Mental Health, Postpartum and Beyond

Not Mine

Last week I had a difficult thought. My body is not my own.

I wake up every day and I get my daughter dressed and ready for the day. I feed her, clean the house, and play with her. Generally I’m cleaning while holding her or trying to keep her busy. I hold her until she sleeps and some days while she sleeps. I get bit, scratched, and have my attention demanded for all day. Then, I bathe her and help her to bed.

Then, my husband comes home or he’s already home, and now he wants to cuddle, be sexual, or in general just have some sort of physical contact. In general, all of those things are great. After a long day of having to care for someone else, it can make my skin crawl to even think about more physical contact at the end of the day.

I feel terrible writing it out. I’m a mom now. If my daughter or house (as in any cleaning to be done) needs something then I take care of them first. It should be easy to take care of my daughter and house all day and not feel used up at the end of the day. It’s not though. It can be draining and even violating to be constantly touched and needed by someone all day.

This is a feeling and thought that should be discussed more. It should also be normalized. I know I’m a good mom. I know I try my best every day. The days when I feel gross when someone touches me makes me feel like I’m a failure, a bad mom, and a bad wife.

I’m none of those things and if you’ve felt similarly to me, neither are you. It’s normal to feel used up after taking care of someone else all day. It’s also normal to want to not feel like sex is being expected at the end of a long day like that. If we’re cuddling or hugging (specifically my husband and I), is the butt and/or boob grab necessary?

Well, it’s okay. It’s okay if you’re feeling like you want to be in a no touch bubble. It’s okay if you don’t want to have sex. It’s okay and you’re doing good.

Remember to vocalize to your partner how you’re doing. Vocalize to a friend or family that some days you just feel exhausted of being touched all the time. A chat with your partner can help put you on a track to where you will feel sexual again. It will at least stop the unwanted grabs that instantly turn you off at least. A chat with a friend/family will help you get everything off your chest. They may even be able to related to you so you’ll know that you’re not alone in feeling like this.

To the parents feeling like their body doesn’t belong to them, you’re not alone and it’s okay. Things will get better and until they do, do not feel like you’re not good enough.

Did anyone you know warn you that you may experience any of these feelings? During my pregnancy I don’t think anyone gave me that warning. It was all just “you’re never going to sleep again” comments and general “your life will be so different”.

As always, let me know what you think! Would telling an expecting parent that these feelings may come be helpful or just scare them?

Thank you for stopping by and I will see you next time!

Advertisements
Updates

A Year in Marriage

My husband and I have known each other for over 10 years. We were friends for the longest time and in 2013 we started dating. In 2018 we got married and we also welcomed our little girl into this world. Today is our anniversary and I’m actually really excited.

I thought that maybe after so long of dating, that maybe this would just feel like any other anniversary. I was so wrong. While, of course, all our other anniversaries were special, this one feels more special to me. A whole year of marriage.

The first year of marriage is exciting. Sure, we were dating and living together for five years, but marriage made it different. It took me a whole year to finally get used to calling him my husband and not my boyfriend. We filed our taxes together instead of separately this year. While we had celebrated holidays before, this past year we were celebrating them for the first time being married.

All right, so the differences were really small. Honestly, the most it probably changed was the fact that we now checked married and not single on forms. Regardless, of all that, it felt so nice to wake up today and be able to celebrate a year of marriage.

We’re not perfect. We both mess up. We can say mean things to each other. We also support each other though. We understand when the other is struggling. We recognize that we can talk to each other. We are each other’s safe places. I love him and I know he loves me. I’m happy with how our relationship has grown and how we have gotten to where we are now.

Here is to a whole year of firsts that I got to have with my husband and best friend. I’m so excited for all the things in our future. I wouldn’t want to grow with anyone else.

Some thoughts

I just want to make sure everyone knows that as long as you’re in a healthy relationship, then it doesn’t matter if you’re married or not. Sure, I’m happy I’m married, but your relationship is also valid if you never want to get married.

Let me know what you think! I always love hearing your feedback and thoughts!

Pregnancy

Why Pregnancy Sucks

A lot of the time pregnancy is presented as a magical time. If you had a great and magical time while you were pregnant, then that’s great. You know what though? Pregnancy kind of sucks. It’s nine months of hormones and changes in your body. It can be confusing and a little bit scary. It kind of sounds like going through puberty all over again. So let’s take a look at some of the lower parts of pregnancy.

Swollen feet/ankles and hands

I had this in my third trimester. It was awful. I couldn’t wear certain shoes because they just didn’t fit and I couldn’t wear my wedding ring. Work was a bit annoying at the time as well. Typing was a bit more of a hassle with little chubby fingers. Walking on swollen feet hurts as well! Most of the time I just wanted to sit back, prop my feet up, beg my husband to please rub my feet (again), and just relax.

Morning Sickness and nausea

Does anyone know why it’s called morning sickness? Maybe it’s because you can feel more sick when you first wake up. I’m not too sure, but odds are you’re going to feel sick a lot. It will not be exclusively in the morning. Certain smells will probably make you feel sick and might even make you throw up. If you’re lucky like I was, then just hearing about a food would make you sick. I don’t know how this one happened. My husband kept talking about spaghetti, next thing I knew the word itself (more so the actual thought of the food) made me feel sick, and I ended up throwing up.
So magical.

Urination

The bathroom will probably be your best friend during your pregnancy. If you’re not throwing up (or thinking you’re going to throw up), then you’re probably peeing. You have to drink more water to take care of your body and your growing baby, but even without that extra intake of water, your hormones are causing blood to flow to the kidneys quicker, which fills your good old bladder up faster. Plus, later on your baby is basically sitting (and kicking and punching) your bladder.

Leg cramps

I’m not sure if this one is super common. I had the worst leg cramps though. Not throughout the day either. My leg cramps showed up in the middle of the night after I finally got to sleep. Have you ever been woken up because your calf is trying to murder you? It’s not pleasant.

Pain

Back pain, hip pain, pelvis pain, headaches. You name it. A growing belly puts a lot of strain on different parts of your body. I personally had a bunch of back pain and hip pain. It’s annoying to have a bunch of emotions and then pain in various parts of your body. Honestly, I cried once because my hips were bothering me so much. It wasn’t because it was a severe pain, just dull and it was there for so long. Like one of those dull headaches that never seem to leave.

Moodiness

Speaking of crying, you’re probably going to be pretty moody. For me, the first trimester was like a bad case of PMS, the second trimester was okay, but the third trimester was the worst. However, the third trimester might have been so bad because at that point I was done being pregnant. Please, get the child out of me, because I don’t want to be how I am anymore.

Alcohol

Congratulations if you don’t drink, this isn’t that bad for you. I however, enjoy a few glasses of wine. All right, a couple of times I’ve finished the whole bottle, that’s not what we’re talking about. After a long, hard day, it’s nice to be able to enjoy an alcoholic beverage to unwind. After a long, hard day of pregnancy, hopefully you have an endless supply of massages because I’m not quite sure how you unwind.

Dietary Restrictions

Oh, you think because you’re pregnant you can eat whatever you want? No girl. Overall, you want to be eating mainly healthy things. You don’t want to load your baby up with junk food constantly. Plus, some women get gestational diabetes as well, so they have to be extra careful with what they eat. Overall, I’m not saying you can’t splurge, but you can’t constantly use being pregnant as an excuse to eat unhealthy food.


There you have it, some of the lows of pregnancy. Sure, some women have super easy pregnancies, and while I slightly resent them for it, that’s so great for them. Some women have even more difficulties and problems with their pregnancies. I think for the most part, people tend to fall somewhere in the middle.

While pregnancy is a cool time, you’re growing a baby, that’s pretty awesome, don’t forget that it doesn’t have to be magical. If you don’t feel like a glowing beauty the whole time, then that’s fine. Don’t forget, it’s only nine months (even though the last trimester can feel longer) and at the end of it all, you’ll get a beautiful little baby.

Let me know what you guys think. Were your pregnancies hard, easy, or in the middle?

Postpartum and Beyond

What I Hate about my Pediatrician

Overall, I really like my pediatrician’s office. They have an entrance for healthy kids and an entrance for sick kids. The wait times seem to get longer and longer, but I come to expect that with all doctor’s offices, so I’m pretty forgiving on wait times. There are two things that come to mind when I think about why I dislike my pediatrician.

The first, is very minor. When we took Little P in for her first office visit the doctor we saw said that she had jaundice and recommended we bring her back in a couple of days to check on how it was progressing. We came back, saw a different doctor, who basically said he had no idea what the last person was talking about. So, definitely minor, but a big old waste of my time and that was frustrating. I guess I’d rather have them be safe than sorry.

The real reason that I have been incredibly frustrated with my pediatrician is that they constantly harp about Little P’s weight. It’s also how they go on about her weight. At our four month visit, Little P had put on five pounds since her two month visit. Personally, five pounds in two months isn’t that big of a deal to me. However, we weigh her (the nurses go on about how they love a bit of a chunky baby, it’s great) and then the doctor comes in. “Five pounds, momma, wow. Five pounds momma.”

My husband is here and my husband is also taking care of and feeding our daughter. Why is it “five pounds momma”? After a multitude of shocked “five pounds momma”, the doctor then proceeded to tell us that once a baby starts moving around the weight gain tends to slow down.

This visit has seriously stuck with me as a parent. My daughter was and is still in the normal weight range. We don’t overfeed her, she dramatically coughs and gags if we try and give her a bottle she doesn’t want. Plus, she’s happy and other than the “five pounds momma” has had no issues. No matter how many times I tell myself all those things though, I hear that stupid voice “five pounds momma, wow”. On a bad day, this memory makes me feel inadequate as a parent. On a good day, it’s just a dramatic pediatrician who was surprised at a hungry baby.

It may seem really small to some people. I’m sure it doesn’t bother my husband anymore, if it ever did at all. As a brand new mom though, it’s frustrating. Why was it only my fault that the baby had gained five pounds? Why was it a big deal she gained five pounds in two months? It wasn’t a week or even one month, it was two. How was I supposed to prevent that? Not feed her even though I knew she was hungry?

It made me think that doctors can have a very narrow view of what should and shouldn’t be happening with a baby. At our six month visit, Little P had only put on two pounds. The doctor, however, still seemed hung up on the previous visit’s weight gain. She mentioned again, “Oh, once a baby’s moving around the weight gain isn’t that big of a deal”, “Oh, was she breastfed? They tend to be bigger babies”. It’s frustrating and not productive. I’d rather the doctor give advice on weight loss at this point.

If the doctor is concerned about the weight, then that’s fine. Maybe it is a big deal and I just don’t get it. That’s the point when the doctor should give advice and next steps though. Not just say, “oh five pounds, wow mom”. I also, don’t want to be the only one getting spoken to. My husband made Little P too, he makes an effort to go to every single doctor visit, don’t exclude him from the conversation.

So, there you have it. The reason (well two) that I dislike my pediatrician. Overall, the positives outweigh the negatives, so I don’t see us switching pediatricians. It just kind of gives me a reason to feel like I should doubt myself. Remember to make sure you pick a pediatrician that works for you though! You’re going to have a relationship with them for a long time, so make sure you get someone who gives you a good experience and who is competent.

As always, let me know what you think! Do you have any doctor horror stories? Or even better, any “my doctor is the best” stories?

Updates

Six Month Update

Here we are at six months, sort of. You were born on August 29th, so I wasn’t quite sure what to do with this month, but I knew I wasn’t missing it (or postponing it). So here we are, a whole half year since you were born.

I am so incredibly proud and amazed at how far Little P has come. Thinking about each month and how she’s grown and changed baffles me, even more, this month than it did last month!

At this point, Little P is getting her two bottom teeth in. I can see them poking through. We’re so excited for them to come all the way out. I’m excited to see what she looks like. Does that seem strange? I know she’ll still look like herself, but she’s going to have some teeth now! How adorable.

She is reaching for everything. Everything. What is that? She doesn’t know, but she wants it, and she would like to try and eat it. Thank you very much. You wouldn’t think that someone constantly trying to grab things out of your hand, or staring at you while you eat, and then trying to grab the food out of your hands would be so cute, but it is.

She is refusing to hang out on her back all day now. I don’t blame her, it had to have gotten a bit boring, even for a baby. Now the days of me putting her down and returning to find her in the same spot are long gone. She hasn’t mastered crawling quite yet. However, she’s figured out that she can just roll herself over and over to move around. If she hasn’t done that, she’s at least rolled over onto her stomach and is probably eating the blanket she’s on.

She finally likes time with me too! I know, I know, she always liked time with me, but her little face lit up so much when she saw her dad (still lights up like that) and now I get those same awed looks!

Some things I want to remember: she’s 19 pounds, 27 inches long. She just opens up her mouth (before her bottle or during solid feedings) when she’s ready for food. She starts to laugh/smile during her “cries” when she knows she’s going to get what she wants. She loves her butterfly singing toy and specifically the cow on another singing toy.

Momma Update

This month (at least today) I’m feeling great and confident. My body feels good. I’m still at my pregnancy weight, but most of that weight is in my thighs and I’m happy with that. I’m working out, I’m working on things that interest me, and I’m feeling that vibe right now.

I didn’t realize how much I truly lost myself in just being a mom. That was my existence. Wake up, take care of anything Little P needs first and myself second. My daughter’s needs are still and always will be first, but now I understand I can take care of myself too. Wanna work out? Involve the little one. She gets so hype when I’m exercising and just looking at her smiling. The work out goes way better because my baby’s happiness hyped me up and she had a good time. Win-win.

I take advantage of the time I can spend away from Little P too though. I feel more comfortable telling my husband that I’m going to take a shower and don’t bother me until I’m done. If she gets fussy and I’m doing something without her, I can just talk to her and let her know I’m on my way and not just rush to her. This might be more of a developmental thing on her end, but I’m taking credit for it!

After Thoughts

This month I want you to realize that your baby has grown up so much, but they’re not the only one. You’ve grown so much too! Your partner has also grown so much! Celebrate the things you’re better at during this time too. Don’t forget you exist just because you have a little one in your life.

As always, let me know what you think!
How are you liking the new look? If you are a parent, did you lose yourself? Tell me about finding yourself again or how you never managed to lose yourself in the first place. Expecting mommas/dadas, tell me how you’re going to celebrate you!