Thursday, August 14, 2014

12 Weeks Postpartum: How I'm Doing

I think it's time for a little update! My last one about me was at seven weeks postpartum, so I'll follow  some of the same format.

I think my emotions have finally leveled out. I'm still a bit more emotional in general than I used to be, but I don't cry at everything the way I did the first two weeks and I don't feel as overwhelmed as I did when Terry first went back to work.

That said, I still have tough days. This week, for example, was very close to hellish. We had a great time at Jenn and Justin's wedding and visiting our friends on the way home, but then we kind of felt like our schedule was off before the week even started. Monday was my birthday, but we kept things mellow because Terry was swamped at work (he ended up pulling an all-nighter that night). Tuesday I woke up all achy and feverish, which turned out to be a bout of mastitis. Thankfully I felt mostly better yesterday, but by then we were both exhausted and had hardly done any housework or unpacking. Today was just blah, and Terry's work doesn't look to be slowing down anytime soon. I know, first world problems, but when they all pile up like that I do get a bit down.

Luckily, a lot of my emotions lately are happy ones, because Marshall is so much more interactive, responsive, and fun! I'll write more about that in his three-month post, but a baby who smiles and is getting close to laughing is much more fun than one who just stares at you.

The Hardest Part
So far, I still agree with what I said last time. Being a mom isn't easy!

It's slow going, but I'm trying hard to go for a long walk every day at least. Today was by far my most active day. I guess I needed to get some stress out at the end of such a tough week, but I did about 25 minutes of my favorite yoga video (working up to being able to do the full 45 minutes--if Marshall will allow it), 3 sets of 15 reps each of hammer curls and overhead presses, 5 sets of 20 dips, a bunch of calf raises, and a long walk (maybe three miles) with Marshall on the Strand. Now I'm curious to see how sore I'll be tomorrow.

Overall, though, workouts vary daily based on how the day goes and what time Terry gets home. We're trying to meet at the Strand once a week for a long walk and/or run, like we did today, but strength training takes a backseat to other responsibilities more often than not. Still, I find myself throwing in a few push ups or squats here and there, and I know this time is only temporary. Excited as I am to build back up to my intense stuff, as long as I get a walk in I'm happy for now. Hopefully Terry's work will calm down so we can take turns getting more dedicated workout time in, but it'll happen in time.

Postpartum Body
I haven't really talked much about it yet, but things are certainly different! I lost almost all the pregnancy weight right away, but I think I've gained some back, so I'm maybe five pounds above where I started pre-pregnancy. That seems about right to me, though, since I'm breastfeeding and need to be able to feed our giant child. I could do MUCH better about my nutrition, though, so that's going to be a goal for next month. More greens, more veggies and fruits, and more water!

As far as how I feel about how I look, I think I have a long way to go before I'm satisfied, but I'm also in no rush. My legs and arms are less toned, my abs are nonexistent, and I definitely have hips now! Things are just kind of squishy in some places. I'm not wearing any maternity clothes anymore, but my pants are all a tiny bit snug. But it all comes with the territory, and I'll get back to a new normal eventually.

Also, my scar has healed, but my entire lower abdomen area is still sore and tingly to the touch. I think that's normal. I hope.

When I was pregnant and after Marshall was born, I felt anxious about how this baby would disrupt our comfortable routines. And disrupt our lives he did! But in the best possible way. (Hello, mom cliche.)

Now our routines are finally settling back down and look something like this:

  • Wake up at least once per night to feed Marshall, burp him, and change his diaper. He puts himself back to sleep almost every time, so this event takes about 30-45 minutes.
  • Wake up around 7-8, depending on Marshall. 
  • Spend the morning eating, playing, and napping. Play time involves singing, making faces trying to get M to smile, reading books, tummy time, and looking at toys. We run through this pattern of eating, playing, and sleeping about every two hours.
  • During Marshall's naps I eat, play with Scout, or tidy up the house. His longest naps are around 45 minutes, so I rarely have time for more than that.
  • In the afternoons we get out of the house for our long walk, errands, etc. Marshall tends to sleep.
  • Terry usually gets home around 6, at which point he spends time with Marshall or we all play together. If it's a bath night, we give him the bath together and then read a story before putting him to bed around 7-7:30.
  • Then I head back out to cook dinner. Terry usually tidies up or helps around the house however he can, and we eat around 8:30. It's been nice to just start eating later, because then we get quiet time just the two of us. When we were trying to eat at 6:30 or 7, the nights felt hectic and we weren't really paying attention to Marshall. This way is more relaxing and fun.
  • We watch some TV, relax, chat, and clean up before heading to bed around 10:30.
The weekends are obviously a different story, but the weekdays are nice. I am now part of a MOMS group, and my first outing with them is tomorrow, so I hope that will mix things up a bit. I'm also trying to have one "big" outing per week, like visiting a friend or driving up to UCLA to walk around campus. It will help me stay sane, I think.

So that's where things are now. I feel pretty lucky that I am able to breastfeed and that I'm finding some time to work out. Those are huge gifts to me, and I can start working on better menu planning, more comprehensive workouts, and more "me" time. I know I'll look back at this time eventually and miss it, so I'm trying to soak it all in!


  1. You're doing great! Yes, being a mom is hard. And I think the first was the hardest for me- this time around it's less of a shock because I was expecting it to take over my life. :) I'm so glad you found a moms group- that can be such a great place to find support.

  2. I love these updates! Thanks for giving us a glimpse into your life with a new baby!