I Missed My Husband:: The Postpartum Grief No One Warned Me About

I Missed My Husband:: The Postpartum Grief No One Warned Me About | Houston Moms BlogI remember the day that pregnancy test first showed a double line. It was an hour of shock followed by several more of elation. But by the time the sun went down, I had shifted {in typical Lauren fashion} into research mode. Google and I became attached at the proverbial hip. What did I need to buy for the nursery? What vitamins should I be taking? How would I possible keep a tiny human completely dependent on me alive when my houseplants never made it longer than a few months? 

And so I googled all the things. I read all the books. I asked my OB 15,482 questions. And like any expectant mother, I turned to the seasoned parents in my life for advice. They helped me make lists of thing I needed to do and figure out what to add to my baby registry, and generally calmed the insane hamster running circles in my brain long enough for me to relax. By the time my due date rolled around {and then passed me by – thanks a lot kid} I felt like I had a pretty good handle on things. 

Cue eye roll here. 

Now there are plenty of things people warned me about that no amount of planning and list-making could prepare me for. For one, there was the difficulties of breastfeeding. And of course, the ever so wonderful postpartum anxiety and depression. Wow was I ever not prepared for that. Today, I’d like to discuss the one thing that no one warned me about, and that was the gut-wrenching sense that I missed my husband. 

I Missed My Husband:: The Postpartum Grief No One Warned Me About | Houston Moms Blog

It was like an ache in the pit of my stomach that nothing could touch. I missed my husband. He was standing right next to me in the new-parent trenches, but I missed him as if he were miles away. Our lives were no longer our own.

This wasn’t a surprise of course. I mean, we created a tiny human together, one that needed us every minute of every day. I knew going into it that the changes in our life together would be unimaginable. My friends and family warned me that we’d be sleep deprived zombies that barely had time to take showers, let alone cuddle up for a movie night. But what I didn’t understand until it happened was the sense of grief I would feel.  

I knew there wouldn’t be many date nights anymore or late night trips for ice-cream while holding hands like teenagers. But I didn’t realize I would be eating Valentine’s Day dinner alone at a silent kitchen table while we took turns rocking our screaming infant. Or watching a new episode of a beloved TV show at different times of night while we alternated who got up for midnight feedings. We weren’t even able to sleep beside one another, to enjoy the comfort of our bodies resting side by side. Our newborn son was such a terrible sleeper that we were forced to sleep in shifts just to be functional enough to get through the day.

I Missed My Husband:: The Postpartum Grief No One Warned Me About | Houston Moms Blog

It’s not that we didn’t try to make time for each one another. We stole every moment together we possibly could. But we were so exhausted and overwhelmed that as soon as we got our son to sleep we found ourselves passing out rather than spending time together. And I remember one of my many crying jags in those first months, just inconsolable because I missed my husband. I loved my sweet baby boy more than life itself, but some small part of me longed for the time when it was just the two of us and we could actually be together. 

So to all the mothers out there who are expecting their first child, hear me when I say. You will miss your spouse.

Painfully.  

But also know this – one day that ache will start to fade. As your child gets older and the insanity of the newborn phase starts to ease a little, you will find your way back to one another. It’s not the same, and that sense of desperately missing what was still flares up from time to time, but it eventually becomes the new normal. You can’t spend lazy Saturdays cuddled up on the couch or have a spontaneous date night to a new restaurant, but eating Chinese food in bed while watching an episode of a favorite show after you finally FINALLY get the kids to bed is pretty special too. 


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One Response to I Missed My Husband:: The Postpartum Grief No One Warned Me About

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    Megan August 16, 2020 at 1:50 pm #

    You nailed it on the head. Every single word. Thank you for sharing this. I just had my first baby, and this is EXACTLY how I feel. I definitely did not see these emotions coming. I didn’t know how much I would miss our life before baby. It helps to know that other first time moms go through it too. Gives me a little peace of mind. Thank you for sharing that it gets better. I have a good cry once a day about this, and I’m hoping eventually I won’t be so sad about it, and that this will become our new normal. Our love for each other has never been stronger, and I think that is what makes it harder!

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