When the going gets tough

Life with a newborn is lovely and it’s h-a-r-d.

I’ve had emotional breakdowns at 3am and 2pm.

I’ve forgotten what it is I did with my life and still don’t know how to cram into 2 (if that) hours what I had a day to do but I’ve resolved not to beat myself up about it or fight sleep.  Sleep is a rare commodity so sleep always wins.

I’ve had cabin fever more times than I care to count (and this is coming from a self-confessed homebody) and what I wouldn’t give to go out and run an errand at the drop of a hat but I am my son’s sole food source and while I am in awe of what my body can do I’m what you might call an awkward (slash bashful) breastfeeder.

I am still trying to find a balance in this new normal of ours.

Sometimes I don’t want to sleep when he sleeps, I want to finish a project or start one.  I want to give the house a good clean but I know that if I do I will be a ball of tears at 3am when all I can see are cluster feeds and all I have is the dark and lonely flicker of a night light.

On the flip-side and above all else, he is my reason for being.  I look at him and just one smidgen of a smile makes me melt.  The other day after I’d had an emotional melt down he looked me square in the eyes, smiled and with two hands outstretched gently touched my face.  I smiled back and yet I was so emotionally spent that I cried too.  I was annoyed at myself for letting him see sadness when all I really wanted to communicate was that these were happy tears.

It’s these tough moments where I can’t wait for him to know me better and I him.  The days when he’s overtired, crying uncontrollably and I fold imploring him to ‘please please for the love of all that is good s-l-e-e-p’, then he sleeps for so long that I miss his awake-ness!

When he sleeps like an angel or my midwife says how much he’s grown in a week it’s those moments where filled with pride I want him to stay small and fall asleep in my arms forever because I know that years from now (or months) I’ll wish that he needed me this much.

The good will always outweigh the bad in this chapter of course but it’s important to acknowledge that life with a newborn isn’t all gummy smiles and TV-ad cliche’s.  In fact if it weren’t for the tough and trying moments then the absolutely fantastic moments wouldn’t feel as sweet as they do.

Erena Te Paa sig

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