Pre-Mom Pregnancy Warning List

by Claire Minnaar

I know this probably isn’t very nice of me, but when I see a Mom-to-be (with her first); I do find myself wondering whether she REALLY knows what she’s in for. We all get warned about having kids and why we should wait, but until you’re there, you simply haven’t a CLUE!

Before we had kids and I was pregnant with Ethan, Ryan and I swore that the kids would fit into OUR lifestyle and things would carry on as usual once he was a few months old. Boy, oh boy, were we proven wrong!
I used to babysit my cousins and help my aunt out with her kids. It was a total breeze! So, surely, I can manage a new baby? Ja, right! For me, there’s an emotion that can almost not be described when you have a child. You feel a love like you’ve never felt before, a feeling or need to protect like you’ve never felt before and so much more – nothing like when you handled another person’s child. The level of responsibility is so different, but also SO VERY special.

So, I thought it could be interesting to put a PRE-MOM WARNING LIST together. These aren’t meant to scare you (and probably won’t), but I’m putting the list together so I can be right and say “I told you so” one day! 🙂

  • You WILL be tired – no matter how tired you’ve been in the past, you will at one point or another be the most tired you’ve ever been. Long nights studying for exams and / or partying just don’t compare to the late night with kids.
  • You will cry…A LOT – I cried when both my kids came out, the second day after they arrived, when I was told there was something wrong with my child (not serious, don’t worry!), when I was at the point that I just needed more sleep, when I’ve had that awful dream / thought that I could lose them….the list goes on.
  • Some people will come see you only for the kids – yes, this is true and alas – they are at an advantage. They have the “CUTE” factor!
  • You will feel inadequate / guilty / useless at some point – you can drive a car, you’ve got a matric / diploma / degree, your IQ is brilliant, yet you can’t get your child to stop crying, listen to you, eat their food or you don’t have a clue what’s wrong or how to fix things when something is happening with your child.
  • Your life views and priorities will change – these will change as soon as you find out your’re pregnant and they will just keep changing.
  • You will be judged – when you enter into the Mommy Community, someone somewhere will feel you need direction or advice. Someone will think you could be doing things better or differently. Your parenting skills WILL be spoken about with others. Hint: Ignore it – it’s SO NOT worth worrying about!
  • Financials will be a little tighter – with babies, come expenses. And, the reality is that until they are out, you don’t know how much. It could be doctor’s bills, formula bills, special need requirements…the list also goes on. Note: You deal with it and you do get through it.
  • One or more parts of your body will be changed forever – most women complain about their boobs and some complain about their stomachs. I’ve got friends whose shoe sizes changed. If you’re one of those lucky women who just bounce back, then ignore this point and know that at this very point in time, I don’t like you very much! 😉
  • Freedom and choices will be reduced a lot AND when you do go out, YOU WILL NOT go anywhere fast – reduction in the freedom department goes without saying and I think it’s one of the first things people think about before having kids. With a small baby or a young child, you have to get someone to babysit (trust issues), you have to consider sleep times, feeding times, where they can sleep, etc. And, when you’ve figured it all out, it takes you about an hour to leave before you’ve packed clothes, prams, food, etc. in the car.
  • Alone time will not quite be like it was – this is more difficult when they are babies, but as they grow up and they become more independent, your alone time can increase.
  • You will bad mouth your kid(s) – yes, a day will come (I can put money on it now that there will be a few of these), that you will moan about your child, think about why on EARTH did you have them, want to give them away or throw them out the house – this is normal and part of being a parent (no need to book yourself into a mental institution or to bring the the strong medication out!)

All of the things mentioned above are difficult and are challenges we go through as parents. But, let me tell you, it’s all worth it when you get a smile, a giggle, an ”I LOVE YOU, MOMMY”, a hug, a little hand asking for you…the list is ENDLESS and it’s amazing!

One Tip for the Future: No matter how you feel, remember it’s OK and it’s most likely VERY normal! Make sure to talk to those you trust and those who will PICK YOU UP rather than put you down (you know who these people are). And, above all, enjoy the process (on those days you can and there WILL be lots of them)!

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