Just emerging from my newborn-head-sniffing craze over here to check in. Yes, we’re alive. Yes, we’re elated. And yes, we are crazier than ever.
And you guys, I can’t wait to bring you up to speed on our birth story. All I will say is there was near-fainting involved, a heated conversation regarding my epidural and even some live Tweeting.
So many fun things to tell you, when I have the time. (See you in 2020.)
Meantime, having this third baby has me feeling all sorts of sappy over here. So in today’s post I want to share my thoughts on the difficult and delicious journey of new motherhood. You parents know what I’m talking about. Motherhood is the oldest job in the book yet still manages to stupefy and inspire me every time I think about it.
Having a new baby is a real test of mental and physical survival. Throw in a paper bag a handful of Hormones, a dash of bleeding nipples (SORRY! THEY’RE A THING!), a heaping spoonful of Exhaustion and all sorts of schedule shifting; shake it up real good-like, and you have New Motherhood.
It’s kinda like being on Naked and Afraid. The babies are naked, and you’re afraid.
Aaaanyhow, I did have some time sitting on the couch with the new bean curled up on my chest and pounded out a few words about having our third that occurred to me in a rare moment of postpartum clarity.
I’d love, as always, to her your thoughts on what new motherhood meant to you, how you handled the craziness, and any other lessons you’ve learned along the way.
Lots of love from our crazy household to yours.
There are times in life that give us reason to party. Birthdays, weddings and anniversaries and the like–those champagne-popping, dance-move dropping, gut-busting moments of partying–they are freaking awesome.
Having a baby? Well, that’s a quiet sort of celebration. It’s calm, yet still strangely intense.
It’s funny, because for months, you prepare to be a mom. You buy things, surround yourself with people who’ve done it and get their advice, and live in a beautiful waiting game.
For all the hullabaloo that precedes the baby’s arrival, actually having the baby? That’s a shockingly solitary journey.
In the beginning, there are lots of people to celebrate the baby’s arrival. But after all the cards and flowers and fanfare, it’s just you and her.
There are the times you’re holding her in the dead of night, exhausted and weary. You will feel lonely–probably frequently–especially if it’s your first child and you’re just learning the ropes. There are the times during the day you want to be able to just set her down and do something, and you can’t, because all she wants is to be close to you. There are the times when you wish so badly you could just shower/go to the bathroom/do laundry/brush up on your astrophysics/do anything but Baby Stuff. And guess what? You can’t. You just have to be a mom. You gotta do the damn thing. Because no one else can.
For me, this was incredibly frustrating with my son, our first baby. It felt shackling. Who was this new person who kept me tethered to the house, in actual fear to walk outside?
In our frenetic, selfish world, where we are all accustomed to our whims being met when we darn well please thank you, this can be a hard lesson.
For me it was one of the most shocking parts of new motherhood–the requirement that you learn how to just be okay, being alone. And by being alone, of course I mean just the two of you.
Having our third baby, there are few moments during the day where she and I are alone, just the two of us. (A 4- and 2-year-old will keep things, well, kinda busy that way.) But despite the craziness, I find myself stealing moments with her that bring to the surface the reminder that we are sharing that singular mom-baby bond.
A moment where she falls asleep on me and I get to bury my nose in her soft baby hair and inhale that precious newborn scent. The three (or 4 or 5 or 6) times a night she wakes up to nurse and then falls back asleep in the crook of my arm. Those crooked little infant smiles that sneak out while I’m watching her dream.
No matter that I’ve done this twice before, all the good stuff? It’s still there.
So if you’re looking for me, I’ll just be over here on the couch, trying my best to enjoy the moments. It won’t always work, but now I know better than to try to rush through it.
Sonni Abatta is a mom of three (wow, that feels weird to say) and Orlando lifestyle and mom blogger and writer. Reach out for collaborations, and to save her from falling prey again to her navel-gazing ramblings, by writing to Sonni@SonniAbatta.com.