We All Stand Together – #ISUPPORTYOU

Now I haven’t blogged in a while (I hope you noticed) and this was just the kind of thing I needed to be part of to get off my ass to blog again.  November 1st  – 7th 2014 is the inaugural week of the #ISUPPORTYOU Movement started by Suzanne Barston of Fearless Formula Feeder and ISY partner, Kim Simon, of Mama By The Bay

I have a real passion for mom to mom support, especially for new moms and the increased pressure to breastfeed. (And get it right)

See I was one of those mom’s that sat in the prenatal classes being told how everyone could breastfeed, and yes it might be tough but it will get easier. My husband and I made our minds up that it was the ONLY way to go. I was waaayyyy up there on my little pedestal looking down on the formula feeding mom’s convinced they had not tried hard enough or that they should be making more of an effort. My mom has a saying “Oh how the mighty have fallen”. I didn’t just fall off that judgemental pedestal I was perch on, I came crashing down, hit every-single-obstacle and was finally crushed by the chair.

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See my plan didn’t include 36 hours of induced labour followed by an emergency C-section. It also didn’t include the PPD I suffered and the fussy baby.

I can close my eyes and see my husband and I in the hospital desperately trying to get mini me latched on and her crying because she was hungry. A young nurse came in and offered me formula. Her kind eyes pleading for me to check my ego and feed my child. I didn’t see it that way.

“I was a formula fed baby,” she told me. “It doesn’t mean I would have been a doctor if I was breast fed.”

I heard her words but was still fogged up in my own world of how and what I should be doing. (The start of endless mama guilt)

So we finger fed her the formula to avoid potential nipple confusion so she would eat.

The next nurse was equally as kind with her advice and told me should she have another baby she would go straight to formula to save herself. Still. I persisted. What did these bitches know right?

So she taught me how to tube feed from the breast and advised me to get a breast pump.

Once I got home the wheels fell off. It was exhausting trying to breastfeed a baby with a tube taped to my breast giving her formula.  I also started pumping and that was equally discouraging as I was hardly producing anything, and I had no time to rest as I was constantly cleaning and disinfecting my equipment.

In my mind I was a failure. My nipples bled. I was tired exhausted. I was beginning to resent feeding this helpless little mini me. I was resenting being a mother and my PPD demons started growing. Still I persisted. I persisted until I just couldn’t anymore.

Deciding to bottle feed my child was a very humbling experience.

I had to put my pride deep in my pocket and do what was best for my mini me and for me (mentally).

You can see why I wanted to be part of the I SUPPORT YOU movement. I have been there. I have tried everything. I have walked in those uncomfortable tight shoes with 9 inch heels.

So dear mama who might happen on this post.

I support you! 

I support your decision to breastfeed and bottle feed.
I support your decision to tube and finger feed.
I support your decision to formula feed and to pump.
I support your decision to give cow’s milk, almond milk, soy and goat milk.
I support your right to breast feed in public and to bravely face the public while bottle feeding your baby.

Congratulations for taking whatever it takes to feed your baby. You are an excellent mom. You are doing a great job.

In the wise words of Sir Paul McCartney – We all stand together.

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Win Or Lose, Sink Or Swim
One Thing Is Certain We’ll Never Give In
Side By Side, Hand In Hand
We All Stand Together

Play The Game, Fight The Fight
But What’s The Point On A Beautiful Night?
Arm In Arm, Hand In Hand
We All Stand Together

Keeping Us Warm In The Night
La La La La
Walk In The Night
You’ll Get It Right

Win Or Lose, Sink Or Swim
One Thing Is Certain We’ll Never Give In
Side By Side, Hand In Hand
We All Stand Together

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When you say nothing at all

Sometimes the best thing you can do for a mom (new / experienced) is…5c9547ad47988f35c259a3b28c4fb51c

We don’t always need advise, or need to be told what we should, or could be doing different. There are times we just need to vent and have someone to take the time to hear what we have to say.

Moms spend so much time being something to everyone that they often feel forgotten.

And to the moms – share.
Share your feelings and concerns, your insecurities and your worries.
Open up to someone you trust and (here’s the important part) LET them be there for you
Let them hear what is on your heart.
You are important.Signaturekeep-calm-and-hug-mom-9

Yes, Sometimes I Lose my Shit!

Firstly apologizes to my biggest supporter and fan for the title.
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Bear with me on this one mom.

I am a huge supporter of gentle parenting, and I try the calm approach to situations as much as possible. But then there are times where I lose my shit. I am talking off the wall mad woman, screaming like a banshee lose it!

You can only have your food thrown back at you and be told NO so many times before you become “that type of mom”.
The one that has been pushed just a little to far.
The one in the store shouting at her child to “COME HERE NOW”.
The one that has taken to threaten her child within the inch of their life to get things done.
The one we all don’t want to be.
But the one we sometimes end up being cause after all we are only human.

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Yes I know – Shocker I said the “H” Word. Cause moms are supposed to rise above ANYTHING!

I suppose it’s because we think we should have a handle on this by now. But we don’t, and we never will cause these little people and the roles we play in their lives are evolving and changing EVERY-SINGLE-DAY.

Even on our trip we had our moments (albeit only one or two) where I could have clawed my husbands beating heart from his chest with my bare hands and dropped Mini Me into the ocean, all while cackling like a mad woman. Yes. I would say I had my moment(s).

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Next time you look at me, or any mom out there thinking she has it all figured out, try to remember she doesn’t.

She is tired, over worked, under appreciated and going through her own struggles.

She has a toddler turning down her home-made meals, a baby that is not sleeping, a husband that is driving her close to making love to a bottle of scotch and a laundry pile away from losing her own shit!

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Its okay.
It’s okay to be human.
It’s okay to admit you cant do it all.
It’s okay to not do it all and be all you can be.
I mean come on this is not the Army.

We don’t receive badges for getting our kid to finish a meal or attend ceremonies decorating us for bravery after we faced the grocery store alone with a toddler. You do not get debriefed after every traumatic encounter with your spouse or kid and there are no survival courses on how to get through this journey without screwing up.

So lose your shit once in a while.
And thats OKAY
Cause as I am learning and trying to remind myself
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Cold Season – YOU SUCK

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Every Time the weather changes – One or all three of us gets some sort of nasty infection / virus / cold / flu.

Some of us get it worse than others (Sorry love)

Trying to find the humor in it is hard, but possible. 🙂

Antibiotics and saline solution,
Kleenex and snot rags for nasal pollution.
Tickling throat and a Chest full of Goo,
Is this a sign of a cold or the flu?

Laundry needs folding there’s no sign sleep,
I’m so exhausted and wanting to weep.
It’s a long night just to get through,
Is this a sign of a cold or the flu?

When the fever breaks,
And my chest clears,
I am not going mad
I sigh a sigh of relief,
and then I don’t feel so bad!

Sung to the tune of “My Favorite Things”

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I am a Medicated Mom!

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There was recently a controversial segment on Anderson live called Moms & Medication – Mothers who take medication to be a better parent. I only knew about it because I happened to stumble on this blog and article “So you think I shouldn’t have had children”

What amazed me wasn’t the show or what was presented on Anderson Live, it was was the pure ignorance and hurtful comments people made, particularly towards mothers who suffer from depression.

When did people become so damn self-righteous.

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Let me tell you, I wanted to be a mom. What I didn’t want or ask for was the PPD. But I did and I got the help I needed, through medication. Did it make me a better mom and help me cope? It sure as hell did! AND I. AM. NOT. AFRAID. TO. SAY.SO!

Do you really think there weren’t moments when I thought that I should never have been a mom? That this precious gift would be better off with someone else beside me? I spent so many HOURS wondering why I couldn’t cope without my medication and doubting my abilities as a mom when everyone else seemed to be having it easy and coping WITHOUT medication.

I often wonder if I had known beforehand that I was going to suffer from PPD if I would have had a baby. Hard to go back and make that call, as I would not give up Miss “S” for the world.

I do know that it has affected my decision to have more even though I know that I could get the help quicker, and a lot of the guess work second time around would be out of the equation. PPD has really put off having another baby and honestly we are quite content with just one munchkin running wild in our lives. I also don’t think I could quiet handle the guilt of enjoying another baby more than I did Miss “S” in those early days. Moms deal with enough guilt as it is. Why add to it.

To any moms suffering from PPD or any form of mental illness don’t let small minded people with too much time on their hands stop you from getting the help you need. FACT 1 in 5 mothers suffer from PPD. That’s a lot more than I would have thought and the scary part is how many suffer in silence being told to suck it up and cope by the world.

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So in closing I would like to say God help those souls that find it their right to be judgmental and criticize moms that need medication to cope. May you or your loved ones never have to walk a mile in our shoes!

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Preparing to Travel

We have under 3 months to go until we embark on one of the bravest things I have done with my toddler.
An international trip to Greece.
I am not sure if I am stupid or incredibly brave.
It’s a 9h 50 min trip that might require sedation! (Or at least an alcoholic beverage for mom and dad)

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Toddlers on flights have been getting bad press lately

Some airlines want to do kid free zones
Some kick toddlers off because of tantrums
And then there was the toddler that got slapped by a complete stranger
Obviously these are extreme cases, but it plays on my mind!
Seriously I don’t want to be one of those moms making the evening news.

If you have read any of my blog, or know me personally, I did a piece about Miss “S” freaking out at a birthday party last September Bad Guest or Good Mom . We also had the same turn of events when we went to visit my husband’s Grandmother in Montreal at Christmas time. So you can kind of understand why I am slight VERY nervous.

Like one friend said “Prepare for the worst, and hope for the best”.
I still have 2 months, 2 weeks to go…….But who’s counting.

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Change is in the air

I am beginning to wonder if it has something to do with the seasons changing, the recent time change or maybe the new moon coming up.
Good Lord there has to be a reasonable explanation.

Its like the toddler gods can’t bear to see us without a struggle, hurdle and obstacle. Everything seems to be a drama and a flood of fake tears and whining this past week.

One minute you think you have it “all together”.
And the next thing BAM !
You go from hero to zero.

She wont pee on the toilet. (Update – Since drafting this she has thanks to her Grandma..aka BA! ) Meal times are back to being battle grounds – ask me what she wanted for dinner last night (and got) CAKE. Bath times are being met with protest. Night waking have been more often than not and so is the word NO accompanied by a loud stamp of the left foot hitting the ground.

Of course all of this can be extremely irritating, especially after a long day at work. And you start thinking (And that is the dangerous part)
“If she ate more at dinner, she wouldn’t be asking for more milk at bedtime (or any other time during the night)”
“If she didn’t have so much milk maybe her diaper wont be as wet and you wouldn’t be forced to change it somewhere between (seriously are you awake again) and (go the hell back to sleep).”

It’s so easy to over analyse and read into. And sometimes you just have to breathe. Steady yourself and roll with the punches. But I also know there is only so many punches a mom can take before she is waving the white flag.

Yes I can hear a collective “This to shall pass” coming!
And I know it will. And I know as hard as it is on me, it must be even harder on her.

SIGH….cease fire toddler gods….cease fire!

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