Tuesday, 29 July 2014

I Jumped On The Bandwagon...

I bought short overalls. I rocked this babies when I was a kid and I looooved them. I had multiple pairs and they were all floral. I also had regular-length overalls in denim and navy blue corduroy. When I first saw overalls back on the scene, I was a little hesitant, but with a post-baby bod, overalls are even more fantastic.

As always, when I'm jumping on a trend bandwagon, I don't break the bank. These ones are from Old Navy and only set me back $20. So if, by the end of summer, I'm over overalls, no biggie!

Sorry about the brutal picture but I at least wanted to show that I wear them. Selfies with a baby aren't exactly easy (just be glad I cut my head off...no make up and crazy hair that morning).

Here's another option (with my own clothes):

And here are a few inspirational pics for more great ways to style your overalls from my favourite fashion bloggers.

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Monday, 21 July 2014

Bringing Home Baby

I found that leading up to Ruby's birth, I was absolutely terrified of labour and I really only focused on getting through that part. What I didn't consider was what things would be like after leaving the hospital. I find that this part isn't something widely talked about (at least I wasn't aware of some of these things) so I feel that it's really important to share in the hopes of helping out other new moms.

{all ready to leave the hospital}

Coming home from the hospital was really exciting, we had to stay in for an extra day so it really felt like we were ready to get home and start life as a family. The first afternoon home was quite a whirlwind; I almost can't remember how it felt. However, by the second evening, a weird feeling came over me. I felt sad. I chalked it up to being tired and overwhelmed with having Ruby home. But the next evening, the same feeling rolled over me. What I didn't immediately understand was that I had the baby blues (common, but I had never heard about it). For me, it started as an anxiety-fueled stomach ache, followed by tears. This happened each day for about two weeks and it felt absolutely terrible. Luckily, I had tons of love and support around me, but there was truly nothing anyone could do to take away my baby blues.

By the third week, I wasn't experiencing the blues daily; they were slowly dissipating. To me, this was a huge relief because not only was I tired of getting sad each day, but I was also experience mommy-guilt for feeling sad. Aren't people supposed to be overjoyed by their new baby? Well, I am, and soon I will probably forget the baby blues altogether (I have to assume this happens so that people want to have another child, just like forgetting labour pain).

Once I started talking to friends and family about how I felt, most people came forward and said 'oh, yes, I had that too'. I am very open with my feelings and because of this I was pretty much willing to tell any stranger on the street how difficult the first two weeks felt. Now, I'm happy to put it out to the internet with the hopes of helping other new moms prepare themselves for a roller coaster of emotions, and ease the guilt that accompanies this. With any luck (as it did for me), the blues will quickly fade and you will get to experience the joy that everyone does tell you about :)

Friday, 11 July 2014

Ruby's Birth Story

I spent months worrying about labour. Maybe it was my expectation of it being so terrible that made the experience more pleasant. I have to say, I actually liked my labour. I think about it and it makes me happy. Many women told me labour horror stories, but two people actually told me that they liked their labour and that it made them feel powerful. I completely agree; it was a very empowering experience.

I'm sure those who have had scary things happen during labour would not necessarily agree with me, but since I didn't have any complications, it made things pretty straightforward. The entire thing (from me saying 'hmmm I think I'm having contractions' to Ruby being placed in my arms) was 10.5 hours, which is fast, considering the average labour for a first baby is 17 hours.

Was it painful? Oh you bet. I laboured through the first 5 cm without much trouble (it hurt but I was able to tolerate it). Then they broke my water. When they did that, I was warned that the labour would then move much quicker and would be a lot more painful. They weren't kidding. Almost immediately the contractions became so intense that I couldn't stand it. I opted for some IV pain meds (since I was terrified to get an epidural), but the pain meds made absolutely no difference. At that point, the pain of the contractions trumped my fear of the epidural, so I begged for the anesthesiologist. He was in surgery so I had to wait. It was a long wait while I went through contraction after contraction. By the time he arrived (about two hours after they broke my water), I had already dilated the full 10 cm. The epidural worked like a charm and didn't hurt at all (for those who are afraid, it's ok!) and I was immediately flooded with relief.

At that point, my mom  had arrived, which gave Nick a break (poor guy, I wasn't exactly pleasant during those hard contractions...). With my epidural working miracles, we were able to just hang out and chat while we waited for it to be time to push. I took this opportunity to put The Bachelorette on tv because, who wants to miss an episode?! :)

The nurses came in and let me know it was time to start pushing. I informed them that I was also quite nervous about that part and they were incredibly reassuring. I will say, the epidural made the pushing part easier. I can't imagine having to push with the pain of the contractions that I had experienced. Yikes. Aside: I'm pretty sure the woman in the next room was doing it without drugs and believe me, the screams coming out of her room were terrifying. It sounded like they needed an exorcist in there!

I only pushed for an hour and a half (again, not bad considering 3 hours is pretty typical). The epidural had slowed my contractions right down, so they offered oxytocin to speed my contractions up so that my pushes would be more effective. I obliged, and pushed as hard as I could until Ruby was born at 9:34. When they placed her on my chest it was the craziest, happiest moment ever.

A side note: my birth plan was no plan at all. Things I had read had all talked about bringing multiple copies of my birth plan to the hospital to give to the nurses and doctors. My feeling on birth plans is that since most births rarely go to 'plan' having a concrete plan can set the parents up for disappointment. This doesn't mean I hadn't considered things like pain management, interventions and surgery. I had just decided that I would take things as they came and if it turned out I needed drugs, interventions, or surgery, then I would be ok with it. I would really recommend taking this approach because the last thing you want is to feel disappointed when your little nugget arrives!

Ps. If you have the time, I'd really recommend taking a shower, shaving your legs, drying your hair, etc before going to the hospital (I did). I didn't know how long I'd be in labour for and figured I'd like to start off clean and feeling my best. The nurses even noticed and commented that I'd shaved my legs, ha!

Monday, 7 July 2014

Introducing Ruby

Hello!! It feels like it's been forever since I sat down to hammer out a blog post and I have to say, it feels great. Clearly I had a pretty significant life event which was the reason for my blog vacation, the birth of my little girl, Ruby :)

Now that she's five weeks old (which has absolutely flown by), I feel like I've been able to adjust to having a new member of our family and now I'm starting to get back to normal/our new normal.

I have to be honest, this blog will likely be shifting focus since my life pretty much revolves around this little cherub right now, but I'm also hoping that by continuing to blog, I will maintain some balance and challenge myself to do things that aren't necessarily baby related.

I will definitely share Ruby's birth story (the non-gory details) in another post, but I will say that it went super smoothly. In the meantime, here are a few more pictures from Ruby's newborn photo shoot (photo credit: my friend Sarah, who also did my maternity photos). We had such a fun time at her studio and since she has already grown so much, I really appreciate having pictures that capture her within her first week.

See some more pictures after the jump...
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