Becky and Eleanora

Name: Becky

Child: Eleanora

Expectations of motherhood: My expections of motherhood were not quite as straight forward as I’d hoped as I had a very difficult pregnancy and was in and out of hospital throughout. To cut a long story short, me and Eleanora are both extremely lucky to both be here.  

It meant a very difficult start; having 2 weeks on the neo-natal unit and being told what I could and couldn’t do with my daughter. This was very hard and any first instincts got pushed to one side. However, my expectations of being able to enjoy my child and be at home with her to watch her grow into a beautiful little girl have reached beyond belief. I never realised how much I would learn from her and how quickly she would learn from me. Watching her grow, from feeding herself to dressing herself and how pleased she is with herself to have achieved something – makes me the proudest mum.

Reality of being a mother It hit me when I realised that this little person needed me and was completely dependant on me. As Eleanora has grown she has continued to amaze me and I am always surprised by how independent she wants to be. As hard as it is I realise that I have to step back and let her do things for herself, and that she is becoming a very bright, confident little girl who I can be very proud of!

Taking you child home for the first time: When we took Ellie home for the first time I found it very strange as I’d had two weeks of being told what I could and couldn’t do with my own baby and all instincts had been pushed to the back of my mind by that time. I felt as if I had to relearn all my instincts again! But I found I enjoyed every moment of being on my own with her at long last and I could finally start to get know my baby.

The best/worst advice: When I came home I felt I had to check everything by ringing my mum or my mum in law – my mum said to me, “You have instincts, use them. You know your own baby better than anyone!” and, “enjoy every moment because I really don’t know where the time has gone.” I try to enjoy every moment as it really is precious.

The hardest parts of being a mum:
 Probably the lack of sleep. I went back to work when Eleanora was 15 months old, and to spend as much time with her as possible I worked in the evenings. The shifts were quite late which meant I didn’t get home till gone 11.30pm some nights, and having to carry on on with a routine as normal or having been up all night with teething or illness, I often felt a walking zombie (but I wouldn’t have changed anything as it meant I could still be an almost full time mum).

The best parts of being a mum: I really wouldn’t really know where to start! I love watching Eleanora grow into a beautiful, confident little girl. Children are like sponges, they soak up so much information so quickly and I’m finding I’m not really having to teach as such, she just watches and learns so much from everyday life. I love it when when we have our own time, simple things like we’ll have a bath or take the dog for a walk and just talk about anything and everything.

Eleanora loves anything about the outdoors – she is so active. I love watching her taking in the environment around us if we’re in the fields or in the woods. She always manages to spot flowers or mushrooms. Everything is an adventure and I find I get to relive my second childhood and learn new things I may have missed out on the first time round!

Hope for your family: I hope Eleanora continues to live and love life as she has done and I hope she will be happy in all she does. I hope to have another child so that she can grow up enjoying the company and have a closeness a sibling may bring – but for the time being she enjoys having a pet dog and has learnt to share and play with him as she would have having a sibling. The only thing she did point out is that he won’t count when playing hide and seek! 

Any advice for new or expectant mums: The only advice I can give is that a child doesn’t ask to be born, you choose to have a baby so enjoy every moment as it is truly precious. Time really does go far too quick and you will never get those years back. Also as much as people say there are text books you can read, its rubbish. Do what you’re comfortable doing and remember you don’t have to listen to those who think they know it all.

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