Ever since Lori was born, my life completely changed. The moment I heard the sound of her first cry, I was overpowered with an indescrible joy.
I would be lying to you if I said that everything following the delivery felt like I was floating on cloud nine. In reality, as soon as we went home, the challenges of being a new mom weighted upon me.
My struggle wasn't anything physical and even fatigue wasn't a major issue. It was the emotional roller coaster, the idea of being a "perfect mom" (I don't think that's even possible…), and the pressure of doing things "by the book" because that was the only "right" way I thought I could take care of my baby.
It's true. I cried practically every single day for the first entire month. For what?
- When Lori slept too much and didn't want to be fed "every two hours".
- When she didn't have 8 wet diapers per day (I counted and recorded every single one of them).
- When she didn't want to be breastfed but preferred the bottle instead. I felt like a complete failure and thought she rejected me – her mom.
That wasn't it. At some point, I didn't feel like myself anymore. It's as if I lost my identity, and now that I'm labeled "mom", the only thing that I was capable of doing was taking care of my newborn.
I was in PJ practically everyday for the first month after giving birth. I didn't feel like wearing anything else – I couldn't wear anything else because of the mommy weight. I was stuck in bed or on a chair most of the time. I wasn't doing the things I used to do before Lori came. I found myself asking this question many times "will I ever be myself again?". At that time, I felt that I was stuck in a deep hole, so deep that I couldn't see the light.
But it only took one thing, and one thing only to make things better; and it was seeing Lori smile at me for the very first time. She smiles and laughs a lot ever since then, but it was on that particular day that my heart skipped a beat, and I couldn't help and smiled back at her and let tears of joy roll down over my cheeks.
Lori brought me out of the hole. She made me realize that nothing else matters to her in this world other than knowing she's loved. It didn't matter how she's fed, dressed up, put to sleep, etc. That smile, that she gave me after I fed her and told her how much she meant to me, proved just that.
Ever since that day, things got better. I finally got out of the hole and saw the broad daylight. Of course there were many other challenges after that and more to come as Lori grows up, but I've decided to approach them with a different attitude.