Thursday, January 30, 2014

7weeks of momhood

This morning I woke up early, woke up Leon, forced some breakfast on him (he was okay with it), put him back to sleep, and went to a 6:30am yoga class. It felt nice to move early in the morning. I was worried Leon would wake up and cry and mess with Tyler's morning routine, but he stayed asleep. 

Yesterday I was asked to do three different things by different people, but I could not oblige them because I have a newborn. Part of me felt guilty and torn, the other part of me was like "I have a newborn." One of these things I could have gotten paid for... But by the time Leon is fed and I've pumped and I get him to an imaginary baby sitter, pay them, do the thing, gas, etc. it's just not worth it to me. And even if it was, I'm just not ready to leave my 7 week old with anyone besides Tyler. Some people don't quite understand that, but that's ok. 

I used to think "oh I'll be such a laid back parent. My kid won't cry when I drop them off at the nursery." And now, I truly think this boy will be attached to me like a barnacle until he's at least 2. And I'm more than happy about it. He's currently mobied up and smacking on my collar bone. 

I got some new jeans. I'm getting a haircut on Saturday. And my car won't start. 

Friday, January 24, 2014

mom guilt

Well. I had pregnancy guilt for different reasons. The other day I asked Tyler if he was upset with me. He wasn't, and said "stop feeling guilty about everything." So I have random guilt for apparently no reasons.

Last night I got home from a wonderful time and wonderful Hazelnut Brown from Trailhead to find sleepy Tyler giving hungry Leon a bottle. For some reason I was just overcome with guilt for leaving him. For some reason I feel ok going to yoga because I'm only gone for about an hour and a half. But being gone for another hour, plus maybe enjoying myself a little too much. I don't know. Moms, you have this?

I'm glad I went and had lovely conversation with Allison. I wouldn't change it.

One thing we talked about was identity. A friend saw me the other day with Leon in the moby and she said, "Wow, I feel like I'm meeting another version of you, or a new you! You're a different Shannon now." And then a woman at yoga described the first time she left her children and felt like she wasn't herself. And I get that. But dumb people say, "Don't lose yourself when you have kids!" Well, I'm lost and that's ok.

I still want to read books and be a better yoga teacher and love my husband and build/grow my relationships. I still have goals. But my identity has changed. Not that it's built on having a child. But... anyway.

The dogs are gross and we don't like them. But we love them. Their hair is everywhere. I just swept, mopped, and tried to get hair off of the couches. Not easy. It's driving Tyler insane. I really do love them, and they've been out and about in the house for the last few days since it's so cold outside, hence why our house is so disgusting now.

My hours of wake and sleep are all wacky, so I want to eat lunch at 9:45am. That's annoying.

I wonder sometimes if having a hairless house will bring us more joy than taking our dogs for a walk in the spring time, and Leon having pets to pinch and pat. I just don't know.

It's cold.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

I have a funny story. I went to yoga last night and one of my favorite people was there. He is a nice guy, about my dad's age, and he just loves Tyler and I. Mostly Tyler. He messes with him on Facebook, and he's just a very loving person. So amidst lots of people (the classes are huge in January) asking how I'm doing and how the baby is doing and what is the baby's name, etc. this guy says rather loudly across the room, "Hey, Shannon, how many stitches did you get?" Shocked, and with a weird smile I let out a short laugh and said "... none.." as I looked away. About thirty seconds later he sort of crawled toward my mat and said, "... Shannon, I was talking about your finger, but I realize now that my question was a little out of context." He had read my facebook status about slicing my finger on a dried tomato on the side of a salsa jar. I laughed so hard. Then I told him I was glad he has clarified. I mean, PEOPLE ASK THAT QUESTION. But it's usually not nice men.

We've had some good nights lately. And good days. Today is a day where I'm still in PJs and haven't brushed my teeth. My phone is dead. And Leon is sleeping on me.

Tonight I'm going to go get a beer with my friend Allison. I haven't told Tyler that yet. But I think I need it, and he will certainly oblige that. I'm going to explode conversation. I might have to put my hand over my mouth. I'm quiet all day! Weird. Tyler read to Leon last night and he fell asleep. I need to do that.

One of my greatest fears is that all I will be able to talk about with my friends is sleep patterns and colors of baby poop and fussy times. I have a lot of goals. Maybe too many. One of them is to maintain normal adult conversation about things besides baby poop. I'll talk about my poop, but not baby poop :)

Well, the child stirs. Off I go.

Also, we've been watching Justified, and I have never wished so much that I was a hick. But the kind of hick that speaks eloquently, the way Raylen Givens does. We love that show.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

I have attended three yoga classes so far. The last two were two days in a row and I am quite sore. But slowly I'm getting it back.

It's sweet to have Tyler come home, take my sleeping baby away from me and say "aren't you going to yoga?" Well. I guess I am. I feel so revived afterward.

When you step away from something and look at it, everything makes so much more sense. It's been good to get away from teaching and practicing. I hear instruction a little differently, and do things for "the first time," rather than doing them before they're even instructed. For now.

People keep giving me cookies. Stop.

I'm going to donate 20oz. of breast milk to a study, and they're going to give me $100 in return. OK!

Tyler took my car to work since it snowed. So we're in for the day. That's ok. I don't mind it. Perhaps I'll make some more chocolate.

Tyler is throwing me a birthday party. We kind of just throw parties and say "Oh, this party is because of a birthday," or "this party is because..." and make up a reason. We just like to have parties. And rather than contemplating too much whether it would be strange to invite someone we don't know that well (thanks facebook) we just do it. And then people like your midwife come to your birthday party... and that is awesome! When in doubt, include everyone.

I wrote that yesterday. Also, thank you chic-fil-a for putting the calories on the menu. I ate there this morning at a "mommy and me" play date. Leon had a blast sleeping in the moby. And I thoroughly enjoying my 2,000 calorie meal. Good heavens. 

Leon is asleep on my lap. I've gotten about 32 text messages but my phone is across the room. There's just something about having a baby on your lap. Can't move. I have never slept better than I do when I snuggle my boy. I imagine that's how little girls sleep when they snuggle their dolls. 

K I'll be done now. 

He used to be really skinny and now he's just normal. But we call him fat.

Oh, lastly. Last night I said, "Ok, hang on, let me go brush my teeth with some detox clay." And Tyler said, "If I wasn't married to you, I'd hate you." Now that sounds extreme. We laughed hard. But it's so true. He can't stand people like me... who believe in clays and chiropractors and oils... but he really likes me. PS The Detox Clay WORKS. Probably better than Psyllium bread, Amanda. But man, it works. 

Thursday, January 16, 2014


Husbands. They are funny things. I can relate a little bit to the idea that my life is different and Tyler's is pretty much the same. But it's not really. 

The way I see it is that I gave up a job that paid bills and that I was burnt out on so that I could "nest" for three months :) and then do this mom thing. perhaps I view motherhood differently because of the way I view myself. I'll come back to that. 

Last night I moved the changing table right next to my side of the bed, and I took my old side back :( we had switched sides because that's just where my midwives dragged me after Leon was born. And it was also the side I had begged for earlier on in my pregnancy but Tyler refused it to me. He was quite attached to his side of the bed. Anyway, so he got it back. I changed all the diapers last night because Tyler has been tired and somewhat stressed with work lately while I sit at home with a broken back and adorable baby. Yes, it's hard, but I chose this. And I think I ultimately view being a stay at home mom (my specific role, not stay at home moms in general) as almost a lesser role since I don't make any money. I shouldn't. I know. But I just do. Mostly because sometimes the house is still messy and I don't cook and I haven't showered today. Most people would be like "what did you do all day?" And I'd be like "well the 2 hours I didn't have a baby on me, I blogged and made chocolate and wipes." All important things. 

Also though, I know that if Tyler could, he would be home with Leon and I. He is obsessed with our baby. Not that your husbands aren't obsessed with your kids - at all. I guess I just know that he'd be home if he could so my anger isn't really about my role vs. his. It's just bout decisions I have to make. And they terrify me. 

Vaccinations. Losing my milk supply. Leon getting sick. Leaving him when we go on a date for the first time. 

I just gave him a bottle today so we can start practicing for when I have to teach doubles or be gone for a bit. He did great. I started to tear up but then I got over it. I know it's a good thing. I just want him to only need me and not a plastic bottle that's probably putting toxins into his little baby body. Oh and it was terrifying. I was nervous. 

Oh. Have I mentioned that I don't trust... Anyone. It's not a good place to be. It's more scary. And I'm a freak. I apologize. And I overexaggerate a bit. But. Almost no one. 

I just made chocolate bars. I had to add sugar because honey doesn't cut it. Once they set, I'm going to sprinkle sea salt on them. Yerm

I also made wipes. I used 1/2 cup of hot water. 1-2tbs of coconut oil. 8 drops of lavender essential oil. Then a roll of viva paper towels cut in half. Put the 1/2 roll in the liquid to soak half of it up and then flip it over. I added a bit more water until it was totally soaked. Tada. Lovely bum wipes. Also once they're wet, the brown middle paper will slip right out. If you have the right size of canister you can use that so it looks cute. I use a ziplock. Beware that if they go unused in an unsealed container they will mold. 

I have to go back to teaching. Im a bit scared. I decided while I was away that I will only talk during yoga like I'd talk in real life. So I'm not going to say things that I hear other teachers say. I'm just going to say whatever Shannon would say. You'll hear things like "make space between your thoughts and your actions" and "as you work hard, where can you surrender," and yep, I've said that before. It makes sense. But I just want to be myself. I think thats a good goal. I'll be like, "you there! Soften your ugly scowl." And "listen to my instruction, dummy." 

My goal for myself in my practice is to just be a freaking expert at inversions. 

I will be running 10 miles a week by May. 

I have to learn to use the moby. 

Oh. I just ordered some clay. It's used for detoxing. You can drink it in water or use it on your skin. It's like miracle stuff. 

Also if you want to poop like a queen, get some psyllium and take it every day. 

I'll be done now. 

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Fear and anger - 5 weeks

I had a realization yesterday. People keep asking me how I'm doing. I say "much better. The first three weeks were hard. Terrible actually. I was just mad at my circumstances. But we're doing so much better now." Yesterday I was explaining myself to Alisha and telling her how scared I get about my baby. 

The other night my phone randomly started going off with an Amber Alert. I was so terrified. My heart was racing and I literally was afraid someone was going to steal Leon. I was so tired but I stared at him for a half hour while actual fear held onto my bones and I was frozen in bed. 

I have been angry with people who share opinions instead of just giving me a hug and tell me it will pass. Of course I want some opinions. But I'm so choosy. Which isn't fair, and I'm scary. I ask "What do I do?!" And really the answer I want is "rest. Feed your baby. Rest more." But then I get a list of infections I might have and I'm like, silently panicking in my mind. Going nuts. 

The realization is that my anger toward my "situation" (breast feeding, thrush, tongue tie, baby not latching, engorgement, scabby nipples, "abundant supply" also called "drowning your baby with milk and making them horribly gassy," lack of sleep, lack of muscle, body in pain, etc.) is really just fear. Oooooo, deep, right? But truly. I am just afraid that these things will never resolve (most of them have and we're doing awesome, but I'm thinking about the first 3 weeks) or that those people who just talk and don't hug are right. 

And did anyone read that funny blog post about parenting advice to get your baby to sleep? Worth the read. It's true. And that makes me mad. When I just want an answer and all I get are four different answers that contradict each other. Fear. That I'll pick the wrong one. Fear that there is no answer and it's going to hurt my baby. And then anger. 

Enough anger that I could not fake being okay. Enough that my face was stuck sad, too tired and scared to smile. Or even not make a sad face. 

Well Leon is 9.5 lbs now. He's latching. No signs of thrush. The abundant supply, we are working on. My midwife told me I could pump and donate it. The angry, selfish side of me says "no thanks. I'd rather be able to bend over and tie my shoe without having to change shirts." 

I think the fact that I've been entrusted to care for a child with a face the size of my palm just scares me. I didn't even take care of my gigapets well. Obviously Leon is much more important. Man I love him. 

Ok since I've processed all this stuff maybe my next post will be about... Ah, the possibilities are endless. Thanks for reading about my issues. 

Tyler put this on IG with the caption "Things change." 

Monday, January 13, 2014

This morning we napped hard. Sometimes I lose track of time and think that we've been sleeping for 5 hours when really it's just been two. Tyler's little sister came by to drop something off and I woke up to the doorbell ringing. I was majorly out of it. 

I went to La Leche League on Saturday (it's a breast feeding support group) and a mom of five who is currently tandem nursing her infant and 2 yr old said the only time that is hers is when she's in the shower. Even then, three of the kids are in the shower with her!! I only have one kid, but man, when I'm in the shower it's so hard for me to get out. Last night I called Tyler into the bathroom and said "tell me to get out of the shower" and he said no. So I stayed in there. Eventually something clicks and I turn the water off. The thought of five kids is utterly terrifying. So is 2. I'm lacking sleep and my hair has been wet for a while, but it's pretty sweet to lay here and type with the cutest baby in the world laying on me and dreaming. I woke him up from his nap because I missed him. 

My skin is so dry. My forearms feel like sand paper. Coconut oil is just not cutting it so I tried olive oil and I think it's working. 

Thrush has been an ongoing ordeal here. I had some pains while bfing and mentioned that to my midwife. She suspected yeast. So I started checking Leon's mouth for thrush. He has such a small amount that I thought it was milk tongue, but it's definitely thrush. It's still not bad, thankfully. I'm just trying to stay on top of it with Jack Newmans Cream and Nyastatin. 2 weeks ago when I thought this might be happening, I googled imaged thrush. Uhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh don't do that. Especially if you have a newborn. It's freaking disgusting and of course the absolute worst cases are pictured. I cried. One of the medicines to treat it is called Genetian Violet. It's purple and it stains. You paint your boob and your baby's mouth with it. Do you know how traumatizing that is? 

Things are less scary now. Occasionally if something goes wrong, like he just refuses to stay latched, I get all panicky and start googling. Stop that! Stop that googling! Sometimes it's helpful. But goodness. 

I get angry. Like, beyond reach. There is just so much stuff to think about with a baby that it's terrifying. 

But then you wake them up from their nap and put their little warm body on yours while they make stuttering little sheep noises and pull their legs up into a little ball, and all that really matters is that right now is that I keep him warm and full and clean and alive. And it's sweet because I can tell he likes me at least. Not sure if he loves me yet. But I know his faces and his cries. I love being his mom. 

I went to yoga last night. I was scared but my body is ok today. It felt so good and it was so sweet to see everyone. 

I'll be done now. 

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Coffee and baby stuff

Coffee is a weird thing to me. I don't like it that much, it makes me feel ill sometimes. And yet, the comfort of having it in my hand is worth the trouble to make it and the money to buy it. What is this? I'm addicted to warm mugs of liquid. I literally take 4 sips, hold it, then dump it. 

I made a list of things I'd like to happen on a regular basis. Not drinking coffee is one of them. Except for special occasions. Like, tomorrow my friend Anna (her husband married Tyler and I) is coming over and bringing me coffee. I will drink the shit out if it. 

Then I'll feel a little dizzy and dehydrated. 

I had echinacea tea this morning blended with coconut oil and it was good. 

I was just holding Leon (it hit me a few days ago we could have named him Leonard!!!) and he was asleep. So, being ever so careful to lay him down, I knocked my mug off the table with a pillow. He stayed asleep. Miracles happen every day. And Leon heard his first cuss word. Erps. 

Tyler went in late this morning so I got to sleep more. It was amazing. Incredible. I have the sweetest husband in the world. He won't be home until 9 tonight. That will be hard for me. 

The night time is still hard because my brain doesn't work at night. Leon will sleep over 3 hours if I let him and I'm already bad at math. So I look at the clock and I'm like oh it's just been 2 hours when it's been 4 and his poor butt is sitting in poop. I hate that. But I don't cry about it anymore. 

Anyway. I did some yoga yesterday. Wowee I am tight. And lack muscle. How do people with big boobs do things? I'm not used to it yet. 

Lastly. I have food guilt. It just crept up on me. I feel guilty about eating an enchilada or a paleo cookie. Anything but a smoothie or a salad and I'm like my day is ruined!!! What a bummer that is. Especially when people bring us enchiladas. I remember this guilt. I had it before I was pregnant. I'm going to pray it away. I thinks it's when I feel the impact of my food, like I'm dehydrated or bloated or feel heavy I just know my body isn't in balance and that just bothers me. I'm so easily bothered. Hyper sensitive. Hyper aware. 

Well. Snow. Please melt. 

Sunday, January 5, 2014

It gets better

People kept saying "it gets better." I told someone they should make a YouTube video about that. But I don't know if they got the joke. 

Well, it does. Slowly but surely. We are fast approaching 4 weeks of momhood/baby life and things are leveling and balancing out. 

Every day with the dogs is like watching The Jungle Book. 

I had an appt with my midwives. Leon had only gained a few ounces and that bummed me out. But they said sometimes babies get a lot longer rather than chunkier. He did get longer. Ah well. Anyhow. 

Sometimes I'll pass Leon off and take a shower. It's the only time I can really gather myself. The only time I'm not covered in milk. Today I envisioned the spring time and I had muscle and we were on a schedule and I was just rocking it. I just needed a change of vision to help me get out of the shower and go back at it. Sometimes it takes me a lot longer to psych myself out to turn the shower off and go back at it. Sometimes before I nurse (when it was a lot harder) Tyler would get Leon ready for me and I'd say "I just need like 30 seconds," and I'd just sit in bed and pray and get hyped to feed my kid. Its a mental game sometimes. 

I remembered a few things that I don't want to forget from the labor. Tyler told his version of the birth story and I had forgotten about this part. I labored on the toilet for a few contractions because I hoped to get the poop out in there. No go. But I decided to head back to the baby room and have Leon in there. I got up and made it to the edge of the bathroom and dropped like a weight to all fours with a contraction that put me over. I had been mid sentence, but then all I could get out was a roar. It was so intense. When Tyler retold this to our friends, I cried. 

Also, a midwife can tell from looking at your placenta how healthy you were, if you smoked, ate too much xyz, etc. In the midst of the bleeding out I was about to jokingly ask them if they could tell how many cigarettes I had a day by looking at the placenta but I was afraid they'd be like "this girl... She's so immature... She just witnessed a miracle and now she's bleeding to death and making jokes." So I didn't say anything. Lots of jokes came to my mind during labor but I was afraid to say them for fear of being immature. I'm such a weirdo. 

Lastly, I have lost every ounce of muscle. My thighs look like that of a woman on her way to the grave, and I was born with a bigger butt than I have right now. It is insane. A month of nursing in a bed will do that to you. I'm going to try to stand more tomorrow. And perhaps do a few sun salutations. Good heavens. My pants are even kind of saggy. Tyler laughs at my butt. It'll be back soon. Oh my gosh, holding plank or doing caturanga is just terrifying. I'll get it back. 

Church was canceled Sunday, but our pastor posted a 20 minute sermon, basically about finding our identity in Christ instead of lofty resolutions. Of course... But I am still so excited to have some goals. I set one a few months back to run 10 miles a week by May 2014. I haven't set any others. But that's what i'll do tomorrow during my 20 minute shower while my baby cries. 

Im kidding. I hate it when he cries. And I miss him when he takes long naps. Man, he's cute. 

Well. I'm going to do things before he wakes up and eats and I spend the rest of my night soaked in milk and pee and sweat. 

Like eat a cookie. 

Milk belly. Monkey. 

He loves Tyler. 

Sleep-eating my neck like a little Gollum.