The baby blues: woman has baby. Woman comes home from hospital and adorably weeps at cheesy insurance commercials for three days. Husband brings her flowers, rubs her shoulders, wipes her tears. Woman goes on brisk walk with baby in stroller without sweating or having to pee for the 80th time that hour. Woman loses all whopping 5 pounds she gained during pregnancy but retains the glowing skin. Woman’s abdominal muscles don’t separate. Her baby smells of lavender fields and no one is ever sprayed in the face with breastmilk.
Post-partum depression–they say–is a little bit different, lasting up to several weeks after the birth of a newborn baby but described similarly otherwise; enhanced, perhaps; with a twist of mild insomnia. I assure you, whatever it is that I experience randomly with each birth (and then again upon the weaning stage 9 months or so later) is nothing like any Pinterest article I’ve ever saved. My PPD is probably more appropriately labeled “WHY IS EVERYTHING AND EVERYONE ON EARTH SO FREAKING LOUD?”
Here’s a better illustration of those tender weeks following the miraculous arrival of a precious newborn:
I’ve dealt with these feelings before so I’m calmer this go-around simply in knowing they will pass with time and possibly medication (I am going to marry my obstetrician.) but in an effort to warn brand-spankin’ new mothers (and also to assure new-ish mothers that I am not immune to post-partum difficulties no matter how effortlessly I seem to be gliding through this first month), here are some interesting developments that may or may not be normal:
- My heart rate spikes with loud noises. Or chaos. Or both. Or for no reason at all like if it’s quiet and I think of something annoying.
- I just want twenty minutes to myself to go walking because I’ve had a little baby attached to me like a tick all day but oh-my-goodness I can’t bear to spend more than 5 seconds away from her, give her back now before I shrivel up and die.
- There’s too much to do, like for instance, feed the kids lunch AND dinner? What am I, a triathlete?
- People. People, all over the place. All the time. Everywhere I go. I actually do not go anywhere if I can help it–because, there are people.
- Sweating. So much sweating. All the sweating. I cannot stop sweating. I just had a shower, and I still smell like sour milk and week-old trash. And sweat.
- Don’t touch me. No, wait. I need a hug. Not too close, I am sweaty. How come no one rubs my shoulders except for only yesterday and the day before that and all the days last week?
- There is CLUTTER all over the place and I can’t take it anymore, I can’t go on like this y’all:
Also I can’t think straight.
- I’m considering putting a bomb in our piano so that the next person who freaking touches it… well. You know.
I’m tired, guys.
New moms, stand firm. This too shall pass. I’ll see you all in two years.