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Saturday, December 17, 2016

Life in 6 months.

Happening in the life as of recent:

I started writing this blog post October 14. I'm just now finishing it.

I started a new job. I love love love it. It's at a hospital super close to my house, which is absolutely unheard of in California, since everyone commutes. It's on a Telemetry floor and it's night shift, so i'm still trying to figure out the logistics of having a baby and really messed up sleep cycles, which doesn't really make sense, but our girl has been sleeping through the night since 8 weeks. I know, I know ***Cue my lynch mob***.  

But on a serious note, my job is really amazing, I haven't been able to say that since i've been here in LA. It only took nearly 2 years of being here, but better late than never. Since getting out of nursing school, it had been a struggle to even figure out what kind of nurse I wanted to be, and floating from one job to the next was not something I was accustomed to doing. The place I work at now really supports future career goals and i'm so excited to be here for the rest of our time in LA. #bloomwhereyoureplanted

Shout out to peeps at my last job location that put up with my pregnant self, LOVE YOU. Just didn't love the place we worked. 

Another huge shout out to the hubs: for taking care of our daughter at night while i'm working. I have to say, I got really, really lucky with this guy. I never have to worry about a thing. He always knows what to do and is such a great dad. Allie loves him just as much as I do. 

Babies grow up way too fast. No one prepared me for this. 

The past six months have been the most stressful, wonderful time of my entire life. When you sit back and see life from the simplistic view of a baby, your perspective changes dramatically. 

My life is a mess, I don't post updates on time and am consistently late for everything, 6 months ago this would have set my Type A teeth on edge, but I don't let it bother me. Oh how things change. 

You didn't know this was going to be a post of pictures, now did you?! 

We also don't care about the mess and how our living room looks like a child's room/homemade disaster with dog/cat hair everywhere. There is literally toys everywhere. Our house will not look like the inside of a Pottery Barn magazine anytime soon.

This is how my hair looks most days, as well as the dark circles, who cares?! That's what they make concealer and dry shampoo for. Come to think of it, I looked a lot like this before this baby was born too. #ohnursingschool #atleastIhadpractice #optimist

We had our first run in with foods. I cannot tell you how excited I get when this girl eats. It's pure bliss. You can bet my shirt looked like this without the bib! You can imagine those diapers are getting pretty smelly too. 

I am so excited for the holidays this year. There is nothing like spending and viewing Christmas through the eyes of a baby. Kids really do make the holidays that much more magical. 

I can't tell you the next time i'll blog. I know it'll be sporadic and completely random, because we're so busy making memories. 

Until next time! 💖

Monday, December 12, 2016

Boobies vs. Bottles, a Mama struggle.

I've officially been a Mom for six months now. Six months. How in the heck did six months go by?!

For the first month of my daughter, Allie's life, I had no idea what I was doing. When I came home from the hospital the only thing that actually frightened me was feeding her. The most natural thing a mother should be able to do. I was dead set on doing what i'd learned in my breastfeeding class and that would be the best thing for my child. My expectations were very high. 

So I fed my daughter by breast. By the first appointment, my child had lost 14% body weight, a normal anticipated weight loss for newborns within the first week is 10%. 

My first thought in my head was oh no, HOLY SH!T, I've done something wrong. I've been a mother two days and i've failed my child, which is every First Time Mom's worst nightmare.

So I had a lactation consultant come to the house to help almost immediately and we weighed Allie and she had lost more weight. We tried using a nipple shield. That worked temporarily, but by the end of that week, Allie had only gained about an ounce. The nipple shield started rubbing and to say the least my nips were on fire. 

I literally was scared to nurse my child, the pain was unbearable. 

This was a huge problem. On top of being in pain from recovering from delivering a child with a midline episiotomy, sleep deprivation, plummeting hormones and a really hungry, screaming baby,
I had to do something else. 

So I started pumping and supplementing breastmilk by bottle, YIKES. Which I was taught in my breastfeeding class was a really big NO, within the first month. You aren't supposed to introduce a bottle until after a month or until after the little one has latched. Well I was 0 for 2, Allie hadn't latched and she definitely wasn't a month old. I was quickly starting to realize my breastfeeding instructor gave really strict rules that didn't work for me, because remember I was trying to do everything by the book.

SPOILER ALERT: when you have a baby, throw the damn book out the window, it doesn't work for everyone and sometimes you need to do what works for you. 

Overwhelmed doesn't even begin to describe it. However, I knew I had to put my pride aside and do what I could do at the time. Allie didn't end up latching. Ever. In time, Allie started to grow and develop. A whole month went by and I was just exclusively pumping my breastmilk. I felt so guilty. I felt like I was letting my baby down. I cried a lot. I mean I shamed myself so much, my husband would come home and have to pick up the pieces and tell me how ridiculous I was being.

When I look back, what was so wrong with pumping? NOT A DAMN THING. 

I was enjoying my baby and pumping was a pain, but it was working for us and my baby was thriving. 

I felt amazing. 

I fed my baby breastmilk for four months. At about four months, I noticed my milk supply starting to drop. Again, I was faced with another round of good ol' fashioned guilt. You know how hard it is trying to pump during a 12 hour shift is when you're a dayshift nurse on a beyond busy hospital floor? 


I was letting everyone (society/crunchy moms) else get in my head and make me feel shameful for how I was feeding my child. 

I started feeding my child formula and I also started sleeping more. The more sleep I got, the more I was able to wake up and realize how stupid I felt for feeling this way. 

My child is being fed. 

My child is thriving and growing. 

My child is healthy. 

How dare I let anyone make me feel less of a mom for feeding my child the way I needed to. 

Mamas, I have to tell you something right now. It's ok to feed your child formula. Yes, breast milk is without a doubt the best you can give your child, but I think we can all agree that fed is best, no matter how you do it. 

Being a Mom is hard. To the mamas that breastfeed with ease, I applaud you. Will I try my hardest to breastfeed my next baby, sure, but If I can't I will not beat myself up for it.

The Honest Company has an excellent feeding resource page, for moms needing more information about the best options to feed your baby and other excellent products.

Let's change the culture and commit to supporting a Fed is Best mentality.

If anything else, Mama, know you're doing an amazing job.

Until next time. 💗