The last post I shared on this blog was 2015. The year we found out we were pregnant. I can still remember it like it was yesterday. Everyday before I start my day I would buy a Caramel Macchiato from Starbucks ( I don’t do it any longer cuz it’s about $5 a cup which would add up $150 a month & $1800 a year…. Ludicrous!!! ). Anyway the coffee started to taste real bad; I would think, “Oh, that place must have done it wrong,” or, “They don’t do it as well.” I would return another day and try another Starbucks to see if I was right. Tasted bad again. So it got me thinking…Am I pregnant? My husband and I hastily bought a $1 store pregnancy test. When I took the test, it had 1 dark pink line and 1 very very very very light pink line on the bottom. The box said TWO pink lines = PREGNANT and I only see 1 Pink, so we were like, “Ok, I’m not preggy.” Wrong!!!!! Because no matter how light that damn 2nd line is, if it’s there, it means you are pregnant. Honestly, I was shocked and a tad bit upset because it meant we couldn’t go through with our Iceland trip that was planned for summer of 2016; then I said to myself, “You are crazy to think that way.” I was. I guess I was just nervous. It has always been just B and I for 11 years. The thought of being a mother never crossed my mind. I had no clue how to be good mother. But when the time comes, natural instincts take over and you just do it. B and I never really talked about starting a family until 2015, 7 years after we got married. Then it happened. We were very thankful that we were able to bring Maisey into this world. I was 35 years old when I got pregnant, and 36 when I gave birth. My pregnancy was quite an enjoyable experience and I really tried to relish every moment of it. It’s amazing the type of drastic changes your body is able to endure. What probably helped was the fact that we were living in Los Angeles at the time and the weather in southern California is as advertised. The weather is usually perfect. Everyday single day. I don’t think I would have enjoyed the pregnancy as much if I had to deal with the cold weather of the east coast.
For this post I want to share MY honest experiences as a mom from giving birth to now (Maisey is almost 3).
After we found out we were pregnant, we also found out that we didn’t have really good insurance. I have always been either a Travel Physical Therapist ( 12 weeks assignment at a time) or Per Diem. We always buy our own medical insurance, so I at least had the opportunity to switch my insurance; but the new plan would not take affect until the new year because we found out that we were pregnant in October 2015. I actually had to go to one of those Planned Parenthood clinics. We found one in Beverly Hills and we went to see if we could get an Ultrasound. (which by the way was really cool because I think we only paid $75 OUT OF POCKET for it.) The Dr there did a Vaginal Ultrasound since I was still pretty early in my journey and they couldn’t do regular stomach one. The physician must have been at least 90 years old because he was so slow to take the picture of Maisey, while finding her inside my belly. He eventually got one though! Lol…
I hear so many stories of people losing their babies in the first 3 months. Very tragic and I hear about it more and more frequently. I don’t know what I would have done if it that happened to us. To all the mothers that have ever lost a child, I have no words that could encompass my sympathy for you, nor do I want to pretend I can imagine what it would feel like, because no one could ever imagine that type of pain; but I think you ALL are so strong and brave to be able to stand back up and get moving again after something like that. I know their are many factors that can contribute to losing a baby during pregnancy, but there are some things we did research during our pregnancy and thought I would share them in case anyone had any questions. This is not a complete list of “Things to do and not do,” but rather just some things we paid a bit closer attention to.
List of food I DID NOT eat due to listeria bacteria ( *Listeria infection during pregnancy can cause miscarriage, stillbirth, uterine infection and preterm delivery.)
1. Deli meats
2. Bean sprouts
3. Some Cheeses ( I avoided ALL dairy)
I only craved bread and vegan butter for the first 2 months. And freshly squeezed orange juice. After the 1st trimester, I started craving saltier foods, and for the last trimester, (which was B’s favorite) all I wanted was the greasy, fatty meats and a lot of cheesy stuff. The only scary part for me was really the 1st trimester in regards of food. I was still very careful with everything I did. One crazy thing I did do at the end of my pregnancy, was go with my Husband to a music video he was shooting out in the desert, in the middle of hot ass June. I was already 8 months at the time.
I was very nervous about being in labor. I hear so many crazy stories about giving birth. Especially about the pain. But when it was time to go to the hospital, I was ready. All that fear about pain went out the window. I just wanted her to safely be out of my belly so we could meet her. I was in labor for about 15 hours and didn’t ask for the epidural until the 15th hour. Not because the contractions were hurting me, it was when those damn nurses would check to see how dilated I was. I feel like they were inserting their whole entire hand. That was pretty painful. So I asked for the needle, which quite surprisingly didn’t hurt considering the size of that thing. Shortly after that, she was ready to come out. I pushed for 3 hours and she was trying her best to come out, but her head was too big and my canal was too small. The doctor monitored my vitals as well as Maisey’s the entire time, just to make sure neither of us was undergoing too much stress. We reached a point when the doctor gave us 3 choices. We could keep pushing a little more and risk the chance of me ripping completely, she could use forceps, or she could cut me open. We opted for the latter. We had an Emergency C-Section. Keep in mind, all of this is happening and I haven’t eaten a single thing. (except for those damn ice chips which I wanted to throw across the room) So, after the doctor cuts me open, I can feel her struggling a bit. I could feel my body shifting left and right as the doc pulled and tugged. The doc had to call in another nurse to actually reach back “down there” and push Maisey back in while the doc pulled her out. Her head was actually caught!! My husband could see the doc on her knees on the operating table while the other nurse was helping her to, “unstuck,” Maisey. After what seemed like a blurry, intense and chaotic few minutes in the ER, Maisey’s voice cut through and we heard her cry for the first time. I was so tired that I wanted to pass out, but the tears just flowed. After I got to briefly meet her, I was down for the count. That was the best 2 days of my life. Being in that little room, just the three of us. I wish our other family could be there with us, but it was also an incredibly unforgettable and intimate experience with just us 3. I gave birth on a holiday weekend (July 4th weekend) so even the hospital was running on minimal staff. It was pretty quiet and empty in there. I feel forever cherish that moment. But the pain after surgery is a whole different topic. That, I DO NOT MISS. I made the mistake of trying to be a supermom and didn’t ask for pain medicine or any initial help from the nurses or my husband. Big mistake. Take the pain meds to manage the pain, recover and let the people around you help. I miss having her in my belly; it’s in incredible experience to feel another human life growing inside you. I especially miss feeling her when she used to punch and kick.
Myths Vs Facts
These list below are my very OWN experiences. So don’t compare yourself with mine and take them with a grain of salt.
1. Breastfeeding is easy and Breastmilk is best for your child .
Yes I do agree with it being the best for your child. But unfortunately I had no milk. She latched on quick but I know I had none. She tried to drink or suck her hardest but nothing was coming out. And the sucky part was that St. Joseph Hospital in Burbank was extremely PRO breast feeding, but I feel like they could have pushed us harder for that. But no one was there to help us or assist us with how to stimulate the lactation process. It may have been due to the holiday weekend, but a lactation specialist did come in on the day we were scheduled to leave, but I feel like she had no real advice since we were already giving Maison formula.
2. Formula is Bad and you should always try to breastfeed.
6. Being a mother is the hardest JOB ever!
Let’s define job:
“job which requires the employee to, work regular hours for a consistent wage that often exceeds the provisions of applicable minimum wage legislation. A job that produces a living wage.”
I don’t consider being a mother a job. It’s an obligation yes but even then some don’t even feel like they are obligated to do that or else why would we have so many kids in foster care. And if this really was a job, then those people would be fired. Well maybe some are in jail or other places, but I don’t say it’s a job. It is hard. It is tough. It’s tough to be mother. Its a challenge. It’s fun. It’s amazing. But I don’t think it’s a job. I have a job so I know what a job is, and being a mother feels totally different. But do I sometimes need a break from being mommy? Hell Yeah! And going to work gives me that break. Thank God my work is easy and I don’t get stressed with what I do. But being a mother is not a job. It is exhausting, challenging, fun, amazing, a blessing, but it’s not a job.
I love being a mother, but some days I would reminisce about my life pre-Maisey to see If could remember how it felt; how life without Maisey felt. But honestly, it’s hard to even remember that feeling after almost 3 years. I guess I don’t miss it that much. I love having her. It’s so much fun to see how she grown everyday. How she learns. How she plays. What trips me out is when I see things in her that remind me of myself. Now that’s an awesome mom moment; when your kid starts to remind you of yourself.