Happy Friday! I didnt write a blog post on Wednesday because quite frankly the weather has been soo amazing and I have been outside making the most of it with Mila. We spend so much time in Kensington Gardens and its so special to me because when I was pregnant with Mila we moved into our current home and I started going for walks there every single day. I would always stop off at this one particular bench and talk to her when she was in my tummy. Then she was born in the beginning of the summer and it became our thing to go for a long walks through the gardens on a daily basis. I love that she was a summer baby and I was able to spend so much time outside. Then Autumn came. And Winter. And now we are experiencing our first Spring together. Sometimes I feel so selfish for living in London but luckily I live so close to the park that it almost feels like its my own back garden! I would never wish a second away but I do look forward to the times when I can chase after her in the park, watch her learn to cycle and hopefully always keep this little tradition of ours alive of going for walks together even when she is all grown up.
9 months. WOW. I chose this photo for the post because I was so beyond excited to be a mother at this point. Full of hope and wonder for what it might be like. Well, it exceeded all my expectations. From speaking to friends and people I have met it feels like so much of your experience of motherhood is shaped by the temperament of your baby. I feel like those that have an easy baby have really taken to motherhood whereas others that have fussy babies have had a much tougher time. Which of course makes complete sense. If you are up all night every night its just not fun. Or if your baby cries all the time it must be very draining. I’ve been very lucky in that although Mila has her moments, she is an incredibly easy baby. Sure she cries. She gets tired. She winges. She gets hungry. Bored. She has her bad days just like anyone else. Her routine is sometimes really off. Some nights she wakes up multiple times. She is a baby after all! But in general she sleeps well and eats well. She is a good traveller. We can take her with us at night for dinner and she will sleep through all the noise. She is an incredibly happy little soul. So I truly have enjoyed every moment. Even the tough ones. But I would be lying if I said its always been easy. I think what truly has helped me a lot is that I plan time for myself. Just a little bit. An exercise class. A breakfast with a friend. Writing my blog. Even if its just a few times a week, it relaxes me and gives me energy and I always come back wanting to be an even better mother. And my husband always says something which I think is so true and I always remind myself of it whenever I have a tough moment. Being Mila’s parent (or any parent for that matter) is a privilege. We are so lucky that we have a daughter and thats really all that matters.
I absolutely love this age. The newborn cuddles were amazing. And watching her develop at each stage has been mind boggling. You find yourself staring like an idiot for hours at even the smallest things they do. But now she is an actual human being. Sitting. Standing. Almost walking by herself. Laughing. Giggling. Pulling herself up. Playing with toys. Rolling around. Listening. Thinking. Babbling. One of you told me that David Attenborough called 9 month old babies “the most amazing creatures on the planet” and I couldn’t agree more. I am savouring every moment. I love being a mother more than anything I have ever done. I am most proud of it. I am the most proud of my little girl. I could talk about that forever but instead I will share with you some practical things I have learned along the way:
- Babies love routine. I definitely think it helps them to feel safe and secure. They know what to expect. I know lots of people are all about feeding on demand and I don’t think there is a right or wrong way, but I know that Mila has always done very well knowing when her feeds and naps are. Even when we travel we try to stick to the same routine as much as possible.
- That said, you have to be flexible. With everything. For example sometimes babies just cry for no reason. And so you just have to be patient, make them feel safe and loved and wait it out. Know that nothing is forever.
- Holidays will never be the same, but I still LOVE holidays. I love a change of scenery. Especially since having a baby. A routine day in day out can get monotonous and I think its so important to mix things up a bit. Plus the sooner you get them used to travel the easier it is. We first took Mila away at 8 weeks and actually the younger they are the less work it is. Its all about shifts though. My husband takes Mila while I go to the spa. I take Mila while he goes to the gym. Long gone are the days of reading books and lying for hours in the sun. But you will get these back soon enough and then you will long for the baby days. We are off on our next trip for Easter in a week and I cannot wait.
- You will not sleep again. For many many many years. We are literally ALWAYS tired. We used to look at frazzled parents and be like omg how can it be so hard. I might look glam in my photos but trust me I feel like I have aged about 10 years since having Mila. We also take shifts on weekends so one of us can have a lie in. My husband is such a hands on amazing dad so I count myself very lucky he gives me a break every once in a while.
- Some “me” time and “us” time is essential. I think for your sanity! We are good about date nights but we haven’t yet been away for a night without Mila. However for my husbands birthday at the end of the month I am whisking him away – just the two of us. Overnight. I know it will be SO hard but I think it will do both of us the world of good.
- You would do anything for your child. However silly. Mila is very attached to me especially at night (lucky me!) and one night she just wouldn’t fall asleep unless it was next to me. So I ended up having to climb into her cot and trick her by being with her in there until she fell asleep. (I actually saw a few days later that Something Navy did this with her daughter so I am glad to know I am not alone!)
- Time wont stand still so appreciate all the good moments. And take photos. Even if they are mental images. Savour them. I sometimes think I didn’t take enough photos. When I was pregnant. When she was born. When she hit every milestone. But I have all the memories. You cant capture everything.
- YOU CANNOT HAVE IT ALL! I probably talked about this in my 6 month update but I have learned now to let go a little more. I care less about everything being perfect. If I don’t reply to every email. Or the house isn’t always immaculate. Or I am not always on time. (although people being late is my pet peeve!) Having Mila has both motivated me as a person but also allowed me to not be so hard on myself. After baby number 4 I might be the most zen woman on earth.
Thats all. Lots of you often ask me for advice and the truth is I don’t have the perfect advise. I am a first time mum learning things as I go along. Making mistakes just like anyone else. Just sharing my journey as I go along so thanks for following and as always I try to share my experiences as I go along.
PS. SO many of you have been asking me to do a denim edit. So I thought instead of doing a blog post about it I would start a denim boutique that I will keep updating so that you can always find my top picks instead of having to refer back to this blog post. I would say my absolute go to pair is the Frame Le Skinny (get them here) but otherwise there is no one brand I stick to. But at the moment I am loving “mom” jeans and here is a link to the Zara jeans I was wearing today x
I know this was ages ago probably, but do you happen to know/remember the brand of the dress you are wearing in this post? I am looking for a dress to wear for my maternity photo shoot and am having such a tough time finding something that is easy but pulled together. Your blog is so wonderful. thank you!
yes of course – it is one of my favourite dresses and i might take it to our trip to italy next month its such a stunning style. not sure if that one is available anymore but here is a similar one xxhttp://rstyle.me/~9Zuz1
Thank you so much!!