As many of you know I just had a baby. He is not my first, but in many ways it feels that way. My older son is three, so it seems like he was a baby a lifetime ago. I thought I remembered what life was like with a newborn, however I was wrong. I only remembered the basics: sleepless nights, lots of poopy diapers and, of course, vomit comets.
I forgot how your schedule is so tight with naps and feedings. You literally have no time for anything! Showers are a luxury at this point. Anytime I sit down to eat or try and shower the baby suddenly manages to wake from his comatose nap. It’s like he has mom radar: MOM needs 5 minutes to shove food in her face or wash her dirty booty – time for me to wake up!
I also forgot that I am the human equivalent to a cow. I make so much milk that not only do I breastfeed, but I have to pump too. This is beyond time consuming. I’m trying not to complain because I know I am losing a ton of calories a day. Every night I pray the skinny fairy will continue to grant me all this milk, because it is undoubtedly helping me on the scale.
Another lost memory was when you get close to your newborn to feed them and their little heads shake side-to-side in desperation until their piranha mouths latch on. Newborns wiggle a lot, so along with their super human strength it makes it hard to calm them down enough to feed. While feeding they grunt and swallow loud enough for the neighbors to hear. I laugh at this every time. I only pumped with my first son because he wouldn’t latch, so I didn’t realize how painful breastfeeding could be. Three weeks in and my lady lumps are pretty much numb, so I think I’m past the electrocution feeling you get when they first start feeding. Dramatic I know, but ask any woman and she will tell you the same thing – it hurts!
I did remember the sleep deprivation. It seems worse the second time around, mostly because I now have two kids to tend to. Nights are always entertaining around here. My husband has been a saint with helping in any way possible even though he has to work. The only problem is – he is a very heavy sleeper, and by that I mean I could blast a trumpet in his ear and he still wouldn’t wake up. It usually takes a dozen times calling his name and shaking him to wake him up. I, on the other hand, can hear a single drop of water drip in the sink and spring awake. He also wakes up very confused and out of it. I always tell him to take a minute to gain consciousness before he takes our newborn down the dark stairwell. The other night he volunteered for the 2 a.m. shift, so when I heard the baby starting to wake I woke him up, then I turned back to the bassinet to comfort the baby until he came to get him. After a few seconds I looked back and my husband was gone. Where did he go? Bathroom? Why are all the lights off? What’s happening? I called his name and then heard him coming back up the stairs. As he came into view I saw him carrying our 30-pound toddler. He did not just take the wrong kid! Yes, he did. Before I could open my mouth he said, “Don’t ask, I have no idea what I’m doing.” He laid our older son in the bed then came and grabbed the baby. The next morning we were in tears laughing. This is one story he will never live down!
Overall, the biggest adjustment has been getting used to being a mom of two. Surprisingly my older son has been very accepting of his new baby brother. When I saw him for the first time after the baby was born it was surreal. Suddenly he wasn’t my baby anymore and he looked huge! How did he get so big overnight? Is he taking growth hormone behind my back? Stop growing so fast, my heart can’t take it!
I feel so blessed to have my two boys and am enjoying every minute of this journey. My life feels complete. Now – if I can just get my husband to feed the right kid, I think we will be all right.