This mom's journey is that of a new mom that, following a c-section, took about 6 months to truly bond with her daughter and was feeling the challenges of dealing with her new mom identity.
This blog entry comes from an anonymous person that felt like she was not able to deal with her new mom identity fast enough and felt that she was not bonding with her daughter. Wherever you are in the world, I thank you for sharing your journey with us.
My journey as a first time mom has been a challenging one. We often see new moms pictured as tired yes but generally happy bonding with their new babies. I had a c-section after 3 days of inductions and I found it took me about 6 months to truly bond with my daughter. I loved her unconditionally, yes, but somehow felt so disconnected from her . I felt extreme guilt about it and it really wasn't until I talked to friend who also had a c-section that I felt like what I was going through was normal. She said she felt the same way with her c-section baby.
Dealing with my new mom identity has been extremely difficult. I've felt lost and not knowing how to deal with staying home everyday with my little one. I actually had people make me feel bad because I said I was looking forward to work and I was burning out. Acting as if I didn't have a right to want a bit of my old life back. Don't get me wrong I love my daughter, I just love going to work and having some of my old identity too.
How to Overcome this Challenge
I go to local mom groups and have an awesome support system of family and friends who have helped me get through my difficulties. My biggest help has been having a friend with an open ear to listen to my troubles and doing some of the old things I used to do before the baby like painting pottery.
A Quote or Saying
Haha well don't laugh but ..."I've found time can heal most anything and you just might find who you're supposed to be " Taylor Swift from her song fifteen . This quote has meant a lot to me for a long time especially during this challenge. I know time will help to heal and I will become who I am supposed to be.
A Little Piece of Advice
Local community centers (e.g., Early Years Centers) were really helpful as well as the books "What to Expect in the 1st Year" and "Baby Whisperer".
TR Take Aways
Oh geeeeze. I can TOTALLY relate. Although I didn't have a c-section or a lack of connection to my daughter, I still felt the confusion with what my identity was now. What I do know is that we are always constantly evolving and this new version of ourselves, one that was just "me" and now a "mommy" and now we have evolved into a new version of "mommy and me".
I'm feeling super practical right now...sometimes I am feeling metaphors, sometimes I feel like I want to share personal development but right now...in this very instant it is all about being practical.
The Book that Changed my Life
I didn't feel like myself until my daughter was about 9 months when I read The Desire Map by Danielle Laporte. I am totally a girl that is all about goal setting but I think I was missing a core piece in order to get back to myself again. My goals were clearly written down or tucked away in my heart but my daughter was waking up in the next room over and I felt trapped, no wiggle room to take time to figure things out.
The Desire map was instrumental in helping me focus on how I want to feel on a daily basis to then attract what I would need to take action towards my goals. I ended up finding out that the way I am currently seeking to feel is cozy, calm, creative and free and no longer would I do anything or go a day without feeling how I want to feel.
Everything is an Affirmation
Once you find your words, it's important to live in accordance with them and to take the time to feel how you want to feel. Everything matters and thus, everything is an affirmation. For example, you may discover that one of your words is to feel FREE and you may not be feeling very free if you're at home on maternity leave feeling like you're a little stuck. However, you can pay attention to the little moments that you already do have freedom like that instant when they fall asleep for a nap - your instinct should be to do something that makes you feel at your best. What makes you feel free? Read the book, breathe fresh air outside, watch a silly tv show or paint! Another example...one of your words is to be cozy and you may feel completely stuck in a world where you are unable to even have a warm tea to yourself. However, seek the bright spots - where in your life are you currently being cozy. Maybe your ultimate goal is to not leave the house without a nice cozy scarf on or to make sure you light a nice candle at night to make you feel all nice and fuzzy inside.
So - to recap
#1: Look around you to try and find the bright spots - you may be doing little things in line with how you want to feel and being grateful for those is always where you begin.
#2: Take an extra minute or two before you feel like you are getting busy or ready to get your baby or "serve" someone else to feel how you want to feel (e.g., leave her in her crib one more minute so I can find my cozy scarf or so I can make a nice warm tea.
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