To some people having a baby seems effortless and straightforward. I mean, really how hard can it be? All you have to do is hold them, rock them to sleep, feed them their bottle when they cry and change their diaper a few times a day.
Who wouldn’t want to bring home that sweet bundle of joy from the hospital, receive an overflow amount of cards, gifts, home cooked dinners and have all the help you would need from family members and friends.
Sounds like a pretty simple question to me. I will never forget, I was about fifteen year’s old flying out to Florida to go on a family vacation. Here comes walking down the aisle a mother around the age of thirty, very attractive, lovely looking face, hair put up in a bun sprayed heavily, wearing earrings and rings that were so flashy that the only thing I could do is sit there and gawk.
Dragging behind her comes Jeffrey. Jeffrey was four years old. I know that because he kept walking around the plane telling everybody that he was four years old. “I use to be three years old and now I’m four years old”, he kept repeating over and over.
I remember his name not because he told me he was four years old, but because his mother yelled his name all 2500 miles of the trip. Nobody on the plane could sleep because all you heard is Jeffrey get down, Jeffrey put that up, Jeffrey quit screaming, Jeffrey quit kicking the seats. People began to hate Jeffrey.
Five minutes before the plane landed Jeffrey fell asleep. I remember sitting there think wow this kid horrible. His poor mother has no control over her child and where is his father to discipline him because God knows my dad would have sent me sailing out the exit door of that plane by now. I just thought this has to be a rare case and no way would I ever have a child that acted that way.
Five years ago, I was at the young age of seventeen, I was a thriving high school girl who didn’t have a care in the world other than when the next football game or dance was. My parents made sure that whatever opportunity arose to be involved, I was there and giving my best. I was on top of the world in love with my boyfriend who I had been with for two years.
We were living life without a care in the work until you know what happened. Yes, seventeen and pregnant. At that very moment our lives had changes forever. Forever is a big word and something that I am always hesitant to use, but not with this situation. Until the day I die I would now be known as a mother, have responsibilities that I have never known or could even imagine at that point. I mean remember, having a baby is a simple piece of cake right?
I think within the next week I developed a serious case of the flu, lost an enormous amount of hair causing bald spots throughout my head, and although I was pregnant, I think I lost about 10 pounds. Hmmm I thought, this is odd, I have heard of morning sickness, but this is for sure a slow death sentence.
It was a long 36 weeks; I never thought the day would come where my skinny jeans would not fit. I always liked them to feel tight, but this feeling of tight was different. I looked like a busted can of biscuits more and more each time I would try to wear them. Then came the no sleeping.
People told me that I better rest up before the baby came but I can’t sleep now due to the watermelon looking stomach I was getting and the horrible burning sensation in my throat that I promise only started when I laid my head down at night. I thought to myself, what in the world is this? It felt like someone had lit my throat on fire and this burping feeling followed it.
Turns out to be that when I spoke to my on call nurse she told me that it was indigestion. What? Really? I thought only old people get that. Ok, I thought. So far, I have had every part of my body checked, had my blood drawn I don’t know how many times, each time I go see the doctor they make me get on the scale which that number grows in multiples, not this indigestion and none of my clothes fit.
What happened to just to stork dropping the baby on the front door step and life is all peachy and easy with a baby! Turns out, I survived and yes every single thing that I ever thought about having a baby was true. However, with that truth comes a whole lot more. It is an overwhelming joy to bring life into this world and I wouldn’t change my life for anything but don’t be fooled, it’s not a piece of cake.
Your patience will be stretched far beyond your imagination, you will learn that throw up is your new perfume, poop is just poop and you get over it. The smile that you have when they say “mommy” for the first time and the sight of your sweet baby sleeping so peacefully brings a joy to your heart that makes all the ups and downs worth it!