Although I prepared my whole life for the experience of motherhood, there are several things that I have surprised me.
Overall, I learned that I over-prepared, which isn't such a bad thing. Take, for example, my stock pile of diapers:
Yup, I have a 6-month supply. I received some very good advice from our financial planner: once you have enough storage (which, for us, meant April, since that's when we closed on our house), buy a box of diapers every time you make a weekly shopping trip to Target. That way, you'll stock up little by little and can just buy diapers here and there while still keeping a decent supply.
We also bought way too many things that seemed like something we would use. A few examples: wipe warmer, travel bottle warmer, Mothers Milk tea, SwaddleMes (my kid only likes SleepSacks), and the list goes on. But I am glad we over-prepared instead of under-prepared... there's really not much that we've had to go purchase.
But here are some things that have truly surprised me:
- He really does look like my husband and me. It's crazy to see your own flesh and blood that was created. Sometimes I just stare at him and realize how much of a miracle he is.
- The kid eats. A LOT. I didn't realize how much and how often babies eat. My whole schedule revolves around when the next feeding time is.
About Mr. D:
- He wanted to be a father just as much as I've wanted to be a mother. Of course, I knew that we both wanted kids, and that our journey with infertility affected us both in different ways, but I never really sat back and realized how much he wanted to be a Dad.
- He loves me more than I imagined. The hugs, kisses, and snuggles in bed I've received since having Max feel much different now... it's almost like he is thanking me for our son every time he is around me.
- Motherhood fits me. Not that I ever really doubted that it would, but I am surprised at how instinctual and motherly I've become in three short weeks.
- Although motherhood fits me, I am looking forward to going back to work when the time comes. Not that I am not enjoying time with my son, but I know that I would not be a good stay-at-home-person. I value my career, and Max will value his time interacting with other children at daycare.
- I loved being pregnant. I lost all of the pregnancy weight I gained (about 20 lbs.) within 10 days of Max's birth, and now weigh less than pre-pregnancy (although I am now working off some of the lovely, chubby-looking skin left over...). I loved how I treated my body, how I ate, how I exercised, how I carried my baby... everything.
- I am dead-set on working out and getting my old stomach back. I started running on Max's 2 week birthday (only a couple miles), and have been running every-other day since. I need to get rid of the little bit that's left.
- Although I conceived, carried a healthy baby, and delivered our son, I still consider myself to be on this journey of IF. It kind of irritates me when people who have conceived or had a baby say things to the effect of, "thinking of you who are still struggling" or "I remember dealing with IF... just keep hanging in there." In my opinion, once an IFer, always an IFer. We are all bonded for life, and it seems funny to me that some people who think they used to be IFers feel as though they have "graduated."
The biggest thing that surprises me is how much I want another kid. Max isn't even a month old yet, and I am already thinking about when to pull out my ovulation tester. It's weird. I always have wanted kids to be close together in age (maybe 2-3 years or so), but it's surprising to me how much I have thought about how and when to try for #2. Even more surprising? Mr. D is totally onboard and is thinking about it, too. Given how much time it took us to get Max, I think we are both thinking that we should start at the earliest point we would be okay with. Maybe next summer... who knows.
Hope everyone is having a good weekend :)