Thursday, June 19, 2014

Getting My Groove Back

Yesterday I was feeling nostalgic and found myself looking back at my old facebook pics and posts from my single and fabulous days. Let me just say that I love my life. I have an amazing husband and a 9 month old that's the coolest thing since sliced bread. BUT...I find myself in a slump. A rut. Feeling stagnant. So I've made myself a few promises and set a few goals in an attempt to go from frumpy to fabulous once again. Here it is:

  1. I will stop hiding in my husbands baggy t-shirts and will start buying cute clothes for my shape in my size. Up till now I've pretty much refused to buy clothes at this size, because I hope to God I won't be this big forever [insert little prayer here]. 
  2. I will start blow drying my hair and wearing make up again on a (almost) daily basis, even if it's just mascara and eye shadow. It makes me feel pretty. And I need that these days. 
  3. I will start trying to get back in shape. I miss the gym. I miss spin class and kickboxing. I miss rocking out to my tunes on my ipod while I did intervals on the elliptical. We cancelled our gym membership because we were just making a monthly donation. (I felt terribly guilty leaving my baby to go work out after already being gone all day at work.) For now, I will work on clearing out my workout space in the basement and start doing my workout dvd's. I think twice a week is realistic to start. 
  4. I will do my best to completely avoid the deli and bakery departments. I work in a grocery store and literally EVERYTHING is at my fingertips. I need to get my self control back in check. 
  5. I will forgive myself for getting here. I had a baby. It really is an amazing thing that my body did. It created life, carried it and gave birth. I knew going in my body would change. Ironically, I felt beautiful when I was pregnant and I actually lost weight during my pregnancy. But then I had my little man and started nursing which made me RAVENOUS all the time! That's when I gained it all back plus some. And boy is it sticking...
  6. I will start doing fun things again. Not that I don't love just hanging out at home with my guys but I miss painting, kayaking, hiking, camping, etc. Those things were sort of on hold for a while but now it's time to start incorporating them into my life again. I need to reconnect with some friends that sort of got sidelined during the whole pregnancy/new mommy stage.
I suppose the trick to all of this is to find a way to balance it all ;)

Monday, January 27, 2014

About Having a Newborn

I had a few extra days to heal and rest while my little one was in the NICU and the truth is that the NICU nurses taught me a lot and the baby too. He came home from the hospital sleeping for 3-4 hours at a time and eating like a champ. He nursed and took bottles beautifully. Well, nursing took some practice but we were both patient and I offered the breast before a bottle every time so eventually we got it down. I can see why some women give it up. It can be challenging for a number of reasons but I was fortunate enough to have twelve weeks maternity leave to get it right.

Having a newborn can be overwhelming. I was blessed with a good sleep for which I am SO grateful. I'm a weenie when it comes to sleep. Seriously. But I had some rules for myself to help prevent baby blues and stave off postpartum depression. I was a little worried about developing ppd because I'm not used to being home like that at all and I know the hormones can make you crazy...So here were my rules. They helped me a lot:

1. shower EVERY day. Some days this is a great accomplishment. Hint: take the baby in the bathroom with you and put him/her in their bouncy chair or rock and play just outside the shower so you can peek at them as much as your obsessive, overprotective heart desires. Even if they scream the whole time, it will make you feel better. Which will make you a better mom :)

2. Don't be shy about needing some "you" time to your spouse or significant other. Even if it's just a trip to the grocery store, sometimes its nice to just have a little time away. I always missed him too much to stay away long anyway.

3. Make plans to go somewhere with baby at least once a week. It helps you practice getting both of you ready to head out the door and it helps boost your mood to get out.

4. Invite friends/family over to visit once in a while. It's nice to socialize for you and baby. And there will be days you feel like you could really use the conversation.

5. sleep as much as you can when you can. Like I said I had a good sleeper but I didn't hesitate to join him for a nap now and then too.

6. MOST IMPORTANT: cherish your time with your baby. They grow heartbreakingly fast. Even in the middle of the night when your baby screams and you just want to cry, STOP. Take a breath and look at their sweet little face. They need you and want you and one day all too soon that may not be the case anymore. One day they will be too busy, too old, or too "cool" for snuggles and kisses and it will break your heart a little. Cherish every moment. Every gummy smile, every snuggle, every time they want you to comfort them, every time they just want to be with you.

About Childbirth

  • first of all, TAKE A CHILDBIRTH CLASS! Ours was free at our hospital and it was very helpful for a number of reasons. 
    • it helped me get used to the hospital (they make me uncomfortable) and seeing the birth suites and knowing what to expect while there helped soothe some of my first-timer anxiety. 
    • it helped my husband be more aware of what was going on at all times as well as what my wishes were as far as my birth plan
  • Write a birth plan! But keep it short and simple. Doctors and nurses want to do their best to keep you happy but they don't have time to sit there are read a ten page essay on why you believe in kangaroo care. Mine was a simple list of bulletins that went something like this:
    • please keep lighting low during labor so I can relax as much as possible
    • please ask me about an epidural when appropriate! I will want one! (so worth it fyi)
    • delayed cord clamping would be preferred if possible
    • if possible my husband would like to cut the cord
    • please place baby skin to skin with me following birth
    • no epesiotomy unless medically necessary
    • no pitocin unless medically necessary
    • no c-section unless absolute emergency
    • if baby has to leave the room please have my husband go with
Think of your birth plan as a best scenario wish list and be prepared to kiss some of it goodbye. Here's how my birth went.

I didn't want to be put on pitocin. But my blood pressure spiked and I had to go to labor and delivery. When they decided to admit me my bp was 176/115 and rising. NOT GOOD. They told me I was either going to be induced or have an emergency c-section which I DID NOT want. (I have this thing about being sliced open...) So pitocin it was. Ok.

I slept like hell all night in the hospital, they gave me cervadil to ripen the cervix and get the ball rolling. The cervadil cause enough cramping that I hardly slept. Not bad, just annoying as pain levels go. They started me on pit the next day around noon or so. Labor started progressing and around 3 I asked for an epidural. I was having contractions in my back as well as front and couldn't get up and move around or shower or do anything but lay there and deal with it because they had me on magnesium (an anti-seizure medication) and a catheder. So I was basically chained to the bed.

Let me just say that the epidural is amazing and I highly recommend it. I got my epidural and I slept. And slept. Till I felt some pressure down below. I let my nurse know and suddenly it was show time! It was a good thing I got all that sleep because my little darling was turned sunnyside up and I was pushing for just over two hours. Thankfully the doc was able to get him to turn but I was terrified it was going to turn into a c-sec the whole time.

Back to my birth plan, I didn't want an epesiotomy. Had to have one anyway. I wanted to delay cord clamping but the cord was wrapped twice around his little neck. BUT at least my husband got to cut the cord and I got to have a minute of skin to skin before they whisked him away to the NICU where he stayed for 8 days. I didn't get to see him again for about twelve hours. I kept turning on my phone and staring at the picture my husband had snapped of him in his little NICU box. I don't know how long I stared at it. It was no substitution for having him there.

Let me just say that to the mothers of NICU babies I feel your pain. There is absolutely no worse feeling than going home without your baby. My awesome delivering doctor kept me there an extra day or two in the hopes he would be released at the same time as us but it didn't work out. I was released on day 4 and my little one was there for about 4 more. I went every day to visit and try to nurse him and help care for him. And when I left I would be ok until I parked my car in front of my house. And then I'd just cry and cry.

I cried because I was coming home without my baby AGAIN. Because I knew he was ok and it was the best place for him, I know he would soon be coming home. I cried because there were too many other babies there, so much smaller and more fragile that my 7lb 13oz little tank that probably had more questionable prognosis. I cried for their parents and what it must feel like for THEM to go home without their babies. It was a hard few days. But it made it that much sweeter when I got to bring little man home.

I strapped that baby in and drove like hell before they could come up with yet another reason to keep him. 

So here's some of my top suggestions for anyone interested:

  • as stated above take a child birth class and write up a birth plan
  • remember that the nurses are there to help you. They are on your side. Try to be nice to them because most of them are angels in disguise and most of them will do ANYTHING for you. 
  • go for that epidural! it's amazing! And if it doesn't work or work properly say something ASAP because it can be adjusted and fixed. DON'T WAIT. 
  • don't worry about the actual birth. Your body kind of takes over. It knows what to do, just follow it's lead and do what feels right.

About Pregnancy

Now that I've had my very own bundle of joy I have this overwhelming need to share my experience and findings during the whole journey. Partially this is aimed at my sister who is now expecting but this is also for any other new, soon to be mommy wading through the mass amounts of info and bullshit on the internet. I'm going to write a blog on pregnancy, childbirth and having a newborn for anyone that cares :)

First off:

  • Relax. There's so much information out there about the million and one things that can go wrong during your pregnancy. STOP. Just stop. You aren't doing you or your baby any good stressing about things you don't have control over. Instead, focus on the things you can control. Take care of yourself. Get lots of rest--it's exhausting growing a tiny human! Never again in life will you have such a good excuse to "take it easy." 
  • Listen to your doctors but DO NOT hesitate to seek second or even third opinions if something doesn't feel right to you. I switched OB's because mine was a pinhead who wouldn't take the time to listen to me and address my concerns (which were legitimate--I had preecclampsia and this ninny never even mentioned that I had high blood pressure.)
  • Eat, even when you're wrestling the ugly beast Morning Sickness. It helps. Even if all you want is bread and fruit like I did. Just don't use it as an excuse to go nuts and "eat for two" because truth is we only need to consume about 300 more calories a day when pregnant. What helped me was thinking, "Would I feed this to my baby?" (I mean when said baby were able to eat grown up food.)
  • Mostly, it goes by fast even if it seems like an eternity. My pregnancy ended very suddenly at 37 weeks when I was just starting to get miserable and wonder how much longer I had. I found myself sitting in the hospital holding my belly thinking, "What if I'm not ready?" Even if you are miserable now, you will one day miss being pregnant. I didn't mind being pregnant but I wasn't in love with it. But I loved how I felt. I've never felt so beautiful in my life and I miss that. I also miss feeling him move around inside my belly and the way my husband would talk to the belly.  

I'm Back!

So, I haven't blogged in forever and ever and basically my whole life has turned upside down since the last time I did. Long story short blah blah blah we bought a house, got hitched and had an adorable baby boy. Now I'm basically trying to get my shit together. Ha....

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Big Brother is Watching!

Anyone else notice that Facebook is getting a little Big Brotherish? I mean, all a crazy stalker would have to do is friend you on face book and they can even see where you live now if you have your home listed for the "where are you" tag. Luckily my boyfriend is a dork and put the wrong address down for home sweet home (in case anyone was thinking about stalking me). It even tells you what I pinned on pinterest and what music I listened to on iHeart radio. Creepy. 

No more logging into things with my facebook account...

Friday, February 17, 2012

Body Bug!

Today I received one of these babies:
Basically, it's a Body Bug. For those of you who don't watch the Biggest Loser and therefore have no idea what I'm talking about here's a little linky poo. Basically I wear it all day and night and then plug it into my computer and it tells me how many calories I burned during the day. You can also use the software to track your calories consumed and figure out if you "met your burn" or not. [More biggest loser slang. I love that show.]

I'm super excited about this because it will be a great tool for the whole making-my-ass-smaller process and also, it's just neato. I always wonder how many calories I burn during gym classes and workout dvds and heck, just walking around at work all day.

More on my new toy gadget later.