An Open Letter to New Moms
Dear Soon-to-Be New Mom,
How are you feeling? That sweet baby of yours should be entering the world sometime between now and the next two weeks. I hope this last stretch of pregnancy has been going well for you. That was the only time I had days of “feeling so pregnant” and my body was tired. I knew those last few weeks were prime time to sleep in, take naps, and rest up, but I was too uncomfortable. Know that even if you’ve been worried about getting your house set up or thinking about things that you need to buy, it really isn’t a big deal. Most of those things can wait, for a long time. Your baby will have a simple life for the first few months with only basic needs. There might be times where you’re awake every hour of the night to nurse or bottle feed and feel completely drained. You more than likely will cry over little things for a while, but that’s alright. Between the hormone change and lack of sleep, I was sensitive and cried a lot the first month or so. It may take some time for your body to heal and change somewhat back to pre-pregnancy. At first everything you do might be somewhat painful. I was very emotional and lost my self-confidence for a while. I didn’t feel pretty in the least and felt like I was just a milk factory. The days and nights blended together. Every decision had me questioning myself. Am I doing this right? What does this mean? Is this supposed to be happening? All of the books I read and things I looked up online didn’t seem to matter much anymore. If I asked a question, friends, family, and neighbors each gave me a different answer. How frustrating!
It would be days before I had the chance to shower. Nearly every time I would feed the baby, give her over to Dad, and step into my nice, warm shower. It felt amazing. It was the only time dedicated to myself, to help my sore body feel somewhat better, and to try and relax. Typically within five minutes the baby would be crying. How could she be hungry already? End of shower. Even though it may be short, make it a point to set aside part of the day for yourself. You’ll need it and it will make you feel so much better…more human. Sometimes I would brew some hot herbal tea or work on my birth story in my journal. After some magic amount of time, I’m not sure when, everything will click. You will think to yourself, “This isn’t so hard. I am getting the hang of things. I am a parent now.” That was a beautiful day. (Months later and I still think it sounds weird being called a parent) It is intuition and you will naturally know what’s best for your baby. Everyone may be telling you the same thing. They may say, “After all of the pain and exhaustion, it is worth it. Once you hold your baby for the first time, your heart changes.” I’ve never felt a love like this before. I cannot imagine life any other way. I believe in you. You will make a loving, strong-minded mother. I can’t wait for your baby to be born and to hear how your unique birth experience went!
PS- Don’t feel like you have to prove anything by wanting to go the natural route. Birth plans are adapted and situations may change. Do what your body feels is right. It’s your choice to make!
Thinking of You,
A Fellow Mama