Coming out of those first two or so weeks of the postpartum blues with my first, I promised to myself, and future moms, that I would urge us all to share the honest and vulnerable truth that is postpartum. 

It’s not always rainbows and butterflies immediately after the baby is here. Of course, all of our experiences are different and there is beauty in that. We all anxiously anticipate and hope for a seamless transition into motherhood, that’s the ideal situation. Some of us go through a breakdown while others experience a breakthrough in those first few weeks. 

But why do we only share about the good and not the bad? Why not be honest about the hard parts? Why not tell your experience even if it’s on the darker side?

 Emotionally, physically, and mentally, it’s hard. 

False Expectations

Everything I heard about postpartum, before giving birth, was positive. How blissful and beautiful it was going to be once my son arrived. How we would bond instantly through a soul connection and how I would look at him with the deepest sense of knowing and feel a love I’ve never felt. 

I read many books and listened to many podcasts touching on the first forty days after a baby arrives and how it should be a time of rest, peacefulness, and joy—relaxing in bed, with your baby calmly on your chest, cuddled in clean sheets, sipping a warm tea and eating a hot meal. How all worries go out the window because your baby is here and nothing else matters. 

Sure, this may very well be the experience you had and if so I am so happy for you. What a blessing. Unfortunately, this isn’t the case for well over 50% of birthing women, and I was one of them. I was in no way prepared for how jarring, disconnected, and lost I was going to feel. 


The moment I stepped foot into my home, with my new baby in tow, I broke down into tears. What was I supposed to do now? What if he started crying and I couldn’t get him to stop? What if my milk didn’t come in? 

I laid my son in his bassinet, took a shower, and waited until the evening when it was finally time to fall asleep in my bed, with this new little human beside me. Only to be startled awake every 30 minutes with cries for milk. After multiple attempts to feed, I finally realized, my milk had not yet come in and the poor little guy was hungry. After what seemed like hours of trying to nourish him, we made a desperate 1am grocery store run to get formula. 

This night kicked off my daily, sunset-inducing anxiety attacks for the next two weeks. As soon as the 5pm hour hit, I felt nothing but dread, fear, and sadness. What was each night going to bring us? How many hours of sleep would we get? How much screaming could we handle?

Thoughts of regret started showing up almost instantly. I didn’t regret my baby but I regretted giving up the life my husband and I had before him. I wanted my son to be with us but I also couldn’t envision a life with him moving forward. The guilt for feeling this way consumed me for weeks.

The expectation was so high that it easily led to a sense of inadequacy. But as time went on, I realized, there is no right or wrong way to enter into postpartum. 

Your body, mind, and soul have changed overnight. You are expected to adjust to this new life with ease but in any other situation, something this life-changing would typically induce stress, anxiety, and fear. We need to honor those feelings just as much as we need to honor our feelings of relief, joy, and love in having our baby earthside.

Postpartum is a journey with super-high highs and super-low lows. It is not a linear path; we need to start sharing those twists and turns in the road. In doing so, normalizing all of our experiences and bonding us together even more in motherhood.  

RELATED TOPIC: Nurturing the Nurturer: A Guide to Mom-Centric Postnatal Gifts

Preparing and Hoping

My son is now two and he is the best part of my life. He is funny, kind, sensitive, and loving. He brings out the best in me and I love him so deeply. But if you were to tell me how in love I would be, in those first couple of weeks postpartum, I wouldn’t have believed you. I was bogged down by regret, fear, and anxiety. 

I am now 32 weeks pregnant with my second and I fear those same feelings will show up. However, this time around, I know that it’s normal to feel this way. That I can and will make it out of the dark days if they show up again. That my baby will bring me so much joy, happiness, and love. That we will get to experience this life together and it’s going to be truly amazing in every way. I love being a mother and I would go through the postpartum blues over and over again to get to the other side. 

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Mackenzie Robitaille
Mackenzie is a full time working mom to one sweet little boy and soon to be baby girl. She was born and raised in Santa Barbara, CA where she met her high school sweetheart. After 10 years together, they finally decided to tie the knot and have now been married for 5 years. Mackenzie and her husband moved to Ventura in the summer of 2020, after living in Long Beach for 6 years, finishing up school and beginning their careers. They had dreamt of moving back, closer to family with the hope to start a family of their own soon after. On the first day of 2022, Mackenzie welcomed her son James into the world. As a family of three, they enjoy trips to local libraries, early morning muffin making, warm days at the beach or pool and Saturday morning farmers market dates with their friends. While juggling being a full time Marketing Director and Mommy, Mackenzie finds joy in the little things; a warm cup of coffee, a brand new book from the local bookstore, a walk around the neighborhood.


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