This interview is long over due! Literally almost a year 😐 – unintentional blog hiatus
Thank you Amanda for your patience in having this post up! and a Happy Early Mother’s Day 2020 to all Mama’s out there. Who knew we’d be spending this one in quarantine….weird times people.
Amanda is a mommy friend I connected with through instagram, she read one of the other mommy interview posts and offered to be a part of this series! I encourage other mama’s to share their stories too!
Friends! This is Amanda, wonderful mama and wife.
What is your name?
How old were you when you had your first baby?
28 years old.
How many babies do you have and how old are they currently?
Just one and he is 15 months old.
How was your labor & delivery experience? methods, length of time, preferences (natural, epidural, tub etc.), do’s and don’ts for first timers.
My labor and delivery was very smooth. I was due on New Years Eve and on that morning I went in for my 40 weeks appointment and I wasn’t dilated yet but my fluid was low so they admitted me. To dilate me they used a medication call Cytotec that had to be given in four doses every four hours. After the second dose, I started having really painful contractions and started dilating on my own so the other two doses weren’t necessary. My contractions were coming in every minute or so. I was grabbing the side of my bed waiting for each one to be over. It was almost midnight and we were watching the ball drop in New York City. My husband put a New Years crown on me. 2019 came and all I could think was how much I wanted that epidural. At 1am I got the epidural and barely felt the needle. Before I knew it, I felt the pain ease up and I was able to nap a little bit. By morning I was fully dilated. My doctor came in and asked if I wanted a C-Section because my baby had measured so big. I said no and began pushing. 20 minutes later my baby boy was born and finally in our arms. The whole experience was beautiful. I was able to enjoy childbirth and be in the moment. I’m very happy I chose the epidural, it made my experience amazing and enjoyable.
What is your honest experience with your pregnancy?
I like to think since I had a rough pregnancy that I was rewarded with a great labor and delivery. When I say rough, I mean I had every symptom imaginable. I had morning sickness from week 6-19. It was triggered by any smell or sight of food. I was very picky with what I was in the mood to eat because of my nausea. Which resulted in eating comfort food and gaining extra weight. Once the morning sickness was gone I was swollen a lot and having hot flashes all the time. Living in Florida that’s pretty bad. A lot of my weight gain was retained water. No matter what I did I retained water like crazy. I was also slightly anemic which required me to take iron tablets every day which also made me sick.
Let’s talk body changes, what was your experience with the growth process?
I gained more weight than I should’ve during my pregnancy. Being picky with food when I was pregnant caused me to gain a lot of weight. I also barely cooked when I was pregnant because of the smells. I remember being in my kitchen and telling my husband there was something stinky and I couldn’t find what it was because it was making me sick, but he couldn’t smell it. I gained 60lbs. while pregnant but immediately dropped 15lbs. after giving birth. I have some stretch marks which I’m embracing. I started using creams and oils in my second month but after I just learned to love them because they were proof I did something amazing.
Did you have a birth plan? Did it go as planned? Who was there when you were in labor and in delivery?
Yes, I did have a birth plan and it did go as I planned. My husband was in the room with me when I delivered. We wanted a special moment meeting our son for the first time.
At the end of the day or during, how do you find time for yourself?
Relaxing on the couch with my husband and a mani/pedi is basically what I do to have time for myself. As a mom, things can get pretty crazy. It’s important that you find the time to yourself as well. You’re a person and you need to take care of yourself as well. I make sure to make time for myself as well.
How do you handle the pressures of ‘being a mom’ in this day and age? Family? Friends? The media?
I feel like there’s a lot of pressure put on moms these days to act a certain way and do things a certain way. I kindly accept advice but at the end of the day, I follow my ‘mom instincts’ and do things my way. If someone doesn’t like how I do things well that’s their opinion. No mom should be pressured to do something they don’t normally do because someone criticized them.
Do you currently work? f Iso, how do you handle the pressure of work life and mom life?
I don’t work. I decided to resign from my position as a teacher to be a stay-at-home mom. I feel it’s the best decision I could’ve made for my child. We’ve been blessed that we’ve been able to do it financially. I plan to go to work when all our kids have reached school age.
For new or even current moms, what are the most useful baby products you own or would recommend to date? What products do you use now that you absolutely love?
Something you wish you knew before becoming a mom?
I wish I hadn’t bought it out any newborn sized clothing. From the beginning my son was always growing ahead of schedule. I never used a lot of the cute onesies that were newborn sized. Moms, if your doctor expects your baby to be big I would go straight to 0-3 month sized clothing.
Who/what was your biggest support group during pregnancy and after?
My husband was my biggest support. Any cravings he’d get it for me. Morning sickness he’d hold my hair and rub my back. He would help me get dressed when I was so swollen and couldn’t bend down. He was and still is my biggest support. I also had family and friends who would support me. My family would help with anything we needed after I gave birth. My family helped us around the house and my in laws would help by offering us help with the baby or dinner. Our friends would bring us diapers after I gave birth. (One gift you’ll never go wrong with)
What are the top 5 items you carry in your diaper bag?
- A lot of diapers
- Babyganics wipes (they’re good for everything)
- Extra onesies
- Burp cloths
- Hand sanitizer
Let’s talk breast feeding. What is your take on it and did you breast feed your baby. How long? #50shadesofBreastFeeding
I wish I could’ve breastfed. I tried really hard for 3 weeks and it wasn’t working with us. I will continue to try with my kids. I pumped and barely produced anything. I tried lactation brownies and lemonade and nothing. I was getting frustrated and my son was getting frustrated and realized I didn’t want us to be frustrated anymore and stopped trying. I learned that fed is best and no matter if it’s bottle fed or breastfed you do what you’re comfortable with.
So far the hardest thing about being a mom?
The first month was the hardest for me. I think the lack of sleep and cabin fever was the hardest for me. I was still learning to get the hang of taking care of another human and doing it while recovering from giving birth and with a lack of sleep. So far, that’s been the hardest part.
How did you know when it was the right time for YOU and your partner to have a baby?
For personal reasons, my husband and I decided we would leave it in God’s hands on when we would have a baby.
What are some of the things you advise moms to do for themselves after having baby?
Take time for yourself. When someone offers you help, take it. It’s important to take care of yourself as well. So if someone offers to bring you food? Accept it. Someone offers to watch the baby while you nap? Do it. Take care of yourself.
List of things you wish you packed in your hospital bag, and list of things you recommend packing.
I definitely recommend packing a comfortable robe for yourself. I got one with a matching swaddle at Milkmaid Goods. I also recommend Always Discreet Boutique underwear. They’re so much better than the mesh ones given at the hospital. I also used Earth Mama Perineal Spray. It helped a lot with my recovery.
Special thanks to Amanda for providing us with her experience and insight! You can find Amanda on her instagram below:
Until next time,