She is finally here! I am holding her for the very 1st time. It’s love at first sight. It’s all worth it: all those months of morning sickness, swollen feet, and the agony of labour.
Now it’s official: I am a MOM! Everyone calls it the greatest time of your life.They’re right…mostly! The untold truths of motherhood remain a secret when you’re pregnant.
I’m so excited to take on my new role. When hubby complains about having to return to work too early, I say, “It’s all good my love, we’re gonna be okay!”. At least we would be, once I can walk again, right?(darn C-section)
A week in, and I am already missing the nurses from the hospital.
Breastfeeding turned out harder than I expected. My nipples are sore and chapped and my breasts are aching all over. Yet, I cling to the hope that things will be better. (They have to be better!)
I am bone-tired, and the constant worry of doing everything right keeps me up as I watch my baby sleep.
Week one flies by as I get busy cleaning spit-ups, washing onesies, and changing diapers. Sure, it’s hard, but every time my baby wiggles her tiny toes or holds my finger, my heart skips a beat. I often feel overwhelmed by this little bundle of joy and how much she grows every day.
I count down the minutes until her father returns from work. Dinners go by in a blur as I bounce the baby in one arm and try to eat a few spoonfuls before she starts crying again.
As I listen to my husband and his day-to-day routine, I sense a pang of jealousy arise somewhere deepdown. He seems to have his life back on track while I am stuck at home, sacrificing my hobbies, long showers, and sleep. I try to shrug off this feeling – What kind of a horrible person am I? Am I jealous on my hubby because he gets to go to work while I get to stay home with our new daughter?
But eventually it hit me! I understood the real truths of motherhood: the bitterness wasn’t the real me talking, but a new sleep-deprived version of me. The changing hormones are not helping, nor are the parenting books I flipped through to find a solution. I am too fresh as a mother to realise that it’s okay for a baby to cry somethimes; it’s even okay if I cry once in a while. It’s okay if I don’t smell fresh as a daisy and it’s okay if my C-section scar is too sore to take her out for strolls yet. No one told me that in these first few months of motherhood I will have mixed emotions most of the days, mixed to the point that I don’t know if my tears are of joy or sorrow. No one told me that I will be stripped down of all my selfish behaviours and I will be forced to let them go. No one told me that I will be cooking meals that I don’t get to enjoy, sacrificing my sleep so my baby can eat, give away my whole self with no expectance of anything in return. This is motherhood, but only in the begging.
As the months go by, I realise that trying to become the ideal mother is overrated. There’s no such thing as perfection, just organised chaos. Also, asking for help and letting my husband take charge sometimes turned out to be a small blessing.
The first few months continue to roll by, much like a rollercoaster ride of anxiety, appreciation, tears of joy, and frustration. As we cross the six-month mark, I realise that these moments are fleeting. We are slowly but surely slipping into an almost normal routine.
Those sleepless nights, sore nipples, and overwhelming feelings are behind me. I find myself growing and changing as much as my little one (sometimes even more).
My ME Version: Mom 2.0 has become more patient, grateful, and wiser. I might have swapped spa days for quick showers and date nights for play dates with other moms, but we are getting better.
More importantly, the unconditional love I have for my baby is incomparable to what I left behind. So hang in there, new mamas.
It gets better with time, and you do too!
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