family

A Year In Review

Where do I begin? This entire year felt like a whirlwind that fly by way too fast.  My journey began when we decided we should start 'trying' to grow our little family.  What I didn't expect was that it was happening much sooner than later.  I was pretty lucky and fortunate to conceive easily and not get morning sickness or have any food aversions.  I felt pretty normal and sometimes even forgot that I had this precious life growing inside of me (call it preggo brain? jkjk). I even helped build our kitchen cabinets during our reno, minus all the heavy lifting 💪🏻.  I enjoyed being pregnant; watching my belly grow knowing that baby boy was growing strong and healthy and that my body was capable of keeping him safe.  I didn't really know what to expect when "it was time" - he's coming! I wasn't even sure if I was having contractions and sure enough, he arrived about 12 hours later and a week before his due date.  I was so nervous to meet him.  I knew I loved him sooo much and the time was finally here where I can hold him in my arms, snuggle and kiss him, and knowing that this is REAL.

Life with a newborn was definitely a learning process and parenting still is.  Who knew they pooped right after every feeding. I have never changed so many diapers in my life in those first few weeks.  As I was getting the hang of the routine of nursing, eating, napping, diaper changes ect, the sleep deprivation was setting in and I can say it was definitely a life adjustment.  Showers became the golden hour (or minutes lol) as I had time to myself and only myself.  Some days were definitely more difficult than others.  The routine became normal but when baby cries and fusses for no reason or cluster feeds every hour, it's so demanding on your body and it definitely took a toll on me. On those days, it made me question 'How am I supposed to be able to do this every day? How long does this last? Will it get better? Do I have a difficult baby?'  Those emotions running through my head didn't last very long because this is what I signed up for after all, right? jk. In all honesty, just knowing that we created this life, he is a part of me and my husband, he came from our love, and that his cute little face staring back at you and coo-ing makes it all worth it and all of those worries of doubt and questions on whether you will be a good mom or not, just disappear.  No mom is perfect. I realized that I don't need to look flawless and make mommy-life look easy and glamorous, but to be able to give the best of myself and providing my unconditional love would be enough.  

As the months flew by, Liam started hitting his milestones with rolling over, sitting up, crawling, to now standing on his own and even taking a few steps.  It was slightly creepy when you wake up from a nap to him sitting up on his own and looking at you like a stalker. The infamous sleep training was hard. It definitely pulls at your heart strings when he started to stand up in his crib crying out for you to pick him up. We initially did sleep training around 6 months and because he got sick from a cold and starting teething around 7-8 months, we held him and rocked him to sleep to comfort him.  That disturbed his sleep cycle for a little bit so we  started sleeping training all over again not too long ago.  I hated listening to him cry for so long but I knew in the long run it would benefit both of us if we could sleep through the night.   We did a combination of crying it out and revisiting with pats and comforting.  I sometimes wondered though, if by leaving him there to cry, 'Will it give him anxiety? Will it make him feel as if we don't care about him? or Will he fall asleep and forget any of that even happened?' I definitely felt like he had slight separation anxiety at first.  For a while, he would work himself up so much that he would throw up.  Sometimes sooner than later and he knew we would rush in to clean him and hold him. He was fine when we were in the room with him but as soon as he heard a sound when we were sneaking away, he would shoot up in bed and scream out bloody murder.  A few weeks in, he knows his bedtime routine now and is falling asleep easier and sleeping through the night again.  

There was a point in time where work was consuming me, mentally and physically - and it still does a little.  Little work life balance and working long hours left me even more exhausted than normal.   Liam definitely preferred my husband over me for a while as he is home nights to give him a bath and get him ready for bed when I'm stuck at work well after the pharmacy has closed.  He just wouldn't let me comfort him when he woke up in the middle of the night either.  I just felt like, WTF. How did I let work take over my life? How did I let work prioritize over my baby, my family? He doesn't even recognize me or want me?! I question how is a mother supposed to succeed in their career when the mentality now is, 'do more with less' and still be able to keep up with the demands, hit all the metrics, rise above all challenges, be more clinical, ect when we just don't have the man power that is needed to run a pharmacy efficiently and effectively. In order to "succeed",  I had to sacrifice time away from my family to get things done that otherwise can't be finished during open hours.  I've come to the realization that, my family is more important and if that means some aspects of corporate metrics don't meet goal, I've tried my best. I refuse let my family suffer as a result.  As long as I'm still providing quality care and consultations to my patients, that's all that matters to me.

Life definitely isn't the same as before; it doesn't even come close. It REALLY is sooooo much more. My life is full of love and laughter.  Full of little hands holding mine, drool all over my shoulder, and burps & poops for mommy.  Life gives you the unexpected but as long as we have each other, I'm ready to take on the world. 

        

I'm half a year old!

I can't believe my babes is 6 months today! I know I haven't posted in a while but I'm going to try to be more active on here. Where do I begin?! So much has happened these past few months. It's amazing and exciting to see how he has changed, learning and growing everyday.  

Sleep Training
We've been sleep training and so far he's gotten better at falling asleep on his own in his crib.  He does wake up in the middle of the night and can't quite soothe himself back to sleep yet but I'm sure he'll figure out how to do that eventually and I'll skip that 2 or 4am nursing. I'm guilty of holding him a little longer in my arms listening to him breath and smelling his sweet skin on mine.  Half of our friends co-sleep and half sleep train.  We were kind of a mixture of both. He definitely started off in his bassinet until he got too big and started rolling and outgrowing that. So he migrated into bed with us and was able to fall asleep on his own without being rocked to sleep.  Then it was time for sleep training in his own crib and room! Hubs definitely took the lead on this as I didn't have the heart to sit there and hear him cry and have him stare back at you screaming "why aren't you picking me up mama?!".  After a few weeks(?) or a month or so, he still whimpers but was able to fall asleep on his own after 30 min and as of last night, he just fell right asleep. I hope this lasts! haha but we shall see. He definitely gets spoiled with morning snuggles and naps with me.  Hubs was really into letting him cry it out with pat-pats and comforting but no picking him up.  When you hear him screaming in the middle of the night because pat-patting isn't working, you feel so helpless. I definitely snapped at him and said to just pick him up! Maybe my maternal instinct kicked in and hearing your baby cry and cry and cry is heartbreaking. I know it goes against what the "books" and "experts" say but I know my baby needs to be calmed down before we let him fend for himself so I'm gonna do what I feel like he needs and that's to be held for a few minutes.  He's still nursing at least once at night so to me I feel that once we wean him off the nighttime nursing, it'd be easier to train him to sleep through the night so he doesn't expect milk/boob/mom/cuddles.  I feel guilty because when I am gone all day to work my 12 hour shift, the only real time he has with me is that nighttime feed to connect and bond. I feel as if I neglected my baby because I see him bright and early when I drop him off and he's sleeping by the time I get home and he won't see me until the next day. Sometimes I wonder if he will forget who I am. <-- haha I know crazy mom thoughts but I wonder if he thinks I just forgot about him too since he doesn't physically see me when all I think about his him. 

Starting Baby Food
We tried oatmeal cereal around 5 months but was inconsistent in feeding him everyday but now that he's 6 months (OMG I still can't believe it), he should really start learning how to eat.  So I try to make an effort in introducing him to different foods every few days. I make the purees myself so I have the confidence of knowing what's going into my baby's food. So far we've tried applesauce, mangos, bananas, and sweet potatoes. Next on the menu will be peas, carrots, and avocados. I love the immersion blender. No need for a fancy baby magic bullet (although I really wanted to get one lol) but I figured an immersion blender would be more versatile for different uses rather than just making baby food alone. What I'm not really sure about is when do you start letting them eat puffs haha or like finely chopped up meats or more solid type of food versus purees? He has no teeth yet and I think they may be popping up shortly but when do you graduate onto the next step I guess? lol I don't think his appetite has grown significantly or that he's left hungry after nursing.  I just want to keep thinking he's my little baby and he's not ready for the next thing but I know he is and we just gotta help him learn to be a grown up haha. 

Skip the crawling and straight to walking?
He still has yet to sit up on his own without flopping over haha but does well with a boppy and bumbo.  He's definitely on the move since he covers his whole entire crib by tossing and turning and kicking. He lifts his butt up and pushes off so we know he wants to crawl. But what he's really loving right now is his walker.  He knows how to push backwards and forward with some help but he loves standing and being close by.  It's funny because when he 'walks' out of view, he lets out a yelp so I pop back over to him and he's all giggles and smiles.  I just can't believe he'll be super mobile soon and we'll need to start baby proofing the house. eeek!! 

Overall, he's such a good and happy baby. There are days he's a little crankier than others because he wants to nap or maybe he's teething? But it's just insane to see how much he's changed in such a few short weeks.  He follows you around the room, he can reach for  his toys (even though everything goes in his mouth - even his feet! haha), he can roll over, and he loves to chat especially early in the morning.  

Baby Boy is 2 Months!

I can't believe how fast time flew by. Liam is already 2 months old. waaahh. He's changing everyday and a little too fast for my liking. I'm definitely getting used to his routine though and can usually figure out what his little cries and eh eh means. If not, I go through the checklist: hungry, burp, dirty diaper, gassy, sleepy. lol figured it out by process of elimination. He definitely is showing his own little personality. Smiling and babbling and blowing little bubbles. Makes an ugly cry face when he's tired and fake cries when he wants to be held to sleep. Pouts his lips like "What did I do?" when he took a big poop. He's starting to kick his legs high into the air as if he want to roll over but I'm sure in a few more months he'll be a pro at that!

He's been sleeping a little more through the night but that doesn't mean that I am fully sleeping when he does. I'm also pumping after his feedings to make sure I have enough milk stocked up for when I go back to work. I can't believe my maternity leave is almost coming to an end in a few short weeks and I'm going to miss him so much when I'm back at work. My husband was joking that he's going to forget me. waaahh! Don't make me cry my eyes out now because I'm sure I'll tear up once or twice the first day I fully leave him. I don't know how I'll adjust but I'll be sure to blog about that once it comes. I can't say this entire time has been easy breezy but it's not as hard as I thought it'd be. Some days are easier than others. I struggle with sleep more than other days. I try to get as much done as I can during his naps like cleaning house, laundry, making dinner... it leaves little time to myself.  Me time = shower time. lol. I'm definitely going to start carving out time to exercise and get back in shape during my days left at home and start my social life back up with my girlfriends. Life doesn't end when you have a baby, it gets richer with memories and moments shared with friends and family.