© 2018 Jules

Five Months of Motherhood

My daughter was born at 5 am on August 9th, which means I have been a mother for a solid 5 months now. Which means I am deliriously tired almost all the time. Which means I know enough about motherhood to fill a thimble. Which means I have noticed some strange new things about myself. All of which I will expand upon subsequently.

1. 5 months of keeping another human being alive fueled solely by my body! I plan to add this accomplishment to the top of my resume, because it feels like a really big deal. Firstly, that she is still alive and I haven’t lost her in the grocery store or squashed her in my sleep-both fears I harbor. And secondly, that a byproduct of my body is what sustains her. That is pretty strange and wondrous me!

2. I am super tired all the time. I have always valued sleep very dearly. Before My baby was born, I jealously guarded my 9 hours a night. I very rarely stayed up past 10 pm. I never once pulled an all-nighter in college. In high school I was always the girl who woke up with toothpaste on her face because she fell asleep first at sleepovers. So now that I have to sustain another human with my own body and have to get up to feed her at 2 am and 5 am every single night, I feel like the hamster running on the wheel of my brain has waddled to a slow trudge. I can’t remember simple words. I put things in strange places. I fall asleep during tv shows at 7:15 pm.

3. I know enough about motherhood to fill a thimble. I know how to change a diaper and diagnose diaper rash. I know how to put a stroller in my trunk using only one hand. I can swaddle like a champ. I can even use a “windy”… (if you don’t know then you don’t want to know.) But that is about the extent of my expertise. Which means I call my mom/cousin/girlfriend to get help with pretty much everything else. Today’s inquiry was: “how many days will we spoon feed our daughter before she actually starts to swallow some of the food?”

4. I have noticed some strange new things about myself. The interior of my belly button is now very dark brown and very rough; presumably the by product of being stretched out so severely. I cry insensibly after 3 nights without sleep (see point 2.) Jogging jiggles strange new places on my body that never jiggled before. If I get even slightly dehydrated, my lips chap and flake like a birch tree trunk. But more than all that, I now value my own life more because of my daughter. Her very existence makes me seem priceless, because without me, she would be much worse off.

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