Getting Through the First Three Months
Soon, we’ll be on our way to the US! I keep in touch regularly with my mother with Skype and FaceTime, but actually being able physically introduce baby to her- it’s exciting!
Here’s a look back at the first three months with baby. This post is mainly for myself, to let me know how far I’ve come, because there were times when I just wanted to run away. I’m not exaggerating, either.
My world had been turned upside down. I was crampy as my uterus tried to get back to its pre baby size. I was continuously grossed out by the seemingly never ending lochia. To top it all off, my butt hurt.
I was angry, cranky, miserable. I seriously even considering taking the dog and baby and leaving my husband, I was that irritated at everything he did or said. I felt he was insensitive, supportive, useless. I felt like I made a mistake. I was constantly thinking, Man, I miss Shinjuku times when it was just me and Kokuto.
Taking care of the baby was just something to do, but I couldn’t really feel connected. I was always thinking, “Um, when are your parents going to come pick you up?” I didn’t feel like myself, and feared that I’d never feel like myself again.
No matter how many times you hear or read that it’s ok, that these feelings are natural, it still doesn’t make you feel better. I felt so awful for feeling this way towards a baby that I wanted and couldn’t have for a long time.
Perhaps it was the gradual increase of daylight hours that helped with the change in my mood, but in March I began to feel the heaviness in my chest slowly fade away.
In the beginning of March, we headed to the photo studio to take a family portrait for O-miya mairi, baby’s first visit to a shrine.
I had tons of photos of baby and dad but few with me and baby. I was happy that one of our first photos since the day I gave birth was a high quality photo shoot in a professional studio. As we looked through the photos with the photographer, I saw that I was smiling, yes smiling, in every photo. Was it true.? Was I actually happy? Was I enjoying myself? Incredible!
This is when things finally, truly began to go in a positive direction for me. Baby, Kokuto, and I really got into a daily routine and life became fun.
In many ways being a kindergarten teacher has prepared me for this new role, mainly by accepting that no two days will EVER be alike, and that a child’s temperament can change quickly without any notice.
In many ways, it’s so much easier being a teacher of 20 4 year olds than a mother of one newborn. I would have no problem walking into a classroom of 4-5 year olds anywhere in the world.
But this little girl… this parenting thing, I admit that have no idea what I’m doing at times (all the time?). Take, for example, the checklist of comforting a crying child:
Once I get to the last item on that checklist, and she’s still crying, I think, Crap, what’s next? What else could be wrong? Oh, she wants to be burped? held?…Why didn’t you just say that?
Again, I’m used to older kids so sometimes when she cries for no reason, I blurt out, Honey, use your words. You’re four years- oh, wrong speech.
Still, things are going in a positive direction. At the same time, the anger and frustration is still here. I try to be open with the husband, but maybe I’m too open and am not expressing myself in the best way.
On top of that, baby has been super fussy lately. It must be a growth spurt period, so she should be ready to show off her new rolling over skills when she arrives in the US later this month!