We asked you all what video you would like to see next on our blog and most of you said "a day in the life" entry. So here it is! Sorry it took so long! Love you :)
Kate Walser from @lilbirdyphotography had this amazing vision where people would allow her to come into their nests and capture the REAL moments; no posing and no planning. She calls this a "NEST SESSION". We are so honored to have had the chance to let her come into our sacred nest and spend the day with us. <3
Some of us wake up in the morning, get dressed, eat some breakfast and then go spend 8 or so hours at work. Then there are some of you, like Vanessa, who wake up in the morning and immediately start your full time job of raising your kids. No breaks. FULL TIME, all day, every day.
There are some days where everything goes smoothly and the kids behave so well, but MOST days that's not the case.
I can just imagine how her days go: she wakes up, immediately changes 2 diapers. Migrates to the kitchen to serve Jax some fruit for breakfast while having Ero attached at the hip. She then puts Ero down with enough time to eat her breakfast just before Jax signals her that he is done (by attempting to fling his plate across the room-- but her fast reflexes catch the plate before its lifted off of his high chair table). She get him out of the high chair as Ero wants some boobie time. Jax, still not used to "sharing" his boobies, sees his sister and immediately begins to whine because now he too wants to nurse. What she does to console him while still breastfeeding Ero, I HAVE NO IDEA. All this and it hasn't even been an hour since they all woke up. When one goes down for a nap the other has a burst of energy and vise versa. On top of all of this, Jax is at that age where he enjoys testing us. He stands up on his bed, we tell him to sit and he does so, but only to stand right back up with a huge smile on his facing waiting for our reaction. This happens over and over again.
How can I expect Vanessa to keep her cool throughout the day? To not get frustrated or overwhelmed? I DONT. Not in the least bit. I can't even imagine how hard it is for her. YES, having the opportunity to stay home with your little people instead of sending them to day care is such a privilege and you should all be grateful that you're in a situation in where that is a possibility, but that doesn't mean it's not difficult.
I will now tell you all what I tell Vanessa:
You can't expect to get anything done throughout your day. As long as the kids are fed and cared for you've gone ABOVE AND BEYOND. I understand how your days go and I wouldn't come home and be upset that there is a mess or the dishes are all dirty. Now if the kids weren't fed and the dishes were clean then we have a problem haha :)
I guess what I'm trying to say to all those of you who stay at home with your kids is... thank you. I appreciate you. Nothing you do, goes unnoticed and you're doing an amazing job.
Baby girl, don't stress yourself out. Cut yourself some slack. You are the most amazing mother to our two beautiful kids. They adore you, as do I. There will be hard days, but on those days just take a deep breath and remember that I love you, that you have 2 healthy kids who think the world of you. Be happy and smile. You may think it doesn't affect your mood but just smiling works. I promise.
Melanie and I decided that once Ero was ready, she would be staying home with Jax and I. I am still breastfeeding Jax- not as much as before but I still nurse him to sleep at night, before his naps, and randomly for comfort. Naturally my body regulates the amount of milk I produce with how much Jax consumes. He eats 3 meals a day and snacks as well so of course my milk supply is not as much as Melanie's, since Ero is exclusively breastfed. We have read that the best way to get your milk supply up is to nurse as often as you can. One day I had Melanie leave Ero home with me while she went to work so I can nurse her, in hopes of sending my body the signal to produce more milk.
The day Ero stayed home with us was a Friday and it was a breeze! We both were surprised! We didn't think it was going to be such an easy transition. The plan was for Melanie to pump while at work so that she doesn't stop producing milk, except she had left her power cord at home lol. Worried that she would become extremely engorged, Mel had her mom drop off the power cord. She took Jax along for the ride and on the way back she picked up lunch. For a good 3 hours it was just Ero and I. Oh how sweet it was :) I mean it was probably the first time I was able to have Ero completely to myself. I nursed her to sleep and snuggled with her, breathing her in. I didn't run into any difficulty until around 3pm when I went to feed her and she cried as if no milk was being expressed from my breast. Luckily ten minutes later Melanie came home and was able to feed her. Through out that weekend Mel and I would switch off with nursing Ero, again so that my body can increase milk production.
We both thought, since it went so well on Friday that I could stay with Ero again on Monday. Woah were we wrong! What we didn't take into consideration was that on Friday my mother-in-law took Jax for a good 3 hours after his first nap so it was almost as if I was only with one and not two. This time around I had both Jax and Ero all day, all alone. Boy what a big difference does that make. Especially when both babies are still breastfeeding. When it came time to nurse Ero, Jax would get super clingy and point at my chest asking for boob too. I wanted to wait until after I nursed Ero to give Jax milk, and because I made him wait he cried. I didn't blame him, after all in his eyes I only nursed him. He has never had to share me or his milk. It hurt me because I didn't want him to think I didn't understand that he was communicating to me that he wanted milk or that I was ignoring him. I then tried playing with him using his toys, that would work for a minute and then he would look at me and see his sister latched on me, naturally it made him want to nurse too. I don't know how I did it but I finally was able to get through Ero's feeding and put her down. I then carried Jax and nursed him. Whatever milk I had left after Ero he surely finished because after a while you can tell he was just latched for comfort. He must have felt a need to "reclaim" his territory because he was latched for about 40 minutes. Anytime I would pull away he would cry. I didn't mind having him on me and sharing that time but I was afraid that he was drinking all my milk supply and there wouldn't be any for Ero when she wakes.
It was around 12:30 when I had just finished making lunch for Jax and I- while Ero was asleep and my little man was playing in his play room. As we sat down to eat, Ero woke up ready for her lunch. I put her to my breast and she just kept crying. She would latch on and after a few she would burst out in tears and frustration. I was almost sure she wasn't getting any milk. My body wasn't producing as much or as fast to keep up with the demand of TWO babies! I was holding back tears. I felt horrible. Here I had my daughter crying and I was unable to nourish her. This literally broke my heart. I then went into the freezer and thawed out some of Melanie's frozen boobie milk, put it in a bottle and attempted to feed Ero. This was a fail, she hated the bottle, how could she not? She likes the warmth of our bodies and our scent and she had none of these things with a plastic bottle. I kept trying to feed her with a bottle and with my boob, she would only stop crying once she felt my breast but then cry because no milk was being expressed. She finally fell asleep- I think because of exhaustion. I felt so sad, I called Mel and explained everything to her, a few minutes later she came home.
I broke down when we talked. We believe strongly that babies pick up on vibes and so I held in a lot while I was alone with them that when I was talking to Mel and telling her what went wrong I cried. I just kept picturing Ero's cries, knowing she was trying to tell me she was hungry and I couldn't do anything to comfort her. I told Melanie that I couldn't do it this way. That first day was easy because it was only Ero and I. I only had to feed one mouth as opposed to two. My body is use to one, it was capable of handling one... But two mouths to feed at the same time? I couldn't do it.
After talking we decide to take a different route. That maybe just jumping into it wasn't the best choice. So I am now making sure I eat 3 meals a day and snacks in between. I'm increasing my water intake and starting to take my prenatal vitamins again. All while pumping a few times a day in addition to nursing Ero a few times in the evening when they get home from work. We just closed on our house five days ago and it has taken up most of our time but yesterday I developed a "ball" in my boob, aka clogged milk duct. Lol I normally hate these because they are extremely painful but they usually happen because there was a change in my nursing schedule and there is more milk that is being produced than what is being consumed. So of course I was pretty happy :). We will be trying to leave Ero again with me this Friday. Hopefully it runs smoothly. Breastfeeding is a huge commitment and can be very difficult but we believe that it is just as rewarding if not more and super beneficial for our two angels. Wish me luck! :)