That little voice

Daniel

From the day that I found out that I was pregnant with Daniel, I envisaged what he would look like, what kind of nature he would have. Would he take after me or Julian? After he was born, I was so exhausted I don’t think that I even had time to think about taking a shower let alone planning my son’s future. But slowly the baby mist started to clear and we found our rhythm, which was not the easiest of tasks, between our breastfeed woes and my total inexperience which left me feeling totally clueless most of the time. I remember one moment of complete despair and saying to myself, come on you read all those books, you watched the DVDs and you went to the classes, you should be better than this!  I then realized that there is a lot of pressure on first time parents to be perfect, when in actual fact, every first time parent needs as much help as possible.

Before Daniel was born we told our In Laws that we didn’t want any one to fly to Dubai to help us until after Daniel was born because we wanted to have some time to get to know the little guy and to get him into a routine. We were praised for being so independent and mature, and I had no idea what the hell I was thinking! After 2 days in hospital we were allowed home, I had a natural birth (with all the meds possible) and hubby went back to work the next morning. But midday I was a complete mess, I phoned Julian to come home immediately because I had no idea what I was doing at all! How in the name of anything sane did I think that I was going to be able to cope on my own?  By the time hubby got home I was a complete mess, I handed Daniel over to him and I escaped into the bathroom for a good old sob! 10 days later my mom in law arrived, and she brought with her a semblance of sanity. For the first time in days, I actually got a bit of sleep because she helped with the night shifts, as much as Julian wanted to help, he had to be at work at sparrow fart in the mornings and was often off to work before the sun came up.

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Yesterday I read a blog posting by a fellow South African mom who had a list of questions or points about raising a new born that no one had told her and her question was why? Why new moms or even second time around moms or parents in general not talk about how hard it actually is to be a parent. It is, after all, on of the hardest jobs in the world and does not come with a manual even though it is probably one of the most rewarding experiences as well. Yes, it is an experience that I would not forgo but it is also an experience that I am reluctant to repeat. Daniel is now 3 and although we don’t want him to be an only  child we are very hesitant to have another. My hesitation stems from the fact that I was lucky enough that Daniel became a sleeper after about 6 weeks, and it is often something that we take for granted now. As I mentioned before breastfeeding was a complete disaster for the first few weeks and my poor child was just constantly hungry and that is not an experience that I want to subject myself or a newborn to again.

I wouldn’t swop a moment with Daniel, he is a kind, sweet and rudely healthy little guy who has made both my hubby and I enormously happy.

But even after all that, there is that little voice in the back of my head which is starting to get a little bit louder each day, and it is saying that I am being selfish for not providing our son with a sibling and I’m actually starting to listen to it. Does that make me a little crazy? In all honesty I think so!

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8 thoughts on “That little voice

  1. I found that no amount of parenting manuals helped me at all. If it wasn’t for my support system I’d be lost. That said I also felt guilty about not taking to motherhood instantly. That was 14 years ago.

    My opinion on mom not sharing their experiences with other newbies is that they more than likely experienced the same woes and are afraid to share because of looking inadequate.

    As for having another kid, if you feel that you’re ready and you’re up to it then go for it. We stopped at 2 and number 3 came as a huge surprise. Contraception and all. They fill my life with such happiness and being a young mom I grow up with my kids. I’m quite broody these days but my quota for kids is filled so I’ll live vicariously through family and friends kids.

    • Hi Celeste

      Thank you for your comment, it is nice to know that I was not the only one that found the parenting manuals very murky. Having your support system around for help is so important, it infinitely harder being an expat but I made it harder on myself, who in their right mind thinks they can get a new born into a routine in 10 days!

  2. I feel exactly the same way as you do. My experience was traumatizing, for lack of a better word, and I am not sure if I can go through that again. I too however would like a sibling for my little girl. And I think that voice of mine will trump my fear one day ( if I am granted another baby one day). I loved this post! 😘

    • Thanks so much Radhia! I think that the more we think about it the more scary the prospect is. In a way we talk ourselves out of it as well. Love your blog, will def be catching up with you over more of your posts in the future!

  3. Those books…helpful with the basics, not so great when it comes to the ACTUAL parenting stuff. The sleepless nights, the dark circles under your eyes, the episiotome (sp) that won’t let you sit without pain for weeks! No one even hints at the idea of shaving your hair to save precious time and ditch all clothes BUT your nighty. I used to sit at my pc working with baby on my arm and later advanced to working with my son sleeping on my lap. Motherhood is something we grow into…

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