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Having a Baby Turned Me into a Hermit

I had no idea it would happen to me. I was sure, going into this whole “motherhood” thing, that I would be one of those moms who have it all together. I’d be out on the town with my cute baby in tow in no time, prancing from place to place, going on coffee dates and shopping and getting manicures, all with my perfect baby by my side, sleeping like an angel and giggling at everyone around us.

Oh, how very wrong I was (except for the perfect baby part). After having my baby, I wanted nothing to do with the outside world. I didn’t have time to bathe myself, let alone look halfway decent enough to even think about leaving the house. Plus, I didn’t really want to leave. What if my baby had a blowout? What if he started screaming (something his little lungs were very apt at, might I add) in public? What if I started leaking through my shirt and everyone laughed at me?

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These were the thoughts that went through a deranged new mom’s mind. These were the thoughts that kept me from leaving my house. These were the thoughts that turned me into a hermit—at least for a little while.

I didn’t want to share my perfect little one with the big bad world. I wanted to keep him, selfishly, all to myself, away from anything scary or different or new. But more than that, I was scared. I was overwhelmed. I could barely get myself up and ready to go before it was time to tend to my baby’s needs. I was scared to feed him in public, scared that I wouldn’t know what to do, scared to bring him places besides our own safe home.

But then it happened. I was forced to take my baby somewhere. Mind you, it was the doctor’s office, but still. He was only 2 weeks old! Can we talk about how crazy it is that we are expected to bring our baby someplace—and be on time—when they are only 2 weeks old?! Shouldn’t pediatricians have, like, house calls for the first month? Wouldn’t that be a dream! Anyway. What I’d like to know is how many of us actually end up making that 2-week-old appointment, and on time, and with a happy baby? We sure didn’t.

We had every good intention of making it, but then Murphy’s Law came into effect, full force. You know, anything that can go wrong will go wrong.

If we were going to be judged for our tardiness, I sure as hell was going to make sure he looked cute.

He napped longer than expected. And I really didn’t want to wake him up. NEVER wake a sleeping baby, right? But we had a doctor’s appointment to get to. And we had never met the doctor before, so we didn’t want to have a bad first impression—we didn’t know what they would think of us, how they would judge us as not being fit to be this tiny creature’s parents, because we were late. I shuddered to think of it.

So we woke him up from his slumber.

Mistake number one.

Then I fed him. And he kept eating and eating and eating and I’m frantically checking the clock every few minutes, palms sweaty, already knowing that we’re going to be late—to the doctor’s office that is literally five minutes from our house.

When he’s done eating, I dress him up in the cute outfit that I had picked out for his first doctor visit. Because, if we were going to be judged for our tardiness, I sure as hell was going to make sure he looked cute. Being judged for his outfit was not something I would allow. So I put on his adorable outfit of onesie/pants/sweater with the little baby moccasins and beanie to match, and he’s all buttoned up with those damn snaps that I had to re-do because the first time they didn’t match up (they do that on purpose, to drive us crazy, I swear). OK, phew. Outfit done.

We get him strapped into his car seat, which is way too big for him because we decided to forego the infant car seat and go straight to the one that grows from infant to toddlerdom in hopes of saving money and space [side note: do not forego the infant car seat] which is a whole other process in and of itself. Those straps are too big. He’s drowning in the padding of the seat. Push him up a little. No, down. Adjust the straps to his collarbone! Wait, now it’s on his throat. Adjust the straps down a bit. Oh, great, now they’re at his belly. After the car seat frustrations, we finally have him in there somewhat safely (I think? But what do we really know) and then we hear it. That loud chorus of rumblings and grumblings and a huge grin comes over his face.

And then we smell it.

Great. Just great. That was a massive blowout.

Time to undo the car seat straps and bring him back into the house and finagle him out of his snapped up onesie and skinny, completely frazzled while dropping the entire contents of the diaper bag onto the ground in the process. We get him back onto his changing pad and see the damage. Poop is literally everywhere. How it got up to his bellybutton, I have no idea, but there it is.

Can we just use a hose?

Time to get him dressed again. I give up. He’s wearing the zip-up footie pajamas that he slept in.

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Back into the car he goes. We show up to the doctor an hour late. She’s already moved on to the next patient and has no more time that day. We have to reschedule.

Is this some kind of joke? That’s it. We’re not leaving the house again…

Well, until his next doctor’s appointment, of course.

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