Thoughts On Being A Mom {I wonder if I get my brain function back?}

So I’m 9 1/2 weeks into this whole mom thing and I have to admit that I haven’t quite pulled myself back together again.

About a week ago, I loaded Harrison up in the car and we drove to my doctor’s office, which is about 40 minutes away.  I needed to sign something and I figured, while I was there, I would go to city hall and get a copy of his birth certificate, because the insurance company needed one.  I was a little bit nervous, because it was the longest trip I had ever attempted with him by myself, but I figured that best case scenario, he would sleep in the car and if he screamed, I would just turn on show tunes and sing loudly.

We made it to my doctor’s office without a problem, I went in, signed the paperwork and headed on my way to city hall.  I parked, carried him up to the second floor and walked into the city clerk’s office feeling pretty good about myself for having made it this far without a meltdown (from either one of us).  I filled out the paperwork and handed it over, at which point the clerk spent a few minutes staring at her computer with a very perplexed look on her face.

“He’s not in the system yet.”

“You need to call medical records at the hospital and make sure everything is okay on their end.”

Well, that’s not good.

So I carried Harrison back down two flights of stairs and out to the car.  At this point it was raining.  I got him loaded up and headed home.  When we got home, I fed him and got him settled, then called the hospital and left a message with medical records.  The woman called me back and was SO sweet, but also super concerned that he wasn’t in the system.  Everything was fine on her end and she couldn’t figure out why Harrison wasn’t in the state system.  She asked which city hall I had been to and said she was going to call in the morning and find out what was going on.

The whole thing just seemed really strange.  I had already gotten his social security card, why couldn’t they find him in the state system?

About an hour after I got off the phone with her, I looked at the paperwork I had filled out.

And that’s when I realized what the problem was.

Date of Birth: 7/2/2017.

Which would have been fine if Harrison was born on July 2nd.

But he was born on June 2nd.

Insert hand-slapping-face emoji here.

Not only did I have to admit to my slightly-concerned husband later on that night that I’m an idiot and the state probably did have a record of our son, but the next morning I had to call the hospital and tell the medical records woman to tell her the same thing, hopefully getting her before she called the city clerk and yelled at them.  And then two days later I had to walk back into the city clerks office and fill out a new form, while explaining that apparently I don’t know that June is the 6th month of the year and not the 7th.

So I’ve got that going for me.

Thoughts On Being A Mom {One Month In}

I am having a hard time believing that tomorrow, Harrison will be four weeks old.  In some ways, it feels like the days are long, but most days I feel like time has just started moving at warp speed and I can’t even catch my breath.  Do I really have a baby?  Am I really not pregnant anymore?  Are we really a family of three?  Did I accidentally feed the cat twice?  Three times?  Whoops.

Writing has always been such a therapeutic way for me to process stuff, so while I have a sleeping baby next to me (I’m learning that’s not always a guarantee!) I thought I would put together a stream of consciousness post with my thoughts on the first month of motherhood …

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1. I literally do not understand my emotions anymore.  Is emotional dichotomy a thing?  Because it should be.  How in the world is it possible to be so unbelievably frustrated because your baby only knows how to communicate by crying and yet you simultaneously love this child more than life itself and think he is so unbelievably precious, even in his hysterical-meltdowning-state??

Here’s to hoping my husband shares the same sentiment when it comes to me and my hysterical-meltdowning-state.

2. It’s weird to not be working.  Since Harrison was born, there was a huge combined annual meeting of the MA, CT & RI conferences to discuss the merging of the conferences and I followed via Twitter.  Yesterday and today, most of my UCC colleagues headed down to Baltimore for General Synod and, again, I am following via Twitter.  I have maintained such an intense work pace for the past six years that it’s weird to be completely disconnected not only from RCC, but also from the denomination.

And yet … I don’t care.  I mean, I care in the sense that I’m curious about what’s going on and I miss everyone.  But I am exactly where I want and need to be right now.  I love being a mom.  I love having this time with my precious baby, time that I know I will never get back.  I love watching Bruce be the most incredible father I always knew he would be, and yet couldn’t have completely comprehended until now.  I may be a hot mess, I may spontaneously cry, I may be covered in some combination of breast milk and spit up and I may not be able to recall when I last showered, but this stage of life is pretty freaking awesome.  Right now I am learning how to be a mom and there is so much grace in it, I can’t even put it to words.  As hard as it is to watch everyone go on with their work and to feel a little bit stalled in that area, I know I am exactly where God is calling me to be right now.

3. I’ve discovered insta-stories and I love them and don’t know why.  Why don’t I just post everything to my main instagram page?  Wouldn’t that make more sense?  Who knows, but if you want more pics and videos of Harrison, check my stories, because I’m currently obsessed with adding little clips throughout the day.

4. I’m seriously out of the loop when it comes to what is going on in our country.

And for that I am thankful.

5. It has been harder to integrate back into the real world than I thought it would be.  I pictured myself being out an about a lot more in this first month, but I haven’t really wanted to, honestly.  I think part of this is my anxiety about bringing a newborn places – I barely know what to do when he melts down at home, how do I deal with meltdowns on the go??

This has honestly been hard for me to admit because I do like giving off the illusion that I have it all together, but I talked to Bruce about it the other day and he has been encouraging me to have faith in myself, make small trips when I can and push myself so I can get more comfortable venturing out into the real world.

The other day I took Harrison for a walk by myself and he started screaming (I think he was hot, it wasn’t super humid, but the afternoon sun was doing its thing).  The bad news is that I had to push a screaming baby up my hill.  The good news is that we both survived and then watched Moana in the air conditioning.

I also think part of my homebody-ness is just loving being home, bonding with Harrison and being a family of three!  But at the same time, I’m definitely also feeling cooped up and needing some adult interaction.  My friends have been awesome!  They have given me grace in figuring out what I need, have let me have space when I need it and have shown up with food and empty arms ready to rock a fussy baby when I finally ask for it.

6. Chores make me feel sane.  Bruce took the baby from me today to give me break from the fussiness and I started unloading the dishwasher.  He told me to go lay down so I could catch my breath, but honestly – chores help me catch my breath.  In a very strange way, it makes me feel like I have some sort of control over something.  Because when you’re on hour three of a crying baby fighting sleep, you realize how little control you have over other things.

7. Motherhood is overwhelming.  I worry about every little thing and second-guess myself all the time.  I analyze the color of baby poop.  I google a lot.  My doctor hears from us on a daily basis.  Bruce got into bed the other night and said something about not realizing how mentally exhausting this would be.  I think we both prepared ourselves for the physical demands that come with a newborn, but never quite realized how much it would demand mentally.  I think this is going to be constantly changing as Harrison gets older.  My friends with older kids say that in some ways it gets easier and in other ways it gets harder and I can totally see how that would be true.

8. I love picturing what life will be like when Harrison starts coming to church and I start attempting the balance of being a pastor and being a mom.  I had him in the carrier the other day and got emotional thinking about what it will be like to have him in that same carrier at church functions.

(God willing.  At the moment he tolerates it for about ten minutes.)

I’m a PK – I grew up in the church and it was an amazing experience.  The church was my second home.  The people there were my family.  It was part of what called me into the ministry.  I cannot wait for Harrison to experience church, know God’s love, learn about Jesus’ life and ministry, see mama working and find grace along the way.

9. This is going to sound so cliché, but watching my husband become a father has made me fall in love with him all over again.  He is an amazing father and does such an incredible job of taking care of both of us.  Last night he held a crying baby in one hand, a crying wife in the other hand and never once wondered out loud when the last time was that he had a fishing rod in his hand.  He’s amazing and I am so thankful.

10. This is the single most incredible thing I have ever done.  Hard?  Yes.  Exhausting?  Absolutely.  Frustrating?  All the time.  Terrifying?  Good lord.

But it is also amazing.  Beautiful.  Hysterical.

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Grace filled.

Harrison Allen

I realize that this blog is called “Preaching in Pumps,” but, truth be told, I haven’t done a whole lot of preaching or pump-wearing lately.

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Harrison Allen Weaver was born on June 2, 2017 at 3:30PM. He was 8 pounds, 8.5 ounces and 21 inches long. To say that Bruce and I are completely captivated and in love is a total understatement.

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I have to admit, the whole concept of maternity leave is a little bit strange to me. Every now and then I have to stop myself from trying to be productive and remember that my only job right now is to take care of my precious little boy who is only going to be this little once. Everything else – chores, emails, texts – can wait.

I have no idea how I am going to balance this whole mom and pastor thing.  The thought of going back to work already breaks my heart.  But the thought of sharing the church with Harrison – the church that loves him so much already, the church that is a living, breathing and grace-filled expression of God’s love, the church that is my family away from family – makes my heart swell.  I am so grateful for a job that is a calling, one that I have the privilege of sharing with my family.

But for now, I will attempt to settle into my new role as mom, temporarily stashing my pumps in the back of the closet and happily existing in spit-up and milk covered workout clothes.

And who knows?  Maybe I’ll write about it along the way …

Onto the next adventure, friends! <3