I haven’t blogged in a long, long time. Honestly, after I got pregnant for the third time I didn’t know what to talk about. I felt like I didn’t “fit in” if I was posting while pregnant.
This past February we were truly blessed to meet our new daughter. My little girl is almost three months old now, and the past few months have been completely overwhelming, joyful, extremely difficult, and hopeful for the future.
After experiencing two miscarriages, I was so thrilled to carry a pregnancy full term. I was trying to stay as calm as possible, but of course I was anxious on how our lives were going to change. Ever since I was a little girl I have always wanted to be a stay at home mom. I defined my ultimate goal in life by being a mother.
When my daughter was born I couldn’t understand why I didn’t feel connected to her. This perfect baby that I had carried. She was part of me yet I didn’t feel that connection. I thought maybe it was just the exhaustion. We brought her home and my husband took to being a dad instantly. He seemed to do everything right. I was completely lost on what I was suppose to do. Sure, I bring her home, feed her, keep her clean and warm, snuggle her, and still.. it was didn’t feel like I expected. Weeks went by and I still didn’t feel it. That’s when I admitted to the postpartum depression.
Those first few weeks I was taking care of my daughter, but I wasn’t taking care of myself. I wasn’t eating. Things weren’t going the way I thought they would. I felt my body had failed me twice before with my miscarriages, and after my daughter was born my body was failing me at producing milk. I had this perfect baby who needed nourishment and my body was unable to provide it. She dropped too much weight at the beginning that I had to go back up to the hospital to get her weight re-checked for a second time. I would just cry the entire time she would try to breastfeed. My whole life was suppose to be about being a mother; how was I failing this?
I never expected to be hit so hard with depression after having a baby. Hadn’t I felt enough of that just trying to have her?
That connection did come. It came when I wasn’t watching for it. It wasn’t when I wanted it to be, but it was there. I just wasn’t able to see it yet. Now I feel much more confident about being a mother. I think my experiences just goes with the whole “things don’t always go as you expect them to” lesson I had been learning for the past few years. My life wasn’t meant to be defined by being a mother. My daughter is a wonderful part of my life, but she isn’t my entire life. I’m still me. I still have flaws. I still have needs. Depression is something I have dealt with in the past and I’m sure I will continue to throughout my life.
Now I am enjoying my life as mom much more. I couldn’t have gotten through those first few weeks without my friends and family. Sure, things aren’t exactly like I expected them to be. I formula feed my daughter, but she gets all the nourishment she needs. It’s the middle of the afternoon and I have yet to shower today even though my daughter spit up into my hair earlier. But you know what? She wasn’t feeling well last night. We slept together in the recliner. When she napped this morning I found it was more important for me to get in a nap then to shower. I have spent the past two hours trying to get her to nap. I have been up from my computer trying to write this post a half dozen times because she has started crying. After two hours I was able to get her down and stay down. Now that she finally is down I should go get in the shower.
This is my life now. It’s not glamorous, but it is exactly what I wanted it to be. I know that depression is there. It will always be a part of me. All I can do is keep going one day at a time – and today is a good day.