Last week my partner gave birth to our daughter in our living room - the culmination of a pregnancy that was extraordinary only because we received the highest quality of personalised care - all from the NHS.
Although, of course, each and every item is labelled as 'essential' for new parents, most of the things you're told you need, you don't need at all. This should help you pick out those items that will actually ease your transition into parenthood from those that may be cleverly marketed, but that you can live without.
Weddings. With a tiny baby. What could be worse?! Well, yes - we've all seen and heard the horror stories. But it doesn't have to be that way with some preparation and life hacks!
They can both be super helpful when you need a quick fix of information to deal with a situation in the here and now, but using these to radically transform the way your family is interacting...
The second thing you need to do is to stop listening to everyone else telling you that you did this, that, or the other thing wrong. You can't change the past (well unless you have a time machine and if you do then I'd love you to give me a call there's a few things I'd like to erase).
In fact, give yourself a break, because not only are you trying to figure out what you want, you're also trying to figure out what another human being wants, when they don't even know themselves...
I don't disagree with my husband that there probably is within us a subconscious, animalistic desire to procreate. I think there is much more to it than that, and only after having a baby myself and going through that first tumultuous year of parenthood can I understand the real driving force behind why we choose to have children.
Many people keep asking me how I managed to get them to sleep through the night at such a young age, so I thought I should share some of my tried and tested tips. Here they are:
What do I wear? Will I get cold? And what happens if I poop? these are the most common questions my clients ask about water
Many people told me their horror stories of birth. Many people rolled their eyes or laughed at me when I said I wanted a homebirth for my first baby. Many people told me I was being naieve or foolish. And many people close to me thought I wouldn't be able to do it: that I wouldn't stay at home the whole time, not for my first baby, or that I wouldn't cope without strong pain relief.