Let’s talk reality of a newborn, no sugarcoating!

Those first few months, ok more like 10 or 11 months, with a new baby are really, really tough! The reality of a newborn. It’s all brand new to you (if you’re a first time mom), you’re permanently exhausted (which is torture in itself) from feeding through the night, waking early in the morning (why do babies love waking up around 5am?) and just general complete lack of sleep! Not only do you get way less sleep than you’re used to, when you do get to sleep its constantly interrupted!

Then it’s also coming to terms with you and hubby not having enough time for each other, your marriage moves to a whole different level and it’s hard! You fight more than you did before and about random shit! Because everyone’s exhausted. And it sucks! A lot!

Your days are filled with ‘stuff’ but what exactly you do all day nobody knows but you’re always busy. When you do decide you’re brave enough to venture out it’s a mission! Pram, nappy bag, change of clothes (for you and baby sometimes), etc and timing it between feeds & sleep schedules (as they get older) is hard going (I couldn’t feed in public).

Teaching baby to self soothe and put themselves to sleep unaided; nightmare and traumatic for all. Horrible time.

BUT; and that’s meant to be a big but! When you look back at videos and pictures of those days it’s not with anger. It’s with nostalgia, love, fondness, compassion, longing and an endless list of other adjectives. What brought this all on? I’ve been looking back at videos and pictures of Tristan in the first year of his life and yes I remember it being tough and shit but it wasn’t that bad, was it? Look how he (and we) have turned out. We’re all ok, we made it. Like millions do, every day. It was a year of little (often no) sleep, very early mornings, a lot of crying (from both Tristan and I) but it was 12 months out of my 440-odd months of life so far. Such a tiny portion don’t you think? Even if you count Tristan’s whole life, 30-ish months, it’s still a tiny segment out of it all. I’ve got the rest of my life ahead of me; he’s was only so small for such a short time.

The saying is so incredibly true; the days are long but the years are short. That first year felt like 10 but I can’t believe Tristan is already 2,5 years old! He is still so little and young but has grown so much and it happened right before my eyes.

Having another baby scare me for a few reasons:

  • PND relapse
  • That complete, torturous exhausting
  • Having 2 kids; it does not look like a walk in the park
  • My weight; I’ve struggled so with my weight post-Tristan as it is. Another baby would just add to my woes (purely a selfish & vain reason)
  • Losing quality time with Tristan; him feeling he’s pushed aside

But I also get all warm & fussy thinking about it! Those newborn sounds & snuggles, breastfeeding, all those funny moments, watching them grow and watching Tristan take on the role of big brother (I know he’d take to it like a duck to water!)

What would I like to do differently this time? Wear the baby right from the start, trust myself, back myself, accept & ask for help, have meals delivered, be on meds from 3rd trimester with regular counselling sessions and be less rigid. I’ve done this once, even with severe postnatal depression, and it turned out well. I can do this.

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