Here are five things you may be thinking after you have a newborn, but are afraid to admit (Note: if you feel like your thoughts go beyond having a diffult day, and you are experiencing post-partum depression, be sure to talk with your doctor.):
1. You miss being pregnant
A lot of women hate being pregnant and cannot wait for it to be over, but even if your pregnancy was more uncomfortable than magical, there is something special about that time in your life.
While you're living it, you may forget what it is like not to be pregnant, but pregnancy really does go by fast. Soon you are already into your third-trimester, and after baby, you are no longer in the "pregnancy club."
You no longer have that unspoken connection with other pregnant women. You are expected to bounce right back into not being pregnant. And, now you have the pressure of losing your baby weight, fitting back into your pre-pregnancy clothes, and having as much energy as you did before you were pregnant.
Yes, we now have a beautiful baby to enjoy, but there is a sadness that comes from knowing you will no longer feel those baby kicks coming from inside of you, that you no longer have a legitimate excuse for acting totally hormonal, or eating a whole carton of ice cream.
2. You feel guilty not spending every moment with your baby
New babies can be addicting. You just want to hold them, cuddle them, and never put them down. You can't stop looking in their eyes, nor can you get enough of their little movements and angel-like expressions. You just want to hold them all day.
Unfortunately, not many of us have the luxury of doing just that. There is food to cook, dishes to wash, a house to clean, work to do, and, sometimes, even other kids to take care of. As soon as your baby drifts off to sleep or finishes eating, you feel like it is time to set her down, so you can jump back into whatever you were doing before she needed you.
There is definitely some guilt in feeling like you can't just sit and cherish every moment with her, as you know how fast the time goes by, and are dreading the day when you long for these moments.
3. You feel guilty not spending more time with your other kids
On the other hand, there is guilt that you are spending too much time with your new baby and not enough time with your other children. This is a tough transition for them, and they need to know they are just as important as the new baby.
Balancing time spent with all kids can be tricky; however, there may be moments when you feel like your older children are watching too much TV, and being sent on too many playdates. In the end, do what you can and know this phase will not last forever.
4. You're afraid to leave the house with your newborn
This is a mix of emotions that seem to nag at you all day. You really need to go out, but the idea of trying to go someplace with a newborn is overwhelming.
What if someone touches them? What if they need to be breastfed in the middle of your grocery shopping trip? How will you get all of your kids you have in and out of the car without someone running into the street or being left behind?
Basically there are so many variables that the thought of leaving your house makes you want to shut the blinds, lock the door, and stay in bed all day. Of course if you don't get out of the house soon, you may just go crazy.
5. You secretly want the breastfeeding stage to be over
Breastfeeding is made out to be a beautiful, natural thing that we are told we should all desire for our children. But it is not always the most convenient or easy method of feeding your baby.
It is very time consuming, and it can also hurt, a lot, and not just when they are eating, but before and after. While we know it is cheaper than formula, provides a lot of antibodies our baby's need, and is supposed to create more of a bond between mother and baby, you may have days that you almost give in and just buy formula.
We wonder if it will ever get easier and become something we enjoy rather than dread. At the same time, there are a lot of moms who don't get the opportunity to breastfeed, so while we are glad we can do this amazing thing for our child, we feel we have no right to complain because there are so many others who cannot do it.
All of these thoughts can come to moms of newborns. When you are living in the moment, it can be hard to see the big picture- in a couple of weeks/months things will be better. You will get into a routine; you will master going out with your child, and you will look forward to those special moments of feeding your child. Keep this in mind as you struggle through those first few months, and hold on tight to all the other wonderful moments that you do experience.
It is okay to acknowledge that along with this beautiful miracle, there are some downsides. But all it takes is one look at your baby to know that it is all worth it!