One day you are all alone with a jumping jellybean in your belly eating copious amounts of chocolate and the next thing you know that same delicate little jellybean is ceremoniously ejected from your belly via the Canal de Vajojo or the sunroof.
Or if your little person was adopted or came by other means, you also go through a major life change and a huge shock.
However your little one came into your world your life has changed forever. You are now a mummy.
You know you’re a mummy when:
1. You no longer carry a handbag.
You carry a changing bag, full of nappies/calpol/wipes/dummies and all sorts of things you think you need but you never do. And even when you do go out and feel like your former self again with an ACTUAL handbag, a renegade nappy or dummy will find its way in.
2. You wonder how you ever went shopping without a pushchair/pram.
Going out with a pushchair or pram always starts so well; you have your changing bag attached to the back, any compartments/pockets/baskets on your pushchair is tidy and ready for a shopping trip. By the time you have done half your shopping you wonder how you will every get home. There are bags hanging off the handles; the basket is overflowing; its like a very real game of Buckaroo. And what’s worse is its filled with shit you didn’t even need. I once walked three miles home balancing a huge bag of compost under the buggy. I could qualify for Worlds’ Strongest (wo)Man after that.
3. You discover the versatile domestic weapon that is a pack of baby wipes.
I had never used a baby wipe before I had a baby. I used to spend obscene amounts of money on make-up remover wipes; floor cleaning wipes; bathroom cleaning wipes; and the list goes on. Now I think I use them for literally everything. I clean my house with them. I clean the cat with them. Blow my nose with them(so soft). Clean my face with them. Every time a member of your friends or family asks how to clean something – you suggest a baby wipe. World changing stuff. I’m aware they aren’t great for the environment, you can make your own or buy reusable ones and they smell lush. Unused obviously. There is also that true sign of the sisterhood when you are out and about and your kid has a poonarmi and you realise your have no wipes. There will always be a fellow mum nearby armed with wipes. Preach.
4. You never wear white. Ever.
From the word go you find yourself wearing every variety of your child’s bodily fluids, and you learn the many different colours poo, sick, wee and snot comes in. My son was about three months old when I decided to nip to the shop in a white long sleeve t-shirt. It wasn’t until eight hours later when the hubbo came home I realised I had korma-esque baby shit up my arm. I asked him if anyone would of noticed. He patted me on the back and told me it was ok, maybe I should do have a shower. Fuuuuck.
5. It becomes the norm to discuss poo with anyone who will listen.
Baby poo is a curious thing. It comes out initially like sticky black tar, and then goes through so many different stages. It can be green, brown, yellow, black, white, you name it. It can vary in consistency from pure liquid to solid as a rock. You can even smell when your child is constipated(“His poo smells dry babe give him some water”). Me and hubbo still have the same conversation over dinner every night: “He had an awful poo today” or “he hasn’t had a poo yet today”. It also becomes normal to pick a small human up and sniff their arse. What have our lives become.
6. You become totally comfortable with discussing your vagina and lady parts with anyone.
I remember before I had my son people would laugh and tell me how your dignity goes out the door when you give birth. I used to get all cocky and think how cool I was with that as I’d had smear tests and coils and I’d done all that getting my vajojo out. How wrong was I. There is something about being stark-bollock naked in a room full of people and then having a midwife announce that she is going to shave you and put a catheter in that changes how you feel about your private bits. And then having to ask your hubbo and anyone who is available to help you change your ginormous maxi pad. Once you’ve been there, your body no longer feels like a taboo subject, and this makes it okay to sit in a coffee shop with hoards of other mummy friends and talk totally normally(and loudly) about how you pissed yourself in Ikea last week and how dry your vajojo is these days.
7. You have survived pregnancy.
Firstly, you realise that pregnancy actually lasts for 40-42 weeks and that equates to ten months,, not nine. An extra month makes all the difference when you can’t walk, sleep, move or wipe your own arse due to a massive baby bump. Secondly, you realise that its not at all like people say it is. It hurts; you get lots of strange pains. Your boobs hurt, really, REALLY bad. You are scared the whole time, hoping that your little jellybean is healthy and doing ok, and you panic when they don’t move for five minutes. Your vajojo leaks strange things. Your shit gets stuck and you get arse grapes. And the glow doesn’t exist. The pregnancy glow is as real as the tooth fairy. I realise not everyone reading this has experienced pregnancy for one reason or another; you may have gone through years of hell to adopt a child, or you may be a husband/wife/partner and have had to watch your significant other go through pregnancy; you have had just as rough a ride, waiting for your child to arrive into your world(just minus the arse grapes).
8. You realise you don’t need half the shit you were told you would need.
Before baby arrives you read books, magazines, articles online and buy hoards of stuff that you “must” have. You beg your other half to buy you the latest gadget because you must have it, it’s essential. And by the time your child has been around a few weeks you realise that you really didn’t need the nappy bin, the pretty expensive cot mobile, the baby shoes(try getting a newborn into shoes and you’ll see what I mean) and a lot of other things you didn’t need. I also insisted on everything being brand new and its so expensive, if I were to ever have another the poor thing would likely have a few vests, sleepsuits and bottles and that would be it. The only thing that everyone said I wouldn’t need and I did need was a baby bath. If anyone ever tells you that you will be fine bathing your child in a standard bath post C-section, kick them in the genitals.
9. You drink tea however it comes.
Pre parenthood I was that person who would ask for a cup of tea and be all particular about how it was made. I liked it milky, weak, sweet and always the milk in last. If it wasn’t perfect, I wouldn’t drink it. There’s something about two weeks of hospital drinks-machine tea that resets your brain and the fact that I didn’t drink my tea hot for months means I am now reformed in how I have my tea. Now, when someone asks me how do I take my tea, my answer is “wet”. It could be laced with arsenic and be stone cold and I’ll still bloody drink it.
10. You discover true love. And its GLORIOUS.
I didn’t get that first rush of love when my son was born; I was poorly and it took time. My point is, whenever that rush of love comes, its the most beautiful and amazing feeling ever. Every time your child does something that makes you laugh, cry, happy, sad… you get an overwhelming rush of love where you think you might die, choke or shit yourself because you love them so much. You can have the worst day ever and put them to bed cursing them and raving about how naughty they are. And then you peer in their room ten minute after putting them to bed and gush over how much you love them and how you can’t wait for them to wake up again. When you know that they love you more than anyone or anything else in the world and that love is unconditional, it makes all the piles, loss of dignity and bad tea worth it.