Baby Talk: It Didn’t Work Out

In my opinion, admitting one’s failures is humbling. I think it also shatters the perfect image that’s so easily fronted online. I will never ever claim to be perfect (although I’m plenty arrogant… cue the humbling).

Before M was born, I had a plan. Then we brought our fresh baby home and realized plans are meant to be ditched. Back up plans are also good for ditching 🤷

If you’re a parent and you find yourself having to alter your course, I’m just here to tell ya you’re not alone or a failure or wrong. That’s just how life goes sometimes.

And here are some things that just didn’t work out…

B R E A S T F E E D I N G
We tried. We went all in and registered for the pillows and bags and pads and creams. We got a pump from our insurance company and we spent $$$ on a lactation consultant both before and after M’s arrival.

And you know what? It just didn’t work out.

It took me a week to make that decisions and I struggled HARD for those 7 days (and I wrote about it), but once the decision was made I never looked back.

C O – S L E E P I N G
According to the internet, co-sleeping and bed-sharing are different. Regardless, I mean sleeping in the same room.

We started M in the bassinet in our bedroom for her first 3 weeks. During week four we put her in her crib to start, then brought her into our room after her first middle-of-the-night bottle. Then we did it after the second feeding. Eventually she just stayed in her crib all night.

We HATED sharing a room. Every time M made a noise I woke up. I laid there terrified that K or the dogs would make a noise and wake M. We had to keep our room warmer than we typically would’ve. And truly, I just needed “my space” back in some part of my life. So we kicked her out.

Listen… we have a video monitor, I check her often, and we’ve done all the other steps to reduce SIDS. I am a paranoid momma and I wouldn’t put my child at risk. Also… from the start she slept (and sleeps) SO DAMN WELL on her own in her room. We’ve noticed she’s got a slight independent flare to her (holla ‘atcha girl!) and she does very well by herself.

D A Y C A R E
Once I headed back to work we thought M would spend half her time with family and half her time at daycare. Two things derailed this plan. First of all, we have almost NO daycares around us… and the ones that do exist have 3 out of 5 stars. I wouldn’t send the dogs to a daycare with that rating.
Also, turns out I am TERRIFIED of M getting RSV or Hand Foot & Mouth Disease soooo….. sticking her in a room with a bunch of other children is a hard no from me right now. I’m fine with parks and family and all that, but I know people send their sick kids to daycare and I’m not all about that. She’ll learn to share and socialize some other way for now.

*(I am very grateful that I have the privilege to make this call- our family is AWESOME for keeping M during my work days.)

N O   S C R E E N T I M E
Hahahahahahahahahaha. I’ll just go ahead and see myself out.

M loves Mickey & The Roadsters, Puppy Dog Pals, & Sesame Street. She typically only gets an hour or less of TV when we’re home, but I imagine that will change over time, too.

I’m going to go out on a limb and say this will not affect her likelihood of graduating high school. I think we’re safe.


Parenting is effing hard. When things don’t work out, don’t beat yourself up- spend that valuable time with your kid(s) and find an alternative.

Fortunately, we’ve had some things work out beautifully. M is on a pretty decent (sleep) schedule. We’ve had much success with cloth diapers. We’re about to start baby led weaning & I can tell M is excited about food.

I struggled with quitting breastfeeding and I cried the first few nights M wasn’t in our room… but things pan out how they’re supposed to and you’ve got to go with the flow sometimes. I’m proud of us for the things we’ve stuck to- those decisions have shaped our parenting journey.

M’s Grand Arrival | part 2

I won’t write a long intro. We’ll just jump back into the story ☺️

(You can find Part 1 here.)

We decided to go with the vacuum delivery to force M out of her cozy home.

At this point I was exhausted. I wanted to sleep for days. In between contractions/pushes I was given oxygen and K was wiping my forehead with a cold washcloth. Most of the nurses in the room were holding my legs/feet for me.

This last part of delivery lasted 30 minutes & I had my eyes closed the entire time. All my efforts were being put into staying awake and pushing. K witnessed two pop-offs and he could see the doctors getting concerned. He knew we only had one more attempt left.

I could hear a change in his voice. I knew some of my pushes were revealing M’s head for a brief moment. As he was encouraging me, I could hear his excitement when progress was being made.

No one told me it was down to the wire, but the nurses, doctors, and K insisted that we were almost there- one more good one. They put the vacuum to her and told me to push on the next contraction, but K and I both think I lied about the next contraction and I just started to push because I was so. over. it.

Again, my eyes were closed but this is K’s rendition:
As I was pushing the doctor was pulling on the vacuum with all her strength- her feet were pushing against my bed because she was pulling so hard. He watched as M’s head came out and the vacuum popped off…. but instead of letting her contract back into the birth canal two nurses grabbed onto her shoulders and pulled her free.

There was no “ok we have her head, just one more push for the shoulders”… it was no baby and then THE WHOLE BABY. She arrived at 8:36pm.

They put her naked, squaking little body on my stomach for a brief moment and patted her dry, but due to the trauma, method, and length of delivery she was taken by the NICU nurses and examined next to my bed. Just seeing her for a few seconds was so surreal.

I’m learning that parenthood is a continuous cycle of frustration/stress/confusion followed by extreme relief. Over and over. This was the first bout of relief. As soon as she was out K and I took the breath that we’d been holding for 12+ hours.

The nurses invited K over to the corner and he hung out with M while they repaired me. I received stitches & a 24+ hour catheter. The doc and nurses warned me that it was going to be a rough recovery (& they weren’t lying).

It took the doctors an hour to fix me up. During that time I sent out a text to our group message letting them know all was good, baby was here, and K would be out in the lobby to bring them in soon. And then FINALLY M was cleared by the nurses and we were reunited.

The NICU nurses told K that M was ok and healthy, but she was slightly stressed from the long & hard delivery. She recommended that only he and I hold her that night- if she was passed around it might stress her out and she’d have to go to the NICU. We weren’t upset one bit about getting to hog our daughter all night but we felt bad that our parents hung around for 8+ hours and wouldn’t get to hold their granddaughter that night.
(No worries- they all took their turns the following day.)

Some things I’d like to remember about labor & delivery:

I had a great epidural. I felt pressure during delivery but I didn’t feel any pain, even when they attempted the forceps and the vacuum. The contractions got a little ouchie toward the end but they were the green light to push so I didn’t mind. I didn’t noticed the placenta delivery at all.

I was in a great mood immediately after delivery. I was joking around with the doctors while they were stitching me up and making them & the NICU nurses laugh. Either my hormones were going haywire and making me giddy or I was just delirious. Dr. Heartless was a totally different person after M arrived. She was friendly and joking with both K and I. (We wondered where that person was four hours ago… *eyeroll*)

Our poor friends and family were terrified. My labor progressed so quickly and they knew we were ready to push at 3pm. We stopped visiting the lobby and texting shortly after that. They didn’t get the “all good!” text from me until 9:03pm. We didn’t mean to freak them out or go radio silent… we were just busy. They were very very panicked, though. Oops! (Sorry everyone!)

And that’s the basic story. (“Basic”…. lol. It took me two whole posts.) After delivery and at my 6 week postpartum appointment my doctor was a friendly, kind human. I know on delivery day she had 3 emergency c-sections so I will give her the benefit of the doubt as far as bedside manner goes… I guess.

First thoughts about M? She has my nose. I think it’s the first comment K made about her. Other than that, she’s resembled him since day one. Also, for having a vacuum delivery, her head wasn’t terribly misshapen or bruised. By the following morning her head was 100% normal. We also think she might be a strawberry blonde but time will tell. Her hair was blonde/reddish/auburn depending on the lighting and her eyes were super dark- we couldn’t tell what color they were. (They’re now a very dark blue.)

Delivery SUCKED. The first two weeks of her life were SO hard. Motherhood has been the biggest adjustment and hardest stage of my life so far. (Newborn stage wasn’t our favorite, lol.) BUT… I’d go through all of it again 100xs over just to have M. She is our favorite.

If you’ve stuck around through part 1 and 2… wow! I’m impressed. I promise I’m taking a little break from the baby content on the blog for a bit 😉 Thanks for putting up with me this long!

M’s Grand Arrival | part 1

I haven’t shared our birth story yet because I’ve been unsure about how to publicly do it. I don’t want to overshare my or M’s life (although my family will tell you I’m way past that point here in Blogland), but I want to tell my story here in my space.

So here’s a condensed, watered down version.

We were scheduled to be induced on December 4th but I started feeling contractions at 2:30am when I took the dogs out. After an hour and a half (and a warm shower) I woke K to tell him the baby wasn’t going to wait until 8am. He got up, showered & dressed, and we kissed the dogs goodbye. We stopped to get K some coffee and we were on our way.

At the hospital they admitted us right away since they already had a room ready for me. I was all hooked up, examined, and was told I was two whole centimeters- ONE more than I’d been at our OB appointment the week before. Talk about feeling bummed.

On the bright side, I didn’t have to be induced- I was laboring on my own. Another dr. stopped in and told me that going from 1 to 2 centimeters was big leap, even though it didn’t feel like it. He said I should be excited and positive- I was definitely making good progress. That made me feel a little better.

When they popped back in to check me a few hours later I was at 4 cm and was told I could get an epidural any time. I was still feeling pretty good… but then they had me change positions. HOLY OUCH, BATMAN. About 30 minutes later I told K to page my anesthesiologist for the drugs.

Sidenote: I had a wonderful anesthesiologist. She was skilled and funny and supportive and dry humored and informative. And my epidural worked like a freaking charm. It was the BEST decision ever for me. Contraction pain was a ZERO until it was time to push- then it was a mild pressure but still mostly pain-free.

I got an epidural, was reexamined at 5 cm, and was given instructions to sleep as much as I could. For 90 minutes I drifted in and out of sleep. Poor K stayed awake the whole time. When the doctor returned for a cervix check I was NINE CENTIMETERS. It was a little after noon and we decided to inform our close friends and family. K gave them permission to start arriving at the hospital around 2pm. We were sure I’d be pushing & our baby would almost be here by then.

Such naive little parents-to-be. This is where the fit hits the shan.

At 3pm I was ten centimeters and ready to push. At the exact same time my doctor was heading into the OR for an emergency c-section. So I was told to wait.

And wait.

And wait.

An hour and a half later I was finally given the green light.

My labor was pretty easy. My delivery was not. I pushed for four hours. M’s head was turned sideways and she was not wanting to come out, despite being so close the nurse and doctors could touch her. Fortunately her heart rate stayed even and happy. (Mine, on the other hand, started getting pretty high toward the end.)

My doctor was pretty checked out the whole time (which really pissed me off). At hour 3.5 she came in, checked on me, and started to leave again. I finally stopped her and asked what the we could do differently to get this kid out.

She gave me a very snarky answer, then started listing the risks of forceps and vacuum extraction… but then ended up advising we go that route given my exhaustion. *insert eye roll and murderous glare here*

When we made the decision to use the vacuum the entire room changed. The lights came on, the table with all the medical tools was uncovered, and we gained an additional doctor, three more nurses, and two NICU nurses. Everyone suited up in protective sterile covers (except poor K, lol).

They wanted to try to the forceps first but M’s head and my pelvic bone prevented them from working. With the vacuum you get three tries/pop-offs to make the baby come out… If that doesn’t work, you’re headed for a c-section.


I’m not trying to be dramatic, but I feel like I’m only halfway through the story and I don’t want to rush the best part (aka the part where M finally arrives… spoiler alert, lol). I will finish up with part two on Tuesday!