parenting

Real Talk: Mom Anxiety

Okay. Can I be honest here for a second. Hopefully you said yes! or sure. Being a mom sometimes gives me anxiety. Like the spiral out of control my thoughts are racing anxiety. Now if I am being completely open I had anxiety before becoming a mom and took medication. Before I would of been embarrassed or ashamed to admit it. But at this point who hasn’t felt anxious or had anxiety at some point in their life. Anyways back to my new found Mom anxiety.

It will start with something small like she spit up after a bottle, or she only burped a couple times. But then I jump to did I not give her enough time after her acid reflux medicine or was it something I ate. And sadly it will continue until I have stressed myself out with all of the possibilities of what could have gone wrong.

Hopefully you caught onto the fact I said what went wrong. I’ve recently noticed with anxiety that I don’t ever obsess over the things that went well or are right. My husband has even commented that I am the most confident person he knows and need to stop second guessing myself and go with my gut. But here is the think being a mom has completely thrown me off my game. I blame a lot of that on the fact of spending 20 weeks of my pregnancy constantly worried over the health and size of my baby. So where I now have the most anxiety is over her size and weight.

I know I know. A fed baby is all that matters. Here is the thing though. When I am constantly hearing feed her more or feed her more often it becomes a lot to handle. Feeding a baby every 2-3 hours is A LOT. We have finally made it to the 3-4 hour mark and I feel like I have a little bit of a life again. Don’t get me wrong I love my baby and cuddling her during a bottle is great but every 2 hours is just a lot of time.

Alright, so here is the point of this post. The biggest contributor to my anxiety is Pumping. My sweet baby wouldn’t latch so rather than pushing it I decided to pump. Meaning I spend hours of my day pumping out milk and giving her breast milk in a bottle. Which is great! Right? It is don’t get me wrong. I am super happy to be able to provide breast milk for her. But it causes me to obsess over the amount of milk I am able to pump daily, the amount of ounces I have in the freezer, and if I have enough in case of a supply dip.

So with you as my “witness” I am giving up the daily battle of having anxiety over pumping breast milk. I will no longer stress over comparing my daily ounces to other days or other women. Hopefully if there is something causing you Mom Stress or Mom Anixety you’ll be able to realize:

  1. You’re not alone.
  2. Being a Mom isn’t easy
  3. You’re baby needs a happy mommy and not a stressed mommy.

-Ally

pregnancy

Cholestasis Of Pregnancy

Callie Here 🙂

Pregnancy story continued:

Everything was great until the week of Christmas.

I was 27 weeks pregnant and I started to have really itchy hands and feet. It was winter, and there was snow on ground so I assumed it was just the usual winter dry skin. I figured it was worse this year because I was pregnant and lets face it hormones make everything worse. I tried lotions all over my hands and feet with no relief. I was loosing my mind. I could not stop scratching. I was cutting my skin all over my hands and feet from scratching. Finally, I decided to call my OB because I just could not take it anymore. When I spoke to the nurse, she said we need you to come in tomorrow for a visit…… Oh Wow… I did not think I was going to get that response. So I hung up the phone and of course did what you are NOT suppose to do… and googled and WebMD pregnancy itching in hands and feet.

What I read, made my jaw drop…

I went into my OB the next day explained my itching and had labs drawn looking at my liver levels for cholestasis.

What is cholestasis of pregnancy? Thought you would never ask!

Cholestasis of pregnancy is the pregnancy hormones affect liver function, resulting in slowing or stopping the flow of bile. The gallbladder holds bile that is produced in the liver, which is necessary for the breakdown of fats in digestion. When the bile flow in the liver itself is stopped or slowed down, this causes a build up of bile acids in the liver which can spill into the bloodstream.

Signs and symptoms include:

  • Itching, particularly on the hands and feet (often is the only symptom noticed)
  • Dark urine color
  • Pain in the right upper quadrant (RUQ), without gallstones
  • Pale/Light coloring of bowel movements
  • Fatigue or exhaustion
  • Loss of appetite
  • Depression

Less common symptoms include:

  • Jaundice (yellow coloring of skin, eyes, and mucous membranes)
  • Upper-Right Quadrant Pain
  • Nausea

How does it effect the baby and the mother?

Cholestasis may increase the risks for fetal distress, preterm birth, or stillbirth. A developing baby relies on the mother’s liver to remove bile acids from the blood; therefore, the elevated levels of maternal bile cause stress on the baby’s liver. Women with cholestasis should be monitored closely and serious consideration should be given to inducing labor once the baby’s lungs have reached maturity.

How many pregnant women are at risk for this?

1 to 2 pregnancies in 1,000 are affected by cholestasis.
The following women have a higher risk of getting cholestasis during pregnancy:

  • Women carrying multiples
  • Women with previous liver damage
  • Previous family history Cholestasis or ICP

Holy Cow…

After reading this and getting my results back from my OB I was shocked. I blacked out in the room with her. She told me they were putting me on a medication to help with my liver levels and I was going to be hooked up for a fetal monitor non stress test. My husband was not with me for that appointment. As soon as my OB left, I started sobbing in the office. My hands were shaking, and then next thing I knew, I am hooked up and hearing my little guys heart beat and tracking his movements. I sat there and just cried. I was so scared. I was so anxious, nervous and full of complete fear for our future. Being this far into my pregnancy and the thought of a stillbirth I was an emotional mess.

If you feel you have any symptoms of cholestasis please contact your provider as soon as possible and speak with them regarding your symptoms.

All information for this post was taken/cited from the American Pregnancy Association

Cholestasis of Pregnancy

parenting

My Pregnancy

Hey! So hopefully you’ve read my post on PCOS & Infertility. If not that post in a nutshell is we wanted to get pregnant and we couldn’t. After having tests done on myself and my husband my OBGYN recommend that we take fertility medicine. She recommended that we start taking a low dose of clomid. The likelihood of it working on our first dose was 25%. with a higher percentage of multiples. Well guys…it worked! On the first try (insert shocked face here).

After struggling to get pregnant my pregnancy was going great! I only had a week or two of morning sickness in the beginning. Fast forward to week 20. My husband is finally able to attend an ultrasound with me to see our baby. For those of you who are thinking wait what! Due to lovely COVID my husband was not allowed to attend any doctor appointments only certain ultrasounds. Talk about not how I saw my pregnancy going.

So week 20 ultrasound is where they are talking pictures of the anatomy of your baby. The tech was counting fingers and toes and everything was looking good. When we were finished she mentions that she wants to schedule another ultrasound to check her kidneys and try to get better pictures of the baby’s heart. At this point we aren’t super concerned but are curious about her kidneys. So I went back for my next ultrasound alone since he wasn’t allowed to attend. The baby’s kidneys are still too dilated for her size and she wasn’t able to get good enough pictures of her heart. Which now means we are going to go for ultrasounds at a perinatal center.

After a few weeks of ultrasounds at the perinatal center her kidneys showed to still be dilated too much her size then fine. The doctors decided that we will just continue to monitor them and she will have an ultrasound once she is born. So yes by this point we now know we are having a GIRL! However after multiple attempts of getting pictures of her heart they were now concerned that she had a small hole in her heart. Cue lots of tears and panic. Nothing was harder than going to multiple checks on your baby alone because of COVID due to complications.

Stay tuned!

-Ally

parenting

Let’s Make Babies!

PCOS & Infertility

Hey there its Ally! So in order to understand my story to motherhood I needed to share my struggles before pregnancy. I found out at a young age that I had Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS). I was experiencing horrible cramping and irregular periods which lead to going to the OBGYN to get a diagnosis. With that diagnosis came the understanding of infertility issues which at the time wasn’t a huge concern.

Fast forward to my mid 20s where I have met my now husband (Jonathan) and I’m curious as to what infertility for me actually means. The main response I received was “when your ready to get pregnant let me know”. Well I’m a planner and that response wasn’t working for me. We had decided I wasn’t going to take my birth control and we would just give it a go. So after about 3 years of trying and no success I went to my OBGYN and said what is our next steps.

My husband already has a child so clearly its because of me. LADIES! I’m not sure who needs to hear this but just because he already had a child doesn’t mean he could do it again. The amount of guilt and blame I was putting on myself was unreal. Thankfully my OB said lets do a range of tests on BOTH of YOU. Her reasoning was why assume its just because of my issues and treat it. When we can see the whole picture and treat the actual issue. So all of our tests came back normal and no issues. Which was great but why can’t we get pregnant. She ruled it as an unexplained lack of pregnancy which is medical terms for who knows!

Stay Tuned for my pregnancy story!

-Ally

parenting, pregnancy

What Happens In Vegas… Doesn’t Stay in Vegas: Pregnancy Edition

Callie’s Story:

My husband (Chad) and I planned a west coast vacation the summer of 2019 and this was our last big trip before we wanted to start a family. We planned our trip around the national athletic training conference that was in Vegas that summer. So we flew out early and hiked some of our bucket list spots. We had discussed before the trip that if we conceived in Vegas it would be a funny story. We had the moto the entire trip of well we may come home as a family of three (I had known I was going to be ovulating during our vacation) and said screw it (literally) we were going to let fate decide if it would give us life’s biggest blessing. I had been off my birth control for a year already so we were ready to start a family. We had been married for 3 years together for 6 and had just bought a house… so we said well why not ? LOL

Right after 4th of July that summer I had this feeling that I was pregnant. I had different kind of cramps in my hips and I was starting to get really nauseous driving to and from work. I remember sitting in clinic with my coworkers and telling them how I was feeling. They were telling me I was pregnant and I brushed it off saying no way (secretly hoping I was). I went home after work that evening and took a test. OMG it was the longest two minutes of my life waiting for the results. While waiting, I changed into my workout clothes to go walk Gunner and I came back into the bathroom and looked at the test and saw it said pregnant. My hands literally started shaking, heart beating so fast, and I started crying. I composed myself and went downstairs to find Chad. I remember standing at our kitchen island, looked up at him and just slid the pregnancy test across the island. He looked down and said “is this real??” My response as real as it can get ! We both hugged and cried tears of joy and happiness.

Ally was one of the first people I told I was pregnant. We were both so excited and then sad only because we were finally going to be in the same state together and had plans to go to a wine bar (and still have not been to the wine bar) . But really we were excited lol

I was blessed with the worst morning sickness the first trimester. I survived on ginger ale and club crackers which made it so hard to hide being pregnant to my coworkers. I am creature of habit and only drink water and coffee plus I usually eat the same snack and lunch daily. So when I started drinking ginger ale and eating crackers instead of a morning banana and afternoon popcorn… they were on to me. I would then come home from work and sit in the bathroom and sob to Chad telling him “I had a lot of fun making the baby but I am not having any fun anymore” he would then respond saying I look like the character from the Mr. Yuck commercial.

Oh but all the morning sickness was worth it when I saw our precious little one at the 8 week ultrasound. The amount of love you feel as a parent when you see your child for the first time is breath taking. My OB called the 8 week old photo the gummy bear phase and wow that was so true. That’s exactly what Chase looked like. He looked like a gummy bear but Chad and I also pictured him with reptar arms and legs since they were just growing, so we came up with the nickname and called Chase reptar gummy (until we actually picked a name)

My second trimester was very uneventful. I finally felt better and was able to return to my normal self. Its so so so true when they say the 2nd trimester is a breeze.

Now my 3rd trimester… that’s another story and a long one….. so we will save that for another post. Stay tuned 🙂

Until then lesson of this story…. what happens in Vegas… Does not always stay in Vegas…