Parenting

10 Reasons I Love Being Pregnant Again

October 3, 2011

1) I know the joy at the end of the 9 months. After being so sick with SuperBoy, and then the fabulous fantastic meeting and getting to know him, the sickness with this little one pales in comparison. My mom used to tell me during pregnancy number 1 that it was “all worth it” and that I’d “forget all about the sickness and then pain of labor and delivery.” She was totally correct about the former, but probably a little off on the latter, as her own last l&d was 26 years ago ūüôā 2) Ice cream. Don’t tell my doula or midwife–but I love that I can indulge my sweet tooth more than during non-pregnancy (okay, they’re supportive). I’m usually a very fitness-conscious person. But when I’m feeling so sick, I definitely let it slide a bit. I’m supposed to consume many grams of dairy a day, and I try to ensure that a few times a week ice cream is in the mix. Thanks to a dear girlfriend and her adorable son who came over for lunch today, my ice cream supply has been replenished! 3) Renewed sense of order. I’m not to the nesting urgency stage yet, but I already am making lists and eyeballing what needs to be brought back in order around the house. Things that the insanity of an infant/toddler just made me blind to. Like the linen closet that is crammed with God-knows-what-sized sheets. Like the medicine cabinet that has 15 year old…

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Second Pregnancy with Morning Sickness

September 16, 2011

Yes, we’re expecting baby number 2 in mid-April! Needless to say we’re thrilled, excited, petrified, and happy that SuperBoy gets to be a big brother. The biggest challenge of being 10 weeks pregnant is that I have a bad case of the all-day morning sickness and a toddler who runs, plays, teethes, and wants to go outside all the time. I was very sick with SuperBoy the whole 9 months and am praying for reprieve by 12 weeks this time around! My midwife recommended a few different ways of coping with the extreme nausea. Please add ones that worked for you! 1) Food. All the time. Any time. Anything that sounds appealing. Protein. Ice cream. Whatever can stay down (not much). Ice cream does stay down better than other things, and bland does appear to be the order of seasoning at this point, much to my chagrin as I love my Thai and Persian food with some taste. 2) Acupressure & Acupuncture. I’m wearing Sea Bands on both wrists–which helped defer vomiting for a day–and considering acupuncture. Did this work for anyone else? 3) Ginger. I just loathe the taste of it, but have managed to suck down a few ginger drops. These and preggie pops just don’t taste very good to me. But I should really give them a large-dose try. 4) Vitamin B6. Haven’t done it yet. 5) Zofran. Only if absolutely necessary. I had to take this for a while with SuperBoy as I was being sick…

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Incorporating Your Spiritual Practice as a Parent

September 13, 2011

If you have a spiritual practice, one of the best parts of it is the gift of sharing it with your child. As he discovers the world, and is introduced to the various dimensions of it, he also discovers and learns about the spiritual side of things. We practice Roman Catholicism and it is so endearing to watch J blow kisses to crucifixes, make a kissing sound every time he hears “Jesus,” and to get excited about the beautiful icon he has in his room of the Blessed Virgin Mary and Baby Jesus. (The icon is a gift from our dear friend who passed away last year, the woman who shaped my sense of parenting and music as written about here.) He pages (and rips) through his picture Bible and sometimes behaves at mass. He also loves chewing on his wooden rosary. Whatever your spiritual practice, sharing it with your child can never come too early. As children grow older and wiser, they quickly ask the “why” behind the “how.” Starting to discuss spirituality young lays a good foundation for what’s to come. 1) Talk about it. Talk about God, nature, centeredness, whatever spirituality means to you. Solicit a response from ¬†your chosen terminology. Pair up the associations–Jesus and kissing, in J’s case, or nature and kissing the ground–associative links are crucial for¬†vocabulary and comprehension growth. 2) Read about it. We read the Bible aloud to J everyday. Does he understand any of it? Aside from the name “Jesus,” probably…

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3 Missing-Your-Child Tips When You Have to Travel

August 27, 2011

It’s been almost a week that I’ve been out here in New York helping my sister and her husband with the difficulty of their little girl being in the hospital. It has been a tough and learning experience to be away from my own child during this time. I’m so glad I have the support system back home such that my little J doesn’t appear to notice mama is gone. My parents and siblings have been wonderfully present during the day, and AA has been at work less. Our friends have been over with meals. J actually appears to have had the time of his life this past week! A few missing-your-child travel tips: 1) If you are still nursing, keep up the pumping. I came prepared to pump in the am and pm, as that has been J’s nursing schedule. I’m grateful my milk is still here and hope traveling home through TSA isn’t too terrible. It’s helped me stay connected mentally to my toddler and ensured neither of us had to quit cold turkey. (My sister’s baby came early.) 2) Look at photos and videos. I get daily media updates from my sister, mother, and husband. We decided it would might too tough for a 14 month-old to skype with mama, and be able to see me, but not touch me, especially as he hasn’t had any meltdowns or tantrums indicating he needs me. Therefore I get to see him, but he just hears my voice over the…

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3 Reasons Mothers Need Other Mother Friends

July 21, 2011

A girlfriend and her sweet little 7 month old came over the other day for a dip in the baby pool and to share lunch, time, and thoughts. It is so refreshing to connect with like-minded parents. We mothers, especially ones who are the primary caregivers for their children, need other mothers for support, inspiration, and shared laughter over the foibles of parenthood. 1) Support. Mother who stay home have unique challenges: being alone with an infant, baby, or toddler for extended periods of time punctuated by diapers and naps is simultaneously wonderful and difficult. Mother who work have unique challenges: the stresses of work expectations balanced with the stresses of feeding, cleaning, shopping, loving, and caring for family. We need other moms in our lives who have parallel journeys. Reach out to those high school girlfriends who’ve fallen by the wayside over the years. See if they have children too! What about your work girlfriends? Church/volunteer activity friends? Motherhood is too good to keep to oneself. 2) Inspiration. Since starting this blog project, I’ve found so many amazing mothers online who are also bloggers. They are a constant inspiration to me! Frugal Granola, Small Town Simplicity, Conversion Diary, Kitchen Stewardship, to name a few. I continue to be inspired by people I knew pre-blogging. Diapeepees, Keeping Up With the Joneses, All Things to Please, Kid Play Times, Farm Girl Fare, Meghan Orud Photography & Design, and JosefBig. Being a mother is simultaneously exhilarating and ¬†exhausting. It is both inspiring…

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Nursing Past Age One

July 8, 2011

I’ve written quite a bit on breastfeeding, starting with some basic thoughts, latching techniques, nipple pain, duration of early nursing sessions, and nursing from the get-go. But now that my little boy is just over 12 months old, and we still breastfeed. So what’s the norm now? This post is not aimed at a criticism of mother who don’t breastfeed, or stop at age one. Every mother has to figure out what’s best for her and her child, and no scientist, doctor, or other mother can judge that decision. Below are the factors that I’ve weighed when figuring out what’s best for my Little Sweet Pea and our family. 1) Health benefits. Dr. Sears discusses the health benefits to¬†extended breastfeeding. He puts it so well. The following is a lengthy excerpt from his website regarding breastfeeding beyond one year of age: Science is on your side.¬†I have read many medical journals with articles proving the long-term health benefits of breastfeeding. The incidence of many illnesses, both childhood and adult, are lowered by breastfeeding ¬†— diabetes, heart disease, and central nervous system degenerative disorders (such as multiple sclerosis) to name a few. The most fascinating studies show that the longer and more frequently a mom nurses her baby, the smarter her child is likely to become. The brain grows more during the first two years of life than any other time, nearly tripling in size from birth to two years of age. It’s clearly a crucial time for brain development, and…

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