Friday, May 5, 2017

Postpartum Check In: Ten Months Out


SD at Nine Months Postpartum:

-As we get closer to celebrating a year with SL, I've been thinking about how different her infancy has been from her siblings'. I've mentioned it before- how much of the responsibility I took on myself. P said to me "you know you basically raised this baby yourself up until now". That's a gift itself but the bonus gift is that it has released me from a lot of "what ifs" and hypothetical regrets that I know I'm prone to. When I am tempted to say "gosh, I wish I had been more present during her babyhood" I can face myself in the mirror and say, with great sincerity, "well damn, if you had been any more present you'd have well been present at a mental health facility somewhere". I know that I could not have (healthily) given more of myself to this child or this season and that's an incredible feeling. 

- That said, she and P have really bonded. He can get her to sleep now and he's even been getting up with her at night to give me a break. I know I shouldn't be anything but happy, but it hurts a bit. I've been waiting for him to fall in love with her but I'm not sure I wanted her to fall in love with him. Selfish.

- It's been a great month, but I've had some hard days. One day I just had a total come apart. All the ordinary things- I felt like I was going to blink and she'd be fifteen and I was so worked up about Peyton's disbelief (which comes in waves; it's always hard but some days I have a distinct peace and some days it threatens to undo me). My heart felt like it was literally breaking and my mind felt so sick. I had to think through the old list- am I sleeping enough? eating good things? getting exercise? enough water? am I taking my medicine? have I let myself get isolated? conversely, have I overextended myself? Self-care is so much more than lighting a candle. The checklist feels awfully long in the hard moments I don't really believe any of of it makes any difference. But I know that's reality even when I can't see it. I barely have the energy for it, but I remind myself that hardly anything worth doing is easy and often it's worth is in proportion to it's difficulty. And I know of few things more important than keeping myself healthy.

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