So sweet. So innocent.
BUT there are also things about being a mom that are much more disturbing than I was prepared to deal with. I read all the books and listened to all of my friends who had babies before me, but until I experienced these things first hand I didn't realize how incredibly not-at-all glamorous motherhood could be. Here are just a few of the things I deal with on the daily.
- Baby Vomit-
Now, I knew there was a good chance I would be dealing with some spitting up here and there. My mom swears that I never spit up as a baby, only once in all of my baby-hood did I do so, and it was on my dad. So after hearing that, I thought maybe I would be so lucky.
Ha. Not so much. Grayson started spitting up almost immediately, and for about 4 or 5 days very early on, it wasn't spitting up. It was a projectile-vomit-across-the-room kinda thing. It was terrifying. And horrifying. I had no idea a baby was capable of such a thing. Fortunately we did a little research and figured out that it was most likely dairy causing it. I immediately cut out milk, ice cream, and most other dairy-related things out of my diet, and he hasn't done it since. Now we just get to deal with regular baby vomit issues. Yay.
- Baby Poop-
Guys. I don't know where I heard this, but for as long as I can remember, I've thought that baby poop did not smell. I never changed a diaper (on my own) until I had Grayson, so I seriously had no prior experience for comparison. But oh good God, I had no idea baby poop could be so awful. The first couple of days are just a joke. You think that's all you'll be dealing with, and then you get home and they have their first blow out diaper and you have no idea what the eff is going on. I just wasn't mentally prepared to deal with this.
And then, if you're as lucky as I am, you get something like this little treat of a story that you can tell to all of your childless friends to scare the bejesus out of them:
A couple weeks after Grayson was born he had been sitting on my lap after eating, working on a great little present for me. I waited what I thought was a safe amount of time after I stopped hearing him do his business, and I took him over to the changing table. I started stripping him down, wiping him off, and was almost done, when an explosion of poop starts coming out right into my hands. He literally filled both of my hands with poop. I didn't know what to do, so I just started laughing hysterically (I think I was having a small mental breakdown). Arsen was working from home and he heard me laughing, although at the moment he thought I was crying loudly, so he comes running out into the living room. I'm just standing there, hovering over Grayson, hands full of poop, laughing like it's the most hilarious thing that has ever happened.
That's the kind of thing no one tells you about. Pretty sure I'm scarred for life.
- Breast Feeding...Issues
I'll try not to be as graphic as I was about the poop situation here (you're welcome) but let's just say if you choose to breast feed, your body will do some things that you might not be prepared for. I have been determined since I found out I was pregnant to breast feed, and I still plan on sticking it out until he's around a year old. It's an amazing bonding experience, and I feel such a sense of accomplishment that I can provide the very best nutrition possible for him all by myself. But let me tell you, it isn't always easy. And it's certainly not glamorous.
When I first started pumping it was definitely strange to feel as though I was milking myself. And having breast milk all over your clothes doesn't exactly make you feel fabulous and put together. Coordinating your entire wardrobe around whether or not something is easy to nurse in can be a challenge. And if you have to deal with engorgement...holy crap, it's painful. But it's one of those things that I wouldn't give up for anything, that I'll do as long as I feel it's needed, and I'll absolutely do with every baby I have. But I do long for a time when my entire life doesn't revolve around my boobs.
Things are so much better now that I almost hesitated to put this on here. Obviously I'm still really freaking tired because I take care of an infant 24 hours a day. But now that he is sleeping so well at night I feel like I have no room to complain at all. I'll take a little tired over I-can-barely-see-straight-or-function exhaustion any day.
It's strange what happens throughout the birthing process. When you go in to have your baby, there are most likely going to be hours of waiting. Perfectly good hours of time when you could sleep till your hearts content (this is if you have an epidural. If not, there ain't no way you're sleeping through those contractions). But you can't sleep. You're about to have your baby! You're excited and antsy and ready to meet that little human you've been growing for so long. So you just stay awake and wait.
And then you have them. If you're lucky enough to do it vaginally, you get to spend a good amount of time pushing a baby out of your body, which I imagine is quite exhausting. If you are as unfortunate as I was and are forced to do a stupid c-section (I'm not bitter, swear), then you get to lay there and have someone cut you open and pull a baby out of you. Neither option is fun or easy.
And THEN you get your precious little bundle of joy. And you never sleep again. The end.
No, but seriously, you won't sleep for weeks. Not sleep that counts, at least. If your hospital is like mine, they let you keep the baby with you around the clock. He was never out of my sight the entire time. I loved it. But I was sooooo tired. Then you go home, and that sweet little baby wants to eat every couple of hours, all day and night. For WEEKS I tell you. You do not get a chance to catch up on your sleep. And if you're like me, you will not sleep well even when you do sleep, because you will wake up every 15 minutes to put your finger under his nose or your hand on his chest to make sure he's still breathing. I swear I didn't get a solid 3 or 4 hours of sleep until he was at least six weeks old.
If you're currently expecting, I apologize for this post. But not really. Because I think you should be fully prepared for what's to come. Motherhood is hands down the best thing I have ever, ever, ever done in my entire life. I am completely and totally in love and obsessed with my baby, and I cannot fathom a life without him. There has never been one second since he was born that I have been anything but overjoyed to have him. Yes, even when I was holding his poop in my hands, I still had more love in my heart for that sweet little man than I ever imagined possible.
But motherhood is not for the weak. Not by a long shot. But it will be the best thing you'll ever do.