I feel like there are many scary “you don’t even know” type posts and anecdotes out there, and plenty of older generations with the “just you wait” stories that I felt like I fully anticipated that it would be a difficult transition into motherhood and parenting. My expectations were pretty built up in this aspect.
On the other hand, there are so many “you’ve never experienced a love like this before” sentiments out there to build up the excitement for your little one’s arrival. I had painted such a beautiful picture in my mind of my child being born, being placed on my chest and having a gentle loving entry into this world. We would have skin to skin, we would establish breastfeeding and take time as our new family of three soaking in those early hours.
I still am quite in love with our birth story. I am okay with the outcome of how my son was born via c-section even though it wasn’t the goal. I think our story is beautiful. However, over this first month and my transition into motherhood, I’ve noticed triggers and sadness coming up for me. At first, I just felt guilt and shame over these feelings because I never quite understood them. I didn’t know how to articulate or make sense of them.
Eventually ,the triggers formed a bit of a pattern and I finally understood what was happening in my head. It’s a difficult thing to convey because when you’re experiencing something that isn’t the “norm,” you feel guilty for or isolated in your feelings. This is why I’m choosing to share this story. Had I read something like this prior to our birth, maybe I would have better understood or better processed what I have been trying to make sense of over the past month.
In June a friend of mine told me something and I’m glad it resonated with me because in the end, I shared a similar experience to hers. She told me that when both of her children were born, she never felt that fairytale overwhelming flood of bonding and love they all tell you about. I remember tucking that information away in the “I hope I never have to pull this out” compartment of my brain.