Dear New Mom,
I know you may be trapped under your new baby as you read this. Maybe the baby is sleeping, maybe you are holding them while they cry.
Maybe you’re not trapped right now and you are taking a break. Maybe you have someone to help you and hold the baby, maybe not and you are just stepping away while they rest in the crib. Maybe, just maybe, that baby is crying right now but you just couldn’t handle it so you are taking a break.
You are doing AMAZING!
You may be feeling overwhelmed and even a little scared as your world has recently completely flipped upside down. You may have been caught way off guard by this, or you may have known it was coming. You may be overwhelmed by how lonely you feel. It can be so confusing because you have a tiny human that is with you all day everyday, but you still feel lonely.
You may even have support people with you and STILL feel lonely. Or maybe you are going it alone and doing your best to live step by step, breath by breath.
Breathe in. You are doing amazing. Breath out.
You may long for your life before the baby came. The peace, the ability to care for yourself, the time to take a shower or put on your favorite outfit. You may be sitting in your dirty spit up stained pajamas right now not knowing if you will ever get another shower again. You may have never known how large your threshold was for wearing another human’s bodily fluids… but who has time to change anyway!
You are doing amazing.
You may look at your body that once housed your new baby and wonder if it will always look this way. Your body may have injuries or just feel a bit wobbly right now and it may be very hard not to let yourself hate these things, and wish your body would just “bounce back”.
Your body is amazing. YOU are doing amazing!
It’s hard to see right now, but what you are doing right now is so phenomenal that you will some day look back and wonder how you ever made it through. The feat you are facing right now may be whispering lies about how you should be doing better, but the truth is that the fact that you are in this moment, that fact alone, shows your undeniable strength and power.
YOU ARE DOING AMAZING.
Maybe your house is a wreck right now, and you may wish you could keep it cleaner. You may sit trapped under your new baby and count the dust bunnies you can see, or maybe you have learned to tune it all out. You may have dishes piled up but the one moment you get to clean it up you are simply too tired.
Oh the exhaustion. You are probably discovering just how little sleep is possible for a human to function. Take a step back for a second, and marvel in the fact that YOU ARE DOING AMAZING!
You may be crying all the time these days. You may feel silly even as you cry over the fact that Target can’t overnight ship you the super jumbo maxi pads you want, you may wonder where these new fits of emotions have come from. Maybe you know that its the hormones, but unfortunately in this instance knowing does’t make you cry any less.
You may have yelled at your partner or helper last night over the fact that they sneezed too loud and woke the baby. You may have lost your mind when someone came over and ignored your pleas not to ring the door bell causing the dog to bark.
You are doing amazing.
Maybe you desperately want for someone else to hold the baby, maybe you desperately want for them to leave you to hold the baby. Maybe all you want is just someone to talk to you, help you straighten up a bit, maybe fold some laundry.
You may be getting unsolicited advice from well meaning friends and family. Maybe this is overwhelming… or maybe you need this kind of support. It may be hard for you right now because you don’t have people telling you how amazing you are and how truly wonderful your mommy intuition really is, but YOU ARE DOING AMAZING.
Maybe breastfeeding isn’t going as planned. You may have cut nipples, and the pain is enough to make you want to just throw in the towel. Maybe you have to, maybe you have support and help to guide you out of the pain. Maybe your baby wasn’t gaining weight like they hoped and so you had to turn to formula out of desperation. Maybe your body had a hard time, maybe you have felt lost, lonely, disappointed.
I promise you, no matter how it feels, you are doing amazing.
You and your baby have so much to learn, these times are so incredibly trying. It’s very easy to believe that everyone else had there lives together during this time, but I promise you, they didn’t and that’s 100% okay. This time is supposed to be unwound. It’s designed to feel new and scary. It is new and sometimes scary. You are adapting to a new life. Celebrate you and all your courageousness for taking this journey. Celebrate how hard you are all working to find your new normal.
Make space to mourn the way things used to be, those parts are very valid. Don’t, however, compare your new life to your old. This is where we start to wonder why on earth we just can’t seem to get it together.
Your old life was then and your new life is now. You have been born as a mother, just as your baby has to navigate this new life outside the womb, so do you. Together you will figure it out. Together.
The new normal will come, and one day you will look back on these days and realize just how truly amazing you where. You will look back and thank yourself for all the hard work building this new foundation so that you could learn to be a family of 3 (or 4, or 5, or 6……).
YOU ARE DOING AMAZING!
Side note*** there are some very real and very common postpartum conditions that may inhibit your ability to feel love or joy right now. These things are postpartum depression, postpartum anxiety, postpartum OCD, and postpartum psychosis. They are more common than you would think and its important to recognize when you or your partner may need help. Please go here to look at a list of signs/symptoms and tools for help please click here.