I’ve been wanting to blog for a while. There is so much going on in my head that I’ve been wanting to share, but I just haven’t really had the motivation to transfer the thoughts from my head into writing. Mostly I feel like there is just TOO much to say at this point, so I’ll try and touch on some of the main things in my new mom life in the most honest way possible. The focus of my updates are going to be mostly about me and my experiences as a new mom. I’m not planning on writing updates on Olivia’s development. She is a happy healthy baby and doing great! I’m hoping that what I write will be able to help other new moms out there to not feel alone. Often times we only see the positives about new motherhood, but I think there is more to say. If you are a new mom, I’d love to hear from you in the comment section!
While I know that I do/did not have postpartum depression, I can still admit to you guys that I cried every day for a while in the beginning. Call it hormones, call it sleep deprivation,
call it serious nipple pain, or just the plain old fact of accepting that life as I know it is changed forever, it was tough at first. Additionally I was basically stuck in the house for 8 weeks, so that didn’t help. I would certainly say that I had a case of the baby blues, but at the same time, I’d also say that I am completely normal. I can’t imagine that other new moms never feel this way. I think they probably just don’t admit it. It’s really easy to feel guilty about it (and everything else), but we are human and not perfect new mommy robots. While there is no doubt that I am completely head over heels in love with my daughter, I still believe that there is a time in a new mom’s life where she grieves a little for her old way of living. How can you not? Now that it is done though- I must say that I think staying in for that first 8 weeks was a great thing. It really allowed me to get to know my baby- understand her cues and natural routine, and allowed my body to heal.
(fyi Olivia is not really a Moby lover. This lasted about 3 minutes)
Postpartum Body Update
Things are going well in this department. Well at least according to me. I never really expected to be one of those women who could walk out of the hospital in her pre-pregnancy jeans and I was right about that. Of the 45 lbs I gained while pregnant I’ve lost 27. Without any effort I lost the first 20. The 7 after that have come more recently. I joined Weight Watchers 4 weeks ago and it has been working. I’ve also been more active (running, walking, Turbo Fire) and cooking a lot more. I think my milk supply is more established now, so I’m hoping my body will continue to allow the weight to come off. I love Weight Watchers and I find it completely do-able. I get a ton of points because I’m nursing, and I really feel like there is nothing I can’t have. I also like the fact that I know if I stay within my points that I am safely dieting to protect my supply. Just winging it would have been a little more difficult. I’m pretty sure I would have under ate if I did it on my own.
My daily menu usually looks like:
B: Oatmeal with flax, berries, peanut butter and a splash of almond milk, coffee
S: Balance Bar
L: Turkey sandwich, grapes
S: 6-8 ounces of 0% chobani with peanut flour
D: A balanced meal- protein, carb, veggie
S: Two Trader Joe’s Hold the Cone mini ice cream cones (Have you tried these?! SO GOOD and only 70 calories each)
Sometimes I feel a bit uncomfortable in my new body, but other times I could really care less. Unlike previous attempts to lose weight, this time I am a lot nicer to myself. I know it’s going to be a process and I don’t have any plans to do anything extreme to get back my body faster than it’s ready. I always cringed at the saying, "9 months on, 9 months off", but now that I’ve seen how fast these 3 months have gone, I feel like the weight will be off in no time.
Breastfeeding is still challenging in new and different ways. After about 8 weeks the pain finally was completely gone which was amazing. However, Olivia and I are still working on other things. I have a fast flow and strong let down which can be upsetting to babies sometimes as they get a lot of milk at once. It causes her to cry during feedings sometimes and also get frustrated at other times if my supply is lower and she doesn’t get the fast flow. She also gets upset if I try to feed her before she is hungry. I thought that my baby would be pretty happy to nurse at almost any time, but she isn’t quite like that. She will get really worked up if I attempt it and she doesn’t want it. So I really need to watch her for hunger signals. She also spits up a bit, and will do that even more if she isn’t hungry enough to digest all of the milk. It hurts my heart sometimes to see that I’m making my little girl upset by trying to nurse her, but I am hoping this is something we can continue to work through. She eats 6 times a day lately and I try to monitor the times to see how she is spacing feedings. Typically it is (4am, 8am, 12pm, 2:30pm, 5:30pm, 8:30pm). I’ve also started getting more comfortable feeding her outside of the house although it’s a bit challenging. At home I can use a pillow to angle her a little bit (to help with the flow), and sometimes when we are out I can’t get the positioning quite right. But we’re working on it. So far I’ve nursed at the Cheesecake Factory (with a cover), in my car (a few times), and at Bloomingdales and Nordstroms. I have to say that I don’t think I was fully prepared for the emotional and physical wear and tear of breastfeeding. I always imagined it would be easy and instant, but it’s a long road and it takes a lot of determination, strength, and love to keep going when it’s hard.
I’m currently working on meeting some new mommy friends. It’s not the easiest thing, but it’s important. I don’t have any family around here so my week days can be a little bit isolating. I started to feel a bit lonely and most of my friends, while still involved in my life, are living a very different lifestyle than me. I am staying home for now, so it will be nice to have other stay at home mom friends to get together with during the day for walks, play dates, coffee, etc. When you think about it, it’s a hard time to get out there and be social. You have nothing to wear, you haven’t showered in 3 days, there is spit up on your shoulder, you worry that every time you leave the house your baby is going to need to eat or poop, your mind is so mushy you can’t really make the best conversation, and you have a little one with you that may or may not be in the mood for socializing. It’s tough, but I am determined. I know that if I feel this way, other new moms out there do too, and we can bond over all of this stuff. It’s funny how much I notice other moms now when I’m out. I make an effort to talk to people with babies all the time because it just feels good. 9 times out of 10 other women are super receptive to the conversation. I think we all share that feeling of living in our isolated mom worlds.
There is much more that I could talk about at this point, but I’m hoping I’ll be back to do that soon.
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