The double Olympic gold medallist gets to grips with being a mum, and talks to M&B about little Summer’s first 4 weeks.
I’m surviving, just. Me and Harry are getting to know Summer and what she likes – and what she doesn’t. When she cries, we go, ‘Is it her nappy, is she hot or cold, is she hungry?’ If we tick all those off and she’s still crying, then we’ve worked out that she tends to nod off if we walk around with her. We’re figuring it out as we go along. Though I’d love for someone to tell me
if I’m burping her right!
I’m thinking, ‘Is she OK? Am I doing things right?’ all the time
I’m not normally a worrier, but now I’m thinking, ‘Is she OK? Am I doing things right?’ all the time. We’re planning a weekend in London so Harry’s grandparents can meet Summer, and I’m in a panic over so many things I’d never even considered before. I mean, how the heck will we even get a pram around London?
I’ve read Gina Ford and all the others and taken some pointers, but I want Summer to dictate what she needs. I’m not going to leave her to cry for an hour because a book tells me I can’t feed her until 10 o’clock. And I’ve stopped Googling everything.
I’ve realised every parent is winging it just like me
In the first couple of weeks, I was online all the time, trying to find out how much milk or sleep she needed. But I’ve realised every parent is winging it just like me. We all do things in our own way. Harry does stuff different to me and you’ve just got to go with that.
I took Summer swimming last week. I was worried she’d bawl her head off, and she grumbled all the while Harry was getting her changed. But then he put her in the water with me and she was like, ‘Hiya! I’m fine!’ I tried holding her away from me so she could feel the water all around her, and I trickled water over her head. When we got out she peed all over Harry. I was like, ‘Good girl!’
We are all getting a bit more sleep, but me and Harry pretty much go to bed at half past eight, when Summer does. We wolf down our tea before we bath and feed her and settle her down. She’s always crabby between 9pm and 11pm – her witching hour. Hopefully at some point Harry and me will get to come back downstairs while she sleeps.
I don’t think I ever get into a full-on deep sleep
She’s quite a noisy sleeper. Some of the noises she makes sound like she wants to be sick, which makes me anxious. They wake me up straight away. I don’t think I ever get into a full-on deep sleep. Harry could stay asleep all night. I’ll whack him and say, ‘Babe, wake up!’ I do get mad when he nods back off before she’s sorted.
I keep having these ‘Oh, God, I’m a mum!’ moments. It doesn’t seem real. We’re married with a baby – it’s all so grown up. Until you have a baby, you’d never think that you’d love a little human being, who doesn’t really even know who you are, as much as you do. It just sneaks up on you.
Life will never be the same. Yeah, it’s not as simple anymore, definitely not as easy, and you can’t just do what you want. But it’s such a lovely little world when I’m the one cuddling her. I think, in this one house is everything I’ve ever wanted. I look at her and think, ‘I’ll do everything for you, I’ll love and protect you and never let anything bad happen.’ And Summer’s like, ‘What? I just want a poo!’
Watch Becky’s video blog at rebeccaadlington.co.uk