Motherhood Myths and Other Things that Make Me Choke on My Wine

Relaxed Mother, Relaxed Baby. Letʼs get one thing straight here – the only people spouting this offensive mantra are people who have won the baby lottery and given birth to a “sleeper”. These people think they have actually influenced their child by being calm. It doesnʼt take an Einstein to figure out that if the Mother is getting some SLEEP, she will be RELAXED, and not the other way around. If, however, you have given birth to the more common, “Awake Banshee”, then you will strangely notice that your ability to be relaxed is severely compromised. An ironic trait of the “Awake Banshee”, who will usually wake the minute you tiptoe silently past their bedroom door, is that they ARE able to have long, intensively peaceful, deep sleeps. These will occur when you are late to pick your 3 year old up from Kindy.

Sleep When the Baby Sleeps - A saying most probably invented by a man, who would also be quietly furious to arrive home to dirty washing, an overflowing dishwasher and no dinner.

Nutrition – How did mashing organic vegetables and carefully planning healthy, nutritious and balanced meals for my kids become throwing a packet of chocolate biscuits at them and announcing, “Itʼs quiet time! Mummy will be lying down watching “The Love Boat”.

Iʼll tell you how…morning sickness.

Personal Grooming. Ok, this is a fairly big category and has several facets. At this stage, it takes all my efforts to appear somewhat groomed on the outside. I insist on keeping my hair appointments, (although the finished product gets a three day run at the most, before being scraped back into a ponytail), I apply some mascara and lip-gloss before leaving the house and try not to wear food stained/snot smeared clothes whenever possible. However, anyone who cared to scrape beneath the surface would find a very different story. I’m still sporting the remains of a 3 month ago pedicure that was an unexpected extra at a girlfriend’s hens party, my eyebrows need a reshape, and, if I had the time, some new bras would not go astray. As much as I’d love to be in the beauty spa having my pubic hair ripped into the shape of my husband’s initials, I seem to spend my “alone” time in much more selfish ways – either a) grocery shopping without the “assistance” of “helpers” or b) locked in the toilet doing important research on the Kardashians whilst having my first non-audienced bowel movement of the day.

Iʼll just duck out to pick up some milk – It is a universal law that if you leave your house to perform any task, no matter how small, without doing your hair, changing out of your food stained track pants or checking your reflection in the mirror, you will unavoidably run into at least one of your ex-boyfriends, and possibly an old school rival. They will engage you in conversation and tell you how great it is to see you, and you will fake enthusiasm and confidence until you depart, daring to believe you might get away with the whole interaction – I mean, after all, how bad can you really look? See, a little confidence goes a long way – they probably didn’t even notice the yogurt on my t-shirt! It is then, as you look up into the review mirror to reverse out of your park, that you will notice the coriander leaf covering the whole of your second-to-middle front tooth, giving you the appearance of a scurvy pirate. Damn that Thai salad.

Dancing – Remember dancing the night away with your girlfriends, carefree and creative on the dance floor? Well brace yourself – although not scientifically proven yet, the minute pregnancy hormones hit your system, they will severely restrict your ability to dance in any way resembling cool. Oh sure – you’ll try, and in fact some poor souls will actually believe they are pulling it off. However, unless you’re JLo, people will judge you as a “mother dancer” and dance around you sympathetically as you tap the beat on your thighs and steer your watermelon gut from side to side. Perhaps the most unfortunate part of the whole affair is that even after the baby is born, the ability to cool dance will be gone forever, leaving an awkward, ungainly shell of the fabulously fun dancer you used to be – case in point, Britney Spears and your mother.

The baby will fit in with me - Which brings me to my final point. Before the first baby is born, we all believe that we will be the kind of person who takes motherhood in our stride and will not let a baby rule the roost – after all – Iʼve travelled through Europe! Iʼve had a career! I will simply strap my baby to my back and trek through India whilst maintaining my career via iphone! Let me break it to you gently. That baby’s sole purpose in itʼs first few months of life, is to make you think that you have been hit by a bus and are now flitting in and out of a coma. Even the simplest tasks, like having a shower, will take on a new sense of achievement. You will only eat what some other kind soul puts in front of you, and the postman (and anyone else who comes to your front door for that matter) will see your boobs – and you wonʼt care. At 2am you may find yourself screaming “What have we done to our lives?!” at your husband, who very quickly develops the skills to sleep through the babyʼs incessant crying (or at least look like he is).You will become obsessed with sleeping patterns and begin to time each nap to the minute, and your desire to obliterate your friendʼs dirty children who are touching your babyʼs clean toys will be thinly veiled. In short, I have never met anyone whose baby fit in with their old life, but, after a bit of an adjustment period, Iʼve never met anyone who would go back to their old one anyway.


Written by Hayley Bracewell – mother of 2 boys with her third child due in October. She currently resides in Brisbane, Australia

She is the queen of Funny!


  1. Annie said...

    Hey Hon. CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!!!!!! 3 is ace. I had my no.3 in October too. Anyway, I digress. This was a wonderful read. Grinning as we speak. Couldn’t have put it better myself sista. xx

    Apr 22, 2011 at 5:02 pm
  2. Natalie said...

    Oh how very very true! Most of the above “advice” (insert sarcastic tone here) is doled out by secretly smug non-patrnts who are never short of tips on how to make the whole parenting gig a bit easier. I have to admit a small (ok….big) sense of satisfaction watching those very people have little ones of their own. Suddenly the advice seems to stop!

    Great article! Keep em’ coming :)

    Apr 22, 2011 at 5:30 pm
  3. Marron said...

    Love the work….very funny.

    Apr 28, 2011 at 9:20 pm
  4. mirena said...

    Hi! I’m at work browsing your blog from my new apple iphone! Just wanted to say I love reading your blog and look forward to all your posts! Carry on the superb work!

    Oct 25, 2011 at 4:20 pm

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