When I found out I was pregnant, on July 4, 2011, I was, of course excited, but, I was also nervous. Being an anxious person, I was worried about everything; about feeding the baby, clothing the baby, changing the baby’s diaper… you know, all the normal stuff I should worry about. I expected some challenges. Honestly though? There wasn’t anything that I eventually couldn’t handle or get the hang of. There were, however, a few things I was surprised at about motherhood. Some of them were a big deal, and I wish somebody had informed me about them before I actually became a mother. Others were just funny. Actually, most of them, in hindsight are funny… I guess. So, in no particular order, here are a few things that have surprised me about motherhood, from pregnancy to present day.
1. I can live off cereal and bagels for a month strait. During Rose’s first month, I lived on cinnamon raisin bagels with strawberry cream cheese, Lucky Charms, and Cheerios. I survived.
2. Breastfeeding doesn’t make ALL the weight you gained melt away. Ten months later, and I’m still fifteen pounds over my pre-pregnancy weight.
3. The postpartum hormones? REAL. So, so real. One second I was blissfully happy, and the next I was crying. I was lucky and this stopped after a week.
4. There is an hour everyday that I am pretty sure that I will not make it until my husband comes home. I’m not sure what I think is going to happen, because time does, in fact keep on going, but for an hour every afternoon, when the kitchen is dirty, the baby is getting into everything, and the dog just wants to go outside, I really feel like my world may come to an end. It never does. I may be a bit dramatic.
5. You actually can love a baby as much or more than your dog. Seriously, when I was pregnant I worried that I wouldn’t love my baby as much as my dog. I do. I spend too much energy worrying about that.
6. You can pee with a baby sitting in your lap. Fun fact; I do this at least once a day, just to avoid the whining that comes when I put her down.
7. The witching hour. Holy hell, there is an hour in the evening when EVERY BABY IN THE WORLD mutually decided they would make their mother’s life difficult. For us, this is right around 5:30 or 6:00. My solution? We take the dog for a walk. At least if we’re outside her screams are drowned out by other noises.
8. For the first month or so, I wanted to punch every person that told me that they slept sooooo well or had such a good nap. Word of advice folks; DO NOT TELL A MOTHER OF A NEWBORN ABOUT HOW MUCH SLEEP YOU ARE HAVING.
9. Related to #8: I also wanted to smack every person that told me that they didn’t get a good night sleep the night before. Because, really, there are very few people who are sleeping worse than the parents of a newborn. FACT. I would like to make an amendment to my advice above; NEVER, EVER TALK TO A MOTHER OF A NEWBORN ABOUT SLEEP. AT ALL. PERIOD. END OF STORY.
10. I needed my mom more than I ever thought possible. You think that you are going to be a ‘real grownup’ when you become a parent, and you will no longer need your mommy. False. Oh, so false.
Let’s leave it at ten, shall we? Honestly, I could go on for days but that would be boring for those of you without kids, terrifying for those of you expecting a baby, and a bit redundant if you’ve already lived through it all.