An open letter to my childless friends
Dear childless friends,
I think it's time to put it out there, on behalf of a lot of new Mummy's that I know have the same thoughts and feelings. I know that deciding to bring a child into this world was entirely mine and my husband's choice and this is by no means me preaching that you are missing out on anything by not having children - hell, I didn't even know if I wanted children as I was growing up. This is just me, being a voice for all the Mummy's out there who wish they were better understood.
Having a baby, planned or not - is a huuuuuuuge adjustment. No matter how prepared you think you are, you are shocked by the chaos, responsibility and surging hormones that await you. You doubt yourself constantly, wonder if you have done the right thing, and it takes a while to come out the other side of these feelings.
Childless friends, you were there in the lead up to the birth, eagerly rubbing my growing belly and getting so excited over the impending birth. Once my little bundlefinally arrived, there was a flurry of congratulations and facebook notifications, presents and promises to visit all the time. I think we both knew that the latter was a lie, but we played along anyway.
The fact is, that although my life has completely changed (for the better I might add), I am still me, under this Mummy exterior and outside these Mummy behaviours is the same friend. I may not always be available, I might be tied up with feedings, naps and nappy changes but I still wanted to feel connected. I made the effort to arrange catch ups and coffee dates, yes I had a baby in tow but that doesn't mean that I want you to sit there cooing over how cute he is - I still want to talk about other non-baby related things, and hear about your adventures.
I was saddened when the calls became less frequent, the fact that I would always have to instigate the catch ups, that you would change the date or time at the last minute not realising that I had spent hours planning the baby's day around our meeting. My world spins on a different axle now, my priorities have changed, my view on the world and my life are not how they once were. I have made new friends with common interests and of course retained some of my old friends, but others like some of you, have faded into the background. If there is just one thing that you get out of this letter, please realise that I didn't disappear with the birth of my son, even though I would give my life for him. I am still me, just with more responsibility, more love and a beautiful baby that makes me realise that I am happy just the way I am.