Wednesday, April 23, 2014

I'm Gonna Hold you Through the Difficult

I remember that first night all too well. Nate had gone home to stay with Averi so it was just me and the baby. She didn't just cry all night, but it was almost like from the beginning she was born screaming. The first of many nights of me just holding her while tears streamed down both of our cheeks began that night in the dark lonely hospital room.

 My mother in law and mother both visited in the first few weeks and even though both claimed Nate and I were fussy, screaming babies too (though neither had ever mentioned this prior to that moment), both seemed a little horrified for me and the emotional outcry of that red, wrinkly baby. Even though I was not a first time mom I was a little at loss how to handle this new baby.

In those early moments, I worried and questioned everything.I was told to quit nursing her. I was told maybe she was emotionally disturbed. I was told maybe she was colic. Maybe she had acid reflux. My husband was unsure how to handle her and with no family around, figuring out how to handle this crying, screaming baby was left to me.

My first daughter was so easy, and even though I'm sure she probably had her fussy moments, she has always been such a happy kid from birth, that any bad moments were pretty much erased from my mind. But because of that I had all these horrible thoughts going through my head those first few months with my inconsolable baby. I worried that we wouldn't love her as much as her sister. I wonder what I did wrong while I was pregnant that made her so unhappy. Then I worried that all my worries were going to cause more problems for her. I worried so much about this child and then I felt so much guilt for comparing her to her sister, for getting frustrated, for feeling so uncertain about what to do about her. 

Through all the tears and frustrations, I just held on. I was just going to hold her until she knew she was loved.  Whereas Averi always loved to be held and is a cuddlebug to this day, Kenzi didn't even seem to like the comfort of the human touch at first. Slowly, over time she seemed to be okay more and more with being held.

The other night when laying in bed with Averi she told me how I don't give her lovey (that's what she calls cuddling) anymore even though we were cuddling in that very moment; that I always give Kenz lovey now instead. In a way she was right. Now that two and half years have gone by, looking back I do see how much I baby and love on Kenz. I reminded Ave that she doesn't remember but before Kenz she was a mommy's girl the same way Kenz is now, but because Kenz needed Mommy so much when she was born because she was a baby and so fussy, she, Averi, became the big Daddy's girl that she is. I told her Kenz for whatever reason-colic, acid reflux-had a difficult start and she just needed mommy to hold her tight until it passed. But if and whenever she was having a difficult time Mommy would hold her through it too.

A friend of mine just had her second daughter and it was through a conversation with her that my own memories of our start with Kenz came back. I think we like to think it should be easier with the second baby because we've done this before, but I've encountered several moms who find something about the second one more of a struggle. Then whether we're new at this mom gig or not, we're afraid to admit our uncertainty, fears, and even the dark places our mind may wander. I think the first part of that hurdle is getting over our expectations that they're going to be like the first one. Just as accepting that no two mother's journeys will be the same, it's the same with each new journey and relationship we begin with each new child we have. Each is going to present its own challenges and difficulties, but just hold them through it.

My once fussy inconsolable baby is now a happy, giggly two year old. She is a very emotional child. Her feelings are hurt easily; she angers quickly, but she also loves with all that she has now too. She loves to cuddle and give hugs to those she knows and trusts. She is a momma's girl, but I see so much of myself in her now. I still don't really know why she cried so much in the beginning, but whatever it was she moved past it. Now I see those nights of crying together in the rocking chair in the dark was just a part of the journey to our mother/daughter relationship.

Similar Posts about Learning to Raise Two Different Daughters

The Journey to Loving Different Children

My Dearest Daughters: My Sugar and My Spice



1 comment:

  1. Angela, I find your posts so inspiring and real. As I read this I sympathized with you. I felt all the early memories that I also have of my daughter come back to me. It can be hard in the beginning. You both made it through. -I'm so happy she's full of energy, smiling and happy. Great post!