Reflecting on 2018 - a year of firsts

2018 was pretty incredible.

I said it about 2017, what with my hen party, my best friend's hen party, us getting married, my best friend also getting married, our honeymoon, finding out we were having P... but 2018 topped that.

I always knew becoming a mum would change me, I just didn't realise how much. I've always been maternal and have always been so excited to have a baby and start a family.

2018 just fulfilled all my dreams and wishes. It was incredibly hard, don't get me wrong. Whilst my pregnancy was quite smooth sailing compared to how others have it, I did struggle being pregnant. I struggled with how much my body changed; and how rapidly. My size was a big issue, not only to me but to other people it seemed. People seemed to find it okay to comment on how big I was and pass judgement on how far along I looked, how big they thought my baby would be and when they thought I'd give birth, because "surely you can't go to full term if you're that size already".

It was horrific and sometimes it really got me down.

My body is still something I struggle to accept now. I hate my stretch marks, my saggy belly, my ginormous boobs... I have found myself being really critical of my body, something I got out of the habit of doing a long time ago. I really must stop, though. Not only for me but for Peyton. I don't want her to overhear me saying how much I hate my body and her to grow up thinking she has to feel the same way. I don't want her to think she has to conform to these unrealistic images we are drip-fed every single day, brainwashed into thinking are real life when, in reality, there's a hell of a lot of editing and filters been applied to the person before us.

I'm so thankful that I didn't grow up in a world with social media. MSN, MySpace, Piczo and Bebo were about as close as we got but even they weren't as readily accessible as it all is now as we didn't have internet on our phones 'back in those days'. I really want Peyton to be body confident because I know that, no matter her shape or size, she will be beautiful.

Right, enough of the deep shit! Back to reflecting on 2018!

Our first daughter, our first child, born June 20th. She was one week overdue and it was the longest week of my entire life. I won't go into my birth story again because I've gone into that, at length, before. If you'd like to read it again here is my version and here is Tom's version.

From there, it was my first birthday as a mum; her first bonfire night; her first trip to Selby firework display; her first time meeting Father Christmas; her first holiday; her first foods... all the firsts have been incredible.

She managed to squeeze one more first in, too, just before 2018 ended - her first tooth!

Yep, that's right, our baby girl has an actual, proper gnasher!

I spotted a dark hole on her bottom gum the weekend before Christmas and said to Tom I wondered if a tooth was on its way through. On Christmas Eve I could feel something bumpy on her gum, where the hole was, and by Boxing Day it had come through enough to be able to see it!

It's bloody sharp for a teeny, tiny tooth. Thankfully she hasn't bitten me while I've been feeding her, but I can sense it is coming. Each time I go to feed her my toes curl as she latches on in anticipation for the bite.

Her first Christmas thankfully wasn't ruined by the arrival of her tooth. She was still in great spirits; so much so that she was having way too much fun to nap at all during the day so went a steady 14 hours without any kip. Needless to say that she started to wear out around tea time and bedtime was welcomed when it came!

It was so lovely her first Christmas. We all went to my mum and dad's - both my family and Tom's. We did the same last year and my dad built a massive table to fit us all around.

It was so nice to be all together again this year, especially with it being Peyton's first Christmas. Her little face when she was presented with all her new toys was amazing. I could see she didn't know what to play with first.

Our house now looks like an off-shoot of Smyth's Toy Store, there are toys everywhere you look. Yet, despite all of that, her favourite thing to play with is a packet of Haribo and the tv remotes. She could have hours of fun with a bag of sweets, bless her!

2018 is going to take some serious topping. We've nothing even firmly planned yet for this year. We would like to go on our first family holiday abroad, so I expect in the coming weeks we will look into that and try and get something booked. Towards the end of the year I expect we'll maybe be starting to discuss/think about a brother or sister for Peyton (although it does heavily depend on how she is because if she's an absolute sassy diva nightmare we are waiting until she's older!) Before we can even think about baby number two I think we would probably need to look at moving house. We could stay where we are now with another baby but it would be way more cramped than I would like.

Suddenly 2019 feels like it's going to be filled with a lot of stress...!

Forgetting all of that for now, I'll worry about that when the time comes around, 2019 will see our baby girl have her first birthday, no doubt her first steps, her first word(s), her first day at nursery... there are still so many firsts that we have to look forward to; and I cannot wait!

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