Dirty diapers, sweet cuddles, multiple loads of laundry, sleepless nights, – these are things I expected when prepping for the birth of my baby boy. I knew bringing him home and getting in the swing of things would make for a challenging few months. I was prepared. I had spent weeks getting together diapers, clothes, fixing meals for days that I didn’t feel like cooking and I even set up a meal delivery service, I was ready for this baby. What I wasn’t prepared for was the coronavirus happening during my maternity leave.
So, what’s it like having a newborn during the pandemic? It’s exhausting, and it’s not the nighttime feedings that have me at a breaking point. Of course, there’s the normal worry of becoming a mom, am I doing this right? Should he be eating more or less? What’s his weight? Is he happy? But I’m also faced now with the worry that there is a shortage on baby wipes, food and Lord forbid toilet paper.
I thought during my maternity leave that I would be able to easily order groceries, like we do every week. We still can of course, but it’s different. My husband goes to our lobby and cleans everything with Lysol and Clorox wipes before bringing it to our apartment. We’re possibly being overly cautious, but this is how we are choosing to handle the situation. This morning, we did a diaper and wipe inventory and quickly placed an order on Amazon for more. Babies go through a lot of these and unfortunately people are hoarding baby wipes. We’re afraid if we don’t stock up ourselves, we may not be able to buy these things we need later on.
Our two-week baby appointment was this week. After talking with our doctor on the phone, we decided not to go. We’ll of course make an appointment for later, but the thought of getting baby out of the house with this nastiness going around terrified me. In our area, several doctors have tested positive for COVID-19, so again, I feel like we are being cautious and not crazy.
At every feeding, I find myself checking social media and the news. My husband and I discuss the latest updates instead of enjoying our time together as a family. Our parents have not had a chance to meet their grandson, only through FaceTime and photos. For my parents, this is their first grandchild – and kids grow so fast, it makes me sad that they are missing these early moments.
Am I scared? Absolutely and I’m aggravated. I understand that we are all trying to navigate this new lifestyle and it’s difficult to understand. Many of us have never seen a time like this and it’s really knocked our generation off their feet. I’m not claiming to know what to do, but I am listening and I’m staying self-quarantined until this all gets straightened out. The sooner we all accept that this isn’t going away quietly, the sooner we can move forward. I’m hoping that when our son is 6 weeks (in 4 weeks) that we can plan for our parents to make the trip to see him without the fear of getting sick.
Remember, we are all in this together – even if you don’t feel like it’s a big deal, try to do your part and stay home. Let’s get a handle on this and finish the year 2020 a lot better than it started.