I just had a baby, so spare me if I’m not ready to spring back into the fast-paced life of a mommy. Giving birth to a tiny human takes a lot out of you. While some moms are hitting the gym to shed the pregnancy weight and get back to their pre-pregnancy selves, I wish to lay down, eat good food, and sleep like a baby. So, forgive me if I RSVP no to your brother’s engagement or your son’s birthday party. Don’t tell me how I’ve suddenly become boring after giving birth to my baby.
It’s crazy how new moms are expected to jump back to their old lives now that the pregnancy part is over. Just like it took us 9 months to give birth to a baby, the journey towards motherhood will be a slow transition. It’s not like I want to lay here all day long as days, weeks, and months go by without doing anything new or exciting. Believe me, I want to go on playdates, weekend getaways, and late-night parties with my friends.
But life is going to be a bit slow on my end because I had a baby a few months ago. My body has only partially recovered from childbirth. Yes, I no longer have to use the squirt bottle after I pee or wear maxi pads and mesh underwear. The aches and pains from childbirth no longer keep me up at night. I no longer dread going to the toilet. But everything aside, I’m still a new mom.
It takes weeks and months to adjust to this new life. I’m sure I’ll get there on my own time. Sleep-deprived, my days and nights seem longer, yet I can’t believe how 3 months has just gone by in a fleeting moment. My baby has achieved a few milestones, but as for me, I’m still exhausted and surviving on just 3 hours of sleep. If I’m able to sneak in a quick 1-hour nap in the middle of the day, my day is victorious.
As I lay on my couch holding the baby in my arms, my body still thinks I’m pregnant. I’m moody. My hormones are yet to get the memo to go back to normal. I have a post-baby paunch and my body hasn’t shed the weight. The pair of pre-pregnancy jeans that I had stacked away in a dark corner of my closet is left untouched. I have no clue how many months or years it would take to fit into those. But for now, I’m comfortable right where I am—with my baby, wearing a sweatshirt and joggers.
Gone are the days when I could drop my kid off to school, run to the grocery store, stop by at the mall, do some shopping, and be back in time to make dinner. Now I can barely get one errand done and feel exhausted as I reach back home.
I feel I don’t have enough hours in a day to fulfill my duties as a mom. My days are consumed by changing diapers, nursing, cleaning spit-ups, and swaddling my baby to sleep. The dishes and laundry pile up, calls and texts go unanswered, and everything seems like a haze.
As I watch other moms juggling work and family life, I resist the urge to be too hard on myself and instead learn to be more kind as I gulp down my fourth cup of coffee and take a deep breath.