PPD continued...


7/11/20233 min read

If I'm being honest, I didn’t feel like this baby was really mine until he reached about 6-7 months. It’s no secret that I did not enjoy the newborn period. It was hard for me. I did have postpartum depression so that didn’t help but I also just straight-up did not like it. No sleep? Endless dishwashing? Crying with no answers? No prizes for getting through the day? No thank youuuuuuuuuuu. And my baby was an easy baby, so I’m told. He was relaxed and happy. Rarely fussing. Not many gas issues. I just couldn't believe that this baby was my responsibility. And it was crushing me. How could I know if I was doing this right?

I wouldn't know. I would never know because there is no answer! As a type A person, I wanted validation. I wanted a certificate saying I was doing a great job. I wanted to get an A+ in newborn care. Unfortunately, that doesn’t exist. Maybe I’ll make them and just give them to every new mom.

I also had a dog that did not like the baby but LOVED me. He was a shadow dog and always looking to protect me. He was the thing I was most nervous about when having a baby. How could I love and care for these two really important things to me? It honestly made everything so much harder. I was constantly having to separate them and I felt pulled between two things I really loved. If I wasn't with the baby, I was giving the dog attention. It left no room for any alone time or time to just calm down. As the baby started moving and making noises, my dog got worse. He would bark at the baby and lunge at him. His aggression started to scare me so I had to make the really hard decision to give him to my parents to take care of. I tried to make it work for 6 months. I still grieve this decision because I love that dog so much but the baby was the priority.

After Cotton (the dog) left, I was able to make changes that really helped with my postpartum depression. I started working on assimilating my baby into my life. I wanted to go to Starbucks? I took the baby. I needed a walk for my mental health? I took the baby. I wanted to visit a friend? I took the baby. I also realized that I didn’t need to be entertaining this baby 24/7. Again, there were no prizes for being the “best” mom. All that mattered was that I loved him, took care of him, and gave him attention when he needed it.

My advice to new moms is to just be. Just be with your baby. Don't worry about doing all the right things. You will do the right things because it's your baby. My friend just had a baby and I’ve admired her so much. She’s just so logical in all her decision making. She’s not following the crowd or all the intense advice people give. If it makes sense to her, she does it.

Sometimes I think about having a second baby just so I could redo all the worrying and fretting I did and just enjoy having a newborn. I don't regret anything because it made me so much stronger and I do think I'm the perfect mom for Ravi. As my sister (a family defense lawyer) said, you may feel like you’re not doing very much in those first months, but you're building a secure attachment for that child that will remain with him forever. I know my baby has that secure attachment because he's a relaxed and happy baby. I try to remember that and be proud of myself and Roland for giving that gift to our child.

I do still want a certificate though.



I didn’t recognize my baby when I first met him. They put him on my chest and I was like, “huh ok.” You know those angelic voices you’re “supposed” to hear? “Ahhhh it’s my baby. The one I’ve been waiting to meet!” No, this was a stranger to me. He was cute as hell! And healthy and relaxed. I liked him for sure. But feel like he was mine? No. I didn’t feel like he was any different from any other newborn I had met. I’m sure this also has to do with the total disassociation mothers go through when they go through labor and delivery. How could you possibly be mentally present for all these really tough things?