The honest confessions of a mum with a newborn during lockdown


2 months old. That’s how old my baby was  on 19th March when we had to self isolate due to us all having a persistent cough: a virus symptom. During our isolation, on 23rd March a national lockdown began with no idea of when we can see our families and friends again. So here are my feelings about this situation and my thought process.

I’m worried people won’t love my baby as much as my toddler. As heartbreaking as that sounds, it’s even more heartbreaking to think because it’s true. I am genuinely worried that people won’t love my baby as much as they love our other son. I’m worried that he’s not able to bond with anyone and they’re not able to bond with him. I’m grateful for social media and for family etc to be able to see what he’s up to, but they can’t physically see him and he can’t see them and it tears me apart thinking how much time is slipping away. I ask myself how can they love him just as much without having this time with him, to see his changes and development and to be the reason behind his smiles and laughter. I can’t stop crying about it: in the bath and at night. I feel like I can’t talk to anyone about these feelings because they might just tell me I’m being stupid or something. Of course you can love someone unconditionally without really knowing them, but is unconditional love enough? What about a love that’s built on memories, moments, a bond…..? I want that for my baby and as a mother I should be exposing him to opportunities for this and I can’t. It’s a feeling that physically hurts in my chest when I think about it.

I’m also anxious that my baby’s development will be delayed. Will his social skills suffer? Will he lack confidence? Will he struggle in social gatherings? Will he be cautious of new people? Will he struggle to make friends? Will he trust people? Will he be happy in the company of other people? Will meeting people make him uncomfortable? Will he find it difficult to build relationships – to love and trust people?

So many questions and no answers. People may think they know the answers, but reality is that nobody could possibly know the affect this will have on my baby. It’s not happened before. People can’t time travel. We are in uncharted territory at the moment and as a mum I worry about the impact it’s having on my baby, much more than my toddler who has already developed such skills in this area.  It’s only when you have a newborn baby at home with you that you realise how much they take in every day and how everything affects them. Yes he doesn’t have a clue what’s going on in the world, but for him this is normal and that very idea is what terrifies me. His normality is a far cry from our usual, every-day lives as a family. Will he adjust ok when things change for him? I have no idea.

I feel robbed of our time together, just him and I. His older brother should be in pre-school 3 days a week now. This is a reason we waited for this age gap so I could have time one-to-one with him, just like my eldest son had. I had so many plans for the baby groups and play dates we should be attending and memories we should be making- as just a mother and her son. I feel like I’m grieving for those lost moments because although we will have some when this is all over, we would have already lost so much time and experiences we were meant to have together. I’m trying to take the positive from it being that the two boys now have the opportunity to form such a lovely and strong bond together, but I still feel guilt that I can’t give my baby all of me throughout some of the days.

So those are my confessions: brutal and honest. My head and my heart are hurting right now and I’m locked in a battle with myself about what kind of mum I’m supposed to be to my baby. I’m keeping him safe, which is the most important thing, but what is the sacrifice? None of us really know yet.

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