Yesterday Logan laughed for the first time, like really laughed! And OMG my heart melted. It’s the most indescribable feeling raising a little human. I had heard moms say things like that in the past, before I had a baby of my own. But now I understand what they meant. The first time she smiled at me, my eyes started to tear up because my heart was so happy. When she laughed yesterday I had tears rolling down my cheeks as I laughed with her. I saw her little personality shining through those pretty blue eyes and thought, “I can’t believe I made this”. It’s these little moments that make me understand why people decide to have more than one kid.
There are so many things about pregnancy and becoming a new parent that people don’t talk about. The recovery process is really tough for moms. Your body just pushed another human out of it, of course its going to take a while to heal. A long nine months of buildup all comes down to this one day when your body just spits out a mini person. The belly is still there, just smaller and saggier. Your body is this alien thing that you don’t even recognize and your stretch marks are painful to look at. You know that you just preformed a damn near miracle so you love your body anyway and just hope that it goes back to how it was, and as hard as it is to believe.. it pretty much does, eventually. Going to the bathroom is terrifying. All that blood and junk that was in there with your baby is still coming out of you for weeks! I KNOW..TMI but I really feel that this needs to be shared because I was not expecting to have to wear mondo maxi pads for over a month after having a baby. Breastfeeding is painful and SO time consuming, you’re at your baby’s beck and call every couple of hours all day and all night.
One thing you’re probably expecting but never actually ready for is the sleep deprivation. Why are you expecting it? Well because every friend, relative, and acquaintance with a child will be sure to tell you to enjoy your sleep while it lasts, of course.. ensuring you that it won’t last very long! Well being 9 months pregnant, waking up to pee 5 times a night, struggling to get comfortable, having a hard time flipping from one side to the other, and trying to ignore the back pain while fighting off leg cramps and acid reflux isn’t exactly a great nights sleep either. (run-on sentence much?- yeah, it was necessary)
The lack of sleep might cause you and your partner to get into stupid little arguments. I know it was difficult for Blake at first because I was the only one who could feed Logan but I was just SO tired and uncomfortable and two hours felt more like two minutes between feedings. When he would say “she’s hungry!” as if I didn’t know, it honestly was annoying to me. I know he didn’t mean to be rude about it, he was just frustrated that she was crying and he couldn’t give her what she needed. I would have to mentally prepare myself for the pain of breastfeeding each and every time. We had to stop ourselves a couple of times and verbally point out that we were arguing with each other for no good reason other than we were both sleep deprived.
It was those first few weeks that made me wonder why the hell anyone would put themselves through that on purpose multiple times over. I looked at my mom and thought, woman you are insane for having three children so close together. I’ve always loved her for being my mom but I definitely had a newfound respect for her and all the other great moms I know. Those first few weeks go by, and breastfeeding is no longer painful. You start to get used to waking up in the middle of the night and functioning with less sleep. Your body starts to heal and your belly slowly but surely begins to shrink. Going to the bathroom becomes less scary and suddenly you’ve got the hang of life with a newborn. Then all of a sudden, your baby isn’t fitting into those newborn clothes anymore and you’re feeling conflicted about how fast they’re growing. The first couple weeks are a huge blur. Your baby is this little slug who can’t do anything for themselves and they do nothing exciting… but the baby cuddles are intoxicating. Feeling that soft little head on your cheek is another indescribably wonderful feeling. Then come the smiles, and then the laughs and you realize that your life before baby was void of something and you never had any idea. You never knew that your heart could be SO full of love. You understand why people want more. You may even try to remind yourself of all the hard times and difficulties so that you don’t end up with Irish twins.
I am loving being a mom and I could go on all day about about the cute things my baby does and how much I love her, but I think it’s equally as important to acknowledge the harder parts. Spreading baby fever with pictures and videos is easy but people don’t see all the hard work behind those pictures. The ten thousand diaper changes and the never-ending neurotic google searches about whether the color of baby’s poop is normal, what that rash could be, and when they will start sleeping through the night, etc. ect.
Motherhood is a difficult lifestyle change. It’s a demanding job and it can be really draining. But that first laugh, yeah…. that first laugh makes it all worthwhile.