From One Mother to Another

From One Mother to Another

Hello all you beautiful mothers out there!

This post will be a little different than my other posts, as I am out here seeing if I can relate to some other mothers out there. Do you ever feel like a bad mother? Or that your little one deserves better? Whether it is because you didn’t get to your son or daughter in time and they fell and started crying? Or they are teething and you thought they were just being cranky but really they are in pain. Or one day you think they are crying for no reason but turns out their tummy really hurts.

Does every mother beat themselves up mentally, hoping or wishing that they were better or should be better? Is it just mom guilt? Do we not see ourselves as confident women or wonderful mothers just because we are more judgmental of ourselves than others?

Today is one of those days for me. My almost 9 month old son is sick with a small cold and each time I go to wipe his runny nose it really irritates him and he starts to cry. His naps were sort of off schedule today making him a little tired and I just felt all over the place. Now here I am wishing I was better for him today.

Today feels like a day where I let myself down, or let my standards down a little. So as of right now, I am looking forward to tomorrow. To start fresh and be the best mother I can be for my little boy, and the best wife I can be for my husband, as well as a better person for myself and those around me. It’s hard to not judge yourself or criticize yourself when you have these goals or envision the type of person you want to be.

That brings us to the question: What kind of mother do I want to be?

I want to be a mother where at the end of the day I deserve that hot bath because I did everything I could to take care of my family, one that made the meals and satisfied the hunger and thirst of my son. A mother that put her phone down to crawl around the floor and enjoying the small moments that will one day no longer be there. I want to be a mother that puts a smile on my son’s face and am there to hold him if he gets hurt or the mother that quickly catches her son before he gets hurt.

I don’t want to be inattentive, missing the moment my son stands up for the first time or takes his first step or says his first word. I don’t want him to feel that my phone takes time away from him.

I want to leave you with a story that always make me think. I was told this story a few days back and can’t get it out of my head.

One day a little boy was at school and he was given an assignment. The teacher told the students to write about what they would like to be if they could choose anything or anyone in the world. The little boy turned in his assignment which was read by the teacher. The little boy wrote… If I could be anything in the world I would like to be a cell phone. Then maybe my parents would pay more attention to me. Then maybe they would want to play with me. And just maybe they would always have time to talk to me.

May we always have time for our children, giving them the love and attention they not only desire but also need.

Home Remedies for Baby

Diaper Rash

When my son was a new born, he got one of the worst diaper rashes where he was constantly crying. The rash was red and looked like some of his skin was starting to rub off. I at first did not know what to do. I started applying diaper creams but nothing was helping right away until I realized that the fastest way to heal it was also the easiest. If your little one seems to be getting a diaper rash, get a small bowl and put warm water in it as well as some soap and mix it so that the soap is dissolved in the water. Next taken a cotton ball and dip it into the warm water and wipe the diaper rash gently. Let this air dry. Once the rash air drys, put some organic coconut oil on it. You will start seeing results that very day.

Dry Skin

Coconut oil, coconut oil, and coconut oil. I am a big fan of coconut oil for my son. I use it all the time when I see a rash about to form, when his skin is dry, or after a nice bath for some smooth skin. I no longer use lotions. Coconut oil is not only organic but also seems to work better than everything else. If you are breast feeding/pumping, breast milk is amazing for helping dry skin. When my son had cradle cap, I started to apply a little bit of breast milk on his head and it helped it go away.

Thrush

Once again I would like to mention coconut oil. When my son got thrush when he was about a month old I believe, I searched for natural ways to take the thrush away so that not only was it better for him, but so it would not spread. I smeared a little bit of coconut oil on my finger and rubbed it onto this tongue.

Organic Coconut Oil (Refined v.s Unrefined)

I prefer to purchase unrefined coconut oil. The natural the better.

Refined: Refined coconut oil is better for things like baking and cooking, as it has a longer shelf life, is also odorless and tasteless.

Unrefined: Unrefined coconut oil has a slight coconut smell to it, which preferably I like, and it also has a slight taste to it. Unrefined also has more health benefits.

I will paste a link below on the coconut oil I prefer

Best Products for Mothers who Pump Exclusively

Best Products for Mothers who Pump Exclusively

When I first started my journey with breast feeding, as in my other post, it did not turn out how I had planned and from starting off with exclusively breast feeding I started exclusively pumping.

In the beginning of my pumping days I started with a Spectra pump provided by the hospital I gave birth in. I must say I really did like it, other than the fact that pumping in general made me feel like a milk making machine or some sort of cow being milked. The Spectra was really easy to use and had minimal buttons to press, and included a little light so that you can see what you are doing in the dark, if you pump during the night.

If you know that you are pumping, definitely do some investing in a durable, rechargeable, portable pump. Pumping gets easier if you know you can travel with it and not worry about finding an outlet.

Two great options for that would be an Elvie pump and a Willow pump. Both are expensive but with the time you will be spending pumping, it makes it worth it. They fit snuggling right into your maternity bra and suction onto your breasts when turned on. If I had known about these pumps earlier, I could have saved on so much headaches, stress, and anxiety from the pressure of being home or finding a place to pump. Both come at around the same price, one pump for around $280 or double pumps for $500. The willow I believe only sells as a double.

I personally have the older version of the Willow Pump, the Willow 1.0 but right now they have a 2.0 that is out. With the 2.0 you can either pump straight into the bags that you can purchase from them, making it easier to pump and store during travel, or you can pump straight into the container and dump into a storage bag of your choice or bottle. The Willow 1.0 can only pump into their spill proof storage bags. From the research that I have done, a lot of people say that it is silent but from owning one I will say that you can hear it but it is definitely quieter than a normal pump.

Both the Willow and Elvie pumps connect to an app that keeps track of all your pumping sessions as well as the ounces pumped, whether the right breast or from the left breast and also stops pumping automatically once the bags or containers are filled. Both pumps are very easy to put together and also simple to clean.

My sister-in-law has the double Elvie pumps and she loves it as well. Being a new mom and knowing that she would be pumping, she got two right away to double pump and save on time. This also allows her to be able to pump while she is making dinner for her husband or is out on the road visiting friends or family, or if she is running late to an appointment, she can pump on the road, which I have also personally done. To be able to pump in the car is amazing and relieving.

They try to advertise them as being silent and unnoticeable but from my experience, they are not as silent as some say and you can notice them because they make your breasts look like they doubled in size. So, I would not be out at a restaurant with them in my bra but if that works for you then go right ahead! I just found it easy to go places as I could easily pump in the car every few hours or in any bathroom en route.

I got my portable Willow pumps too late, when my son was 7 months because I was so tired of dealing with pumping only at home or carrying around the big pump and trying to find an outlet wherever I went.

For my next pregnancy I will be investing in the Willow 2.0 to not have to deal with what I dealt with during the beginning few months of my pumping journey. I am choosing the Willow 2.0 because it can pump straight into the storage bags or the container made for it, giving me more options. If straight into their storage bags then there is less to clean as well. Although you need to keep buying their specific storage bags.

So, all you mothers, invest in your happiness! Because these pumps definitely make a difference. They have in mine and they will in yours too! And no I am not sponsored by them, just writing this from experience and hoping I can save some of you from doing the mistake that I did and got them too late.

Final Pros and Cons of Willow Pump

  • Saves time
  • Portable
  • Rechargeable
  • Easy to store
  • Can pump into storage bags
  • Can pump into container
  • Easy to clean
  • Better suction than Elvie
  • Can pump anywhere anytime
  • Expensive
  • Not completely silent
  • Still noticeable
  • Can only use their specific storage bags to pump into
  • Suction is less than Spectra or Medela

Final Pros and Cons of Elvie Pump

  • Saves Time
  • Portable
  • Rechargeable
  • Easy to store
  • Pumps into container
  • Easy to clean
  • Quieter than the Willow
  • Can pump anywhere anytime
  • Expensive
  • Can slightly hear it
  • Noticeable
  • Has a light on when in use that you can see through your shirt
  • Can’t pump into storage bags

I will add the links to their sites down below:

Willow Pump

https://shop.willowpump.com/

Elvie Pump

https://www.elvie.com/en-us/

Best Baby Registry/Baby Shower Gift Ideas

Best Baby Registry/Baby Shower Gift Ideas

When it comes to creating a baby registry there are many things that should be considered. Can the product be multi-functional? Is it easy to clean? Is it reliable? Will it last? Can it be reused? Will it take up a lot of space? These are only a few questions that one needs to ask themselves.

When I was creating my baby registry for the first time I regretfully must say that I did not do enough research when it came to products that would save me time, space, and money. I sort of just plopped things onto it. Only after I had my first born son did I realize what I had wished I put on there. Here is a list I have put together after doing some research as well as trying out the products myself. Hope this helps!

Mushie Silicone Bib

This silicone bib is perfect for babies who are just starting solids and helps keep the mess to a limit. No longer will the drool and food find its way down your baby’s neck for this has the option to go up under the chin. Very easy to clean and wipe down. Great for when on the road as well. Only $12.99 on amazon. You can click on the image to be rerouted to the exact page.

Avocado Baby Smock/Bib Apron with sleeves

This baby smock is also perfect when starting your baby on solids. This also comes in various designs. I double up on this smock with the silicone bib. With the bib apron, it covers the arms up to the wrists, preventing any mushed up food to get onto the baby’s clothes. There are many different apron bibs out there, this is just the one I personally bought and liked, although I have not tried other brands. This is easy to clean and reusable.

Marpac Hushh/ Rohm Portable White Noise Machine

I personally have the Hushh but know of many who have the Rohm. Both are made by the same company, so there is not much of a difference other than the Hushh has a clip and the Rohm has a lanyard. Having a white noise machine has helped my son sleep so much better. Not only does he fall asleep faster with it but he also stays asleep longer, due to the white noise cancelling out any disruption.

Tommee Tippee Portable Baby Travel Bottle Warmer

This Tommee Tippee bottle warmer saved my life. After having complications breast feeding, as I explain in this post, (https://innerthoughtsofmotherhood.com/2019/12/11/my-breastfeeding-journey/) I decided that I still wanted to give my baby my breast milk so I started pumping. My baby was very picky with the temperature of his milk and at first it was very difficult to take cold milk with me until I found this on Amazon. You pour hot water into it and it stays warm for hours. It is a little heavy once the water is in it but it is what helped me give warm milk to my baby with out having to worry about going out. I use it every day. Only $13.82.

Baby Merlin Magic Sleep Suit

I have heard great things about this sleep suit. I personally got it too late when my son was already starting to roll over. This suit is great when the baby is transitioning from a swaddle but does not yet roll over and helps avoid having a blanket in the crib. This sleep suit is thick enough to keep your baby warm as well as gives your baby the comfort they need to sleep peacefully while still being snug. The material is extremely soft and the suit itself is easy to put on and take off. Many people who take classes for their newborns to sleep well use this suit and recommend it.

Baby Car Mirror

A baby car mirror is a must! I love being able to see my little one without having to risk turning around while driving. You can safely keep an eye on your baby while still looking foward. The baby mirror simply straps onto the seat where the car seat is. This also gives a way for the baby to entertain themselves while on the road, giving you a peace of mind. Afterall babies love mirror! It is a win win situation! This is the one I personally bought, but any baby car mirror will do.

Baby Teething Pacifier

This pacifier clips is perfect for teething babies. My son loves it and even started rubbing his gums on it before teething. We all know babies love to put things into their mouth and this is perfect for them. Not only does it look cute but is also multifunctional. Works as a teether, a toy and helps the pacifier not get lost.

Unisex Drool Bibs

A mother can never have enough drool bibs, especially when their baby is teething. Not only do they add to your babys outfit but they also keep the rest of their clothes from getting wet. Would you rather their onesie get wet and have to change their outfit, or simply change their bib? I also prefer to simply switch out their bibs.

DIAPERS DIAPERS DIAPERS

You can never go wrong with gifting diapers. Diapers get extremely expensive, so as many diapers as a mom can get, she will be extremely grateful! I personally buy the Kirkland from Costco, but Amazon has them as well so just found it easier to link through amazon. The Kirkland diapers are of good quality and are more affordable. Although in Costco they are cheaper than they are here on Amazon. I have also tried the Huggies and Pampers diapers. Personally I like the Huggies diapers more, as they seem softer than the others. Out of Pampers, I would suggest the Pure Pampers diapers as they are more natural.

Baby Wipes

My favorite wipes would have to be the Huggies Natural Care wipes. They are the perfect size, making it easy to store at home as well as put into a diaper bag. The are soft and easy to pull out. They are unscented, 99% water, as well as hypoallergenic. For the price Amazon has then, it’s hard not to get them as well. At 6 packs for only $9.48, that is a steal!

ENJOY

Hope this list helps or gives ideas to anyone looking for what to put onto their baby registry or is looking to buy a gift for a future mama. As I look into other products I will try to update this or will post another blog post with other products that I find useful! 🙂

Giraffe Wubbanub

One of the best pacifiers that I had bought for my son when he was a newborn. Not only was it super cute but also gave him some comfort as well as something to grab or hold. Helps introduce stuffed animals to them as well as acts as entertainment or a distraction for them. Only $13.95. They come in different animal options as well. Will link on the side bar!

Skip Hop Explore

Loving his skip hop explore 🙂

Skip Hop Explore makes for a wonderful gift for your little as well as helps strengthen their leg muscles for when they are ready to walk. My little boy could not be happier with it and uses it every single day. Will link it in the side bar, just click on it and you will be rerouted to the exact page on Amazon! Grab it while it is on sale for $45 off!!

Enjoy 🙂

My Breastfeeding Journey

My Breastfeeding Journey

Breastfeeding. Sounds so easy, doesn’t it? You just feed the baby with your boob. Well, as easy as it sounds, it couldn’t be any farther from the truth. My breastfeeding journey did start off easy, and I thought I had lucked out or that secretly I was a pro and had breastfeeding all down to the core, as my little newborn come out latching perfectly, making me one proud mama.

I had taken a breastfeeding class prior to my giving birth and was confident that everything was going to go well. Little did I know that I would soon become educated and experienced when it comes to milk ducts getting clogged, Mastitis, as well as breast abscesses. Yes, it did go that far for me and yes as horrible as it sounds, it was so much worse.

A week into my breast feeding journey I had a home nurse visit, which was optional, just to check in and make sure I was adjusting well with the baby and if I had any questions, as well as weigh the baby and such. I was never thinking too much about how my breasts were feeling until she started asking me questions, did my breasts feel okay, have I noticed any tenderness, soreness, any spots warm to the touch, etc. Which in turn had me answering that everything seemed to be going good.. That is until she left and I started seeing and feeling all the symptoms that she was describing. The symptoms for a clogged milk duct.

Photo credit belongs to http://loveandbreastmilk.com/wp/blocked-ducts/

Once I realized that I had a clogged milk duct, I freaked out. I called my breastfeeding mentor and completely broke down over the phone, telling her how scared I was. A great way to get rid of a clogged milk duct is to apply a warm compression to the area while massaging it. That is if your little one can’t suck it out. You are still supposed to feed from that breast, because nothing can suck better than your baby. But aside from that, definitely apply a warm compression and massage the area with your thumb, putting pressure outwards as if you are pushing the milk out. That’s what cleared my first clogged milk duct.. As well as the second.

Now when it came to my third clogged milk duct, I must say I did not take it as serious as I should have. And what made it worse was that it was in the same spot as one of my previous clogged milk ducts. My third clogged milk duct developed into Mastitis.

Mastitis occurs when the clogged milk duct becomes infected. You start to get fevers and the pain increases. Once I got Mastitis, I was given antibiotics by my OB. Which I took for several days. The antibiotics did not work and I then was referred to a lactation consultant and prescribed a different antibiotic. At this point my mastitis had already developed into a breast abscess.

I was once again seen by my OB who confirmed I now had a breast abscess, and boy was it painful. I had been going through misery for about a month at this point, getting adapted to my fevers and the pain in my breast. And at the same time I hated looking at myself and seeing this huge lump just bulging out the side of my breast.

I was referred to a surgeon at the nearby hospital and scheduled for them to drain my breast abscess with a needle. Ouch! Relief flooded my body as I was finally going to get rid of this lump of pain. Or so I thought. That same night my breast abscess returned and just as big. The next day I sluggishly dragged myself to the emergency room, for I was exhausted mentally from having to deal with this for so long. I was again scheduled for surgery then and there but this time the surgeon was to make an incision and I was going under anesthesia.

That night I was going to drop breast feeding all together, for fear of having this all happen again. For the sake of my son, I stuck to giving him my milk, for I knew that was what was best for him. Through all the aches and pains and even to the last string, a mom will always be a mom, and will always stay strong for the sake of her children.