Where creative writing and general rambling go hand in hand :)

Tuesday, 26 June 2018

Reading makes me feel normal

Since having Isaac I've often questioned whether some of the feelings I have are normal. Like not enjoying mother and baby groups and being perfectly happy to live in our own little bubble.
I recently read Giovanna Fletcher's 'Happy mum, Happy baby' (great book, would highly recommend) While I couldn't relate to everything in the book, which I'm sure is the same for most people, every so often I read something that made me think oh maybe I am normal after all. When I found these bits I would disturb Daniel and read the passage to him just to clarify things, I finished the book feeling so much better about myself.
Last week I read 'The Unmumsy Mum Diary' (again, great book highly recommended). I've been following her Facebook page for a little while so when the book came up for 99p (I'm on unpaid maternity leave and love a bargain) I decided to give it a whirl. Once again I found things I could relate to, and once again I disturbed Daniel to read it to him. The most significant thing I read though that made me feel normal was that not everyone cries when they're handed their new born baby for the first time. Obviously I knew that not everyone cried but actually reading it like that made me feel totally normal.
I am a crier, I cry at pretty much anything and everything, films, TV, adverts. So I completely expected to be at least a little tearful when passed my little bundle of joy, nope, nothing!
In hindsight of course I was beyond exhausted and quite possibly didn't even have the energy for tears. However I also didn't feel the sudden rush of love for Isaac when he was placed on my tummy or even fairly soon after. I've questioned this in my head a lot but like the Unmumsy Mum I notice these feelings when I least expect them. A couple of weeks ago while watching Isaac's swimming lesson I sat at the side of the pool and felt like I was about to tear up, because when I looked at my baby and his daddy enjoying their time in the pool I had that sudden rush of love for both of them. In other circumstances I may have stood up and said to them I love you so much, to save embarrassment for all parties though I waited until we got in the car.
Both these books have made me feel better about myself and while I know I often don't fit the stereotypical 'normal' in a lot of ways, I also know that I am not alone.

Monday, 30 April 2018

Mummy friends?

When I was pregnant a few people mentioned joining an NCT class, 'because you'll need the support' 'it's great to have mummy friends that are going through the same thing at the same time' 'they are a lifeline'
While I don't have anything against these classes or people that use them, it really wasn't for me.
Since having Isaac I keep seeing posts about 'why you need mummy friends'.
Out of interest I've read a few of these and mostly these mummy friends are ones who have babies the same/similar age to your own. You can talk to them about your birth story and they won't be horrified, they'll help you out with childcare, they understand when your clothes are covered in baby sick/snot/whatever else your child has wiped on you.
Each to their own but I already have some great friends, some have children, some don't, some have grandchildren and each one of them is important to me. My friendships haven't changed since I became a mum, to them I am still the same person I just have different priorities now.
Some I see barely once a year, some every other week or so depending on plans, some every couple of months. This is much the same as before I became a mum.
I'm pretty sure none of my friends care whether I turn up to meet them with a baby related stain on my clothes, and those who are interested asked about the birth. I also know that if I was in need of childcare I could call on any of them (unless any of them message me after reading this and tell me to bog off).
When Isaac was about 8 weeks old I decided to try a baby music/sensory class. I can honestly say it is the most uncomfortable I have ever felt, I was even relieved when he started screaming so I could take him off for a nappy change and make a swift exit.
To some this may sound ridiculous, but having never been a very sociable person I'm perfectly happy with this. Why do I need to make new friends just because I've had a baby? sometimes it's hard enough to arrange meet ups with my current friends and I certainly am not prepared to replace them just because we are all at different stages in life. I've known some of these women for over 20 years and they're not getting rid of me that easily.

I understand why this sort of support network works for some people, but I'm perfectly happy with the support I have from Daniel and our family and friends.