Two weeks in and I feel that I’ve become a Mother again in a new way. Some things are easier this time around, the sleepless nights are more manageable, the basic care of a newborn isn’t new to me and not eating before she eats is my normal. With Owen, all of those things were very much overwhelming. I remember I would cry at how tired I was, and at meal time I would stare at my food while it got cold because for some reason the baby always wants to eat when you do. This time I have a new set of challenges, like fussiness after family and friends visit. Ella starts to “stress feed” and will feed for hours after they leave which makes for a tired mommy.
Another challenge is getting out the door. The first two times that I left the house were to go to our follow-up Doctors appointments, I was late arriving to both. Its crazy that as soon as you plan to leave the house, your baby doesn’t just poop she has a diaper blow out, pees on the new outfit you were just about to put her in, then as soon as you leave the house you almost forget you haven’t changed out of your pajamas or brushed your hair. I almost left the house without a bra the other day and laughed at myself because wouldn’t that have been something!
What about giving your partner the time and love that they need? When we first got home I was sleeping on the couch in the living room as I didn’t want to wake Rick or Owen in the middle of the night. I thought I was doing the right thing by doing this but Rick quickly put an end to that when he told me he wanted me back in our bed even if Ella was going to fuss throughout the night, and it was simple as that, communication is key! We are also going to pick up our date nights where they left off before little Ella came along. It may be a quick dinner out while our little one hangs out with grandma but some time alone where our attention is focused only on each other is so important to a healthy relationship. The most challenging aspect has been to watch my son Owen go from being so happy about his little sister to having some jealously towards her and hard feelings towards me, it completely breaks my heart. We’ve definitely had more than a few tears around the house but I’ve been constantly reassured by those around me that it’s an adjustment not only for him but for everyone and that in time it will get better.
With all the new little challenges, I wouldn’t change this feeling or this new life we have for anything in the world. When Ella was born and placed on my chest, tears of joy immediately came over me “Hi, Ella, I’m your Mom. You are my Daughter” is a moment I will never forget. She calms when she hears my voice and when she stares up at me even if it’s with a stern little face, I can see it in her eyes that she trusts me, she feels safe with me and it’s an amazing feeling! With Owen, I’m confident that things will get better. We’ve continued to read books every night together and even if Ella is screaming I say to him “she can wait while I tuck you in”. Owen and I will continue to have our date nights together starting tonight! This evening we are seeing a movie and I may be even more excited than he is to get that one on one time.
My best advice for the new Mommas out there is to try to think of all the good when you have some frustrations or moments of “how the heck am I going to get through this”. Never be embarrassed to ask for help from family, a friend, your care provider or your partner. Every few months there may be some new challenges you face but those will come with some unforgettable moments like your baby’s first smile or giggle. Cherish every bit because the time goes by all too fast.