Growing young

confidence, empowerment, Family, Marriage, Mother, Uncategorized

As a child I was surrounded by my grandparents and great-grandparents. My parents were 18/19 when they started our little family. My grandparents 40, my great grandparents 60. 

Similar to many American families, divorce struck our family and we really needed the support of my grandparents-great grandparents. I practically lived with Grandma and Grandpa. Heck, today, they would be just about that age that we feminists are having our children. 

Ain’t no thang in that 40 ovary game. 

I digress. 

My grandparents did everything for us during times where my parents were – figuring it out. My grandma stayed at home and cared for us. She was the busiest woman I’d ever met. There was no a moment to wait, relax or sit. She was always moving. I, of course, loved that. Let’s go! I’m always up for shopping and driving around the city. My grandfather, worked all day. He made the life for this family. He worked long, hard hours in his younger years and that paid off dividends in his later years. 

So, here I am, 30 and realizing things are starting to change. So. Freaken. Fast. 

When you have young grandparents you have the luxury of enjoying them for many years. But, time is a fickle thing. Time does some nasty things. Time creates a sense of false security- just more time- just once more- if I only had more time. One more minute and one more breath. 

I’m writing this as we drive away from the family that cared for me when my parents were absent. The people that held my hand and led me through my childhood. They rocked me, encouraged me, fed me, clothed me, loved me. Many times, I was the apple of their eye. The first girl in a family full of boys. The sassy one that kept them on their toes. The steadfast yet flexible one. They built me and I’ve been gone from them for years. One state away through high school, college, marriage, career and family. Still, one state away. Always waving – goodbye! See you soon! But, today’s goodbye was different. As we drove away sentimental items in tow I can’t help but deeply and intensely feel the change, deep in my bones. I feel it so much it hurts and comes out as ice sharp tears. Knots in my throat and full blown belly ache. My grandparents have come to a new life stage: dependency. They aren’t traveling. They aren’t leaving the house as much. Grandma isn’t busy. She’s not even driving. 

Aging hurts. Is it just selfish? I don’t want to see them like this. I want to go back. Back would mean so much pain – and I know that. It’s not possible and I know that, too. It’s not the wrinkles that bother me or the gray hair. It’s the early signs of losing their sense of self. You know, the… Oh, gesh, that’s so sad- I never want to end up like that, kind of thing. We are our identities. When you lose your sense of self and understanding of what life means for you… What are you doing here? 

I saw my great-grandma (Nana) yesterday. 95. Ninety five freaken years old. Glorious. How is that even possible? The stories she would have for us… Vast… If only she could talk. She stopped talking 6 months ago. If her 40,50,60 year old self saw herself- she would not be happy. As I was masking my tears and picking my jaw up from the ground, I, again, became selfish. Why? I wanted her back. For just one minute. Tell me the story about when I was sick at school and you had to pick me up and give me soup. Tell me about my Papa and how you met. Make me one of your little dolls with the knitted dress that I took for granted and didn’t think about saving. Tell me. Instead, we sat there- strangers. I didn’t know this woman and she didn’t know me. 

I took photos. Too painful to look at – I can’t see the joy in them. Again, just selfish. I took a close up of her hands because those are and were her hands. When I was born she said, “oh my goodness, look at her beautiful hands!” And now, as she nears the end, the only thing that caught my attention was her beautiful hands. 

Those hands picked cotton as a child, they held a pencil as she learned to write her name, they held her husband and children. They bathed four girls, diapered, fed, rocked. They held grandchildren and great grandchildren and this weekend her great-great grandson, Zaccai. Those hands have accomplished more than can ever be imagined. As I opened chocolate after chocolate for her and placed them delicately in her hands I thought. This. This could be the last time I see her sweet, soft hands working. She’s worked for 95 years. 

How do you let them age? We grow old to turn young. Regression and hopefully softly and safely into the arms of the one who loves us most. 

Stolen Time

Attachment parenting, confidence, empowerment, Family, Marriage, Mother, Parenting, Uncategorized

First of all, Happy Birthday to my momma. 

  
Everyone has the “perfect” mom…. And I’m here to say, I have the “perfect” mom. I mean, we get in our fair share of arguments but I wouldn’t trade her in. My mom was once a young mom with three children who too most likely felt like a huge failure. 

Why, why do we [women] find fault in like everything? Now, let’s backpedal a bit and bring you to my mom at 24 years of age. Marriage falling apart, 4 year old boy, 3 year old girl and infant baby boy. 24, people. 

Maybe you’ve been there, maybe you’re there now. I’m here to say, I admire you. You feel like a failure and like you’re never going to muddle out of the mounds of debt and depression and these children need you… And you need a partner; however, s/he is gone. I think my mom would tell you: this sh!t is hard and it’s not going to get easier. She would tell you the pain is heavy and the stress is intense. She would also say the most painful part is losing your children. She would say the courts f’d up and gave her children to the wrong parent. She would tell you her children suffered tremendously because of her. 

She blames herself. Everyday she tries to make up for stolen time… She can’t. It’s gone. 

For so many years I cried for my mom. I wanted her in my life, daily. I knew what I was missing out on; but, more importantly, I knew what my siblings needed- their mom. I, at the age of 6, was certainly no replacement for a mother. I tried. 

A moment of clarity came over me as I sit in tears on my therapist’s couch. WHY AM I STRUGGLING IN MY MARRIAGE AND PARENTING? I knew some of our marriage issues were unearthing through my rotten childhood. My husband has a lovely family, solid foundation. I, very very cracked. I told her of a story (unrelated to myself) about a 2 year old boy being forgot in the car in the middle of Arizona summer and he died. I literally cried all night for him. Young, forgotten child in the car. How horrifying. How lonely. How sad. My therapist said, “Amber, do you know why you can’t shake that”? I stared, confused. “You’re the baby stuck in the car, you’re waiting for your parents to save you, comfort you, protect you. They didn’t.” 

They didn’t

Maybe, they just couldn’t. Two people interested in the same thing: 3 children and ripping apart the other person. Divorce. Hatred. Dirty laundry. Attorneys. Judgements. Weekend visitation. It’s all just f’d up. 

They couldn’t. 

I knew my parents would never work it out. I knew they would never be amicable. I never even wishes or prayed for it. I only prayed my life would not reflect theirs. I didn’t want to go through the pain again. 

How did my mom survive that pain? My son went to the ER one night and I thought I would lose it, ear infection. Drama. How in the world did my mom go years without holding, squishing, smelling, and cuddling her little lug bugs? 

So, now, here I am – 30 and trying to get past all this yucky childhood stuff and pray to God we don’t put our son through any of this… But there are still so many families out there that can relate to this pain. There is so much hurt, so much anger. If I can give you one piece of advice from a child who desperately needed both parents to be civil and kind…

Don’t deny your children their right to see the other parent. They will resent you. 

Don’t deny your children their right to visit with their grandparents. They will really resent you. 

Don’t talk bad about the other parent in front of them. Just don’t do it. 

Co-parent. Make decisions about their lives and focus on them. Not YOU. 

We just finished a holiday season and every year I’m so thankful it’s over. I can’t help but think of all the pain I had each Christmas without my family. Now that I have my own little family the holidays are bright; but, the past is sometimes hard to shake and I have to continually remind myself that I am in charge of my happiness and no one else. 

Whatever you do, do it with love in your heart. 

   
    
   

Follow Your Heart

Attachment parenting, empowerment, Family, Marriage, Parenting, Uncategorized, weight loss

We’re all busy, right? 

I am. I’m a wife, mom, full time manager, part time instructor at a community college, a friend, a daughter, a writer, a dishwasher, a laundry goddess and last but not least a terrible cook. 

How do I have the time? If I had a nickel for all the times my friends say, “how the hell do you do it!?” I’d be rich! 

I don’t know. But, let me tell you what I’ve lost because I’ve “done it all.”

Time.

Memories.

Moments.

Years.

Z turns 3 in November. I turn 30 in September. The year of “3”. I told myself 2015 will be my year of change. I will not continue to be “too busy”. I’ve told my son on numerous occasions- I can’t, mommy has to work. Sorry, off to work. Internally I say, sorry, I’ll make it up to you… of course, Z can’t understand the concept of “make it up”. 

But, I won’t make it up. I won’t because he’s only going to take his first step once. He’s only going to say his first word once. He’s only going to smile and coo “once”. These moments are gone. Some of them I’ve witnessed, but most I’ve missed. I missed them so I could pay off credit card debt, pay off car payments, pay for Internet, pay for cable, for for loans I took out to pay off debt. I’ve worked so hard so others could be successful. 

In our couples therapy my therapist asked me if I thought I was successful. 

I said no.

God, have you seen my checking account? I’m NOT successful.

No mind I put myself through college. I wasn’t supposed to go to, statistically speaking. I graduated with a Master’s two years later. All by 23 years of age. I lost 55 pounds on the Weight Watchers program and lead hundreds of people to live happier, healthier lives. I encouraged my friends to love themselves and take risks. Fall in love. I emotionally supported my husband when he couldn’t take another day in Corporate America. I let him take a risk. I climbed the ladder in Corporate America after numerous rejections and I have taught at a college for the past 5 years. I’ve ran 3 half marathons and 1 Ragnar. I had a labored for days with my baby and had a c-section to seal the deal and bring him into this world. I’ve given up so much to provide for the people I love. And, now, when faced with a deep, profound question: are you successful? My answer was: NO.

My life has always been defined as being poor. Lower than lower middle class. I’ve always been taught that success=money. Why, why oh why is this woman telling me that I’ve gotten it all wrong? I need to look at success from a different angle. I can’t. Or, I feel like I can’t. 

Since that day I have seriously tried to tell myself I was successful. It’s been hard to accept that I am successful since I don’t have much to show for “it”. The successful competition is fierce. I mean, how can I even compare? How can I convince the world Amber Green is successful? Shit, I’m probably the 1803502747920847 person on your Google machine. 

Or, maybe, just maybe it doesn’t matter what others think of me… Only how I feel about myself? Compared to myself?

If I’m not “successful” why am I wasting my time working? If I’m not becoming “successful” and doing the work I was put on this earth to do, what am I doing? Working to live, not living to work. Who does that anyway? Live to work?

“If you love what you do you’ll never work a day in your life.” That’s always been a crock of shit to me, not gonna lie. But, maybe I’m just a pessimist and people really love what they do and jump up before their alarm and do it.

If that’s true, I feel that way about teaching. It’s amazing. I feel like I’m empowered and empowering people. I’m giving them the gift I thought I would never have: information. College & Weight Watchers. Both accomplishments that were never supposed to happen. I should be an uneducated fat woman. I’m not. Instead I’m the opposite. 

  
I’m ready to do this. I’m ready to feel success by following my heart and sharing my gifts. 

I am starting to find if I let go and trust it will all work out things seem to go better than I could have imagined.

How can that be? Let go and let God.

Is that success? 


Love + Love = Love

Art, Attachment parenting, confidence, empowerment, Marginalized individuals, Marriage, Mother, Parenting, Publishing a children's book, Small Business

If I’ve learned anything it’s to pass on love to my child. My husband and I don’t spend any time explaining who should love who with Z. To us, love is love. 

My parents divorced at a young age and went their separate ways. Dad remarried and mom, well, didn’t. 

I’ve never been asked why my dad remarried but believe me I’ve been asked why mom never remarried. 

I used to lie about why.

  • She isn’t interested in dating
  • She doesn’t really want to be in a relationship 
  • She doesn’t have time! Hello, 3 kids, single mom! 
  • She likes being alone-  duh, doesn’t everyone just want to be left alone!?
  • She’s overweight, maybe when she loses weight
  • She wants to focus on herself

Lie. Lie. Lie. Lie. Lie. Lie. You get it.

Truth? 

She’s a Lesbian.

That’s right. I said it. I’m not a lier anymore. Man, that feels great. 

I’ve lied to everyone in my life until I met my husband. Oh, yea, and the drunken night with some of my college besties and our need to share all. Yea, that happened. Anywho……

Why the lies? “No one cares.” People would tell me. 

Oh, yea. Sure. Tell the world as a teenager that is coming into herself- I could barely contain my period let alone the fact that my mom was a lesbian. Then, I got so used to all the lies that I never went back to those people and corrected them. I just brushed it under the rug. 

Until now. I just took a leap of faith. I wrote a children’s book about Z’s two grandmas. 

Loving My Grandmas

I’m so proud a publishing company invested in me and my family story. I’m absolutely thrilled that Z gets to have representation of his two grandmas. TWO grandmas in love.

In love and that’s okay. It’s really, okay!

He will never have to lie. He won’t have to make up stories about Noni & Grandma. He won’t have to feel ashamed. He will just be able to love and enjoy them. Isn’t that what having grandparents is all about!? 

We think so. 







You can buy the book and support the movement! Equality for all. 

Buy here! Loving My Grandmas

Support my passion and advocate for marginalized couples all over the world! 



5 signs you’re a mom and probably shouldn’t be…

Attachment parenting, Cloth diaper, Family, Marriage, Mother, Parenting, Publishing a children's book

I woke up oh so early this morning.

4 AM Wake up! For what reason? I don’t know.

Well, that’s not entirely true. Z started whining in his sleep, “MULK” “momma, Mulk.” So, naturally, in my sleep I roll over, pop out a boob and nurse. But, this morning it woke me up and I couldn’t fall back to sleep. I started thinking about being a mom and how much I need to learn.

Here are my 5 signs I need to grow up but probably won’t:

1. If you don’t take a shower at night and you play outside with a toddler, you’ll wake up itchy in the wee-hours of the morning. Fact.

2. After work I take off my nice, expensive work clothes and politely lay them on the ground in front of my closet. After my 4:30 AM shower this morning, I stood on said clothes to find comfy yoga pants. Winning.

3. I walked into the bathroom and found my dirty clothes on the ground – next to soggy cloth diapers, eh, someone’s mom might pick that up one day.

4. I looked back in the shower and realized I’ve been taking a shower with empty shampoo bottles for months. Where is that mom that cleans this shit up?

5. I’ve been sneak eating Marvell’s red velvet birthday cake all week and then coming out of the kitchen with baby carrots. What? Don’t judge me.

There you have it. #momfails of the century. When will I turn into my mom? It seemed that she always had shit together.

Hey, at least I’m up, showered and have eaten a bowl of cereal and a bite of red velvet before anyone even noticed.

That’s winning in my book.

Speaking of book: ITS DONE!

“Loving My Grandmas” will be on bookshelves soon! I approved the proof of the book and 100 copies are being sent to my house. I’ll soon have a link to buy the book. I can’t tell you how excited I am! Here’s a sneak peak of the cover….

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Like me on Facebook as well!

Loving My Grandmas Facebook page

Happy birthday, love.

Attachment parenting, Family, Marriage

Til’ death do you part.

And we’re not dead yet, so let’s eat cake.

Jan. 31, my love turned 39. I know right!? He looks A-M-A-Z-I-N-G. Lucky duck.

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I wanted to surprise him with a little birthday dinner and a BIG birthday cake. His favorite is red velvet. So, I made reservations for dinner with a few of his friends. Such a fun, sweet night. It’s so important to celebrate the people we love. It reminds them we care about them and are willing to take the time out of our day to show appreciation.

Dinner was fabulous but my view was the sweetest part of it all. Him.

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To my husband:

Your quiet introverted self is the complete opposite of me, inspiring.

Your hands create the most amazing artwork this eye has ever seen, truly.

Your smile melts my heart and I don’t see that enough, need more.

Every year you’ve been alive tells a story, I’m thankful to be a part of this journey.

Your 20’s were a shit-show, glad to not have been a part of that journey! Lol, had to throw that in there!

I’ve seen you in the lowest of lows and the highest of highs. At times I think I’m responsible for both. Love isn’t easy, is it? Babies aren’t easy, are they? And not to mention these dogs! Through it all you’re calm and patient, well, most of the time. You show me love and respect and I’m thankful for that.

For your 39 candles and a wish I share with you:

Go. Show the world YOU. Don’t hold back. YOU have something to offer this world, they’re ready.

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That’s a cake. That’s a cake with 39 candles! What a beautiful way to celebrate the man I love. To another 39 years. Growing old with this dude.

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For better or worse, Couples Therapy

Attachment parenting, Family, Marriage

Last I checked our country had a
high rate of divorce. When I say “last I checked” I literally googled it yesterday. Now, with the high rate and all, we are actually declining in divorce rates! Don’t jump for joy so quickly, it’s still pretty high. A nice pat on the back or thank you very much will do.

Now, if you’re married you know this shit is hard. If you’re married and poor, that shit is hard-er. And, lastly, if you’re married, poor and have other mouths to feed, quit while you’re ahead! All right, enough of the doom and gloom… there’s hope.

How to withstand a marriage without hating your partner?

1. COMMUNICATE. Which means, get off your “smart phone.” It’s not so smart. If fact, arguably, we spend more time on our smart phones than with, I don’t know, real people. Setting boundaries is extremely important, even with our technology. Set ’em.

2. Be honest. We’re not perfect people. If you need something from your partner, ask. If your partner isn’t giving you what you need, ask. Then, refer to step 1.

3. Have fun. Yea, like you “used to.” Even if fun means, making fun of your two year old’s poop face. Or, when they fall. Come on! It’s funny, sometimes.

4. Allow yourself down time. LOL. Just kidding moms.

5. Wash your hair! Throw on some makeup or cologne or underwear for that matter and get out of yoga pants or sweat pants…. I mean, really. Try it once. Your significant other will thank you. Then, go out for coffee or whatever people do in real pants.

6. Charm each other. You were once capable of it. Try it again.

7. If at first you don’t succeed…. You know the drill.

8. Be OK with growing old. Sagging is the new 20. If you’re a millionaire, lip injections can also be the new 20. Damn you rich people.

9. Create something together… Maybe not another human if the time isn’t right. Start with a mini garden or something.

10. Last but not least, seek an amazing therapist. I did. It’s awesome.

Speaking of therapy… I want to share the most insightful piece of information she shared with me.

After recapping the saga that is my life story, she asks me a few questions, I answer. She looks dumbfounded. Choppy words come out of her mouth, like, “but how did you know that at such a young age?” Or, “you couldn’t have known what was going on between your parents, could you?”

Yes. Yes. And, well, yes.

I knew. I knew all too well. I protected the “boys” from what I knew. BTW- they HATE that I call them “the boys.” They were so young and I could tell they lived in their own bubble of a world. Why would I pop that bubble just because I lived in reality at 6?

Separation.
No mom.
Living in another country.
The divorce.
The nasty court battle.
Raising my brothers.
Fighting for our rights in court, yes at ages 6,7,8,9,10…

My job was to protect those boys from the truth.

She looked at me, I could tell she wanted to cry. My face, stone cold. I couldn’t let the tears start because they wouldn’t stop.

She said, “you made it out.” YOU made it out.

I started to tear up… And she said, “how does that make you feel?”

My only response was… “I let them down. I can’t enjoy success because they [“the boys”] are so troubled. They haven’t felt the same success. I feel as if I can’t be happy.”

Then, I lost it.

I look at this sweet face and wonder if in 20 years… Will he sit in my shoes? God, I hope not.

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1-2-3…. OUCH!! #attachmentparentingfails

Attachment parenting, Cloth diaper, Family, Marriage, weight loss

Yea, we’ll get to that in a minute. You’ll probably die laughing.

I survived my first week back to work. We traveled home from Mississippi and landed in our cushy nestled little mess-of-a-home. It felt like we brought Mississippi weather with us. It was freezing cold when he landed in AZ. Seriously, the next few days it rained & snowed in parts of the valley. Totally nutty. Happily, I will say it’s now 70. That’s why I live here.

New Years means New You! It’s a time to reinvent yourself and prove to the world you’re an asset to your family, work & friends. When is it that we start to slip into the old habit(s) again? It happens. You forget how much you wanted to lose weight, save money, pay off debt, stop drinking so much… You get it.

Why?

Why do we forget so easily? Comfortable? Lazy? Busy? Overwhelmed? Maybe all of the above.

When I lost 55 pounds over 7 years ago I remember thinking, “if I could just fix this problem/this food issue, all of my other problems will seem like a breeze.” {She} was right and wrong. If you’ve kept up with me over the year you know I’ve fought many battles: family/financial. I must say, those aren’t easy, but knowing I have total control of what goes into my mouth and how I handle situations makes MY life slightly easier. It doesn’t solve all problems, but it does make it easier.

I miss leading Weight Watcher meetings. I wish I could be there to inspire my friends. The members were my friends, I loved them. I know they loved me too. I wish I had all the money in the world and I could go back. But, I can’t. There isn’t enough time in the week for me to squeeze out another job. I worked 3 jobs for 6 years. Too much. Can’t do it. But, I miss it. Weight Watchers saved my life.

Alright. The moment you’ve been waiting for…

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Oh, what’s that you say? Well, a moment of I can’t take this shit anymore. I’m done. Give me coffee. Oh, and the band aids. Yea,
those. Well, you see, I’m still nursing the kid. Last week- I WAS DONE! No more. Stop. Stop! Stooppppp!!!!!

“Mama, mulk.” “MAMA, MULK.”

First off kid- it’s MILK. An I. “ill-k” with an M before that. M-I-L-K.

Mama, MULK.

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So. I said no more “Mama Mulk” for this guy. He cried and cried and cried. Heart wrenching tears. It was horrible. That’s when I remembered this blog I read that mentioned she put bandaids on her nipples and her kid seemed to get it. “Momma owie.” So, I tried that. Z was pretty pissed that I had a sudden “owie.” I could tell he thought, “this woman thinks I’m an idiot!” He eventually gave me some space and all was well. I thought, OMG. It worked. It really worked. Then, 10 minutes later Z said…. (Drumroll please)

Mama, MULK!

I had to peel those bad boys off one of the most sensible sensitive (that was funny auto-correct, sensible lol) skin on our bodies!!!!!!!!! WTF! I didn’t think about that part! He didn’t wait a second. I ripped them off and he was right there ready to nurse. So, here we are going strong. 26 months and counting.

I remember thinking, can I get this right? Will he latch? Are my boobs too big… Will he suffocate under there👈LOL. Well, I guess I got it SO right that it’s lasting forever.

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Happy {birth}day Zaccai!

Attachment parenting, Cloth diaper, Family, Marriage, Mother, Parenting, Uncategorized

Well, we’ve made it. Our sweet little boy has turned 2. People this is monumental. Two years ago Marvell and I were clueless as to how to raise a baby, toddler, little boy.

But, we’ve made it. A few scrapes and bruises along the way {metaphorically speaking- egos mostly!}.

So, here’s to one of the sweetest boys in the world! Biased, I know.

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Mostly, I’m thankful this boy has forced me to slow down!! I am a go-go-go type of person. If I don’t have multiple things going on or multiple jobs, I feel lazy. [although I don’t think others are lazy that work 1 job or stay at home] Anyhow… this year I quit my favorite part time job. It is bitter sweet. I did it for Z. I knew that it was time to move on. He needed me to move on. Marvell needed me to move on.

Zaccai’s birthday celebrations were small. We had a nice BBQ, cupcakes and lovely weather outside at a local park. His sweet friends were there to play & have 2 year old meltdowns. Oh, the meltdowns.

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Zaccai LOVED us singing to him! His face lit right up! He knew the celebration was for him!

It was a beautiful day at the park! We could not have asked for better AZ November weather. The only minor problem: WIND! Who knew!? Wind in AZ. So, we blew out candles at home. Which meant singing to the boy again! He loved it.

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Digging the cloth diaper and socks look? You too can have this look! LOL.

My dear sweet boy. This world is cruel and angry and I hope your generation does more than ours. I pray you see a world of happiness & peace. I hope you see less war and more understanding. I urge you to put yourself in someone else’s shoes before you judge them. Believe me, you may feel tempted. At times you will think you’re better than someone else. Maybe even better looking…
{well, we know that’s a given}

……Quietly stepping off the mom soap box there…….

Really though, Zaccai, you’re world will be different than mommy’s and daddy’s. Just know, your parents have stood in the face of adversity, racism & sexism. The fight has come a long way but it’s not yet over. There are many battles to be won and I hope you’re part of the change. I believe you will do amazing thigs for our world. I can only hope that we positively impact your life to show you the way.

Just know, many parents have their way of raising babies/children/teens. We are all humans trying to do the best we can. That does not mean we are always right – we most likely will be very wrong one day – if we are… Let us know!

Challenge Us
Push Us
Ask Questions
Be Bold
Forgive Us
Love Us

Most importantly, get to know who you are. Be confident in the person you will become.

No matter what, we will support you.

We LOVE you.

Our sweet angel boy.

Born to this world and us on 11/4/2012 at 2:04 AM via emergency c-section. Your parents went through 12 weeks of natural Bradley delivery method to bring you into this world in the most “unnatural” way. But, man, does your mom have a story about her 4 day natural-no-pain-meds labor. I’ll be sure to tell you one day. And by that I mean: every time I get angry at you, when I’m bored and want to tell you the story, or, maybe when your first date shows up at the house… All appropriate times.

We named you Zaccai because we couldn’t agree on anything A-Y and the website stopped at Z: Zaccai. Your middle name is Marvell: didn’t have to go far for that one either: daddy & PawPaw’s name.

You were a tiny 6 pounds 11 oz & cute as a shriveled up old man. Love.

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{birth}. {one}. {two}.

Family Bonding & Nursing a Toddler

Attachment parenting, confidence, Family, Marriage, Mother

I’m not certain when I decided I’d practice attachment parenting –practice being the important word…. But, I must say there are ups & downs.

This morning, my sweet husband says to me, “Now, don’t take this the wrong way….”

Sidebar- a communication scholar would say anyone that positions a conversation with that statement will know that you most likely will take “this” the wrong way.

He continued, “This attachment parenting & breastfeeding thing, I mean it’s cool and all…. But is there an exit plan?”

Man, isn’t that a good question? I mean, I never imagined I would nurse a two year old boy.

In fact, years ago, when I lost 55 pounds, I went to a breast reduction consultation to get my boobs back… You know… And the doctor said, “There may be a great chance you will not be able to breastfeed.” My response, “I don’t care; I don’t want kids.” Then he looked at me like an evil bitch.

Well, obviously things changed and not only did I want a sweet baby but I wanted to now nurse this baby. After my c-section I really struggled even keeping myself awake as the lactation consultant came in an assisted with nursing. I have to tell you, those moments, those first days, weeks and even months were super challenging. I felt as if I couldn’t nurse this kid I would be a failure. I would have failed at one more thing I was supposed to do. So, I did everything in my power to make it work. I would NOT fail at this.

There were nights he cried and so did I. There were moments that I questioned if I was doing the right thing or if he was “getting enough.” My son has always been thin. 6 pounds at birth, 5th percentile for weight his whole life. People around me would say, “maybe you should supplement… or pump to make sure he’s getting enough…” I just ignored them. I knew he was fine. I also have an amazing pediatrician who supported me.

So, here we are almost to his second birthday and I just nursed him to sleep. Maybe some of you are thinking, wow he’s too old for that. Or, he has teeth! He can eat food. Yes. Maybe you’re right. But try denying your child comfort and security. I bet you wouldn’t.

I read this mom’s story about her weaning her son. And I cried. I really do not plan to nurse too much longer but I also didn’t plan to nurse until two.

So, back to my husband’s question: this attachment parenting weaning method… Well, we’re going to get there. How? I don’t know. All I know is I fought to get this nursing thing right and I freaking NAILED it! I couldn’t be more proud of myself. Not one ounce of formula*. I dedicated hours to pumping oz upon oz at work and even had to boil, ice, deliver when my milk started to sour (I was producing some extra enzyme or something that was turning my milk and he refused it. I had to dump 50 oz of stored milk after we discovered the problem!)

When Z is ready, I’ll be ready. To me, nursing an infant is needed for survival; nursing a toddler is needed for comfort and confidence.

I also have to say, I’m proud of my husband for understanding his child’s needs. Not all husbands would be supportive of this. He is. Now, I’m sure he’d love the boobs to himself… But sharing is caring.

How long did you nurse your baby? How did you/they wean?

*I do not judge formula feeding moms! You do what you have to do and each mom has their own reasons for nursing or not. Be confident in your choices because they are yours!

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