Gah! I'm going freaking crazy.

The last week has been rough. Sure, I have good days, I have bad days. They usually even out. The last week though has been primarily bad.

There was a huge blow up with my insane step mother in law. I seriously thought she was going to put her hands on me -- while I was holding Violet. I almost put her head through a wall. Since then, I have been avoiding her like the plague. I would really hate to have to go to prison for murdering an inconsiderate woman that isn't worth the effort. So, I stay out of the way.

My days consist of being cooped up in my bedroom, with my dogs who are annoying the crap out of me, and the baby. I have to admit, I am not dealing very well.

While I was pregnant I often wondered what kind of mom I'd be. Would I somehow learn patience? Would I instantly have a cooler temperament? Would I instantly feel all those lovely dovey feelings about my baby that other moms felt about their kids?

I love Violet so much. That can't be denied. She is the most important thing in my life and I would do anything for her. It is just when the screaming, the fussiness, the crying won't end and I feel like I'm gonna lose my mind.

You know how babies have normal crying, and then they have the INTENSE, piercing your eardrums, shrieking like they are being murdered, sort of crying? It is the latter that I can't deal with. I have to put her down, or give her to my husband and walk away for a few minutes. Not always, but sometimes.

It is hard to tap into your patience when you are going on little sleep, are irritated with your in-laws who you resent because they give you no privacy, and a baby whom you can't make happy. I'm trying so hard to keep it together. I'll admit I've had my fair share of breakdowns this week though.

On top of the stupid drama with my in-laws, there is the money factor. That alone would be enough to trigger a breakdown on my part. My husband decided to change jobs after Violet was born, which I originally encouraged because he hated his job, but it has been nearly 3 weeks now with no money coming in and we're circling the drain. The good news is that today he was offered what we hope will be a much better job, financially and much better suited for his talents.

As soon as we have some money put together for a place to rent we are going to get the hell out of here. Which is good, cause I feel like I'm going to lose my mind if I have to be here any longer.

The scary aspect for me is that starting tomorrow morning, when my husband starts his new job, I will be on my own with Violet for the first time. Honestly, I'm scared shitless. I won't even deny it. Will I be able to handle it? What if she cries for hours on end and I can't figure out how to make her happy? What if I break down?

When I was a teenager I had some bouts with depression that I took medication for, and it helped. I'm not certain if what I'm feeling is just the normal, "baby blues" as it is called, or the beginning signs of postpartum depression. I'm keeping tabs on it either way, believe me. I have good days, and bad, and on the good days I feel like what I'm going through is very normal, especially for first time moms. It is very easy to feel overwhelmed.

All I can do for now is hang in there.

19 comments:

Laura said...

I am so sorry! I wish I could help you out! I am having the triplets in March and now I am worried lol

Shannon said...

Hang in there! I don't have any kiddies yet but I know how frustrating it can be, especially the crying. My cousin just had her first and he has colic, yikes! I think it is important that you know what you are feeling and what it is like to be depressed. This has been such a huge change added to all the other things going on, I'm sure anyone would feel the same way.
I hope things get better for you soon!

Dooneybug said...

The first baby is always the hardest, trust me! And the lack of sleep totally messes up your mind and makes you question everything. There were many, many days when I wondered if having a baby was a good idea after all. You may feel alone and bored. I totally suffered from the baby blues the first time around. I'm happy to report that knowing what was coming with #2 has made things much easier.

Is there a local early childhood center near you where you could meet other moms with babies the same age? The ECFE in our town has a sliding scale fee so you don't have to worry about the money aspect. Or, there's probably a MOPS group in your area and that is always a great resource for meeting moms and finding support (www.mops.org). Just email me anytime if you need help finding any info or just to chat about being a new mom!!!

Cate said...

The first couple weeks are always a challenge as you all begin to adjust to each other. Sooner or later, you'll fall into a routine, as will she, and you won't be able to remember these days. Until then, hang in there!

Barbara said...

Hang in there. You're still adjusting to a new life with Violet. Things will get better and you will make it through all of this. You're a wonderful caring person, don't ever forget that.

Waylon & Willie - the Boston Terrier brothers said...

I think you are doing great...you are a brand new mom w/ a brand new baby, a healing incision, no privacy, having money issues...anyone would break down.
I had help for 4 days after Lauren was born and that was it. Hubby had to go back to work and family lives 100's of miles away.
There were times at night I did not know if I could make it...but I did. It does get easier, I promise! Wish I was closer to help. Please vent anytime.
Take Care
Jennifer

Keely said...

I was where you are now a few months ago. It does get better, I promise. *hugs*

Parker said...

thanks ladies.

last night was bad. violet was up all night long, about every hour or so, and then she'd stay awake for hours on end.

i don't know what to do to make her happy. or to help her fall asleep, because i know she is exhausted.

it is 7am and she is still awake. ugh. the only thing left to do is cry. i never knew it would be this hard.

anna said...

They're right - the first one is ALWAYS the hardest, and you'll question yourself like CRAZY for the next few months (until she's sitting up and playing with measuring spoons).

One thing that helped Lydia when she went into 'pteredactyl' mode (sonic screaming fits) during her early colic phase was to give her rides on the dryer in her carseat. The motion really helped. Also, laying her on her tummy along my arm and holding her face down seemed to help some, too. But you'll figure out what makes her happiest.

Venting sure does help, though, doesn't it?

Waylon & Willie - the Boston Terrier brothers said...

What a long night - I would play music and bounce, walk, sway, sing (which I cannot do very well, but she does not know the difference). Do you think the formula is not agreeing with her? Call your peditrician...they may have other ideas. Just what you need more advice, right?
Hang in there.. :) We are thinking of you

Lisa said...

Oh, I am so sorry to hear your frustration level is rising. What you anticipate with such joy suddenly becomes the overwhelming nightmare! Been there, got that t-shirt twice now but that doesn't help you a bit.
Do you have a baby swing? My son LIVED in his for months. Make dear hubby take the child for a drive in the car. You head straight to the bath, bring a cup of hot tea, light some candles, fill the tub with hot water and bubbles. Jump in and don't get out until your toes are prunes.
I too learned that the formula wasn't agreeing with the kid, and changing it did help some.
Hang in there girl. You are doing a fantastic job in spite of all the challenges that go along with it.
You can email me anytime to vent. I completely understand what you are going through.

minx said...

remember it's always okay to put the baby down and walk away for a few minutes! and i totally know what you're talking about with the whole "instant mom-feeling" thing. you grow into it. it's not something that just shows up (damn... i wish it had...)

you are doing a great job. hang in there. it sounds like you're doing everything right. things will get better.

C'tina said...

Deep Breaths....babies sometimes have this 'amped up' period in the early evening from 6-9 pm...where they cry and are very active and hard to keep calm. They need walked around or swayed back n forth...constantly...please please drop me a line...I'm not sure what market your husband is starting his new job in...but I may have a lead for you, depending on his profession, ans willingness to relocate.

C'tina said...

And I too had to develop the strong emotional bond over about three months with my first son. From the moment he was born I felt the overwhelming need to keep him comfortable, fed, clean, and all that...but the strong maternal love took time to grow. It is compounded for you by the total lack of support on from your step mother in law. You prolly feel that you can't trust her enough while you walk away to even go in the bathroom and run the faucet (what I used to do so I couldn't hear the baby crying, for 10-15 mins, just some peace.) to mask the baby crying with out wondering what step monster in law is up to. Stay strong.

Mallory said...

This stage is so, so hard. Do I think it would help if you got away from your crappy MIL? You bet. I know you will be ok with V and it is very healthy to step away from a baby when you are getting too freaked out. Do you have anyone who can help you out for a while so you can get a break and just see something besides the four walls, the baby and the dogs?

I think medication can be really helpful if your doctor thinks it would be a good idea. I hope you feel better!

She sure is strange! said...

OMG, I was so there about 14.5 years ago with my first child! Change formulas, she may have colic. It isn't what you are eating since you aren't breastfeeding so you don't have to worry about wheat or dairy or whatever. But, the formula could very well be causing her tummy to hurt.

Get meds if you think you need them. I had PPD, GAD, and PTSD all after my son was born but I stupidly didn't think anything was wrong. After my 2nd child, I understood and was on paxil for about 2 years. After kid 3 I was fine and have been for the past 7 years since her birth. Pregnancy/baby hormones can do a number on you so don't feel bad or weird about seeking medications to help you out. A good soak can help though. I hope your inlaws are long gone by the time you read this!!

Hang in there, give Vee some lovies and try to chill out with her. Do you have a sling? If not, get or make one(just 2.5 yards of homespun type fabric tied around one shoulder and under the opposite arm). This was my life saver!

Molly

Carey said...

Okay, forgive the ass-vice, but remember I'm kinda where you are right now, just a couple weeks ahead. All the ladies have given good advice, let me just suggest a few things. I know it's hard and being stressed out about money issues has to only add to your frustration and anxiety. Just when you think you have her patterns figured out, she's going to change on you!
-Do NOT be afraid to call your pediatrician to ask advice! I was thinking we were feeding Robert too much & too often last week, so I called them and sure enough I was right. They told me to put him on a 4-hour feeding schedule, since he's so big and able to eat 6 oz. at a time without a lot of spitting up. It's been a LIFESAVER, it felt like we were always feeding him at the 3-hour block.
-If you don't have some kind of gas drops, get them right now and start adding them to her formula every single time. Also, make sure your nipples are the right "speed" (I had #2 nipples on my bottles a couple weeks ago and was wondering why he was so fussy! Duh, he was getting way too much too fast!) Also, you may have to give her another dose of gas drops straight in her mouth just after her bottle. Make sure you're burping after every ounce or two, and try to keep her from eating too fast by forcing 'breaks' in there.
-To help with burping, we bounce Robert on our knee and that often helps get the bubbles in his tummy jostled loose. Or, you can sit him on your knee and bend him over your hand like he's doing sit ups while applying pressure to or massaging his tummy with that same hand . I can tell when he has gas because his tummy is tighter and bloated. Feel Violet's stomach when she's sleeping or happy and then right before you burp her so you can learn the difference.
-If she's not on a schedule, do all of yourselves a favor and get her on one right away. I swear to you, it will help so much. She's a big baby, so she should be able to start going longer between feedings sooner rather than later. This is what we do for my big baby who's now 5 weeks old and weighed the same amount Violet did when we took him to the pediatrician for his two week appt:
Starting with his first morning feed, he gets a 6 oz. bottle every four hours until his evening bottle, which will fall somewhere around 6-8 PM depending on the time he got his morning bottle. After that, we give him 4-5 oz. every 2-3 hours until 11. This is "tanking up" and it helps to fill his tummy more to help him sleep longer at night. Example, today he got 6 oz. at 8 am, 12 noon, 4 pm, & 8 pm. Gave him about 5 oz. at 10:30 and he was down for the count by 11:30 after just a little fussiness due to gas pains.
-Papasan swings are great but expensive. During the evening "witching hours" you can try the washing machine thing, or even the dishwasher, or put her in her stroller and just push her forward and backward, or get in the car and drive around if that soothes her! The tanking up method has been a lifesaver in some ways because at least he can't cry when he has a bottle in his mouth!
-Whatever you do, watch the stimulation and make sure she doesn't get too much because that can cause her to get over-tired very quickly. Very young babies shouldn't be in front of blinking or flickering lights or loud noises too much. If you have the TV on, just make sure other lights are on in the room, too. And she doesn't need the music on on her mobile or any other noise-making and flashing toys right now. Too much too soon.

Sorry this is so long. I hope at least one of these things is helpful. I promise you'll make it through this time, I know I have my sanity now only because I have had a lot of help from family on both sides. And I am so sorry about the living situation. I had a sneaky feeling back in August when you first vented about your Step-MIL that things would escalate after the baby was born. You're in my thoughts and prayers that things will start looking up and getting easier on every front.

amy*lou said...

after reading your post, i just keep flashing back to the time when i was 19. i had an 18 month old and a 6 month old... trying to spoon feed my son and balancing a bottle with my chin trying to feed the baby. home alone. couldn't help but cry... that was the point that i realized, if i can do this, i CAN handle it. think positive, have faith and you will get through. hang in there!!! the days/weeks/years do get better. you'll see. :)

me said...

One thing that helped me was to get out!
Feed and change baby then just go out and pound those streets pushing the buggy!
It does wonders in every way!
Babies like movement - car/buggy whatever.
Get's you out of the four walls - especially as hubby is going back to work.
And you lose weight (if you need to!) I was at my thinnest pushing twins around!
One more thing is to find a Mum's group. We have the NCT here in the UK and it saved my life I can tell you! Not only that I have made life long friends and even set up a bussiness with one of them!
You are soo not alone and your thoughts are very natural and I remeber them well!
My boys are through IVF and in those darkest hours I really thought that I obviously was going to make a bad mother and Mother Nature knew this so was this why I couldn't have any?
Crazy eh?
Just take each day as it comes.