Four months ago, I entered the club — the New Mom Club. When my son made his entrance into the world, my life changed forever.
Is that a dramatic statement? Yes.
Is it true? Absolutely.
When you join the New Mom Club, you won’t get a special ID card or a welcome party. But you will go through some amazing, frustrating, joyful and even confusing experiences that bond you to your “New Mom Club” sisters.
What’s it like, you wonder?
New motherhood is…
Acting truly selfless the majority of the time.
Constantly wondering if you’re doing it right.
Having more visitors in your home than ever before, and realizing that none of them are there to see you.
Immediately wanting your old life back.
Eventually forgetting what your old life was like, but knowing you no longer want your life BB (before baby).
Crying when your baby cries.
Crying when you leave your baby for the first time.
Crying when your baby achieves a new milestone.
Realizing that all of your preparation was mostly useless, but you’ll be okay anyway.
Feeling a new appreciation for your own mom. (And yes, you should call her to say “thank you.”)
Watching your husband or partner with your child, and falling in love with him or her in a completely new way.
Finally understanding how your parents love you unconditionally.
Leaking. A lot of leaking.
Living days that are so long, and months that are so short.
Giving up the old life of familiar freedoms for a new life of unpredictable change.
Enjoying a dentist appointment because it’s the only “me” time you’ll get this week.
Smelling a stain to figure put if it’s pee, spit up, breast milk, or some other liquid.
Reflexively sticking your hand out to block or catch pee, spit up, breast milk, or some other liquid.
Talking about poop at least five times a day.
Accepting new standards of hygiene. (A shower every other day is golden.)
Accepting new standards for appropriate sleep. (You got a four-hour stretch last night? Lucky lady!)
Letting go of all the judgments you made about parenting before you were actually a parent.
Wondering if that new mom you see on the street is just waiting for you to come up, say “hi,” and ask to be friends. (She is.)
Going back to work and worrying that you aren’t spending enough time with your baby.
Staying home and worrying that the baby would be better off in a more stimulating environment.
Working from home and worrying that neither your work nor your baby are getting appropriate attention.
New motherhood is powerful, difficult, overwhelming, exciting, confusing…
And beautiful—even when you’re covered in pee, spit up, breast milk, or some other liquid.
Related post: A Letter To My Pregnant, Child-Less Self…