Thursday, January 23, 2014

The working momma

First off, I have to say that living in Canada we are SO LUCKY to be able to take 1 year off of maternity leave and receive a partial income for that year.  For mommas in the U.S and other countries that aren't so fortunate, I have no idea how you cope! 

Returning to work has been hard!  I find the demands of my job and the demands of being a mother (and a wife) so difficult to juggle.  Time for myself is very limited and sleep is basically unheard of. 

Being a nursing mother returning to work has been easier than I anticipated.  About 2 weeks into work I didn't pump on my lunch (I wasn't pumping for milk to feed...but just to comfort as H wouldn't drink BM from a bottle or cup.  I ended up donating over 100 oz to a momma in need as it would have gone to waste otherwise.  Pretty proud of that considering I struggled with low supply for so long), and I forgot to 'check' the girls to see if they were ok. When I did check, I had a clogged duct.  It was brutal! I ended up taking a day off as I came down with a nasty cold too and went to a physio-therapist to receive therapeutic ultrasound on the clog.  Luckily it drained and haven't had one since. *knock on wood*  I've since given up that pumping session and now I can go the entire day without needing to express.  It saddens me some as my supply isn't as plentiful as it once was, but I was assured last night by my LLL leaders that my body/boobs know what they are doing!

Coming home is an interesting endevour.  H can be happily playing with her daddy and as soon as I walk in the door, she starts crying and whining until we nurse.  The nursing session is a long one and she has a rather long period of cranky/clingyness before she starts playing again.  I hate this.  I wish she didn't have to make up for lost time.  However, we are very fortunate to have an amazing sitter who loves H and H loves going to see her. 

Food and cooking and cleaning have been a battle.  I hate cooking.  I wasn't a very good stay at home wife for the year I was off and didn't prepare meals on a regular basis.  Now, it is a struggle.  I try to ensure there is meat out each night so that we can do something for dinner.  However we are still eating take-out on a regular basis.  I wish we were more organized...but that just isn't the case.  Many nights it isn't the cooking that is so daunting...but the cleanup.

H has been falling asleep on her own when daddy puts her to sleep.  She still isn't sleeping through the entire night, but it has given me a new perspective.  It is amazing to have a few hours to myself at night and be able to spend time with hubby. Unfortunately my insomnia has been HORRIFIC.  Since returning to work I have had so little sleep and I think its because of the stress of work keeping me awake at night cause many times it isn't the baby. 

Overall, we are coping.  I wish I had heard more stories from people who returned to work when there babies were a bit older and how they coped.  I miss being off SO MUCH.  Hubby and I are officially in TTC land once again.  I'm trying not to be obsessive - but its hard to not go down that road.  Since I'm up for a lot of the night, I'm finding it hard to temp - but I hope to try again next month. Ideally we'd like to be pregnant in May/June.  But we are trying now cause it took us awhile the last time around so we figure we wont waste any time! LOL

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Back in the game

2 days ago AF came back.  Last time she came to visit, was January 2012.  2 years without worrying about my cycles.  2 years of forgetting I was an infertile and all the emotional baggage that came along with that. A few weeks ago I noticed a change in my CM and hubby and I DTD a number of times (we haven't used protection since having DD).  Over the holidays my nipples were so sore whenever DD nursed, I was exhausted and cranky.  I thought for sure I was pregnant.  So...there I was taking a HPT and thinking maybe, just maybe we wouldn't have to worry about fertility problems.  Atlas, AF came.  I am happy with her arrival as I was starting to wonder if I would be one of those women that would never get her cycle while nursing.  Now that she is here (with a vengeance I may add) I know my body is ready to conceive.  I am not ready to be pregnant yet.  I really don't want another late fall baby.  Nov/Dec is the worst time of year for me with my seasonal depression.  Having a baby during that time was rough.  Going back to work during that time was rough.  I would really love to have an early spring baby. .. or even late Feb.  Ideally we would love to get pregnant again in June.  However...we all know how much those plans pan each month will be an opportunity to try.  I am meeting with a fertility counselor next week who can help teach me how to chart my cycles while nursing (as it is a bit different given I'm up so many times a night). Hopefully with her help, I'll be able to relax and learn my body and learn when I ovulate and when a good time to conceive. 

Its funny - reading blogs lately.  Many fellow momma's who had dragon babies are back in the game too (or planning on being back in it) I guess that's what happens when your baby is a year.  You think about when number 2 will come.  Although I am so blessed to have H, I really feel my family is not yet complete.  I really want another baby on so many levels.  I pray that the second time will be MUCH easier and less stressful than the first.

On another note - in order to conceive...hubby and I need to be able to DTD on a regular basis.  Last Friday I went out for dinner with a friend and told him he HAD to put DD to bed.  Up until last Fri, I had gone to bed with her every night of her life for 14 months.  I nursed her to sleep and nursed her back down every time she woke (which ranged from 5-20 times a night).  Well he was able to put her to sleep with minimal fussing.  It worked so well he did it again .. and again..and again.  It is now his job to put her to sleep as he is able to read her a story, lay her on the bed say goodnight shut the light off and leave and she falls asleep on her own.  It is a miracle.  This would NOT happen with me at all!  She still wakes... A LOT.  But he is able to put her back to sleep quite easily.  At 2am I usually take over so that he can get some uninterrupted sleep before work.  We are hoping that by  him doing many of the early night wake-ups (he just goes to her, lays her back down and comforts her by laying next to her) she will wake less.  So far, we are making progress! We are still bed sharing...and we hope in the next few months to have her transfer from the king bed in our room, to the single bed attached to the king (yes we have wall-to-wall bed).  That way hubby and I can share the king and she can have her own space.  Neither one of us really care if she is in our room or not.  We love having a family bed.  Its amazing this transformation has occurred the week I get my cycle back as it proves that we are ready to start thinking about bringing another person into our family.  He putting her to sleep has changed my life and has changed our marriage.  I will never regret the time I spent with my daughter nursing her and making sure felt secure enough to sleep.  But I am glad she is giving us freedom in the evenings without her needing us.

I hope that this space remains a space I can share my thoughts and feelings...but I don't want it to become a negative space for me to obsess about every little thing.  I am trying to still enjoy every moment with my daughter and count my blessings for having her in my life.  I don't want to dismiss everything she is going through and learning just cause I am obsessing over becoming pregnant again.  Toddlers are hard (or so I am told).  Hubby and I have vowed to continue on with our AP style parenting and treat her with dignity and respect - even when she is screaming on the floor in a full-blown tantrum.  She needs us to help her understand her feelings and understand boundaries.  We can't be too preoccupied with fertility or lack there of.