Lies People Tell New Moms: It Gets Easier
I vaguely recall, in my hazy newborn mom days, someone (or everyone actually) telling me that it gets easier.
It just gets different.
Read on for the proof.
Newborn morning: Wake up after only 58 minutes of actual sleep with baby draped across your chest clutching a used wipe in your fist. Baby stirs and immediately pecks about to eat. Pre-shower, pre-breakfast, even pre-pee you feed him to avoid the fall out from denying the hungriest human baby on the planet his meal first thing in the morning. Plus you're praying that if you just do what the little dictator wants, you may actually get some down time when he goes back to sleep. Thankfully, your sacrifice pays off and baby drifts happily back to sleep. You slip out from under him to stuff your face. It may be your only meal for a while and seriously, showers are overrated.
Big Kid morning: Wake up after only 58 minutes of actual sleep because you were up
finishing your kid's project making sure your kid's project was ready to go. Big Kid doesn't stir at all. In fact, you have to blaze into his room 12 minutes before the bus comes to wake him up for the SIXTH time. He doesn't shower (remember, they're overrated), and after you force him to change his clothes twice (once, because ew, that smells, and once because ew, you're not wearing a t-shirt that says ‘That's What She Said' to school. Also, where did you get that?), you shove a granola bar at him and he does his version of fast walking (note: it's not fast at all) to the bus. You are left to manage a sick kindergartener and a surly third grader who still requires convincing that school is a thing even though it's May and HE'S IN THIRD GRADE.
Baby afternoon: Wake up from nap two, cry, eat, poop, play, sleep, eat, poop, sleep.
Big Kid afternoon: He's at school. No telling what goes on there. But know that when he comes home he will be tired, hungry, cranky, and in desperate need of the nearest bathroom. Also, if he calls you a butt face when you send him to time out for hitting his brother during snack, you can probably guess where he learned that one. Prepare yourself for days of brainwashing to get rid of it before he brings home a new gem for you to undo.
Baby evening: Play, cry, eat, poop, play, sleep, eat, poop. Bath time, cuddle time, eat and poop again because, yes, constantly. Asleep by 7 for at least 4 blissful hours of do-whatever-you-want-but-probably-clean-eat-talk-to-your-spouse-and-thank-you-Lord-shower (by 10pm showers are not overrated, they're necessary) time.
Big Kid evening: Alights from the school bus and eventually makes his way home after getting caught in an impromptu game of Infection where he somehow loses his homework in the forest behind your house that you told him to stay out of anyway. After spending thirty minutes looking for it only to find it soaking wet and drippy, you force him to copy it onto a separate paper while you write his teacher a note
lying about what happened eloquently explaining the incident. You rush him through a snack so you can hurry up and pick up his siblings, take him to tutoring, take him to soccer, take him to buy a poster board for his project that he knew about for a week but just remembered is due tomorrow. Feed him meatloaf and mashed potatoes a stupid value meal from McDonalds. Again. And then lecture him on the way home about the need to really be more responsible. He's snoring when you look over to see if he's listening. He's not. Clearly. After two more hours of work at home he finally goes to sleep while you stay up kicking the stupid printer because WHY WON'T IT PRINT. Your other children go to bed bath-less, story-less, and with dirty teeth.
Baby middle of the night: Could go a few different ways; as predictable as your children are they have their moments of unpredictability to keep you on your toes. So, he could sleep through most of the night only waking every few hours to eat and poop without incident. Alternatively, he could cry constantly from sundown to sunup making you miserable and cranky and (if you ask your husband) a little stabby the following day. Or, he could do a little of both: heartily cry for a few hours, then begin the lovely eat, poop, and sleep routine about 15 minutes before you have to get up for work. Probably that last one is the least enjoyable.
Big Kid middle of the night: He should sleep through it. Unless he's sick. Then he will be up and so will you. And there are few things more unenjoyable than cleaning up the grown man barf of your still-too-young-to-clean-it-up-alone son.
See that? Not easier, just different.Read More