Thursday, July 7, 2016


I think it's true when they say when you love someone you only remember the good times. Looking back on the past year, as a new mom, with all the normal day to day struggles (plus the added stresses of a genetic condition diagnosis, pediatric hospital trips, vision tests, and worries) a lot of the past year has blended together memories of pure happiness. It is only when I think of specific points in time I start to recall the difficulties and struggles of a newborn on my body, my marriage, and my sanity. As I delve ahead into the future of wanting more children, I think it's important to look back and reflect on how far we've come.

I wish I could say that my ten months of exclusively breastfeeding and the next few months trying to wean went complaint free, but it was not without it's mental struggles. I am lucky that breastfeeding went very naturally and easily for us and it is, without question, the most selfless thing I have ever done, but that didn't make it easy. I missed late nights drinking wine with friends, nights away with my husband, a few hours to go to the gym, shower, or do anything without having to be a small person's food source. Will I do it again? Yes, probably because despite all those things this year went by incredibly fast and I'm fairly confident that I also would have found reasons to complain if breastfeeding didn't work out and I had to wash bottles and pay for formula. I can honestly say now that looking back over the past year there isn't one night I would have wanted to give up with my newborn for a night out because the memories I have are the ones I will cherish forever (even if at the time I might have felt differently).

When I think of my husband and how much my life changed at first while to me, his seemed to stay the same, I marvel at the balance we're managed to create and I have no idea when that happened. I will always remember being home alone with a newborn while he was out golfing and hadn't been home since leaving for work at 7:30 that morning, sitting in my new grey rocking chair Googling "How to not resent your husband with a new baby" searching for someone to tell me it would get better and I wouldn't always resent his ability to go go go while my soul ached for even an hour to myself. The great thing about my husband is that he is committed to our family and he adapts easily, so although it took a while before he understood why I needed time away from the baby every now and then,  it doesn't take too many meltdowns or discussions before he hears me when I say "I need help" and "I can't do this alone". There, somewhere, between diaper changes, compromises, laundry, and letting go we managed to find what works seemingly at the same time we decided we are ready to do it again. I often wonder if adding a second baby will create an earthquake of disruption to the life we worked to create the last year, or will it simply be an aftershock tremble. Will the plates fly off the shelves, or will we wobble around for just a little bit before finding our grounding again.

It could be easy to list all of the things we gave up the past year, but it is far easier to list what we've gained. Before having a baby, getting up at 6am was a chore. Now, I ache to hear those morning rumblings and witness her first smiles of the day. The love we have now more than ever as a couple, as parents, and for our growing family runs deeper than anything I have ever known and if I think about it too long it scares the crap out of me.

So, was it worth sore nipples, sleepless nights, colic, loneliness, worry, more worry, headaches, and hassles? Hell ya. For every tear there has been a smile, baby giggles that will melt your heart, and when Scottie wraps her little arms around my neck and hugs me tight I know I wouldn't change one thing about the past year that got us where we are today. The first year is hard, but trust me when I say it just gets better and better.