“Parenting is so much easier when I was raising my non-existent kids hypothetically.”
How much truth is in that? Seriously, it really was so much easier. All those ideologies about being a parent, filed so neatly in my mind. I had no idea what was coming. I was as prepared as I could be and ready to embark on my parenting journey from the minute that little positive line of blue showed up.
My pregnancy wasn’t easy, quite complicated in fact. H caused quite the stir from the start but I was in good hands and constantly monitored. As my pregnancy progressed, I felt more and more ready to meet my beautiful baby girl.
A control freak like me, had everything organised from months in advance! All clothing washed and ironed, the cot set up, the buggy built, etc. I was ready. I was confident and I was going to be the perfect parent. I was going to ace it in every sense and with the exception of the giving birth, I had no fear. Until my beautiful baby girl was placed in my arms. Then I was flooded with anxiety and that vision of ease evaporated into thin air. “Will I be a good mum?”, “How do I hold her?”, “How do I keep her safe forever?”, “She’s so teeny, what if I break a leg when changing her nappy?” You know, those standard questions. And as time goes on, the questions only increase.
Let's fast forward to almost 4 years later. Within the blink of an eye, my beautiful little girl is about to come out of her threenager years and enter the world of 4. I don't know how we got here so fast. I really don't. That pregnancy daydreaming of us having constant smiles on our faces and never battling between each other seems a distant memory. Parenting is HARD. It is really hard. The pressure is immense. And everything changes. Throw in 2 jobs and a husband, it makes it tougher. Like most parents, my to do lists are endless. But I seriously wouldn’t change it for the world. I LOVE IT!
Some say it gets easier, some say it gets harder. In many ways it is so much easier than the beginning… H was the worst sleeper. Once nursery started, it got better and it was a huge turning point for us. She’s always been a fussy eater but in time that too has improved. She’s turned into this beautiful, confident, independent, vivacious little girl full of sass. She constantly makes me proud. But as she gets older (and wiser), her negotiation skills (I’m sure), are as good as battling it out in the court room with a top class lawyer. She's very strong willed stubborn. Something she has inherited by both of us.
Then there's the added pressure that most parents put on themselves. The guilt, the comparisons, the striving for perfection. We all know that these things shouldn’t exist but they do and it gnaws away at us. We’re human. With social media being used excessively by most of us, it’s almost impossible for us not to fall into that trap and feel the pressure.
So I guess, my question is why, do we as parents, put so much pressure on ourselves? Is it worth it? In short, the answer is no but it's so much easier said than done right?!
So the next question I tend to ask myself is what am I going to do about it?! And honestly, I've been on this journey for a while, nearly 4 years now. You’d think I’d be experienced but hardly so. However, more recently I’ve tried to become a little more selfish in the hope that I'll ditch that parenting guilt so that the stress and anxiety that comes with it will drop off. I've started to exercise regularly. We’ve recently got a puppy, which means lots more walking outside. I try and do one thing a day that helps me to relax. I try to plan my day properly, I write a journal and am making more time to see my friends. I am learning to breathe. Oh it’s good to breathe!
And tonight I’ve ditched my mountain laundry…. yes, you heard me right! I've chosen to be with the hubby, have some wine and relax instead of getting lost under a pile of clothes thanks to Laundrapp. They’ve come to collect our washing and it’ll be returned, clean, folded and ironed in 24 hours. Something, I highly recommend!!
Laundrapp have kindly offered Mamazou users £10 OFF their first order by using code LAUNDRAPPJENNY. Enjoy!!