Working Mother Guilt

October 26, 2018

I went on leave today.

At 39 weeks I just could not physically deal with being at work any longer.

Constant pain, constant exhaustion, constantly having my work life together but home was a wreck. I just couldn't do it anymore.

How on earth am I supposed to roll up to the hospital and have a baby when I feel like nothing is done. It's not how I live. I'm very much someone who needs things done, and if all the talk about how mental going into labor is... home being undone is a big enough mental block to keep that at bay.

So now I'm at home. With my bag in my living room and not in my car.

No more fear of going into labor at work. No more stopping in the hallway because I'm in pain. No more wincing while I try to work with students because my contractions are a killer at that moment.

Nope. Now I can adequately get ready for this next baby phase.

But in that... why is there so much guilt?

Why is there this whole idea that we need to work until the baby is crowning?

I recently asked a question in a teacher mom group I'm in on Facebook about who went into labor at work and you'd be shocked at the answers. Many teachers told me that they continued to have contractions at work but stayed to get copies made and plans finished for the sub... then they left for the hospital.

Um, what?

What is this pressure?

Is this something we should place blame on that 1960's group of feminists? We are already told as women that we should work... now we should work through labor. Or we at least feel the pressure to place work above our own well being.

You see it from other women though, many thing you should just work until it all comes to a close and the baby falls out during your lunch break.

Maybe my last birth and postpartum period was just more difficult than some of the women I talk to.

This particular birth and postpartum might not be as bad, but I'm preparing for the worst again. I'm afraid of the emotions, not because I can't have them, but because it's just such an inconvenience for this new mom to now be the happy hostess when people come over. I should be happily handing my baby off, feeling great, and cleaning so others don't have to.

But I can't very well expect to be jumping out of that hospital bed again known where I was last time. Because of the trauma of suddenly not having any core strength and a pelvic floor that was ripped to shreds I couldn't do much on my own that first week. Jeremy had to help me out of bed. He had to hand me the baby. He had to help me get to the bathroom at the hospital. And at the end of the first 48 hours I was such a wreck that I just cried.

I cancelled hospital photos because I just had to get out.

Then when I was out I sobbed at home that first whole night with Jeremy holding the baby.

And you know what... we had visitors the next morning.

I needed my husbands support in everything at the time but we were being spread thin to visitors.

This time I can't do that. I can't feel bad that I do need time to get things in order before I have the baby, no matter how long other women work. I need time after having the baby where other people don't expect me to be some welcoming hostess, when what I need is to be taken care of.

I'm putting my foot down. Regardless of the fact that I've felt a basket of guilt for doing it. But this time I can't give in to peer pressure and just bounce back. No, I'm going to do what my body wants so that when it's time to return to the real world of work I can stand up without my pelvic floor wanting to come apart. I can feel like I've got things together somewhat.

So I can't spend the next 6 weeks making sure everyone else around me is happy and I definitely can't give into the guilt of what working moms are expected to do these days.
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Meal Planning Monday

October 22, 2018

This week I was able to bring my pregnant self to meal plan for 3 nights. Couldn't really go farther than that. But hey, it's better than last week and the pre made Sam's Club meals we bought.

[What is Meal Pinning Monday?]
MPM is how I meal plan for our little family. I once spent a lot of time searching the web and my recipe books hunting for new recipes and ideas for what to cook every week. Then, Pinterest came along and made meal planning much easier for me. Every weekend I look over what I have pinned the prior week and decide what I would like to cook and make my grocery list from these recipes. MPM came about as a way to share what I am cooking, and to also see what others are cooking every week to hopefully get even more dinner ideas from other bloggers. If you don't pin your recipes feel free to just share what you are cooking.

Monday - Chicken Bacon Ranch Skillet with Fingerling Potatoes

Tuesday - Grilled Chicken with Green Beans

Wednesday - Beef Tips with Rice and Roasted Broccoli (cooking them the Mississippi Roast way - Au Jus Gravy Packet, Ranch Packet, Butter)

We might get two nights from the Beet Tips, but after that I have got to figure out what is going on. This has not been a pregnancy where I have the energy or desire to really plan that far ahead. 
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Life Lately

October 19, 2018

Lafayette Moms Blog had it's first Mom's Night Out this month. It was an absolute blast to hang out with these ladies all day. Even if I had to take my big ole belly home early to rest. If you live in the area I highly suggest you go next year, or even to our events throughout the year. If for any reason alone... the swag bags are amazing. 

Southfin Southern Poke opened this week in Lafayette and last Friday night I went with our crew to check it out before it was open to the public. This was my first time having it... seeing as how it has gotten popular while I've been pregnant. On the upside they have cooked options, I didn't know that before. There are also Whole30 and Paleo options too! It will basically fit any diet you have, everything is can be customized.

I got the Luau bowl, all shimp no tuna.

Our ladies with the owners. There is also a location in Baton Rouge is you live closer to there. Kids bowls are a dollar every night... and they have chicken for your non seafood eaters! 

I was going to put this off and potentially skip a year but Jeremy made me since we all know I'd regret it. So we loaded up the little one and headed off to our usual pumpkin patch. I personally prefer the Methodist church in Lafayette to the one in New Iberia just because the pumpkins aren't covered with tents. Makes for better photos.

Who knows how getting a photo next year will go, this one is allergic to making eye contact with the camera as is. The year he was almost 2 is my absolute favorite pumpkin patch photo series we have ever taken.

Last but not least, I'm still pregnant.

I gave up makeup this week, I can't stand the idea of going into labor and having to take it off in some awkward way while I don't really feel like standing for long.

Then last night with all my achy body parts I decided I'd start showering at night and washing my hair just in case. I was on day 3 and had some grease filled locks. Nothing I want a photo of when the baby comes.

So no makeup and night showers because I'm paranoid and we have two weeks left. Which I doubt we make... the full moon is Wednesday. I've bee crampy with back aches for two days. My stomach feels somewhere between a tumor and a rock. My dreams of going to November 2 are likely not going down. 

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What's in My Labor Bag

October 17, 2018

I have a few essential items in my hospital bag this round, but what I'm really gearing up for is what's in my labor bag.

So here are a few essentials to get me through the tough labor times ahead... whenever on earth that goes down!

1. Yoga Ball

Also called a birthing ball. It helps to open your hips and doing hip circles and bouncing can help get baby in place. It's really the only comfortable place to even sit at this point. During my last labor I spent most of the day on my ball.

2. Labor Essential Oil Blend

I bought the Hosie blend that is already mixed with oil so I don't have to mess with that during labor. It's said to help with stimulating contractions and such. I plan to use it for massage, as well as rubbing on my stomach and ankles.

3. Rebozo Scarf

Or the closest thing I own to one. This will be a great way for Jeremy to use counter pressure on my hips without wearing himself out. Not to mention giggling your stomach and body with it is so relaxing.

4. Tennis Balls

I'd pay someone to massage me with these. They were an absolute lifesaver during my lovely back labor with Harrison.

5. Spray Bottle of Water with Lavender and Frankincense

Lavender is calming and Frankincense helps with focus, the combo mixed with cool water will hopefully help out with how hot I tend to get. As well as just the aromatherapy side of being relaxing.

6. Hot/Cold Pack

I doubt I'll want or use the cold option with this, but it's great for the pain I've had at night so far. Plus I think this will take the place of a warm sock of rice on my eyes. Anything to calm my nerves and help with labor pain.

7. Notes from the Comfort Measures Class as well as my Ina May Gaskin Guide to Childbirth

I've highlighted half to death in an attempt to not forget what sounds like great ideas for comfort measures during labor. Especially since it's up to Jeremy to really guide and suggest, especially if I'm in so much pain that I can't think. That actually happened last time when my epidural wore off while we were trying to turn Harrison's head... it felt like my hips were being pulled out of my body. Funny enough, tonight he wants to go over everything so he has a mini refresher class in what I want and don't want. But really the man is a stellar doula, I should charge and loan him out.

Also, my camera and a fully charged battery! I'm going to be that weirdo though that makes her husband shoot in manual mode and has to fix the settings while I'm being sewn up... I'm not a control freak at all.
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Southern Wedding Gifts

October 12, 2018

Today's guest post is all about Southern wedding gift ideas. I have to say, these are pretty spot on for what to get when you don't know what to gift someone! 

Giving wedding gifts is a challenging task and can be even more confusing if you need to follow certain traditions such as they have in the south. You want your gift to be on point, memorable and truly make a statement with the bride and groom.
Take your time and do your homework, so you don’t have any regrets at the end of the day. Shop around and use the list of ideas below to help you get started in the right direction. Enjoy the process and how great it’ll feel to finally come to a decision about what the perfect southern wedding gift will be for your friend or family member.

Supplies for Outdoor Activities

Outdoor activities and hunting are very common hobbies in the south, especially when the weather is nice. A unique idea for a southern wedding gift is to give archery supplies or hunting gear, which is a great activity the bride and groom can do together after they’re married. Other ideas include camping, hunting or fishing gear so they can embark on new adventures as a couple doing what they enjoy.

Formal China

People in the south love to throw dinner parties for friends and family members and this is especially expected of new brides. The perfect southern wedding gift is to purchase formal china that the newly married couple can use to entertain in their home. Get them a full set so it all matches and they have all they need to look put together and organized. Luckily, there are a wide variety of beautiful patterns and styles to choose from.

Piece of Art

Another excellent southern wedding gift idea is to buy the couple a stunning piece of art or opt to make your own. For instance, purchase colors you know will look good in their home and artists you know they love, otherwise make a gift using memories from the wedding. You can DIY crochet or stitch words and images together that have to do with ever-lasting love and building a happy home and then frame it. They’ll appreciate the thoughtfulness and personal touch of a homemade gift.

Monogrammed Anything

One tradition in the south that is sure to be a hit if you go this route is to gift anything that’s monogrammed. For example, you can engrave and personalize jewelry, towels or a nice vase that they can put on display. Your bride and groom can be proud of wanting to showcase the family name in any way possible around the home. The bride and groom will love any gift that accomplishes this goal and looks nice in their home or that they can physically wear such as jewelry. 


You should now have a good idea of what to get a southern bride and groom for their wedding day. These gift options are not only traditional in nature but tasteful and classy as well. You can’t go wrong with one of these choices, so commit to an item and wrap it beautifully and you’ll have nothing to worry about.

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36 Weeks or Commonly Known as 36 Years Pregnant

October 9, 2018

Let's face it. If I didn't take a photo in the bathroom with wet hair there would be no photo. 

36 Week Pregnancy Update

Size: Baby B is about the size of a tray of lasagna (thanks Ava) and at our ultrasound last week the baby was weighing about 6 lbs. 

Due Date: November 2 (measured for Nov 6 at the ultrasound, but they aren't changing it). 

Heartbeat: Last week it was 188. 

Symptoms: Same ole, same ole. Except I started dilating early and am now 2 cm and 50% effaced. That landed me on Procardia to stop contractions... but made me feel like I was dying. So it ended. Now I've tested positive for GBS and have a UTI so I get to start antibiotics tonight. The GBS is ruling out my hopes and dreams of getting less fluids and having a hep-lock. 

Currently Missing: Being comfortable.

Cravings and Favorite Foods: Frozen blueberries

Sleep: What's that? The Procardia threw me off so badly that I was waking up more than every hour. Luckily after being off of it for a week I have started to fall back into my normal pregnant sleep cycle.

Food Aversions: 
Sugar... it makes my indigestion worse. But honestly eating eggs isn't that appealing.

Exercise: Quit that mess back in August. But I've since been banned to hold off labor.

Reading/Baby Related Classes and Prep:
Mama Natural Week by Week Guide to Pregnancy and Childbirth
Ina May Gaskin's Guide to Childbirth
Mom's On Call 0-6 Month

Weight: On track with where I should be, last appointment wasn't a good read after I had a big lunch and wore heavy clothing. Y'all might think I'm crazy but I wear dresses and shoes that can be removed easily.

Movement: It never ends. I was actually hurting yesterday from the wild baby movement.

Maternity Clothing: Yup, but I also have a few non maternity dresses I wear. I've come to hate maternity shirts that gather and make everything look larger right now.

Gender Guess: Learning towards a girl... because I'm totally unprepared for it. 

36 Weeks with Harrison vs 36 Weeks with Unknown Child...

Only difference is the swelling you can't see in my legs from Harrison's pregnancy. Plus the fact that it was cold and I'm currently melting. 
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3 Key Ways to Prep for Your Big Day

October 4, 2018

Today's guest post is all about wedding prep! But honestly these tips would work for any big event you have coming up. 

Getting married can be one of the greatest adventures that you decide to embark on. This is because it’s a lifelong commitment that is likely to be full of surprises, twists, and turns. In light of this, ensuring that your big day turns out as close to perfect as possible is key. It’s going to be a day you remember for years to come, so you want to look back and be happy with the outcome of your day. In light of this, you’re going to find three key ways to prep for your big day in the following article.

Plan Ahead
Somewhere in the world right now, a bride is likely frantic and panicking because her big day is a few hours away and she left some key things until the last minute. In light of this, you should try and plan as far ahead as possible to ensure you aren’t missing out on key moments because you’re stressed. Devising a wedding planning timeline often goes a long way as it helps you stay on top of things and tick off boxes like the guest list, food, venue, entertainment, and others as you go along. Also, don’t be afraid to accept or ask for help because you can’t do everything on your own.

Take Care of Your Skin
One of the things that most people look forward to seeing at a wedding is the bride. For this reason, you should try and ensure that you take care of your skin so that you have a stunning glow on the day. Here is a skincare routine that may be worth trying below.

Cleanse - Seeing as your skin is likely to pick up oil and sweat overnight, it’s a good idea to cleanse first thing in the morning. You could decide to wash your face using your hands or motorized oscillating brushes that help remove dirt from pores. Be sure to cleanse with a good facial wash that’s suitable for your skin type.

Moisturize With SPF - Hydration and protection are vital for glowing skin, so moisturizing with SPF is another element to add to your routine. It could help both keep your skin replenished, protect it from the sun and help add a glow as well.

Use Eye Cream - The last thing that you want on your big day is to find that you have tired eyes. For this reason, you should include the use of a good firming eye cream in your skincare routine. This should help your eyes look a lot more rested when you’re walking down the aisle.

Remember to start your new routine as early as possible and avoid trying new products close to your big day just in case of any allergic reactions.

As mentioned above, sometimes you get so lost in preparing for your wedding that you forget to enjoy every moment. Seeing as you’ll hopefully only get married once, try and relax and enjoy the ride. One of the ways that you can relax before your big day is by going to the spa and getting pampered as well as treatments. You should also look into getting the right facials and exfoliating your skin to help you feel as refreshed as possible.
Getting married is a day that many women often dream of. To ensure that your dreams are close enough to your reality, it’s imperative that you put in enough work behind the scenes. As mentioned above, this often means ensuring you are mentally and physically prepare for the many things to come. By doing so, you should find that your big day is nothing short of magical.

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