Springing into those same old stages


Spring has sprung and with it came a new baby! Well lots of babies, probably, but mine in particular.

My son came into the world early and he’s big, cries lots, feeds like a demon all day long and our hearts are so full. But it turns out that I still know nothing about nothing *anguished sob*Isn’t it funny how you can go into a situation feeling confident and then fall at the first hurdle? For me, it was having a hungry and not so sleepy newborn that did me in.
I thought I’d prepared so well for his arrival but I felt like I was right back to the start of new motherhood and all those god forsaken stages. Almost like the stages of grief.. oops.

Stages like, Denial… Oh yup that was the best one. Lying to everyone except my husband and midwife that I was coping on three hours of sleep? Yeah.. not cool.
In hindsight, I’m not sure if anyone actually believed me, anyway. Let’s just say there were eggshells and people were walking on them.

Then came a day of Anger. I raged at myself thinking, since I’d already had sleeping challenges with our girl, why was I not better prepared? I’d washed all the baby items, set up the nursery, wrote FOUR birth plans (seriously) and re-schooled myself on breastfeeding. But sleep? Well I figured the first few weeks were easy sleep wise and that I’d feed to sleep for the next 10 like I did with Mackenzie. NOPE. Baby boy was all “hmm.. sleep is not for me, mama”.

The only fun stage was Bargaining. I had back and forth text conversations begging Mum to come around. Honestly it was like that time I suggested that the courier drop off the parcels AFTER 8am when my husband had left.. Being pushed to bargain for help in absolute desperation. LOL. Anyway, begging mum to stay over for the night shift once a week in exchange for wine, dinner, then coffee and cake the morning after was without a lie, what saved my sanity. It was heaven. All I had to do was feed and she’d take the baby, change him, burp him, and cuddle him to sleep. She claimed she loved it because she could bond with the baby, but I know that she really did it for me because I was becoming a demented version of myself in front of everyone’s eyes.

Then the Depression hit and oh boy, was that hard. I was ready for it, because it happened last time but what I wasn’t ready for was the agony of wanting to shield my daughter from it. To be real, the way past that stage was to talk, talk, talk about it and be present with my family. Being open with those that I trust helped, asking for help in very practical ways also helped. Not having any expectations each day helped. Having a shower each morning, getting out in the sun for a walk, having yummy treats on hand.. Finding joy again in those little things, all helped.

But after all that gurrrl, I finally came to Acceptance.
Well, actually what I accepted was that life with a newborn is freakin hard, and I was in the pit of despair, but this was my baby and I needed to be there for him. Hell, when I really think about it I really, truely WANT to be there. Being there at 10am in the morning was the same, to him, as me being there at 11pm, then 12pm, 2am, 330am, 5am… you get the picture. It’s that same raw, exhausting, mind muddling, heart breakingly beautiful love. And this time around I honestly know that motherhood is me, and I am motherhood. My kids are mine, and I am theirs and we are a whanau. What new things happened for you this spring?

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