Observations on New Motherhood

I've been a mom now for two weeks. I can't believe Ella was born just a short time ago, because it seems as if she was always here. In reality, of course, she's been a part of my life now for 10 months. Being Ella's mom has brought so much joy to my life in ways I never thought imaginable. And when I'm holding her in one of her brief alert stages throughout the day, and she looks up into my eyes, I know she knows I'm her mom. The person who fed her a daily diet of peanut butter and Doritos for nine months. Who helped her dad sing "Islands in the Stream" to her each night before bed. Who sold a kidney and 15 bags of platlets for the chance to bring her into the world. I kid on the last one, of course.

I've learned so much in the past two weeks. My mom came to stay with us for about 10 days to teach me how not to break her. So far, so good. All her limbs are still intact. But I've learned several other things not taught by mamacita. Here's my list, in no particular order.

1. Thirteen years of Catholic school education, which in part taught me to speak no evil and show no skin, have all been flushed down the toilet, as my house has now become a scene straight out of National Geographic magazine. Normally a very discreet girl, I have now flashed my breasts, Ella attached, to every female member of my family, several of my friends, and even Ella's pediatrician, thanks to a crying jag during her first visit. (Incidentally, my pediatrician invited me to nurse her during her visit, and even offered to leave the room while I did so.) It's so completely weird, I can't even explain it. Because while I thought I would be completely skeeved out by it, I'm not. Perhaps my long suppressed exhibitionist tendencies are just now being given the chance to shine.

2. People like to buy little girls pink things. A lot. The pink, it is everywhere. Ella has received so many wonderful and adorable gifts, 99% of which are pink. Or contain pink. Or appear pink when held in a certain light. Little girls' clothing does come in other colors, does it not? Now, some of these pink-buying people know my feelings about the color. Pink and I are not really friends. I made it known when I was pregnant that I didn't want an explosion of pink in my house if I had a girl. Pink in moderation? Okay by me. Pink to the exclusion of all the other nice colors out there? Not okay. All this said, I'm coming around to the pink. I suppose I don't have a choice, right?

3. I now go out in public looking like shit. Now, granted, I'm not one of those girls that has to look like she just stepped out of the Anthropologie catalog before she leaves the house. I'll leave the fashionista extraordinaire role to my sister. But I used to, you know, do my hair and stuff before I'd leave. And most of the time, I'd wear at least a little makeup. But, since Ella, I have made brief trips to the mall, a tuxedo shop (Rich was in a wedding last weekend), Dunkin Donuts, and Ella's pediatrician looking a bit too much like Courtney Love on Monday morning. I don't have the energy, the interest, and most of all, the time to put into my appearance anymore. I'm still wearing some of my maternity jeans and shirts, and not because I can't fit into some of my old clothes yet, but because I don't have the time to see what fits and what doesn't yet. And strangely, I don't care.

4. One good burp out of the girl can make my day. Ella is not a good burper. And when she does, the happiness it causes in me is sometimes embarrassing.

5. Time evaporates. I'm home pretty much all day, everyday. And seriously, I will sometimes look at the clock, and it's noon, and I haven't showered yet. I have so much to do. My house is a sty (this despite my relatives constantly cleaning it for me), and I have so many thank you notes to write for all the fab stuff so many (including some of you!) have bought for her. Thank you, thank you to those of you who have sent/given Ella gifts. You will receive a proper thank you in the mail soon. I promise.

6. Once again, blog friends rock. I can't tell you how much it meant to me to visit your blogs in the past two weeks and see announcements about Ella's birth. I have the best readers on the web. Seriously, you are wonderful. I can't wait until I have more time to catch up on all of your blogs and your lives. Please know that even though I'm not reading everyday, I am still reading your words, even if I don't comment.

Here's Ella after her first bath last week. Pink courtesy of her grandma.

16 Responses to “Observations on New Motherhood”

  1. # Blogger L

    THAT is the cutest picture ever! I'm sure most of the people who sent gifts would be ok not receiving a "proper" thank you card in the mail. Invest the time in more posts instead! :)  

  2. # Blogger Schnozz


    She's beautiful. I'm so happy for you!  

  3. # Blogger Clare Eats

    she is soooooo adorable kristi!!!  

  4. # Blogger Marie

    Awww! That's a great photo...

    It sounds like you're doing great Kristi! I did lots of smiling & nodding reading this post.

    Islands in the Stream?! You guys are too funny!  

  5. # Blogger M

    OMG- she is the cutest thing ever...of course until I see my own baby. ;) I check your blog several times a day- I'm like a little stalker...because I just can't wait for the next update. Right now, I'm living through you, and I know that in less than 4 weeks (probably more like a week and a half) I'll be experiencing the exact same things. I cannot wait.
    How do you feel- physically after the c-section?  

  6. # Blogger jenny

    #1 - Finally releasing your exhibitionist tendencies - that must be what it's about ;)
    As long as your comfortable with it - enjoy! I can tell you one male who would appreciate a warning before you "whip it out" though.

    The times I've stopped by you've been FAR from a Courtney Love comparison. When I can smell you or your house that you claim to be a "sty" from a street away I'll let you know.

    Thank you cards - I agree with other comments here - people aren't wondering where they are. We know we're appreciated :). It's more than enough thank you to me that I get to visit all of you and have a turn holding Ella when I stop by.

    I hope you'll get the  

  7. # Blogger jenny

    (sorry - left that last sentence unfinished was supposed to be...)
    I hope things will start settling in to a more comfortable routine soon enough!  

  8. # Blogger kenju

    Pink is not my favorite color either, but Ella looks ravishing in it!! After my first kid was born, I decided I could walk down Main Street buck-naked and not care who saw me. You seem to be doing very well for a new mom - and I am most happy for you!  

  9. # Blogger annelynn

    She is ADORABLE! Ah, the cuteness... thank you for sharing!

    And congratulations again on being a mom. I am so very happy for you!  

  10. # Blogger sunShine

    She is so adorable in all her pinkness! Motherhood is awesome, you do things you never thought possible, like flashing your breasts for all to see when your baby is hungry.  

  11. # Blogger smashedpea

    She sure is cute!

    Get used to the pinkness, you won't be able to avoid it anytime soon :) I, too, don't mind the occasional pink thing on Sophs, but I remember all the cutesy pink stuff she got when she was first born, and still gets now.

    And aren't those first few weeks of motherhood awesome? Nothing like having a newborn around to help you get your priorities straight :)  

  12. # Blogger The Princess

    Welcome to motherhood dear! No one can really tell you that you'll experience those exact things you have listed. It's just something you realize when it happens. I think more people than I wish have seen my boobs and now? Well, I quickly learned that showers are optional!!

    So so happy for you....she is gorgeous!  

  13. # Blogger sher

    Oh my God!! She just gets more and more beautiful every minute! It's so good to read how you're doing. I think about you and Ella a lot. You sound like you're doing great.  

  14. # Blogger Kross-Eyed Kitty

    She's looking like she LOVED her bath, and, like she's liking The Pink!
    Great Photo, she's absolutely beautiful.  

  15. # Blogger Shannon

    Oh, no, maybe now I shouldn't send the little pink gift I got for her--I kid! Yes, I do have a gift and have been meaning to get it out in the mail to you for two weeks now! This wedding and job have consumed my life. This week, I promise.

    Such big brown eyes she has!  

  16. # Blogger HoosierGirl5

    Congratulations again!
    She is adorable.

    And welcome to the grunge look. It took me years to get back to the fashion plate I am now! (har, har)


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