New Mom Real Talk: A look back on a year of momhood
Where do I even begin? I wanted to post a reflection on my first year of being a mom, but I didn’t realize it would be so difficult to put my thoughts and emotions into words.
It’s been a pretty nostalgic two weeks. The first cool days of fall used to remind me of college (kind of ironic since I went to school in Atlanta), but now I’m taken back to the weeks leading up to L’s birth and the days that immediately followed. That last few weeks of pregnancy were long. There was typical “I-gained-35-pounds” discomfort, I was so sick of being hot, and I just wanted to meet my baby already. I wasn’t even nervous about becoming a mom. I think that the only fear I had was of the unknown in regards to labor. When would it happen? How would I feel? How long would it take? I never shared L’s birth story here, but in summary, I never really went into labor. After a day of lower than normal kick counts, I went in for fluid level monitoring and when L’s heartbeat started going crazy, they broke my water (ouch), nothing progressed and a c-section seemed prudent. Afterwards we found out that it was the right decision and we were blessed to welcome a very healthy baby into the world.
When I think back to those first days in the hospital and then home recovering, it actually feels like it was a very long period of time. I think because in those first couple of weeks I felt like I already knew my baby as well as you can ever know another person. It was an incredible sort of bonding and being that I’m not sure how to express. The nightly wakeups for feedings just became a part of me. I didn’t resent the lack of sleep, in fact, I didn’t complain that I was tired, merely acknowledged it. I was just living and breathing for this new person in my life.
The first couple of months with a baby really continue like that. A newborn just eats, sleeps, and requires a lot of diaper changes. They do start to stay awake a bit more and interact a bit towards the end of that period, but they really depend on you 100%. While L still depends completely on me and Matt, he can now express himself and his desires. If he wants cheerios, he will go into the bottom of his stroller and grab them. If he wants to get to something, he will crawl, cruise and climb there (or point to you and then the direction he wants to go). If he wants to read, he will grab a book and hand it to you. When did this little baby turn into his own person? When I talk to people about being a mom, I can’t help but describe the incredible wonder that is watching a baby go from almost nothing to everything.
From the day I heard L’s heartbeat, through today, I’ve been in love. Each giggle, each new milestone, every single big smile, all of those things take that love to a deeper level than possible. Oh trust me, there are days when Matt gets home and I say “your turn” as soon as he walks through the door. I’ve had moments where I’m ready to cry in frustration. Though, as I reflect on this year as a whole, those moments seem so small and insignificant. Fleeting even. How will I feel three, five, ten and twenty years from now, Gd willing?
What an incredible year and journey it has been. It’s changed me in ways I never thought imaginable. I’m a different person as a mom than I ever pictured or imagined. And yet, it’s all so natural, like it was always set to be this way. Thank you, L, for being such a magical part of my life. I couldn’t imagine it any other way. I love you.
A look back on a year of New Mom posts: