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.
Not everyone has the same sentiments regarding 2021 as I do. It has been the greatest year of my life thus far. I couldn’t feel more empowered going into 2022- ready to continue on this path of success for me and my family.
Lots of changes ending this year and I’m really excited to see where next year takes us! Tove is 2 days away from 5 months old and we’ve just moved into our first home (thanks to the help of my parents- slaving away and cleaning over the last week!). I’ll be missing my old job dearly but keeping faith in my abilities going forward into new opportunities in 2022.
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.
This one hits close to home, in more ways than one. Not only did we consider having Tove in Dallas, but we also have family/friends still in Texas. Unfortunately rumor has it that Oklahoma is pushing for similar laws to go into effect here as well. This also hits close to home because like this post I shared on Instagram, there are so many reasons behind why a woman would ever choose to have an abortion.
I got pregnant in 2020 around the time Covid hit. Ben and I were SO EXCITED! Especially since all Ben has ever wanted in life is to be a dad. Having never been pregnant before, we immediately told our family the second I had taken multiple pregnancy tests and they all came back “pregnant”. When I saw the results on the pregnancy tests I cried because I was so happy and emotionally unprepared for what that feeling was going to be. We weren’t trying for a baby but I hadn’t gotten my period and well.. maybe the stars had aligned? So I scheduled an appointment with an OB, little did I know that I was about to be “Vanessa”.
I believe I was 6-8 weeks pregnant when I had my first appointment (this is the first time I’m writing about this and/or thinking about it since I pushed these memories into a “forget” folder in my brain.). Ben was at work so I drove to Edmond on my own and met with the OB for my appointment. Everything was normal until they went to listen for the heartbeat. I laid there on my own as they kept trying to search for one without avail. Something didn’t feel quite right. They told me not to worry because it was still early on in my pregnancy, maybe we were too early in fact and it just hadn’t developed yet. So I was sent to get some blood work/labs done next door and come back for my second appointment in 2 weeks. I left feeling very uneasy, but also had to share the “no news” with Ben that evening.
Was I worried? Hell yeah I was. But I had never been pregnant before and wanted to trust the doctors. However, a few days later I miscarried in the middle of the night in our apartment bathroom. It was a traumatic experience, but I am SO LUCKY that I didn’t need medical intervention. Or that I didn’t have to carry a “baby” to term who never even developed a heartbeat because I was past that 6 week mark. I am still grieving the loss from our first pregnancy, so much so that it totally robbed us of any joy our first trimester with Tove. In fact when I took the pregnancy tests and they came back “pregnant” I cried when I told Ben because I was so damn worried we wouldn’t be able to carry to term again. Plus I was so sick following the miscarriage and it continued well into my pregnancy with Tove. I was barely able to eat, I was violently vomiting all the time and had terrible IBS symptoms.. it was a nightmare. I cried so much in the beginning because I was scared to feel any resemblance of joy in case I got robbed again. We waited until the second trimester to tell our parents this time around and my mom told me “we are your family, you could’ve still told us” and it wasn’t that I didn’t want to share with everyone it was that I didn’t want to have to answer those calls or texts if I had another miscarriage. The aftermath was gut wrenching and emotionally draining and I didn’t want to have to share that with anyone again. Now imagine having to share with them that we had to have an abortion mid-pregnancy because our pregnancy was no longer viable. That’s definitely not something you want to share with the world.
Luckily we now have a beautiful HEALTHY baby, whom I was able to carry to full term but I’d be lying if I said I hadn’t called planned parenthood out of fear because I didn’t think I could handle being so sick and losing another child. So to take away these rights from girls and women is so fucking ludicrous, and it hurts my heart for the ones who didn’t have as favorable of outcomes as we did. An abortion isn’t a quick fix or an easy decision, and I for one hope that my daughter will have the right to autonomy over her own body.
The closer we get to our due date the more and more prepared I feel we are at home. Changing table has arrived from IKEA and we got a changing pad recently from Keekaroo as well. Plus after the baby shower so many of the items on our registry got purchased that the only thing left for me to do is mentally prepare for an unmedicated birth. I told Ben not to let me chicken out when the time comes and ask to go to a hospital just cause I want pain meds.
When we took our birthing class the instructor recommended we put together a few items to bring with us to the birthing center (which could also be brought to a stale hospital environment in case of an emergency transfer) so I decided to start working on an inspiration board today. I found some phrases on Pinterest but also drew from my own personal mantras and created some super simple affirmation cards on Canva.
If you want to see all 12 of them you can do so here. I’m no graphic designer but they are simple so you can use them as a template if you click the pen in the bottom left hand corner and change the phrases to fit your own birthing experience!
My boss asked during one of our meetings if I had planned on having a baby shower. I told her no, in Sweden it is not customary, and I’d never even attended one before. So Megan took it upon herself to encourage me to start my baby registry and host a shower for us! I’m so thankful she was willing to plan and host our baby shower with the help of some of my radest colleagues.
Not only were the cookies the CUTEST things ever, I loved the color and Tove’s name on them, but they were also delicious. I got to take home 4 of them and I ate them within 2 days… oops, I would do it again. Megan had 3 different games prepared for us as well, the first was a plastic baby you had to hold in your hand, not pocket, and whoever had the most at the end of the shower won.
The second game was to guess what baby item was in the paper bag. Not to brag but I won cause I got all the items correct- MOM TO BE POINTS! The third was different kinds of chocolate bars melted in diapers and we had to guess what type it was. I did poorly with guessing, needed my chocoholic dad to be there I guess.
After the games the ‘shower’ began and Ben and I got to open presents from all our friends who came. You can see Ben proudly looking and counting his babies at the start of opening presents.
So appreciative of all the useful gifts we received, we felt so loved during opening them. I will say Brit had the Spice Girls onesie custom made for me and Ben already knew about it but actually managed to keep it a secret for MONTHS.
My sweet colleagues had also helped blow up balloons at work and then set up the backdrop for photos! I handed the camera to Sabah and got photos with all our attendees 💕 sweet sweet memories.
Megan, the hostess with the mostest! Not only is she a mom of four kids, but she also runs two businesses. #GirlPower
Me and Michael! He was actually one of the interviewers when I applied for my current position. Now 1.5 years later, I’m his boss 😛 but only technically because I don’t believe he would let anyone be boss over him truly.
Sabah and I, another beloved colleague. Not only is she an immigrant like meeeee but she’s just a badass in the cannabis community as well. Love having her in my corner for support. Plus she’s pretty damn good at buying presents that fit me to a T!
Dream team from work… or as our group text says, Hoe$
Sierra, my assistant manager at work, and I. She’s been a favorite of mine for a while now. Not only is she such a pleasure to work with but I just adore the crap out of her as well. Like I would love to just go on a hike with our pups and drink margs after one of these days! I’m excited for her to get to run the show while I’m away on maternity leave.
Ben, Sierra, I, and Quez
Hannah and her son Avery.
Mady and I
Sweet Kyla. Another mom to help field my millions of questions!
Ben, me, Brit & Tobin. Our first OKC friend couple!
Forever my best friend! Was happy Ito was willing to drive up from Dallas to spend the night before with me and also attend the shower. Plus now my colleagues know I didn’t just make up having a best friend from Canada 😅
The only blood relative we had at the shower was my brother, Rob. Him and his girlfriend, Helena, drove up from Dallas; I felt so bad that they got caught in traffic coming up, making it a 4 hour drive for ~1 hr of the baby shower only to then drive back down. I really wanted Rob to come in person though because Ben and I met through him. My brother invited Ben to celebrate July 4th with Ito and I and here we are 5 years later about to have a baby!! We also asked my brother after the baby shower to be the god father, and he happily said yes 🥰
Happy parents to be.. the second one is when Ben realized our daughter’s due date was a month away.. lol jk JOKESSSSssss
So happy and grateful for those who decided to come celebrate with us! Had a great time and wouldn’t have wanted it any other way.
I got spoiled rotten this past weekend by my parents who came to visit. They cleaned our entire home AND my mom cooked a bunch of meals for our freezer meaning we can eat easily once baby girl arrives. Dad also helped Ben put the bases in both cars for the car seat. I feel like we are ready for her to come into the world any day now. Luckily we reserved Sunday for my Pappa!
We ate brunch at Cafe Cuvée in the Ambassador hotel in Midtown. Luckily they could squeeze us in because my dad had accidentally made the reservation for Monday morning.
Good service. Good atmosphere. I would definitely go back to eat here! Ito and I actually stayed at the Ambassador hotel for my birthday last year but we ordered champagne room service from Cafe Cuvée then instead 😝
Unfortunately my Mamma wasn’t feeling good, like at all, but I love this photo Ben snapped of my Pappa and I outside the Ambassador hotel. 🥰💕
Next year’s Father’s Day we will be celebrating Ben being a father & amy dad being a grandfather!