Diastisis Recti

Many of you mommies have an idea of what this is, or have heard of it.  If you’ve never heard of it, it’s possible that you may even have it.  If you’ve ever had a child or children, even if it was a decade ago, and still have your ‘mommy tummy’, this could be why.

Diastasis Recti is a separation of the Rectus Abdominis muscles that make up that six pack that you so desperately miss- or have secretly  longed for.   It’s technically defined as a gap greater than 2.7cm or 2-3 finger widths in between the Rectus muscles.  It is usually the result of intra-abdominal pressure and loading.   During pregnancy, the growing uterus stretches the connective tissue between the right and left muscle groups and occasionally it won’t return to normal on it’s own.  Nearly all pregnant women have this gap immediately postpartum, some correct on their own, and some do not.  I should note that it occurs primarily in pregnant women and newborns, but can also appear in men.   Pregnancy does not actually cause the separation, but it will make a problem worse.  Women are most susceptible, especially if pregnant over the age of 35 (as I was), having big babies, multiple babies, or multiple pregnancies close together (also me).   This condition can also be associated with or cause pelvic floor dysfunction.

It’s really easy to see if you may have this condition.  You lie on your back on the floor with your knees up and feet flat.  Place your fingers near the belly button area.  Tense up your abdomen and raise your head up, chin to chest.  You will be able to feel some separation between the muscles, it all depends on how many fingers you can fit in the gap.  Right now, I’m about a full 3 finger gap at my belly button region.  I expected this, as I found I had some separation after my last pregnancy and in the 10 months before my next pregnancy, wasn’t able to lose that belly.  I was still 10 lbs over my normal weight when I got pregnant with Owen.  I might add that after my first pregnancy, my body was pretty much back to my pre-pregnancy body, with no belly, at about the four month mark.

There are varying opinions as to whether this can be corrected with exercise or not.  There are even exercise programs you can pay for that claim to make a huge difference in your abdomen and close that gap significantly.  I have done a lot of reading on the subject and the majority of people, whether medical experts, fitness experts or just women who’ve managed to correct this themselves, seems to have a small number of exercises they recommend.   Most are centered around a basic Core contraction or Transverse Abdominis contraction that you practice and hold in order to strengthen your core area.  Once you master that contraction, you can add single heel slides while holding, you can add a knee raise, or use a resistance band around the knees and pull knees apart.   Squats are also said to help strengthen, as long as your holding the initial contraction.  This is only a small sample of beneficial exercises.  I’m not a medical or fitness expert so I’m not going to go into detail about these exercises, nor am I going to link one specific site for reference.  I’m merely going off of a consensus that I’ve noticed among the so-called experts.  I also have a good idea of what will work for core strengthening as I used to teach it on a regular basis, not that anyone could tell.

There is also a consensus on exercises that may be detrimental to the diastasis or even make it worse.  Any type of crunches, sit-ups, jack knife position,  and oblique twisting are no-nos.  Many types of pilates exercises can also make this problem worse.  

I’ve begun doing a handful of the recommended exercises (almost) daily and have been very aware of holding that TA contraction throughout the day.  I’m tempted to try out one of the programs that cost money, although most don’t say what you’re getting besides exercises.  I’ll keep at it and pray that I can even slightly correct this problem.  I really don’t want to look 5 months pregnant the rest of my life, and at six weeks out I have 20 lbs to lose.  I guess the other option is getting a tummy tuck, and I have no plans of doing that in the future.  Best of luck to all you mommies also struggling with your mini keg of a midsection.  Hopefully in the future, I’ll have a positive update for you.

 

 

 

 

Finally moving forward

I am so far behind on posts, it’s a little discouraging.  I actually began this post in December, lol.  While it is months overdue,  I had a lot less free time than I thought I would while I was pregnant.  I was working, have a busy, picky, non-potty training toddler, and basically one day off per week that I had to get most errands/doctors appointments squeezed into.   Then in much of my free time in the last few months, I was trying to get a nap in here and there.   That’s my story and I’m stickin to it.

I covered our wonderful pregnancy news in a prior post.  We were so surprised and excited to finally be pregnant again.  I was working in a small spa that catered to pregnant women, and it worked out perfect for me.  The spa was owned by a group of perinatal specialists, some of the best in the city.  The spa owner recommended one of the doctors to see if I became pregnant.  I actually saw him before my own OB, around 6 weeks,  mostly because I was an employee and had had prior losses.  They specialize in all types of high risk pregnancies as well as women with prior losses.  He felt confident we would get to take this baby home and was amazing throughout the entire pregnancy.

I chose to stay with my OB (love him and his staff!) and have him deliver me, as he did my  prior C-sections.  I would then see the specialist for all monitoring and ultrasounds.  That would happen regardless due to my advanced maternal age.   The specialist had put me on Lovenox blood thinner shots daily.  Those were not fun, but they were necessary as a precaution because I have 2 blood disorders that were found after I lost Isabella.  We never found a reason why she passed, so this was the best way to prevent any minor clots, which may have possibly been the cause.

Everything was going very smoothly.  Hubby and I talked a lot in the beginning about not being crazy worried or having constant anxiety through this whole pregnancy because that isn’t good for me or the baby.  What happens will happen, and we will do all that we can to bring this baby home.  We had genetic testing done around 11 weeks and were able to find out that we were having another boy!  A little brother for Max!  Granted, I cried the rest of the day when we found out he was a boy, but it was almost like we had to grieve her loss again.  My husband felt the same way that day, just sad about the loss of our daughter and a potentially another daughter.  The next morning we both got up feeling good about having 2 boys that will hopefully be great brothers to each other.  That, of course, opened up more talk about trying for a third…yikes!

As we settled into the thought of boys, and the many doctor appointments, we grew more and more excited.  I was huge immediately, had people guessing I was pregnant as soon as 14 weeks.  By the time I reached 32 weeks, I was as big around as when I had Max.  The pregnancy was highly uncomplicated.  I did end up with my fluid being on the high side in my third trimester, but at 32 weeks I began 2x/week monitoring and they just kept an eye on it.  It definitely made me larger and more uncomfortable sooner than I was used to.   Most days I felt great (light) in the morning, and by late evening felt like I had gained 10 extra pounds that day!

We were having a scheduled repeat C-section and the doctors agreed that 38 weeks was a good time to do it.  37 weeks is considered by most to be full term, but the specialist felt that the extra week would most likely (in his past experience) keep baby out of the NICU.  Around the 35 week mark we were able to schedule you for May 17th.   That would be 37 weeks and 6 days.  We were so excited, just a few weeks left to go.

We arrived at the hospital at 3:30, with the surgery scheduled for 5:30 pm.  That day was long for me, mostly because I was nervous, and I couldn’t eat or drink anything (even water) since 9:30am.  That was completely my choice, because the other time option was 2 days later and I didn’t want to wait that long.   We were put in a room right away and they immediately prepped me for surgery.  The nurses were awesome and had me ready to go in about a half hour.  The labs were ordered, now we just wait.  The anesthesiologist came to speak to us, he was very cool.  Then we waited some more.  Finally at around 5:15, my OB came in to say hello and ask if we had any questions and went over what was going to happen.  Ten minutes later we were walking down to

So Perfect!

the OR.

From the moment my OB came in to my room to say hi, I had been shaking.  So nervous and scared.  Even though I’d done this twice before they were both very different circumstances.  With Max, I had been in labor for nearly 24 hours when I finally went into the OR, and with Isabella, we were still in shock, I think, so I really don’t even remember much of that one until my husband was holding her next to me.  They began cleaning my back for the epidural and it was discovered that they were missing some of the blood work and had to call down to the lab to have it run stat.  He would not administer the epidural until he saw everything was good.  That made me feel good.  They called my husband in to sit down and we basically chatted in the OR for probably ten minutes before the lab called up with the results.  Then it was underway.

Owen Parker

Getting a spinal block is one of the most awkward, uncomfortable feelings I’ve ever had.  The pressure, not the needle stick, that you feel in the spine just gives me the willies.  I still remember that feeling from last time.  My doctor is amazing and walked me through everything as it happened and that really helps.  Gary got to sit in and watch the whole thing.  I had waves of nausea from the meds, which the anesthesiologist took care of right away.  I got nauseous all 3 times, but this time I actually was dry heaving.  So strange, being awake with you arms tied down and having no control over anything.  Things seemed to be going well, same as before.  The anesthesiologist kept checking on me, he was great, and he let Gary know if he wanted to see the baby being born, to stand up and watch.  To my surprise, he did.  I thought for sure I would see my husband hit the floor, but he didn’t.  He said it was the most amazing thing he’s ever seen.  Baby Owen was born at 6:07pm.

Our Rainbow is here!

He cried immediately but sounded really gurgly (is that a word?) and that worried me.  It took a minute but they cleared it and he was great.  Bright red baby with lots of really dark hair, just like his sister had.   They took hubby and baby to get him cleaned up and I waited to be sewed up.  At one point I heard my doc say something about a lot of bleeding.  They were having trouble stopping some bleeding by my pubic bone, so it took an extra 20-30 minutes to get me back to the room to see the baby.   When I got back into the room he was doing skin to skin with daddy which was so sweet, then I finally got to hold my second baby boy.  It felt so amazing and scary, and we were relieved and terrified at the same time.  That parental responsibility that never goes away was intensified by a million in that moment.  As was my love for my children and family.  This was a long and challenging road for us, but was worth every second the day he was born.

We now face the question from everyone-are you going to try for a third child, or a girl?  Right now, I think we are planning on it, maybe early next year.  So far we are taking this one day at a time and really enjoying our new baby while he’s so very tiny and perfect.  People think we are crazy to try again or have three kids and we just don’t see it like that.  These are mostly people that had one girl and one boy and decided to be done.  I know my hubby wants a baby girl and I think we should try for one and see what happens.  We are also ok having three boys.   The best thing I’ve heard came from my sister who said…No one ever regrets having a third kid, but many people regret NOT having them.  So if it happens, we will be ecstatic, and if it doesn’t, we will love our family of four just the way it is.

 

Max, year 2

So much change this year!

I can’t even believe my baby boy is 3!

Year two was so amazing and he has grown up so much!  We were still grieving the loss of his little sister when he turned 2.  It’s still hard some days, and it always will be, but we feel like we haven’t bottled any of it up and are doing well.

Silly little puppy

One of the first things I attempted after his second birthday was potty training him.  I really tried very early, and based on what I had read, I thought it was worth a shot.  I wrote about that here.  He did so well for a number of weeks, got to the wearing undies or shorts stage and did well, then woke up one day about 3 weeks in and decided he was going to pee his pants and he was not going to sit on his potty anymore.  After struggling another week or so, it was clear that he was going to hold out and resist me, so he went back to diapers and we are still there.  Not really a big deal to me, but I would love to be done with them.

His vocabulary really took off this year and he was able to communicate with us much easier.  That made his day to day temperament much more tolerable, for all of us.  He was using a lot of short phrases which have now turned into full sentences.  Around March the Mine! phase began.  Everything was his.  He didn’t go overboard with that, thank goodness, and moved on to more appealing phrases.  Some of my favorites through year 2…

‘Scooz me!’      ‘I chase you.’      ‘Mom, Daddy comin!’     ‘Awww,C’mon…..’   ‘I hold you’ (which really means pick me up)      ‘I did it!!!’    ‘Good job Mom!’     ‘I pooped.’      ‘Oh, that’ll be fun.’   When he gets in trouble he started telling us, ‘be nice to Max’ and occasionally would say- ‘I’m gonna spank your butt’- if he didn’t like being disciplined.   A common sentence we hear is-‘Gonna go bounce house, and tunnels, and trains.’  The bounce house is the playroom at the gym, the tunnels is the indoor playground he loves and the trains is actually a RR about a half hour away.   He says them all together at the same time like we will do them all in the same day.

He’s been loving his Daddy time this year, which is amazing for my husband.  We hear a lot of ‘Daddy, come play’, and ‘Daddy, no go work.’ He loves going to play in the park and loves playing with bigger kids.  He’s becoming more fearless, climbing, jumping, he loves to spin around, trying to jump and throw and catch different types of balls.

He was very into trains for most of this year.  He had a slight obsession with Thomas the Train for many months.  His second birthday party was Choo, Choo I’m 2.  Lots of fun.  After purchasing lots of trains, tracks and a Thomas table for him to play on at Christmas, he lost a little interest in trains and turned to Mickey Mouse Roadster Racers around the New Year.  My nephew then introduced Paw Patrol around his 3rd birthday and we are currently obsessed with that.

Another big milestone for him this year was losing the crib, and the binky!  We removed the front of his crib and put the toddler railing on around August, so he went a good 2.5 years without climbing out of his crib.  For an entire month, he never even got out of his crib, even though he was able to.  Everything in his room is secured to the wall, and his doorknob is reversed so at night we lock it from the outside so he can’t roam the house.   Sometime just before Christmas we put his big boy race car toddler bed in his room.  It took a little getting used to, but he did great.  Some nights he still doesn’t want to stay in bed, so he’ll crawl out and sit behind the door.  That makes me sad when he does that, because I know he’s tired and I just want him to get some sleep.  We got rid of the binky sometime in November, partly because the pediatrician and dentist did recommend it.  And honestly, it was time.  He was only using it for nighttime sleep, but I was dreading the transition.  Turns out it was fine.  I don’t even remember him crying for it.

17 weeks at Christmastime

Another big change in our house is that we are expecting our third child, another little boy.  He is getting excited to be a big brother and now he is old enough to understand (mostly) what is happening.  At the time of this post (I’m so far behind) I am nearly 31 weeks and doing great.  More of that in another post.

We  couldn’t be more proud of our little man.  He’s changed and grown so much in this last year and looks like a little boy now, no longer a baby-faced toddler.  I love listening to him sing songs, explain the pictures in his books or tell me what’s happening in the Paw Patrol episode.  Still so innocent (most of the time) and sweet, he fills me with joy every single day.

My boy

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Max at 1 year

This is my boy, Maxwell Tucker.  He is my joy.  I cannot imagine life without him.  I can’t believe he turned two in February.  It blows my mind!  He is getting so big and so much smarter every single day.

Max was born Feb, 26, 2014.  He was due on the 17th, but apparently felt pretty comfy in utero, so there he stayed until eviction via C-section.  My pregnancy with him was very easy.  I was lucky.  Little to no sickness, not a whole lot of weight gain or heartburn, just some feet in my rib cage for a couple of months.

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36 weeks
36 weeks

He sat very high up, even after his due date, he never seemed to drop.  I had a scheduled induction that went nearly 24 before it turned into a c-section due to failure to dilate.  I just stopped at 7cm and no matter what we did, I didn’t move any further.  So, out he came at 8lbs, 6oz and this poor boy looked beat up.  Poor thing was being squeezed for about 18 hours, no wonder he looked so rough.  After a day or so, he looked a lot better.

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2.5 weeks old

Max was a good little baby.  He slept a lot the first few months (the 4th trimester) and he ate really well.  He wasn’t particularly fussy, liked being held by anyone, and was generally happy.  He liked to eat!  I could count on him needing fed every 3 hours on the dot.  This would continue until at least a year old.  He was a pacifier baby, aka binky, and still uses it for sleeping (and traveling, lol).  One of these days we will strip it from him, but probably not for a few months.

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6 months

Sleep is one thing that it took awhile for him to get a handle on, he was not a good sleeper.  He ate so often, even through the night that he just never got into a sleep through the night pattern.  Yes, I could have just made him cry at night around 5-6 months old until the pattern was broken, but I chose to get my ass up and feed my baby.  It’s just now starting to fade, all the memories of horribly lost sleep and middle of the night crying.  By the baby and me, both.  The first six months to a year is a cruel cocktail of hormones, lack of sleep, dirty diapers and pure panic.  It’s tough.  But you get through it and you want that little snuggler back.  This is why second babies come along.  Max probably slept through the night around 14 months and we were ecstatic!  It felt unbelievable!  Then around 18 months he went through another rough patch, and we suffered through that too.

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He started walking around 11 months, and it felt like he immediately ran.  He was saying  quite a few words by about 15 months or so.  Now he is using small sentences and it’s seriously the cutest thing ever.  He definitely enjoys communicating with us, and the dogs.  He has a little bit of a temper when things aren’t going his way, and he gets that from daddy.  He lets himself get worked up over dropping a toy when he didn’t want to or if his cars fall off the ramp.  It’s just something we will work on with him.

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The first 2 years were definitely challenging, but worth every second.  We lost his baby sister in November, but fortunately he was still so young that he didn’t understand what had happened.  We are working on another sibling for him and hopefully that will happen soon, I would like them as close together as possible.  But until then, we will eat this kid up, every bit of him.  He is such a good boy, most of the time.   Every day he surprises us and cracks me up.  He is a mama’s boy right now for the most part, but when daddy gets home he gets so excited.  I couldn’t ask for more from a rambunctious 2-year-old toddler, and am looking forward to teaching him new things and watching him explore the world as a little man.

 

 

 

 

 

DIY hair- feel free to try this at home

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I want it all.  I am blessed with mousey brown hair, much like the picture above.   I’m ok with that overall, but I’d love to rock fire engine red hair, or even pink or purple.  I’ve had red hair in the past, not quite as bright as pictured above though.  My husband would love me to have blonde hair.  I tend to be pretty pale in the winter, so having some blonde in my hair is usually more flattering, I have to agree with him there.

I have done some fun stuff to my hair, I had a cosmetologist as a roomie for a few years.   I pretty much gave her license to do what she wanted as long as it wasn’t too short and would be approved at work.   I even got to shave her head once!   Oh, Sandra I miss you so!  When she moved back East, I began getting my hair done by her good friend.

Alicia has been doing my hair for over six years.  I think I’ve only asked her to fix it twice, and once was completely my fault.  She told me it was gonna be dark and she was right, it was way too dark.  She retired recently to raise her boys so I have been borrowing my friends’ hairdresser.  She is really great, and I really have no complaints at all.  She’s pretty cheap which helps since I’m staying home with Max right now also.   So with my brown hair, I asked her to do some red and to lighten it up a little with some blonde.  I know how hard that is because one is darker and one is light, but she didn’t mind.

When I got my hair done that day I immediately found myself looking online for new hair ideas.  Not a good sign.  I saw many videos on how to DIY Bayalage your hair.  Now bayalage is different from ombre, but basically lighter on the ends, roots dark.  That makes hair easy to grow out.  I was already getting dark roots a week after my foils but with very harsh lines.   I first had to figure out what to do with my newly colored hair.  It was 3 very different shades with already horrible roots.

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You can see the 3 colors, and my roots
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This is about 1 week old color

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In my search, I have seen lots of positive reviews about eSalon‘s custom home hair color.   It’s box hair color, but after filling out a questionnaire telling them what your hair is currently and what you would like, they have you choose from appropriate colors and custom blend it for you.  I was looking for a base color close to my dark brown so it would grow out nicely.  I chose a copper mahogany which was mostly dark brown with – you guessed it, some copper and some mahogany.   It came in the mail within 2 weeks and I colored over all of my previous stripes.   I was really impressed with the color.  It covered everything and felt great afterwards.

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Basically really dark brown red
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Turned out dark and shiny.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I went out a few days later and purchased my blonde highlighting kit.  I chose Revlon’s Frost and Glow in Honey.  It is recommended for dark brown hair which is what I needed.   One of the more popular techniques to watch is in Jessie James Decker’s video on youtube.   She has pretty great hair and has been doing it on her own for a while.   Her base is much lighter than mine overall, but I wasn’t too worried.   I didn’t do mine exactly like she does, but I used Saran wrap, which other videos suggested to keep the highlighter moist longer and get a more lightening effect.   I chose a day where Max would be at daycare and I made sure I had all my supplies.

I sectioned the hair off in six sections.  I tore up some Saran, mixed the color and began.  I basically brushed it on from about 1/3 of the way down my hair then rubbed the starting point with my fingers to blend it.   I made sure to cover the bottom ends well because I did want that lighter.  I was a little conservative probably at the beginning, worried I would run out when I got to the top/front.  I had plenty though.  Wrapping it in the Saran was difficult and I twisted it a bit which I wouldn’t do next time. It did cause some bleeding with the twisting and I noticed a little stripey effect when I washed it out.  Next time I would just lay the hair flat and put Saran under and over a section.

It took me all day – close to six hours.  It lightened pretty well initially, but I noticed a few flaws and needed to add more to the back, so I did a second process while the color was still good.  Doing the back was difficult so I would recommend having a friend help you out.  Doing it twice is why it took me so long.  IMG_7230 IMG_7231

As you can see from the dark reddish brown photo above, it lightened up quite a bit.  Most of the ends are blonde.  It did do a little damage to the ends so I’m doing a lot of deep conditioning and it’s working out nicely.   The next time I lighten it, which will be awhile, I will probably have a toner ready to put on it.  I had planned to get one, then decided to see how it came out, and felt that I didn’t really need it.  With the reddish base, I had some orange-y tones, but not too brassy.

I wish I had a better pic when I had it fixed or curled a bit, but you get the overall effect.  I’m pretty satisfied with my $25 at home hair and will continue with it for a while.  The bayalage look may be heading out of style, but I’m ok being a busy mom a couple of years out of date.  What’s most important is that I didn’t burn my hair off completely, and I got a nice, lightened effect for summer.  Best of luck should you give it a try, I would love to see feedback from anyone using these products.

Feed my toddler or pull my hair out?

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My happy little eater

Boy, do I have a picky eater!  Most kids go through this stage at some point, but I thought I’d have a little more time.  This picture was taken about a year ago, when I could give him just about anything and he would at least shove it into his mouth and try it.   Look at that happy face!

Those days are long gone.  The struggle began to start probably around 16-18 months old.  Max was breast fed for an entire year, and started solids using baby led weaning around 6 months.   IMG_4178He really did well trying new foods.  He loved all kinds of fruits, sweet potatoes, most veggies, yogurt, cheese, pork roast, eggs.  I didn’t give him any sugary foods until well after a year old.   Then it started to taper off last summer.  When I would put the shredded meat on his tray he would just drop it on the floor.  Same with the veggies, with the exception of sweet potatoes, which is one of the things he will still eat (usually).

As the list of foods narrowed slowly each week,  I became more and more frustrated (=angry).   There were days where I had to talk myself off the ledge and just wanted to pull my hair out.  The most annoying thing is how he’ll gobble something down one week, then the next week won’t even touch it.  GRRRRRR!!!!  You just ate that last week and loved it!!!  It’s been so many months that his diet has sucked now that I’ve been able to get a grip on myself.  I have to remind myself to leave it alone, and not let it ruin my day.  This is a common toddler power struggle and my stubborn temperamental prince has a good handle on this one.  So, I’m trying to let it go.

I do a lot of searching for nutritious recipes and healthy ways to get him to try new things.   I’ve read hundreds of articles about how to get your toddler to eat.  And I’m over it.  I really can’t read one more article or post or suggestion about how to get him to eat broccoli.  And why do the suggestions all sound so smug and condescending?  – Just give him what everyone else is eating, and if that’s all he has he’ll eat it.  -Put a vegetable on his plate every day, eventually he’ll eat it.  -Start with vegetables first.  I’ve tried all of these things and more.   The more I read them, the more I want to reach through my screen and throat punch some random lady whose kids seem to be perfect.

Right now this isn’t going to happen the way I want it to.  I’m ok with that.  I’m not going to blame myself or spend endless hours whipping up crazy ways to hide veggies in his food.  That doesn’t make me a bad mom.   I’ve read lots of posts where kids are eating mostly pizza and sugar and I wouldn’t do that either.  Everyone has to handle their children the best they know how.  I plan on waiting him out for a little while and when that doesn’t work he’ll sit at the table until he gags his veggies down, the way I did when I was little.  I think 2 is just a little early for that tactic.

As for now, he will not touch any meat products, no green veggies, barely any fruits.  He has never eaten white potatoes (not even fries dipped in anything), won’t try pizza, chicken fingers, pasta, mac’n’cheese, avocados, or raw or frozen veggies.  It’s impossible to eat out with him, he won’t even eat the crap food on the kid menu.   I made these muffins yesterday and was surprised how good they were since the batter looked like vomit.   They have a ton of veggies, but a lot of apple taste.  He won’t eat them, not even with peanut butter.   In the freezer they’ll go for a month or so and I’ll attempt again later on.  That’s what I get for busting out my food processor.

As disappointed as I am, I do attempt healthy choices as often as I can muster.  It’s honestly exhausting.  He knows he has total control over his mealtime right now and he’s using it.  I’m sure this stage will pass.  We are basically living on waffles, sweet potatoes, pancakes made from sweet potatoes, veggie pouches, applesauce, cottage cheese, cheese sticks, yogurt, PB toast, blueberries, grapes.  Sometimes eggs, oatmeal.  Then there are some snack foods he’s really loving, but they aren’t staples.  I haven’t even mentioned his severe cashew allergy.  Thank God those aren’t put in everything and PB doesn’t bother him.

He seems to be growing just fine, so for now I have to let it go.  It’s my job as a mom to give him healthy choices and I will continue to do that.  I don’t spend as much time now trying to look up new ideas about how to feed him.  He’s in the driver seat for this one, and eventually I’ll wear him down or his texture issues will disappear like magic.  One thing I won’t do is pretend like my kid is ideal or that I have a grip on everything.  I don’t, and I don’t for a minute need anyone to think that I do.  Nothing is more frustrating than that mom whose kid always sleeps through the night, eats everything, and never throws tantrums.  Maybe she’s incredibly lucky, or just terribly insecure.  I got a rough sleeper whose now a very picky eater.  That’s what raising kids is all about.  All I can hope is my next one sleeps and eats on demand.  Ya, I’m gonna go with that.  Good luck to all you mommas in the kitchen.  The struggle is real.

Let’s just call it a crisis

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I believe there are a lot of ways to define a mid-life crisis, they can appear in many ways, shapes and forms.   I think I could count this time period in my life as my mid-life crisis.  Most people commonly fall into a mid-life crisis because they hit a spot of boredom or transition or feel unfulfilled, and something in their behavior or actions changes dramatically.   I’d like to make it clear that I’m not bored or unfulfilled in any way, and as far as I can tell, no dramatic changes here.   I am, however, in transition.

A few months ago I quit my job as a LMT for 8.5 years.   I’ve been doing massage since 2001.  I’m licensed in 2 states and probably will be forever.   I’ve done massage in doctor’s offices, rehabilitation clinics, small spas in Ohio and very large spas in Las Vegas.   I worked for a show on the strip, which was amazing.  I’ve had many great opportunities in this field and am pretty sure I’m not done with it.  As for now, I’m a domestic goddess.

I began this blog just a few weeks ago.  It’s something I really want to do and devote time to.   I’ve been looking into help from other bloggers and doing a lot of research.  Here’s my biggest stumbling block.  I don’t know what I want to be when I grow up- or when I am done raising little ones.   This blog, right now, probably looks like a mommy blog, and it might end up as mostly one.  It’s truly  a journey blog.  Whether it’s interesting or not remains to be seen.

When starting a blog, one must choose a niche, or something I’m good at.  Well, I’m good at a number of things…massage therapy, changing diapers while my kid crawls away, sleeping (when I’m permitted to), singing my sentences(which my husband can’t stand), sarcasm.   Not sure if that last one even counts, but I feel like it’s a true talent of mine.  None of these things are in the same niche, but can be cross-referenced when needed.

I have so many things that run through my mind daily.  This is the reason I want to call this stage a crisis.  It feels like one.  What will I do down the road?  And, mind you, this is a few years down the road.  I’m already feeling a panic about it.  I am a planner!  Type A to a fault.  I need to know, get started in another direction, but what the hell am I going to do?  But first, what the hell is this blog going to be about?

  • I thought about getting into real estate for awhile.  I love looking at houses, would love to flip a house or two.  Yes, my television is either on Disney Junior or HGTV.   But even my own real estate agent and friend told me-don’t get into real estate.  OK.
  • I would love to take some photography classes and turn that into a small money maker eventually.  I have a pretty decent camera.  I rarely use it.  Working on that one.
  • I love doing DIY stuff, thank you HGTV.  I’ve done a few small projects around the house and look forward to doing more.  I’ll have a post about those changes soon.
  • I love sports!  Most sports-but especially football.   I pay an unhealthy amount of attention to football minutia.  Female sportscasters seem to be all the rage right now, I would love to do that.   When I have time, I love to be active also.

Above all, I’m married and have children.  This takes up the majority of my life and time right now and I woIMG_7176uldn’t have it any other way.  I could write a lot of info about how cute/maddening my two year old is.  I can write a number of posts about what makes marriage hard and great at the same time.   I’ve lost a child late in pregnancy and will write about loss.  We are just starting to try for our rainbow baby, so I hope soon I can post about that.

 

This will be my journey.  This is my blog.  Love it, hate it, stay tuned in or never return.  I hope you find something you enjoy, or at least, can relate to here.   I hope there’s lots of that, and plenty of sharing.  Something that makes your day and makes you think you aren’t the only one going through a mid-life crisis.  Although it feels like a crisis to my Type A ass, it’s an amazing change for the better for me and my family.   That’s something I can never lose sight of.

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Sometimes life may feel like a crisis, consider it a beautiful storm.

 

A boy and his potty

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My son turned two at the end of February.  I decided that it was time to look into potty training.  He can be quite stubborn and I was worried that the longer I waited, the more resistant he may become.  After searching the internet for a few weeks, I saw amazing reviews for the book “Oh Crap! Potty Training” by Jamie Glowacki.

This system is basically a three stage, or block, system starting from Clueless to I Peed to I’m Peeing to I Have To Go Pee.  I’m glad that I got the book and read it because she dis-spells a lot of myths attached to potty training.  Most parents nowadays wait until their children “are ready”.  Everyone says they will show signs they’re ready, they’ll sit on their little potty, etc.  My son had sat on his a time or two, but was generally showing more interest in the toilet paper roll.  We don’t wait for our little ones to be ready for major changes, often times as parents,  we initiate many major changes for our little ones without their readiness.  That made sense to me.  She also explains how countries all over the world have their kids trained before the age of one, and the US is beginning later and later.  She wasn’t sure why this is happening, but most of the reason probably has to do with parents waiting for their children to show they are ready.  She gives a readiness list that helps to see if your child is capable of potty training.  Jamie has been training for over a decade and finds that 20-30 months seems to be the optimum time frame for training.  After 30 months, the power struggle becomes a real problem.

As I prepared myself mentally for this little challenge, I found myself becoming increasingly nervous about how this would go.  I had visions of him peeing all over the rugs and telling me no or hiding behind furniture for a nice number 2.   I tried to keep telling myself to relax, stick it out and just go from there.  I picked a start date and stuck to it.  I took about a week and a half getting ready.  Making sure I had stocked up on juice (coconut water, diluted)  and I got him coconut chocolate milk (diluted with original coconut milk) to try also.  I also bought him a new Camelbak Eddy kids water bottle, which he loved!  We talked about getting rid of his diapers for a few weeks beforehand.  Nothing about our prior talks or preparation told me he was ready.

Day 1-  Naked from the waist down.  Told him no more diapers, pee goes in the potty and filled up his sippy cups and bottles.  Had about 10 pee accidents, but I rushed him to the potty each time.  Luckily, I just happened to catch him pushing on a #2 after dinner and whisked him onto the potty just in time.  He was surprised to see the poo, but was proud of himself.  He’s been able to poo in the potty since then.

Day 2- Naked in the morning, no accidents.  Late morning we did some shorts and he peed them fairly quickly.  We stuck with it and I just kept telling him no pee in your shorts.  He wet his shorts a couple more times so we went back to naked.

Day 3- Still naked.  No accidents.  Wore shorts later in the day and he began to go to the potty with his shorts on and wait for me to hurry to pull them down.  Still a couple shorts accidents but really good overall.  He did have a #2 accident in shorts in the five minutes I let Daddy watch him.  This is after I strongly warned my husband that he was about to go.

Day 4- daycare in a diaper.  Came home diaper off and did well.

Within the next two weeks, he has come home from daycare and asked to take his diaper off to pee.  He’s so excited about it, which really shocked me.  He still says ‘bye bye pee pee’ everytime we flush.  We’ve gone an entire day in shorts with no accidents.  We’ve had short car trips with no accidents also.  I’ve taken the potty in the car, but haven’t used it yet.  He’s initiating on his own, but not really telling me he has to go.

I do think that wearing diapers all day at daycare might be confusing him a little bit, so I’m trying to explain that he only wears diapers for sleep and school.  When he’s naked, he does really well.

We are going to have accidents and lots of them.  Last night, sitting naked next to me on the couch, it must’ve come up suddenly because I totally missed his face and everything.  All I know that happened was he sneezed and when I looked over he had pooped on the couch.  (Fortunately, it’s wipeable.)  I wasn’t expecting that and by the look of it, neither was he.  Today we walked down to the park and he’s not sure what to do there, and doesn’t yet tell me he has to go.  He can pee right out in the grass but doesn’t really know that’s ok.  So he’s standing there in front of me, looks down and he’s peeing right into his crocs.  Needless to say, we went and played in the splash pad right away.

It’s going to be a process for sure but I’m so proud of where he is heading.  I have to remind myself that for two years he did whatever he wanted, wherever he wanted.  I think he’s doing so well and Daddy and I are so happy that he’s enjoying hitting the potty.   He’s getting so big, so fast, right before our eyes.  IMG_7097

This book and system worked for us and she has so much info on her webpage, which is linked above.  Good luck to all you future potty trainers, I hope it’s not as horrible as you think it will be.