Pregnant women hear a lot of trite motherhood cliches. And while you want to ignore all of this unsolicited advice, don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater. Turns out, there is some wisdom in these pointers.
But if you’re not sure which cliches to keep and which ones to toss, here are 11 that tend to be true.
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1. Mothers know best
Everyone likes you to give you their advice, along with this popular cliche. And sometimes, you have to ignore opinions and feedback that doesn’t serve you or your child. After all, there are many different approaches to being a mom, but you have to do what’s right for you.
2. Sleep when the baby sleeps
You might think you can power through and get it all done – especially when the baby sleeps.
But if you can get some shut-eye when your baby finally drifts off to sweet, sweet, sleep, do it! A new baby shatters your previous nights of rest and repose.
3. Get ready for the terrible twos
For better or for worse, the twos can be a really challenging time. Your child is developing and growing. This is obvious when they take all your boundaries and break them.
It’s not easy, but if you know this ahead of time, you can prepare yourself for the worst and come out standing.
4. You’ll never eat a full meal again
It’s hard to imagine not being able to eat a full meal again. How could that be so difficult? But with babies, all things are possible. In fact, your baby will demand your time and attention, both during, before and after meals.
And you might be lucky if you get one or two forkfuls in before you’re pulled away for the umpteenth time.
5. This too will pass
When your child’s in the middle of a meltdown, or the dishes are piling up, or you feel like you just can’t handle life anymore, the last thing you want to hear is a trite cliche: “This too will pass.”
Instead, you want it to be done and over with now! But this cliche proves to be true, too. Nothing lasts forever. So, take a deep breath and trust that you have everything you need to keep moving forward, and out of this difficult time.
6. You’ll never sleep all night again
Yeah right, you might say. But you might change your tune once the baby arrives. After all, who knows how they’ll sleep. Some babies are great sleepers, and even if they do wake up at night, both you and the baby return to sleep without too much trouble.
But that’s not the case for every baby, and you might have to deal with frequent wakings and incessant crying. That’s probably why people say Cliche #2: “Sleep when the baby sleeps.”
7. Keep calm and carry on
This might look great on a coffee mug or on a kitchen magnet, but when someone gives you this advice, you might want to lash out and let them know how you really feel. In the process, you’re basically showing them that you really do need to calm down!
Even though it might seem impossible and even ridiculous, the calmer you are, the better off everyone will be – you, the baby, and everyone around you.
When you’re calm, you can look at your baby, along with his or her needs, more objectively and without getting trapped inside an emotional rollercoaster.
8. Your kid will dress better than you
If you pride yourself in looking stylish, or, at least putting some effort into your outfits and appearance, this cliche may irritate you and rub you the wrong way. After all, no-one wants to be told that their personal style will fly out the window once they have kids. But be prepared.
Your baby needs clothes, too – lots of them. On top of this, all of those cute outfits would look great on your little one.
So, guess what? You cave in, and by yet another set of onesies, or another Easter dress because you never know, right?
9. The days are long, but the years are short
When you’re in the thick of motherhood challenges, especially when your child is still a baby, the days can seem incredibly long and draining. Your kids (and you) can get sick. Your house may look like a hurricane just hit it. You’re sleep-deprived, and you feel like you’re at your wit’s end.
During times like these, you might want to hide in your bathroom with a carton of ice-cream and wait for it all to pass – and as quickly as possible. And it will.
But the truth is, as hard as these early years are, there are many beautiful moments hidden in between the stress and tears.
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10. You won’t have any time for yourself
Self-care is important for every woman, but your own self-care routine might go on sabbatical when you have a baby. And it’s not hard to see why. Your baby can’t do anything for herself and she’s completely dependent on you.
All the time you used to have just for you and your partner, you now have to split with your child. But to be honest, you won’t split this time 50/50: half of this time for your child, and a half for yourself.
Chances are it will look more like 99 percent of your time goes to your child.
11. It takes twice as long to do anything
Not only will you lose all of your personal time, but everything takes twice as long as it once did.
Getting ready in the morning? Check. Leaving the house? Also. Grocery shopping? Check. Making dinner? Check.
As a mother, you have to accommodate a little one and their needs, whether that’s feedings, diaper changes or simply giving them a nap and delaying all of your plans.
These 11 motherhood cliches might sound annoying, and you probably want to dismiss them. But think again. It’s probably a good idea to give them some credence. It can make your own motherhood journey a lot easier!