It’s Okay to Admit You’re Not “Okay”

*Please note: This is a sensitive and real thing that I went through. It was not easy to write and some parts may make you think I am a horrible person…but if you continue reading, I hope that you will understand. Thank you. <3

Did you know that today is World Maternal Mental Health Day?

It is! It has been declared the first Wednesday in May and I’ve been given signs for a long time now, to share my story. Even more signs popped up in the past few days. It’s something I have never really shared with people and if I did it wasn’t in depth, but I wanted to share this in hopes of someone reading it will know that they’re not alone.

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Photo: Amanda Glenn Photography

This here is a photo of a mother who absolutely loves and adores her child.

This is also a photo of a mother who had/has a hard time with this adorable, little babe.

And I don’t just mean, had a hard time adjusting to motherhood. That, alone, was a battle. But I went through stages of anger, fits, rage, crying, sadness, and hopelessness…and I didn’t know or understand why.

This tiny baby would cry because he was hungry or wanted to be close to me. I had fed him, changed him, burped him, took clothes off, put more clothes back on, rocked him, swayed him, swaddled him, hugged him, wore him…and nothing was working. I feel like this is something quite common. And when you can’t figure out what’s going on with your baby, it’s perfectly normal to cry! Instead, I got angry. I was filled with rage when I couldn’t get him to stop. Following the feelings of anger and rage, I began to really cry. Not only cry but completely sob until it hurt.

I hated the mother I was.

Why would I get so upset at this sweet, baby boy? I grew him in my belly, birthed him, and nourished him with my body through breastfeeding. He was MY baby. My love. Everything I lived for.

So, why did I get so angry all the time? Why was I filled with so much anger when it came to the simple cries of a child needing his mother?

Postnatal Depression is real.

From someone who already struggles with depression (that’s a whole other story), I felt that the post partum part hit me hard. It was always difficult for me to understand what was going on within me and I thought that it was going to destroy the bond with my child and I. As much as it pains me to say this…I was almost afraid. I would get so angry and upset that I was afraid that I was going to be one of those mothers that would actually hurt their child. Yes, it was that bad.

Did I want to hurt my baby? Absolutely not. Never in a million years would I ever want 18280802_10208845007314754_1932360827_n It's Okay to Admit You're Not "Okay"to do such a thing. It is my job to protect my child and to keep them safe. And I will do that until my last dying breath. But was that a real fear of mine? Yes. It’s scary.

But I didn’t know that it wasn’t just me.

Over 75% of women do not get diagnosed or receive treatment or support. And 2 in 10 women have a mental health problem during pregnancy and in the first year, following birth. Think of all of the women around you, having babies. That’s a lot! I’m willing to bet that many of them are hiding it from you and are hiding it well. The problem is, we need to speak up about it.

I had no idea what was going on with me. I thought it was just my regular old depression, short fuse, and bad temper coming in. I didn’t think I actually needed any help with anything. When I was about 6 months post partum with my son, a friend of mine (whom I finally admitted a few things to) said,

“That sounds like post partum depression. I went back to talk to someone and got some help with it.”

I had no clue that she was going through it too! She actually experienced a lot of what I was going through. The anger and the sobbing. She went almost immediately having her child. I went back to get some help and I was given the runaround. Because I was 6 months post baby, I was no longer considered having post partum depression and they thought it was something completely different. So,  I looked forward to meeting with the doc and talking about what was going on – to finally get some answers.

Not long after being in that room with the doctor, I left feeling worse about myself. I felt as though I was an unfit mother. The doctor ridiculed me for the things that I was saying and for how I was feeling. He threatened to find a way to take my baby away. Now, that was one of the scariest things for me. That was why I didn’t want to get help or tell anyone about it. Because, how do you explain to someone the anger you feel inside and what’s happening in there…but that you’re not actually going to do ANYTHING like what you’re feeling? Some people can’t comprehend that until they are in the same situation. And if you’ve never had depression or post partum depression – you’re not going to get it.

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Amanda Glenn Photography

Needless to say, I never went back again. I never went back for help. I just continued with feeling the way I did. I talked to my husband and a couple friends here and there. I tried my best to be the best mother I could for my son. I loved him with everything in me. I wanted the feelings that I would feel every now and then to just go away. I did, however, feel a strong bond with him through breastfeeding. I missed him so much when I had to go to work. I snuggled with him and played with him and had all of the marvelous moments that one would have with their baby. My love never changed.

But I did realize that as he got older and we started trying for our next baby, my feelings weren’t as bad as they once were. Mind you, I was on the Mirena and although it is localized in just the uterus – hormones are hormones. And I learned a long time ago that I cannot do a lot of birth control because of the hormones. The Mirena still affected me. When I got it taken out, it took some time to get pregnant again and those “crazy” feelings weren’t as strong anymore.

Not until I ended up in the ER. Not many know about that situation. It’s hard to talk about but I will say that, depression caused by pregnancy and birth DOES happen. I had my kids close together. My hormones had gone up and down over the past 3 years. It’s not easy. It’s not easy to talk about or admit. And it’s not easy to know that you’ve had this happen to you.

Throughout my pregnancy with my daughter, I had been attacked from others about “mental issues” and being “mentally unstable.” And let me tell you,

It was a time where I was the strongest I had ever been.

Did it hurt when people talked about it as if it was nothing? Hell yes. Did I want to go off on those people? You betcha. But what was that going to solve? Absolutely nothing. It just made me realize that it really is something I needed to talk about. And the sad part was, it was in reference to the night I ended up in the ER. So, over the past year, I realized I needed to talk about this. So, here I am writing this super long post. 18280802_10208845007314754_1932360827_n It's Okay to Admit You're Not "Okay"

Anyway –
As much as I had bonded with my son, I did notice a disconnect. And I still do to this day. My pregnancies, their births, post partum side – everything is like night and day between my children. I didn’t feel the same feelings I had with my daughter after birth like I did with my son. My pregnancy was fitter and healthier the second time around. Hormones are weird like that, where they really can mess with the body in a very negative or even a positive way. But because of this disconnect with my son, I have felt the pang of guilt on more than one occasion. It hurts me to know that I get angry at him easier.

 

That disconnect actually worried me while I was pregnant with my daughter.

What if I love my daughter more than I love my son? What kind of thought is that?! A real one. And it sucked feeling that way. To be honest with you, I don’t love either of them more or less than the other. BUT – I can totally see a difference in how I am as a mother BECAUSE of my daughter. Because my pregnancy and the BIRTH was so different, I felt more of a connection immediately. When my son was born, he was rushed away from me completely. I am not blaming our disconnect on that whatsoever but I can see the differences throughout pregnancy and birth with each of them. I did post about my birth story with my daughter and I described it as a “healing birth.” And that’s exactly what it was. No, I don’t love my daughter more than my son. But we all connect differently to each other. And that’s okay.18280802_10208845007314754_1932360827_n It's Okay to Admit You're Not "Okay"

Honestly, there’s a chance that most of me getting angry easier is just due to him being a toddler and those “terrible-twos” are quite difficult. He is a lot like me. Go figure. But I can’t dwell on the fact that I used to be a certain way towards him. I can only move forward and learn from my mistakes.

I wish I could end this post where I tell you that I got the help I needed and I am fixed. But unfortunately, that is not the case. Somehow, in some way, my body healed itself. Not completely, but I noticed that I am no longer as angry or hopeless as I used to be. I don’t cry nearly as much as I did and my heart is more open.

I do, however, urge you to get help if you need it. If you feel ANYTHING like how I have described it in this post, please talk to someone. A doctor, a therapist, a friend (who will then refer you to a doctor or a therapist) but don’t let yourself think you’re helpless. Don’t think that you’re the only one.

You are NOT crazy. This happens. You are not alone.

18280802_10208845007314754_1932360827_n It's Okay to Admit You're Not "Okay"

18280802_10208845007314754_1932360827_n It's Okay to Admit You're Not "Okay"

A Letter To My Daughter – A Rainbow Baby 

img_1316 A Letter To My Daughter - A Rainbow Baby ✨the stillness after the storm✨

When you were 4 weeks old, I took a photo similar to this one in appreciation of my post partum tummy. The tummy that housed you and grew you into the tiny human that lays upon me today. 

But as I had shared in a previous post this last week, this month hasn’t always been so good to me. I’ve experienced loss. And this tummy had the privilege to be home to a little one, even if only for a few weeks. This was a year ago. Although I experience great joy that I have you here with me, I do not forget the little one that came before. The little angel that looks over you now, that is a piece of you and of me. My temple is not damaged, no good, not worthy, or less womanly. It’s a shame that women have felt that it’s too “taboo” to speak about miscarriage, as I have before, but it’s not something to be ashamed of. And it doesn’t make you less of a woman or a mother. My little girl, someday you will become a woman and a mother. I pray you never experience the sadness that I have, but if you do, know that you are strong and you will survive. 💕

img_1316 A Letter To My Daughter - A Rainbow Baby 

The Truth About 28

img_8604 The Truth About 28
I posted a photo the other day on my Instagram, about how it felt to be TWENTY EIGHT. I mean, not much has really changed overnight from 27 to 28. I’m still me but at the same time, I’m different. 

✨the truth about 28 – as I see it✨ ••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••• I'm still in my twenties. I'm still young. Long ago, I used to think 28 (or anything above 25) was old. 12 years ago, I experienced horrible heartache. And last year I experienced loss. This day doesn't always bring amazing memories but it's not always a sad day either. It's a day I get to celebrate each year, the woman I have become. The woman I am going to be. And the woman I once was. Every year, I sit and reflect on these days and today I sit here, so peaceful. Loving every moment of my life that I've been blessed with. I am a wife, a mother to two beautiful babies, I am healthy, I am strong, I am loved, and I am happy. Happy is not a word I used to describe myself in the years past but I can confidently say it now. 28 isn't a year of change or discovery for me. It's a year of passion. There ARE a lot of changes happening in my life this year, but I get to express and explore my passions. And I'm so excited. Bring it on, 28. ____ 👆🏽 Read more in the blog on Friday. Link will be in the bio. 💕 . . . . . #birthday#happybirthday#28thbirthday#lovemylife#embracewomanhood#embracemotherhood#thehappynow#motherhood#motherhoodthroughinstagram#momsofinstagram#momsofinsta#momsoftwo#strongmama#blog#blogger#momblog#momblogger#ageisjustanumber#lifestyleblogger#lblogger#lifesgood#womanhood#empoweredmama#empoweredwoman#empoweringwomen#selflove#fitmom#fitmama#fitmomsinspire#momswholift

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I’m currently stuck in this stage of not quite mid twenties but not yet thirty. What does that even entail these days? As I wrote in my Instagram post, a few years ago, I thought 30 was such a dirty word! It meant I was old! But the thing is, I still have so much life left ahead of me. And the best part about it is: I spent almost 28 years of my life trying to figure out who the heck I was, trying to find the confidence to be ME, and now I get to spend the rest of my life being me! Unapologetically! 

My birthday isn’t something I ever look forward to. It’s another year I’ve been on this earth and another year I’ve gotten to enjoy the blessings in my life. But it wasn’t always like that. It seems that around my birthday, I’ve always dealt with some sort of pain or tragedy – a bad memory in my life. 

  1. Death of a family member
  2. Loss of a pregnancy
  3. Losing another pregnancy
  4. Breakups

One of those things really isn’t that big of a deal now, but it took a long time for me to get past a few of the others. And although I won’t get into the details on this post, I will say that I’ve come out stronger than I was before. 

And 28 as I see it…is a year of a fabulous me. The mommy of two beautiful children, the wife of a handsome and intelligent man, the active duty service member becoming a stay at home mom. It’s a year of experience, a year of learning, and a year of adventure. Adventures in motherhood, stay at home mom life, not earning my own income anymore, and adventures with my family! 

So, no. I am not in my mid twenties or in my thirties. I am not old. I am not young and naive…

But I am everything and everywhere I am supposed to be. That’s the truth about 28, as I see it.

img_8604 The Truth About 28

A Year of Me January 1-7

Alright, I said I was going to take a selfie everyday for this year. I had a list of what I was going to do and well, I failed. 3rd day of the year and I didn’t follow through…

But actually I did. I took selfies everyday but I just didn’t post them. Oops!! Here’s my selfies!! 

I actually take a selfie every time I workout too. So, if I didn’t get the selfie in the same spot as I said I would, at least I got one. 😜 

I spent all of last week really trying my best to workout as many days as possible. I start a new program on Monday and it’s really new. It’s important for me to feel ready and prepared, so I started some of the workouts early on. I’ll be posting updates about the workouts on here and on my Instagram as well. 

And over the weekend, I also discovered some new skincare products that I am trying out. This “selfie a day” project will really help me see the difference! I’ll write more about it in the next weeks round of photos. 😆

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The Mama Breastfeeding Two Babies

Anyone see that photo of the mom nursing both of her children at the same time?

Yeah, that’s me. It’s crazy to think that a photo that I had posted to my Instagram page was reposted many times and commented on by so many people. I wrote about how it felt to nurse both of my kids at the same time and it really was an amazing experience for me. You can read about it here:

Ever since my husband snapped this photo of me a few days ago, I've been going back and forth in my head, trying to decide if I wanted to post this photo or not. I'm not new to posting breastfeeding photos and I am not new to nursing in general but I found this to be quite an experience that I shared with both of my children. This was the first time I nursed them both at the same time. . . My son is getting closer and closer to being 2 years old and my daughter is almost a month old. They are growing up far too fast already! There's a tremendous amount of bonding that you get when you nurse your littles and man, it's crazy how it feels to be able to nurse both of them. My body is providing milk for not just one but for two of them. It's seriously amazing what our bodies can do. . . Brother seems to be nursing more now that little sister is here. But he's been pretty good at learning that sister needs milkies first and that's all she eats. It took a little bit but I think he's starting to understand a little more. Although, he does ask a lot more often to nurse when sister is already on there. So when I am able, I do my best to let him too. The look on my face is me saying, "I'm doing it!!" 😂 There are so many things I said I'd never do as a mom or that I won't be able to do…but here I am. Doing these things and it's awesome. . . . . #momdotme #motherhood #motherhoodrising #tandemnursing #tandem #normalizebreastfeeding #toddlernursing #letthembelittle #attachmentparenting #naturalbirth #momlife #mommyof2 #crunchymom #crunchymama #milkies #breastfeeding #newborn #kidsofinstagram #badassmom #candidchildhood #breastfeedwithoutfear #4thtrimester #4thtrimesterbodiesproject #takebackpostpartum #postpartum #postpartumbody #badassbreastfeeder

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Even pages like PopSugarMoms, Essential Baby and FitPregnancy wrote about the photo and shared it on their Facebook pages. It was really cool to see that. My friends and even followers on Instagram were sending me messages and tagging me in posts that had my photo on it. And as I would see these posts, I would look at the comments as I left my own. 

Many mom’s were sharing their experiences nursing their babies and even tandem nursing as well. It was wonderful and encouraging to read these stories! 

The sad part about this is, there were a lot of negative comments. These pages, magazines, and blogs that were reposting my photo or writing articles about it, were using my photo as a way to encourage women. To empower them. To show them how strong our bodies can be. And yet, there was always some yahoo that decided it would be great to say,

“You showed your tits on the internet, good for you.” 

&

“It’s sad that you’re just desperate for attention.”

Those are just the two main ones. Not only that, I ended up receiving messages. Messages that were saying incredibly rude and inappropriate things that I don’t even want to repeat. It was just very upsetting to read these things and to see how they would defend themselves when others would respond to them. 

The thing about this photo is that…it was a wonderful moment that I got to share with my children and my husband. Not only that, the ONE time my husband actually took his phone out to snap photos (without being prompted by me) was this moment. Right when I said to him, “I’m doing it!” Because I was shocked and excited that I finally did it. 

For some odd reason, I was scared to nurse both of them at the same time. I saw photos of mom’s doing it but I had never seen any of my friends do it. I didn’t even know it was possible until I became a mom. But this special moment that I shared with my family, I wanted to share with the other moms that were following me on Instagram… my excitement! I never posted for attention…that would just be weird. And for someone to say “tits” as if I was a porn star showing off my goods…that’s just foul. I was just doing what my body was intended to do! 

There were even comments about how some women can’t breastfeed or can’t do it for that long. Someone decided to tell me it was rude of me to rub it in the faces of those who couldn’t. Well, I’m sorry but I didn’t post it to rub it in. I never claim to be better than any other mom and I’m not one of those people that think you’re horrible for giving your baby formula! Is your baby fed? Then that’s all the matters! But please, don’t continue the vicious cycle of tearing women down. It sucks and I say as women, we just try to end that! Building each other up and empowering one another is what I stand for, hence the reason for my post on Instagram. 

Thank you to those who had shared my photo. I was a little worried about having my photo going around the internet, but I will tell you…I am darn proud of the fact that I am doing so many things as a mother that I either swore I’d never do or that I didn’t think I’d be capable of. Turns out…I am a lot stronger than I realized. 

?s=100&d=mm&r=g The Mama Breastfeeding Two Babies

One Month Old – One Month as a Mom of 2

dsc_0743_fotor One Month Old - One Month as a Mom of 2

Our little girl is officially one month old! What that also means is I have officially been a mother to two beautiful babies for one month now. Has it been easy?

No.

But it’s been a month full of love. Even in the hard moments, I try to remember how wonderful and amazing my life is. I have been blessed with the opportunity to be a mom to both of these children.

This past month has been totally different than the first month of being a new mom. When I had my son, I also had my husband home quite often to help me out when I needed it. This time, I have two babies with me, at home, alone, without help. It is TERRIFYING.

I was incredibly terrified of being home with two babies by myself. When I was pregnant, I had a bit of anxiety about it and would worry about whether or not I am going to be a good mom to both of these littles. I tried to figure out ways to prepare myself for being a mother of two. I rearranged my living room about 10 times during the weeks that I was pregnant, my husband built a learning tower for our son so that he could help us with things in the kitchen since he’s become so independent, and I went on Pinterest and pinned every blog post I could that talked about preparing your toddler for a sibling.

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But the thing is, there really isn’t much you can do to prepare. All you can really do is to do your best at remaining calm in all situations and to find inner peace. Because let me tell you, when you have a child gearing up for those “terrible-twos” he will test your patience as much as possible and you will need all the peace you can get!

You also can’t prepare yourself for things like:

  • How much your first born LOVES his sibling. He will literally try to sit on her to give her hugs and kisses.
  • How to remember to eat after all the kids have been fed and taken care of.
  • How to get a week’s worth of clothing and diaper laundry done…before the next week starts.
  • How to get out of the house on time.
  • How to make time to workout (I have yet to try this since I haven’t yet been cleared to do so).
  • The amount of coffee you will consume in a day…and how many times you will warm the same cup in the microwave.

There are many more things you really just can’t prepare for…but being home with both of these kids have really opened up my heart and my mind in so many ways. I am starting to understand “the other side” as not only a mom of two but a mom to two babies who stays home with them. I get it that it’s not always easy and I get that you never really get a “break.” You’re always mom and you’re always needed…24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Before going on maternity leave, I had that break from being mom when I was Sailor instead. Being in the military and working gave me that. I am slowly learning more and more the true meaning of “there are pros and cons to everything.” I know what that means but experiencing it makes a total difference.

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But at this point in time…I wouldn’t change a thing. This is where I’m called to be and I’m enjoying it for as long as possible…as my toddler spills an entire bag of pretzels on the floor for the 13th time today…

dsc_0743_fotor One Month Old - One Month as a Mom of 2

Morning snuggles, nursing sessions, and baby feet

img_7271 Morning snuggles, nursing sessions, and baby feet
4 weeks ago, I woke up looking down at my belly and wondered when I was going to meet my daughter. Little did I know, I was going to be in early stages of labor at the gym that evening and would deliver the next day. I look down today and see a tummy that has been home to two beautiful babies. Stretch marks from the first pregnancy that “ruined” my first ever tattoo that I got when I was 18 and the same ones that stretched between the holes of my navel piercing that I took out when I joined the military. My belly isn’t completely flat but it’s crazy to see the differences and changes my body has made over the past 2 years. And today, I look down and I am proud. I am proud of what my body has done and what it’s going to do. The #postpartumbody is a body (as are all bodies) to be celebrated. I never realized the joy and beauty there is in this body the first time. But I’m so glad I found all of that this time. 

**this post was originally posted on my Instagram account and had a lot of responses. I decided that I would post it to my blog as well. ❤️️ 

img_7271 Morning snuggles, nursing sessions, and baby feet

Welcome! My Birth Story 

Welcome to the world, Juniper! 😍

img_5988 Welcome! My Birth Story 
This beautiful, little girl came roaring into this world yesterday morning. It all started at 6am when I felt a punch in my cervix. My water broke and it woke me up. It didn’t break all over the bed or anything but I went to pee to make sure and my husband got up and walked around the house with me. He actually sat down to play video games while I paced around the house. Then I realized I was having contractions and it was time to start getting things together. Aston was still sleeping and we figured he would be waking up soon so we let him sleep while we got ready and started timing contractions. Not much time passes, Aston is up eating breakfast, I texted Kassie and she came to pick up Aston, I text and call Nicole and let her know this is happening, and I told Jonathan it’s time to go. Got everything out of the house and I was on my way. I even said to him, “I’m not going to make it to the hospital.” I grabbed a trash bag to put on the seat of the car if I needed it. I was seriously convinced that I was going to give birth in the way there. Hubby sped down the freeway and followed a cop the entire way (who happened to also be speeding) and when we got there, they came out with a wheelchair for me. It was 8:01 and I got a text from Nicole and I responded with “wheeling me in right now.” They asked me a few questions, got me into the triage room, and I told the nurse “I need to push.” She told me to get on the bed so she can check me and I could barely do it. I fought through a contraction and Jonathan was rubbing my back and pushing my hips together. And I guess I was dripping blood while I stood there (he told me about it later). She checked me and I was 9cm and immediately rolled my bed into delivery. Jonathan let them know that last time I was in labor for less than 3 hours and the nurse called down to another and said, “she has her babies fast!” And the other one said, “oh yay!! This will be fun!” Lol. We get into the room and I had to transfer beds. I had originally planned to walk through my contractions and to be squatting or on my knees on the bed during delivery. I had to deliver at the hospital, couldn’t have a home birth, and had to follow a lot of Navy rules (I am active duty) but I knew I could have the natural birth I wanted under any circumstances. BUT the most comfortable position for me? Oh my back. I wasn’t moving…no way. 😂 my husband talked to the doctors and the nurses and expressed everything we wanted for this birth and what we didn’t want. Everyone was amazing. They listened to our wishes and communicated everything with us. My hubby was a rockstar at being a great advocate for me and was an amazing birth partner. 😍 As for me, I wanted to push. At this point I wasn’t sure if I was going to be able to do this. I doubted myself for a second but it didn’t matter…this baby was coming. They told me not to push for a minute so I was trying my best not to and I would thrust my hips up with every contraction. The doctor reminded me that I needed to not do that otherwise I would risk tearing worse. And let me tell you…it was very difficult to not do that. But I did it. And then it was time to push. 

With my first, I had gotten an epidural and I didn’t even push. They had vacuumed him out and I felt useless. So, that’s why I chose a natural birth this time around. But because of that…I didn’t know how to push. 😂 There was an amazing nurse on my left that was trying to explain to me how. And I think it helped. I was making a lot of noises during this process. Nothing too crazy at first. I yelled a bit, a few “Ah’s” were coming out. And then I heard the doctor tell my husband, “okay, she’s not moving and he heartbeat has drastically dropped. We NEED to get this baby out. She needs to push. I’m going to put the vacuum on her for just a second and then take it off.” Jonathan agreed and told me I needed to push. I pushed and her head was out. And the doc removed the vacuum. It sucks that the vacuum was used but had he not, that would have been worse. But I’m thankful he took it off immediately. Then I remember being told to give one really big push…

I screamed. I pushed. And what felt like 10 minutes was the most excruciating pain I had ever felt in my life. I honestly felt like my body was being torn in half and then she was out and my body could relax. The tension was gone and all of a sudden I was overcome with a feeling of relief and then I was just in shock. I did it. And you know what? That 10 minutes….was literally a few seconds. They handed me my baby girl and laid her on my chest. She cried as she was coming out, the umbilical cord was around her leg but they got it unwrapped, and she was on me…I was staring at her. Again, I was in shock. I couldn’t believe it. I felt every bit of pain and every bit of her. We chose to do delayed cord clamping and my husband and I were just in awe. 

img_5988 Welcome! My Birth Story 
I did it. The girl who can’t watch someone take her blood or get a shot…someone who has an extremely low pain tolerance…gave birth naturally. Just like I wanted. It didn’t matter that I couldn’t have my home birth or a water birth. It didn’t matter that I couldn’t birth with a midwife or that I didn’t have a doula…I listened to my body. I was in tune with my body. All those weeks and months of preparation, reading, prayer, being at peace, and just finding balance in my life is what made me get through this. And having my amazing husband with me through it. Have your birth how you want it. You are in control. ❤️️

Oh, and remember what time I got to the hospital? 8:01am… our baby girl was born at 8:20am. 19 minutes later. A lot can happen in 19 minutes! 

The goal was a healing birth. And I have been healed. 

img_5988 Welcome! My Birth Story 

To The Mommy of a 1-Year Old

13151501_10206151479938253_4589970671008760466_n To The Mommy of a 1-Year Old

Dear Mommy of a 1-Year Old,

You did it.

Didn’t think you’d make it this far with all of your hair still, huh? Well, you did and you are fantastic.

The first year of anything you do in life isn’t easy. And the first year is definitely a rough one. Then again, we have the rest of our lives with our children and I am sure there are many more years to go that could be just as trying as the first!

But hey, you did it. You ROCKED being a mommy.

You made it through those sleepless nights.
You learned not to wake a sleeping baby.
You figured out the difference between a hungry cry and a sleepy cry.
You have a new outlook on life.
You figured out that being a mom is hard work…
and it’s the best thing you’ve ever done with your life.
You realized that you don’t care about what others think about you…
– your clothes
– your hair
– your parenting style
You figured out that there are more things to think about and none of them are for you.
You figured out that you are much stronger than you know.

Many people told you what it was going to be like having a baby. They told you the pros and the cons and well, a lot of times they left out the really juicy stuff that you wish you had known. But you, you learned that every child is different and you did everything you could to make sure you kept your sanity and kept your bundle of joy safe and happy.

Moms talked to you about topics like (some more controversial than others):
Breastfeeding vs formula feeding
Circumcised or not
Cloth diapers vs disposable
Binky (paci/nook) vs not using one
Babywearing or stroller usage
vax, delayed, or nonvax
and so much more.

It’s all a mess sometimes but everyone parents differently. Everyone makes their own decisions based off of what they believe is right and what works for the family. And you did exactly that.

Good for you, mama! Keep doing what you’re doing.

And now your baby is 1 and it’s a huge step. Don’t worry about where they are.

If they’re walking now, great. If not, that’s great too. Some people want fast movers and some enjoy the immobility for as long as possible.
So, they’re not talking yet, it’s okay. They will, when they are ready.
That first birthday party? It doesn’t have to be extravagant. You don’t have to stress about the theme, the decorations, or who is coming. You can if you want, but your child will not remember it. It’s all for you guys anyway. And a little thing I must add: Really, don’t worry about who is invited.

We had a huge issue with people getting upset with us for not inviting them to our son’s first birthday party. Grown adults whining about not coming to a 1 year old’s party. The thing is, last minute, we decided to have the party at home. Our home is tiny and there wasn’t tons of room for children and tons of adults and we didn’t have the funds to buy enough for so many people! And believe it or not, these were people that hadn’t talked to us in MONTHS. So, we decided to go with the people who our son would recognize and know the most and feel comfortable with. That was that. Don’t stress about it and don’t let people treat you terribly because of the decision you made.

You have now experienced what everyone told you when they said, “Enjoy it now. They grow up so fast.”
That year really did go by fast, didn’t it?

Don’t be sad. Believe me, I was. But I didn’t need to be. My child is growing and it’s what we, as mothers, do. We get sad but we are happy for them. And we get ready for the next stage in their life. Be prepared for the obstacles that may come:

First year molars
First words and steps
Tempter tantrums
Terrible Twos

I haven’t experienced much yet, but that’s just what we’ve gotten so far.

Just remember: You are one amazing mom. You’re a rockstar. You are the best mom for your little baby. And as they grow and change, so do you.

Love,
The Mommy of a 1-Year Old

13151501_10206151479938253_4589970671008760466_n To The Mommy of a 1-Year Old

Toxic Relationships: A Few Reasons To Get Rid of Them

toxic Toxic Relationships: A Few Reasons To Get Rid of Them

Let’s face it. Unless you are living in a world where every single person around you is the most positive person on the planet, you have toxic people in your life.

I, for one, have dealt with one too many toxic people in my life and it’s taken me a long time to either realize it or realize it and then get them out. It’s really a harsh reality that you have to face every now and then.

That friend that you grew up with and have talked to for the past two decades could be your “best friend” but if you really think about it, they turn out to be this burden as opposed to being a light in your life. OR maybe you have a “friend” you became friends with just because you have things in common. Hey, that’s how a lot of us develop friendships but if all you ever do is talk about those couple things and your friend pretty much bashes all the things you believe in or think about…you’re probably better off without them.

Recently, over the past year or so, I have gone through some changes. No, nothing huge. But changes that involve getting rid of the toxic people from my life. And I figured, it would be a great idea to share it with people! You may find yourself reading this and a name pops into your head. Yeah…that relationship probably isn’t good for you.

  1. They’re usually full of negativity.

It’s true. They drown themselves in their own pity parties and as you try to comfort them and leave them with something to look forward to, they shoot you down with their negativity. Basically saying, “Buzz off, you have no idea what I am going through, so don’t bother trying to make me feel better.” Well, alrighty then. No arguments here, you’re on your own. Just get rid of them. The negativity does nothing good for you and your life. You should be surrounded by people that are going to be a positive outlook. Don’t get me wrong, people have bad days and that’s totally fine. And you may even feel negativity sometimes. But when each conversation is filled with the constant complaints about people or their life…it gets old.

2. They don’t support you.

Usually, those toxic people in your life don’t care very much about what is going on in your life. If you accomplish something or have some great news for you, they usually follow up with something better so something so negative that it makes you feel bad for sharing the news. You probably know them as “one-uppers.” Bet another name just popped into your head, didn’t it? They don’t just “one-up” you, they just downright don’t support anything you do or say. Not every friendship or relationship has to share the exact same views and opinions on things but hey, you don’t need to straight up bash somebody because of their point of view. I have kept myself at peace with a lot of the things people say and do and unless it is harming myself, my family, or others…it’s not going to bother me. Believe what you want, do what you want, if it truly makes you happy then that works for me!

3. They’re never really there for you.

This is probably one of the hardest things to come to terms with. Are you normally there for your friends? The one who comes to the rescue when they are feeling down and out and try to do whatever you can to lift them up? No one is perfect and as adults, we tend to not spend as much time on our friends as we used to. So, it’s okay to not ALWAYS be there at their doorstep with pizza and a bottle of wine when your friend has had a bad day. But if you’re going to text someone and ask them how they are doing, you better be there when you get back a response with, “I am just having a hard time right now.” I don’t know, I have a hard time remembering to text people back or I read a text and totally forget that I even read it. It happens. But when someone needs help, I do my best to be there. I guess it’s hard for some people who don’t value things the same way you do. We have families to take care of and businesses to run, it’s life. I get it. But there’s always that ONE friend that just…sucks at being there, period. And always expects you to be there for them. Ugh!

toxic Toxic Relationships: A Few Reasons To Get Rid of Them

4. They’re not as forgiving.

There have been numerous times where I have messed up in a friendship or gotten upset about something that happened or was said. If you’re a female reading this, you totally get it. Sometimes we are just a little sensitive…sometimes we’re a little mean. We can’t always control how we are feeling but we can choose how to carry on from the situation. Long story short, I had a friend who I told great news to and didn’t do #2. They didn’t support me. Mainly, they got jealous that I was going through something they weren’t…yet. Then they got mad. This whole time, I had no idea about it. Then something bad happened and they didn’t do #3. So, when that something bad happened, I was stuck without a friend to talk to because she was one of the only people to know about what was going on. Come to find out, she was jealous, didn’t want to talk to me, randomly talked to me again, found out about the bad news, felt extremely guilty, didn’t talk to me for longer, and then finally told me the truth. They apologized for not being there. And guess what? I forgave her. In an instant. Because, I understand that things happen and I wouldn’t want me friend to feel the way she was feeling. Fast forward to a few weeks later…you’re having a really rough time and that same friend tells you they are there for you if you need anything. Later on in the conversation, starts acting rude and you tell them….you’re sounding rude. Your comments are rude. I just don’t understand why you’re being rude. And then the comments from your friend turn out mean and just disrespectful (which will be #5) and well, you being the person going through the tough time, you get upset. You let your friend know you’re upset. And, you’re not going to let them walk all over you – like always (#6) and you tell them! But get this, later on you message them and apologize for your own actions. And your friend has the audacity to act like they did absolutely nothing wrong and was still being extremely rude to you.

Take the two scenarios here…your friend couldn’t forgive an ARGUMENT but you forgave them for being a plain, HORRIBLE FRIEND. End the friendship there.

5. They don’t respect you.

It kind of goes along the same lines of them not supporting you. They don’t really care what you think and don’t care all too much about what you have to say when they’re whining about their life. Clearly, if they’re not there for you when you do the same thing, that’s just not fair. And if they belittle you for the things that you do or say, that’s not respect at all. You two may have the same interests in life, but you are NOT the same person. But respect should always be there. It doesn’t matter if your friend makes more money than you or goes on vacations and buys a ton of fancy clothes…she shouldn’t rub that in your face or make you feel bad because you just don’t. Or you spend your money on other things that you see as more important to you. Not only that, if they are giving you condescending remarks about the things that you do or say, please know that they don’t have any respect for you. They may say, “I was only joking,” but there’s a good chance they were just being rude anyway.

6. They walk all over you.

Now this….I have been guilty of in the past. I had a friend that used to be the nicest person in the world and let people walk all over her ALL THE TIME. So, it wasn’t just me, but I took advantage of the fact that she never said “no.” Granted, I wasn’t the worst but if it came down to asking her for help, I knew she would be the one to do. Fast forward to a few years later and the mean friend she hung out with all the time (me) finally taught her not to let people do that and she doesn’t anymore. If she ever reads this, I am proud of you girl! haha. Anyway, I realized how much of a bad friend I was being, I stopped acting like that and I grew up! I mean, I was in high school so we all have some growing up to do in those years.

toxic Toxic Relationships: A Few Reasons To Get Rid of Them

 

With all that being said, someone is walking all over you and mistaking your kindness for weakness, drop them like a bad habit. I sure deserved it back in the day but I am thankful that my friend kept me around and we have been friends for over 10 years now. 🙂

Well, I think that’s about all I can think of at the moment. Spending time just going over these six reasons has helped me realize who I needed in my life and who I didn’t. Now, it’s your turn. Maybe a few names came up while you were reading….maybe you’re one of the lucky ones and you couldn’t think of anyone. That’s great! But for those of us with toxic people in our lives…don’t let them weigh you down. Assess the relationship and see if it’s going to make your life better or make it more stressful. I definitely like the less stress option. Good riddance!

 

toxic Toxic Relationships: A Few Reasons To Get Rid of Them