23.

So much has changed in my life between my last post and this moment. Although, writing serves as one of my greatest abilities as well as one of my best coping skills, I have had a hard time trying to actually launch my vision and manage the reality of my life.

Year 23 was such a disgusting one, but in the same breath I’d say it was one of the best years I have had. Being 23 broke me down to the very core and humbled my entire being and for that I am forever grateful. I am grateful for all the lessons in the losses. Year 23 gave me a lot to be thankful for, but it also took a lot from me. 23 took a wedding, my best friend, family, finances, normality, my dignity, my peace, happiness, self respect, life, and stability. Instead of soaking in everything I lost in the last year, I got up every single day and started over. 23 showed me to never get comfortable because at any moment life will come for everything I know to test the strength I believe I have. 23 put me in a boat of vulnerability & desperation to show me that I was getting complacent in the wrong circumstances. On the other side of the coin, 23 motivated me to start grad school, relocate to a different state, seek peace, and learn who I actually am. For these reasons, I characterize it as one of my best and worst years, a concept I have never truly understood until life forced me to.

With all of this, being a mommy did not stop. It took me lying in bed crying while my one year old climbed over my head, jumped, played, and stared at me with confusion, for me think about why it was so important to me to start MommysBreak in the first place. There was no break, there was no pause, there was no moment for me to gather my life while someone else ensured that my motherly duties were done. I felt guilt, I felt sadness, I felt drained because I had never imagined getting to a point of doubting my ability to be a mommy, especially so soon in my journey. I had to find force to turn what I wanted to call “shambles” into my “moment” to grow, to find myself, and most importantly to find peace.

Mommies, we will be ok. As I have written before, there is no rule book to this mommy thing. It did not come with a book of directions, so when things do not go as envisioned, it is extremely hard to remind yourself that it will be ok, but it will be. I know that this will not be my last run in with feeling broken and doubtful, but I have found it extremely helpful to talk to myself, encourage myself, and remind myself on a daily basis of the long term goal. I would encourage you all to do the same. Find healthier ways to create strength for you to continue through any storm you may be facing. Talk to someone, see a therapist, utilize your support system, meditate, write, do anything but give up or in.

11 Months Later

Imagine being a full time mom, a recent college grad, starting your career, moving into a new apartment, maintaining friendships & kinships, and trying to run a social blog for moms who need a break?! How ironic. For lack of better terms the last year has been, eh, scary. Life has felt like it’s been in overdrive & the saying, “A mothers job is never done” has become a reality for me. I thought with the ending of college, my life was on the road to peace, normality, and free time, when in fact it’s been nothing but the polar opposite.

When I first started MommysBreak, I thought I’d use this as my free time. That every week I’d take a few hours to myself to be dedicated to this. It is hard. It is hard when you haven’t seen your kid(s) for 8 hours of the waking day & they’re sleep for another 8-10 hours a day. When I get home from work, I’m immediately rushed by thoughts of what to make for dinner, bonding time with baby, and trying to be in bed before midnight. I used to think mom’s who were oh so busy wanted their lives to be that way. I thought how could a baby who can’t talk or walk really keep you busy 24/7. I have been humbled over the past year without a doubt. I have learned that it isn’t necessarily the baby who is keeping me busy, it’s the point of having a baby & trying to lead a life that includes things outside of him.

As I write this entry, I think about why I wanted to start MommysBreak. I think about my state of mind after I didn’t post for 30 days, then 60 days, then three months, then 6 months, & before I know it, it’s been 11 freaking months! I was tempted to let it go to waste. The website I built & paid for, the drive I had at the beginning, & all my ideas. I thought “I should just wait to do this until Aiden is older.” Or telling myself “I just don’t have time right now to run a blog.” And that’s just it mommies. We convince ourselves that we don’t have time for anything extra outside of the necessities. I am very well aware that this is the start of sacrificing things that make you happy, welcome to mommyhood right?

Please take time to yourselves mommies. As mothers, we can easily keep up with the excuse of not having time. Make time. Create a strong support system and make time to do something that makes you happy. Start that gym membership, go pamper yourself, go out for a girls night, register for that class, open that book, start that business, engage in a hobby! I’m not giving this advice because I have it mastered, but because as I’m working on it, I would like other mommies to do the same!

I Know You’re Weird, but What Am I?

Hi mommies!

Funny how if you choose not to share a part of your lives with social media, people automatically equate it with something being “wrong.” Every now and again people around Desmond and I will express their opinions with us about how “weird” it is that we choose to keep Aiden off of social media. What baffles me about choosing to keep him off, is that we’re occasionally hit with how “stuck up” or “weird” we are. When people realized that we were choosing not to share him, we were swarmed with remarks such as being “like Kardashians,” or “thought Aiden was Blue Ivy.” I understand that we live in a world where we cannot brush our teeth without letting social media know how many times we stroked the toothbrush, the type of toothpaste we used, and how long we brushed for. But sheesh! I can’t choose to enjoy my son in REAL life without incorporating social media into his life, without being treated like I walk around with a blanket over his face?

Somehow keeping Aiden from social media is always equated to him being a “secret.” We do not give those closest to us any notion that they cannot see him. There hasn’t been a week since he has been born that he does not have visitors at the house, we take him to all events we have attended, his grandparents and close family receive pictures of all his cutest moments, he’s even been out of state three times. And yes, IN PUBLIC. What we are doing IS normal.

As I have grown older, I feel the need to share less and less with social media. Watching those around me and their use of social media shows me more and more how much of a false sense of security it creates. We as a society have grown very fond of maintaining self esteem and approval based off of likes and emoji heart eyes. I initially did not want my son or his value to be based off of how many likes or comments his pictures received. We all know that it just happens, even if sometimes unintentionally. I didn’t even want to chance me having to think about the judgments of social media, how many people screenshot him, or how many group chats he would end up in without my knowledge. I get it, some people thrive off of knowing that they or their children are apart of conversations, but not me. One mom put it in perspective in a way that I am sure we don’t all think of when choosing to share our kids most adorable moments, “Posting that takes advantage of our children’s vulnerability to gain attention for us, the parents.”

Once he was born it made me not want to share him even more. From his innocence to enjoying moments in real time, it just drove me further into not wanting to share him. When I post pictures of myself, I sometimes find my self looking at every detail of the picture before posting it, to ensure that it’s the “right” one. Sometimes taking a selfie 20 times before deciding that I have the “right” one. I remember thinking to myself, do I really want to create that environment with my child who has NO idea what this life thing even means yet? I thought, why would I subject our relationship to that when I can just enjoy EVERY single moment in real life and it’d always be “right.” Enjoying him in reality, there is never a “wrong” face he could make, a “wrong outfit,” or a “wrong” moment.

Now mommies, you all have the right to choose what and how you  want share your child(rens) moments (with input from dad) lol. What we are seeing with this new generation of children is something we have never seen in the history of humans. They are the MOST exposed generation known to man. We don’t know in what ways it will effect them and won’t know until they are older. Subjecting children to the judgments and creating a social media identity for them before they even have a chance to know who they are, is a risk I am not willing to take as a parent. This is not to say that I will blur his face out of all wedding pictures next year or I’ll never share a family photo. I will say that, for now, I like it how it is.

I am not here to influence mommies one way or the other! Just wanted to share my own experience. We did not decide to shield him from social media in hopes that sites would pay us to post him. So for that matter, we’re nothing “like the Kardashians.” Neither are we trying to build up anticipation for the public, “like Blue Ivy.” We are just simply doing what we feel the most comfortable with as Aiden’s parents!

Catch a break next week with MommysBreak!

 

 

 

Everything Is So Unplanned!

Hi mommies!

This week I wanted to talk about my personal birth story! Not just step by step of what happened the day I refused to believe I was in labor for two hours before I was crawling around my apartment. I wanted to instead, talk about how my birth story is a prime example of why as a mother, things rarely go as planned!

I am the mom who carries a planner and writes down my day to day plans, by the hour. Before giving birth I truly believed that I had me and my child’s life planned out to a T, at least until his 18th birthday. Boy was I dead wrong. It was the second day in the hospital post birth that I realized, “wow this is not going as I planned it.” The evening I went into labor I did not want to believe I was in labor. I was planned to be induced two days later and I just knew for sure that my son would not come any sooner, as he was already nine days late. Had it not been for my own mother, I probably would have gave birth in my bedroom as I did not want to go to the hospital. A couple hours into the contractions, she finally convinced me to crawl out to the car. When I arrived at the hospital I let them know that I would not like to get the epidural and no matter what I said, that they should not give it to me. That was until I was stuck at 7 centimeters for 5 hours. At this point I had been in labor for 10 hours, natural. I received the epidural at about 10.5 hours and this began the cycle of unplanned things. After I received the epidural we started having complications which led to me having to have a C-Section. I was completely bummed by this and after crying for 45 minutes I finally agreed. After the c-section I did not get a chance to see my baby right away as there were more complications with myself.

Fast-forward to the next day, I learned that I was not producing enough breast milk and that my baby had lost weight which he continued to do until we left the hospital. They came in and offered me to use another woman’s donated breast milk (yes this is a thing), or formula. Not wanting to do either, I continued to try getting my own supply to pick up.  That night my son decided to wake up every 45 minutes to nurse and the nurses decided to try the pacifier. Believe it or not, the pacifier sent me over the edge. I began to cry and I thought to myself, “I can’t plan this. I cannot plan how this is gonna go so I should not have done it.” I had planned to push my son out naturally, breast feed him, and keep him far away from pacifiers. Only to have a medicated c-section, have him sucking a pacifier  and not producing enough milk. I texted my sister extremely upset and I remember telling her “This is the one thing I cannot plan and it’s driving me crazy.”

Happy to say that by the time we made it home I had an over production of breast milk and he’s never had any other kind of milk. He hates the pacifier, he’s a huge baby, and life has not been any different because I had him cut out versus pushing him out. So moms, DO NOT be discouraged when things don’t go as planned with your kids. Doesn’t matter if your child(ren) are 1,5, 10, 16, or 18 years old. Things will go unplanned and it’s ok because it always works itself out. I learned from my personal break down that I have a lifetime to go of things not going as planned. If your child isn’t doing the things that you always imagined they’d be doing or if things are differently than you had expected, find a way to love the situation for what it is. No matter how displeasing it may be. “Life’s most beautiful moments are unpredictable.”

Catch a break next week as my mommy will be doing a guest blog for Mother’s Day!