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So much changed when I became a mum ...


“I felt like I had to be a woman when I had my baby, but I still

felt like a girl. I felt people didn’t take me seriously because of

the way I looked. A woman to me resembles power, strength,

authority and I didn’t feel any of them. My confidence went

from 10 to 0 after I had my first child.” Elizabeth


Change is inevitable. It’s going to happen whether we’re

ready for it or not and there are a lot of changes during

pregnancy and motherhood. I haven't got all the answers, not

because I haven't experienced change, but because it affects

everyone in different ways. But I think sharing my

experiences can help you find your own path through change.

Creating a list of the changes that are happening, or have

happened, will create a sense of being in control. You can start

planning out the different options that will support you

overcoming any negativity that change may bring along.

Changes that you might feel pressured into can include

something as simple as clothing. But becoming a mum doesn’t

automatically mean that you swap the heels for the flats, (even

though it is a lot easier to run after a toddler). No one is

making you become someone you’re not. So why do it? To fit

in with the expected mummy style? To cover up more because

you have a baby? You’re now a mother so you mustn’t do this

or show that? Rubbish! Yes, you do change your mindset on

clothing, and that is appropriate when you have a baby, but

it’s more about what is convenient. For instance, I didn’t want

to layer up when I was exclusively breastfeeding as it could be

a nightmare with a hungry baby.


You can spend lots of time and energy worrying about your

image. Even the thought of not having had your roots done in

months can be stressful. This might be because of cost or

energy levels, or maybe your baby won’t settle with anybody

else. You automatically think the worst, and sometimes even

when you’re only thinking about leaving your baby, he or she

seems to already know what’s going on. You will panic about

how your baby will ever survive without you. You forget that

other people share the same love, or have raised children

themselves so know how to administrate a cup or a bottle of

expressed or formula milk. But making the time for yourself

will enhance what you have with your baby, not damage it or

them.


Your energy levels aren't going to be the same if you're not

looking after yourself. Aside from getting your hair done to

feel better, this can even be as serious as the fuel you are

putting into your body. Drinking lots of water does help me

feel awake and clear headed. I never used to drink much

water, but now I make sure I get as much as I can every day. It

can be easy to forget when you’re looking after a baby, but you

need to keep yourself hydrated and healthy.


The last thing I want you not to change is a sense of what

belongs to you.


Remember that a massive part of your identity are the things

you own. It’s not selfish to want to keep doing the things you

enjoy and the objects that you deem as yours. I share things

with my children, but there are things that I wouldn't want

little hands to break and that’s okay!


It doesn’t have to change.


Always here.


Clare.


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