10 things I’ve learned in 10yrs of being a mother……
October 26, 2018
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So October 2018 marks 10 years since my husband and I became parents. Addison is all excited about reaching #DoubleDigits….I wonder if she realises it’s amazing, with me as her mother, that she survived 10 years! ha ha. It’s been such a ride….one that nothing and nobody can prepare you for. I once had a life where I literally could do anything I wanted…. all day, everyday. Since 26th of October 2008….that perk has been stripped from my life. My life now belongs to my kids…and for now, the soon to be 10yr old kind of dictates our lives a lot. She’s the one that hasexams, sports, her parties get preference….it’s Addison’s world, and we just live in it. Sucks right?
Umm…for all my dissing of #MomLife and my ‘pride’ at not being ‘that mom’….I am very much ‘that mom‘. My world revolves around my kids. I don’t mind that I don’t have my own life anymore. My kids have given me meaning, unconditional love….plenty of eye rolls…and more unconditional love….more than I deserve. I’m hoping to not get soppy in this post, because I have an image to uphold. The one where I pretend this motherhood crap is really just an inconvenience 😉
How it all began
Okay not how it really began…you all know that part…. but a few weeks thereafter. I remember being at the Spur with my friend Donna on 26th of February 2008. I was anxious…and I had just downed 2 brutal fruits when I looked at her and said: ‘Donna, I think I’m pregnant.’ She looked at me with big eyes…and said: ‘Well then I don’t think you should be drinking that 3rd brutal fruit!’. I replied that if I was pregnant, it was going to be my damn last brutal fruit for a while, so she needed to chill!
Hubby got me a test, and brutal fruit laden urination later…..it was confirmed. My mom was ecstatic! I had no idea she’d be…because she always pretended being a granny was beneath her life ambitions…but when she got that news, it’s like her life had begun. It had…for all of us….. So let me share what I’ve learnt since the 26th October, 2008.
10 things that I learnt in 10yrs of being a mother…..
Prepare to say goodbye to your old life
As I’ve said above…..your life is not your own anymore. There will be no more series binges all day, nights out drinking until you pass out… Nope…. From the day they put that screaming pink fluff bum on my chest….I knew that I needed to be afraid….very afraid. My old life was gone…. This little force of nature was here, and she demanded to be loved, fed, clothed….and kept poop free. Her needs were now my number one priority. Her life, was my new life….
Cliche, but…time flies when you’re having fun!
Time truly does fly when you’re having fun. Not so much when your nipples are cracked and you’re trying to breastfeed unsuccessfully…but when you’re having fun…it flies. When they’re cute and gurgling and talking and singing…and taking first steps…..those moments fly by. Record what you can, write it down, take photos and videos…you will forget…and you will wish that you didn’t.
We make mistakes and #MomGuilt is real…
I was hell bent on not co-sleeping. My child would sleep in her cot, she would sleep through, she would breastfeed….ha ha. Whatever…. I made many mistakes with Addison. She had thrush at 2 weeks old. I rushed her to casualty many times because every person thought she could not breathe. I convinced myself she had these ‘breathing issues’ because I had to have a c-section…because her lungs did not squeeze all the fluid out of the lungs, exiting my vagina, as the Lord intended. #MomGuilt
We tried the cry it out method, because the books said she had no business NOT sleeping through at night. Some of those cries still sit in my soul…. I can still hear it, see her little face…. Those really rock bottom moments aside though, they may haunt you, but they pass. The kid will survive. So will you.
Don’t sweat the small stuff
My instinct has always been to lash out when there’s a spillage or a broken plate or glass. I realised one day…no kid intentionally tries to trip and drop their glass. Okay I do know one kid that does this stuff intentionally…. you all know his name too…
Adam aside, what is the definition of an accident? An unfortunate incident that happens unexpectedly and unintentionally, typically resulting in damage or injury. UNINTENTIONALLY. We need to stop screaming at our kids for accidents. Unless it’s Adam digging into my new eyeshadow palette….that shit ain’t no accident. I remember the first time Addison split milk and she waited for me to scream…and I didn’t. The relief on her little face…. something imprinted into my memory. Still now she’ll start crying and when I say: It’s okay baby, it was an accident…. she’ll look at me and go: ‘Thank you mom.’. Ahhh…… #ThatMomThings…..
The Eldest Child pressure is real
I try to NOT put more responsibility on Addison than I would her brothers, but unfortunately this is something I can’t control. There’s just this inherent expectation that the Eldest Child should know better. Must know better. Be the example. I try to not have that train of thought, but I do fail many times. She notices it some days and calls me out on it…. Other days I try to do better. Who am I kidding, I never do better, but let’s pretend I do…..
Do NOT feed your kids sushi
I thought that it would be cute having a toddler who eats sushi back in 2010/2011. This little sushi eating diva would be so cute… I mean people would look at our table and go: ‘Ahh what a sophisticated little lady they have there!’ I feel that now people are still looking and going….’ahhhh….how the hell do they afford to spend that much money on sushi for a kid!!???’ ALL my kids eat sushi. It’s expensive. The cost of fish nuggets and chips is MUCH cheaper than a Salmon Sushi platter. Just don’t do it. It’s not cute…it’s addictive and expensive!
Think before you buy!
I always said…zero kids, or 3 kids. So once we had one I knew, even in the throes of sleepless nights and feeling like a failure, we would have more kids (Lord willing). The intention was always more kids. One also knows that there is a 50/50 chance that you may have EITHER a girl or a boy the next time. No guarantee for same sex. Why then, every time we made a big purchase….a bicycle, a scooter, a Zingo….a bed….why would we buy pink?? Every time! So by the time Joshua came around…. he either had to use pink things….or we’d have to buy new things. I mean, where’s a good ‘ol hand me down when you need it??
You cannot allow the past to dictate how you raise your kids
This one is pretty deep….but there are many occasions where parents parent based on how they were raised. They cannot love or tolerate, because they were not loved and tolerated. I cannot tell anybody how to parent, but I do know that I want the best for my kids. I want them to know love and security and how to hug for pete’s sake!
Hug? Yes…hug. I can’t hug. I blame my mother. Oh my word, hug my mother and it’s like she doesn’t know what to do with her body or face. She just cannot…. as a result…I grew up not knowing how to hug. She claims I hated hugging….and I see with Addison, this may actually be a thing. Maybe some people are not inherently huggers….but I’m trying to make a hugger out of her. When she gives me a half hearted hug, I call her back and make her repeat. This point (the actual point, not the hugging thing) is very deep…. just do the best for your kids, even if it wasn’t done for you.
I said I had 10 things….guys…I was winging it after the 3rd point…. I had nothing…and I knew I’d never get to 10. I hoped none of you could count. Truthfully though, who would click on a title: 7 things I learnt in 10yrs of being a Mother? I think 10 just sounded better. So clickbait in a way? Oh well….. we do what we must.
I’m just looking forward to spending the day with my now 10yr old… and celebrating her and her life. She’s an amazing daughter, sister, granddaughter, niece and friend…. she truly has the kindest heart. I get so annoyed with how quickly she forgives her friends that are mean to her, but I am so proud too. She’s no pushover though….she stands her ground and rolls her eyes….shit and this kid has the most beautiful eyes. To the point where I imagine how stunning her makeup is going to look one day with all that lid space and the cat shape of her eyes. Urgh….and the lashes…let’s not even go there….. Sorry, back to the topic. My life is so much richer for having her as a daughter…even in my wildest dreams, I didn’t expect such perfection.
Okay……I cannot type through tears…so I’m signing off! Please…go have a piece of cake today…or sushi…and celebrate with us 😉 Also….if you’ve missed the giveaways, go enter my Elizabeth Arden or my Dermalogica giveaway as part of the #ChritsmasInOctober that was actually inspired by Addison’s birthday <3