I want to write about this in a way that is honest plus gives enough importance and respect to what I am trying to convey. All I can really do is write what I experience and hopefully that in itself will be enough.
I am a new mum, a total rookie thrown into the most important role of my life, I have only known my son for two months…yet he is my world and I ache at even the thought of not having him. I am not completely sure what creates this intense bond, whether it is the mixture of love hormones released through pregnancy and birth, a divine connection or the comfort that I have a purpose in life that cannot be denied. Whatever creates it, there it is, I am totally indescribably in love with Boston.
People say that motherhood will come naturally, for some that may be, for me yah sure different parts very much did, but others seemed more elusive. I have the love thing down pat but I still can not point out the difference between a hungry, sleepy or bored cry (Bozzie generally sounds like a fire alarm even if he just wants to sit up instead of lie down). Breast feeding…now we love it but for the first two weeks…bonding experience my butt! Bad latching + awesome sucking = cracked nipples + searing pain. Is that grimace Boston with wind, tired or discovering new faces? Plus what is the deal with really really sleepy babies just refusing to sleep?!
Please do not get me wrong, I was under no impression that parenthood was a walk in the park, or that there would not be numerous challenges. What I could not comprehend was that my lack of experience to care for this person I love so much would lead to feeling like a failure…Trying many approaches and reading a million passionate view points that completely contradict each other left me completely confused, totally unconfident and quietly guilty. It seemed that no matter what I tried I would be emotionally scarring or setting bad habits or creating insecurity.
There has been countless days that were speckled with his tears and mine, both of us enveloped in a new world, it is confusing and frustrating and tiring. However…now I know what my friend meant when she said “it is so hard”, now I have an understanding when I see another mum, I could go so far to say there is a secret look that we share between us (not unlike a college frat club). I am lucky enough to have a handful of new mums close to me and the good news is… I am not the only clueless rookie. We all have moments where it seems we were not born to be mothers, times when we are completely uncertain about what to do next, feelings of guilt, feelings of failure. Yet sharing all of this begins to lighten the load.
Nine weeks in and I know what I have experienced is the tip of the iceburg. The challenges will keep coming and they say not even 18 years will see the end to it. No matter what comes my way I know there will be another mum around who will wrap me in their arms and tell me they get it. I am learning that no one book/mentor/friendly neighbour is going to have the answers. No one else is me and no other baby is Boston. You take bits and pieces, go through trial and error, find the puzzle that fits (I think I have the first 5 pieces of the 1000 to come). There may always be those times when I feel all I am doing is wrong, that I am permanently damaging this amazing little person I love so much, and just when I want to crawl in a hole and forget about everything…Boston will smile…eyes gleaming…gums beaming…and suddenly all will be great again.
p.s A big huge massive thank you to the other mums who have shared their feelings with me, supported me with kind words and encouraged me to find my own groove.
p.p.s A special thank you to one mum in particular, my mum, without whom I would have been completely lost during this time.