11 April, 2016

life as a new mom: 6 months later


I still wake up some days and can't believe I have a child. These past 6 months have been so hard but also the best 6 months of my life. I wouldn't trade them for anything. Oliver is so much fun and I swear each day with him just gets better. I wrote my first post Life as a New Mom at 6 weeks postpartum so I wanted to check in and see how different everything is now at 6 months. I'm so glad I've been writing posts since Oliver was born because newborn amnesia is real and you really do forget what even happened a week ago.


Work
I went back to work 12 weeks postpartum and cried pretty much everyday that week. It's so hard leaving your newborn baby who you were with 24/7 from the moment they were born. I was still breastfeeding too so I had to pump every 3 hours at work, if I could. The thing they don't tell you about breastfeeding is how hungry it makes you. So much hungrier than being pregnant. And for me if I didn't eat enough or drink enough water I would feel really weak and my supply would dip. I also started a brand new job after my maternity leave so I was under a lot of stress with that, trying to eat enough, worrying about making enough milk, and raising my new baby. It was a lot at one time and Oliver was still waking up 2 times at night so I wasn't getting a lot of sleep. But each week got better and we have a great nightly routine now where I pick him up from my mom's around 4:30, he takes a catnap on the way home, once we get home we take Pixie on a walk, then start his bedtime routine around 6:15-6:30. I'm also extremely lucky that I only work around 30 hours a week and have every Friday off. As much as I would love to stay home with Oliver, I know for my sanity I need to go to work. I think I'm a better mommy to Oliver because I work. 



Breastfeeding
I stopped breastfeeding around 5 months and stopped pumping about 2 weeks ago. My supply dipped once I went back to work and Oliver got used to the faster flow of the bottle so he started to get less interested in nursing. It went from something that I never really loved to just plain annoying and after I got mastitis I knew I was done. So I stopped nursing him except at night and started pumping and giving him a bottle and if I didn't have enough breast milk I would supplement with formula. I slowly started to wean from pumping over a month and a half. He handled it all so well and I don't think he missed breastfeeding one bit. He's still getting some frozen breast milk each day but we're slowly running out of that. I don't really miss breastfeeding. I'm enjoying wearing whatever I want and feel like I'm myself again and have my life back. But I do miss the early months of it just being he and I and how awesome it felt knowing that all he needed to survive was milk that I made. I put up all my pumping supplies the other day and I even kind of missed it, for about 2 seconds! 

I had no idea how emotional ending breastfeeding can you make you. The week I was weaning off pumping was a hard one. I found myself missing the early days when Oliver was born and I even started to cry when I saw a picture of a girl holding her brand new baby in the same hospital Oliver was born in. It really messes with your hormones. But everything is great now and ending breastfeeding was the best for our relationship.




Pregnancy Woes
Somedays I find myself really missing being pregnant. More now than before which I think is strange. It's more I miss the time in my life when I was pregnant. I miss my old job and the people and the excitement and build up of pregnancy. It's like I want my old life but with Oliver in it. I'm sure it's just my hormones but I do find myself thinking about it often. I met a girl last week who's due with her first baby the same day I was due with Oliver last year and I was almost jealous that she gets to experience it all. I have the end result, the baby, so why am I jealous? 



Baby #2
I've been thinking a lot about baby number 2 which won't be for awhile but I have a hard time grasping how I'm going to love another baby as much as I love Oliver.  Is that normal? I feel like it would be unfair to the new baby because  I don't know how I can share the love. I know, why am I thinking about this now. Because time flies and before I know it we'll be wanting to start trying to have another baby. I'm hoping I'm worrying for nothing and that it'll all just come naturally.



Theo and Pixie
Theo tells me often that I give 150% to Oliver but am slack with he and Pixie. As much as I don't want to admit it, he's right and it's something I'm really trying to work on. It's hard finding the balance of being a mom to Oliver, but still take care of my first child Pixie, and be a wife to Theo. I don't know how people with more than one kid do it. That's why we take Pixie on a walk everyday after work and why I'm so happy Oliver is sleeping better at night so I can stay up a little later with Theo before bed. It's all such a big adjustment that's a work in progress.




If you're a new mom reading this wondering if it'll ever get better and if you'll ever feel like yourself again, you really will. It all falls into place. The baby starts to sleep better, which for me is the probably the most important because when I'm sleep deprived I start getting stressed and depressed. You learn your child's ways and everything just gets easier.  Your life will never the be same as it was before but you have this new life with your child which is the best thing in the world. 



13 comments :

  1. I really wish we could discuss all of this over happy hour....I have SO many thoughts to add!

    1. I'm going to start dropping another nursing session and begin the weaning process. Leo is getting less and less interested in BFing which is so sad!
    2. Roscoe and I are not in a good place either! He more than anything drives me nuts and I feel so bad to admit that, but I'm Hoping it changes
    3. I want to be pregnant Again, but do it next time with SO much less worry and anxiety! It's like I want a do over, but I know we will wait a while
    4. You're an amazing mom and Oliver is lucky to have you!

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  2. You are such a good Mama and I think all of these thoughts are totally normal. Kevin and I had a big convo last week and I told him how hard it is to be a good wife, employee, mom, friend, daughter, sister etc....it's just HARD! But, it's a phase so hopefully in a few years when they get older, life will be a bit easier!

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  3. What an honest post. Big hugs on leaving him for the first time, I know it's in the past but I bet it was still tough. I've heard breastfeeding is a hard thing for everyone and to each their own.

    Oliver is such a cutie.

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  4. The balance thing is SO hard! Plus you're trying to be an employee too. That's the part I worry about most with a baby #2. And having time for yourself because you need and deserve it! Oliver is so lucky to have you guys and I still can't believe you breastfed for that long with all of that going on! So impressed!

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  5. I totally get the pregnancy jealousy! I think my biggest thing with Finn is that I make certain to start each day with him (belly rubs, head scratches, you're the best dog in the world) and end each day with him (hugs, scratches, I love you, you're my baby). He always knows I am hovering nearby :)

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  6. Such a good post! I think the first 6 months is a huge adjustment period for all new moms. I gave up breastfeeding with both about 6-7 months and it was so freeing. I'm going to email you a great article/blog post about this weird phase of life. It so describes my marriage right now, it's tough trying to figure out how to be a good mom and a good wife.

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  7. I totally agree with balancing the baby with the husband and other responsibilities! It's tough when you just want to give your all to your baby. I am loving this post lady! What a great idea.

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  8. I love reading these check in posts from you and also how honest you are. I have always thought that I would breastfeed till a year when that day comes but I totally get what you are talking about with feeling like yourself again and not worrying about what you are wearing. I honestly feel like I am sitting with you on the couch with a glass of wine right now talking to you as I'm reading this. I can't believe he is 6 months now! So crazy!!

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  9. I love everything about this. You eloquently put into words how I am feeling about pumping and missing pregnancy. I am having to exclusively pump because baby will not breastfeed. I have no emotional connection to feeding her because she never breastfed and feel truly bad about it sometimes.

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  10. I think I'm a better mommy to Oliver because I work"--I think that is true because it's always easier to be at work!

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  11. my little girl will be 8 months on friday and I still ask how in the world she's this old already. it's so bitter sweet, the whole growing up thing :) and I also still wonder how on earth I'm a mom some days! so happy to have just found your blog and to follow along!

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  12. Even though I am not a mom yet, I loved reading this post because I know I will be there soon. I can't believe Oliver is already 6 months, time is flying! Xo, Stephanie

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  13. I love how honest you are in these posts! Despite not being a mom yet, I already know some of the concerns that I have and it makes me feel so much better to read what thoughts moms have. Oliver is a cutie! xo, Champagne&Suburbs

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