Last night, we went out together as a family for the first time!
This is a huge milestone for me.
So, a little context: I had given birth 6 weeks ago, and everyone always says the same thing, “you must be itching to get out!”
Well, here’s the thing. I actually wasn’t. You would think being cooped up for 6 weeks would drive me crazy, and I’d want to take every opportunity to get to do something. Anything. When in reality, that couldn’t be further from the truth.
We have had a few opportunities to go out over the past few weeks, and every time something would come up where we ultimately decided to stay in. And it felt great.
You know that feeling when you have plans, and then the day of, you realize you would really rather just stay in instead? Canceling plans is sometimes the best feeling in the world. You don’t have to get ready afterall and you can continue your Netflix binge.
I’m actually not an introverted person, and I normally love to go out at any chance I get. I live in Florida! Even if there is nothing going on around town on a particular day, we can always have a beach day. Who doesn’t love the beach?
So anyway, I’ve come to find out that postpartum-me is not the extroverted adventurer I once was. In fact, the thought of going out as a family gave me anxiety.
I’ve come to realize that it was my insecurities getting in the way:
I’m insecure that my body wasn’t what it once was and my clothes don’t fit me the same way anymore. (It may be October, but here in Florida, it might as well be July because it feels like we’re in the middle of summer). I can’t bundle up and hide my body.
I’m also insecure about being a mother in public. What if he cries? What if I have to feed him? Where do I change him?
When you’re pregnant, especially in the last trimester, you had to deal with everyone staring at you. If you’re not used to it, it can be a very weird experience. Here you are waddling to the bathroom, and everyone feels it’s necessary to stop and stare in unison. So when you’re still adjusting to motherhood with your little one, the last thing you want is for everyone to be staring and seemingly judge you.
Well, this time our plans stuck and we ended up going downtown. (By the way, it takes twice as long to get a baby ready to get out the front door than it does a woman in her 20’s).
Once we got there, I kept waiting for something to happen. Casey pointed out that it didn’t seem like I was enjoying myself, and I wasn’t. I was too preoccupied with my surroundings that I wasn’t focusing on spending quality time with my family.
Finally, after nothing bad happened…I relaxed. Who cares if he cries, or if I need to feed him? The person who cared the most was me. Even if someone did have a problem with it, I’m a new mother! Babies cry. Ultimately, you need to take a step back and stop worrying about what people think. Because if you do, you’re going to have a bad time.
It takes a lot of time to adjust to postpartum life. There’s going to be a lot of adjustments. Being a mother and having a baby shouldn’t and won’t stop us from living our lives.
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