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Friday, September 29, 2017

13 Weeks Pregnant with Baby #2

Week ending Sept. 26, 2017.
Due Date: April 3, 2018

Okay, I can officially say my first trimester weigh gain total is at 5 pounds! I must have been having a bad week a couple weeks ago when I was up to 7. I know it's only a couple pounds, but it really made my day when I stepped on the scale to see that I gained within the recommended amount for the first trimester this time!
I'm feeling Mr. Baby moving everyday these days. Of course, it's not very consistent or predictable, but I definitely feel the movement every day.

I've been ready to wake up in the mornings better than usual. I actually get out of bed instead of hitting snooze too many times. That gives me time to do both my hair and makeup and makes me feel much happier throughout the day, I feel like less of a hobo, which is always nice.
Still napped a lot over the weekend and wanted to pass out at like 6 on Sunday, but I still think overall, I have been having more energy.

Physical Symptoms:
It's definitely feeling more solid above my pubic bone, so I guess I'd say I can finally feel my uterus.
Super oily skin seems to be beginning.
Headaches are still being dumb.

I must brag a little, I've been super behaving myself this week. I've been really watching what I'm eating and keeping track of my calories to not go overboard and it actually seems to have paid off.

Sleep & Dreams:
After I get up for my middle of the night pee, it's been hard for me to fall back asleep easily.
Still having weird dreams. Another one about smoking. One that was borderline scary but I don't recall exactly what was going on.

Favorite Moments of the Week:
Actually doing my hair and looking put together 3 days this week! And also being able to film a video for my lainamarie91 channel, haven't done that in way too long!

Anything I Miss:

Random Thoughts:
Justin and I have had a named picked out for a couple weeks now, but neither of us really use it to refer to new baby yet. I'm sure it has at least a little to do with the fact that we're unsure if we trust our gender reveal and we're waiting on the ultrasound.

Alaina & Tiny Baby #2

Toddlers are Exhausting

Toddlers are exhausting on an everyday basis.
Now give momma the fatigue and nausea of early pregnancy and it feels like the exhaustion is never going to go away!
And it's not just me. Justin passes out at 8 pm right by my side haha. Sympathetic pregnancy symptoms are apparently for real.

And then I think when I'm finished with this whole pregnancy thing, I'm going to have two tiny people to keep alive everyday!

I look back on the newborn phase as not as bad as I thought it was when I was in it. If that makes sense. Babies sleep a lot, then they nurse a lot. Easy peasy, right? Well throw a crazy little toddler in the ring and it's like, what have I done?!

And it's funny because Justin and I want to have several kids.
And I keep telling myself we'll just figure it out as it goes, it's gotta get easier with each one, right?

Good thing we're right on the verge of the second trimester;
the magical part of pregnancy where you get your energy back and your bump is a cute size instead of unbelievably gigantic.

Thanks for reading.

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Preparing for Birth Again After a Traumatic First Go-Around

I would call Calvin's birth traumatic for me.
I know there are far more traumatic birth stories out there in the world, I realize that, but I still think I would call Calvin's birth traumatic for me.

Neither of us were in distress, but things sure didn't go as planned.

  • Calvin was born via c-section after 2-3 hours of pushing (my nurse said it was 3 but I thought it had only been 2).
  • I never even gave any thought at all to having a c-section. I never ever expected it to happen to me.
  • All of my family was at the hospital waiting on his birth.
  • We got to spend one hour with Calvin before he was going to the NICU. So we decided to let our family who had been waiting like 4 hours to come and see him so I literally only got to hold him on the way from the operating room to our hospital room before he was passed around to everyone else.
  • Calvin spent 48 hours in the NICU.
  • Once we got him back to our room, we tried nursing for the first time and he absolutely would not latch at all. That had been a big fear of mine.
  • I was stuck in the hospital for five weeks before Calvin was born. I never got to nest. I never got to just sit in his room and gaze at all his things.
  • I "attended" our baby shower through Skype. So I never got to open all the presents or wash all the baby clothes and have that one essential new motherhood experience.

And I believe that all these things combined made the birth of my first precious little boy a traumatic experience for me.

I didn't feel connected to him. I didn't feel this instantaneous overwhelming love for him. I didn't even give him his first kiss until his second day of life outside the belly! (that totally breaks my heart and brings tears to my eyes whenever I say that)

Even though I saw him on ultrasound twice per week and heard his heartbeat twice each day for those last five weeks in the hospital, I just didn't feel the connection right off the bat.

We're going to try for a VBAC this time, as long as things are looking okay. And I understand complications can change things in the end. I think I'll be okay if we end up with another c-section after a couple hours of pushing. But at least I'll have given it a try. And if baby is looking giant and it just doesn't seem plausible to even try, I guess I'll have to enjoy the fact that we'll have baby's birthday already planned and I can at least take a little bit of comfort in knowing we won't have to go through labor again. I want it to be its own special experience, no matter how it turns out. I don't want to fear having flashbacks to Calvin's birth.

I've gained a lot of acceptance to either way things turn out, especially since discussing the possibility for VBAC with my doctor. But the one thing that really bugs me and worries me about it all is that Justin and I want lots of babies. And lots of c-sections is not recommended. It's not the recovery or the label or the fact that I have never had a baby "the right way," it's the fear that we aren't going to have as many babies as we always planned because of the way they come into the world. That's the part that really gets to me.

I love you guys and am so happy you're on this journey with me. I hope this post meant something to you.

Alaina & Tiny Baby #2

Monday, September 25, 2017

Working Mom Guilt : Pregnant with Baby #2

Holy cow, working moms are tough.

I must admit, since getting pregnant with baby #2 I've been experiencing a lot more working mom guilt than I did in the past year.

I'm sure it's a combination of all different things.
Such as...
Pregnancy hormones just make me more emotional.
Pregnancy fatigue makes me not want to do anything.
I've been working 5 days a week instead of 4 like I was for the first 9 months or so I was back to work after Calvin was born.
Thinking about the future.

Mornings suck. I've even been going in to get Calvin 15 minutes earlier so we have extra time to spend together. It's almost like that backfires though. The more time I spend with him in the morning, the more I don't want to leave him. Instead of just rushing to get us both ready and in the car, where I don't have much time to think about the fact that I'm not going to be with him all day.

Evenings suck. I just want to relax, but the house is a mess, dinner needs to be made, regular laundry and diaper laundry need to be done, and I want to spend time with both Cal and Justin. And there's only 2-3 hours to spend together before bedtime!

Calvin feels it too. He is very clingy in the mornings and wants to be held the entire time, so it's hard to actually get things ready for the day. In the evenings he can be the same way. He's not even content to sit in his high chair next to me while I cook dinner, he wants to be in my arms. And believe you me, I'm all for baby-wearing, but this guy is a toddler now. And he's a giant one at that. Putting him in a carrier is no fun. So we must accomplish many things one handed.

And perhaps one more thing that makes it suck even more is that my husband and I have decided that I will be able to stay home with babies 3 & 4 once we have become financially stable under Calvin and new baby. I feel guilty that the future babies are going to get to spend more time with me than my current babes.

So what is a momma to do?

I understand I'm very fortunate to even have SAHM status on the radar. Some moms don't get the opportunity. But also, it's not like SAHMs are spoiled like their family is well off to be able to afford to have one parent at home, I don't think that's the case at all. It takes determination to set a strict budget and make it work. Justin and I are working our butts off for the next couple years to get our family into the best financial situation possible. Justin has a good job but we're not making a ton of money. It's going to take a lot of work to get to where we want to be, then to keep our strict budget and make it work on one income as well.

If I were to quit work now, it would put us in a financial bind that we don't want to be in at this point and for years to come. It would be selfish of me to quit now when we're realistically looking at financial freedom in just 2-3 years. So I know I have to choose what's best for the whole family unit, not just my own guilt.

So I shouldn't complain because I know it will happen one day, but in the meantime, some days are just hard.

Thank you for listening.

Friday, September 22, 2017

12 Weeks Pregnant with Baby #2

Week ending Sept. 19, 2017.
Due Date: April 3, 2018

Watch this week's video update here!

Well I've reached the stupid +7 pound mark. So I've gained the same amount as I had with Calvin at this point. I'm not very happy about it, but maybe this is just what my body does in pregnancy... I know I've been behaving sooo much better than I did with Calvin, so I guess that's why it makes me sad. I have been eating regular portions, not snacking constantly, and also not feeling deathly hungry all the time either, so why did I still gain 7 pounds in the first trimester?! :'(
Perhaps Calvin quitting nursing played a little role, I'm not burning those extra calories from breastfeeding? That's really my only theory right now.
I didn't keep track of the weight gain in my updates after the first trimester with Calvin because I felt bad about how much I was gaining. Hopefully this time around I have a better attitude about it.

Been pretty good this week, maybe the fatigue is ready to leave the picture!

Physical Symptoms:
Still have a terrible sex drive. It's driving me crazy. Like I want to want to do it, but then when bedtime comes around I only want to sleep and sleep and sleep. And I keep thinking, from here on out I'm only getting bigger and more uncomfortable, like we better do it while we can. Haha.
Sitting in traffic one day I could smell the guy ahead of us smoking and had to close up the windows it was driving me crazy.

I'm really really glad I don't have the starving hunger I had with Calvin so far. I went through that phase where the morning sickness made me always want to have something to fill my stomach, but I'm not constantly hungry like I was the first go-around.

Sleep & Dreams:
Pulled out the Snoogle pillow this week. I forgot how awesome that thing is.
Also I hate having dreams about rotting teeth!

Favorite Moments of the Week:
Doctor appointment day. I was excited up until the day of, then I started to get nervous hoping they would quickly find little mister's heartbeat. My doctor found it right off the bat and I could hear it clearly at 171 bpm! I also got to talk to her further about the possibility of a VBAC. She seems super supportive and that makes me feel really good. I understand that things could start to look differently toward the end, but for the time being I'm very happy to keep this optimistic outlook for little mister's birthday!

What I Miss:
Laying on my belly. Already. Haha. Great.

Random Thoughts:
I kind of already want to start nesting! I want to get out the newborn stuff and just sort through it, but I know it's way too early. It feels like just yesterday that we packed all that up! I had pulled out the newborn cloth diaper stash we have so far and just kind of marveled at it, we haven't cloth diapered a newborn before, so it's going to be interesting to see what works best. I don't want to invest in too much seeing as Calvin was a big baby, our one size stuff will probably work just fine if this mister is the same size lol.

Alaina & Tiny Baby #2

Monday, September 18, 2017

Our Breastfeeding Story : My 15 Month Old Self-Weaned

This is definitely "our" breastfeeding story, not "my" breastfeeding story. It's a relationship and a process my son and I have both gone through together. We had a combination of baby- and mommy-led weaning, but when it came down to the very end, Calvin chose when it was time to stop, albeit, earlier than this momma was expecting.

In the beginning, breastfeeding was hard. Calvin couldn't latch. He never latched in the hospital, I pumped, and when he was in the NICU, they even gave him formula. He only finally latched with the help of a nipple shield right in the pediatrician's office at our first out of the hospital visit. And let me tell you, that moment brought tears to my eyes! After days of struggling with him he finally was drinking straight from the tap! 

We didn't take advantage of that magical first hour after birth. Calvin was going to be spending 24 hours in the NICU, after one hour with us, and my family had already waited for like four hours to see him. So I decided to forgo that hour alone with just the three of us, and let our family members come in to meet him. I do regret that decision.

So the nipple shield proved to be another obstacle altogether. It was almost two months before we weaned from it. The nipple shield and I had a very love/hate relationship haha. Without it, I'm unsure we would have ever made it in our breastfeeding journey, but weaning from it was a bitch. Calvin became dependent on it, even when I just knew he didn't really need it, he preferred it. And honestly, I was somewhat dependent on it too. It was easier to just let him use it than to struggle with him for several minutes without it. But I hated relying on the thing. The whole point of breastfeeding was to be able to do it anywhere at any time, but always having to remember that nipple shield was making a natural, convenient process, totally inconvenient. We had an emergency nipple shield in the diaper bag, one upstairs in our bedroom, and one downstairs in the living room. 

I don't want to focus too much on all our mistakes here. I've got a whole post about that here! Haha. I just want to put it out there that we didn't start out all sunshine and daisies. 

Now excuse my #mombrain and #pregnancybrain here about exact dates, but I'm pretty sure we nursed on demand until Calvin was around nine months old. That's when I made the decision to start changing our schedule around a bit. I'm not sure if it's a coincidence or if it was bound to happen naturally, but over the next few months, the nursing sessions just started dropping off like flies! 

Around Calvin's birthday, we started trying for baby #2. I really really didn't want to have to wean completely in order to get pregnant. That was a big fear of mine. I wasn't ready to wean. That first and second month of trying we were down to two nursing sessions (morning and bedtime) but when we didn't get pregnant in those two months, I started to question whether breastfeeding was the cause, so we dropped our morning nursing session. So we held onto that one last session each day for about two months before one night Calvin just decided he didn't want the boobies anymore. And what a shame, he had just learned to say booby! Haha. He says it real fancy-like, "boo-bay."

About a week or two before he was totally finished, he refused to nurse on my left side. That side always produced less, so I thought maybe it just finally dried up. 

About a week after he stopped taking the left side, he started nursing every other night or every three nights. I describe it like a cat's instincts haha. If a cat sees a laser or a jingly ball, they just have to attack it, they can't help themselves, it's just their instinct to do it! When Calvin saw the booby, he initially leaned in to drink, but as soon as his lips touched my nipple he was like "nope, I don't want that." We tried both sides, we tried laying side by side, nursing off the side of the couch, laying on my belly, cradle hold. We tried getting him calmed down to almost bedtime proportions, but he still just didn't want it. So he went to bed without it. He only nursed to sleep about half the time anyway at this point, so he was fine to go to bed just rocking with my husband. Justin always takes him up to bed, he's awesome like that. :) I think he has more patience than me. Haha. 

Then he caught a cold. He was already nursing every couple days at this point, and once his nose stuffed up and he couldn't hardly breath while nursing, we were done for. He skipped a couple nights as he was first getting sick, and then we got one magical night where he was actually able to breath before bed and we nursed. Our very last nursing session ever. And it was just great and I'm so glad I was able to cherish that last time and remember it and know in my heart that it was probably going to be the last one. 

We were in his room getting ready for bed. He was covered in natural vapo-rub, we had a humidifier running, and an essential oil diffuser, trying to make sure he'd sleep through the night with his poor little cold. We sat on the floor leaned up against his dresser and nursed for the last time. 

If it had been just a few weeks earlier and I would have had a breakdown, I think. I just wasn't prepared. I felt like I needed it more than him. I worried about having to stop due to sensitive nipples in early pregnancy, but we never had that problem. We were blessed to make it this far and I know it's earlier than I would have liked to let him go, but I am so grateful that he got to make the decision and I'm so glad he did it on his own. 

Thanks for reading.

Saturday, September 16, 2017

11 Weeks Pregnant with Baby #2

Week ending Sept. 12, 2017.
Due Date: April 3, 2018

+1 more pound for a total of +4
I've been feeling some uterine movements, like vibrations. Like fluttering or a shiver. Almost like there's a hummingbird in there haha! I don't remember a feeling like that with Calvin. I'd say it's happened about 3/7 days this week. I know I'm going to get people saying I'm crazy, but I swear it's the baby! I didn't start feeling Calvin until 15 weeks and I had an anterior placenta with him, which they say can make early feeling of movement more difficult. 

Each day is different. Some days I feel totally normal, and other days I could absolutely pass out at my desk in the middle of the work day.
I seriously wish I didn't have to work. When I'm at home with Cal I just nap when he naps and it's seriously a life saver. But you can't nap in the middle of the day at work. 


I've definitely been more emotional lately. I've had a couple little cry spells mostly over working mom guilt. I feel so bad to even feel that way though because I don't even give a thought to how Justin feels. Some mornings I just feel so bad when I go get Calvin to get ready in the mornings and I'll just sit with him in his room and get all teary-eyed just thinking about having to leave for work. I know he's in great hands, he is with his grandmas while I'm at work and it's great that they are able to spend time with him, but it is still really hard lately for some reason. I just get to feeling so selfish for even thinking that way, yet at the same time, it can be good to just cry it out a little. 

Physical Symptoms:
A couple days with a couple waves of morning sickness.
Thought I was doing pretty well in the headaches department, but I had one big one over the weekend. 
A couple nights of lower backache, just a little reminder of how bad it's going to get in the future weeks to come lol.
Some more low c-section spot aching late in the week, almost like it's really sensitive to the touch around my pubic bone itself.


Craved some pizza after seeing a commercial on TV. So we ordered some even though we already had dinner.
Craved a buffalo chicken salad at work one day even though I had already packed a lunch. Had to go to 54th Street to get one. So yummy! I've been really digging buffalo sauce lately.
Bought some candy corn because it's delicious and awesome all year long, not just at Halloween. Typically I'm all over that stuff but I can only eat a handful at a time these days, instead of demolishing half a bag haha what the heck?
A couple days where I felt sick after eating, even with smaller portions. 

Sleep & Dreams:
Sleeping kind of crappy this week, but I've had a cold. I just get restless and hot and uncomfortable. I wonder if it's already time to pull out the Snoogle.
Had another dream a friend of mine was pregnant. And I told her in the dream that I just had a dream that she was pregnant.
Okay, Justin is not a big cuddler. He always likes to have his own space in the bed. But this week he actually rolled over to cuddle me in the middle of the night and I pushed him away because I was hot and uncomfortable. Haha. The one night he actually wants to cuddle me and I'm like no way.
Had a pretty intense dream about rotting and losing my teeth. I really hate those dreams, but I don't know why. Maybe I have a real fear of having tooth problems. 

Favorite Moments of the Week:
Calvin and I both weren't feeling well on Monday so I stayed home from work with him. That whole morning he was very lethargic and he actually laid around with me and cuddled with me in the living room, so even though we felt crappy it was nice to actually have him cuddling with me. This kid literally never ever sits still for more than three seconds unless he's absolutely dead tired. Lol.

Things I Miss:

Not feeling fat, not craving all the things. We've been spending way too much money on eating out lately because when I want something, I want it now! Haha. And why does food prepared by someone else taste yummier than stuff you have to make yourself? Ha.

Random Thoughts:

Are we really this close to the end of the first trimester?! Holy crap!


Alaina & Tiny Baby #2

Saturday, September 9, 2017

10 Weeks Pregnant with Baby #2

Week ending Sept. 5, 2017.
Due Date: April 3, 2018

Watch our Gender Reveal Video here!

+3 pounds overall 
I have vowed to start wearing maternity pants next week. I even wore some a couple days this week because my regular pants were already bugging the crap out of me like fifteen minutes into the morning lol. The rubber-band method works for the first half of the day, but after lunch, my jeans drive me crazy!

I'm not sure if it's hormonal changes and things are actually looking up, or if I've just been good about going to sleep earlier and that helps the whole day run more smoothly, but it seems like the fatigue is down a bit.
However, Calvin got sick this weekend and was up a lot in the night. Chasing after a boogery little sick boy is hard work haha.

I may or may not have been more snotty than usual this week. I'm gonna blame it on not feeling well and taking care of the sick toddler.

Physical Symptoms:
Morning sickness has really dissipated.
Still getting headaches.
Some nipple sensitivity this week. Overall though, I don't think the boobies have changed much at all so far. Not sure if already still breastfeeding Calvin has anything to do with it.

Craved buffalo sauce on something a couple times this week. 
I still don't want to eat stew. Made some a couple weeks ago and froze it. Took out a batch this week and totally don't want to eat it. I made Justin take the last batch to work a couple weeks ago too lol.

Sleep & Dreams:
Dreamt a friend got pregnant.

Favorite Moments of the Week:
Gender reveal time! We filled a hollowed-out egg with colored chalk dust and had Calvin throw it in the driveway. Making and testing the eggs with Justin was fun too. We made one of each color and I got to be the one to find out the sex this time (even though maybe I let it slip before the reveal gathering). Let's just say this family can't keep a secret ha. 

Random Thoughts:
I know we took the Sneak Peek test and there can be inaccuracies, especially with a boy result, so I'm not totally sure if it's really sinking in that it's a boy, almost like I don't trust the results.

So my little buddy Calvin has been weaning himself lately and I don't know how much longer he's going to want to continue. He's usually nursing every other night before bed now. He's been sick, so it's hard to nurse with a stuffy nose when you are already indecisive about nursing lol. But I've actually finally come to terms with it. I think I'm ready to let go. If you had asked me about this a month ago, I would have panicked and said I wasn't ready, but I think we've both come to a good place where we are both ready if it's time to wean completely. I'm not sure that it's really pregnancy related or not, but it's a big step in our family I thought I'd document here.

Alaina & Tiny Baby #2

Saturday, September 2, 2017

9 Weeks Pregnant with Baby #2

Week ending Aug 29, 2017.
Due Date: April 3, 2018

Still using the rubber band method on my pants. Starting to feel like I look extra fat in the belly. 

Even with 10 hours of sleep, I just want to keep sleeping. Then other days I'm up at 5 and can't go back to sleep.
Overall, I do think the daytime fatigue has settled down. I no longer want to pass out in the middle of my workday (as often), but when 7:30 pm rolls around, I want to crawl right into bed. Haha.

Physical Symptoms:
Don't want to jinx myself or anything but it seemed like the nausea was down this week. I read somewhere (and wish I could find the link) where a woman said she was taking prenatals with iron and her doctor said that the iron could be contributing to her nausea in early pregnancy. I was taking prenatals with iron too so I decided to switch to another vitamin without the extra iron and within the week, my nausea has been much better. It could be a coincidence, but maybe not!
My fingernails are starting to look good. :) That was one very nice benefit I remember from last time haha.
Increased uterine twitches this week, but still no bad cramping.
Increased headaches again. Man, I hope they phase out soon.
With the decreased fatigue and nausea this week, I've been feeling a little better, but then every once in awhile I'll get that stupid worrisome feeling about my symptoms suddenly diminishing and thinking it means something bad.

I've been getting picky this week. Justin and I plan out like a whole month of dinners and I've just been throwing those plans out the window lately when that evening's particular meal doesn't appeal to me. Also had more cravings. I almost made Justin run out to get some Sour Patch Watermelons but I texted my sister (who lives down the street) and she had some!
However, I've been surprisingly good about snacking this week. Since the morning sickness seems to have been giving me a break this week, I haven't felt the need to keep my stomach full all the time, I can survive without snacking every two hours, so that's been awesome!

Sleep & Dreams:
One scary dream. I hate scary dreams.
Had a dream I was at Best Buy and some dude was flirting with me and I kept trying to tell him I was married, had a kid, and another kid on the way. When I left the building my sister was waiting for me in the parking lot in this super old, rusty, junky looking dump truck that was parked on top of a hill. She was in the passenger seat so I had to drive and I thought the truck was going to roll over as we tried to pull off the hill it was parked on. Ha!

Favorite Moments of the Week:
Getting to spend the day with my Calvin on Wednesday again. Over the summer I've been working all five days and I really miss having Wednesdays off with Calvin. He had a doctors appointment and I took the whole day off. We went with my mom out to lunch and by the park and had a really great day. Not going to lie, I was totally exhausted by the end of it though. 

I really need to talk to my boss about getting Wednesdays off again... Working just those two days at a time really helps me keep my sanity. I think it's a perfect balance of work and home time and it should be the standard! It helps me get housework done so I'm not stressed by how terrible the house looks all week long, as well as giving me time with my little buddy, and time to rest from my workplace. 

What I Miss:
Having energy! I literally can't wait for the second trimester!

Thoughts on the Sex of Baby:
I officially get to take the Sneak Peek gender test at the end of this week!!! The next time you hear from me will probably be with a gender reveal! I know reviews on this are very mixed, but we're taking it anyway! Haha. The way we see it, if it says girl, it's like super duper likely it's a girl. If it says boy, we'll be a little more skeptical. It seems to be more likely to get a false boy reading because of possible male dna contamination. We'll see!

Up until this point, I have been pretty set on baby being a boy. Until I started rethinking the boy name we have picked out. I just feel more connected to the girl name and it makes me think baby is a girl. It was the same with Calvin. I just loved his name right off the bat and as soon as Justin suggested it, I just knew in my heart that's who was living in my belly. I know these are silly things to be basing my judgement on, but we'll hopefully know next week the results of the Sneak Peek test.

Alaina & Tiny Baby #2