I became an official mom three-and-a-half months ago and, although I only halfway believed people when they said my life will change forever, they were absolutely right. I was a nanny for three years before switching to my current job so I I was very confident in my ability to care for a baby but now that I'm the parent and I can't give the baby back at 5 p.m., wow, it's a lot different!
Now that we've had help for my son's reflux and he's sleeping through the night, I can't complain too much — he's an easygoing baby! But there definitely are ups and downs. These are my biggest rants and raves about being a new mom:
Unwanted advice. Everyone who's a mother thinks you need to hear how they did things or how you should do things. They even try to tell you the obvious. (Like my sister-in-law telling me to use 'lots of sunscreen, lots of sunscreen.' Really? I had no idea I would need to put sunscreen on my blond haired, blue eyed son but thanks for letting me know.)
You don't accomplish as much as you used to. Everything is on baby time!
Know-it-all comments. Hearing 'I told ya so' or 'Well, welcome to parenthood' are my least favorite phrases.
The end of enjoying your meals. It's a blessing when you get to have a peaceful dinner with just you and your spouse. Our first one in a while was last night actually!
Strain on your relationship with your spouse. It will get tested so many times in such a short period.
The learning curve. It takes forever to figure out how to balance caring for your child, housework, and relaxing. Still don't have this down but working on it.
Breastfeeding logistics. Although breastfeeding is great (I am exclusively breastfeeding right now), you're tied to your baby constantly. Making sure you have enough milk frozen for times when you won't be available really wears on you if you aren't a huge milk producer (two thumbs pointing at this gal!).
The first time baby smiles at you. And every time they smile when you walk in the house from work.
How all that testing actually makes you and your partner closer. If you make it through all this, I think your relationship will end up stronger than it was before you had your baby (hopefully).
Dressing baby in cute clothes. Super fun!
Watching baby grow and learn new things.
Hearing baby babble. Our little guy just started really, really "talking" up a storm this week and we just laugh and laugh at him.
And more smiles. When you're nursing them and they just stop for a second and smile at you. Talk about melting your heart.
Don't get me wrong — having a baby is such a huge blessing and we are so thrilled to be parents. We had to go through IVF, so we are well aware how fortunate we are to have him. But it is definitely the hardest thing we've ever done. I think everyone has to find a balance and a schedule that works for you, your spouse, but most of all, baby. Once we get there (I think we're almost there), I'd like to think it's a little smoother sailing. Fingers crossed!
What did you struggle with most as a new mom? What did you love most?