An Open Letter to Myself If I Have Another Baby

Dear Future Hil,

I hear congratulations are in order! Did you really just have a baby a couple days ago? Well, I must say you look stunning. I have been sent from the past to make you feel better. Think of me as the Ghost of Post-Partum Past.

Are you tired? Cranky? A shell of the woman you were just a few days ago? The beginning sucks. It does.

Your boobs hurt, don’t they? And when you pump, tears stream down your face because of hormones and tenderness. You stare at the clock and count the seconds until you can turn off the droning-siphon-soul-sucker. But if you don’t feed and pump, your boobs hurt even more. It’s a lose-lose situation.

Actually it’s a lose-lose-lose situation because breast feeding hurts too. Stop reading the hippy books that say it doesn’t hurt. It does.”Bonding?”

Oh and recovery from birth? It is traumatic. Stop reading the hippy books that say it isn’t. It is.

Your back hurts from picking up your baby and doing laundry. I know it hurts.

And I know you don’t want to talk to anyone on the phone because you’ll just cry. And because they will ask “OMG – don’t you just love your baby?!” and you won’t have an answer.

I know you are tired. I know you can’t imagine waking up one. more. time.

And that baby? Doesn’t even acknowledge all that you are going through. Mean baby.

And when you put it all together, you remember how sick Ridley was and how the doctors didn’t know if he would live. And you remember that it is a miracle to get pregnant. And that makes you feel guilty that you are even complaining.

Ah, what are you to do?

Don’t worry, Future Hil (cue super hero music)! I am writing this letter from the future. I am writing this letter from the two-month-old baby mark to tell you that good times are coming! Remember Ridley when he was two months old? He smiled. He cooed. He slept. When he woke up, he would cry until he saw you. Then he would smile. You looked forward to feeding times because it didn’t hurt anymore and he was so cuddly. Playtime was full of new discoveries. You would dress little bald Ridley in a black turtleneck onesie and call him Tiny Steve Jobs. That was hilarious!

Tiny Steve Jobs

If you are reading this, it’s because you have a new crying baby at home and you are too tired and hormonal to hope for the future. I know you feel guilty for complaining because babies are miracles. But it’s OK. Go ahead and cry. Don’t be so hard on yourself. I’m writing you this letter to remind you that the good times are coming. Very soon.

Hang in there!

Love, Hil
January 2011

P.S. And, you don’t look fat. You look great!

  1. #1 by julia on January 12, 2011 - 12:10 pm

    haha. I love this post. Remember, you are a GREAT mom and God gave this role to women for a reason :))

    • #2 by hilstreet on January 12, 2011 - 12:31 pm

      If I knew how to “like” a comment, I’d “like” this one. It’s a tough job! Ladies can handle it!

  2. #3 by roadwarriorette on January 12, 2011 - 2:31 pm

    I agree!! And, I would also like to say, that no matter how you thought you looked, or how you felt, you NEVER looked fat. Always amazing and lovely. xo

  3. #4 by Ellie on January 12, 2011 - 2:45 pm

    How in the world did you get to be so wise?!?!

    I read this and have tears in my eyes. Not just because this sort of reminds me of all hard things I have ahead of me in 4 and a half months (oh, and a toddler on top of it), but also because I honestly know and want to reassure you that IT DOES GET EASIER, the best really is yet to come, and every ounce of heartache being postpartum, every ounce of sheer exhaustion, every self-doubt you have right now is so totally worth it and it doesn’t take forever to really believe that.

    If it wasn’t, there’d be a lot of only children out there, right?

    Hang in there. You inspire me. And of course you look great. You’re HILARY.

  4. #5 by Katie on January 13, 2011 - 9:35 am

    this post was perfect. the beginning is terrifying. TERRIFYING. WHAT would we have done without our mothers? seriously, i’d be typing this from a room with white padded walls and pushing the keys with my nose from my arms being in a straight jacket if it weren’t for my mom. where is the “what to expect for the first 2 months” book for moms. all it would have to say is “be afraid. be very afraid.”

    you’re awesome hil! and ridley is perfect 🙂 and i don’t know who steve jobs is, i hope we can still be friends. and if you want to know fat, let’s skype. you’ll feel much better about yourself. i saw pictures the day you came home. you look like a rockstar.

    love you!

  5. #6 by Stacie on January 13, 2011 - 3:40 pm

    One word- AMEN

  6. #7 by tierd on January 19, 2011 - 2:04 pm

    ALL SO TRUE! With the second, it’s all much better because you KNOW it’s just phases – everything about parenting (even still) is just phases. But in the beginning, you don’t know that there is an end in sight!

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