Baby Blues: Real, Raw And Ugly. Let Your Husband Read This And Make Sure You Have A Laugh After It.
Motherhood…, for those who choose to become moms is the most rewarding job in the world. It’s beautiful, challenging and filled with so much love, a full heart and happiness. When I started my blog, my son was 1 y old. I did it because I realized, during this first year, how many challenging episodes I went through that could have been aloooot easier If someone had talked to me about. I would have expected them and at least and knew what exactly is happening with me. So I decided to start writing my journey one step at a time sharing what I know and what I experienced for:
1) Young moms (because older ones are more experienced than me)
2) Strong, free, on the go women who might one day become moms.
As I said in my introduction, motherhood is Love and Happiness but its also challenging, not dark, BUT challenging. A high risk pregnancy could be challenging (which I’m seeing a lot lately), having twins could be challenging, and one of the things that 70% and more of new moms go through that are challenging, not only for the mom but for the ones around her too, are baby blues or postpartum depression. What’s the difference? Both have the same exact symptoms but postpartum depression will last longer plus PPD symptoms might be a bit more developed than baby blues, some will include suicidal thoughts so please if at anytime you think about this, you need to seek help! Postpartum psychosis is the scary one but is the least common, it includes thoughts of hurting your baby, hallucinations and more. Before you proceed, please read this article.
70% of women experience baby blues or ppd!
Those pictures were taken the day I gave birth to Toufic! Please excuse the beautiful hair and face… The last two pictures were taken the moment they handed him to me when I was taken to the room! I remember everyone looking at me waiting for an emotional moment like in movies, crying and stuff… I’m a very sensitive person! Anything will make me cry! Like last week, we bumped into Toufic’s old (favorite teacher) so he ran to her and hugged her and I cried… (totally unnecessary tears and drama!!!) So yes I am a very sensitive person. Hello Aries! But not when I held my baby for the first time. All I could think of at this moment was: is this really mine? Was he really inside my tummy? How will I be able to keep him alive? What if he gets hurt? I had NO IDEA what to do with that tiny human that was suddenly handed to me but I knew that my life has changed forever!
It wasn’t love at first sight
No it wasn’t LOVE! Love came later, i’ll tell you all about it! I was worried, shocked, scared, no not scared, TERRIFIED!! It took me a while before I realized that this tiny human was actually mine! And that I just became a mom… And then we went back home…
My journey with baby blues or maybe postpartum depression started the day I was back home, I honestly don’t know if it was postpartum depression or baby blues, but it was horrible and crazy. I was crazy, I wasn’t myself and had really weird thoughts (not suicidal though) and feelings. I was negative ALL the time. My baby wasn’t latching well and this alone was driving me crazy. I looked at myself in the mirror and literally wouldn’t recognize my body, my hips, my tummy that looked like there was another baby inside. I had HUGE leaky smelly boobs (sorry for the image). I was in pain because my nipples (sorry again for the image) were cracked I had to take a strong pain killer to be able to breastfeed. I had to give formula the first three days because the pain was not acceptable and I felt like shit and guilty. I was exhausted! My body was used to at least 8 hours of sleep now I have to wake up every 1 hour to feed my baby, burp him, change his diaper and put him back to sleep. They will tell you the baby will eat every three hours, yes maybe (mine ate every two hours) and people forget that when he finishes breastfeeding, you will have to burp him and that will take more than half an hour sometimes and then change his diaper. So you will be SLEEPLESS. I didn’t sleep anyway! You’ll find out why soon!
Not all baby blues are similar, some moms, won’t accept to touch their babies for the first few weeks, and this is part of baby blues! Others will become crazily attached (still no love just obsession) and over protective (LIKE SUPER NONSENSE OVER PROTECTIVE) and that was my case… NO ONE was allowed to touch my baby. Because my mom who raised 3 kids doesn’t know how to shower a baby and my sister in law who raised 4 doesn’t know how to hold them! My husband!! Who was always around new borns (because of his sister) He wasn’t even allowed to come near him. BUT I, who became a mom like 2 days ago for the first time and was never around baby borns knows how to do everything on her own without anyones help. (sarcastic). I was the only one who was allowed to hold, feed and shower the baby. Everyone was shocked, they knew what exactly was happening and of course that helped a lot (i’m sure they laughed a lot behind my back). I remember very very well their faces when I asked them to do the weirdest things like hold my deep sleeping baby, who should be in his bed, and stand next to me in the bathroom for me to take my 3 min shower while I looked at him from the glass door. I had to be able to see him all the time. I can’t leave him in his bed to sleep peacefully while someone was watching him because what if he choked and they didn’t notice? What if he suddenly stopped breathing and no-one noticed? 100% of new borns choke while breastfeeding like a mini choking, all you have to do it hold him straight and NOTHING will happen, this is extremely normal but I wasn’t prepared for this. When it happens don’t panic, just hold him upwards until he takes his breath back, that easy! But when it happened with me, I used to hand him to my mother and go run around the house crying and shouting: He’s dead, he’s dead! (I’m laughing right now) I will pull my hair and act literally crazy, while my husband followed me around the house trying to calm me down and assuring me that Toufic was OK! I remember his face, shocked, tears in his eyes! What was happening to his wife? Is this going to last forever? Who is this crazy woman? My mom asked my older brother to come spend few days in Beirut in my house because “your sister needs all the help she can have” Don’t ask me how I’ve done this and how my body tolerated this. But for the next week I literally slept for 1 hour a night!
The scariest moment of the day: When the sun sets. When it’s dark outside and everything was calm. The nights were so long. It was terrifying! I couldn’t sleep, I had to have him under my eye 28 hours/day. I couldn't fall asleep by myself just when I was too exhausted and my body couldn’t tolerate it anymore, I fell asleep sitting. At the peak of my baby blues, (please don’t judge) I would use my newborn wrap put my sleeping baby in it and sleep sitting on the couch just to have him near me all the time and feel any slight move! The second week of my baby blues was better in terms where I would let people watch him but they all knew the rule: Your eyes on him. They weren’t allowed to blink! They were terrified from my reaction in case I see them blink! They promised me that if he wakes up while I took my shower or take an afternoon nap, they wouldn’t hold him (because they might hurt him you know) they will directly call me. Yeah it was funny! They laughed BIG time behind my back but they knew that this was not going to last. “Let’s do what she exactly wants us to until she feels better.” If there’s anything I can advise you to do when you give birth: Get all the help you can. A nurse, your mom, your sister in laws, your in laws, your husband, a helper ALL THE HELP YOU WANT! You will need it until you and your body both feel better.
LET YOUR HUSBAND READ THIS
After I started trusting my husband, the father of our baby that he won’t hurt his very own baby, we had an agreement that at night I would sleep early and he will watch the sleeping baby (that needed no watching! I’m sure sometimes Karim fell asleep while pretending to watch him for his crazy wife) and every time he wakes up, he will wake me up to breastfeed him and change for him until he was exhausted (3 am) then I will wake up and watch the peacefully sleeping baby! My mom, who didn’t leave me for 2 months would also take turns. But her main job was “watching the baby” during the day and of course cook! Karim’s sister shift was also at night, she would put her 4 kids to sleep and come check up on her nephew and crazy sister in law: ME! SO yeah, everyone was there and this is what helped! SUPPORT and understanding the situation and knowing that in few days or weeks everything will be fine! Just give her time and do what exactly you are asked to (whatever it is) to keep her happy and calm and take videos so that later on you laugh so hard while you watch them back! CRAZY WOMEN!
The days went by, with each passing day I felt a bit better, the crying was gone, the obsession of watching him during the day was gone but not at night. I was still terrified from the night, and for the next 4 months, I wasn’t being able to sleep properly. I would wake up every 30 min to check on him. I got monitors that were made for premature babies to monitor his breath and his heart beats! Would put my monitor next to my ear at night. And then, I made him sleep in my room until he was 9 months! Many many nights, when my husband was away, I would put pillows around all the bed and put him next to me super close (which is a bit dangerous)! I was obsessed with him and didn’t want anything to hurt him or make him cry.
Hormones play a huge role in baby blues. But we always forget the main reason: You just became a MOM. You just received a HUGE responsibility that nothing in this world could have ever prepared you to it, especially when you’re an irresponsible person who takes life for granted LIKE ME. Your life just changed upside down. Moreover, your body is not yours anymore. You feel like you were born again in a new body and face! (Don’t worry, everything will back to normal) and the exhaustion! Your body had never experienced such kind of exhaustion.
I started “loving” my baby when I stopped obsessing over him
What do I mean by “Loving” my baby? Of course I loved him since the first second I saw him! Actually one of the reasons of baby blues is the guilt feeling that you might not be enough and the fear that you might fail this baby who just wants to eat and sleep 🤦🏻♀️ But the first three to four months, I didn’t have time to love him the kind of love where you just wanna sit there and feel the blessing you are in and then when he’s awake you feel like hugging him and squishing him all the time. It was more about looking at him and making sure he was breathing and that everything you’re doing is good! CREEPY. Honestly the only time I would look at him and feel a bond was during breastfeeding. That’s exactly why I’m a big fan of breast-feeding. Please read this super honest article I wrote about it. You need to know what might come. Then baby blues were totally gone, everything went back to normal when he was around 6 months looking more like a human instead of a weak tiny chicken! This is to be very very honest!
I HAD baby PINKs WITH LYNN
How come can the same person go through terrible baby blues with a child and nothing at all not even a bit with another? I was literally over the moon with Lynn as if I was on Xanax all the time! I was the happiest! I’m sure knowing what exactly to expect helped a lot! So yes, you might not feel anything with your second. And this squishy, I wanna eat you, ughhhhhh feeling: You’re gonna have it from the moment you lay your eyes on her/him.
I wish there was someone who wrote about this before I gave birth to my first!
This is my story with baby blues/PPD! I’m sure I forgot a lot of crazy moments, Karim maybe remembers them! He will never forget, he was traumatized!
Finally, a message to every husband out there reading this (Let him read it future mamma): Your wife needs you the most after she delivers! when she tells you i’m tired don’t answer with “me too” no you’re not tired! When she tells you I haven’t slept all night don’t reply with “yeah me too” You were snoring while she was feeding your baby. Opening your eyes for few seconds doesn’t count as waking up! Show her all the love, support and understanding during this. She might ask you to do weird things. JUST DO THEM and laugh when she’s not around. She’s not herself. She just increased the worlds population by 1 person. She might be hating herself and her body (which she shouldn’t but she can’t help it) So if she hates on you and blame you for everything. TAKE IT LIKE A MAN! If she tries to kill you, LET HER! No I;m kidding, if she does, seek help immediately 😐 Just love her, hug her and assure her that everything is going to be OK. When she’s ready, she will make it up to you ❤️