Dear Kid-less Pregnant Self,
You have no idea what is about to hit you. It would be nice if I sugar-coated that, but look at your tummy. We’re way past the cutesy talk. Life as you know it is over. The sooner you accept this, the better it will be for us.
Stop whining about how your hips hurt, about your stretch marks and how hard it is to find a good sleeping position. Very soon your whole body will hurt from bouncing the baby around for 40 minutes in order to get her to sleep for 20. Stretch marks will soon be the least of your concerns as things will move around on your body in places you didn’t know fat could subsist. And, be thankful that you’re sleeping in your bed. Soon you will need to figure out how to sleep in a chair, holding the baby so her head is elevated at 47 degrees, while simultaneously shushing and rocking.
So, sleep. Sleep a lot. Go to bed right now and don’t get up until Monday. When your water breaks, kiss your bed goodbye – you’ll see it in a few months.
Also, stop stuffing your face with everything in sight. I know you can’t see your feet, but if you keep eating like that, I won’t be able to see mine either. I will have to pay someone to make me workout so hard I think I’m going to throw up because of those extra 20 pounds. I don’t enjoy logging every item that goes into my mouth and eating dry, bland food. You are having all the fun and I have to do all the work. Just stop.
Find babysitters now. Finding someone you trust to watch a child under the age of one is very difficult. In the spirit of not overworking Grandma, look to your friends who are done having babies. They seem to have the first several months wiped from their memory and can’t wait to get their hands on a newborn. So, let them. Let go of the psychosis that no one else will be able to take care of your child. They have been where you are and they know what to do.
Go out. I mean, go OUT. Enjoy a long dinner. See a movie. Go dancing. Stay up late. Sleep in late. Make bad decisions. Get it all out.
You really don’t have it all figured out like you think you do. Stop saying things like: I will never leave her side for the first six months. I will never use a bottle. She will sleep in her crib the first day home from the hospital. You will break all of your own rules – I can pretty much guarantee it.
Stop judging other moms. You will also open a bag of crackers while grocery shopping to distract your toddler. You will also take the day off once in awhile and still send your child to daycare.
But, you will also love more than you ever thought possible. You will cry when your baby cries and laugh when she laughs. It will all be worth it. I promise.
Melissa Cruickshank is married with two children. She works full-time. Read her here on momaha.com
* * *