They say ‘it takes a village to raise a baby’ and I could not agree more. I’m incredibly blessed as I have a lot of great people in my support network but the quantity doesn’t really matter. You just need to have people in your life who support you and you need to actually let them. That is easier said than done as there is a huge pressure to look like you can do everything on your own and never struggle. Of course we all want to be the perfect parent but it’s just not real life. I aim to hit my idea of ‘perfect’ 50% of the time, that’s me doing my best.
When I first became a mum I definitely struggled with wanting to look like I could cope with anything and was reluctant to ever ask for help. I soon realised though that parenting is not easy, so why pretend that it is? Nobody is handing out medals for the cleanest lounge. A support network is made up of people who care about you and want to help you, so use them!
This is what my support network looks like. Yours might be very different or not so much. Made up of 50 people or just 3. It doesn’t matter as long as you value them.
Obviously, we share Little Knight, so he’s my biggest support. He is so encouraging and always builds me back up when a day of nappy explosions and toddler tantrums has pulled me down. He will work hard all day then come home and get stuck in.
There is a reason we didn’t move very far away from our parents! I see my family at least twice a week and depend on them a lot. I also find it really special to see Little Knight enjoying spending time with her grandparents, she’s very lucky as she has a lot of them! My sister is my ultimate best friend and now that she has a baby it’s even better, she always just ‘gets it’. Whether you want someone to love the 6896426th photo you’ve taken of your child or someone to watch them so you can actually have a hot cup of tea/a wee in peace/a stress-free food shop, family is always there. Plus, I don’t think you ever grow out of needing your mum. If Little Knight has a rash, I send her a photo.When I don’t know how to chop a leek, I call her. When I need a little break, I go round and eat all of their biscuits whilst Little Knight empties the toy box.
Our church family are really special to us. We have some great friends there and if you ever need anything, someone will help you. Little Knight and I go to the Baby and Toddler group in the week which she loves and we go to the morning service every Sunday. We’re really blessed as there are a lot of other babies and toddlers so she has friends to run around with and we have other parents to share the joys and struggles with.
Really, this point should be first but I thought I’d get attacked for ‘being preachy’. I am a Christian and my faith is really important to me. Praying got me through a long pregnancy, a hard labour and everything that has followed. This is a very personal thing and I’m not trying to throw religion at you, but I don’t want to shy away from such a huge part of my life just because I’m scared of the reaction. (I am still a bit scared though…)
Going out with the girls is the ultimate pick-me-up. There is just no spa treatment like a natter over a glass of wine and massive burger (or something more ladylike). I go home feeling refreshed and me-time is so important when your whole life suddenly revolves around someone else.
Your support network aren’t just there if you’re struggling, they are with you through all of the laughs and milestones too. Even though I go to bed singing Peppa Pig’s Bing Bong song, being a mum is the best fun ever.
Thanks for reading,
Knight Mummy x