Your baby is here! You are probably holding him, or her, right now, wondering if it is normal to feel so much love. How is it possible that a person can feel so much for someone that has just arrived?
You are getting to know your baby today. Smelling her head, looking at her perfect finger nails – each yawn and scrunched face is perfect and a remarkable moment.
When he cries, your heart leaps out of you. When your feed him, it is as though you can see your energy and strength pouring directly into his tiny body, because he is already bigger than yesterday. Stop growing little baby! Your changes are coming too fast!
Dear New Mom, you are tired today. The hours no longer tick by in the same, reliable way they used to. You seem to be in a new world, where minutes drag, and the wee, early bits of the day are now so familiar as you sit to feed and comfort your new child.
Did you remember to eat? Are you thirsty right now? The idea of going to the grocery store is unbearable. I know that car seat looks deceptively light. I know it is the most awkward contraption. I know the idea of taking your new baby in and out of it is terrifying.
Dear New Mom, do you miss yourself? Does this new person in your reflection surprise you? Are you confused about when so much of yourself disappeared? Has it only been a week or two? Are you worried in a few months you won’t know yourself at all?
Dear New Mom, have you noticed your strength yet? Have you stretched out your arms and back and felt a pause when your baby is not there in that cozy crook? Have you seen how you are able to sooth pain and discomfort in a way that no other person can? Have you recognized that magic?
Dear New Mom, everything is going to be all right. You are learning, your baby is learning, and everyone in your life is learning that you are a new person. How could you possible prepare for something like this? Each day will help to mold your resolve, embolden your instincts, and give you courage to make the decisions that no other person can make.
When it gets to be to be too much, please know that your friends want to help you. Please know that asking will feel like a huge hurdle, but people aren’t sure what you need. Please know that you won’t be left in the cold with unbearable weights to hold. You are loved. Please ask.
Dear New Mom, sooner than can be expected, you won’t be a new mom anymore. You may see other new moms trying to figure out how to get in and out of the store. You may see other new moms needing just a few minutes on her phone to zone out or be “normal.” They may be unsure of how to talk to you and the world. And it will hit you, you have figured some things out, all on your own. Some things aren’t scary anymore! You are on to learning older, different mom things!
We are all in this together, New Mom.
A recently Not-New Mom