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My little man is one month old today and I can’t believe it! Time is going by so fast & I wish I could slow it down!
I have 5 weeks of maternity leave left and I’m already dreading it being over. 🙁
Physically I feel great! Breastfeeding is causing me to have some stiffness/soreness in the shoulders and upper back, but I’m seeing the chiropractor weekly for adjustments and that is really helping (highly recommend)! Since Hollis is still sleeping in his basinet in our room, I do occasionally get sore in my lower abdomen from awkwardly reaching over and bringing Hollis into the bed with me to nurse.
Emotionally I still feel level headed the majority of the time. But I definitely have days where I feel more overwhelmed and on edge than others. Mostly towards the end of the day on days when I’ve had all three kids by myself. I get to feeling very over stimulated when the baby is crying, Kenley is asking the same question over and over again, A is singing a song from school, and the dog is whining…..it makes me much “snappier”.
I’ve also been feeling very torn and emotional/guilty about splitting my time with all the kids. Although Kenley & A have adjusted to Hollis really well and they love him so much, they’re both needing some extra 1:1 attention from mom & dad in the last week or so. Most days Kenley and A are still going to their baby sitter, I think keeping them in their normal routines has helped with the transition a whole lot! But, I also feel guilty for not keeping Kenley home and spending that extra time with her while I’m off work. A goes to school and wouldn’t be home anyways, so it’s easier for me to not feel guilty about that. A day or so a week I’ve been keeping Kenley home with me & Hollis, and if A has a snow day or school gets canceled due to sickness, we take advantage and usually everyone stays home. Truly the kids enjoy going to school/the sitter and on the days I do keep them home, they’re usually asking when they can go back to the sitter or school to play with their friends.
Even with my occasional guilty feelings about it, I’ve realized how much better our house functions when I’m home during the day and can get “house stuff” done….laundry, dishes, starting dinner, cleaning, etc. It’s really helped us be able to maximize our time with Kenley & A in the afternoons, and allow Blake & I to spend time together after the kids go to bed instead of having to use that time to catch up around the house. When I was postpartum with Kenley, one of the things I struggled with the most was missing Blake & our time together. He was right there…..but I missed him so much. If you’ve had kiddos, you probably know what I mean.
Most nights Hollis is giving me 3-4 hour stretches, but as he’s gone through growth spurts and belly issues we’ve had several nights the last 2 weeks that we’ve been nursing every 2 hours which means I only sleep for about 1.5 hours. Those nights, and the next day, are rough! On those nights, I’ve slacked off on us getting up at a consistent time the next morning. I had previously been making sure we were up by 5:40-6am since this is the time Hollis will have to be up when I’m working, and it allowed for me to see the kids & Blake before they left for the day. I started this mainly because I remember noticing a big shift in Kenley’s sleep when I went back to work & we were consistently getting up at the same time each day. Hollis & I are still always up by 7am, usually before.
As a reminder, they use interrupted sleep/sleep deprivation as a torture tactic. So, when I say I’m getting pretty good rest……I’m still freaking tired and it’s still taking its toll as time goes on. I’ve never been a “I don’t need much sleep” type of person anyways. If you have a new mom in your life (or a mom with kids that still don’t sleep through the night) remember to give her grace.
It seems as if my tiredness comes on random days….most of the time I feel fine, but then I’ll have a day where I am just so TIRED. On those days I try to catch a nap and usually go to bed a little earlier.
With both my pregnancies, I haven’t had many cravings……but I absolutely feel like I’m having breastfeeding cravings LOL! Breastfeeding makes you really hungry and thirsty anyway, but I’m craving specific things. I could currently eat my weight in peanut M&Ms and Cheddar & Sour Cream Ruffles. Especially the ruffles.
I’m having (and enjoying) the ruffles with my lunch almost daily, but I’m sure to pair them with protein, fat, & fiber too! As for the M&Ms, I wait to have them at the end of my lunch or dinner to reduce the blood sugar spike.
First, just as a reminder, this is not me recommending you to take this supplement regimen…it’s simply what I’ve chosen to do and I recommend talking with your provider before you implement any new supplements/vitamins especially if you’re breastfeeding.
Not much has changed here with my line up, but I’ve stopped taking a few doses of things. Honestly, I get burnt out with swallowing pills.
FullWell prenatal vitamin I take 4 capsules before bed, but sometimes I leave off the 4 at breakfast
Perfect Supplements Desiccated Liver I take 2 capsules in the morning still, but have eliminated the 2 at lunch
Perfect Supplements Vitamin D drops I do 5 drops directly onto my tongue each morning
Fun fact: if you’re taking 4000-6400 units daily, research has shown Vitamin D crosses into the breastmilk and you do not have to give your baby additional vitamin D 🙂
Just Thrive Probiotic I take 1 capsule every other day
Electrolyte Supreme (fruit punch flavor), LMNT (orange is my favorite flavor, its very similar to orange gatorade), or Re-Lyte (lemon-lime and strawberry lemonade flavors are my favorite, I definitely recommend trying the variety pack first) I do 1-2 packets per day to help with my hydration and breastmilk supply. The LMNT brand has the most salt taste to it, FYI
Code for Electrolyte Supreme: AUBREYFAM
MagSoothe I intend to do one of these each night before bed, but sometimes I forget. When you’re stressed (physically or emotionally) your body burns through magnesium & your levels become depleted pretty quickly. Lack of sleep, general life with a newborn, & breastfeeding causes stress on the body, so I know I need to boost up my magnesium. Plus it helps you sleep at night!
Perfect Supplements Unflavored Collagen I use 1-2 scoops of this in smoothies or hot chocolate…I’m not a coffee drinker, but I also use it in hot tea sometimes. Its truly unflavored and dissolves SO well in hot or cold beverages!
When I was “planning” for my postpartum period there were a few goals I set for myself/things I planned to do every day that I feel like are helping keep me #1 sane and #2 feel productive. Not much has changed here, but I added on #6
Keep in mind that these are goals and they do not happen every single day
- Make our bed and make A’s bed
Making the beds makes me automatically feel like the house is cleaner. I do this first thing in the mornings when I go around and open all the blinds in the house.
- Shower Daily
Okay, first of all…hygiene. It’s obviously best for your healing body (& certain parts that sustained trauma during birth) that they get washed every day. But, this is also key for me mentally. I feel so refreshed after a nice hot shower and it forces me to change into clothes for the day instead of staying in pajamas. I do not wash my hair every day because I don’t always have that kind of time. Livingproof dry shampoo really comes in clutch here.
- Put on Makeup
Some of you are rolling your eyes right now, and I get it…….but hear me out. I do this on days when I’m home alone with the kids, but I’ve found it’s especially helpful when we have visitors coming over. Now, I’m not one to get hung up on what people think of me, or what they say about me. BUT, I’ve noticed that I feelbetter when people are commenting “Vanda you look good” or “you don’t look tired” as opposed to someone saying “you don’t look like you feel good today” or “honey you look really tired”. People are a lot less likely to comment on how tired I look, if I put on a little makeup. So if taking 5mins (or less) to swipe on a little makeup makes me feel better…I’m going to take the time to do it, even if it means just swiping on some mascara (like today)
- 10 min power clean
In the mornings as I’m opening blinds and making beds (after blake & the big kids have left) I take 10 mins to straighten up the house. I put away any random things that aren’t in their place, clean up toys that the kids have left in the living room, or fold a load of laundry & start another.
- Get 6,000 steps
Its’s really easy to just sit on the couch and snuggle your newborn all day, especially when you have a winter-time delivery like I have both times. There are definitely days where I take advantage of all the snuggles, because I know they wont last, and I encourage you to do the same. But most days I still prioritize getting in as much NEAT movement as I can here in the house (since it’s cold outside and sick season, we don’t go many places). I fall short of this 6,000 step goal quite often, but being conscious of it keeps me from having super low step days (like less than 2,000).
- 1 load of laundry each day
With five people in the house, laundry really adds up. There’s nothing I hate more than spending an entire day doing laundry. Before we go to bed at night I try to put a load into the washer, I have the option to delay end so I’ll set it to finish about the time we get up, that way I can get it into the dryer in a timely manner LOL. I’ll find some point during the day to fold and put it away. Its so much less daunting of a task when there’s just one load to deal with.
These posts continue to be lengthier than I anticipated they would, but I hope some of that information is helpful/encouraging to some of you!! Helping plan and prepare for postpartum is one area I work with people on in my 1:1 sessions, if that interests you or you could use some help/guidance, get on the e-mail list here to get more information.