Battling the Baby Blues for the Sake of Brighter Days
My name is Mia Ortiz. I am a very young mom. I had my little sweetheart at the age of nineteen. The months leading up to her birth, I was so excited. I couldn’t wait to post updates on her progress in my belly on Facebook.
I overly decorated her nursery and bought her so many clothes that by the time we got to them, they were too small. I made sure she had the best of the best when it came to her crib and transportation gadgets. Well, at least what I could afford and would consider high end for my budget. Everything was just perfect I couldn’t wait for her arrival. Besides my actual health problems during my pregnancy, nothing else bothered me. I just wanted to snuggle and show off my new baby.
My daughter came early, I had a natural birth planned out. So once I found out eight centimeters in, mid-labor, that I’d have to have a c-section, my heart was torn. I’d just like to say no matter if you have a natural birth or c-section. Neither one makes you more or less of a mother.
My c-section wasn’t the best experience, again it had a lot to do with my health problems prior. Although it seemed to happen fast, my life felt like it was moving in slow motion.
I had never felt so alive in the moment where I had finally got to see my child’s face.
Everything was perfect in the hospital. She was beautiful. A lot of family and friends came out to meet her.
The nurses warned me to get sleep while she slept and asked if I wanted to let them take her back to the nursery. I had my fiancé by my side. Up until he had to go to work, but he’d be back later in the day. On the third day of my hospital stay, I was introduced to breastfeeding. My best friend really encouraged me to try it out.
So I did and it wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. For some reason, I had anxiety about not doing it right. Or not being able to produce milk, I really don’t know why. It was like an opportunity to bond with my baby more than we already were. I was able to use a manual pump in the hospital, but thanks to WIC services, I was provided with a much more convenient breast pump to borrow for when I got home. Soon after the hospital stay, we had our first day home.
With all of the chaos and last minute precautions we took to get me to the hospital at first, we forgot that we hadn’t finished rearranging the house in time for her arrival. On top of that my body was still in pain. I was told not to carry up to a certain amount of pounds and to take it easy around the house. My fiancé never had a child before so this was new for the both of us.
Between giving out demands and expecting help from family, which neither happened to be a success, I began to fall into a “blah” state of mind. My baby wouldn’t sleep throughout the night at all. She also wouldn’t sleep on her dad so it felt like I couldn’t catch a break. Even when I wanted to sleep while she slept.
My motherly instincts and my what-if’s kept me up through the night. My appetite seemed to decrease. My fiancé had to go back to work after a week. Only then is when I started to realize I needed help. I just didn’t have the energy or will to ask anyone for help.
I felt like I shouldn’t have had to ask anyone, and that my family and friends should have helped anyway. To my surprise, I had little to no help from day to day. I started to feel less energized by the day as well. It was like I had a dark cloud over me. I didn’t quite know where it came from all of a sudden.
Between losing all of my sleep, to everyone telling me it’ll get better as she gets a little older, I thought I had definitely given up hope on being the great mom figure I planned out to be. I’d listen to other moms and their stories about their perfect birth and their perfect child and I was so confused. What could I have possibly done wrong? On top of all of that, I couldn’t produce enough breast milk to feed my baby.
The whole time I thought I was, but at most of my doctor's visits, she’d meet the height requirements but not the weight. I knew I couldn’t afford to buy formula out of pocket every month so with the help of WIC and their voucher program I was able to do a successful switch. I also had problems with finding the right formula for my daughter, she didn’t tolerate some of the first ones we tried but we got the hang of it around the third try.
Everything just seemed impossible. One thing that did grow on me was my child’s smile. The way my child looked at me like it was me and them against the world. It’s priceless, and those moments made me realize that I had to savor the time we shared. Overcome the feeling I had felt, for whatever reason, because babies don’t stay young for long.
I knew I was stronger than what I was going through. So I fought hard, I never stopped loving my child. It’s just that the feelings I started to have made things seem blurry and clouded.
Making a little time for myself helped a whole lot. Whether it was two hours or thirty minutes, it still made a huge difference for me.
In those little moments, I found a hobby for Myself. I started blogging, which allowed me to express all of my feelings through writing. It was very therapeutic for me. It’s something I would recommend to all new moms, find a hobby, anything that interests you, and strive in it. It can help you get out of that feeling and inspire you to take the next steps to overcoming the baby blues.
All in all, I realized being a mom isn’t an easy job, that I am gonna face highs and lows, and not everyone is perfect. Also, every child is different, so what works for one mom might not work for me. So being patient and understanding is key. As well as making time for myself, speaking up or talking to someone when I am feeling overwhelmed is important. I am lucky to have my fiancé. If you don’t have a partner you can try a family member, friends, or a counselor. Or if you're up to it, you can branch out and meet new mom friends. Before I end this blog I would like to say that no matter if you had a natural birth or a c section. If you breastfeed or feed your baby formula. If you're a working mom or a stay at home mom. You are a mother, you are important, and if not from anyone else, you are loved by your child.
They don’t care about you being a perfect mom they just care about you being their mom.
Spending time with them, capturing those captivating moments, and being that person they can count on. I promise you it’s all worth it in the end. So when you feel like the baby blues is creeping up on you, remember these words and fight it. You are worth it, momma.
About the Author...
My name is Mia. I am a passionate and driven young mom who is also learning my child day by day. I am not perfect, but I am doing what I have to do to give my child a life I never had. I am also in school and I have my own blog. Doing all these things gets hard at times, but I know in the end it’ll be worth it. I spend my time encouraging and supporting other mothers to keep going because it’s never too late to start making a better life for yourself.