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An All-Around Update


It’s been 4 weeks since I’ve had a normal sleep. Sleep is still nowhere to be found in the Mama et Maman household. After 14 days of Cipralex/Lexapro, I was still sleepless and my anxiety was over the roof. My family doctor recommended that I stop the medication and has prescribed another medication- Remeron, which is often used for anxiety in people with eating disorders because it causes a significant increase in appetite and in fat storage. I’ve read that even in the short-term, and at low doses, people can gain upwards of 10-30lbs in a month. Obviously, this freaks me out. It freaks me out enough that I am considering not taking it even though the prescription has been filled. 

I’m currently dealing with the withdrawal symptoms of coming off the Cipralex cold turkey (as recommended by my doc). Headaches, heart palpitations, feelings of dread/anxiousness, insomnia, and a little bit of depression. I took an Ativan three nights ago and had a great sleep, but the last two nights, I’ve gone unmedicated at night and sleep is not happening. To make matters worse, my in-laws are over right now (which is normally fine) and there was a big fight last night. But more on that later…


Mochi’s due date is this Sunday (in two days!), and at yesterday’s midwife appointment, DW’s cervix is soft, but still closed. Mochi’s head also seems to alternate from being engaged to floating up near DW’s round ligament, so baby doesn’t seem to want to come out to play anytime soon. DW is super uncomfortable- with feet so swollen that they no longer fit into Crocs, and hands that are painful and feel like they are on fire all the time from the nerve impingement. She’s so uncomfortable lying down that she’s only able to sleep for about 3 hours at night, then spends the rest of the night with her hands hanging while seated watching British crime dramas on Netflix. She’s so ready to be done, so that unfavourable cervical status was heartbreaking for her. 

Yesterday, the midwives called us to discuss scheduling an induction, since DW is 40 years old, and unlikely to go into spontaneous labour anytime soon since her cervix is still closed and baby hasn’t dropped yet. They discussed the significantly increased risk of stillbirth after 42 weeks (2/1000), and explained how induction would be done after prostaglandin gels to soften her cervix. Since DW is so uncomfortable, we are thinking of getting the ball rolling sometime early next week…. So Mochi might be on this side of the womb before May, which is exciting and terrifying both at the same time.

We have a “to do” list of things we need to accomplish before Mochi arrives though, one of which is minivan shopping. We know we want a Dodge Caravan with 4 captain chairs, stow and go, and automatic rolling middle windows. We also intend to trade in our Subaru Impreza, since it is no use to us if we can’t fit the babies and the dogs both at the same time for drives to the cottage or to the conservation park. Right now we’re taking two cars whenever we need to have Dumplin’ and the dogs in tow. Also, I have two old disc herniations in my low back, so bending over to do up the kids in their car seats in the low Subaru is aggravating. Basically, it’s time to become a minivan family.


 This boy is my everything. He makes even the most sleepless nights bright in the morning. He is so smiley, happy, funny, and adorable right now. Our boy turned 6 months this week and I feel like this past month has been super sweet so far, aside from a weird week where he was super fussy and going through what I suspect was the beginning of leap5. He is very active, always rolling or wanting to Jolly Jump, so much that he’s actually lost weight this past month! He’s back down to 19lbs 12oz at last check. He sleeps happily in his own crib from 7pm-7am, with 2 or 3 nursings at night. He plays in his crib in the morning until we get him at 8am. We just started transitioning him from the swing to his crib for naps, and he still fusses a little bit, but will eventually fall asleep for a short 40 minute nap a few times a day. He loves watching and petting his dogs and front-facing in the Ergo360 during walks. He’s extra cuddly these days, which we love. We have started giving him “tastings” of food- chicken bone broth (loves!) avocado (loves!), peanut butter (loves!), butternut squash (unsure?), but don’t plan on really starting solids for real until Mochi has arrived and settled in a bit. It all just seems like a huge undertaking, and I’m a bit scared of what his poops are going to be like. He’s also super distracted these days (must be all the learning), so his intake of breastmilk has dramatically decreased, so I don’t want to exacerbate that either. Anyone delay feeding solids? Pros/cons?

The In-Laws:

I don’t even know where to start with this. Basically, my niece might have mono and her parents dropped her off at my MIL and FIL’s for a couple of days because she couldn’t go to school, and the next day my MIL and FIL at our house for a planned visit with Dumplin’. Being concerned parents, DW and I jokingly (but not really) said just “don’t be kissing him”, which seemed to set my MIL off on the meanest drunken rant I’ve ever witnessed from her. She was downright nasty, saying things like “well it’s not like your parents come and help” (my parents live across the country), and “how [we’re] such know-it-alls” regarding our concerns for Dumplin’s health, how “[they’ve] often complained about how taxing the drive is, and how [they’ve] commented on how [they] can’t keep doing the drive” as a sort of threat to say that they won’t be coming over to visit Dumplin’ anymore, how we “make it difficult for her to be with the baby”, how we are “hypocrites because he goes out into public and into daycare” so he’s exposed to worse than the potential mono that she’s exposing him to, and so much more. She also verbally attacked my FIL because he was trying to talk some sense into her (she was truly being irrational), and for the first time ever, picked on me. I was sitting quietly as she was ranting away, just listening to her, and she singled me out with personal insults for no reason. Her intentions were simply to be mean, and it took everything in both DW and I to respond kindly and with kid gloves because her mother twists the truth and has a tendency to go all emotionally unstable when criticized. Don’t get me wrong, I’m very appreciative of their efforts at coming for visits, and recognize that it is a 2 hour drive, but everytime they come over, she gets piss drunk and starts fights with DW. Last night my MIL and FIL polished off 2.5 bottles of wine and at least one beer in 4 hours. And the damage that her words have cannot be erased. Both DW and I spent the night talking through her insults, taking turns crying because we were so hurt by the mean things that she said. Neither of us slept, and both of us considered alternate childcare plans for Dumplin’ while DW is in labour at the hospital, since my MIL threatened to pull her support for us. It all made me really sad. Sad because the reality is that we really have no one. None of our friends have kids or the ones that do already have their hands full. We don’t have a village. We are alone. I even thought about possibly paying my massage therapist who is a doula to come over and stay with Dumplin’ when we have to go to the hospital. Or even one of the daycare workers at the gym because they know him. It all makes me want to cry. Anyways…. Today is a new day, and I just hope it’s better, but I still feel really wounded by the harsh things that she said to us, and in particular that I was singled out and picked on.

So yeah, lots of drama going on here. Just in time for Mochi’s induction. Ugh. 

Right now I need some reassurance- people that don’t have help with their kids- how do you manage? 

59 thoughts on “An All-Around Update

  1. Oh god, D. Your plate is so full, and on no sleep, to boot! I am so glad Dumplin’ is your shining light amongst all the stress and lack of sleep.

    I am so sorry about all the added stress and hurt that came from the fight with your in-laws. Does your MIL have a drinking problem? Has she since apologized when sober? I really hope so. Not that it will take away all the hurt her outburst caused…

    Your DW’s pregnancy sounds miserable – I looked at the photo of her foot the other day on FB and cringed for her. I can’t even imagine how uncomfortable that must feel. I do, however, remember the hell that is being 40 weeks pregnant, and I understand her devastation at hearing about her cervix’s progress (or lack thereof). I’d totally do the induction sooner rather than later to put her out of her misery and bring that baby earthside. Or maybe a miracle will occur and Mochi will decide to make an appearance this weekend.

    I really wish I could help out and take care of Dumplin’ for you when Mochi is being born. If I was a SAHM I wouldn’t even hesitate. It would make both Evelyn and me happy to take care of a baby for a while. It might be worth asking your daycare providers at the gym if they would be willing to be back-up, just in case your MIL decides to make good on her threat (I hope she would never do such a thing, but it’s good to have back-up).

    Sending you so much love.

    • Thanks Linds. I know you would help if you could. And I know you know more than anyone else how difficult it can be without family around- even though you do have a very lovely chosen family. I agree, that it’s a good idea to have a backup plan no matter what happens. I don’t remember EJ’s birth story- did you need to be induced? I know you’re a rockstar at home births though.

      • With EJ, my water broke and my labour never started after that. So my midwife told me to take castor oil (yuck!) to get things started, and that was the trick.

        I’m sitting here hoping/praying J is in labour right now. Or at the very least that you get some sleep tonight, both of you!

  2. Oh my goodness. I think anyone in your position would be concerned and even pissed at them for exposing you guys to potential illness with a 6 month old and a newborn on the way any minute now. I don’t know much about mono, but assume it’s only transmitted by saliva? Regardless…

    If you want an outsider’s perspective, my biggest concern for Dumplin’ is the emotional instability and the excessive drinking. You would hope that they would curb the crazy while caring for a baby, but what if they get piss drunk and unable to provide competent care for Dumplin’ while you two are at the hospital? I’m sure you guys have thought of all of your options, but I do hope you can find an alternative arrangement. Standing your ground and changing plans in light of this behavior truly demonstrates that she can’t treat you guys that way.

    Ugh, hoping this gets sorted out in a way that reduces both of your stress and anxiety.

    • Yes- I agree. The emotional instability and excessive drinking are a big concern for me too. We’ve already told my FIL that they should stop bringing booze when then come over. We don’t normally drink in our house, so they usually byob. Clearly that needs to stop. She has been a lot more her regular self today, which is reassuring, but I definitely want to explore alternative options just in case things go south againz

  3. Oh goodness! I am so sorry that you both have that added stress of your MIL. That is not what you need at all now…or ever for that matter.

    I am sending you all so much love and good thoughts for all that you have going on. It is a lot πŸ™‚

  4. Whoa. That’s a lot.

    As far as the “no village/ no help” sentiment, I get it. Axel is nearly 7, and has been with us for nearly 24/7 that entire time. And he can’t go to sleep on his own either! Add unschooling and no real friends nearby, and it can be a downright disaster at times. My suggestion would simply be, FIND YOUR VILLAGE, and as soon as possible. The new sibling will help, I’m certain.

    Next, are you working towards healing your gut?? That’s where so many of these neurological issues begin. We have been dealing with a crazy array of symptoms for the past year– it’s a LONG process to gut health… We’re not even close to there yet. But lots of anxiety/depression means something is off. Just have to find the rooting the issue, which may lie in the gut.

    As for the in laws, it sounds like you guys may needs a break from all that drama. I can’t even tolerate that kind of shit anymore. Be respectful or BYE FELICIA.

    I would totally say you could just let your little guy hang out with River and I if we lived close. πŸ’›

    • Yes- I would totally love Dumplin’ and River to hang out. Gosh, I bet that Dumplin’ and Mochi would both just adore Axel too. It’s so hard, and I know you get it- esp with the unschooling and being familypeneurs, you’ve had to sacrifice a lot to gain much more. I hadn’t even thought about healing my gut because I’ve been so focused on DW and Dumplin’ that I’ve only been treating myself symptomatically. You’re right though, I need to bring it back to the basics and simplify. With Dumplin’s reflux disappearing and my workouts requiring me to increase my intake of protein dramatically, I’ve reintroduced dairy hardcore! I bet you that has something to do with it…. Thank you friend!

  5. OMG. How are you managing?? That you and DW have each other is truly a gift in times like this. Beautiful pics of dumplin and it is wonderful to hear he brings you so much joy. Do you think the anxiety will improve after mochi is born? Does some of it stem from waiting for this huge event? You need to do what you need to do to get through this and shame on your mil and fil for making this about them when you and dw and your babies are the number one priority no matter what. I wish I could help – I would gladly take mochi if it were physically possible. I am hoping for a speedy and safe labour and delivery for dw and that things feel a little easier after the birth. As for help – we have none, which used to make us feel angry towards our families. My dad is old school, never changed a nappy. My mum and brother are mentally unstable. My father-in-law sometimes makes me uncomfortable with his behaviour and the husband’s sister doesn’t like kids. My closest childhood friends all live a three hour drive away. Leaving the boys for my labour with baby F was awful and I think part of the reason it was so stop/start. I hated it and like you I stressed about it so much beforehand. In the end my sister in law had them (I don’t think she enjoyed it at all), and we all survived. It is tough though. Very very tough, and I was SO glad when all us were safely back in our own home. I have massive trust issues which makes it difficult too. Hoping you all stay safe and healthy. You can do this girl – we’re all cheering for you both.

    • Thank you so much, friend. While I am sad that you don’t have any help either, I’m comforted that you are living proof that it can be done! Thank you for sharing that it used to make you angry towards your families, because that’s exactly how we feel, and somehow need to find a way to accept this reality in a way that feels okay, or at least less resentful. I reminded DW last night that if we lived closer to my MIL, we’d get easy access to the extra help like her brother does, but then she’d have to spend more (unpleasant) time with her mother lol. I agree that perhaps this anxiety is rooted in my anticipation of Mochi’s arrival and the lack of control that I have over how Dumplin will be cared for during that time, so maybe once it all passes and Mochi is home and Dumplin’ is back to his routine, it might dissipate. At least I hope so! I also have trust issues. I am so glad that you understand πŸ’•

      • *I realised at about 2am last night I’d written the wrong name – I meant Dumplin’. No point me looking after mochi! πŸ˜„

      • It’s taken ages (years) for us to get over the anger at how everyone around us seems to have helpful parents around that are really good at looking after their grandchildren. We live in a very nice area with big families that have been around for generations. It constantly highlights what we don’t have. We’ve often talked late into the night about our disappointment, and the husband still struggles more than me. I have found solace in promising myself that one day, if my children have children, I will be the kind of parent I wished we’d had. The rest of the time I just accept that we have to do 99% of things ourselves and remind myself that adventurous families who move abroad are in exactly the same position.

  6. PS if it was me, i would consider the doula as an option – she is interested in women’s wellbeing as a career, so must have a decent nurturing streak, which is all babies need. Does she have children? Could she be an option?

    • The doula is an excellent option. I trust her experience both as a women’s health advocate, but also as a parent. She is tender and caring, and helped me through that terrible kidney pain I had right before my csection- out of the kindness of her heart.

  7. Where to even start on this one. I’ll start with the cutest, Dumplin’. Seriously, he just keeps getting cuter every single day!!!
    I so hope Mochi arrives soon as your poor DW sounds miserable (and rightfully so). But, I also hope that your family drama settles down a bit before Mochi’s arrival. In my opinion there is nothing worse then crazy coming from family members. It hurts more then anything else, and it’s just hard to cope with. I’m sorry you are experiencing such harsh things from your MIL. I’m sorry she took it out on you and DW. And I’m mostly sorry she is seemingly so willing to leave Dumplin’ when he needs her most. I really do like your idea of asking someone at the Gym daycare or your friend, I’d rather good quality paid help then free poor quality help. Or even worse having her not show up at the last minute.
    I wish I could fly over and help you!! Baby MPB and I would have so much fun with Dumplin’. But this of course is the drawback when half your village is in the blog world, our distance is hard to overcome. Since, we cannot fly to help out, I’ll be sending all my love your way and hoping things come together well.

    • You’re so right- I do have a village- it’s just spread across the world. Thank you for also pointing out that good quality paid help is better (for people like us) than free poor quality help. It sure isn’t worth the long-lasting effects of verbal abuse. I know you know more than most how it feels to long so much for family support, but have it fall quite a bit short of your expectations. I just need to find a way to wrap my head around all of it and frame it in a way that doesn’t leave me feeling abandoned.

  8. Ugh, I hate that you’re going through all of this right now. Your MIL was completely out of line, and you are a MUCH bigger person than I am – I would have taken DW and Dumplin’ and left, if I couldn’t kick her out! I hope she regretted her words when she sobered up. Some ideas for building your village might be meet-ups, a mother place/parenting place that offers classes, or a local mom hiking group? I know that if we lived closer, we’d be happy to watch Dumplin and provide support, so I have to think other new-ish moms in the area would too, you just have to find them!!

    I’m pulling for you over here – this too, shall pass. You’re being burdened with too much, but you four WILL get through it! Hugs to you all.

    • It’s funny you say that- DW was so close to asking her to leave, except that my MIL threatened first that she was going home! You are so sweet to offer your support. Thank you. Yes, this morning she did a vague apology, just a “I’m sorry for last night”- nothing specific mentioned, but it did make me feel a bit better.

  9. First, Dumplin’ is so very cute!! I’m sorry you’re having In-Law issues. That sounds awful. I would definitely find someone else to look after Dumplin’ in case they leave you hanging. I wish I was there to help. Sending all three of you all my love and strength. xx

  10. Oh friends, I am so sorry to hear about this stress. I agree that it is worth asking for other options. Even if you don’t need it now it would be good to know who to call in an emergency in the future.

    It’s so hard without support. I wish I had good things to tell you about that but I really don’t. It’s just so hard. I feel for y’all and hope these next two weeks go as smoothly as possible.

  11. That’s definitely a lot going on! : / As far as the food is concerned we began feeding Kai solids at 6 months. We started with the jarred food and slowly moved to true solids. Originally it was super healthy only organic food. I had meal planned for him the recommended three meals and two snacks all of which he’d barely touch. It’s gone from all that organization and healthy meals to we are happy if he eats ANYTHING at all. We pretty much have to beg him to eat absolutely anything. & part of me wonders if that has anything to do with waiting until he was 6 months instead of doing it at 4/5 months. I think you’re doing great by starting now and if he is liking it I wouldn’t stop. I never thought we would miss spending almost 40.00 twice a week for his medicated formula, at least we knew he was constantly full!

    I tried taking antidepressants (I think it was Prozac) about 8 months ago & I just totally stopped one day because at first it really seemed to help I had more energy and everything went well and eventually I felt like sort of robotic and like I wasn’t actually “feeling” any sort of real feelings if that makes any sense. So it’s truly great that you’re listening to your body & if you are skeptical about this new prescription then I would ask for a different one & voice your concerns. I have serious body issues & I always have so I straight up told my doctor from the beginning that I don’t want anything that could cause me to gain any weight & apparently my prescription was known to suppress appetites (which seemed true from my experience). Just hang in there.

    Regarding your Mother in law that’s totally s***** & i applaud DW & you for remaining calm because in the same situation I know things wouldn’t have turned out so well for either my mother or my MIL. We sort of have a “this is our son & we dgaf how anybody feels on our decisions regarding him so keep it to yourself or keep yourself from us, no tolerance attitude to pretty much everybody.” For a very long time we didn’t let anybody give Kai kisses probably until he was almost a year. Which might sound crazy (& kinda is a little) lol. But his skin is EXTREMELY sensitive and also we really didn’t want anybody else’s germs on him. My wife is an extreme germaphobe like real life. & I’m sure it did bother people but it’s really only their problem. So honesty your MIL should be happy that you guys allowed them over at all considering the mono thing & her flashing like that is totally unacceptable.We have been in a similar situation so believe me when I tell you i totally understand how you feel right now. I would definitely consider alternate care for Dumplin. You should feel 100% comfortable with whoever is watching him(not saying you don’t trust your MIL but even if there’s some negative feelings right now you shouldn’t even have to think about that while DW is in labor & be able to know he’s with somebody who there’s nothing but positive vibes with especially if she threatens to not see him anymore meaning she would take out her own issues on her grandchild by isolating herself from him) , you should be able to fully focus on DW & Mochi & know Dumplin is good with whoever he’s with! πŸ™‚

    Alsoooo, Kaimani is approaching 18 months in a few weeks and he has yet to ever have been babysat like not even once. Although his grandmothers & other members in or family are willing and I’m sure really want to we just chose to not leave him alone with anybody until he can communicate with us more. Which also might be sort of crazy but it’s just our preference is all. So in a way we also don’t have a village, even if it is by choice. It’s definitely a lot of work. A lot on our relationship at times as there’s really no alone time. When I do feel overwhelmed I just try and think about how one day he will be busy with school and lessons and practices & we’ll never get this time back of just spending every moment with him. πŸ™‚

    Sorry it’s such a long comment. Lol! But I kind of just wanted to give you my first hand experience on each topic as I can actually relate quite a bit! & how exciting Mochi will be here soon! I pray DW has relief soon & you both have a healthy baby in your arms sooner than later!! πŸ’œ

    • Btw I got so caught up in trying to address everything hoe could I forget Dumplin! He’s the absolute cutest. 😍

    • Thank you so much for your comments. I feel like you really get this MIL situation- your assessment of it couldn’t be more spot on! We wish we could be more assertive and give zero fucks about what others think of our parenting choices. The problem is that it’s against both of our natures- we’re both such introverted doormats lol. It truly is super taxing on us to ask for anything. But we’re working on it- because we need to for the babies sake.

      Interesting about Kai and the food. I wonder why he’s just not a big eater? I worry that Dumplin’ is going to be a picky eater. Starting solids is a whole different world. I’m also secretly mourning the slow end of breastfeeding, since I have loved it so much.

      I too, want to spend as much time as I can with Dumplin’ and Mochi. I agree that we can’t get this time back. I already feel like it’s flying by and I’m not ready to Dumplin’ as my newborn.

      • Lol. I am a bit of an introvert when it comes to parents at least but after 5 years of being with Domonique she’s rubbed off on me a little. She’s a very no nonsense, doesn’t take shit from anybody person like literally doesn’t care if you’re the president she will tell you EXACTLY how she feels and before we had Kai it was almost to a fault but he’s calmed her a bit. She’s been on her own since she was 15 so she’s naturally become pretty badass. Haha. BUT maybe in your situation you’d benefit from writing her a letter which maybe sounds kind of silly but maybe it would just settle your feelings a little even if it doesn’t get through to her you can have that piece of mind that you expressed your feelings even if it were to offended her & she were to leave maybe that wouldn’t be the worse thing πŸ™‚ you & DW have so much going on right now you shouldn’t have to have that energy around.

        & yeah I mean because he’s not underweight and is following his curve his doctor isn’t worried but it’s soooo unsettling everyday just knowing he usually doesn’t each much at all and having to wonder is he hungry. I mean we spend sooo much time everyday just trying to get him to eat anything at all it’s pretty mentally and physically exhausting! For instance today I made him a breakfast, snacks, we tried to get him to to eat in his high chair, chased him around the house trying to get him to eat and he literally only ate a few chips until about 4:00. Kind of crazy cuz mostly every toddler I read about loves or at least likes food. Not that we want him drinking juice but he even refuses to drink any juice. Only water & milk which is a good thing but kind of strange.

      • I admire both you and Domonique’s badassness! I like your letter idea- it may be good even if it doesn’t make it to her- as a way for us to get it all out and possibly let it go. Oh Kai! I was like that as a kid too- I’d only eat really meager amounts of food, but eventually started loving food. It must be very stressful always chasing him around and worrying about whether he’s getting enough food. I hope his tastebuds change over soon!

  12. I’m in a similar boat. I don’t have a village and it sucks. We’re trying to figure out what to do when baby #2 comes in November. So far my husband and I have managed to make it on our own with very little help. It’s not easy, but we work through it always keeping in mind our daughter comes first. I’m sorry your in laws treated you that way. Family sucks sometimes.

    • Thank you for sharing. It helps to know we’re not alone in this, especially when I feel like all of my coworkers have family help whenever they want. I hope you’re also able to solidify a plan for when baby2 arrives. It’s so stressful to plan for labour and delivery, and then to add on the stress of childcare that you trust for#1! Ugh.

      • I totally agree with everything you just said. I feel the same with co-workers and friends. I’m not very good at asking for help but my eyes were opened when we had no visitors in the hospital and only a handful at the house when I was on maternity leave. All of our family is 4 hours away in opposite directions so we really have no one to call if we need help. I don’t know who we are going to have come watch our daughter when the new baby arrives – all she really knows is us and her daycare provider. It’s kind of stressing me out already but hopefully I will come up with a plan. What makes me more angry than anything is that neither of our families make an effort to visit. We have to bug them to make the drive. I could go on and on but I won’t right now. Hang in there and I hope everything works out for you. πŸ™‚

      • I’m so sorry you’re going through similar challenges too. Hopefully a suitable solution surfaces for childcare for your daughter when your new baby arrives. I know how stressful it can be though in the meantime. I am worrying so much about Dumplin’ and how he will handle being away from me, since we’ve never been apart for longer than 3 hours.

  13. Oh my gosh that would have reduced me to a mess, to be involved in that conflict with MIL. I can’t imagine how it must be to take all that in when you’re already facing your anxiety troubles. Big hugs to you. That drinking is pretty terrible. Do they always drink around their grandkids like that?? I hope not if they’re alone to watch the grandkids..
    We don’t have a village here either aside from maybe once a month DW’s come to visit for a few hours. I usually end up cooking for everyone though so it’s not much of a “help” when they visit. We manage by just foregoing things we can’t do with kids or one of us stays with the kids while the other goes out (it’s me with the kids since I don’t pump). We try to get sitters occasionally but it’s rare that even one of our 3 possible sitters is available when we want them, so… We do without. It’s tiring but it’s our normal.

    • They drink as a way to relax, I guess. A glass of wine while socializing, another glass with dinner… It goes on and on sometimes. They always have a glass of wine with a meal. I know some families are like this, but it’s not how mine was growing up. I grew up with non-drinkers.

      I’m sorry that your in-laws aren’t more helpful either. Our experience is similar to yours. When they come over, we wait on them, we prepare dinner, while they play with Dumplin’. My FIL is a lot more helpful- he does chores and odd jobs like fixing things and mowing the lawn, but my MIL is a bit of a princess and likes to be waited on. I don’t really pump either- I absolutely hate it, so I suspect that like you guys, we will just plan most things to be done as a family. Mochi’s birth is just a tough one because they won’t let Dumplin’ in the labour room 😦

      • You’ll find a way to manage. You have a doula, right? Is there any way whoever is watching dumplin can bring him by every few hours for you to feed in the waiting room or something? Not ideal, for sure, but it could help. Maybe pump enough for a couple, and they could bring him once every second feeding?

      • Yeah- we’re just talking about it now. DW thinks we could alternate- he comes to the hospital for a feeding, then I go home for a feeding… So on and so forth. Today we went minivan shopping and were gone for about 3.5 hours, and they called us because he was freaking out and wouldn’t take any of the bottles or sippy cups no matter if it was my pumped breastmilk or formula. It makes me a bit, okay a lot, stressed.

      • Yeah I can imagine… I was thinking about this for Kaia, and maybe for dumplin it might be an option. Maybe over the next few days you could start feeding him some oatmeal puree, and maybe some fruits and vegetables purees to give them something that will keep him satisfied between times he can be nursed. He might be more receptive to taking food from them that way. And, if it’s in puree rather than BLW, you have less to be worried about (I’m paranoid about anyone who doesn’t know about cpr & choking first aid stuff feeding my kids).

  14. Oh Hon, I am so sorry you’re meds weren’t working and you now have to deal with withdrawal and starting on something new. I can’t begin to imagine how annoying frustrating this must be for you. I am also sorry about you and DW having to deal with the issues with your MIL and conflict she’s bringing your way. This is one area that I can completely understand as my MIL frequently attacks me and blames me for her issues with everyone in the family. I hope that you are able to figure out a plan with Dumplin’ for when Mochi arrives. I sure wish I lived near by because we’d totally help out. Sending you and DW best wishes and lots of love as you get closer and closer to Mochi’s arrival. Praying everything settles down for you all. Love to you, my friend!

    • You’re so sweet. Thank you for all of your support and kind words. I’m so sorry that you have to deal with such abuse from your MIL. It is such a toxic relationship, and you don’t deserve to be treated that way.

  15. I’m sorry that you’re going through this but i promise you will come out of it stronger. You two have already inspired me with your strength, its rough having one baby and the all the emotional stuff that leads up to and follows but you’re having TWO and i see nothing but strength from you since Dumplin’s birth. I think once things settle you will begin to feel better and maybe even the sleep will sort itself out.
    I can personally relate to the not having a village either… or even a family and because of that my husband and i decided we needed to build one, so we had our baby boy Younes, who is my world now but getting here after the past year of not just physical sickness with the pregnancy but so much emotional distress that everyone dumping their issues on us makes me even more resentful. It sucks when you have to take care of the people around you too, and not because theyre sick or elderly but because theyre selfish and ruined their own lives. We’ve been held back our entire lives, and the last ten years have been crazy for us! Sometimes its time to just cut the cord and all that toxicity out but i can imagine when other families are being brought closer together after the announcement of the birth of a baby i find myself even more distant. I’ve taken the last 5 months for myself – and i really mean that – my husband’s family are 4 minutes away and they havent seen me or the baby (other than Younes in the driveway for a couple of minutes two or so weeks ago) because i simply can not take a single ounce of their drama when i feel so fragile as is.

    I often cry for all the things i feel i can not even give my son, the first couple of weeks after birth i felt like a terrible mother out of fear that i would repeat the same mistakes my parents made – i had to learn to let those feelings go or i wasnt able to get up in the morning and function.
    On the other hand i feel sad that my husband and i have so much love to offer but struggle with feeling irresponsible and selfish for wanting a child in the messes that are our families.
    I can relate to a lot said in the post and comments and for the first time that makes me feel not so alone. We’ve been fortunate in many ways too with baby, he has good sleeping habits (even if that means no napping during the day)…. and so whatever i am able to offer in assistance just let me know. Friendship to me means through the good and bad so even though i would love to eventually get to know you all and hang out i am also here for you in the rough times

    My thoughts are with you this week, keep us posted !

    • Thank you so much for sharing all of this insight. It helps so much to hear how other people cope, and I admire you so much for putting you and Younes’ best interests ahead of family drama. You’re so right about the toxicity that some relationships bring. And it is sad that we have to mourn not having supportive families that we wish we had. You’re right though- sometimes you have to just let those feelings go in order to function. I suspect that as Younes, Dumplin’, and Mochi grow into the wonderful little people we will bring them up to be, it will fill the voids that bring us sadness now, with so much happiness. Thank you for your friendship. I do feel like we are destined to be good friends. Once the dust settles, we can’t wait to meet you and your beautiful family in person. ❀️

  16. I’m “liking” in commiseration.

    It’s really bloody hard managing with exactly *zero* unpaid support. MT is 4 and my dad and his fiancΓ©e looked after him and baby A for ~4 hours last weekend for the first time ever in those 4 years. Because I asked, there’s no volunteering and it was a brunch. My brother is estranged. My mom and LPs parents are dead. His sister has a 1-year old grandson and another on the way and is too busy to help us regularly although she was awesome when I was hospitalized twice last June for the emergency section and emergency appendectomy a week later. Other than those two sets of events, we are an absolute island. My best friend lives in another province, our friends here don’t have kids or have adult kids and have moved on or the two that have kids are swamped keeping up with their own lives and extended as well as immediate families. I often want to break down and cry over this. If I could do my life over… It would look different. I got nothing inspirational to offer I’m afraid. Wish I did.

    • Thank you for this. It is so so hard. I wish we all had more support than we do, and in some way, I’m sure there is some kind of silver lining to all of this even if it’s not clear at the moment. I’m glad that your SIL was able to come through for you when you had that section and appendectomy- that week from hell.

  17. Dumplin’ is seriously the cutest thing. I mean, really. He and J should have a play date just to look cute together.

    The stuff with your MIL sounds so awful, and the timing – you’d think she would hold off knowing that you guys must be very stressed. My mom is kind of similar – antagonistic but super sensitive to criticism – but luckily, does not drink. Nonetheless, there have been some awful blowouts and I’ve been trying to get her to not yell at me in front of J – which makes her roll her eyes. Ugh.

    We have plenty of family close, but for various reasons they are either unable to take care of J or we don’t trust them to. They do help with other stuff which is great and I am so thankful, but we have never left her with anyone else and not having that option is sort of stressful. We hardly see our friends since J’s arrival, despite the fact that they were so excited before she was born. Our only friends with kids live in NZ. So… Yeah, not having a village is hard. I’m hoping things fall into place with that as she gets older, but I also think I need to make more of an effort.

    Hope that you’ve been getting some sleep and that all goes smoothly this week!

  18. Straight up if things get worse you contact me and I’ll fly in! (I’ve got tons of points still) I know all too well the feeling of having no family close and crazy drunk in laws. She is lucky you even let her in the door because I wouldn’t have. I do not understand why people risk babies and pregnant mother’ s health like that. We haven’t started Wyatt on solids yet either. I hope to sometime in the next week or two. I laugh that you drive a minivan but my bro does too and he loves it! I’m sure it will be a perfect solution for your family. Sending so much love and healing.

  19. I know i’m super late reading this, but gosh, that sounds like an awful, awful visit. I’m so sorry that everything went crazy like that. My dad can be sort of like your MIL when it comes to how strict we are with Mary, but he just doesn’t get that she wasn’t raised the way we were and that she needs more “guidance”. He gets his grandpa panties in a bunch when we tell him he can’t take her to the movies becuase she got in trouble at school for leaving the classroom without asking, or lying about brushing her teeth, or sneaking food into her bedroom, or the long list of dumb shit that Mary does that gets her to lose her privileges. And he has said quite a few nasty things in a drunken rage to Callie and myself. We try not to take it to heart because he’s drunk and emotional, but like you said, you can’t really unhear all the nasty stuff theyve said. I hope this was all cleared up and that things are a little more normal and that you are getting a little sleep becasue we all know that not money, but sleep deprivation is the root of allllll the worlds evils!

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