Category: Being Mom

Momma’s Must Haves

Momma's Must Haves

Since I’ve been a Momma for just over 8 weeks, I’m considering myself an expert. Just kidding. I am flying by the seat of my pants just like everyone else.  I’ve had a few friends recently get pregnant (congrats!!) and ask me what I would recommend goes on their registry. Here are my top 5:

1. WubbaNub: I am a big pacifier fan, and thankfully so is Mikey. I read about these on another blog and decided to use some of our gift card funds to pick up a few. Mikey loves them! It’s a soft animal literally attached to a Soothie pacifier. I’ve caught Mike holding the animal in his sleep and we have yet to lose one – which makes the price tag a little easier to swallow. The only other complaint is how to wash them, which I am still working out. FYI – Babies R Us has them for cheaper.

2. Summer Infant SwaddleMe: S. took the Dad’s class and was a swaddling expert. Me on the other hand … not so much. Especially when we were in the hospital for 5 days and exhausted. Welcome the SwaddleMe. They are soft cotton pre’made’ swaddles with velcro. So you put the baby in the ‘pouch’, fold one side over, then fold the other side over and velcro closed – ta da! Instant baby burrito. Mikey was a HUGE fan of these and it helped him relax and stop crying. He looked like a glow worm.

3. adan + anais Muslin Burpy Bib:  I am obsessed with adan + anais products. I got one of these burpy bibs as a hand me down and was really impressed with it’s size. Mikey has some impressive spit ups and somehow this burp cloth catches it every time. Plus, it has small hidden snaps so it can snap around his neck covering a large area – critical if you kid spits up like mine. The muslin washes great too.

4. adan + anais Muslin Swaddle Blankets:  Guess what! Prince George was photographed with one of these blankets! First of all, finding lightweight blankets for summer babies is damn near impossible. We got a few as gifts and they were heavy or fleecy. I passed these a few times at Buy Buy Baby, but couldn’t justify to price – until I couldn’t find anything else. Best. Purchase. Ever. I’m not sure why they are marketed as swaddle blankets. I use them as blankets, car seat cover, nursing cover (when I was nursing) and a changing pad. It’s HUGE and they wash great. Plus I love their prints.

5. Baby K’Tan: I will be the first to sing the praises of the ErgoBaby carrier, but it is hard to wear and work on a computer.  I liked the concept of a sling, but slings seem be confusing to put on and time consuming.  I did some research before I went back to work and found a lot of positive reviews of the Baby K’Tan. It’s really easy to put on after the third try and it has a variety of positions. Mikey’s favorite is the hug position, facing me.  I can quickly put the sling on and slide him in and within 5 minutes he is snoring and I am working uninterrupted. What else do I love? It is 2 pieces and the big one fits in the pocket of the other piece. AND when I am wearing it, that same pocket is available for his WubbaNub or house keys. Or cookies.

There’s a Bad Moon on the Right

Before I launch into my latest musings, I apologize for the long absence. It’s not like I am busy or anything! The DC metro area is in the middle of a killer heatwave and I am spending my time sweating in a dark room (keep the curtains closed!) eating take out (it’s too hot to turn on the stove!) with a fussy baby (no excuse for this one).

The other day I was rocking with my fussy baby and trying to conjure up a nursery rhyme or lullaby – and I couldn’t think of even one. Wait. I am lying. I know one verse of All the Pretty Little Horses. Since I am scared to death of horses, that song is a no go. Why don’t I know any of these songs? I had (and still do have) a cool mom. She was a younger mom and while other moms played kid friendly songs, I was rocking out to Madonna and Michael Jackson. I wouldn’t know a nursery rhyme if Mother Goose asked me herself.

Mikey does like the sound of my singing (he is the only one, which I totes understand), so I tried to sing a couple songs I knew and I couldn’t get through the first verse of any of my favorites – I couldn’t remember the lyrics! I blame my Catholic upbringing for this one. Like any good Catholic, I can recite the whole Mass in my sleep, as long as someone is reciting it with me. Left to my own devices I am lost. I can sing any Jay Z song – as long as I am singing with the radio.  Plus, Jay Z might not be appropriate for Mike in a few months. I can imagine his first word being ‘hustling’ and having to explain that one to our friends.

I am forever grateful for Pandora’s Rockabye Baby station – hit songs (why should I suffer?) set to classical music. I set it, sit and rock and sing along to the parts I do know. Which is funny when a Jammy Jam comes on like Summertime by Will Smith.

Some of Mike’s favorites? Take Me Out to the Ballgame, Three Birds by Bob Marley, Always Midnight by Pat Monahan and Mine by Taylor Swift. He’s got eclectic musical tastes already!

What do you sing your little one?

My Son Hates Breasts

Phew! I’m still a Mom! I keep waiting for Mike’s REAL Mom to come pick him up. But alas, that’s me and he is still here in all his snugly glory.  We had a huge win the other day at his 2 week appointment – he SURPASSED his birth weight an in less than a week we chunked him up from 7lbs 4 oz to 8lbs 12 oz. How did we do that? Not breastfeeding.

Here’s the thing. When companies claim things about their products that are not true, they get sued. I wish there was someone I could sue for marketing breastfeeding as this:

Beautiful right? Happy baby, happy mama? I am sure it is like this for a lot of mamas and babies (I do question her spit up and stain free white robe though). It was kinda like this for me in the hospital; minus a good latch, add incredibly sore nipples. Mike even tried to latch on my face while they were sewing me up! But hey, breastfeeding is natural right? We’ll work it out. In fact, at the hospital we learned how to supplement formula and Mike was in HEAVEN. Suddenly he didn’t have to work too hard for food. Which ironically, I don’t like to do either. I can’t be bothered with chicken bones or breaking open my own crabs.

Flash forward to our first night home. Here is what my breastfeeding experience looked like:

Back arching, mouth open, hands flaying, legs kicking … and mama crying. Every. Single. Time. The next day we went to our pediatrician to meet with the lactation consultant and Mike was still not gaining weight. But we worked on a scheduled plan, made an appointment for the next day with a different consultant and went home to try again. And by try, I mean cry for half an hour and give a bottle. Every. Single. Time.

The next day, we were back at the lactation consultant’s office and she noticed I had … wait for it … small nipples. Insert a flash of hope! The answer to my prayers! A quick fix! I got a nipple shield and Mike seemed moderately interested. Until we got home. 3 days and nights of screaming and crying to be followed by formula.

3 days later, we were BACK at the doctor’s office for a weight check and to see the lactation consultant. This time, I cried. She was so nice and caring about the situation. She made great points like breastfeeding has to be right for both mama and baby and clearly it wasn’t working for us. She also mentioned that it is to the point where Mike is so frustrated he freaks out at the sight of my breasts.  My breasts scare my son.

And Mike still wasn’t to his birth weight, so breastfeeding REALLY wasn’t working for him.  When Plan A doesn’t work, go to Plan B. When Plan B is a wash, go to Plan C.  Plan C for us was to be a formula family and supplement with a little pumped breast milk, which I call his multi-vitamin.

And guess what? No more tears. No more dreading feeding time. S. is able to take part in a stress free feeding experience. Sure there are a lot more bottles to wash and formula to buy (which is insanely expensive).

The strange thing is I am not sure why breastfeeding was so important to me. I always said if it works great, if not, that’s fine too. It’s about the baby being fed, not about me. But when it came down to it, it was heartbreaking that things weren’t working. A few days have gone by and a little Zoloft eased the blow (more on that later) and we are happy with the situation and snagging all the free formula samples we can.