Sunday, September 29, 2013

Thoughts from 2 Months of Motherhood

Baby E is 2 months old today. Time has been going so quickly and she has changed so much. Motherhood has been incredibly rewarding, but also incredibly hard. I have come to realize a number of things about myself and motherhood over the past couple of months.
If I can do it one handed, on my phone, while nursing, it will get done. 

If not, there is only about a 50% chance it will get done. Don't get me wrong, when I am nursing her, that is the first priority, but I have also realized that I need to multitask at points. Things like sending a brief email or making a doctors appointment can be done while nursing. 
Naps are a mythical thing. 

I love that baby E is always interested in what is going on and trying to take in everything she sees. The downside of this is that she does not want to miss anything. She fights naps with everything she has, and this can make for some pretty rough afternoons. We are getting better at figuring out how to get her to at least take some short naps here and there. Some days it takes 45 minutes of shenanigans for a 30 minute nap.

There will be tears. 

Before I had baby E, I knew that even the happiest of babies cried at times. I do my best to get her what she needs before she starts crying, but it does happen. What I completely underestimated was how many tears I would shed through this process. There have been tears of joy, pain, frustration, fear and  just simply being overwhelmed. 

Guilt your ever present friend. 

For years I had heard about Mommy guilt from friends and family with kids, but man is it real. Guilt about not doing enough, guilt about doing too much, guilt for no real good reason at all...I feel them all and almost daily. For my own sanity, I need a little time away from the baby now and again, but it always comes with a tinge of guilt.

Just because the baby sleeps through the night, does not mean you get to sleep through the night. 

Most nights baby E sleeps from about 8:30 until 5:30 or 6, which is amazing. However, because of concerns about supply and for my comfort, I am up at least once and sometimes twice to pump. The good part about this is that we have a nice stash of milk in the freezer.

Being needed is a double edged sword. 

I love that I can provide little E with food and comfort. She also uses me as a pacifier when she is upset and doesn't know what else she wants. My husband is an amazing father and always there to help, but there are times when she only wants. Most times I do not mind this, but there are days, when I wish she would take a pacifier and some time with Daddy. (These feelings also normally cause guilt...see above).

Milk is a precious commodity. 

I grew up in Wisconsin and never really thought much about milk. It was always around and there was always more. Now that I spend a portion of my day hooked up to a pump like a dairy cow, I realize how valuable milk is and how hard it is to get. And yes, I have cried over split milk.

Smiles make everything worthwhile.

Overall, baby E is a happy baby and her smiles make my day. There have been times when the day has been long and she has been fussy or difficult, but will then give me a smile and it takes the frustration away. I completely underestimated how amazing a little smile could be.

Baby snuggles are the best thing ever. 

When little E snuggles up on my shoulder or chest, it is one of the best things ever. Those are the moments I savor and want to hold onto forever. One of the best things about her late night/early morning feedings was snuggling with her when she fell asleep.

I know I am still really new at this whole motherhood thing, and there will be new lessons and struggles as baby E grows, but the whole thing is pretty amazing.