Moving Out East

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The day that we had been hoping and praying for, for months and years, had finally come.

It’s not like we absolutely hated where we were living at, but we felt as though we were ready to go. With my husband being stationed here for 7 or 8 years and myself for nearly 5, we had outgrown this place. Plus, I don’t like dry heat, so there’s that!

But since we ready for a change and a chance to see family a little more often, we had hoped for orders to the East Coast and that’s what we got! And it’s pretty crazy to think that this is the place that our relationship started, where we started a family, and grew. It’s where we had our first home and this is the house we brought our kids home to. It’s a bit surreal, a bit sad, exiting…emotional. I was quite emotional on the day we finally said “goodbye” to our “home.”

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So, the packers came one day and packed up our entire house. They even brought little boxes for the kids to use to pack up some things they wanted to travel with and crayons for them to decorate them. I thought that was adorable. We filled that house with a ton of stuff over the last 3 years and it was crazy to see it all packed up in less than 8 hours. I think it was even 5 hours if I am being honest!

The next day, the moving truck came and the movers started loading all of our things up. That also didn’t take very long. We spent the night in a hotel on base and the next day, we blew that popsicle stand! We did the final check out of our home and said goodbye to a few friends of ours. Friends of our kids too. Friends that became family.

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I remember, when I joined the Navy, that I always heard about those you served with becoming your family. And it’s so true. But in my own life, it wasn’t JUST the people I had served with who had become my family, it was also the people who were serving along their own spouses that became my family. We know this life and how to be there for each other. And as moms, there are some of us that just…clicked.

Seeing your kids saying bye to other kids is really emotional. At least it was for me. Plus, I am saying bye to my own close friends! All I was thinking about is:

Are we actually going to stay in touch? Or are we just going to say we will talk to each other all of the time and not actually follow through?

Either way, I knew I was extremely blessed to have been able to have those friendships during the time that I did.

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Anyway, enough of the emotional stuff! Ha! We headed out towards Las Vegas but not before we stopped at Old Navy to use our super cash! And sure enough, my best mom friend (that’s what I call her) ended up finding out we were there and met up with us! She was the absolutely last person to send us off. It was so funny and sweet. Her boys are the sweetest and her oldest was crying the night before about us leaving. And her kids asked if mine could sleepover. Ah! I thought I was done with the emotional stuff! I guess not!

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But seriously. It was the cutest. And I was happy to see my friend again before I left.

For those of you that do not know, this is our first time PCSing anywhere. We left our first ever duty station. It’s so crazy to think that wherever you end up, that’s automatically your new home. And you don’t ever know how long you’re going to be there for sure. I mean, I was convinced that I was going to be doing a 20 year career there, but it’s amazing to see what God has done in our lives. And I look forward to seeing what MORE he has in store for us.

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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. 

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✨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.

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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:

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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.

Morning snuggles, nursing sessions, and baby feet

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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. 

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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 

Being a Boy Mom

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I may have only been a boy mom (mom in general) for about 15 months but I totally love it!

It’s hard to believe that this time, two years ago, we were getting ready to be out at sea and I would later find out I was pregnant. During my first pregnancy with Aston, I wanted a girl. I have no shame in saying it! It’s the truth. But that was at first. Growing up, I always wanted a girl first if I had kids. I grew up with a sister, I was the oldest, and my cousins that were around my age were all girls. It just made sense to me. Either way, I just wanted a healthy and happy baby. When I found out we were having a boy, my husband about jumped out of his seat. My first thought was,

‘What am I going to do with a boy?!’

I think that is totally normal for anyone who doesn’t have much experience with boys. I’ve never even babysat for baby boys before! But I seriously went into a little bit of a panic mode. I told my husband that I wasn’t ready for a boy. I came up with so many questions:

How do I dress a boy?
How do I change a boys’ diaper?
How am I going to potty train a boy?!

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And many more as I am sure you can imagine. But eventually, as I was buying things for him and for the nursery, I became more at ease and of course, excitement overwhelmed me. And now, having been a mom for the past year, I just love being a boy mom. And I wonder, what will it be like if I find out I am having a girl in a few weeks? We shall save those thoughts for a later date.

But I have compiled a small list of things I love about being a boy mom. I am SURE many of these things are fairly similar with little girls, but what do I know? I have a boy. 😉

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  1. I never have to put him in pink.

I know, you never HAVE to put a girl in pink or anything, that’s not what I am implying here. But I just love that at the baby shower, I didn’t receive a million pink things or have to return things because of the color. I made a point to tell people not to give us anything with that baby blue color. Bright blues, navy blue, dark blue….anything but baby blue. I am just not a fan. And I don’t like pink like that either. I am sure if I have a girl, I will change my mind. But for now, I am glad it’s blues and other things.

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2. There really isn’t much accessorizing.

I mean, if he wants to go ahead and wear fancy bows in his hair, that’s fine by me. But for the first year, I am pretty sure he doesn’t have much of a preference besides, “Get this thing off of my head.” And that goes for hats or anything else. But I don’t need to put anything on him. Hats sometimes are cool. I think some moms put bows or headbands on their little girls because people can’t tell if their baby is a boy or girl. Hey, some can’t it happens. We have gotten she occasional, “She’s so cute” but it never bothered me…except when he’s decked out in all blue in a shirt that says, “Dad’s little dude” or something like that. Come on. Maybe some moms actually like the bows and headbands! Again, I will have no idea until I have one for myself but for now, I will enjoy keeping it simple.

“Get this thing off my head.”

3. His clothes are simple.

Onesie or shirt. Pants. Shoes. Done. Okay, it’s not that different from girls but I guess it all comes down to preference! Some people put their girls in a dress and they’re good to go, so that could be simple enough. But then there’s leggings or tights and back to the hair bows. And I guess with boys you can add bowties and suspenders, but I can keep it super simple with Aston.

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4. I am the only girl he will ever love…for now.

I get to enjoy the fact that my little baby loves his Mommy so much. No other women in the world is going to love him like I do and he won’t look at anyone like he looks at his mommy! I feel pretty awesome when he comes running to me with open arms and a huge open mouth kiss. Yeah, we’re working on the whole kissy face thing.

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5. Cars, balls, trains, turtles, etc.

These are the kinds of toys he loves to play with. Again, no pink and nothing super fancy. I mean, at this stage he’s just throwing a lot of his toys around anyway but I love that we can play catch (more like fetch) together and he has a grand old time. And he loves playing outside. I was the kid that hated being outside and hated getting dirty…but this kid is adorable and loves playing in the dirt. And I really don’t mind it all that much! Put him in a diaper and no clothes and he’s good to go!

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6. I’m the only girl.

Hey, it sounds a little selfish but I really like the idea of being truly the only girl around. Like before, I mentioned that I am the only girl he loves right now…but I also like that I get to be the girly one. My husband and my son’s attention is on THIS pretty girl in the room! Ha! I don’t know how to explain it really, but it’s nice being the only one. Plus, when I am trying to get ready, I don’t have to share with anyone. Oh man, if I have a girl this time around, I can only imagine the teenage years! And if she’s anything like me, I am really in for it!

7. Their clothes really do have the cutest sayings on them.

Many of the shirts and onesies you find for a boy could work for a girl too. And yes, all the frill is great for a girl. But if you’re not into frill…and you see some dinosaur eating a cookie while drinking milk…that’s just super freaking cute! I love the Mama’s boy ones or the Dad’s little guy. I just love that stuff.

8. Diaper changes.

You can wipe up, down, side to side….doesn’t matter. No worries. As long as the poo is gone.

9. “Boys will be boys.”

You totally understand that saying when you become a mom. I mean, he’s only one but he does such silly things that I couldn’t see a little girl doing. Then again, we will just have to wait and see. But things like picking his nose and discovering his…ahem…penis. I can’t help but laugh when he does these things!! I probably shouldn’t laugh. He probably does it more because I laugh at him.

The bottom line really is: I love being a mom. And I love being pregnant with my next bundle of love. in about 2 weeks we find out what we are having and it’s going to be fantastic. And it doesn’t matter, boy or girl, I am sure I will have posts about how different it is to raise another baby. <3

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“Meternity Leave?” This is Maternity Leave

2016-05-10_12-53-47 "Meternity Leave?" This is Maternity Leave

Alright, there is a popular article that has pretty much gone viral all over Facebook and Twitter. I have seen it pop up on my feed quite a few times and I finally caved to read it.

The article on the New York Post titled, “I want all the perks of maternity leave — without having any kids ” by Anna Davies has stirred up quite a few blog posts and Facebook posts from moms all over, giving Miss Meghann Foye a piece of their mind. And well, being a mother myself and having finally read the darn thing, I decided to write about my feelings on this subject as well.

No, Meghann. I haven’t read your book. And there’s a very good chance that I won’t, mostly because I barely have time to read books as it is. Don’t get me wrong, I am not going to sit here and say that I have never been in your shoes before. I have. I was once one of those women that focused solely on career and friendships as opposed to thoughts of having a husband or kids in my future. Well, I thought about it but after numerous breakups and heartache, my life became more about me than about having a “we.”

I joined the military with every intent to put in my 20 years, retire, and live a fabulous life of being single and never having any other responsibilities besides the ones that are needed to take care of myself. And hey, that’s totally fine. More power to anyone who takes pride in what they do with their life. Countless jobs before, I thought it was unfair that mothers got to take time off of work. I mean, what did I know? I just saw these moms getting paid to take time away from work or even what you said in the article in the NYP, people got to leave work early to pick up the kids and having a friend who just suffered a breakup wasn’t a valid excuse. Been there. I was like, ‘Why the heck can’t I get out early because I live 30 minutes away and I want to go out with my friends…but I have to drive all the way back home then all the way back HERE just to do so.” We all worked together, downtown…it just made sense.

Then being in the military, I thought the same thing, at first. People got to get out of working a 13-14 shift because the daycares on base shut down after a certain time and you HAVE to pick up your children. People got time off and got away from the job that we were all sleepily working at on a Friday evening…still here…

But that’s the thing. You never know anything about anything unless you have been through it. This whole concept of “Meternity Leave” just makes no sense to me. That’s what vacations are for. If you work in the corporate world, you get paid time off and well, many people who don’t get paid time off for vacation, still get time off to themselves to do whatever they please.

Maternity leave is not a vacation. Maternity leave is a time of bonding with your child and having those precious moments with them. Because those first few months are some of the most important times that baby needs to be with their mother. And 3 months off? Not many people get that luxury. When I first had my child, I was given 6 weeks paid and I took an additional 2 weeks of my own time that I had saved up. And that’s in the military. Granted, we have recently changed things a bit and we now get those 12 weeks – paid, but that wasn’t the case before. And think about many people outside of the military who are ALLOWED to take those 12 weeks or more off…but many moms can’t afford to take it off because that time off isn’t even paid for! So, the entire time that the mother is supposed to be spending time with their child and learning how to be a mother, they are spending time stressing about the bills that need to be paid and how they are going to make up for the time lost at work.

Ask your friend who decided to leave her corporate job and start a new business after she had her baby. What is it exactly that made you want to do that? I am willing to bet that it wasn’t…”I had an awesome vacation from work and I wanted to continue it.” It is very likely the fact that she pushed a melon sized child out of her vagina and realized what was important in her life and what her focus needs to be on. And let me tell you…I highly doubt she had a “break.” Do you really think stay-at-home-moms ever get a day off? Wait, don’t even answer that. I am willing to bet I know which side of the spectrum you’re on when it comes to THAT conversation.

But here’s the main deal with this post. THIS is what maternity leave looks like. And if you’ve never had a child, you wouldn’t know.

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This beautiful moment after I had my first son is nothing short of amazing. Everything I felt was worth it. But what you don’t see here is that, I was terrified. Nurses and doctors didn’t speak to me. They acted like I wasn’t even there and they just had to get a melon out of me. What you don’t see is them pushing on my stomach and passing my placenta out and stitching me up. What you don’t see is the pain that I endured or the fact that because doctors wouldn’t talk to me, I had no idea what was going on.

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You may see me smiling here but what you don’t see is that I am cuddling with my child in the early morning, after hours of fighting him to nurse. I had to battle with him to try and eat for the first 6 days of his life. He had jaundice and wasn’t nursing at all and I didn’t understand why. So, laying down with him in bed was one of the only ways to get him to calm down.

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What you see here is a mom who stayed up all night with their crying baby. Trying to put him back to sleep after hours of trying. Many nights I fell asleep sitting up in my bed because my baby only wanted to sleep in that position.

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No, I am not squishing my child, but this is a great example of what you DON’T see moms go through during maternity leave. Finally, a satisfied baby. Fed and ready to pass out. But mama? Covered in milk from leaky boobs, stained shirts, nipples that are sore and completely cracked from learning how to nurse her baby for the first time, and breast pads to help from a milk waterfall from streaming down your clothes. As you can see, it doesn’t always help.

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There is always poop. I bet your “Meternity” never has a bunch of poop…or pee all over you. Or vomit for that matter, unless you’re covered in your own vomit from those margaritas with your girlfriends at the bar because you’re celebrating her newfound singleness.

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An exhausted mother. Sleeping with an ice pack in between her legs, wearing very large mesh underwear from the hospital, and feminine pads that resemble diapers. It’s the healing process. You don’t see that, do you? That’s because most women don’t post that all over their Facebook pages. You don’t see the heartache some moms go through when they look in the mirror and see their bloated stomach STILL looking like they are 6 months pregnant because not all moms lose weight while nursing. You don’t know the feeling of having a stitch stuck in your lady parts because it didn’t dissolve like it was supposed to. And you don’t know what it’s like to not be able to be intimate with your husband, 1. because you can’t and 2. because you have no energy.

There is no such thing as a “break” when it comes to maternity leave.

So, go ahead and suggest to everyone that you deserve your “ME” time. Because honestly, us moms never really get that “Meternity Leave.” Once you have a child, there is no such thing as ME time. It’s about your kids. It’s about family. And yes, that’s a choice that we, as parents made for our lives. But don’t you dare say you need paid time off to have time to yourself just because women have a baby and get their time off.

Also, I found an article that I found completely hilarious after I started writing this post. And for those of you that want “MEternity leave,” I say, go for it. As long as you abide by the rules of this post. And I absolutely love it.

So you want maternity leave without the kids? OK. Here’s how that should go.” by Elizabeth Bromstein

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And Then There Were Four…

12973018_10205948156655298_5075545641529279649_o And Then There Were Four...

Now that the entire family and the Facebook world knows the good news, I can share it publicly…anywhere I want. Including this blog. 🙂

That’s right, Aston is going to be a big brother! And we are all so excited!

I did post the other day (April Fool’s day to be exact) and I talked about my experience with miscarriage. It’s a sad thing for anyone to have to go through at any point in their lives. But it’s also something real. It does happen. And I will not dismiss it and act like it didn’t happen.

I know that God will use that situation as a reminder or a lesson at some point in my life. we mourned our loss and we moved forward. And you know what? It’s okay to move forward too. Some people may think that it’s not okay to just move on past what just happened to you, but it really is okay! There is no sense in dwelling on the things that you cannot change. Especially something that happened beyond your control.

So, here we are, now with baby #2 on the way. And it’s such fantastic news! Hubby wants a girl and I want another boy. Let’s be honest, I want a boy because I already have all of the baby boy things and I don’t need to go out and buy all the extra stuff then! 😛 But for real, I don’t care as long as we have a healthy and happy little baby. Isn’t that all any parent really hopes for?

This baby will be a fall baby. He or she is due on November 1st and we are pretty excited. Not only that, I am so excited about that fact that I will get an entire 18 weeks of maternity leave! The military changed some things around over the past couple years and I made the cut off by a few days. It’s pretty fantastic. When I had Aston, I was home for 6 weeks and then took an additional 2 weeks of my own time off to stay with him. I wasn’t ready. I really was NOT ready to go back to work after only 8 short weeks with him. And I have missed him every moment since.

Of course, I still see him every night when I get home from work and on my lunch breaks if I take them, but I love being home with him. Yeah, I get the crazies every now and then when I am home with him all day, but I assume eventually you get used to it! 😛

Anyway, there’s the announcement. I am so excited and feeling incredibly blessed to be having this little peanut growing inside of me. Such a gift to be able to carry a child not just once but twice. <3

12973018_10205948156655298_5075545641529279649_o And Then There Were Four...

12973018_10205948156655298_5075545641529279649_o And Then There Were Four...

Quick Guide To: Being a Good (Okay, Decent) Wife

 img_3276 Quick Guide To: Being a Good (Okay, Decent) Wife 
Well, clearly you need to have a sense of humor. Man, if I didn’t have any sort of sense of humor, my marriage would’ve been doomed from the start!

Alright, so I started thinking of ideas on what I could write about. It’s been a really long time since I have written a really good blog post. As you can see, I have been posting a lot about health and fitness focused ideas. That’s mostly because my life revolves around my faith, my family, my job, and then health and fitness. And instead of going on and on about my son (who is the cutest thing, bee-tee-dubs), I decided to go a different route and talk about what I’ve learned over the past year on being a decent wife.

Hey, it’s not that serious and I will joke around from time to time but maybe someone will take something away from this post and think, ‘Wow, maybe THAT is what I was missing!’ or you will just think I am crazy which is TOTALLY okay! Either way, this just my idea over the past year on how I have been able to keep my marriage afloat with the things I do.

Your husband needs love just as much as you do.

It’s TRUE. You want all the romantic things to never end. You think about the things he did for you when you were just dating and even when you were engaged and you want them to NEVER go away. Believe it or not, your husband doesn’t want the things you do for him to go away either. On the same token, he’s a man. They are pretty laid back when it comes to this. The things they see as “romantic…” nevermind. They don’t see things as romantic. 😛 But they do enjoy loving things such as, kisses, hugs, touches. Most men are physical beings. It’s not just about sex here, ladies. Granted, that helps but it’s about being physical and letting him FEEL your love. It’s just as important to him to feel that love as it is for us to hear him say, “I love you.”

Don’t suddenly change who you are.

Okay, this one is a little difficult. I mean, I was pregnant the first year of our marriage. At least for half of our first year. I changed A LOT. My face, my body, my mood…lots of changes. But there are some women out there that think everything will be different if they get married. Like, magically you become this old couple that doesn’t do anything. If you’re anything like my husband and I, we became that old couple LONG before marriage was ever brought into the picture! I know, there are old couples that probably get out of the house way more often than we do, but that’s okay. Either way, don’t expect everything to change just because you have a ring, a marriage certificate, and a husband. You both are still the same people, enjoy that. Things will change over time anyway…especially with kids.

Don’t sweat the small stuff.

Hmmm, I am pretty sure that’s a book I read in junior high. I should listen to that book more often! Either way, this is very true. If you’re someone like me who experiences anxiety and gets stressed out so easily, this doesn’t always work. But it can. If you are newly married or about to take the deep plunge, many of you may be getting ready to move in together for the first time…ever. And that is going to be a HUGE change for you both. Like I said, I am STILL working on this one but I know it needs to be done. And when I can chillax a little, he’s at ease and things run smoother. For example, I am very picky about where things go. I like to be organized and have a place for things. I walk into the door from work; boots off and put away, keys hung on the key holder by the door, wallet on the shelf by the door, lunchbag unpacked and put away in its proper home. My husband on the other hand…stuff everywhere. That’s really just how men are. Even the more organized ones, they are still pretty spacey when it comes to that kind of thing. Over the past year, I learned that I need to just let it be. If I want to have things put in a certain place, it’s really not that big of a deal for me to just do it myself. He works all day too and the last thing he wants to do is come home to a wife who is going to talk his ear off about the fact that he forgot something (again).

Speaking of being more organized…don’t move his stuff

This isn’t a long one but remember how I said I am really organized? Things need to have a home. You pick something up and you put it back where you got it. That’s my logic. Hubster? Not so much. And it’s okay. But really, don’t move anything unless you are ready to hear the, “Honey? Where are my -_insert object here¬¬¬_?” It’s going to happen. And you are just going to have to deal. I guess, it’s along the same lines of not sweating the small stuff. Your husband is basically going to be lost if he can’t find what he’s looking for. But what you should realize is…he probably just forgot where he put something anyway so if you moved it, it’s not a big deal.

I really am not just trying to insult my husband in this post. But…he’s funny and awesome and these are the things he does. 😛

Let him feel useful

This is seriously something I didn’t notice until we were married. We lived together before for about a year before we were married but it wasn’t until we moved into our house that I saw this. He wants to do things around the house. If it’s something that needs to be fixed with a hammer, some nails, his power tools…whatever, he wants to do it. Like, seriously…I know how to do a lot of things around the house but he wants me to let him do it. He’s built me some shelves for the wall in the living room, put together some bookshelves and things for organizing the house, and he’s made some parrallettes (I really don’t know how to spell that, haha) for the gym. He’s painted our son’s nursery (and it turned out beautiful might I add) and he was a perfectionist about it. It’s actually pretty cute. But this is what I mean about letting him feel useful – Like I said, I can do a lot of these things myself. Granted, it may not be as impeccable of work as his would be but I can do it. So, instead of doing things around the house that I know my husband would like to do, I just say, “Hey babe, can you do this for me?” And he’s happy to do it. I mean, sure he helps around the house with the cleaning, dishes (he mainly does the dishes), takes out the trash, etc…but those are things that don’t give him much joy. So although he does the normal chores, he wants to do the “manly” things for me. It’s cute, so why not? 

I could go on and on about the things I learned over the past year about how to be a good (decent) wife, but this is a QUICK guide. I hope you all enjoyed this Quick Guide to Being a Good (Okay, Decent) Wife. There are so many other things I can point out…maybe I will have an extended version for you all sometime. 😉

img_3276 Quick Guide To: Being a Good (Okay, Decent) Wife