I don’t know how to be a mother

My daughter is 10 weeks old and I have no idea how to be a mom. What am I doing? What do I do next? I ask questions and no one seems able to give me a good answer because they just knew what to do and I feel like I’m failing when I’ve just barely begun.

 

My husband is on 24 hour duty (more like 26 and that’s if his replacement shows up on time) so this is the first time I’m taking care of Lilyian completely by myself. I can’t have him come home and help for twenty minutes. I can’t pass her to him for night shift and she’s sobbing. I’ll be getting up at 1am/4am (depending on her last feed) to pull her out of the crib and get myself situated for feeding and change her diaper then put her back to sleep. All by myself. And this is possibly the worst day for that to be happening.

First off, she’s feeling off or something because she’s barely eaten all day. She’s probably spent about half the time at the breast than she usually does. She’s cranky, she’s fussy, she.. SMILES FOR MAMA!!!.. cries. She napped this morning (thank god) but its been a rollercoaster since 10am onward (7pm at the moment for reference). All of this I could deal with even though it’d be frustrating.. but I’m also sick and it decided to fully hit today. I ache, my neck and shoulder blades are killing me, I’m nauseated, and I have a killer headache. So I’m bending over to soothe a screaming baby while holding her to my chest. Everything is getting hit at the same time and I feel like crying. Because I feel like crap. Because I feel like a bad mom. Because I feel like I’m failing her….

But then I strap her to my chest, I hum her sleep songs (Lullaby and Goodnight + Hush Little Baby), and I turn on her rain app… and she falls sleep against my chest. A little arm sticks out of the carrier and she holds my finger while she sighs in her sleep. And I remember that I’m the one who got her to fall asleep last night when she refused to have anything to do with Eric. I’m the one she gives her first big smile of the day to every morning, whether or not someone else is there. I figured out what her favorite sleep position is (mind you, it didn’t work for this last nap but I also have a stubborn daughter so….). I don’t know how to be a mother… but I know how to be her mother and that’s enough.

mama's little teddy bear

mama’s little teddy bear

TWO. MONTHS. OLD.

TWO. MONTHS. OLD.

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