Slave to the Pump (Part 2)
Baby blues? Post partum depression? My emotions were a mess.
Now it’s several months later. I left off in June 2005 when our son was six months old and started to put words to paper again in December 2007.
You won’t believe this, but three years later and it’s December 2007. I decided to revisit my beloved Slave to the Pump, as a colleague has just become a new mother. She asked me a question about pumping and sounded very stressed and it all came back to me. I even sent her a copy of this so that if possible, my piece could help her somehow feel better about the situation. Well, our darling son, who was six months of age when I took a reprieve (long at that!) from my story, is now three years old! I took a look back at my last few entries and realized that I temporarily ended with questions about post partum and baby blues. It was hard. Like I said, my emotions were an absolute mess and aside from crying all of the time, images of smiling and happy mothers kept barraging my mind. Was it normal to feel out of sorts? After lots and lots of writing—and even more research on hormonal changes in women during and after pregnancy, I realized that yes, I was okay and not “wrong” for feeling the way I did (the guilt mothers feel for practically everything is unbelievable!). My baby blues (which is what it was, as it lasted just a few weeks) was finally over and I was able to really concentrate on continuing to build the bond with my new and precious child.
My husband and I grew closer. It was difficult at first. He did everything he could to make me comfortable, help take care of our then, baby—and no matter, I doubted all of his efforts. Again, it was hormonal and through research, I also discovered new mothers with baby blues or post partum had patterns of what I call “micro-babying” or more accurately, almost obsessively watching over the child while thinking nothing is ever perfect. When my blues were permanently gone, I apologized to my husband for all that I put him through; although unintentional, I understood then (clear-minded, finally) that I had hurt and angered him by my actions.
I am not sure how much more I can recall since the time last time I wrote, but I promise that as I continue this story, I will make sure to include any memories that happen along the way. In the interim, I will certainly say that we have had some serious family journeys, life lessons, and success stories to date! And the learning never ends. I was telling my colleague, the new mother, that “children make you even more resourceful and creative than ever before.” If you thought you were imaginative and could come up with tricks before, you just wait! Moms and dads become all genres of artists (e.g., magicians, singers, painters, dancers, etc). I remember that when I had my little one at home during maternity leave … I needed to do so many things in the house, but he would cry whenever I put him down, so I took a long wrap skirt I’d had in my closet, held him to my side, working the material so that I finally had it (almost perfectly!) wrapped around his back and underneath his bottom so that his legs could hang loose—and then around me. It worked! And I was amazed with myself, but our baby boy inspired me without having a clue.
(A work in progress … thank you for taking the time to read.)