Family over 8 years ago by Liz Adams

One Month with Charlie

one month with charlieWednesday, October 28th marked one month with Charlie. This has probably been one of the hardest and most rewarding months of my life…

Charlie is perfect. He has the sweetest little personality, he makes the cutest grunts when he sleeps, he LOVES his hands, he has the chubbiest double chin, he like to eat every 2 hours, he loves to sleep all morning and stay up until midnight and he loves the sound of his parent’s voices – which makes my heart happy. We can’t quite tell who he looks like yet, we will see.

The first two weeks of motherhood were rough. Having a child is without a doubt the biggest life change and I don’t know if you are ever really prepared. I for one definitely was not. I have always known that I wanted to be a mom and I’ve always been very maternal to family and friends but I don’t think it is possible to step into the mom role as soon as your child comes into the world. I cried when they laid Charlie on my chest and was so happy to hold him in my arms but I had absolutely no idea who he was, what his cries mean’t, how to feed him or how to console him. I was completely overwhelmed.

When we got home I felt sad. I felt guilty for missing the quiet days of just Webster, Dave and I, I felt exhausted, I physically felt beat up and I felt lonely. Dave and I would be sitting on the couch and I would just start crying – telling him that I felt alone and he assured me that I (literally) was not. The first morning we woke up I forgot to feed Webster and cried for half of the day. I’ll blame the hormones and exhaustion for a lot of these feelings but they didn’t go away until 2.5 weeks.

The exhaustion you guys. It’s brutal. I’ve never known such intense levels of sleepiness. One night after Charlie didn’t go to sleep until 5am, cried for 3 hours straight with no chance of consoling him and pooped literally all over me – I sat in the shower and sobbed. My mom told me that day that I had to look past the cries being sad and realize that they are just a form of communication. The next day I woke up, brushed my teeth, looked in the mirror and told myself outloud “you can do this” and I’ve loved every second of motherhood since.

I swear a lot of it is mental. Charlie 100% reacts to my stress levels. Thank god for my completely laid back husband who can console Charlie just by breathing. Dave has been the most amazing support system and dad. It’s a role that he was born to play and I feel so lucky I get to experience this crazy, emotional, intense and insanely wonderful adventure with him.

Here are a few other details of motherhood thus far:

Breastfeeding: The first week sucked. I told the nurses in the hospital that I can 100% understand why people would throw in the towel and choose not to breastfeed their children. Trust me, stick it out. Once we got home I was so much more comfortable and calm and I think that helped Charlie figure out how to latch, etc. After your nipples heal it is seriously the most amazing experience. Our bodies are incredible. *Note: these are my favorite nursing bras (so supportive) + don’t forget these and these!

Sleep: We have absolutely no schedule at this point. Charlie loves to sleep during the day and then tends to be fussy at night when I’m ready to sleep {9pm} and doesn’t settle down until midnight. I usually do a feeding at 3am and then I’ve been able to pump and store milk for Dave to do a feeding at 6am which allows me to sleep until 8am. I’m adjusting to 2-3 hour sleep increments. It’s amazing what you can accomplish on no sleep!

Products: In no particular order, these are the items that have been used daily around our household. Nuna Pipa car seat, Nuna Ivvi stroller, NoseFrida Snotsucker, Baby Gap socks, Gerber white onesiesSoothies, Medela Freestyle breast pump, K’Tan wrap (baby wearing is the best! he falls asleep in a second and I can work), White Noise Baby App (we love the hair dryer + doppler ultrasound), Boppy lounger, Babyganics face and hand wipes and the 4moms infant bathtub. Feel free to email me with any questions!

Despite a rough first two weeks, I can’t even begin to describe how incredible motherhood is. I didn’t know I could love anything so much and Charlie has completely opened my eyes to what really matters in this world. Trust me when I say that none of the things that stress you out in this moment will matter in a few years. Your peers, any feeling of envy or jealousy, competitiveness, someone bumming you out at work – I promise that regardless of whether you are a mom, become a mom, or never have children – none of it matters. Life is so precious and I hope that in the days, months or years to come something  happens in your life that makes you realize that whatever is getting you down is just a bump in the road. If I’ve learned anything in the last month it’s that moments pass by in the blink of an eye and we have to take advantage of every second.

I love you, Charlie! And I love you, blog readers, for your continued and constant support. xoxo

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  1. Liz, you are brave. I secretly think all mom’s are super heroes. Thanks for sharing your honest and touching story. Congrats on Charlie and love this little man’s appearances on S&S πŸ™‚ Even his bandaid is cute!

  2. Love the way you put your feelings into words and glad you’re past the “rough” part of the adjustment. Charlie is adorable, and that double chin is too cute. Enjoy him, and congratulations to you and Dave.

  3. Thank you for this post, Liz! I have a 7 week old little boy and completely relate to everything in this post! It’s good to know that other new moms are going through the same thing. The good news is it gets a little easier everyday!

  4. You are doing great, mama! It just gets better and better- those post-partum hormones are a doozy! Congrats on that sweet babe, he’s just going to get more and more fun!

  5. I loved this post Liz! Thanks for being so honest and open with readers. It’s so refreshing! Hang in there, I have no doubt that you’re doing an amazing job!

  6. Loved this post, Liz. Charlie is such a handsome little guy. Please keep the mom posts coming! I’m 29 weeks and can’t hear enough from new moms. Would love to hear what you’ve been wearing (even if just loungewear) in these early days to make yourself comfortable and make breastfeeding easier. Also, maybe a post on any tips on items you found NOT useful?

  7. I cried reading this. My son is 5 months now and everything you said about the first month brings me back to EXACTLY how I felt. I cried all the time – so many hormones. Breastfeeding is the hardest thing I’ve ever experienced (no one tells you how hard it is-or at least you are not prepared for how hard it is) but it is really the best thing I’ve ever done – I have a goal of 6 months but fingers crossed to make it to 1 year.

    It does get easier and you find your grove, you really do. Enjoy every second. This love is the best kind of love you can ever have.

  8. Your honesty is so refreshing. It’s so hard to describe those feelings the first couple weeks post birth. Such a mix of emotions. I will never forget how alone I felt adjusting to motherhood in the beginning. I have two boys now and the best way I can describe life now is that the days are long but the weeks are short. I wouldn’t trade it for the world though!

  9. I have a little one who is around the same age and everything you said is spot on. Nobody can prepare you, the first couple weeks are tough and breastfeeding is so painful in the beginning. It is the toughest and the most rewarding experience and I wouldn’t change change a thing! Thank you for being honest in your experience.

  10. i love that you’re always so real! he is a doll and you’re definitely killing it, even though i’m sure it doesn’t always feel like it.

  11. Excuse me while wipe the tears from my eyes at my desk. This was so real and raw and I really appreciate you sharing it with us here. Charlie is such a little doll, band-aid and all!

    26 and Not Counting

  12. Everything you said here is 100% true. My husband and I were blissfully unaware of how unprepared we were for our first son 2.5 years ago. The first 6 weeks were. absolute. hell. I basically cried for 2 months. Once you get over that initial hump, man oh man, it is fun. The most perfect quote about parenthood is “the days are long, but the years are short” — this is the absolute truth. I can’t believe my little boy is already almost three years old! Just wait for toddlerhood … it is the most frustrating and unbelievably fun stage EVER. My child amazes me and drives me to my breaking point while literally making me bust up laughing every day. Worth. Every. Minute.

    You guys will do great!

    xo alison

  13. It’s so refreshing to come across a blog post that is open, honest, and real. Thank you for sharing, Liz. It’s such a joy to watch your beautiful new life unfold!

  14. Being 25 weeks pregnant with our first child… this article came at a perfect time.
    Very sweet. Thanks for being honest. Keep on keepin’ on. You got this! He’s beautiful.

  15. Loved this great post!! I am expecting my first child next year and really appreciate these true, honest posts. Thank you!

  16. I don’t understand why more people don’t talk about the “after birth”. In my opinion, that is the worst part! The recovery, the hormones, the pain, the frustration, the feeling of loneliness, and the feeling of frustration when you don’t know what you’re doing. It is hard but it all passes.

  17. Liz, I admire your honesty so much! You truly are wonderful, don’t doubt that for a second! Charlie Dave and Webster are so lucky to have you! xx

  18. Hooray to you for sharing in a real and honest way!
    Admitting defeat and frustration is the key to sanity and to getting past it.
    I’m here to reassure you that it does get easier and better with each passing month. We are almost at month 4 and every moment is incredible! Love your blog.

  19. Liz, I’ve enjoyed your blog for quite some time but I’ve never commented – until now. I have to commend you for being so candid and open. It’s so refreshing. Thank you for your honesty!

  20. Thanks for sharing your true honest feelings. I’d read so many bloggers accounts of early motherhood before I had my son and always felt like it would be rainbows and butterflies all the time. Then I had Henry in August and felt exactly like you described you felt. I think sharing your true experience is so helpful to others. I took comfort in talking to friends who told me they felt the same way, or reading about others experiences. I love Henry to pieces, can’t believe he is 12 weeks and have to go back to work on Monday. It truly does go by so fast so enjoy every second- poop, tears, lack of sleep and all.

  21. Wow. What a great post—thank you so much for your honesty. My husband and I want to be parents so badly, but I am secretly terrified of the life change! Reading this helped me realize all of my worries will only be temporary!

  22. You are amazing. Thank you for sharing these thoughts, with so much honesty. You’re doing a wonderful job and I admire you so much. I’m about to become a first-time mother myself in about 4 weeks, and I was in tears reading your post- pregnancy hormones and anticipation/excitement?! I know my life will change so much, and like you said there is no way to prepare really. I know it will be wonderful but so challenging too. I currently live in Japan, and here they keep you in hospital for a full week after giving birth- you learn how to breastfeed and take various classes on how to give baths, change diapers and get used to a baby. It seems like a long time, but hopefully it will help me with this whole transition. I’m curious to see how I’ll feel, but I’m sure very similar to how you did.

    I’d love to read more about your must-haves for nursing and life with baby, and what you’ve been wearing around the house, etc. Charlie is so adorable and I look forward to reading more about your experiences.

    Love from Tokyo xxxx

  23. Liz – I just wanted to say thank you for opening up so much more about life and being a mother. Being newly married myself it’s hard to actually talk to people who are open about what actually goes on in life with the ups and downs. Reading your blog for a few years it’s been wonderful watching the journey and now seeing Charlie and what it’s like being a mother for the first time is encouraging to me who will soon be approaching that in a few years. Congratulations on this exciting new chapter!

  24. Great post! I’m due in 5 weeks, and starting to become petrified at the thought of the labor, and everything that comes afterwards. Reading this is helpful so that I know what to expect, and somehow, it makes the whole thing seem less scary. I also live in the Chicago area, and seeing you on here and in social media navigating the world with a little baby makes it seem more doable. Now, I just have to keep it all in mind when I am up for 24 hours straight and not thinking very clearly! Congrats on working through the hardest moments and thanks for sharing your lessons learned.

  25. Bring him next door anytime you need some alone time (or a nap)! We can always come get you if we need anything while he’s with his neighbors πŸ˜‰

  26. Liz – You are by far my favorite blogger. You are so real, and raw, and not afraid to share with your readers the truth. I feel like I can really relate to you. (And I’m not married and I don’t have kids!) I enjoy reading your blog every day. I really took to the last few sentences of this post:

    “Your peers, any feeling of envy or jealousy, competitiveness, someone bumming you out at work – I promise that regardless of whether you are a mom, become a mom, or never have children – none of it matters. Life is so precious and I hope that in the days, months or years to come something happens in your life that makes you realize that whatever is getting you down is just a bump in the road.”

    I struggle with being happy with what I’m doing, what I have, where I’m going… in the moment. I fuss over the details and what others say. I hope my “something” happens soon πŸ™‚

    Congratulations on your amazing baby, Charlie. I look forward to following you and your growing family for many years to come.

    1. Feel the same Rachel and I’m in the same situation! I hope my something happens soon too… =)
      Thanks Liz for sharing this with us!

  27. THANK YOU for keeping it real. I’m 6 months pregnant with my first and read so many stories of “motherhood is amazing!” — which, yes, I hope it is and know it can be — but I know it is a massive life shift as well, which is scary to anticipate. Hearing other moms (especially first time moms) talk about the challenges alongside the joys actually helps me emotionally and mentally prepare (as best I can, anyway!) for the fact that things WILL be different and hard but not for forever. Anyway, thank you for sharing such personal anecdotes; they are much appreciated. You’re doing great, mama!

  28. Liz,

    I absolutely loved this. Thank you for being so honest about how difficult it is to adjust to being a mother, and for the last paragraph in which you explain that having Charlie has made you truly appreciate life. I’m so happy for you guys!! You’ve got this, Girl!

    Kelly | Kelly in the City

  29. Beautifully written. Those feelings you have now is what Motherhood is all about. When our Max went to his first day of Kindergarten, all the MamΓ‘ Bear protective feelings came out. I sobbed right in front of him. All he said was “Mom, I’ll be fine!” He turned around and never looked back. We’ve had given him enough sense of security of confidence that he knew he could handle Kindergarten. In the blink of an eye Charlie will do the same…treasure every moment. I’m rooting for you!

  30. I’m not a mother but I just wanted to let you know that I really enjoy reading about your little one and viewing your blog and Instagram in general! You seem like such a pleasant and genuine person. Keep up the good work!

  31. I so appreciate your candor and honesty about the transition to motherhood. It’s so easy to feel alone or like things are going wrong, and it is so reassuring to read posts like this and know that others experience the same thing. Congratulations on your little one – he is so precious! You got this!

  32. Liz, I love your post! I’m not a mom yet but I love to hearing about your experience. You will be fine! things will get easy soon…
    Thanks for your last paragraph, I read it in the exactly moment that I need it.
    Charlie is so cute!

  33. What an amazing journey you are on Liz. I could feel your sleepless anxiety, worry and tremendous love coming through in your words. Your honesty about yourself has always been, to me, enduring and one of the best parts of you. Charlie has a wonderful, honest, funny, successful beautiful Mother. Love you xo

  34. I honestly loved and cherished every word and your transparency there is nothing more rewarding, more fulfilling and more exhausting than motherhood but it’s all worth it. My Emanuel is 2 years old and every moment is precious. He, like I’m sure Charles for you, is making me a better woman, a better person all the way around.

    Congratulations on this amazing adventure and so thankful for you and your hubby β™₯


  35. Thank you for your honesty! Being a new mom is so many things… Wonderful and amazing — but very isolating and vulnerable at the same time. It’s completely life changing. I related so much to your post, thanks for keeping it real. There’s so much joy even in those crazy early days, you just might not be able to see it until a few months down the road. Once they get out of that fourth trimester it’s so much fun.

  36. This is such an amazing post! Brought tears to my eyes!!! I felt like I could have written it myself. Unfortunately, my hormones took 9 months to level out and I wasn’t able to figure out breastfeeding, but like you said in the last paragraph — none of that matters!!! Our little ones are what matters. πŸ™‚

  37. Congrats, he’s so adorable! As a mom of two (4 and 16 months), I can say that the good days definitely outnumber the bad days. But man oh man, those rough days often leave me in a puddle on the floor. You’re a good momma, just remember that on those days when that devil on your shoulder is trying to tell you otherwise!

  38. I felt the exact same way the first two weeks, and now tell every other soon-to-be mama I know not to worry and it will get way better after you exit “survival mode!” Thank you for sharing!!!

  39. Congratulations! Would you do a post on city living with a baby? Small spaces and lack of storage can be challenging.

    Month 2 is so much easier than the first!

  40. Loved your honesty and it is all true! I have a 4 month old and home and it just gets better each day.
    It really is all your perspective on things. A simple change of mindset makes it all manageable and better!
    Thanks for sharing.

  41. Thank you for your honesty about your first couple weeks of motherhood. My husband and I have been talking about when we’d like to become pregnant, and sometimes I think about what a huge change it will be for us. It’s great to hear real truths, both positive and negative. You’re doing an incredible job, and thanks!

  42. i love how open and authentic you are! although i can’t relate since i’m 25 without a child (or man for that matter haha) I’m sure one day i’ll understand where you’re coming from. p.s. charlie is absolutely precious beyond words. xx

  43. I had the baby blues the first few weeks too! Completely normal! Your little man is adorable! Ps. We have the same car seat !

  44. Thank you!!!!! Oh my god, this is exactly how I felt after giving birth and you are the first person I have actually seen write how it actually is (or can be at least). I have never felt so alone as those first few weeks, even though I was about as far from alone as I could possibly be, but I don’t think you can ever be truly prepared for having a child. The guilt at missing time when it was just me and my husband, the responsibility for keeping a human being alive and the sleepless nights were probably the worst things to happen but here we are, 7 months down the line, and we’ve finally found out groove. We still have our ups and downs but that’s life and whatever you do, you are doing great!!!!

  45. Thank you sooo much for sharing your month one baby favorites! My husband and I are expecting twins next spring and I wrote down several of your favorites. Would love if you would continue to share your baby favorite’s as Charlie gets older. Congrats on surviving the first month of motherhood!

  46. Hi! I’m a new mom too, and noticed a humidifier in one of your Instagram pictures. Could you tell me what brand you use and how it has worked out for you? We tried a cold mist version, but it didn’t stop the congestion. Thanks!

  47. I know you might be out of the breastfeeding stage at this point, but I’m curious to know how you dressed for nursing when out and about. My son is 2.5 weeks old and I can’t figure out how to dress myself for comfort, style, and practicality for nursing. Thoughts?