Thursday, June 8, 2017

Entering Survival Mode: Not for the First Time Mom

I wish I would've known what postpartum was like with my first baby, and had a better grasp on what life with a newborn is really like. Honestly though, no matter how many people you talk to or books you read, nothing prepares you for that time. Not a damn thing. I feel like that is best though, because a baby makes you "grow up" so to say, not into an adult, but a parent. Trial and error becomes a way of life while navigating that first year, and it's all just surviving.

So as I sit here just over four weeks out from delivering my third baby, I'm having all sorts of realizations; call it age or experience, whatever it is, I wish I would've had it with my second baby!

This bump and the dirty mirror....life!

Stop prepping.

Put the Dreft down.

With my first pregnancy I nested like crazy. I cleaned everything, made sure the nursery was ready before his arrival and washed the 8 million newborn onesies I was sure he would wear (he rotated through 8 or 10 in the end). I spent days preparing meals for when the baby came, and cleaning obsessively every square inch of the house, because who knew when it would happen again!

That was dumb. I should've napped. Yes, I've made some freezer meals. I actually used a Wild Tree freezer prep kit (I paid for it, so no, this isn't sponsored). It took me an hour and half and I made 10 meals! I'm also just keeping things picked up, the baby won't care if that top shelf that hasn't been dusted in 11 months gets dusted any time soon. I haven't finished decorating the nursery either. Truth is, she won't even sleep in it for probably the first year, so whether that picture frame gets hung now or not, doesn't really matter.

Say no.

I've always been a yes person. I don't ever want to miss anything or regret not doing something. The fact is though, having a million visitors at the hospital or going to Thanksgiving with a 5 day old probably weren't the best decisions being a first time mom.

So now, I've already started saying no. No, I won't commit to that play date, I'm tired. No, I won't promise that we will be at the parade, it's hot. No, I don't want a big baby sprinkle shower, it's too hard to entertain other people (side note: I had a friends only pool party with donuts and it was perfect!). I'm coming to love the word "no," and will probably continue this trend for my own sanity.

Have a plan.

First baby; we came home to our two foster babies-now our oldest boys, drove them to day care every day and picked them up. I had almost no reinforcements to help me. I also didn't realize what postpartum hormones looked like. I cried for three weeks straight, with no reason, apparently that's normal but I didn't know that. I really think I was teetering on the edge of postpartum depression for quite awhile, it was all just SO much to deal with!

With my second and now my third, I'm prepared. I have help scheduled for the first few weeks to help me get through the cries. I've even gone so far this time to line up a babysitter for days when I'm desperate for a nap, or so I can run away to the grocery store with just the baby. It may sound neurotic, but knowing how I need to postpartum has lessened my anxiety leading up to her arrival.

Let shit go.

It sounds cliche, I know. But if there's something that doesn't bring positive into my life, I'm not giving it any energy! I know I can't be doing my best in these last few weeks with the boys and then with a newborn while stressing about things that don't really matter. I'm blogging less, ridding the house of "stuff" we don't need, and reducing my friends and family.

That last one probably shocked you. Let me clarify. I'm just not going out of my way to connect with friends and family that currently aren't actively present in my life. Is this animosity towards them? Not in the slightest! They're busy, I'm busy, and I just only have so much energy to give, and maybe in this season of life I'm just meant to be surrounded by a few people. I'm sure I'll rekindle things down the road, but leading up to this new arrival, I just don't have it in me.

Soooo........

I know they say hindsight is 20/20 and maybe this is why I've developed this ehh attitude. But I'm preparing to survive. To make sure that everyone and everything in this house just gets by with limited sleep, clean-ish clothes, food in their belly and the quality time they all need.

So please don't be offended if you stop by my house and there's little boy underwear on the floor. Or if I opt for a nap instead of going to the splash pad. Or if I haven't texted or called you recently. It'll all go back to normal....eventually.

Are you preparing yourself for another little human in your house? Just survive mama, and let all the rest of the nonessential bullshit slide!


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