this is my postpartum

since taking my postpartum doula training i’ve been contemplating how my own postpartum period would shake down. i’m going to be honest and state that i’ve had high hopes for this time period. this is probably my last baby and i feel i didn’t treat my postpartum with darla with the sacredness of which it was worthy. i did the typical first-time-mom thing of trying to prove that i would be good at motherhood by getting up on my feet and back in the game.

well, that didn’t work out so well.

so this time around we’re doing things differently. i’d like to document it for these next 6 weeks, maybe longer, in hopes that it’ll give others some insight i didn’t have for my first go-around. and if no one is in need of insight these posts will just be here for the internet to entomb for-ev-er.

get ready for some cute overload and postpartum tips:

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^^^ life! let’s do this ^^^

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^^^ herbal bath for momma and baby ^^^

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^^^ with big sis’ help ^^^

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^^^ i spend almost the entirety of the day reclining w/ some part of baby daphne all up in my face ^^^

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^^^ sometimes it’s toes ^^^

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^^^ sometimes it’s nose ^^^

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^^^ but more often those toes are peeking out from under a blanket during a nursing ^^^

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^^^ and everyone is tryingt to focus on rest and relaxation…except maybe darla ^^^

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^^^ she keeps herself busy helping to hold and snuggle daphne ^^^

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^^^ and helping the midwife with measurements ^^^

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^^^ and beautifying our space. “one is for you and one is for daphne, mom.” ^^^

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^^^ we’ve been lucky enough to have tons of help in the food department ^^^

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^^^ and both daphne and i are taking most of our meals in bed ^^^

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^^^ along with my placenta capsules! ^^^

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^^^ but most of my time is spent just staring at this lovely little human and snuggling up close…and changing her bountiful diapers. seriously, this girl can poop. ^^^

so, what else do i want to say about this first week of my second daughter’s life? i want to say that this experience feels right. i wanted to be kinder to myself this time around because i wanted to then in turn be able to be kinder to my family. i wanted to sit around and do nothing but mother my new little one. to be able to do that means i had to welcome in the help. i had to welcome in the care. this was something i was not good at the first time around. with darla we had a great network of friends but i think i was still trying to prove that i could do this on my own.

but doing it with help is sooooo much better!!! and we’ve been really blessed to have help coming from many, many directions. really an overabundance of help that leaves me feeling quite unworthy. but i’ll take it. and i hope i’ll let it grow within me and beside me and my family so that i can pass it on in the future.

so the theme of this first week of life was rest and recuperation. and that would be my advice for families desiring a nice start to their postpartum.  just stay in bed. just rest with your babies. gather your tribe around you and welcome in the help, welcome in the care {with appropriate boundaries, of course} and just be. everything else can wait.

and i have to send out thanks to everyone who has dropped off food, my parents, my doula, our midwives, neighbors, family near and far who have helped us out in this first week. and a thank you to my husband and first born. it’s really astounding how much love and generosity we’ve received from you all and i want to tell you you’ve made all the difference in the world to my family and my second experience with motherhood.

sincere thanks and love vibes. wish us well with week two!

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around the house

lookin’
around
the house
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i’m looking around at all the fantastic little details of everyday life and thinking that i’mma start this as a new series. these are the details of our household from week to week:

{1} husband’s record reorganization. {2} new green babies. {3} ‘murica. {4} oh hey! welcome to the world little friend. {5} a sweet surprise from grandma. {6} more ridiculous conway in our house. {7} my new official DONA doula badge.

because still life is still life. and sometimes the magic is in the details.

yeah.

hi all, please give us your vote for the week by clicking the vote for us icon below. thanks for your help!

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daphne’s home birth: a photo tour

ok, so it’s a dimly lit photo tour. we’ll call it ambiance.  or love aura. whatevs…

i’d like to highlight some of the things i loved about birthing our baby girl at home, in our own bed, with these few snaps from my phone. lucky you, nothing graphic will be shown as i was too busy with the actual birthing. i was able to capture one last maternity shot when labor was just getting started.

there was so much i was thankful for about being in our own space for laboring and birthing. i want to write a little bit more about the experience and process but i think that is for another time.

so we’ll flash forward to the immediate postpartum which, for us, seems to be bursting with benefits:

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^ the first being that we were given time and respect. our space and experience were honored. i have several photos of daphne just looking around the world for the longest time. it was all so peaceful and serene. at least for us. daphne has a bit of a what-the-heck-just-happened-to-me look going on.

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^ all daphne’s measurements and exams were done in our bed, by our side.

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^mike got to be the one to give daphne her first “bath” which was just a washcloth rubdown

and we all got to hang out in various stages of undress holding miss Daphne:

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^and darla held daphne for the first time. darla’s thoughts on the experience: “she doesn’t smell very good.”

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 ^home birth meant my parents could come and be with us and the lack of visiting hours has lead to lots of bonding time for everyone, which works well for our family.

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and mostly we just sit around and stare at daphne josephine, completely comfortable and settled in to her home surroundings from minute one.

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 our home birth = a home filled with love. a birth filled with love.

our week

a
small
collection
of moments
from our week

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^^^ crafting on the porch ^^^

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^^^ pollacking on the porch ^^^

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^^^ unschooling the franklin park conservatory ^^^

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^^^ “mom, i want our house to look just like this jungle!” ^^^

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^^^ nature walk treasure ^^^

 

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^^^ and i continued to grow a human ^^^

if this were a face-to-face convo this would be the point where i would deflect and say “let’s talk about how you’re doing” because i’m just kinda all over the place. the week was beautiful and i’m glad i snapped these photos of our outings and life because i can’t pull my head out of my pregnant ass sometimes. it’s so hard to focus on anything else other than getting this baby here.

i know my whole family is feeling stretched right now.  i look around and i just see all these humans that are stretched so thin. but maybe i’m projecting and seeing that everywhere because it’s how i’m feeling. i tried to really take it easy this week. and it was nice to stay at home a lot. darla did her own things, mostly on the front porch. i spent a lot of time there too soaking in the air and sunshine. soaking in the feelings of just being. but i cannot escape this encumbered feeling. it makes everything feel so heavy.

maybe i’m on the brink here because i feel like all i want to do for this weekend is walk and walk and walk until i can’t anymore. it’s that very animalistic feeling taking over because i feel like this body has to do something. i feel like the tigress pacing back and forth before i slink off to find a place of solitude. please send me good vibes for finding some time to work these things out of my body and mind over these next few days.

*wishing you all the best for the things you wish to work out over the weekend, whatever they may be*

hi all, please give us your vote for the week by clicking the vote for us icon below. thanks for your help!

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weekending

a
small
collection
of moments
from our weekend…

a weekend that i should title “Life With Recorder”

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2 things about this weekend: 1} still pregnant 2} darla graced us and our whole neighborhood with sweet, peaceful recorder sounds all day saturday. she even included it as an ingredient in her cooking. wonderful stuff!

^^^sarcasm.

my family helped me stay active both by taking walks with me and giving me time to walk by my lonesome. i spent some time out under the super moon hoping moon mama would work her magic on my belly. friday night i tried to be all spiritual and connected to her. when that didn’t work i just ate candy while basking in her light on saturday. that didn’t work either.

i do want to state that i really am feeling more patient than my presence on the internet may lead you to believe. the thing is, i like the drama and suspense of the wait so building that up is a bit enjoyable. i also really enjoy surprises so this event is a bit of a body wonderland to me. yes, my body is a wonderland.

babies come in their own time. we could endure a few more weeks of me talking about being pregnant all the time. just a warning.

our week

i don’t know where these days are going.

it’s friday and i got up early to write out a little about our week and i really can’t remember much that has happened save for a few big events. we spend much of our time here at home these days and i fear i’ve not really been able to stay present while here. my mind seems hyper-focused on chores and organization and cooking and errands.

and it all seems so ordinary.

and i feel like that has taken up a lot of my brain space this week: reconciling with the fact that i’m going to lead an ordinary life.

i, like most of my generation, was ingrained with the idea that i was a special little flower and that i was going to go out and do great things in the world. i have genuinely, 100% honestly always believed that I was going to lead some out-of-the-ordinary life. mainstream life was not good enough for me.

but here’s what i see when i step back from myself:  31 years old, lives in ohio, full-time mom, drives a pt cruiser, listens to neil sedaka live in concert on the 60s station….

it’s so ordinary. it’s so vanilla and blah. it doesn’t feel like this was the life i was supposed to lead. it’s not how my life played out in my head. and it certainly doesn’t seem to measure up to the adventurous lives of my peer group before i got myself saddled with motherhood. 

and feeling that way feels terrible.

then i sit down here to this space and i start to take a look back at the weeks and i’m once again glad that i’m recording life here because when i scroll back through the days and weeks and months i see a whole mess of ordinary, every day beauty.  it’s not over-the-top exciting and most of it is mundane but there is so much beauty shining through this ordinary life.

and i feel a bit foolish that it took me SO LONG in my life to see that. i feel like even from my earliest days i’ve wanted to live a life different and more exotic than the one i have. i’ve wanted to be a completely different person. i’ve even survived much of these last few years by telling myself that this is just a little pit stop in my life and that i’ll be zooming off to great adventures before long.

but that is not guaranteed to me. nothing is. and what a waste of an ordinary life it would be if i never ended up in this spot able to see how beautiful even the dullest of moments here on earth are.

so, this week i sat around on my porch a lot, watching my child cut grass with a pair of scissors {seriously}. i cooked some meals for my family. i took my girl to the pool. i ran errands. and i spent a whole lot of time gazing at a growing belly.

it was thoroughly ordinary. and it was beautiful.

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* sending you all the best for a super, super moon weekend *

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preparing a space for baby

one of the fun things we did this past weekend was cleanse our room and labor space. darla helped me sage our bedroom and fill the space with good energy for labor. when i asked her about what she thought of during her turns to hold the smudge stick she said “how much i’m going to love my baby brother or sister.”

that’ll do, sis.

like i said in this post, it’s not really about whether or not it works, it’s the ceremony of it. it was one more thing i could do to let the universe know i’m ready. it was something to do to feel spiritually connected to this space. it was another way to bring my daughter into the folds of this process. one more way to feel connected and welcoming to this new being.

so, space has now been cleared and cleansed for this new person.

back to waiting…

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