Those Baby {Boo Hoo} Blues

I’ve mentioned before that several of my friends are expecting their first babies right now.  I’m certainly no expert, as I’ve only done this once, but I still feel like it’s my duty to share with them {only when they ask} what to really expect as a new mom.  I know that everyone’s experience is different and my next time around might be a total 180.  However, one of the biggest surprises about those first few weeks as a mom was my emotional state.  All of the books mention the Baby Blues, Postpartum Blues, Postpartum Depression.  Because of my history of depression, I was hyper-sensitive about this topic.  Even though I felt prepared for all of these common occurrences to a postpartum mom, when it happened — it’s like all that stuff I’d read didn’t matter.

I would classify my experience as a mild case of Postpartum Blues or really just whackado hormones from having a BABY!  Lack of sleep and recovering from major surgery didn’t help.  I was also really disappointed that I ended up delivering via c-section.  Even though everything turned out great, Jack was perfect, and it wasn’t very painful, I felt like I was less of a mom since I didn’t push my baby out.

So What Do Baby Blues Actually Look Like?

Okay, so I read a lot about the Baby Blues, but didn’t actually know what that might look like.  Let me give it to you straight – for me, it meant I was a hot mess; an emotional roller coaster.  Blissfully happy one second, crying in my coffee the next.  Feeling content in my role as a mother, stressing about the end of my maternity leave.  I was also super snippy and sensitive which didn’t work well with my husband who was also going through a world of emotions and lack of sleep.  This made us fight more with each other which didn’t help with my baby blues…oh, the cycle!  One night as I was nursing Jack, I even sat there and seriously wondered if I could handle being a single divorced parent.  {We are still happily married and never spoke of divorce.  Just trying to show you my wide array of emotions.}

The best example that I use to explain this to people is my birthday / Mother’s Day story.  Jack was born May 3rd, Mother’s Day was May 12th, and my 30th Birthday was May 13th.  My husband and family and friends wanted to shower me with celebrations and gifts, and all I wanted was for it to be over…and maybe an actual shower.  It’s like I just couldn’t handle it.  On the day of my birthday, my mom came to my house and brought me my favorite lunch from Black Walnut, birthday presents, and a birthday cake.  When she showed me everything she was surprising me with, I lost it and just broke down in tears.  We had to put it all away.

Same thing on Mother’s Day :: gifts and sweet gestures = tears and asking for it all to go away {the celebrations…not the baby}!  This left my husband wondering what the heck to do, and I’m sure others were worried about me.

I even felt sad one evening when a couple of my girlfriends came to visit me and see the baby.  I wasn’t sad to see them – just the opposite.  I was sad because it was as if I couldn’t imagine ever being able to leave the house again for girlfriend time.  I was so in love with my baby, and I just felt different.  Little did I know that I just needed to give it time, give myself a break and adjust.  In hindsight, I probably just wasn’t ready for visitors yet, but because others had visitors right away, I felt I needed to also.

What To Do

Talk To Your Doctor – I broke down in tears at my first doctor’s visit after having the baby.  Jack wasn’t with us, but my husband was.  I was just feeling pressure and stress {and lack of sleep}, and I broke down in front of the nurse and doctor…something that is very NOT like me.  Both my doctor and nurse looked at me like I was the most normal one in the room, listened to my worries, and gave me great advice.  I walked out of there feeling worlds better.  I just needed to hear it from a professional that everything was okay.  And added bonus that my husband was there to hear these reassurances also.  It helped him understand how he could support me.

Give It Time – Every single day it got better.  It did not go away overnight, but each day was better.  After the first month, I would say my “blues” were gone.  Some probably don’t ever experience this, while others will experience a more extreme case and may need to speak to their doctor about it.  The best thing for me during this time was to read about others’ experiences.  I took comfort knowing that this was normal and would pass.  It’s different reading those words in a textbook versus reading it from a “real person” in a blog post.  Someone jokingly told me never to make decisions about your marriage {or your hair} that first year of baby’s life — and it’s so true.  Becoming a parent is a huge adjustment, and you need to give yourself time to adjust.

Listen To You!!! – Trust your instincts and listen to your body.  It pretty much told me what to do.  The only times I didn’t listen to it was when I was comparing it to others…which is never helpful.

Watch Friends {the TV show} – Or whatever brings you comfort.  I say this jokingly, but for whatever reason watching Friends made me feel better {along with passing the time while nursing}.  Because I was so emotional, I couldn’t handle watching dramas or the news, but watching Friends always lifted my spirits…plus, it was always on TBS!  Could this BE anymore random {Chandler voice}.

Did you experience any type of “baby blues”?  How did you cope?



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