All of a sudden I am a mother

Guest blogger: Zoey Ivory

Well, okay, not all of a sudden. Of course, we all know how babies are made. Totally surprised, my boyfriend asked, “How can that be?” when I told him I was pregnant. But that was more because we were still trying to figure it out. Of course, we knew how it happened. But I still haven’t fully grasped the fact that I am now a mother.

How is it possible that nine months of pregnancy flew by in an instant, but when you are waiting for the washing machine or the microwave to finish, one minute seems to take forever? Childbirth, too, was over in no time at all: Our daughter was born after three and a half hours. And while she was already happily sucking on my chest, it still seemed so unreal to me: I am “someone’s mom” now.

Being a mother is the most natural thing I’ve ever done

And being someone’s mother – my daughter’s name is Jones, by the way, and not “someone” – is actually the most natural thing I’ve ever done. Everything happens automatically (maternal instinct is real!). Even if you do not quite realize it yet, even on two hours of sleep and even when you are in pain. Because one thing is certain, as brand-new mothers, we certainly have to cope with a lot of pain. Whether you’re wearing a triple layer maternity pads in the largest grandma underpants ever or feel as if they’ve removed more than just a baby from your womb – pain is definitely a part of it. But unconditional love makes up for a lot. I’ve heard a lot of talk about unconditional love before my pregnancy, and there is really nothing exaggerated about that. The weird thing is that it feels like your baby has always been there; you cannot imagine life without it.

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Time flies by as a mother

In the meantime, we have already moved on from diaper size 1 to size 3 (and let us not mention the mountain of diapers that we have already gone through). I remember my own mother always complaining: “Oh, everything is going so fast, time flies by.” And I always thought by myself, what is she going on about? Now, I completely understand.

Every day I see something new in my daughter. Every day she develops and grows. And each passing day is marked by another onesie that has become too small for her. The clothing she wore as a newborn is already neatly folded up at the bottom of the closet. And after soothing her for half an hour, my arms and lower back become acutely aware of the fact that she is already long past the six-kilo mark. Right from the start, I was firmly resolved to dwell on and enjoy every moment. Even though she turned around day and night in the first week and I had wounds on my nipples from breastfeeding. Not really things to enjoy, you may think, but in fact you do. Because what you do know is that all those moments will be over in no time.

The realization of being a mother

Maybe that is the essence of being a mother. Not one particular feeling, but consciously experiencing all the first times of your baby. The sacrifices you make and the adjustments you accommodate in your life for your child. Knowing what your baby needs without her being able to tell, and each new dose of patience you develop as a brand-new parent. Normally, I’m a very sober person, but it’s really a journey of growth and discovery, for both mother and child. And despite the challenges and the fatigue, I wouldn’t want to miss it for the world. Because what I realize now is that I’m a mother – Jones’ mother – and that is indeed the most wonderful thing in the world.

Zoey Ivory, mother of Jones.

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