Oh to be a first time mum

Oh to be a first time mum

It seems as though everyone around me is having babies, every day I see a new squishy face appear on Facebook or a 12 week scan photo and the seemingly mandatory announcement. My bestie in fact welcomed in a ball of gorgeous loveliness the other night, I was up feeding my baby and the announcement came on our What’s App group chat along with some essential photos of the new family, I must say it made me a bit emotional, it was 2 am though. But it brought back all those feelings of responsibility and uncharted love that come with that life you are now responsible. It got me thinking about the journey they are about to embark on, the trauma of feeding, the hours on end spent awake willing for sleep, the hormonal rush and doubtless tears that will follow as a result. Even still it is the best journey you will embark on.

In the grand scheme of things I guess I would be considered a ‘new mum’ I have after all only been on the job for 20 months, but in that time I have been lucky enough to become the proud owner of two tiny humans. I have without doubt learnt a whole new skill set in that time, a skill set that I don’t believe you are even aware of before the little people come crashing into your life.

NEW MUM blog zara

Baby 1s first day at home

When my first, my baby girl, landed on my chest I think I was in shock (being a month early probably didn’t help but its not like I didn’t know she was coming!) I was now responsible for this life, this person relied solely on me and her dad for absolutely everything and boy did I feel the weight of that responsibility. I was responsible for her well-being, her happiness, her life, I had an overwhelming sense of responsibility not to fuck it up. I felt I became a different person, I was previous very laid back and I now felt I boarded on neurotic. I was the typical ‘new mum’ I obsessed about everything, I stood to attention at every cry and beat myself up about every decision I made. In hindsight I have come to accept that this was normal.

Together with that normality was how I dealt with the arrival of our second child, despite the initial worry over his prematurity (2 months this time) and his subsequent health problems, I was, I am for the most part notably more chilled out, thankfully!

It is true, you approach your second born differently and it is absolutely not a result of any less love. You are just a little less worried, it is no longer the unknown and your are perhaps a little busier than the first time around. It is also true you don’t change the sleep suit at the first sight of spit up nor do you stress about the strict 2 hour time limit in the car seat or the lack of poo for 10 hours but there are so many bigger things that make the second time round easier and less worrying.

NEW MUM blog toby

My first born, meeting her little brother

With my first I was OBSESSED about her temperature, especially at night. I was petrified she would over heat and die, it didn’t help that during our three day hospital stay she couldn’t regulate her temperature too well and it was taken every hour. I was constantly feeling her chest, adding blankets, taking blankets off. I would get out of bed ‘just to check’ she wasn’t too hot or too cold, it wasn’t just her keeping me up at night but myself. I eventually got a room thermometer so I could monitor the room temp and make sure she was dressed appropriately – accordingly to Google anyway… Baby 2, well I have allowed my instinct to dress him and the room thermometer has made a brief and short lived appearance in the room but it is by no means part of the furniture.

Coupled with temperature stress at night was the sleeping position stress, I think I had a small heart attack when baby 1 rolled over in her sleep for the first time. What if she lies on her face and can’t breath? Will she roll back? Perhaps I should put her on her back..just in case? For a week I think I would go in and put her back on to her back. Obsessive much? Baby 2, OK so I did have a bit of panic seeing him sleeping on his front but I have resisted the urge to put him on his back (OK I may have done it once) but on the whole, he is comfy, he sleeps better and I let him sleep how he wants.

Feeding, oh my god this was horrendous. I exclusively expressed milk for baby 1 every 3 hours for 12 weeks. I didn’t sleep for more than 40-60 minutes in any one go. I beat myself up over our struggles to breastfeed, the tears, the anxiety, the feeling of guilt, feeling like you are failing your baby for not being able to do what is the most natural thing was truly awful. With baby 2, we had similar feeding problems, he had breast milk for as long as I could give it but I sure as hell did not give myself the punishing ordeal second time around. I knew I was doing what was best for me and my baby regardless of how he was fed.

When I was faced with leaving my first with someone else for the first time this was a HUGE deal. Mr TM fought tooth and nail to prise me apart from the little ‘un to go to the cinema, the cinema! We’re talking a few hours in the day, whilst my mother in law looked after her. Ya know a women who has had two of her own children, and now 4 grandchildren –  it’s fair to say she had a few hours baby sitting down. Nonetheless, getting out the house away from my additional limb felt traumatic. NOW as soon as Mr TM and I get a whiff of the words ‘we’ll look after the babies if you fancy getting out for a bit’ our shoes are on and we are out the door before you can say ‘be back for 8’.

So to any new mums reading this, it’s not just you, we all obsess over the little and big things, worry to much, over think, over react, over do the guilt and second guess ourselves but we do it for the right reasons. This mum thing is a learning curve and the only way we do learn is to be submerged in at the deep end. But, if there is a second time around, chances are your time at the school of mum will stand you in good stead.

Cuddle Fairy

 

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34 Comments

  1. April 7, 2016 / 12:50 am

    I’m a new mum (2weeks) and I’m going through all the things you mention, my particular obsessions at the moment are her rolling over in her sleep and struggling a little with feeding. It’s so helpful to read posts like this, they’re all things I know and shouldn’t worry about but as humans we seem programmed to beat ourselves up all the time! Thanks for helping me remember to stay positive and enjoy every minute! #bloggerclubuk

    • tammymum
      April 7, 2016 / 10:01 am

      Oh good I’m glad it helped in some way, however small ☺️. Hope things are going well with your little one and the feeding gets easier. Thanks for your comment xx

  2. April 7, 2016 / 9:31 am

    At 23 weeks pregnant, this is a reassuring post to read. Just hope I remember it when the time comes. It’s so easy to say to myself that I’ll try and stay calm and take it all in my stride etc etc, but I appreciate that there is no accounting for hormones, or for the reality of having a little one 100% dependent on you. Glad to hear you are finding it easier second time. #coolmumclub

    • tammymum
      April 7, 2016 / 10:03 am

      Oh good I’m glad it helped however small and yes unfortunately I fear those hormones tend to have the last stay. All the best for the rest of your pregnancy and the arrival of the little on xx

  3. April 7, 2016 / 9:38 am

    Such a great post for any new mums experiencing the worry and panic associated with just that. Most of us have experienced those heart stopping moments but we all make it through and I think you are right the second time around does get easier as you feel more in control (or I did). TY for linking up with #FamilyFun ????

    • tammymum
      April 7, 2016 / 10:04 am

      Yes absolutely you do feel more in control great way to put it. TY for your comment xxx

  4. April 7, 2016 / 10:26 am

    Love this. I was watching One Born Every Minute this week and it was taking me back to the birth and those first days. I think it’s natural to worry a lot with a first baby – although in general we have been fairly chilled out but I think there’s some things we’ve done that will go straight out the window with a second baby! Bless your little ones being premature though. #FamilyFun

  5. April 7, 2016 / 11:30 am

    lol this is great – I think I am still neurotic! I still do the majority of those things and my childs is 4 lol – Great post and glad you and hubby find time for you! So important! xx #familyfun

    • tammymum
      April 7, 2016 / 6:21 pm

      Ha yes it is! Yes I can also still be a bit neurotic with new things but in the whole I am much more chilled. Thank you for your comment xx

  6. April 7, 2016 / 6:34 pm

    Thanks for this post! I like to think that second time around (assuming we are lucky enough for that to happen) that I’ll be a bit more chilled, but I do worry a bit that all those worries will come flooding back – I was a huge worrier when my little boy was little! #coolmumclub

    • tammymum
      April 7, 2016 / 7:02 pm

      I am a massive worrier about everything and if I can chill a bit then there’s hope for everyone ????. Thanks for your comment xx

  7. April 7, 2016 / 7:51 pm

    I agree def more chilled second time round – I find myself doing stuff that I would never have done with number one. Much more confident and I have to say baby 2 is much happier, think not having a stresshead for a mum probably helps :) #bloggerclubuk

  8. April 7, 2016 / 8:24 pm

    This post took me back! I was a wreck over the first baby looking back. Needless to say, time and experience chilled us out for the second time around. It’s been said so many times, but nothing prepares you for it first time around eh?
    Thanks for linking up to #coolmumclub

    • tammymum
      April 7, 2016 / 8:27 pm

      Nope you are in at the deep end and you just have to get on with, nothing like trial by fire ey xx

  9. April 8, 2016 / 6:01 am

    I find it so comforting that I am not the only one to obsess over every little thing – who knew that a temperature change of a few degrees would have me in such a tizzy… I am a grown rational woman I swear!

    #familyfun

    • tammymum
      April 8, 2016 / 8:45 am

      Tell me about it. I left all my rationality in hospital when taking my first home, along with sleep, dignity and a functioning brain xx

  10. April 8, 2016 / 11:51 am

    I was definitely the worrying focus on every little detail first time mother (still am I guess but more relaxed than the first year!) It is so much easier now even though turning 1 brings a whole new set of challenges!

  11. April 8, 2016 / 12:17 pm

    Hope you’re right! I struggled so much with the first…anxiety, worry…I actually don’t think I’ve got the headspace with a toddler to do that again… Although I suppose I’m just worrying about different things! Can completely relate to the time alone thing, yes in the beginning it was so hard to leave…now? Um, byeeee, funnily enough not so hard!! #familyfun

  12. April 9, 2016 / 6:30 am

    Now that I’m 12 months in, I feel like I’ve calmed down loads since when my boy was tiny. I used to obsess over his breathing when he was sleeping, I was sooooo worried about SIDS. I remember reading something when I was pregnant about a baby who had a hair wrapped around her toe and it was cutting the circulation of and, I’m not even kidding, every day for the first 3-4 months, I would constantly be checking my son’s little feet haha. Hopefully, if I ever decide to have a #2, I’ll be much more chill. Great read! #coolmumclub

    • tammymum
      April 9, 2016 / 8:05 am

      Haha that’s a good one. It’s mad isn’t how on edge we are about everything! I’m sure you will be more chilled about the small things anyway I don’t think anything will ever stop us worrying ????. Thanks for your comment x

  13. April 9, 2016 / 9:58 pm

    Im sitting here 9 months on thinking I didn’t obsess! Maybe I did and I have just forgotten! I think I was quite relaxed fairly quickly, I had my other half to keep me centred though. I would speak a worry, he would say he’ll be okay! It was true though as he is still here, both of them!!

  14. April 10, 2016 / 8:31 am

    I was a really laid back first time mum, I didn’t fuss over her or check temperatures I don’t think I even really paid attention to guidelines, she slept in my bed, exclusively breastfed, and my goodness she was a cryer at first anyway. I’m still pretty laid back about them 4 years on and having just had baby 3. I worry about them of course but I try not to let it get on top of me. However I’ve not had the worry of a premature baby and I expect I’d be VERY different if I had.
    Listen to yourself, you know your child better than any professional or qualified person. Just always remember to enjoy it, it goes too fast.
    #KCACOLS

    • tammymum
      April 10, 2016 / 8:37 am

      That’s a lovely comment thank you. Yes we’re all different as are our babies, I was definitely more chilled the second time, thankfully. Good on you for taking it in your stride and being so calm about everything, I could have done with taking a leaf out of your book. Thank you again for your comment xx

  15. April 10, 2016 / 3:09 pm

    I was so obsessed with temperature too – it didn’t help that our boiler packed in the day we brought her home, so the house was freezing. She was swaddled in so many blankets, with me fussing around and checking her temp every 15 minutes!

    Thanks so much for linking up at #KCACOLS. Hope you come back again next Sunday x

  16. April 10, 2016 / 3:49 pm

    Great post – i am a first time mum to a 9 week old and i am obsessed with watching her breathe by night and making sure shes not too cold. I used to be laid back before as well but now i am that neurotic mummy! xx
    #KCACOLS

  17. April 10, 2016 / 6:56 pm

    A great [ost for new mums – we’ve all been there and it’s always helpful and reassuring to come across others’ experiences so we don’t feel alone :) #familyfun

  18. April 11, 2016 / 7:34 pm

    It’s been commented that I’m really laid back to say I’m a first time mum. I don’t always feel it and, like you, temperature was a stress point for me. I never knew what was best to dress him in. Mini R is now 22mo next week and I’m still fairly laid back with him apart from when it comes to the important things like manners etc. I’m sad I’ll never be a first time mum again. Like you say, that feeling when you first meet your first born is unbelievable #KCACOLS

    • tammymum
      April 11, 2016 / 7:50 pm

      Oh it is isn’t it. Almost makes me want to go though it all a third time just for that moment lol. Yep, temperature has always, and probably will always get me ????. Thank you for your comment xx

  19. April 13, 2016 / 10:31 pm

    Yes, it is different with the second. Though, in fairness, I am still fairly neurotic, but I’m a neurotic person in general! She definitely eats stuff at a younger age than we let her sister, as it’s too much hassle to refuse her when she wants what her sister has!
    Thanks so much for linking up at #KCACOLS. Hope you come back again next Sunday.

  20. agentspitback
    April 15, 2016 / 11:20 am

    What a lovely post! I can so relate and great advice to new mums! I have three children and so you can imagine how I managed things when my #3 arrived! Beyond chill…With my #1, I used to check on him all the time to make sure he was breathing! Thanks for sharing with #PasstheSauce

    • tammymum
      April 15, 2016 / 6:29 pm

      Yeah it’s mad isn’t it, you feel like a dab hand with the second so number three must be mega relaxed…well as much as a baby can be anyway xxx

  21. April 16, 2016 / 7:19 am

    Great read as ever 😉 as you know I am just about to have our second so its good to know all those things you stressed over first time round don’t seem as important second time!! I am wondering how Monkey will ultimately react though and the guilt is already starting to kick in. Stupid eh? Thank you for joining us at #BloggerClubUK x

    • tammymum
      April 16, 2016 / 7:43 am

      Ah thank you. I felt horrendously guilt when I found out I was pregnant with my second but as it turns out baby 1 adores baby2 and fusses over him and they are always making each other laugh. I’m sure monkey will love having a little baby to fuss over, I’m sure that sibling bind starts much earlier than we think xxx

  22. August 5, 2016 / 6:44 pm

    Really enjoyed reading this, I’m only 4 months in and trying not to obsess about her rolling over in sleep which she now does eek. It’s such a learning curve!! X