Shepherd James Bell, SJB, has been with us now for four weeks! To say it’s been a whirlwind would be an understatement. Lots of days have been trying and have resulted in lost patience or frustration or overwhelming anxiety. I’ve had my share of sob sessions. Some for good reasons, some probably for no reason at all. Minus the general postpartum hormone dump/shift that has caused uncommon for me emotions, I’ve also cried feeling like I don’t know wtf I’m doing. Ive cried at the lack of newborn joy and bliss I’ve felt most days. I’ve cried when our help has left. I’ve cried remembering the woman next to me in triage who lost her baby. I’ve cried at how hard this feels to have a toddler and a newborn and adjust. Mostly, probably, I’ve cried due to lack of sleep. I’ve mentioned before how much I need solid sleep but I’m now shifting to being delighted over a few solid hours. The tiredness can be heavy some days but we are learning to manage. Some days are very hard and some are delightful. Some days we are in survival mode and some days I feel like we are really getting into a good groove and thriving as a little family. Some days I feel like I’m accomplishing nothing and some days I let the fact that I’m keeping a human alive be enough of an achievement.

It’s all normal, I’m sure.

Back to the help we’ve had. I know if we had no option for help, that we’d find ways to handle things on our own but I have thanked God so many times we don’t have to hack it on our own. The amount of support and help we’ve received from family and friends and neighbors has been incredible and a true saver of sanity. From meals and laundry and cleaning to holding crying babies to caring for a toddler or caring for us, it’s been extraordinary.

Trying to give into where we are an accept that each day is different and just try to take things as they come. This whole experience from pregnancy to labor to now with S has been different than with P. Obviously, they are two different little beings so we shouldn’t expect it to be the same. But some days the comparison and the unknowns are hard. We’ve dealt with thrush, severe diaper rash, digestive issues, mastitis, and colds. None of this happened with P but hoping we are coming out on the other side. P was in her crib in her room within days (she didn’t sleep well “in the kitchen” i.e. close to me and neither did we) and with this little guy, he’d rather be close (hoping to transition to crib sooner rather than later as his bassinet is already getting snug but we shall see what he/we are ready for).We are getting on a schedule the best we can. It’s only been four weeks so it’s okay to still be in the weeds a bit.

I’m hoping that all this will make me more laidback or give up some of the things I feel like I need to control in my life.

By the way, Pfeiffer loves her little brother and loves being a sister but of course doesn’t always love sharing her parents. She’s had moments of testing her limits and acting a fool but for the most part I’d say she’s adjusting very well to the new addition. I can’t wait to see more of their interactions over these next months and years.

And, side note, I’ve had a feeling of PTSD of sorts after labor and delivery but I will share my birth story here soon so stay tuned if you’re interested.

Here are only some pics of our new life at home as a family of four. Huge shoutout to Alicia Osborne Photography for capturing some extremely precious moments (and to my iPhone for making it easy to capture every day images…thank the Lord for technology).

Anything more you’d like me to share about this time? What’s new with you? Let me know in the comments!

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