This morning I got out alone for one of the first times since Sister Nugget was born, and it was wonderful! So grateful to the Abbot for being willing to wrangle our littles so that I could have some silence in my life.
The man loves his daughters.
Speaking of which, have you seen the buzz online about being an introvert? Motherhood is what made me finally realize I actually was an introvert, and that realization has made a huge difference! I now know how to prevent myself from getting burned out - making sure to have a little time alone every day. Like Lisa (in the second link) describes, most people wouldn't think I was an introvert because I have no problem acting extroverted when need be. But...it really helps to know that I'm actually an introvert so I know how best to re-charge! (Let me just say I breathed a huge sigh of relief when I read these two links, too, because it turns out that some of my inclinations that I thought were odd are actually introverted - like screening my calls and calling people back so I can mentally prepare for a conversation. Don't laugh, extroverts. Don't laugh.)
Baby back in arms. Sister Stinky loved her Mommy's milk, but she also loved (and loves) her pacifier.
She pretty much lived with the thing in her mouth until she was three months old or so. Sister Nugget, on the other hand, makes a disgusted face whenever I try to get her a "patsy" (as we call it around here). She prefers Mommy's milk and nothing else. Her poor father is often at his wit's end when trying to soothe her, but is a good sport about it. Thankfully, my post-partum depression symptoms have been much milder this time, and so I'm not too overwhelmed by a baby who wants to, basically, live in my arms. In fact, I even kind of like it.
I mean, wouldn't you want to hold this little person every chance you got?
Which leads me to my next link to share: this great reflection on being a mom to more than one. I wholeheartedly agree with her opinion that zero to one is the hardest transition! I couldn't have dealt with a non-pacifier using baby the first time around, but I am almost enjoying it this time around. God has a wonderful way of sending you the child you need when you need her. It was a blessing to have Sister Stinky first, and it is a blessing that Sister Nugget is our second. I can't even begin to explain how those statements are true - but they are, in countless ways. Sister Stinky was just the baby that we needed to start out with, and Sister Nugget is a great younger sister in our family. God always provides, I'm learning - and He has a way of knowing what we need before we ourselves know what we need.
I don't know if you caught that, back there in take #3, but I haven't been immune to post-partum depression this go-around...but it has been a thousand times easier to deal with! Having the support and care you need makes a huge difference. So, I really encourage any mothers out there who think they may be struggling with PPD to take a screening quiz and share their results with their doctor or midwife. The sooner you diagnose it, the easier it is to treat! My first time, it wasn't diagnosed until almost 3 months post-partum and it took much longer to improve than it has this time (when my ob/gyn and my daughters' pediatricians' office have both made resources available to me from the get go!). But above all else...please know that you're not alone! Many women suffer from post-partum depression (and too many suffer in silence). Motherhood is MUCH more enjoyable if you have the support you need and access to whatever treatment works for you (be it therapy, medication, progesterone supplementation, a post-partum doula, etc., etc.). And if you think you're suffering from it, and don't know who else to talk to, I would gladly welcome e-mails from any one of my readers! You are most definitely not alone!
But seriously...newbornhood has been sooo much easier this time around, simply because I'm healthier! I'm able to enjoy the little things so much more, and am so much less overwhelmed by the daily stresses of caring for my daughters. I can even laugh at those stresses that would have made me cry last time!
Speaking of laughter...Sister Nugget woke up a little before seven this morning (after having been up on an off for the previous two hours) because her sister trotted in our room shouting, "Mommy! Daddy! It's morning time!!!" So, I snuggled her next to me after that so we could both try and doze off. When we both opened our eyes to the morning sunlight, she looked at my face and smiled. I totally think it counts as her first smile! Sister Stinky smiled earlier than six weeks, too. I am so grateful that God has sent me earlier smilers. :-)
By the way, I've been re-vamping the blog a bit...check it out!