Monday, August 29

You Can't Expect It To Be So Easy....

This week has been rough sauce. Like, seriously rough, Super-tiring, hard, exhausting, & tear filled.
I know when I'm having a particularly hard day because my spine gets all tight and It's difficult to breathe. (That's when I'm grateful for impromptu, emergency Skype dates with friends who pray for this basket case mother of two and love me.)

My midwife says I've got post partum anxiety. So that's what this shit storm is? That explains it! It's not like post partum depression where you have weird thoughts of harming your baby, you're afraid to be around people or you are weepy and sad for no reason (that was me with Conrad.) I feel the complete opposite with Elle. I'm high strung. The tiniest thing can go wrong (getting lost on the other side of town after a Dr's appointment where I waited nearly 2 hours to see the Doctor which resulted in a total full on anxiety attack, crying, and yelling at my husband on the phone to help me get un-lost and praying to god my baby girl doesn't wake up and need to be fed on the side of the road...) Good times. It's like I've lost my coping mechanisms for stress. The smallest disappointment becomes a large mountain of devastation. My joys are extra amazing and glorious. My disappointments are extra debilitating. I cry happy tears almost daily and tears of frustration quickly follow. I think post-partum-bipolar-syndrome is a better explanation of what the hells wrong with me.

Damn hormones!

Not only that, I've become a first time mother all over again. They say you're more relaxed the second time around, but I disagree. I'm more protective, more cautious, & more concerned about every single thing concerning Elliotte. Not that I wasn't before, I just have a very different connection with her as a new born than I ever had with Conrad. Dustin was sucking snot out of her nose the other night as she screamed and cried and all I could do was sit and watch in horror just waiting until he was done and I could scoop her up and snuggle her back to calmness and peace.

I was talking on the phone with a friend of mine about how hard this life change of adding another baby to our family has been. One thing that she said was, "I don't know why you expected it to be easy. It's not going to be easy..." I guess I did sort of expect it to be "easy." I don't know what I expected really. The difficulties of having two some how surprised me and blindsided my ass.

A week ago, a stranger offered to help me to my car with my groceries and as he pushed my cart with my food and my two year old in it, I followed next to him with Elle in the sling. He asked how I was doing and I couldn't hold back the tears. (really, Chelsea? Breaking down to a stranger? Awkward.) Just a simple trip to the store can turn me into an emotional wreck. I tried to suck it up and say that I was doing just fine for the sake of saving myself the embarrassment. But I wasn't fine. I was a mess. Part of me was just so grateful to have someone give me a hand and the other part of me was completely frazzled and hanging on by a thread. I wasn't holding myself together as well as I thought I was. He said something sort of profound, looking back. He told me to enjoy this stage of sleepless nights because even though it's hard, it's going to be gone before you know it. 

He's right.

So that's what we're doing. We're taking each day as it comes. I'm asking god for extra helpings of patience with my two year old and when my new born has mustard colored poop all the way up to her neck and I'm cleaning crap out of everything, I just try to smile and take it moment by moment not expecting it to be easier than it already is. These days do pass too quickly.

Conrad is FIN-ah-ly accepting his sister though. For the first two weeks he sort of ignored her and was in denial of her existence and now I think he gets it. She's here to stay! She's not being sent back to Target, or Trader Joe's or wherever he thinks babies come from. She's not going anywhere....  The sibling rivalry has already begun I'm afraid. When we're in the car, if Elle starts crying, he goes, "Mom, baby cryin', mom! Baby cryin'! BahhahahahahHAhaah!!!!!" And breaks out in hysterics. Why it brings him so much joy to see her cry? I don't understand it. BUT last night he did come give Elle and I a kiss goodnight (UNPROMPTED!) AND THE WATER WORKS BEGIN AGAIN! So maybe he's starting to really get used to the idea of her.

Sleeping beauty:
"If the lord had not been my help, my soul would have dwelt in the land of silence. When I thought, "My foot slips," thy steadfast love, o Lord, held me up. When the cares of my heart are many, thy consolations cheer my soul. But the Lord has become my strong hold, and my God the rock of my refuge." Psalm 94

It will get easier. These precious days will disappear all too quickly. 
I need to enjoy them, even when they aren't easy. 
I can depend on my God to grace me with everything I need to raise both of my sweet babies, 
even in the hardest and most overwhelming of days. 
Even if I'm hanging on by a very thin thread, I'm still hanging on. 


  1. Praying for you and your family ! The last picture made me laugh !

  2. That last picture is priceless - she is giving the hormones THE look. :)

    Sorry it has been so rough...praying it will get better soon for you. Deep breaths.

    Love Conrad's kiss. :)

  3. I am thinking of you, way to much considering we are total strangers and I don't know you. But your pregnancy and birth were really inspiring to me and now that I am on the road to having two (8ish weeks along. . . ) I am so thankful to read this too. To know that this is the reality and this will pass. This is beautifully honest and your words are working a great work in many people, be sure of that.

    ps. not to sound like an ass but I am fairly certain that the G diapers on on backwards, they are super weird and the velcro goes around the other way. . . it threw me big time with our daughter (the lady at the diaper store taught me on a doll, but she could have been wrong.).

  4. Autumn, you're very sweet. I appreciate your comment! ;)

    And, I didn't realize they were on backwards but i kind of like the way they fit backwards! Maybe we'll just be diaper rebels and keep doin' em wrong! Ha! ;)

  5. she is beautiful! hang in there.. he will adjust with time. I promise! ;)

  6. beautiful. keep it up, things will get better. love you lady.

  7. You are not alone Mama! I cried my face off to the clerk at CVS when Mason was sick. He was so kind and compassionate and even brought me tissues as I sobbed in front of a line full of people!

    Oh, and I know you like birth stories, I wanted to share mine with you:

  8. those first few months are the HARDEST. i've always heard that when you have a second, it's the most difficult to adjust but when you have a third, it's no big deal. haha...we'll see.

    i remember it being quite a crazy house around here for a good long while when Willow came along. i felt the same way you do. it does get better! you will get into a routine, conrad will adjust, your hormones will settle and life will get a million times easier. you just need to make it over this hurdle :) but there IS a light at the end of the tunnel!

    praying for you, friend...and sending you lots of LOVEEEEE <3

  9. April Doremus30 August, 2011

    He told me to enjoy this stage of sleepless nights because even though it's hard, it's going to be gone before you know it.

    - this is actually a country song he quoted. It's called "you're going to miss this" by trace Atkins. You should listen to it, it will definitely give you happy tears :)

  10. Remember this is all worth it. I'm sure you know that. One look into your children's eyes will bring you back to that place. Sending love and prayers your way.

    I'm also grateful to hear stories of truth, where it is not always easy. I think somehow the stories get twisted along the way, and we all get duped into thinking it's always magical! I love your openness. It's beautiful.

  11. Oh Chelsea... I'm sorry it has been so hard. It must be such a mess to feel so many thing, so much all at once. Keep looking to the Lord, since He will guide you through.

    A thought about Conrad laughing at his sister: he's only two. Maybe he thinks she sounds ridiculous, but more likely it's a nervous reaction to her screaming. I don't think it has anything malicious behind it.

  12. Thank you for your comment! It was so wonderful to log into the wifi at the local cafe and find it waiting for me. Especially as I had already prepared a comment for this post (while I'm hooked to the internet in the morning, I open a bunch of blog pages and when it gets dark or mosquito-y back at no-internet camping land, I read the blog pages and save the comments I want to post in a word doc for the next time I have wifi). Whew! Anyways, I wanted to say:

    Oh Chelsea, you're my hero. You're doing so well and I can FEEL the love you have for your children all the way on the other side of the screen. If it was always easy, it might be less memorable. I hope it does go smoother though, for your sanity's sake. You'll be in my prayers.

  13. I haven't been on blogger in a while, omgosh.. congratulations, Chelsea!!!! Such a beauty. Utter perfection. God bless your family.

  14. Chelsea, I am right there with you. My little girl is now 4 mos, and my big boy is now 25 mos - he was 21 mos when she was born. Things are tough for our sweet little family, but the joys certainly outweigh the sleepless nights, screaming fits, misunderstandings, tears, etc. Keep hanging in there - you can do it!

    PS. I love your sweet blog! And also, I looked it up - the G Diaper tabs close at the back! You and I are both using them incorrectly! Good thing they still fit comfortably for our little ones.