What I’ve learnt about parenting…J’s 3rd birthday. 

Today is J’s 3rd birthday. J popped into the world (not particular willingly) at 6.25pm. It was the most uncomfortable and painful 30-something houses of my life but worth every second of it. 

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about everything I’ve learnt and the things that have changed over the last 3 years. So I thought I’d share them with you:

1- I’m not the mother I thought I’d be…and that’s ok!

I always imaged myself as Mary Poppins crossed with Topsy and Tims Mummy. I planned to be patient, always doing some sort of crafts and activities, and only the best food and wooden toys etc. 

Now I think I rock as a Mum. I love it. But I don’t have the patience I had hoped for. Years of sleep deprivation, tantrums Autism and general life crap is enough to slowly eat away at you. As for the crafts and activities, well J would prefer to lay on the floor with his cars. I can set up all the activities I want but they’ll probably last 2 minutes. However we go out for great walks in the woods, family says out, play fun car adventures on his play mat. As for the toy situation…well my house is mixture of Wooden and plastic tat. J loves his toys so I’m happy.

2- I know J better than any professional

Doctors, nurses, health visitors etc may have their qualifications and experience but I know my child. I know when he’s actually poorly, when something’s not right and have that gut feeling I’ve learnt to listen to. I was right about his milk allergy (took 10 weeks for doctors to listen to me) and I was right that his development was ‘normal’ (and now have Autism diagnosis). Never be afraid to tell a professional that you think they are wrong or that you want them to check again!

3- People will drop out of your life.

I knew parenthood would change things, I wasn’t that naive. However, it has surprised me just how many people have left my life. Some of my friends who I always thought would be close to J and me for ever are now   aquaintances. But on the flip side, my friend with a some of my friends have strengthened and they mean the world to me. They love J and they know him as well as I do. They laugh and cry with me. I stopped worrying about the ones who aren’t in my life. I don’t dislike them but I don’t have the energy to maintain relationship single handedly.

4- There’s always mess!

Children and so messy and take up sooo much space. Right from day 1 the house was full of muslin, clothes, toys and various bits. This became bouncy chairs and jumperoos, then walkers and masses of toys. Now it’s toys, games, beanbags, wobbbelboard and cars EVERYWHERE. There’s always washing to do, we go through insane amounts of plates, bowls, cups and cooking stuff and the carpet just needs hoovering way to often for my liking. 

But, I’ve learnt not to care. Mess will always happen because we’re always doing something. There’s always washing up because I feed my child. Clothes to wash because I cloth my child. I’m the evenings once J is in bed I will do a basic tidy and clean up but then I chill, because that’s my time. Which leads me too…

5- I have the right to down time.

I’m tired, always tired. There’s always something to do. So when opportunity arises for me to chill then I take it. If someone asks to have J then they have him. I go for meals with friends and I do things for me. Not as often as pre-child but enough to keep me sane. In the evenings that is my time. I am strict about J staying in bed, or st least his room until gro clock turns yellow. This is the time I will watch TV, play Xbox, read, have a long bath etc. It’s the time my husband and I get to be together to talk and hang out. 

There’s many other things I’ve learnt too…

  • Always carry a pack of raisins
  • iPad and TV have its uses (don’t be afraid to use it). 
  • You can stick so much in a steriliser!
  • Calpol and bonjela are life.

Just to name a few more.

I don’t know what the next 3 years will hold for us. I hope that J can carry on developing his speech and start to use it more to communciate with others. I hope he enjoys nursery when he starts in January. I hope he carries on being the funny boy he already is and I hope that he is happy.

Thanks for birthday wishes over on Instagram. Now off to eat leftovers and prepare for bedtime. I’d love to hear what you’ve learnt through parenthood. ❤️ 

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