Being a parent

I write a monthly article for my local parent’s centre newsletter. Normally my topics are around green parenting. This month I was asked to write about being a new parent. Rereading the article I wrote I guess I’m very emotional today the words really did flow out of me (maybe I’ll be a poet one day ha ha). I’ve touched on a lot of topics in this article that I definitely want to expand on one day but for now I have posted this in its unedited entirety. They may print this unedited they may not we’ll see.
Being a parent (especially a new parent) is exciting, scary, tiring, rewarding, heart warming, overwhelming, exhilarating, exhausting and amazing all thrown into just one day. Once your bundle of joy arrives you have no idea that that you can love another person so much. So much that there really isn’t anything you wouldn’t do for them.
All children are different and do not come with a manual but don’t throw out those books just yet there are many amazing books on raising children that a subscription to the local library is totally worth it – even if you only learn one thing.
The first year of being a parent can be the most challenging time of being an adult; having a child will test your marriage and relationships to the limit but also reward you so many times over with love, cuddles, smiles and hearing mama or dada for the first time.
You will do everything that you said you wouldn’t just to get a good night’s sleep; yes you will give your child a dummy (if you were anti them), you will have your child in your room or bed (if you said you wouldn’t), you’ll use a bottle (though you said you never would). We’ll go to any lengths to protect and love our child but please baby, just go to sleep.
Do not be afraid to ask for help there is no shame in saying you can’t cope with this small bundle all day by yourself. Keep up with your coffee groups and even start a facebook page for your antenatal group so you can all post on there your worries, hopes, fears, tears and loving moments. Reach out to other mums and dads to ask what they are doing. There is no shame in seeing a doctor if you are having serious issues. PND is very real and can affect men as well as women even up to two years after your child is born. Ask for help.
Bonding with your child takes time. Some women feel the hand of motherhood the second their child is born. Most of us do not. Much like falling in love; falling in love and bonding with your child takes time. Do not be too hard on yourself you didn’t love your partner the second you met them. Most of all love and cherish each other as your family’s love is the most important thing of all.

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