You spend nine months painting the nursery, folding tiny clothes, researching online, and buying must-have gear, but nothing can truly prepare you for all of the changes that occur once your bundle of joy arrives. Motherhood has been described as one of the most challenging and most rewarding occupations on the planet. There are a number of big changes ahead. So, buckle up and prepare for the ride.
It is important to point out, first and foremost, how the phrase “sleep like a baby” is very often misused. You likely picture a sweetly sleeping babe with their delicate eyelashes against perfectly round cheeks. Many newborns do experience a brief period right after birth where they sleep for extended stretches, but most need to wake up often to feed. And “often” is not an exaggeration. Sleep deprivation becomes a norm for most mothers. Whether or not you get used to it, you eventually learn to live with it.
Regardless of if you decide to go back to work after your little one arrives, your overall scheduling and priorities will change. There will no longer be as much time available to spend with your significant other, and they may end up feeling neglected. It is important to remember to pencil-in time for them to ensure that they realize what a priority they still are in your life. Motherhood makes you more of a mom, but it should not make you less of a partner.
You may be surprised to find yourself making conversation about things you never thought you would. Who knew you had so much to say about spit up? Well, as your activities and priorities change, topics of conversation are sure to shift. It is often best to seek out friends with similarly aged children to help make this transition easier.
This is not an exhaustive list, as there really is no way to describe all of the changes that occur once you become a mother. Many claim that throughout motherhood, the days (and nights) are long, but the years are short. It is important to embrace the journey and enjoy the ride.