Being pregnant I felt prepared for motherhood. I read all the right books and asked (what I assumed were) all the right questions.
I was prepared for nursing, for sleepless nights, for dirty diapers, for pee in my face. I was ready for the challenge. Or so I thought.
It turns out I wasn’t prepared for the emotional roller coaster that is the first few months with a newborn. Where I’m from, culturally, people find it difficult talking about post partum depression. No one talks about PDD. It’s just one of those things.
To be honest, talking about it here is actually scary to me.
While I didn’t experience post partum depression, I experienced major hormonal fluctuations, which in turn led to a lot of UNCONTROLLABLE thoughts, feelings, and emotions. I was overwhelmed, scared, slightly frustrated and weighed down. I would sometimes cry when J would scream uncontrollably (he was colicky; I’ll do a separate post on how we dealt with this).
To make matters worse, I got sad that I wasn’t a happy mommy. I felt like I was ungrateful to God for such a miraculous blessing. But I knew I was thankful, and I loved this little being more than life itself.
I would cry to The Hubs at night about how I was overwhelmed, and he would try to remind me that I was doing an amazing job. I think somehow he understood what I was going through because he NEVER once tried to snap me out of it. He would let me cry it out, talk it out, or laugh it out.
Some days I would just be mad at him. For nothing. For absolutely nothing. But he always did his best to cheer me up.
In hindsight, I really think it was all mostly my hormones fluctuating; I used to be on Dr. prescribed ‘’over-the-counter pills’’ for regularizing my hormone levels, and pregnancy – childbirth must have stirred up something.
For many women the hormonal fluctuations are smooth sailing, but for others, like me, it was a shipwreck. I experienced lots of crying and intense joy – both extremes which consequently resulted in stress. It was an intense hormonal roller coaster. And though I didn’t need medical assistance as with PPD, I needed to be encouraged through it. I needed to be reminded that I wasn’t a bad mom for feeling these things, and that it was okay to feel these things; because it wasn’t all bad feelings, it was just A LOT of feelings.
The Hubs was amazing, he made conscious efforts to point out the great things I was doing. He even got me a T-shirt that says “World’s Greatest Mom”.
And we got through it. By the time J was 10/11 weeks, I was feeling a lot better. I was more confident in my ability to take care of him. I prayed more, renewed my faith in God and sought help when I was tired. I was hardly feeling overwhelmed when he cried from the discomfort caused by colic. I wasn’t weighed down anymore by the thought and stress of waking up 4 times during the night to feed.
I had dealt with my feelings, overcome my fears and I was a happy confident mommy.
So if you are pregnant, or just had your first baby, or you plan on having a baby, I hope that someone told you this – that you may have to deal with A LOT of feelings. And I hope that it’s easier for you to deal with it than it was for me.
But in case it is hard, know that it gets easier, more enjoyable and it’s always worth it.
What did / do you wish you knew before you had your munchkin? Have you dealt / are you dealing with these feelings?
P.S: If you follow my social media @oby_o (instagram and snapchat) accounts, you probably know that we are currently in Dublin spending some time with family (my twin sisters-in-law just had the 2 most adorable babies in the world – making my uterus jump!!!) and i brought J to meet his new cousins!!! We are having such a great time 🙂
I took some time off from work, and gave J’s nanny some time off too so i’m looking after him all by myself 🙂 It feels good to take a break from the “paid job”, BUT there’s no days off from being a mom – i’m still on 24/7 shift looking after J – and i LOVE it!
I’ll be responding to everyone’s e-mails and comments tonight *fingerscrossed*
Love & Light,