So life has been really fast paced lately. There is a lot of go go go and not much slow down and smell the coffee (wait...that's not how that saying goes...is it? I need coffee). Two weeks ago, we packed up our house and moved across the city (yea, it's only across the city but in a city like LA, that's significant.) There are still so many boxes to be unpacked, so many things to put away, so many spaces to organize. My husband and I are both working full time. Oh yea. I am working full time at home while taking care of my son. Am I complaining about working from home? Hell no. Do you know how lucky I am to do this right now and have the opportunity to be home with my son? I sure do. But you guys, please do not be mistaken, taking care of an almost 4 month old is a full time job in itself. And I am so proud of myself because I have not dropped.a.single.ball. (*takes a bow*) I also decided last week was a great time to begin sleep training my son to self soothe (The Happy Sleeper is my jam so far- future blog on that.) You know who's really tired? ME. GIVE ME ALL THE COFFEE (oh wait, I only allow myself one cup a day since I am nursing the baby).
So I work full time, take care of baby (don't forget we are sleep training!), unpacking when possible, pumping 4 times a day, and keeping up the family's laundry and dishes and bills...and I have been feeling REALLY REALLY REALLY SAD. Like cry every night sad. Being a new mom can be really isolating. It's a strange thing. You are experiencing this extreme joy of having a child that you love with all your being yet you are also struggling with feelings of loss of identity, social life, sleep, and self care. Before I had a baby, I was all about "being up in the gym just working on my fitness" (shut up- this is a relevant quote since Fergie's rendition of the National Anthem just made headlines). I counted calories like it was my job. I cranked up the heat in my house and did Vinyasa flow. I power walked my way through every work day lunch break. I painted my nails every couple days. I choreographed shows. I had dinners and bottle(s) of wine with friends. I wore skinny jeans and was all "look at me, living my best life."
I broke down to my husband after the baby went to bed two nights ago. I felt so alone and so defeated. In a word, I was overwhelmed. After I finally got baby to sleep, the last thing I wanted to do was work out. While I love where we live, it's pretty far from nearly all of my friends. And who would want to hang out with a new mom who can't party like she used to and has to call it a night at 11pm so she can pump and try to get some sleep? I would wake up saying "today, we will take a walk" but getting him in his carriage seemed like a hassle at times and while I am totally into the sleep training, finding time between our naptimes and feedings and pumps and work can be discouraging. It is much easier to just give up and give in. My husband reminded me that I have always been the girl who accomplishes whatever she says she wants to accomplish. And then he told me straight up that I was making excuses. Damn. Ain't that the truth.
Since that conversation, I have taken the baby on three walks outside. Short walks but walks all the same. You guys, I can feel ocean breeze where I live. Why have I not been out there walking? I washed my hair yesterday. I painted my nails tonight after the baby went to sleep. But the biggest chance I have taken since then? I got into a conversation with women I don't know on a Westside Moms Facebook Group and have made plans for a playdate with our babies. I have downloaded a Westside Moms app that lists Mommy and Me classes, including fitness oriented ones, for moms with babies as young as mine. Making new friends when you are an adult is tough. It's easier to stay cooped up with the anxiety and the routine because I know I am safe here. Know what's tougher than putting it out there and saying I need outside interactions? Feeling so isolated and alone and sad. I don't want to feel that way anymore. I have a baby who is adorable and smart and so funny already and I want him to explore the world starting now. I am still super nervous about it all but the old me- the power yoga, two a days, leading dance calls me would push through the nerves and just do it, no matter how socially awkward she may feel. I want my son to approach life confidently, even in times where he may not feel it. It's time for that old me to come back around and lead by example. May the journey begin...