No Pressure Sis
I became an Uncle for the first time this week. My sister who has been impatiently counting down the days gave birth to a beautiful baby girl. We are Skype acquainted and I’ve taken the opportunity to flex the credit card and assume the role of Uncle Spoiler.
Ever since that first glimpse of her niece Anna has developed a mischievous broody glint in her eye and Max keeps banging on about sister this and sister that – it’s fair to say I’m feeling the pressure from all angles. In truth I’d love another child and it will happen but in the interim I get to have all of the excitement without any of the responsibility with my niece.
In the run up to the big day I was stalking my sister via Facebook to see if I could glean any pregnancy news and noticed a friend’s comment – “it’s the most wonderful thing in the world being a mum, you’ll love it”. I’m sure this is the ‘done’ sentiment to share on these occasions and it’s obviously well meaning but I wonder if it’s actually helpful.
I can remember as a new parent I too had been told that it’s “the most wonderful thing in the world”. I can remember a friend telling me that something happens once you become a Dad, an instant change the moment your child takes their first breaths. I was also told just how much I’d “love it” and I have loved it and I do love it but sometimes I don’t and sometimes I fleetingly glance back on my old life with come hither eyes and I’m not sure I did feel the instantaneous change I was told I should have as soon as Max made his dramatic entrance.
Things happen differently for different people. I have no doubt that for some being a parent is all they have ever hoped for, it is their most wonderful thing and they do love it, but some parents won’t feel that straight away, some take a little longer to arrive there and some may never get there at all.
I’m not criticising the person who made this comment, it’s a throwaway line that I might deliver myself one day. But there will be impending parents who have read something similar, who are scared of what’s about to happen to them, who are doubting themselves and feeling the pressure. Then there will be new parents that have been banking on the fact that it is the most wonderful thing in the world and for them in those early days it’s not.
I know my sister will be a fantastic mother and with a couple of clucky grandparents just down the road and a caring partner she will have all the support she needs. It will be wonderful, you will love it but there might be days when it’s not and you don’t and that is okay too.
Linking up with Jess at http://essentiallyjess.com/