Friday, July 17, 2015

5 months of learning...

5 things I've learned in 5 months as a new Mama:

1. The pressure to breastfeed is astronomically high. Seriously, I have never felt so judged before. It's been a learning experience and one I'm glad I've had to endure. I know I will never ask a Mama what she's feeding her baby. Mainly because it's none of my business and when it comes down to it, it doesn't matter. She's doing what she thinks is best for her baby and that's what counts. When people ask me I constantly feel the need to justify why I stopped breastfeeding and I shouldn't have to do that. Let's just be brutally honest, breastfeeding is hard. It's time consuming. It's exhausting. While I agree that it is definitely worth it for the baby, sometimes it doesn't always work. I tried for a month and for a month I watched my little boy lose more and more weight. He latched, I pumped, he bottle fed...none of it increased his weight or helped his overwhelming reflux. So we transitioned to formula and within 3 days he gained 5 oz. In the first month he barely gained an ounce over a weeks time and with a small change he gained five in a matter of days. I was relieved and happy to see an improvement and then...I felt nothing but guilt. Everyone around me was unknowingly posting about how amazing it feels to feed their babies the best and I felt like a failure. I no longer feel like a failure, I know my decision was in the best interest of Landon but from time to time I do get a few pangs of guilt. So for the love of Pete (who's Pete?) don't judge Mamas for how they feed. Just encourage them for loving and supporting that little bundle of fat joy. 

2. Time flies. Time stands still. In the blink of an eye your 6 pound peanut turns into a 14 pound walnut. Yet at the very same time your days run together and blend into 5 months and it feels like they never end. That's most likely delirium though. I'll admit, I'm leaning more towards the time flying thing; it's amazing how an hour nap only seems like 3 minutes but that's how it always is. Or you could have a baby like mine who literally takes 3 minute naps and then is ready to party for a few hours. We're still learning...

3. Sleep really is a thing of the past. It does get better (sorta) as they get older but not infinitely better. I am constantly waking up over every little sound coming from the monitor. The majority of the time it's just him moving into a different position but that doesn't stop me from staring at the screen for 15 minutes to the point of waking myself up completely and then finding it beyond difficult to fall back to sleep. I suppose one day I'll get over that too? For now I'll continue being slightly sleep deprived.

4. Your heart is on the verge of bursting every 3.3 seconds. They look at you, you melt. They smile, you smile bigger. They cry, you cry harder. Ok, that's a little lie on my part. Sometimes when Landon cries he lets out these hilarious shrieks. I can't help but giggle. I believe it's partly due to being a NICU nurse and listening to babies cry for 12+ hours, I've become slightly immune to the crying. Side note: For those who may be thinking "Oh, she's the 'cry it out' mom" please know I'm not. I don't let my kid scream bloody murder, but I also don't jump at every whimper. Back to the point...every little thing they do makes your heart fill a little more with love and soon enough it's big enough to explode. But it doesn't because lord knows you already have enough to clean up, no need to add more.

5. Those beautiful pregnancy locks you had, say goodbye. I thought I escaped the dreaded hair loss and then 4 months postpartum it started coming out in clumps. I  may or may not be shedding more than my extremely furry dog. You know those pranks you see of people putting Nair in shampoo's funny till it happens to you...WITHOUT NAIR! I completely understand why new Moms chop of their hair...
A: It's falling out anyway
B: The little hair you have, the little shit Angel is pulling out.
It's a lose lose situation, so snip snip! Which is exactly what I did this week and I LOVE it!!! #ShortHairDontCare

The majority of this stuff I was warned about during my entire pregnancy but I guess peeps only preach the truth. I'm well aware that I have a whole lot more to learn over the next...many many years...and I am so ready for the challenge!

Until next time...
Mama Bear signing off..

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