Having a baby has profoundly changed me.
Or at least, I think it has because I can't really remember who I was before. Or what was important to me. Even if I do get a flashback on how I used to spend all of my time and energy, it doesn't seem all that important anyway.
When I'm out and about instead of checking out people, I'm honing in on the new mum in the corner breastfeeding her baby. Did she have the same struggles as me? Or will she as her bub grows? Should I offer help? Can I even help? Because I don't seem to be doing that great some days anyway.
Yes, profoundly changed.
And then at the same time, all of a sudden not. I still am a healer at heart and want the best for my clients. I love being in clinic and for me not going back to work would have crushed me. I must say though going back to work so early just about broke me. I still put everyone else before me, love to cook and feed others and get to the occasional yoga class (Sorry Claire!).
But, that amazing baby comes first, before everything in the world.
Nothing else matters, right? Except the washing and the kitchen and the rest of the house and that client I just can’t figure out how to help exactly plus the rising anxiety, lengthy menstrual bleeds, dire low iron and ongoing guilt about wanting to ween and how the hell to start.
Back and forth back and forth. My brain is a sailing pool of emotions. And those babies I mentioned earlier? Yep, I get teary just as an onlooker. I feel everything deeper. People's pain, their struggles. At times, I wonder what is the point of it all. Then Callie runs, full speed, to me when I pick her up from daycare. She jumps into my arms and holds on as if she hasn’t seen me for weeks (despite dropping her there a few hours earlier) and happiness spreads through me, warming my heart, waking me up, and I wonder how could the world be any better.
What can I do?
Well, rather than continue to drive myself crazy I started seeing a therapist. Having someone tell you that all of our deepest darkest fears and worries are normal is surprisingly soothing, whilst at the same time infuriating. Applying simple tools to manage the thoughts in my mind has given me back some clarity and some sanity. What else? Start taking some of your own medicine Mel, literally.
We can all get lost sometimes and having a baby is one of the biggest life things that we will do. I know I need to cut myself some slack, stop feeling guilty for wanting some me time and trust that everything will be ok for that hour or two. As well as take my herbs, see my therapist, get some new bloodwork, cook dinner for my family tonight, send that invoice……. (you get the idea).
I also know that there is always tomorrow and some of that stuff can just wait.
Having a baby is life changing. If you need help, please ask…anyone. Just asking feels good and takes some pressure off. If you feel there is no one to ask, get on the phone.