Most mothers will quickly agree that getting your first child is always a great experience. From the pregnancy, to being able to see the little heart beating on the ultra sound and the holiday you get from all the house chores once you are close to giving birth. It is quite an experience. It does have its ups and downs and above all the labor pains that highlight the entire experience and once the little guy gets here, all the trouble that you went through seems quite worth it. You face the waking up at night sessions with renewed bravery convincing yourself that this is for a great cause and do not hesitate dropping whatever you are doing at the slight sound of the baby. Everything has to be perfect. There is no room for mistakes. The baby’s health is the most important.
However, as time goes by, what you had expected would happen to you the moment you gave birth starts creeping in slowly but surely. It is just a matter of time before you bundle of joy fills you with frustration and exhaustion. Yes, you are not the only mother that has had to go through this which begs the question, when does having a baby become easier? Here is what is certain, when it actually starts to get really hard.
For most mothers, the initial months after giving birth are filled with excitement and the adrenaline and hormones definitely keep you buoyant. The baby is relatively clueless and their demands are very minimal so you see this as a walk in the park. Until you start weaning. What most mothers tend to forget is that this is a process that affects both you and the baby. It will usually start after about six months and when the baby will miss the nursing and start yearning for solid foods, you on the other hand loses your feel good hormones and the exhaustion and moody days start to creep in. you start realizing that you are actually a mum and you have your plate full with your baby at all times. It is even worse at this time if you happen to have other children that are not fully grown.
The worst part is usually weaning. When breastfeeding, there are hormones that are produced by the body to facilitate the milk production process but also do a great deal of work to make sure that you have a great deal of benefits among them being a lighter mood. Once you start weaning and the breast milk production starts to take a hit, so do the hormones and so does your good mood. It is made worse by the fact that the baby also becomes more irritable and demanding. They are ready for solid foods and have become more mobile so you have to deal with the occasional falls and unnecessary cries that drive you crazy. There is not much you can do but play your role and try to calm the baby. This is when having a baby becomes a truly uphill task.
The worst is yet to come and it starts presenting itself when the baby starts teething. For them this is a painful experience and one that is bound to keep you up all night. You fatigued days get longer and sleepless nights get even longer. It is a horrible experience but as a mother that is what you’re going to have to put up with for the considerable future. Normally, if you hang around mothers, you will notice that they giggle at the success that they have had with their babies especially considering that they can now reach for toys and give you those gentle slaps on the face. They can even giggle when they see you or you make funny faces. Alas! The joys of mother hood. However, if you were to have a heart to heart talk with them, you will quickly realize that they are in the same fix as you. The sleepless nights and ever crying babies are a common factor. Also, forgetting to take care of yourself becomes the order of the day. Stinking of baby drool, unkempt and untidy hair or just one that has been tampered with by the baby. But the worst is that all those people who would come to check on you and give you flowers do not come around anymore.
After six months, giving birth does not seem so great anymore. The nurse thatwould come around all so often to check on you is no more, the neighbor who would bring you soup every evening does not show up any more and all that you are left with is you and your little one.
All hope is not lost
At this point, you feel like going into the bathroom and slitting your wrists open or pulling your hair out. The only thing that is stopping you is knowing that you have a little angel in the next room that is relying on you to survive and the momentous occasion where you get to share a laugh and it reminds you how adorable they are. After the six months are done, things start to take a turn.
As this stage passes and you and the baby start to get a hang of weaning, they will be able to sleep longer. Of course when they are awake they will cause some havoc but the nights will be quieter and less eventful. You will finally be able to get and entire nights rest and wake up feeling fresh. You might also have a number of minutes to yourself and that is when you realize you are still a woman and could use some touch ups and a constant change of clothes. Finally, there is a light at the end of the tunnel.
Once the hormones have settled you will be more sane and organized and you are definitely able to do things more easily. However, this does not mean that the nightmare is over; just more relaxed. It could help however to make sure that during this time, you are able to get out for sometime at least once every day and if there is anything that you should take from this is the need to talk and air your frustrations. You will find it helps more and feels comforting especially if you have a mom’s group of children that are the same age. Knowing you are not alone makes it much easier. Plus, you can always share tips on how to contain the chaotic scenes when they prop up.