I know I know all of you have been just sitting on the edge of your seats thinking of me and what I’m up to right?!
In my previous blog I shared how the last 9 months have been a whirlwind. My sweet Jackson was born August 16th of last year. Two months into being a mother of two I was diagnosed with postpartum anxiety and depression. My life was flipped upset down as I tried to navigate taking care of two little ones and healing myself from birth physically and mentally. My story and my journey with ppd/a is the fuel for my next journey and it’s just the start of something truly amazing.
One day when everything was going right I found myself sitting on my bathroom floor while Jackson slept and Annaleigh stood beside me. I sobbed and sobbed as her 2 1/2 year old self stood there and told me “Mama its ok.” I got the courage to call my husband and he immediately called everyone that was close to come help me. My sweet friend kk came and stayed with me the rest of the day. I just couldn’t seem to get my emotions under control and that comes with the hormonal changes after birth. After that I decided what I was experiencing and feeling was not normal. I set up an appointment with my doctor and got put on antidepressants.
When you have a baby it is such a beautiful thing! Of course its wild those first few days in the hospital but at least you have help just outside the door. On day 2 or 3 they wheel you out to your car in your granny panties and say adios! In a way you are just dropped off in this land we call motherhood and it can be scary and at times lonely. We all need people to lean on and go to during that time. This is where I want to come in.
My dream is to start a non-profit aimed to help the postpartum woman in several different capacities. I have so many ideas swirling in my brain but this is where it all starts.
This is a Postpartum basket to help assist in healing those first few weeks. It comes with Epsom salts, water bottle, flushable wipes, dry shampoo, witch hazel pads, nipple butter, perineal spray, pads, and breast pads. This will be the foot in the door to helping many women and be able to minister to them in the process. It will be filled with all kinds of information on healing after birth (natural and C-section) breastfeeding, lists of symptoms and signs of ppd/a and much more.
My mission is to help the postpartum woman feel seen and heard. It’s one of the most beautiful but challenging times. Each basket costs about $40 for me to put together. I plan to post ways to donate soon but I couldn’t wait to share any longer as I already have my first basket going to a pregnant mama that showed up on my doorstep!! Yes I said it my doorstep! God is amazing and more on that story later but for now I love you all and thanks for reading.
The Home Stretch
It’s officially only 3 more weeks until our precious baby Webb will be born and I no longer will be a mama of one. As the day quickly approaches you will find me bustling around the house preparing for babies arrival and dancing the day away with my very exuberant toddler. I don’t remember nesting this much last time. Maybe it was the fact that I worked up until the week I had Annaleigh or that I finished everything by 4 months pregnant. There have been so many differences between this pregnancy and my previous with AL. The physical stuff not so much as just being able to enjoy every minute of this pregnancy with my toddler and my husband. There have definitely still been hard days (this last week being one of them) but we always come out learning more about each other and growing closer as a family.
Mama of Two
The adjustment of going from taking care of one child to two is starting to really frighten me. I love AL so very much and I know she is going to adore having a sibling but I also know the first few weeks will be hard. Not being able to have mama’s full attention at all times is just not something I believe you can fully teach them without going through it themselves. We do try to do independent play a lot but to be honest AL is just like me as a child. I was always very social and wanted to be with someone at all times. She wants to brush her teeth with mama instead of play with toys while I get ready or help me cook in the kitchen instead of even watch a movie. She loves being around me and I love being around her. I pray that as this transition into sisterhood begins that she will love helping mama with baby. That she will feel ever so needed and loved by mama, daddy, and baby.
Labor and Birth
I didn’t fear my labor and birth last time. I was too preoccupied with chasing around 4 little ones that I nannied for and didn’t have time to fret. I also wasn’t as educated on all things birth as I am now. This go round I am able to sit down and relax but my mind does sometimes wander. AL’s birth wasn’t traumatic or anything there were just some things that happened that I rather not happen that way again. I have been to my new doctors office twice now and I am so confident having them support me but of course that fear sometimes still slips in. The what ifs of birth can be quite terrifying but I know in my heart that everything will work out just as God has planned it. I have seen several woman in my life go through some very traumatic births and their faith that has just overflowed through the whole thing encourages me that I’ve got this and God’s got this.
Bear with Me
These last few weeks I may be quite absent on social media and such. I love keeping in touch with everyone but it also can be quite overwhelming and right now I need to focus on my little family. I know that may sound selfish but I just know when I need to take a step back and become unbusy. That being said I know a lot of people that don’t understand this concept. I have had and seen many friendships break apart because someone couldn’t quite grasp what a woman goes through towards the end and after birth or they did grasp it but couldn’t understand why the person couldn’t just bounce back like them. Please don’t be that friend. I encourage you if you have a pregnant friend or a new mom friend please don’t give up on her. No matter how many children she has those last few months and once baby is here are rough. They still need your support and know that you are there waiting for them. Some woman are ready to go right after they pop baby out but some women it takes time so please be patient. I love you all and I can’t wait to share baby webb with you!
In the past week I have learned there is something about a baby that brings women together of all different cultures and beliefs. Pregnancy and birth are such beautiful experiences. The fact that a baby is formed in its mothers womb and that same womb protects it for 9 whole months! The baby is then birthed from its mother and from that moment on a woman is changed.
2 Cultures but the Same Love…Babies
This week I got to experience learning about two different cultures and how they celebrate pregnancy and birth. It was eye opening to see these women talk and share what they do in their countries of Vietnam and India.
My nail technician is from Vietnam. They do not do baby showers before the baby arrives. It is seen as bad luck. She did think getting baby supplies beforehand is very nice but not to do too soon. They also are very big about unmedicated births. She has had 4 children and her shortest labor was 2hrs! Personally I want to learn more from her.
The next woman I spoke with is from India. They do things similarly in that no gifts are to be brought until the baby is here. Their families are very involved and a part of the birthing experience. They celebrate pregnancy in many different ways, one in which I got to participate in. I celebrated my pregnancy by getting a beautiful piece of art to celebrate the life growing within me.
Here we tend to complain and compare. We only give the negative sides of pregnancy and social media doesn’t help at all. We set ourselves up with all of these expectations due to seeing how others handle it instead of connecting as women. Do not compare your pregnancy! It is beautiful in its own way and no two pregnancies are alike. You may gain 50lbs (yep I sure did with Annaleigh) or 30lbs. You may get stretch marks or not but who cares! Yes, pregnancy is hard and there will be many rough days but the good days outweigh the bad for sure. Pregnancy is a blessing and I am going to celebrate every minute of it.
Get a Henna!
Getting my henna was one of my absolute favorite parts of this pregnancy. The experience of it all was just wonderful. Watching Noureen create this piece of art with all the intricate details was fascinating.
Sometimes during pregnancy women start to feel down and upset about their quickly changing body…the stretch marks, weight gain, enlarged everything! This piece of artwork captured beautifully the life growing within me. I️t set the tone and focus for the next 4 weeks as we patiently await Baby Webbs arrival.