|Photo by Valerie Mitchell Photography- March 8, 2015- 36 weeks|
It's amazing how much things can change in 5 hours. On March 31, I was still pregnant. Miserable at 39 weeks and almost 165 pounds (30 pounds heavier than my pre-pregnancy weight and GOD did my feet know it!)- but still pregnant. At 1.48 AM on April 1, I became a mommy, and just like that, my world was tossed into a jumble.
|Photo by Jess Cadena Photography- April 9, 2015- 9 days old|
I expected it to change- and it's a beautiful change, and I love my son beyond what I could have comprehended- but expecting something and experiencing it are two entirely different things.
I'm trying to learn how to balance caring for myself and caring for my son. I don't want to lose who I am in motherhood, as I see so many women do. It's easy to leave the girl I was behind, though, I'll admit it. As I rush to put on BB cream and mascara and cover the smell of spit up and pee on my shirt, I think to myself- It would be easier if you just left the house in yoga pants and threw your hair into a ponytail. It just wouldn't be ME, however, if I did that. I've always been one to get dressed every day, even on really bad days. (An old friend used to say "my bad days are my best dressed days." There's something about getting dressed and pulled together that really makes you stand up straighter and gives you an edge to face your challenges.)
I'm trying to learn to live with more chaos. I'm a planner by nature, and I despise being tardy. I've quickly learned babies don't always make punctuality easy. I'm learning to be more flexible (although I do still try and show up at least ON time, not 10 minutes early.)
I'm learning how determined I can be. My son is struggling with breastfeeding [another post for a different day] and I've had to pump in order to feed him so we can get through this learning curve. This pumping process is not for the faint of heart... you have to REALLY be dedicated to it in order to maintain enough milk for your baby to have enough to eat. I've cried at least three times a week out of exhaustion and frustration, telling myself I just can't do it anymore... but I still carry on. I don't know how, but I do.
I've discovered how incredible my husband is. He is a great person, but he is an amazing father. He's been incredibly supportive during this postpartum/newborn period, and I count him twice when I count my blessings. I love him more and more as I watch him become an incredible father and husband. I am so fortunate... I don't think I could do this without him. Actually, I know I couldn't.
I've realized who my true friends are. Distance doesn't matter if you love your friends, and I've had a small handful of women who have been amazing and supportive. Those that haven't bothered to reciprocate for the last 5 years are going to be "released" from my life- conscious uncoupling on my part, perhaps- so I can make room for people who want to be in my life as much as I want to be in theirs. I don't have the emotional energy or the time to invest in those who aren't willing to give back in the smallest of ways.
I became a mother only 18 days before my 30th birthday. I think 30 is the decade that begins the process of finding inner peace. I'm so thankful to be at this point.
I'm becoming a mother, and I'm finding my new normal.