Childbirth Seriously Changes Everything
Hello, lovely friends. I hope y’alls weeks are going swimmingly!
Let me start this out by saying that while I was pregnant with Oliver, I was incredibly preoccupied with childbirth. When would it happen, would I know it was happening, would I have to have a c-section, how much did it really hurt- you get the idea. I didn’t think about after childbirth very much because I thought we would just figure the whole parenting thing out.
What. A. Joke.
Before I start telling you some things I wish I had known before having kids, I will preface by saying that some of these things you just can’t understand until you experience it. I know it’s cliche, but it’s just true. So if you don’t have kids, take everything I’m saying and exaggerate it by 10 to try and understand. If you have kids…you know. So I give you…
8 Things That Change After Childbirth
Your Definition of Pure Exhaustion
We’ll kick off with the one everyone talks about. Oh, I know you pulled an all-nighter in college that one time, so you definitely know what it feels like to be tired. (Insert eye roll here). But see, after that all-nighter, you could sleep! All day! Whenever you wanted! Try to pull 4 months of all-nighters straight with an hour long nap during the day, maybe. Everyone tells you to sleep when the baby sleeps. I definitely recommend that when you can, but y’all, sometimes mama needs a shower and some lunch instead. You just learn to live in a perpetual state of exhaustion. Then, when you do get 4 hours of sleep straight, you feel like a brand new woman.
Your Definition of Privacy
So this is something no one told me about that I wish I would have had a heads up on. Sure, we all know privacy goes out the window during childbirth, but it doesn’t end there, friends. Nursing kind of makes you not care at all about privacy, obvious reasons. Then once you get past that, you have a toddling child bursting into the bathroom when you’re trying to take a moment. And then he tries to crawl into your lap while you’re on the toilet because he just has to be read Little Blue Truck right now or he’ll just DIE! (Insert another eye roll.) Y’all, just don’t expect to have privacy for a few years.
Your Body is Not Your Own
Again, the nursing is largely responsible for this. You are literally a food source for a tiny human. You live to serve their every cry and demand, especially when it comes to nursing. (Cluster feeding, anyone?!) But this extends even beyond that, people. My two year old views my body as a jungle gym, a tissue, a pillow, a racetrack for his cars, a target for his throwing practice…and that’s in between the nursing my 4 month old every two hours. So during the day I feel like I am anything but a human being.
Your Ninja Skills
You guys should see me during lunch time. I can nurse Zoey while making mac and cheese with Oliver climbing up my leg, all while drinking coffee. You know that show, American Ninja Warrior? Not a doubt in my mind I could beast that. In my pre-kid life I would ask Dan for help if I was trying to carry two laundry baskets. Psh. Child’s play. Now I can carry all of the laundry, while dancing across the living room to avoid stepping on lego’s, wearing a baby on my chest, with my coffee in hand. Boom.
Your tolerance for Repetitive Noise
I used to not be able to handle the same sound for more than about 2 minutes at a time. Playing a beeping noise over and over was a guaranteed way to get me to talk if you needed information from me. But in case you weren’t in on it, babies crying is the same sound, over and over and OVER. And you know what calms them down? White noise machines. And what do white noise machines do? Make the same sound over and over and over again. It’s really just one giant vicious cycle, but lemme tell ya, your tolerance for these things is higher than you think!
Your Appreciation for Caffeine
I mentioned it before, but I didn’t become a coffee drinker until kids. Specifically when I was pregnant with Zoey. Listen, y’all, you have to do what you have to do to get through. I found coffee. Even if it’s soda, you will more than likely find a source of caffeine and hold on to it like a drowning sailor to a buoy. When people don’t have kids and say they love coffee I’m like, “yea, but I need this coffee to avoid a mental breakdown.”
Your Definition of a Meal
Pre-kids I had three square meals a day. Sure, occasionally I might miss one, but usually I ate pretty consistently. And they were full meals. Earlier this week my lunch consisted of a drumstick, a cookie, and half of a bowl of cereal. I try really hard to still eat regularly because it’s so important, especially while nursing, but there are just some days that Zoey and Oliver are on completely opposite schedules, and that leaves limited to no time for my own schedule. But the fact that I could even consider some goldfish and the crust of a PB&J lunch is a testament to how low my standards have shrunk.
Your Definition of Gross
It used to be considered inappropriate to talk about feces at the dinner table, right? Because now it’s pretty commonplace conversation. I also used to look at parents wiping their kids’ snotty noses and just think, “uuugh”. Now- I’m that parent (I still think it’s gross, but ya do what ya gotta do). I’m also that parent that has unidentifiable stains on her pretty much all the time. I used to change throughout the day, but then I realized it just wasn’t worth it. Not only would I still get spit up on me, but my laundry load would be more. So now I just rock it. Gross? Yes. Practical? Absolutely.
These changes are hard, y’all, and definitely take some adjustment, but I wouldn’t trade a single one of them. I love being used as a pillow for my babies (though I could do without being a living target), and I know that way too soon I’ll get those three square meals in peace and quiet and just be thinking how much I miss it all. So though these changes are hard, I’m trying harder to appreciate them at this moment.
So tell me, what were some unexpected changes your experienced after having a baby?
Have a phenomenal day!