Welcome to the club.
An acquaintance sent me this simple one line email after I had BabyBird and the news spread across Facebook. I thought it was a sweet and simple message, saying congrats on just giving birth and welcome to being a momma.
But now, 15 months later, I can truly appreciate what she meant. Oh the mom club. Where on one hand you are filled with an indescribable amount of instant love you have for your newborn child, how you will worry about each decision and if you are doing the right thing, you’ll think of food in ounces, poop in color, consistency and more importantly frequency is he pooping too much, too little? You plan around your day on when you can squeeze in a shower, or the time to eat something, and wonder how you will ever function again as an adult. It’s so hard when you are in the trences of day to day survival mode of being responsible on keeping another human being alive, clean and fed.
You worry about breastfeeding and if he’s getting enough, or should you use bottles and why are your nipples so sore, is this normal? Counting wet diapers and remembering when he ate last when you’ve only slept in 3 hour long increments. Is it too hot or cold? Is his swaddle too tight? You worry about SIDS and spend way to much time googling and reading about it.
You wonder how you will ever get to that pile of laundry that is doubling by the minute. Curse when you snap those footed PJs wrong and you are one button off, but only realize this when you are almost finished. Sway and walk around the nursery 387 times a day. You silently high-five yourself when your baby finally poops. Wonder how in the world you will clip those itsy bitsy finger nails.
Then you realize you haven’t eaten since this morning and you are about to go to bed. There’s spit up on your shirt, your hair is a mess and unwashed, and you do not care. The sense and knowing that there is a little human who depends on you for every need, somehow gives you that one more ounce of energy to keep going.
Dear new mom, you are doing everything right. Don’t doubt yourself. Keep going and try to remember that this is just a phase and it too will pass. Newborns are tiny, and oh so sweet. They fall asleep anywhere. But their tummy’s are tiny, so they have to be fed constantly, at all hours of the night. Sleep depravation will hit you hard and you feel like crying, if you had the energy.
They can’t fall asleep on their own, or without their arms swaddled because of that darn startle reflex. They spit up. And burp. Oh, how I’ve missed the burps. Stay strong momma, it’ll get easier. I promise and it gets so much better.
I understand it now. Welcome to the club. I totally get it.
So today, I sent a sweet message to a new mom who just went through 72+ of labor with her little one, and my opening line was… welcome to the club.