When the moosh came out I didn’t instantly fall in love with her.

I thought it was cool she came out with all her parts in the right place in seemingly right proportion.

But I was not in love.
14 hours old
I wasn’t in love with her when I brought her home.

I wasn’t in love with her three months after  I brought her home.

I felt a sense of obligation to her. But I didn’t feel love.

She was pretty, yes. She had a darling smile, yes. I even liked her sometimes. But I felt like I was going through the motions of making sure she was fed, clothed and clean.

She felt like a job. An exhausting job that payed crap. A job that I was supposed to love.

I feel like I faked it well. But I was tormented. Everyone else was so in love with my baby, I was not. I put up a good front though.

However there were nights I put her in the crib a little too hard. There were nights I left her wailing in the the other room while I shoved my head under a pillow and screamed if only to drown out her crying. She was never in danger, she was always taken care of.

She just wasn’t loved by her mother.

I felt broken, yet obligated.

Try telling anyone in this world you don’t love your baby and you’ll hear “Oh yes you do, you’re just tired and overwhelmed.”

“Excuse me, no I don’t.” is what I wanted to say back, but never did. I just forced a smile and said “Yeah, maybe you’re right.”

Then at seven months it happened.

I fell in love.

I had been reading Harry Potter to her before I put her to bed. I turned her around to burp her one last time. She snuggled into me and fell asleep. Her chubby little hand over my heart.

Just like that I fell in love with her, and I never looked back.
the moosh.

Those were a long seven months.

Comments

  1. I posted our first family picture a while ago and told a story very much like this one. That picture was taken when Boog was 2 weeks old and my smile was so forced and fake. I remember when he was 6 weeks old I wanted so badly to return to work even though I had 6 more weeks of maternity leave.

    I think this is more common than most moms think because no one talks about it. I’m glad you posted this. I think new mom’s need to know that it may not be love at first sight and that is ok.

  2. This is why I love you.

  3. k you so just made me cry… I felt the exact same way… and one day it just hit me… it wasnt 7 months but it still felt like forever… like why dont I love her as much as everyone else does??? ahh and then the photo at the end… adorable…

  4. I was in love with my son before I had him, but I know it’s not that way for a lot of moms. Thank you for having the courage to write this post and put it out there. For women who don’t instantly bond with their kids, I think that it’s so important for them to know they’re not alone, and that if they talk to the right people, they will not be judged for it. Also, that picture of the moosh in the pink hat makes me want to just kiss her all over. SO CUTE!

    Rachael’s last blog post..Summer Plans

  5. So wonderful of you to admit to this! This happened to me with my second baby, so I felt doubly guilty – I love the first one, but not her! Oh, no! Couple that with enormous sleep deprivation, and it didn’t make for a good first year. Of course, she grew on me; but for a long time I couldn’t shake a sense of guilt for not loving her right away. Now, after 6 kids, I have better perspective, of course. But I hope some newish mother in my situation finds this post and reads it!

    suburbancorrespondents last blog post..Here We Go ‘Round The Mulberry Bush…

  6. I was drawn to this post when I saw it on Blog Nosh because I wrote about something very similar on my own blog as well. It wasn’t immediate for me either, and I think there is a lot of pressure to “feel the love” the moment your baby is placed on your chest. For those of us who experience it more as a process, it’s good to know there are others out there like us.

    Beth – total mom haircuts last blog post..Behind Closed Doors

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  1. [...] easy to me, the whole mothering gig. I still don’t feel like it does. A while ago I admitted to not loving her right at first. And there’s still days that I count down the minutes to bedtime. Parenting is, well, [...]

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