10 things I wish I had known before becoming a parent

In conjuction of our our monthsary, I want to share 10 things I wish I had known before becoming a parent.

Just like that, we became parent for 8 months now. In 4 months, it will be one year. Whoaaa… to be honest, sometimes I still can’t believe it but thats the reality and I love this reality.

Raising a child is full of surprises. I read many books, parenting website but nothing compare to the experience becoming a parent. I read somewhere, becoming a parent is like on job training. No guide able to fully prepare you for what it’s like to becoming parent.

Hence after becoming parent for 8 months, here 10 things I wish I knew before becoming a parent.

  1. Postpartum depression is real

I’ve heard of the postpartum depression during my pregnancy and I prayed hard that I never experience this. I tried to do a lot of preparation to avoid it. But, when you’re on it, its not like what you imagined. It’s crazy. I stressed with my work and at the same time, I need to take care of my family and I push myself hardest to be what wife and mum I want to be. At one point, I started to feel nothing when I look at your baby and heard a voice saying ” You’re bad mom, how come you become a mom and you never know how to be mum”. I feel guilty and wish I can do better than this. Sometimes, I don’t feel bond, irritated and get angry easily. I feel numb, feel nothing, you anxious most of the time and I don’t know how to explain how chaotic your situation. PPD can look different in every women, some mom cry, some mom afraid, some of anxious, some are angry while some don’t even know they have PPD. Our society views depression as something you have to overcome by just optimism. But it doesn’t work that why. What women with PPD need is medication and understanding and encouragement from family.

2. Your marriage will be challenged

Finding alone time with your spouse after having a baby can be a challenge. To be honest, when first month our baby arrival, I feel “jealous” because my husband give his attention to our baby. I don’t know why I feel this way but this what I experience. Sometimes I feel “if the baby is not here, my husband’s attention will be fully on me”, how childish right? The key here is communication. When we having a baby, we need to communicate a lot on what inside our heart because we can’t read each other’s heart. Be open to each other. If there anything you don’t feel right, speak up and don’t assume. This marriage is not a one-man team. You have to understand, forgive and cheer each other every single day. Don’t give up on each of you. Don’t forget you guys has come so far.

3. Appreciate our parent more

This one really hit me to my core. Its hard for me to let go my mum when she going back to Sarawak after taking care of me for one month. I missed and I need her so bad! It’s make me wonder how my parent survived this? After become a parent, I always missed my parent, I just don’t know why. But due to COVID-19, I can’t travel to Sarawak visit them which even make me feel so sad. Becoming a parent is not easy, now I get it why my parent do that and this way, our love to our child is endless.

4. Sleep become a luxury

For the first months when baby comes, me and my husband have a rotate sleep time. I will sleep start 9pm – 12am or sometimes my husband let me sleep until 2am. After 2am, I will take care of our baby and my husband will sleep as he will go to work the next morning. Thanks to our babysitter, she created good sleep pattern for our son so we can sleep together from 11pm – 6am and sometimes each of us will wake up to change the diapers or gave the milk. Its still luxury for us as we can sleep like we used to, just wake up two times but that should be okay.

5. You need a good people around you

I’m glad I had a lot of good people that help us through our parenting journey. We clueless about this but with their help we can go through it. I can’t mention each one of you but I’m glad we are having our good friend that encourage us. Its so important to have community to be with us during this season.

6. Enjoy it because it will fast

Just like that, our baby already 8 months and I feel it just like yesterday I giving birth to my son. I just can’t slow down this journey. Whenever I look at his newborn photos, I always feel “sad”, still disbelief that I gave birth to this little human. I’m glad I take a break from my career to take care of him and our family. I will never ever regret that decision.

7. It will be worth it

Raising kids is a gift and a blessing. You are not just raising a human being but you are guiding the next generation. In order to achieve big things, we must willing to go for it. Same goes to raising our son, we may not have enough sleep now but its okay, we building up our son.

8. You can never take too many photos or videos

I took my son’s photos and videos everyday and my phone is full of him. I never get enough of him. I hope this habit won’t falls off as my son get older. I will never regret having too many pictures or videos of my rapidly growing child, it something worth to watch in future.

9. Going out will never be the same

Once become a parent, everything will change especially going out. Whenever we need to go out, we need to make sure our baby needs is always with us.Its tiring sometimes but I happy to do this. How I solve the repeatedly to pack for our baby needs? I prepared one bag for him and always fill in that bag with his needs and when want to going out, just grab that bag! Solved ehehe.

10. You will never be the same

Parenting changes you. I expected this but I didn’t expect just how radically it would. A lot things will change like my habits, relationship, never take free time for granted

Finally, you’ll discover many new things about yourself as a parent. As time goes by, you will learn to be stronger and more vulnerable too.

Lastly, thank you so much for read until the end. I hope you learn something.

As for other new parent, what things you wish to know before being a parent?

Please do share.

Sincerely,

Aya

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