I love online shopping. You could say it was one of my “obsessions”. I’m on maternity leave for the next 6 months and I’m kind of bored out of my mind. When I can’t get out in real life, online shopping is probably the closest thing I get to leaving the house some days.
I LOVE ONLINE SHOPPING – understatement of the year.
I found Yaffifashion on the ‘gram and I’ve loved matching matching family outfits for as long as I’ve had kids. When I saw they did matching swim suits, I was sold.
Yaffifashion is an online retailer catering to matching family outfits. This includes swimwear, dresses, and sleepwear. They are also available on Amazon and have some of the most affordable prices I’ve seen for sets. They were a perfect fit for us because not only did they have women’s suits and baby girl suits, but if you’re like me, a mom of all boys, they also carry swimwear for boys and men.
We had a mini vacay in our hometown and the matching swimwear was a huge hit for us! The quality of the suits was beyond my expectations considering they are so affordable, as well the fit was great for every family member! I do recommend sizing up as they fit small. I am wearing a large and I’m normally a medium. TJ flipped out when he saw I got him and extra large but after trying it on he understood. Also, plus for men, swimsuits have pockets!
While summer may be over for us, these matching outfits are perfect for your winter holiday vacation or like us, mini vacation anywhere!
Disclaimer* I am not a doctor and I’m not here to give anyone advice on how to conquer depression. I am here simply stating my experience with postpartum depression. I strongly advise that should you have any questions about postpartum depression, seek professional medical attention. If you feel like doing harm to yourself or those around you, please see immediate medial attention.
I always ended up having a little bit of post partum depression after each of my kids. Baby blues immediately after birth. After I had Aiden 10 years ago, I went on anti-depressants for about a month and things started to lighten up afterwards. After Kato, about 6 years ago, I would scream and run up the stairs and cry and tell TJ “YOU DON’T EVEN LIKE ME CAUSE I’M STILL FAT”. Dramatic, much?
Before I had Jasper, I knew that there was a very good chance I would have some form of post partum depression. I was very vocal about it with friends. I let those closest to me know that I expected to have baby blues. I encouraged them to check up on me. I knew during this time, I didn’t want to be alone.
Right after having Jasper, the blues set in. In fact, I probably had the blues starting in my labour. I couldn’t help but know that while I was going to have a baby and had my partner by my side, something was off. I didn’t feel right. Hearing “I love you” “you’re doing great” “I’m right here” made me feel empty.
In the hospital, I remember there was one day, I can’t even remember why I was upset but I was crying hysterically. I was shaking. I threw TJs phone across the room and shattered his screen and I screamed “I NEED MORE SUPPORT”. I couldn’t explain what I needed. My hormones were taking a huge dip. I felt like a crazy person. I made so much commotion that the nurse and social worker came in to make sure everything was okay. For the time being, it was ok.
Postpartum depression is different from the “baby blues,” which begin within the first three or four days of giving birth, require no treatment and lift within a few hours or days. PPD is a deeper depression that lasts much longer. It usually starts within the first month after childbirth (although it can occur any time within the first year) and can last weeks to months. In more serious cases, it can develop into chronic episodes of depression.
I know sometimes you think “postpartum depression? So are you planning on killing yourself and your kids?” Well no. Postpartum depression is different for everyone. Some experience a psychosis of some sort, some hear voices, some cry, some, like me, stop enjoying everything they used to. They don’t want to socialize, participate, or even take interest in their kids.
Postpartum psychosis refers to the sudden onset of psychotic symptoms after childbirth. This condition is rare—approximately 1-2 cases per 1000 births.
I felt like a monster.
A week or two after giving birth, I could feel the clouds of depression rolling in. I stopped enjoying things like shopping, my favourite shows, my favourite meals. I would cry some days and not be able to move or get out of bed. Postpartum depression made me feel like a monster. I felt like a monster. Here I am, three beautiful kids, and I couldn’t look at them. Some days, don’t want to service them, I don’t want to play with them, feed them (although I do because these boys never stop eating), and I don’t want to be a mom. Some days I don’t want to be a mom.
The worst part is when someone tells me “why are you so upset when you have so many things to be thankful for?” Can I just say, that is a highly offensive and insensitive comment. I can’t really control this part of me. I don’t “intend” to feel awful or want to cry or not enjoy everything around me. This is like being sick. You don’t try to be sick. I happens and while it’s unfortunate, I didn’t “try” to feel this way. In fact, I very much hope I didn’t feel this way at all. I just wanted to take a moment to say, I’m not a monster nor am I trying to be. If you can’t understand someone’s depression, make no comment on it. It’s not your place to judge them. (<— that’s my take on it anyways)
How am I gettingthrough it?
Talk about it
I talk a lot about what I’m going through with those closest to me. I’ve kept my circle small but powerful. These relationships I have, fulfill me in so many ways. Just being able to vent without judgment has been amazing. I am nothing without those I can depend on to support me and bring me back down to reality. I understand what it means when they say it “takes a village”.
Work it out
I started working out again 6 weeks pp. I started with spin class and since then now nearly 4 months pp, I started going back to the gym. Physical activity had given me strength. Not just physically but mentally as well. I have been able to move that energy from something that’s toxic and clouds my mind to something tangible that I can “use”.
I meditate regularly. Usually while breastfeeding to be honest. It helps me relax while feeding and helps milk flow. I take a regular inventories of things I am thankful for. I make time for myself to become more self-aware and focus on what I need at that given time. I make time to think about me. I think that being so self-aware has been my greatest strength. I remind myself that I am doing the best I can. I am doing the best I can.
TJ says I’m less grumpy when I eat. I try to make sure I eat regularly and often throughout the day. I usually try to eat well and have veggies, protein and whole grains however if I need a “quick bite”, drive through wraps are great in a pinch. I try not to be so hard on myself for what I eat. I’m doing the best I can.
I had heard that placenta pills were supposed to help with postpartum depression. Knowing fully that I might get it, I tried them myself. I really did enjoy how they made me feel. Whether or not it was the placebo affect I’ll never know. However I did notice that while taking them my milk supply would suffer which is why I stopped taking them. Feel free to send me a note if you want more information on where I had gotten my placenta pills.
CBD oil. I take zero THC CBD oil on days that I can’t sleep. I have found that it eases my nerves and anxiety without altering my judgement. It has helped relax me and give me a little bit of peace. I don’t take it often, only on my really bad days. I can’t say how this affects my breastfeeding. I usually take it at night when Jasper has the longest stretch of sleep before his next feeding. My best advice is to check with your doctor before you try any type of “unconventional” supplement as I have.
Doing things I enjoy
I’ll go out to eat with a friend, get coffee, get my nails done, or just get out of the house. Being cooped up all day doesn’t help. Some fresh air does me good and doing something small to help me feel like myself helps. Calling a friend, helps. I will admit it doesn’t always help, but taking time for myself really helps me focus on myself and what I need.
It gets better…
I am 4 months postpartum and definitely still have really good days and really bad days. As time has gone by, the bad are fewer and further in-between. Working out really helps me and I feel really good after. I never regret a workout. I still cry for no reason. I still have days I “hate” myself and struggle with being a mom.
I try not to blame myself for feeling this way. I realize that sometimes people can’t help it. It’s not my fault. I didn’t feel this way intentionally. I didn’t do this to myself. I didn’t wish this upon myself. I am only human. I am doing the best I can. I will get better. It will take time to get back to normal. I will get there.
I love breastfeeding. I love the bond between baby and I and it makes me feel good to know that I am providing my baby with the best nutrition I can possibly give him.
There are so many benefits from breastfeeding for babies and moms. Some of which include:
Its FREE (formula is expensive)
The first “milk” called colostrum is full of antibodies
Lessens the risk of SIDS
Helps lose pregnancy weight (amen!)
Delays your period (win!!)
Brings you closer to your baby (skin-to-skin)
I breastfed my first two children and assumed that my third would be just like the rest–a walk in the park, right? I am an old hat at this game. Breastfeeding off the hop was my JAM. I had already done it twice without issues. Breastfeeding is natural, easy, intuitive, right? Wrong.
With Jasper I had so many struggles I never had in the past. He had a teeny tiny mouth and my nipples were almost too big for him to get a good latch on right away. Latching challenged us and my nipples hurt because of it. My milk took 5 days to come in. Jasper lost about 5-7% body weight before leaving the hospital. Not ideal, but acceptable and expected.
We tried to mitigate his weight loss by doing SNS feeding within 24 hours after birth (a process in which a small tube with formula is attached to the breast while feeding to support breast milk production and formula to help with feedings as my milk had yet to come in). This helped us gain an oz of weight overnight and get us discharged (woot!!). I continued to pump even after each feeding in order to stimulate milk production.
Within 2 weeks the thought was that he would get back up to birth weight and everything was normal. This did not happen.
I did get engorged. I did pump. I did expect my milk to adjust after a few days. Instead, they seemed to have shrivelled up and were almost bone dry.
I reached out to the public health nurse for help. She recommended nursing more often, staying at the breast for longer, trying milk thistle, fenugreek, prescription domiperidone, and everything in between. I did try all of these. While I did see an increase briefly, I still wanted more milk!
I wanted more milk. No matter how much I pumped, he was always hungry. I could never satisfy his hungry until I found the one that worked…
If you’ve read my pregnancy story, you know Ihas gestational diabetes. The lactation consultant I saw eventually said that this symptom of pregnancy can affect milk supply. With this information in mind I finally felt like it wasn’t my fault.
While pumping away one day, I came across an interesting brand called Legendairy Milk. They are a US company who use herbal supplements in their own proprietary blends to promote the production of breast milk. They are are fenugreek free company. While I had been using fenugreek as a supplement for myself, I didn’t realize it may be working against me (and I hated smelling like maple syrup all the time). I read the reviews on different products online and scoured the comments on posts on Instagram, I was highly intrigued.
They have so many products (with the cutest names) and you can try smaller bottles of the supplements to figure out which one works best for you. Their “best seller bundle” includes three varieties: Liquid Gold, Milkapalooza, an Pump Princess. You can also build your own bundle with three of any variety. Upon looking at reviews, this looked like the best option for me. I tried their Liquid Gold, Cash Cow, and Lechita. I used these in conjunction with the domperidone prescribed to me by my doctor, no other supplements were used when trying these out. I took 2 capsules, 3 times per day as recommended. Their recommendations is to try each one for 7-10 days to determine how well the product works for you. Each bottle came with 60 capsules (enough for 10 days). Every person is different and while some people may have better/worse reactions to a particular blend, this is just the results of my own experiences using these blends. I highly recommend trying their best sellers or doing some research and determining what you think may work for you and to go from there.
This one is part of the best seller bundle and the one I wanted to try first. The pills were easy to swallow and had a “grassy” flavour. I took the dosages with each of my meals to avoid any type of upset stomach. No issues there. I didn’t notice much until about 24 hours later. After taking this for a full day I was engorged when I woke up. It was surprising. I hadn’t been that engorged since my milk first came in and I was adjusting to my supply. I was able to pump about 3 oz combined from both breasts after a feeding. I hadn’t been able to do that up to this point. My volume pumped after a feeding was up about 50%. I was more than happy with that. Jasper was finally getting satisfied after a full feeding. It was amazing.
I was really excited to try this one because I had seen some reviews that said it made their milk thick and creamy. I saw a post from someone online and they had shown the fat cap on their expressed milk was like an inch thick. I was so jealous. The most I’ve been able to get from my milk was maybe a third of an inch in the bottle after it has separated and settled. This one also tasted very “grassy”. I noticed a drop in my supply in the first 24 hours. It was a bit of a challenge that first day however after the first 36-48 hours, I continued to feel the fullness in my breasts that I was familiar with after missing a feeding. I noticed that my milk appeared to be “richer” and “creamier” when I swirled it. I wasn’t able to pump as much after feedings while taking this supplement. For me, the increase was about 25% more prior to taking any Legendairy Milk supplements. However, what I did notice, was Jasper was still becoming full after each feeding and over the course of those 10 days, he was getting much heavier. I don’t know if it was a growth spurt but I think fattier milk = chubbier baby. Coincidence? Maybe, maybe not.
I saw really good reviews from this one and thought this would be a good try. The thing that caught my attention was that it claims to promote milk flow. One thing that bothered me about pumping was that it took so damn long to pump. I would be sitting there for 20-30 minutes waiting for those last drops to stop. I was a slave to the baby and a slave to the pump. I wanted the milk to flow more efficiently. This was my answer. It had more of a licorice/anise flavour. I didn’t mind it at all.
I started this one a little late and missed the first dose. I started the second and took the third before bed. I woke up in the middle of the night and my nursing bra was soaked. I changed my bra, nursed baby in bed, my sheets were soaking wet. It was amazing. I got up and pumped and was able to pump 5 oz in one session. THIS HAD NEVER HAPPENED BEFORE. I would literally pump 5-8 oz in an entire day. Now I was pumping 8-13 oz over the course of the day. Even my milk flowed more efficiently. When I fed Jasper, milk would flow so quickly he would need to take a break and sometimes would even choke a little because everything flowed so quickly.xMy pump sessions were cut by at least 10 minutes. Some days I could pump everything in 15 minutes. The sound of milk flowing was amazing. I found my winner, my saving grace, my one and only… Lechita.
Ok, ok, I tried one more. I thought it at the cutest name and more than anything, I wanted to be one of those moms who showed off big bottles of pumped milk and I thought this would be the one for me. Turns out, it wasn’t. I noticed a drop in my supply within 24 hours of taking this. It did nothing for me. This particular blend did not show me any significant increase prior to taking any Legendairy supplements. It was the last one I took and within 48 hours of taking it I was placing an order for a month’s supply of Lechita.
Both Best Sellers/Build A Bundle packs retail for $49.50 USD. Shipping to Canada is $17.20 USD. I used a 10% off code I found online. Product came in about a week.
I highly recommend trying some of Legendairy Milk products if you’re having supply issues or just want more milk (like me). I found that they worked for me and in different ways. They don’t taste bad and I know some people even combine blends based off what worked for them. As for me, I will be sticking with Lechita and have already built a 2 day stockpile with breastfeeding since getting my month’s supply and it’s only been 4 days. You can check out their website here.
Thanks for visiting! A little backstory here, I’ve always been early. All three of my boys were early and each delivery was very different:
Due – October 11, 2008
Delivered September 28, 2008
5 lbs 13 oz 20 inches
Natural – morphine only upon arrival – admitted approx 7 am and delivered approx 1pm same day – back labour
Kato Mars Bishop
Due – June 6, 2013
Delivered May 22, 2013
5 lbs 13 oz 19 inches
Arrived May 20 10pm – sent home May 21 – returned approx 6pm – delivered May 22 approx 4am – back labour
March 15, 2019
The long awaited day had come. We were waiting for our call for our scheduled induction. I was scheduled for the induction due to being miserable. Just kidding. Having gestational diabetes put me as a high risk pregnancy and my doctor had concerns for my health and the baby’s size.
We went for breakfast at Grassmeres for some Filipino breakfast and got the call to come in. So. Freakin. Excited. I made sure my hair and makeup was ready before we went 💁♀️ (gotta make sure I looked good for those first pics with baby)
We arrived at HSC women’s around 12:30pm. I was already having some light contractions this day nothing unusual. They wanted to monitor me for about an hour before we started the induction process. I had some tightness every 8-10 minutes but nothing that wouldn’t go away quickly. At this point I was 1-2 cm dialated but my cervix was still very thick.
At approximately 1:30pm I was administered the induction gel. For me, it burned and I felt like my cooter was on fire. The nurse assured me that the feeling would go away and I should go for a walk. TJ hung out with me and I walked for 3 hours up and down hall ways and in tunnels. I was pooped. Eventually we ordered some SkipTheDishes (while I was still allowed to eat). My contractions were about 5 mins apart with increased intensity. I was monitored for the next 6 hours to see if I was progressing– which (thank the Lord) I was!
After 6 hours I was about 4-5 cm and I was asking for some pain relief. I requested the morphine and told them I was possibly considering an epidural. At this point my contractions were very intense. They advised me that I was definitely progressing and I would be transferred to the labour and delivery floor. Once my morphine arrived and I was on an IV drip, the nurses just asked me “why don’t you just get the epi while the anaesthesiologist was on the floor”. After approx 7 hours of torment 2-4 minutes between contractions, I gave in.
While on the L&D floor my contractions would not let up for a second. Just when I thought one was over I could feel another creeping in. If you’ve never had contractions, they make your abdomen tighten all the way to your back like the worst diarrhea cramps you’ve had in your life — sorry TMI. I could not wait for this epidural so I could take a nap.
Finally once administered the epidural, the nurses advised I should wait approx 10-15 minutes for it to fully work… I waited and waited and waited. It never worked. Only my right side would go numb and my left was not numb at all. We tried everything from changing positions to getting a top up on the drugs but nothing helped.
I felt everything.
My contractions were rolling one over the other. The doctor came in and said that I was 6 cm at this point and would be breaking my water. I’ve never had my water break on it’s own before
Well then things got moving! With Aiden, I went from 6-10cm in 45 minutes. It was insane the amount of pain I was in in that short period of time. After 5 minutes I asked the nurse to check again because I felt a lot of pressure. They didn’t want to check me too soon because it would increase the risk of infection. I told the nurses that once my water broke I was sure we were moving. It may have taken me 9 hours to get to 6cm but I could feel my body preparing itself. I started shaking uncontrollably with every contractions with all the adrenaline pumping through my system. Ten minutes past and lo and behold, 10 cm fully dialated. In case you missed the math, six to ten cm in 15 minutes (probably less but they didn’t check).
Approximately 10-15 minutes later and 3 big pushes (I am a pro at delivery), we welcomed our perfect baby boy into the world.
Yes, thats blood on TJs shirt 🤣🤣
Jasper King Cosmos
Due – April 6, 2019
Delivered March 15, 2019
6 lbs 3oz 19 inches
Natural delivery – failed epidural – arrived 12:30pm and delivered 10:42pm – regular labour
Summer ’18 and TJ and I had been discussing having another baby. I just recently had my Mirena IUD removed as my 5 years with it was coming to an end. While we weren’t “trying” at the time, we decided we would see how things went and if it happened, we wouldn’t fight it.
Fast forward to my first period after getting my Mirena taken out. I was heartbroken. I realized then that I didn’t just want to “wait and see”, I wanted another baby. I discussed this with TJ and he agreed we would “try”.
Given that I hadn’t had a period in 5 years, I didn’t know my ovulation schedule. I took a generic generator I found online and guesstimated when I would be ovulating. By fluke, I decided to try out one of those ovulation strips 3 days after my “scheduled” ovulation dates. Lo and behold, I was ovulating 3 days later. One ovulation strip was all it took.
Five weeks after that, I took a pregnancy test and had no idea what I was looking at. I actually sent it to a girlfriend before I showed TJ because I wasn’t sure if it was positive or not but a few minutes later, there was no doubt. We were pregnant!
Motherhood: All love begins and ends there.
Now don’t get me wrong, I was both scared and excited. We were about to endure the journey of three kids. I thought about doing something cute to tell TJ but I basically just showed him the test and told him we were having a baby.
He didn’t look excited. He didn’t smile. He didn’t even hug me. He looked at himself in the mirror and said “I guess I got to get my shit together”. I asked him if he was happy. He said yes, but the yes was less than enthusiastic.
We told both of our immediate families shortly after not wanting to announce to early. My MIL cried and was super happy, my parents also cried and were excited to add a new grandchild to the mix.
The nausea during this pregnancy was the worst I had ever experienced. I took Diclectin daily until I was 17 weeks pregnant. I hadn’t lost weight. I wasn’t puking all the time. I had an appetite but lost interest in my favourite foods. Thank you to all of my coworkers for putting up with my whining. Especially my boss who let me go home after puking in the bin at my desk.
I tried taking cute pregnancy photos throughout but to be honest, we had two other kids, each with their own activities and appointments and we had very busy lives that I rarely had the energy to take a picture. I looked tired and worn out.
During my pregnancy I developed symptoms I had in previous pregnancies as well as some I hadn’t. I was put through the ringer this time around. It started with Pubic symphysis dysfunction around week 20. I had it late in my last pregnancy and earlier in this one. A physiotherapist I was seeing helped me with the diagnosis. We tried some exercises but the lightning crotch feeling would haunt me for another 17 weeks and get worse as time went on. I couldn’t lay down in on position for too long (particularly on my side) or my pelvis would feel like my crotch was getting stabbed. I couldn’t lift my legs without pain. I couldn’t turn over in bed (worst thing in the world when pregnant!!). I couldn’t put on pants, underwear, or socks without sitting down completely. Winter is the worst for this because it was impossible to get in and out of my car and walk over snow banks. I remember slipping and falling multiple times and each time felt like someone was ripping me apart from my crotch ( there was, it was the baby).
I work at a computer for long periods of time and do eyelashes. This involves a lot of wrist and hand contorting for hours. Because of the swelling during pregnancy, it caused me to have the most severe form of carpal tunnel I had ever experienced. Imagine waking up in the middle of the night unable to close your fists, having to run your hands under cold water to try to reduce the swelling, be unable to feel all of your fingers at different times (impossible to do lashes at this point). This lasted 10 weeks at it’s worse. I wore braces on both of my hands to try to manage the pain and discomfort. I eventually was taken off work because of it. It took weeks for me to feel my fingers again. To this day (2 months pp) I still have some lingering tingling.
The worst part of this pregnancy was having gestational diabetes. I remember telling TJ early on that I had a strange metallic taste in my mouth every time I had sweets. It had never happened before and I chalked it up to hormones. Little did I know that this is also a symptom of gestational diabetes. At 29 weeks I took my glucose test and the doctor called me two days later telling me no more sugar. I tried diet and moving more (as much as I could) but eventually my body told me that this wasn’t because of what I ate, it was because the hormones in my placenta would not allow me to produce insulin. Eventually I was taking insulin at lunch and dinner and overnight. It was hard and uncomfortable but I managed to push through it.
If you’ve never had gestational diabetes (this was a first for me), it’s a lot of pokes! Basically I had to test my blood sugar 4x per day. The goal was to be below 5.3 in the mornings (fasted) and below 7 two hours after my meals. I could be 7.7 one hour after my meals. Because my levels couldn’t be controlled (fasted), I had to take insulin. This involved a tiny needle where I had to inject insulin directly into my stomach (most effective) 3x per day. Once at lunch, once at dinner, and once before bed. Having to stab yourself with a needle is terrifying. At the end of the day, I would have to psych myself up to doing it but I did it. After 30 weeks I went in for weekly fetal assessments to assess how big the baby was. They were guessing that our baby was going to be around high 6lbs. My doctor was hoping to get my through to mid 6 lbs as she didn’t feel my pelvis could support birthing a larger baby given that Aiden and Kato were both 5lbs 13oz.
The emotional toll this pregnancy put on me between my mind and my body and my relationships was the most difficult for me. It’s very different having a baby as a single mom when you’re 18 and in a long term relationship when you’re 29.
Being two months post partum, I’ve watched my symptoms get relieve and resolve for the most part. I am going to physiotherapy for stuff that has lingered, the carpal tunnel, back pain, and core strengthening.
I was very supported by my doctor who induced me at 36.6 weeks. She acknowledged my difficulties. She wanted to take me off work sooner but was able to support me while I battled with the mental aspect vs my physical difficulties.
We were blessed with our baby boy on March 15 at 10:42pm. I would not change a thing. Every pregnancy for myself has been different and every labour and every baby is different. I thought going into this pregnancy I was a pro at it. This pregnancy beat me to my core and it was worth every painful minute and second, every poke, every needle, every sleepless night just so we could meet our perfect baby, Jasper King Cosmos.