Right about when I was feeling better from the birth I was slammed with mastitis. I tried to take care of it naturally, pumping and nursing and resting, but after two days with a 103 temp I surrendered and got antibiotics. As that was getting better Ben and I caught the cold that L had gotten from her dad. I'm tired and stuffy, with an occasional cough, but this too is getting better.
Mom has been a huge amount of help, and for over a week we had someone with us almost 24 hours a day. When Ben would wake in the middle of the night our Helper would get him, change his diaper, bring him to me for nursing and then soothe him to sleep so I could return to bed. I find that I loose 40-60 minutes of sleep every time he wakes up if Helper is not with us, so that has been incredibly wonderful.
All this help, along with the fact that Ben is an easy baby has made this new stage of motherhood easy for me.
In the midst of all this I've come to see two fears before me. The first is over sleep. I am very afraid of becoming exhausted again. The lack of sleep that turned into extreme sleep deprivation that happened during the first 6 months of L's life was horrible. I was not able to bond with my daughter. I was angry and sad almost all of the time. I felt like I was drowning and there was nothing to pull me out. I was disappointed in myself, felt bad for my daughter and felt incredibly lonely. I do not want this to happen to me again, but I'm not sure how to get the sleep I need if I cannot nap every day or sleep through each night.
My second fear is about L. Our relationship has changed since Ben's birth and I miss what it was. We were partners and we enjoyed being with each other (okay, we did drive each other crazy every once in awhile). Now it seems that when she wants me most, which would be when she's tired - waking up or ready for sleep - is when I am tending to Ben, nursing him or soothing him to sleep. I hate the way she looks at me, she's so mad and hurt. Any more she prefers her grandma or daddy to me, which breaks my heart and leaves me feeling rejected. I'm not sure how to restore what we had, or if I'll ever be able to, but I wish she could understand that I miss snuggling with her at nap time just as much as she does.