Oh, my. I’m pretty sure nothing anyone said could have prepared me for life with a new baby. The phrase, “It changes everything,” is really true, ladies. Those of you with children will probably agree with me when I say the housework is the first thing that suffers, if not your spouse.
I was blessed enough to have my mom fly out to be with us the first two weeks with our precious son. But when she left, all of the sudden the weight of responsibility really smacked me dead in the face. My optimistic mind anticipated easily working my schedule and commitments around the baby. Hah! It hasn’t quite worked that way.
Babies, particularly newborns, have this knack for being unpredictable. My sweet boy isn’t on a good schedule yet, so let’s just say things have been a little interesting in the way of housework. I tend to set high, impossible expectations for myself and when I don’t meet them, I get frustrated and upset. And then there are those postpartum hormones to contend with. Any other moms experience this? I’m learning to give myself grace. It’s difficult and exhausting, but my God is good to me.
What does this look like, exactly? Well, I’m glad you ask.
It looks like a dirty sink and unswept floor. It looks like unkempt hair and baby wearing. It’s patience when the baby is crying. It is long nights and a tear-streaked face. It’s ugly and messy, but you still carry on, especially after one of those sweet baby smiles. And it’s praying for strength, when you’re exhausted and at the end of your rope.
Life will never be the same, and that’s okay. God’s reminded me that this is just a season. A challenging one, yes, but still a season. My baby boy won’t be little forever. I want to cherish these little moments and not get caught up in my expectations of how things should be. That said, it doesn’t change the difficult moments. The moments where I’m not sure how long I can go on, or when I just want some sleep. The moments when I feel broken and helpless, incompetent and unequipped. However, it makes those moments more bearable. It gives this weary momma hope.
The next biggest challenge I think I have faced so far in this new chapter, is learning to not resent my husband. I am learning to not resent him for getting a good night’s sleep every night, while I get up every few hours. I’m learning to not resent him for being unable to feed and care for our baby to give me a break (we’ve chosen to breastfeed, so it’s all on me!). And lastly, I’m learning to not resent him for leaving me everyday. Stupid, I know. The man is working to provide for us after all! But it still seems unfair some days that I’m cooped up at home, left to care for a newborn all by myself. I don’t know how some women do it.
Can any mothers out there relate?