The Grind

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Yesterday was my first day back at work and the first time for our “morning routine” or what I like to call the fly by the seat of our pants. I was up at 4 fed bub a little as he wasn’t that hungry but I wanted to make sure that he would just sleep with daddy. I then went for a run (3 miles J woo hoo!) in the freezing cold. Got back, showered and dressed in record time, about 25 minutes. I then made lunches for the BF and I, ate a banana and then went and laid with the family in bed until I had to leave. I fed James again, held him and cried that I would miss our daily babbles and reading together, then went off to work.

The Grandma stayed the night to watch James after the BF left for work. I feel so lucky and blessed to be able to have a relative care for him like her own while I am gone. I think it would be ten times harder to go back to work leaving him in the care of a stranger. The night before I got all the bottles ready, cleaned and sanitized my pump, planned my outfit and did everything I could to make the morning easier and it worked.  The Grandma knows the routine of James and what/where things are in the house, I knew he would not starve. But the idea of someone else being there for him when he cries, when he is hungry and when he needs love feels like…. Well, like I should be doing it. How do I know that she is doing everything like I want it? Is she reading to him? Is she comforting him the right way, as in the way I do? Is she doing everything like me? Chances are, no. I know that she will do the necessary things, give him tummy time, give him his vitamin D, change him with the right diapers and ointment, and feed him with his bottles and my milk. I also know that she loves him and would never hurt him. But she is a different person from me; I know that I have to give her the freedom to bond with my child in order for their relationship to work while mommy works.

But still, I couldn’t help but feel all day that I was not neglecting him, but I guess, letting him down.  I know we have bills to pay and my medical is needed, but what about the bond between my baby and I? Is this guild unnecessary? Am I just being selfish with just wanting me to provide for my baby? Are there other mothers out there that feel the way I do? I honestly don’t know, but I will continue to try and work until we can afford to have me not to. Luckily I am on out in the field (as my work goes) about 2.5 days a week and the rest I can work out of the home. It’s definitely not as bad as some moms have it and I praise you all for your courage to do it.

On the other hand, I must say that it was nice to socialize with others and talk about other things then the baby. And all in all, I like my Job its interesting (sometimes) and I get to meet a lot of people and see a lot of businesses in my hometown.

I guess we will see how this first week goes, then the first month and then for however long it needs to continue. Any other working moms out there with words of advice, please share and please let me know if this whip of mothers guilt gets easier…

 

PS

On the weight loss side, I am down 3 pounds and I think I owe it to gluten and dairy free diet (thanks Sis for turning me on to it)… I’ll talk more about it next time.

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What Happens in Vegas… Is Me Missing My Baby

Leaving him was one of the hardest things I had to do. The guilt I felt, the pull at my heart and my uncontrollable tears as we left him was hard to bare. The grandma drove us to the airport for our Vegas flight at 5 in the morning and he was asleep when we said goodbye. The whole night and day prior I didn’t let him go. I felt guilty because I knew he would miss us and that that would be the first time he felt that feeling, that he wouldn’t understand and that he wouldn’t know if we would be back. I knew he would be well taken care of and loved while we were gone for the 2 1/2 days, but still he is my baby.

To prepare for the trip I spent 2 weeks pumping 3-4 times extra a day to increase my milk supply and was able to save up 100 ounces of milk… way more then enough. I also made a list of emergency numbers, wrote out the trip and flight details, made detailed notes on his feeding, changing, and sleeping routines and even a list on his favorite activities  I wanted his schedule to be maintained as much as possible.

Although our trip was fun and amazing, we saw circus du soleil mystere, Carrot Top, went on the Pawn Stars tour, and walked and gambled a lot (the only trip I lost weight on, a pound actually .. the strip is over 4 miles long and we walked it several times a day), both the BF and I cried each night because James wasn’t there with us. We watched videos of him on our phone, looked at the pictures the grandma sent us of his happy face (this was so reassuring seeing him smile and knowing he was okay), and talked about the things James might love to see.

The BF and I did enjoy sleeping through the night and cuddling with each other in the morning and I must say, that I do feel closer to him now and more on the level of being in a relationship rather then in a partnership. Its so easy to forget the needs of the dad and of yourself when you spend 24 hours a day looking at the needs of your child. I forget that there is another person that needs my love and attention, that being good parents means being an example of a good, healthy and happy relationship and that the foundation of our family is based on the relationship between the BF and I. We took this trip to strengthen that foundation, to heal some cracks and give it some good attention that it needed to so we could be the best people for James.

One setback of this trip was pumping every 3 hours, although I skipped the pumping at night, I am on vacation after all .. but in the morning… wow or should I say jwoww. I set the alarm on my phone for every 3 hours and carried a handheld electric pump (seen below). I never thought that I would be pumping on a plane in my life but there I was, sitting on the airplane toilet seat lid, swishing around, pumping. I visited just about every bathroom on strip while the BF patiently waited (patiently waited gambling). Now, I did not save my milk. I know that you can bring it on the plane back with you despite the 3 oz requirement, breast milk is an exception. But I had no way to keep it cool plus I was having a alcoholic beverage every now and then (Vegas, remember). I was mainly pumping to keep my supply up and relive the engorgement, I do hear that there are places you can donate your milk and other places that can cool and ship your milk for you, but I deemed it unnecessary.

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When we came back home I couldn’t describe how excited I was to see him! I felt more excited about seeing him again then going on the trip! When the grandma picked us up he was asleep and I rode home sitting next to him, holding his hand, giving him kisses. He didn’t wake-up until we were home and I could tell that he was upset, mad, angry… some negative feeling because he would not look at me. He look everywhere else but at my face. I knew this could happen, so I just started feeding him and man, he ate forever! He still wouldn’t look at me but he smiled when I made goofy noises. We slept close together, all of us. I woke up to him hitting my face and I looked at him, he was smiling and started cooing… I guess he forgave me.

Would we do it again? Not for awhile, and the next vacation will definitely be with James. But I do believe that when I return to work next week that we will be fine, and that it would be easier on me as well.

So do you think babies can get mad? Even at 3 months? tell me your stories of how your baby acts mad and stories of when you first went back to work. I could use the encouragement.

Trips and Nips

This weekend we are leaving for Vegas for a couple of nights and I am terrified! I am so scared and nervous of leaving James that I can’t even look forward to the trip. Let me explain that this is something that the boyfriend and I do every year and this year we found it especially important as with the pregnancy and the first 3 months with James, we felt it was a good time to reconnect with each other. I strongly believe that happy parents equals happy babies and we (the BF and I) have been on edge lately… like we are on the verge of pissing each other off at any moment but haven’t quite pissed the other off enough to say or do anything about it. This will be a good break right before I go back to work and will allow the caregiver, the grandma , to connect and bond with James as she will also be the caregiver for when I go back to work.

Now, I find it extremely important to have a backup caregiver (besides the BF and me). The BF and I have already discussed who would care for James in the event that something were to happen to us and have made sure that person bonds with James on a regular basis. With that said, obviously the bub would need to be bottle fed while in the care of such person and let me tell you… the bottle is hell! Bubs would not latch, he would cry and fuss and it’s horrible to watch! He won’t take a pacifier either, pretty sure he just doesn’t like plastic in his mouth… no matter what the shape or size, a plastic nipple is a plastic nipple.

After spending hundreds of dollars on every bottle under the sun, the one that he seems to like the most is the Medela nipples. I think because they are small and closely match me. So now that we found the bottle that we like, we began getting him use to the feeling of it. I would stick my pinky in the nipple and just let him play with it in his mouth, he never latched this way but I think it helped. The bf would give him the warmed expressed milk bottle and tried every position, sitting, standing, facing each other, in the car seat, in the swing on the couch. What it turns out that he likes is being walked around and bounced. Now… James is a big boy… 14 pounds and walking, bouncing and feeding him like this is hard! I was holding the BF’s arm up at one point following them around the house. But he eventually latched and when he did a huge load was lifted off my back… I can go to work! I can leave the house for more than a couple of hours! He is not going to starve!

Although I prefer breastfeeding, like everything else, its best to always have a backup and I am so proud of the Bubs for taking a bottle.

I’d like to hear about stories of when you first left your little one or if you haven’t. Any advice for me before I leave? I have been pumping like I’m BP oil and have over 100 ounces already (more than enough for 2.5 days, but better safe than sorry).

On a side note… Down 3 pounds! Running 3 miles in the am in 27 mins…. I haven’t been doing it regularly but plan on doing it more when we get back from the trip.