I don’t know if I’ll post this, but I am hoping that writing it out makes me feel even just slightly better.
I hit a hard place just before my baby turned 6 months, so around a month and a half ago. I told my other half “I’m struggling” and he asked what we could do to make me feel better. I explained that I was excited to learn to cook meals from scratch that we could all enjoy as a family (As we were approaching weaning). We decided each night when my other half gets in from work, he’ll get quality time with the baby whilst I cook dinner. I really enjoyed it and started this blog to document it.
I am still enjoying my babies weaning journey, I enjoy everything about him and having him in my life. He honestly makes my life a million times better, yet I started to struggle again? And I didn’t want to put time/energy into finding new recipes and taking the time to cook them, but I did. However, I fell behind on documenting it and that made me feel crap because I enjoyed writing about it, as well as the interaction with others.
Why am I struggling?
I don’t really know why, but it can cause me to feel stressed. I then feel sad that I felt stressed around my baby instead of just enjoying being in the moment with him. I am completely aware that the baby years just fly by and I want to make the most of every second.
Bed times used to stress me out a lot for a couple of weeks. I had seen articles and read comments from other parents about the ways babies should and shouldn’t be put to bed. I kept thinking I had to change what I was doing, stop nursing or cuddling my beautiful, healthy baby to sleep. This made bedtime upsetting for us both. Then when he was asleep the guilt would kick in about how stressed and upset we both were before he drifted off.
I would then struggle to sleep because I felt so bad and was upset. I also developed this weird anxiety about death, but not actually dying. The anxiety was more about what will happen to my baby if I die. On nights where I was home alone with him, I would worry “If I die tonight, no one will know. My baby could wake up, cry for me and think he’s been abandoned when I don’t go straight to him”. I don’t know what started this worry, but it was consistent and exhausting.
I finally got to the stage where I thought I needed to reach out for help. I attempted to contact my doctors, due to COVID I had to do an e-consultation and wait for a phone call. I filled this in late at night and waited for the phone call the next day. The doctor phoned as I was putting little man in his cot for his nap so I missed it. They left a voice saying they would phone one more time and then I would have to redo the e-consultation if I didn’t answer.
I waited and they didn’t phone…
I didn’t have the patience to fill it in again. I thought I’d text my Mum with an indirect reach for help. “I got stressed around Roman last night. I know I shouldn’t and now I feel so horribly guilty and upset” Her response “Aww, you shouldn’t get stressed around him”. Clearly I already knew that from my initial text? We went back and forth a little, but she didn’t catch on to my cry for help. Why would she? I never straight up said to her I was struggling.
It’s got better.
I do feel better 95% of the time now, but I really think having a baby (the most wonderful time in my life) and then 2 months after going into lockdown (the oddest time of my life) really affected me.
I worry constantly that family won’t love my baby the way they should because they missed out on so much of his little life. This worry is exaggerated by the fact that hardly any of them make the effort to come and see us. We always have to go to them? Then when I take my baby to my Mums for the day she naps or is always “popping out” to neighbours or something. She hasn’t been well, which worries me also (Can you tell I’m a worrier!?) but I always ask her to tell me when’s best for her and when she’s not tired, etc.
I set my expectations too high?
I guess I thought that everyone in my close family would love my son as much as I do. I thought he would take up a massive part in their heart. I expected him to become a priority. He’s the first nephew, grandson, great grandson and great great grandson. I thought this was exciting my family too. I obviously expected too much.
I guess I expected family support as I had my baby and became a first time Mum. I received comments like “You’re doing amazing amazing job as a Mum, especially considering the circumstances of the world” Ok… you know I’m doing an amazing job because you saw some photos of my son smiling!? These comments feel like empty words from people who don’t regularly see me interact with my son or check in on how we are doing. Maybe I’m being too dramatic.
I hope someone shares some of the same worries and stresses as me. I hope it is normal to feel like this. To be honest, I feel like the worst Mum ever a lot of the time. I want to do better and be better for my son.
I’m starting to feel better, but don’t get me started on the new financial worries…