post partum | 11 weeks

July 21, 2014

i really can't believe how fast time has gone. it seriously feels like yesterday we were in the hospital, anxiously awaiting the arrival of our girl. it's hard to believe she has been in our arms for 11 weeks. we had the Dr's last week and she has grown so much already. i cried, of course. some of her clothes are starting to get tight, and John insists i "pack them away" but i just can't bring myself to do that yet. i cried again, of course. they are still hanging in her closet at the moment. i will have to have a few shots of tequila before i can bring myself to "pack them up". not today.

the beginning was hard for sure. i played a huge role in the raising of my nephews, so i thought i was prepared. nope. i cried when we left the hospital. 

what if she cries and i can't stop it?
would i drop her?
what if i can't breastfeed her without the help of a nurse?

it was not fun. of course, i had John to help me - but come on moms .. we all wish one of those nurses were coming home with us!

i cried the first few days, only when she would cry & it took me a little while to calm her down. she slept great, but when she was awake, i just felt like she wasn't "happy". i am not sure what "happy" exactly looks like on a 4 day old baby, but i just had a gut feeling that she wasn't feeling it.

John's job gave him 2 weeks of "bonding time" which was amazing. since i was breastfeeding, it meant i always had a little person on my nipple at all times. John would make me my meals, make sure i was drinking & feed me most of the time. i tried out all the different "feeding" positions, and finally found the one that worked best for us, which required both hands. but once John went back to work, it was hard. i wasn't eating, i was barely drinking, and was lucky if i brushed my teeth before he got home at 8pm.

i would always hear stories of this, but thought:
"no way! can't you just put the baby down & eat? .. come on now!"

well screw me. because that is not how that shit worked. at least not with my baby. she was eating every 2 hours, but feeding would take around 30-45 minutes, which gave me less than 1.5 hours in between feedings. it wasn't horrible, but it was hard. being alone for 14 hours a day, with a crying baby who you were trying to bond with. 

there were many times where i would text John and just curse him out. i was so angry. i wanted him home & he wasn't. he was at work. and i was home with a screaming child attached to my nipples. lucky man. 

overtime, this obviously stopped. lucky for him. i came to the conclusion that i was not producing enough milk to nurse exclusively. again, i cried of course. but what was even harder, was finding the right formula to give to my baby.

we tired 2, then finally the 3rd was our miracle. pricey as shit, but our miracle nonetheless. then we had switched up her bottles. that was fun. 4 tries later & we found the perfect combination. and i can honestly tell you, it was like i had a new baby. she was so happy. finally, i knew what "happy" looked like & my little girl was glowing. i was able to pick up on her hunger cues before she would scream bloody murder. thank the lord.

happy baby = happy mommy = not screaming at daddy

my weight was another story. i have always had trouble gaining weight. a curse, i know. so i was pretty excited to gain weight while pregnant. well, since little miss kept me vomiting for the first 6 months, i wound up losing weight in the beginning. 

eventually this stopped, and my appetite came back. and i was loving it.

i had a number that i wanted to "stay under", but at the same time, i really allowed my body to do what it needed to do. i wound up staying under the "number", which was a bonus. 4 days after baby, i lost half the weight, and now 11 weeks after baby, i only have about 5 pounds left to lose. but i have happily chosen to keep them! crazy right?! 

the only time i weight myself, if when i go to the Drs. we still haven't unpacked out scale in our new house so i could have more than 5 pounds at the moment, but at my 6 week gyno appointment - it was 5 pounds. i am not on any diet. i am enjoying myself. i need to keep myself happy in order to keep my baby happy, my house tidy & my husband glad to come home at night. the number on the scale does not define me. i want to look good & feel good. i am not there 100%, but i know there are more important things in life that require my attention: my baby & my marriage.

of course, i will be toning myself up .. when i find the time. but honestly, tending to a baby really does help. my arms are stronger from picking her up. my legs are stronger from "lunging" constantly. and my belly is a littttttle toned from rocking her back & forth. 

my stomach will be my target body part when i do decide to put fitness back on my "to-do list". but most of my old clothes fit me again, so i know i am on the right track. no complaints.

before the bump

during the bump

after the bump

i hope this helped the new mamas out there. no matter what you are feeling, it's normal. we are all in this together. support each other, don't tear each other down. don't worry about the number on the scale. worry about how many smiles your baby gives you during the day, and the kisses your husband gives you when he walks through the door. that's what life is about. enjoy it.

TBT | baby shower

July 17, 2014

i've been so busy lately, that i finally realized i hadn't shared my baby shower photos! one of the best days of my life :) such an amazing time celebrating my little girl! glad to be able to share these moments on here with you guys! hope you enjoy it as much as i did :)

oh hey guys!

family <3

mama bear

mama z :)

baby daddy <3

love of my life :)

yummy customized dessert table

girls girls girls girls

little cousin ain't so little anymore :(

best sister in the whole world <3

godparent's amazing gift

z girls

cutest thing in the world

bath goodies!

that damn hat

mama & papa to be!

yea .. 

my work girls, i miss you guys so much!

my favorites!

michelle :) crutches & all

this fancy lady :)

the two mama to be's :)

miss fabulous cinz :)

"oh, just wait .."

July 14, 2014

if you've been pregnant, you have heard "OH, JUST WAIT" a least a million times. everyone who has given birth thinks that they know it all. that phrase is my ultimate pet peeve, and having recently caught myself saying this, i knew this post was due.

don't get me wrong, i loved hearing everyone experiences, but no two pregnancies are the same. no two births are the same. so if you are expecting, take it all in, and then let it out. 

i wanted to share my take on what i was told, vs. what actually went down. again, everyone is different. but i actually feel like i was "warned" for things that did not happen for me. i had doctors & nurses ask me multiple times "this is your first baby? wow, you got it easy". i guess i was lucky, but i was prepared for much worse. pregnancy & birth is an amazing thing & i would hate for someone to fear what their body is about to experience because of what people told them. misery loves company.

you're going to rip
negative. i did not need any stitches. maybe it's because i only pushed for less than 5 minutes, but i did not require any stitches or "fixing" down there.

it's going to burn when you push
another negative. my epidural wore off so i know what i felt, and it was not burning. i had slight pressure. not the "oh it's going to feel like you have to take a really huge shit" - no. 

you're going to shit the bed
i didn't, but i know this is common. i think it depends on the last time you ate & when you have your baby. i hadn't eaten for 24 hours by the time i gave birth.

your first poop is the worst thing ever
i was petrified, but nope. i was fine.

you'll bleed for 6 weeks after
i bled for 2 weeks after. trust me, it was a heavy bleed at certain moments, but 2 weeks & i was finished. 

the hospital panties are disgusting
um, they aren't VS - but they are amazing. they were my favorite thing in the world. before i left the hospital, i asked my discharge nurse for extras of everything, especially the undies - i was so mad when i ran out. stock up. they're amazing. 

i wish i could think of more, but these are the ones that stand out in my mind at the moment. i hope this helped some of my mama-to-be's. don't fear what you are about to experience. it's beyond amazing, no matter what kind of "birth" you have. it's worth every second.


labor + delivery

July 9, 2014

3:45am -- the first contraction
we had just moved into our new house 2 nights sooner. i was finally in a deep sleep & then BOOM! they weren't that strong so i didn't think anything of it. my husband got up for work a little while later, and i told him not to worry and go to work. i planned on sleeping it off if possible, i didn't want him to miss work because i had some little "pains". i told him that if i did go to the hospital, i would keep him updated. just because i was having pains, doesn't mean they would admit me into the hospital. he argued, but listened.

about an hour later they became a little stronger & more frequent. i started logging them in my phone so incase i had to call my DR, i had some information to give her - not just "it hurts!". around 530am i called my DR, she told me once the "pains" were about 5 minutes apart for an hour straight, i could go right to the hospital. OH MAN. 

i logged them for the next hour & at that point, being home alone, i was really scared. having had pre term contractions at 31 weeks, i really didn't want to be alone. i called my husband and told him "get your ass back home". by 730am he was back home and i had managed to wash myself up, get dressed & get my bag together. who knew what was going to happen. i sure had no idea what i was in for.

8:30am -- me & my hospital bed
they hooked me and baby girl up to the monitors, and we watched my contractions blow up the screen. about 2-3 minutes apart at this point, but not too painful. i think at this point i was 2cm dilated. we knew that there was a possibility they would send us home if the labor didn't progress quickly. i really wasn't sure what was going to happen. my nurse was AMAZING & catered to me like i was her own daughter. she called my DR and informed her of my progress (or lack there of) and came back to tell me they were going to keep me a little longer, until the DR got there to check me herself.

i may have taken a few little cat naps, but couldn't sleep too long because of my nerves. i still wasn't dilating anymore than 2cm, so they asked if i wanted to walk around to see if that would help. i was ready to rock. john and i walked around for about 20 minutes. the strongest contraction would always come right when we were walking passed our room, so eventually, i gave up & just wanted to go back to bed. 

12pm -- hello doctor
this part was the biggest blur. my DR came in, said hi, lifted up my gown & said "okay, let's break this water!" i was 3cm & full of emotion. before i knew it, she had broken my water & the woman came in to give me my epidural. john held my hand as she broke my water & i sobbed like a little baby from fear. i wasn't ready for this. i didn't expect this to happen today. we had been preparing for weeks, but i didn't think the day was ever going to actually come! but we were here & this baby was coming!

i told john to go home & get the last of our things, he argued. i told him the baby wasn't going to come in the next hour, so just go get our stuff. he listened of course. my epidural was scary. i didn't plan on getting one in the beginning, but after this pain, i said OHH, LET'S GET THIS EPIDURAL GOING! again, my nurse was so amazing. she held my shoulders from the front & kept me distracted while the woman administered the epidural. boom. it was done & i was feeling good about 20 minutes later. 

i rested my eyes until john got back, which seemed like 5 minutes.

3pm -- stupid ice chips
i was starving! i hadn't eaten since about 8pm the night before .. but i was only allowed to eat ice chips now. horrible. we made our phone calls to family to inform them of what was going on & that once we had a better idea of when the baby was coming, we would call them. well of course nobody listened & we had them in our room a short while after. i felt good so i didn't mind the company, plus i was going in and out of sleep.

4pm -- oxygen mask time
when i was awake, my eyes were glued to my monitors. i wanted to watch what my body was doing & how my baby was responding to it. i wanted to make sure she was okay. her heart rate began to drop due to lack of oxygen (as i was told) and my nurse came in & gave me the oxygen mask to help bring her heart rate back up. it didn't take long before she was back on track. THAT'S MY GIRL! i kept it on a little while longer just to be safe.

5pm -- fast & furious
i think around this time i was about 6cm dilated, i really don't remember the time frame exactly. our families were getting excited, and i was getting more nervous. my mom began to walk up to my bed & before she even touched me, i started to sob. i wasn't ready. i wasn't ready to meet my baby. what if she didn't like me? what if something went wrong? i wanted my dad with me. i couldn't believe he wasn't here to see this (in human form at least). i had so many emotions running through my head. i was just a mess. oxygen mask and all. 

6pm -- not so fun anymore
my nurse came in & suggested i sit a certain way so the baby would drop a little further to help things progress. THIS. WAS. THE. END. OF. FEELING. GOOD. about 20 minutes into sitting this certain way, she was coming down! my pain was excruciating. there really are no words to describe this. i was sweating, screaming & pissed that i wasn't numb anymore. 

i told the nurse and DR that i needed another epidural because i could feel EVERYTHING that was happening. they said in a few minutes they would have the woman come up & give me more of the goods. it felt like days, but she finally came. 

they escorted our families into the waiting room & that's when i knew it was about to go down. i was MISERABLE. screaming. everyone heard me. i really didn't think i was going to react this way. i couldn't handle the pain. this shit sucked. i had them give me the oxygen mask back because i felt like i was going to faint from the pain. luckily, i didn't. or maybe i wasn't that lucky.

7pm -- go time
around this time, my DR came in to "double check" my cervix .. 9cm - fabulous. is it over yet? no? great. she said we would start to push in about an hour depending how my body responded. she probably tried to get out of my room as soon as possible since i was a crazy person. i felt so bad. at this point, my amazing nurse had gone off shift & i had the night nurse. she wasn't bad, but not like my first one. the epidural still hadn't kicked back in so i begged for more. they looked at me like i had 6 heads. they administered more, maybe .. they could have pretended just to calm me down. either way, it worked .. for now. UGH. at about 7:28pm i felt the most horrible pain i have ever felt. i told john to get the DR because she was coming out - no lie. he looked at me like i was insane. no john, go get the DR, the baby is about to come out.

7:30pm -- knees up
the DR came in, threw gloves on & went right under my gown. i screamed "GET EVERYTHING OFF! I WANT TO BE NAKED!" i was so hot, in so much pain. i didn't want anything on me, or anyone touching me to be honest but i knew that wasn't going to happen. john also reminded me that i yelled "CUT HER OUT OF ME!" .. but i try to blur that one out. my knees went up & that was it.

1st push .. her head was peaking
2nd push .. her head was out
3rd push .. her shoulders
4th push .. she was here

7:34pm -- hello baby girl
she was here. holy shit. 4 pushes and she was here. my little human. this little thing that was kicking me. keeping me up all night. making me vomit for 6 months. she was here. i looked at john who was looking at our baby in awe.

i can honestly say that pushing one of the easiest parts. everyone said it would feel like burning, ripping, etc .. i just felt a little pressure. no pain. no ripping. no burning. just pressure.

i looked at my baby girl & couldn't believe i had just pushed her out of my body. i put my head back, and she laid on my chest. she was perfect. 10 fingers. 10 toes. all symmetric. she was gorgeous. she was here & she was ours. forever.

May 4th, 2014 | 7:34pm | 7lbs 2oz | 19 1/4 inches
Mila Sophia Zabriski

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