We Skipped Naps. And No One Died.

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For real. This happened. And for anyone that knows me, knows this is huge.

I get it, it sounds so fucking dumb. But I am a creature of habit. I thrive on a schedule. And for me to break a schedule purposely…that’s a big freaking deal.

First of all, I don’t even know what my life is lately. We are so so so so so busy. It’s ridiculous. We have seriously been non-stop for months, it feels like. Our free time has become even more limited in the past two weeks with Raelynn’s soccer. Just two more days out of the week where nothing gets accomplished. We have a mound of laundry (that is at least clean), that needs to be folded. The mound on the couch just keeps growing and growing and growing. So many dishes….So many bottles…….so many pump parts that all need to be cleaned. Meal prepping has been put on hold because there is literally zero time to prep meals right now. So many events on the weekends…we have just been living a very abnormal life right now.

This past Saturday, Scott and I had both had plans separately. Then on Sunday, we had plans together with the girls. On Sunday, we were going to a Food Truck and Craft Beer Festival. It was from 12pm – 6pm. Normally, we would wait to go until after the girls nap around 3pm. But, I didn’t really want to wait that long to go and then have to rush through everything. So, I said fuck it. We are skipping the naps today. Of course, I didn’t arrive at the decision that easily. Hell no. I contemplated over it for a week. Literally, a week. And I envisioned all of the worst case scenarios that could happen. What are the worst case scenarios? My children would cry and scream. Because no other child on the face of this earth has ever done that, right? I mean, I sound like the biggest idiot ever.

So, what actually happened? We went to the festival, walked around, and enjoyed ourselves. Briar was fairly content all day. Raelynn did get a little crabby and had a couple of emotional breakdowns, but they were limited in time. Really, nothing bad happened. On the way home, they both crashed hard.  And after that, we even went out to dinner. I mean, we were truly living on the edge on Sunday.

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Today is Wednesday. The mound of clothes still remains on the couch. The dishes still need to be cleaned. S O  M A N Y  D I R T Y  B O T T L E S.

BUT…

No one died when we skipped naps. And no one died when we skipped housework to play with our babies.

HOWEVER…

We are not going to skip naps all the time. Because I look forward to nap time every weekend 🙂 But, for me, it’s so nice to know that the world doesn’t end when we skip naps.

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I had a therapy appointment last week and we talked a lot about my anxiety being in overdrive. I talked to her about me planning to let the girls skip naps on Sunday. I mean, at the point that I am talking to the therapist about how crazy skipping naps makes me….like, seriously, I should probably be in a mental institution. She basically told me everything I already knew. I didn’t need her to tell me, but I can’t explain it. It just makes me feel better when my therapist tells me stuff.

So that’s my story on how we skipped naps and no one died. Tune in next week to see what other stupid thing makes me lose my mind.

 

–The Kentucky Momma

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A N X I E T Y

My anxiety is in OVERDRIVE…

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The main trigger – Raelynn started soccer.

And I feel like such an asshole mom that this triggered my anxiety. I should be so excited that Raelynn started a sport. And I literally dread it.

It’s simple really. My schedule is changed and it literally fucked my whole world up. And it didn’t even change that much. But that small change and completed fucked up everything. Really, just me. Because the world is still turning and life is still happening as normal and I am just fucked up.

Our normal evening schedule is Scott and I get home between 5pm and 5:30pm. Briar goes to bed at 7pm, Raelynn goes to bed at 8:30pm. Before Briar goes to bed, we usually try to get Raelynn and Briar fed dinner. Just focusing on them to, it’s balls to wall. There is no time to do anything else but entertain them, feed them, make them happy, play with them. It’s just a lot.

So, the point of this, we are gone from the house from around 6- 8. As soon as we get home, we try to give Rae a little something and I fix Briar’s solids. I feed Briar at the field. When we get home, I rush to get Briar changed and settled down, nurse her, and put her to bed. Then it’s dealing with Raelynn saying she’s hungry and thirsty and wants cartoons. We try to limit her food and drink intake about an hour before bed time since she is potty trained. This makes a big difference for her not having accidents.

Obviously on soccer days, by the time both kids are down, I’m fucking beat. I do not want to do anything. And after both kids go to bed, I have a laundry list of things to do. I get Briar’s milk and solids ready for the next day, I get my gym bag ready, I try to do dishes or some laundry. I literally feel like if I sit and relax for one night, the list just continues to build. It drives me crazy.

I know, I’m fucking crazy, right? All I can say is that I wish I was not like this. I don’t wish this feeling on anyone.

My anxiety is triggering other areas of my life. My focus is non-existent in all areas. I feel like I cannot focus on anything. As I’m sure you’ve read, work has been super stressful, but I know I’m magnifying it because I cannot focus at all at work. I will start on something and get pulled in a different direction and then forget what I was doing and then get pulled into something else, then get a call that I need to take, it’s just a cluster fuck. I get to the point where I get so incredibly overwhelmed, that I just sit at my desk. Sometimes I cry because I feel like a piece of shit for not being able to sort out my thoughts and get my shit together.

On top of this, I thought I was personally having health issues, but it turns out, I’m okay.

For about the past month, I have been experiencing some pretty severe joint pain. Literally every single joint, my ankles, my knees, shoulders, wrists. It’s terrible. Whenever I work out, I actually feel good because I’m warmed up, but after, I stiffen up quickly.  My initial thought was I had to be calcium deficient. That was the only thing I could think of that actually changed in the past couple of months, besides me having a baby. Plus, it just made sense, especially with me cutting dairy from my diet. I didn’t want to assume this was the cause, so I decided to go get blood work done. I told the doctor that I had hit my deductible for the year, so run anything and everything on me. She did a complete blood panel and tested for a trillion different things. Only to find out that everything was normal. Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy that everything is okay, I guess I was just looking for an answer.

For the first time in my life, I have actually considered talking to my therapist about anxiety meds. I am not happy that it’s come to this. I still don’t think I will actually pull the trigger and take them. I hate taking medicine in general. And I just don’t think I actually NEED anxiety meds. I just feel like, there are other options, but, I’m at the point where I have exhausted all other options and I’m still bat shit crazy. So, what else do I do? I feel like meds are the next answer.

I have a therapy appointment tomorrow morning. My appointment always seems to be perfectly timed. I’m sure my therapist is not looking forward to another bitching session.

Until next time…

 

–The Kentucky Momma

3…..4 months with a Toddler and a Newborn

Well, I’m 3 months into our new life of 4. It’s definitely hectic and we are still trying to figure things out.

I’ve been asked several times how much harder are things with two kids. Everything is harder. But, in my personal opinion, the hardest adjustment was going from 0 kids to 1 kid. You have to sacrifice literally everything and care for another human being. You have to put someone else before yourself. Our family of 3 got into a routine and then we added Briar. Things are a little shaky, but we are already in the habit of caring for another human being, and now we just added one to the mix.

As I assumed, balancing time between kids, our careers, our marriage, our social lives, household chores is all very hard and stressful. But, we manage. Some days are better than others, and that’s okay for now.

For the first three months, Briar has basically been attached to me. Which leave Scott to care for Raelynn. I’ve had hard time dealing with this because I’m sacrificing a lot of time with Raelynn. In my head, I told myself, things weren’t going to change. I would get equal time with both kids, but that’s just not reality, unfortunately.

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I’m going to lest this post Rest In Peace because we are now 4 months into our new life….

And I’m dying….

Literally dying from no sleep…

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The moment I think that Briar has somewhat turned a corner, it’s like she looks at me and laughs in my face for even thinking such a reasonable thing can happen.

From month 3 to month 4, a lot has changed.

Developmentally, Briar has learned to roll over both ways. She smiles SO much. She laughs out loud. It’s the cutest thing. If we place a toy in front of her, she will grab it. It’s amazing the things we get excited about as parents.  Me to Scott – “OH MY GOD SCOTT, LOOK!! SHE GRABBED THE RATTLE!!!” Scott to me – “KEISH, SHE’S ABOUT TO ROLL OVER, STOP EVERYTHING YOU ARE DOING AND COME LOOK!!” I mean, seriously. Who are we??

She is still pretty fussy from 5pm – 7pm. It does seem we have more good days than bad though, so that’s a plus. I remember feeling completely locked down with Raelynn when her last feeding and bedtime was at 7pm and I already feel like again. Briar has no fear in letting you know that she is hungry and ready for bed. It doesn’t matter where we are.

Sleep…Sleep is still the biggest issue for me…I guess sleep really is overrated because it’s still pretty nonexistent. She was really taking well to the swaddle and then she started to roll and I was done with it at that point. I would feed her at 7pm, when she was done eating, I would swaddle her, and then I would have to rock/hold her for about 40-50 minutes before I could set her down in her crib. At this point, there was no putting down to sleep drowsy. This worked for us, so we did it. From there her sleep varied tremendously. Some nights she would wake up at 11pm. The majority of nights she would wake up between 12am – 1am, A very small handful of times she would sleep until 2am, and we had one instance where she slept until 3am. Of course that night, I didn’t make it to bed until almost 11pm :\. Go figure. So, she was overall having a very good first stretch of sleep. I would go to bed anywhere from 8:30 – 9:30. On most nights it was 8:30 just so I could get at least 3-4 hours of sleep. After her first stretch of sleep, her middle of the night wakings were literally everywhere. Sometimes it was every 2 hours, sometimes it was every 3 hours. On average, she was still waking up 3 times a night. After her first stretch, she would either come in the bed with me or go to the couch with me. I couldn’t muster up enough energy to stay awake and nurse her in her room and put her back down asleep in her crib. It was easier for me to nurse her, then lay her next to me so I could at least get some rest.

So, when she started to roll, we ditched the swaddle.I had read several different articles about how to wean off the swaddle: one arm out, two arms out, Merlin’s Magic Sleep suit, Zip a Dee suit. I told Scott that I just wanted to cold turkey it. I figured, there was nothing consistent about her sleep right now, so what’s the point in trying to slowly transition out. Let’s just do it and get it over with. The first couple of nights were a little tough. She had a hard time falling asleep and staying asleep, initially. It would take around 1 1/2 – 2 hours to finally get her to sleep. That was a combination of Scott and/or I going in her room and shushing her or putting that god forsaking pacifier back in her mouth. We let her cry a little bit. I’m very hesitant to do a full on cry it out with her because of Raelynn. I can’t imagine having to calm two kids down and put two kids back to sleep. We do a somewhat modified version. We let her cry for a couple of minutes and then we go in and reassure her that all is well. That has paid off tremendously for us. For the past couple of days she has went right to sleep after her feeding. She may toss and turn for a minute or two to get settled, but no real crying or having to go back in.  For about a week, she was sleeping like a champ, down at 7pm up around 1am-2am then up around 5:30am – 6am. Still very broken sleep for me and no more than 4 hours at a time, but I felt like I could see the light. Then….the 4 month sleep regression happened. It happened with Raelynn too. I was just hoping to slide right on by this time. It started last weekend. Friday night and Saturday night she was up every 2 hours. Then Sunday night happened. She never slept for more than an hour at a time. I was awake from Sunday morning until Monday night. I was awake for around 40 hours. It was terrible. I never EVER go into work late and I didn’t make it into work until around 9:30am Monday morning. I felt terrible. I know I looked terrible. WHYYY was this happening? I swear, I’m never getting sleep again. My body might be regulating to 4 hours of sleep, because now 4 hours of consistent sleep feels natural and normal. This past week (Monday – Wednesday), I thought she had somewhat went back to normal sleeping habits. I was putting her to bed around 7pm, then getting up around 1:30am – 2:00a.m. and then again around 5:30am – 6:00am, UNTIL Scott informed me that she was waking up every night between 10:30pm and 11:00pm. He was getting to her before I woke up and has been able to settle her back down to sleep until she wake up for me. So, instead of the normal 2 night wakings, we have somehow increased to 3 wakings. Last night there was even a 4th waking. All I know to do is to keeping being consistent and hoping this passes soon. I’m at a loss. Since she has been born, I’ve not got more than 4 hours of sleep, a handful of 5 hour stretches, and one 6 hour stretch. And at this point, we are going backwards, but hopefully not for long.

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We had our first overnight with both kids away and I wish I could have enjoyed it more. I guess, the sleep, I mean. That was my only 6 hour stretch. They stayed at my in laws house. I was not sad at all to give them away. LOL. I wish I could do it more often. Scott and all of his guys went to a BeerFest and me and all of the girls went to a WineFest. It was much needed. But, as you can imagine, I didn’t wake up feeling refreshed. I woke up feeling very hungover. I had to get up early to pump, then pick up the kids from my in laws and take them daycare so Scott and I could recover. I didn’t really feel like myself again until about 5pm.

Breastfeeding is becoming another issue. The beginning of our breastfeeding relationship was MUCH better than Raelynn and I’s. Briar is eating MUCH more than Raelynn did at this point. Raelynn was around three or four, 3 – 3.5 ounce bottles every 3 hours while we were apart. Briar is four, 4 ounces bottles every 3 hours. That’s 16 ounces for Briar compared to around 12-14 ounces with Raelynn. It doesn’t seem like a big difference, but I struggle majorly to get 16 ounces a day. I had to add a pump session in at night, which I absolutely hate. Instead of going to bed at 8:30, I now have to pump at 8:30. I’m considering power pumping for a while until my supply goes back up. I drink Mother’s Milk Tea every single night. I put flax seeds in my protein shakes and in my morning oatmeal. I have just recently ordered some cookies from a nursing mom. The company is called Milk Boosters. I’ve read rave reviews about them. I am praying they work. I also just ordered some brewers yeast to make my own cookies. I’m hesitant to take Fenugreek because I’ve heard it can upset mom and babies stomach so I will hold off on that for now. For a couple week straight, I had to get into my frozen stash to make up the 16 ounces. I knew that once I started supplementing with my frozen stash, I was letting my body know it was okay not to make any more milk than I was making, so that’s why I added in the 8:30 pump. I am currently making just enough day to day and as of the last two weeks I haven’t had to dig into my frozen stash. I maybe freeze 3 – 5 ounces a month which is terrible. I think I maybe have around 120 ounces frozen and 100 of those ounces contain dairy :/. So I am on the struggle bus for sure to make the milk. Ideally, I would love to add a pump session in the morning, but Briar is just too inconsistent with her sleep. I know the day I would wake up, so would she and she would want to eat. Or she would wake up as soon as I get done pumping. I would love to have just an extra ounce or 2 a day. I don’t need or want a huge stash, but just enough to feel comfortable if something were to ever come up.

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And my little Raelynn. She is becoming a feisty…almost 3 year old…cue the tears. I don’t know where the last 3 years have gone. It’s really sad. She’s so smart. But, she takes after both me and her daddy…she is a head strong little girl. She is starting to give us a hard way to go. I don’t think it has anything to do with Briar because she gets ample time with us after Briar goes to bed. We make sure to spend quality time with just her. I just think she is going through a toddler stage. She is definitely Miss Independent, she is strong willed, she is so bossy (me). Sometimes I feel like I see some of my negative traits come out in her. I expressed this to my therapist in my last meeting; the bossiness in particular. I want Raelynn to be a good leader and I want her to stand up for herself, but I also want her to listen and be able to help other people. I told the therapist, my controlling and bossy side has come out majorly in Raelynn already. I am scared to death more than anything that I am going to portray my anxiety onto Raelynn and that’s the absolute last thing I want. I would not wish my anxious self on anyone. I try to be very careful and mindful what I say, but sometimes, I just say the wrong shit. I’m trying very hard. Plus, I want to be happy. I want her to see me happy. I want her to see me and her daddy happy. All of those things are very important to me and balancing all of them are really hard.

Speaking of being happy with Scott. We are about the same. We aren’t terrible, but we aren’t great. When we both get home from work, it’s balls to the wall until Briar goes to bed, then Raelynn goes to bed, then I have to pump, then I’m tired so I go to sleep. The weekends are already getting crazy with plans. It just seems we never have time to ourselves. We never MAKE time for ourselves. Just today, I asked him if he would be okay with me going out to eat Friday night with a couple girls. He said yes, and then in turn asked if he could go to grab a drink with friends tonight. I, of course, said yes, then immediately said, “Next time we need to make plans together, not separate.” The last time we had a date night was when I was 6 months pregnant, so around 6 months ago…and before that….I think it was well over 6 months.  Another thing that plays into us never making plans together is that we feel one of us always has to stay home with the kids. If not, we have to find a sitter and they are hard to come by with two kids. Everyone is a little more hesitant to jump on the babysitting bandwagon with two kids. One that we use regularly, we pay hourly, and sometimes that’s just not in our best interest to have to pay someone, or we literally don’t have the money. So we each make a sacrifice so the other can have some time away from the kids. It just sucks that we don’t spend more time together without the kids.

Work is a whole other issue and it’s praying on me more and more each day. Ever since Briar, I feel like I just cannot get back into the swing of things and I hate it. I feel myself becoming less and less focused at work. It’s a very huge struggle for me because I’m normally very work oriented. I stay under a lot of pressure at my job and it really sucks to not be 100% focused.

A couple of pictures of the girls over the last month or so…

 

 

That’s it for now. Until next time…

 

–The Kentucky Momma

Let’s try this again…

I did have a really terrible day yesterday. Which prompted the really negative post.

But, last night, I actually got some sleep, so I felt compelled to write about the somewhat positives of my first 12 weeks with Briar and maybe elaborate a little more on certain situations currently going on in my life.

She is happy.

She is healthy.

She is well taken care of.

She is loved.

That’s really all that matters.

Her first month was pretty laid back. NOTHING compared to Raelynn. Raelynn screamed from the moment she came home. Briar ate, slept, was awake for a little bit, slept, and ate some more. Our breastfeeding journey was and has been MUCH less complicated that mine and Raelynn’s. I struggled with Raelynn for about 3 months with a terrible latch and bloody nipples. Briar, maybe a week, which was a welcome change. Sleep sucked, which was expected in the first month. The adjustment to two kids was weird, but we were establishing a routine.

Briar’s second month into her third month is where things started to go downhill. (I know, this is supposed to be positive, but I feel like I have to say this). She started to have colicky moments and I instantly had flashbacks of Raelynn. It was not welcome at all. I don’t know why, but I like to be in denial of certain things instead of acknowledging them and trying to fix them. Briar’s colicky behavior was probably one of them. She is now almost 12 weeks old and looking back, she probably definitely had a mild case of colic. It was nothing compared to Raelynn, but Scott and I both faced some desperate moments with Briar.

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YEP…. 

Scott’s desperate moments most certainly outweighed mine. I found myself being able to be cool, calm, collected, and for the most part able to deal with the crying. Even if I wasn’t able to soothe her, I could deal with the crying. With Raelynn, I couldn’t deal. Period. I was in a very bad place with Raelynn very early on.

Which brings me to my next point, I honestly don’t know if Scott was like this with Raelynn or not. I was so fucked up and wrapped up in my own emotions that I did not have the energy to focus on Scott. Some similarities between Raelynn and Briar with Scott, I know he did not like coming home from work with both because they would both be in the colic stage and they would both cry until they went to bed. He felt like he could not soothe either of them because he didn’t have boobs, even though Briar is somewhat taking the pacifier. But one big thing I notice with Briar is he simply loses it. He has ZERO patience with her. He gets so worked up so quick and he doesn’t realize whenever he does this, she feeds off him. My rationalization for this is, he can talk to Raelynn. Raelynn can tell him her wants and needs and he can fulfill them. He cannot do that with Briar. He finally told me he doesn’t feel connected to Briar. I know he felt the same with Raelynn, too. It’s just hard to hear. Even if I am feeling those same feelings, vocalizing something like that just hurts my heart. But, I get it. I really do. If the roles were reversed, I can’t say that I wouldn’t be experiencing the same feelings.

I read an article yesterday that kind of put things in perspective for me and my post partum depression. Even though this should be common knowledge and I should know better because I’ve been through it once…this simple statement really speaks volumes…”You can’t do it all”.

But, I am the mom and I want to do it all. I have a very hard time asking for help. I’m strong willed and hard headed and I’m not afraid to admit that. I am a controller. I would just rather do things myself, my way, instead of having someone do them for me. It’s how I’ve always been in all aspects of life. Is it right? Probably not. But, I can’t help who I am. I’m working on it. I don’t want my kids to feel this “controller” part of me. Therapy helps with that and she calls me out a lot on this side of my personality.

Back to the positives…

Briar smiles and laughs which is adorable. And when she does, it almost always seems to erase the bad night we had together.

Raelynn absolutely loves Briar. Every day when she gets home from daycare she asks, “Mommy, did she have a good day?!” So far, there has been no hard feelings about having to share her mommy and daddy. But, we also try to give her a lot of attention. Especially since it’s starting to feel nice outside, we go outside and play a lot. We try to interact with her as much as we can before we result to the TV or iPad. So far, I think we’ve done a pretty good job with managing this. Now, I’m not saying we don’t ever use the TV or iPad to give us a break because we most certainly do! We just try to do it in a positive way. We try to make it a reward for us so she doesn’t think she just gets it all the time.

Briar will be 3 months on April 22nd. As each day passes, I feel like we are getting closer to having a happier, sleepier (fingers crossed), baby.

I know both Raelynn and Briar will be strong willed like me, they are already proving it. For that, I am thankful.

Here is a picture of both of them at their 2 month appointment. Raelynn is on top, Briar is on the bottom.

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Here are some pictures of my girls.

And another 6 weeks later…

I’ve been slacking, as expected, just hoped it wouldn’t be another 6 weeks later…

Well, I’m just going to dive right in. These past 6 weeks have been pretty terrible. My thoughts are pretty scattered right now, so I’m sure this post will be too. I apologize in advance.

I am most definitely going through post partum depression again. The realization hit me over the past weekend. I seriously hate this feeling more than anything. Currently, at this moment, I am not in a good place at all.

Picking up where I left off at my last post….I was not getting any sleep, I discovered that Briar probably was allergic to dairy, I was going back to work, I was going to start back at the gym.

Briar is not allergic to dairy, just sensitive to dairy.  I am now dairy free, soy free, and egg free. She got a blood test at her 2 month appointment that tested for the milk protein allergy and it was negative. I have decided to stay dairy free since she had an obvious reaction to dairy. For the most part, it’s not that terrible. I have days where I get really pissed off that I literally have to fix every single one of my meals. There is no “grab and go” when you are dairy/soy/egg free. I was dairy/soy free for around 2-3 weeks and her face was breaking out still. I decided to cut eggs and it seemed to make her face better. I’m still somewhat unsure if she really had a reaction to eggs or not. I plan to reintroduce eggs first to see if she really had a reaction. I won’t reintroduce dairy until she is at least 5 or 6 months old. Hoping she has grown out of her sensitivity by then.

Going back to work and the gym have both been a good thing for me. I thrive on on schedule and routine. Currently, I only have one more week of working part time. I’m so ready to be back to work full time. I’m thankful I was able to slowly ease back into work, but there is too much shit to do and I’m a workaholic, so I’m ready to be back full time.

The most positive thing that has happened in the past 6 weeks is being able to go back to CrossFit. In the beginning, I was so ready to jump back in full force. My body was like, “Hell nah, girl. You just pushed a baby out 6 weeks ago.” I didn’t think it would be that big of a deal, but it was. I have NO CORE. Core is everything for all of the movements I do. I thought I would just be able to jump back in and be able to hit all of my maxes…wrong. I’ve been back in for about 6 weeks and I’m slowly getting stronger. I started out pretty slow, 2-3 days for the first couple of weeks. Then I started 4-5 days a week. Plus, I have a squat rack, barbell, and weights at home, so I’m able to do some strength training at home which has been very key for my recovery. It was very surprising to me, but I could do more in my 9th month of pregnancy than I could at 6, 7, even 8 weeks post partum. But, again, slowly recovering. Very happy to be back.

So, addressing the post partum depression…

Still…not getting any sleep. For almost 3 months, I’ve not got more than 4 hours of sleep at a time.

No sleep has, in my opinion, been the number one factor. I only know what I’ve been through with Raelynn, so all I do is compare. I don’t remember anything about Raelynn’s first 4 months of life except she just cried non stop and hated her life. I don’t remember too much about her sleep patterns. I just know she slept in the bed with us for the first 4 months.

We have tried everything with Briar. We have found some success, but we still have room to improve. She finally started to take to the swaddle. Technically, it’s a Halo Sleep Sack that we got from the hospital, but essentially comparable to a swaddle. Every night at 7pm, I feed her, then swaddle her, then take her to her room, put on white noise, and rock her to sleep in the rocking chair….

Yes, we tried the infamous put the baby down drowsy and let baby soothe herself to sleep. NOPE.

Yes, we even got so desperate for sleep that we tried, cry it out. I’m not a fan of this, but I was desperate for sleep. We tried it for 2 nights. The first night she cried for 2 hours. The second night she cried for 2 1/2 hours. Never stopped. We went in and got her eventually.

So, the rocking her to sleep works for us now. I’ll take it. Once she is asleep, which takes about an hour, I am able to lay her down in her crib. At first she would sleep until 11:00 – 11:30, she gradually made it to midnight, and now she is sleeping until about 1:00 a.m. in her crib. Two nights, she has slept until 2:00 a.m.

Sounds good right? The problem is when she wakes up. She wakes up, I feed her, and sometimes she goes back to sleep, and sometimes she does not. I tried for about 2 weeks to keep her in her crib all night and I was losing so much sleep. So, I decided after her first stretch of sleep, I was going to put her in the bed with us. In my mind, I could at least lay there while she did whatever and I could rest a little bit. For the most part it worked. However, it was not comfortable for myself, Scott, and Briar to all be in bed together. So, Scott and I do not sleep together as of right now which is a whole other issue. We take turns, one of us in the bed, and one of us on the couch. We are able to safely use the couch for Briar to sleep on because we have a huge couch and she’s not rolling, yet, so I feel comfortable with this.

So, when she wakes up, sometimes she able to settle herself, and sometimes she is not. On the nights that she is not able to, it’s terrible. We had a terrible night last night, which prompted me to finish this post because I needed an outlet. I have such a love/hate relationship with the pacifier. When she actually takes it, it soothes and she is able to go to sleep; HOW-FUCKING-EVER….she will not keep that damn thing in her mouth. She will suck a little and then spit it out and then cry. We have tried every pacifier known to mankind and pretty much the only one she likes are MAM pacifier. She goes through this vicious cycle in the middle of the night and she ends up working herself up because she can’t go back to sleep, therefore, is wide awake. It’s so fucking annoying. Like, I’m ready to get rid of the pacifier.

I’m just at a loss. I need her to sleep. I know that will come with time, which is why I’m wishing these newborn months away. I really didn’t want to do that with Briar because I did it with Raelynn. However, I didn’t regret it, and I don’t regret wishing it away now. I need to be sane for myself first, and my family second.

It is so hard for me to find a good balance in life right now. I honestly felt like Briar was going to be different. That I wasn’t going to have to walk down this post partum depression path again. Yet, here I am, with the exact same feelings that I had approximately 2 years ago.

Besides sleep, I am not enjoying much of anything. I don’t want to do anything, I don’t want to leave the house, and I don’t want to have anyone over. This was my realization that I was in the throes of post partum depression already.

Last weekend, Scott asked if I wanted to have some people over for dinner. Without hesitiation, I instantly said no.

Here’s my thought process:

  1. First of all, I was not going to cook dinner at my house and then not be able to eat it. Let’s face it; most normal people on the weekend do not want to eat chicken and vegetables, which is essentially my diet being dairy/soy/egg free.
  2. I was already anticipating the chain of events that would happen through the night.
  3. Come 7:00p.m. I was going to have to be the one that went back to Briar’s room and secluded myself for the hour – hour and a half that it took to feed her.
  4. I was not going to want to entertain anyone after I put Briar to sleep because I was going to want to get ready for bed.
  5. I was going to have to be the one that woke up with her at 1:00a.m. and deal with her antics, whatever they may be for the night.

What part of that sounds like fun? I instantly realized that I was not enjoying things like I should be. That was my epiphany that I was balls deep in post partum depression already. It was not a welcome feeling. I became extremely emotional after this. I just did not want to be in this dark hole again. I had made so much progress, only to take leaps backwards.

There are several social events that are coming up and I’m probably going to stay at home for all of them. I literally just don’t have it in me to participate. I just feeling like I’m losing control of my life right now.

Another issue…my relationship. Things are not terrible; but they are not great either. I don’t really know what I expected this time around. I mean, introducing a newborn into your life is a big deal. I totally get how couples do not make it through kids. It puts major pressure on your relationship. And, Scott is having a really hard time with Briar in general.

We have several different situations right now that we both do not like:

  • Our sleeping situation is that we don’t sleep together right now. I hate this more than anything.
  • I am the only person getting up with Briar each night. Hence, Scott gets a full nights of uninterrupted sleep every single night. I hate this. He seriously does not even hear Briar cry. I am nothing less than amazed by this.
  • Scott only has to worry about Briar from 5:00pm – 7:00pm; which is her extreme fussy time. He has expressed to me that he does not feel connected with her at all right now.
  • Scott gets to not have a care in the world. I feel as though I carry all the burden.
  • Scott gets to enjoy himself and go out with friends. He does not have a hard time detaching from Briar, Raelynn, or myself at all. For me, I’m more so envious and jealous of this. Not mad about it.
  • I feel like he does not acknowledge any of the hard work that I’m putting into this.
  • Scott gets all the time with Raelynn and I practically get zero time with her.

Whenever I realized I was experiencing PPD, I took some time to gather my thoughts and then I had a conversation with Scott afterwards. It was a good, civil conversation. I told him that I didn’t want a pat on the back because I’m doing what any mom would do, but shit, give me a break every once in a while. Like, I’m not the one that has to put Briar to sleep every night. I’m not the one that has to wake up with her every single night. That’s when he told me that he didn’t feel connected with Briar. It made me sad when he said that, but I get it. We both equally agreed that we weren’t enjoying our lives right now. That made me even more sad. We both knew this, but just to vocalize it is a different story.

Here are the positives with Scott and I. We don’t hold anything back. So, whenever we have an issue with each other or just in general, we talk about it. We love each other too much to just let things keep building until we blow up on each other. We love each other too much to just let things go. We love each other so much that we realize we will have many bumps in the road that will test our relationship, but that doesn’t mean we give up. We fight harder. We overcome. And we always do. Which is exactly why Scott and I are perfect for each other.

Hoping for a more positive post the next time around…

 

–The Kentucky Momma

6 weeks later…

I’m not sure why I had the inconceivable idea that I could actually blog during Briar’s first 6 weeks of life. Sounds really optimistic, doesn’t it? I did, however, keep a small journal of notes, feelings, emotions, etc. that I experienced during the first 6 weeks so I could relay them here.

As I hope you have read, Briar was born 2 weeks early. It was somewhat expected because my first, Raelynn, was 2 weeks early. So, I am going to pick up exactly where I left off at with my Week 38 post.

Right after I had Briar, they had some small issues delivered the placenta. Not a huge deal. After about 15 minutes of trying to deliver it with no luck, the hospitalist just reached on up in there and proceeded to dig it out. That was interesting. It didn’t hurt, I could just feel her whole hand inside of me. Guess there is a first time for everything. Once it was delivered, she showed Scott and I, and Scott compared it to an uncooked steak. I suppose that’s why some people dehydrate it and eat it or encapsulate it. No judgment at all, that’s just not for me. After that, she started to stitch me up. They numbed me, but I could feel everything. Halfway through, my doctor finally arrived. She finished me up. It was somewhat of a blessing that we had her in the middle of the night because we had her all to ourselves for several hours before we ever had any visitors. When we actually got into our private room, it was about 2:00 a.m. My adrenaline was still pumping from pushing out a child not even 2 hours ago. I knew there was no way that I was going to get any sleep. Scott, on the other hand, snoring his little heart out on the pullaway bed. It’s hard to sleep anyways with all of the nurses and doctors constantly in and out.

The first day, we didn’t have many visitors, just family. The second day, we mainly had friends. Scott and I convinced all of our doctors and nurses that we should go home on the second day since there were no complications with myself or Briar. They all agreed, so we only had to stay one night in the hospital. We got discharged on Monday around 3:00 p.m. It was just enough time to get home and get settled before Scott had to go pick up Raelynn from daycare.

Our first week home…

Monday, as soon as Raelynn got home, I immediately started feeling all out of sorts, in particular, about Raelynn. I just spent the last two days bonding with Briar, and essentially not seeing Raelynn at all. It was just a whirlwind to have them both together and finally be a mother of two. It was a lot to deal with. I hoped these feelings would go away soon. That night, Briar nursed for 5 hours straight. It was terrible.

Tuesday, I was feeling so tired from no sleep at all. We had a doctor appointment for Briar. She weighed 5.13. Since she was under 6 pounds, they wanted her back on Friday for a weight check.

Wednesday, I was feeling better because Briar had slept a little. My nipples were killing me. They were so sore and the pain was toe curling. As a matter of fact, my whole body hurt.

Thursday morning, I woke up to the chills, literally teeth chattering chills. I had a low grade fever, my whole body ached. I had a mild case of mastitis. My right boob was the size of a basketball. Not joking. I called the doctor and they prescribed some medicine, but I ended up not even taking it. I nursed right through all of it and it was extremely painful. I wanted to cry every time it was time to feed her.

Friday, I felt much better. Briar’s appointment went well, she was up to 5.15. I started having night sweats. OMG terrible…..drenched in sweat from head to toe.

I was very anxious about Saturday and Sunday because it was our first full days with both kids. Throughout the week, we still continued to send Raelynn to daycare. We wanted things to stay as normal for Raelynn as possible. The weekend went well though.

The first week was as good as expected I guess. Notable items – night sweats suck, nursing sucks this week, I only had irrational feelings the first day, after that I felt okay, I didn’t get more than 2-3 hours of sleep at a time all week, but that is expected with a newborn and breastfeeding. Briar slept in our bed all week. We have other options (bassinet, rock n play) that we are going to try next week

Second week home….

Monday, Scott went back to work. Even though I had done it once before, I was dreading  being alone with Briar. Overall, it went well. Briar started cluster feeding again (7-10 day growth spurt) Basically from 5pm – 9pm, nursing every hour, then still getting up every 2-3 hours at night to nurse. Raelynn started acting out today. I don’t think it was because of Briar. I think it’s typical toddler stuff. But, we had lots of spankings and time outs today.

Tuesday, getting really tired. No more than 2 hours of sleep at a time.

Wednesday, I felt like she cluster fed during the day??? I found myself getting really anxious for the first time. I was able to talk myself down though.

Thursday, still no sleep. Up every 2 hours.

Friday, still struggling with sleep at night. She finally goes to sleep around 8pm, then is up at 11pm, 2am, 4am, 6am, 7am, 8am…

Sunday night, getting really frustrated with the 11pm feeding. I feel like she just goes to sleep only to wake up again to eat.

Second week notables – not sleep at all. Still managing to function. Cluster feeding sucks. Being anxious sucks. I JUST WANT SLEEP. She has still been in our bed, by our choice. I’m not sure she liked it though. And she is a very, very loud sleeper. Big grunter

Third week home…

Monday, Tried the bassinet tonight, hated it.

Tuesday, we tried the swaddle and the rock n play for bed time and she slept the first stretch in there and then was back in the bed with us.

Wednesday, hoping growth spurt (2 week spurt) was over with. She slept for a long stretch during the day. I also had therapy today. I took Briar with me. We mainly just talked about how I was feeling (so far, so good) and how things were going. Nothing monumental to report. I also went into work today to talk to HR about my return. Planning on returning after my 6 weeks, part time only. 2-3 days a week for 6 more weeks and then I will go back full time.  Projectile vomited tonight. Completely out of the ordinary for her. Still didn’t think much of it though.

The weekend was not fun. Multiple night wakings. We are trying bedtime between 7pm  and 8pm. Waking between 6-7 times a night. I started experiencing some desperate moments as she would not go right back to sleep.

Week three notables – NO SLEEP SUCKS. Projectile vomit worried me. Only did it the one night though.

Week four home…

She is starting to fall into a good daytime routine. I let her lead. she wakes up from 7am-8am and we TRY to follow eat, wake, sleep. It doesn’t always work, but we try. Nighttime is a different story. We cannot find a constant at all. Nothing seems to work for her. Swaddling is hit or miss, the rock n play is hit or miss, the bassinet can suck it, she’s not comfortable in our bed, up to this point, she still hasn’t taken a pacifier. From 5pm – 7pm – she is becoming colicky. Nothing compared to Raelynn, it’s just frustrating for both Scott and I.

I kept Raelynn and Briar home by myself for the first time this Friday. They both had doctor appointments. They both went well. Raelynn weighed 26.8 pounds and Briar weighed 8.6 pounds. Keeping both of them went better than expected. I actually really enjoyed having Raelynn at home with Briar and I.

With a month of no more than 2-3 hours of sleep at a time and some nights, no more than 2-3 hours of sleep PERIOD, I needed a break. I told Scott that us two and Raelynn should go have dinner somewhere without Briar. It was nice to just have us three together. Plus, we both want to have times with just Raelynn. We went to dinner and then went and had ice cream. I had mentioned to Scott that I thought when Briar projectile vomited, it could have been because I ate cereal that day (not sure of timing). I am not a big dairy eater so it just kind of stood out to me. I chose to eat the ice cream anyways and see what happened. Well, she projectile vomited everywhere again almost instantly after  I had the ice cream. So I quickly came to the conclusion that Briar was allergic to dairy. I do not eat big dairy items, so I decided to do the elimination diet. But I also decided that I would eliminate the hidden dairy as well. From everything I had read it would take 2-3 weeks for the dairy to get completely out of my system and it could also be the reason for Briar’s consistent waking at night. Essentially I decided to follow the paleo diet. I very loosely followed it before I got pregnant, but I figured now is the time to do it hardcore. It also goes hand in hand with CrossFit, so it’s a win win for me.

Week four notables – no consistent sleep for me is killing me. It’s all starting to catch up. Really desperate to find some type of night time routine for Briar with my return to work fastly approaching. I realize it’s not going to happen in a week.

Week five home…my last full week home…

I started the dairy free diet this week. It’s going okay so far, just a lot of meat and vegetables. I feel like I cook vegetables about every 2 days.

Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday I slept on the couch with Briar on my chest. Nothing else is working. I don’t get much sleep, but it’s better than nothing. She completely said FUCK your bed and FUCK the rock n play. A couple of nights she was awake for several hours at a time. I was finally reaching my desperate stage. I was feeling so anxious and overwhelmed. I just needed sleep. I was thinking not so great thoughts. **Disclaimer, no babies were harmed** But, all I really wanted to do was swing her by her feet into the wall. Obviously that solved nothing because then she would just more more awake and cry a lot more, but I was over it. Badly over it. Thursday, I finally got four whole hours of sleep, thanks to Scott. I climbed in bed with Scott around 3am and he cuddled up with me and I just started crying. I missed him and us and sleep and just being normal. I know this newborn stage doesn’t last long, but I am just over it.

This week, we also somewhat successfully got her to take a pacifier. We have been trying for about 2 weeks now with no luck, but she finally took one. And now it’s hit or miss. Sometimes it works for her and sometimes it doesn’t. Why am I not surprised.

It’s now the weekend and I am preparing to go back to work. I am starting to feel a bit overwhelmed with everything I have to do. I need to make sure I have enough food for the week, I need to remember my pump, I need to remember my computer, I need clothes that fit; which let’s be honest, isn’t happening, is Briar going to follow the schedule that we started? What if she doesn’t? OMG no sleep and now I have to go back to work.

BUT, I also get to start the gym again which I am super excited about. I need the gym so badly. I do need work also. I need adult interaction and I need to something to get my mind off my kids all day long. I need to feel useful. Work does all that for me. I am only starting back part time. I will be there a full day Monday, a half day Wednesday, and a half day.

Here are some pictures from the first 6 weeks. She looks so sweet and innocent because all she is doing is sleeping….

So that pretty much sums up the first 6 weeks. Pray for us, y’all. This momma needs sleep…..

 

–The Kentucky Momma

 

Week 37

I’m having a very emotional time right now. It’s a combination of lack of sleep and potential back labor. Week 37 is not officially complete yet, but I felt compelled to write, so here I am.

I’m going through the reoccurring thoughts of Raelynn no longer being an only child. It’s hard. Every time I look at her this week I think to myself that any day now, she’s not going to be the baby anymore. She’s going to be the big sister. And I’m going to have a new baby. How am I ever going to love another child as much as I love Raelynn? How am I ever going to find the time to dedicate myself equally to two children. I’m not, and I know that. And that’s scary to me. I don’t ever want Raelynn to feel left out or that Briar is better than her because she is the new baby. I know I’m not the only mother in the world that has ever felt these thoughts about bringing a second child into the world, but it sucks. The thoughts and feelings that I’m having suck.

I’m also 10000% petrified of labor. Even though I have been through it before, I guess, because I know what to expect, I’m absolutely dreading it. I know in the end, I will get to meet Briar, but the whole labor process absolutely scares the shit out of me. So much can go wrong; but so much can go right. It can take literally forever, or it can take literally 5 minutes. As it gets closer, I find myself waking up in the middle of the night literally freaking out about it.

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I have still been waking up pretty consistently from 2:00 a.m. – 4:00 a.m. about every other night. It’s exhausting because then I’m essentially useless the next day. And the last thing I need to be right now is useless. I still have so much crap to do at home.

Early this morning, 1/19, I woke up at my normal time. Normal time = 2:00 a.m.; I got up to pee, I laid back down, only to find myself wide awake. As normal… All this week, I have had very inconsistent contractions in the middle of the night. They are ranging from my stomach, lower abdomen, and lower back. It is by no means terrible, but definitely there. It seems to be the only time that I am having them is in the middle of the night when I’m laying down. But today, they continued after I woke up. Particularly in my lower back. I didn’t have back labor with Raelynn so I have no idea what it feels like. My one friend that has been a good support system for me about trying to go all natural again had back labor so I texted her this morning asking about it. Basically what I described to her was a dull pain in my back that wasn’t going away. Again, not terrible, but not going away. She agreed that was what her back labor felt like. She said it lasted until transition for her. That was pretty scary for me. I can’t explain it, but it just was. I told Scott all of this, and his main concern was how am I going to know when to go to the hospital if my water didn’t break? I told him that I would just know. For him, it was much easier to comprehend whenever my water broke, we knew it was just time to go.

So, with the lack of sleep and then this back pain, I’m just out of sorts today. You know, being awake for 2 hours in the middle of the night is not ideal and my brain just runs over and over and over.

In other 37 week news…

This past Saturday, we had a diaper party and acquired SO MANY diapers. Seriously, I highly recommend having one of these.

Saturday we also stocked up on grocery’s. I am hoping that it was our last trip before Briar. We stocked up on everything from toiletries, paper products, dog food, people food, etc. I used this blog as a guide. I didn’t use everything on this list, but it was certainly a good guide. Pre Stock Up before Baby I used the same list with Raelynn too.

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Sunday, Scott got all closets together. Thank goodness! He had started on Briar’s last week and made huge progress, but it wasn’t finished until this week. The hall closet is now finished as well. I sewed another crib sheet as a back up. It was very useful for us to have two with Raelynn so I wanted to have two with Briar. Scott also got almost all of the baby stuff down from the garage, now it was just up to me to go through everything and get it together.

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So…all in all, we had a VERY productive weekend. I was very happy with the progress we made.

This past weekend, we also had Raelynn in only actual cotton panties with the exception of her nap and night time and she had no accidents. She has been doing so good with even pooping on the potty. We are ecstatic. I had proposed to her daycare that we switch her to panties only at daycare and then I retracted my statement because she is still on her antibiotic from last week and it’s causing major pooping issues. Not really issues, just pooping a lot. So we decided to wait until next week when the antibiotic is out of her system. So, hopefully we have a good follow up report next week!

In other pregnancy news, I am still not sleeping well, as stated above. And, something new, I am swelling. My legs, ankles, and feet are swelling. I didn’t do this with Raelynn. I happened to look down at work one day this week and thought, oh shit, my ankles are definitely swollen.

I had an OB appointment on Wednesday and everything was fine. I was 1 cm dilated and barely effaced. Lately, after I get checked, I have been feeling pretty crampy and just plain shitty. Same story yesterday. After my appointment I had a couple of errands that I needed to run and I just wasn’t feeling it.

It’s just been a weird week.

CrossFit this week…

Only once…

Tuesday, January 17

Strength – I was having a lot of pelvic pressure today, so I just did push jerks instead of split jerks – worked up to 100#, surprisingly.

Split Jerk
(pause 2 secs in receiving position of split)
5×2 @ 50%, 60%, 70%

MetCon – I did not do a partner workout – I turned this into a 15 EMOM. 10 push presses and 5 squats. I worked for about 20-30 seconds and I was able to rest 30-40 seconds. It was a good workout. I needed it.
Partners
15min AMRAP
Partner1: 10 push press #75/55
Partner2: Burpees
*push press cannot start until other partner is doing burpees

Until next week…

 

–The Kentucky Momma