Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Want it Wednesday

So today's post is really more of a rant.... one of those letters I'll never send only instead I'm posting for the world wide web to read, ha.

Poor little man's tummy was a mess today. We switched formulas on Saturday... long story short, trying to not bore you with the details.. day one went great... day two was alright. and today being day 3 was awful. Now I feel like a terrible mother for trying to save a buck at the cost of my poor little man's tummy. Here's my rant. . . simplify things for us already!!! First time mom's or even mom's with 18 kids and counting could all use a little help. I wish that we didn't have to have a bachelor's degree in research in order to figure out what formula's have what in them . . .and honestly, if I hadn't called my Dr to ask what I should use I would have absolutely no clue... and once you throw the generic formulas into the mix... forget about it.... so please.. world... if your listening, help a baby maker out and simplify things !

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Tackle It Tuesday

 Tuesdays are my day to face my to do list and tackle as least one thing that has been bugging me . . .this to do list has changed drastically over the past 24 hours since we have found out that we are moving at the end of April.

So what is on this Baby Maker's To Do list  today. . . GET ORGANIZED. . . redoing my To do list to fit in all of the new items that are needed now that we are packing up and moving out. I've turned into quite the list freak, I like to have stuff laid out in front of me and there is something great about being able to check off the completed items as I finish them. So, what better to do then get that list in front of me.

* Sort each room making keep, sell and trash piles... giving myself 30 minutes for most rooms, helps to speed the process and lessens the chances of me chickening out and keeping too many things that should be sold or trashed. Plus little man almost always sleeps for at least 30 minutes, so I know I can get done at least one room for each nap :o) maybe more if I'm lucky

* Yard sales at least two back to back weekends to sell as much of our stuff as possible

* Whatever doesn't sell at the yard sale is getting donated to Purple Heart,  under no circumstances can it come back into the house!!!

So this is what I'm working on over the course of the next week... we'll see how far I get by next Tuesday.... Wish me Luck!!! 

~Accidental Baby Maker

Monday, March 29, 2010

Make My Monday . . .

Okay so Mondays stink, even now that I have no official job to go to, I still don't like them. It's the first day of the week, hubs heads back to work so I am flying solo and I just can't seem to get it together. Don't know what it is- I hate Mondays- so my personal goal is to find something that rocks my socks. Something that will distract me from the misery of Monday and cheer me up.

Last week was a massage, and low and behold the hubs picked me up Saturday and took me to my favorite little spot-- All About Me Spa.  It's a fantastic, small, family owned spa in Helotes, Texas. If your anywhere near Bandera and 1604 in San Antonio, Texas, please check it out. They are reasonably priced compared to the run of the mill nail places (you know the ones I'm talking about) Everyone there speaks English, which I personally love. And the service is wonderful!!! All of their technicians are awesome and every single service I have ever gotten has been wonderful.

On another note we found out that we have 45 days to find a new place to live. One of the down falls of renting privately. So now we are working on packing up and organizing yard sales to get rid of all of the junk we don't need. There is sure to be crazy madness around this casa for at least the next 45 days and can only imagine how crazy our days will be in the new house getting everything organized and sorted. So what will make my Monday marvelous?

Today, its a bacon cheeseburger.... not in my "post baby" get in shape diet... but every once in a while a girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do. Yummy ... waiting anxiously for hubs to get home with my yummy goodness and for tomorrow to be another day :o)

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Smiling Sunday

I'm a firm believer in family time and Sundays are our family's day to spend together. We try to get to church, focus on things around the house, and enjoy a day with as much rest as possible. Keeping that in mind I was trying to think of something quick and easy but still worth posting for Sundays. So I came up with Smiling Sunday. . . a picture is worth a thousand words... and a simple smile can often be just what a person needs during the day.... so here it is..... my smiling Sunday

If only little man had come with an instruction manual!!!

Saturday, March 27, 2010


 this is what happens when insomnia strikes, I thought I'd get all artsy fartsy while waiting for the little man to wake up and take his next bottle :o( 

blogger changed their templates so I thought I'd give it a go... and now ... I HATE IT!!!! 

I want my old design and layout back!!! 

I apologize for the appearance and hope to be having things back up and running soon!!!!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Thankful for .... Thursday

Seeing as "Want it Wednesdays" is all about something I'm wanting, I thought Thursdays should follow it up with something I'm thankful for . . .

Today I am thankful for . . . . . amazing weather that I can open all the windows and doors and let the fresh air blow through my house . . . what a difference it makes! I find more spring in my step, more energy, and a generally better attitude. Maybe because yesterday was dark and gray I wanted to curl up with little man and sit on the couch all day .... today we have a to do list written and projects to get done... I am determined to clean out and organize the garage over the course of the next two days while Hubs is home so that we can get a kick butt garage sale organized. It's amazing how much junk we have accumulated over the course of our 2.5 years of marriage, not to mention all of the garbage each of us brought with us from our previous lives. It makes me realize, if its been out in the garage for almost a year now, do I really need it.... can't I live without it.... the answer should be yes, but why do I find myself still clinging to that box of purses I might use someday... or those fishing poles that we used once two years ago and have no intention of ever using them again...

It's time to clean up .... clean out.... and embrace a garage that can actually hold a car instead of all of our junk :o)

what are you thankful for????

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

I want it .....Wednesday

Okay, so I'm working on creating weekly topics that will allow me to post daily and share a little about myself  while also getting to know my readers. It will also allow me to change up the topics a bit so that you don't have to listen to me rant and rave about my precious amazing baby boy every post :o) Even though I did use him in every picture :o)

I don't have every day figured out just yet but am feeling like " I want it Wednesdays" are a good start.

Today I want . . . an awesome back massage. I know its a simple request. Ever since the epidural I have been having crazy back issues. I can not say for sure that it was the Epidural alone but ever since coming home from the hospital there has been something going on back there. At first it was just pins and needles, then it progressed to a dull achy pain that would creep up after sleeping wrong or sitting in an uncomfortable position. Now it seems that no matter what I do I can't get rid of it. Thinking of resorting to one of my hubs muscle relaxers tomorrow night when he is on baby duty unless the pain gets better. The crazy thing is that I never had back problems before. Sure pregnancy gave me random aches and pains, but they were nothing a good hot bath couldn't fix. Now I'm walking around like a little old lady, grabbing my back any time the pain strikes . . . so today, I want a kick butt back massage :o)

Now its part of the getting to know my readers section . . . what do you want today? ? it can be anything, something fun and exciting, something simple or luxurious. Just cause you say you want it doesn't mean its going to randomly show up on your door... sometimes its nice to be able to say the desires of your heart out loud...  Let's be serious, as a mom sometimes just being able to go to the bathroom by yourself is a treat :o)

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

She works hard for her money

I recieved an email from my grandmother the other day. It was one of those forwards that tell you to pass it on to 10 of your friends and all your dreams will come true. I don't do forwards, not usually anyway. But this one I did pass along to all of my mama friends . . . The message it contained was one that struck a chord with me. I realize I've only been at this Mom gig for a little over a month technically, longer if you count the months that my little bun was in the oven. I have come to realize that this is one of the hardest jobs a person can have. I wish there was some way to get monetary reconciliation but I'm happy with love, smiles, hugs, and kisses for the rest of this little man's life :o)

Below is the email. . . I hope you'll pass it along to all of your mom friends, sisters, co-worers and your own mama ! 

A woman renewing her driver's license at the County Clerk'office, was asked by the woman recorder to state her occupation.  She hesitated, uncertain how to classify herself.  "What I mean is," explained the recorder, "Do you have a job or are you just a ...?"
"Of course I have a job," snapped the woman, "
I'm a Mom."
"We don't list 'Mom' as an occupation;
'housewife' covers it," said the recorder emphatically.

I forgot all about her story until one day I found myself in the same situation, this time at our own Town Hall.  The Clerk was obviously a career woman, poised, efficient and possessed of a high sounding title like "Official Interrogator" or "Town Registrar."

"What is your occupation?" she probed.

What made me say it, I do not know.  T
he words simply popped out.  "I'm a Research Associate in the field of
Child Development and Human Relations."

The clerk paused, ball-point pen frozen in midair and looked up as though she had not heard right.  I repeated the title slowly emphasizing the most significant words then I stared with wonder as my pronouncement was written in bold, black ink on the official questionnaire.
"Might I ask," said the clerk with new interest, "just what you do in your field?"
Coolly, without any trace of fluster in my voice, I heard myself reply, "I have a continuing program of research (what mother doesn't) in the laboratory and in the field,
(normally I would have said indoors and out).  I'm working for my Masters (first the Lord and then the whole family) and already have four credits (all daughters).  Of course the job is one of the most demanding in the humanities (any mother care to disagree?) and I often work 14 hours a day (24 is more like it).  But the job is more challenging than most run-of-the-mill careers a
nd the rewards are more of a satisfaction rather than just money."
There was an increasing note of respect in the clerk's voice as she completed the form, stood up, and personally ushered me to the door.  As I drove into our driveway, buoyed up by my glamorous new career, I was greeted by my lab assistants -- ages 13, 7, and 3.  Upstairs I could hear our new experimental model (a 6 month old baby) in the child development program, testing out a new vocal pattern.  I
felt I had scored a beat on bureaucracy and I had gone on the official records as someone more distinguished and indispensable to mankind than "just another Mom."
What a glorious career!!
Especially when there's a title on the door.
Does this make grandmothers "Senior Research Associates" in the field of Child Development and Human Relations?  And great grandmothers "Executive Senior Research Associates?"
I think so!!! 
I also think it makes aunts "Associate Research Assistants."

Thursday, March 18, 2010

hormones or new found courage? ? ?

Today I found myself in a unique situation, unique for me anyway. I am not one to openly speak my mind. At least not in the moment it happens. I try to remain calm and collected, I like to think through things before I share my thoughts. This most often leads to me watering down my thoughts and opinions to a degree that I think will be well received by audience. I have never felt justified in forcing my opinion on someone. I have always been offended by the man that complains to the drive through person that the order is taking too long. I can't stand the woman in the deli that is flipping out at the clerk, as if that poor person is the one in charge of ordering their beloved turkey and its their fault that its gone. I just never saw the point--until TODAY!!!

I need to preface the next part with the fact that I have worked in customer service and have friends and family that are currently working in such fields. I always try to think of the person standing in front of me as someone's mother, daughter, friend. I always strive to treat everyone I come in contact with, with a certain level of respect and dignity. I try to remind myself that maybe they are just having an off day, surely they don't always behave that way. Today was not that day.

I am running on no more then two hours of sleep at any given time. Overdosing on caffeine in an attempt to make it through the day I'm sure has some effect on my nerves. When little man and I are home we have our routine, schedule and life works well. I lay down when he is sleeping and even though I don't sleep, I am able to at least rest and recharge enough to make it until 10pm. Today we had to venture out during our normal quiet time. We had to sign some papers at a local financial institution (not naming names because I would never judge an entire organization on one crappy, uneducated, poorly trained office). I plan my day around this adventure, carefully calculating little man's morning nap and feeding so that he will be at his most potential happiness while we are there. I pack him up, load up the diaper bag and we are on our way. Out of sheer coincidence I think to call ahead to let the above mentioned person know we are on our way. She had absolutely insisted just two weeks earlier that we come in on this day, at this time. As I am getting ready to turn into her parking lot she informs me that her end of things were not done. She had not done any of the paperwork, filed any of the forms and beyond that, all of the information she gave me two weeks ago was no longer valid and the situation was completely different....... Riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiight.

I don't know if it's the post pregnancy chemicals, lack of sleep, complete shortage of patience, or the realization that a person should not be doing a job that is beyond their capabilities. I suddenly found the words to tell this woman exactly how I felt. No more "thinking through things". I let it rip. Normally I would have a "post outburst guilt" but today, nothing. At the end of my conversation I informed her that I would be doing everything within my power to not only take my business elsewhere but also ensure that non of my friends or family would have to suffer through her offices poor business practices. (this is putting it nicely).

Today I learned the value of your words. If I had taken my normal course of action, thought through things and called her back when I was in a "better state of mind" I may have misconstrued my complete and utter digust with the situation. I probably would have said something like "no problem, when is a good time for you" and this would have led her to believe that its okay to not follow through. That as a business vendor it's okay to not follow through on what you say you are going to do. Sometimes we all need a little kick in the pants to help us be the best version of ourselves. Hopefully she will take today as a learning experience, make it a point to not promise something unless she knows that she can make it happen. Hopefully I will walk away from today, knowing that sometimes I just have to let it rip. Sometimes I need to speak my mind on the important things, and don't water down situations or things that are important to me.

So, today, I like to think that I found an inner courage to speak my mind and hope that I can keep it around.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

One month and counting

I can't believe that we are getting ready to celebrate Little Man's one month birthday ! As I sat with a friend today I was thinking back over the past month and the endless lessons I have learned. There are no words to express the amount of love and adoration I have for this amazing creature that has blessed my life. I am constantly in awe of him. Every time he smiles, coos, or squirms my heart grows more in love. I pray that every woman has the opportunity to experience this kind of love. Whether it be through surrogacy, adoption, or childbirth, a child will completely transform your life, and if you allow it, will be the most amazing transformation a person can go through. I promise!!!

Now that you know how much I love him, how I wouldn't change a thing, and am completely loving this new role I have been given. . . here's a little reality :o)

#1 lesson learned by this Accidental Baby Maker:  LET GO!!!!
I have had to let go of pretty much any and all expectations I may have had before having him. Absolutely nothing about this month has been what I thought it would be. I thought that my years spent as a nanny would make being a mom a walk in the park. Boy was I wrong. First of all, its 24 hours around the clock nanny care. There is no clocking out at the end of a 12 hour shift. He doesn't know when I am exhausted, frustrated, or just plain done. I found myself fumbling through diaper changes, freaking out at the first bath, and constantly worried that he would stop breathing. I was acting as if I had never taken care of a baby before in my life. It was so completely different now that it was my child.  Nothing can prepare you for the emotions you will feel, and the hormones make it a thousand times more amplified. If you can't take a step back and laugh, you will spend your time crying. I have chosen to laugh, most days, but a good cry has also been needed on several occasions.

#2: The rest can wait. . . I was blessed to have my mom, mother in law, and aunts help with the house while I was recovering, it was a huge blessing to not have to worry about meals, cleaning, or laundry for that first week. And now that the house hold responsibilities are back in my hands, I find that it will get clean, eventually, and I just have to be okay with it. The phone that used to be in my pocket or within arms reach has been silenced for days. It takes me hours, sometimes days to return phone calls. I actually hung up with a dear friend of mine after the little guy spit up all over his outfit and mine... it took me over 18 hours to remember to call her back. Things that used to be so crucial and important no longer hold a candle next to the needs of this little guy.

#3 lesson Smile and Nod even when you think their crazy !!! Everyone in your life will become a baby expert and will want to tell you what you should do. Random strangers at the grocery store, a friend who knows someone who knew someone who did something, close friends and family all offer up their advice, opinions, and points of view. It can get completely over welming. Someone telling you to only this kind of pacifier, someone else telling you to not use pacifiers at all. A lactation consultant telling you to breastfeed a certain way, someone else telling you that this position worked better. Not to mention the world wide web. My husband and I are crazy googlers .. . anytime a question comes up we head straight to Dr. Google :o)  I now smile and nod when someone offers me advice. I know that their hearts are in the right place. Or maybe they think I am completely screwing up my kid and are trying to set me straight . . . either way I take the good with the bad, try to find a balance of what actually works for me and the baby... and the rest gets stored away for a rainy day.

#4 lesson: Don't be afraid to ask for help. . . everyone wants to be "that girl" that has it all together (or maybe it was just me???). The girl that can handle the baby all night long and keep it together during the day. Unless you have some super human power I don't see it happening. I went into the first few days home thinking, this is my child, my responsibility and I will do everything. Part of my breastfeeding struggle was feeling like it was wrong to share some of the feeding duties with the husband. I mean, women were made to do this right??? How could I be so selfish to hand off the responsibility of feeding my child to Similac and Bottles. Within 3 days of being home I was a walking disaster. Completely sleep deprived, bordering on the line of delirious makes a girl do and say some crazy things. I wasn't functioning, I was miserable and that made the baby miserable.  Finally I took my mom up on her offer of keeping the baby until his bedtime bottle so that I could get a jump start on sleep. It was amazing to finally get a 4 hour stretch of uninterrupted rest. Now I have my mother in law here in the evenings to help with the baby, or dinner, or whatever hasn't gotten done during the day. She is a life saver and I don't know what I would do without her. If you don't have someone that can help with all of this, then find other alternatives, frozen pizzas, a cleaning lady, a laundry service. In my mind, spending the extra money for the first few weeks is well worth the cost of keeping your sanity in tact.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

to spoil or not to spoil. . . that is the question

Okay Mamas . . . here is the question, "At what point does a child become spoiled?"  Is it spoiling a child to pick him up and snuggle him when he cries? Is it spoiling him to rock him to sleep for naps and bedtime? Is it spending a nap keeping him wrapped up in my arms instead of putting him in his crib? The hubs seems to think that our precious, amazing baby boy is spoiled! How dare he!!!!  :o) 

Here are my thoughts-- He has spent the last 9 months warm and cozy in a sea of bliss. He never experienced pain, cold, or trauma until suddenly his mommy was shot up with Pitocin. He was evicted from the warm safe haven of my belly into a world where he was poked and prodded. He has been cold, hungry, and having to deal with his newly introduced crazy family.

I am all about getting him onto some sort of schedule. Having him nap and sleep in his bed and being able to get more then a few hours of sleep at night. I realize that this makes putting him to sleep for naps a little more difficult for others when they are watching him.  But I am also very much aware of the fact that kids grow up too quickly. I want to cherish every second I have with him and not rush to the next "landmark". So to my husband who says our baby is spoiled I say . . . "so what!"

He will sleep through the night just fine and is making great progress for only being 3 weeks old.  He is in his crib as we "speak" taking his afternoon nap and doing great.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

King of the Castle

September 1, 2007 was one of the happiest days of my life. It was an absolutely gorgeous day in New Jersey. Sunny with a few gorgeous billowy clouds. An amazing 70 degrees with a perfect breeze that cooled you just enough so you didn't break a sweat in the sun.

Every girl dreams of her wedding day. While I was never one to vividly map it out in my head, I always dreampt it would be a day surrounded by my family and those who have impacted my life in an important way.A day to cherish my life and all that has brought me to this moment. While I never knew who the man would be-- I had a few things on my wish list for things my husband would possess. Someone who loved his family and would love mine as much as I did. Someone with a heart of love and compassion for those in need. A man with strong morals and values, someone who was not afraid to stand on principle when the rest of the world was sitting down. A man who took care of those he loved and would do anything for the people that were important in his life. Someone who shared my faith and belief in God. Little did I know that every single one of my wish's would come true. I know that no one is perfect, but I do truly believe in my heart that there is something that is perfect for each person.

My husband and I have enjoyed every second of our marriage. For the past two years we have lived our lives how we wanted. We would get up and go whenever the mood struck. We planned random weekends away or vegged out on the couch for an entire rainy Sunday. We would go to midnight showings of movies that we had been dying to see. It has really truly been an amazing time to enjoy each other and the spontaneous newlywed life. Don't get me wrong, we have had some tough times. Times that have caused us some growing pains both individually and as a couple. We have argued and fought, we have had to adjust our lives and habits to ensure the sanity of the other person. Even to this day I am struggling with the socks that never seem to make it to the hamper, and the towels that never get hung up in the bathroom. But I can honestly say that each and every tough time has been doubled over with amazing blessings.

Over the course of the past three weeks our lives have taken a dramatic overhaul. Our time is so carefully planned. I am amazed at the transition a parent must go through in order to care for a newborn. It is no longer about us. I can not sit and have endless conversations with my sisters. My husband hasn't picked up the controller for his Playstation in days (which is huge for him).  I no longer have my phone permentantly connected to my hand. It takes me days to return the calls of friends. We have exactly 4 hours almost to the minute to do things before he is ready for his next bottle. He is a super easy and mellow baby, which I thank God for every second. It is no longer about my wants, my husbands desires. This little seven pound wonder dictates our lives. It is a transformation that both my husband and I needed. I think its something that is so valuable for every person to go through. To realize that the things you used to value and cherish really weren't all that great. To see that there is something so much bigger and better. Something so worthy of sacrifice that you will not want your life to go back to the way it was. Sure I hope that there will come a time when I can go for a day at the spa or even run to the corner store and not obsess about what my son is doing. I know that my husband will eventually be able to spend some time with his video games again. But this "growing up" process has been so needed in our lives and I am so grateful for this little guy and the amazing blessing he has been to our lives. 

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

The first of many tears to come

So my little man cried the first tears of his life today.

It felt like my heart was broken into a million pieces. Thank goodness I have some time to toughen up. I can only imagine what it is going to do to me the first time he falls down, gets knocked over or has some sort of real injury. The first time I have to send him to time out. Lord help me!

As a result I snatched him up out of his crib and snuggled him in our baby wrap for the rest of his nap. I'm such a sucker its ridiculous!!!

Save the Boobies

Okay, first of all, I'm talking about breastfeeding. So for some of you, skip this post but promise to come back next time !!!  I realize that not everyone is okay with breasts, milk production, and the act of breastfeeding. I was one of those people and don't judge you :o) I was always embarrassed when my mom would just whip out her breast to feed my little sisters without a care in the world. I would look the other way when a woman was out in public nursing her child. I totally understand the issues and even up until the little man took his first breath I would honestly say I still had some issues with the subject of boobies. 

It's funny how once you have a child you really stop caring. It's not even that I don't care, it's that I see it so differently now. Having a child transforms you in a way that no other action can. You let go of your self image issues. You are awakened to the fact that no one really cares and that your private areas are one of a hundred million billion that are in the world. I'm not saying I'm completely rid of my insecurities about my body. But I have come to terms with myself and that "it is what it is". This is not to say that that I am okay with bare boobs in public-- I think that there is still a place for blankets or nursing covers :o) But after having your vajayjay exposed for all the hospital staff to see, having random strangers help you maneuver your massively engorged breasts to your child's mouth, suddenly your issues really aren't that big of a deal.

I was torn with writing about my breastfeeding experience because its something that was a big emotional struggle for me. It's something very personal and unfortunately something that can make mom's feel really inadequate when it doesn't go according to plans. I come from a mother who breastfed like a dairy cow. She made it look so effortless and enjoyable. I figured it would be this amazing experience like it was for her. Every mom is so different, and so is every baby. Just because your sister nursed for a full year, doesn't mean you will. And its okay if you don't.

I saw breastfeeding as the ultimate way of bonding with my son. I mean, whats better then knowing that you are the one providing him with what he needs to grow and flourish. I was providing him with immunity and reducing his risk of ear infections, coughs and colds. I mean that lady in my breastfeeding class must have spouted off at least a dozen amazing benefits of breastfeeding. There was no way I was going to poison my son with formula!! (my thoughts after leaving breastfeeding class)

I have seen friends and family members rock it like it was the most natural thing in the world. I have also seen a few struggle and battle with their little ones but eventually get the hang of it and figured I'd eventually catch on. I was determined that no matter what I would breastfeed this little guy! My first mistake. Be open to options! You never know what will happen. Our little guy had a severe case of jaundice and had to be under the lights around the clock except for feedings. This left our feedings rushed because I was so worried about getting him back under the lights that I didn't pause to enjoy the moment with him. This was the nursing staff that created this panic within me. Reality: he wasn't going to die if I took an extra 10 minutes to get the latch right, but they made me feel that way. We also eventually had to supplement after each feeding with formula to help his little body get rid of it. I went crazy with every bottle he was given because I was afraid that it was sure to ruin him for breastfeeding.Reality: the lactation people create this because they genuinely want and believe that what a mother produces is enough. I wish I had trusted my instinct and taken the extra time to create a positive feeding experience. 

Now, my reality. Breastfeeding was the hardest, most demoralizing part of my first 6 days of mommy hood. I was battling a severe case of anemia that left me passing out if I sat up too quickly. I had been shredded internally trying to get this little guy out. All of those things were bearable with some rest and prescription strength Motrin. I was dreading my child waking up because I knew it meant I had to feed him.  That made me feel like a horrible mother. I mean, how could I selfishly choose formula over the health and well being of my child. Not to mention the physical well being of "the girls" (my breasts). He was my son, so what if my nipples were cracked, scabbed and bleeding. He HAD to have my milk!!! Mistake number 2, I should have pumped at the first signs of nipple damage. I felt like I had to push through the pain and that eventually it would get better. Yes, your nipples have to toughen up, but cracking, bleeding, and toe curling pain is NOT normal. On a pain scale I was at a 9 or 10 with almost every feeding. If I had pumped and allowed my body to recover I know it would have never gotten to the point where it did.

I had lactation consultants come in once we were up in the maternity ward. It was the first real feeding since I delivered and knew it was important to get it right early to avoid bad latches and problems down the road. I asked them all my questions, and of course while they were there he latched like a champ and it was a wonderful moment. As soon as it was just me and him, the razors came. We would struggle through endless wrong latches and each and every time I would think I had it, but within two or three "sips" the razors would return. The maternity ward was packed and I was unable to get a lactation consultant back before the next feeding so I would ask the nurse for any tips. She showed me the same thing, and he did great, as soon as she walked out of the room, the latch slipped and the pain was back. I was determined and would try to push through the first 30 seconds or so because eventually the pain would go away. Maybe this was normal and I just needed to toughen up. Mistake number 3, don't go home without being comfortable with breastfeeding. Sure your going to be nervous, have normal anxiety about doing things on your own. You should at least feel like you know what your doing. I should have camped out in front of that lactation office until someone could help me get it right on my own. You need to be able to do it with your own two hands. At 3 a.m., when your home, your not going to have a professional by your side holding his head or navigating him so he is perfectly centered.Everyone says have your husband help and learn so that he knows when its right, but unless your husband is some sort of miracle man he won't know. My husband watched and studied each time I had someone coach me, and he was no better at getting him to latch then I was.

I finally got to the breaking point but was still so determined to not give up I had my sister in law come to help me figure this out. I knew she had struggled with her little one and had just recently stopped breastfeeding so things would still be fresh in her mind. She came over, held his head and voila-- He latched--painfree I might add!!! It was heaven. I wanted to cry. This was everything that I had wanted. Sure it was 5 days late. But finally, we did it!!!! I felt empowered, invigorated and ready to breastfeed till his first birthday. She left, I was happy and a few short hours I was excitedly awaiting the cry of my precious baby boy and the next feeding.

We sit down, just the two of us, I did exactly everything that she had just shown me and---- razors were back!!!! Your kidding me right?? I took him off carefully, took a deep breath and thought it must have been a fluke. I mean a mere two hours earlier we did it. How could we not get it this time---- razors. Okay, maybe I had him too far to the left, razors.... too far to the right.... RAZORS... too low RAZORS..... too high RAAAAZZZZOOOORRRRSSS!!!!

Before I knew it the tears were flowing. He was crying, I was crying. He was frustrated, I was frustrated. I called for my husband and told him to go get the formula. I wanted the two of us to make it out alive. I was mentally and emotionally exhausted. I had nothing left to give and knew that if I was going to be the best mom for him, it meant formula. By this time my nipples were so damaged pumping was not an option. I tried to manually express but the pain was just as ridiculous as it was for him feeding. My biggest tip, don't be a masochist. There are a thousand things that you can do to screw up your kid. Formula is not one of them.

Today, we are in heaven. Everything about mommy hood is wonderful. Sure its formula and a bottle, but I'm happy, baby boy is happy. He is healthy and while its only been a little over two weeks of formula I am 100% completely okay with "poisoning" my child with formula. When my little guy is staring deeply into my eyes and I am feeding him, its our time. Since I have let go and realized that this is the perfect fit for the two of us, we are in heaven. I feel just as bonded and connected with him as I imaged I would feel with breastfeeding. Not to mention at 2am I can wake up my husband and tell him "its time" without my head ever leaving the pillow!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Sleep is for babies

Okay seasoned baby makers. . . I have complete and utter respect for you. Seriously, I will never again view mom's in the same way. I am so thankful and blessed for this amazing wake up call in my life. Literally, every 4 hours hours, sometimes sooner I am stirred into consciousness that this world is so not about me :o)

I have been at this mommy thing for 18 days and I'm spent!!! Physically, emotionally, spiritually. My body is past the point of any exhaustion I have ever felt. The worst part is, everyone tells you, nap when baby naps. I believe that is a valuable tip and WOULD LOVE TO DO IT! I lay down and despite my sheer exhaustion I can never fall asleep. I toss and turn and finally give up. Knowing that there is laundry to do, bottles to wash, and life to get caught up on.

 I am finding myself being "that girl" constantly. Things I used to think were ridiculous I am doing on a regular consistent basis. I am the germ freak, that sanitizes bottles after each use. I smother everyone that walks through our doors in antibacterial gel. Every little noise and breathe that doesn't sound quite right sends me flying to his side to make sure he is still alive. I used to think, "how hard can it be? it's just a baby." He is 7 pounds 7 ounces of pure exhaustion!!! And he's a good baby. He really only cries when he is hungry. He is sleeping 4 or even 5 hours at night and taking naps during the day. Even as I type the words I am thinking to my self. . . " Since he is such a great baby, why the heck I am so tired????"

Sleep deprivation can make a girl do crazy things.I truly admire the women that come home from the hospital and jump right back into their lives unscathed. I'm wondering how in the world they do it? Maybe if we ever get around to baby #2 I will have some new tricks up my sleeve to make the transition a bit easier? The craziest thing so far would have to be the bottle sanitizer situation. As I mentioned earlier I am a crazy person when it comes to germs and keeping little man healthy. Especially since we were not able to breastfeed. I find myself paranoid about keeping everything that goes near him as clean as possible. So I sanitize the bottles after each feeding. I know its unnecessary, but I can't help myself.

I have my routine. Come down in the morning and head straight to the coffee pot. As soon as I know that my sweet caffeine relief is brewing, I rinse, wash, and load up the bottles from the night. By the time the sanitizer is finished I've been able to guzzle down at least a cup of coffee and am beginning to get it together. I go to the microwave to get the freshly de-germed items and the microwave is empty. That's strange. I begin to peruse around the kitchen thinking maybe I already took it out and just forgot, but it's nowhere to be found. Now I'm starting to get irritated, I'm down to only 30 minutes before little man is awake and still needed to get the laundry sorted and started.

There are only so many options right??? or so I thought!!! I spent almost an entire hour tearing apart the kitchen . . . looking in every possible spot I could have put it... how can I seriously not remember something that happened mere minutes ago.... finally when I'm at my whits end... I open the cabinet to get a glass for some ice water and there it is... ARE YOU KIDDING ME.!!!

The biggest lesson from these 17 days of Mommyland. . . let go!!! Let go of everything I think I need to do. Let go of what I thought motherhood would be like. The laundry is not going to get any more dirty if it goes in a few hours later. The kitchen will get cleaned eventually, and the dirty plates sitting next to the sink are just fine. The dog hair on the floors will come back even if I spend the time sweeping so this morning or this afternoon really doesn't make one little bit of a difference, for that matter, tomorrow is even better. But this little guy is only going to be this small for so long. There will come a day when he won't fit in the palm of my hand. When I won't be able to sit for an hour and just snuggle. These are the moments I cherish. This is what I live for ! The rest will get done eventually !

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Accidental Motherhood

Here I sit, delicately reclined at an angle that is just sloped enough to allow my son to rest peacefully on my chest, while also allowing me to type on my keyboard. My life is no longer about me or my schedule. I plan everything from showers and trips to the rest room around this little six pound bundle of love. I found myself seriously considering if I could go another 5 minutes without going to the bathroom as I had just gotten him to sleep and knew if I put him down now, he'd wake up.

Motherhood has grabbed a hold of me and I am amazed at the transformation my life has gone through in a matter of seconds. It is an hourly, daily, and weekly change that never ends.  From the moment they placed this little man on my chest after taking his first breath of life I felt the urgeant need to protect him. The old "self" that used to take precedence was gone. It wasnt about me anymore. His littlest wimper sends my heart into a flutter and I want to do everything within my power to fix whatever is wrong. Everyone says just give it time, but I don't know that this feeling will ever go away. Or for that matter, that I would ever want it to go away. I pray that my life will always be 100% about loving, protecting, and caring for this new love of my life. That I will never be one of those mom's that complains about the responsibility that motherhood requires. Sure there are going to be tough days, but I know that this is what I was made to do.

While in the hospital, little man developed some pretty serious jaundice. He had to be under the lights around the clock, only coming out for feedings. Those feedings could last no longer then half an hour and then he had to be put right back in. This broke my heart. I would sit on the edge of my bed staring at him in his crib. Hearing his cry sent an ache to my stomach I had never experienced before. My baby was crying frantically wanting someone to snuggle him and hold him close. This was my first "mama" moment. I sat crying, while my baby cried. Knowing he needed the lights in order to get better but all the while wanting nothing more then to snatch him up in my arms and never put him down. I thought this was bad.... little did I know what was to come.

This brings us to Saturday night . . .we had been home for almost one week and I was feeling steadily more confident with my "motherhood" role. There is something so different about caring for other people's children and then suddenly being responsible for you own. Being a nanny prepared me endlessly for most day to day situations that would occur. I can change a diaper, know all the tricks to burping and dealing with gas problems. But there is something so different when its your own child. I found all of my years of knowledge flying out the window and frantically going through the routines as if this was my first time ever doing it. But come Sunday I was feeling like the "Nanny Emily" was in full swing. I was feeling awesome, back to my old self and ready for whatever this little guy could throw at me.... HA!!!!

It was my mom's last night in town and wanted to get the bath time routine down while I had an extra set of hands. While bathing him I noticed a good ammount of swelling on his little pee pee. He had been circumsized in the hospital and the Dr said that it could take up to 10 days for the plastic piece to fall off. Well, we were on day 10 and I started to panic. Suddenly every thought was going through my mind. What if its infected. What if there is something wrong. It looked embedded into the skin. OH MY GOSH.... MY BABY !!!  I immediately get him out of the tub and frantically search for the circumsicisons Dr's telephone number. I page him and sit anxiously waiting for his call. I explain to him what it looks like and the problem and he, as calm as a cucumber says to me, "you'll need a pair of scissors and you are going to carefully cut the string that is left attached to the tip of the penis" ...... ARE YOU KIDDING ME.... you want me to take a pair of scissors to the tip of my sons penis !!!! Thank God my mom was here, the husband and I both were freaking, there is no way I could have done it... .my hands were shaking, my heart was aching, and my stomach felt ready to lurch. She couldnt do this by herself. Someone had to help hold his little legs. . . men and penis issues are a touchy subject so I knew it had to be me. There I stand. Balling my eyes out, holding my little man's legs down so that his grandmom could carefully and exactly clip that last little bit that was stuck. He was fine, sure he cried but because he was cold, his little self was completely naked and he just wanted to be cozy warm. I was convinced I was going to pass out or throw up.

For the next hour I sat snuggling my little man.  Crying till my head felt like it was going to explode. I just looked into his precious face and knew that was it. I was done. My entire being belonged to this little man. My life was never going to be the same. Every tear he cries, I will cry. Every pain he feels I will feel a million times over. But one look into his amazing eyes and I know that I wouldn't want it any other way!