Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Freaking out

Josh got home around 6pm from work last night and I had baby clothes scattered throughout the house. They were everywhere. They covered the sofa and love seat, some living room floor, our bed, the baby's crib, and the kitchen table. I inherited most of them from my sister's two boys, but got some nice new stuff at my shower as well, so I washed it all yesterday in preparation for the kid's arrival. I have lots o' clothes from newborn to six months that I want to keep available because I have no idea what's going to fit our little guy when he comes. That, and some stuff looks awfully teeny for the size listed on the tag.

Anyway, Josh looked around but didn't say anything. I cleared him a spot for his laptop on the coffee table and asked him when he thought we could refinish the dresser. Turns out the paint stripper we got recommends use in temperatures between 65-85 F. It hasn't been that warm here for at least three months! So I disappointedly agreed to just use the dresser as is for right now, and we'll refinish it later when it's warmed up outside. I'm going to clean it up as best I can today, but I can't help but be so sad that it's not going to look all fresh and new for the baby. I'm still going to look for some new hardware right now, though.

About an hour later, after he was done exercising, he came into the kitchen while I was making dinner and asked me how I thought things were coming along. I asked if he was talking about baby things or if I was missing something. Yes, he was talking about baby preparation...was there anything I wanted him to be doing that he wasn't? I told him no, because there really isn't, but then I got really quiet and tried to hold back my tears.

The truth is, I'm totally freaking out about being a mother. I haven't been scared or nervous to be pregnant at all. I almost like being pregnant. I'm not scared to go into labor and have the kid, either. But being pregnant and delivering a baby are not the same as having a baby. I can do the first two - I did a great job the first time around. But I chose not to take the baby home and dress her and feed her and bathe her and burp her and get up with her in the night and sooth her when she cries. I gave that responsibility to someone that not only wanted it, but was prepared to do it. All I had to do was heal up real quick-like and drown myself in school and work.

But now, every morning, I wake up and realize that this baby is going to be born in a few weeks and instead of going home with another family, he's going to come home with me and Josh. And we're going to be responsible for everything for him. And that scares me. Then I get worried that Josh isn't as scared as I am.
And then I feel guilty because I'm more scared than excited, like I won't love the baby like I'm supposed to. And then I get worried again when everyone says my motherly instincts will kick in and I'll just 'know' what to do. Because...what if they don't kick in? And it's a whirlwind of emotions that I don't like to have but I can't seem to shake them, and I feel so overwhelmed when I look at all these little clothes and I wonder why it felt like such a good decision when we decided to stop trying to prevent pregnancy.

So, in response to his question, I tell my husband these things and he patiently listens to me and brings me tissues to wipe my cheeks and blow my nose. Then he offers to give me a blessing, and I accept. And even though I cried again today recapping these feelings and events, you need to know that as he used the Priesthood to bless me with strength of spirit and comfort at this time, I felt so much love from my Heavenly Father. It was like He calmed the emotional turmoil that had been consuming me for days. He gave me a sweet, gentle, reminder that I need to spend a little more time on my knees and a little less time in my head.

I am so incredibly grateful for Josh, for his wisdom, and for his worthiness. I don't know how to explain my simple love for him, but he is probably the greatest thing to have ever happened to me. This baby and I are so lucky to have him leading our family.


Sara said...

I'm not one who believes everyone has those mothering "instincts", but I also don't believe you need them to be a good mother. If when you bring your baby home you don't feel like a natural, don't worry about it! There are so many great books that will fill in the gaps for you. It'll all come together. I know it.

Dirtius Wifius said...

I was certain that I would be a natural mother. I'd been around babies my whole life! But when we got home it didn't feel natural and easy at all. But it still worked. Paige - with a loving family, that baby is going to be just fine - no matter how prepared you think you are. Because even though it's cliche', love really is all you need.

deidra said...

Oh! So sweet. I'm definitely glad that I'll have Chris as a husband when a baby comes our way. I think you'll be a wonderful mom!

theqcontinuing said...

Thanks for freaking me out. Now I know what I have to look forward to. Sheesh! As if the mood swings, and constipation weren't enough!

I'm glad you have a husband you can count on for blessings and support. And the fact that you're even worrying about loving your baby enough is a good sign.

familyofthewaves said...

Oh no! j/k This is all normal. I just wanted to keep Daniel in my belly where I could protect and love him at all times. And you know what, I didn't have those motherly instincts. They came to me over time and I'm still learning with my second. Each baby is different, each mother is different, life is different for everyone. As long as you worry and try your best . . . because they are going to grow up and be their own person just like you and I became our own person with our parents trying their best. And I don't think you or I turned out all that bad! You turned to the Lord for comfort and that is what we all need to do in times of doubt. Hang in there mama!

bechtold clan said...

Im worried too, but for a different reason..that perhaps I wont love this baby as much as the first( everyone tells me Im crazy) so Ill pass it along-- Your CRAZY! does it help? No I didnt think so...same for me. I just think that because we do feel the way we do, and we are being honest with ourselves that is the first step...getting a blessing was Im sure a very good thing. I know for me that whether I am hit like I was with Elijiah with overwhelming love, or it takes time- it will be ok. Like PP said..all situations are a bit different and we each do our best.

DebraPants said...

Your post touched me... to tears. I know I'll have those same worries and fears whenever my time comes. And while I know part of that is probably hormones, it's a scary and wonderful thing.

I love Priesthood blessings!

Bethany said...

Oh, honey.


Joycelyn said...


I really liked his comment on you needing to spend more time on your knees and less time in your head. Now there is some sound advice!!!

Right now, I'm just trying not to complain too much about my complications bc I know that this is all worth it in the end...to hold our son in our arms.

At times I want to rant as well, but am afraid it'll come across as a whiny pregnant lady. :-p We do just need to rant sometimes, though, dont we?

Loved your rant. Glad I don't feel alone in this.