It's been almost three years since I've touched this blog. It is officially time to blow the dust off. It's 8:00am on the dot. I've been up since 5:30am. Viv is starting to wake up, making those awfully adorable squeaks and squeals that she makes when her wake up is in process. In the time I've been up, I cleaned the kitchen, threw some chicken in the crock pot for fajitas tonight, made her bottles for the day & thought about pumping breast milk but was quickly distracted by this extremely strong notion to finally sit down and blog. I've thought about it about a million times in the last couple of years but something continues to prevent me from doing so. Work, being tired, my very strong desire to keep majority of my personal life very private and more recently, Viv.
First things first -- I want to send a major shout out and thank you to Irving Naxon, the inventor of the crock pot. His invention has been a life saver to wives and mothers like myself for decades now. God that was so annoyingly June Cleaver of me but it's the truth -- what can I say? *Gag* lol. Now on to more important things -- I had a baby almost 3 months ago *gasp* Crazy right? I know! Even when I'm staring at her as she sleeps in her crib, it's hard to believe that she is mine. But she is. All 9 pounds and 22 inches of her came out of my body. MIND. BLOWN.
It is so eerily ironic how my life has continued to come full circle. I continue to find myself in these familiar mental spaces. Four years ago, when I married James and relocated here, I took three months off of work to write. Now, as I sit here typing, everything is different...our address, our family size, our financial situation. Yet, here I am once more -- recently resigned from my full time job, now a work from home wife and mom who is once again writing.
There is so much that I want to share about the last four years of my life. There is also a great deal that I cannot share. For now, I will start with the present. Specifically a few things that I have learned in my 11 weeks of motherhood.
1) I know nothing about motherhood
LOL but seriously. Everything I thought I knew is officially out of the window and deemed irrelevant. I have had this idea of motherhood for what seems like my entire life. Those ideas became a little more solidified during my pregnancy. However, once Viv arrived, all of my thoughts and theories were suddenly null and void. Why? Because there is no greater teacher than experience. For example, I've always heard the most beautiful and encouraging things about breastfeeding. "It felt so natural to me," "It was such a great bonding experience for me and my baby," "I absolutely loved it," "It helped me lose the baby weight like THAT! The weight just fell off!" "It's the best for the baby & it's great for you too!" My personal favorite: "it was very soothing for me." You can imagine my complete and utter shock the first time Viv latched on..."are you kidding me right now?!" I thought to myself. It was excruciatingly painful and uncomfortable. There was nothing beautiful or natural or soothing about it. It was a complete logistical nightmare -- my breasts have always been very large, now that they were preparing to feed a child, they had only become larger and that was a problem, a big one. Pun highly intended. I struggled to find the right position to hold my five pound wonder so that she could latch on properly and more importantly so that she would not be smothered by my newly ridiculously large baby feeders :-(. Couple that with an insensitive and pestering lactation consultant and you've got a nice lovely batch of post. partum. deeeeeepression. That's right folks -- I had it & from time to time still feel like I have it. But motherhood was supposed to be so perfect & magical! Why was I feeling this way?
I will say this, parts of motherhood are magical, but breastfeeding AIN'T ONE OF 'EM! Somewhere between my daily dose of pain meds (to help with incision pain from my surprise C-section) and Viv screaming because she was latching on but getting hardly any milk, I decided that I would no longer nurse her but that I wanted to instead bottle feed her breast milk. I would do so by pumping & continuing to supplement with formula. Words cannot describe the immense guilt I felt for this decision. I agonized for days & only recently (like a couple of weeks ago) became at peace with this decision. As the irony of life would have it, James & I referred to formula as the F word during my pregnancy. We had both decided that I would breast feed and that our daughter would never be formula fed -- again, everything I thought I knew was completely irrelevant once I had her. I'm getting off subject, back to the list
2) I really love being a mom
Only a crazy person would feel this way after the roller coaster ride I've had these past 11 weeks but guess what guys -- I absolutely LOVE it. It's so disgustingly cliche, but I didn't realize how much I could love someone until I met Viv. While I was pregnant I went on and on and on about how I so desperately wanted to meet the little person that was constantly using my uterus as a punching bag. With every kick and punch, the anticipation grew and grew and grew. So did my belly. I remember renting a baby heart monitor so that I could listen to her heart beat whenever I wanted. I also remember finding out that it was a girl. James and I both wanted a boy first and I just "knew" it was a boy before finding out. Obviously, my mother's intuition was still developing because I was wrong. When the sonographer told me it was a girl, I burst into tears. Surprisingly, they were tears of joy. I thought I would be disappointed to find out that it was a girl but I was not. Not even a little. It was almost as exciting as the day I actually found out that I was pregnant (that is a separate blog post).
I was physically miserable for 100% of my pregnancy. Other moms would tell me, "you're going to miss it when it's over so enjoy it while she's in there." Were these women insane?! How could I possibly miss being sick CONSTANTLY, having NO appetite, gaining 30 pounds, obsessing over eating ENOUGH (since I had no appetite) and on top of that eating very healthy (which has never been a strong suit of mine), heartburn, waking up at 3:00am every morning to pee, not being able to get back to sleep until 5:00am and having to be up at 6:30am to make it to work by 8:30am, people constantly asking how I'm feeling or saying the most ridiculous and annoying things ever "God, you look tired." Why thank you for confirming that for me -- as if my lack of make up and messy ponytail (not cute messy, just messy messy) did not already do so. How. in. the. world. could. I. ever. miss. those. things?!?! Well folks, those moms were right. I do miss it. I miss it very very much. So much that I desperately want to get pregnant again. James thinks I am clinically insane for this but it's true. I want another baby. NOW. lol.
3) I am in for a wildly difficult but rewarding and down right ridiculously joyous ride
I can just tell. This little girl makes me feel emotions I never have before. For example, I melt when she stares up at me with those huge brown eyes as I'm feeding her. I can hardly take the cuteness of the way she scrunches up her face when she cries. I cry literally every time she smiles at me. I can't wait until she laughs for the first time, I try to incite laughter from her everyday. Thus far, I've been unsuccessful but I know it's coming soon...stay tuned. I agonize over whether I'm "doing it right." I feel incredibly guilty and solely responsible for the fact that she has acid reflux. I obsess and google every little cough, sneeze or remote spot on her body or slight change in the sound of her cry. James says I am making myself crazy. He's right. I literally jump out of bed and run to her crib and the slightest sound of her coughing or making one of the 8,000 noises that she makes in her sleep. I jump up to make sure she is still ok and I periodically check on her to make sure she is still breathing. So even though she is sleeping through the night these days, I am not. I've never considered myself an anxious person before. In fact I would say that I am quite the opposite, usually. But Viv has changed that for sure. This is getting ridiculously long and Viv is starting to wake up....to be continued!