Before I get to my question for moms, I need to brag on Joe. I can honestly say that there is NO WAY I could have survived the past two weeks without Joe. He’s been by my side the entire time, helping me, answering questions and reassuring me, wiping my tears away, and all around being such a servant to both Jonathan and I. Joe’s gotten up with me during the middle of the night for diaper changes and feedings, helping me supplement feedings with a baby who never could be satisfied, yet didn’t want to gain weight. He’s prepared lunch and dinner for us, run errands, helped out so much around the house and given so much of himself…on little sleep! He’s taken Jonathan from me practically every morning and sent me back to bed for uninterrupted sleep.
That being said, I’m mildly terrified about what will happen come Wednesday when he has to go back to work and I’m all alone with a 7lb newborn. What was once “normal” to me no longer exists. “Normal” has yet to be defined in our new little world. But I knew this day would come and I would have to embrace it. I don’t want to feel like I could collapse in fear or sadness. I want to feel capable of taking care of my baby for extended periods of time with no one around. And I realize that Joe is simply two blocks away most days if I need him. And I’ve got friends who I know will be by my side if I need them. While I need, and want, my husband here longer, his patients need him too!
I know this is a normal feeling. I know that because I’ve heard so many women talk about it when their husbands have had to return to work and they’re still at home, either on maternity leave or they are staying at home for good.
My question for all my mommy friends and readers is how do you cope? How do/did you establish a new normal for your life? I know I have to put Jonathan down during the day in order to accomplish things (I’ve been practicing this the past few days). I realize too, that I must continue to take naps with him at least once or twice a day in order to function at a semi-normal level. I’m asking for tips or battle stories, but I don’t plan on resuming my chaotic organizing and cleaning routines. I’m ok with just getting a load of laundry accomplished! I appreciate book suggestions, but in reality, I’m not going to be reading right now. Its taken me four days to finish writing this post, and I just managed to clean out the 300+ emails in my inbox. I need things I can read while half coherent at 3:00 in the morning in between sleep, feeding, and pumping.