'Being a new mum isn't all it's cracked up to be – and I'm not scared to admit it'

Luisa Zissman shares an honest account of how she felt as a new mum
Luisa Zissman shares an honest account of how she felt as a new mum

Luisa Zissman rose to fame in 2013 when she became runner-up on the BBC’s The Apprentice. Her honesty and frank opinions on motherhood and all things topical have since gained her a large social media following.

It’s never really spoken about. You are just meant to seamlessly glide into your new role of motherhood as if you were born to do it.

The calling of being a mother and knowing exactly what to do with your new little bundle of joy should be - they tell you - an instinct that kicks in like no other.

Don’t moan about the sleepless nights, don’t lust over your pre-baby body and don’t crave your old careless, spontaneous life. You wouldn’t want to be ungrateful.

Because there are, after all, thousands of women that want to be in your position.

This view on new mums is widespread and damaging - and it’s very much an ‘Instagram vs reality’ thing.

The reality is you will most definitely long for your old carefree life; you’ll crave the days you didn’t have to look after a child with a hangover.

Read more: Why parenting in a pandemic doesn’t mean you have to become Mary Poppins overnight

You will resent your stretch marks and that ‘mum tum’ and long for your pre-baby figure back.

The sleepless nights will make you feel like you’re a zombie existing in this body that you don’t recognise.

And the silent suffering that you endure because no one else talks about this and everyone else seems ‘fine’ can eventually drive you to a dark, lonely place.

The loneliness of being a new mum is excruciating.

Groundhog days of eat, sleep, s***, repeat will make you wonder why you ever decided to procreate - a decision you didn’t take lightly.

Asian happy young mother kissing her two months old daughter's feet in bed at home
Luisa argues that Instagram shows a different picture to reality (posed by model) Photo:Getty

Read more: Pregnancy and birth care is changing because of coronavirus - here’s what you need to know

And how, when you wanted something so badly, could you ever have even a fleeting moment of wanting to send that baby back?

Well, I will be the voice to tell you that you are normal. Everyone else might be scared to say it, for fear of a social shunning, but I’m not.

Being a new mum is not all it’s cracked up to be.

Nothing in life is easy and learning to be a mum isn’t either. Try to get out - following social distancing guidelines - even if you throw a coat over your PJs and go for a walk to get some fresh air.

You will find your rhythm. You will find other mummy friends and every day the love you have for your little human will grow and grow.

Luisa Zissman shares an honest account of motherhood
Luisa says once you get through the darkness, you'll feel an overwhelming rush of love

Then one day you’ll have an overwhelming rush of love and wonder what you ever did before.

You’ll learn to accept your new body, your confidence will build back up and a new woman will rise within you.

It’s hard to get through the dark days of navigating motherhood - but we have all lived in that darkness. Or, at least, I have - and I’m not ashamed to admit it.

Follow Luisa on Instagram @luisazissman and Twitter @thelululife.