Baby Fever

Now don't get excited.  I do not have baby fever.  I don't even have low grade baby fever. No it is Mama Kat's writing prompt!  I chose the #1 prompt:   Baby fever is in the air. Describe what you would do differently as a first time mom.

When I was pregnant with my first some 12 and a half years ago, I had dreams of walks in the park, a cooing cherub, and her playing happily and chewing on a toy.  You know kind of like a diaper commercial.  Yeah reality bites, and it usually bites you right in the butt.  First of all, she was not a cherub.  There are pictures of yours truly at 3 days old and I was a fatty.  My mom had big babies.  Kristin was tiny, just like she is now.  She was very long and very skinny thin.  Just like now.  She really was beautiful.  She is beautiful.  How I loved those big bright blue eyes.  Her eyes are now grey, and they are still huge.

Now, nobody told me that they poop 20 zillion times a day.  And nobody ever told me about diaper blowouts.  And no one ever warned me that they poop whenever they need to, diaper on or not.  I never knew a baby could spit up so much and grow so fast.  I never knew about colic.  Colic is evil.  It is horrible for both baby and mom.  Baby is miserable for whatever reason for 4 long months and mom is too.  Plus she thinks she is the worst mother on the planet. 

What would I have done differently?  I would have slept every chance I got.  I would have asked for help more than I did.  I would have let the dishes go and the laundry instead trying to do it all.  I would have gotten on some anti-depressants which I now know I seriously needed.  If  I could go back and talk to that poor distraught mother that was me, it would go something like this...

"You need to sleep when she does.  The house will wait.  I know it bugs you.  Tell Rich you need his help.  He'll do it.  He's tired too, but he wants to help you.  It's okay to ask for help.  You are not a one woman show.  And guess what else, Lourie.  You can put that baby in her crib, close the door and let her cry so you can take a shower.  You will feel so much better and she might even go to sleep.  I know you feel like you have to do everything, but really all you need to do is take care of you, and I promise it will be much easier to take care of her.  It's okay to put yourself first.  Even on the airplanes they want you to secure YOUR oxygen mask first.  That is so you can help your child more effectively.  And lastly, it feels like forever but it will end soon.  She will calm down and sleep through the night.  You won't forget it, but you will be able to look back and say it was long and hard but it ended."

I wish I would have slept more than I did.  And let her cry a little more in her crib than I did.  But, I survived and so did she.  Everyday brings a new challenge to a parent whether they a first time parent or a seasoned veteran--I am no veteran.  It's a rough job, the hardest one you will ever have to take on.  There is one more thing I would have done, and that is have a support system.  Having lots of friends to talk to makes a lot of difference.  It's amazing how much we can relate to one another.

Check out Metabolism Blues for the promised cookie recipe!
Photo By Emily Kathryn


Nikki said…
awww I don't know about colic either!!! that sounds rough though. I don't have babies, but do have baby fever lol! I think I would be like you, trying to do everything (cause I do it now) and reading this just makes me want to go home today and not do the laundry, or the dishes, or vacuum...and just relax and have a glass of wine:) ahhh... I literally just took a deep breath! lol. I think you did a great job, look at your 3 little beauties!!! :)
Emmy said…
Yes, it is so hard not to just let things go, espeically when before having kids were able to do it all.

Lucas didn't officially have colic, but he was a difficult baby. For some reason though I didn't realize it and just it was "normal" so I survived :)
Rachel said…
Wonderful post! It's amazing what you learn from experience. You just can't understand the first time mom thing until you're living it! It's amazing what we all can survive.
Mama the Chef said…
aaaaah, Lourie I needed that, I think I will copy and past that into a word document and read it every day, that is how much I needed that. It's hard with a 7 week old and 22 month old. Thank you for that.
Laura said…
I loved this post! I agree there is always the should have would have things. I should have slept more too but you know, I had to be supermom and get it all done. The one thing I never had to deal with with either kids was colic though, thank goodness, I don't know if I would have made it. Now my 1 1/2 and 3 year old cry about little crap all the time...I don't know if I am going to make it. ;)
Christina Lee said…
AWWW love this. DEFINITELY one of the hardest jobs you'll take on.
Laura Lynn said…
Loved this - definitely the hardest job ever. I wish I would've held mine more. Everyone kept telling me not to hold them or they'll get too used to it and you'll never get anything done. Now I can't remember holding her like I do this last one of mine.
That makes me sad.
But she's a great kid and seems to like me so that's good!
Tracie said…
You and I had the same issues with our first born. Only my husband refused to help even when I asked so I stopped asking.

Your kids are beautiful!
KK said…
Great letter. I still have colic. It was supposed to end 37 years and 9 months ago?????
Amen, amen. Oh, and you forgot, don't ask your husband to help you when you are in a sleep deprived, hormonally induced rant. Please tell me I'm not the only one who got those!!
You know, I know that I don't do very many things very well, let alone perfectly- but I think that with my first child i was very well prepared and that I did things right. I enjoyed every single minute of her, and wouldn't change a moment of my experience for the world.

Subsequent children, however, I have plenty of things I would have changed.
Holly said…
Everything you said about being a mom and what no one told you or what you would have done differently...ditto. I would only add to all new mothers "never say never." Really awesome post Lourie!

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