Sometimes, husbands just don’t get it. They try; but they can never fully understand what it is like to be a new mother, especially when it comes to the exhaustion that we feel on a constant basis.
That’s why, after a sleepless night with her new baby, mom of two Mattea Goff decided that words weren’t enough to explain to her husband why she isn’t in “the best of moods first thing in the morning.” So, she drew him a visual representation instead — a series of sketches that are hilariously on point. She then shared the drawings on Facebook where they immediately stuck a chord, receiving over 127K reactions and over 173K shares to date.
The first drawing shows how we all hoped sleeping as a new mother would be: with Dad and Mom side by side with an adorable, swaddled baby sleeping soundly in a bassinet nearby. Below in the same sketch, however, the baby is out of the swaddle and wailing two hours later. Mom is instantly awoken, as Dad continues to sleep soundly.
The subsequent drawings perfectly depict a night in the life of a new mom, and it’s not quite as peaceful as any of us had first imagined!
One sketch shows how the baby continuously slaps Mom throughout the night.
Another includes thought bubbles to reveal Mom’s musings as the night wears on (as Dad continues to snooze with what she calls his “useless nipples”).
The baby remains at Mom’s side from the first feeding …
… and Mom continues to look more and more frazzled and worn out.
Goff’s brilliant sketches instantly brought me back to those first months with a new baby when I felt like an on-call dairy cow. Believe me, I was grateful to have a healthy baby, and it did feel like a small miracle that I was able to feed him with my body — but nothing could have prepared me for the exhaustion I would feel being up with a colicky baby at all hours of the night. I couldn’t seem to soothe him no matter how hard I tried. My husband tried to “help out,” but being a breastfeeding mom meant I was responsible for all of the feedings — and that meant almost no solid sleep.
Now, I’d say for anyone who’s getting up every hour or two at night with a baby while looking across at their partner snoring soundly, it would be impossible not to have some feelings. As Goff puts it, while everyone’s experience with new motherhood is largely unique, some truths “pretty much apply across the board.”
I also think this is an amazing way for a new mother to express herself. I remember feeling so lost during that time, so determined to “do it all on my own,” trying to enjoy that time with my precious baby while also being so depleted that I couldn’t see straight. It’s hard to explain that to another person, but these sketches “show” instead of tell.
Goff says she never expected the huge reaction her post would receive from mothers everywhere, describing it as “surreal.”
“I’ve found it downright inspiring how supportive and encouraging people have been,” she says. “The comments and messages have been everything from tear-worthy sweet to downright hilarious. #UselessNipples touched my soul.”
Needless to say, Goff’s drawings have touched ours.