A number of my friends have had babies recently and each time I have gone to see their precious little creations, I am overcome with waves of nostalgia. Oh pul-eeeeeeeze people, I am not considering having another one, I just LOVE LOVE LOVE little, tiny, itty, bitty babies. I am quite confident that I have sufficiently trapped Mike into a lifetime of servitude to me with the ones we already have together. And besides, my vagina just clamped shut at the mere thought of getting pregnant (fun fact: it also does this when I see minivans). But anyway, occasionally I reminisce about a special time in my life when I was not quite so laid back, a time when paranoia, anxiety and hand sanitizer were my closest friends, a time when my house was actually clean and certain catch words like “please” or “thank you” mysteriously vanished from my vocabulary overnight. Yes, I am talking about the first baby.
My new mom neurosis started in the hospital right after I had my first daughter AKA “The Second Coming of Christ” or “Jesus” for short. An adorable, grandmotherly type nurse came in and asked if she could take my baby down to the nursery so I could get some rest. I remember feeling a sense of panic course through my veins at the mere thought of someone else holding her. Helllllll-lo, what if they fed her white poison (otherwise known as formula) or accidentally mixed her up with another baby? (Mike logically pointed out that this was rather unlikely, considering the only other baby in the maternity ward at the time happened to be African American and male). I didn’t care, noooooooo fucking way Jose. Mike looked on helplessly, as I clenched my daughter to my chest and kept her there for the next 4 days until we could leave. Going Off the Deep End: Phase I, was now complete; it was time to take my baby home to allow my craziness to achieve its full potential.
Prior to my daughter’s arrival, I made sure that every single baby blanket and outfit was washed 2 times in special “baby” laundry soap. Her nursery was immaculate, I sprayed every visitor down with Lysol before they even looked at her and I almost punched a lady in the throat when she sneezed in my baby’s general vicinity when I took her to the doctor. I had all the latest and greatest gadgets and monitors, as well as every Baby Einstein movie ever made. Oh yes, I also insisted that she sleet right next to me at night so that I could keep an eye on her at ALL times. I held, nursed and fretted over our baby while Mike wisely kept his mouth shut and obeyed my orders.
After about 2 weeks of my exhaustive but ingenious parenting methods, my daughter had developed an adorable habit of shooting poo all over me every single time I changed her. At first I thought it was hilarious and soooooo cute. Strangely however, the wearier I became, the less amusing being sprayed with shit became. On the rare occasions that I “allowed” Mike to change our daughter’s diaper, she would not poop on him. I didn’t get it. Maybe she hated me. Had I already screwed her up? OMG.
Meanwhile, I had developed a habit of watching Mike sleep with a look of sheer contempt on my face while I was up nursing our baby all night. I would doze off momentarily and dream about Mike growing nipples that served a fucking purpose other than decoration (not that I would have let me hold her anyway, please note the glaring hypocrisy of my fantasy while insanity was steadily increasing). After one particularly bad night when Bella managed to shoot shit directly into my mouth (MOUTH) and my nipples were cracked and bleeding, I lost it. I broke down into hysterically sobbing mess. I cried the rest of the night and right on into the next morning. (Attention Ladies: This is just about the time when you should go to the doctor and be diagnosed with a fucked up but totally fixable condition called “Postpartum Depression”). I told Mike that I wanted my mom and my sister.
Mike joyfully dropped our daughter and me off at my mom’s house where I immediately sat down on the couch to resume my crying. I heard tires squealing as Mike quickly drove to the nearest liquor store. I faintly remember my sister taking the baby from me before I did the unthinkable…… I FELL ASLEEP. A few hours later, I woke up totally disoriented as I slowly realized what I had done. Because of my selfish negligence, my beloved, trusting daughter had been without her mother for 3 WHOLE HOURS. I was ready to report myself to Social Services as I stumbled around only to find my child, sound asleep on my mother. Wait, WHAT? She didn’t even care that I was gone? OMG, we missed 3 solid hours of bonding time and she did not even notice? It was obvious she liked my mom more. Oh no, what had I done?
My daughter woke up and my mom handed her to me. I fed her and laid her down to change her. Instantly, I was covered in shit. I started bawling uncontrollably once again, telling my mom and my sister that “My baby HATES me, I just know it! Why does she HATE me, WWWWHHHHHHYYYYYY?????” My mom started laughing and said “Honey, I think you are doing a great job, but you don’t need stand her on her head when you change her. You just need to lift her buns a little.”
Hysteria Ensued Once Again.
*By the time I had the next one, I had chilled considerably. The hospital was like a luxury vacation and I milked it (no pun) for all it was worth. Painkillers every 4 hours, nurses asking if they could take my baby so I could sleep and would I care if she had a little formula so I could sleep longer, and oh, could they give her a bath? HELL. YEAH. I even told Mike to go home and stay with her sister because “she needed him”. While I spent 4 glorious, spectacular, beautiful days all alone. It. Was. Awesome. XO