My First Month of Motherhood
“The moment a child is born, the mother is also born…”
I blinked and a month with my little girl has passed. Prior to giving birth, I pictured motherhood differently. I suppose my parents made it look so simple, as many of our parents did. I remember even telling my boss before I left work to contact me at any time. I actually said, “What am I going to do all day? I’ll probably be bored, please keep me in the loop, I’ve never not worked for months.” If you’re a mother, needless to say, I was wrong. New motherhood is a blur, but in the best way.
When I came home from the hospital I was still in pain for about two weeks. During that time I was changing diapers (for the first time), learning how to breastfeed and pump, keeping up with how often a newborn eats, and getting adjusted to the lack of sleep that comes during the first few months. I also had some baby blues, which was probably the combination of the hormones plus the adjustment to motherhood. There are many new things to get used to while you are not feeling your best, and that can be a shock, especially if it is your first child. Along with healing and caring for my newborn, I still look different than I’m used to. I lost all of the baby weight in the first two weeks, but I still look different since I haven’t worked out in a long time. I also have skin discoloration and mild swelling that I hear should go away soon. At the age of 36, I’m aware that there are more important things than how I look, however I want to feel good about myself in order to be the best version of me for my family. I know it’s only been a month, so that will come.
When your first child is born, you become a whole new person. I am rediscovering who I am. I can go back to the social life I had (my husband and our support systems encourage it), but I learned that I don’t want to. I went out once during this first month and all I could think about was my baby. Maybe that will pass a little as she gets older, but for now I don’t mind being one track minded. I want to be there for her bed times and everything else I can, I don’t want to miss any firsts, and I want to personally know that I did all I could do for my daughter as her mama. I know this is time with her that I can’t get back. Professionally, it has always been my intention to keep climbing the corporate ladder, but I honestly would not mind pausing the climb until my little one is in school. My priorities have shifted and I’m completely happy with it.
Even though I have gone through so many changes and motherhood is not easy, I would not change a thing. Looking at my little princess sleeping peacefully on my chest makes me feel like I’m doing something right. My husband and I stare at her and can’t believe we made this beautiful little person that is half of each of us. There is something special about your child needing and depending on you. It can be overwhelming, of course, but it is also rewarding. She’s only a month old but when she is staring into our eyes or when we catch a reflex smile, we are amazed at everything she does. It seems like I was just at the hospital yesterday, I can’t believe a month has gone by. That definitely teaches me that this time will go by quickly, especially when I go back to work. These are the precious, simple moments that I need to take in. Before I know it, she will be rolling over, then crawling, then walking and talking, and these seemingly stressful moments will only be a memory.
So how’s motherhood going in this first month? It’s hard, it’s a blur, it changes every part of you, but it is beautiful and worth every single minute.