Here I am writing 4.5 years after first experiencing postpartum depression to tell you that I feel as though I am going through it yet again. I have never been someone who adapted well to change or the unexpected and with this third sweet boy I am having hard time with both the unexpected and the transition to being a mom of 3 boys!
Leo has a tongue tie that will be revised via laser early next week. This might not seem like a big deal to most and was something I thought other moms exaggerated about in the past. The hard thing is that on top of caring for my two older boys I question my every move when feeding Leo.
Having nursed both boys for over a year I assumed this third time around would be a breeze. I even planned to nurse in my baby carrier and really take on the whole mom to three kids role. Unfortunately, our feeding situation currently looks like this (it gives me anxiety even writing about it):
- Leo wakes and nurses 10 min on one side and then screams and spits up everywhere
- Nurses the other side and repeats the crying and spitting up (reflux, the painful kind)
- I give Leo a bottle of pumped milk because he is rooting around like a starving kid
- More burping, crying, and spitting up
- I pump and clean parts and bottles
- Burp some more
- Put him back down for a nap
Repeat this 8-10 times a day.
The hard part is that I feel guilty for spending so much time on one feeding while not giving the other boys any attention and also it is a lot of work having a 3 step feeding process. After his laser procedure we will have to do a lot of stretches to make him more efficient at emptying me out when nursing and the thought of not knowing how everything will pan out makes me really uneasy. I know God has chosen me to be their mom specifically but I believe most of us moms can relate to the fact that not knowing what your baby needs is a very hard pill to swallow.
I did not expect to have to go through another rough go of breastfeeding, I did not expect to go through so many dark emotions yet again, and I did not expect to ever have a baby who loves his bottle.
There has been a lot of sweet and memorable moments over these past 2.5 weeks. Every time the older boys are playing nicely together or offering to help me I am reminded how short this phase of life is. But the reality is I think society tells us how wonderful this new phase is and for some women, like myself, this is the hardest transition we will go through. Yes, newborns are so sweet and they only stay small for so long but it is also a major time in the moms life. We have to heal emotionally, physically, and spiritually all the while caring for a household, husband, kids, and lets not forget ourselves.
I hope I am not scaring anyone here who might not be a mom yet. I just want to be open and honest with the fact that although some women love the unexpected and the transition into the fourth trimester, there are some of us who it simply does not come easy to. Thankfully, this time around I knew when and where to get and ask for help. Hoping to have time to write more on how our life has changed and how our routines are also changing to better fit the 5 of us.