1. Even though your pregnancy seemed easy, doesn’t mean your labor is going to go as smoothly. I really thought I’d be in one day and out the next with baby in tow. I had read about labor and delivery, I had gone to the birthing classes, I thought I had done my research. But I wasn’t ready for what came next…
48+ hours of labor, 4 hours of pushing, a resuscitated baby and two nights in the NICU (yes, very fortunate compared to some) wasn’t what I expected after the easy pregnancy I had.
2. Labor is as much a mental game as it is a physical game.
3. Breastfeeding is HARD. For something that is natural, I thought it would come naturally. It still, six months later, takes a ton of perseverance. Just remind yourself it is best for baby and push through. There will be literal blood, sweat and tears in the beginning but it is so worth it!
4. Separation Anxiety – not from baby, from mommy. For weeks after he was born I could not let him out of my sight and even at times out of my arms. I would sob harder than him at the thought of not being with him every second of every day. It was a huge struggle for me that I never expected. I had to (and still at times) surrender the anxiety I had of loosing him to The Lord.
5. Just when you think you are healing…you’re not – you still have a ways to go. I was naive in thinking that I would be back up and able to bounce back to life two weeks after I had Sebastian. I really thought I’d bounce back. It frustrated me that after a simple task like running to the grocery store almost four weeks postpartum wiped me out for days after. The healing part for me was much harder mentally than labor was. At my six week appointment I was still not fully healed and was told to continue to take it slow. Ugh! It was probably not until 8-10 weeks pp that I actually felt myself with no repercussions for days after. Although – six months later and my tailbone is still a bit sore every now and again!
6. You will never catch up on sleep… again…no matter how many naps (at least in this stage of life). Haha nope. I have always been one to love sleep and need a solid eight hours at night. Now, if I get four in a row I feel refreshed.
7. Just because a strict schedule works for one person – doesn’t mean it’s gonna work for you and vice versa. I am not a scheduled person. I like to have some sort of order to the day but it doesn’t have to be strict, I like the flexibility. So when it came time to figure out some sort of schedule for little dude we attempted a strict schedule and it just didn’t work for us. Instead we have a flexible schedule, each day is fairly similar but not exact and that is ok because it works for us!
8. Laundry. Never. Ends. And neither do the dishes. Just when I think I have them caught up, we either have a poopy blowout, a wet through or a baby food baby hand print on mommy. I’d rather make the memories than miss them trying to make sure my house is perfect.
9. Coffee is your new best friend. I’ve never been a coffee drinker until now.
10. Your cat that requires a lot of attention doesn’t count the baby’s attention as proper attention …. Actually it’s the opposite and I have less tolerance for his misbehavior.
11. It’s impossible to get out the door in 15 minutes or 20 or 25 – 30 is possible but not always…
12. It’s impossible to have your house perfectly put together….aim for one room a day. Memories are more important than perfect houses. I have found picking up for 10-15 minutes before bed, once baby and hubby are in bed, really helps us start the next day off right.
13. The battle of finding the right diaper – not all diapers are created equal. For some reason before he was born I never thought about the difference different brand diapers could have. Not necessarily how well they worked but how well they fit. Some diapers just did not fit him and still don’t. Some run small and some run big. Some he wet through the top, some the sides, some the legs and some the back. We had nights that he woke up every two to three hours soaked through and literally gone through every onesie he had. Trial and error my friends. What works for me may not work for you and what works for you may not work for me.
14. Growth spurts throw everything off track – eating, sleeping, attitude. And then you fall back into routine again. But for a week or so it’s like your schedule or routine got thrown out the window and you remember what it feels like to try and survive on no sleep.
15. It goes by way to fast, so cherish each moment – even the difficult ones. Everyone told me it went by too fast, I never realized how fast until I had one of my own. I sit here and wonder where the last six months went, were my little baby went, what his newborn cry sounded like, what the kicks in my belly felt like. Take each second in, don’t wish it away, each new thing will come but enjoy the stage you are at because it will be gone before you know it.