I’ve been sitting here staring at the keyboard for about five minutes, just trying to figure out where to start. These past six weeks have been filled with A LOT. A lot of joy, sweet moments, diaper changes, tears, sleepless nights, photo shoots, smiles, bottle cleaning, learning, sweet snuggles, full hearts, hormones, and a whole lot of googling. Seriously, I google everything. I need that shirt that says “Idk, google it.” My response to everything, haha!
Having Bentley unlocked a place in my heart that I didn’t know was there. A love that can’t be explained, only felt and experienced. I have never experienced such a love. It’s so much different than my love for my husband. Similar, but different. My little baby is helpless and needs me, physically and emotionally needs me to care for her. I was prepared to do those things before having her. I was prepared to sacrifice many things, many nights, and a lot of my time. I was prepared to have my life change and my schedule to change. But to actually do those things, to care for her, to sacrifice your time, and your body, is a whole different thing. Motherhood is the most fulfilling thing I have ever experienced. Seriously. It is also one of the hardest things I have ever experienced. I have never felt such deep joy and deep exhaustion all at the same time. Ha!
I am such a schedule person, I like order, and I function so much better when there is both. I love knowing what to expect, I love to be prepared, and I always want to know what I am supposed to do and I want to do it well. Motherhood squashes all of that, doesn’t it? More specifically the newborn stage. I remember the first couple nights in the hospital, and our first few days at home, Tate and I would constantly be asking each other, “What the heck are we supposed to do?” “What does this mean???” “Are we doing this right??” “What’s that red bump??”
*Googling all my questions*
*Google coming up with 998,475 answers that all kind of contradict each other*
Turns out we weren’t changing her diaper enough, and she got a really bad diaper rash. The nurses at the hospital apparently translated their numbers wrong in English, and we weren’t feeding her frequently enough the first few days. I couldn’t breastfeed due to reasons out of my control. I accidentally nicked Bentley’s finger when clipping her fingernails (oh my gosh I have never felt worse in my life!!).
I share all of these things to say, it’s a learning experience. Things aren’t going to always go how you envision them, you won’t always do things right, and you might “mess up” a few times. AND THAT IS OK! I will constantly remind myself of that. It’s so easy to feel like you aren’t doing enough or doing it “right”. Don’t let those lies creep in!
In a perfect world, I would have a “motherhood manual” that told me everything. How to do it, when to do it, and I would have every detail covered. Wouldn’t that be nice??? 😉 But there is beauty in learning as you go, and figuring things out on your own, as a family. You might do things completely different than your friend, and that is ok. Your baby might not respond to something someone else’s baby does, and that is ok. You might breastfeed, you might formula feed, and you know what? They’re both the right way to do it if it’s right for you. Because it’s how you and your baby are choosing to do it!
I remember feeling self conscious about not breastfeeding, and I honestly didn’t even want to talk about it on here. I’ve found that people looooove to give their opinion on how you should feed your baby and “what way is best”. Mind blowing. When in reality, feeding your baby is the only thing that should matter! Providing food for your baby is the goal, no matter how you choose to do it. I am constantly learning to do what is right for me, Bentley, and my family! Rant over. I chose to share all that in hopes to encourage someone who might be feeling the same way as me. You’re doing amazing momma!
Tate and I are finally figuring out a schedule that works for us. Having a baby has definitely been an adjustment! I knew taking care of her would be hard work and require a lot of my time, but holyyy cow. I feel like I am constantly pumping, consoling, holding, rocking, feeding, changing diapers, feeding again, changing again, making dinner, trying to shower, putting to bed, laying in bed, getting out of bed because the pacifer fell out (that might be the death of me), finally getting a little sleep, and then REPEAT.
It’s real easy to feel like life is monotonous, a little isolated, or lonely, so find things you can do throughout the day that bring you joy! I started Gilmore Girls and I am already on season 5. Yes. I started it 4 weeks ago. But I have it on during the day, while I’m feeding, and I love it. I started getting up a little earlier, before Bentley gets up, to have a little quiet me time. My “go to” is driving to McDonalds, blasting my hood music, ordering a diet coke and fries, sitting in the parking lot for a few, and then jam back home. It’s quick, easy, nothing crazy, but it does my sanity WONDERS. Oh and I always make sure I always have diet coke in the fridge. 😉 If you’re a new mom- this is your reminder to take time for yourself. Find your joys!
Now onto the fun and ooey gooey stuff!! I AM OBSESSED WITH MY CHILD. Seriously. I sit around and just gawk at my little babe. I love staring at her button nose, her cheeks that are beginning to fill out, her gorgeous eyelashes, and her sweet little lips. I love that when I touch her hand she holds onto my finger with a grasp that is hard to break. I never want to let go! I love changing her diaper and watching her thighs gain new rolls. Thigh rolls are the best!!! The more rolls, the better. I love having “us” time. When Tate is at practice, and she’s alert and awake, I will lay her down and talk to her. I tell her over and over how much I love her and how beautiful she is. I can’t wait until she can talk back to me!
She has started to give out little smiles that melt my heart into a million pieces. The minute I get the camera out though, the smile turns into a scowl. It is the funniest thing! One of my favorite moments is when we are feeding and her eyes are locked into mine. I love when she lays on my chest after a feeding. When she is laying on my chest everything just goes away. All the stress, exhaustion, to do lists, and anything else on my mind, it all goes away. In those moments, I am reminded that this is a season. She won’t always be curled up on my chest like a little tree frog. So I choose to soak up every minute of those tree frog snuggles. There is truly nothing sweeter.
I am so amazed by our God every time I look at Bentley. He knit her together in MY womb. He chose ME to be her mom. He created our bodies to go through the crazy process of pregnancy. Not only those nine months, but delivering that baby into the world. I was terrified to give birth. I prayed over and over that He would prepare me mentally and physically to give birth. I honestly didn’t want to do it.
But He met me in that delivery room and He supplied me with everything I needed. He gave me courage and strength that I didn’t know I had. He created this little motherly instinct inside of me that kicked in the minute she was born. You may not feel it, or know it’s there, but it is. Trust it. Now I have this little tiny human that I get to raise with the love of my life. He blessed me with the incredible opportunity to extend His love to my sweet Bentley Marie Unruh.
Motherhood really is one of the greatest gifts of all time, and I am only 5 weeks in. Sure it’s crazy, tiring, hard, and draining at times, but all of it is completely and entirely worth it. I mean, LOOK AT HER! I might even do it again a couple times 😉
I have a million other things I could say, but baby girl is awake and HUNGRY. So I gotta go!
But really quickly, I wanted to tell you abut the book “Moms on Call”. I purchased this book around 3 weeks after Bentley’s birth, because quite frankly I wanted to start getting on some sort of schedule and just didn’t know what the heck I was supposed to do. I have LOVED it so much. It has helped us get on somewhat of a schedule and it has made all the difference! I know everyone is different, every baby is different, but their scheduling/tips/advice has been so helpful. I highly recommend their book! Linking it here. Not sponsored at all, just thought it would be helpful to share!
THANK YOU for taking the time to read this. I know not everyone reads blogs, so thank you for reading mine. I really appreciate your love and support!