Sunday, February 1, 2009

Truth or Dare

In the wee hours of the morning, while trying to fall back asleep but worrying that the baby would wake up again at any second, I came up with this idea for a post. It's a few 'truths' I've come to learn about being a new mom and having an infant to care for ... as well as some 'dares' or goals for myself.

Truth: I love my son more than words could ever say.

I thought I'd start out with this one, because I know I'll probably get a little flack for some of my other truths. So I want everyone to know right now ... I LOVE MY SON! I appreciate every moment I have with him, and though I didn't go through nearly as much pain and suffering as some have to bring a child into this world, there is not a moment that I am not thankful to be a mother.

Dare: Love him, and myself, thru our rough spots.

You'll get an idea of our 'rough spots' from my other truths!

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Truth: I nearly gave up on breastfeeding.

Let's get this one straight ... breastfeeding is no walk in the park. My second week of doing it, my nipples HURT like a mo-fo. Whenever he'd latch on, the pain was so intense my toes would curl, I'd gasp for breath, and have to breath thru like it was a contraction. Now, don't get me wrong, I didn't want to switch him to formula ... so I was pumping like crazy so he could still have my awesome breastmilk. But I completely did not want him on my boob!

Also, the time it would take to breastfeed, combined with his lazy attitude about eating, made me feel very secluded from the rest of the family. For 30 to 40 minutes I am locked in the bedroom ... only to finish and find he'd wake up and be hungry because he never really ate right.

Dare: Learn to be a better breastfeeder.

This includes being patient while he's suckling away ... finding ways of keeping him awake so he gets full and content ... and learning to breastfeed in 'public', i.e. at my desk, in the living room, etc. so I can still be around the rest of the family but not have my boobies hanging out all over the place. Having him close, knowing that I'm providing him with the best food possible, and spending that special time with him is what needs to really motivate me to continue as long as I can.

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Truth: The rewards are few.

Yes, having him in my life is reward enough ... but I've discovered that apart from sleeping, crying, eating, and pooping, there's not much else Jaiden does. The rewards of having him look into my eyes and smile, mimic my facial expressions, or write a concerto have not yet shown themselves. I know they will come, but it's pretty hard in the meantime while we wait for them. In my moments of 'weakness', one little smile from him would definitely melt my heart and make me forget everything.

Dare: Remind myself of what's to come.

When I am upset, frustrated, and/or angry, I just have to remember that he will keep growing and reaching his milestones in time. Again, I just need to be patient and remember that our little miracle will get there when he's ready. And that first REAL smile will be even more special!

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Truth: I second guess myself constantly.

Did I do my son an injustice by giving him a pacifier too early? Is he crying at the top of his lungs because I've fed him too much and his tummy hurts? Will he be able to breastfeed right if I give him too many bottles? Am I depleting my milk supply by pumping all the time and not letting him breastfeed? Oh my god ... the questions are endless.

Dare: Remind myself I am doing the best job I can.

For someone who hasn't had much on the job Mom training, I have to remember that I am doing the best I can in the moment. If it works at the time, then I must be doing something right ... right??

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Truth: Babies have 'snuggle' radar.

It never fails ... I finish feeding Jaiden, put him in his bassinet, then Jaimie and I curl up next to each other in bed and snuggle ... and Jaiden cries. No shit ... it happens every time. It's like he knows there's snugglin' time going on and he wants in on it.

Dare: Find ways to have moments alone with Jaimie.

I cannot deny how much I miss that special alone time Jaimie and I had. But I knew that having a baby would change everything ... I just have to make it a 'mission' to continue showing and telling Jaimie how much he means to me and finding those moments when we can have time to ourselves.

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Truth: I'm very cranky on only two hours of sleep.

After feeding a fussy baby for 45 minutes only to be woken up two hours later because he's hungry again is not conducive for a happy Mommy. The night-time is hard ... because I'm tired ...and when I'm tired, I get cranky. And that leads to being less loving. I'm sorry, but it's true. Now, don't misunderstand ... being less loving does not mean I would cause pain ... it just means I'm less attached in that moment of frustration and exhaustion. I would much rather be curled up next to Jaimie fast asleep, than trying to lull a crying baby while keeping my eyes open.

Dare: Get better at sleeping when the baby is sleeping.

I confess ... I hate not spending time with Jaimie, so sometimes I push myself to stay up with him instead of taking a cat-nap on the couch while the baby's asleep. It's hard to explain ... but when I'm not with Jaimie, something just doesn't feel 'right' ... even when we're in the house together but in separate rooms. And since Jaiden's come along ... I find myself being separated more and more from Jaimie. I just have to remember that this won't last forever ... and Jaimie and I will eventually get our 'schedules' back in order.

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Mm-kay ... I'm a little 'truth'-ed out for the moment. But I think I will start a weekly 'Truth or Dare' post ... that sounds like a good dare to me. =D

1 comment:

Dawn Milton said...

I totally feel you on everything. It is hard to function on VERY little sleep ... but as you know now it DOES get better!! I had some frustrating time, ones where Chris was out of town and I had to call my mom to come over b/c I was delirious from not having ANY sleep. I also had difficulties with breast feeding, and was actually somewhat relieved when he didn't take to me. For me it wasn't a bonding experience, it was just a little creepy to me.

I know everyone is different and every baby is different, but once it has past it will feel like labor did - it wasn't as bad once you look back on it.

If you ever need anything - questions or just to vent - you can call me!!!! You know I am always here for you!!