A Letter to Myself as a New Mom

Dear New Mom Me,

Congratulations on that sweet baby BOY! Looks like our gut instinct was right the whole pregnancy. I know he came early, but he's perfect. Sniff his head, count his fingers, kiss his tiny baby feet. Marvel at how much he looks like his daddy. Put him to your breast constantly. Are you ready for your world to be turned upside down? To balance out the craziness, you will love him more fiercely than you ever imagined possible. Get ready to cry over how much you love this tiny 6 pound 3 ounce being.

The first few months are going to be hard. Breastfeeding will seem insurmountable, but you'll do it. Your marriage will suffer, because someone else's needs will be put ahead of your husband for the first time ever. Rest assured that you will get through it. You need each other more than ever, keep communicating. Give each other grace, a big hug, and butt squeezes. All of it will help, and you will get through this stronger and loving each other more. He's your partner on this wild ride called parenthood. You'll laugh together, cry together, and love together.

Going back to work is going to suck. I'm sorry, there's no other way for me to put it. You will cry over how much you miss the baby. You will worry about missing his firsts, that he'll love the babysitter more than you, that he's missing you. Your time together will be so precious. His whole face will light up when he sees you. You are his mama, his whole world. He will not forget that.

You'll go through a period where you're irritable and paranoid about leaving the house. You'll talk yourself out of every social event you're invited to and lash out when questioned. Your husband will urge you to call a therapist. Do it. It will help. These feelings will come up again after your next child is born, but they will seem overwhelming because they're compounded with other major changes. You're not alone. It will be okay.

Remember that the children's hearts are big and very forgiving. For right now, there's nothing that a big hug and some ice cream won't fix. Have a dance party every night if you can. Realize that you will not be your old self ever again. You'll have to figure out who you are now that you are a mother. You will be a newer and better version of yourself.

Motherhood is hard, but worth it. So worth it. Just give it time. You're a great mom.