I can recall the whole hospital experience with my first as if it were yesterday. I was exhausted as the nurse tried to get Holden to latch just after birth. All I could think about was a shower and food. I hadn't ate in over 18 hours and if you know me even a little, you know I will do anything for food and I get HANGRY easily. I value showers and after my mom proclaiming, "your pooping so much" while giving birth along with the blood, sweat and tears that went into this birth I needed a shower. After I ate and showered we tried again.
My mind was so much clearer, but still I had visions in my mind about what I had thought about breasts prior to giving birth. There was a ton of pressure from the nurse forcefully encouraging my son to take my breast and my parents watching. I started to cry. Here's my turning point. I look to my dad tears in my eyes, thinking I cannot do this. And my dad looks at me and says, "Just Do It." My son and I made it 9 months, no formula and I was working from 6 weeks on.
My decision to stop nursing Holden came one day when his feet were on my stomach, booty in the air and his mouth was on my breast shaking it the way a dog shakes a stuffed toy. Eric had been in the picture since my son was 6 months old, but I remember him looking at me that day and I know we were thinking the same. He's walking (yes, I know 9 months and walking), he was talking and eating table food. It was time.
When my second came along the initial hospital connection was easier. When we got home she had colic even today I recognize I did not make the connection with her as a baby that I did with Holden and my third. My first daughter was always eating, who am I kidding she is still always eating! Along with this I faced some uncomfortable situations with family not being too accepting of my nursing in public even though I was being discrete. I only made it 5 months with my second. I could not produce what she needed I strongly believe this was due to lack of connection with the screaming colic and the pressure of feeling uncomfortable about my breastfeeding. I still revisit regrets about not getting further with her.
My third was the easiest. In the hospital I was confident in what I was doing. I believe the nurses even thought so because they left me alone. When we got home we had an immediate connection. I do not feel uncomfortable in front of those that made me feel uncomfortable in the past. Number 3 had struggled a bit with being covered while nursing. I made decisions to be open about my nursing with her and we are comfortable doing feedings pretty much anywhere.
Above you will see pictures of me nursing in fitting rooms. This was my number one go to place when nursing prior to just being open about things. I do still use the fitting rooms now because it is easier to keep my other two small children contained while I nurse Myla when we are out.
I have always pumped in a bathroom at work which has honestly been fine with me. I do tend to feel guilty about taking so much time for pumping while at work so I always try to be productive if I can. I also find if I am taking my mind off pumping I can pump more. Below you will find some of my favorite nursing mom on the go products.
DEALING WITH A DECREASE IN MILK FLOW:
If you have made the choice to breastfeed, CONGRATULATIONS! This is not an easy journey. Find a support network to offer solutions when things get difficult. Don't give up if breastfeeding is something you want for your children.
My choice to become a mom working wasn't until May of 2017 when I was pregnant with my 3rd. I actually didn't even realize that was a choice. I had made decisions to be a working mom with my first because I needed it financially for survival. When I found out I was pregnant with my first I was driving over an hour, two hours in the snow to work. I knew this would not be an option once my son had arrived because most daycare facilities in the area could not accommodate the work and drive time. At 38 weeks pregnant I was hired for a position in the city I lived to start after my maternity leave. I couldn't have been more blessed to be offered this opportunity.
Just six months into the position my duties were to launch a new website, redesign the newsletter, and a few other redevelopment tasks which the company had projected to take 2 years. I completed these projects much faster than projected. Just before my 6 month review I was brought in and told I was "no longer a good fit." My son was 6-months old. I had never been let go from a job before. I seen our lives flash before my eyes. I was our only source of income. I was given 2 weeks severance, I didn't think that would get us anywhere. We had a house, groceries, a car payment, and so much more. I called my dad hyperventilating. I was a new mom, I didn't even know who I was as a mom yet. I wasted no time, I was crushed, but I started looking that day.
Within two weeks I had a new position. I hadn't intended on creating a position within that company that I would inadvertently be a mom working, but that's what happened.
This company allowed for so much growth for me personally. Not only did I meet Eric upon starting, I grew my skills greatly professionally, and created a home there. Unfortunately working so directly with a personality that was completely opposite of my own I ended my relationship with that company abruptly at 24 weeks pregnant with my 3rd baby. At 24 weeks pregnant I was getting away with interviews going smoothly. I was offered a position with a company and also given an opportunity to be independent. I took the risk and went independent. I can say now that this was a learning experience and I would not make that same decision today. This decision ended up leading to creating many relationships with business owners and doing work as a Virtual Assistant in my own office the remainder of my pregnancy after a fall out with a marketing agency.
Remember when interviewing that you also have a decision to make.
Do you want to work for the company you are interviewing with?
Just because you submitted an application doesn't mean the company is right for you!
I own two businesses currently Go Savvy Social, yes, I still today am an independent and a Pure Romance side hustle. These businesses allow for some security to feel free should my work world get rocky again. I know I can support myself financially with drive and perseverance making me a mom working.
I also work full time with a company near my home again. This company was open to say they have a family focus in the interview, which made the decision easy to move forward. They also knew I was only 4 weeks postpartum from having my daughter, a mother of 3 and they made me feel excited about being a new mom again in the interview. In all of these experiences, I know now to ask for what I want and I will likely get it, if I do not it wasn't right for my family. Do not be afraid to learn more about what you are good at and start something on your own. Ask for what you want.
Let's be honest, co-parenting is hard for most people. For me co-parenting is beyond hard. I find myself repeatedly faced with circumstances I have been through as a child of divorce at only 7-years old. Reliving my past, while thinking of my son's future. My son is much younger than I was and wrapping his mind around what is really going on with visitation I can't imagine is easy. I have done a crazy amount of work to educate myself on not only parenting, but parenting separately. Now, if you are looking for information online about parenting after divorcing you will find it everywhere. If you are looking for information online about parenting where the parents have never been together, GOOD LUCK.
Today, we are a family of 5! Yes 5. My son now has two sisters. I met an amazing man at work when my son was 6 months old. I was giddy with love from the first moment I seen him. I have never been unable to speak to someone, but all I could do was laugh and turn red when he was near. He has been a blessing, we have two beautiful daughters together and he accepts my son as his own. The adventure that lead me to my forever made me to woman he needs me to be and he is the man I have always needed by my side. It is my hope to protect, support and educate our girls as well as finding a balance in parenting with my son's dad.
I enjoy educating myself in all aspects of my life so you can look forward to a #lifestyleblog... I want to share it all with you!
Why is this different? My son has never had a vision of a loving relationship between his dad and I, because we have never been together. My son only knows my daughters father as his primary, everyday father figure, which is where he has grown to see a loving and respectful relationship. In this mix of things, I know I need to sort my feelings from my childhood and support my son with what worked for me growing up. By figuring out what didn't work I can hopefully apply a better situation for Holden to thrive overall. I feel the important part here is to make sure I am not taking away a learning experience. There may have been some bad things that happened in my childhood that could have been done better, but I grew because of those circumstances. I don't want to take those moments away from Holden either, I want to support him through those times.
WHY DEAR MOM WORKING
I had read a book called, "Spark by Angie Morgan." Reading this book I took SO MANY notes, but a key point that screams to me daily is, "ARE YOU A MOM WORKING OR A WORKING MOM?" I am the mom that appreciates sending my children to daycare, working and adult interaction. All hail stay at home moms, but it's not for me. I also believe that my children benefit from the structure and learning environment at daycare. Although being a stay at home mom isn't part of my current lifestyle, my kids will always come first. I am a mom working. Dear mom working....
My personal journey with motherhood started in December 2013 when I was blessed to find I was pregnant. After several years of believing children would not be in my future, my youngest has been a savior and a hardship. My journey into motherhood has been a roller coaster of events which I believe can only benefit others. As this blog develops I hope to build relationships with other mother's that may find resolve in things I have been through.
Maple Plain Party in the Park
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