parenting

Never say never: Cosleeping

So I have to fully admit I was one of those people that said my kids would never sleep in my bed. As you can guess I caved and Emersyn slept in our bed with us until she was almost 4 months old. Hints why I said never say never. People would often say “oh you never know you might not feel that way later”. Now I still felt that way. I honestly didn’t want her in our bed mainly for safety reasons. We had plans to use a cradle or bassinet and then move her to her crib. Clearly, our plans were not Emersyn’s plans and she is the boss around here.

Around 8 weeks old we found out Emersyn had bad reflux. She had been spitting up a lot at a time and when we would try to lay her down at night it was horrible. We decided to try some medicine for her reflux and saw improvement but she still wasn’t sleeping at night. Which means no one was sleeping at night. Now in the beginning she slept on me. I know horrible idea. Emmy slept Mom didn’t.

Eventually I found this awesome reflux pillow on amazon. I am not sure if it has helped her reflux or not but it helped her sleep because of the cozy feeling. We were able to have her sleep successfully at night in this pillow! Yay! I was still looking for something with sides so I could feel better about Mom and Dad not accidentally rolling too close to her.

One day at target I saw this Cosleeper for around 45 dollars that was the same price on amazon. I loved that it had hard sides and it wasn’t huge or super expensive. We decided to give it a try. I put her reflux pillow that she was use to inside of the cosleeper. Finally everyone was able to sleep a little easier.

So if you were like me and didn’t want to cosleep but now you are I highly recommend these two items to give you some peace of mind and hopefully a little sleep. Or if you’re that mom that wants to cosleep these are some awesome products that you will love.

Link for Cosleeper
Link for Pillow

parenting, pregnancy

Five Tips for Exclusive Pumping Moms

Callie Here 🙂

If you are an exclusive pumping mom lets face it… its really freaking hard. No one knows how time consuming it is until you have to do it. Moms can be EP by choice or if their babe does not latch properly and they still want to provide for their little one.. they may choose the EP life.

I made it to 9.5 months EP. Nine months was my goal… and soon as that hit, gosh I was so done. I was over the pumps, I was over the full boobs feeling, I was over washing the pump parts, and mostly I was really over taking time away from my son to go pump. That sucked and was the hardest. Luckily I had a decent freezer stash so me stopping gave us enough milk till he was a year (mixing some formula in too when needed)

These are my tips/tricks that helped me stay sane and on track during my EP journey.

  1. Hydrations is key
  2. A great support system
  3. If you can afford it a hands free pump
  4. Set short term goals
  5. Exclusive Pumping is breastfeeding

Hydration, hydration!!!! Ladies you have to drink your water in order to make your milk! I noticed if I did not drink four 32 oz cups daily my supply would not sustain. I am a visual person so I purchased a 32 cup and I made sure I drank 4 of those daily. I also read in one of my pumping groups to drink the Body Armor sports drinks and wow did those work! They have a lot of electrolyte’s in them so if you are a dehydrated person boom supply can go up (this may not happen for everyone)

A great support system. This person can be your spouse/partner, best friend, or family. EP is so hard. You have to take time away from your child to go pump which sucks. You can pump while taking care of them… but lets face it Mom’s its really freaking hard. So your support person needs to be able to help you when you need it and also keep you motivated to keep going. Be there for you during the ups and downs of pumping. They have to understand why you are EP and not make you feel like a bad mom for doing it. Chad was a life saver for my support person. He understood why I was EP and was supportive throughout my entire journey.

LADIES A HANDS FREE PUMP IS A LIFE SAVER- Well… at least for me. I made it to the 6 week mark and I had the S1 spectra which is not battery charged.. so I had to plug into the wall. It sucked. I hated that I felt like I was on a leash and had limited room to take care of my little guy while pumping. I invested in the Elvie and loved every second of it (Elvie tutorial to come soon) But there are so many pumps on the market to help make your live easier. (Elvie and spectra linked at top on Amazon)

Short term goal. If you are set at pumping for a year that way seem like a life span away. Set short term goals. I did mine every 3 months that way when I reached a new goal I was a little victory for myself and I felt I got somewhere. It motivated me to keep going.

Exclusive pumping is breast feeding no matter what anyone says. You are doing your best to provide for your child and at the end of the day that’s all that matters. Momma you are doing a great job and remember that. That’s the important part!

parenting

Emergency C-Section: Emersyn’s Birth Story

Hey! In the very end of my Pregnancy Story I talked about how Emersyn was going to come early. We went Friday for our final growth scan and boom all of a sudden she had grown and could stay. My husband and I were in shock. We had finally gotten use to the fact that she was coming the next day or two. I’m sure we seemed like the most ungrateful parents to hear that our sweet baby was okay and now on target. But something in both of our guts didn’t feel right. Our girl who for 9 ultrasounds wasn’t growing on target and who had to be monitored so closely multiple times a week was good to go. Well good thing we went with our guts!

After arguing a bit we convinced my OBGYN to let us get induced on that Saturday just like we had scheduled. We went in at 8:00 am and were ready to go. I was only 1 cm dilated. We start the labor process of using a medication to try to dilated my cervix. This small pill that they insert takes 4 hours to work. So every 4 hours the doctor would check. After 2 pills I still wasn’t dilating and now I was having serve contractions on the monitor that I wasn’t feeling. After the 3rd pill I was in pain and still only 1 cm. My contractions were now painful and I had asked for my epidural.

Now I will take complete credit for this but I honestly knew very little about the labor process either way. I understood you needed to ask for an epidural before it became too late to get one. I knew it would hurt and you had to be super still because of the needle. What I didn’t know was the side effects that could happen because of an epidural.

Side Effects of an Epidural:

  • itching
  • low blood pressure
  • nausea and vomiting
  • fever
  • loss of bladder control
  • headache
  • slowed breathing

Other Very Rare Complications

  • fits (convulsions)
  • severe breathing difficulty

Scariest moment for my husband was that after about 10 minutes with my Epidural I started to have convulsions and my blood pressure was dropping super low. As soon as my blood pressure dropped there was at least 4 different nurses coming in with my doctor. I had an oxygen mask placed on my face. For the next several hours nurses would come in and out of my room putting medicine in my IV to bring up my blood pressure. Every time they brought up my blood pressure my chest would itch and Emersyn’s heart rate would drop.

At about 2:00 am my doctor lets me know that I am going to have an emergency c-section right then. In less than 20 minutes our sweet baby made her entrance. I was unable to hold her right after due to still having convulsions. We later found out that her umbilical cord was only 6 inches long. My poor husband was told had we tried to deliver vaginally he might have lost us both. Our bodies are amazing and my body wouldn’t let me deliver vaginally.

Emersyn was born 6lbs even and 18 inches long.

parenting

My Pregnancy Cont.

Sorry for the cliff hanger! Alright back to where we left off. Possible hole in her heart (VSD).

We received a referral to a heart specialist for another ultrasound. Around this same time frame they became concerned about her size. Now for those of you who don’t know me and my husband. We are not “big” people. Like I am well aware of the fact that she wasn’t going to be a tall basketball player and we are totally okay with that. Her ultrasound went great. They couldn’t rule out the fact of a possible hole in her heart but if she had one it was really small and might close on its own before delivery.

So at this point we feel like we are in the clear. Kidneys are getting better ✔️ heart isn’t a major concern at this time ✔️. Now we just need to monitor her size. After multiple grown scans we found that she was dropping into the 10% percentile for her weight. She was growing but not at the rate she should. At this point they are talking about possibly being induced at 37 weeks but trying to push it to 39 weeks if possible. We learned that babies who fall at the 10% or below for weight can become stressed due to their size. So now I am attending an appointment with my OB every Monday for a Non Stress Test (NST) and an ultrasound on the baby every Thursday until delivery.

My OBGYN decides that she will induce me at 38 weeks due to the fact that our sweet baby was growing but the chances of her staying past that and becoming stressed was high. So we were going to be induced on October 31st at 4am. We had our last grown scan on Friday the 30th. At that scan we learned that she was all of a sudden 6lbs and 7oz and could stay another week. At that moment we were in shock. How could this baby who for 9 extra ultrasounds not be normal and okay to wait now she is good to go. Something just didn’t sit right with my husband and I. We had to push and argue on his part to still be induced the following day.

Stay tuned for our birth story! For now enjoy some Pregnancy Pictures

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