(Above – me and Nugette. Motherhood is not glamorous, it’s exhausting)
I’m 6 weeks postpartum with my 2nd child now, and we’re just starting to get into our new routine which of course changes pretty much daily. It’s a delicate balancing act of child care, self care, and care for my partner. Friends and family have fallen by the wayside during this time since I just can’t keep up with everything / everyone. The funny thing is I expect that I should.
There’s so much pressure on women and mothers to be as perfect as they possibly can during what is quite honestly the most difficult transition in my entire life. Having one child was pretty rough considering he was premature – but I had my husband by my side for 8 months of paternity leave. This time he was only off for 6 weeks, and then went back to work leaving me with two children under two. Add the terrible two tantrums that my oldest has been going through, the fact that he still isn’t talking, and a plethora of other “issues” and I’m feeling a TON of “mommy guilt” – those moments of “we should have gotten out more, I should have made a healthier meal, I should have paid more attention to xyz thing, I should have cleaned the house” etc. While I’m not a fan of the catch phrase, it’s a thing. We feel a lot of guilt. I’m told this guilt will last right up until I no longer exist. Figures.
One thing I’ve been trying to do for myself, is lose the baby weight I gained. I gained a whopping 70 pounds with baby number two. I decided very early on that I wasn’t going to pay too much attention to my weight so long as I was feeling well and baby was growing, because our first was so underweight and I had so many complications. I’ve lost 32lbs so far, but I’m also nursing, so I’m trying to eat healthy and eat enough to keep up energy levels chasing after the toddler and running the house and – eventually, something is probably going to give.
I’m trying to give myself some leeway, not be so hard, remind myself this is all a phase – but it’s hard. In fact that is how I sum up my days. Hard. I know they’ll get easier as the newest edition learns to sleep through the night, as the oldest learns to express himself and communicate via something other than screaming at the top of his lungs, and eventually we’ll find our routine. I’m thinking around Christmas things will be feeling better, so check back on me then.
Oh, combine this with living in a new remote location where I know no one and have no friends or family.. yup. We’re managing, but I wish I were handling it all better.