I’ve learnt over the last two years. I’ve learnt more than I could have possibly imagined. My mind has stretched to proportions beyond what you might think – pregnancy, baby raising, baby sleep, starting solids, teething, the list goes on. But the biggest thing I’ve learnt, is that I can do this mothering thing. I can do it, and I can do it my way. I’ve learnt that I don’t need to seek and take on board every sidewards glance, round-the-bush comment or straight out judgement. I know how I want my parenting to go from day one with our baby on the way, but I also know that it might not go to plan, and while I’m still learning to go-with-the-flow, I’m getting better at it. I try to take a deep breath and just go along with things. It’s not really in my nature, but I’m working on it. I’ve learnt but I’m always still learning.
I want to bond with my baby straight away. I don’t want to be consumed by visitors in hospital. In fact, I don’t want visitors in the first day (apart from my husband and son). I want to work on breastfeeding and skin on skin contact. I want to relish holding my baby and making that first bond that is ridiculously important and I don’t want to play pass the parcel with my baby when they are hungry and my milk hasn’t come through. I want to be free to get that baby feeding and get that milk going! And hopefully…I can do it. All on my own. Without the help of a million midwives trying to wring me out with no success.
I want to be more relaxed. If my baby is crying and I feel the urge to pick my baby up then I will do it. If they need another feed, I will do it. I won’t be consumed by what I think my baby ‘should’ be doing because someone told me they should be feeding less, sleeping more, not being held so much, blah, blah, blah. I’ll just do what feels right and drown out the voices.
I want to rest without reservation. Why feel guilty about trying to get some sleep? The need for perfection and ‘doing it all’ consumed me when I had Tom and at times I was so darn TIRED. This time? Pat myself on the back for making a mountain of milk, looking after a toddler and doing what needs to be done, and feel good about getting some rest! And if I don’t want to commit to visitors or a social thing, then I WON’T.
I want to be kind to my rock. To appreciate that he is going through the same things but in a different way and that we need to lean on eachother and help eachother through. I want to be his rock as much as he has always been mine.
I want to believe in my own education over the last 2 years. I want to believe in what I’ve learnt about being a parent and what I am yet to learn. I want to be confident enough to stick to my beliefs that I’ve formed and drown out anything that tells me otherwise.
Did you do things differently the second time based on what you learnt with your first baby? If you haven’t had a second and are hoping to, what will you do differently in those first days?