Wednesday, February 24, 2016

10 Bible Verses for when you are stressed

Let me start by saying I love where I am in life. I think right now, in this moment I am exactly where I am meant to be. I was terrified of becoming a mom. I had always been a free spirit and maybe a bit selfish. I didn't know if I could handle all the responsibility. I didn't know how I would handle someone being dependent on me 24/7.

I have to say, those fears were ridiculous. I have never been happier than I am now with my little one. I feel at peace in this role as "mama" but I will say there are definitely new stresses now as well. Fitting in time to pump, play time, snuggle time, basic baby care, basic mama care (showering, eating, getting dressed...), work, blogging, cooking, cleaning, a social life... wait, I have a social life? Barely.  Then I have to find time to be a wife, a daughter and a sister. Some days I feel like I am carrying a huge pile of porcelain plates and one wrong breath can send them all tumbling down.

I reached for my Bible to help alleviate some of my stress and I am sharing 10 Bible verses that calm me during stressful times, starting with my favorite.

1. "So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own." ~ Matthew 6:34

2. "25And which of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life’s span? 26 If then you cannot do even a very little thing, why do you worry about other matters?  27Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; but I tell you, not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these. " ~ Luke 12:25-27

3. "Anxiety in a man’s heart weighs it down, But a good word makes it glad" ~ Proverbs 12:25

4. "Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God." ~ Philippians 4:6

5.  "Say to those with anxious heart, “Take courage, fear not. Behold, your God will come with vengeance; The recompense of God will come, But He will save you.” ~ Isaiah 35:4

6. "Do not fear, for I am with you; Do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, Surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand." ~ Isaiah 41:10

7. “ Know therefore that the Lord your God is God; he is the faithful God, keeping his covenant of love to a thousand generations of those who love him and keep his commandments.” ~ Deuteronomy 7: 9

8. “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” ~ Galatians 6: 9

9. “Be still and know that I am God.” ~ Psalm 46:10

10. "When I am afraid, I put my trust in you. " ~56:3

Peace be with you.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Joining the Exclusive Pumping Club

What led us to make the choice to pump By Daffodils and Lace
I did not choose the pump life, the pump life chose me.

I was dead set on breastfeeding. I had a double electric pump just in case I wanted to go out and needed to pump Ava's meal for Deedee and Pop (my mom and dad) to watch her. It never crossed my mind that breastfeeding didn't come natural to everyone and I never thought I would be an exclusive pumper. But, that is where I am at right now (No, I am seriously attached to my pump as I type this). 

The minute Ava was placed on my chest and we attempted to breastfeed she did great. Latched right on and fed for 15 minutes her first try. I was so happy and the nurses were impressed. The next few days we kept attempting to nurse but I could tell something wasn't right. Ava made a clicking noise and breastfeeding was so painful. My nipples were bleeding and I didn't know how much more I could take. My nurse called in the L.C, who said she thought I was doing fine but she gave me a shield just in case. Mind you, the woman never watched Ava latch because Ava was sleeping and she told me not to wake her up, so how the hell did she know how we were doing?

Once we got home breastfeeding became more troublesome. Ava would get frustrated and I would get frustrated. We both cried.  I started googling breastfeeding advice and looking up proper latching. I noticed Ava's top lip was turning in. We had a mild lip tie. I called mom and told her I had no idea what to do. My mom assured me that all of her children had ties and still successfully nursed. Well, except me... I was the first and a formula baby because she was working. Mom offered to come over and help me and when she showed up I felt to relieved! Until we noticed another problem...

Apparently, my nipples suck. I never realized I had weird nipple but apparently I do and that was the biggest issue Ava had. My nipples are flat and my boobs are huge so she can't get enough in her mouth. Add that to the lip tie and we are batting 0-2. My husband and I discussed it and decided that it wasn't worth putting Ava through getting the lip tie fixed if it wouldn't affect her later because with my stupid nipples she still probably couldn't breast feed. The pediatrician agreed with us.

That evening I walked into my bedroom, hooked up my pump and cried as I pumped a bottle for my sweet Ava Grace. I knew that it was the right thing to do, that fed is best. At the same time, I felt like I was missing out on a huge part of motherhood. I wanted that breastfeeding bond. I sucked it up and told myself it would be okay. I took the bottle to Chris and smiled through my tears as he finally got to feed our daughter. I realized that there were benefits. He would get to help with feedings and she was still getting the "liquid gold".

Pumping is not easy. Some days I feel like I am attached to that machine all day. Finding a place to pump when out in public is not always easy. I have to take either the big pump or the hand pump every where I go. I struggle with supply because of PCOS and now I fear that I will have to supplement. I know, I know... fed is best. It won't be the end of the world if I have to supplement.

With that being said, pumping is also rewarding. I am not missing out. Chris gets to help feed when I need him to. That is a blessing! I am still providing nutrients for our baby girl and I still get those sleepy milk drunk smiles. The best of both worlds. Pumping is becoming more normal and there are huge support groups for it now and I have met some great mama's through pumping. It might not be for everyone but it is what works for us. Fed is best.

Sunday, February 14, 2016

2 Months!

My little one is growing so fast! We have reached two months and she has changed so much. Her little personality is growing more and more daily. She is a smiling, cooing little bundle of joy. 
She fights sleep like Ronda Rousey, but once she is down for the night we get 6-9 hours! She loves her mobile, piano play mat and her mirror. 

Friday, February 12, 2016

Ava Grace : Birth Story Part 2

I finally have a minute to finish little one's birth story.

We were to the part where we went to the hospital. We go in and they send us to our room. The nurse comes in and starts going through all the fun check in questions. Once she is done with that Chris runs to the car to get our things and I call mama and daddy. They had picked up my sister, Anna and my grandmother and were on the way down. 

They arrived just as Chris was bringing up dinner. Only two people were allowed in the room with me at a time so everyone started rotating shifts. At 9pm the nurse came in and inserted Cervadil to get things going. I was told that at 9am they would start Pitocin. I thought we had plenty of time to sleep and rest up. Ava Grace had other plans. 

I get up to pee and climb back into bed and hook myself back up to the annoying monitors. I was trying to get comfy and was snuggling the labor bear (bear made from the quilt that was in the room when my great grandmother delivered each of her children) and decided to roll over. That's when I felt a pop and warm fluid running down my thighs. At this point mom was in the room and my dad, grandmother, sister and hubby were all supposed to be chilling in the lobby. I woke mom up and she went to get a nurse while I called Chris. He was in the room within 60 seconds. He had been sleeping in the car because it was more comfy. How he made it that fast, I will never know. 

I looked at the clock and it was 4:30am. I had to pee again and started vomiting (morning sickness to the end!). The nurse came in at 5am. She checked me and I was dilated to 5. She asked if I wanted an epidural and I said "yes, please!". So, she went off to order it and said I had some time. I swear, the second she walked out the door I told mom and Chris, "I think this is it. I need to push."

At 5:50am the nurse and midwife came in to set up the room. The anesthesiologist came in to do the epidural and my vein collapsed for my IV so he said he would come back after they got a new one started. We didn't make it that far...

At 6:15 I looked at the midwife and said, "I can't wait for the Dr. or the epidural. I need to push now." At this point they were rushing to get the room ready, she was getting dressed and I said to hell with it I can't wait and started pushing by myself. I couldn't believe that I was going through NATURAL child birth. What the heck?!

I pushed like 5 times and at 6:34am Ava Grace entered the world. It went so fast and I was so proud of myself for doing it natural! I felt like superwoman and then they laid my precious gift on my chest. I looked at her, and said, "Hello my baby Ava Grace. We have been waiting so long for you." It was magical. There is nothing like meeting your first child.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Ava Grace: 1 month

Blogging with an infant is hard!

She is definitely over a month old now and I haven't finished her birth story but I had to share. I mean look at those eyes. Swoon.

The first month flew by. Time, slow down!

We are learning each other still but everything is starting to click. She definitely has an angry cry. She is a daddy's girl and prefers to snuggle with him at night. She is fascinated by Riley and will watch him for the longest time. Bath time is her favorite and will usually relax her to sleep. She is smiling and can roll from her tummy to her back. She will do it over and over again. She is very strong for her age. A strong core could mean a future equestrian! She sleeps in 4 hour stretches through the night (sometimes longer) and we hope that lasts! She is learning to like the car (finally) so maybe we can start adventuring out more.

We love watching her learn new things and take in the world around her. I can't wait to see what this next month brings and what new things she learns along the way.

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Ava Grace's Birth Story: Part 1

Going into this pregnancy I was terrified. I do not do well with medical stuff and the thought of being poked and groped and in a hospital terrified me. I considered a home birth because I knew that I was risking a panic attack by delivering in a hospital. Towards the end of the pregnancy I was so over it I didn't care where I delivered. I just wanted her out. I tried everything to induce labor. EVERYTHING...

Pineapple juice, spicy food, eggplant parmesan, walking, bouncing, nipple stimulation, sex... Nothing worked. People risked their lives when they would ask, " You still haven't had that baby?" Um... I still look like a freaking beached whale don't I? I was irritable and so ready to have Ava Grace in my arms.

The best thing I did was join a Facebook group for mommies due in December. We all battled the pregnancy woes together and they assured me my body could do this. We all naively compared birth plans and I actually thought I stood a good chance of sticking to mine. It was simple and didn't include any crazy requests.

 I wanted to be able to avoid the IV as long as possible.
 I only wanted my mom and Chris in the room.
 I didn't want many visitors before, during and after.
And the most important one...
I wanted the epidural. ASAP.

I didn't need a special playlist or a special tea to relax me or any of that. I just wanted the drugs so hopefully I wouldn't panic or throw up and pass out from pain. I pictured myself going into labor at work and strolling to the car. Hubs would drive me to the hospital we would check in. I would get the drugs and all would be well. Ha... Little did I know...

She was due Friday, December 4th. She didn't get the memo. Saturday and Sunday I felt like crap. My hands were swelling and I felt light headed. My appointment was Wednesday to talk about our next step, but I knew I probably wouldn't make it until then.

Monday morning I woke up and went to work. My sister and I were working on setting up our new office so it was kind of a chill day but around 10:00AM my hands started swelling  to the point where I couldn't make a fist. I tried to ignore it but then my vision started to blur. Fun, I know.

I called the Dr and they said to come in so I got my grandmother to drive me because I couldn't see road signs at that point. At the Dr. they said my blood pressure was high. I was dilated to a 2 and Ava Grace was at station 2. Final verdict: go to the hospital, we will induce you.

I was so nervous but so excited all at the same time. It kind of hit me... I am about to have to push a child out of my body! I went and picked up hubs and we grabbed lunch and headed to the hospital.
That's where the real fun starts...

Friday, January 1, 2016

Space Cadet: A Pregnancy Story

It has been so long since I sat down to write a post. I keep thinking, "I really need to document my pregnancy for Ms. A", and now... "I really need to document her birth story," but then I sit down and my mind goes blank. It's like I forget what words are and how to string them together. Her journal is going equally well. I just can't get my life together.

It's kinda funny. People used to talk about baby brain and I would roll my eyes and say "Oh that will never be me. I will never let the child rule my thoughts." Ha, never say never.

When pregnant, I would do silly things like leave my cellphone in the refrigerator or forget to turn off the oven. Oops. I couldn't form sentences or remember words and all of the paperwork for work... HA! It's a good thing I work with dad and he kind of double checked everything at the end.

The worst case of baby brain had to be the day I was driving to work and turned a left off of our street and there were people walking down the road. They confused the hell out of me and for a brief 5 seconds, I could not for the life of me remember which side I was supposed to drive on. That scared the hell out of me and luckily Ava Grace was born the next week.

Baby brain has gotten better in some ways since she arrived. I am more alert and can focus and form sentences now, but I still think post pregnancy baby brain exist. I am forgetting things constantly. Like, "when did I shower last?, Did I put on deodorant? Have I had food today?" 

The kid takes all of my energy and brain power but gosh, I love her. Now that I kind of have a brain again maybe I can post her birth story this week!