An interview with Becky Woodburn, a myHummy Brand Ambassador, creator of Tots Together and mum to Indigo. Follow Tots Together on Facebook.
Becky, what was the best piece of advice you were given as a new parent?
One of my best friends told me when I was pregnant to feel free to say no to visitors (besides grandparents etc) for the first week or so. I thought she was mad at first – why wouldn’t I want to show off my new baby to everybody straight away… and wouldn’t I feel guilty saying no to people? Honestly, it was one of the best bits of advice I’ve ever been given. The moment our birth announcement went on social media, we had an absolute influx of well wishes and gorgeous messages. But, we also had – understandably – lots of requests for people to come round.
We were in our own little bubble at home – we were settling in to a new routine and finding our feet as new parents. We were shattered beyond belief, and had no time for ourselves – let alone other people! I actually felt so empowered (and not at all guilty!) to be able to ask people to come round in a week or two’s time, and nobody even questioned our decision. It meant we got to stay in our own little bubble a bit longer and found our feet, with no added “pressure” from anyone else.
What has been your favourite milestone with your baby?
Am I allowed to say them all?! This is going to sound cheesy as anything, but every single time my little girl does anything new, I think to myself, “Wow! This is the best stage!”. Then she goes and does something even more incredible a month later, and I feel the same again and again. No doubt we can repeat this cycle until she turns 45, haha! Having said that, Indigo is now 2 and I am loving the fact that she is able to communicate with me properly (even if that does mean her shouting and screaming that she wants the blue cup not the red one!). It’s a truly special age (once you’ve dealt with the tantrums), but I am sure that the milestones to come are going to be just as incredible.
Did you work during your baby’s first year? If yes, how did you manage your time?
Yes! I was actually made redundant whilst pregnant (felt awful at the time, but in hindsight it was amazing to rest and get ready for my baby), so I didn’t have a job to return to. In short, we couldn’t just live off my husband’s wage. So, when Indigo was 6 months old, I took up an evening job, 3 evenings a week at a local holiday park. In a way, I felt like I’d taken a huge step back career-wise; I’d gone from a good job with a decent income, to a zero hour contract and minimum wage. But, the job was easy, they were flexible around my husband’s work schedule, and it meant I got to spend every day with my little girl.
My husband would come home from work at 5pm, and I would have prepared Indigo’s dinner and got dressed for work. He would swap with me – taking over meal time, bath time and bedtime – and I would jump straight in the car at 5.15pm to start work at 6pm. It was hard, it ate into our weekends, and I definitely ran myself into the ground at times. But, it also meant that I didn’t have to give up fun summer days out to the beach or the castle with my little one.
What is your top tip for any new parent?
DON’T DOUBT YOURSELF!! Everyone has opinions on how to parent. How you should be feeding/dressing/carrying your baby; how much they should sleep; the amount of screen time they should have; what time their bedtime should be; how heavy/light/big/small your baby is… the list is endless! I am so lucky to be surrounded by a bunch of wonderfully supportive people, but even some of their comments left me doubting myself at times.
My “baby” is now two, yet just the other day, I had a comment made to me that she should be walking more and using the pram less. The comments don’t stop, but how they affect you can. TRUST YOURSELF. No, seriously… Trust. Yourself! You know your baby better than anyone else. Of course reach out for help or suggestions if you genuinely want them. But, if comments are fired at you unexpectedly, or someone says something that catches you off guard, take a deep breath, smile, and remember what a fabulous parent you are!
What is your current bedtime routine?
We’ve had the same bedtime routine since my little girl was about 6 months old. She is now 2 and it still works, so we won’t be changing it anytime soon! We wind down together watching CBeebies bedtime hour on TV, we then run a bath and we usually put some Childs Farm Bedtime Bubbles in there (they smell sooooo good, and I think Indigo associates the smell with sleep!). Once out of the bath, we go into her bedroom and turn on our myHummy, before moisturising her eczema patches and getting her into PJs. We let Indigo choose a book – which we read together – and once the book is finished, we all kiss the book goodnight and put it away. At this point, the light goes off, Indigo pops into bed and we sing a goodnight song that I made up for her.
Now that she’s getting older, she sings along with us… it’s a truly melt your heart moment!! We then leave the room, and she falls asleep listening to the myHummy’s heartbeat sound. Me and my husband take it in turns who does the bedtime routine, but (where work allows), we both try and sneak in the room in time for the song.
Becky’s Review of Lucas
Lucas is a Bluetooth myHummy from our range of white noise toys for babies. Read the full review on her page.
“I could rant and rave about how bloomin’ brilliant the myHummy has been for me and Indi, I’ve been so, so, so impressed – I feel like this is a gift that should be on EVERY baby shower list! Why doesn’t every mum know about this!! I honestly can’t wait to try out the myHummy Bluetooth app – it came out just after Indi was born so my myHummy wasn’t compatible – but to be able to control the MyHummy from my phone, monitor battery levels and turn the volume up and down remotely will be AMAZING!! Can you tell I’m excited? “