As little girls, it is instilled in us to be mothers. We played with baby dolls that pooped; Barbie and Ken had a dream house and we baked cakes in an oven with a light bulb. We chanted “first comes love, then comes marriage, here comes baby in the baby carriage!” to our friends who had a crush on a cute boy. We are pressured to pursue a husband with a good-paying job so that we can possibly stay at home with the children. When you do find that special guy, you get married and it’s only right that you guys have a kid in your first year of wedded bliss. Once you do get pregnant, it’s all about baby. What about the alternative?
I must say, I did those things. My husband makes great money and I have the luxury of staying home with our new baby. However, I tweaked some things. We were married for five years before our daughter graced us with her awesome presence. You better believe we heard it all within those five years. “What are you guys waiting on?” “Don’t wait too long, your clock is ticking.” “You’re married so you can have a baby now!” My favorite has to be “You need to have a baby now so it can have brothers and sisters.” Terrible. My husband and I love to spend time with each other, laughing and joking or just being in each other’s company. We knew a baby would disrupt that so we took time to enjoy each other; to enjoy our marriage. We felt it very important to nurture our union before we try to nurture a human being. I’m so glad we did because we are able to share our love with her. We are able to give her a piece of what we share as husband and wife.
My life changed on May 15 of this year. So many emotions since that day. I felt guilty for not feeling that overwhelming love for her the minute I saw her. I did not understand why I wasn’t feeling the way the women in movies felt. I felt like something was wrong with me because I didn’t post pictures of her with baby goo all on her or of her taking her first breath. First off, there is so much that people do not tell you about postpartum depression. It’s a subject that is swept under the rug, but having gone through it, I believe it needs to be addressed constantly. And breastfeeding, don’t even get me started on the “mommy shamming” behind that. Once I stopped listening to everyone, stopped reading material that did not pertain to me, things became easier. I decided that I didn’t want to be a milk machine anymore. I decided to say with confidence that I only breastfed her for 7 weeks.
Now we are four months in, and life is good and hard. Between being a wife, a full-time student, and a mom I had to find a rhythm that worked for my family, and honestly, still trying to get it down to a science! She growing so fast and changing so much that it’s hard to keep up! But believe me when I say this, trust yourself. Out of the many voices you’ll hear, yours should be the loudest!