Having a new baby is tough. No, I take that back. It is hands down the most challenging job in the world. Since having my first child, I have a whole new respect for parents. Especially my own mother. My world turned upside down when our daughter came into this world, from jumping right into nursing and having difficulty, to sleeping 2 hours at a time, to riding emotional hormonal waves that had me in a puddle of tears daily. To throw the cherry on top, I also endured 42 hours of labor. That story is for another day.
Eventually, my hormones leveled a bit and I slowly started to feel like myself again. But the nail in my side was my partner — my dear husband who gets on my nerves daily for habits I never noticed pre-baby.
Let me preface with the fact that I have an amazing man in my life who works tirelessly to provide for our family. He has a charming personality and can socialize with just about anyone in a room. Not to mention his handsome smile could put Brad Pitt to shame.
Though, since having my daughter, I now can’t help but cringe at his tendencies. From telling me that his back hurts to complaining about his lack of sleep, I’m pretty sure my eyes are permanently rolling after every petty comment.
Then I become inundated with thoughts that fill my mind with resentment. Why can’t he make me lunch today or offer to cook dinner tonight? Can he please run to the grocery store on my behalf and stock the refrigerator so it doesn’t sit empty for a week? Could he rock the baby to sleep tonight without seeing me almost in tears because she won’t stop fussing? Oh, and a back massage would be nice.
And when I can’t possibly think of another reason to be annoyed, I remember there is something my ever-so-amazing husband is not: a mind-reader. My tired eyes can only tell him so much and my lack of patience only puts his guard up. I know that he will never understand where I’ve been and what I’m going through: the waves of hormones that still erupt out of nowhere, the fluctuation in my success of nursing and pumping, and the constant worry about how I’m doing as my baby’s provider.
And when my negative thoughts slowly subside, I remember what he does do. In the morning (my least favorite time of day), he gathers my pumping materials and sets them by the door. He lets the dog out. He drops our daughter at daycare so I can have a bit more alone time getting ready for work.
And at the end of the day, he gladly pours me a glass of red wine and lets me vent.
Sure, there are things I wish he would just do without me asking. But, no, he isn’t a mind-reader. We’re new parents. We’re tired and short-fused. We’re surviving and thriving and in constant awe of our amazing child who is rapidly changing daily. He may not know what I’m thinking all the time, but this man of mine is doing his best.