A letter to myself
I don’t want this to offend you. I am purely writing this from an encouraging spirit and hope that it will reach it’s way into your heart and you will hear for what it it truly is…the truth.
YOU GOTTA STOP FREAKING OUT.
Being a new mom has it’s ups and downs…sure, sometimes you wish that you could open the freezer, place your head between the shelf holding the seventeen one ounce bags of pumped breastmilk and the frozen peas and then slam the door shut repeatedly just to distract you from the sound of a crying baby…and sure, curling up into the fetal position and crying like a reality show contestant is a better alternative to screaming at your 7 month old…and absolutely, having a meltdown over fnding the right kind of Sharpie is normal when your baby seems to be attempting psychological warfare on you…but you’ve got to stop.
I know that you are worried. You worry that you are ruining your child. You worry about not doing enough. Or being enough. Or working with him enough. Or playing with him enough. Or loving on him enough. But believe me, you are doing fine. He will not die because he doesn’t yet respond to his name. He isn’t reverting back to how he was fresh from the womb because sometimes he topples over without catching himself. I know you want to be there to break his fall…every.single.time…but he’s gotta learn that falling is part of life. I know your heart feels like it is being squeezed by a mammoth sweaty hand when you think about his sleep habits…or lack thereof…but he will eventually sleep through the night. And so will you. I know you wish he didn’t cry every single time you put him down, or walked out of the direct line of sight, or stopped touching him in general…but one day, he won’t want you near him so you need to learn to soak this up.
That is my message to you. Suck it up & soak it up.
Breathe. In and then out. Slowly. And then again. Dry your eyes. Wipe the eyeliner off your jaw. And then breathe again. You are fine. You are not alone. Even when you feel alone. You are a little hormonal. Which is normal. And emotional. Which is also normal. But you can do this. You are capable. You are a mom.
You don’t need to be in control of everything. You just need to be in control of you. And you need to breathe. Pray a little more often…there is help there. And you need to stop yelling at Jeremy. It’s not gonna permanently scar Will if Jeremy puts him in the jumper instead of performing your definition of father-son quality time. You gotta stop comparing him to other babies. And you need to stop reading so many baby books and reading so many websites and start reading your child. And do not have a meltdown if Will doesn’t eat his homemade Vitamin A and Vitamin C food cubes. He won’t turn into a chimpanzee because he loves bananas. And you gotta stop freaking out.
I know that it feels overwhelming sometimes. I know you feel ill-equipped as a mother. I know you sometimes question who the crazy person is that put you in charge of another human being. It not a mistake. It’s not an error that you are Will’s mom. You have been chosen as the absolute best person to be a mother for him. It is not an error that you are in the position you are in. You are exactly where you are supposed to be. God does not make mistakes. And you gotta stop freaking out.
Sure, your house is a mess. Sure, your laundry pile is like Everest and you are no mountain climber. Sure, the dishes are in slobbery stacks of disarray. Sure, the floor is speckled with food, and toys, and a slew of unidentifiable whatnots brought in by dirty shoes. Sure, your toilets are sporting the ring of neglect and your hair hasn’t seen a brush in four days. BUT THAT IS LIFE. Life is messy. Even if you clean it up or choose not to, life will still be there. And that is a wonderful gift.
Embrace the gift Katie. Embrace life. Hug your baby. Hold him and soak that in. Kiss your husband and tell him that you love him. Hold him too and encourage him at every chance you get. Count your blessings…one by one. Decide to do something fun today. And for heavens sake, whatever you do, stop freaking out.
xo – katie