The first question everyone asks me, a new mom of 4 boys, is: “How is it going?”
For the first couple weeks on my own, I couldn’t even formulate an answer to that question. My response became, “We’re doing it.”
If you have been reading this blog the last 7 weeks since Knox arrived you may think “I have it all together”. You may think I’m ridiculous when I say, “I’m struggling” or “I feel I’ve ruined my children.” Perhaps you think I need to give myself grace, lighten up, relax.
You may be right.
But in first few months of adding a life to your family…it feels overwhelming. No matter how it looks to bystanders. A new mom’s heart is anxious.
My theory is God designed new moms’ senses to be heightened. Sense of sound…to hear the slightest whimper. Sense of sight…to watch for potential dangers. Sense of touch…to bond with a new soul. Sense of smell…to know when a diaper needs changing.
Heightened senses are great when you only have one newborn. Problems arise and stress appears when more children are added to the situation. The increase in sensory sensitivity plus additional sensory input…can lead to sensory overload!
Everyone is loud. Everyone is running around. Everyone is spilling things. Everyone is touching me. Everyone is calling my name. AAHHHH!!
At the end of the day, I would describe my day as “crazy.” (particularly the days involving tornado warnings with a toddler attempting to potty train himself while the newborn has a “colic tantrum”).
Last week I came up for a little air. And a little perspective. I realized my ENTIRE day wasn’t crazy. It really only came in waves.
The most challenging moments were when the newborn was awake. Which was every 2 to 3 hours. So it couldn’t be crazy the whole day because he wasn’t awake ALL DAY.
Recognizing that there were only a handful of truly “crazy” moments in my day helped me handle those moments when they came. Instead of screaming or crying when all the boys were screaming and crying, I could breathe and know this moment would pass. The calm (or somewhat calm) would come soon.
Not only would calm come soon, but perhaps even joy. When I painted a picture of the entire day as “bad” or “crazy” I robbed the day of those waves of joy & laughter.
Studying Psalm 139 last week (Run to Him study), His Words brought me comfort in the waves of “crazy”:
Wings of dawn (early morning newborn feedings). Far side of the sea (waves of craziness). Each wave of emotion and stress, He’s there. He’s not going to let me falter. Even more amazing, He knew I would have hard moments on those days:
“all my days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.” (vs. 16)
He is not surprised by what I considered “bad days.” He is not even shocked when I use harsh words and criticize the boys…
“Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O Lord.” (vs. 4).
When I feel darkness closing in & negative thoughts filling my mind, I cling to His right hand holding me fast (vs 10).
“even the darkness will not be dark to you;
the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you.” (vs 12).
May you be encouraged in your craziness. Consider that the “crazy” may come in waves and not encompass the entire day.When a moment comes, stop, breath and realize it will pass.
Be comforted by God’s complete knowledge of you. He knew how your day would unfold before you were even born. He even knew what words you would use that day. If you cling to Him, in those dark moments you can see light/hope because there is no darkness in Him. And through His eyes you may glimpse your own waves of joy.