As a new mother, your ‘get excited’ threshold is probably pretty low. After all, every half smile, hiccup or burp from your baby has you beside yourself with joy. The things that used to excite you (skydiving, all night parties and designer shoe sales) are, for the moment at least, resigned to the history books as you make way for new and unexciting things such as breast pads, reflux and lullabies.
That’s not to say you won’t be getting excited though. Heck, you’ll still know the hysteria of a fan at a Justin Bieber concert. But as you exist in the newborn stupor, with very little grasp of much else outside the warm and cosy world inside your arms, where your baby lies peacefully sleeping, it will take much less to please you. Quite simply, you have lowered your expectations for each day, and now the following lame things excite you beyond measure:
#1: Getting Anywhere On Time
With a baby in tow, getting anywhere on time is a huge achievement, so don’t feel embarrassed if you unconsciously fist-pump as soon as you enter the cafe, it’s totally normal to be that excited. After all, all parents know only too well that to get anywhere on time with a newborn you have to get up three hours earlier than you would have in your pre-motherhood days, allow for at least two costume changes for the baby (and one for yourself), and that even then, the baby will do a giant poop as soon as you need to leave the house. And then decide it’s times for a feed, so getting anywhere on time is definitely worthy of a celebration.
#2: Sleeping For Four Consecutive Hours
The first time this happens after the birth of your baby, upon waking you will react like a lottery winner who has just bagged the jackpot. It will be a mixture of elated joy, disbelief, panic and fear. You will open your ache-free eyes to the sound of silence, and immediately rush to check whether your baby is ok. Once you have checked that she’s breathing, you will be able to celebrate the fact that you just had all that sleep.
#3: Having A Hot Drink
The arrival of the baby marks the end of your love of hot drinks, only to be replaced by a habit for drinking lukewarm cups of tea found lying around the house. You may even have fallen to the depths of never quite making that cup of tea, and instead finding hopeful looking tea bags placed in empty mugs, discarded by a now-cold kettle of once-boiled water. On the rare occasions you manage to make a tea and drink it while it’s still warm, you will probably find that it tastes a little saltier than usual. Don’t worry, that’s just your tears of joy.
#4: Flash-Free Feeds
Breastfeeding is public is a personal experience, but one that a whole bunch of strangers happen to be closeby for. Public feeding is a minefield for accidental boob flashes, and, should you desire a bit of privacy, it is worth celebrating when you manage a whole feed in public without accidentally flashing the group of people sitting next to you. Don’t celebrate too loudly however, or you will draw the attention of the elderly couple whilst also startling your baby into latching off, and then you will have failed a flash-free feed, yet again.
#5: Seeing The Bottom Of The Laundry Basket
You have probably noticed that when your family grew from two to three, your laundry pile grew to two million times it’s usual size. All of a sudden, the floor space in front of your washing machine is covered in a carpet of dirty clothes. As you stare at the tiny baby asleep on your chest, you wonder how it can be possible for her to create so much dirty laundry. You can no longer ‘do’ laundry, because you must accept that it will never be ‘done’. There will always be more waiting, hiding under beds and sofa cushions, peering out from behind doors and in nappy bags. The rare occasions you and your partner manage to get through so much laundry that you can see the bottom of the laundry basket you will want to jump for joy. But don’t, because the turbulence might upset the baby’s tummy causing her to throw up, and making it time to say goodbye to the beautiful sight of the bottom of your laundry basket.
#6: Adult Conversation
This one might be cliche, but it’s true. After talking to yourself all morning, while your baby looks on with a faint expression of disinterest, a real adult conversation can be stimulating. It’s always exciting to make it out of the house and into the welcoming arms of your friends, so that you can lose yourself in a real two way conversation. Obviously you will mostly talk about how tired you are and how many nappies you change, but that’s fine, it still counts as adult conversation.
#7: Remembering That Thing…
The dreaded phenomenon of mummy brain can infect even the brightest of minds, leaving you feeling foggy and a little slower than usual. One common complaint of new mothers is the frustration of not being able to remember things, be it the word ‘scissors’ or the reason you walked into the dining room, new mothers are forgetting things left, right and centre. So, on the rare occasions you manage to remember the words for scissors before having to call your partner and ask him, it is perfectly reasonable to be excited. You have saved yourself another embarrassment, good work, memory.
#8: When Things Go To Plan
Nothing makes a new parent more excited than when baby sleep just works out. You know how it is, you really really want the baby to sleep at a certain time so she will be awake later on. It never works out how you want it to. Except when it does, and those days are the greatest gifts life has ever given you.Those are the days you get to read a book and enjoy a hot drink in a cafe, or speak to a much-loved old friend on the phone, or create yourself to a quiet bath. And on those days, you can’t help but feel smug about that fact that you are clearly winning at parenting.