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Lessons learned

7 Reflections on my 2nd year as a Mom

By August 16, 2016 3 Comments

I can’t believe he’s turning 2 years old, where has the time gone?” is what most of my friends and family have been saying lately. Well just check out these grey hairs and these rings under my eyes… and I can tell you a couple stories about where the time has gone!

Happy 2nd birthday to my little Leo pants. I could literally eat him up!!

The 2nd year of being a Mom has been very different from the 1st, so I thought I’d do a follow up post about my experience so far.

1. Conversations with Mom friends have changed

We actually talk about stuff that doesn’t involve our babies anymore. Like, normal stuff! Before, the only thing we spoke about was the colour, size and frequency of their poop, their sleep habits, their feeding habits, all the ways we tried to get them to sleep, etc, etc…! We still talk about our babies… a lot… but we also talk about ourselves, how we feel, how we’re working towards being healthier and fitter again, positive life things, and I must say playdates have become a lot more fun now that we don’t talk about poop for 2 hours at a time.

2. Mom friends have become real friends

You know when you first start going to these Mommy meet-ups, you sometimes really have to drag yourself. You remind yourself that you’re doing it for your baby, to make sure they’re socialised and don’t become scared of other people… all that nonsense. But in this 2nd year, I find that I’ve made some really cool Mom friends along the way, and I actually really look forward to our meet-ups! Sometimes… there’s even wine! Okay always. Literally always.

3. I’ve learnt to say no really easily

Saying no (especially to friends with no kids) has become super easy for some reason. In the 1st year I would use my baby as an excuse all the time. I’d be like “aaah you know Leo is teething, it’s really tough on him, I’m sorry but I don’t think I can make it this evening“. Now I’m just like, “you know, I’m fucking tired and I’m going to stay in tonight, but you girls have fun, I’ll join you next time.” Funnily enough, my real friends don’t mind that answer. Yay for real friends!

4. Leaving the house is way easier

I have jumbled memories of my 1st year as a Mom, but I do remember that getting ready to leave the house was a pretty stressful event. These days it’s a lot more casual. If we need to make a dash to the shop, I can actually just pick him up and put him straight in the carseat… and wait for it… not bring a baby bag!

5. More ‘me time’ again, just in a different way

I’m enjoying getting back little moments of time here and there. Sometimes that means letting my toddler unpack my entire underwear drawer 1 pair of panties at a time and then run to the staircase and throw each pair down the stairs… but while he does that for 20 minutes… I get to do my nails! Winning. And he also understands that Mom can’t pick him up for the next 5 minutes coz her nails are wet, so he helps me blow them dry, it’s very cute.

6. Believe it or not, Dads can Mom too!

Leaving baby with Dad during the 1st year is one of the most nerve wracking things ever. I would dream up the most ridiculous scenarios and completely obsess over them happening while I was away. I’d go on whatsapp to send a message to him to check if all was okay and if I saw him on whatsapp when I logged on I’d be like “what the hell are you doing on whatsapp?! Who’s watching the baby goddammit!!” Letting Dad ‘Dad’ is something that I think a lot of us Moms need to make space for, it can really help take the pressure off.

7. He is the cutest little shit ever

Oh the terrible two’s… well so far, we’ve had about a week of it. At about 23 months, he learnt ‘the tantrum’. It was like he Googled ‘worst tantrums ever’, watched a video and then copied it. We literally sat there with our mouths hanging open! “What the hell, this kid is demon possessed!” After 2 days of it, I couldn’t, he got a good old smack on the bottom, which of course did nothing except made me feel guilty as shit for being a ‘gentle parent’ for almost 2 years. Thank goodness for Dr Shifali and her books. Our tantrum phase lasted for about 10 days and then literally disappeared. I really truly hope it’s because of the changes we made to our reactions to him (which I’ll write about in another post), and that we’re now in for a good year ahead. Touch wood touch wood touch wood!

IMG_3537Despite all the ‘naughtiness’ which I’ve come to realise is just him learning, being a kid, exploring his world and teaching me patience… I really love this age. We are friends, me and my baby, we can hang, do cool things and understand each other and communicate. I’m truly loving it!

I think that my 1st year was very clouded by my whole birth experience, dealing with depression and overcoming a lot of fears and self doubt along the way.

This year has been more about learning to be me again, accepting this new crazy life and being happy!

So if you’re a Mom feeling like you’re stuck in the trenches, I promise you, the fun is just around the corner… along with the grey hairs… ;) Please leave a comment below if you can relate to this in anyway, I’d love to hear from you!

Shannon McLaughlin

About Shannon McLaughlin

Shannon is a mama to her busy little toddler Leo, who is the inspiration behind her business, Ubuntu Baba. She strives to create the simplest and comfiest baby carrier on the market, helping new moms to step out into the world again with confidence, freedom and style.

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