Monday, November 4, 2013

One Year Reflection

This past week I've been spending quite a bit of time reflecting about this past year.  I can't believe that my baby is going to be a year old this week.  When I look back at where I was at this time last year I can't believe how much things have changed. 

This time last year, I was still pregnant and full of emotions.  I was scared to experience labor.  I was excited to find out if we were going to have a boy or a girl.  What will this baby look like?  How big will this baby be?  But I was also scared of the unknown.  I had a lot of fear.  How will we pay for the baby?  Will we be able to save money?  How will our life change?  Will we be able to participate in bible study?  See our friends?  How will we balance our new life?  So many unknowns, so many worries. 

Now that I look back, I could feel those emotions again, but not in the same way.  As I feel some of these emotions again I think, "Why was I so worried?"  I am amazed with how God provided.  I have no idea how we make ends meet.  I have no idea where my energy comes from.  How was I able to survive off of 3 hours of continuous sleep?  Looking back, I can tell you that it was God who got me through it. 

One of the emotions I have very vividly been remembering is the feeling I had sitting in that hospital room.  I was in shock!  I couldn't believe I just had a baby.  I didn't know what I was doing.  Feeding was not as easy as it looked.  I remember feeling like such a failure as a mom in that hospital room.  I was not a natural when it came to breastfeeding and we had to give baby some formula.

I had a lot of torment the first 6 months or so of being a mom.  I had felt like a failure because feeding wasn't easy.  People would come up to me and tell me how cute my baby was, but then they would also go on and talk about her "rash" which was actually bad eczema.  I hated when people would ask me what's wrong with my baby when they would look at her when her eczema would flare up.  I felt like a bad mom for going to work and not being a stay-at-home mom. 

While you're in the moment of sleep deprivation, low milk supply, cluelessness of being a new mom, and just the 180 your life makes the moment you have a baby, you just can't imagine how it's going to go by so fast.  But it does.  All those people were right when they would tell me it'll soon pass.  Yes, the first 3 months were probably the hardest.  I have no idea how I survived.  But eventually I started sleeping at night, my milk supply increased, I started having confidence in myself as a mom, and I started getting into a new routine and becoming accustom to my new life style. 

Now my emotions and feelings are completely different than they were last year.  I realized that I don't have fear about the future.  I'm not scared about how are we going to pay for XYZ.  God had miraculously provided over and over again.  I don't feel like a failure as a mom.  I feel like I'm a really good mom.  I've loosened up and I'm not as paranoid.  I'm not calling the doctor's office asking ridiculous questions.  I feel like I'm more relaxed as a mom.  Maybe it helps that the eczema has really cleared up a lot these past 3 months and people don't ask me what's wrong with my baby anymore.  And maybe it's because I had to face some of my deepest fears when I was pregnant and a new mom.  And once I faced them, things really weren't as bad at all.  I got through them. 

It's been a roller coaster of a year.  But I would not trade any of it!  I can't imagine what our life without our baby girl.  Yes there was a lot of challenges and a lot of growing but it was worth it.  I'm glad I worked hard and preserved with nursing.  I'm glad I made the sacrifices I did.  Instead, I got to have some wonderful experiences and memories with my baby.  Everything I went through this past year, good and bad, was totally worth it.  I hope it made me into a better person.