This Mother’s Day…

is almost over and as sad as I am to say it, I’m relieved. I’m relieved we’re back from vacation, back from being away from our little girl for a whole week, relieved to be going back into normal life and relieved Mother’s Day has (just about… 3 hrs to go) come and gone. I’ve hit a road block in my grieving process and knowing that this day was right around the corner wasn’t helping any.

Having Lucy has brought me the greatest joy and being a mother is my most important role, so of course I appreciate a day celebrating moms. Any recognition we can get is welcome πŸ™‚ And more than that, I love that it’s a day to spoil and love on my own mom; she’s so deserving and so under appreciated. Typically Mother’s Day is a wonderful day, and this time last year I was embracing every bit of it and taking advantage of all the day had to offer to a new mama.

This year is different. This year it’s a reminder that I’m a mom to 2 babies, one of which isn’t with me. The feeling of loss is always present but I’m mostly able to compose myself because life is busy and Lucy keeps me on my toes. On a day like today though where I’m inundated with Happy Mother’s Day posts (as it should be), it’s so much harder to keep the smile on. What upsets me is most of my social media world (is that a thing??) doesn’t even know this second little one existed, or the sort of pain Geo and I recently endured. Sure I write about it here but very few people read this little blog, and those that do don’t even know who I am (for the most part).

I want people to know about this baby of ours, and that he or she is forever a part of our family but there are two things that keep stopping me from sharing about it on social media, they are: 1. I don’t want people to feel pity for us and 2. It feels too sacred to share. It’s such a personal and meaningful experience in our lives, it was our baby, and simply “posting” about it just doesn’t feel right, or at least not right now. I want people to know about this baby of ours, this perfect little human, but I suppose I’m just not ready yet.

Anyways, it’s been a long day and I’m just so happy I’m a mom. It’s the greatest gift I’ve been given in my life and although the pain of our recent loss is feeling very heavy right now, I also know I’m very lucky to have a healthy baby girl in the room next door. Feeling for all those mamas who don’t.

Grateful: For the toothy grins and belly laughs Lucy was full of today πŸ™‚

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Not Sure…

where to start. For the past three weeks I’ve thought about writing this post yet every time I sit down to write I’m at a loss for what to say.

There’s no delicate way to share that after finding out your unborn baby has a terminal birth defect you and your husband decide, at 13 weeks, to end the pregnancy.

We found out the news about our baby on a Monday and I had the procedure that following Thursday. The time from that first ultrasound to the procedure life just stopped for us. There was nothing else that mattered. The pain was almost unbearable. I don’t know how we would have gotten through it without Lucy. She was what carried us through that week. She was our only source of happiness and hope.

Since the procedure life has gone on. Between running my business, working with my mom to launch a new one and caring for a 1 year old, the hours never seem like enough and I am scurrying throughout the day trying to fit it all in. It’s the nights, when I get into bed and see our baby’s beautiful footprints on my nightstand that I’m reminded I just recently had a baby inside me, one that should still be there but isn’t. It all feels very unfair. For Geo and I, for Lucy, for my loved ones and most of all, for this baby that was so little but already so loved.

I’ve struggled with whether I wanted to share this online or not. I’ve truly gone back and fourth, but what kept bringing me back to this space is my desire to honor this baby. I want people to know I think of myself as a mother of two babies; the one who after a very busy day of practicing walking is peacefully sleeping in her crib, and the baby who I know will always look over that sleeping baby and who someday I’ll get to meet. This baby meant so much to George and I. This baby deserves to be acknowledged and that’s why I’m overlooking my fear of being judged or ridiculed for sharing such personal information because if I don’t, it’s as if it didn’t happen, and it did.

These are just the most perfect little feet I’ve ever seen.

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Lucy’s Birth Story (Part 2)…

Considering Lucy turned 1 on Saturday I think it’s time I get around to finishing up her birth story πŸ™‚

We left off here.

I remember thinking on the Tuesday prior to Thursday that the slight cramping I was feeling wasn’t all that bad and hey, if this is it then I could totally handle it. Ha. ha. ha. silly me. Thursday was full of pain, laughter, frustration, excitement, and more pain. Labor is no joke. To be honest I don’t remember a lot of what I was thinking during the whole thing, I just remember the intensity of it all. The intensity of each contraction, the intensity of my focus and determination, the intensity of my love for Geo (I felt so comforted to have him by my side), the intensity of my excitement to meet this little person — it all was just very intense. As the day drew on I then started to feel an intense desire to quit, like every woman in labor πŸ™‚

Our midwife, Nicole, was fantastic through it all. It was such a long day, and as the hours went by I got more and more tired (at this point I was going on 48 hrs of no sleep), but Nicole helped keep us going and smiled through it all. I remember cracking jokes in between contractions and being open to anything that might help Lucy descend, which was becoming more and more of a problem as the day progressed.

Here are a couple of beauty shots.. #notmygreatestlook!

After a full day of hard labor 12:30 am on Friday morning rolled around and Nicole and her assistant came up to talk with Geo and I. Nicole was confident we could keep going, and we’d deliver a healthy baby but was also cautious of my exhaustion and honest about the fact that she wasn’t 100% certain why Lucy wasn’t descending more. It was likely she just needed more time but Nicole didn’t pretend to know more than she did and honestly, this is exactly what you want in a midwife – no heroes, just honesty. This slight question mark was enough for me to think it was time to transfer to the hospital. I was so tired and I thought by going to the hospital they could give me something for the pain and I could squeeze in a nap (ha, that was funny of me), but more than that I knew from the get-go if I ever questioned the safety of my baby while birthing at home I would transfer to the hospital. I didn’t think it would ever happen, but sure enough it did.

SO, off we went! Geo and me in one car, my mom (who was called to our house after we made the decision – she’d been staying at the local inn waiting for updates) and Nicole in her own car. We finally got there (I had contractions the whole way), and all I could think about was how lovely it’d be to get into bed and drift off to sleep. Well that didn’t happen because within 20 minutes of being there I was checked by their on-site midwife and sure enough Lucy was crowning… all she needed was that bumpy ride to the hospital!

30 minutes after that our baby was FINALLY here πŸ™‚

And by 5 am she started meeting some of her biggest fans!

Our birth plan clearly didn’t go the way we’d hoped it would but we had a healthy baby girl and that’s all that matters. My prenatal care with Nicole at South Shore MidwiferyΒ was amazing, I honestly cannot say enough wonderful things about the care and support that Nicole provides. And everyone who cared for Lucy and I at the hospital was wonderful as well – we always felt like we were in good hands.

One thing I wish I could go back in time and change is… packing a hospital bag! haha Why oh why did I not do that?! I was so confident everything would go smoothly with the home birth that it didn’t dawn on me to be prepared, just in case. Because we were discharged the very next day (we requested this), no one had time to put together a bag for us, so I went home in Geo’s pajama pants and an oversized men’s button down shirt that my mom bought for me that day (pants and shirt were two VERY different patterns) and Lucy went home in a 0-3 month old onesie that her aunt kiki had bought for her as a gift THAT DAY. I had delicately washed all her new clothes so that nothing would irritate her newborn skin and then her very first full day of life she is put in a brand new, unwashed onesie. And I honestly didn’t really think twice about it… I blame the exhaustion πŸ˜€

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Dear Barcelona…

we failed you.

It’s true, what I had imagined as being a beautiful and even relaxing trip ended up being a tiring, frustrating and at times surprising one.

Small glimpse of what just one part of our weekend looked like:

Saturday morning we sleep a little later than planned because, well, Lucy was still sleeping and who doesn’t go back to sleep on a weekend morning when the babe is asleep? That’s sacred time that does not come along all that often. When we do head out the door we (I) make the mistake of hopping on the first bus that shows up going in the direction of the city. “As long as its going towards the city, then it’s taking us closer to the Sagrada Familia.” **not my smartest moment. When we finally get off I suggest to Geo we just grab a cab because our tickets state our entry time is between 9:15 and 9:30. He assures me that this is just a “suggested” time and they’re probably not to stringent on it. **not his smartest moment.

Cut to us walking 1.5 miles to the basilica, only to get there and be told we weren’t allowed entry because we were 45 minutes past our entry time.

Enter annoyance and the beginning of whats to be a pretty long day.

Lucy wasn’t phased by her parent’s frustration, nope not one bit. Instead, she took in the sites like a boss. #HelloMyPeople

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And the weekend just continues in this fashion until we get home on Sunday night after multiple travel delays. Besides the issues we ran into while in Barcelona we did find area’s of the city that we really enjoyed. Such as the area in which our Airbnb was located, El Poblenou which is right across from the Mar Bella and Bogatell beaches; strolling down to the water was my favorite part of the weekend. And across from the water was a terrific little neighborhood – full of little shops, family friendly restaurants and some great people watching. This also happens to be where we lost Lucy’s favorite little bunny – #tear.

Lucy enjoying the Hop On Hop Off bus πŸ™‚

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Oh my heart…

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And then there’s this… #alldaylong

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Thank you for having us, Barcelona!

Grateful: For a visit from George’s brother and sister-in-law! It was so so nice having them here the past few days πŸ™‚

It’s Hard to Blog Today…

about anything because my mind is so distracted by the fact that Donald Trump just won the U.S presidency. So I’ll just do two things.

  1. Share what I posted to Facebook and Instagram
  2. Share a funny interaction I had at the mall yesterday, because it’s good to balance heaviness out with a little lightness πŸ˜€

What was shared on FB/Instagram:

She deserves so much more. Anyone with a daughter, how could you vote for him? The way he views women alone is enough of a reason to be disgusted by him but I guess if he’s gonna “make America great again” then it’s all okay… pretty sure treating women with respect would be a good starting place. #Confused #Why?? #MamaBear #BabyGirl #Respect#Daughter

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So now onto the semi funny/awkward exchange that occurred yesterday while in line at the mall. Lucy was in her carrier facing outward and on the verge of a mini meltdown, she was clearly over my little birthday shopping escapade, and to be honest so was I. So we’re standing there and the woman in front of us seemed pretty out of it. She was well put together but she was kind of swaying, staring off into space and then shifted her focus onto Lucy. At first I was a little uncomfortable but then thought “eh, its keeping Lucy content, I’ll roll with it.”

Then the woman says, “How old is he” (typical – most people seem to think Lucy is a boy) and our chit chat continues with the usual empty banter. And that’s when she mentions she has a little guy who is 4 months old. Now the “swaying” and “staring into space” makes sense.

The conversation continues as so:

Woman in line: “Yea, today is the first time I’ve been away from him. My husband is at home right now. It’s really hard to be away, isn’t it?”

I swear I saw a tiny tear start to form in the corner of her eye.

Me: “Hmm I didn’t think it was that hard. I actually remember really enjoying my first outing by myself :D” *Insert giggling and smiling*

Instead of smiling and laughing along with me in agreement or at least in amusement she seemed to be in shock. “Wow, who is this woman? How is she allowed to be a mom?” was written all over her face.

And thankfully that’s when she was called up to the register.

Yes, I really enjoy my alone time but that doesn’t mean I don’t LOVE my time with Lucy. To the woman in the line, I hope you find a way to enjoy your alone time because I personally think it’s really important for you, your baby and your husband. But what do I know, I’m the kind of mom who has a babysitter, lets her babe watch tv, and shares ice cream with an 8 month old – Lucy doesn’t seem to mind πŸ™‚

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PS. Next post is about our trip to Barcelona. It was fun. tiring. beautiful. tiring. warm. tiring. and a trip for the books. Did I mention it was tiring?

Grateful: For 4 year presidential term limits. 4 years, that’ll fly by right?

Our Day Date in London…

was the perfect remedy for a couple who had barely seen each other in two weeks and were in need of some alone time to reconnect and just, have some fun!

Last Saturday, after taking a 7 hr long flight home with an 8 month old, Geo and I spent the morning sleeping, unpacking and eagerly awaiting the arrival of our babysitter, Jenny. I had made the decision earlier in the week that having Jenny come would be a nice way for us to rest, eat out, take a breather and I was right – it allowed us to do all of the above. We had Jenny for 4 hours and spent the first hour sleeping… pure bliss. We then headed out for a mini adventure.

First stop, a photo with my two new besties:

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Next we headed to London’s South Bank in search of a good place to eat. Along the way we couldn’t help but take a few pics like this one:

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We then came across a restaurant called Bill’s, a small chain in London. It was cosy, warm and had a great menu. I ordered a Mint Iced Tea and had NO regrets (might have been the best part of the meal!). Here’s a peak of our visit there:

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I got the veggie platter and between the falafel and spicy hummus I was in heaven.

After indulging in a late lunch we headed to the highlight of the day date, the Clink Prison Museum! Dun dun dunnnn. It was spooky, grotesque and basically everything you’d expect it to be. Next date we’re heading to the National Portrait Museum, probably a little more worthwhile :p

We made a couple friends though! (the sort of friends nightmares are made of… creepy.)

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When we were finally done with the museum we headed back home feeling refreshed, reconnected and just excited to see Miss Lucy. But of course we had to stop to take in the Thames one more time. It’s amazing to me how busy it always it. I wouldn’t say it’s the most beautiful river I’ve ever seen but there’s something magical about all the commotion that seems to take place on it – always moving, always different, always with a backdrop of London. We will certainly miss it.

Geo asked me to pose, so naturally I gave the best Kardashian look I had… #Fail #HowDoIDoPoutyLips?

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Grateful: For this little pipsqueak who finds amusement, wonder and happiness in just about everything (especially my phone!). I hope she holds onto this for a long long time (the wonder, not my phone!).

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Gone Are The Days…

Of looking forward to traveling and in are the days of dreading it with every morsel of my being. Dramatic? Maybe a little but honestly traveling is not what it used to be. What it used to be was “do I read my book, watch a movie or take a nap during the flight?” What it is now is “do I try to get her to nap (enter hours of frustration), entertain her with toys (each toy keeps her occupied for approx. 1.2 minutes) or just hand her off to the hubby and take 3 minutes to find my inner buddha before Geo looks at me with desperation in his eyes and hands her back over?”

Lucy has brought so much joy into our lives and I can literally feel myself loving her more and more every day but geesh, flying from London to NY with a 6 month old is not for the faint of heart! Luckily we made it out alive and I’m hopeful our flight home, which is a night flight, will be full of zzzz’s and downtime because she’ll be peacefully sleeping… a girl can dream πŸ˜€

In other news, this girl seriously is so lucky to have so many knitters in the family! How cute is this skirt?!

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Grateful: For being back home in the states for two weeks. I’d forgotten how nice it is to have the love and support of so many loved ones, we’re so lucky to live near our parents πŸ™‚