Newborns are hard work. There’s no denying it. You’re warned about the ups and downs. The sleepless nights. The endless nappies. But it still doesn’t quite prepare you for the emotional rollercoaster that the first few weeks puts you through.
I’ve never been more physically and emotionally drained than I have since having Henry. The most amount of sleep I’ve gotten in one go is three hours. Even four lots of 2-3 hours isn’t enough because it’s so broken. And I’ve often woken completely confused on the time and when I last fed him as I’ve dreamt about feeding too!
Breastfeeding has also been way harder than I thought it would be. I knew it wouldn’t be easy. And I was over the moon when it seemed to be going well in hospital. Yes I was so nervous to go it alone but I thought I could do. And some days I’m really pleased with our progress and then another bad feed/difficult latch , or a set of cluster feeds will set me back and I think about giving it all up.
There’s so much pressure on mums to breastfeed, especially exclusively, but it’s freaking hard! Hats off to the women who can do it for months and are happy to feed anywhere but I know I don’t have the confidence or the will power. I’m taking it each day as it comes. Because it’s the only way I know how.
But I think it’s the emotional side of a newborn which is the hardest. The mum guilt kicks in straight away. Mixed with the postnatal hormones it’s a tough time for new mums, and then poor dad’s have to try and help both! Plus there’s the ever present worry that maybe the tears aren’t just normal new mum tears but something more worrying like postnatal depression.
I guess I’ve written this post more for me than anything else. To help me cope because for me writing helps.
But I hope that any new mums who read this post know that they aren’t alone.
In that 3am feed where you remember the days of 11am lie ins and you need cocktail sticks to keep your eyes open, you’re not alone.
When your baby has been crying for two hours and you have no idea why, you’re not alone.
When you’re crying in the bath because you’re worried you’re not doing it right, you’re not alone.
We’re all in this together us mums, and dads too. We can do this!
Photo by Studio1314