The #this_is_motherhood community was created to normalise the “not so normal” moments of motherhood by sharing real stories from real mamas.
There’s so much pressure to feel a certain way about our role as mother, from society but more so from ourselves. We need to remind ourselves that whatever choice we make IS right and it is okay to not be okay.
We we’re very excited to interview Kirsty from Winnettes because of the genuine community she has built and her passion for writing, photography and learning. We love how honest and vulnerable she is in her writing and wanted to share her experience transitioning into motherhood.
Tell us a little bit about yourself….
I am Kirsty, stay at home mum to two little girls. Ex nurse (thanks to the ridiculous costs of childcare and the pathetic amount nurses are paid), full time procrastinator and all round Netflix addict. When the girls are at school/preschool I spend my days writing and taking pretty pictures, listening to podcasts, reading books and watching way too many boxsets.
If you could sum up the transition into motherhood in one word, what would it be and why?
Shocking. Everyone warns you that it will be a shock to the system. That when you get home from the hospital you won’t know what has hit you. And they’re right. But no amount of forewarning can truly prepare you. Life as a first time new mum is shocking. From the lack of sleep to the constant worrying. When you do sleep you are not really asleep as you have one ear constantly trained to the sounds your baby is making. And babies are loud! I don’t mean the crying but the sleeping snuffles. They may have tiny lungs but they know how to use every inch of them.
If there is one thing you could tell your pre-parent self, what would it be and why?
You. Are. Not. Tired. Seriously. You are not tired. Yes you work beyond ridiculous hours, yes you party hard and spend your days off trying, and failing, to catch up on sleep. But not only are all those things your choice, they are easily rectified. You have no idea what tired is. You have no bags under your eyes, you have no wrinkles. And don’t even think it is because you are still young. It is because you are child free! We have all seen those gorgeous young mums. They have bags. They have wrinkles. You want to know what tired is? Have a child. Then you want to know what Sleep Deprivation Torture is like? Have more than one.
How do you deal with stressful situations at home or at work?
Truthfully not very well. I either lash out verbally or completely withdraw within myself. You’d think as someone who used to help bring people back from the brink of death I would be much better. I used to be so good in stressful situations, I am just so out of practice now. Which I guess should be a good thing, as I have removed so many stressors from my life but I definitely find stressful days or situations harder to deal with as a result. I try and remain organised which help keeps things in order and certainly reduces the effect of any stress but it doesn’t solve it.
What was your best and worst day as a new mum?
This is the most wonderful thing about parenthood; the good always outbalances the bad in the end. So much so that it is really tough to choose just one good day. My six years as a mother has been built up by good moments. Each better than the last.
If I really had to choose I would say it was a recent day. The day we held a party at our house for our eldest daughters sixth birthday. The party was mental and the clean up was ridiculous. But despite that we had so much fun. We laughed, we danced, we sang. We had a house full of squealing girls and I enjoyed every minute. Then we went to the pub to relax but also to avoid the let down as the excitement waned. We all shared a pizza, had a few drinks (soft ones for the kids obviously but I had seriously earned a little gin) and then headed back home for a relaxing evening. I was exhausted by the end of it but it had been one of those days that was so good for the soul.
The worst day is actually harder to pick. Partly because bad days come in so many different forms. Tantrums, sickness, accidents. There has been plenty of yelling and plenty of tears over the last six years. Honestly, some days I think we could solve the world draught problem in the Winnettes household. To really nail down the worst day ever I would go back to one particular day in April two years ago. It was the first day of the Easter holidays and because I had the prospect of entertaining both the children, then four and two, for two whole weeks my husband and I had planned a little overnight stay in London to start the holidays off well. We had babysitters sorted, a hotel, dinner reservations. The works. Then the day before, both the girls (not just one, oh no! They BOTH), woke up with Chicken Pox. Covered! From head to toe in itchy little blisters. So, not only did we have to cancel our plans, and loose room deposits, but we had two poorly little ladies to look after and we couldn’t even leave the house. For most of the Easter holidays we were confined to the house. Oh and did I mention there was a random heatwave that year? One of the hottest spring days and we were stuck inside with itchy spots to calamine and oat soak. Effing great!
Of course in the interest of balance it is true to say this experience has had its benefits. Both the girls got it at once so there was no consecutive house confinements. I had already been considering potty training my youngest so I just got on with it whilst we had nowhere else to go. And now, every time there is a pox outbreak locally I am one of the few mum’s stood in the playground not worried about it.
A group of mums sharing their experiences on pregnancy, post-birth, breastfeeding, work-life balance, and more.