Learning what to expect when you have a baby is hard at the best of times, you always hear that you’re never going to truly know until it happens. However, there are some things that nobody told me about at all! Definitely, the days of staying out late, getting a full night’s sleep, or doing many of the things that you’re used to taking for granted will be likely put on hold for a good few years – but also the impact on your home, surroundings and other areas of your life! Here are just a few more unexpected ways your life could totally change once your firstborn arrives… *this is a collaborative post
Your car – Whether you’re the kind of person who’s pretty attached to their car or not, you might find that your car inadvertently gets a makeover soon after the arrival of your little one. Whether you have a fancy sports car or the old rust bucket you’ve had since you were seventeen, it will soon be bursting with things like bibs everywhere, soggy toys, bottles, nappies, wipes, cloths, spare clothes, always dummies stuffed in car door compartments – even if you don’t remember using a pacifier and no idea where it came from! – and of course, the baby seat! Something like a new Vauxhall Vivaro panel van can be perfect for not only driving around your baby but also carting around all of their stuff as well – you could even make a little emergency kit to keep in there. The sheer amount of stuff you need to take with you when you go out and about with your baby can get crazy!
Your home – You may think you’ve baby-proofed your home, but babies have other ideas! They will look to find and actively seek out the things you don’t want them to get hold of. Once your baby is mobile they will manage to find crevices, dangerous places, and precariously balanced objects all over your home that you might not have even considered. Even innocent everyday objects like batteries, pens and bobbles become the dangerous things! A great thing to do is to go through your home and think of all the little unexpected ways that your bundle of joy might be able to cause chaos!
Your diet – This is one thing we don’t think about but it’s more common than you might think. The truth is that having a baby throws about every aspect of your life into complete and total disarray a lot of the time and when you’re not sleeping more than an hour at once, or getting two hours of sleep at night, it’s so very difficult to find time to cook or prepare anything! Whipping up a healthy, delicious meal simply isn’t possible and it’s so tricky to even get out to the shops to buy food in!
You might not feel much – or you might feel everything! The movies might tell us it is the most emotional and wonderful time of our lives but there is no rule on how you might feel once baby is born, you could feel real relief, pride, disbelief, disappointment, sadness, completely nothing at all or wonder what the fuss is all about. For me, I entered in to a completely numb state, I could not get it to baby mode or parent zone at all, I just went through the motions and didn’t enjoy one bit of it. I wish I had known that was okay and it gets much more rewarding as you go along! I later found some things rewarding that I didn’t expect and I always dream of one day maybe being able to experience and enjoy the newborn stage in its fullness. It’s always a lovely idea to reach out after the birth to family and friends to kind of get a ‘debriefing’ or I like to think haha, and keep as social with them as you can. I always think the process of childbearing and child rearing is a communal project but women feel pressure to go it alone and see reaching out as a sign they are struggling. If you are suffering or struggling at all never be afraid to tell people and seek help, it is not your fault at all!
You become more confident in your social standing – it gets a little easier to talk to people, even those who intimidate you and you might even find you feel a little more empowered and confident. A baby can be a great comfort – or wingman/woman – and great conversation starter! There are endless things you can tell someone about them, so many things elderly ladies at the bus stop want to know, their birth weight, how old they are, when they were born, how well they sleep…
Your body – it plays by different rules! Forget everything you once knew about your body, what foods make you bloat, where your body loses weight first… you might even find your metabolism is different, you put on weight easily in certain places or have totally different eating habits!
You get through everything so fast! Clothes, nappies, wipes are all things I wish I’d thought about in advance, I had no idea we would need so many! I survived using disposable nappies, wipes and if I had the chance again I would love to set myself up with materials before the newborn stage began, I would love to be prepared with special cloth nappies and have everything set up so I could minimise impact on the environment as well as making things really easy on myself.
These are just a few examples, there may be a huge number of other ways in which your life will change you have a baby and you only find out once it’s happened! Having a baby really does change everything. It doesn’t just change your life on a practical level but it changes how you see your life as well. Your perspective on the world might change completely as you start to get to know them.