Wednesday, 19 August 2009

It's not all rainbows and unicorns

It should have been a good day. Logically it was a good day. Eloise slept for 7 and a half hours straight the night before. From 10pm to 5:30. In her crib. At three weeks old! She woke up and fed, then slept with me in our bed for another hour and a half. Great start to the day.

I then bathed her, by myself for the first time and did not drown her or scald her. She loved being in the water.

And while I didn't get to take a shower myself and I have never eaten a bowl of cereal so fast in my life, we did both manage to get out of the house before 10am. One of our elderly neighbors was passing our house just as Eloise and I were exiting and she ooed and ahhed over how cute she is and then Eloise and I walked her to her bus stop as she held onto the pushchair for support.

We went to the Health Visitor where Eloise was weighed and is gaining nicely (4kg last week, now 4.180kg) and the Health Visitor said she was looking very healthy and very alert for her age.

We got the letter from the doctor's saying all of Eloise's blood tests have come back normal. I managed to even do a load of laundry and hang it up to dry, which is impressive considering the day before I couldn't figure out how to open the washing machine door.

What is even more impressive with all that we accomplished is that I also managed to get in over 2 hours of crying as well. Me. Not Eloise. Though she joined in at times.

Crying because Eloise had thrown-up on me for the 10th time in under 2 hours. Crying because Eloise did not take a nap until 5pm. Crying because I worry that I'm not doing enough for my daughter. Crying at the weight of everything I should be doing and just can't manage. The house is a mess. I see a pile of dust in a corner of a room and I cry while Eloise breastfeeds. I look down at the giant size of my belly and I cry for all the exercise I don't have time for. I cry because I haven't been able to take the photos I need for the birth announcement. I cry because the Health Visitor looked so worried when I told her I had no family in this country. I cry because my only companion during the day for the next 8 months can't even look at me when I say her name. And then at night, when 3 hours after putting her to bed she is finally asleep, I cry, because I am so worried tomorrow will be the same, or worse. And I realize I am dreading the next day with my child. And I cry even harder at the shame of feeling this way.

So, as I said, logically this should have been a very good day. Emotionally? Still working on that.


  1. Don't feel shame. PLEASE find someone to talk to though.

  2. I think you are doing an amazing job; remember, you've only been a mom for 3 weeks. I am thinking of you and would also like to encourage you to get some outside support, at the very least another adult who you can talk with. I want you to know that you are deeply loved and thought of daily.

  3. Sweetie, I'm no mama, but I have a few friends who are, and they've all been where you are with baby #1. (Except for the rich ones who have a friggin' "night nurse" living with them. Yeesh.)
    I know "just keep breathing" isn't the best advice in the world, but just remember it won't be this way forever. She will sleep more and puke less and turn when you call her and someday talk when you call her. ...Then someday talk BACK when you call her, and you'll wanna smack her. But don't. ;-)
    Hang in there. Thank you for sharing this with us. The fact that you're being so hard on yourself probably means you're a much finer mom than you think.
    That's all I've got. Breathe... and cry as needed.

  4. Okay, I don't really know you, so it might seem kind of odd for me to comment on such a personal post, but I *do* know how this feels. It's hard to adjust to motherhood and it's especially hard to adjust to motherhood when you aren't near your family. Just know that it's okay to do a less-than-perfect job sometimes--and it's okay to sometimes dread tomorrow. It really does get easier. And then harder. And then easier. In waves. You're doing a good job, and everything you're feeling is normal. Thanks for such an honest, moving post.