Motherhood

Rowan’s 7 Month Update

I can’t believe he’s already 7 months old. I remember when we were deep in the “fourth trimester” and I didn’t think we’d ever get to this point. Well, here we are! I don’t have any stats unfortunately because we don’t have another well-check until 9 months so I guess we’ll just start with the next biggest update I have. We have teeth! Two of them to be exact. About a week after he turned six months his sleep started to really take a turn for the worse and he started fighting his bottle hard. This was my first indication, however, we didn’t actually get confirmation of teeth for about three weeks after that. It was a nightmare and if hell does exist I’m pretty sure I saw a glimpse of it. I know that sounds really dramatic but holy shit you guys, that was the worse three weeks we’ve had to date. Regardless, they’re through now so I’m crossing my fingers we can start getting back into our normal routine. He used to sleep through the night like a champ so I’m praying we can get back to that.

He hasn’t quite figured out crawling in the traditional sense but he’s a master at “leapfrog” crawling now. From what I’ve read it is totally possible for him to just leapfrog along until he starts walking and that would be totally fine. He’s getting pretty efficient with it though and we’ve already found him in some questionable places throughout our apartment. Needless to say we’ve made some purchases to try and keep him as contained as possible, however, the little monster is so into crawling and being mobile that he always finds a way! He NEEDS to be moving and dislikes being still so much that he’s refusing to sit up. Seriously. He bucks like a damn bronco when I try to put him in sitting position. The kid is a little crazy.

We’re making excellent progress with baby led weaning. He’s tried a plethora of different foods over the past month and let me tell you, pancake has been the most horrifying yet. He had some yesterday and it all managed to become a gooey ball of mess in his mouth and he didn’t quite know what to do with it. Thankfully after a few concerning seconds he managed to swallow it, which happened to be the first time we really saw him intentionally chew and swallow something of that magnitude. I really like the concept of baby led weaning but holy fuck can it be scary sometimes.

He’s starting to make a few more consonant sounds and I’m hearing them more frequently. We haven’t quite gotten anything like “dada” or “baba” yet but I am hearing “ga” and “la” quite a bit. As a paranoid first time mom this was something I was really stressing about (for no good reason really) but we’re finally getting there I think. I keep trying to get that “mama” out of him but I haven’t had much luck yet. I think he’s just annoyed with me at this point because I’m constantly in his face saying “mama.” I probably need to chill.

I believe that’s all I have to update on at the moment. Overall he’s doing great and again, I can’t believe he’s already 7 months old. This past month just flew by!

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Pregnancy

How My Body Has Changed Since Having A Baby

So I thought this would be an interesting topic to talk about. It all started with me, standing in my bathroom, looking at my noticeably wider hips. I started thinking, “what else has pregnancy and child birth changed about my body?” I guess being my first pregnancy I never really bothered to think about how my body would be different afterward. Surely things were going to change but I never really thought about how. Well, I’m almost 7 months postpartum I and now I know!

Let’s start with the obvious one that I’ve already briefly touched on; wider hips. My hips are noticeably wider since giving birth and it is very evident when I put on my pre-pregnancy jeans. They’re so tight! The funny thing is, I was wearing those jeans comfortably when I got pregnant and for quite sometime into my pregnancy. I currently weigh less than when I got pregnant and there’s no way in hell I’m comfortably fitting into those jeans anytime soon. On a similar note, my old tried and true brand of jeans, the brand that I could always turn to (American Eagle), looks horrendous on my body now. They just don’d fit the same. I’m not complaining though. I really like my new wide hips and I’ve found a new brand of jeans that works just fine.

Second, my acne has improved significantly. I am so happy about this I could literally cry. My acne has always been terrible and it’s been extremely frustrating and discouraging. Up until the day that I got pregnant I was dealing with painful and unsightly breakouts. I had a few breakouts during the first few months of postpartum but now that my hormones are mellowing out, I just don’t get them like I used to. Sure, I still get the occasional pimple but I can go days, maybe weeks now without seeing one. Before it was an everyday occurrence. I’m beyond grateful for this!

Spotting! I spot now. It’s the damnedest thing. Pre-pregnancy I experienced minimal spotting before my period but now I get it days in advance. It was such a foreign thing for me that I initially thought something was wrong and started Googling. My dumbass eventually put 2 and 2 together and figured it out but it’s definitely different to say the least. Not bad, just different. On a somewhat similar note, my periods are so light now. My periods have always been on the lighter side but this is on a whole new level. Again, I’m not complaining because if I could have it vanish forever I totally would! For now though I’ll just settle for light.

Lastly, I get sore hips. I started getting hip pain near the end of my third trimester. I was amazed it didn’t happen sooner but I knew it was totally normal and bound to happen so I embraced it the best I could. Unfortunately for me, my achy hips didn’t end with the pregnancy. It’s not bad pain but it’s definitely noticeable when I sit in certain positions for too long.

That’s all I’ve noticed thus far. I’m sure new things will start to pop up the deeper I get into postpartum. Or maybe not. I guess only time will tell. Maybe I’ll have new fun things to report on after baby #2! We’ll just have to wait and see.

 

Health & Fitness

Weight Loss Tips & Tricks

I’ve mentioned previously that I’ve had successful weight loss in the past. I had my son in July and now I’m back on the weight loss train once again in an attempt to better myself and prep for baby #2! Here are some things that I did/am doing that you yourself might find helpful if you too are on a weight loss journey. DISCLAIMER: I’m obviously not a doctor, dietician, or anything worth a damn for that matter. These are just a few things I do that make losing weight easier for myself!

1. Get a food scale

You’d be amazed at how skewed your idea of portion sizes can be and you may be unknowingly consuming unwanted extra calories. Weighing your food is the most accurate way to count your calories!

2. Stop drinking your calories

Drinks are wasted calories. They’re not filling and can often times take up a large percentage of your allotted calories for the day. Try sticking to coffee (black or with artificial sweetener), teas, and of course water.

3. Drink coffee

Coffee contains caffeine which is a stimulant. It suppresses your appetite and will help keep you from “bored” eating.

4. Drink more water

You should be drinking plenty of water throughout the day anyway but keeping up with your water intake can increase your metabolic rate ever so slightly and will help keep you feeling full.

5. Prioritize your calories

This may be kind of obvious but you’re gonna want to cut out any and all unnecessary calories. Find zero or lower calorie alternatives and cut out things that absolutely aren’t worth it. Just like the calorie dense drinks. For example, salad can be a good low calorie meal but when you use cream-based dressings it’s a total wash. Vinaigrette dressings typically have lower calories so making the switch is going to leave you with a lot more calories to work with throughout the day. It’s all about sacrifices people!

Health & Fitness

2 Week Keto Update

Today, I am 2 weeks into my keto diet and it has been going great! I’ve actually been enjoying it (as much as anyone can enjoy a diet) and I’m having really great success with it. Dare I say I’m finding it almost easy? At least in comparison to the calorie counting I was doing previously. Eating 1,600 calories on a strict, low-carb diet is much easier than eating 1,200 calories of whatever I want. I, of course, have the occasional craving but it’s so much more manageable and my desire to “bored” eat is much less. I’m not sure if that’s strictly a keto side effect but regardless, I’m not complaining. I’m still experiencing the occasional bout of fatigue when I do something strenuous so I may have to look into altering my diet slightly or supplementing a little more to make sure I’m getting sufficient nutrients. Aside from that though, I feel pretty good!

Starting weight: 174
Current weight: 167.6

Health & Fitness

I Started Keto! – Day 3 Update

I’ve decided that it’s time for me to get my ass in gear and lose this damn weight! Not only is it necessary for my own health but my husband and I have already discussed baby number 2 and that’s certainly not happening until I get healthier. I’ve been trying (read: half ass-ing) to lose weight for a few weeks now but I’m not seeing the pounds come off like they have in the past. In 2014 I lost a significant amount of weight just from diet and exercise alone. I used MyFitnessPal to count calories and, although it took some time, it worked. This time around, I’m not really interested in going that route. I’m finding calorie counting to be more and more mind-numbingly tedious the more I do it and I’m just not about that anymore. Sure, keto has it’s own tedious aspects but it’s tedious in a different way and I’m looking for change!

So to briefly explain keto, it is a low-carb/high fat diet which attempts to put your body into a state called ketosis. In this state, your body produces ketones which burn stored fat as opposed to the sugars you ingest. Now that’s a very simplistic explanation of the keto diet and if you’re interested in learning more then by all means, Google your little hearts out. I’ve been on the diet for 3 days now. I’m still using MyFitnessPal to track my carbs, fat, and protein and I’d say things are going great so far! Here’s a small update.

Starting weight: 174
Current weight: 171 (losing mostly water weight at this point)

Current feelings: I’m definitely feeling that “keto flu,” however, I really think it could be worse. So far I’ve only experienced some dizziness and fatigue as well as some mild stomach cramping yesterday. All in all I’d say I’m doing okay. I’m EXTREMELY optimistic about this journey. As of right now I have no issues sticking to this diet as it allows me to eat a ton of foods I couldn’t when I was only calorie counting and foods that I actually enjoy eating. I’m finding that I don’t have to make such drastic changes and I’m thrilled about that. As you can see from my stats above I’ve already lost about 3 pounds, however, I’m still in the “honeymoon” phase so the majority of that is water weight, which is fine. It’s all apart of the process.

Motherhood

Rowan’s 6 Month Update

So I’m a terrible person and I’m just now getting around to doing any kind of an update for Rowan post birth. We just had our 6 month appointment last Monday (1/29) and he weighed in at 16 lbs 6 oz, was 26.6 inches long, and had a head circumference of 43.8 cm. He’s currently sitting in the 27th, 49th, and 66th percentiles, respectively. We started baby led weaning just a few days before he turned 6 months and I would say it’s going well. He still doesn’t know quite what to think about solid foods yet but each day he gets a little more comfortable with the idea and is starting to get a pretty good grasp on it. So far he’s tried quite a few different foods including avocado, carrots, bananas, apples, and a few others. He is laughing a ton! It doesn’t take much effort these days to get him cracking up. Seriously, the kid thinks everything is so damn funny. For the most part he is sleeping through the night, however, we must be in the middle of something right now because his sleep has tanked the last few days. Maybe teething? Speaking of teething, he doesn’t have any teeth yet and I see no signs of them showing up any time soon. He sits pretty well unassisted. It’s not perfect yet by any means but he’s getting there. Lastly, and what I think is the biggest milestone hit thus far, is he’s crawling! He started getting up on his hands and knees around 5 1/2 months and a few days after he turned 6 months he started to actually move forward. It’s nuts! We definitely did not think he’d be crawling so soon but the little butthead is an overachiever I guess!

 

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Motherhood

Let’s Talk Baby Blues (My Experience)

If I had to pick one thing to share with an expecting mother it would be this. Baby blues. It exists and I feel like it doesn’t get talked about enough. Hell, I was smack dab in the middle of it before I even knew it was a thing. I was convinced I was heading straight for postpartum depression and I was terrified. I was either crying for no reason or I was blank and emotionless. I wanted nothing to do with other people and I actively avoided talking to family and friends. Everyday I would tell myself what a huge mistake I made and that I ruined my life, my body, and gave up all my freedoms. And for what? To burden myself by now having to care for this helpless creature? My brain instinctually kept trying to find a way to “fix” it. To make it all go away so I could be happy again but there was nothing. There wasn’t a single thing I could do at that point to change it and go back to the way things were before. I felt defeated and lost. On top of all of that, I didn’t feel connected to my baby. I felt what I can only assume was an instinctual need to care for and protect him but I couldn’t go beyond that. I would kiss him and tell him I loved him because I felt like that’s what I was supposed to do but it was all forced. None of it was authentic or genuine and that terrified me. Eventually as time went on I slowly started to come out of it. I began connecting with my baby and my relationship with him became more than just “keep him alive.” I could tell him I loved him and actually mean it. Things are good now but I’d be lying if I said those first few weeks weren’t rough.

I know all of this probably sounds really intense but I promise you, it is all 1,000% normal. It frustrates me to no end that “baby blues” is the name we’ve given this because it makes it sound so innocent. Baby blues is heavy shit and the name does a damn good job of dismissing that. Just remember that this is all temporary and I promise you will get to a point where you just want to squish your baby every single day because they’re so fucking cute and awesome! However, keep in mind that postpartum depression is also a very real thing and if you feel like things aren’t getting better, get help! Don’t fuck around with that shit. Society wants you to think that everything will be rainbows and butterflies after you give birth and for a lot of women, that’s not the case. It’s okay to not have that magical moment the first time you see your baby and it’s okay to feel like you’ve mentally been hit by a bus. For whatever reason, society wants to ignore the fact that things like baby blues and postpartum depression exist and that’s what’s not okay.