Well, it has been a slightly traumatic experience, but little Eve and I are finally home. I must admit, if I had known 9 months ago what a trauma bringing the little one into the world would end up being (I won't go into detail but it involved scarily high blood pressure, my kidneys giving up, and being rushed into hospital after a splitting headache suggested all might not be well), I may have been less calm throughout the pregnancy. However, seeing by little baby girl made everything I have been complaining about for the last 9 months worth it, and more.
However, I feel it my responsibility, nay my obligation, to break some of those popular motherhood myths that have haunted me during my pregnancy.
1. "A c section is an easier option than a natural birth". Now, I don't know about natural labour, having not managed it myself, but it would have to be going some to be worse than a c section. Of course the baby is out nice and quickly with a c, however the recovery is far from the piece of cake it is made out to be by the celebs. I missed out on Eve's first 30 mins because I was lying on my back being stitched up, I needed help getting out of bed for 2 days afterwards, I have a scar (albeit a small one) that will make my nice black low bikini bottoms a thing of the past, and your body takes a bit longer to realise that it has given birth so everything is taking longer to sort itself out.
2. "Breast feeding is natural". No it's not. It bloody hurts. And to begin with when, as a new Mum you have enough stresses to deal with, you have nothing to feed your baby on (it takes a few days for the milk to appear) and so you and your baby get increasingly cross with each other until you give up on the whole thing. I was lucky and stubborn, and decided to express my own milk (more of that in another post) and bottle feed it to her. Apparently there is something horrific about doing this, but it seems to work for Eve and I and it means I spend a few hours each day reading or watching TV while I express, giving me some valuable downtime.
3. "All babies scream and cry lots". No they don't, not at the beginning. They eat, crap and sleep - sometimes all at the same time. In a few weeks time she will get difficult, but mother nature has an amazing way of ensuring that the new motherhood bit isn't too hideous to start with.
4. "You forget all about it once you see your baby". No you don't. I still remember feeling like a fat whale for the last 6 weeks, I will never forget the feeling of being cut open and having my baby hauled out of me, I will never forget the sheer terror on the Boy's face as my blood pressure went up to over 200 on the evening after the labour, and I will never forget the moment this morning when I realised my breasts had leaked onto my top and felt both proud and horribly icky as a result.
So, the moral of all of this is not to believe what anyone tells you and that every experience is different.
She is, however, worth all the risks and worries and pain and discomfort. I have, quite simply, fallen in love with my daughter.
Analogies of a sort
1 week ago