Mothers are liars! That was the thought going through my mind one early Saturday morning at 12 weeks pregnant. Hit the panic button, I'm about to have a baby and one thing's for sure, my body is going to change. How do I avoid stretch marks? What will I wear?
Feeling like a chronic mess I scrabbled through a myriad of emotions and thoughts like, why am I awake so early? How many days have I been asleep? I still want more sleep. Where is the glow? Nothing tastes the same. Will I ever have energy again? Damn, I'm about to overheat. Am I cut out for this? What about my business? Oops! I'm about to throw up. Am I even awake? Am I too young? Surely I'm too selfish. Arghhh! Am I ready? Where is the amazing feeling of motherhood that all these other pregnant ladies possess? Had it negated me? My mind was in utter turmoil and this was only the beginning! Lasting another 28 weeks would surely kill anyone, let alone me.
Fast forward to a few weeks later and finally there's a slice of solace in this weird new world, or so you let yourself believe, until you realise that your body is changing and your memory is fading. Already the size 10 jeans hesitate to fasten. You convince yourself not to panic because most of your Lycra dresses just about fit. Still in denial you attempt shopping, you pick up all your usual sizes, but of course nothing looks right and your signature shapes no longer suit you. In the midst of your anxiety attack you realise your super sense of smell. Has this store always smelt this way? Overwhelmed, you drop all the miniature clothes and hastily head towards the exit thinking of your new fashion strategy.
Having a text book pregnancy doesn't evade temporary amnesia. You soon forget your partners' first name and blame all inedible meals and missed appointments on exhaustion.
With everything subject to change you realise the liquidity of life. All of a sudden your once black and white military mind-set turns grey. Dumbfounded it dawns upon you, I'm growing up. The joys of the life blooming inside climax at the feeling of the first movements and soon the many psychotic episodes all feel worthwhile.
By now you're already past the half way mark so you decide to try the shopping experience once again. Determined to be undefeated you stick to the basics and top up on staple items. Leggings and wrap dresses become your fashion saviour during pregnancy and some new underwear won't go amiss, especially if you want to feel sexier as your new body continues to metamorphosize. Forget the high street, a quick online search can land you the perfect outfit for a special night out.
Soon the countdown begins and the cleaning bug sprints in, you hit preparation mode. The cascading tremors of labour are real, for which every mother deserves a standing ovation. The exhausted birth partners, if they make it out alive, are true champions too. The bellowing of the newest heir to your throne sounds and the marathon of the journey evaporates. You did it! Systematic checks complete, soon they send you packing with this new fragile yet resilient life. For crying out loud, somebody ring the alarm. Now the real magic begins!
You survived the post delivery, emotional solar eclipse. THIS IS NOT A DRILL! For several weeks you become a walking zombie. You're somewhere near melt down and the questions gush ferociously yet again. Is the milk supply enough? Am I doing a good job? My boobs have trebled, are they going to suffocate me? Will I ever sleep again? If I hear one more cry, I'm going to pretend to be deaf. Is the baby allergic to breast milk? Was that a rash on his face? Is he breathing? I'm officially insane. How long did I say I would breast feed for again? I change my mind. My body is not my own.
The antisocial wake up calls leave your mind fried and you can't tell one day from the next. You develop a new talent, the stalker! You stare constantly in amazement and notice every detail on your new bundle of joy. But with sleep deprivation at an all-time high you can't even trust your own thoughts so you write everything down. Housework? Your once OCD temperaments are a thing of the past in an ever messy environment filled with all manner of - STUFF.
At some point in the day the allergies of insomnia dissipate and finally clarity sets in. You remember that as well as being a mother, you're a partner and an entrepreneur. You start rummaging through what's left of your wardrobe as your body finally begins to snap back. A good work out at the gym and a few beauty therapies will help you feel more feminine, not just functional. Looking fabulous should still be a priority but your outfit has to be practical especially if you're a breast feeding mom. Opt for a button fastened top as opposed to a fitted dress and express milk early in the day to avoid whipping out whilst on the road. Juggling work and your newborn, you soon realise you have developed super powers. With limited time between nappy changes you quickly learn to ignore the facade of social media and just get things done. Rushing out the door to your next meeting, not surprisingly, your baby poops or pukes on queue. One last change and you hope for the best. Your life has become a mess, a magical mess that you can't live without, it's the new normal, and you've become superwoman!