Monday, January 29, 2018

Thoughts on Working and New Motherhood

I just kicked off my 5th week at work and so far I've found balancing work and motherhood to be pretty difficult, but not in the ways I expected.  We are very happy with our childcare situation.  Vienna has been chugging down bottles and she lights up with the biggest smile when I drop her off, so leaving her with Miss Connie hasn't really been too hard for me.  Although Vienna has been going to bed between 10 and midnight (woof), I am still managing to get between 6 and 7.5 hours of sleep!  My supply has also been great and I'm pumping a ton of milk so that has been a relief.

But I thought I was returning to work to ease back in on a familiar project that's currently in a lull and instead I have been tasked to help out with a crazy demanding project in DC.  My company has allowed me to transition back into the workforce at 30 hours per week, but everyone else on this project is working overtime.  Between stepping away to pump and then coming in late and leaving fairly early, I just feel extremely awkward. To make matters worse, the part of the project I am supposed to be spearheading is significantly behind (aka everyone just ignored it) and it's a giant mess.

At first, the project was stressing me out to the point of trying not to cry at work, but now I am just trying to do what I can and not let it get to me.  My manager has been extremely supportive and it's not like my other coworkers have made comments or anything, it's just an internal pressure that makes me feel like I am not doing enough.  I need to remember that this is just a job.  It is not life or death.  I do not need to feel bad about taking the time to pump milk to nourish my baby.  I do not need to feel guilty that I am working less hours to adjust to my new role as a mother.

In other news, I've been doing pretty decent with my January goals.  Black coffee isn't so bad.  Daily stretching has been awesome.  I've avoided all shopping, except I finally broke down and purchased a ton of new bibs the other day since Vienna is a drool monster.  I've gone to the gym once a week for the past 3 weeks.  Some things felt pretty humbling.  I quickly quit on box jumps and opted for step ups so I didn't bite it my first time back at the gym.  I've lost a lot of strength in my squat, which makes sense since I backed off of heavy squats towards the end of the second trimester.  My dubs sucked and I left the gym with lots of whip marks from the jump rope, fun!  But other things felt great.  My snatch felt pretty strong and I was able to do 30 reps at 75# in a workout.  I worked up to 105# in a heavy clean and jerk complex.  My pull ups feel good and my number one goal of 2018 is to finally fix my dang kip and connect my pull ups properly.  And most importantly my pelvic floor felt good and I haven't peed myself during any running, jumping, or heavy lifting.  Huzzah.

I still can't believe that this time 1 year ago, I was 5 weeks pregnant and trying to hide my nausea and now I'm waiting for this 16 pounder to roll over!

Saturday, January 6, 2018

Goals for January

Between all the social media accounts I follow and my private Whole30 support group, the internet is buzzing and I'm having a major case of FOMO.  I really wish I was doing the Whole30 with everyone... but then I eat a handful of cookies and I quickly forget about it.

Humor and gluttony aside, I figured going back to work and getting used to pumping was enough to deal with in January.  Adding the planning, cooking, and willpower demands of a Whole30 would have been too much to expect from myself.  I'm thinking maybe March.

But in the meantime, I need to start somewhere!  I do love using the new year as a fresh start so I'm making some small attainable goals for myself to get the ball rolling.

January Goals:
  • Do yoga every day (five minutes minimum)
  • Go to CrossFit six times
  • Break up with flavored creamer and go back to black coffee
  • Do not purchase any sweets/treats, soda, bread products
  • No shopping (aside from groceries/necessities)

Another goal is to jump on here and share more often by keeping the posts quick and snappy!  And to share more baby pics.  Obviously.

Thursday, January 4, 2018

3 Month Check In!

Just like that Vienna is 3 months old... and I'm back to work.

It's weird because the time has flown by, but it also feels like she's been a part of our lives forever.  I was home with her for 13.5 weeks!  My company gave me 10 weeks of paid maternity leave, which is almost unheard of, and then I was able to utilize PTO, the holidays, and a few unpaid days for the rest.  It was amazing being home with her for that long and I cannot fathom having to leave her after just 6 weeks like so many women are forced to do.  My work is also allowing me to return for 30 hours at first, so that is helping everyone transition (including Mela haha).

We are using a woman who does daycare out of her house and is only watching one other little girl who is 3 weeks older than Vienna.  Our friends from the gym used her for 3 years and on top of that my coworker is good friends with her son.  She's been watching kids for longer than Dave and I have been alive!  I'm hoping we'll avoid some of the extra daycare colds and Miss Connie will be the Italian grandmother Vienna would never have.  I'm not exactly happy to be back at work, but I think having a set schedule will be good for both of us and mama's gotta make that money.  Pumping is pretty inconvenient, but I'm going to try and make it work as long as possible.

Vienna is changing so much all the time.  Just this past week or two she started making a lot of different noises and crying differently for different things.  Her cries are actually pretty cute, she makes little squeaky gasping noises and often snorts.  She only gets super mad once in a while, although we do call her the pee pee princess because she doesn't tolerate a wet diaper at all.


She's still going to bed pretty late, usually between 10 and midnight, but she went to bed at 9 pm the first day she came home from daycare, so I'm hopeful.  She sleeps for long chunks and usually only gets up once per night, but on both Christmas Eve and New Years Eve she slept 8 hours in row as a special gift for Mommy!

She recently realized she could jam both of her hands in her mouth, so that's been a fun new extra drooly activity.  We're hoping it's not a sign of early teething.  She loves her play mat, she kicks wildly at the piano and gets a tough grip on the toys and refuses to let go.  Tummy time isn't a favorite, but we know it's a necessary evil and her neck is getting pretty strong.

As far as my recover goes, I feel mostly like myself aside from my boobs being extra huge and filled with milk.  I've lost over 40 lbs (of the 60 I gained) without really trying and I've enjoyed as many cookies as my little heart desired.  Before giving birth, I decided that I wasn't going to try and diet through the holidays and now that I've gone back to work, I'm concerned about impacting my supply as I adjust to pumping.  I also haven't made it back to the gym yet.  I've wanted to go, but baby snuggles always win out.  I just signed up for a limited membership for the next 3 months so now I just need to get my booty there.  I'm really looking forward to lifting heavy weights and doing something just for me.

Blogging has also been a challenge.  Whenever I have any free time I'd rather be trying to make V laugh, enjoying her little body sleeping on my chest... or fitting in a shower, doing laundry, or sometimes just watching Grey's Anatomy.  And the longer I don't post, the more epic the return post seems like it needs to be.  I would like to get back into some kind of groove and just post shorter snippets more often, but I really can't promise anything.  Spending time with this little bug will always be more important.

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