baby girl

a new lifestyle

Hey fellow dreamers!

Today is Friday, my second Friday since I left my full time job. Two weeks that I’ve been a stay at home mom. Sometimes it feels like it’s been forever, but it really hasn’t been.

I never thought I would be doing this. Well, truthfully I had my doubts that I would have children at all, but once that was something I wanted, I really felt called to try and pursue work options I could do while staying home with the tiny human. Particularly as someone who wants to home-school down the road, it seemed natural to start from the beginning.

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I will say it’s definitely been an adjustment and not without it’s very, VERY hard moments. The teething, which had been kind of hit or miss, depending on the day, really hit us around the middle of last week and I’ll admit I had a few times where I missed being at work, or anywhere away from the screaming really. She still doesn’t have that ridiculous little tooth, but between the on-demand nursing, extra naps and cuddles, and the magic of chamomile, we’re surviving for right now.

I’m learning how to do a whole lot in 45 minutes while she sleeps. I honestly had no idea how much one could fit into that small space of time! I still feel like my house will never be as clean as I want it to be, but it is consistently more clean than it was before, so that’s something.

Another time I’ll talk more about how my schedules and planning tendencies go with this new change – something my therapist and I are still discussing and tweaking for my optimal mental health – but I can honestly say that working full time and being a SAHM are equally hard, it’s just in different ways.

Working full time was so SO hard for me because it felt like I never got anything done at home because from the time I got off to the time she went to bed, I wanted nothing more than to enjoy those precious moments. Then, when she did go to bed, the day really hit me and I no longer had any energy for the house chores or anything else I might have wanted to do. Emotionally I struggled a lot and the lack of sleep wore me down so much.

Being at home is… a little easier for me emotionally? I say that kind of in jest because we have had several of those days where I want the Husband to be home RIGHT NOW so I can just have a moment to myself. But I don’t miss the emotional roller coaster that being away from her was for me. My days often feel incredibly long and I’m not even quite sure what day of the month it is right now – I can keep up with the day of the week only because Husband goes to work. Sometimes it feels like I’m doing stuff all. day. long. and then in the evening it’s like my day was gone with nothing to show for it. So it’s different. Easier in some ways, harder in others.

I have so much compassion for new moms now because no matter which lifestyle you have, it’s going to be hard. That’s just what having a baby is like and everyone has to decide for themselves which path is going to work (ha ha)best for them and their family. Mom guilt is such a real thing and I know we all cry in the shower, or in the car, or wherever because we’re convinced we’re doing it all wrong. There is no right way to be a mom as long as you’re loving that baby with everything you have. That’s all that matters.

I said something about it in an Instagram post earlier this week – that success can change from day to day. It’s not a static definition. Not only does that mean that my definition will look different today than it did yesterday, but it means that my definition in general will look different from yours. The comparisons that often happen between different mothers is so unrealistic because we are all such different people.


For myself, I have zero concerns about choosing to stay at home with my beautiful daughter. Is it where I imagined myself to be at this point in my life? Not at all. But it is where I need to be right now and whether or not that changes in the future doesn’t really matter to me.


Love, light, and warm hugs, especially to all the other moms out there!

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Posted by katharine_marie in Life in 2020, mental health, Parenting, 0 comments

Thoughts for November

Hello dear lovely readers,

I definitely have not been keeping up with my usual blogging schedule this month. The first half of the month I was very distracted with getting words written on my Nanowrimo project and now I’m just having trouble getting any words written at all.

This past week has just been really rough overall. Even though the Tiny Princess still wakes up at night to eat, we had been more or less on a routine and I was getting decent chunks of sleep in between her feedings. And then, for no apparent reason except the fact that she’s a baby, she decided to wake up at completely random times for a whole slew of different reasons other than being hungry. It’s taken almost a week at this point but she is FINALLY settling back into a rhythm so maybe I can stop feeling like a zombie again soon? I don’t know. Now I just need to get her back to her wakeup time being 8am and not 7am. I love you, munchkin, but I desperately need that one hour to myself first thing in the morning, thank you very much! <insert slightly delirious laughter here>

We are also coming up on the holidays. Thanksgiving is next week (Whaaaa? How!) and then it’s Christmas time and then suddenly it’s going to be 2020. I would be one hundred percent okay with time just stopping for a hot minute, but sadly that will never be the case so I guess I just need to get my life together and enjoy the holidays. Which I always do, of course, although this year I’m probably putting some extra pressure on myself to get some family traditions started with the Tiny Princess. I’m awful at putting excess pressure on myself when I shouldn’t, isn’t that right? Something else to work on, I suppose.

It’s been a challenging week in terms of mental health too. It’s a little ironic though, since at the end of last week I was just thinking about how good I had been feeling and things were going well. Ha ha ha… every time I notice that things are good is when they take that turn again. Anxiety was the first one to rock the boat and then, especially with the lack of sleep factored in, things just devolved to where I am now – an uber fragile emotional state wherein one random word can bring on tears and completely ruin my day. I’ll be the first one to bring up the fact that we have the strongest influence on our own moods, but to me that’s the difference between just a bad day and a day where my brain is short circuiting: how well I can control my own moods and feelings. And this week it’s definitely been the brain. Well, and the not sleeping. That too.

In case you can’t tell how much sleep I’ve been lacking, this post has just become a rambling mess at this point. But that’s okay, I haven’t done one quite like this in a while.


With one week left in November, this is usually the time when I start to focus on what’s coming up in the next year and brainstorm new goals and all sorts of new crazy s*$! I can plan to do. Sometimes I even ruin my holiday moments with all of that. But not this time.

I’ve earmarked a page in my planner and labeled it “2020”. Now, for the next 4-5 weeks (or until Christmas is over) whenever an idea or a thought pops into my head about the future, I’m jotting it down on that page. Once I go back to work after Christmas, then I’m going to actually take a look at that page and figure out what next year might hold.

For right now I want to focus on making memories and enjoying the holidays, bonding with my family, my husband, and my sweet baby girl. Time goes by way too quickly and right now I’m tired of wasting it by focusing so far in the future. Adaline is never going to have another first Thanksgiving or another first Christmas and even though she won’t remember it, I intend to enjoy it with her as much as possible.

I’m going to go ahead and scale back my blog posts for the rest of 2019, depending on how I’m feeling on any given day. I suppose we can consider this my winter break – the intention is to come back in full force once January arrives.


All the love and kindness for the season ahead!

Katharine Marie

Posted by katharine_marie in Anxiety, mental health, 0 comments

Two months of #momlife

Hey there lovely readers!

I totally failed at putting up a post earlier this week – when it came down to it, I was more focused on getting words written on my Nanowrimo project than I was on writing a new blog post. But today I must write on both projects, I suppose!

Last Saturday marked two months since little Adaline was born. It’s been a roller coaster, to be sure, but its definitely the adventure of a lifetime.

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The Tiny Princess doesn’t seem so tiny any more. She’s grown so much, her personality is starting to come out more and more, and we are still over the moon and totally obsessed with her.

Being a little family is my favorite part so far. It makes me happier than I can explain to watch The Husband play with and take care of her. Even though I miss getting a full night of sleep, I’m also not ready to give up those moments at 2am when I get to bring her into bed and cuddle with her while she eats.

I already feel like time is slipping away from me far too fast. I wish I wasn’t working so that I could spend all my time playing with her and watching her learn new things. That has been the hardest thing for me so far – she is generally very happy and engaged in the mornings, but I don’t get enough time to really enjoy it since I have to get ready to leave the house at a certain time.

I’ve mostly adjusted to being a mom now, and of course I still struggle with certain things, especially the fact that it is ten times harder to juggle all the things that need done at home before and after work when there is a small human that requires my attention first. That and if I thought I was tired before she came along, it was nothing compared to this. Thankfully, for my own sanity, she’s a very good girl and generally wakes up to eat and goes straight back down. She almost never cries or stays up in the middle of the night.

Complete honesty is that I have definitely dealt with both postpartum depression AND anxiety and both are very difficult. I’m still dealing with both at times, but I’ve been getting the help I need and things are going much better now.

Overall, we might have some rough days and I might feel like I’m losing my mind or falling apart half the time, but I’ve never been more blessed than I am right now. We could not have a more perfect little princess to love on and take care of and being her mom is the most amazing thing to ever happen to me.


Love and kindness,

Katharine Marie

Posted by katharine_marie in mental health, 0 comments

Mindful Monday: Survive

Hello dear readers!

I’m actually back today with a semi-normal rendition of my Mindful Monday blog post series. I know, shocking! But trust me, no one is more surprised than I am.

Everything is starting to go much more smoothly at home. I think I’m slowly getting my brain back, everyone is kind of getting a little more sleep again, and we’re learning how to be a happy little family, whatever that means for us.

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Appreciating the stillness sometimes is what we’re learning to do.

What’s been happening…

I have two more weeks of maternity leave and I’m feeling the time slipping through my fingers so I’m trying to soak up everything I can before I go back to work. Thankfully my mom is the one who will be taking care of the Tiny Princess so I don’t feel quite as much stress, but it’s still not easy. I’ll miss getting to snuggle with her while she wakes up from a nap and playing with her after she eats. It’s the little things and the sweet moments that make me love being a mom.

Very slowly, I’m starting to get back into a routine. We’re working on sleep training with the Tiny Princess and I have to make a big effort to get her eating full meals instead of snacking, plus I’m starting to pump to get ready for going back to work, so it’s not like I have loads of extra time on my hands. But I’m definitely trying to use her good naptimes and whenever The Husband isn’t at work to catch up on the housework and get things done on various projects. Life is starting to feel more “normal” again, even though that normal is insanely different from what it was a month ago.

I am also ridiculously happy that fall is finally here, even if I do live in the state of Texas, which apparently hasn’t gotten the memo. But I know the cooler temps and gorgeous days are on their way and it’s so exciting to me!! I love the fall season for so many reasons, and it thrills me that we’re so close.


What’s Coming Up…
  • Chiropractor appointment for the Tiny Princess.
  • Keep the floors swept.
  • Stay caught up on the laundry.
  • Keep all of us on a bedtime schedule – sleep is a priority!
  • Figure out daily routines to prepare for going back to work. Exciting.
  • Go to our local community theater’s next production one night.

What’s On My Mind…

My brain is constantly on a timer right now – how long since she last ate? how long since I last ate? How long was that nap? When did I put that laundry in the washer?

Since we’re sleeping training the baby, I’m also always analyzing how that process is going and making sure we’re on track. Not an easy task, for sure.

I’m also ridiculously excited about spending time with the ponies again. It’s one of my favorite things to do and I’ve been more or less banned from it for most of the year. I’m still not able to ride (thanks, childbirth!) but I can definitely start doing other things with the ponies and I fully intend to get to it.


What’s been going on with you? Let me know in the comments below!

Love and kindness,

Katharine Marie

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An Open Letter

To my precious baby girl,

There are so many moments that I am trying to capture right now, both through pictures and words. I’m becoming so painfully aware of just how quickly you’re growing and I desperately want to make time stand still, just for a little while so I can take it all in.

I honestly did not know how much my heart was capable of. Everyone told me about how much things would change when you were born, but I guess it was one of those things that you really can’t understand until it happens to you.

I can’t remember what it was like not to plan my day around your meals and naps. I don’t really know how to focus on something else anymore because you are always in the back of my mind.

There have been a few moments, usually in the middle of the night, when I just want to take a break… or sometimes during the day when some time to myself would be the best thing ever. But even when I do get those moments to myself, when I do get to take a hot shower and relax, it’s not the same because I’m still wondering whether you’re okay without me. Even right now, I’m typing this while you take a nap and I keep pausing to listen, to make sure you’re still asleep. I have to make myself stay put and not check on you every two minutes.

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You’re still so small and I’m still trying to figure out what you need at any given moment. I cry a lot because I have no idea what I’m doing and I just know that I’m failing you as a mom. But I can see that you recognize me, my face and my voice, and a lot of the time that’s all you want – just to see or hear me, and then you’re happy.

I wonder a lot about what kind of person you’re going to grow into and I think about what all you’ll end up doing throughout your life. Your daddy and I are very adamant about letting you be your own person and we’re trying not to have any pre-conceived ideas about what we want you to do with your life, but that doesn’t mean that I don’t think about it. I wonder what your favorite stuffed animal is going to be over the next couple of years. I think about what your favorite part of school will be once we get into that stage, and what subject you’ll fight me on every day. I want to know what hobbies you’ll get into and whether you’ll want to play sports and I try not to hope too much that maybe you’ll enjoy riding horses with me.

No, I don’t want to get ahead of myself and focus on those things. All I want is for you to grow into a strong, brave woman. Someone who is kind and gentle and always goes after whatever it is that she wants. I want you to never ever forget that no matter what, I’m always going to be here for you and I’ll always have your back – even when you’re a teenager and you kind of hate me. So yes, I hope you become an amazing person, but mostly I just hope that I’ll be the mom that you need in order to become that person.

And I want to do my absolute best to make sure that I am that mom, whatever that takes. I am so, SO blessed to have your dad beside me, and in turn you are a very lucky girl to have him too. I honestly have no idea how I would be handling this adventure without his help.

Of course I’m reading all the books and the blogs and I’m asking my mom a million questions – I’m trying to suck all the helpful information in without getting overwhelmed. And then I’m trying to learn exactly what you’re life because even with all the tips and expert knowledge that I can read, nothing is the same as learning exactly what your different cries sound like or how you like to be held or how long you like to eat for. I have to learn what your quirks and preferences are, and I love how special you are (yes, I’m still biased).

I guess it’s a good thing that I’m already learning that hard lesson – nothing will replace listening to my own baby instead of all the opinions and ideas that get thrown at me. And I intend to keep that lesson close to my heart because no matter how old you get, listening to you will always be the most helpful thing I can do.

I love you, baby girl. I’m so proud (and also terrified) to be your mom and I can’t wait to see what you become. I had no idea what I was getting myself into, but I had no idea how much you would change me.

Forever and ever, I’ll always love you.

-your mommy

 

p.s. also, just stop growing for a while. just stay this small for a bit longer. please??

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Introductions

Hello all you lovely, amazing readers!

If you were paying any attention at all, you might have noticed that I haven’t posted anything in about two weeks… not here, not on my Facebook page. And for good reason…

The final stretch of pregnancy is crazy. And painful and stressful and just really tiring. In a lot of ways I was very ready to be done, but in some ways I was also sad to see that season end. That’s the way life works though, right? One season ends and another one begins.

What I’m trying to say, albeit very clumsily, is that our new season – the one we’ve been anxiously waiting on, is finally here.

Our sweet daughter, Adaline Nicole, was born the morning of September 9th.

Obviously we are completely head over heels in love with her. I know I am a little over-attached and obsessed with her, even when I’m delirious from the sleep-deprivation and exhaustion. I just can’t get enough!

She was ten days early and I don’t think any of us were really expecting that, but we’ve been so blessed to have family and friends helping us make the adjustment to… well, everything. This is our first baby, we don’t exactly know what we’re doing, right? Ha!

Thankfully, there is no super dramatic birth story or craziness. I am so happy with my midwife/birth center experience – I was able to have the natural, unmedicated birth that I wanted with the people I knew and trusted around me.

So far, Adaline has been an absolute joy to have around. We’ve had a few rough nights of course but she definitely tends to be a happy, content baby – probably not that hard when you’re as adored as she is though.

My time management is a little all over the place at the moment (still adjusting!) but I will definitely be sliding right back into my writing projects as soon and as much as I can in the next few weeks. Now that my brain is slowly resurfacing, I’m missing it!

I’ll see you all early next week!


Love and kindness,

Katharine Marie

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Mindful Monday: Duality

Hello beautiful wonderful people!

It’s time for another one of our Mindful Monday posts – a roundup of things I’m currently into, some current goals, and some mini updates on my personal life.

Since the last time we chatted, I’ve done both a lot and practically nothing at all. My house is kind of a mess, but we’ve been doing more activities away from home. I’ve panicked because of how quickly our move is coming up and great progress has been made in prepping for the baby. So it’s’ been mostly good with a little craziness thrown into the mix. Which, now that I think about it, sounds like exactly what I like!

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Photo by JC Gellidon on Unsplash

Since Last Time…

The worst thing that’s happened so far has been me getting a lovely little sunburn. Ouch.

My parents wanted to do something for July 4th, so we headed up to Oklahoma for a day trip with my family. I was pleasantly surprised that I managed a couple hours of canoeing on the river without getting too exhausted! It was a lot of fun!

We just got back last night from a weekend in Dallas – kind of a getaway for both of our birthdays (even though his was back in April!) – and it was SO nice to spend two days together, not worrying about anything else. I spent too much money on books, we had maybe a bit too much fun at Medieval Times, and even won a few of our bets while spending half a day at the horse races.

Camp Nanowrimo though… honestly, I’m a little behind at the moment, although not ridiculously so. Having extra days off work and having plans out of town have made it difficult to catch up though. The next week and a half though, our calendar is a lot more open and I hope to keep it that way so that I can continue writing. At least when I do find the time to write, I can get my words in! The story is coming along well!

I am deep in the process of setting up baby registries right now… and it is a simple enough task that somehow makes me realize how much I don’t know or am not prepared for. Yikes. But hey, I can NOT get enough of the adorable baby stuff. So tiny!! Ssqueal!

The house hunting is still very much on – it’s been a real challenge finding something that is in a decent neighborhood while still allowing indoor cats. Our family of five is harder to house than I thought! And I’ve been journaling, but not quite every day. Also a challenge for some reason. Maybe the crazy schedule.

Coming Up Next…
  • Camp Nanowrimo continues!
  • Fort Worth Indie Film Festival is in two weeks – wish us luck!
  • Find that unicorn house to rent.
  • Really work on my daily self-employment routine (I may need to write about this).
  • Packing for that move we have to make next month!
What I’m Reading…

What blog posts caught my eye?

I really needed to read this blog post from Frugal Debt Free Life about small steps towards getting out of debt. Even though all the things on that list are things I already think about and (mostly) implement in my daily life, it was still a great reminder.

I’m starting to pack up stuff around the house and a big thing has been my closet, so this post from The Confused Millenial about capsule wardrobes was a nice read. Right now my wardrobe is very limited because of the baby bump, so just to see the huge amount of clothes that I’m not wearing is a little humbling. I may need to get rid of some stuff!

What book am I currently reading?

My darling husband got me a tablet for my birthday and the first book I downloaded to read was The Tethering, by Megan O’Russell. And so far I’m enjoying it – the writing is very strong and so far the plot is holding up. We’ll see what happens!

What I’m Thinking About…

What issue has been preoccupying my thoughts?

I’ve been thinking about how my cats are going to handle having a baby in the house – my younger kitty in particular. He’s practically a dog behavior-wise and he requires a lot of energy and attention – he is going to be extremely jealous and I worry a bit sometimes about how things are going to play out. (I’m not getting rid of him, it’s just a matter of what we have to do to make the household run smoothly!)

What’s coming up soon for my online platform?

I haven’t been as active online as I was planning to be so far, but slow and steady wins the race. This week specifically I’m working on posting something on social media once a day, no matter what that might be. From there, we’ll see!

What do I really want to buy right now?

I mentioned that The Best Husband Ever got me a tablet for reading and whatever business purposes I might need it for, and I am now obsessed with buying ALL the books. Whoops.


Now it’s your turn! How are things going in your life?? Let me know!

Sending you love and kindness!

Katharine Marie

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Thrills and Fears

Hello you fabulous readers!

This week kind of feels like a rollercoaster for some reason. And it’s only Tuesday!

In case you don’t keep up with me on social media, I was finally able to announce yesterday that I’m taking my writing hobby on a new adventure and finally making the push into the freelancing world as a writer and editor!

Now you can check out my new professional website while I slowly figure out how to break my way into jobs and side gigs that I really love spending time on! I’m a whole mix of terrified and excited because this is what I’ve wanted to do for a long time but have never had the courage or drive to really go for it.

But anyways… starting my new business isn’t what I wanted to write about today. Not really. Or at least not quite yet. We’ll come back to it.

Today I want to talk a little bit about the thoughts, the thrills, and the fears that I have about the other adventure I’m embarking on… the one where I become a parent.

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I wasn’t the girl that grew up dreaming about the perfect wedding or knowing that one day I would become a mom. Nothing against those things themselves, but just that I had other priorities and interests that kept me busy.

It makes me cringe because it’s so cliché but I only started being interested in having kids after my husband and I got together. We’re not going to talk about why that might have happened, but that’s the way it was.

But even after we had talked about it and decided that children were in our future, it still didn’t really sink in just what I was getting myself into. Even now, there are a lot of things about the whole situation that scare me to death and if I wasn’t on this adventure with the person I am I probably would have already died of panic. (Sorry, anxiety talking!)

The logical, rational, thinking side of me keeps me kind of sane. I know that my husband and I are an incredibly good team, that we have the same values and ideas, and that we’ll be able to handle this. I’m aware that I have a big group of friends and family that live nearby who will be able to help me learn what I need to know and take on some of the work when I need the backup.

I am super blessed to have a full-time job right now that is supportive and understanding of how real life works so that I’m not stressed about that adjustment after baby A arrives.

Then there’s the terrified aspect… I am very aware of the fact that I don’t know a lot about taking care of a baby. Honestly I only learned a few months ago how important it is not to leave blankets or pillows in a crib with a newborn. I didn’t really babysit as a teenager and I wasn’t all that interested in small children so information like that never really stuck in my mind.

I’m really scared that I’ll do something wrong and she’ll never be able to sleep on her own at night. I’m afraid that the cats aren’t going to get along with her and I’ll be forced to choose (thankfully I already have a long list of ideas on how to fix this problem if it arises).

And somewhere in the middle of all that fear and panic is the realization that I am already completely smitten with our baby girl. I already love her more than I ever thought I possibly could and even though its still scary I am so excited to be able to show her just how important she is to me and to her dad (who might be even more in love with her than I am). It’s humbling (and frightening) to think that she is going to rely on us for everything, that we’re completely responsible for her.

But the whole adventure is so thrilling too because even now already, before we’ve even met her, she is exactly what we hoped for and so much more than we could have dreamed of.

So the rollercoaster of emotions and anxiety and panic? It’s all there because I never realized how much the process of becoming a parent would take over my entire life.

But I wouldn’t have it any other way.


Love and kindness…

Katharine Marie

Posted by katharine_marie in Anxiety, 0 comments