August 29, 2011

Burdens Lifted

My baby is sick, or teething. We've thought many times before that she might be teething, and each time we find out she is not. So we've given up on the theory that when she's acting sick, she might be teething.

But really this time.....she might be teething. Only time will tell. My baby (almost 1 year old!) has teary eyes, a runny nose, excessive crying, frequent sneezing, all the signs of teething. Oh how I wish I could life her burden!

Whenever my husband is sick, I always feel so sorry for him. Or when my mom gets sick, or another family member or close friend. I always feel sorry for them and wish I could make things better. I could make them a warm meal, tuck them into bed, send a get-well card, etc.

But with your own child, it's different. Waaaaaaaaaayyyyyy different! It's like you'd give ANYTHING to lift that burden off their shoulders. There's nothing so sad as watching your own child suffer. I wish, oh I wish, that I could take her pain away. Take away her sadness, her tears, her aches.

But alas, that is part of being a baby. Part of growing up. In the end, it makes them stronger. She has to go through that process to progress. It reminds me of baby chicks who hatch from their eggs. They have to work hard at getting out of that egg. They peck and peck and peck some more at that hard shell, and eventually, the shell breaks and they are free. But if you break the shell for them, and "help" them out of the egg, they lose out on that experience to gain strength. It's a part of being born for them. That's the way it was intended for that baby chick to progress, to get stronger.

And that's how it is with our children. We can't protect them from every little bump, bruise, or scrape. What we can do is kiss them better, help them up after they fall (figuratively and literally), put a bandaid on their "boo boos", and just hold them tight until they stop crying. Until I stop crying.

But that doesn't change the feeling in my heart of wishing I could lift her burdens and make them light.
Maybe I'll make her some homemade chicken noodle soup.

August 25, 2011

Baby Banner

Here is a great idea for a baby's first birthday banner (or a baby shower banner)! All I did was take some twine string and loop it through the arm holes of my baby's onesies and outfits from when she was a preemie/newborn. It was easy as pie!

Then I just added some small hand mittons using colored paper clips. It took me all of 10 minutes to get it put together and hung.

You could easily add anything onto this banner and make it longer or shorter. Other items you could use on the banner are:
Baby beanie hats
Baby socks
Pictures of baby throughout their first year
Baby shoes/slippers
Footprints/handprints on paper

The possibilities are really endless. And if I'd had more time, you could also hook these items on using clothes pins (you could paint them any color to coordinate with other items), or diaper pins (like the ones for old cloth diapers).

August 24, 2011

Another Baby

I have been thinking a lot lately about having another baby. I love having a baby. I love that E is growing bigger and that we are getting to experience her as an older baby now that she’s crawling and eating and growing developmentally, but I am also already missing the infant stuff about her! I want her to have a sibling soon.

My husband and I have talked a lot about our hopes to have a baby naturally this time. We are so grateful for modern medicine that has allowed us to get pregnant with E, but I would love to be able to experience getting pregnant like most women do, just getting pregnant naturally, without all the ultrasounds, medications, exams, etc. 

Although I have a baby of my own, I still feel a little jealous when I hear of other people I know getting pregnant and having babies. I think it’s because I feel like we are back to square one again trying to get pregnant. Even though we have been immensely blessed to have one child, I constantly think about how long it took us to get her here! I don’t want to have to wait another 2-3 years to get pregnant. All the mothers I know seem like they have a baby, then the month they want to conceive again, boom, they get pregnant. 

I just found out recently that a good friend of mine was able to conceive within WEEKS of getting off birth control. Weeks! I would KILL for that! People who are blessed to be fertile have NO IDEA the heartache that accompanies infertility. They cannot possibly imagine what it’s like to want to be pregnant NOW and be denied that blessing for months, even years. 

Another friend of mine at work is pregnant and stated clearly that it was an accident. She was paraphrasing something her husband said, “Why can’t we at least have to try to get pregnant like everyone else! I swear I blink and you’re pregnant!”. I do understand that for some people having an unplanned pregnancy is hard for multiple reasons, whether it be financial, physical, emotional, timing is not right, etc. But still, they are blessed to be pregnant! I would much rather be able to get pregnant without hardly trying than go through what I have been through. At least people who are super-fertile have the option of birth-control! 

I’ve been trying to suppress my feelings of jealousy at others who are pregnant/just having babies, but it is still there deep down (okay, maybe not that deep down!). I want to be like them. I want to be able to surprise E soon and tell her she’s going to be a big sister!

The questions that run through my mind all the time are:
-When will we get pregnant again?
-How long will we have to try to get pregnant?
-Will we be able to get pregnant naturally or will we need to do IVF again?

I need to focus my thoughts on something else. I know that in time we will have more children, I just wish I could look into my crystal ball and see when that time will be!

August 22, 2011

Great Read!

It has been FOREVER since I actually sat down and read a good book that wasn't related to parenting. I didn't know much about The Pioneer Woman, Ree Drummond, before I read this book.

It is really a great book! I read it in about 3 days. I am not one for reading romantic novels, but this is a great romance story! It's also a great story about decision-making, and how the really important things in life can pass you by if you aren't paying attention.

I would highly recommend this book to anyone.

If you have already read it, what did you think about it?


I have always been a little bit (okay maybe more than a little bit.....majorly) antisocial.

As a shy child and even adult, I usually try to avoid being in many social situations. That is pretty hard to do though. I have always been a little awkward when it comes to conversing and interacting with other people.

I don't want to make myself sound weird like I have a phobia, I don't. What I mean to say is that I can force myself to be "normal" in social situations, but deep down, it's not who I really am. I have always been a homebody. I love being in the comfort of my own home, just with my family.

In my profession, I have to interact with strangers on a daily basis, and I get to know a lot of personal information about my patients and their families in a short amount of time. I am able to always be very friendly and outgoing with these people, because they are strangers and the likelihood of me every seeing them again is very slim.

But for some reason when it comes to seeing people I already know, I kind of freeze up. Like at work for instance, I do great with the strangers I meet during my shift, but my fellow coworkers are always asking me how come I never speak up.

They say I'm the quietest person they have ever met. It's true, I don't like to talk a lot (at least vocally). I have always been a great listener, but when it comes time to share my opinion, good luck getting it out of me!

I have found that those who gossip or talk a lot about themselves end up hurting others' feelings even when it's not intended. They say something about someone that is unkind, or maybe just an observation, but it can be taken the wrong way by some and misconstrued to mean something entirely different.

I love the TV series "Everybody Loves Raymond". It is a classic show and I have laughed so hard so many times during the episodes. We own the complete series and watch an episode almost daily. The grandfather in the show is named Frank and I can relate to his feelings of people so well! He is always saying how he "hates" people.

Now I don't "hate" people, but I sometimes hate being around people. I much rather enjoy being by myself or with my family at home.

Again, I don't mean to sound crazy or make others look bad if they are social butterflies, but it has never been one of my desires to be out and about in the social scene.

How do you handle different social situations? Are you introverted or extroverted? A combination of both?

August 19, 2011

I don't want to!

Recently I've been sounding a lot like a two-year-old. I don't have one of those yet, but I know how they act and what they sound like.

As a full-time mom, it is hard for me to also be a part-time nurse. I work part-time at a local hospital usually 2-3 times a week. It is so hard for me to leave my family and go to work!

I've never been a huge fan of going to work. I know I sound lazy, but I'm really not. I have so much I would like to do at home that I hate going to work.

The #1 reason I don't like going to work is leaving my baby girl. I miss her so much while I'm at work. When she was just a newborn, I would get all choked up and cry just in anticipation of leaving to go to work. Now that she's a little older, it's not quite as tough, but it still is hard for me to leave her at home and not take her with me.

It's hard because I work in the evenings and during the night so when I go to work, I miss being able to put my baby girl to bed. I love that time of day!

I love nursing her before bed, then reading books, then rocking, then cuddling while I hold her.

I love feeling her warm dreamy breath on my cheek, I love looking at her droopy eyelids.

I love putting her in her crib and watching her roll over onto her side or tummy and give that one last huge yawn before she's asleep.

And I miss that when I'm at work.

What motivates you to go to work? I mean I know that earning money is important, but I wish I could freeze time while I'm away so that I wouldn't have to miss out on these precious moments!

August 18, 2011

Mermaid Giveaway

There is an awesome giveaway going on over at

You can win an incredible Mermaid Tail from this website.

Head on over to enter the giveaway!

August 16, 2011

Another Baby

We have a daughter who is less than one year old. And I am constantly thinking about when we will get pregnant again! We have struggled with infertility for years. It took a lot of time and money to get pregnant with our daughter.

Once we finally got pregnant, I felt relieved that I didn't have to deal with infertility again for a while. But the thought still loomed in my head. We had a magical pregnancy and delivery, but as soon as our baby girl arrived, I started thinking about our next baby.

When would we get pregnant again? Would we be able to get pregnant naturally this time? Or would we embark yet again on a several-year journey of medications, ovulation testing, procedures, ultrasounds, waiting, more waiting, hoping to get pregnant?

I can't help thinking sometimes that my infertility has been "cured". It's easy to think that because we have one baby having another one will be a piece of cake. At least that's what I'm hoping for.

We are not under so much stress and pressure to have another baby right away this time. For years the only thought that occupied my mind was "I want to get pregnant now!". I am more content and happy now that we have our baby girl. But I still wonder when the next time is that we will get pregnant.

Will it be in a month? 6 months? 1 year? 3 years? I KNOW that we will get pregnant again and have more children. That's a fact. But the not knowing WHEN is so hard!

We had discussed birth control when my daughter was born and made the decision to not take any kind of birth control. We truly felt like if we got pregnant right away (even though it's not advised or good for a postpartum body such as mine) we would be thrilled.

And I truly would be thrilled! Now that our baby is older and not really a newborn, getting pregnant would be so great! I always wanted my kids to be close in age. Maybe not 9 months close, but within a couple years of each other.

Some days I try not to think about it much, since stress is not good for a woman who wants to get pregnant. But I can't help thinking about it.

Whenever it does happen, my world will transform again in to a magical land of pregnancy hormones and dreams of a larger family. I love being pregnant.

August 15, 2011


I am embarking on a project. A huge project. Something that eats and eats away at my brain on a daily basis. Something I think about multiple times a day (and night) and yet I do nothing about it!

I am talking about clutter.

The endless stacks of paper and mail on my kitchen table. The cereal boxes and leftover cookies on the counter. The clothes on the floor. The random hair accessories in the bathroom drawers. The overfilled closets. Wrapping paper and bows.

Clutter is everywhere! It's been taking over my house slowly for the past couple of years. But I hate it!

It gets in the way. It looks horrible! When I "clean" for guests, everything unsightly gets put in our extra storage room, and then I lock and bolt the door so no one can see what our house really looks like.

I spend waaaaaay too long looking for important documents, or the measuring tape that I can't find for the life of me.

I'm telling you, clutter in the home can seriously interfere with happy living!

But today is a new day. I've been reading a book on how to de-clutter and it's given me some great ideas. I've always wanted that immaculate looking house, where everything has it's place and there's a place for everything.

As a perfectionist though, I become OVERWHELMED just thinking about de-cluttering.

This is my normal thought process,
"I want to organize my room and bathroom. So I'll start by cleaning off the top of the dresser. Boy, when did I accumulate so many hair accessories and pieces of jewelry? I guess I'll make a place in the bathroom for all this stuff so I can clear off the top of the dresser. But all the bathroom drawers are cluttered and full of random brushes, combs, floss, curling irons, hair products, what do I do with those? If I clean out the bathroom drawers, then I'll have room to put my jewelry and hair accessories in there. But where will I put the random curling irons? I could put them in a box downstairs! But wait, before I put them downstairs, I have to organize the shelves in the basement by color, size, item, season. In order to do that, I have to buy more storage boxes and go through all the seasonal stuff. Where should I store that extra Christmas tree we have down there? Now that I'm thinking of it, I should go through all the Christmas ornaments one by one and get rid of all the cracked ones........."
See? My thought process makes me so overwhelmed that I keep pushing off this project. I am going to set goals and tell myself that each day I need to set aside some time, whether it is a chunk of time (1-2 hours) or 10 minute increments (the latter is more realistic for me since I have a baby).


August 11, 2011

Laughing at Infertility (Part 2)

I found this website which brought great relief to my situation. However, I feel like I missed out during my years of inferitlity, because it wasn't until after I got pregnant and delivered my daughter that I stumbled upon this website.

There are others out there just like this one, but it helped me to realize that there are hundreds, no, thousands, of other women and couples out there who are struggling just like I did to get pregnant. Struggling with the same emotions and questions that I struggled with on a daily basis.

All those years I thought I was the only one out there. I didn't want to talk about it to anyone. I didn't want to laugh, to smile, to be happy. I thought, "Poor little me, no one else could be hurting as much as I am."

I was pretty self-absorbed. But the other night I spent a while reading through several reasons why to laugh at infertility. I LOVE these "Birds and Bees" videos on YouTube:
Jane's Pregnant
I had a window
They must not be working

On a different note, I just found this video of the song "I Would Die For That" sung by Kellie Coffey that made me cry!

Seriously though, take a moment to laugh at your situation. It's the only way to get through life. I wish I had learned this lesson years ago, it would have helped a lot during those long sleepless nights.

Laughing at Infertility (Part 1)

My husband and I have struggled with infertility for years. I never thought in a million years when we got married that we would have so much trouble getting pregnant as we did.

After 3 years of TTC (trying to conceive), we finally became pregnant through IVF (in-vitro fertilization).
This was our 2nd attempt at IVF and luckily we were successful and became pregnant with our daughter. IVF was the the last option we had before we would consider adoption. We had tried everything we could to get pregnant before resorting to IVF. We tried taking expensive medications; clomid, metformin, levothyroxine, femara; and when those didn't work we went to injectable medications like FSH. Nothing worked. Then we tried IUI's (intrauterine insemination). After 4 rounds of those, we decided to try IVF.

Throughout out the years of TTC, my emotions took a toll. I was depressed every month when my cycle started, or when we found out that the hundreds of dollars we'd just spent on last month's meds didn't work. Or when we found out the IVF cycle that cost us $$$ didn't work. You get the idea.

Crying myself to sleep became a habit. I tried to look at the positive side of things; how my husband and I had an opportunity to enjoy married life a little bit longer before having kids, how we were able to get into a house sooner than we planned on, how I was able to work full-time longer and save up more money. But all of these "positives" were outweighed in my mind by the biggest burden I'd ever felt in my life, my inability to conceive!

I thought to myself constantly, "Why am I not able to conceive? Why does this have to happen to me?" The doctors couldn't find a reason why I was infertile (my husband was absolutely fine, in fact, better than fine. His "swimmers" as we like to call them, should have won an Olympic Gold Medal for their record time and agility.  The timing of my cycles had always been a little off, so the idea was to get my cycles more regular and take meds to make me ovulate more regularly. But once that was happening and we still couldn't get pregnant, I felt helpless.

All I wanted was answers. I wanted to know what else I could possibly do to increase my chances at getting pregnant. During all this time, I felt utterly alone. I felt like I was the only person on the face of the planet; no wait; the entire universe; who couldn't get pregnant.

But I was so utterly wrong! I knew there were others out there who were infertile, but they all seemed to get pregnant quicker than I did. I never wanted to talk about my infertility trials to anyone but my husband. I didn't even want to tell our families about what was going on. That would signal defeat in my mind. It would be like acknowledging my defaults in front of the whole world. They would all know that something was wrong with me. Was it too much to ask that all I wanted to do was provide grandchildren for our parents?

After going through the trials of infertility for 3 years, finally getting pregnant, and having our beautiful daughter, infertility is still looming in my mind. It never goes away. Yes, I was able to get pregnant which is one of the greatest blessings in my life. But that didn't take my infertility away. For 9 months I looked like a fertile woman, but I was still incapable of conceiving on my own.

I think a lot about having our next child. How all of this will come back to haunt me. Will we need to do IVF again? Will we finally be able to conceive naturally? These questions swim around in my head all the time.

I felt powerless for years. How could anything possibly be positive about this situation? What could I possibly find funny about our infertility?

And then I found out..........

August 4, 2011

Looking Plain

It's one of those days.

You know, the kind of day where you wake up, and before you even look at yourself in the mirror, you feel it.

That feeling of looking horrid. Unattractive. Ghastly. Homely. 

And no matter how much make-up you put on, how long you spend doing your hair, choosing a cute outfit, that feeling is still there, because when you remove all that stuff, it's still you underneath it all.

I try not to think about it that much. But it's hard not to wish I looked like somebody else. There is that rare day when I actually DO like how I look, but those days are few and far between.

I look in the mirror, and my eyes immediately focus on those blemishes all over my face. The oily skin, the pimples, the unkempt hair.

Why can't I look like those people that wake up and instantly look gorgeous? They don't have to do a thing and they already look 100% better than I do! It drives me nuts how some people can pull it all off without even trying!

My self-esteem wanes sometimes. Like when I see ordinary people, not celebrities, but ordinary people in my neighborhood who look so breathtakingly gorgeous that they could be models!

I know I am sounding so vain right now, but I think inside all of us there is that occasional feeling of jealousy, even if we do feel comfortable in our own skin. 

My sweet husband is always telling me how beautiful I am. I am truly blessed to be married to him! But I still want to KNOW for myself that I am beautiful.

Each of us has our own insecurities, whether it's our weight, height, hair color, skin tone, teeth, eyes. 

I just have to stick with my gut and realize that I am the way I am because that's the way I was made. My husband loves me for who I am, and for the way I look. I can't change that. 

I don't want to change that. Despite my insecurities, I do know that deep down, I am beautiful. 

I am unique. 

And that helps bring my spirits up, along with a little mascara and lip gloss!

How do you boost your self-esteem on those days when you feel like you just poked your head up out of a garbage can?

Re-finished Entry Way Table

I refinished and painted an old entry way table that belonged to my husband's Grandpa. It was in great condition, but I wanted to change the color and update the hardware for a fresh look.

 And waaala! I love how it turned out. The color is called "heirloom white" and I love the cottage-esque look of it.

There comes great satisfaction with fixing up something yourself. The whole project cost about $20 (the table was free but I had to buy primer, spray paint, and new handles; we already had the sander and related tools).

For this project, I used spray paint. But I have re-finished old wood furniture before using regular paint like in this post.

It was much less time-consuming using spray paint. However, I had to apply a few more coats with spray paint vs. regular paint to get an even tone throughout the table. I also had to start with a primer, then use spray paint, and finished with a spray-on clear protective coat of polyurethane to protect against nicks and scratches.

The supplies you will need are:
Drop cloth
Spray paint
Polyurethane spray

The steps are almost the same as painting furniture with paint like in this post, however instead of applying paint, you will use spray paint. Be sure to follow the spray paint can instructions for how long to wait in between applying new coats. Also make sure you shake the can vigorously before spraying and hold the can at least 8-10 inches away from the furniture so the paint is spread evenly.

Old Things Made New

This dresser/changing table is 25+ years old, but I was able to make it look brand new with some easy steps!

Now a days, changing table/dresser combos cost $200-$400+ which is an expense I personally couldn't afford.

The changing table actually wasn't in bad condition to begin with, but I wanted to spruce it up a little with some new paint and new hardware, so I went to work.

Here's the old dresser (still in great condition however!):

And here's what I did to it:

The supplies you will need are:
Paintbrush or foam brush (I prefer a foam brush)
Drop cloth
Mask (optional but recommended)
Tools for removing/replacing hardware

  1. Choose your paint color- make sure it can be used on wood (or whatever medium you are using). I recommend buying a sample size paint can and trying it out before committing to buying a huge can.
  2. Remove any hardware from the furniture.
  3. Use sandpaper to buff down the wood and and smooth out any rough spots. It's easier if you have an electronic hand-held sander, but doing by hand will also work.
  4. Clean the furniture with a damp cloth. Let dry completely.
  5. Apply coats of paint, allowing each coat to dry completely in between new coats. Once finished, allow furniture to completely dry for 24 hours before moving it.

This kind of DIY project is very easy, quick, and affordable and makes any piece of old furniture look brand new!

August 3, 2011

Baby Packing List

Traveling with a baby is a daunting task. But it doesn't have to be if you are prepared.

Below is a packing list for a baby 6-12 months. This list can be used for infants younger or older with a little variance in some of the items. 

Diaper Changes:
Desitin cream
Changing pad
Swim diapers (optional)
Diaper cover (optional)

Travel high chair (optional)
Baby food
Food containers
Rice cereal
Nursing cover
Breast pads
Bottle nipples
Hand pump (optional- if nursing)
Burp cloths

Bathing suits (optional)
Towel coverup (optional)

Plastic grocery bags (for blowouts)
Hand sanitizer
Pack-n-play sheet (optional)
Plug-in night light
Baby sunscreen
Baby monitor
Baby music for sleeping (optional)

Baby carrier (optional)
Umbrella stroller
Diaper bag/backpack

Baby lotion
Baby wash
Spray bottle
Bath sponge
Bath toys

This packing list really helped us get prepared for traveling with a baby. In order to calculate how many diapers and wipes you may need for traveling, I suggest keeping a log or tally sheet each time you use a diaper and wipe for the same amount of time you will be traveling. This helped us figure out exactly how many diapers/wipes we needed. Then add in at least 50% more diapers/wipes to make sure you have enough!

What other items would you recommend for this packing/travel list?

Longer Out than In

Have you ever thought about the moment in time when your baby hit the mark of being outside longer than they were inside? 

For most mothers, this mark is usually around 9 months or 40 weeks after the baby was born. For me, however, it was around the time my baby turned 8 months old.

We were pregnant with E for exactly 8 months to the day. We are unique in knowing this since we had invitro fertilization and know the exact day our embryo was fertilized. I'm going to say something here that most people think is crazy talk, but I thought our pregnancy went by really fast and I really really loved being pregnant!

I hear most moms say that their pregnancy seemed like it took forever, but the first 9 months of their baby's life just flew by. Well, I feel the same in regards to the latter part of that. E's first 8 months really flew by and I have to pinch myself daily to remind myself that she is no longer our tiny little newborn!

My pregnancy didn't seem to fly by simply because E arrived early, but the whole thing just didn't seem to take very long to us. Some parts of the pregnancy went by slow, but for the most part, it felt like it went by very fast.

I loved EVERYTHING about being pregnant. Unlike most pregnant women who complain about every little thing (believe me you hear about it all day long when your job is working with pregnant women), I actually enjoyed experiencing the common "side effects" of being pregnant. 

Yes, I was blessed to not have extreme nausea and vomiting like most women, but I did have the usual nausea, aches, pains, trouble bending over, frequent bathroom trips, trouble sleeping, trouble walking, trouble breathing, sciatic nerve pain, cramps, intense labor pains, etc. But all that is expected during pregnancy.

Every day I was pregnant I experienced a miracle in progress. And I still experience a miracle every day I wake up and look at E. She is a miracle. Childbirth is a miracle. Pregnancy is an absolute miracle and I cherished every moment during those 8 magical months.

While I am absolutely elated to have a baby, I still miss my pregnancy a lot. Again, I know most people consider that crazy talk, but my outlook on the whole experience was different than most I think. I laugh just thinking about the many times I had to ask my husband to put my socks on for me or to help me pick something up.

I think of that moment when I first held my daughter for the first time, and sobbed like a baby myself because of the miracle I now had in my arms. I am even grateful that I was able to experience intense contractions because each time I knew I was closer to meeting my baby girl. (But I was also very glad to finally have a working epidural at 8 cm!)

E, thank you for being my sweetheart. Thank you for those 8 months you spent inside of me showing me your love each time you kicked Mommy. Thank you for the months you have spent with us showing us your love each time you smile and laugh and look into our eyes.


Occasionally I discover a flood of emotions washing over me with regards to how grateful I am to have E in my life. 

The latest 'flood' occurred when I was putting her down for a nap and then getting her up from her nap. I remember just holding her in my arms and comforting her. 

As I looked down at her face I had the strongest feeling in my heart of gratitude. Gratitude for being entrusted with this baby, for the blessing of being her mother, for the blessing of experiencing motherhood and having E as my daughter.

I can’t begin to explain how full my heart felt in those small moments but I started crying while holding E. 

I just held her tight up to my chest and didn’t let go. 

I am so incredibly blessed that sometimes my heart feels like it will just burst with joy because of the happiness I feel to be E's mom. 

It’s still surreal sometimes to think that I am a mom, that I have a child. She is a part of me. 

I can’t describe the love I have for her. 

I think everyday of how precious life is and how precious our time is right now with little E. I try to soak in every day and every minute of every day because this time is slipping away all too fast. 

Before I know it E will be all grown up, and I will miss this precious time with her.


Soon after the birth of our first baby, a neighbor asked me if I thought motherhood was easier or harder than what I expected. 

I thought about it for a minute. I thought to myself in that brief moment. How DID I envision motherhood? Was what I was doing easier? Harder? 

I responded that for the most part, motherhood wasn’t easier or harder, but it was just as I expected it to be.

I told her that of course the first couple of weeks were difficult getting very little sleep and learning to feed a new baby, but other than that everything was as I expected. 

It’s not ‘hard’ for me to be a mother, I love it in every possible way.

But lots of new moms I think say that caring for a newborn was harder than what they thought it would be like, but for me I don’t feel that way. I think that it is this way for me because I spent so many years just thinking over and over again about being a mother and caring for a newborn that I was mentally prepared to do so when my turn came. 

When I think of motherhood, images come to my mind of children laughing, rocking a newborn to sleep in the middle of the night, wiping peanut butter and jelly off a toddler's face, placing a band aid on a fresh scrape. 

Most of those things are still to come for my own motherhood story, but in that moment I was looking at the long term expectations I had as a mother. Those are the things mothers do. We comfort our children. We play with them. We teach them. We cry with them and laugh with them.

Of course there are hard things mothers do. We do them everyday. But honestly, did we not expect that? All mothers expect to change diapers, clean messy faces, deal with tantrums, put away toys, get glasses of water in the middle of the night, cook meal after meal after meal. That is an expectation of motherhood. 

Too often we focus on the difficult parts of motherhood. I don't want to call them negatives because I do not see them as such. Every experience helps us grow, to learn. 

I choose to focus on the positives. I choose to expect great things from motherhood. Before I became a mother, I would dream of those exciting moments as a mother when you got to change your baby's first 'blowout'. And it made me kind of excited! 

I wanted to become a mother so badly, it hurt my heart to think I may never have that chance to change a 'blowout'. 

So yes, I expected to do all those things that may seem mundane or unpleasant. But I enjoy every diaper change, every messy face, every spoon thrown on the floor, every cry in the night, every scratch on my face from those tiny little fingers, every hair pull, every wardrobe change.

Because that's what I expected.

What did you expect? Were your expectations different once you became a mother?

The Moment I Became a Mother

I will never forget the moment I became a mother. Such strong emotions surged through my body when I realized I was finally a mother. I think back often on that tender moment when I saw my baby for the first time and was able to hold her. 

Here is how I described the experience in my journal:
 I warned my doctor and my nurse that I would likely become a ball baby when she came. Her head came out and I felt an immediate relief of pressure. Then the rest of her body came out very easily and she was born! Our little girl was born! 
I couldn’t believe it. She was immediately put up on my chest and I started to just ball and the tears came pouring out. A little baby was now on my chest, my little baby. She was crying and I couldn’t believe that this little spirit was mine! 
It was such a different feeling to have her inside of me and now to have her outside of me on my chest and to actually see her. I was just sobbing tears of joy at this point. It was an indescribable feeling to have my baby girl with me finally after the years of waiting for her to join our family. 
I cannot describe the intense emotions that were surging through my body. The tears were flowing from my eyes and I have never felt that kind of joy in my life before. For 8 months this baby was inside of me and while I had seen her on ultrasound, I hadn’t seen her in the flesh with my own eyes. 
To finally see a living being on me, with ten fingers and ten toes and hair and eyes, and ears and hands and legs, was a moment I will never forget. 
My life changed forever in that small moment.        
I kissed [my husband] and I could see tears in his eyes as well. My doctor and my nurse were telling me how well I did and what a good job I did. I got to keep her on my chest for a few minutes then they put her under the warmer to get her dried off and examine her. 
I sat up in the bed and they brought my baby over to me to hold. She was wrapped up and had a little hat on. I held her and started crying again. 
She was the most perfect baby! 
I couldn’t believe that I was actually holding our daughter! It was so surreal. It was the best moment of my life along with the day I married my husband. 
What an incredible experience to go through childbirth. I just couldn’t believe how fast everything had gone and how blessed I was to have such a smooth labor and delivery experience. Everything went perfectly and I couldn’t have asked for a better experience.

I cannot count the number of times I have read and re-read those words. It brings tears to my eyes every time I read about the moment I became a mother. I want my daughter to know how I felt the first time I saw her, held her, kissed her, snuggled her.

Do you remember what it felt like to become a mother? Have you recorded those thoughts and feelings? What about when you became a mother for the 2nd time, 3rd time, 4th time? What did it feel like the first time you held your child, blood-related or not. Did you adopt? How did it feel to know you were finally the mother of this child?

Write it down. Remember it. Read it. Cherish it. Even if it was years ago, write down anything you remember from those days. You will be grateful you did.

Leave a comment and share your story of the moment you became a mother.

August 2, 2011

Because I am a Mother

I have always thought that I would make a good mother. 

I don’t mean to boast or say that I am a better mother than others, but I have always thought that I would make a good mother. I’ve always felt like it was my calling in life to have children and to raise them. I’ve always felt like I was well prepared to be a mother since I babysat and nannied so much in my youth and have had such an intense love for my nieces and nephews and have enjoyed spending so much time with them. 

I have always been a patient and kind person, and have interacted with children very well. And I have always gravitated towards children and wanted to spend time with them almost more so than with adults at gatherings.
I love being a mother. 

I cannot describe the feelings of joy motherhood has brought into my life. I still love my nieces and nephews so so much and love spending time with them but now I get it. Before I became a mother, I used to tend my nieces and nephew and think about how much I loved them; how I would do anything for them; how I would sacrifice everything I had to make a better life for them. 

Then I would think about the mothers of those kids, and think if I loved these kids so intensely as their aunt, how much more intense a mother’s love would be and having a hard time comprehending that kind of love. 

Now I understand that love. 

The love a mother has for her child. The kind of love that fills your heart to its capacity so that your heart feels like it will burst because it cannot contain the amount of love you have for the little being that you hold in your arms.

 The heartache you feel as you realize the trials this child will have to go through throughout their life and how as much as you want to protect her from the world, she will need to experience these trials in order to grow and remain strong in today’s troubled society.

The kind of love that makes time stand still, that makes you soak in each small moment, because those small moments make up your world. 

The first time she smiles, coos, laughs, looks straight into your eyes, holds your finger with her tiny hand, yawns, and stops crying when you pick her up and rock her. 

Those moments pass all too quickly, but you realize that there is still so much more to come. 

Soon she will be crawling, walking, talking, running, reading, writing, scraping knees, running through sprinklers, riding bikes, playing hide-and-seek, playing dress-up, playing dolls, doing homework. And then one day far in the future she will be getting married to the love of her life, and then having her own children. 

And the circle will continue. She will finally understand the love I have for her as her mother, because she will have that same love for her children.

As I wipe away the tears from my eyes, I hear my baby babbling away in her crib as she wakes up from her nap. Suddenly I am back in reality, my own little world where I change diapers, play on the floor, and nurse my baby all day long. 

And I love it. 

Because I am a mother.

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