Monday, June 23, 2008

Patience is a virtue...

Topher had his last feeding last night at about 9:30, and he didn't wake up till 5 this morning- Thank you Jesus! I went to bed at 11pm, so that's the longest, uninterrupted bout of sleep I have had in a long time. Lily woke up at 7:20ish this morning (thanks for that too Jesus) and I went into her room and gave her her morning bottle of milk. For some reason I was still exhausted, even though I slept pretty well last night. Lily finished her bottle on my lap and looked at me with her sweet, giant, doe eyes and smiled. Sometimes I just LOVE being a mommy. Then she got off my lap and started to scream. Dang. So I picked her up again and all was well. Took her to the changing table to get her a fresh new diaper. Put her down- more screaming. Too bad so sad, you need a new diaper little lady. After that was done, I went to the laundry room to get her some clean clothes. She let me put her down sans tears. Thank you! We were hanging out, folding laundry, having a gay old time, and out of nowhere- tears. I picked her up, not knowing what could be bothering her. Sometimes it is so hard and frustrating being a mommy. I told Lily that I didn't have any patience today- and we had only been awake for thirty minutes! And I told her we really needed to pray to Jesus for patience. And so we did.

I went over to my girlfriend Christin's house for breakfast. Our other girlfriend, Kelly, who had a baby a month ago came too. I had not seen her since a week before she had her little one. Topher, Cambry (Christin's baby girl) and Grady (Kelly's boy) are all about four weeks apart. They were all very good and let their mommies have quality mommy time. I started telling the ladies that I have been straight up loco since having Topher. By the grace of God, I was pretty 'normal' after having Lily. But with Lily and Topher, and having been pregnant for two years straight- I am not the same person I used to be. Kelly and Christin admitted the same. For the most part, the three of us are pretty relaxed, and it takes quite a bit to get us frazzled. Kelly shared that she started crying for no reason a couple times after getting home from the hospital. Christin admitted to getting annoyed, and even a little bit angry over the littlest things. With each admonition came a series of nodding heads, and excitement that we were not alone. It seems we were all guilty of losing patience- sometimes with our husbands, but mostly with our new crazy selves.

All of us are very lucky to be married to three amazing men. Drew, Christin's hubby, is a sweet and sensitive man. He is really in tune with Christin's needs and dotes on her on the regular. He is famous in our group for having gotten Christin three dozen red roses cause she had a bad day. It wasn't Valentine's Day, or her birthday, nor was he the cause of her bad day. I don't know Tim, Kelly's hubby, that well, but he is also a supersweet and lovely man, who makes Kelly very, very happy. As sweet and kind and caring as our hubbies all are, there is one problem that they all have- though they are all daddies and have babies, none of them have HAD a baby. As in, they were not pregnant and did not have a human being live in their bodies, emerge from their bodies, leaving a mess of insane hormones in their wake. As much as they try to understand what we are going through, and how we are feeling- they can't. Mostly because half the time we don't understand what we are going thruogh or why we are feeling the way that we are!

So what does this all boil down to? Patience. Patience for each other. Patience for ourselves. One of the best pieces of advice I received when I was getting married was this: "be patient with your new hubby, because he has no idea how to be a good husband right off the bat." And it's true. He has never been the head of a household before. He has never had to make choices for anyone but himself. And all of a sudden he has a wife that he is supposed to lead God-fearingly. And it's true that men need to be patient with their new wives- because no matter how domestically 'trained' a new bride is, being a wife, and a good one at that, is not easy and takes much practice. So all this is true with parenthood. Again, patience is needed for the new daddy- he in all likelihood never played 'baby dolly' and has possibly never even held an infant before holding his own. It doesn't matter how excited your husband is to become a daddy- he isn't going to automatically know what to do to calm a fussy baby, or a fussy new mommy either. Patience people. Patience. And a butt-load of empathy doesn't hurt either.

Men, imagine this if you will. You're a woman. You have a baby stuck to you 24/7. When you have a break from holding baby- you have to do laundry, or the dishes, or both. The last thing you want is to snuggle and be held. When it's time to lie down and sleep- it's time to lie down and sleep! I know all us women ever wanted before the baby was to be held and hugged and loved and adored. Well, we are all hugged out for the moment! Yes, sacrifices need to be made. By all. Women- love your husbands so that there is no doubt in their minds that you love them and still find them very, very attractive. Access your uncrazy side as much as possible in their presence. (That's one of my favorite lines from 'The Office') Men- love your crazy wife with all your might and be patient! She's had a human being escape from her body, with different war wounds to prove it- saggy belly, stitched up nether-regions, (or stitched-up belly, which is not any better), and again- hormones running rampant affecting every fiber of her being. Will she ever get back to being the affectionate, loving, not-psychotic wonder that you married? Yes. When? Probably when the last kid goes off to college. Just joking. I think... All I can say, after having had two kids, is- be patient and enjoy the bumpy, saggy, fun-filled, teary, wonderous road together.

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