Saying goodbye: Dealing with a Miscarriage

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Yesterday May 14th was my due date for the baby I had lost in october. I am still grieving that loss even though I am currently 25 weeks pregnant with my rainbow baby(Just like I still grieve the loss of my child I lost 10 yrs ago on what would be his/her due date each march)

The topic of grieving a child that you have never met seems to be so taboo and people don’t talk about it that often. It’s something that you just move on from, especially if you had an early miscarriage. However, the truth is that for many women the moment that see that pink line they become a mother. That line is filled with all kinds of hopes and dreams. “who will my child look like?” “what will their personality be?” “i can’t wait to meet them.” etc.

No matter when you loose that child a part of you always seems missing because you have dreams that you were dashed to pieces. Personally I find comfort in my faith I believe in a resurrection and I believe that I will see my children again some day. That doesn’t take about the grief I have now and how much I miss them.

I have had people tell me that they are happy I conceived so soon after my loss because I have a news baby to be excited about. That hurts so much because it insinuates that the baby I am carrying now will replace the one I lost and that is not true. I will always love and miss the baby I never was able to meet.

That being said, it seems cruel that I don’t have anything to remember my child by. You can imagine my excitment when I was scrolling through instagram one day and stumbled across a page called Rachelle Isims. This beautiful page was full of miscarriage jewelry and stories from mothers like me who were grieving and wanted something to remember their babies by.

I immediately went to visit Rachelle Isims Etsy shop and placed my order. I can not wait to see what my necklace looks like and I can’t wait to be able to talk about my babies that are here and who aren’t here when people ask me about my piece and what it means.

example of some of the work from Rachelle Isms shop

                                example of some of the work from Rachelle Isms shop

To all those who have lost a child I am sorry and know its ok to grieve and ok to talk about it. I am listening and so are your friends. You can still talk about your hopes and dreams and what that child means to you .

 

World Breastfeeding Week 2015

I feel so thankful that this week will mark 23 months of my breastfeeding relationship with my son.

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If you would have told me when my son was born I would be doing it this long I would have called you crazy. I had gallbladder attacks beginning at 37 weeks and couldn’t have surgery until after baby was born. I had horrible attacks that my husband had to hold the trash can for me so I could feed my son. I was sick and learning to nurse a newborn, it was ROUGH.  I couldn’t get more than 2 oz out each time I pumped and I knew my surgery to remove my gallbladder was coming up. I  didn’t have enough milk stored up and I found out I wouldn’t be able to feed my son for at least two days after surgery thanks to the pain meds that were to be given to me during surgery.

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milk coma at 16 weeks

Five weeks after my precious son was born I was scheduled for surgery at 10am. I couldn’t eat or drink for 12 hours before surgery(which to a breastfeeding mother is pure torture.) my surgery didn’t happen until 4:30 in the afternoon. I fed my son who was going through cluster feeding all the way up until surgery time because I knew I wouldn’t be able to.

My anesthesiologist came in and saw my son, he mentioned  how cute he was. Through conversing we found out his wife just had a baby the same day. We then found out we both had the same doctor and gave birth at same hospital. He was about to leave for the day I was his last patient and he told me that he knows how difficult it can be breastfeeding. He told me he would leave precise instructions on what to give me so I would be able to breastfeed right after surgery. That was an answer to my prayer. Surgery went great and I was able to nurse my son when I got home(I did have enough milk pumped for at least two bottles so that was great)

Fast forward and the more I read about the benefits of breastfeeding pass the age of one I became determined to nurse until my son naturally weans. That can be anywhere between the age of 2-7-yrs.

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breastfeeding on top of the rock in NYC

And here I am almost two years later. I have learned so so much! This post isn’t to bash anyone that supplements part time or full time with formula. We as mothers do what we have to do. There is no problem when you’re in public and you feed you child from a bottle. That is more acceptable in our society.

Many may ask Why do we need a breastfeeding week? I see it everywhere now, so many people are ok with posting pics of it in social media. Well the truth is , in the U.S. The average age that women wean their child is 3 months(coincidence that the time frame coincides with the U.S. Maternity leave?  that is a whole other subject for a different day) for the rest of the world the average age of weaning is four years.

There is also the stigma that comes with nursing your child after one. Many feel if a child can ask for it they are too old. I’m sorry but how does your child ask for food? I know my son quickly will ask for a bapple(apple) as clear as he would ask for “milk milk”.  So should we stop giving our children snacks or dinner because they ask for? NO that would be ludicrious. Many mothers like the fact that their children can ask for milk, that way they know exactly what they want. It;s also a great tantrum stopper for those terrible twos.

The heath benefits alone are great.My son has only been sick three times and he was born during flu season, we’ve traveled by plane three time and he goes to a gymnastics class weekly and the library. I’m thankful that my breastmilk contains the antibiotics needed to help develop my sons immune system and helps shorten his colds IF he does get sick.

The fact is that when it comes to extended breastfeeding many women are shamed. Don’t believe me just look at the comment section under anything that features a mother breastfeeding a toddler, look at the many random post on social media from people shamming mothers for nursing in public uncovered.

This week is needed to encourage mothers to keep going, to encourage those on the fence about breastfeeding. This week helps them see they aren’t alone.

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A letter to my son

 

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The love that was placed into my heart the day you came into my life was something I had been waiting for since I was a young girl.

I always knew I wanted to marry my best friend and with the love we had for each other we would become parents one day

I didn’t know that we would have to wait eight years before this special love would unfold

Every day I watch you grow I am in awe of the way you look at the world, such innocence.

The innocence you have, I wish I could bottle up and keep forever.

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I know that as you grow you will not only be molded by the things I teach you

But you will be shaped but the things you see, hear, and sadly even the things I will try my hardest to shield you from

I can’t keep you a child forever

Those small hands exploring the world, the inquisitive oooooooh you say when you hear a new sound or word.

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I must do my best to mold you as gently as a potter does with clay.  Give you everything you will need to make it through each and every day

I make it my aim to be diligent in teaching you the ways of life. I’ve realized that in my imperfect moments there is also lessons to be taught

When I mess up you can learn by my mistakes and even if you don’t. I’ll be here as your shelter and loving place.

I’ll be here when the pain and grief I can no longer shield you from.

I’m you mother, your beacon of comfort when this world shows you its true self.

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A Day in the Life

As a Stay at home mom that lives in Florida, many people seem to think I spend my days hanging around the beach or pool, going to Disney or other amusement parks and sipping away on a Mai Tai all day. As fun as that sounds it isn’t me at all. Each day brings its own struggles and joys and I like taking life one day at a time. No two days are the same in my life. One day I may be at an amusement park, another I could be at home all day.

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To be honest I am not nearly as scheduled as I thought I would be as a mom. I really thought I would have a schedule for everything because that is how I was before having a child. I knew exactly where I was going to be and what time I would be there. Planning with a child is difficult because depending on their mood you may or may not do everything you had planned for the day. Some days I have everything together and Xander and I are dressed and out the door on a new adventure. Other days we have pajama day and we watch Disney movies and build forts.

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Going on a walk around the neighborhood is one of our favorite things to do each day. I like to point out the flowers and trees, while Xander is yelling beep beep for every car that passes. I try to make it a point to have a walk each day. These walks are something that we both look forward to,It gets us out the house, it’s a teaching moment and it calms me down after I have visited the grocery store for the 5th time this week because I forgot something on my list. This is almost a daily ritual of mine. I am so thankful that he usually goes with the flow when I have to make those short trips to grab the ingredients I need for dinner that evening.

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Cooking is a love of mine, I make sure to have dinner on the table for my husband by 7 each day. That is one ritual that I would say is scheduled in my home. Eating together as a family is a huge deal to me. Turn off the TV and the radio and sit down at the table and discuss the highs and lows of your day. That is something that my grandmother did with her family, my mother did with us and something I will continue to do with my family. This is the most important time of the day to me because it means my husband can sit down and have heart to heart talks with my son and I.He knows that around 6:00pm its time for us to start making dinner for dad. He loves being my little helper.

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Our son knows that when dad gets home to walk right over to his  high chair to eat. He knows when all the plates are cleared he needs to announce “MY BATH” because that is HIS time to spend with dad. I love to sneak in and hear the two of them playing, laughing and discussing algorithms and programming(my husband is determined to teach our son programming)This small ritual is something I cherish and love look in on, to see your son and husband bonding is a priceless gift that I am so appreciative of. Some days dinner may be takeout that my husband brings home because I’ve had a rough day but sitting at the table as a family is something we both insist on. It strengthens us as a couple and a family and we all look forward to those special moments at the end of our day.

The bittersweet reality of a day is that once it ends you can never get it back but if you had a bad day, there is joy in knowing a fresh day will start again soon. So what if I wasn’t able to have dinner done on time, that I didn’t get out of my pajamas all day, that I have cleaned up my living room twenty times and folded that laundry more times than I can count. To quote one of my favorite movies “After all, tomorrow is another day”(I am giving you the BIGGEST high five through the screen if you know what movie I am referencing) I remind myself on hectic days that I am not alone and there are mothers who are doing the same thing.

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No matter what we accomplish in the day, we shouldn’t put ourselves down. We can always feel great knowing that we did our best that day and we met the needs of our child. That’s what is important at the end of each day.

 

 

LIES the Real Tells

I have been a fan of The Real since they had their testing season last summer. I liked that it was a show with minorities that you don’t often get to see on television so I of course tuned in to support them. What I saw yesterday was ANYTHING but support. I was very saddened that they chose their platform to bash breastfeeding.

Now I may not choose to breastfeed my child until they are 6 years of age but the women who have: can.  You know why? THEIR BODY, THEIR BUSINESS. I am sadden that they didn’t have an expert on there to explain to them that a child can self wean between the ages of 2-7 yrs and that is NORMAL. I am sad that Tamera, who owns a company that is in place to help women UP their supply, feels that she is a breastfeeding advocate BUT only until a year of age.She also stated that if a child can ask for it and unbutton your shirt you should stop. I’m sure her son ask for food, does that mean that she won’t give it to him because he used his words and asked for it? Also I know children who weren’t breastfed and they try to pull down their mothers shirt(breastfeeding babies aren’t the only ones who get comfort from a mothers chest) Let’s not even get started with Tamar and her statement of milk going rancid after a certain time.

These women are entitled to their opinion however the platform that they have will already have some wine feel like they shouldn’t breastfeed or extended breasted. Minorities are already the LOWEST group to breasted their children(and african american women are least likely to do so) I was shocked the ones who were speaking down about it the most were two african american ladies.

I have said time and time again that education is key. Breastmilk and it’s benefits don’t stop at the age of one. The same vitamins and nutrients that a baby gets is the same that a toddler or CHILD gets. My son is almost 1 1/2 and when I was pregnant I thought I wouldn’t do it until 1 but after i educated myself I decided that I would let my child let me know when he was ready to quit. We live in a society where people would look at you crazy if you tried to drag your child and make them walk when they aren’t ready BUT when a child doesn’t feel like they are ready to wean and they are over the age of 1 people are told they should pump.

I am sorry but YOU pump if that is what YOU want to do, What someone else wants to do with THEIR body is THEIR business. I am sad that this segment was even tapped and shown. The same women that they are talking about here are the same women that help their business be successful as well as their show getting picked up. There are plenty of times where I am nursing my son as I watch their show. You better believe that I had something to say and I tweeted how I felt. I also wrote on the host walls on instagram.

Women shouldn’t be made to feel ashamed because of the parenting choices that they make. I find it ironic that the same day this posted a commercial from a formula company went viral and their message is great.

No matter what we choose at the end of the day we are all parents. We are just trying to do the best that we can. I would never try and shame these host that have breastfed for a shorter period than I have because that was THEIR choice and it worked for THEIR family.

If you are extended breastfeeding do it with PRIDE and if you are thinking about breastfeeding, educate yourself. See a lactation consultant, join a FB group that will support you and hang in there.

 

I encourage you to tell the ladies at the Real how you feel about their discussion on breastfeeding

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Tweet them @theRealDaytime