Tomorrow marks nine months since Rory’s arrival therefore I’ve decided to take a look back at the things I remember about having a newborn.
Although it wasn’t that long ago it feels like so much has changed. I find it difficult to remember exactly what it was like. Of course I remember the sleepless nights and the explosive poo’s but just what made those early days so different?
Looking back, these are the things I remember about having a newborn
1. Breastfeeding is thirsty work
I’m unsure why but for some reason breast feeding made me extremely thirsty. Preparation is key. Make sure you have a drink (and the sky remote) within reach before you start nursing.
2. Belvita Breakfast Biscuits (either the soft bake or chocolate variety)
These biscuits made up 90% of my diet in the first two weeks of Rory’s existence. Probably not the most nutritious option for a breast feeding mother but they were easy to eat with one hand, didn’t go cold and as it happened they were on offer at ASDA.
3. The first poo
It may sound odd but I look back at Rory’s first poo (the newborn shit) and it makes me smile. It was our first test as new parents. Neither of us had any clue what we doing yet we stumbled our way through it together. In the end we got the job done (fairly well) but I’ll always remember how happy I felt knowing we’d helped each other over that first hurdle.
4. The attention from strangers
If you’ve only had two hours sleep and you’re struggling to remember your own name, you better avoid the café at M&S. It’s a hotspot for the over sixty five and nothing gets an elderly lady’s attention better than a newborn baby.
5. The fear
You’ve just done a night feed. Your baby has drifted back to sleep and you’ve successfully transferred him into the moses basket. Just as your head touches the pillow he lets out a little mumble. You freeze, holding your breath, you wait. A tense couple of minutes crawl by as you pray for him to sleep…silence. Your muscles relax and you allow yourself to fall back into a half sleep. That my friend is the fear!
6. A new life in the sun
Like most new parents we spent a lot of time at home. This meant filling our lives with simpler pleasures. Mine was daytime TV. For two months I followed a group of intrepid expats as they chased their dream life in the sun (available here). I particularly liked the couple who moved to Spain to open a seafood restaurant called the Blue Marlin.
7. The baby Blues
Something which people don’t always talk about is the feeling of sadness you can sometimes experience. For me it happened one day while I was sat on the toilet. It was the first quiet moment I had had to myself all day. I just sat and thought “we’re never going to able to just sit down and watch Corrie again in peace”. I could have very easily cried. The truth is having a baby is life changing event, one which almost nothing can completely prepare you for. Your life changes overnight and it’s normal to feel a little lost.
It isn’t always good
Thankfully for me the blues were only short lived and before I knew it we were back enjoying Corrie (most nights in peace). But unfortunately that isn’t always the case for everyone. It’s very important to tell people how you’re feeling because having a newborn isn’t easy. It’s not all good times and happy memories. Sometimes it’s hard and you may feel like you’re failing. If you have any concerns you should speak to your family, friends or healthcare professionals. Just remember a problem shared is a problem halved!