It seems like the Perfect Storm has occurred for me in the last couple days. A really wonderful Perfect Storm full of snuggles, feedings, sleeping, and baby poop.
Yes, Little Mister has been going through a growth spurt and I’ve basically been held prisoner in my bedroom for the past couple days. Now, up until this point, I would have been filled with anxiety and counting the minutes on the clock until he finished eating. HURRY LITTLE BABY! Eat! Eat! EAT!! Up until this point, I’ve unfortunately not been able to enjoy the whole breastfeeding/bonding experience to its fullest since I’ve had something or other to accomplish RIGHT NOW and a tiny little baby takes too long to gulp, slurp, and motorboat his way to fullness.
I’ve been on-the-go non-stop for the last few months and, truth be told, I’m a little concerned how hard I’m going to crash once I’m able to process everything that I’ve been going through. I’ve been putting it off- mainly because I’ve not had the time to truly think and process and OH.MY.LANTA! I’M A MOM NOW!
Since moving here 3 weeks ago, we’ve had to do the normal things you have to do when you move to another country- get a local driver’s license, get a local bank account, get a new vehicle, have a heart attack due to sticker shock since everything out here is SO VERY EXPENSIVE, and walk, walk, walk everywhere since you do not have a car and then you are stuck walking in a strange city when your very hungry little baby needs to eat RIGHT NOW and you don’t have the privacy of your own car with tinted windows and a sun shade and your dearly beloved Boppy with you so you can feed him properly so he cries and cries and your heart breaks and you yell and cry at your husband, “WHY DID YOU DO THIS TO US???” even though you know he’s been through so very much himself and his heart breaks hearing his son cry and seeing his wife have a meltdown and he wishes he could just fix it RIGHT NOW.
No. It’s not been an easy transition for me. Not into motherhood, nor as an ex-pat. Although, I do think the transition into motherhood would have been much easier (MUCH!) had the whole moving-to-the-other-side-of-the-world thing did not happen AT THE SAME TIME. (When the opportunity first came up and we knew we’d be most likely be moving with a 2-month old, we thought, Crikey! Sounds good to me, mate! And we danced a dance of joy and threw shrimps on the barbie. And then the reality slowly sunk in as I started getting bigger and bigger and the pain became unmanageable and the baby just WOULD NOT BE BORN no matter how much I begged and pleaded and cried and bribed him with candy.)
When Little Mister started having blood in his stools and I couldn’t just jump in my own car and take him to his pediatrician or even to an urgent care center, I seriously thought my heart was going to break in two and would never mend due to all of the shoving aside of thoughts and emotions I’ve been shoving down deeper and deeper until I started becoming a walking zombie- emotionless and simply going through the daily motions of life- and I can’t even have the comforts of cheese to help me cope! I do not like this version of me. Not at all, Sam I am. It reminds me too much of the “me” I was last year when I wouldn’t- couldn’t- process my first pregnancy…and loss. Even to this day, I have a difficult time saying the “m” word.
Heck. It’s not been a tough couple months. It’s been a tough couple years, really.
My creativity has both waxed and waned during these times. Sometimes I’ll have a creative frenzy where the most beautiful creations and colors will rush through my mind. Other times the colors are muted and the creativity just won’t come. Sometimes I escape in my books- living vicariously through the lives brought forth in the pages before me. Recently, my creative juices have been flowing (I’m being published!!!!) and I’m happy about that. Yet I felt guilty when I would pick up my hooks knowing that I had SO MUCH to do to get ready to move and shouldn’t I be enjoying this time with my baby a little more since that’s what everybody tells me to do? “Enjoy this time- they grow so fast.”
But I couldn’t enjoy it. I wanted to very very badly to just hold my baby and love him and kiss his huge (HUGE!) cheeks and smell him- even when he’s smelly- and kiss that gummy mouth of his and snort him like a new skein of wool and I COULDN’T.
Instead I had to pass him off to my mom during the first week of his life since I knew it would be a very long time before she would see her first grandchild again. I had to put him in his car seat so he could sleep instead of lying down with him or letting him fall asleep on me anytime he wanted to just so I could get something done RIGHT NOW. I had to watch the clock and think, “Why aren’t you done eating yet?!? Don’t you know I have things I need to do RIGHT NOW and you are eating and eating and eating and I love you but you need to HURRY!”
Hurry! Hurry! HURRRRRRRY!!!
This brings me to the last couple of days. We finally have a vehicle so I don’t have to walk 45 minutes into town and 45 minutes back to run errands. We have our bank account and driver’s license. We don’t have all our stuff here yet, and that’s good. It means I don’t have to rush unpacking. I’ve been able to stay home and b-r-e-a-t-h-e and NOT in a hurried way that causes hyperventilation. And, best of all, this is the time that Little Mister has decided to go through a growth spurt.
He’s needed me every hour or so to feed him and gets cranky when I’m not with him. I’ve been able to sleep-in with him in the morning- having him nestled in the crook of my arm which is a perfect position for me to kiss his little head. Ok. So he’s sprayed me with fountains of poop which was really gross and did cause me to HURRY to get it all off me. BUT then we were able to snuggle again so he could eat (again!) and then I was able to nap with him because all of that eating and growing makes a baby very sleepy. And I didn’t need to HURRY and get up, leaving him in the bed alone, so that I could get Something Really Important done RIGHT NOW. I’ve been able to just stare at him and think- Oh.My.Lanta. This is my son and I love him.
And I thank My Mister for “doing this to me.”