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When will I feel normal again?

May 18, 2012
Logo design by Christine Hepner

During August of 2011, about 8 weeks after the birth, I started to wonder if I was ever going to feel “normal” again. I had my six-week check up with Dr. Cleary in late July, and she told me all was normal physically. I couldn’t believe that an incision was supposed to look like that, and I was still numb and moving slowly, but I did feel a little better every day. It was more than just the physical changes that worried me, though. I hate to admit it, but since I’ve promised to be honest, here goes: I was having moments where the thought, “What have I done to my life?” crept in.

I found and still do find the hardest part of parenthood is the monotony: the sterilizing the bottles, the dozen or so diaper changes, the hours of pumping and/or breast feeding, the walking back and forth at all hours of the day and night murmuring, “Hush Lil Darlin’, Don’t Say a Word.”

D and I were out pushing the baby in his stroller one afternoon near my mother’s house when a friend from high school drove by. She has two sets of twins born more than a decade apart. She pulled over to see the baby and to tell us how thrilled she was for us and asked, “Wasn’t life boring until he came along?,” and I couldn’t help but think to myself, “Boring? I could use a little of that kind of boredom right now.”

When I think about the question, “What’s it like to be a new mom at 51?” I’m not sure I can answer it. He’s my first baby, so I have no first-hand experience of motherhood except at age 51. What I am an expert in is being single until my mid-forties, and then being in a childless relationship for 6 years. While being single was not always a bed of roses, I did make the absolute most out of it, thanks to the amazing friends I’ve made along the way. Then D came along, and I realized that the waiting was totally worth it.

I should say that I’ve never been a baby person. With my nieces, nephews, and friend’s babies, I was much better with them once they were a little older. Yes, theoretically, infants are (mostly) adorable, but in practice, they are total tyrants. It’s their way or the highway for the first few months, and I’ve always had a problem with authority.

The saving grace of this whole situation is that, of course, I fell totally head over heels in love with my little tyrant. It’s almost like having my personal Kim Jong-il, but much, much, much cuter (if I do say so myself) and perhaps even taller. And every day, it gets a little less monotonous. This week he started crawling/climbing up the stairs! All four flights of stairs to our apartment door, which means it’s so much easier for me to get him outside for a long walk or to the playground. And then there are the moments he takes my breath away with a smile or makes me laugh out loud by shaking his head “no, no, no, no” when I say, “Tell Mommy yes, yes, yes.”

So, I guess the answer to my topic sentence is, yes, I feel normal again, but it’s a new normal. It’s happened very slowly over this 11 months, but now I can’t imagine feeling any other way, totally in love with him and grateful for my life.

Next time: D takes over

Thanks for following and reading! I’d love to hear your story of IVF. Please leave your comments below.

© 2012

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One Comment
  1. Mary permalink

    I love your blog. I must let you in on a secret, you will love him more every day. You won’t believe how much you love him and you can’t believe you’ll love him more, but you will. Don and I are still in love with Sara and Joseph and they’re both in college. Treasure the days. Mary


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