August 26, 2008

Confessions of a new mom

So the following post will probably be only understood by most moms. Let me forewarn the men about to read, you might feel uncomfortable, bored, or both so feel free to stop reading now. The inspiration behind this is just to vent. Some may be shocked or think me selfish or vain for thinking this way, but it is what it is. I am just being honest.

Reason's why I hate AND love breastfeeding:


1 - I can't eat whatever I want. Toby is extremely sensitive to certain foods I eat so sometimes I feel like I have to eat bland or boring food just so I don't have to deal with a meltdown. Sometimes all it takes is a slice of pizza to throw him into a crying fit. This has been a huge challenge for me, since those of you who know me well, know that I LOVE food. So right now I have to suppress my cravings for spicy Indian or Thai or Sushi or flavorful Italian. *sigh*

2- I hate feeling tied down. I am someone who loves, no treasures, my time by myself. Even before I was married I enjoyed having my alone time to just run errands, shop, read, whatever. So it's been an adjustment being the primary source of nutrition for another person every two to three hours. And it can get frustrating when I want to got out for long time I have to keep the fridge well stocked with milk. I really miss just having my body be my own. I cringed typing that last sentence because it does sound really selfish. Hopefully some of you moms share the same sentiments.

3- Engorgement. Ouch! If you don't know what it is, look it up.

4- I use to feel like all I was to my son was source of nutrition. The human bottle. Sometimes I felt like when he looked at me all he saw was this huge bottle full of milk instead of me smiling and cooing at him. And there are times I still feel this way but honestly now that he is older and more interactive his world doesn't revolve around much....well at least for a good three hours anyway.

5- I am thirsty and hungry all the time. This is especially challenging since I am hypoglycemic (low blood sugar) and I already have to eat about every 2-3 hours. So now that I am suppose to consume and extra 500 calories a day because I am breastfeeding, I feel like I should just live and graze at a buffet bar all day long. And those of you who have seen the dark side of Debbie when she has had a sugar drop, have only glimpsed at what my hubby has had to endure these past 6 months when I've skipped a meal. Can we say Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde? Ahh...Poor, patient Nick.

6- Sometimes I feel like people categorize me as one of "those breastfeeding moms." You mom's know what I am talking about. There are some breastfeeder mom's that can become extremely critical of those who use formula. I don't look down on anyone who uses formula because I figure everyone does what's best for them and their baby. In fact, there were times where I wanted to switch to formula but couldn't because Toby refuses to take it.


1- It is an extremely bonding and relaxing experience. A natural sedative for me and the Tobeman.

2- Best weight loss plan I've ever had. Some of you will despise me for this but I can eat as many calories as I want. It's like my stomach has turned into a incinerator. That's right - eating large quantities of food and maybe taking some walks with the stroller seemed to get me back to my pre-pregnancy figure faster than curbing my appetite or spending hours at the gym.

3- It's less expensive. We save a TON of money by not needing to buy formula.

4- Toby hasn't had one cold, ear infection, or fever (hopefully I don't jinx myself). All those antibodies in the milk has really kept him out of the doctors office. Another money saver.

5- It's helped me be more selfless with my time and my body. At times its extremely gratifying and humbling to know that Toby is in this world because of me (and a little help from Nick) and he continues to exist because I provide him all his meals....and lots of love of course.

August 18, 2008

You raise me up...

We set-up Toby's high chair a couple weeks ago since he has been sitting up so well on his own. He absolutely loves it. Sometimes when he is fussy I will just put him in his high chair and give him a few plastic measuring cups to play with and he couldn't be happier. It's funny how the simplest things will entertain him the longest (well, for at least a good 10 - 15 minutes anyway). So far we are still just feeding him rice cereal and milk (per our doc's recommendation) but in just a couple more weeks we will be able to start him on some other solids. And don't worry, I will have my camera out to capture those first few bites!

I love the pic on the couch because he looks so adorable in his striped shirt and khaki shorts. I think he could totally do a Baby Gap ad or something. But then again I am a little bias. :)

Grandpa and Grandma Sibert and GREAT Grandma Sibert came over yesterday to hang out. Grandpa got to feed Toby his mid-afternoon snack of rice cereal. cute!
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August 14, 2008

The Good Life

Toby is over five months now. The time is really flying by. I find myself getting more emotional when I look over his newborn pictures. I think its partly due to my overactive motherly feelings and partly due to a recent eye-opening experience. You know what I am talking about - the ones that kind of take you by surprise and make you re-think what you value in life and how you prioritize your time. The ones that make you realize that the most important thing in life, doesn't have a price tag, but is often cheapened and left by the wayside by our pursuit for the things that do have one. Its something we all take for granted at one time in our life or another, either because of our finite vision or because of our distraction (and sometimes obsession) with the alluring material items that we think will bring us eternal joy. The one thing that will outlive and has the ability of bringing so much more lasting happiness than all the shiny, new BMW's and beautifully, landscaped mansions in the world is within arms reach: FAMILY.

The moment came when I was discussing the hardships of parenting with my older brother, Tim. We were talking about how easy it is to get caught up in the tomorrows of our life and wanting our kids to grow up faster. I should add that Tim already has 3 kids and is working on his Masters - so he knows all too well how I feel when I talk about my impatience with my current circumstances.
But even when I was single, I always found myself saying: "Now when I get married, life will be complete and wonderful. " And now that I am married, life is pretty sweet, but I am still constantly battling this futuristic mindset of: "When we have a house, or when Toby is older, or when we don't have to eat Macaroni and Cheese and hot dogs for dinner anymore, then life will really be easy and then I will truly be happy."

But I am finding this mindset not only to be a huge fallacy but very dangerous. Thinking that your happiness rests within the next milestone or promotion or vacation, can seriously rob you of appreciating and relishing the small but meaningful every day moments. Moments, I may add, you can never get back. Sure, there are times where life is dull and seems mundane and yes, it can even feel downright depressing and hopeless. But I have recently discovered the trick is to not let those darker moments overshadow the beautiful, priceless ones. Its just like one of my favorite leaders of the L.D.S. faith has said: "We perhaps need to snatch happiness in little pieces, learning to recognize the elements of happiness and then treasuring them while they last." (President James E. Faust).

So just a few hours ago, after I gave Toby his nightly bath, instead of looking at the clock and thinking about how much longer I had until he goes to bed, I decided I needed to just "live in the now" (a favorite movie quote of mine). I busted out the camera and had little photo shoot with him because I've noticed there aren't very many pictures of just Toby and me- if any - on this blog. So while we cuddled and made silly faces at each other, I suddenly felt how very precious these moments were. Someday he will probably try to squirm away from me and go after a toy instead. Someday he will want to have a sleepover at his friends house. Someday he'll be staying out late to go to the high school dance. Someday his parents won't be his entire world. It was then when I really tried to drink in the moment. I looked at him as if it was for the first time. I tried to remember his little giggles and squeals and the way his eyes lit up when I pulled him close and gave him a kiss on his chubby little cheek. When I rocked him to sleep, I held him just a little longer before setting him in his crib. And as I stared at him peacefully sleeping, an overwhelming feeling of pure joy and love for my life took over. I knew in that moment, my life was complete and rich and so much more wonderful than I was allowing it to be. Now if only I could live each day with a such a perspective.
Perhaps that is one of the greatest challenges of our mortal lives - living each day as if it was a gift and not just a list of "to-do's" and "somedays" .

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August 7, 2008

Nick hikes Timp!

Nick hiked Mt. Timpanogos a few weeks ago with his friend Kurt. For those of you who aren't familiar with this mountain, the summit is approximately 11,800 feet. He trained for a few weeks before he ventured up this rugged but beautiful trail. He said that it took him about 4 hours to get to the top and then 3 to get back down. Some of the pictures he took were absolutely breathtaking. I find it so amazing that parts of the mountains can be so brown and rocky and well, lets be honest, kind of ugly, but then other parts have cascading waterfalls and rich green foliage that you would swear you were in a different state.

Nick said he was able to catch some mountain goats butting heads. I wish I could have been there with him but I was home chilling with the Tobeman. Hopefully someday we can all hike Timp together!
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