Monday, September 1, 2014

BREASTFEEDING: A NEW MAMA'S STORY

i'm dipping into a topic that i didn't think i would ever publicly write about.  so...here goes.

i always knew i would breastfeed.  actually i should say i always hoped that i would breastfeed.  "knew" is such a strong word and i'd never done this before so who was i to know that it would be for me or my baby.

it was hard.  good god it was hard for me.  those first few weeks.  a month.  it must have been.

the first few days in the hospital, easy breezy.  a lactation consultant came in to talk to me and i listened but in the back of my mind i kept thinking this is a waste of time.  addison is doing great and i know what i'm doing.  i don't need your help.  i was that person.

then we got home and everything changed.  i would dread to hear that cry of hers.  i would ask andrew to bounce her around a little bit more because maybe she just needed a little comforting.  i would try to convince him that she wasn't hungry.  and when i had held out long enough, i would sit in the rocking chair and cry as she fed.  i begged andrew to make it stop.  i would stop her halfway through because i couldn't take the pain anymore.

it's hard.  for anyone who tells you it's not hard and breastfeeding is easy, they're lying to you.

i finally had it one day and instead of calling a lactation consultant, i called one of my closest friends.  she had a hard hard time with breastfeeding but she stuck it out.  she was my inspiration to keep chugging along.  she's the reason i didn't stop.  after a long talk and lots of advice, i did a few of the things she suggested.  google also helped.  and a few days later, i wasn't dreading feeding my four week old.  in fact, i was looking forward to feeding her because it was finally an enjoyable experience.

a few months into breastfeeding addison, i was sitting in the rocker in her nursery that i always nursed her in and i noticed her feet were dangling off the side of my leg.  and i balled.  i cried not only for her growing so quickly, but for my selfishness.  i apologized for being a bad mom in the beginning when it came to nursing.  i weeped for making her suffer through my pain.  my heart went into it and the world got blurry and i couldn't stop the tears streaming down my cheeks.  i couldn't believe how selfish i was with feeding her.  who was i to make her stop eating halfway through because it hurt me?  i tore myself down and i destroyed myself with terrible thoughts on how i was a bad mom because, even though i got through it, i put addison through the selfishness of my pain.

moms.

it's hard.  but don't do what i did.  don't ever put yourself down.  you know what's right for you and your baby and MOST IMPORTANT, your body.

reach out though friends.  you can't do this alone.  and you shouldn't have to.  if i didn't have that support system, i wouldn't still be able to nurse addison on a daily basis at almost 7 months old.  so keep on keeping on.  and if you can't do it, don't.  it doesn't make you any less of a mom.  but if you can breastfeed, it's the most beautiful thing you will ever imagine.

Sunday, August 31, 2014

EMBRACING A NEW SEASON





it's been quiet in these parts lately.  i've been soaking in every moment of this sweet soft summer.  it's scary how fast the months fly by the older we get.  the saying the days are long but the years are short couldn't ring more true.  i've been spending my days at work and my nights with my family soaking it all up like a sponge.

we still aren't sure how much longer we are going to be in wisconsin and it's only a matter of time before we pick up and move everything we own to a different state so i'm trying to be more intentional with my time.  have addison spend as much time with her grandpa's and grandma's and aunts.  sneak out of work early to pick up addison and take her to my favorite parts of milwaukee.  sometimes we go to the library before heading home.  sometimes we go over to our friends house to visit with her boys.  sometimes we head home to pick up the pup and take a really long peaceful walk in the park across from our house.  i wanted to be in the moment every day this summer because i really truly blinked and it was my birthday and now i'm blinking again and tomorrow is labor day.  and even though it's not technically fall yet, labor day has always marked the beginning of fall to me.  so, two more days of true true summer left.

a new season is upon us.  and even though i want summer to stay because i can't believe it disappeared as quick as it did, i'm ready to embrace the changes of a new season.  i'm ready to live in the moment and document it as it goes.  we have a lot of exciting things coming up and as much as i want to be a hundred percent present, i also want to be more intentional with this blog.  i want to get back to my writing and remembering for years to come.

and i want to embrace the fall season.  it's my very favorite.  because if i don't embrace it, it might just slip through my fingertips.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

HAPPY WEEKEND

What are you up to this weekend?  I am going to one more wedding to wrap up the summer season and I can't wait to have the baby stay with my in-laws so I can dance the night away!  It will be nice to just let loose a little.  Hope you have a wonderful weekend and here's a few links I've found from around the web.

13 moments in Disney that are weirder than we thought.

Fall just got more appealing.

I can't believe what I'm reading.  Scary.

Truths you won't find in a parenting book.

This salad is to die for.

A good (lazy) guide to eating healthy.  Finally.

25 lessons we learned from Robin Williams characters.

To my maybe daughter.

If Seinfeld was still around, it would so look like this.

5 co-sleeping myths busted.

Great tank to wrap up summer.

WORDY WEDNESDAY ON THURSDAY

thankful for:  last weekend my family had a huge family reunion on my mom's side.  and by huge i mean roughly 30 people.  i don't have a very big family and a lot of them live out of state so for everyone to be able to come together in one place was truly so special for everyone.  i'm so grateful that we were all able to be there and make a cheers to those who couldn't be there.  it really makes you count your blessings.

reading:  i have read this article over and over and every time i do, i cry just a little harder.  i grew up with this book in our house and it was one that i was constantly requesting my mom to read to me.  now that i know the real meaning of it, it makes me read the book in a whole new light.  and i weep like a baby.

feeling:  yesterday was my birthday and i'm just so grateful for the people in my life.  my husband made me feel so special and my best friend posted something on facebook that brought me to tears.  i don't know what i thought life would look like when i turned 28 but i know this is better than i ever thought possible.

thinking about:  there have been so so many videos posted by people doing the ice bucket challenge.  i understand it's for a good cause and it brings a little fun to an otherwise tough condition but there was one video i saw where the girl pulled pieces of paper out of her bucket saying instead of dumping cold water on your head, people with ALS would likely appreciate it if you just donate instead.  it was the best one by far.

eating/drinking:  i'm obsessed with salads still.  i guess there are worse things but honestly it's all i want to eat all the time.  that and watermelon.  i've also been drinking a lot of infused water too.  the latest and greatest is orange infused water.  try it and you can thank me later.

watching:  i got sucked into watching bachelor in paradise.  it's getting a little boring though with no competitions and all sorts of love triangles.  but you know.  drama be drama.

listening to:  nothing right now.  i feel lost without my sirius radio.  first world problems.  i know.

loving:  i'm probably going to regret saying this someday but we had to take our vehicle in for a little mishap that had to be repaired (like trailer met passenger door courtesy of gusts of wind sort of thing) and we decided to get a minivan rental to see if we'd ever consider this.  i have to say, i am kind of loving it.  there's so much extra room and with the sliding doors, i no longer have to be worried about hitting cars with my door in the target parking lot.  but i do feel like i'm 40 when i jump into the drivers seat of that puppy.  i'm not ruling it out though!

Monday, August 18, 2014

AND NOW AN UPDATE ON THIS WHOLE MOVING BUSINESS...

image can be found here

a few weeks ago, i wrote a little something about how we're moving and i'm nervous and excited and scared and incredibly anxious to do this.  to start a new chapter, to jump on the bandwagon of the unknown.  we put our house up for sale a few weeks ago and now we have been waiting.  and waiting.  i feel like this is the worst part of the whole process.  and i know it's only been a few weeks but when you're waiting for an offer or something to happen, a few weeks can feel like a decade.

friends and family have asked us where we are in the process and have we found a house yet and they want to know know know.  i look at them and give a little eye roll about the whole thing and then laugh.  because you know, i want to know too.

we can't put an offer on a house until we sell our house, we can't sell our house until we actually have someone interested, and we can't really start looking for a house until we have an exact location of where we can go because it's possible the area could be changing again.

oh we will certainly still be moving to alabama but where in alabama is beyond us.  and that's the frustrating thing.  it's not like we can just drive around and get a feel for neighborhoods or anything.  so i've simply stopped looking.  until we know for sure at least, i have closed up the discussion and put "until further notice" on it.

it's okay though.  we will get there.  it's going to take time and if you know me you know i am the least patient person in the history of all people. so.  poor andrew.

now to keep me busy, i am going back into nesting mode.  yes it's real post pregnancy.  it's also known as my word for 2014.  i am going back to the basics and simplifying.  i am once again sorting through my closets and drawers and in the last two days i've accumulated a few more bins of things i'm going to donate to goodwill.

a few dresses here, some hats there, t-shirts that i didn't even know i had anymore, purses that i haven't used in ages but i had to keep them because you know, that one occasion this purse will be perfect for.  it's all going.

to me, less is more.  and the more we can get outta here, the less we have to deal with in the end.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

HAPPY HALF BIRTHDAY BABY GIRL!!!

Dear baby girl,

You turned six months on Saturday. And in another six months, you will have been with us for a year already. Where did the time go? It’s easily been the fastest time of my life and to see you grow and learn and change over your short time here has been nothing short of a miracle. You are so amazed at everything. You are so curious about everything. Your eyes get really big when you are interested and you make the goofiest faces I ever did see. Lately you've been into mimicking people, especially grandma when she says “Can you blow me kisses?” You twist your lips into a O shape and try so hard to do the same thing we do. This weekend you started this head tilt thing and it is the silliest ever.

You’re still nursing like a little champ and at the end of July you cut your first tooth and the second followed shortly after. I figured once teeth came, we would be done nursing but it’s still been going well and I’m very grateful for that. After your four month doctor appointment, we started you on rice cereal and you weren't a big fan so we switched you to oatmeal cereal. You liked that but it still didn't seem very flavorful. A week and a half ago we tried avocado and you loved it! I was hesitant about starting you on real food before you turned six months but you were oh so ready. Last night, we tried peas. You weren't sure about those but we’ll keep chugging along. I’m sure you’ll like them sooner or later. I’m excited to put my baby food maker to good use!

I’m still squeezing you into six month clothes since you have so many. Honestly, I don’t know how it happened but your closets and drawers are literally bursting at the seams. The funny thing about that is we don’t have a lot of nine month clothes for you. I’m kind of excited about that because now I can go shopping for you! Up until now, almost all of your clothes have been gifted to you by our wonderful family and friends (but mostly both your grandmas who spoil you rotten).

You are daddy’s girl through and through. You light up whenever you see him, which sadly hasn't been too often lately due to work travel. But it just makes the time with him that much more special and sacred. He loves you more than you’ll ever know and I hope you know he thinks about you every day and is constantly asking about you and requesting pictures when he’s away. He is a really good daddy and you two have the best of times together acting silly and pretending to drive tractors or motorcycles.

Sometimes when I look at you, I can’t believe how we have ever been blessed with you in our life. You have only been around for a little while, but you have grown both your daddy and I and have changed us in so many ways for the better. I want to be a stronger person for you. I want to capture all of our times together and hold them in a little jar to open on a rainy day. I want to wipe away all your tears and hurt and remind you that you are so loved by everyone around you. Know that when times get bad, God is always by your side and He will never leave you. He will lead you down the right path if you follow Him.

Happy six months my beautiful darling girl. I can’t wait to see where this life takes you.

Friday, August 8, 2014

8 TIPS FROM A NEW DAD

For today's post, I'd love to talk about new fatherhood.  Over the last six months, Andrew and I have talked about things that we were surprised happened or things we didn't think we would do before we had children.  He revealed some funny and good tips to me.  Here were his eight tips about being a new dad in his words...

1. You can plan, plan, and plan but you will never follow your plan once the baby comes.  You may read every book and think you have it all figured out but when the baby hits your arms it changes things. Its hard to explain how and why but your perspective adjusts.
2. Don’t plan on ever leaving at a certain time but rather plan on a time range. You are on baby time, just accept it.
3. Take the help.  People want to help and would like to have their own moment with your kid so take the help and go out or catch up on that to do list.
4. Happy family = Happy Baby.  If you are stressed and over mange your baby your kid will sense that and not be happy; just go with the flow
5. It’s okay to be a PROUD DAD.  Show off those pictures.  Having a baby is a great conversation starter with people (most people can relate)
6. LIVE LIFE.  We took our two month old hiking in the Smokey mountains.  We take her anywhere we go, DON’T SLOW DOWN.
7. Do what you think is best.  There is no manual for kids.  If you listen to someone else and it fails now you are mad or disappointed with their advice, but if you do what you think is best then you have no one to blame but yourself if things don't work out right.
8. Have fun.  She may not remember what you do with her in the beginning but you do and that is important.
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