Friday Realness – Keeping it all afloat…

Friday Realness

The past month and half have been nothing short of difficult. Dealing with the lost of our good friend; watching my first baby (cat) deteriorate and eventually pass away; being rear-ended; navigating thrush; teething challenges; working; and dealing with a hurricane as a solo parent while the wife was on business travel. The days and nights have been long, the tears have been plentiful and the snuggles have been needed.

Our little guy is 9 months old today. We waited so long for him and now he is growing so fast. I love watching him interact with us and the world around him.

Yet I have been struggling lately. Struggling to do it all, and not let anyone down. Fellow breastfeeding working moms, how do you deal with the demands of keeping up your supply; working; taking care of your house, pets and spouse; and being a great mom.

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World Breastfeeding Week

After dealing with infertility for many years and struggling to have our little miracle, one of my biggest goals was to breastfeed. Over the years of struggling to get pregnant and thinking about our options of having to possibly use a surrogate or adopt all I could think about was how I would miss out on the special bond of breastfeeding our baby.

After almost three days of induced labor and a c-section, I was relieved that Hawk latched right away as they laid him on my chest in the recovery room. He had no idea what to do and neither did I, but together in those few quiet moments we started our journey. However, let’s be honest, most days are not as easy and joyful as those first few moments.

After a few weeks of being home and nursing, I began to experience serious pain while nursing. I would cry through our nursing sessions but determined to not give up on my dream. After talking to the Lactation consultant (use these resources, they are very helpful for the most part) at our pediatrician, I found out that I had an overactive let down. An overactive let down meant that my milk was flowing too fast when he first latched. Therefore when Hawk was latching he was baring down to try to slow the flow. After learning a few different positions, breastfeeding was comfortable again.

Breastfeeding is hard! There are days when your baby doesn’t nurse well. When you are away and have to pump, it is a full time job. One that can be quite frustrating when you see little production. People may not be supportive and will tell you to quit or that your baby is too old just give them formula and a bottle. However you have to decide what works best for you and your baby.

Today we are 7 months strong and still going. Yes there are days, late nights and early mornings when I want to give in the towel and just give him a bottle, but there are also a lot of special moments when he reaches for me, looks at me with love and falls asleep in my arms.

I know that all can not experience this bond or may not choose to and that is ok too, but for me it is one I will cherish for the rest of my life. Happy World Breastfeeding Week!

Friday Realness

Years ago I started this blog with the intent to be completely honest and open about my journey through life and infertility. Since getting pregnant and having our miracle, I have held back on sharing and find myself falling back into the trap of the highlights of life, so I am committing to get back to the “realness”.

This week we got back from a good but long vacation (vacationing with a newborn is a different world…more on that later) to find out that a dear friend passed away and our cat has cancer. This week has really challenged my patience, my heart and my faith.

So here I am…less than 6 hours of sleep, eaten 1.5 meals, pumped 14 ounces of milk, cried lots of tears and snuggled my baby to sleep…

Hello Birthday….

For years I have dreaded my birthday as it was often met with sadness, disappointment and neglect. Over the last 15 years, this woman has worked to make every birthday special and for that I will be forever grateful. The past five years were hard waiting for my wish of becoming a mom to come true. However, 36 turned out to be that lucky birthday, a year that I will never forget. I can’t wait to spend many more trips around the sun watching these two grow, love and interact. Bring it 37!

NIAW – Infertility warriors

This quote is my infertility anthem. Getting pregnant, carrying a baby to term, and birthing a healthy baby are all a blessing as a woman and a mom. For so many women bringing a life into this world is just a dream, so let’s not forget to honor their strength in trying to make their dream a reality.

NIAW – Insurance Coverage

15… is the number of states that have some form of mandated insurance coverage for infertility. That means that only 29% of our states realize (or chose to recognize) that infertility like any other disease should have insurance coverage for treatment.

I live in a state that is not in that list of 15, however I was lucky enough to have a job that covered a portion of my treatments.

So many couples are not this lucky and often have to make the tough decision to give up on their dreams of a child due to the financial burden. Please contact your representatives and let them know infertility is a disease that should be covered.

NIAW – What Infertility Looks Like…

Often people think that infertility treatments just involve a few drugs and appointments and bang you have a baby…if only.

This is what infertility looks like thousands of dollars in medications, constant monitoring and testing, needles, shots, and ultrasounds. Infertility is physically and mentally challenging.

So rather than telling someone what they should do to have a child, ask how you can help instead.

So often those who are going through infertility treatments have done the research. They have seen doctors, tried the old wives tales to get pregnant and everything in between. What they really need is a someone to say I am sorry you have to go through this, how can I help you?