Friday, July 27, 2007

The Reality of Postpartum Life or 12Week Magic

It is so very hard, and no one ever talks about it.

We all want to think of that time as a haze of loving our babies and nursing peacefully in our beautiful frilly gowns rocking serenely.

BAH! We're sweating so much that the frilly gown is thrown on the floor in disgust. I actually accused my husband of not loving me because he wouldn't grow a lactating breast! I was delusional and actually believed it when I said it. The rocking chair has a hard seat and a tender bottom has no place in it. The nursing is messy at first and getting the supply/demand thing right takes time so engorgement has you soaking everything in sight. No one tells you that when the baby nurses on one side you leak like a sieve from the other, and everything smells of milk for a while (until you get things just so, and that takes a couple of weeks)

You didn't just give birth to a baby, you gave birth to a mother.

You are both BRAND NEW PEOPLE and you've got to take time to get to know both of you (and your husband) in completely new roles.

It takes time, and sometimes it will be REALLY hard. You will cry, you will wail, you will smile and you will laugh. Sometimes within minutes of each other.

These are the dirty secrets no one talks about:

No shower for days on end, sweating, bleeding, crying, sore bottoms that take weeks or months to heal.

They are the currency with which motherhood is purchased.

Again, extend yourself the hand of Grace. Cry out to the Lord. Even His own Son cried out to Him when He said "Let this cup pass from me" So, you are in good company when you do.I promise you that things will get better, and easier every day for the next 12 weeks.

It takes 12 weeks to get really good at this and to feel as if you've been doing it your whole life.
It takes 12 weeks to get past the thought that someone will call any moment now and say that they are coming by to pick up that baby from you.
It takes 12 weeks to fall completely in love with yourself as a confident mother.
12 weeks is magic.
12 weeks is where the prize lies.

Was your day successful?

Success is spelled differently now.

Until then, if you get a shower, call the day a COMPLETE SUCCESS.

If your baby only ruins two outfits call the day a COMPLETE SUCCESS. I

f you have a day in which no diapers leak, call it an UTTER SUCCESS.

If you spend a day in bed nursing your baby and only getting up to get a snack or meal for yourself, but you only cried three times, consier it a TOTAL SUCCESS.

You are a stranger in a strange land with a new name that sits funny on you: Mommy. It will fit you better every day. You will learn the language of the foriegn people. You will speak fluently and love on the new ones who come after you because you have now done the most amazing thing any human can have had a hand in creation. You are amazing.


Christi said...

Amen, sister. Powerful, true, beautiful!

Gem said...


BL said...

Thank you thank you thank you.