Saturday, January 9, 2016

New Mama: You Will Survive.

New Mama,

Hang in there.

You will survive.

I know you're exhausted --More exhausted than you've ever been in your entire life. You're so tired that your body aches everywhere, you probably have a constant headache and you probably look like you've been punched in both eyes.

You're hormonal. --And boy do you know it. --And you feel guilty for the uncontrollable weeping and angry snapping you've done for the past few days.

You love that baby more than anything. You'd literally give an arm for that child (heck you'd give both). But heaven knows, you need those to position the little one for feedings and do the baby-rock dance across your living room or nursery -- for hours on end. You need those arms to change endless poopy diapers, attempt* to feed yourself, slather cream on your hurting bits, and climb into bed... or the couch you've been camped out on for the last week.  So rest assured, we know (and God knows) you love your child. You're doing it right, Mama.

And it's okay to be completely and utterly overwhelmed. It's okay to have puffy eyes that barely stay open due to tears and sleep deprivation. It's okay to have a sharp tongue at times and the deepest doubts you've ever experienced.  We mamas understand. And your man, he loves you.  He just may not know what to do for you at the moment. He doesn't think poorly of you. He doesn't think you're insane. -- I mean, he might, but let's be real, you kind of are at this point. And it's okay.

You aren't alone.

Sleepless nights and constant feedings, sore lady-bits (top to bottom), and some serious hangry outbursts are all part of the new baby experience.  If you can get through this, you can get through anything. Motherhood is not always this hard.
"Let me sing you the song of my people".

You're postpartum experience is unique to you and it's unique to your baby. And sometimes even the most well-intended advice just. won't. work. --And you'll feel incredibly discouraged. --And you'll wonder why you're different.  --And you'll wonder why your kid won't sleep like the other people who post snuggly pics all over Facebook. --And you'll wonder why your little love just won't stop crying. --And you'll feel like you are constantly failing and you don't know what to do.

Sometimes you'll just want to cry and sometimes you consider taking a walk alone... while your child screams inside. --But you won't because you are a good mama.  Oh, but you'll consider it.  --And then you just might close the door to the nursery and take a couple-minute mental break when you know the baby is safe.

You literally may not have the energy or strength or physical ability to get the baby pillow off of your lap and get off the couch to shower. Every nap, bathroom break, and every attempt at meal prep may be interrupted by fussing and feeding.  And the grocery store, please. No mama. Ask the jogger down the street to go for you.  Because girl, you gotta rest.

You will survive.

It doesn't feel like it. In fact, you probably feel like you are dying as you read this... but you will be okay.  Give yourself a break. --You just made and delivered a (not all that tiny) human!  And despite your worst fears, your emotions won't completely take over your life. You won't feel so discouraged forever. There will be light at the end of this tunnel.

--Also, don't listen to the mamas that see everything through rose colored glasses (at least right now)  or those that have recently slept a full (I don't know, 6 hours) and offer all sorts of "gratitude" advice. Gratitude regarding your family and new little blessing is a given and it's important to be thankful. --But postpartum life sucks for a while. It just does. But by God's grace, you'll make it.

Hang in there, exhausted, discouraged, hurting, weeping, hangry, overwhelmed, stinky, half-asleep Mama!  You will survive.

<3 Love and LOTS of prayers,