Viewing posts tagged pregnancy

Postpartum life with a family of 5

These past two months have been challenging but not as bad as expected. They flew by so fast, and now that Persephone is close to two months old she's starting to sleep for longer spells during the night time, and that makes mommy VERY happy. During these past two months:

Persephone 

has been as sweet and lovable as can be! Compared to the boys she has by far been the easiest. During the first two weeks of her life she was constantly sleeping, so much so that I had to set an alarm for every two hours through the night to wake her up and feed her. She cries so rarely that I am constantly checking on her breathing to make sure she's ok, and her lucky brothers are getting a full nights sleep every night since she was born, uninterrupted! 

Persephone's eating schedule for the first two weeks of her life were 2 ounces of formula every two hours, right on the dot. Then for the remainder of the first month we increased it to 3 ounces of formula every 2 1/2 to 3 hours, and throughout her second month we increased it to 4 ounces every 3 hours and we let her sleep as much as she wants to overnight. 

Persephone has also recently started turning over onto her tummy by herself, and is attempting to crawl. I put her on one side of the crib and I'll come back an hour later to find her on the far end of the other side of the crib. She does not co-sleep with us, from day 1 she has slept in her own crib. I want her to get used to it so that she will grow up to find sleeping in her own space as the norm. I've done this with all my children and it has worked out very well for us, could you imagine if all 3 kids wanted to sleep in our bed every night? That would be a disaster!! 

Because Persephone is still so tiny and vulnerable, we keep her away from people, especially her brothers. She is so little and still needs more vaccines, so we are VERY careful to keep germs away from her. The boys are constantly coming home with all sorts of illnesses caught from school, and we are constantly wiping their noses, cleaning throw up and dealing with all sorts of colds and viruses. We prevent little Persephone from catching anything by keeping her away from the boys and literally washing our hands every 2 minutes. I remember Valentino's old pediatrician would firmly tell us NOT to take a newborn out anywhere, especially to restaurants- where the guy in the back making your salad could be from a south american country where they don't vaccinate and next thing you know your newborn could catch TB. How funny is he? Like, who says that? THANKS for making us paranoid doc :)

Valentino

does understand that he has a "baby sister." Whenever she cries he looks concerned and tells me that she is hungry and that I should give her some pizza :) He has been adjusting to having a baby sister incredibly well. He sleeps, eats and goes about his normal daily routine really well. Because I have been recovering and preoccupied with everything baby related, hubby has really stepped up to the plate and has handled all things toddler related, therefore Valentino has really developed a special bond with daddy during these past few months. He has also matured a lot during these past few months and takes his daddy very seriously. If daddy asks Valentino to clean his room, he will instantly clean it with no questions asked. With me, on the other hand, he will play and ignore me and not take me seriously. How unfair! 

Caspian

also understands that he has a baby sister, but that's about all he understands. The first day Caspian met Persephone he patted her head and then just went about his business. He's not bothered by having a baby sister, and carries about his day normally. He ocassionally will say "bye bye baby!" His room is adjacent to Persephone's, and initially I thought that would be a problem and interrupt his sleep, but so far so good! Caspian is known as the family parrot because he will repeat everything he hears, and sometimes I even catch him imitating the baby crying! 

Sir Edward

Does realize that another human has joined the house, and seems to be curious and concerned about it. So the rule of the house is that he cannot come upstairs to the bedrooms. Sir Edward knows this and has never set foot upstairs. However after Persephone joined us, sometimes when she cries and isn't immediately soothed, Sir Edward will become very concerned and will run up the stairs and sit behind her gate, as if he is protecting her from some unknown predator who could be the cause of her distress :) 

french bulldog top of stairs

We haven't introduced him properly to Persephone yet, because she's still too little, but he has seen us walking around the house holding her. The nurses at the hospital gave us a worn hat of Persephone's and put it in a ziplock for us to take home so that he can sniff it. I thought that was really sweet of them to think of the family dog :) 

Salar

has just been ecstatic and at the same time exhausted! He continues to work hard at his job and for the family, being responsible for most things toddler related and helping me also with the baby. Literally everything has fallen on his shoulders while I'm on this what we call "medical leave" that will last until May 1st, and then I'll take over all household and children responsibilities so that he can focus on his work more. He has been really enjoying spending more time with the toddlers though, and has developed new and fun routines with them that they all seem to enjoy. Amongst all this craziness he has even managed to get a promotion at work. He very nonchalantly told me this, like it was no big deal......I then started screaming hysterically whilst jumping up and down and just making a ruckus!  He is just awesome! 

Me

I feel a million times better than I felt throughout my entire pregnancy! There is nothing more I hate than being pregnant, and there's nothing more I love than having a newborn. Every time I get pregnant I tell my husband, THIS IS IT! I AM NEVER DOING THIS AGAIN!!!!!! Then after the baby is born I completely forget those nine months of absolute torture and I'm like "hmmmm, well maybeee." 

I have gained a ton of weight as expected. On June 1st me and hubby will start the Ketogenic way of life again to lose all this pregnancy weight. By this time next year I WILL have lost about 50 pounds and I will look amazing. Right now I just look like a fat mom. It is what it is! 

On the mental health front I also feel a million times better than I did throghout the entire pregnancy. This happens to me every time, and every time while I'm pregnant I get paranoid that I'll get postpartum depression....and then it never happens. The only thing that gets me hysterical is the day after the c section where they draw my blood and can't find the vein on the first try. With all three pregnancies I sobbed like a lunatic the day after the surgery while they were trying to draw my blood. The nurses looked at my husband completely shocked and tried to reason with me. All I wanted to do was to scream "B!tCH STOP POKING ME!!" I attribute that craziness to postpartum hormone fluctuations. 

Regarding breastfeeding, that pretty much hasn't been an option for me. I produce 50% less milk than the average person, and my breasts never feel full or hurt. It's like they are the same as before pregnancy. WEIRD huh? The lactation consultants just tell me to pump whatever I can get and to just formula feed. During the first few weeks of pumping this was how much milk I pumped after an entire day of non-stop pumping:

1 oz breast milk breastfeeding problems not producing milk

I really wish I could just breastfeed as constantly pumping and sanitizing bottles is just irritating. Don't even get me started on the cost of formula! And the kids bathroom is overflowing with bottles and baby related stuff. I need a bigger house! 

newborn necessities bathroom

I am very excited to wrap up the 4th trimester and resume my normal daily routines and life. We are still figuring out how to make this work (with three kids and all) but if there's one thing I've learned it's that the seasons will continue to change and everything will eventually fall into place. 

My main goal over the next few months is to figure out how to take care of three kids and a dog at the same time, kick the carbs and enter ketosis to get my body back.

Hold me accountable, ok? Thanks!  

Welcome to the world, Persephone Shiraz Rahmanian

Introducing our new little bundle of joy- Persephone Shiraz Rahmanian. She was born on February 22nd and weighed 7 lbs 1 oz. She is named after the Greek mythology Goddess of Spring and Queen of the Underworld, who's story is one of love, grief, celebration and the changing of the seasons. Her middle name is after the city in Iran known for it's poets, literature, flowers and wine. 

We are so thrilled this time to have a girl. She is so pleasant and wonderful, all I want to do all day is snuggle and squeeze her. Her nickname is garden gnome, because she's cute and funny looking like a garden gnome :) Hubby says she emits the same calm energy as I do, and she rarely cries. After two boys and a miscarriage, I didn't want to get too excited and jinx my luck. Having a girl in addition to the two boys seemed too good to be true! I was so happy for the boys to have a sister and it just seemed like the perfect addition to the family. To avoid any jinxing (as we are great believers in Sod's law) we didn't tell anyone the gender, due date or name. I didn't have a baby shower, didn't prepare the nursery until the night before her arrival, and only bought two outfits for her prior to her arrival. 

Here's hubby staying up all night putting together her room the night before..... <3 

baby nursery canopy light pink

The night before our scheduled c section I felt SO ready and excited to get this baby out. Pregnancy is such a pain in my backside that going to the hospital for a c section felt like going on a much needed vacation, where I could rest, sleep, sleep some more, and order room service. When we arrived at the hospital everything went like clockwork. Everything was as expected, timely and organized. It couldn't have gone smoother. We arrived at 5:30am, signed my life away on a bunch of forms, had an iv put in, got prepped for surgery, and the baby came out at 8:11am, crying kicking and screaming with a head full of hair and a body full of fuzz. I gave birth to a chunky monkey! We later found out that the umbilical cord was wrapped around her neck twice! How terrifying! Everything turned out great though. 

Fairfax hospital c section

And here is that obligatory family c section pic. I had to force a smile as I felt like a ton of bricks were crushing my chest and shoulders. They then pumped me with meds that I spent the remainder of the day vomiting up. Apparently the more c sections you have the longer the surgery is and the worse you feel during it, or at least that's what happened to me. Oh so glad that is over :) 

fairfax hospital va c section

I still cannot believe I have a daughter. I kept staring at her after she was born like, did this just happen? Do we really have a GIRL and THREE kids now??? Holy $h!t!!!!!!! 

Persephone Shiraz Rahmanian

Leila Rahmanian

Here she is in her coming home outfit!!!! We were so excited to introduce her to her big brothers :) 

Valentino was totally welcoming and excited to have a baby join the family. Caspian was as well but he doesn't yet understand much. He thinks it's funny when she cries and imitates her cries. Valentino becomes concerned when he hears her crying and tells me that "baby is sad!!!" I have a feeling they will both be fantastic brothers. 

It's been about two weeks since we brought her home, and I've been taking it real easy, kicking my feet up and letting hubby take charge of everything. We have a great system where hubby is in charge of everything like the boys, taking them to and from school, feeding them, bathing them, doing bedtime routines, doing chores, running errands, helping me with baby feedings and bringing me breakfast lunch and dinner in bed :) In return, I try to do as many night feedings as I can so that he can get some sleep. I try to just sleep whenever baby does, but it's still hard and we are both so sleep deprived that we just look like zombies! I'm so lucky to have such an involved and helpful hubby who's mission it is to keep me as comfortable as can be! He's got this baby thing down!

Welcoming a third child has been much more relaxing than I thought it would be, and anxiety free. I was expecting chaos, stress and all hell to break loose. So far so good though. Welcoming Persephone has been one of the greatest things we have done. I feel so happy to become a mom again for the third time, and still in shock over having three kids. Knowing how fast they grow up, I spend my days holding her tight, snuggling, being grateful and just living in the moment. 

persephone rahmanian

Happy New Year! Hello 2017!

Happy New Year everyone! I don't know about you, but I am so relieved to say goodbye to 2016. It was such an unbelievable year! Everything after June (when I found out I was expecting) has been a blur!

Here's a recap of my crazy year..... 

January 2016 through May 2016 was fantastic! I felt great, the kids were doing great, hubby was doing great. We both looked thin and fantastic due to our miracle Keto diet, and so we took out our old boxes of clothes from our pre-baby days and tried everything on, and were so surprised to fit into everything!!!! We then stored all our old L and XL clothes into the buckets and sent them to the basement thinking we would never see them again.

Then on Father's Day we found out we were expecting! That was a REALLY big and wonderful surprise!!! We knew we always wanted a third child, but the timing of this completely caught us off guard. We were overjoyed and super excited about this miracle baby, who was determined to make its way into the world! 

Shortly after finding out, I was struck down with intense bouts of morning sickness that lasted a good 4 months. The entire summer of 2016 was a complete blur. I cannot even explain to you how bad it was. It was like going through 4 months of feeling like you have food poisoning, or having the worst hangover of your life. Multiple times a week I would have to pull the car over and vomit on the side of the road. It was super embarrasing. We had a live in nanny for about a month to help out, but that was short lived. To say my pregnancies are difficult is putting it very lightly. 

Also during late summer we moved house. That was right when Caspian started school, and right when I caught a bug that left me with a cough that lasted two months and I was constantly gagging and vomiting during our entire move. I was utterly miserable. 

Then around October and November 2016, something crazy happened to me! My pharmacy gave me the wrong pills in the correct prescription bottle. The wrong pills were mixed in with some of the correct pills, and they all looked the same, so I took them for the entire month until I had a few left and realized I was taking something that I wasn't supposed to. Then I discovered that the pills I was taking should not be taken by pregnant women as they CAUSE BIRTH DEFECTS. I immediately went to the doctors who informed me that due to that mistake my thyroid levels were dangerously off. Thanks a lot pharmacy! 

Because of that whole pill fiasco, during the months of November and December 2016, I had to constantly go see different doctors, write letters to multiple healthcare professionals, be tested a million times and it seemed like every few days I had a medical appointment. 

And while all this was happening, everyone was fliiping their $h!t about the presidential elections and all these celebrities dying. Because I was going through something so traumatic and irritating, I couldn't empathize with anyone who was badly effcted by the outcome of the elections and the dying celebrities. I really couldn't understand why people were making out to be the end of the world. To cry because your favorite singer died or because your favorite candidate didn't win seemed absurd to me. Is it insensitive of me to want to yell out to the world: "GET OVER IT?" Ok, maybe that's a tad bit insensitive. I will attempt to exercise more empathy. 

On a more positive note, Caspian started school in September 2016 and has really taken to it. He's in Valentino's class, and big brother looks after him :) The kids have been doing so great. Valentino has turned 3 and Caspian has turned 2 in December. They play so well together and I couldn't have asked for better kids. They eat well, sleep well, and are just overall well adjusted happy kids. Hubby takes them to school in the mornings so that I can sleep in, as the pelvic and sciatic pains keep me up all night. 

There have also been a few other things that happened this year that I am not at liberty to discuss yet, and that have impacted our lives, in the not-so-greatest of ways. We are still dealing with those things and maybe one day I'll divulge, but for now I just can't. 

We ended 2016 with the whole family being sick and a trip to the emergency room for me. I wasn't able to breathe through my nose at all for four days and then on the fifth day I couldn't even breathe from my mouth as it would cause me to gag and vomit. At nights I wouldn't be able to sleep, and would sit in a hot shower multiple times in the middle of the night so that I could breathe (I didn't sleep for 5 nights in a row!). Then when I did manage to sleep for a few minutes I would wake up suddenly gasping for air due to choking on heartburn. Oh the joys of pregnancy! 

So here's to 2017. You better have something REALLY good in store for me. I'll just be here, waiting patiently :-) 

Pregnancy Updates

I found out I was pregnant with baby #3 on Father's Day during the summer. What a fantastic Father's Day present to hubby! I AM SO EXCITED that I don't know what to do with myself. I have already planned out Valentino and Caspian's lives, now I'm working on planning out this little one's life. I have spread sheets done, activities and routines planned, and made ready a list of acceptable colleges. Tiger mom you have nothing on me. 

If pregnancy wasn't really hard on me (thanks mom, for those HORRIBLE pregnancy genes!) then I would have considered having maybe nine kids? ten? Ok jk. I really love kids though. I feel like they are little presents, wrapped in a blanket with cute little noses and chubby little cheeks. They melt my heart. Three kids who are three and under? No big deal. I got this $h!t  I thrive on routines and structure and organizing my life so that we have smooth sailing. But once a newborn shows up everything is just chaos! It's okay though, as the rough parts only last three months.

When I found out that I was pregnant I was in the state of Ketosis and on the Ketogenic diet, which I had done for over a year and had become a lifestyle. Upon finding out, I immediately stopped the diet and introduced carbs back into my diet. Eating carbs suddenly after refraining from them for over a year really gave my body a shock. That in addition to first trimester pregnancy symptoms really knocked me out for like 4 months! At first I thought, I will probably only eat healthy carbs like whole grains and fruit. That idea lasted for like two days, and then saltine crackers, plain rice and ginger ale became my best friends. 

Then I gained a lot of weight. This didn't surprise me, as most people who stop this diet gain all their weight and then some back. I'm not worried about it one bit though, because I know how to lose it all, and I know I will lose it all. So for now I can have my cake and eat it too. What a great perk of pregnancy! On the downside, however, I am already up 50 pounds and not even in the third trimester. Ok, maybe I need to back off of that cake. I can't help it though, it's what the BABY wants! 

As I'm easing my way into the third trimester I have been resting a lot and enjoying my time with my two boys until baby #3 arrives. I have been totally spoiled as hubby is now in charge of everything that I used to be in charge of. I am lucky that I don't have to work while pregnant either, and that the kids attend a fantastic montessori toddler program every day for 4 hours. The kids also do a great job of enternaining themselves and playing with each other. I love that they are so close in age, my little Irish twins.

I cannot wait to add baby #3 to the mix. Life will definitely be a lot more hectic, crazy and busy! I'm ready to say goodbye to sleep AGAIN :) Although pregnancy takes a toll on me and I feel like I have to take a year off life, what's a year of hardship compared to a lifetime of joy and happiness? Life is seriously such a gift and I'm really thankful to be blessed with this baby #3.

Halloween 2016 Family Fun

Happy Halloween everyone! This year we had a fun and busy few weeks. We attended all kinds of Halloween and Fall festival events. 

Can you guess what we were?

dr seuss family halloween costumes

Dr. Seuss characters! The kids were thing 1 and thing 2. I was also thing 1 and thing 2 (my unborn baby was thing 2) and hubby was the cat in the hat! My sister Sara was the grinch, and my mom was the goldfish. 

I'm kind of a Halloween nut. I got hubby to decorate the outside of our house, and the kids were crazy about it. Valentino loves his pumpkins. He points at each and every single one and says "bumpkin" over and over again. Caspian likes to bite on the pumpkins, so we have to keep them away from him. 

family outdoor halloween decorations mickey mouse inflatable

outdoor halloween decorations kids toddlers inflatables pumpkins

outdoor decorations inflatable halloween scarecrows pumpkins

outdoor halloween decoration at night

The kids's school and our neighborhood both had Halloween events. The kids were over the moon and had tons of fun. Our neighborhood event had farm animals, pony rides, bouncy castles and the works!

thing 1 and thing 2 halloween costumes

halloween festival northern va montessori school

thing 1 and thing 2 toddler costumes

thing 1 and thing 2 toddler costumes diy halloween

thing 1 thing 2 toddler halloween costumes diy

So we also had a little family get together and ate cake and carved pumpkins! 

dr. seuss halloween family charachters goldfish grinch cat in the hat

Can you tell I love glitter??

glittery pumpkin halloween decoration

halloween tablescape cakes and cupcakes

halloween pumpkin cake halloween tablescape

pumpkin carving party

I love watching hubby as he concentrates. Check out his and my sisters faces..... this is some serious stuff! so funny.

thing 1 and thing 2 pregnancy halloween costume

Wishing you all a very safe and happy halloween!