How was your night?
This became one of the kindest questions for me, when I had my little ones. The sort of question that made me feel that people really knew me, really knew what life was life.
You see as adults we tend to have a day. One period of time that we report on, perhaps a 7-11pm day. We see other adults and ask, how was you day? And they tell us.
But when you have a little one, suddenly, there is no longer just the day. There's the night too. This time period that used to be completely uneventful - a time that we perhaps only ask our partners about - becomes front and centre of our minds.
When I first had a baby I suddenly felt like I had two days. A day that everyone regularly asked about, and one that was not asked about. One where the rest of the world slept - a time period they didn't really consider - and yet how well that 'second day' or night went - really affected me overall.
I was so grateful to have a supportive husband, who used to prepare me rows of drinks, bowls of grapes and a few chocolates (!) and who was also supportive in helping wherever he could - but as I was breastfeeding there were times when it was often something I needed to do.
Here are a few things I wish I'd known.
You are not alone. All around the world, millions of others are in the same situation as you. Awake at the same time, also experiencing this day and night scenario.
Babies waking in the night is normal. Babies wanting to be held is normal. It is a normal part of infant behaviour. They are little, their tummies are little, and sometimes they're hungry. Sometimes they're unsettled, not yet used to not being in the womb - they're looking for comfort. You can read more about the Forth Trimester here: https://www.carryingmatters.co.uk/secure-attachment-fourth-trimester/ Being responsive now builds trust, and builds a firm foundation for good mental health for the future. You're doing a great job.
It will not last forever. It won't. Honestly it won't. It is so difficult at the time to believe this, but it will not last forever.
Talking about it does help. It doesn't change the bags under your eyes, or make you feel more awake - but it does help you to know you're not alone in this.
I hope this helps you to read this! And next time I see you in person, I'll ask, as I always do, How was your night? Lots of love!