I am so in love with my daughter. My entire pregnancy, I was very cynical and whined a lot about how miserable the whole thing was. I was told by many a lady on my birth board that it was fine. I just wasn’t a magical, glitter-pooping pregnancy unicorn. I was just being honest and realistic about pregnancy. I didn’t have to enjoy it. Well, I finally became a unicorn.
That first night in the hospital after Charlotte was born, I wanted to scream. I hated that she wouldn’t sleep in the weird plastic tub they gave me, felt guilty for wanting them to take her to the nursery (they don’t do that at our hospital anyway), was upset because I wasn’t able to breastfeed, frustrated that every nurse had an opinion and was super pushy and no one’s opinion was the same, and exhausted from days without sleep. I was in horrible pain every time I tried to use the bathroom, had to do so many things to treat the issues and the pain, and was terrified of infections and such. I thought I was going to have Postpartum Depression big time.
We got home from the hospital and everything changed. Charlotte sleeps in her swing. She sleeps in her cradle. She sleeps in our arms. She sleeps almost all day. I have plenty of time to get things done. Tom was so helpful in bringing the baby to me for feeding her. I got over the fact that we were having to feed her formula instead of breast milk. We were sleeping. We had time to eat and shower. She didn’t cry for an extended amount of time or have any issues whatsoever.
The day after we got home, she had a doctor’s appointment that went incredibly well. My OB, who wasn’t my favorite person while I was pregnant, was super helpful and patient and answered our questions without judgment. Who could be mean to that sweet little face? Anyways, her Daddy and I were beaming with pride and joy. I loved her. I enjoyed her. I found taking care of her to be fun and come naturally.
Today, she is 4 days old. Almost 5, given her time of birth. We had a lazy day of lying around, eating, sleeping, going to the bathroom, bathing, diaper changing, and spitting up everywhere. Her face is becoming much more expressive. She grins at us when she poops her diapers, like a little troll baby. Like “You mad, Mommy?” She squirms and wiggles and is starting to make little noises. We found out she likes to have her hair brushed. And I had a terrible nightmare that I left her in the car in a parking lot for hours and someone broke into my car and kidnapped her. I woke up hyperventilating and Tom brought her over to me, when I grabbed her and bawled my eyes out, so relieved she was ok and I hadn’t been such a terrible parent that some stranger kidnapped her for her own good.
I don’t feel like a bad parent. In fact, I feel like Tom and I are actually pretty good at this. We’ve been able to take our time to adjust and figure things out on our own. We’ve had resources to go to when we had questions and have taken time to get to know our little girl. We’d done a lot of research prior to her birth which has come in handy. We weren’t “prepared” exactly, but we weren’t completely clueless coming in, either.
I’m healing very nicely. My body is bouncing back pretty quickly. I’m currently wearing pre-pregnancy jammies. They don’t fit exactly how they used to, but with some diet and exercise, time will tell. My milk came in and I’m able to feed my baby myself now. We’re still struggling with some physical obstacles, but I am so elated to be able to provide my child with healthy, all-natural, antibody-fortified food. Today was a good day. I have found my unicorn and I’m proud of it. She’s my perfect little angel and I love being her Mommy.
I know a lot of women struggle with Postpartum Depression. As someone who has struggled with Depression as part of my Bipolar Disorder, I empathize. I can’t relate entirely because I never had the added sense of guilt that society places on a new mother if she isn’t all sunshine, rainbows, and glitter-pooping unicorns about her newfound motherhood. I do not write this post to make anyone feel bad. My experience is individual to me. I’m incredibly lucky to not be struggling with depression right now. For any and all mothers who are suffering/did suffer PPD, I don’t believe myself to be a better parent or more naturally suited for it than you. Lord knows I have faults. Depression is not a failure, simply a chemical imbalance. I wasn’t happy with pregnancy. I’m so blessed to be so happy so easily now that Charlotte has been born. If it weren’t for my easy healing and Charlotte’s easy temperament, I might not be all sunshine and rainbows right now.
Parenthood Day 4 is Heaven on Earth.