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First-Time Mom Problems

They tried to warn me, but...

By Chelsea MoyePublished 7 years ago 3 min read
A Meme I Made After Someone Unnecessarily Woke My Newborn

First of all, let me state that I love being a mom, and there is nothing better in the world than my sweet baby. However, I can tell you that nothing quite prepares you for being a new mom. None of the stories your family and friends tell you, none of the literature you read...none of it prepares you for the reality of being brand-spanking-new to parenthood.

Nothing prepares you for that first heart-pounding-hard-to-breathe-shaking-all-over anxiety attack because you can't tell whether your baby is breathing or not. Nothing prepares you for the sleep deprivation, the diapers, for every way that your life must adapt to revolve around this new life you've brought into the world. Nothing prepares you for the emotional roller coaster that is your first month postpartum. Nothing prepares you for the hormone changes, mood swings, emotional meltdowns, or the mental breakdowns that can ensue on a couple hours' sleep and the sheer willpower it takes to help that little person adapt to life outside your womb.

It's even more difficult if you're having to adapt to all these changes on top of existing mental health issues. I have Type II Bipolar Disorder and ADD, and adapting to my postpartum reality after such a surprisingly wonderful pregnancy has been hard. I absolutely adored being pregnant. It's the most hormonally balanced I've been in my adult life. I know it sounds crazy, but I have PCOS, and that has had my hormones completely whacked out ever since I hit puberty.

Nothing prepares you for the resentment you feel when your baby sleeps well for everyone in the world except you. Nothing prepares you for how torn you can be between the desire to do what is best for your baby no matter what and the desire to have a little bit of sanity-saving fun, like going to a movie (especially when you've been anticipating the movie's release for almost as many months as you carried your child for). Nothing can possibly prepare you for the millions of minute occurrences that make up a day with your baby, and certainly not for the milestones that come all too quickly and with astonishing regularity.

Nothing can prepare you for how inadequate you can feel as a woman and a human being in general when you have a new baby and you have no idea what you're doing. Nothing prepares you for the struggles that come with choosing to breastfeed. Nothing prepares you for how awful you can feel when your baby can't latch because his chin is recessed, his mouth is too small, and you can't for the life of you get a nipple shield to stay on your oversized nipples long enough for him to literally breastfeed. Nothing prepares you for how inadequate you can feel when you have to pump and bottle feed your baby instead.

Nothing prepares you for the pain of chapped, bruised, tired nipples and the exhaustion that comes with the knowledge that you have to do it all over again in 3 hours. Nothing prepares you for how much like garbage you can feel when you struggle to stick to your pumping schedule and your supply appears to be dwindling because you mess up or wait too long when you lose track of time; or you hold your child all night long to keep him from screaming and waking your husband who has to work in a few hours so pumping, sleep, and your sanity all fall by the wayside in the face of trying to take care of everyone else in your life. Nothing in the world prepares you for parenthood.

People tried to impart to me just how much having a baby changes your world, but nothing besides having a baby and experiencing it for yourself can truly clue you in to the realities of parenthood. No matter how difficult and painful it may be at times, I can tell you one thing: there is nothing in the world more worth doing than being a parent.

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About the Creator

Chelsea Moye

Wife. New mom. Author. Long-time pet parent. Bibliophile. I sometimes struggle with my ADD and Type II Bipolar Disorder. Coffee addict.

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    Chelsea MoyeWritten by Chelsea Moye

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