Post Partum Update Part 1 ~ The Grace Between

Post Partum Update Part 1

{I originally wrote this at the beginning of Dec, but posting it here for posterity.

Time for some real talk, the COVID postpartum edition. While my physical recovery has been the easiest one yet (go figure-5th kid and old lady pregnancy and my body is all “we got this”), the Caboose has been our most challenging newborn, through no fault of his own.

We had nursing issues at the beginning that resulted in A LOT of sleepless nights for me and big BIG emotions as I navigated the stress of feeding time and not being able to do for my baby what my body is designed to do. So the first few weeks I was in a huge fog, mentally and physically due to fatigue.

The nursing issues have mostly resolved, but he still struggles with reflux and gas, which makes nighttime difficult for his comfort levels, (so still no sleep no for me) and daytime iffy depending on the day and how his tummy feels. Also, he doesn’t like to nap unless I’m holding him. But also holding him is ❤️❤️❤️.

Combined with the uptick in Coronavirus cases, and our general conservative take on safety measures when he was born, all of this has created a very isolating situation for me.

I didn’t realize how much of my joy in having a baby was sharing him with friends and family until I couldn’t. We chose not to travel to see family for thanksgiving, an emotional decision that brought on a tremendous amount of grief for me as well because we are very close and my parents aren’t getting any younger.

The whole situation is disorienting because generally, I am an extreme extrovert. However, the more isolated I feel, the harder it is for me to reach out. The simple act of returning a phone call or text message is almost paralyzing at times.

I’m telling you all this because I want to remain in community with people and that requires effort and honesty on my part. Praise God for chemical relief – Zoloft is mostly keeping postpartum issues at bay. (I was on it throughout my pregnancy for ongoing anxiety and anticipation of post partum issues, which I’ve had in the past. Bottom line? We are just in the thick of navigating newborn plus COVID and it’s lonely and hard.

And I know I’m not alone. I originally typed out a version of this to send to a group of women in our church, but after talking to a dear friend in a similar state (after a major surgery and just prior to a cross country move), I was reminded just how much, again, we need to hear the truth.

The truth behind one-month-old photos, and letterboard pictures, and Christmas card photos (all of which you’ll see from me, don’t be fooled). The truth looks like this: no makeup, no sleep, no shower, grateful for good gifts, AND sad in a way that cannot and should not be ignored. You aren’t alone.

Thanks for praying for me and checking on me so faithfully.

Love M.

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