The Nitty Gritty on the First Few Weeks of Motherhood.

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God, grant me grace. Help me be patient with myself. I am not perfect. I cannot do it all. I am not Wonder Woman; I am me, just one person. And there’s nothing wrong with that.

Let me not worry so much about my older daughters. They will be okay. We all have an adjustment period. It’s not easy. But it is what it is. We just have to muddle through it—together.

Let me concentrate on this new little one who needs me. She needs to eat more. She’s still not back up to her birth weight yet and this hangs heavily upon me. I feel responsible. I know she will be okay, but I still worry. Last night my breasts were leaking and I cried for what I cannot give her. My implants prevented me from nursing successfully (the implants I got because we were “done” having kids. Post-twins, pre-miracle conception). The milk was there, but it got stuck and couldn’t find its way out. The result? Painful engorgement and only getting a few ounces per day for Piper.

Piper Lynn

People always tell me they don’t know how I did it with twins. And I’d reply that I couldn’t understand how others did it with kids at all different ages and stages. Now that is me, this is my life. I am struggling with it, trying to grab hold and figure it all out. How do I get the twins breakfasted and ready for school while juggling a screaming, hungry baby? Listening to her wail while in the carpool line, knowing she hates her car seat, she’s starving or sitting in a poopy diaper, etc.
How am I supposed to do it all? I guess I’m not. And I hate that I can’t.
My bottom is sore from being torn from stem to stern. My tush is chapped from sitting on wet maxi pads all damn day. And by evening the throbbing from my crotch forces me to put my feet up and/or sit in the tub for 20 minutes. I am hormonal and overwhelmed.
I feel like there’s a vast wasteland between my husband and me.  That will probably not change until Piper is sleeping through the night. I miss my own bed. It’s hard to sleep with baby noises. But I love the snuggle time we get in the middle of the night. I never got to have that with the twins. It almost makes me feel guilty. In many ways, Piper is getting more of me than Abby and Izzy ever did.
I feel like I’m neglecting them–there’s not enough of me to go around right now. And they aren’t quite six, so they can’t really comprehend. Maybe they won’t really remember. And soon this will all hopefully be a memory.
I will get through this.
I will get through this.
I will get through this.
This is temporary.
This is temporary.
This is temporary.
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  • Diana

    Yes – it is temporary and you will make it through. It took 10 months but Jellybean sleeps through the night more often then not now. You figure out your new normal along the way. Hang in there!

    • Erin Margolin


      Thanks for giving me some hope—maybe in a few months there will be a light at the end of the tunnel! ;-)

  • Melissa Harvison

    This is very well written, Erin.  Methinks you are definitely finding your “writer roots.”  All I can say is that you will make it through this.  You are strong.  I remember when we lived on the same floor in the New South dorm at Millsaps, and something had happened in your life that made you upset and depressed, and I admired you for being strong and getting “there” in the end.  I like the honesty with which you write. 

    -Melissa (your old buddy from college)

    • Erin Margolin


      You are a doll. Thank you so much. I love that you came over here to read and even left me some comment love! I can’t believe you ever admired me. And if I’m strong, then you must be Wonder Woman because I was always in awe of you and how much you’d been through and done in your life….


  • Leighvslaundry

    Oh, I can remember feeling this way at first. Here is what I learned in hindsight so get ready for some unsolicited advice. If your baby is screaming in the backseat put the radio on a static AM radio station and  turn it up LOUD. It will soothe Piper right to sleep. Spend at least 30 minutes a day on focused playtime with the twins.  Set the timer and let them pick the activity. Oh, this REALLY helped me. If you have to make Piper wait so that you can do something for the older girls tell Piper “Oh, honey you have to wait. I need to do this for the twins but I’ll be right back.” Do it within earshot of the girls so that they hear it. It makes them feel important and more aware that you are making time for them. I always point out to Griffin when he has my undivided attention-even if it’s just helping him brush his teeth. I’ll say “Hey look, it’s just you and me!” and then I’ll give him a quick hug. Kiss your husband ate least once every day. Not just a peck but pull him into the closet or push him against the wall and lay one on him. Then walk away. It will make both of you feel tended to. Okay, that’s all I have for now. Hang in there!! YOU CAN DO THIS!!!

    • Amy d

      I LOVE this comment and agree wholeheartedly. The first 6 weeks were the hardest…for me….when my second baby arrived. You’re sleep deprived, healing, and quick to snap at your partner because life is just too hard right now. IT WILL GET EASIER.  IT WILL. The hardest part is finding a new norm for your family, and that’s what you’re doing. In no time at all things will settle. Be kind to yourself Erin. You are a great mommy and wife.

      • Erin Margolin

        Thank you, Amy. I’ve got my eyes on the 6-week mark. We’re half way there. Trying to just keep my head above water right now and I know you’re right. I’m quick to snap at anyone. Damn hormones! xoxo

    • Erin Margolin


      The AM radio works! HOORAY! you are awesome, thanks so much!

  • Courtney

    oh my goodness, I cant imagine how your breast felt, I am sorry you had to deal with that. Dont worry about her weight, she will do great (easier said than done right!) my girls were teeny tiny and failure to thrive for so many times I cant imagine but now they are fine and in those times they were also fine but the pressure to meet needs is so hard when we are already fighting a battle to get use to having a new one in the house and family. You will get through this and I love your honestly!

    • Erin Margolin

      Thank you, Courtney! I think our weight checks are done now and we got some Zantac, too, which will hopefully help. Pediatrician seems to think reflux may be one of the problems she’s been dealing with. Wish us luck! Thanks for reading!

  • Amanda Austin

    Erin, you’re doing great. I remember some of these feelings with just ONE baby. I was a hormonal mess. To be honest, I was a mess for 9 months until I finally got some help….but you need definitely keep in mind that this is just a stage….it will pass!!! And you’ll come out on the other side more confident.

  • Mindy

    Oh, Erin. I have been here in my own way, but I have been here. I know it sounds trite, but hang in there. There is no perfect way to do this and I’m certain you are doing it wonderfully. It’s hard to see beyond this time full of pains, joys, wonders, and exhaustion, but I promise it won’t be forever. I wish I could come over with Kai and hang out and help. The best therapy in this situation for me was to just sit and talk with a friend. I know you have lots of friends to support you, but I’d love to talk anytime.

    • Erin Margolin

      Thank you, Mindy. I would love to try and talk soon. It’s just hard finding the time—especially when someone isn’t needy/crying/whining/throwing a tantrum, etc. LOL! I am sure you can relate!juggling the baby w/ older kids is tough!

  • From Tracie

    I have no advice (just having one kid )but I read Leigh’s comment down there, and I think she is a genius  so I just have to say – do what Leigh said!

    And one more thing…cut yourself some slack!! Your twins are little, but I’m sure they have big hearts and understand that Piper needs special attention because she is so little. And honestly, they don’t remember how much cuddle time they got when they were babies, so enjoy this extra time with Piper – it doesn’t mean you love her more, it just means that it is different to only have one newborn. 

    You will get through this. You are rocking it much more than you realize. When you are finally able to get some sleep and get settled into a schedule, you will be able to look back and see just how great you are doing right now. I promise.

    • Erin Margolin


      I hope you’re right. I don’t feel like I’m “rocking it,” but maybe that needs to be my mantra! LOL! xoxoxoxo THanks for all the encouragement!

  • Anonymous

    You will get through it and they will get through it. It is hard. So hard. But you are not alone. Thank you for being so honest. We have all been there – stay strong! You are loved and you are mighty.

    All my best,

    • Erin Margolin


      Me? Mighty? I don’t feel like it, but am so flattered you think of me this way. makes me smile! xoxo

  • Erin

    The fact that you can admit that you can’t do it all says a lot! But you learn and it gets easier and you’ll heal and eventually you will settle into a grove and before you know it, you will be doing it all and will feel like super mom!
    Hang in there, you have 3 healthy happy girls, and they love you no matter what!
    And don’t forget to sneak a few moments just for you!

    • Erin Margolin

      Thank you, Erin!!! I’m so ready for that groove. Where is it?!?! LOL

  • Evonne

    It’s hard.  I know.  You will get through this.  It takes time, but you will find a new routine.  Your girls (all 3) will never love you any less because there were bumps in the road.

    • Erin Margolin


      Thank you, sweets. I needed to hear that. I know they  mostly won’t even remember. I just need to get through the next month or two and even by then things will be loads easier.


  • jo miller

    You had me weeping and smiling at the same time.  Congratulations!  You are a great and loving mother.  All of you, your girls and husband will thrive.  I have faith in you.  I believe that you will discover a strong faith and confidence in yourself.  Just reflect on how far you have come.
    You are getting through this  ~  Hooray! ~
    Sending you love,

    • Erin Margolin

      Thank you, dear Jo. I keep forgetting that I am getting through this. A day, sometimes an hour, at a time. I have come a long way and I do need to keep it in better perspective…

      HUGS and THANK YOU!

  • Rachel Molina Basta

    I can completely relate! Our stories aren’t exactly the same, but I now have a two month old and a 3 year old, and it’s been hard. Hang in there! Week by week, day by day, sometimes hour by hour. It will get better. It’s so much easier at 2 months than it was at 2 weeks. And I can’t wait for 6 months – seems like everything will just fall into place then. And heck by two years this will all be a distant memory, and I’ll have to break apart the fights between baby brother and big sister… =)  (((hugs)))

    • Erin Margolin


      Amen to all of that! I’m ready for 2 months. Heck, if I can make it to 6-8 weeks I think things will even be much better then. It’s just hard when you’re still healing in addition to the sleep deprivation and all the other stuff.  Bring on the distant memories!

  • Juliecgardner

    Sweet, sweet Erin.

    So much of what anyone can say to you is stuff you already *know* intellectually; but it’s still emotionally hard to BELIEVE it.

    Nevertheless. I’m the annoying one who’s going to tell you a few things anyway. Feel free to ignore me. Most people do.

    First, Abby and Izzy have each other. They are the intrinsic gifts you created for both of them the minute they were conceived. Neither of them has been or is alone. Ever. And now they have a baby sister who ISN’T part of their twosome which makes her special in her own way. As she grows up, Piper will be the third in their triangle; the one they can look at as separate from their pairing and therefore more THERE for them as individuals (if that makes any sense).

    Your husband has a house FULL of love. And girls ;-). I can only imagine (watching the way Bill melts over Karly) that he is proud and awed and overflowing with his own concerns about being enough and doing enough for all of you. We all worry we’re not capable of spreading ourselves out to cover everything and everyone relying on us. But you’re both there. Filling in the gaps and picking up the slack, taking turns until the road smooths out.

    And you. My leaky, swollen, aching friend. You and your family are a miracle. AND it’s probably also probably so hard you can’t imagine a time it will ever be easy again. But easy is overrated and chaos can be fabulous if you filter out the mess and listen to the laughter.

    It’s there. You made it.
    Hang in there until you hear it :-)


    • Erin Margolin


      “Easy is overrated and chaos can be fabulous if you filter out the mess and listen to the laughter.”
      This is why I love you. Even in your comments there is such wisdom, poetry even. It’s lovely and refreshing and so endearing.


  • Anonymous

    You are so sweet and so real. I’ve always loved that about you. And congrats on your adorable (and crying) baby.

    I know it’s hard at first. I don’t want to take anything away from that.

    I just know no matter how hard, you’re gonna come through with flying colors.

    • Erin Margolin


      I am smiling so big right now, lovely to see you! Thank you for the sweet comments and your vote of confidence. I need it!

  • Ren

    Mazol Tov- you can do it- and you can do it with humor which makes you amazing- Shalom to you. 

    • Erin Margolin

      Thanks, Ren! I appreciate your kind words & thoughts more than you know. ;-)

  • Galit Breen

    You can so do this, girl! Just remember that we ALL thought it was crazy- and we’re right by your side cheering you on because you? Are a rock star! xo

    • Erin Margolin

      Thanks, beautiful Galit! I’m so lucky to have you!

      Happy you stopped by! xoxo

  • Jackie

    One day you’ll look back on this and it’ll just be a faint memory. Things will get easier day by day and everyone will settle into an easy rhythm.

    Keep your chin up and know that we are all here cheering for you!

    • Erin Margolin


      I’m sooooo ready for that rhythm. I know it’s too early, but…a girl can dream! LOL

  • Susan

    YES, you will.  NO Abby and Izzy got it too you just don’t remember. I am here, anytime

    • Erin Margolin

      Thank goodness for you, Susan! Don’t know what I’d do without you—-you are amazing!


  • mom

    i love all of the wonderful, insightful, helpful, encouraging and healing comments that have come your way!  you have wonderful friends, and family, out there!  you bring us all RIGHT THERE when you write…..and you bring us together… reach out and they/we reach back….what a gift!
    wish i could have stayed much longer, to help…
    love leigh’s suggestion about music….some soft, classical music might also help all of you …there are golden moments tucked into each day….hope they jump out and grab you! XXXXX

    • Erin Margolin

      thanks, mom. I love and miss you and wish you lived closer. I agree on the music and the AM radio already works in the car—yay!


  • Tracy Morrison

    Hugs my friend. Thinking about you. Reach out for help if you need another set of arms..even an almost six year olds set of arms. Love you.

    • Erin Margolin

      Thanks, Tracy—

      I am working on reaching out. Not my forte, not easy for me to ask for help. I feel like I should be able to do it all. Le sigh. The almost 6 year-olds are doing better. They are definitely good little helpers, too!


  • Random Blogette

    I remember feeling this way after Paige was born and I only had one. I wish I knew exactly what to tell you to make everything ok. Abby & Izzy will understand and yes I am sure they got all of you when they were young. You just did it all double-time. Just remember, this is a miracle baby and you. my dear, are a miraculous woman. I am here to hold your hand even if it is just virtually. I wish I lived closer because I would be right there helping you out! You’ve got this sweetie. It will all be ok.

    • Erin Margolin


      Thank you so much. I can feel the love coming through my laptop screen! I know we’ll all get through it. I just need to be patient and try to relax. Which isn’t easy for me! I’m so glad I have friends like you in my corner!


  • Anonymous

    OH sweetie My mom did this same thing in reverse only a year apart. AS in she had a singelton then a set of twins, within a year. Then 11 years later had me, so it has to get better otherwise she would have laughed maniacally when discovering she was pregnant with me right?? Wait umm I am a little odd aren’t I?? BUT FUN I am so much fun.
    Sweetie you got this. I am sorry that you are having such issues with breastfeeding and if you have to supplement that is not a crime. Look at me I have enough naturally to share with you and I couldn’t breastfeed. Hot showers as often as you can will help with the engorgement. My mom said to tell you raw cabbage leaves on your breasts will help as well. Something in the cabbage is a natural swelling reducer.
    Abby and Izzy know all too well you love them.
    Hubby, he is of course as stressed and worried as you, just for different reasons. So you can’t sleep with him at night, make a chance to sleep with him in the day When Piper sleeps. Leave him love notes, and do the same for the girls. Each little thing reminds them they are still in your heart. And as Leigh said grab him and lay one on him.
    I wish I was closer cause I would so be there helping you with everything.. you know me and lil ones.. and since I have only boys spending time with the girls would be perfect for me.

    • Erin Margolin

      Thank you, Angel. You know what? The cabbage leaves really do work! I read about them on the internet. Of course I stunk to high heaven while I was wearing them, but they really did help. And you’re right—I know hubs is stressed for his own reasons and in time we’ll all get it worked out. Just have to hang tight for now.


  • Nancy C

    Oh, friend. Yes. It will pass. Yes. postpartum is so hard. And yes, the girls will understand and they will be fine. Thinking of you. 

    • Erin Margolin

      Thanks, Nancy!

      I got your sweet card yesterday, too. You’re a doll. I miss you like crazy. I know we’ll all be fine. Just a matter of time. One day at a time. When I remember, that is….


  • Helene1108

    “This too shall pass”…that was my mantra for the first few months after our 2nd set of twins arrived.  Everything you’ve written here describes me to a T!  I felt like I had to be perfect at everything…smiling my way through the frustration, exhaustion and anxiety…especially because the 2nd set were our “miracle babies”.  But you know you’re only human…you can only do so much.  This is a huge transition for your entire family and everything will be fine.  I think, deep in your heart, you know that but it’s still hard to cope with the changes.  

    All of this is temporary, my friend.  It’s important for you to take a few minutes each day and just breathe.  Just soak it all in for what it is and remember to take deep breaths, knowing that you will survive this and so will your family.  

    • Erin Margolin

      You’re spot on, Helene.  SAme here since Piper’s our “miracle,” too. Every day I feel like I’m waiting for the other shoe to drop. And it doesn’t help we’ve had bumps in the road—she’s not gaining weight as quickly as they’d like, etc…but I am hopeful she’ll hit her stride soon. We have our next weight check on Friday. Cross your fingers for us!


  • Angela

    You will absolutely get through.  You are still at the beginning, and the beginning is so impossibly tough. 

    Mine are two years apart, and the first year of Dylan’s life is like a dream now (he’s not even two until January.) 

    All of the girls in your family will be fine and perfect from this experience (including you), and your (poor, outnumbered) husband will bask in the love of such wonderful females in his life.

    Thinking of you.

    • Erin Margolin

      Thanks, Angela…yes, you’re right. I have blocked out much of the twins’ first 8-9 months, it was so crazy and such a whirlwind. I know soon this will all be a distant memory. And I’ll likely wish I’d cherished it more/not wallowed as much. It’s just hard. I’m so grateful that my other mom friends like you understand!

  • Ally

    I remember sitting on a donut pillow, hoping not to bleed through the mattress of a pad between my legs. Not only did the episiotomy hurt like hell, I had a stitch abscess.  Fun times. And then the baby got colic.

    But before you know it, you will be pulling your hair out shopping for prom dresses for the twins, while Piper runs around trying to grow up too fast to be just like her big sisters. You won’t be worried about whether Piper had enough breast milk, or if she had to have formula, or if you spent enough time with the twins when their baby sister was just three weeks old. The pain in your crotch will be a distant memory replaced by peri-menopausal craziness. ;-)

    Hug your husband. And know that if I could come be your sister wife and make any of it easier, I would! :)

    • Erin Margolin

      Thank you, sweet Ally—this comment made my day. But a stitch abscess? OMG. How does that happen and how did you survive? I actually called the doctor Friday to ask if it’s normal to still be feeling this crappy, and they assured me it was. They said if 2 weeks from now it’s still this bad, they’ll want me to come in. Sheesh. I should’ve had another c-section!

  • Stephanie

    You will get through this…you will!  You are beyond amazing and you can do this!!  I’m so sorry that you are chapped, chafed, throbbing and leaking and hope that it eases soon.  This is the hardest time and it’s temporary.  You’ve got this Erin!

    • Erin Margolin


      Thanks, babe! So comforting to hear from other moms who’ve been there and get it, you know? Because the men DON’T! ;-)

  • Sherri

    This is temporary and you WILL get through it. And you are probably so lost in the day to day routines and demands of a newborn that it’s hard to see that. But please, my dear friend, take care of yourself, too. The girls can help, and there are things that you can just skip for now.

    Hang in there, and wow is Piper even cuter now than the last picture I saw!

    • Erin Margolin

      Thanks, Sherri. I know it’s hard to see when I’m in the thick of it. But trying to maintain perspective. I know in a few months this will all seem like a distant memory!


  • Katie @ An Authentic Life

    As a mom of a 16 yr old and 2 adult kids, just go with it. Who cares if you don’t clean for a year. You’ve got a sweet baby to snuggle. If I had to do it all over again ~ I would have just cuddled with my son for hours on end. It would make up for the fact he barely hugs me anymore! 

    • Erin Margolin


      Thanks! I do need to slow down and stop being so anal about things around the house…that is part of my problem. I’m not good about sitting still. I feel guilty when laundry piles up or there are dirty dishes in the sink and no dinner on the table…it’s time for me to LET GO!

  • Allison Nazarian

    I love you and it has been 12 yrs since my last baby was born but I remember and I understand. And for what it is worth, I was 5 yrs and 8 mos when my sister was born. I remember the day she came home and that’s it. I do not remember even once feeling like I wasn’t getting enough attention.

    • Erin Margolin

      I love you too, Allison—-and thank you for that reassurance. I was almost 6 when my youngest brother was born. I remember taking him to school for show & tell, but little else. So I suppose I should try to keep that in mind. Let’s try to chat soon?!

  • Oscaramyr

    Everyone else said what I would have said so I will add only this: Angels, please bless and keep ERin and her beautiful family. Relieve and heal the physical pain, ease the worry, soothe the baby to sleep beside her beautiful mommy. Ease Erin’s heart and let her feel the power of her own ability to feed and to love these little girls exactly as much as they need her to. All is well. So be it, so it is.

    • Erin Margolin


      You are amazing. Thank you. I feel a calm coming over me just reading your comments. I love you.

  • Missy | The Literal Mom

    You will.  You will.  You will.  It is.  It is.  It is.  We’re all rooting for you!

    • Erin Margolin


      Thank you so much! I needed the vote of confidence!

  • Elaine A.

    I know I’m WAY late to comment but I was nodding through this post.  It’s hard right now, I know but you are going to do fine and they’ll do fine and even though it seems so crazy at this time you WILL get through it.  

    And I’m really sad that I did not know Leigh’s A.M. radio trick before I was done having kids… ;-)


    p.s. email me if you need to vent or for anything else…wish I could hug you. 

    • Erin Margolin


      I wish you could hug me, too. I need it. I don’t know how you do it, girl. I am struggling. I know it’s not forever, but….I guess it’s just hard to see through the hormones and sleep deprivation. I miss you.


  • Tulpen Elefanten

    I don’t know if I’ve given you a proper Congratulations. So.


    I’ve used the AM radio static  trick on myself!  Works great for me!

    • Erin Margolin


      Thank you! Good to “see” you—and yes, I was so grateful for the AM radio suggestion. It’s worked several times so far! ;-)

  • Erin Leigh Peck

    Thank you for sharing such  candid picture of the first weeks of motherhood. Very courageous of you and hopefully it will help other women see that this is what it can feel like and that’s OK.

    You sound like an incredibly committed and loving mother who takes her role seriously.  All children should be so lucky as to have a mother like you.  Don’t worry about the baby so much.  She is fine, will be fine.  And so will you!  The first weeks are always hard but you are doing what you have to do and in a few years you won’t even remember!  (Except of course you’ll have this blog post to remind you!)  And the twins: I promise you, ALL mothers feel guilty about their older kids when a new baby comes.  When I adopted my son I was sure I had destroyed my 5-year-old daughter’s life. But that’s how all mothers feel, and most people grow up with siblings are are better for it.  

  • jessica

    Oh I remember all of these feelings, every single one. I hope, since I am reading this so long after you wrote it, that things have gotten better and you have realized that you can do this.

  • Denise Ullem

    I am so glad that you shared your hugely normal, rattling, raw emotions here. It is hard. It is hard. It is hard. You are wonderful. You are wonderful. You are wonderful. xoxo

  • Jana Anthoine

    Oh, you WILL get through this. You will. Sending you love and strength to do it all. It doesn’t all have to be done perfectly… just remember that. 

  • Callahan Mcdonough

    sending a Mom’s hug, Mom to a 33yr old wonderful son. Know this part of the mothering trip challenging, although a part of me would love to be able to pick up my boy and cuddle him now.
    Peace n’hugs Erin. x0x0

  • unknownmami

    Oh boy! I can relate on so many levels. My little girl is  months and tiny. I worry about her weight and size all the time. My eldest is 3 and comparing the way I am now to the way I was when she was born makes me feel so guilty because I feel like my youngest gets much more of me than my eldest did. All you can do is your best and hope that it is good enough. I have a feeling that you are doing a great job.

  • Nina Badzin

    Hello! I just found you because Renee has on the email together for the Hanukkah posts. Nice to meet you! I just had my fourth baby on 11/6/11 so I’m RIGHT THERE with you. I find I’m on Twitter MORE than usual since it’s so easy to scroll through while nursing. THAT’S something I didn’t have to distract me (for better or worse) with my older three. It’s amazing how quickly things change. So I’m up on the blog and on twitter, but I don’t see how I’ll ever do my “real” writing again. But like you said, “I will get through this.” “This is temporary.”

  • Gayletrini

    All I have to say is that this stage passes and they grow up. ((hugs))

  • Anita

    Hello Erin, Although I have not visited your blog in a while, I have often thought of you and wondered how your family of five is doing. Your little Piper is beautiful! The thought of holding a cuddly little person warms my heart and makes me smile. I hope things have improved since you wrote this post. I’m going to try to read more of your recent posts to see what you’ve been experiencing – babywise and otherwise. God bless you. :) Congratulations!