sheep soft toy

Things I have learnt during my first month as a mum

Our baby boy is 1 month old and oh my, it has flown by. We have experienced many things that no one tells you about when having a baby, especially when it’s your first. You know it’s going to be hard but many people don’t explain exactly why. Before you know it, your newborn baby is home with you and you’re there to figure parenthood out. It’s amazing how much you learn in your first month of parenting. You go from, “Am I doing this right?” to figuring each day out at a time and remembering that, you’re always learning.

One minute I’m giving birth and the next, I am taking a shower getting ready to go onto the postnatal ward. From the moment I left the delivery ward, I kept wondering, “What am I going to do now…?” When I arrived, I was greeted by a lovely midwife then our baby boy was placed into a cot beside my bed and that’s when it became very real. I obviously wasn’t alone because I was on hospital grounds but I was in the sense that, I became a mum for the first time and it was just me and our baby behind the curtain. I gave birth at 6.17pm and when the next morning arrived all I wanted to do was go home as a family. Luckily I could be discharged but it took a long while for my notes to be done which meant we didn’t leave until 10.30pm – 11pm. The first night at home was surreal.

Since our first night home, here are some of the things we have learnt…

Your baby has their own cues

When our baby cries, we now have a better idea if he is hungry, his nappy needs changing, if it’s wind, or if he just wants a little cuddle. Who doesn’t love a newborn cuddle?! At first, to me, baby’s cry was daunting if it lasted more than a minute. I felt the pressure of making his bottles in the night or if I couldn’t quite figure what he needed. However, now, between the two of us, we have a much better idea. A baby that is fed, clean, and loved, is happy unless there’s a sign that something else is wrong. We haven’t experienced anything as such on this side other than when Freddy has struggled to to bring up wind.

We also know the he is having a poo face. You might think, “Oh lovely!” but it’s actually good to know so we can prepare for what kind of nappy we are in for!

Babies wee and poo a lot

Everyone says it but until you have a baby of your own, you don’t realise just how much your baby needs their nappy changing. We don’t like to leave Freddy in a wet or poo nappy so we always check regularly. Nowadays, most nappies have the yellow line which turns blue to indicate that your baby has done a wee or poo. Any mums or dads to be reading this post, be prepared for your baby to wee on you (or like a fountain over your baby’s head if they are a boy). Also, don’t be surprised if your baby does their business again while you are changing them!

In the second week, Freddy was leaking through his nappies. We took all the advice onboard from midwives and the health visitor such as making sure the nappy is fitted properly – not too loose, up at the back, frills out to absorb more wee/poo, and ‘pointing it down’ etc. We tried several brands and learnt that more expensive nappies do not equal better quality/less leaks, at this stage anyway. We upped to Mamia newborn size 2 and it has been much better since. It’s so much easier now that we don’t have to clean multiple Moses basket sheets on repeat or change baby more so than you already do with a newborn as it is.

It’s okay to cuddle your baby

If you want to cuddle your baby a little longer sometimes, that’s absolutely fine. We all need love. When we hold Freddy close to us – his favourite place being on our chest – he gets to moderate his body temperature, feel our heartbeat against his and be comforted by his mummy and daddy. Cuddling our baby boy reminds us of all the love we have to give and we constantly stare at him to admire his ever-changing features, his growing legs, arms, hands, feet, and those cute little cheeks. After Danny has been to work, football or to the gym, or just nipped out to the shops, he comes home and wants to cuddle Freddy because he has missed him.

You don’t need to be the perfect parent

There are no points or rewards for being the ‘perfect’ parent. To be honest, does the ‘perfect’ parent exist? Aren’t all of us first-time parents in this together, finding our own ways? You learn that you eventually pick up ways of getting into the swing of things like prepping bottles, changing nappies, settling baby, changing their outfits and so on. Your baby needs warmth, nutrition, cleanliness and happiness. We have learnt that Freddy enjoys time to explore his senses too with shapes, noises, sounds, recognising mummy and daddy, tummy time etc.

To all of the parents to be or first-time parents currently wondering how they are going to survive the first month, you’ve got this! Don’t think there’s anything wrong to ask for help or a little company sometimes.

close up of baby Freddy's feet

Experiencing parenthood for the first time

On Monday 2nd August, our beautiful baby boy, Freddy, was born. This will now be a special date for the rest of our lives. Danny is coming to the end of his paternity leave which makes me feel sad but I also think about how happy I’ll be once he gets home each night, giving me something to look forward to later in the day. Freddy knows when is dad is near so he will be excited too.

How are you finding the whole parenting experience?

Parenting for the first time can be hard but as soon as your newborn baby’s eyes look into yours, you realise that everything is and will be okay. There’s no love like looking into your baby’s eyes and saying, “I’m your mummy!” or “I’m your daddy!”

Before Freddy entered the outside world, I never knew how challenging it would be to adjust to a different sleeping pattern. I almost thought that because I had been up at 2am, 3am, 4am etc. in the night during pregnancy that my body was preparing me for what was to come. Oh, it was a completely different story once it hit. Due to the lack of sleep at first and the heightened hormone levels, I cried and then cried some more the next day. I also had to be reminded that my body was recovering and will be for the next 4 weeks or so. Unfortunately I got the results that I have an infection following a swab on my perineal tear. It didn’t help that that it took 5 days to get the results then the rest of that day to get some antibiotics but hopefully they will do their job and get me feeling better in at least one way or another. I have finally discovered the benefits of sleeping as much as I can when baby does. It has made a huge difference in how I feel along with eating a little more throughout the day.

Do you worry about your baby?

I mean, would we really be parents if we didn’t worry? Those mum and dad instincts kicked in right away. It’s all new and there are things we question but having the midwife attend for the first 5 days after giving birth was really helpful. She came each of those days to check on my blood pressure and to explain how important it is to rest. Rest? It wasn’t easy at first. The first few nights, if we did get any sleep, I’m pretty sure we slept with one eye open. We even took it in turns sleeping at each side of the bed.

We have got to know what his “I’m ready to be fed” cry is. He doesn’t cry heavily for long periods of time but he has his moments. And in those moments I have worried if I’ve done something wrong or if I am missing something. You really do learn something new every day – every day is a learning experience. I’m glad Danny has been able to spend 2 weeks at home with me. It’s helped us to pick up our own ways of doing things and we have both done our bit with changing, feeding, settling baby and most of all, giving him lots of love. If anything, Danny has probably worried more about me at times when I have felt low as he just wants us both to be happy. One thing we promised each other before Freddy was born was to never niggle at each other in front of our baby and always talk through things if something is on our mind. And that is working really well.

How do you feel now you are parents?

In one word? I’m not sure how to pick one but I will say that it is very surreal at first. You are holding a little human you have both brought into the world and you have to let it in sink in that the tiny little human is really yours. Freddy makes us smile multiple times a day and we know what people mean when they say, “There’s no love like it!” because there isn’t. It’s such a special bond the 3 of us share. It’s like we have fell in love all over again with our new addition beside us.

When we hold our baby boy, even if he is crying, it’s the most amazing feeling on earth. It’s only been 2 weeks and time is going so quick already which reminds us that we need to cherish every single moment. Those smiles might only be wind at the moment but they light up our day. When he holds our finger, looks into our eyes and looks contented, our hearts feel so full. There’s nothing more heartwarming than growing more and more love for our newborn each day.

Do you have advice for parents to be?

As one of the midwives said last week, “Go with the flow.” Honestly, she is right. Do things step by step and learn as you go along. If you need help, ask for it. As long as your baby is fed, changed, clean and loved, he or she will be very happy. Try not to be afraid to leave your baby with family, friend, or support network. It can do you the world of good even if it’s for only half an hour. Go outside for walks as much as you can with baby in their pram. They will most likely sleep and we have found it can settle Freddy for longer periods of time between his feeds. Another thing I would say is, no question is stupid. I’ve asked plenty and will no doubt continue to ask more.

Enjoy every moment. There are many firsts, even in the first couple of weeks e.g. first walk out in their pram, first time in their Moses basket/crib/cot, relaxing in their bouncer or on a play mat etc. You will have plenty of cuddles which are just are the sweetest. Your little one’s face will make you feel better no matter how your day is going.

pages of a book folded into a heart shape

39 weeks pregnant

Photo from pexels.com by Rahul Pandit.

This morning I woke up and smiled. It’s Sunday which means a new week in my pregnancy journey and today marks a whole new month and that I am officially 39 weeks pregnant! Let me just take a moment to let that sink in… wow. I thought it would be the perfect time to reflect on my pregnancy journey – the reality of it and the many things I have learnt. This post is solely based on my experience and what I have felt.

The sickness has been real

Yep! The sickness made an appearance early on in the first trimester around 5 weeks. And just when I thought I had said goodbye around 12-13 weeks, it came back with a vengeance throughout several weeks in the third trimester. In fact, just a few days ago I woke up coughing to be sick in the night – it was a bit more like reflux/indigestion brought that one on though. Would I want to take any of it away? I hate being sick with a migraine or if I have a terrible hangover but this was different. As tough it has been at times, it reminded me that our baby boy was there and each day we were one step closer to his due date.

Emotions have been stronger than ever

Highs and lows – I’ve felt a mixture of both – mostly highs though. I have questioned so many parts of pregnancy. This includes many what ifs or what if I can’t… moments. I look back and wonder how many times Danny has told me to never worry because I have him. He is right but it’s only natural to have worries I suppose, especially when it’s my mind doing the thinking! At times, I struggled with some comments but I decided to take them with a pinch of salt and to continue doing our own thing. it is our journey after all.

On the other side of things, it has been much more special than I could have ever imagined. I did not know just how blessed we would be to watch a tiny little human growing inside of me. To feel him kick, wriggle and push his heel as far as he can around my ribs, side, and back! It’s all been so heartwarming. And I’m not going to go any further because these emotions of mine are at an all time high. The excitement is well and truly around but I am also feeling very sentimental the closer we get to baby’s arrival.

Mum instincts kicked in

I don’t think it took too long for those maternal instincts to kick in. I used to cry when I seen ‘not pregnant’ or 1 line on a test even though I was on contraception. It might sound silly but sometimes I thought my body was telling me I still might be. Danny and I had the conversation many times over the year and we finally decided it was time. I made choices to make sure my body could be in the best possible state, had regular check ups with my GP etc. who was so lovely to chat about anything. Before we knew it, everything changed. I got to see PREGNANT on the test and my body really was giving me signs beforehand. Since then, I have felt my stomach, rubbed and comforted my baby bump ever since he was just a tiny little thing. I have even spoke to him, played music and Danny has kissed bump to let him know he is there too.

It’s incredible the strength I found once becoming pregnant. You realise what really matters and how important your health is for both you and your baby. I have been very lucky to have been closely monitored by the team at MAViS (part of Tommy’s Research Centre at St Mary’s Hospital) for my blood pressure and any other concerns. They have always put me and baby first. I have learnt not to ignore any sudden changes, reduced movements, or when you just think something isn’t right.

I’ve treasured it all

Every single little moment, no matter how big or small is so special and touching. I have stored all of baby’s scans and bump progress photos on my phone and backed up onto my Mac. My body has gone through so many changes – physically and mentally. It’s incredible. I’m still amazed that a woman can keep babies warm and snuggled up inside our bodies. My womb has been has been baby’s home for so long and he is going to be in our house soon, the 3 of us living together as a little family. I have tried my best not to take any part of this journey for granted. I will never stop saying how lucky and blessed we are already.


As I am nearing the end of my pregnancy journey, I really am starting to feel a little sensitive. I have carried our little boy for 9 months and amazing as it’ll be when he is on the outside world, how is it going to feel no longer having a bump? He won’t be inside wriggling away, he will be here with us to hold. Can my body take all of this in? I will miss many things about pregnancy but each day has led us to what’s about to be one of the biggest days of our lives. It’s not long until we will find out just how it’ll feel to welcome our first newborn baby into the world.

teddy bear looking at window

Thoughts of a mum to be as due date approaches

Featured image from pexels.com

Becoming a mum for the first time, for me, has brought the most exciting and heartwarming journey but little bits of worry are starting to creep up now. After speaking to a couple of friends and of course my Danny, they know it’s most likely down to the closeness of baby’s due date approaching. Little things are building up in my mind – some of which won’t even be a thought when baby is on the outside world no doubt. Here are some pieces of advice that I am going to let soak in and remember the next time I start to feel a little panicked.

Not everything can be done in a day!

This one is from myself. As baby’s arrival gets closer, I keep looking at things that are lying around the house upstairs because we are in the middle of having some things sorted out e.g. shower and retiling, paint tins in the room, bits of clutter we are waiting to be collected etc. Danny has done an amazing job with the decorating around the house. The only other main room to do now is the living room and small touching up around the completed ones. Once bits of furniture we don’t need anymore are gone, I’m sure I’ll feel much happier to see less clutter.

You’ll laugh at me right now because as far as baby is concerned, everything in place so I shouldn’t be so bothered but hey, it’s me. Another thing that bugs me is the constant sight of spiders. Yes, I know that sounds random but they are everywhere at the minute. I am going to try some peppermint oil and hope that does the trick. It’s one fear I don’t think will ever completely go away. I’m going to have more things on my hands soon to worry about, so I’ll have to try my best to ignore those creepy crawlies! Typing these things makes me feel pretty daft but it’s the truth.

You’ve got food, nappies, warmth, and a whole lot of love!

A lovely friend said this to me just this morning and she’s absolutely right. All of these little stresses I have at the moment will disappear once our little one is here. He is going to be so loved and bring a whole new light and level of happiness into our lives. I’ve got to stay as happy as I can to make him happy – that goes for today and once he is born.

It amazes me every day that we are brining a new life into the world. A baby boy, a son to call our own. When I take this piece of advice on board, it gets me thinking about his little face, what his little fingers and toes are going to look like, and when we look into each other’s eyes for the first time. This is such a special time and I am going to remind myself to cherish these last few weeks because as excited as we are, I know I’ll miss having a baby bump, watching him grow and wriggle around.

You’ve got me, everything will be okay!

Time and time again, Danny will say, “Tasha, do you really think I’ll let anything happen to you.” He tells me that we’re in this together and no matter what challenges come our way, we will face them as a team. Even though he constantly tells me he is right – guess what, he is right again! Danny has things on his mind too but he knows that the both of us will work together and give our baby all of the love in the world and that’s the most important thing they need.

Over the last couple of weeks, I have been chatting away to Danny to say, “What if I do this or that wrong?” or “What if I struggle in labour?” These are normal thoughts, right? If anything happens before I go into hospital, Danny will be here before I know it. Before the days we got together, he looked after me, and now he is there for me more than ever. Every bone in his body is full of love, support, and understanding (he has also picked up my foreign Tasha language really well!)

We’ve got this!

So, it goes without saying, I am bound to worry a little or a lot, just like any mum to be. But I can 100% say that I am looking forward to every moment to come. The cries, sleepless nights, and challenges with patience will hit for sure but it is going to be really worth it. For two people who have always wanted a child, there isn’t a single moment we will take for granted.