Today I wanted to lay my thoughts down about being a new mommy, provide updates on the babe, and how I’m coping with life moving on after maternity leave. I’m hoping to provide a platform for conversation on some of the challenges that new parents face and how to improve our attitude during these stressful times.
First, I feel like a rock star mom! I’m truly putting in all my effort to make her life as blessed as it can be. I pour my heart and soul into all that she needs and I really do feel like she knows it. This fact gives me comfort that when I do find myself stressed, it’s for a great reason. Some facts I’m finding to be true of being a new mommy:
- no two babies are alike-we can give fellow mommy friends advice on what we did/experienced, but we can never assume the situations will be the same
- it’s ridiculous to compare ourselves to other parents because again the situations will never be exactly the same
- it’s like word-vomit when it comes to giving another mom advice; however, it’s best to not overload your opinions on them…they’re just as stressed and vulnerable
- everyone loves their baby above all, but being genuinely happy for the birth of others’ kiddos is what makes sharing this stage of life with your friends and family so fun
- it’s okay not to know what to do. you’ve never experienced anything like this and you’ll need to learn. researching problems before, during, and after situations occur is normal. I didn’t always know how to be a speech pathologist…I had to study. I don’t always know how to be a mommy…I just have to study
- making the decision to quit BF is super easy for some and super hard for others; either way it’s a touchy subject so be gracious when discussing it (& apparently it’s totally normal to feel cramping after you quit)
Callie is 4 months old now. I’m choking down my words as I type them! Like seriously? How do months move so slow when you’re pregnant and so fast after they arrive? It’s not fair! Callie has recently added some tricks to her bag. Watching her develop and grow is the most rewarding (and emotional) part of being a mommy. She’s officially:
- grabbing those toes-all day long!
- screeching like a drowned cat *smh
- trying to hold her bottle
- trying to roll over
- she went to see the doctor today and get her shots; those shots are no joke ladies! (but the snuggles are fabulous)
- to get her ears pierced? or not?-total parent indifference on this one…I’m for and Dad’s against
It’s been tough the last few weeks as I returned to work. I know I mentioned in one of my last posts about how I was making the most of my new schedule; however, as the honeymoon period wears off I begin to miss her more and more. I’m currently working part-time (which I am VERY grateful for), but at times I feel it’s harder than choosing to be full-time or stay-at-home. Here’s why:
- I try to be the best SLP while I’m at work. I’m running around trying to make all the patients love me, make all their caregivers love me, make my coworkers love me, make my bosses love me, etc. I’m trying to get my work done right away, so to not hold up my coworkers. I’m trying to get creative with what I do, in order to be better at it. Yes-it’s nice to not have a baby attached to my hip while at work but she’s being replaced by tons of babies that need me and the pressure can be real.
- I try to be the best mommy while at home. I’m running around trying to do all I can to make her happy and keep her healthy. I find myself trying to be ‘Wonder Mom’ because I had a wonderful mom and I put the pressure on myself to be the same. Some call it smothering, some call it ‘new mom syndrome’-I call it my constant need to excel (which I admit is really annoying). I’m also trying to make up for the lost time that is spent away from her while I’m at work. My mom was unable to be home with me a lot when I was little and I really don’t want Callie to remember me always at work. I selfishly find myself trying to love on her more, so she will still want to come to me when she’s in public and come to me when she needs snuggles.
- I try to be the best wife I can be while at home. I’m running around trying keep the house clean (as much as I can) and cook meals and be the one to get up to check on the baby, so that Wesley doesn’t have to. He’s the full-time working parent. He works 12 hours shifts and it’s not an easy job by any means. I try my best to take care of him and make his time (the little that he has with us) as enjoyable as possible. I want him to be able to relax at home and soak her up while she’s tiny. I don’t want him to start resenting me for the fact that I don’t work as much, that I do get more time with her, etc. I put a pressure on myself to try and be the best for him so that he knows I love him and that I acknowledge his sacrifices.
Life as a new parent is scary, is happy, is funny, is stressful, but is also AMAZING. There is a huge learning curve and it changes daily. The second you think you ‘have it together’, a new obstacle pops up. It impacts your personal time, it impacts your ability to focus at work, it impacts your relationship with your significant other, and it helps you challenge yourself to be the best version of yourself. Again, my situation is different than other moms. Some work full-time, some work part-time, some stay-at-home. Some moms have healthy babies and some do not. Some moms have a supportive family and some don’t.
I encourage you to comment below describing what being a mommy means to you in one word. Let’s see what each other feels and let’s be there for one another ladies!