The first few months of motherhood is one of the most amazing yet hardest times.
When I first became a mom, I didn’t have anyone to tell me what it would be like — what motherhood was really about. Everyone I knew made it seem like it was going to be so natural and that everything would somehow just click when my baby was born.
There was some truth to that.
There were also so many moments where I felt incredibly clueless and constantly wondered if I was doing it right. While there are plenty of moments that you just have to experience for yourself, there are a few things I wish someone would have told me.
1. Motherhood is lonely.
You have to give up your freedom, sleep, and relationships to attend to your baby’s needs around the clock.
In the beginning, the days and nights seem to run together. You don’t get a day off, ever. And despite spending an entire day with a tiny human glued to you, you feel like you’ve been in complete isolation.
Loneliness isn’t always about being physically alone. I have felt the most alone when my own needs fall low on a long list of priorities.
Remember to take care of yourself.
2. Breastfeeding is HARD.
Before I had my first baby, I don’t remember anyone telling me what breastfeeding would really be like.
The early days of cluster feeding.
The frequent night feedings.
The leaking, especially those first few weeks.
The worrying you’re not producing enough milk.
I remember feeling like a failure after I had my daughter. I couldn’t figure out why I wasn’t producing enough milk. (Which after two more babies, I now know I probably was.) I felt guilty that this supposedly natural thing, didn’t come naturally at all for me.
If I’d known the truth about how difficult it could get, I could have saved myself all the negative self talk and rather reached out for help. Which I did, after struggling to breastfeed my second.
If breastfeeding is not for you or if it just doesn’t work out, that is really fine. In the end, the way you feed your baby is inconsequential compared to the way you love your baby.
3. It’s okay to NOT love every moment of motherhood.
“You’ll look back and miss these moments.”
I’m sure you’ve heard those words before. Those words that are somehow meant to encourage and lift you on your toughest days, instead make you feel like you failed at your one job.
My kids are my life.
But let’s be real, some days are hard!
There will be times where you just don’t like being a mom. That doesn’t make you a bad mom! It’s okay to feel this way! I promise it’s normal.
4. Motherhood will never get any easier.
Nobody wants to admit this! Everyone wants to make you feel better by telling you that it will all get better soon.
I’ll be honest with you; it doesn’t get easier. It only gets different.
I don’t say this for you to lose all hope.
I promise, there will be a time you will actually get a good nights sleep. (Until you have a teenager, than I’m told all bets are off again.)
5. You will never know everything you think you should know.
When I was pregnant with my first, ten years and a million sleeps ago, I went about pregnancy the same I went about school. I tried reading everything I could get my hands on, I attended classes and joined online groups.
Then I had a baby.
You can ask all the questions.
You can read articles and books.
There will still be a lot of times where you’ll wonder what you should do. There is no way to fully prepare yourself.
At some point, you will realize that nobody ever told you because some things you have to experience for yourself. The challenges that we go through as mom are totally normal.
It’s very hard being a mom, but it’s totally worth it!