Monday, October 1, 2012

The Reality of Life...

Lovely picture, eh? I honestly found it very striking. This is my reality a month post-partem. 
I just wanted to share a bit of my experience as a mother of three little ones. I admit I was warned, having three children is completely different than having two. Of course you know that the addition of another child means the addition of another life, personality, and a shake up in the family order. But, that is really another post entirely. What I want to write about is the one thing I have found in common following the birth of each of my children.
It is the little known or talked about period following birth. It is that time of adjustment that seems to linger on, and on, and on... following any addition to a family. 
I remember well preceding the birth of my oldest Colton, that I figured that 6 weeks would be more than enough time to adjust and get in the swing of things....However, twelve weeks later I finally returned to work....part-time. I realize I was blessed to have very flexible employers and a husband who was very supportive. (I know this is not always possible.)
But, still in that time I realized just how much pressure our culture puts on us woman to always have it "all together". Celebrities have their pre-baby bodies back just days or weeks after birth. there is a huge cultural push to get back to work as soon as possible. Even within our own circles there is a bit of competition it seems to get back on track before anyone else. 
So, imagine my surprise when Colton was six weeks old, I had no desire to leave my baby with anyone (even his beloved Grandparents.) And at twelve weeks I was still reluctant, and at six months I was setting my sights on leaving the business world entirely. 
And on the sidelines I had one more even bigger surprise, the fact that I was having some serious trouble just finding a morning routine that worked. It seemed I needed two additional hours to get myself and baby out the door...for any reason. 
Then 3 1/2 years later when we had our second child, Alex. I needed to add one additional hour to get our family ready and out the door. And that I rarely got out of my pj's, and cooking dinner....lets just say, the crock pot became my best friend. 
And so here I am with my precious new baby girl, and contrary to the logic that with more children finding a routine or rhythm would get easier, I am exactly where I was after I had my first two children. In my pj's, sleepily moving from one feeding to the next, one diaper change to the next, find one lost toy, and rocking a little bundle, and feeding a toddler, and changing a diaper. Then before I know it, it is 1pm and we are finally ready to go for our morning walk. Which we quickly squeeze in just before nap time. Or maybe we skip nap time because our walk got started later and took longer than we thought it would and now its time to start dinner. Yes, the boys are watching a movie. I still may or may not have gotten that elusive shower, and dinner may or may not be pancakes, or PB&J.
But there is hope. This season does not last forever,  I remind myself that we have not truly lost our routine or rhythm, it is just adjusting. It takes time, and for this moment I am reminded how precious these mellow days are. They are fleeting, we will soon be running a full tilt again. This precious babe will be on the move sooner than later. And it seems that somewhere around six months I will feel human again.
So, amidst the cultural push to press on at break neck pace I remind myself to allow for some grace, for me, for my family and anyone else who feels this pressure.
It is a golden time.


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