One morning during the first week home I realised the true extent of the damage, measured by the amount of products I use every morning. No, they’re not Clarins or Dior, or even beauty products, but my god they make me feel better! I used to see pregnant women and feel broody. Little did I know just how ghastly and unglamourous pregnancy can be. I loved it, don’t get me wrong, I was growing another little person and the miracle of life etc, but I moaned and winged A LOT of the time. According to my mum, this is because I am a) a drama queen, and exaggerate everything and b) a hypochondriac, so found a lot to complain about!
2 weeks into the actual postnatal part and I’m still winging (I don’t want to be one of those people who ‘changes’ when they have kids now, do I??), but I’m just getting on with it. Currently sat with Jude lying on my bed in front of me, writing this with one hand, and expressing every now and again from my ‘bad’ boob. CLASSY.
We’ve been out and about quite a bit since Jude arrived and everywhere I’ve been people have said “wow, you look great, you’re a natural” etc. now, I don’t know whether they actually mean it, or I look so bloody dreadful that they feel compelled to say something nice because they feel sorry for me. Similarly, during the pregnancy people were always telling me how ‘blooming’ I looked. Blooming massive more like. I put on 4 stone, so certainly didn’t feel great. But the point is, that both pregnancy and postnatal times can make you feel pretty gross, unglamourous and miserable, and that’s a pretty fair representation. But you also feel AMAZING, and people being nice, whether falsely or genuinely (you’ll never know) is great. Slap a bit of make up on and paint your nails every now and again and you’ll survive. It can only get easier. And I’m telling myself that one day I’ll feel glamorous again. One day.
Going it alone.
Steve went back to work this week.
This has been difficult, not only because I have had to keep Jude alive by myself, but because I have felt a huge amount of guilt for being the lucky one that gets to spend this extremely important time with him. 2 weeks is such a short period of time, yet Jude has changed so much already. I can feel myself becoming one of those pushy parents; I’m getting excited about the way that he follows my voice and can bash his car seat toy to make it jingle (albeit accidentally).
But Steve isn’t seeing this stuff. He’s working. And he’s working long, exhausting shifts (he’s a chef) which means when he comes home he’s shattered. He doesn’t complain, but I know he’s on ‘the edge’. That’s the thing with breastfeeding; I need to be here, on tap, to make sure our baby boy grows up big and strong. But it’s just sad for boobless daddies that’s all.
Speaking of tiredness, I am exhausted. It’s crazy how lightly I’m sleeping. Sometimes I feel like I may as well not bother going to sleep. I’d get much more done! I always thought I’d be an ‘active’ mother. Like one who has the house spotless when daddy comes home and has baked and cooked lovely, nutritious meals for us. No chance! Looking after a baby is actually more time consuming than you think! I mean, you have to feed (and breastfeeding on demand means that this can’t really be planned too rigidly), wind, change nappies. Jude will nap alone (thank goodness), but even then I need to be in the room so that I can check he’s still breathing every 6-7 minutes and feel the back of his neck to check his temperature. (Yes I do this approximately 47 times a day). So everything takes that little bit longer. Plus, there’s the ‘lovingly watching him because he’s just so amazing’ thing that takes up at least 3 hours of the day. So all in all ‘stuff’ just doesn’t get done as quickly as it should!
I have tried napping when Jude naps as loads of people have recommended that. The thing is, I don’t want to nap at 10am and 1pm, it’s 5pm when I’m shattered and he is the most active and awake he’s been all day! So I’m generally knackered. Which is normal (apparently).
Every now and again I feel like my hormones are settling down…. I probably shouldn’t over-analyse these things, because then I end up crying about ‘not feeling like me anymore’ and just being so tired! The problem now is, that I can’t tell whether I’m tired or hormonal. OR BOTH?!
Either way, stealing Steve’s Galaxy Ripple and then popping to the local shop to pick up 3 chocolate yogurts and 4 more Galaxy Ripples to replace the one I ate is reminiscent of being pregnant… Or breaking up with a boyfriend as a teenager… Or generally just dealing with hormones!!
So, all in all, we’ve survived another week.
Oh yeah, and Jude DOES NOT like it when I drink orange juice. My god, his poor tummy can’t cope with with orange juice-infused breast milk!