What I learned the first week of motherhood.

After nine very long months, I gave birth to my first child Xavier Stephen Morris on Sunday, September 8, 2019, at 7:33 p.m.

The first photo of the three of us taken by Carling Zhou in the hospital!

The first week of motherhood has been raw and it’s been incredible all at the same time. It’s been the hardest thing I’ve ever done yet the best thing Carl (my husband) and I have ever experienced/ could not be happier! Since then, we’ve had ups and downs, we’ve laughed and we’ve cried and I am so in love with my son. After taking time to reflect, I wanted to share what the first week of motherhood was like for me as it has not been all butterflies and rainbows!

The hardest part for me was dealing with the crazy, hormonal emotions that come postpartum. The first day we came home, I was breastfeeding and just crying. Then bottle feeding to supplement because X was borderline jaundice. Don’t worry–he’s ok now! But I 100% felt the “mom guilt” everyone has told me about and that I finally understand. It’s crazy how much you hear about “mom guilt” and you don’t understand it at all until it becomes you. I’ve learned to reassure myself that my body IS doing enough and I shouldn’t feel ANY guilt, this is normal and I am doing a great job!

Having friends who are mothers has helped me immensely. I am so thankful for my friends who have been through those first, tough few weeks and can reassure me that everything will be ok. I have asked them for tips and advice non-stop, I’ve even facetimed them just to cry. Being able to lean on my friends during this time has been much needed and appreciated. Even the friends and family who have been dropping off food and offering to help with anything we need. I truly never realized what a friend might need when having a baby until I had my own.

Since those first few days, each night is getting easier as Carl and I figure out our schedule and baby X’s, what works and what doesn’t. It’s very much trial and error with a lot of patience! Carl and I have been taking turns on night shifts with Xavier and it’s been helping us stay sane during the process. We both can’t be zombies! haha

Xavier and I on day 7 postpartum!

Xavier’s first doctor’s appointment could not have been funnier. Carl and I were exhausted and X peed ALL over me, the table and his clothes AND we forgot wipes! We couldn’t help but laugh so hard, and made sure to pack them for his next appointment!

Carl, Xavier and I at his first doctor’s appointment after he peed everywhere!

I wanted to share all of this with you as I think a lot of social media is only life’s highlights–the happy moments and rarely the tears and emotions behind the first couple of days, weeks and months of being a first-time mother. The emotions are real, they are normal and it’s ok to let them out and know you are not alone. I hope me being open helps at least one of you because my social media and my life aren’t made to look perfect, it’s not perfect and it’s real life and I want to share it all with you. Opening up and sharing my thoughts and feelings with my husband, family and friends have helped me so much. Whatever you may be going through, talk about it! It’s important to let out your feelings and emotions during this huge change in life and be ok with it.

Did you have a similar experience with your first time being a mother? I would love to know in the comments below!

Xx, Tonya Michelle

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  1. I wanna cry just reading about your first night because it sounds EXACTLY like my first night and my first breastfeeding experience! My baby had jaundice too! I’m so proud of you Mamma! You’re doing such a good job and you’re a rockstar mom already! And that precious baby is just perfect! Resembles both Mommy and Daddy is such a beautiful way!

  2. I’m so excited to finally meet baby X! I am so happy for you and Carl, how exciting! This is such a special thing, I can’t wait to see all of his little outfits!

  3. Thank you for sharing the real side of motherhood! In the beginning, I remember feeling so mad during the night that I kept getting woken up haha. And then guilty that I felt mad. I got over it, but yeah, it’s not all perfect. You are doing great, mama! Keep it up!

  4. OMG!! Congrats to you both! The baby is so cute!! Thank you for sharing your experience. I bet that is rough but beautiful and that you can never tell until you experience it. Enjoy this process… Time flies!

  5. Omg yessss, so many tears. The hormones and baby blues are so so real. You are supposed to be over the moon..and you are..but you’re also sleep deprived and terrified. Thank you for the realness.

  6. Congratulations Mama! I think the overwhelmed feelings are completely normal, no one can really prepare you for how much life changes once there’s a baby around!! But you will find that there are good periods and bad periods, that you’re a wonderful mom (even when you don’t feel like it) and everyone is doing the best they can. Don’t put pressure on yourself to be a certain way, the best thing you can do is be flexible and keep seeing what feels good to you, baby and Daddy each day.

  7. CONGRATS, girlfriend. Being a mama is not easy. My hubby and I take turns on night shifts too – you are absolutely right: you can’t both be zombies. NEwborn life is crazy but oh so wonderful. Then they start smiling and laughing at you and life can’t get any more beautiful than that.

  8. Congratulations on your new baby boy! He’s super adorable and you have one beautiful family! I can imagine how motherhood is not easy but you are definitely doing a great job! ❤️

  9. Congratulations on your new baby boy! He’s super adorable and you have one beautiful family! I can imagine how motherhood is not easy but you are definitely doing a great job! It will get better with time❤️

  10. What a lovely story…Congratulations on your new baby boy! He’s super adorable and you have one beautiful family! I can imagine how motherhood is not easy but you are definitely doing a great job! It will get better with time❤️

  11. Congrats! This was so interesting to read about. I don’t have children and I always go back and forth on whether I want children because know how hard it is to be a mother! Looks like you’re getting a good handle on it though!

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