My motherhood by Grace Timothy

To me, motherhood is a surprise. Starting with the surprise of finding out I was pregnant (oops), I am now constantly astonished.

 

Firstly, I’m surprised how fun motherhood is. I had fairly low expectations based on the warnings I’d gleaned through my 20s – people are quick to share the worst bits, I guess. “Enjoy your sleep now, because you’ll never sleep again!” friends cheerfully trilled, “And you can wave goodbye to your sex-life, buddy!” More horror stories included, “My baby bit my nipple off!”, “My son just screams all day long!” and the one that really made me feel sick with dread, “I have to spend everyday at Soft Play, but at least you get free tea.”

 

I began to wonder why anyone had kids, when so many parents seemed to be exhausted, bored, dissatisfied. But then my daughter was born, and I realised what they hadn’t told me is that all the other stuff – the giggling, the chattering, the cuddling, the feeding, the mess, the loving looks, the playing – is all SO fun that it makes any lack of sleep pale into insignificance.

 

Now, she surprises me pretty much every day with something she’ll have apparently learned to do overnight. Once it was rolling over or discovering her feet, but now she’s 10 months old it’s a perfect copy of Beyonce’s Single Ladies hand dancing, then an imitation of my mother’s cough. One morning I went in to pick her up from her cot and she’s Winding The Bobbin Up. Every time, my heart jumps, I squeal, she squeals and we play whatever it is on repeat for hours.

 

I also surprise myself – it turns out I’m not the wimp with the low pain threshold I thought, but actually quite stoic when it comes to quick labours and episiotomies with no time for drugs. I’m surprised to discover I can cook, if the dinner is for this precious girl I want to nourish. And more than anything, I am bowled over by this overwhelming love – the stuff of movies and clichés – for the best surprise I ever got.

 

 

Grace Timothy lives in Sussex with the beautiful Noémie Rae, 10 months. Since having her little beauty she has created the awesome blog The Pregnant Beauty Guide.

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