In my mind, I never stopped writing this blog. In my mind, I’ve been writing posts whilst suffering from pregnancy insomnia, in doctors waiting rooms, on hospital beds, whilst suffering from post pregnancy insomnia and during midnight feeds. In my mind, this blog has been a running commentary on motherhood. But in reality, its been ten whole months since I’ve actually sat down in front of the computer to write a post.
Towards the end of my pregnancy, I turned into a giant whale full of fluid, chocolate and hormones. I gained 26kgs and even the shoes I purchased (which were two sizes bigger) stopped fitting me. I lived in tent like clothes and even though it was the middle of winter, I squeezed my puffa-fish feet into some flip flops when I had to leave the house. I was utterly miserable. But that misery soon turned into elation when our little bundle of gorgeousness was born. Little A-Man arrived with hardly a whimper (him not me) and my husband and I cried our eyes out. At least I’m pretty sure that’s how it went down, I had suffered several agonising hours of labour and was given my fair share of drugs. But he arrived safe and perfect and our lives were complete.
And then we came home from hospital.
A friend recently described the first three months of motherhood as “The 90 Days of Darkness”. During that time, I didn’t know who I was, where I was or what I was doing. Days turned into nights and back into days. It was one continual blur of feeding, changing, burping, settling. And round and round we went. The first time I left the house with Little A by myself, I was terrified. It was if the shops had suddenly turned into a hostile environment and if I didn’t figure out how to get him into the pram before he cried, the world would come tumbling down.
And then something happened. We got past 12 weeks and we were more confident. Baby was more settled. We had a routine. It doesn’t mean that some days, the sound of his crying makes me feel like crawling into a little ball and rocking back and forth until he stops. Or the thought of having a day by myself fills me with both excitement and sadness. But we’re making progress. And honestly, he is just the most perfect piece of magic I’ve ever seen. I recently said being a mother is like getting to open a present every day. He’s always growing, changing and becoming more wonderful.
The thing is, no one could have ever prepared me for those first three months. No matter how hard they tried. I’m not sure if that’s because if women truly knew what it was like beforehand, we might never do it. So if we did hear “the first three months are hell” we interpret it as “the first three months are challenging but so is shopping in the post Christmas sales, I can totes do it”. Whatever it is, I’m glad I didn’t know. I’m glad I went through the 90 days of darkness and came out the other side to see a rainbow…even if the rainbow is sometimes smeared with poop.