Let's talk about love, baby

Mother and Baby column

Let's talk about love, baby

I’ve always been a loving person. I’m the first to give hugs in social situations, and fall for my friends hard – once you’ve made an impact on my heart, I’m impossible to shake off! And before having children, I thought I knew how much love I had to give and how that
would manifest itself in motherhood. I imagined it to be a more intense version of what I already shared with the world. But I was wrong.
It’s not the same sort of love at all.

Each time I’ve fallen pregnant,
I’ve felt a wave of emotion wash over me, as I thought about how our lives would change when our little bundle arrived. As soon as the word ‘pregnant’ appeared on the test, I’d be filled with dreams of our future and a deep affection for the baby growing inside me. And when
I became a mum for the first time, the love was not akin to any I’d ever experienced before. In truth, it made the affection that came previously seem futile and childish. When I first met Buzz, I fell. I fell deeper than I’d ever fallen before. And I continue to fall each and every day – no matter how many times I have to tell him to brush
his teeth or stop climbing on the back of the sofa!

Motherhood is unconditional. Once you’ve held your baby in your arms, it’s as though you’ve signed an imaginary, binding contract, letting everyone know that you have become tied into a mission that’ll take over your very existence, usually without a second thought for yourself (well, not at first anyway).

The love of a mother is complex, yet consistent and unwavering. I’ve found it isn’t simply looking at their faces and wanting to kiss them endlessly. It’s a tickling sensation around the edges of your heart as you watch him master how to use
a spoon. It’s your insides melting as he shows kindness to another child. It’s the sheer panic and horror when you think he might be hurt.

And it’s feeling that mum-guilt. There’s a very good reason you’re smacked with mum-guilt as soon as you discover you’re pregnant, and that is because you want what is best for your child. You want him to be loved, safe and happy, and so you spend forever questioning whether you’re achieving that. A pregnant friend of mine has recently reached her due date. It made me think
back to the later stages of my first pregnancy (I didn’t quite get to that point, as Buzz was almost three weeks early) and I realised that those last few weeks, when most women are frantically walking around trying to get their baby in the optimum position for labour, are probably the last bit of guilt-free alone time most mums will ever have. It’s funny how we don’t focus on that side of things more. I think it would help mums relax in the lead up to that life-changing moment.

I’ll always be thankful to my boys for showing me the value and magnitude of what I have to give. It turns out treasured love really is endless.

Read more by me: Mother and Baby