5 Things I’ve Learned Since Becoming a Mom

5 Things I’ve Learned Since Becoming a Mom… And My Plan For Doing It All Over Again

 

There is a little joke in Spark HQ, that posts on social media about babies and dogs get the most likes!

Well, when my turn to write the company blog post coincided nicely with my rapidly approaching maternity leave, I thought to myself, “I know exactly what I want to write about”

So here are 5 things I’ve learned since becoming a mom… and my plan for doing it all over again!

I hope you enjoy

 

1. There is No Way To Prepare For It

“What’s it like though… seriously?” I was asked by a friend who had yet to board the Mom Train

“Pregnancy is like studying you’re a** off for Leaving Cert Maths, and having a baby is like showing up on the day to find out that it’s actually English, and you have to blag your way through Shakespeare and poetry and sound like you know what you’re talking about”

That’s how it felt to me anyway. I read every book I could get my hands on, I subscribed to every Mommy Blog and advice page there was, I googled extensively, and yet when Aylla arrived I was genuinely shocked that my body had managed to grow an entire human being from scratch, but yet, her instruction manual was just too much trouble for me!

The reality is there is no way to prepare for it, you just have to put your head down and plough through it – and even though I didn’t think it was possible, you do come out the other side… eventually! (remind me again why I’ve decided to head back to the starting line? Face palm!)

Spark Market Research Mom with her new Child

2. Everyone, and I mean EVERYONE is winging it

Along the same train of thought as There Is No Way To Prepare, I also learned that everyone is winging it.

I used to look at my friends, my sisters in law, other Mom’s in the supermarket, and I used to think to myself “wow this woman has got it down, look at how well behaved her kids are, look at how mannerly her kids are, look at them dressed all nicely, out and about for a lovely family day”

Turns out, those Mom’s don’t have any magic formula, they don’t know any more about parenting than I do, they’re winging it just like me!

So when Aylla throws herself on the ground in the middle of the supermarket and starts to cry because I won’t let her open her yogurt before we pay for it, I don’t know what to do!

Or equally, when we’re in Pennys paying for our haul and she smiles at the cashier and says “thank you Lady, have a nice day”, I don’t know how I managed that either.

I do the best with what I’ve got on a day to day basis and that’s all anyone can do, but the truth is, I’m winging it!

 

3. My Husband and I are Complete Opposites in The Parenting Game, but we’re an Awesome Team

Another thing I’ve figured out since becoming a Mom, I’m great at the organisation, the schedule, the routine, how we do breakfast, how we do bed time, the family planner on the wall in our kitchen that we now live and die by – that’s all me

I’m also great at books, blocks, Play Doh, puzzles, dolls and organised classes like Baby Massage, Baby Yoga, Baby Sensory, Baby Music, Gymborie, Messy Play, Ballet, Gymnastics and Swimming.

My husband however, excels at things like chasing, hide n’ seek, jumping on the bed, pillow fights, pillow forts, blanket forts… any kind of fort really… the Tickle Monster, The Upside Down Game and the slides in the park that are meant for the big kids. Anything that gets her completely hyper, screaming with laughter and entirely worn out is his forte.

I suppose we compliment each other in that way, which is great, because Aylla wouldn’t be the little lady that she is without that input from both of us – and this is the mantra that I repeat to myself every night when it’s 10 minutes to Bed Time and she is high as a kite!

Family of Spark Market Research Researcher

4. Kids are Genuinely Very Funny!

One thing I absolutely did not get before having a baby of my own was how people used to refer to their own children as ‘funny’. You know what I’m talking about – the posts you see on social media where people say ‘happy birthday to the funniest little girl I know’ and I’d think to myself, she’s two, how can she be funny?

Well, how wrong was I?

The other day Aylla responded to a question I asked by saying ‘great idea Mom! High Five!’

A few weeks ago she ushered me out the door to work by saying ‘off you pop now Mom, bye!’.

She’s taken to shouting ‘be careful on the stairs’ at me when she sees me heading up or down.

She makes me laugh every day which I totally wasn’t expecting from a not-quite-two-year-old but I love it!

 

5. I wouldn’t Change it for the World

No doubt about it, this is the hardest job I’ve ever done. People aren’t kidding when they say there’s no days off, no sick days, no such thing as a holiday (Spoiler Alert –  that’s just parenting in a hotter climate).

People are right when they say that hangovers with kids are the closest you’ll get to hell on earth.

Lie ins are a distant memory, as is the bikini I loved the summer before she arrived, but here’s the thing, I don’t care! I can’t imagine life without her and I wouldn’t change it for the world!

Happy Spark Market Research Employee with Her Daughter

Having said all of that, my future as a Mom Of Two is getting closer by the day and I hear it doesn’t get any easier the second time around!

I’m worried because I know no two babies are the same, I feel like I have everything down now after having Aylla but what if this new baby doesn’t feed like she did? Or doesn’t sleep like she did? I had Aylla in the depths of winter, this baby is a Spring baby, what’ll that be like?

I suppose I need to approach it in the same way that we approach our projects in Spark – bespoke!

We know that no two projects are the same, every project needs it’s own team, it’s own briefing meeting, its own tailored approach, its own analysis session – maybe that’s what I need to do?

Take a briefing meeting with the new-born, see what it’s all about and design its own bespoke parenting approach and go from there?

Sounds like a plan!

See you on the other side everyone

Megan Reynolds

Associate Director

 

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