I have been a mother now for a whopping 4 days! Woo hoo! My baby is the most beautiful thing that I have ever laid my eyes. I could, (and do) just stare at her for hours. What have I learned in 4 days? Needless to say, I haven’t even scratched the surface, but it feels like I have learned a lot.
1.Labor is no joke. I knew that, we all know that. But you do not REALLY know until you go through it. I was induced, and that actually went very well at first. I was given my first and only dose of a cervix ripener. My contractions happened fast, and oh man were they painful! I waited a little too long to ask for my epidural, but once I did, smooth sailing. Because my contractions were happening on their own, I didn’t receive any more medication. 10 hours after being induced, I was pushing.
I’m going to spare you most of the details, but it was not pleasant from this point on. I pushed for 3.5 hours and then was rushed into an emergency c-section. My epidural had pretty much worn off. I should say that this was my choice so I could have strength to push, since I was already so tired. You can always push a button for more. I chose not to. Because of this, I was very aware of what was happening during the surgery. At one point I was scared for my baby’s and my life. All I could think of was, save the baby, don’t worry about me. My maternal instincts just kicked right in.
Then I was given anesthesia and was put to sleep. About an hour or two later I woke up to my husband holding our baby. Seeing our baby for the first time was surreal. I just reached for her and held her. I stared at her with amazement, with love. The whole experience was extremely painful and terrifying. But I would do it all over again.
2. Ok, baby is here!! She needs to eat, and I plan on nursing. Every woman says that breastfeeding is hard, and each woman has their own experience with it. Some have a good experience, and some are never able to make it work. But oh my god, BREASTFEEDING IS SO HARD!! I get it now! I thought I was doing well. Then you speak with a specialist and you realize you may not be doing so great. There is so much you need to learn, need to look for. It is a process that you and your baby will hopefully learn together. But the process can be painful, upsetting and frustrating.
But I’m sticking with it, and hopefully me and baby get in sync and make this work! I just need to stay positive. Plus, there are so many resources out there. I plan on using what ever is offered to me to make it happen. And if after all of that, it doesn’t work, then that is ok too.
3. Last, but certainly the not least. Motherhood is magical. Yes, I’m exhausted. I’m also in so much pain from labor and surgery. I haven’t washed my hair in days, and I eat and sleep when I can. But I am not too concerned with myself. All I care about is my baby. What was that noise? What is she doing now? Does she look hungry? Do you think she’s cold? Hot? Wait, did she just smile? Do you think she will like her nursery? It’s ridiculous. She’s my world.
Like I said, it’s been 4 days. I have a long road ahead, and so much more to learn. But in these 4 days, I feel I have already changed. I have evolved into a mother. So yes, labor sucks and breastfeeding has proven to be very difficult. But it’s all worth it once you see your baby’s face staring back up at you. That untapped love is finally tapped, and it’s the best feeling in the world.