On December 4th 2014, I gave birth to my first baby, my beautiful, healthy, bouncing baby boy. As most new mums can understand I was dazed and confused, sore and uncomfortable, completely emerged in hormones and emotions and so have very little memory of that first precious christmas. Consequently this Christmas has really felt like our first as a family. He’s seen his first christmas tree, met his first santa, opened his first presents and we’ve begun our first traditions as a family of our own. It’s really made me nostalgic for his first year, so much has happened. He’s now unrecognisable from the skinny little, puffy eyed newborn baby we had last Christmas. So this is Seth’s (and my) first year in review.
December to February 0 – 3 Months
In the first few months I was permanently in a state of feeling freaked out and scared shitless I was going to break him somehow. I left the house very rarely, showered even less often and cried more than is possible without severe dehydration setting in. The house was a mess, I was a mess. Seth fed every few hours sometimes every half an hour, day and night. Everyone was exhausted. I honestly thought people who had more than one child must have a mental Illness and, I truly think that if he hadn’t of smiled early at 5 weeks old and shown me just that little bit of interaction, I would have cracked. Seth learned how to open his eyes and smile and that’s about it. Slow start for him.
March to May 4 – 6 months
So, in March we started to venture outside. We enrolled in a baby play group and a baby music class, baby swimming classes, met other local mums and babies, started to get into a comfortable routine and the feeling of fear in the pit of my stomach gave way to pride and love for my little baby. During this time Seth started sleeping through the night for 12 hours straight, cut his first teeth, learned to laugh out loud and squeal and by the time we got to May could even sit up unaided, roll in both directions and had tried his first ever solid food.
June to August 7 – 9 months
Summer brought commando style crawling followed by full scale proper crawling for Seth, which meant baby proofing everything, mild panic and a feeling of not being ready for this at all! But it also meant that Seth could properly play and engage with you, he had long, regular naps, would eat anything you put in front of him, laughed at everything, slept all night, cut his first 4 teeth without even a whinge….. I mean I could go on! He was perfect, it was our hay days, the best summer of my life. I know I’m laying it on thick but I really did feel like I was kicking motherhoods ass, that’s why the next section was such a shock……
September to November 10 – 12 months
In September we went on our first family holiday down to Cornwall. Seth was at that adorable wobbly but walking round the sofa stage and we all enjoyed some much needed sunshine. Then this happened…
WALKING!! I cannot stress to anyone how unprepared for this I was! I was like “oh we’ve already baby proofed, he’ll be fine!” I was so wrong. My giant baby could reach everything! Walking round the furniture quickly gave way to full scale running, running into everything, like walls, doors, me!! The kid was and still is a menace on two legs, looking after him is exhausting. But to go with all this, Seth learned to clap his hands, started eating whole solid food like entire sandwiches, bananas, muffins!! He can climb, can say mum, dad, car, ta and nanny. He can tickle you, can point to what he wants, feed himself his own drinks and bottles, knows his own mind and can throw a tantrum that puts even my unreasonable streak to shame.
So basically, I blinked and he was big. That’s how I feel, it was all over in an instant, I can’t remember if I enjoyed it enough, was I too worried about whether I was doing a good job to enjoy it properly? Perhaps. But the bits I do remember, the wakeful nights full of cuddles in the small hours, his tiny fingers gripping mine, his first laugh, the inner pride I got when he achieved a milestone, all those memories will never leave me. I recall them clearly and I enjoyed them immeasurably.
So here’s to another year. Age 1 to 2, with all its new triumphs and challenges. He’s not a baby any more that’s for sure, but although I don’t want to wish it away I cannot wait to find out and watch what kind of little boy he becomes. Thank you 2015 for being the year I finally experienced what it’s like to be a mum, for my little boy is certainly my greatest achievement.