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pregnancy

breastfeeding, breastfed, breastfeed, lactation, feeding infants, breast-feeding, nursed, feeding babies, breastmilk, benefits of breastfeeding

Is breastfeeding really always best? I was reading, my friend, Jennifer Brandt’s blog Perfectly Disheveled tonight and was reminded of something that I had buried deep within the recesses of my mind…BREASTFEEDING! Oh how it sucked! No pun intended. It was one of the most awful things I have experienced thus far in motherhood. I know its not PC to admit that breastfeeding sucked for me but hey, that’s how I roll. I am honest to a fault. I always thought that breastfeeding would be something beautiful and magical; a sacred bond between mother and baby. And it was but it was also something else. It was what most Hollywood actresses look like without their hair and makeup done, no stylist standing by, no PR person to spin their words into weaved gold. It was raw, it was painful , it was ugly and, on most days, it hurt me deeply. Breastfeeding kicked my ass physically and emotionally. Worse than that, it was humbling. From the beginning, breastfeeding made me feel like the world’s biggest freaking loser Mommy! Amen. I’m divulging the truth that it was for me.

I remember coming home on that first day, driving 15 miles an hour with our blinkers on trying our best not to damage or mess up this most perfect being that we had just been given. We cooked this baby good and read all the books but when it came down to it, we couldn’t believe these people were going to let us take the baby out of the hospital. After all, what the hell were they thinking? We didn’t know what to do. We could barely keep one another alive, plants were dying all over the house, I’d lost a dog but these assholes wanted me to keep an entire human being alive! WHAT?? Panic set in but there was no turning back. We were going to hold onto this halo/fog of new baby splendor as long as we possibly could. The key was to keep the baby in tact.

We arrive home. Hello baby! This is your new house. The whole world, in its entirety, will be forever changed. You will be the sun and we will rotate around you forevermore. Time for a nap. Gently we place the baby into the bassinet and then its time to turn off the lights, pull the room darkening shades and SLEEP. But wait. That won’t work. If the lights are off we can’t see if she’s breathing. If we can’t see that she’s breathing..maybe she’s not. No! Sorry this plan will not work. Abort mission. Abort mission! Turning off the lights won’t do. Instead, we collapsed in exhaustion laying across the bed, with our heads half in the bassinet, with the ceiling fan light turned all the way on! Just about the time my brain and heart gave way and allowed my eyes to close, the baby woke up..starving. Let the breastfeeding commence. No lactation nurse, no holds barred. Let’s do this.

To my teet I drew my baby. She suckled. She didn’t latch very well. I knew that my milk hadn’t come in yet, as the lactation nurse had already informed me of my ineptitude before I had even left the hospital. She, also, had set me up with a medieval contraption known as an SNS. Not familiar with this? Oh, aren’t you the lucky girl? SNS stands for Supplemental Nursing System which is basically today’s scarlet letter for you are a fucking loser who doesn’t have the capability of feeding your own offspring. That’s right, there are broads in the world breastfeeding their boobie nectar to chihuahuas and I can’t keep my own human alive. Fuck. It was the Chia pet all over again. I was panicked. I was popping Fenugreek like they were the last tic tacs in the world. Anyways, those were my choices…Fenugreek and SNS…until my milk dropped. What does that even mean? It’s not like a gallon of formula is going to come spilling out of me. I pumped..barely a taste for my infant. So, I grudgingly hook myself up to the SNS. Picture, if you will, some sort of human type version of what is used on cows. Basically, it was a small container that you filled with formula, that hung around your neck. There was a very small tube attached to that which was then taped to the top of your breast and down at the nipple.For me, that meant atop the nipple shield. It was a pretty hostile site. Poor baby Bella. Why couldn’t her Mommy just produce like all the other Mommies? I don’t know baby. These fucking D boobs apparently are for fun and not function.ARGH! The humiliation.

Why had breastfeeding forsaken me? What had I done wrong?

As I sat there, her looking up at me, questioning what wrong she had done in a previous life to be saddled with such a worthless mom, was enough to break my heart. But I soldiered on because I wasn’t stopping until that milk gave in and came in. I was going to breastfeed this baby if it killed me or broke me. Oh, don’t you worry…it almost did. I called the nurse and she barked at me to only do the SNS every other feeding and only an ounce so that it forced the baby to suckle harder and force my milk to drop. I listened because, quite frankly,this is her job and I didn’t know what the hell I was doing. Then in that first 24 hour period, Bella fed every 1/2 hour. Do you know what that means? She was literally off my tit for about 5 minutes every hour for 24 hours. She was crying, out of starvation. I was crying out of frustration, humiliation and guilt. I felt like the biggest piece of shit Mother to EVER walk the earth..even lower than those broads who drove their kids off a bridge. By the next morning, constant crying ( on both our parts) and no sleep, I was at my most vulnerable. And the baby was looking pretty much like an Oompa Loompa. I’m not going to lie to you, I lost my ever loving mind when I realized I had broken the baby. The perfect little baby.

I called the doctor and he said to bring her to the hospital. I was raw. OMG. I was the most exhausted, vulnerable, crazed lunatic on the maternity ward. Oh yes, they made me return to the scene of the crime.The nursery. Immediately, they took one look at our Willie Wonka cast member and told us that our baby had jaundice caused by my malfunctioning bossoms! It was as if someone kicked me in my hemorrhaging crotch, smacked me in my sore raw nipples and yanked my heart out through my chest all while laughing at me. I left the room and ugly cried hysterically…uncontrollably. The Big Guy was freaked out, his baby was orange and his wife was out of her mind. The nurses knew it was hormones. They tried to soothe my fears but it was impossible.

The moral of the story is even after all this, I continued to nurse for 3 months…with the SNS system because I NEVER produced enough milk to sustain my child.NEVER! But that damn lactation nurse kept telling me to keep taking the Fenugreek, it will come in. Then she told me to withhold formula, then I lost her number. I have never felt like such a failure. To this day, it still makes me hang my head to know that I couldn’t just breastfeed. It’s like being 30 and still riding a bike with training wheels. But because I would have been ridiculed by everyone I knew and scowled at for not trying my damnest, I did it again with my second child and again we ended up in the hospital with jaundice. Breastfeeding isn’t for everybody…no matter what people say. If I could have, I would have done it for longer. I did love the bond we formed during that breastfeeding time but if you pan out in the pictures, you can clearly see that I was strapped to that SNS contraption which was neither sweet or bond conducive. So, I say to you…for me…BREASTFEEDING SUCKED!

Did you breastfeed? For how long? Was it easy? Was it hard? Did you use an SNS? Would lengths would you go to succeed at breastfeeding your baby?

Breastfeeding is NOT always best for everyone

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Mother's Day. march of dimes, anthem foundation, premature births, fertility, regret, postponing motherhood, baby, birth, pregnancy, labor, delivery,new mom, what labor feels like

They say they call it labor, because it’s a lot of hard work ( which is beyond my comprehension, still how it can take 10-30 hours for a baby to move from your uterus out into the world; after all, it’s not a transatlantic flight). Well, if we’re calling it what it is; let’s call it a near death experience! Giving birth hurts, a lot!

That’s the truth. Thank God we women are so easily distracted by our new shiny object (said newborn), because if it weren’t for that we’d sure be holding a lot of grudges over labor and delivery. Not that I’m bitter about birth, but damn they could have pulled out all of my teeth, all of my hair, and my fingernails and I wouldn’t have noticed because the pain of bringing my dear, sweet glorious angels into this world, was all encompassing.

*Originally posted May 2009, but it just made me giggle this morning and I wanted to share it with you.

I think “Labor” is the most understated term for what actually happens when a woman gives birth.

It is much nearer to the term I used, a near death experience.

It amazes me that myself, or any woman for that matter, would purposely put herself through such physical torture more than once. Before I experienced it myself, I thought maybe it was true;maybe woman did “forget” the pain of giving birth. Maybe it wasn’t as bad as I had heard. Maybe those broads were a bunch of wimps. I was not. No, now I know the real story, if it comes down to the choice of going through the pain and being able to hold our child in our arms and not going through it and not having our children, we choose the pain every single time.

My new theory is that labor is in fact just a small preparation for life with a child.  A life peppered with profound moments of bliss and misery. A love so big that it makes us physically ache.

It starts with the physical pain of birthing them, but we feel emotional pain from that moment on.It is literally like our heart is walking around outside of our bodies.The pain of labor for a few hours is minute in contrast to the lifetime of letting go. So cherish the pain, it will be over before you know it and then the real “labor” begins.

And FYI, don’t believe the hype…you will NEVER forget the pain of labor. I can close my eyes, right this second, and be right back in that birthing room, wanting to jump out of the  window to escape the pain.Oh yes, it was THAT bad. And I still did it twice.

What did labor feel like for you?

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When I was in my 20’s, I felt I was too young to have kids.When I actually did have my first girl, in my early 30’s, I was planning to plan to have a baby. Then we planned Gabs and after 1 month of actively trying, we were pregnant. When is the right time? There really is no right time. It’s like that moment right before the wax is removed from your upper lip, its scary as hell but sometimes you’ve just got to pull the trigger or you’ll never accomplish anything. If we were all to afraid of the certain pain it takes to remove the wax, we’d all be running around either with hot wax or hair on our upper lips. Am I too old to have any more? Has my womb become a cavernous black hole filled with cobwebs and brittle remnants of my past? These are the thoughts that plague my mind in my 5 seconds of free time every single day, lately.

I don’t feel 38, I feel the same as I did when I was 25 but much, much wiser in the ways of the world, relationships, and myself. After Gabs was born, we were conflicted whether or not to have another baby. After all, we already had these 2 perfect little girls and, at least me, felt that to have any more might be getting greedy.The Big Guy and I discussed it and decided to make a decision by the time Gabs was 2.Two came and went and it was basically accepted that we were a family of 4. We both breathed a sigh of relief that we had made a decision…sort of. Gabs is now 3 and I am not sure what I feel anymore.

The Big Guy occasionally makes a joke that we need to have ” a boy”..you know our illusive unicorn baby. I’m not sure if he’s joking just to drive me insane or if he actually might want another baby.It starts getting hard when you see that your babies are no longer babies. Bella’s in kindergarten and it feels like she already has one foot out of the door. Every day she becomes more and more independent. I realize that is what we want to happen. She is amazing but with each new miracle and milestone she performs, we know its only a matter of time that she is no longer in need of our immediate care. Then there is Gabs, who is just  so sweet and lovable and squishy but each day I can see her getting her big girl face and it breaks my heart. She is picking up everything at lightening speed because she is her sister’s little clone.

Lately I have noticed myself wondering what if? How would this be? How would our lives change? I just don’t know if its a genuine hunger for another baby or is it not wanting to have my options closed or am I just feeling the twitches of my uterus a little more than usual because my girls are growing up so quickly? How do you know when you are absolutely done? Obviously, it will start with a serious talk with the Big Guy.It’s a little hard to broach the subject when I’m not sure how I feel myself and he’s only here on the weekends. That’s a pretty serious topic to hit him over the head with when he walks in the door on a random Friday evening.

Then there is the factor that no matter how old I may feel, I am, in fact, 38. I always told myself no ba
bies after 35. It was like this magical stopping point because of risks and statistics. Of course, I have spoken to my doctor and she says that I am perfectly healthy and another baby would not be an issue. Then again, there are NO guarantees in life. None! Have  I mentioned to you that I am a complete control freak.Then I get that feeling of tempting the fates, again.I am so conflicted. To be clear, there is no baby in the works. It’s just something I’ve been thinking about a lot lately and I thought you ladies could weigh in.So, my question to you …what’s too old to get pregnant? How did you know that you were done having babies..for certain? I just keep having a feeling that I am supposed to be the Mommy of 3 but that could just be the baby pictures I just looked at talking. But how could these pictures not make your uterus twinge?

“https://3.bp.blogspot.com/_9uZoyBGwKCM/S9ZnMFf-XDI/AAAAAAAAASU/ywpjDaZl6mw/s1600/gabi” imageanchor=”1″ style=”margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;”>
You do have to admit, we do good work! Look at those gorgeous little girls!
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Birth, Pregnancy,labor,dleivery, birth

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Birth, Pregnancy,labor,dleivery, birth

Photo By Rubberball Productions/ Getty Images

Birth~ The only thing anyone ever tells you about birth is “It’s such a blessing” (which it is) and you forget about the pain of childbirth as soon as you hold your beautiful newborn baby in your arms , which I hate to be the bearer of bad news, is a complete (Did I mention complete) and absolute, bold faced lie. Unless an anvil fell on your head immediately after giving birth

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Who’s the spin doctor for Motherhood? Seriously, who was it who decided to tell us that when we get pregnant we ‘glow ‘ and ‘ never look more beautiful’ ?Did I really , could I really, have been so naive to believe that harboring a fugitive parasite in my body for 10 months could make me beautiful. Saying it out loud sounds ridiculous.You’d think someone with a 147 IQ would have known better. Let’s be honest , when I was pregnant , I felt nauseaus, bloated , fat, ugly, unlike myself , grouchy, mean, horny , hateful, hungry , tired and like I had to pee a lot. But not once , do I ever remember feeling beautiful or glowing . I guess if they told us the truth the species would die out . I guess it’s not all so bad, I did go back for seconds. Pretty sure I’ve learned my lesson now, though . Happy Mothering, may it be all it’s cracked up to be.

-Truthful Mommy xoxo

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The other day my husband and I are trying to purchase a new insurance plan for ourselves. Obviously, we’re all rogue in this field trying to feel our way as we go. Normally, all the logistics of the plan is handled by the place of employment. Not this time. So, after I spend what feels like forever on the phone trying to speak with an actual human being (in actuality it was seriously about 4 hours over a period of 2 days). I finally after much patience, a little bit of cussing and quite a bit of aggravation get a wonderful human being on the other end of the line..who is actually very informative and helpful. Bonus!!! I am ecstatic, I call my husband to let him know that after discussing the plans with this agent I had found a suitable health insurance plan for our family…NEVER want to have sick kids with no insurance. It’s just too much for my heart to handle.I absolutely must be able to take my children in at a moments notice or on any occasion of anything suspect that may arise in their health. I’m pretty much a “shake it off” kinda gal, when it comes to me, but when it comes to my girls..I don’t mess around. I am almost immediately on the phone with the nearest doctor I know, whether it be their pediatrician or one of the other wonderful doctors that I am blessed to have in our lives on a more personal level. Anyways, I was pretty happy with myself for pushing through all the clicks and beeps on the phone to actually investigate and find a plan. I call my husband at work , in IOWA, to let him know I had it taken care of it all by myself. I won’t lie and say I wasn’t expecting some sort of kudos. I explain the plan, tell him the monthly costs and this was his response, “Really? That seems high. Does that include maternity?” I’m thinking, what the hell does that have to do with the price of rice? Does he mean he wants another baby? What’s going on here? But soon , my question was answered with a hard swift, quick to my metaphorical balls.  “Why?” I ask. ” because…WE DON”T NEED MATERNITY!!!!!” Wow, it was almost as if, in that moment, he had a secret metaphorical vasectomy. That was what I felt like.  I don’t know why it bothered me, maybe because I felt like he was making a statement. Drawing a line in the sand of some sort. It’s not like we plan on having any more children, its just that statement felt so final. It made me apprehensive and nervous, you know like not having health insurance, in case you need to go to the doctor, or car insurance, in case you get into a wreck. I’m a planner and an organizer, not ashamed to say, a little bit of a control freak and I need insurances in life….just in case life throws me a curve ball.

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It’s that time again, yes, everyone around me is either having a baby or anticipating trying to have a baby. I know, didn’t I just post about this? Anyways,there are two things that I have come to know as my truths..they may even be universal. The first is that apparently I am still on the fence about a third child because no matter how many times I tell myself, I am done and I want to move on with my life, every single time one of my friends or relatives tells me they are pregnant, trying to get pregnant or has a baby I get just the tiniest pang of ,”Oooh, I want one.” My cousin just had one, and she is absolutely adorable in every way ,shape and form and , at the mere glimpse of her photo, I am magically transported out of the house of the screaming preschoolers, the biting toddler, the bizarro world where I find myself being sarcastic to children back to that first moment of their first breaths..where the entire world was magical and wonderful and unicorns lived, etc. Imagine what would happen to me if I were to be in the same room with this little blessing, I could quite possibly lose it and ravish my husband in the instant like a rabid dog trying to consummate and obtain the fruit of his loins.Seriously, I could not be trusted that close to a brand new baby. Is it just me? Or is this a pretty common scenario for Mid thirties Mommies with 2 already? I just about can’t handle it anymore. I feel like I am crazy. I know on Tuesday that there is no way I want to do this whole ordeal again ( well, to be honest.. I know that I don’t want to intentionally do this again. I think this is my way of not accepting responsibility if the next one were not perfect or I found myself ready to pull my hair out in the middle of some random 3 am awakening. Then what?Who would I blame?) but by Wednesday I find myself day dreaming at the possibility. I don’t know how this is going to come out but I think I need to be protected from myself:) I don’t think I have to worry too much, seeing as my husband is on “hell nah” patrol and he will be working out of town a lot soon. Thankfully, saving me from myself!

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.5 child, .5 you never stood a chance

. 5 ~ To be or not to be, that is the question. Tonight, though I obviously have 107,000 things that I ought to be doing, I have baby on the brain. I think it was the combo of visiting my friend and her new puppy ( get your panties out of the bunch), I am not comparing your little miracles to tiny hairy beasts and all this talk recently of whose pregnant and whose not. Anyways, apparently , I am in that stage of Motherhood where I have 2 perfect daughters and I am undecided about a third

.5 child, .5 you never stood a chance

OK, lets’ be honest, brutally honest. Let’s just rip it off like a band aid and put it out there.After all, you girls are my friends and you’re not telling anyone, right? I am in my mid thirties, two kids feel like 10, I am always tired. In fact, there has not been a day in the past 5 years, that I have been not tired.

.5 , Should we or Shouldn’t we?

I am finally doing something proactive about getting back into shape and shedding these pounds that I put on with marriage. Oh yeah, you know what I’m talking about. People blame it on the babies but really, babies like the weight are just a symptom of our happiness. Us women, at least me, I spent years trying to get in shape and look good for my man, whomever he was at the time. And I’m no half asser, I got a full on eating disorder and everything (another blog entirely) but my point is that women go to extremes to look good.

Then we get married, we get happy, we loosen the get ready ritual, and next thing you know the pants are a little snugger. Then we get pregnant,and the poor baby gets the blame. No, its not the baby its all that cuddling and canoodling instead of dancing in clubs,its all the fancy rich restaurant dates, its being comfortable in your own skin because you are unconditionally loved.What a sad state it is that we have to be threatened with the possibility of being an unloved cat woman to get our asses to the gym. Anyways, I digress.

My point is I have finally figured this out and am actually working out and getting back in shape. Do I really want to set the reset button? On my body..here comes the weight, there’s no escaping it with pregnancy. There is 4 more years I have to stay out of the real world, that’s more years of no sleep, walking around with spit up on me, someone at my knees calling incessantly.”Mommy, Mommy, Mommy,mommy……..”

The Illusive .5

It’s all that and more that makes me want to take my “aw, baby” Debi..who appears in moments of insanity and hit her over the head with a skillet. Sure, babies are cute, and they smell good, they have that delightful apple breath, they do somehow complete me:), and they are so helpless and beautiful and I won’t lie, I would adore being the Mommy of a baby boy. But lets be real, the Dr assures me that the chances of me having another girl are 75 % on the 3rd child, but promises me that I would have a boy on the fourth. Is he insane?

Do I look like I could handle 4 kids? Do I look like my IQ is below 70?? Are there actually any clothes left in my wardrobe that have not yet been spat, puked, pooped, and/or peed on? Come on My mom had 6 children, and I love that woman. But I am convinced of two facts 1) that all 6 were not intentional (whoops) and 2) that she must have been just the tiniest bit crazy to start with. Furthermore, if she wasn’t before she had us, she surely has been made so over the years, courtesy of us.

So, when my friends are having there 2ND babies and bring over these brand new shiny objects, I am attracted to the challenge.I hate the feeling of losing my babies as they evolve into toddlers, and then preschoolers. I miss that adorable way they run to your arms and you can see that you are there everything. I do. I feed off of that shit. But then I remember, 1 am, 3am, and 5 am feedings, I remember not being able to pee or shower by myself. I remember the crazy smelling ability that I had during my pregnancies and the poor smelly kid that I taught and how every day for 3 months he made me vomit..just a little. I remember feeling so enormous that I felt that I warranted my own solar system, and I especially remember going through my entire transition labor without an epidural!

Then I think, Yeah..maybe, for me today, I’ll take my 2 perfect kids and not be greedy.2.5 is overrated anyway.LOL, I always wondered how they said 2.5 kids,I mean how can you measure kids in a half? Now, in my great wisdom, I realize that 2.5 means Mommy has 2 and wants 3, Daddy says his vote’s for the vasectomy, and the .5 is the middle.

.5 You Never stood a chance.

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