The Smith Project

self-worth

Coming Alive

Motherhood, LifeAndrea SmithComment

After many months of transition, pain and loss of self, I finally feel like I am rediscovering who I am. Since having my first child and battling PPD, it's been a struggle to find enjoyment in everyday life. We recently celebrated my son's first birthday and it was a joy to say the least with family and friends surrounding our little boy with love and affection. I "officially" am a SAHM (Stay-at-home-mom) and just enjoyed my first week with little Liam. Though both of us have been sick, it has been an extremely enjoyable week learning, talking and shopping together. Yes, momma likes to shop. 

Now transitioning from full-time marketplace, to full-time mommyhood, I feel a sense of relief and even feel at peace with just having one occupation. I think if I wasn't battling so much with PPD and other things in my life right now maybe it would of been ok for me to stay in the marketplace, but mentally, spiritually, emotional and physically it has stripped me. I think working moms are seriously the best. I wasn't able to do it, but I have such respect for mothers who go back to work after having a baby. My mother was a single parent herself for a time and I seriously don't know how she did it. My mother has sacraficed so much of herself for us and even now I tear up just thinking about all the things she had to do to push us to have better. It is a courage that has marked my heart forever. 

I am very grateful though that my husband has witnessed the past year and has called for a change. I am grateful and humbled that he wants me to stay at home with our son and give all my energy and attention to his needs. Adjusting to my new schedule is interesting, but today is the first day that I can say, that I have felt true happiness, and I haven't felt this way in a long time. 

Is Breast Best?

Motherhood, Family, PregnancyAndrea SmithComment

Oh, the highs and lows of breastfeeding

When people tell you that breastfeeding is best for your baby, it really is true. But no one tells you how hard it really is. I was an avid researcher while I was pregnant with learning all the things I needed to know with what was going on with my body and my baby.

In my third trimester was when I started to do research of breastfeeding. I highly recommend The Art of Breastfeeding by La Leche International. It really is the bible for breastfeeding. I read up to half of the book before my son decided to make his debut. It was really helpful in getting me a head start mentally with how much work you have to put into breastfeeding. But nothing, I mean NOTHING prepares you until you actually go through it. I knew breastfeeding was hard. But I did not know HOW hard it was until I was facing engorged breasts, painful nipples, fear of yeast infections, nipple shields, 3AM feedings, on-demand feedings and more.

I don't care what people tell you about breastfeeding. It is bleeping hard!

Is it worth it? Yes. There are so many benefits to breastfeeding. Bonding with your child, free milk, saving money long term, portable, high percentages with learning are better, extremely low chance of being obese, the list goes on. Would I do it all over again? Yes. Do you use formula? Yes! If I don't have time to pump, (which a lot of the time I don't) when my son goes over to Grandma and Grandpas house, if they don't have the milk I pumped, he drinks the formula, and guess what... he's fine. Seriously this is NOT an article to bash moms who couldn't breastfeed their child. I give you a standing ovation for trying or not trying! It is a lot of work. But for me and my family, I decided I wanted to breastfeed.

Here's my journey so far with breastfeeding. All my milk came in the day after I delivered. Some of you may think wow that's amazing! Eh no it wasn't. I woke up from a nap, and my boobs were freaking rocks and I mean rocks! I didn't get to see a lactation consulate until the following day and I was in so. Much. Pain. Plus, they massaged the crap out of my breasts that I am pretty sure I have damaged scar tissue and my right breast literally hurts all the time. Being a first time