Hindsight is one of the greatest gifts of motherhood. It is experience passed onto from parent to parent. Simply by saying 'I know how it feels', can be all it takes to turn the world the right way up again.
Our Moonshine nappy is a story of the wisdom that is left behind from those long nights of zero sleep. There is always a story behind our prints and Moonshine tells the story of a little boy who didn't sleep.
When I became pregnant, I fully embraced all things pregnancy and signed up to ALL the newsletters, read the books, went to ante-natal classes. I did everything I could to learn how to be a mum. So I thought.
He was born after a difficult labour and I had this overwhelming love for this little person but felt completely and utterly lost about how to look after him. He cried each time I put him down and would not sleep unless he was on my chest. I kept getting told off by the midwives in the hospital when I dozed off with him on my chest or after I had fed him. I was petrified I was doing it all wrong and felt guilt about putting him down or picking him up.
Over the next few weeks and months, he would only sleep when he was on my chest but those sessions of sleep only last 26 mins at a time. Yes I timed them. And this continued for what felt like forever. It was so tough. It wasn't what was in the books.
When he was a born, Facebook was in its infancy, so there were no groups or support like there are now. All of my friends had babies who slept. Everyone at baby groups had babies that slept. It got so bad that I couldn't spend any time with them because it would eat me up inside. 'What was I doing wrong?' and the guilt I felt about him not being able to sleep was off the scale. So I shut myself off.
It wasn't until he was just past one when he started to sleep for 2 hours at a time at night and nap for an hour in the day. I was pregnant too and I was clinging onto every hope that I could get him to sleep for longer before my little girl arrived. I was full of despair of how I would cope.
Then one day, I read something somewhere from a mum who had been through years of sleepless nights and she said try and sit with them under the light of the moon if you can. Watch their faces and the rise and fall of their chest and know that it is just you and your baby in that moment. One day, they will be grown and you would love a chance to watch them sleep under moonlight.
That mum's hindsight really resonated with me and so I put a chair by the window and did just that at every wake up. As I held him to get him back to sleep and I would say to him 'I love you to the moon and back' and try to be mindful of the moment, even through the exhaustion.
He did eventually start to sleep better but we would have the odd time when we would snuggle under moonshine. And in one of those moments, one of my most magical motherhood memories was born. He looked up to me as he was falling asleep and said 'A moon Mama, a moon'. He was telling me that he loved me to the moon and back.
And just like that, the moon and hindsight joined forces and all that unbearable exhaustion melted away and replaced it with magic.
My son is 13 now. We have a really close bond, which I like to think was formed under the light of the moon. This morning he texted me while he was on the school bus saying ' A moon Mama, a moon xx'. I was transported back to those sleepless nights with full on rose tinted glasses.
I wish I knew that mum who had gave me the gift of their hindsight. A gift that is now embedded into the story of our Moonshine nappy. With it's grey clouds of the hard days and the moonshine which weaves it's magical threads of bonds and love.