I have a strong, healthy, and easygoing baby and an abundance of milk. Life should be plain sailing, amiright?
But honestly, I sometimes feel quite overwhelmed.
V is almost five months old. Apparently by now she should be waking only once a night to feed. Apparently she should be napping regularly during the day.
I hate the word ‘should’. It makes me feel bad.
V is a very sweet baby. She gurgles and coos and is beginning to babble. She’s learning to suck her thumb and her favourite activity that doesn’t involve milk is standing. She’s adorable. She gets frustrated sometimes that she can’t stand and eat at the same time. She’s sociable and hilarious! Lucky me!
She eats all the time. At her four-month check up, she was in the 96th percentile for weight (16 lbs 11.7 oz / 7.6 kgs) and 95th for height (25.87″ / 65.7 cm). She’s already in 9M clothing. She’s huge. At not even four months old she was already wearing nine-month-old onesies for both length and girth. I was alarmed until the lactaction consultant said that you can overfeed a breastfed baby. Clearly there is something to this epigenetic malarky.
You’d think with an abundance of milk I wouldn’t feel inadequate, but I do. I know breastmilk is more easily absorbed than formula due to the smaller protein molecules, but I am frustrated because I can’t keep her hunger at bay for more than a couple of hours day and night. I’m not sleeping well.
This is making me super-duper-with-a-stupid-cherry-on-top tired. I haven’t slept properly in almost a year now (always awoke every couple of hours during pregnancy, even during the second trimester) and I think it’s beginning to catch up with me. For a start, she won’t nap unless it’s in my arms. The oft-quoted advice “Sleep when the baby sleeps” and “It gets better” make me want to punch someone. It’s a crock of shit. I mean, come on, when the hell else are mums supposed to do a load of laundry? And how the buggering bollocks are you supposed to make dinner?
Right now she’s flutter-sucking my right boob and I’m typing 20 words a minute with one hand. She’s drowsy — apparently the best time to put her in her crib. If we stay like this, she will happily sleep for a couple of hours. The minute I try to put her in her crib her eyes fly open and she starts wailing like she’s the victim of a mean, dirty trick. If I get the timing right and do manage to sneak her in, she will awaken 20 minutes later, screaming like she doesn’t know where she is. What the hell?
So then I pick her up again and she comfort nurses. At some point in the not-too-distant future — and without warning — poop bubbles out of her diaper, dirtying yet another outfit. (I’ve tried a bunch of different disposable brands and they all leak. The one that leaks the least is Bambo, the most expensive but also the most eco-friendly disposable brand.)
Thank god I have as many hand-me-downs as I do, but the laundry pile is beginning to take on a life of its own. I cannot imagine how cloth-diapering mamas stay on top of their baby’s shit…
This motherhood gig is definitely the hardest job I’ve ever had. Most days I take things in my stride. Most days I have a lot of anxiety, the overwhelming responsibility, all the stuff no amount of reading can prepare you for. And some days I just feel close to tears because the house is a mess, there are bills to pay, I haven’t eaten in hours and it’s 10pm, I have to fold two loads of laundry and, to top it off, also change the sheets on the bed because the dog left a fucking skidmark. All while the baby sleeps in this precious window of zzz’ing opportunity.
I guess I’m doing okay for a newbie? I hope?