Three years ago today, I was an exhausted, sore, emotional, sweaty mess. I was also deliriously happy. Yep, my toddler is three today. Three! I can hardly believe it. I honestly have no idea of where the time has gone.
Being a mum ain’t easy. People try to tell you how hard it is, but until you are holding that tiny baby, you don’t really comprehend it.
The lack of sleep: I naively thought I’d be fine. Ha! Staying up ’til 4am as an eighteen year old is not the same thing as being up all night, every night with a colicky baby. Even when the baby starts sleeping through, you can’t sleep because you’re constantly checking on them. Oh, and babies just love to throw you off-balance by randomly refusing to sleep.
The worry: I didnt think I was a worrier until I had a baby. I have spent so much time worrying about the colour and consistency of poo, you wouldn’t believe. Rashes, fever, vomiting bugs, grazed knees and banged heads. Just this weekend the toddler fell and grazed all his face. I swear my blood pressure has quadrupled in the past three years.
The tantrums: Oh, the tantrums. Nothing, and I mean nothing, will prepare you for the joy that is tantrums. They happen and the most inconvenient times – five minutes into a half hour bus journey, in the middle of Tesco, a busy restaurant. No matter how may ‘how-to’ books you read, you’ll still be left red-faced and stressed.
The mess: We’re not talking clutter here. We’re talking wax crayon all over your newly painted walls; we’re talking toys everywhere; we’re talking that meal you spent two hours preparing – all over the floor. Just when you think it can’t get worse, you start potty training and using an industrial size bottle of floor cleaner a day whilst playing the fun game I call ‘hunt the poo’.
The cost: They grow, they get older, they eat a lot, they have irresistibly cute little faces. This all costs money.
Having a child is the BEST THING IN THE WORLD. The love you feel for them easily outweighs all of the above. Just a kiss, or an ‘I love you, Mummy’ is enough to make the bad bits fade away. Who cares if you have mashed bananas on your ceiling or you haven’t slept in a month when you have this perfect little person.