The boy who made me a Mother arrived six weeks early and turned my life upside down in the best way possible. I haven't slept a full night since and it's ok because sleep is overrated even if it isn't, not really.
There was a lot I wasn't expecting about motherhood, like the fact that maternity leave isn't a holiday (who knew?!), and the things I was expecting are different anyway.
This overwhelming love everyone tells you you're going to feel? Yep, I feel that. It's so intense that I finally know what it means to permanently live with my heart outside my body. How you can function on no sleep and still smile? Yep, I can do that too. When this little boy of mine wakes up at 5am smiling at me, who cares we've been awake every hour since 2am? For three nights running? Nobody cares, because that little morning smile shakes my whole world and sends in rays of sunshine that put the magic hour to shame.
I've learned that I knew nothing about becoming a mother and most of the things I thought I knew were quite off the mark.
Of all the things I've learned so far, this motherly love is the absolute best. And knowing I can hold my baby is the most unexpected. It's utterly ok to hold your baby. All day long. For as long as it needs. Because babies have needs not wants and you can't spoil them by giving them what they need.
I've learned why it takes a village to raise a baby and I'm totally ok with it. I'm grateful I have a village and I'm grateful I'm building a village every day.
For the last three months, I have felt so incredibly lucky for my baby, for my family, for the amazing care we receive, for the neonatal midwife who visits us weekly, for my old friends and for the new ones I've met at neonatal class. This last week, I've gone from knowing I'm lucky to feeling it. And it's such a relaxing feeling!
We've had incredibly amazing days and stupidly hard ones. We've had days where I thought this may be a holiday after all and days where I thought I was a total fiasco. I have cried and I have laughed and I've seen those first six weeks come and go and the fog only partially lifting. Everyone said the first six weeks are the hardest, yet so much begin at six weeks (baby reflux, I'm looking at you!).
I've finally understood that comparisons and expectations are pointless. I've read somewhere that your baby needs and wants you. And given the choice, your baby wouldn't choose another mother, no more than you would choose another baby. That really made the penny drop. We're a perfect match, my little baby and I.
The one thing that has stayed the same with this motherhood business? I'm still me. I am the me from before and I'm a new me and they both live happily together. Three months in, I finally feel like myself again and I love it.
These last three months have been amazing and hard. And I wouldn't change it for the world. I know I've got this. We've got this, baby! We can totally do this. Look at us, we're doing it!