Hi there, my name is Jessica and I’m a new mom to an eight month old baby boy named Steve. I enjoy photography, coffee, airports and the outdoors. I’ve been following Kendra and Hanging with the Huies for a couple of years now. I really love watching all of the Vlogs and I enjoy all of Kendra’s beauty and food posts. She’s always been a person that I knew -if we lived near each other- we’d be the best of friends… Mostly because we both love outdoors and coffee so much.
Kendra gave me free reign on this blog post, so I thought I’d enlighten you all with my random thoughts on motherhood and how it has changed me – the good, the bad and of course, the beauty of this beautiful, messy life that I wouldn’t change for the world.
Motherhood is always something I couldn’t wait to enter. I couldn’t wait for all of the firsts, the birthdays and the everyday joys of motherhood. I helped raise my siblings that are 11 years younger than me. I always picked up every baby my friends and family had. I knew that one day I would be a mother and I was going to try my best to be a good one. My son, Steve, made me a mother on September 2nd, 2016 and changed me forever. My pregnancy was fairly easy with only minimal morning sickness, round ligament pain and my sciatica flaring up near the end. My delivery was easy and smooth and then he was here. My sweet, sweet angel. Everyone always says that a baby changes you, but I never fully understood that until I held him, smelled him and kissed him for the first time. His big blue eyes looked up at me in a haze like “mama is that you?. Is that the voice I’ve been hearing the last 10 months?”. Our first few weeks were difficult and amazing as we adjusted to each other. I struggled with getting used to having a baby and not being able to shower whenever I wanted to or sleeping longer than two hour stretches, but I knew I was meant to be his mom.
He made me so proud and even on those long sleepless nights, I tried to embrace those moments because I knew they wouldn’t last forever. Steve has changed me as a person forever. One of the struggles I faced in the beginning was breastfeeding. My milk took five days to come in and then when it finally did come in I had to use a nipple shield and my supply was barely enough. My son would latch for maybe 10-15 minutes whenever he ate and then he’d cry and cry because he was still hungry. I struggled a lot with breastfeeding. I always felt defeated and less of a mother because this beautiful, natural thing I couldn’t do. I wanted so badly to make it work, but after two months of trying and meeting with lactation consultants I decided to just exclusively pump. He was getting formula at night from the beginning because I never produced enough. I pumped every two hours for five months. It was wonderful and stressful being hooked up to that machine. I loved knowing he was getting my milk, but I hated having him cry and want to be held while I pumped alone. After five months of exclusively pumping, I decided to stop. My supply had nearly diminished and I was barely pumping 7 ounces a day. I kept hearing from a close friend that a happy mom will equal a happy baby. I still struggle knowing we didn’t breastfeed for long and when my supply dropped I had to stop pumping, but I know I did my best. He is a healthy, happy and thriving baby boy and as my doctor would say. He’s off the charts with his weight and height. I’m proud of myself for getting through that struggle and I’m a better mom because of it.
I also struggled with going back to work after my 12 weeks of leave were over. I loved being home with him every hour of the day and seeing him grow and change. I knew everything about him. I hated thinking that I would be missing out on so many things with him. I still get teary eyed when I think about the time he spends away from me, but I now know it’s for the best. My family needs both of our incomes to live the life we want and even though it took me a long time to admit it, I liked getting back into a work routine. Now I cherish all of our time together so much more. I live for the weekends and I live for those morning giggles.
Like most women these days I struggle with my body postpartum, but most days Steve helps me realize what my body created. How could I be unhappy with it when it gave me the best thing in my life. I love this body I’m in- stretch marks, flabby skin and excess weight and all. Before having my son, my main focus was always on the scale and losing weight and wearing a size small. I still struggle with my body some days, but It created life and nurtured a baby with breast milk for five months. My goal now is to try and live a healthy and happy life. If that includes an ice cream cone or a glass of wine on a Friday night, then I’m fine with that. I will be healthy with my food about 80% of the time and that’s great because then I don’t have the urge to binge. Finding that balance is what I still struggle with, but I’m making it work. I want to keep loving the body I’m in and set a good example of a healthy life for my son.
To end my thoughts and rambles, I just wanted to say–
Motherhood has changed me forever and I wouldn’t have it any other way. I love the person I have become and I can’t wait to see how I keep changing with motherhood as my son gets older and future kids get in the picture.