Thursday, October 24, 2013

It took me thirteen months to get here.

Yesterday, for the first time, um, ever, I felt like a good mother.
Not a great one, by any means, but a good one.

You see, yesterday I decided I didn't care about my work emails or phone calls. I wanted to play cars with the wee boy. I wanted to snuggle with him and let him nurse all morning since that what he seemed to want. I cooked three full meals for him, all from scratch and with lots of vegetables. He ate most of what I made, and I didn't get frustrated when he threw precious avocado pieces on the floor.

I did disappear to the basement to teach for three hours while his grandparents watched him. But while I was down there, I could hear them all reading Dr. Seuss books and laughing. That made me feel less guilty about leaving him for a few hours.

And when I was finished working -- get this -- I was really happy to see him. I didn't mind when he grasped my trousers and shouted, "Up! Up! Up!" I didn't mind the extra nursing sessions he insisted on even though I know he wasn't hungry. I didn't mind reading "Little Quack Counts" six times in a row or skipping directly to the black sheep page of "Brown Bear."

This is good, right?

I'm relieved to be feeling better. But it also makes me unbelievably sad that so many mothers feel this from the beginning. It makes me wonder what I've missed, and it makes me angry and guilty (guilt guilt guilt!) that it's taken thirteen months to get here.

Still, it's a good start.

You may also enjoy this far-too-personal explanation of what PPD actually feels like.

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