My 5 New Mom Worries
Posted By: Kate Marsh Lord
Kate Marsh Lord is the mom of three young and very energetic kids: a 5 year old son, a 3 year old daughter and a “surprise” bonus baby boy born in March of 2012.
I think I glided through the vast majority of my pregnancy happily ignoring the real concerns and fears that go hand-in-hand with welcoming a new baby. In some ways, I figured “Been there, done that” so I didn’t spend too much time mentally preparing for baby’s arrival. It was a nice change compared to my first angst-ridden pregnancy when I was alarmed at every odd twinge or sensation and I obsessed about things over which I had no control. Nonetheless, after baby arrived and the reality of my life as a mom of 3 set in, I had some very real new mom / post pregnancy concerns.
Big Family. I realize in the scheme of things a family of five doesn’t really qualify as big, but the change from 2 to 3 kids has presented some logistical (3 car seats in our car!) and emotional concerns. My one consistent worry about a new baby wasn’t so much the nuts and bolts of raising a baby, but the more difficult struggle to find the time, energy and ability to meet the very different needs of each child and my husband. I obviously have enough love to go around but am I expressing it the way my kids need? Do the older two still know I love them even though so much of my time is spent caring for the baby? Can my husband and I handle being outnumbered?
Body. At some point late in my pregnancy, as I was laughing about the fact that I gained more weight than I had previously, a friend pointed out that it would mean more weight to lose after baby. It hit me like a ton of bricks. I honestly hadn’t thought of the weight as anything but a funny, growing number until reality hit at that moment. I have tried not to focus too much on my postpartum body, knowing that it will take time to get back to normal and that my mid-thirties-post-third-baby-bod may require a new sense of normal.
Breastfeeding. Even though I breastfed my first two kids for nearly 3 years combined it was still one area of concern. Here’s the thing: I have one breast that just doesn’t produce much milk. My son gave up the right breast at 9 months. My daughter at 5. Crazy, huh? From the moment I started nursing Max I have worried about the milk production on that side. And for good reason, as it still seems to be a dud and produces only a fraction of what my left does. Thankfully, Max is still growing and thriving and if I have to nurse him on only one breast, I will.
Balance. It’s no surprise that I enjoy blogging. I love connecting, sharing and learning with other moms. What started as a hobby has grown into a job I love and I cherish having an outlet. Yes, I blog about my kids and family but I do it for me and not for them. I worry about finding a new balance between working at home and being present for the kids. We had a good routine going and clearly a baby has thrown that into limbo, but I’m hoping we find a good balance again soon.
Bonding. This one is a bit difficult to admit, but there was a period of time after Max was born when I worried about whether I was really bonding with him. I specifically remember the day we came home from the hospital my husband said, “I love him so much and I can’t remember what it was like before him.” And all I could think was, “Really? That’s weird.” Because I totally didn’t feel that way about my new son.Isn’t that awful? I knew I cared about Max and I was caring for him, but I definitely didn’t feel an overwhelming “Ohmygodhe’smybaby.I’msoinlove.Foreverandever.” emotion like I did immediately with my first two. Looking back, it was obviously a touch of postpartum depression that had me in an all around funk. Luckily, I’m not worried about bonding any more. Because Max? He’s all mine and I am so in love, forever and ever.
9:00am on Friday May 25
Enjoyed your post, Kate.
I, too, am a mother of three: a 5yo, a 3yo, and a newborn...so I identified with so much of what you wrote.
This part of your post especially resonated with me: "My one consistent worry about a new baby wasn’t so much the nuts and bolts of raising a baby, but the more difficult struggle to find the time, energy and ability to meet the very different needs of each child and my husband."
Love the honesty you have shared with us. All the worries in being pregnant, bringing home baby and nursing only compound as you add to the brood. Just because we know what to expect doesn't mean that is what you get! Congrats on your beautiful family, and I look forward to reading more of your posts!