The Truth About The Fourth Trimester

Hi everyone! Moving forward I’ve decided to dedicate Monday posts to all things mom related and I hope you are excited as I am to see these new posts go up! While I know, I know today is Tuesday, but yesterday got away from me and I really wanted to hit publish on this post so here it is going up a date late..oops!  I’ve been trying to think of topics that I know I was interested in as a new mom (and still am interested in), or topics that I don’t see a lot of people talking about but I know most moms are probably interested in reading about.  So, today I’ve decided to open up about my experience  surviving the “fourth trimester” or those first few months after baby arrives home.

While I know everyone’s experience is different what I do know is those initial weeks and months seem to all blur together. Whether this is your first baby or your forth baby  those first few days and nights are hardly distinguishable, most of your time spent in sweatpants and showers are rare.  It may not sound great, but I know I wouldn’t trade any of these moments for the world. Ok, enough about how awesome it is lets talk  acknowledge how hard those first few weeks are.

 

Life With A Newborn…

I don’t even know where to begin.  Life with a newborn definitely has its ups and downs and this  second time around gave us a run for our money.  I’m pretty sure Addison was what they call a “trick baby.”  She was so easy going, such a good sleeper, and such a good eater, that when Eleanor arrived it was almost like we had never done this before.  Ellie was, well, hard.  After that first week where all they seem to do is sleep, she would eat, maybe sleep for a few minutes and then just cry.  I also decided to exclusively breastfeed this time around (with Addison we almost exclusively formula fed), so the daily routine  with her was, and is, so different then it was with her sister. I could write a whole post about my experience breastfeeding so far, and I hopefully will, but let me just tell you that I felt very overwhelmed.  It didn’t matter that I had such a  supportive husband or more family around to help then most people do,  it was very hard to wrap my head around the fact that I was my baby’s sole food source.  I was everything she needed to survive and it was a big burden to bare.  Breastfeeding also meant that there was only so much others could do to help me because at the end of the day all she really wanted was me.  I began to feel very protective of her and a  All of this sounds horrible right? But, just when you think you can’t take another moment of crying or another failed attempt at feeding, your baby falls asleep in your arms or gives you a tiny little smile and you know it is all worth it.

You Need To Heal Too…

This time is hard because you are exhausted, hard because your life and schedule now revolves around another tiny human, and hard because you just pushed something the size of a small watermelon out of your body and you need time to heal as well.  Personally, this part  was something I was so unprepared for the first time around, that with my second I over prepared. I stocked up on all the Tucks Pads and Dermaplast (the blue bottle not the red!) and oversized maxi pads I could find.   Addison’s birth was long and hard ( was induced and it took her over a day to arrive) and I was not prepared for the physical toll that it would take on my body. While birth with Eleanor was definitely easier, neither birth was a walk in the park. I know this varies from person to person and some of you moms out there might be thinking, “what is this crazy girl talking about? I was up and walking and felt like a million bucks after birth!” I guess what I am trying to say is that time for me to heal was the last thing on my mind. Sure, I knew that I would be tired, and that I would probably want to eat enough for five people, but what I didn’t know is that once the epidural wore off feeling every tear and stitch would hurt so much.  Keeping that in mind after Ellie was born I tried not to push myself to be superwoman.  If I needed to keep my feet up in bed I let others help me and tried to remember that I cannot do it all.

Oh, The Hormones…

As if sleep deprivation wasn’t enough to make me  cry add those crazy hormones to the mix and I was a hot mess.  I wouldn’t spontaneously cry but anytime I thought about my kids, or any kids really, or even saw something about kids on T.V. my eyes would well up with water.  I also had a very very short fuse with others and it seemed like everything annoyed me.  Luckily I realized this and tried to check myself when I felt any of these feelings but I also realized that I just needed to let these things out.  Bottling up anything I was feeling, happy, sad or indifferent, would only make me more upset.

I Promise I Love My Kids…

Ok, this seems like a lot of complaining and I want to make sure you all know how much I love my children and how lucky I feel to have been able to bring two happy and healthy kids into this world.  But, like i said before being a parent is hard!  Anyone who says it isn’t is for sure lying.  The happy moments definitely outweigh the sad or bad ones, but they are definitely there.  Especially in those first 12 weeks that your new little one is at home you don’t know which way is up and you are just trying to figure it all out.  Now that Ellie is almost six months old we are finally settling into a good routine and those sleepless nights seem like they happened a million years ago.  Then again, ask me how I’m feeling tomorrow and my answer might be different :).

Now, on can I take a minute to gush about these photos? We had the amazing Cadence from Cadence Kennedy Photography come over to some family photos a few weeks after Ellie was born and I can’t believe I never shared them with you.  These are just a few of my favorites but each and every photo came out more beautiful than the next. I also cannot believe how different Ellie and Addison look only a few months later but I am so happy I have these sweet photos to look back on and remember this special time.

xo Ali

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