That SO did not happen.
Besides utter exhaustion from pushing a baby out of my body, all I remember thinking is:
Who's alien baby IS this??? Why does she have a cone-head? Why is she purple? Why doesn't she look like me?? Why is she screaming? Why won't she STOP screaming? Doesn't she know I'm her mother? Is this REALLY my baby?
There was an immediate disconnect between the strong bond I felt for the baby that grew in my belly and this screaming, crying, cone-headed purple lizard laying on my chest.
I was shocked that my baby was finally here. I also felt guilty that I wasn't in love with her at first sight.
Fortunately, that unconditional love came in small moments the next few hours, days, weeks and months:
Sleeping in my arms in the hospital. (She was less lizard-y and very cute at this point.) THIS is what I was expecting when she was born. L-O-L at me. I really look forward to the next birth of my next baby so I can savor those first few moments of life without wondering why there is an alien on my chest instead of a baby. Now that I am fully prepared, I know I will appreciate it a lot more.
The day we came home from the hospital, I went upstairs to take a nap. But I couldn't sleep- I was too excited and just wanted to watch this new little life I brought into the world
The day she finally smiled, my love grew even more.
But the day I finally realized I loved my little girl more than anything in the world was the first time she slept through the night. I fully own up that my love of motherhood was not complete until that blissful night at 6 weeks post-partum.
Up until that point, I didn't understand how any woman ever had more than one child. It was exhausting! It was emotional! It was tiring! It was stressful! There were small moments of bliss throughout the day. But how could anyone turn their life upside down for a newborn more than once? WHY would they do that?
When I finally got a full night's rest, I knew what unconditional love was. And fortunately for me, this girl loves sleep as much as I do. Goes to bed at 10 pm, sleeps in til 10 am. In the crib, in her car seat, in her Pack'n'play, on an airplane.
I really love my daughter---but especially when she's sleeping. Nothing is as sweet or angelic as a little babe completely conked out.
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