Learning To Say I Do
Sara: I can’t believe Gus turns one month old this week! Time certainly has gone quickly, and I’ve learned a lot about our new family in such a short time.
Adjusting to life with an infant was, in fact, different than I expected. My friends with children had given me a fairly accurate picture of what to expect in regards to sleep and diapers. However, I wasn’t prepared for the joy that Gus would bring to our lives.
Justin: I especially like having Sara home on maternity leave. I love spending time with her before I leave for work and can’t describe the sense of enjoyment at seeing both her and Gus when I walk in the door.
Sara: Motherhood is my vocation with a big “V” and I can tell that God made me to be Gus’s mother. Even though there are difficult times (like the nights with little sleep), I still know and have peace that this is what I am meant to do. The feedings, the diaper changes, and nap time can get mundane, but Gus is more than worth it.
It’s been fun watching Gus grow and change. He’s outgrowing some of his first outfits, and now he’s finally starting to interact with the world. Gus has a toy moose given to him by Grandpa and Grandma that he likes. If we set out his toy moose, Gus will knock it over with his fist and wait for us to put it back up so he can continue the game. Gus is even lifting up his head at times. It makes me realize how quickly both my maternity leave and Gus’s childhood is going to go!
The hardest part of motherhood for me has been breastfeeding. While Gus is able to feed easily, I wasn’t prepared for how much and how often he was going to need to feed. Some days, I feel like I’m lucky if I get Gus fed and take a shower before Justin comes home. Since we are breastfeeding, I am the only one that can feed him, so each time Gus cries at night I have to get up. While Justin has been very supportive and oftentimes gets up to help change his diaper and get me settled before a feeding, ultimately I still have to be the one to feed. I’ve found that nighttime feedings can be good prayer time.
Justin: I do try to get up with Sara for each night diaper change. I realize she has the hard job and want to make her job a bit easier, even if only by changing a diaper.
Although this is my goal, I must also admit that I sometimes fall short. I have caught myself on occasion laying in bed thinking, “Well she has to get up anyway.” Usually at that moment, I try to remind myself that when I change a diaper that neither of us really wants to change, I am really saying, “I love you Sara!” Thus far this has been enough to get me out of bed.
Additionally, Sara has an extra sixth sense about when Gus needs her at night. She always seems to hear him first. Saturday night I actually slept right through one of his feedings. I had gotten up at about 4 am with Sara and then went back to bed. Shortly before 6 am I awoke as she was crawling into bed. I said, “Wow, that was a long feeding!” She replied, “Not really, you just slept through the second one.”
Sara: This weekend, I had my first experience breastfeeding in public. We headed to my folks’ house two hours away. For just over 48 hours away, we had a FULL car load including Gus’s pack’n’play, stroller, clothing, and more. Gus traveled like a pro on the way there and slept for the entire trip. On the way back, he got hungry about forty-five minutes from home so we stopped at a fast food joint so I could feed him. I covered myself up with a blanket the best I could, but it was interesting to see the reactions of people at the restaurant. Most simply didn’t pay attention, but others did stare, which made me uncomfortable. Hopefully, in time, I’ll feel more confident about breastfeeding in public. In the meantime, I’ll simply work to treasure every experience with Gus and Justin!
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