He's 10 days old now.
I've thought about writing a post so many times in those 10 days but my moods swing so dramatically that whatever I wrote, I knew I would hate myself for it a few hours later and either delete it or write another post reneging it.
The first week was the worst. I was so fucking emotional I was crying all. the. time. I was certain there was NO WAY I was going to survive this.
I was stressed over Ruby and how I've "ruined" her life. I cried every time I looked at her, overwhelmed with guilt.
I was embarrassed of myself for how I acted while I was in labour. I cried and screamed in pain and I begged to die. When it was time to push I at first refused because I said that I just couldn't. I begged the midwife and/or nurse to get him out another way, any other way. I felt ashamed acting so out of control and it ate me up a bit.
I was uncomfortable with breastfeeding. Remember I pumped for 6 months with Ruby because she refused to breastfeed. Lincoln is a champ in that department but he sucked so hard it hurt (I cracked and bled). And I felt trapped by it - sitting on the couch feeding him for hours and hours in a day. Not to mention the wild emotions that were released when I was in the actual act of doing it. I also felt shy about doing it. My boobs are bigger than Lincoln's head and I found it extremely difficult to be discreet which really bothered me.
I felt pain and immense fatigue from the birth. I was so tired and shaky and had zero appetite. So even though I was hungry and knew I should eat - I couldn't. And that made things worse. I was soooo weak.
I thought/imagined that Steve was disgusted with me. Both my appearance and my emotionalism.
Ruby acted like a demon. She was already going through a "phase" when Lincoln came into the world but I managed to blame myself for bringing a new baby into the house for her behavior. I felt like a horrible mother because I was actually incapable of dealing with her. Her whining and crying and often rotten behavior almost put me over the top.
I was overcome with fear and anxiety of how in the hell I'm going to look after both Ruby and Lincoln when Steve goes back to work later this week.
After a particularly tearful visit to the midwive's office, one midwife said she would refer to me to post partum mental health.
Later that day the midwife who delivered Lincoln called and talked to me about the birth and explained that it really was normal and I did and said nothing that I need to be ashamed of.
I let Ruby go to my mom's house over night when Lincoln was a week old. Of course I felt like I was pawning her off and hated myself for it but the next morning I felt refreshed and more clear.
And in the past few days I feel like things are improving. My body is healing. I'm getting the hang of Lincoln. I bought a breastfeeding cover. I'm not quite as sleep deprived feeling. I'm working on helping Ruby through her phase. The guilt is fading. I'm able to do a little more.
I feel incredibly lucky to have such a good baby. Lincoln is kickass good. He's not fussy. He doesn't cry (unless he's really, really hungry). And a few times I have had to wake HIM to feed him in the night. Sometimes I only have to get up with him once or twice in the night. (I didn't want to write this paragraph because as soon as I hit "publish" he will turn into a sleep depriving demon, I just know it)
I probably won't need the mental health appointment. I can probably work through this.
And yet still... at around 5 or 6pm each day I am usually in fairly rough shape. The tiredness hits and so does the depression. The tears are easy to fall. It usually lasts until I go to bed. But I know that when I wake up the next day (or sometime in the night) I will likely feel better.
I just have to keep on keeping on and hope things keep improving - however slowly.