Mikey came unexpectedly, so he was in the NICU for 7 days before we could take him home. So in the meantime, the only way I felt like I was being a good mom (the guilt started already!) was pumping the crap out of my boobs. I spent 30 minutes every two hours trying to get enough milk for my little guy. By the end of that 7 days-I was producing 4-6 oz per boob! I felt like a champ and we had more than enough for Mikey. But then I had to adjust to his meting his little body’s needs, so the engorgement was horrible…. I remember his little head was like half the size of my previously A cup chest.
Because of this, Mikey had a hard time latching on. So, with the help of a lactation consultant, and these nipple shields, I was able to nurse my little guy for 10 whole months! Nursing him was honestly what healed my relationship with Mikey. Because he came so quickly and unexpectedly, (and I was drugged on Magnesium Sulfate to regulate my blood pressure, and I could not hold him for the first 24 hours, and I could not take him home for an entire week after that,)bonding was extremely difficult for me. I just felt broken, like I was not called to be a mom or something… like I wasn’t even his mom and he wasn’t even my child. I thought to myself, “Isn’t this supposed to be the happiest and most fulfilling time of my life?!?” To make matters worse, all my peers were still in college, not even close to marriage, let alone having kids. I felt like an island. A 21-year old, non-maternal island.
But I write all of this because I wish someone had told me, it gets better. And I wish someone told me that sometimes ‘falling in love’ with your child takes work and effort. And that it doesn’t make you a bad mom.
So if you are first time mommy, and you feel super overwhelmed, and sometimes that you even regret taking the plunge into motherhood, or that you don’t feel super connected to your newborn just yet- I am here to tell you that with prayer and effort, you CAN fall totally head-over-heels- in love with your little one! If you don’t, I would TELL SOMEONE about it-talking through some things with others and even seeking meds to help regulate your hormones postpartum can really help heal your relationship!