With all the stress and struggles that come with parenting, it’s reasonable that someone without kids may think it’s a miserable experience. One first-time expecting mother from the U.K. internet forum, Mumsnet, was yearning to hear something positive about her upcoming new life as a mom.
The mom-to-be, who goes by Wiltshirelass2019, wrote the following in a post titled, “Does anyone have anything positive to say about being a parent?”:
“Just about to have my first baby and all I seem to read is that being a parent is drudgery. Everyone with kids tells me my life is over and I’ll never sleep again. It’s really getting me down. AIBU [Am I being unreasonable?] or do people with kids never seem to have anything nice to say about parenting when you’re pregnant? I’m s******g myself 😭.”
She then received stellar insights from parents that while positive, didn’t sugar-coat what it’s really like to have kids.
User Whocanbebothered told the OP of the joys found while watching their children’s developmental stages:
“My kids are 10 and 11 now and it’s a fascinating new stage. The baby, toddler, early school years all come with their own challenges but the kids are so entertaining and full of wonder when small that it more than makes up for it. I’m really enjoying this new stage they have reached; there is a lot more independence for them, they walk home from school themselves, I can pop to the shop without bundling everyone out the door and they do chores.”
This mother, who goes by the username TwiceAsNice22, appreciates learning new life lessons via the fresh perspective of her child:
“It is hard at times and the lack of sleep is a killer, but the good parts far outweigh the hard times. One of the nicest things is seeing the world through your child’s eyes, it makes you notice things that as an adult you often take for granted.”
Though user ElspethFlashman struggled with postpartum depression, she still found so much joy from parenting:
“Their facial expressions, even as babies. Watching a baby really concentrate on having a poo—you will be in stitches! And they stay hilarious for years and years. My 4-year-old makes up silly rhymes and songs and is obsessed with gas and wind and it absolutely cracks me up.”
She also mentioned this heartwarming ritual she shares with her kids:
“After a hard day at work, being greeted at the door with hugs that knock you over is awesome. It’s like being greeted by really heavy puppies.”
Iyralalala has six kids and they find great happiness by simply chatting with their kids—regardless of their age:
“My day yesterday involved my 4-year-old declaring that when she was older she was going to be a unicorn and I had to accept that as she wouldn’t change her mind. Then a discussion about Brexit and parliament with my 19-year-old. You cross every part of the scale over the years and it’s wonderful.”
DuggeesWoggle shared this part of being a mom that she loves:
“When you look at them and get that fierce feeling of love and pride that this incredible, beautiful, amazing little person came from you and belongs to you (albeit not forever), you just can’t describe it.”
But she didn’t fail to add this honest pearl of wisdom:
“Yes, much of the day-to-day stuff is boring and tedious and can make you want to rip your hair out with frustration but it’s just part of the deal.”
Despite describing her kids as a “handful” and admitting that there are “moments of utter stress” in parenting, user SamStephens had this to say:
“You learn so much about yourself through them—even from the tiniest facial expressions—my daughter squints at me if I say something she thinks is daft, something I didn’t realize I actually do to people myself (husband pointed that out). The unconditional love is a whole other level, I love having cuddles and kisses and just their undivided attention when I’m doing something as mundane as chopping veggies. It’s worth it, 100 percent.”
The OP from Mumsnet has since thanked commenters and said that she’s “feeling better about things already.” Sometimes a little reassurance can go a long way. We hope that others would comfort nervous parents-to-be with similar sweet, yet honest anecdotes. But we have a feeling that when the OP holds her baby for the very first time that she’ll have nothing but a smile—and be just fine!