man just wanted to sleep but instead, he had to comfort his unstable wife. After my emotional outpouring, I snuck out of bed and jumped in the shower which felt like pure luxury. Every T-shirt I owned was covered in baby vomit, I didn’t know when I had last washed my hair and any opportunity to wash normally involved having the baby nearby in her rocker; so having an actual chunk of personal time to shower felt like being at a spa.

After a few weeks, things started to settle down and her sleeping pattern greatly improved but I still remember a salesman telling me that his wife was expecting their second child and all I did was glare at him and say “Why?” I couldn’t understand through my sleep tortured daze why anyone would have more than one child. Obviously, now that my little girl sleeps through the night and I can function like a human again, I understand the impulses to reproduce but I certainly have a newfound respect for people with twins or multiple children.

Now that nine months have flown by, I still get surprised when I catch myself beaming with pride because my honey-bun has learned to crawl, clap or stand. Never before have I admired any child’s ability to perform basic bodily functions but when my own child laughs, rolls or farts, I find it entertaining beyond measure. The simple joys in life really are childlike and even though there have been times of struggle, I would not have traded a single moment with my daughter for an extra hours sleep. (I might alter this last statement if a second baby comes along!)