Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Don't Rush It

If there is one thing I would say to new first time parents, it would be do not rush it! Seeing your child hit all the milestones early, rolling, sitting, crawling, walking, it's exciting! You feel as if your child is ahead of the game, which is great and a feeling of accomplishment. But, don't rush it! Take these early days, weeks, months of your child's life and enjoy it, slow down, and just enjoy it. Soon enough they'll master these new moves. Your child will likely be standing before you know it; they'll be walking, and soon running!

Last night it hit me as I watched my oldest, my Little Miss at her gymnastics class, that I was that parent who couldn't wait for their child to sit, crawl, stand and walk. I remember propping her up to sit and holding her hands encouraging her to take steps and walk on her own. She wasn't "early" with many of the tasks, Little Miss was barely standing unassisted when she turned a year old, but just shortly after her first birthday she took off and hasn't slowed down since. 

So, last night as I sat and watched her swinging on the rings, climbing rock walls, walking a balance beam it made me realize how quickly this time has gone, how quickly my baby is becoming less and less dependent on me. She will soon be two and a half years old, then her third birthday will be here before I know it. This means next year my baby will be able to play organized recreational sports and I don't know if I'm ready for this. With each passing day and each new milestone reached, she is slowly gaining her independence, she is slowly letting go of my hand and finding her own footing. Am I proud? You better believe it! My baby is growing up! Though I have learned, don't rush it!

So for now I will cherish each time she grabs my hand. I will cherish the moments where she plays as if she is shy and hides behind me, because I know soon these moments, these days will all just be a memory. I won't rush it!

Wednesday, February 8, 2017


What if every day you felt like an inadequate parent? What if every day you constantly thought how your kids deserve much better than you, deserve more than you can offer? What if every day you felt bad for your spouse because they have to live with you? What if every day you hated the person you've become? What if every day you woke up just to go through the motions, but rarely found pure joy in your day? What if every day you were scared of some of your actions? What if every day you slowly felt pieces of your true personality slipping away? What if every day you felt alone? What if every day you felt disconnected from people who love you, care for you? What if every day you felt unloved? What if every day you struggled to get out of bed? What if every day you worried about things that could happen? 
What if every night you laid down and thanked God for your family, but hated how you treated them? What if every night you had to tell yourself tomorrow will be different? What if every night you told yourself it was just a bad day? What if every night you laid down to sleep but couldn't turn your brain off? What if every night you dealt with fears, irrational fears? What if every night you wanted to touch your children to make sure they were okay, that they were still breathing? What if every night you were also terrified to touch them, because what if they weren't okay? What if every night you wished it was day light because you don't like being in the dark alone? What if every night you laid your head on the pillow and just thought to yourself that tomorrow will be better, it has to be, because you feel like you're slowly losing control of your life? What if every night you knew deep down you'd wake up to do it all again tomorrow?

I am the face of postpartum depression and postpartum anxiety. 
I am not alone, you are not alone. Open up, speak out, and don't be afraid to ask for help. 

Sunday, January 29, 2017

I wrote this last week and time has gotten away from me, so posting now and praying for a smooth and easy week! Ha!

"The days are long, but the years are short." I've often heard mothers mutter these words or heard others gently reminding mothers of this saying. Heck, I've said it myself more times than I can count. No one, I mean no one warned me how long some of these days could feel. Much of motherhood is all praises of those happy moments, those "winning mom" moments. Social media shows the high lights of motherhood and often puts up a false pretense of what motherhood really looks like sometimes. It's HARD, the days are long, sometimes way longer than we'd wish for. Will bedtime ever come? And let's be honest, even when it does, you're likely to have at least one (usually both) kid(s) up at some point during the night. So, perhaps the days and nights are often long, but the time flies by. 
Today I found myself in one of those moments, one of the moments that's rarely talked about. One kid head butting the other, both kids screaming, laundry piled on the floor, snacks spread across the living room, one naked child running around, the other dousing you in spit up, mommy losing her patience (patience lost...long gone)...yeah *that* moment. As moms we've all had at least one of those moments, where  you find yourself unleashing it all to the mom friend you know who won't judge you. --Can I just say thank the good Lord for placing one of those friends in my life!-- 
For every mother envying those who seem to "have it all together", don't. Just don't do it! Behind every social media account is just another mom who's likely losing it at some point, just like you. You are not alone! It's okay to have those days! Because at the end of *THOSE DAYS* your child is still loved and cared for! Deep breath and push on, this doesn't last forever and you won't always be needed in these ways, your kids won't always be running you wild or fighting with one another, your laundry won't always be piled high, and one day you'll miss those snacks covering your living room floor...so for now, breathe, take your moment, hide out in the bathroom for some "me time" if you muse, but BREATHE and remember YOU ARE NOT ALONE!!

Sunday, January 15, 2017

A month in, how did this happen so quickly? I could've sworn just yesterday we were bringing Little Man home from the hospital. Walking in the house to see my Little Miss, giving her the biggest hug and settling in for our first tandem nursing session. But, no, that wasn't yesterday. This month has flown, it's been a roller coaster of a ride for this postpartum family. I knew the holidays would throw us off a bit. Let's be honest, the holidays throw you for a loop even without a huge life changing event, like adding a new member to your family. Toss in said life changing event and well it's a recipe...it's a recipe for sure. We welcome Little Man and we definitely welcome the chaos! Bring it on! As 2016 was coming to a close, I thought finally we can settle down, slow down and "enjoy" this adjustment period. I use the word "enjoy" loosely, and with many meanings. I was longing for a slow down, and just as I thought it was going to happen life tosses a curve ball! 

Then came the diagnosis of RSV, for not one, but BOTH KIDS! Welcome 2017!! Talk about being thrown in to life with two kids. There was no slow transition , we jumped straight in to having two sick littles. We prayed and really thought Little Man would breeze through RSV and not have a rough time with it. Little Miss had already seen the worst of it and was on the mend, when it ended up going downhill for our sweet little 3 week old man. Thankfully, after three nights in the hospital, he's home and they are both so much better!

So, to say the least, this first month has been a roller coaster, full of ups, downs, and many emotions (I'll open up about those soon)! Here's our first professional family of four photo. We kinda nailed it!

Friday, December 30, 2016

To My Sweet Little Miss

I see you, I promise that mommy still sees you. You are my girl, my baby and the first one to call me mommy. I know these early days and weeks will be rough, we are all adjusting and I see you trying your best to figure out how you fit in with this new normal of having a sibling. I see you struggle baby and my heart breaks for you. I want to reach out and hug you so many times during the day. Most of those times I do, while sometimes I'm busy holding and nursing your brother. You've been such a big girl in helping me and loving on your brother, but I see your needs too. I see how you react when your brother needs a little more care and attention than you do. My heart longs to just hold you in those moments. I'm adjusting too, I'm trying my best to be there for you and your brother both. You both need me, often in different ways and I want to be able to stretch myself for you both. I know I fail, but I'm learning sweet girl, mommy is trying! I'm tearing up as I type this while nursing your brother in the early hours of the morning, because I know you are in the other room wanting me as well. I hear you. I see you. I am here for you my girl. We are in this together. It's an adjustment and we are both doing all we can. So baby girl, when you need to cry, cry. When you need to feel mad, be mad. When you want to laugh and tickle your brother, do it. I pray you don't hold back, I need my sunshine baby to shine her brightest. 

Monday, December 26, 2016

To My Little Boy

You came in to this world and forever changed me. You are everything I never knew I needed. I look at you and realize there's always been a place in my heart for you. There's always been a love there just waiting for you to take. I watch you as you sleep and silently cry to myself. I look at you and realize every pain I felt, every emotional breakdown I had, the loss, they all brought you to me. God indeed always has a plan and His timing is perfect. The hard times I endured over the past year, were all setting up my life to make space for you. I want to hold you as much as I did your sister, cuddle you in my arms as you nurse and drift off into a sleeping slumber. Stare in to your eyes and wonder at what you are thinking and who you will grow to be. I pray for you, my son. I pray you find joy in life and always remember where you came from. You've forever changed my world and I pray I can be the mom you need. 

Monday, December 19, 2016

A Second Time Mama's Birth Story

I was already mama, Little Miss made sure of that, but we were anxiously waiting to find out another Little would be on the way. In late March we got the news that another miracle was growing inside of me!

This pregnancy flew by, it was filled with emotions, since this little babe would be our rainbow! The weeks passed and the pregnancy was going wonderfully. At 20 weeks we found out our rainbow would be a boy and he looked just perfect! Things were smooth sailing aside from breech presentation at 28 weeks, but Little Man had flipped head down by 34 weeks!

As our estimated delivery date approached, I was prepared just as I was the first time for the day to come and go. It did. We saw December 10, 2016 pass and here I was still pregnant. There's something so exciting for me about reaching 40 weeks! Though with my hormones raging and having a two year old I was ready to be done with pregnancy and have our little man home with us! 

If you haven't heard of the restaurant in Atlanta called Scalini's, google it. They claim their eggplant parmigiana will put you in labor. I joked about needing to eat it when pregnant with Lana, but never did. This time I found where they shared their recipe online and thought just for fun we would make it. 

December 14 (40 weeks 4 days pregnant): I woke up with some signs that labor may be coming in the next few days! Though I was totally preparing myself to go past 41 weeks. My mom and I spent the late afternoon preparing this eggplant parmigiana and joking about how it funny it would be if I really did go in to labor after eating it. 
Around 11pm that night I started having some cramps, granted I had been cramping off and on for almost two weeks, so nothing new. I did text my doula and photographer to let them know that if anything picked up, I'd be calling.

December 15, 2016 (40 weeks 5 days pregnant): I took a shower and climbed in bed around midnight. The cramping had gotten stronger, there was no way I could sleep. I got up around 1am and decided I'd lay over my birth ball and just sway through the contractions. Shortly before 1:30am, I called Tyler who was asleep upstairs and asked him to just come sit with me so I wasn't alone. He was downstairs and rubbing my back in a matter of minutes. I decided this may actually be labor getting started and figured I was in for a long night/morning. A little after 1:30am, Tyler called my mom to ask her to head our way. Before she arrived I thought I would go get in a warm bath to see if it slowed the contractions or eased them. I still wasn't 100% sure it was labor. They hurt, they were regular but everything seemed to be moving so quickly! At 2:00am, we called my doula, Lisa Maddux. She arrived to the house around 2:30am. She came up to our bedroom where I was taking one contraction at a time by leaning over the bed so I could squat and sway. After Lisa heard/saw me through a couple of contractions she said we should probably head on to the hospital now. My mind couldn't grasp that, contractions had just started. I had my mom call our photographer, Heather Dimsdale so she could head our way. I really wanted labor pictures with our Christmas tree in the background. I told Lisa I wasn't sure if I was ready to go to the hospital and asked if I could maybe walk around for a few minutes. By the time I made it down the stairs, I said I was ready. Things were moving so quickly compared to the birth of Little Miss. Everything felt so different! I had little to no back pain and was feeling every contraction very low in my abdomen. A few minutes after 3:00am we were in the car and headed to the hospital. We made a phone call to my friend Stacey who was going to be attending the birth as well. Stacey and Heather met us at the hospital. We all arrived around 3:30am. I was pushed through admissions quickly and put in my room. As we walked in the room, I instantly felt emotional as I realized it was the very same room I delivered Lana in. Our nurse, Nadine was amazing! She never once pushed me and she allowed me to move around while she monitored myself and Tucker for a few minutes. It was probably close to 4:00am when Nadine checked me and said I was 4-5cm and 80% effaced. I thought to myself that we arrived at the hospital to early, and now I was stuck laboring here. The intensity of the contractions was pretty high and I was not sure how I would continue to cope. Tyler lightly rubbed my back with each contraction and it made such a difference for me. I continued to labor, walking around the room and allowing my body to guide me. My labor playlist was playing music in the back ground and I was working on finding my zone. As the intensity of contractions picked up, I could feel them surging in my lower abdomen. Pain mixed with pleasure, I knew each one brought me a step closer to meeting my son. I had my affirmations sheet in front of me, beautifully colored with a lotus and rainbow. Words written such as, ease, open, breathe. Statements like I enjoy the birth of my baby, I open, I relax, I breathe my baby down. These words kept me sane, they kept me in my zone. Sometime after 5:00am, the on call OB came in and decided to check me to make sure baby was head down, since we had issues with him flipping breech earlier in the pregnancy. My immediate thought was I could end up in the or, this could be it. I allowed him to check me. He said I was 5cm and 100% effaced. And that yes, baby was head down!! I could have easily been discouraged that I hadn't dilated, but I chose to find joy in the fact that I was completely thinned out, meaning my cervix would dilate more easily. By this time, my OB had been notified, much thanks to one of my nurse friends. He was planning on coming in to deliver this baby! The on call OB had stepped out for a few moments and I was in a semi squat, leaning over the foot of the bed to cope with contractions. At around 5:45am, I felt a pop and a huge gush of fluid, my water had broken. I looked at my doula who was playing a more hands off role, since my husband was my main physical support this time and I told her I needed her. I needed her to be close to me. There's something about the presence of another woman when you're in labor, especially one who knows you and has labored with you before. The contractions became so intense, I thought at only 5cm that there was no way I could continue coping with these contractions. The intensity was out of this world. My body felt foreign to me as I surrendered to the waves. I swayed, I bounced, I squatted and allowed my body to open. I became loud, allowing primal instincts to take over as I was washed away with each wave of contraction. I found a rhythm and continued to go with it. Though the ritual I followed with each contraction was not for sensitive ears. I found myself yelling, loudly, words that are not usually a part of my vocabulary. My body was not my own, it had been over taken by hormones inducing wave after wave of contractions that swept me away. My OB, Dr. Leigh came in shortly before 6:00am and offered to check me. I said no, not yet. There was no way I could allow the disappointment of no progress to hit me again. Within minutes of him walking out the door, I yelled wanting him to come back and check. I began feeling pressure during contractions , but nothing between. Without control, I began pushing while squatting on the floor, I still wasn't sure what was happening. Had it really happened so fast? Was I trying to push against a cervix that wasn't fully dilated? I needed to be checked, I needed to know! At about 6:05am, I, with every ounce of energy left in my body climbed on to the bed on my hands and knees. I looked my doula in the face and said I want the epidural, I need it. She laughed and rolled her eyes, then told me no you don't, plus it's to late. This is our relationship, she knew that wasn't me talking, that was pain, that was exhaustion, that was end of labor doubt. Dr. Leigh was preparing to check me as the instinct took over, I had no control, I was pushing. When he went to check our Little Man's head was right there. He told me with one more push we would have a baby! With two more pushes on my hands and knees, and some adjusting by Dr. Leigh, my baby entered the world at 6:12am. They allowed the cord to stop pulsating, as I collapsed face down in to the bed. Tyler cut the cord and I was able to turn over on to my back and hold my sweet baby boy for the first time! He was perfect, absolutely perfect! He latched on and began nursing within 15 minutes of birth and nursed off and on for over an hour. The labor was intense, it was quick, but having that boy laid on my chest made every contraction, every ounce of pain and emotion beyond worth it. The adrenaline post birth was out of this world, my body was shaking, I had no control, but my Little Man was here and I had just experienced a crazy intense labor and my world was complete. 

9lbs 2oz
21.25 inches