Postpartum Life

Postpartum life is not as fun at 43 than I remember at a younger age. (Although having a little baby in the house is!) But the upside is that I’ve had enough babies to expect and prepare for the crazy roller coaster of hormones that is my life after giving birth.

I just thought it’d be fun (helpful? encouraging? distracting?) to share a few snippets of my life in this season.

First thing: there’s just nothing, nothing as wonderful as a newborn. And this newborn seems softer, sweeter and lovelier than ever I remember a newborn being. We just drink him in. And the reality is, I have to fight to hold him. From the very moment he wakes up (sometimes from a sibling standing over his crib waking him up) there are negotiations and arguments about “who gets him next” and who held him the most yesterday as a bargaining chip for who gets to hold him next today. Poor guy.

And secondly, I’m a blubbering cry baby. Well some days. And others I’m as chipper as can be. It’s a little like feeling bipolar, maybe. Which makes my husband’s job exceedingly interesting, playing “guess which emotion” each day when he comes home from work.

One day he was being super sweet and called me on his way home to ask me if he could pick anything up for me. Immediately I felt a tinge of disappointment as I was particularly wishing for a “surprise dessert” (I crave sweets like a crazy person when I’m nursing), because, reading minds is a husband super power. So I just answered, “Well, we don’t have any dessert but it’s up to you. I’m OK.”

Even I wasn’t prepared for bursting into tears when he came home without any. (He quickly remedied the situation, by the way.)

Another day I burst into tears after an unsuccessful attempt to unclog the toilet. It’s mayhem.

And then other days are blissful, with so much energy and enthusiasm I tire myself.

There are other “fun” things a postpartum woman deals with that I’ll leave to the knowledge of women everywhere, and I’d love to hear your stories.

Big sister visiting for the first time–what a joy.

The good news is, things balance out, the belly shrinks, it feels wonderful to walk again (though diastasis still ails me), and eventually, I’ll sleep through the night, but for now, even the midnight interruptions are a gift (well, mostly) as I consider the privilege of being my sweet baby’s only lifeline and I cherish this probably-last chapter in my life of nestling a newborn in my arms.

And I have learned that whatever season of life we find ourselves in, replete with ups and downs, tears and laughter, it’s good to just be there, knowing that the harder days will eventually melt into good days and it’s all a part of life and it’s going to be OK.

I’m obviously not writing much now, focusing on motherhood, but I wanted to drop in and give you a quick update.

Oh, and following this post I wrote on Facebook last week:

“I might be able to handle this news on a normal day, but my husband’s sad news from Walmart, to this waiting, postpartum woman, confirming that they have stopped selling Danish Wedding cookies, might just put me over the edge.”

my sister sent me a delivery of 4 boxes of wedding cookies–I might survive.

 

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25 Responses to “Postpartum Life”

  1. Paige says:

    I just had my fifth baby two weeks ago and this time I’ve been taking vitex and evening primrose oil and find I’m not on an emotional roller coaster….yet! Thought I’d share! Congratulations!

  2. Lindsay Jackson says:

    Congratulations on your beautiful baby! I just had my sixth exactly a month ago
    and there is nothing sweeter than a newborn. I also have to fight my other 5 to get to hold him. I have been reading your blog for about 2 years now and it has so encouraged me in this large family journey! I never desired a large family but God has seen fit to give me one anyways. I am so grateful He gives us what we need and not what we think we want. We just bought a passenger van so I think we are officially a large family. Enjoy your sweet blessing and the not so sweet ones (hormones…post pregnancy body..to name a few). Blessings and thank you!

    Lindsay

  3. Sarah says:

    Hi. I am pregnant with my 7th and have continually been blessed by your journey and wisdom. Thank you for encouraging us momma’s in this season of life. It blessed me so to read your normal journey of after baby comes. I feel like I am in a season similar “before baby comes”. Clinging to the cross daily!
    Thank you for being you.
    Sarah

  4. Heidi says:

    Hahaha! What a good sister!
    Love the update. Newborns are so precious and hormones are…something else. 😉 I had our 6th seven months ago and I still don’t feel completely normal…if there is such a thing as “normal” especially for a homeschooling mom. 😉

  5. Shannon says:

    Whew, at 41 with a new baby over here, I hear ya! 😉 It’s definitely harder than it was in my thirties…. but knowing this is most likely the last makes it very sweet.

  6. Christy C says:

    I am with you! Postpartum the older you are is so much harder! My first babe I had at 21 and last at just shy of 41……(I am now 52) giving a total of 14 children, 7 boys/7 girls. Adding on top of it homeschool!! So glad for God’s grace and an understanding hubby! God is good! Blessings to you and your precious family!

  7. Katie says:

    We just had our third three and a half weeks ago. I completely understand the hormones! One minute things are great and cheery and the next everything is upside down! It’s nice to know it’s normal and to read about others experience with it. 🙂 It made me smile reading about your children arguing over who’s turn it is. My girls are 21 months and three and they do that constantly.

  8. Sheila Mom to Seven says:

    Thanks for sharing such precious pictures. I would love to have “just one more”, but my youngest is four, and I just turned 45. Makes me sad thinking I mightn’t ever have a newborn again…
    Cherish these moments! 😉

  9. Jen says:

    Gal- I just love your posts! I’m a momma to nine, newly expecting number ten. I’m always so relieved to read your positive outlook on an X-large family! So few cherish their children, and look on “another baby” as another task. These child-bearing years are short, and it’s so nice/lovely/sweet to see you cherish them. Your family is beautiful! Congratulations on all those blessings!

  10. Danielle says:

    Just had my 7th 4 months ago at age 41. They are softer and sweeter! While my postpartum body ached much more this time, my emotions stayed even. The only thing I changed was using geranium essential oil. Rocking my warm, fuzzy headed lump of love right now… Swooning❤️

  11. Wow, what a nice sister! What lovely pictures! Drink that baby up and don’t push yourself. Enjoy this time…..and don’t forget to keep taking your red raspberry leaf tea etc to steady your hormones. So wonderful that you have lots of big helpers these days so if you can ever get the baby from them, you can sit and enjoy him while they do the house work! 🙂

  12. Michele Call says:

    I’ll be having baby #8 in about 6 weeks and I’ll be one month shy of 43. I loved hearing about your postpartum emotions. That sounds like me right now. For me I think it is my level of busyness that affects my mood swings… and you have reminded me that I need to figure out how to slow down now. This could be my last baby and I want to enjoy him. My life is so much busier than it was when I had less/younger children. Anyway your blog has been an incredible blessing to me during this pregnancy. I am not around any big families and live on the mission field in a country of small families and have needed the encouragement your blog has provided.

  13. Mandy Sills says:

    What a beautiful little one! I have 2 boys and we are celebrating my youngests first birthday next week! Time flies so enjoy every minute. And hey- I just live in the Odenville area so I am just around the corner if your in need of anything….brownies, cupcakes, baby clothes etc. praying for supernatural energy and stamina! God bless!

  14. Carolina Jackson says:

    A friend of mine had baby number 10 at… 48!
    This may not be your last one!

  15. Catherine says:

    I was always glad to be nursing, that way I got to hold the baby once in a while. Our pediatrician was worried about sibling rivalry. I told him the only rivalry was over who got to hold the baby! Those days are over, my ‘baby’ is 6.

  16. Melissa says:

    Thank you for sharing this! I am about to have our 6th baby in a few weeks. My thoughts are mostly preoccupied with the giving birth part right now. I am not 30 yet but I can also relate to the ups and downs postpartum!

  17. Amy M says:

    Congratulations on that new baby! So beautiful. I’m currently pregnant for the 4th time, and I had to smile and nod as I read this. I love cuddling a newborn, but the exhaustion and emotional rollercoaster of postpartum days is something else. I still remember when my son (now 2) was born. I would burst into tears when I saw pictures of him because I was just overcome – and I would also burst into tears when the sink backed up because well, messiness.

    I hope you and your family are well!

  18. Bonnie says:

    Kelly, You are doing such an amazing job with all of your children. Your freshest little guy is so perfect!

    May the Lord bless, strengthen and encourage you as you continue to walk in courage and faith. His eye is on you and He delights in you greatly!! You are a leader to so many and you speak with humility and tenderness as you share your journey. You are a blessing to many. <3

  19. Amber says:

    I really have been thinking about you so much lately. Following your blog these past few years or so has been such a blessing to me.
    Postpartum is hard. It really wasn’t much of anything for me aside from feeling soggy and a bit emotional after the first 4, but after 5 and 6 it has definitely hit a lot harder. I had a back injury after #5 and it took about 7 mos before I even started to feel normal emotionally and physically. After #6 it was closer to 5 mos that I started to balance out. I’m only 32, but I suspect it’s not necessarily going to get easier.
    It’s funny because it finally started dawning on me what Eve’s curse means in Genesis 3. I always just thought that it meant giving birth would be painful, but the more I understand about the Bible, and the more commentaries I read, the more I’m seeing that childbearing is a lifelong struggle, and it’s supposed to be, and it is for ALL moms! I used to always think that other moms had it more together, or had it easier, or were more godly than me. Really, it’s hard for everyone, and those women who are more godly, are probably more godly because they have embraced suffering, and learned to lean on Christ instead of being in constant despair. Anyway… just thinking out loud, and wanted to say that I appreciate you being real and striving to be a godly woman! You have been such an inspiration for me.

    • Kelly Crawford says:

      Amber,

      Your comment is timely, and I appreciate it more than you know, as I am struggling now, much more than when this post was written a few days ago, and I cling to the promise that His grace is sufficient.

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