I love the new WaterWipes TV advert ‘When a Baby is Born, a Parent is Born’ which focuses on the highs and lows of becoming new parents. It opened my eyes to that fact that although everyone may have a different story one thing never changes – parenthood is far from being picture perfect. It is completely normal and acceptable to have good and bad moments. There are phases that make you smile and that may make you shed a few tears.
Parenthood is a cocktail of mixed emotions. Inspired by WaterWipes new advert I have written this very honest open letter to all new parents and parents to be, explaining the joys and challenges of parenthood.
I had read every parenting book I could get my hands on to prepare myself to meet my son for the first time; but honestly nothing can prepare a new parent for what is to come. The new mother jumping into the sea is a great example of this – no matter what you know, or do not know, you cannot predict how it will feel jumping into the sea/motherhood.
I found out I was pregnant when I was living in Lanzarote. I had been living on the Canary Island at the time for five years, but I still struggled to pick up the Spanish language. I had a few phrases to get me from A to B but when it came to expressing my wants and needs to a doctor/midwife this was one of the hardest hurdles I had to overcome. I felt the purest of love for my ever expanding bump and that gave me the strength and determination to carry on each day.
Dylan was born at 1:00am on the 19/11/2011 in Arrecife Hospital. I felt extremely blessed to have had a quick and relatively stress free labour. It was love at first sight. Dylan had a full head of hair and yet was so tiny. I had never felt such a strong urge of love that I did in that moment. I automatically felt the overpowering need to protect, guard and shield him from the world. In my eyes he was everything I had dreamed of.
When the midwife delivered Dylan she said “Oh no, no se ve feliz!’’ which meant “Oh no he does not look happy!” For the next three months, Dylan expressed his unhappiness morning, noon and night with non-stop crying. Those weeks after Dylan was born are now a blur. I survived on as little as 30 mins of sleep a day and lots of coffee.
Dylan really struggled with colic. I remember always feeling worried, anxious and extremely concerned, oh and did I mention tired. Seeing pictures from parenting books of new mums with glowing skin and freshly washed hair in perfectly kept houses, holding smiling content babies made me doubt myself as a Mother and my parenting skills. I felt like I was doing everything wrong and nothing was how I had envisioned it would be.
Days turned into weeks and weeks turned in months and soon Dylan did begin to settle. He began sleeping through the night, which I am forever grateful for. By six months he began to develop his own little unique personality. Watching him laughing and clapping warmed my heart. He learned to run and jump before he could walk. Dylan has kept me on my toes from day one and I wouldn’t have it any other way. In the story of my life, Dylan’s chapters are by far the most beautiful.
Dylan is now six. We moved back to Ireland when he was one. I now never take for granted been surrounded by such loving family and friends. Dylan has grown into such a handsome and smiley little boy and similarly, like the campaign, a parent was born in me. I have flourished into a confident, courageous and self-reliant Mother.
Six years ago if I could tell, myself anything it would be:
• Each baby is different, it’s not your fault if your baby cries a lot or if your baby is more demanding. Make use of all the help offered to give yourself time to rest and recoup.
• Don’t forget to ‘Breathe’ it will all be ok. Promise!
• I would absolutely tell myself to take it easy on ME. There is no ‘perfect’ way of parenting. Follow your heart and trust in the love you have for your child.
There will be so many messy moments ahead. Luckily WaterWipes will be on hand to help. It is suitable for sensitive skin and 97% of midwives agree that is is suitable for newborn babies. As Water wipes contain 99.9% water and a drop of fruit extract, its gentle, offering peace of mind for new parents.
One less thing to worry about!
Check out Waterwipes new tv ad over on Waterwipes.com
This is a collaborative post with Waterwipes