Life is really tough right now.
I knew it would be, but this doesn’t make it any easier.
People ask how I am doing, and what am I supposed to say? I tell them the truth – that it’s hard and that I am doing the best that I can – but if I truly stop and express to them just how hard and just how much I struggle, then I fear I’ll just fall apart.
I need more human contact. My son needs more human contact. It’s good for us. But getting there, getting OUT, is SO. FREAKING. HARD.
Today we got up and tried to get to playgroup. I got up around 7:45. The playgroup started at 10:30. By 11:45 I was still feeding my youngest a bottle. I texted to cancel. We ended up taking a walk, by ourselves, in the freezing cold because it was the easiest and quickest way to get outside. Yes, it was better than nothing, but man, it sucked.
And that’s the thing – I don’t expect perfection, but I feel like I am trying my hardest and that I’m still failing. At some point in the day, I’m always failing SOMEbody. Sometimes it’s me (because I can’t make social contact with friends), or the baby (because she’s screaming hungry and has to wait), or my toddler (because he’s screaming that he wants to go outside but has to wait), or my husband (because he listens to me complain and cry and fall apart).
I usually start the day off trying my best to cope, like today. But the time ticks by and more and more gets in the way of reaching our meager goals (getting to playgroup), when it finally comes crashing down because my toddler kicks me in the jaw and I burst into tears, or my baby won’t nurse even though I know she’s hungry and I burst into tears. These days, it’s rare to get through the day without feeling like the walls are crashing down on me.
I have glimpses of hope and reminders that life gets better. I try and hold onto those. But living in the moment requires breaking down, because the here and now is often unbearable. That’s why I am always on my damn phone – if I can just check out for a minute, maybe I can regroup and reenter my life. Or just pass the time; maybe when I lift my head, things will be different. Better.
So I’m coping. At least I am getting more sleep these days, but I am still choosing sleep over most other things. I choose sleep over chores, over human interaction, over getting out of the house. Because if I am not moderately rested, nothing else matters. That may sound dramatic, but it’s true. Here’s the catch, though: if I’m not a zombie physically (sleep deprived), then I’m a zombie emotionally (isolated). It’s like I can’t win.
Not to mention that this winter, everyone and their mom is sick. Everyone in my family was sick a month ago, including my newborn, and that was pure hell. Less sleep and meeting with other people all mean a higher chance of getting sick again…so perhaps hunkering down is what we just need to do right now, even though I don’t have a whole lot of choice in the matter at the moment. I suppose all these circumstances just mean I super prioritize what get togethers we try and attend.
Lest I begin rambling, I will simply repeat my point in closing.
Life is really tough right now.
Today is my birthday, which means I usually: 1) get a massage, 2) go to Starbucks, and 3) write a blog post. Today is no exception.
So far, today has been fabulous. My little girl started sleeping through the night about 3 days ago, which has been a godsend because everyone in the family (including her, poor thing) is sick. Today, my babies let me sleep in til 9am. NINE. In the MORNING. Best birthday present ever.
We snuggled and breastfed and ate breakfast and danced and sang. I tried on my pre-pregnancy jeans (always a gamble) AND THEY (just barely) FIT. Let’s just take a moment to glow in that last sentence. Aah. As if that weren’t enough, I saw a rainbow on the drive here. Honestly, I wouldn’t be surprised if I saw a leprechaun today. Or maybe Bigfoot.
So. Since last year I blogged about my own birth, and since then I’ve given birth, so let’s talk about that one.
The two times I’ve given birth were extremely different. For my first, I was induced, labor took 32 hours (including 2.5 hours of pushing), and ended in a vaginal birth aided by an epidural.
The short version of my second L&D is as follows: labor was so fast that it only took 3 hours and ended with me giving birth on my bathroom floor while my baby was delivered by firefighters. It was the most physically painful and intense experience of my entire life.
Allow me to back up. Because I was induced last time at 41 weeks, I was determined to do everything in my power to try and go into labor naturally. I asked my OB to sweep my membranes on Tuesday, December 20 when I was 39 weeks +1. Initially I had some cramping, but nothing major. At 2am Thursday morning, I woke up with contractions. They were mild, but strong enough to wake me up, and I found that they were coming at regular intervals once I started tracking them.
I woke my husband and we called L&D. The nurse asked me a bunch of questions but she wasn’t convinced I was in labor because the intensity of my contractions just wasn’t there. She advised to call my childcare person to come over but to wait another 30 minutes and see if the contractions ramped up at all. Her guess was that this was false labor and they’d go away and she was right. I felt horrible for getting my friend (who was also pregnant) out of bed for a false alarm, but we all went back to sleep.
That day I took it easy and had a few wimpy contractions here and there, but nothing out of the ordinary. We went to bed. I woke up at 3am Friday morning with contractions again. This time, as I tracked them, their intensity increased but their frequency was all over the place. Around 5am Brian woke up and I told him what was going on and we talked about what to do between contractions. At 5:20 we decided to call L&D, so I said I’d get up to pee and then we’d call.
I stood up and quickly discovered that I couldn’t walk as the intensity of my contractions rapidly increased. I turned around, grabbed the side of the bed and instinctively swayed and moaned to get through the waves of pain. Brian was still quite groggy and wasn’t grasping onto what was happening so I finally barked at him to get up and help me walk to the toilet. As we moved I started to panic because my body no longer felt like it belonged to me; some force had just taken over.
As soon as I sat down on the toilet, my water broke. I turned to my husband and told him (screamed at him) to call L&D. Immediately, my body was rocked to the core by a contraction that started pushing my baby out of me. I couldn’t believe what was happening. My instinct was to try to suppress the urge to push because there was no way my baby was coming so early. In hindsight, this probably made things all the more painful.
My husband couldn’t hear what the nurse was saying over my screams, but she could most definitely hear me scream that I needed to push, I need to push! She told him to hang up and call 911. By this time it was 5:40am…and my baby was born at 5:57am. It took the firefighters 9 minutes to get to our house, and Audrey was born 8 minutes after that.
The dispatcher told my husband to get me flat on my back and to get some towels. It was only then that it dawned on me that they were getting me ready to have the baby right there on the bathroom floor. I don’t think I’ve ever been so terrified in my entire life.
My husband started grabbing our good towels we got as wedding presents and, in true form, I was still able to scream, NO! NOT THE GOOD TOWELS! GET THE OLD ONES! because I’m a freak. And bless him, he got the old towels for me. The dispatcher continued to ask questions, one of which was, Do you see the head? He looked once, no. He looked again, and yes, yes he could. YOU CAN SEE THE HEAD?! I screamed in reply. I was still in shock and denial about what was happening. Contractions were back to back at this point and I was screaming pretty much the whole time. In case you’re wondering, my two-year-old was down the hall and slept through the whole thing. Like I said, my kids (angels) are sleepers.
We could hear the firetruck arrive and B ran downstairs (still in only his boxers) to let them in. They had trouble finding me at first but I think they just followed the screams. I immediately asked them for pain meds – ANYTHING! – and they sadly shook their heads and said they couldn’t. I was devastated.
Pretty soon her head was born (worst pain of my entire life) and they told me to keep pushing to get the rest of her body out, and I remember thinking that I just couldn’t. I needed that 15 second rest between contractions. I pushed again and she was out. She wasn’t crying right away and I held out my arms for her, but it felt like an eternity while he rubbed her back, suctioned her mouth and got her properly breathing. Once it was apparent that we were both just fine, the 6 firefighters who were crammed into my bathroom were overjoyed. They proudly announced the time of birth and her Apgar score.
They had B cut the cord and gave us the shears to keep, joking that they make great cigar cutters. One firefighter asked for our phones and started snapping pictures. She was here. My little girl was in the world. I couldn’t believe it.
We were carried downstairs and into the ambulance and taken to the hospital. A few firefighters even stayed behind at the house to wait for my childcare person to get there. Later that day, she brought my son to the hospital so he could meet Audrey. We came back home the next day – Christmas Eve – to start our lives as a family of four.
Best Christmas present ever.
I can say that having a newborn the second time around, for me, has been easier than the first time. That leap from non-parent to parent was so intense and life-changing, and nothing could have ever prepared me for that experience.
This time, though, I’ve realized that the only thing that can prepare you for baby number two (if anything) is…baby number one. And it’s not the baby that’s doing the preparing, exactly, but it’s the experience of being a parent, of having to care for a newborn. This time, I knew to expect the extreme sleep deprivation, and what that felt like. I knew to expect feeling isolated, feeling trapped inside the house, feeling resentment at my baby, at my husband, at everyone who wasn’t me and didn’t have my issues. I also knew to expect that this newborn phase would pass (and quickly), that there was definitely light at the end of the tunnel. I had done this before; I could do it again.
Because of this previous experience, I think I was able to fall in love with my baby a whole lot sooner than with my first. This time, I had already given up my freedom, my childless status, my sanity, so there was no resentment. I had little else left to lose! I’m already crazy, baby, so you can’t even come close to rocking my world (in a negative way) the way my first one did.
And this time, this baby made my family complete. Because she’s my last kid, I figure I had better enjoy the good parts while I can. I also did this with my first, to be sure, but it’s different when you know something is the last time going in.
Another point is that we already had all the baby crap. There wasn’t new stuff to research and buy and worry if you’re getting the right thing, or enough things. We had all the things! They just needed to be washed, is all. Easy-peasy.
This time, it’s been a little easier because we, my husband and I, have more balls to just smile and nod while our baby’s doctors tell us to do impossibly time consuming and unrealistic things, and then go home and do what we know will work for us. Namely, we’ve been told with both babies to wake them up to eat every 2-3 hours. We are blessed with babies who love their sleep. Waking them up made them pissed (like me) and they didn’t want to eat. It wasn’t working. We killed ourselves trying to comply with the doctor’s orders for baby number one. For this one, fuck that. We’re letting her sleep, and guess what – it’s working. And that’s only one example, but it’s an important lesson to just follow your gut because it’s made all the difference.
This time around, my physical recovery was easier, which may seem counterintutitive. I was anemic with my first, so I felt weak, tired, and out of breath. This time, although my labor and delivery was crazy amounts more intense than the first (that’s another post entirely), I’ve felt more energetic and sooooo happy to have my body back.
One of the biggest reasons why this is more manageable: my husband and I have already hashed out how we deal with all the baby-related chores. This may not sound like a big deal, but trying to figure out who does what and when and how and what feels fair is the biggest deal of them all. It’s so easy to feel alone, unsupported, and resentful when you don’t feel like your partner is doing their fair share of the work. We got through all those sleep deprived, tear stained arguments two years ago, so now we’re good. Feeling the ease of routine and the support from my husband has been incredible.
So what’s been hard? The hardest part by far has been trying to meet both my kids’ needs, often simultaneously, not to mention trying to meet my own. There’s always at least one person waiting for needs to be met, and it kills me. I feel like I owe both my kids an apology. I’m sorry to my toddler, who’s been used to having my undivided attention his entire life and suddenly has to share me and wait for things. I’m sorry to my infant who has never known my attention to be undivided, who sometimes has to wait for things. I never worried about being able to love both my kids; that part is easy. But feeding them at the same time? Goodness help me. It’s one huge juggling act.
How am I holding up? Better than with my first baby, that’s for sure. The first 6 months with him were the hardest, and if this time is anything like the first, then I definitely see a light at the end of the tunnel: come June, I’ll be getting more sleep, we’ll have found our new normal, we’ll have a routine and a schedule, I’ll feel better in my body and I’ll be ready to be more active and my god, the weather will be nicer. Walks! Parks! Bike rides!
Right now, I’m rediscovering a realization I had when my son was tiny: that good days and bad days don’t depend on what happens, but they depend entirely on how I am feeling and my ability to cope with what happens. If I am well rested and have patience, it’s going to be a good day. If I can remember to sing and dance and laugh, it’s going to be a good day. Even if that day includes a tantrum and tears and potty accidents. That all may sound like a no-brainer, but it’s huge. It makes all the difference.
Here’s to surviving the newborn phase being a mom of two. Cheers.
My heart is just so bursting full…of everything. Love, gratitude, depression, exhaustion, sadness, grief, body image issues, joy.
My mood swings are controlling me. I feel like my whole life is out of control, and rightly so…because was it ever within my control to begin with? Like when my son was born, this out of control feeling lit a fire under my usually only moderately crazy OCD tendencies. I go nuke if something goes missing. I clean even when I’m supposed to be doing something else. I try and control the things in my house because I can’t control any. thing. else.
Being alone with my two kids often terrifies me.
The things my body is capable of continue to astound me.
Breastfeeding is a beast. I’m having PTSD flashbacks around what it was like to breastfeed my son two years ago. I hate how my entire outlook on life depends on how well our last breastfeeding session went. And they are hit or miss. At least she’s latching better than my son did and I am very thankful to report that, for whatever reason, I am actually making more milk than I did after my first pregnancy. Huzzzzzzah.
I hate talking to lactation consultants. They mean well, but man they hit me squarely on my breastfeeding shame trigger. On one hand, it’s my fault that I can’t feed my kid. The simplest thing ever, just feeding her so she doesn’t die. I’m not doing the right position, or I’m not making enough milk, or I’m not pumping enough, not getting enough sleep. Take your pick. On the other, it’s her behavior that’s getting in the way because she pushes and claws and bites and thrashes around and screams. And I resent her for it. Damnit. Either way, horrible mother. And in suggesting I try something different, like massage the breast, use a hot compress, nipple shield, football hold, pump, pump, PUMP – the lactation consultants just seem to highlight the fact that IT’S NOT WORKING and somehow it’s all my fault. You see the spiral.
In order to get through days without falling apart, I’ve had to work hard to disconnect myself from my feelings. It feels so yucky to just numb out like that, but the alternative is to burst into tears while listening to a voice in my head that is wailing, “It’s noon and we just finished breakfast! We can’t do this! How are we supposed to be able to get outside today? Or brush your teeth? Or put on pants?!”
Instead, I have to force myself to listen to the other voice, the emotionally sterile voice saying, “Hey. Now we need to feed the baby. Your toddler can wait to eat, but she’s screaming. Go on now, first things first.” It’s a constant struggle, but it works. And some days are easier than others.
When I look back, I realize that 2015 was the year when nothing happened. I know I blogged about how it was the year a grew into being a mom, and I am so glad that I had that time with my son. That year, we didn’t change marital status. We didn’t move. We didn’t change jobs. We didn’t get pregnant or have any babies. Things were stable and boring. Yay for boring!
My hope is that 2017 is like that, too. I’d like the time and space to develop a routine with my kids, a relationship with my daughter, and a new relationship with myself as a mom of two. As for 2016…that was the year when things got progressively harder. I got pregnant, I got tired, then I got huge and tired. I slowed down while my toddler sped the fuck up. I had daily pain for a while and I could barely bend over to pick up things my toddler had dropped…or thrown. We still managed to have a lot of fun in 2016, though. We went camping and (barely) survived. I applied for a job I didn’t end up taking, but it was nice to put on professional clothes again. We took our son trick-or-treating and he loved it. We took him to the snow and had mixed results. We took a trip to California and had fun seeing family. We took our first family road trip and D danced at his first wedding. We successfully became DAYTIME POTTY TRAINED, people! We went to the zoo and hunted for Easter eggs and went on a train and picked strawberries and saw a parade and ate ice cream and played in the water features and went to the planetarium and went to the pumpkin patch and toured a cheese factory. Whew.
I’m glad I just typed all of that out because, according to that list, 2016 wasn’t all that bad. We were a family! We really got to enjoy my son being a fun age. My hope for 2017 is that things just get better from here on out.
Even though my current days are often dark, I can totally see the light at the end of the tunnel. Part of it is because I’ve been through this once before. I know a little better what to expect, and we’ve already adjusted how we’re dealing with raising a newborn since the first time. Another part is that I’m done making babies. This is it; this is my family, and it’s beautiful! I’ve gotten everything I’ve ever wanted, and I feel so amazingly (hashtag) blessed, as cliche as that sounds. But it’s true.
And with that, this blog post has come full circle. It’s a swirling hot mess of emotions: welcome to my life. My beautiful, imperfect, perfect life.
I don’t mean to brag (yes I do), but I got the best Christmas present this year:
Her name is Audrey and she’s perfect.
I’m so lucky and grateful and full of hope and excitement…and I’m also a completely sleep deprived hot mess. Wee!
Happy New Year, everyone!
Today was the first day I felt actually ready and excited to have this baby.
You know, because you never really feel ready-ready, and nothing can ever actually prepare you.
I’m due on the 26th and today I am 38 weeks + 2. I started feeling crampy and achey last night while I was bending and lifting and standing to wrap Christmas presents. It felt like the familiar daily race to get things done before my body gave out, except with more urgency this time.
I took a hot shower and the steady stream of water felt really great on my lower back. I went to bed feeling oddly calm paired with the crampy anticipation and excitement that maybe this baby would be coming soon.
As the night wore on, with each successive trip to go pee, I felt more contractions and more anticipatory excitement that eventually kept me up from about 4-5:30am. I started bargaining as I frequently do: please, just wait until morning so we don’t have to wake the kid and rush out of here to the hospital. Also, please don’t wait too long and kick in just as the forecasted snow starts falling in the afternoon, making it hard for us to get to the hospital.
Arg, being unable to plan for something so important is making me go batty. As much as I complained about being induced with my first baby, I am now realizing how it took away a lot of this uncertainty.
B got up for work and I told him I thought I was in the early stages of labor. He asked if there was anything he could do, and there really wasn’t, so he got ready and left for work and we both assumed I’d be calling him in a few hours to get to the hospital.
This is perfect, I thought. We’ll make the window between sleep and snow, and all my support people are still in town today. And I’ll get to hold my baby!
As I lay there, I started thinking about the date and what her birthday might be, how labor would go, what I still needed to pack. My mind was whirring.
It took some effort, but I was able to sleep for a few more hours. I woke with continued mild contractions and started packing more stuff into my hospital bag. Then I started my day with the kid and we had breakfast and…..then nothing really happened.
Contractions stayed the same. We played, had lunch. The snow began to fall. Shit, I got nervous. The window was gone, and now I just knew I’d go into labor just in time for the snarl of traffic that was sure to happen. And it’s a 20-30 minute drive to the hospital with no traffic at all. I texted B at work and we agreed that we’d call 911 to request a police escort if it came to it.
I worried that I was waiting too long. What if these contractions were the real thing and my tolerance for pain is freakishly amazing? The whole day felt like one long contraction anyway, as my uterus tightens up anytime I stand up to move. I worried I’d end up having the baby at home, in the car. I was questioning my judgement.
Once I finally got the kid down for his nap and I was able to relax and try to chart my contractions, I could tell there was no rhythm, no intensity, no buildup. At the same time, I can feel that my body has turned a corner. It’s definitely getting ready. Just how ready and how quickly?
Leading up to today I’ve been doing a different kind of bargaining. It’s the thing where I’m sick and tired of being pregnant but still had shit I needed to get done before she got here. Christmas shopping needed to be finished. There was wrapping to be done. Decorating needed to happen. We even did our Christmas brunch early. And not to mention all the normal baby stuff that needed to be ready. Washing clothes, folding, putting away. We moved the kid into his new room along with all his stuff to make room for baby stuff. Car seats, carriers, bouncy seats, etc.
But as of last night…all that was largely done. We did it. We got ready. We’re ready. Holy crap!
As I just typed that, I realized we never got to that point when I was pregnant the first time, because at 38 weeks we moved into this house. In the three weeks before I was induced we were scrambling to get boxes unpacked just so we’d know where the pots and pans and underwear were – forget any kind of nesting or decorating. So that makes sense now that I actually feel ready. I’m thankful for the feeling…even though it can’t ever be ready-ready.
So now, we wait. Come on out, little miss. There’s a layer of snow on the ground and it’s beautiful, just for you.
When I was pregnant with my first baby, his movements made me come up with a word that described his personality. I blogged about it.
And now I’ve come up with a word for my daughter: mischievous.
Her distinctive move as of late is to wait until I am asleep and then wedge herself up under the right side of my ribcage. Once I wake up to pee, which is often, and feel the pain, it’s too late. Her damage has been done.
What is it with my babies enjoying the right side of my uterus?! Does it have an ocean view? Fresh paint? Hardwood floors? I guess I’ll never know.
She also enjoys dragging her pointy, pointy little elbows across the width of my abdomen, which makes for quite a show from the outside. And lately she’s been snuggling down lower and lower, which I understand is a good thing, since she’s getting ready for her big debut, but my bladder really doesn’t appreciate it. And I really hope she doesn’t start pinching my cervix like my first did, because whoa man, that shit hurts like a baby on the cervix.
And it never fails – every time I have babydaddy put his hand on my tummy to feel baby going crazy with her breakdance fighting lessons, she stops. Just like that.
So enjoy your time in there, Little Miss. I only hope I’m calling you mischievous because I’m cranky and this pregnancy seems longer and harder than the first and not because you’re gearing up to give me a hard time.
Either way, I’m on to you.
I know where you live.
On Tuesday my partner and I celebrate three years of marriage.
I want to say it’s been all rainbows and unicorn farts, but it hasn’t. Well, there have been farts, but not those of the unicorn variety. It’s been…loving and supportive and stable and hilarious and the kind of tenderness that brings one to tears. But it’s also been the biggest challenge in our relationship since moving out of state and having a kid and basically having our whole world flipped upside down. And now we’re about to flip it once again with baby number two. Woo-boy. I’m sure glad I have him by my side for all this.
But enough about our marriage. The anniversary gets us thinking about our wedding and all the bittersweet feelings that go with it. I blogged about it (read it here) to help me cope at the time and then the post got Freshly Pressed, which I initially had mixed feelings about. On one hand, getting recognized for my writing is always nice, but I was worried that the feedback I got would just make me feel worse.
Overall, the good outweighed the bad and I felt so validated knowing that many, many other people felt similar letdowns as a result of their weddings. My comment section became a big virtual group therapy session. We shared horror stories and shared what helped make us feel better. I thanked people for reading and supporting and commenting. People thanked me for writing because it made them feel less invalidated, less sad, less alone. I am glad that I wrote what I wrote.
What interests me now, and what prompted me to write about this again, is that that blog post has been by far my most popular post. To this day – almost three full years later – it still gets about 3-10 hits a day, on average. Every day. And occasionally, people still comment with their own stories.
It makes me feel so sad when I read what people have Googled to get themselves to my wedding blog post. Things like, “my wedding was a disaster,” and “I can’t get over how my wedding went,” or “I’m depressed about my wedding.” This sucks! Part of me feels validated because, again, I am definitely not alone in how I feel about my wedding. However, part of me feels like a sucker. I fell for the whole wedding-industrial complex. I got wrapped up around expectations that were handed to me (and that I readily accepted) by society, spent a hell of a lot of money, put tons of eggs into the basket of one blissful day, only to have it crash down all around me. What does this say about our society that this post-wedding blues phenomenon is so common?!
Would I do things differently? A few, but not many. I admit, even now, I still just wanted the fun, expensive party that I could enjoy with all my friends and family.
In the months following my wedding, I responded to the many comments readers posted. Some were unsolicited advice (one of my least favorite kinds of feedback), others were words of sympathy and encouragement, and many were similar horror stories. Because I was going through my own grieving process, I found it difficult to respond to others who were suffering as I was. Reading those comments brought up my own yucky feelings that I was still wading through (or trying to forget – depending on the day) and it was uncomfortable. It stung. Each new story was a reminder that I’d always look back on that day with some amount of sadness, grief, regret. Even today, a random comment that gets posted brings it all back, just a little bit.
While responding to these comments, I found myself wanting to slip into a therapist role as I typed. Of course, that role feels natural to me, and it also protected me because it created distance between myself and my feelings. Now that I am much more at peace with how my wedding went and how I feel about it, reading and answering the comments is easier. Easier, but not pain-free.
My brother made us a wonderful video from the raw footage a relative took at our wedding, and only recently did my husband and I muster up enough courage to actually watch it, almost three years after the day. Of course it brought back some of the yucky feelings. The grief. But. It also reminded me that I actually managed to have fun that day. And the ceremony was wonderfully moving. And I looked beautiful. And we were so in love. I couldn’t deny it – the proof was right there on camera! Whew.
In all the discussion with readers about how to heal and move on from these experiences, we often talked about having a do-over. A “corrective experience” as therapists put it. I pictured the two of us on a beach in Hawaii with an officiant and a photographer. No one else. I have flowers in my hair. The wind is whipping my white cotton sundress around. The sun is setting. We’re laughing and holding hands. And no one can take away our joy.
Maybe someday. I say maybe, because I don’t want to get too hung up on expectations.
I’m going to need some seriously awesome suggestions for family Halloween costumes, you guys.
Cuz my seriously knocked-up self is going to be pretty huge by then, so I gotta take full advantage of this costume-wearing opportunity.
Yup, you heard me. I’m preggers again and it hardly feels real.
Well, so far it just feels exhausting and I doubt that will change for a very, very long time. I wish I could go back to my pregnant-for-the-first-time-self and tell her how easy she had it. She could rest and nap whenever she wanted. She could eat whenever she wanted. She could watch whatever she wanted on TV, whenever. And she didn’t have a demanding, energetic toddler to waddle after. Ugh, this is hard.
And the scary thing is, I only see it getting harder. How do SAHMs take care of a toddler and a newborn? I don’t see how it’s possible, and I have no idea how I’m going to do it.
I worry about my mental health. It’ll be winter, it’ll be cold and rainy. I’m not going to want to go anywhere, and I’ll feel alone.
I have hope in knowing that this phase will be temporary. That I got through it before, and I’ll get through it again. That I have some good mommy instincts and that I have some great tools and experience under my belt that I didn’t have the first time. That the kids will grow and change and gradually become more independent from me. And at the same time, I don’t want to already be wishing away all the cuddly newborn snuggle time.
So there you have it- exciting and terrifying all intertwined.
But seriously – ideas for Halloween???