Friday, September 17, 2010

Why Does Everything Change All At Once?

So life was about to change forever with the arrival of my baby.  June 1st 2010 my son arrived and I thought all was right in the world.  I had a wonderful husband, a beautiful baby boy, two awesome friends who lived within walking distance, and we were all going to be staying home with our kids.  Yes, this was going to be perfect!  My friends and I could hang out during the day, take the kids on outings, decorate cookies during the holidays, and have our weekly or semi weekly Friday night dinners together.  Life was good!

Then it all changed in what seemed to be the snap of my fingers.  I think Jack was a week old, maybe two when one of my best-friends in the whole world and next door neighbor informed me that her husband had found a new job and would be moving in six weeks.  My first thought was this is a joke.  What happened to all of our plans, what happened to my perfect situation of having a support system already in place for this new adventure of being a mom?  Who was I supposed to run to when I needed help?  But then I snapped out of it and told myself I would be fine, I still have one more awesome friend and she is only three houses away.  We still have cars so we can visit each other and life will go on.  But then just a few weeks later as we are all on vacation together, my other friend informs me that they too will be moving because her husband had found a new job.  All I could think is... WHAT IS HAPPENING?!?!?!

So here I sit both of my friends have moved away and I am still here.  Making new friends sucks and it's even harder when you have a newborn.  So what now?  What do I do with my time?  I play with my son, we nap, talk on the phone when we can find someone to talk with... or he isn't screaming in the phone, we cook when I have the energy, nap as much as possible, nursing takes up a lot of the day as well and cook dinner hopefully before my husband gets home.  But these wonderful days of spending the whole day with my son and no other interaction with adults is starting to get to me.  Don't get me wrong I love Jack will all my being, but I need some adult conversation/contact.  So I guess I will continue my hunt in trying to find new friends in a place I have lived for over three years.  It's pretty sad when I have really only made two good friends and both of them move away within weeks of each other.

Moving on is hard.  It's even harder when you don't want to.  But I suppose with change comes good things and bad.  I guess I should start looking for the good in all this change and find something positive to focus on.  This blog has been something good in all this change.  If my friends hadn't moved away, I would never have thought to start one.  It's an outlet for my day to day thoughts and a way to connect with others.  Have a wonderful weekend everyone! 

Monday, September 13, 2010

Why Do I Feel So Passionate About Breastfeeding?

While I was pregnant I always knew I wanted to breastfeed.  I crossed my fingers that I wouldn't have any problems and that everything would go smoothly.  The time came for my little one to enter this world and he did so with a grand entrance.  29 hours of labor and finally a c-section.  I have to say it was disappointing to end up with a c-section.  I wanted a natural childbirth with no drugs.  I had a doula, a midwife, a loving and supportive husband and a nurse who was ready to help in any way possible.  However, we just couldn't make it work... I had a baby that was just too big for my body to deliver.  I guess it was a good thing that after such a stressful and emotional two days that I ended up with such a perfect little guy.  I have to say I was sad my husband didn't get to cut the umbilical cord, I didn't get to have my son placed on my chest, and I wasn't the first one to hold him.  I had to wait what seemed to be an eternity to finally hold my son, but when I did it was the most magical moment. 

I was nervous about nursing but when they placed my son on my chest and he began to nurse almost immediately I knew all was right in the world.  I didn't want them to take him away but I knew I would see him soon.  I was off to get situated in my postpartum room and he was off for a bath.  It wasn't long and we were back together laying in bed.  He was perfect and we were right on target with nursing.  Don't get me wrong we have had our problems with sore nipples, cracking and bleeding and two rounds of mastitis, but nursing is the best decision I have ever made.  With the right support from my mom and sister I was able to make it through the rough patches and get back on track.

Now here is where I have some problems with several things.  When I signed up for the emails and free samples I always marked breastfeeding.  But why then was I sent formula in the mail?  When I received coupons in the mail, why was I getting coupons for formula?  When I was sent home from the doctors office, why was I given formula in the welcome home bag?  When I went to my son's 2 day appointment why was the doctor telling me I could supplement with formula until my milk comes in?  Why was I being asked by so many people if I was still breastfeeding?  Why are people so shocked that I have never given my son a bottle?  Why am I being told that I should start rice cereal and solid foods at 4 months?

 I guess I feel so passionate about breastfeeding because I feel like so many people are bombarded with formula and not enough information about breastfeeding that I want to talk to anyone that will listen about breastfeeding.  Please understand that I am not against formula, we have it available for a very good reason.  Many mom's are unable to nurse for many reasons and some babies are fortunate enough to be adopted and require formula since breastfeeding isn't an option in that situation.  But what I don't understand is why there isn't more information out there about breastfeeding.  Why are mom's who breastfeed made to feel like they are doing something that should be hidden?  I feed my son everywhere.  When he is hungry I feed him.  I wear clothing that is nursing friendly which makes it possible for me to be very discreet.  But I have to say there should be no reason why any woman should be made to feel uncomfortable for breastfeeding her child in public.

I love the t-shirts you can find for babies that say "Stop Staring at my Lunch" or "If you feel uncomfortable, you eat your lunch under a blanket".  Or for mom's that say "I make Milk" or "It's not about my right to breastfeed, it's about my child's right to eat".  Anyways, I think that so many people are just uneducated about all the good that breast milk does for a baby and the mom.  I think more mom's would choose to breastfeed if they knew what kind of impact it has on their child and themselves. 

Whatever you choose for you and your baby I support you in that decision, but I hope that everyone takes the time to do a little of their own research before they decide what they are going to do

I Don't Sugarcoat, I Tell It How It Is

Does anyone ever feel like they are just being told what they want to hear, or that people are just being nice?  I've been told more than once that I am not that kind of person and the funny thing is I know it.  I don't sugarcoat anything, I tell it how it is.  I know being blunt can hurt someones feelings but sometimes you just need a friend who is going to tell you what you are doing is dumb or wrong or whatever it is.  We all need these friends and I just seem to be that person. 

The funny thing is I find myself as the friend who is often called to vent and tell me their problems.  Which don't get me wrong I don't mind, but I think because my friends call me and vent they also want someone to tell them if they are being unreasonable about whatever it is they are venting about.  I have one of these friends too.  She and I met in the Army and I always seemed to get us in trouble but she never stopped being my friend.  She would tell me how it was and that I needed to stop being so out spoken and when I didn't listen she would scold me and move on.  I knew I was wrong, but I just have a quick mouth.  I seem to speak before I think which can get a person in trouble.  However, most of the time I am right, but that doesn't always mean it's the best thing for that situation... especially in the military.  

I try to make sure that I am not going to hurt anyones feelings, but I feel that sugarcoating things only makes the situation worse.  Now that I am a new mom I feel that I have to tell it how it is more often with regards to my son.  I like to make sure people wash their hands when they are holding or touching him as he is in the stage of everything goes in his mouth.  I hope this doesn't make me one of those overprotective crazy moms, but I just want what's best for my son.  My number one job in life now is to see that my son is happy and safe and sometimes we have to tell it how it is even when it comes to our kids.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Are You Still Breastfeeding?

Why do I keep getting this question, "Are you still breastfeeding?"  I have had many people ask me this question.  It started about 2 weeks after my son was born and I really didn't understand why they would be asking me this question.  Yes, the first few weeks are painful, yes I wondered to myself what was I doing wrong, when would the pain go away, but I never wanted to stop breastfeeding.  I have always wanted to be a mom and when I found out I had PCOS (Poly Cystic Ovary Syndrome) I thought I was never going to have children.  However, with the help of some fertility drugs and a wonderful husband who helped me from losing my mind we were able to have a beautiful baby boy.  However, during my pregnancy my midwife informed me that some women with PCOS are unable to produce enough milk for the baby.  So I was mentally prepared for some difficulty but crossed my fingers that I wouldn't have any.  During the past three months I have had mastitis twice and that does make me second guess my choice, but only because of how painful the infection is.  I know which time and medicine the infection will go away and so will the pain.  I have been breastfeeding exclusively for 3 months and 7 days now and plan to continue. 

It breaks my heart when I hear of a woman who wanted to breastfeed was not able to, or wasn't given enough support.  However, I don't think that any woman should ever feel that they have failed if they were unable to make breastfeeding work for them and their baby.  In a perfect world we would all be able to have babies without any problems, we would all be able to breastfeed without any problems and we would all feel comfortable feeding in public.  But this isn't a perfect world and we should all do our part to support those around us in anyway we can. 

Yes, I am still breastfeeding.

Breastfeeding in Public

Ever since I started the Twitter thing I feel like the breastfeeding topic is all over the place.  Or maybe it's because I am a breastfeeding mom and feel very passionately about the subject.  I feel breastfeeding in general is not talked about enough.  Women should feel comfortable feeding their children wherever they are without the fear of someone saying something to them.  I feel fortunate enough to have grown up with a good role model.  A mom who breastfeed anywhere and it wasn't a big deal.  I feel the same way but find it surprising how many women out there want to go and hide what should be one of the most natural things in this world.  Women are made to have babies and they are made to be able to feed them.  I think that we should stand together and help all breastfeeding moms feel comfortable enough to feed their child wherever and whenever they need to.

I have to say I am not big on the capes, use of blankets, or other contraptions to hide your boob or the baby.  I can't see what I am doing or what the baby is doing.  So I have spent a good bit of time looking for nursing tank tops and shirts that have easy access without reveling a whole lot of my skin.  I am pleased to report that after nursing for 3 months now, people have to ask me if my son is still nursing or if he is asleep when I am nursing around friends or family.  If you have any questions about what I wear let me know.  We are a single income family so spending a lot of money on a nursing wardrobe was not in the budget.  So if you need some ideas for a budget friendly wardrobe while you are nursing, I would be happy to help. 

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Shower Time

Showering used to be something I did to wake up in the morning and feel good before I started my day.  It wasn't something that I longed for or felt passionate about... it was just a part of the day to get cleaned up and move on with whatever else needed to be done.  Now that there is a baby in my life sometimes I plan my whole day around when I might get to take a shower.  Sometimes I can sneak one in during a short little nap, other times I set up the swing or exerciser for him to play in... but of course I still have to play peek-a-boo, sing, or do something so that he knows I am still there.  Which of course makes for a very cold and un-enjoyable shower.  Sometimes, I can't wait for Saturday morning, when I know my hubby will be home and I can take as long of a shower as I want.  No baby crying right outside of the shower who wants my attention.  Ahh, the little things that we look forward to after becoming a mom.