THIS IS NORMAL
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I am a loving, dedicated mama of two insanely smart and amazing little girls. Okay, one is only 7 months, but she will be smart too ;). I am also a health coach at Parsley Health, a role and company I am deeply passionate about. I work with people to create health plans that encompass nutrition, movement, stress management, sleep and community in order to optimize their health and uncover the root cause of their ailments. I wholeheartedly believe that if we can start a child off on the right foot in regards to their nutrition and ability to manage stress, along with fostering a love of movement, we can truly create a healthier society and change the world. Let’s do this!!!
What 3 words best describe your parenting experience to date?
(deep) LOVE, exhaustion, unpredictability
What’s one of the hardest or most surprising things about being a parent that people wouldn’t expect or don’t usually talk about?
Your life is not your own. Everything (at least for me) revolves around the kids and what is best for them. My whole life is built around when the baby needs to nap, and taking/dropping off my big girl from school. Between that and work, I really do not have a second to myself. I was never a person who needed much alone time, but I really rarely have down time for just me. It’s worth it, but it’s hard sometimes as the days can really just bleed into one another. Trying to have an identity but also always wanting to put my kids first is a constant guilt battle. Your heart is now completely overtaken by your babies, but you’re still in there as well, so you have to adapt to your new self and your new normal. And just when that happens, you have another baby, and it starts all over again 🙂 Also, I am a huge breastfeeding advocate (I breastfed my first for 2 years, and am 7 months and going strong with my second), but it is a legit full time job (on top of my full time job!). I had no idea what a time commitment and all consuming “job” it is, and that all day long I would be touching my boobs, looking at my boobs, and all around just thinking about my boobs. Come to me if you want some breastfeeding real talk!!
What were some of your “wait...is this normal??” moments once you became a parent?
Waking up sopping wet from milk and sweat multiple times per night. Feeling like you’ll never sleep again! Feeling so much love but also being bored sometimes (more so in the beginning when baby can’t do much!). Crying and laughing at the same time! Having a hard time relating to your non-kid friends who suggest stopping by during nap time or at 7pm (if the baby is sleeping, I need a break and do not want to be entertaining!). Feeling anxious and obsessing about everything (Did she sleep enough? Too little? Is she being stimulated enough? Not wanting certain people to hold her, etc). Having every waiter in town see my boobs at one point or the other.
What’s one of your favorite parenting hacks that helps keep you sane (that other parents should know about and start doing ASAP)?
In the beginning months, keeping a fresh pair of pjs on my nightstand to change my shirt when I wake up sweating. In that vein, keeping water all over the apartment and cell phone chargers and headphones in multiple spots (my baby naps on me a lot, so it’s good to be prepared!). Carrying a hand pump when out in case of emergency and needing to pump a little. Always having a present ready to go for bribing purposes (yes I swore I’d never bribe my kids – HAHA- if someone tells you they don’t, they are lyingggg!!). Putting extra pacifers in every bag, bed, stroller, etc.