Let me preface this by saying, the second time around is different. I do remember being buoyed through those frustrating early baby days with my first child by this powerful sense of awe.
I also remember judging myself too harshly and comparing myself too often to other mothers. I remember weeping as I tried to get my firstborn (who was a very lazy eater) to latch. I remember literally feeding him drops of breastmilk from my fingertips in the middle of the night because I had been so sure I could breastfeed that I hadn’t prepared for the alternative.
This time around, I am giving myself permission to be flawed, to be frazzled, and most importantly to be honest. (And I’m recognizing that handling a new baby and a 3 & 1/5 year old simultaneously does make for a little more chaos and frustration.)
Musings on New Babies from a Very Tired Momma:
— The days are repetitive and monotonous.
— The nights are long and frustrating.
— Breastfeeding can hurt and doesn’t come naturally to every baby and every mom and when you’re a high energy person sitting still that long drives you crazy.
— You will feel incredibly guilty for not having the energy or the extra arms to play cars with your toddler.
— Patience is much harder to muster when sleep deprived.
— A simple shower becomes a precious luxury of alone time and pampering.
— Putting on real underwear again is a monumental milestone.
— You will feel like a hot mess 95% of the time with pads in your bra and stains on your clothes and dark circles under your eyes and funky, tossed up hair.
— You really start to feel chained to this needy, hungry, helpless human who can’t do much of anything yet except maybe smile when they’re pooping/farting.
— Despite it all, you will still love this little ball of fat rolls and fuzzy hair and dimpled elbows.
— You will find the energy and the willpower to repeat the routine day in and day out because this little life NEEDS you.
— You will look over at them sleeping and they will somehow manage to be the most amazing thing you’ve ever seen.
— And it’s all worth it for the sweet sighs when they snuggle into your chest or the moment their little eyes truly focus on your face or the way they inexplicably become part of your being, as if they had always been there before.
— You don’t have to like or enjoy it all to be a good momma.