You hear it from veteran moms all the time: Sleep when the baby sleeps. Easier said than done.
I heard it. I told everyone including myself that I would do it, no problem. This was before my husband injured himself, had emergency surgery, and is now in a cast with crutches = can't pick up the baby, bring me anything, change her, or get anything for himself. That means I have to do the laundry, the dishes, the meals, the cleaning (okay, I don't do too much cleaning/ my house is dirty), the nursing, the pumping, the all around baby care, and occasionally I take a shower. So, when the baby sleeps, that is my chance to actually eat something. It doesn't help when she is cluster feeding every one to two hours. Or decides that she can't sleep at night, but must keep soiling her diaper and eat, eat, eat.
During the day she permits me to put her in her swing for a short while or on the floor for tummy time. These activities don't typically last long, as she gets a whiff of me walking by and remembers that I am the milk factory and she could go for some of that right now. And, as a 3 week old whose lungs are now in full swing, she has figured out that the wailing she produces gets results. I remember nostalgically how her excuse for a cry in her first two weeks of life was so cute and squeaky. Now the only time I hear that cute squeak is if she is sleeping and having dreams about wanting more milk (I assume that is what she dreams about).
So, lesson to all mothers-to-be and new mommy's: Do not let your husband do anything remotely athletic or beyond normal cleaning around the house before and after the arrival of your new baby. And, try to sleep when the baby sleeps but don't expect too much. Baby is sleeping right now, and I chose to write here instead of taking a shower in fear she might wake up from the noise. After last nights wake-a-thon, she needs sleep just as much as I do! Time to conquer my fear and not be quite so smelly.