Before my son's birth, I envisioned long afternoons of cuddling and bonding, making gourmet meals for my husband and catching up on the books on my nightstand that had gone ignored while I worked full-time. It was going to be fabulous... and then our son got here.
Eventually, your loving husband, whom you had specifically banned from taking breastfeeding pictures, the one you had forced to delete any pictures that showed any area of your breasts, sends you this amazing photo.
Without acknowledging the steep learning curve, and without putting in place good support systems, the message is that early motherhood is just another everyday task and that caring for a new baby is a natural skill that will come easily.
While the right to privacy is an unquestionable one, is there research that can inform us about early interactions between fathers and newborns? If the mother does not want the father present at birth, at what point does he have a right to see his child?
I do wish I had realized that just because something is biological or natural, doesn't mean it comes without struggle. It's such a simple thought, but I think it was lost on me in those early days when I was short on sleep and high on anxiety.
What I want all new moms to know is that we see you. We see you trying, and loving your new little one. And as your newborn gets older, and their first smiles come along with their grateful coos, you'll return to being human again.