Writing Your Birth Goals

Before making this, I talked with my doctor about what was feasible so we were both on the same page. Then we reviewed this during the last 3 appointments just to make sure everything was clear. We printed out multiples for the nursing staff and our doula as well.

I named it Birth Goals instead of Birth Plan because I didn’t want to feel stuck to it if anything went wrong.

We packed it in our hospital bag for the big day!

Generic Baby Birth Goals – PDF File

What Birth Goals did you and your doctor lay out? Comment below.

The Bowels of Pregnancy

I’ve said it before and I will say it again.

Giving birth feels like the worst constipation you will ever have. You push that baby like the biggest poop you will ever experience. He/she is a little shit before they even get out. (I mean that in the nicest/most loving way possible.)

But what about during pregnancy? For everyone it is different, but this is my poopy pregnancy story.

Pre-pregnancy I had a very healthy bowel movement at least every other day. When I got pregnant, all of that changed. I clogged up, big time. Not to mention all the color changes. I look back now and think how this prepared me for the big day.

While you’re pregnant, your doctor will let you know which laxatives you are allowed to take. Mine was on that long list of medications I would be allowed to take for various issues. It’s a short list and all the medications on it suck ass. You can’t take anything good while pregnant and if you get sick, it is the worst.

But I digress.

I was home alone one day and it had probably been about 3 days since my last bowel movement, which for me was a long time. I was bloated, uncomfortable and irritated. When I got my body’s signal that it was time to go, I was thrilled. Finally. About time.

I seriously sat there for 20 minutes in pain. Crying. It hurt so bad I called my husband at work and told him I didn’t know what to do and that it was stuck.

** Note to men: this will not be the grossest/weirdest thing during pregnancy so if you can’t handle this then suck it up.

Thankfully my husband (who still closes the door when he poops even after almost 9 years of marriage) was so sweet. He not only answered the phone, but also in the calmest tone ever suggested a bath and promised to pick up Mini Wheats on the way home.

Mini Wheats fixed me every time. It was my “go-to” for this issue. I highly recommend all pregnant women at least try it.

Since he was at work that was all he had time to say. I was on my own again. I reluctantly stood up, walked to the kitchen (still in pain) to get more water. I chugged the entire 20 ounces. I continued walking around for a few minutes. I wasn’t going to take a bath… that just seemed like a weird idea and I didn’t feel like going through all the trouble for something so stupid. I sat back down on the toilet for another 20 minutes. I started crying and panicking all over. My body was shaking uncontrollably and I was miserable. This was one of the MANY times during this journey I needed my mom. I am 26 and was texting my mom because I was constipated. Sounds so dumb now, but at the time I didn’t want to be alone.

My mom told me that was just part of pregnancy and that it would get better. I love that my mom was sweet about it, too.

** Another note to men: if your baby’s momma is going through something like this, it is NOT the time for jokes. Keep them to yourself until she is ready to laugh about it later.

At the end of the last 20 minutes it was all over and I was exhausted mentally and physically. I actually got really scared about giving birth at that point. I was never fearful of the pain of birth. I was afraid of losing control. Afraid of not being in control of what my body was doing, which is stupid because it is what the female body is designed to do.

Fast-forward a few months and sure enough, it was a repeat all over again. But this time it resulted in my beautiful baby boy being born. Being able to be held in my arms.

I was so glad my body put me through that. It was like it was testing me. Like it was trying to prepare me for what was to come.

A lot of women fear pooping during pregnancy, but keep in mind that the doctors don’t care because it is so common. Plus, that isn’t even the weirdest/grossest thing that happens during birth, so get ready! I was covered in my fluids 10 hours before the pushing even started.

I didn’t end up pooping, but I sure wish I did. You don’t know when you will finally poop again. It took me a week before even a little poop, and that was with the help of the laxative (doctor ok’d me) Colace. I still use it periodically three months later. I think breastfeeding is the culprit, but I haven’t cared enough to look it up or ask.

 

Is there something I left out that women should know? Want to share your story? Comment below.

Adventures in Cloth Diapering

I am lucky. I was not the first of my friends to have a baby, so I had all their advice to build on with my own little one. One of my mommy friends used cloth diapers and they sounded like something I would be interested in trying.

“Haha. Ok, sure. You go ahead and try it.”

“Don’t waste your time. You’ll be back to disposables before you know it.”

Those are just a couple of the many things I was told when I shared my interest in using cloth diapers for my baby. But neither of those remarks came from my friend. She only had positive things to say and since we agree on a lot of outlooks on life, I thought maybe I could make it work, too.

Since her son was finished with diapers when my son was born, she sold me her lot of gDiapers for dirt cheap. She takes amazing care of her things so they were all like new. She even sanitized them before sending them my way (something a germaphobe like me REALLY appreciated). She also gave me the in-depth information I would need. I typed it all up and made the informational graphic at the bottom of this post.

I have been using them for about 3 weeks now and I love them. My husband not so much, but we a figuring it out.

Here’s what you should know:

  • Newborn poop is a huge hassle.
    • It stains and makes a big mess to rinse off.
  • I wash diapers every other day.
    • I use about 2 shells a day and up to 4 plastic liners a day. My washable pail lining and gDiaper shells take a full day to dry.
  • Have an “in-between” placement option.
    • I use a plastic wipe case to carry them to the tub and back for rinsing.
  • Your baby will pee in between diapers more often.
    • It takes MUCH longer to swap out diapers, especially if you need to change out plastic liners or a new shell. Be prepared for more pee-pee cleanup.
  • It doesn’t stink up your house.
    • We rinse all diapers with poop immediately after changing. This also prevents the need to run it twice through the wash. I use a Dekor Plus Diaper Pail with their washable liner. I put baking soda in the bottom of the pail and on the “in-between” washing days. I also have a small trash can for disposable wipes.
  • You will need a wet/dry bag for on-the-go.
    • I change the entire shell and all when on-the-go to avoid additional pee pee messes. This also helps keep the wet/dry bag clean since the mess is contained in the old diaper.
  • Don’t use a changing table cover.
    • This is because it is hard to avoid pee pee mishaps. Much easier to just wipe the plastic changing table instead of washing the cover. Babies don’t care if the changing table is soft or not so save your $ and skip buying one.

**UPDATE (4/25):

We stopped rinsing the diapers before tossing them into the washer. I just send them through a rinse cycle before cleaning them. Saves water and a lot less hassle. This is while we exclusively breastfeed at 3 months.
I stopped hanging my gDiaper shells to dry. I just throw them in the dryer on a low setting with the liners and inserts.
I love my Planet Wise wet/dry on-the-go bag and my Dekor cloth diaper pail.

 Have anything to add? Comment below.

Explaining Makeup to My Son

I recently started going back to work. Just two hours here and there. My fabulous job has a kid’s center where I can drop off my son for up to two hours a day. This is perfect for when I am feeling a serious case of cabin fever and need a break from The Constant Countdown that comes along with motherhood.

While attempting to get ready for work, I took advantage of my son’s nap so I could shower for the first time in a week and a half. When I started putting on my foundation I heard him waking up so I walked into the living room, sat down in front of his mamaRoo and per my usual, started talking to my son. What do I talk about? Putting on make-up.

“Mommy is putting on her make-up. I put it on before work. Mommies wear make-up because —“

How do I answer that? Granted my son is only 10 weeks old. He recognizes basic sayings he hears every day such as I love you and hello, but the words I was saying about make-up he wouldn’t comprehend. Still… I could not bring myself to tell my 10 week old son about make-up.

How do I tell my son that Mommy puts it on because she is self conscious, that she has blotchy and bumpy skin and finds it repulsive, that society expects women to be beautiful so she covers her face, that Mommy wants to look pretty for other people… so I changed the angle.

“Only girls wear make-up because boys —“

Another dead-end. What if my son wants to wear make-up. What if he just wants to be like me? How can I tell him that boys don’t wear make-up. That they aren’t allowed. That it will get him made fun of? I don’t ever want my son to be afraid of being made fun of. I never want him to change himself to please people who don’t matter in the big scheme of things.

I couldn’t bring myself to finish either of these sentences no matter how many different reasons I gave myself in my head. I found myself getting embarrassed that my son was seeing my greatest insecurity in action. That he saw his mother be insecure with her body, caring about what other people think.

He was as happy as a clam and satisfied with staying in the mamaRoo so I retreated to the bathroom. I hid. I had no way to confront the situation so I fled. I am such a coward.

I don’t even wear real make-up. I only wear foundation and when I am feeling flirty I may add mascara. And that is only when I go out in public. At home make-up seems like an impractical waste of time. I’ve always assumed that made me more secure than the women who paint their face daily. I have been known to scoff at those women thinking I am better and have a higher sense of self-esteem. That I have come back from endless years of being relentlessly bullied because my nose was so red it looked like I was leading Santa’s sleigh.

As I washed my foundation off my hands I wondered how the conversation would have gone if I had a daughter. Would I explain about all the kinds of make-up. Would I have even considered discussing that only girls wear it? Such a double standard and here I am buying into it.

I do fear the day I will have to have this conversation. It brings tears to my eyes that society has raised me to be unprepared for this discussion. That society has impacted me enough to fear discussing something as mundane and widely accepted as foundation.

I want my son to grow up fearless. To be who he is regardless of the opinions of those around him. How can he do that when his mother is hiding who she is? When his mom is a hypocrite.

The Smell of Motherhood

Before I had my baby, I expected my house to smell of poopy diapers.

Turns out that my baby’s poop didn’t even smell until he was about one month old. That, I didn’t expect. What I also did not expect was how little I cared about his poop smell when it did start smelling. I don’t mean that “my kid’s shit don’t stink.” There was another smell so much worse that followed me everywhere not like the poopy diaper smell. That would go away the minute I threw the diaper into my Dekor Plus diaper pail.

The smell? Sour milk. More specifically, my clothes that get soaked in my own breast milk.

I am so glad I bought 4 nursing sleep sets and two soft bras (one seen in the picture above). I sometimes wake up soaked. My son and I sleep on a large burp cloth so it doesn’t mess up my bedding and so he doesn’t spit up on the bedding, either. 

Treat yourself to multiple bras and tops. I started throwing my nursing clothes in with my son’s daily laundry load. I’ve gone through two outfits in one day before.

For those of you becoming first time mothers, the feeling you get when you are enlarged and leaking is similar to when your foot falls asleep and tingles, except it hurts more because, well, they are your nipples. I get enlarged a lot because I also pump on top of breastfeeding straight to my baby. It can be a huge pain in the ass, but it makes it possible for me to store a lot of milk for date nights or days I just need to get out of the house and I leave my husband alone with our son.

I was hesitant to start pumping at first because I didn’t want to take away from my son’s supply and he ate all the time. Every hour sometimes. I learned that, for us, he worked better than my Medela In Style Advanced pump. I would just pump after he ate or when he started to drift off for a nap. If he woke up, I would just stop pumping and feed him. There was always more for him. I even message the crap out of my boobs to squeeze out all the milk I can. I’m sure I squish them more than a mammogram machine would.

I love breastfeeding. It has given me and my husband many laughs and I love just staring into my son’s eyes while he is eating. It is also pretty awesome to think that my son’s body is growing because of me. It is my body feeding him. It makes me feel like a superhero.

Future moms: get ready to smell milk all the time. It’s all part of the journey! I’ve even dripped through my clothes. Not to mention when my son sometimes yanks off and I am spraying a solid stream making an absolute mess. I remember my mom’s milk could squirt across the room.

What are some of your funny leaking moments? Share in a comment below.