The Big #1

When I found out I was pregnant with Beanie, I started writing letters to earmark tales of my pregnancy with her and for something for her to look back on and read. I’ve (been trying to) email them to her via her email address, kind of an electronic baby book.

This was written the day I found out we were expecting Beanie.

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21 Jan 11

Dear Beanie:

Today is a huge day. Today, we found out that we are expecting you!

When Daddy and I moved in together, we decided we would eventually get married and start a family. We both agreed that we wanted kids. Being in the Coast Guard, I wanted to wait to start a family because I didn’t want to move you over and over again. After a few months ago, we decided we didn’t want to wait so we tried and tried. I was told that the likelihood of me getting pregnant was slim, due to a bout of cervical cancer.

Finally today, we learned we are pregnant with you and we couldn’t be more blessed. We definitely have an angel looking down on us. The look on your Daddy’s face, when I told him we were expecting a baby, it’s a look I’ll never forget. He is so overjoyed and full of emotion. He actually thought I was joking at first but then he saw the pregnancy test and we both knew, we were having a baby and we were so excited.

We told Mommom, Gammy, and Poppop about you. They couldn’t be more excited! We also told Aunt M, Uncle B and they can’t wait to have you play with Cousin T. Aunt T and Uncle S are also having a baby! They are due with a baby boy and he’ll share your birth year! We’re going to find out if you are a boy or a girl but that will have to wait until May. For the time being, I’m hoping and praying for stickiness and that you stay put. I want to meet you more than words can say. I already know you’re a fighter and you want to be here with us. I’m so excited 🙂

Love, Mama

PS. Always Remember, Mama Loves You

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One year ago yesterday, I remember being 4 days overdue and quite ready. I laying in bed and around 0715, the contractions started. They were manageable so I didn’t wake E up. He stayed home that day and we walked around everywhere we could think of. Imagine walking through the Disney Store at the mall while in labor. That was super fun 😉

I didn’t want to go to the hospital because I wanted to be med-free and I didn’t want to be chained to a bed so we walked and I stayed home until we hit the 17 hr mark. After that, I realized I needed a break. It was mostly back labor and that was what hurt the most.

17 hours after the first contraction, we were on our way to the hospital. We got there around 0030 (through the detours and the bumpiest road known to man) and I got to sit in Triage for another 9 hours. Around 0900, the midwife says “lets get you set up”. By this point I had been in labor for over 24 hrs (my water hadn’t broken but they considered me in “active labor”) and I broke down and asked for some medication. I had gotten a dose of Stadol while in Triage and dear barbara, that was funny enough that E still talks about it.

With the epidural started, I started to feel better. Enter the Pitocin.

I’ll save the boring details of the next 12 hours but suffice to say, there were emergencies and one big argument with the midwife and OB but finally I had a c-section.

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27 Sept 11

Dear Beanie:

Well, you are finally here and Daddy and I couldn’t be more excited. We never thought this day would come, that we would get to hold you and tell you how much we love you and how long we waited to meet you. You are definitely our miracle baby.

We went through the doctor appointments to make sure you were healthy and growing and thank Heanves, you were perfect looking. There were times you scared us but thanks to the modern day medical marvels, everything came back normal.

I labored through today and finally, at 9:55p, you were here, yelling and kicking and carrying on as though any pissed off woman would do. You are in the NICU and will be for a little while due to some complications (all from me, nothing to do with you) so itll be some time before I get to hold you and snuggle you and tell you how much I love you.

I can’t believe you are finally here, Beanie. I love you more than words can ever express and I can’t wait to hold you.

Love, Mama

PS. Always remember, Mama Loves You.

 

Love has nothing to do with what you are expecting to get, it’s what you are expected to give, which is everything.
– Katharine Hepburn

Cozy Coupe Fun

Beanie got a cozy coupe for her birthday — I think she likes it 🙂

August Recap

August brought some crazy days. Between work and visitors, The Coastie81 household was busy.

August brought us some visitors! 🙂

Aunt J and my cousin came to visit and they braved a train, bus, and car ride to get here. Beanie loved every minute of it!

We took Beanie to lunch (and the guests) to Jameson Tavern in Freeport, ME and the food was amazing.

E and I haven’t done much touristy stuff so I figured now was the time to take to see some sites and see what our town and the neighboring towns had to offer. Enter The Breakwater Lighthouse.

It was a little over a mile out to the actual light house and it was made of these massive chunks of rock pieced together, which made for a difficult trek but we made it.

 

 

 

 

Even after walking across all that rock with E pushing (and tossing and jolting) the stroller, Beanie managed to sleep. I’m not sure how she does it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

It was a good time. A long haul and we were all ready for a nap by the time we were done but it was nice to get out and walk.

The Breakwater Lighthouse, as taken from inside the harbor

Aunt J wanted to see whales but the prospect of driving back down to Portland wasn’t so exciting so we settled for lobsters.

Mainiacs take their lobstering VERY seriously

Their visit was all too short 😦

After their visit, we took Beanie to the Boston Aquarium. She’s never been to an aquarium before (why waste the money when she has the attention span of an ant? LOL) While we were there, we got to meet up with some great people and spend the day with some friends.

She dug it

To Brighten Your Day

Good Morning!

And not to be left out:

Lenny has an eye on things 😉

Defining Yourself

I live by a few simple rules.

The #1 rule: Never let anyone or anything else define you or who you want to be.

Unfortunately, that’s a tough thing for people because life happens. Life often gets in the way. People lose themselves in their marriages, their jobs, their relationships with others, their parenting, etc.

If I were asked what  I could or would say to someone who was having a rough time with redefining themselves, I’d ask them one question: At the end of the day, do you lay in bed and rehash your day and think “I’m exactly who and where I want to be?”

If the answer to that is NO, then I’d suggest taking a step back and figure out what you could do differently to become the person you want yourself to be.

Prior to Beanie, I would rethink my day through and think “this is where I’m supposed to be”.  I was married, I had a house, I loved my job, I thought I had it all. Then I got divorced and I couldn’t stop thinking “what did I do wrong?” I couldn’t stop overanalyzing.

One night, while out with my BFFs, they told me “it wasn’t that you did something wrong, it was that he wasn’t who you should be with.” And they were right. I kept trying to make myself believe that I was who I wanted to be but it was painfully obvious to everyone that I wasn’t with who I should have been with and at the end of the day, I wasn’t the person I wanted to be.

I’ve since transferred from where I was and I’m in a totally different place in my life. I balance between defining who I want to be as a member of the CG and who I want to be “in the real world.” Then I stumbled upon this picture:

If I could tell Beanie about my childhood, my early adult years, and my time in the CG, I would tell her “be the person you want to be.”

But it goes deeper than Beanie. I want to be the wife that my husband brags about. I want to be the mother that my kids adore and want to become just like. I want to be the best possible friend to my gals. I want it all. And right now, in my life, I believe I do.

I’ve spent quite a bit of QT with my bestie, talking her through some things and in talking to her about issues in the world, I’ve found out more about myself. It’s almost like “hey, take your own advice”. Like Beanie, this chick has saved my sanity. She has shown me that I need to take a step back and while life isn’t always the prettiest or greatest or easiest, it’s liveable at your own pace. Life will knock you on your ass. It will kick you in your non-existant balls. It will punch you in the face so many times, you think you need to buy a new one.

But that’s all ok. Because at the end of the day, you can crawl into bed, think about what you can change tomorrow, and then go forth and conquer. Sometimes you won’t conquer the world the next day but you’ll be a step closer. Even when the next day throws you two steps back, you pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and keep going. Other days, you don’t want to get out of bed and that’s ok too. However, always look at your mom/your BFF/your “person”, and know that they’re saying, even if not out loud:

Pretty, pretty please Don’t you ever, ever feel Like your less than perfect. Pretty, pretty please If you ever, ever feel Like your nothing You’re  perfect to me.

I have a handful of great friends that I would go to the ends of the earth for and I hope they all know that I think this about them ♥

No Title Necessary

When your mother asks, “Do you want a piece of advice?” it is a mere formality. It doesn’t matter if you answer yes or no. You’re going to get it anyway.
Erma Bombeck

This made my day.

It’s funny that I happened upon this link because I was having a conversation with a “soon-to-be-new mother” and this seemed to put it all in perspective for her.

She asked “Does childbirth hurt?”

Well — when I said it’s like pushing a St Bernard through the doggie door, I wasn’t lying. Your girl parts attempt to expand to a ridiculous measurement and then you basically act like you’re taking a massive shit in front of a room full of people (your husband included, which let me tell you, has never made me look more sexier to him…) You have contractions that feel like your innards are coming out through your belly button, you can’t eat or drink and you could very well shit yourself while pushing. Or you have a c-section, which you will be strapped down to a table with a curtain put around your chest and then they rearrange your innards (and take some out, depending on where things are laying) and they reenact a scene from Alien and pull this bloody creature from your abdomen. It’s a major surgery so yes, it hurts.

But 99.9% of the time, the end result is totally worth it.

I will say though, “they” are correct when they say you forget all about the pain and bullshit that you’ve just went through. As traumatic as my delivery was with Beanie, I don’t remember the contractions or the epidural screw ups or the pushing.

She then goes on about changing her entire life and plans for accommodate her child.

Umm, I can’t say that. I didn’t change a thing. Most people change their entire lives for their children. Their standing poker nights become a distant memory because OMG they have to be home all the time.

No. That’s so NOT the case here.

I made Beanie fit into my existing life. E and I still went out, we still talked to friends. We didn’t drop off the face of the earth simply because we had a baby. You’re preexisting life can still happen. Sure, you might have to carry a few extra items (diaper bag, wipes, diapers, baby, etc) but you don’t need to bring your life to All Stop simply because you have a baby. Let someone (you trust, obviously) watch them for 2 hours while you go out. Have date nights. Go to friends houses. Do things you did before you were pregnant. Life will start flying by and the last thing you want is to look back and remember all the friends and fun you used to have.

She said “how do I be a mom that does it all?”

You don’t.

You will feel like a failure at some point along the way. You were think that you are the biggest screw up ever because you will see other moms that are trying their best to be Martha Stewart. Let the laundry sit. Buy paper plates. Nothing beats getting down on the floor and playing with your child. Who cares if your house is messy? As long as you aren’t on an episode of Hoarders, it’s ok. Your kid won’t remember that you had spaghetti on paper plates? They’ll remember you being at their soccer games or their cheerleading competitions.

“How did you get Beanie to sleep?”

Well, this is an interesting one. Let me start by saying I absolutely, 110% believe that breast feeding is best. For most. For me, it was not. Beanie was a bigger baby at birth (8lb 4.6oz) and she was hungry. In the NICU, they were giving her 2oz of formula at a time. That wasn’t cutting it. When she cried the hungry cry, I fed her more. I started at 3 oz and then moved up from there. Yes, there was some wasted but I was willing to risk it. She would go to bed at 10p and sleep until 5:30a. That, to me, was sleeping through the night. By 7w old, she was sleeping from 9:30/10p until 6a and that thrilled me. Now, at 11.5m old, she will go to sleep betwen 6-8p and sleep until 6-9a.

I bring up the breast feeding comment because a lot of BF mamas don’t know exactly how much their babies are getting unless they pump. I can’t tell you how to make a BF baby sleep because I know they require more of the mothers. Hopefully you’re able to find a happy medium.

Bottom line: be your own person. Be the mother you want to be. Sure, you can draw on others experiences. Hell, I think I called my BFF K a million times when it came to feeding Beanie solids. I was lost. But now I’m more relaxed and I just roll with the punches. People want to tell me what I’m doing wrong or start a conversation with “When I was pregnant with my kid…” and they are met with a blank stare. Sure, you did your thing while you were pregnant but now it’s my turn to f*ck her up as I see fit. I choose not to put her in a bubble. Shit, just last night she bounced her face off the corner of a desk. She screamed and I picked her up, told her she was ok, gave her a toy, and she was happy again. No need for dramatics.

Don’t title yourself. Don’t put yourself in a category and put more stress on yourself. It’s not worth it and in the end, you will find that you aren’t helping your children any more or any less by trying to be SuperMom. And chances are, everyone else is looking at you and saying “That poor, pathetic woman.”

11 Yrs Later

We Will Never Forget.

rachelkern152

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