Just like that, our Frankie Mae is six weeks old. The instant that she landed on my chest six weeks ago, I figured that time would start to fly at warp speed, but man, it's so true. I simultaneously can't believe that she's already been here for six weeks and that it's ONLY been six weeks. Crazy what living groundhog-day like days will do to your brain. I thought it would be nice for a reality check-in for those of you who have been so sweet to ask how it's going.
Here have been some of my realities* -
I really freaking love this kid.
I was prepared for love, but I wasn't prepared for so much crying about how much I love her! No one told me that I would fall so hard for someone with a faux hawk/mullet combo! EVERY TOOT IS ADORABLE. I will catch any amount of her vomit IN MY HANDS! And she doesn't even care about me in return yet! At least 27 times a day I exclaim, "WE MADE THIS HUMAN!"
I adore maternity leave.
And it's so, so, so necessary. Although I supported mandatory paid leave before I had a baby, I wasn't entirely sure I would take much of it since we own our own business. Now I am ready to go to bat for it however necessary. Not because it's all bonding and sweetness (though that part is nice), but because you are literally learning a new job. Every baby is different, so even if there was some sort of text book to prepare you, it wouldn't really matter. Not only are you fulfilling a new role that you've never taken on before, but YOUR BODY JUST EXPELLED A HUMAN AFTER HOUSING IT FOR 9+ MONTHS. Believe it or not, there is a recovery process for that! Not to mention you're living on a 24 hour schedule. EVERY SINGLE 2-3 HOURS THEY EAT. and then they poop. and then you have to calm them down. AND THEN REPEAT. Try using your brain after that. Plus, you can never, ever have this time back. They literally change and grow every single day!
I haven't started working out yet.
I mention this only because I honestly thought I'd be one of those ladies who was back at yoga and spin within 2 weeks - HA! YEAH RIGHT. For one, you do lose a substantial amount of baby weight pretty rapidly if you're breastfeeding (which I was luckily able to do). And two, when the hell would I have time? This post has taken me an entire week to finish. I'm hoping in the next week or so to give a class a shot. And THREE - I literally don't care about my body yet. It's gone through such a rapid transformation within the past year, that I'm cool giving it some time to get all of my organs back in the right spot. I'm still in awe of what our bodies can do -- this process has made me really appreciate how truly amazing women are.
I'm not down with some Mom culture.
Before I get into this, let me first state that tons of moms (if not most) are nothing but supportive and hands off until you ask for advice. Otherwise, some moms make motherhood feel incredibly competitive, are condescending, and think their experience is the only experience. Some also project a "WELCOME TO HELL" attitude... it's super strange and I don't love it. Motherhood can be a very judgey place, I've found! Also, all of the unasked for advice! HELLO. no thanks.
I feel pretty good.
I have been very lucky and I am 100% going to acknowledge that. I have a partner that goes above and beyond to help out and I do not have postpartum depression or anxiety. I've shed some tears, for sure, but largely, I really feel great. Some moms really only want to hear that you're miserable and hate life (because that’s how they felt), but I don't. No part of this is easy, but in the grand scheme of things, it's a tiny sliver of life (even though sometimes you cry at your kitchen island asking "WILL I EVER FEEL NORMAL AGAIN?!" - and that's normal). In no way am I trying to make light of PPD (or A), I just personally don't mind this time as much as I was led to believe I would. We're lucky.
I live for going outside.
So while the paragraph above is 100% true... I live for any chance to leave the house sans baby. First of all, she JUST got her 6 week shots, so she just now is able to be in public places. Second, after about 2 weeks of being cooped up and in that sweet hibernation mode, the fog lifted and I was like, "DAMN, WHAT IS OUTSIDE EVEN" and Ron said "LEAVE NOW; go be sane." So I did and I forgot my wallet -- which means I drove to buy something without a license or money and looked like a total idiot and told the entire store that I just had a baby and they just laughed and laughed and I drove home. True story.
My most of the time mentality:
Most of the time I feel like "oh shit, WE HAVE A BABY" and it still blows my mind that she exists at all. I can't believe I was pregnant, gave birth, and now have a baby that is totally our responsibility. I am 100% aware that it's ridiculous that I feel this way. However, I wasn't sure this was a step we'd ever take OR if it would even be possible, so it's still sinking in a bit that it's real.
Anyway, that's about it! That's how we're doing.
*I feel like I need to make a disclaimer that these are my realities. I have no idea what is considered normal and am in no way trying to make general statements about motherhood.
Here are some of my favorite photos from these past 6 weeks + her nursery! PS - Ron is not asleep in that pic. It was morning cuddle time; we don't sleep with her in the bed.