MAMA! IT'S OK TO ASK FOR HELP
Before having my first child i did all the research I thought I needed to get me prepared for his arrival. I read books and did some good old google search. I thought I knew all i needed to know in motherhood, when it came to breastfeeding, lack of sleep, and all the things the baby needed. But really and truly when we are getting ready to have a baby we don’t really take the time to think about ourselves, and how motherhood will change our lives and effect us mentally, how truly hard motherhood can be.
I have always been really independent and absolutely hate asking anyone for help, even when it came to asking my husband for help, I detested it. From the moment I had my son and daughter, I wanted to do everything. I breastfed both my kids, my son until 11 months and my daughter 1 year old. I wanted to be the one up with them when they woke up for a feed, i wanted to be up with them in the morning. I wanted to clean, cook, look after my toddler son. I really thought I was superwoman, at first I was loving it and didn’t really want anyone thinking I'm not a good mum. Silly me, in my mind i thought if i ask for and help even to my husband, I was weak, I wasn’t a good mother. I had to show everyone that I have it all together, I mean I wanted these children right?! So i had to look after them 24/7 with no help. What a stupid way of thinking!
Society has made woman feel like they can’t ask for help especially mothers because we get judged by the smallest things, which is so sad because being a mother isn't easy at all. Mothers go through so much every single day in silence. Asking for help doesn’t make you a bad mum.
I soon started getting frustrated over everything, i would feel irritated by my husband and everyone around me. It was starting to affect me every single day, the thing is, my husband would offer to help me but i wouldn’t accept the help.
My husband would ask me what is wrong, I would always say nothing, but clearly I wasn’t. For me, asking for help was a sign of failure, like I couldn’t look after my kids and my home. I always thought I needed to do it all with a smile on my face even if inside i was exhausted.
I was looking after everyone, except myself. I wasn’t really doing anyone a favour because everyone in my house got affected by my cranky moods.
Somethings had to change, I reached my breaking point, after many tears, me falling apart, my husband and I sat down and spoken to change things.
Tell your spouse what you expect from him.
I always would give my husband the cold shoulder and I would frown, if he didn’t do something. Even though he asked me if I needed help and I turned down the help. I would still be angry. For some reason I thought he should just know. Like he does magic, he should guess what is going through my mind. I have learned that communication is key and so many other problems can be avoided if you have great communication with your spouse.
Tell your spouse exactly what you want from him. If you want him to put the kids to bed, tell him. If you want him to be the one to bath the kids sometimes, tell him. If you need time to just take a quick nap, tell him. If you want some time for yourself to go for a walk alone a few times a week, tell him. He is there to support and help you.
He then will know what you expect from him and work with you. We all need some help from time to time, it doesn’t make you a bad mum, it just makes you human. We aren’t superheros, I wish I was but that isn’t the reality is it?!
Ask family members for help
We all need some space and time to recharge. Have the option of having a trust worthy person look after you child. Whether it's a family member, close friend or nanny, as for me I know I have serious trust issues with nannies so family will be my only option. Not neglecting the fact that there are also single mothers out there whom may not have family available to them like that or friends. You can always consider a nanny, I guess when you find a great nanny, it's also as good as family. There's absolutely nothing wrong in that.
Having time alone without the kids will help you to refocus and re-energise your body, mind and spirit. Usually if i want time with no kids in the house I ask my mum or my in-laws to stay with my kids. You trying to do it all and being with your kids all the time isn’t helping them or yourself either. It is important for kids to also build relationships and bonds with other people. My kids have beautiful bonds with their grandparents, I love seeing them bond. And they love being with their grandparents, I can’t take that from them by wanting to keep them for myself.
You are a human being and deserve rest mama!
Getting help and rest will bring the best out of you and you can be the best mother to your kids. Being an angry and frustrated mum isn't the way, it will just make you have lack of patience with your kids. Motherhood is hard, Sometimes need to read some inspirational mum quotes to motivate me and get me thru the day. I ask for assistance and I am not ashamed to say it. In actual fact, I will continue asking for help where necessary. Don’t feel like you need to do it all, you really don’t have to do it all. And you are still an awesome mum. Don’t ever feel ashamed to ask for help. YOU ARE A GREAT PARENT