Tove has spent more time alive outside my womb than she did inside at this point and wow have I loved her journey so far.
16 pounds later, she’s somewhere in between nine month old clothing and one year old. She’s tall like her pappa but she’s also a skinny one.
Tove is great at eating food. We’ve gone from breastfeeding four times a day to only feeding once in the morning. She’s eaten everything we’ve given her so far… and she’s enjoyed it! Broccoli, corn, rice, chicken, salmon, pasta, bread, blueberries and bananas; to name a few of her favorites.
She’s starting to babble a bit and she’s enjoying walking with the help of my poor back 😅.
This month we took our first flight together and Tove took her first swim in the ocean.
I am so grateful that Tove has changed my life in the way she has. Tove feels happiness with her entire body and she really shares her joy with the world around her.
This post is a day late but Tove was extra fussy and stayed up an hour past her bedtime last night. I’m pretty sure I start every monthly post off the same way, “man it’s a wild ride..” but for real watching a little human who grew inside of you find her way in the world is the biggest trip.
Tove is able to sit on her own but cannot sit up from lying down yet. She’s begun army crawling around and to whichever nearby object she can find. She enjoys crawling to Tex and stealing his 🧸 toys- and he’s sweet enough to let her.
We’re in the shrieking phase- I do not love it, nor does Ben. Tove is finding her voice but currently it involves screaming at the top of her lungs at almost everything. It’s an ear piercing shrill sound but it’s not because she’s upset. Cute and funny when it’s at lower registers but when she gets you in the ear it’s definitely less cute.
Tove has started mumbling and babbling so the race is on to see what her first words will be. Tex, pappa, or hat are my guesses 🤪
Food wise, Tove is always hungry it seems! She loves purées and has been enjoying cut up fruit recently. Much like mom, Tove also enjoys bread and pasta!
She outgrew her first sleep sack and she’s pretty close to being done with her 9 month old pjs as well. Tove’s got them long legs like her pappa.
What a difference Tove has already made in this world. So loved from many areas of the 🌎 globe.
We’ve been blessed to have her as healthy and happy as she’s been these first 8 months.
This last month, Tove’s appetite has definitely grown. She’s still breastfeeding 3 times a day but we’ve also added in 2 meals and some snacks throughout the day. So far anything puréed has been a hit, but she’s also been enjoying some baby led weaning. We’ve started with some watermelon, tortillas, avocado.. you name it, Tove eats it!
She’s still stationary but honestly, I’m grateful for any extra time we get. I am not ready to be chasing her throughout the house just yet.
Tove LOVES dogs, like a lot. She screams with happiness at both my parents dog, Ziggy and anytime she can get Tex’s attention at home. She’s also fond of other dogs on our walks 🐾
We’ve recently hit a fussy phase, or leap if you’re reading the wonder weeks. Lots of patience is needed from us as parents and it’s a work in progress. Luckily she’s still sleeping well throughout the night in her crib so we’re able to be sane throughout her tantrums.
I can’t believe we’re just a few months out from her first birthday… like I said, life changing.
Yesterday marked Tove turning five months old. A whole handful of months- high five to getting this far 😅
Five months out of the womb sure went faster than five months of pregnancy.
Tove is almost to the point of turning from her back onto her front. She’s fascinated by all things beverage/bottles – la croix, topo Chico, water and beers are her current favs. She also mastered griping things with her tiny hands- moms skin on her boobs included (ouch!).
We’ve successfully gotten a room set up for Tove now and she’s taken a few naps in her crib. Sleep has been a little less than stellar since we stopped using a swaddle but we’re still doing one okay stretch in the bassinet at night.
Tove has outgrown most 3-6 sized clothing already. She may be tall like her daddy because the 6-12 pants are already perfect for her. We’ve successfully gotten Tove to wear a bow and a hat without crying at this point as well!
Tove tried carrots for the first time and seemed to enjoy them, frozen blueberries were not as liked.
She shrieks in happiness when she catches eye contact with Tex our dog and I can’t wait to see what this next month of me staying at home with Tove brings.
I didn’t write a blog post for her third month, mostly because it felt like chore on my never ending to-do list but also because 143 is a special number to ben and I. It means I love you; there is 1 letter in I, 4 in love, and 3 in you.. 143. A lot of the time I will message Ben 143 instead of writing it out and it’s been this way for as long as I can remember. Ben’s favorite number and his football number was always 4, my number is 3. On top of that.. Tove was born at 4:31 in the morning. So it kind of made sense in my mind to group these two months and blog posts into one.
Tove is still as happy as can be.. until she’s not. She’s finding her voice so lots of random shrieks coming from her these last two months. We’ve had a few tough car rides where she wouldn’t stop screaming. She’s growing to be tall like her Pappa, she’s ~2 feet tall now and we’re convinced she weighs more than 15 pounds. She’s still in size 1 diapers but she’s outgrown all of her newborn and the majority of her size 0-3 month clothing.
We’re still nursing and luckily after 2 weeks of oral exercises Tove’s latch has improved and she’s all healed. She’s definitely teething and putting all the things in her mouth. Tove has also started to hold things with her cute little hands as well. I have conversations with her daily and she’s so close to saying “hej!”
Ben and I live for her giggles and I never want her snuggles to end. We are so in love and my only goal in life is to keep her as happy as she’s been for as long as possible 💓
I have been hungry for three days now. Doesn’t matter how much I eat or how many supplements I drink. Breastfeeding is exhausting me and triggering my eating disorder to a whole different level.
Being a new mom is hard, there are so many changes that happen overnight that are impossible to prepare for. You have no idea what life is going to look like on a minute to minute basis and it’s all about the new life you brought into the world.
I just want to take a moment and say how much it just SUCKS after having a baby. Yes it’s beautiful and magical and you have a being who you created in the world, but it’s okay for women to say that it sucks also.
I’ve struggled with eating disorders for the last 15+ years of my life and it was a struggle during the pregnancy, and it continues to be a struggle postpartum.
I don’t have the same animosity towards my body that I used to have because it never got me anywhere. It only let Ed (eating disorders) walk into my life easier. However, I will say that the changes are hard to swallow. The flappy boobs with big nipples don’t make you feel as sexy as you used to be. The wider hips.. well those can stay 😋 but the loose jiggly belly, naaah. It’s an adjustment phase, I’m learning to live in this new body just as much as Tove is learning to live in hers.
I just get so disheartened when I think of all the moms out there who are affected by the “snap back” culture. Priorities immediately change and it’s ridiculous to think that a new mom needs to be struggling to fit in work outs when she can barely fit in the time to shower.
Another thing I wish people would stop doing is commenting on women’s bodies after birth (before and during as well but that’s beside the point). Whether you are meaning to give a compliment or not doesn’t matter, just keep your thoughts to yourself. “You lost all of the weight so fast!” You don’t know if that mom is struggling to keep weight on and you may have just sent her on a downward spiral because of the unnecessary comment. Just keep it to yourself.
I guess I didn’t realize that after pregnancy I’d still need to consume more calories in order to keep my supply of breast milk ample. In fact, I’m consuming more calories now than I was during my pregnancy and it’s exhausting. Before being pregnant I regularly struggled with finding time to eat. Especially when I worked. I stand a lot at work so sometimes I don’t notice my body’s hunger cues, leading me to go long hours without eating. Which then leads to me being nauseous to the point where I can’t eat. A downward spiral really.
The thing is.. I used to be able to come home and medicate with cannabis to quell the nausea and relax enough to sit down and eat. These days things look a little different. It takes me longer to calm down and be able to eat. I feel like I’m always behind on meals and with breastfeeding I need to eat even more so I am constantly playing catch up.
Plus I feel like every time I’m finally in the mood to eat, something else happens that needs my attention. The majority of the time it’s Tove, but there’s also moments where Tex needs attention or I get caught up in trying to fit in everything else on my to do list. Luckily Ben is helpful and knows to make me oatmeal in the middle of the night and in the morning. I’m getting better at holding my space but it’s a work in progress.
On top of that I’m still wanting to try to eat healthy because what I eat effects what goes into the breast milk I make for Tove. I find that the majority of snack bars, fig bars, and protein bars are laced with sugar. The same goes for ensure and boost drinks. Drop any recommendations you may have for calorie dense low sugar snacks in the comments, please I beg you.
I guess I just needed to vent a little because I’ve been struggling hard recently.
To all the other moms out there feeling some type of way- it’s okay, you ain’t alone! I just think of the safety guide on airplanes, you can’t put an air mask on someone else if you’re passed out from no oxygen. So mamas, put your air mask on first.
We had an early morning appointment and Tove looks like she was mad at me for making us late by getting stuck in traffic on 35 😅 You’d think I would know better at this point. ANYWAYS… If you read her birth story you already know that she was born with a tongue tie. Our midwife cut her tongue tie shortly after birth with scissors because she was unable to latch. However, even after having the frenulum cut, Tove was making a clicking noise when breastfeeding and also kept chilling with her tongue out of her mouth, among other things. There’s quite a few symptoms of tongue tie and if you are getting a poor latch with your newborn, it’s definitely worth having a consultation just to see if there’s any ties present.
Since Tove had been gaining weight steadily and we were still able to breastfeed with a poor latch I was okay with waiting 3 weeks for this appointment. Dr. Coleman comes HIGHLY recommended, and now after I can say she’s definitely worth the wait (if you have the possibility to do so). Had our midwife not cut the frenulum under Tove’s tongue, I don’t think we would have been able to wait longer than a week to readdress the ties.
After the paperwork I sat in the chair with Tove and the dentist had a look inside her mouth and her assistant took some photos for us to see what areas needed to be addressed. Dr. Coleman was very thorough with her explanations of the procedure and the aftercare. She wasn’t pushy in what she believed need to be revised, only presented her findings and then left the rest up to Ben and I (mom & dad).
Tove had a pretty restricted upper lip and the chances for speech impediments as well as a gap between her teeth was a little higher and so Ben decided it was important for him that we got it sorted. Her tongue was still not able to reach the top of her palette which could inhibit the development of her palette and sinuses further down the road, so I think that one was a no brainer that it needed to be addressed as well.
Tove was all smiles and tongue until it came time to do the hard part, using the laser inside her mouth to fix her tongue, lip, and cheek ties. They swaddled her and gave her protective glasses and let us snap a few photos of the little cutie first.
The procedure was the difficult part for me. Ben stepped out of the office and I stayed with Tove. Although the whole procedure probably took less than 2 minutes, it felt like a lifetime for me. My mamma heart was HURTING watching the procedure mainly because I have never heard Tove scream bloody murder. I even told Ben in the car during the ride home that we must be decent parents seeing as though we’ve never heard her cry like that before. Dr. Coleman used the laser to cut four different points inside her mouth, upper lip, 2 cheek ties, and one cut under the tongue. The smell was a little off-putting but also reminded me of when I got laser hair removal.
After the procedure was done, I grabbed my phone and Dr. Coleman had me film while she gave me instructions on daily exercises we have to do with Tove’s lip and tongue. I went ahead and edited the video when I got home to remove Tove’s scream so that I could share it with both Ben and our Nanny. Since the exercises need to be done every 4-6 hours for the next couple of weeks I figured it would be best if every one who watches her knows how to do them. Mostly because if we don’t do the exercises then all of this will be for naught. The mouth heals quickly and can heal the way it was before the procedure, and we don’t want to have to redo this ordeal. I would way prefer it if Tove never even remembers this happened.
After giving us detailed after care instructions, we were left with Tove and I tried to comfort her a bit with my boob but dad was the clear winner when it came to calming her cries. We stopped at Sprouts to grab some Arnica, a natural pain reliever, but I also popped into Walgreens to grab infant Tylenol. Dr. Coleman recommended having Tylenol at home, even if we don’t use it just incase we find ourselves needing some at 2AM randomly. Once we got home we fed her a bottle and I also breastfed her. She instantly had a better latch and the clicking noise went from being heard every other suck to intermiddentily being heard.
Fingers crossed that the healing isn’t too hard on Tove and that we are well on our way to breastfeeding/developing without any more issues!
Throwback to when Tove was just 5 days old. I look at this photo and feel ALL THE FEELS. Everything was so new for her, for me, for our little family. We were still struggling with feeding due to tongue tie and I was having a hard time with my breastpump. My hormones were all over the place. Ben would come find me in the room just bawling my eyes out. Exhaustion, fear, and anxiety were pumping through my veins.
Yet here we are..
it’s amazing the amnesia after giving birth. I miss the newborn stage already but I’m trying to also remember how much of a struggle it was. I felt like nobody prepared me for the fourth trimester. I did so much prep for giving birth when in reality I should’ve been preparing for when we brought her home.
The best part of the photo is that it’s edited 😅 below is the real deal- taken at 2:42am with a pillow case covered in after birth mess and newborn poop.
Today Tove “turned” two months old; two months of our family being three instead of just the two of us. The meaning of time changed completely the moment she was born; Ben and I say that time is just a construct now. Doesn’t matter how many hours we’ve slept in a day because her life goes on and she still needs us. Doesn’t matter if it’s 3am and she wants to feed, mamma has to eat as well. So we’re just rolling with the punches and I think we’re managing pretty well all things considered!
We’ve graduated to size 1 diapers from newborn and she’s almost fitting perfectly into 3 month old onesies 😱. Still not getting longer stretches of sleep but we’re also not on a consistent routine since my work schedule is all over the place. The swaddles though- brilliance.
Tove is definitely more alert now. She will follow you with her eyes and she’s almost to the point where she can hold her neck up on her own. An improvement from when she used to headbutt my collarbone. That first week I thought she was going to give herself a concussion 🤕
We have dance parties and Tove seems to be pretty fond of Kasey Musgraves new album 💿 but at night she’s all about the white noise Spotify playlist for babies.
She also eats SO QUICKLY, it’s like she’s chugging on my breast 😅. Pumping at work has been a challenge, and I leaked visibly yesterday. But we’re happy she’s eating well and growing! Some latch issues still so we’ve got an appointment for a lip and tongue tie evaluation towards the end of this month.
Every day is a new struggle but filled with so many AMAZING moments. I can’t describe the feeling I get from seeing her happiness just from the sound of my voice. Pure love 💕 ❤️