confessions from a first time momma

February 29, 2012


Today is not a great day for me. Our apartment is a disaster and I have no motivation to clean. Well I did this morning for like a second. So I moved the bed. Then I just crawled up in it while Sydney napped. There's a few things on my mind today so I hope you don't mind I vent a little bit. I had a reader email me a few days ago and ask me how I do everything. HA, I wish I could. Honestly, I can't and I don't- as you can see by my house. Things go unattended, goals are not met, and some days I spend day dreaming about all the things I should be doing. But, baby comes first. So if everything else in my world seems to be crashing down it doesn't really matter to me. However, I wasn't always able to feel that way. 

My first month with Sydney was the worst month of my life emotionally. There were glimpses of happiness and a bond I desired more than anything to have with her, but most of that month I spent in a dark place. She cried all day long, all night long, and then some. I had a very difficult time breast feeding. I didn't know how to soothe her. I felt like the worst mom on the planet because sometimes I felt like maybe I didn't want to be a mom anymore. My dear husband was gone most days from 6 am until midnight. I was so alone and so over my head. Forget about trying to make dinner or take a much needed nap. He would come home to a wife sobbing right along with her baby, pleading to make her stop. Then somehow I had to muster up the strength to start working on my assignments and finals, usually after the midnight hours. But really I wanted to take a shower or clean, or anything but school work. It was a vicious cycle of sleep depravation and stress. Sometimes I would have to just let her cry and I would curl up on the shower floor, with the water running down, sobbing for as long as I needed. I have experienced depression many times in my life, but nothing quite like this. I realized very quickly I couldn't do everything. 

Then came Christmas break. I was dreading going to my in laws, knowing the emotional state I was in. I wasn't sure I could handle not being able to be myself and having to pretend like I wasn't falling apart inside. I just wanted to be with my mom more than anything. I knew when I told Michael he was heart broken, but he was so supportive and loving. I decided one day I was just going to suck it up. So away we went for 2 weeks. They were honestly the perfect two weeks. The two weeks that I needed more than anything. I had so much help with Sydney. Michael and I were able to get as far away from school and work as possible. We were able to relax and enjoy family and yummy food. The best part for me was being able to go for a few runs and exercise. Oh and the SUN. Weather in december in california= blissful. I honestly feel that was a turning point for me. Sydney, the moment we got on the plane to leave for California, became a different baby. I felt hope and rejuvenation. When we returned to Utah I thanked my Heavenly Father so much for allowing me such a blessing. I prayed about my Masters and decided to take the semester, or more, off. I needed to get to know my baby and just be with her. I still work a few hours a week from home when she is sleeping. I manage to get a few crafts done here and there, and I clean my house occasionally, but most everyday I just spend with her and I love it. 

Can I do everything? Well I hope I learn to balance everything better someday. But for now, learning to be a mom and a wife, and everything else in between, is a process - one I am growing to love and one I am slowly succeeding in each day. I love being a mother. I love my litte Sydney Grace. She is such a wonderful baby and I know she is more patient with her momma then I probably deserve. The one thing I have learned is that you have take care of yourself in order to be a good mom. It's also so important to have some type of support system. Sometimes that can't always be my husband because of his schooling and tennis, but I have amazing friends, siblings, and parents who are able to help near and far. I am so thankful for motherhood. It has taught me so much about myself and priorities, and what really matters in life. 

So ya, today isn't a great day, but I have a smiling baby next to me so who cares! 

6 comments:

  1. You are a wonderful mother and have such a strong spirit and love about you. Your baby is so lucky. I wish I could be there to hang out with you and sydney and help you. Miss you so much friend!!

    Emily

    ReplyDelete
  2. Jess, after reading this (and even before) I realize just how much i look up to, and love you. It is so amazing to see all the changes that are happening in our HUGE family. but as i've seen there is nothing more challenging than being a first time mom. I am so grateful for the example you are setting for all the rest of us younger cousins. To keep trying even when things get hard is a lesson that we all have to learn and I'm glad i have your example to look up to. :) I love you jess keep up the good work you sound like a terrific momma. P.S. i can't wait to meet the little babe! :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. perfect. good work doing the most important work you have to do--and it's not the laundry! May all young (and old) mothers prioritize and lower our expectations in this regard!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Thank you so much for this blog entry Jess! I'm sitting here with a week and half old baby wondering what I've gotten myself into and I know it's just the beginning. Your post makes me feel better knowing that what I'm experiencing, all first time moms experience--so Thank You :) When my 6 weeks of indoor solitude are over, we should grab Ashleigh, the babies and get some fresh air :)

    ReplyDelete
  5. Depression is so hard, so hindering. But you have so many things to be grateful for. I'm not a mom, I can't say from experience or absolute feeling, but I know you are one lucky lady and so is Sydney (and Michael is one lucky guy as well). Hang in there girlfriend.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I had pretty much the exact same experience. I spent my first few weeks/months as a mom being totally overwhelmed, wishing I wasn't a mom, and feeling completely inadequate. I wondered how everyone else who had kids made it look so easy. Little did I know that this experience was "normal". It's ok to not feel that intimate bond with your baby immediately. It's ok to step back from the crying child and go cry yourself! I wish someone had told me that I wasn't going to be perfect. I wish someone had given me a reality check.

    Thank goodness for family that was there for you (and me) in our most dire need.

    ReplyDelete