Having a baby sucks.
To be clear, the baby doesn’t suck. Well, actually, the baby does suck – all night and all day. But that’s not what I’m referring to. The actual having of the baby is not a fun process.
For the first six weeks after birth, you are basically wet.
Sweat. Tears. Milk. Blood (yes, of course there’s blood. You didn’t know that? Neither did I until I had a baby). Spit up. You rock the baby and read sweet articles about letting laundry slide and cherishing this time, then you go do three thousand loads of laundry because everything you own is wet.
And that’s how I expected everything to go with this last baby, number three. A couple months of misery mixed with joy and then you know, you get on with your life. But of course that’s not how it went down.
For one, I had a really slow recovery. My OB basically put me on bed rest after delivery. (“Modified couch potato status” she called it.) I couldn’t unload the dishwasher without starting to bleed again.
Sorry, is that too much information? I’ve got a few things I need to get off my chest today. Moving on.
I had a hernia and a torn muscle in my stomach. I couldn’t walk across the room without holding everything together.
Then I got an ear infection. Because I’m four years old, apparently. I don’t even think I had one when I was four, but I got one, one week postpartum.
Then I got a stomach bug which is just one heck of a post-baby diet plan. “HOW TO LOSE THE BABY WEIGHT: Don’t keep anything down for 24 hours.” Not exactly what you typically see advertised. Also, it doesn’t work. I still can’t wear pants.
The next morning I shattered my iPhone.
Luckily, my mom was here for all that. And we did a lot of sitting around and talking about what an unlucky month it’s been and thank goodness everything was on the upswing now before she left.
And then she left.
And I decided that was a good time to go back to “work.” And I say “work” because I only work like 5 hours a week, so I need to emphasize it’s not like I’m punching in 9-5. I also say “work” because I’m self-conscious and self-deprecating and I don’t want anyone to think I think too highly of myself.
The next week my ear infection came back.
Which doesn’t sound like a big deal until you’ve had an ear infection that you’ve been treating incorrectly for two weeks go haywire. I believe the doctor’s words were “horrible infection” and that was before a week of using the incorrect medication. Pro tip: if you ever want to get in to see a doctor right away, sobbing so hard on the phone that you can’t make an appointment helps.
So that came and went and things were finally on the upswing!
Until we totaled our brand new-to-us-minivan.
While driving it home for the first time.
Obviously this is a bigger deal than an ear infection and warrants more space in this essay but I don’t know what else to say other than WE TOTALED OUR MINIVAN BEFORE EVEN BRINGING IT HOME.
(Everyone is OK by the way).
And everything is fine, except my ear infection then came back and I got another stomach bug. This time I had to go to the hospital for fluids which is a fun way to get much needed away time with your husband except that I couldn’t stand up or see straight.
And everything really is fine. My husband bought a lottery ticket because just what are the damn chances.
On the bright side, we have a baby. And a fun fact about parenting is that no matter how many babies there are in the world, and no matter how many you personally have had, every single one is the cutest in the whole wide world. It’s a scientific marvel I tell you. Mathematical improbability. Schroedinger’s parable or something. That’s not a thing. I don’t know, I haven’t slept in five years and had two cups of coffee like a wild woman this morning so I’m not liable for anything I say.
But the baby really is awesome, and occasionally, in spite of everything else going on, we remember to change and feed her. Also the other two kids are around here somewhere.
She started smiling recently which is basically a baby’s way of saying, “I know everything is awful and I’m partly to blame but isn’t life AMAZING?”
And she’s right. Because yes, yes it is.