On with the questions! I got lots of great questions, so I'm going to break this into two parts.
Is motherhood what you expected? If not, how? - From The Slackmistress
I had a vague idea about the logistics of being a "mom" from my hours and hours AND HOURS of research. But the emotions that come along with it? Nothing like I could have ever imagined. I read somewhere that when you're a mom, you look into a mirror while holding your baby, and you don't see yourself. So very true. Bringing a child into this world has made me more selfless. I put Em before me so much of the time - well, as much of the time that doesn't impact my sanity. Every mom needs some time to herself now and then.
*****I've been a silent reader for a couple of years now, and as a mother myself, one who was so very fortunate to be able to be a stay at home mom for 10 years, I'm wondering with you having to go to work here fairy soon, are you excited to get back to work or completely torn at the thought? - From Tedra from Don't you people have lives?
First, thanks for delurking! To answer your question, I'm somewhere in the middle. Up until I got pregnant, I had no desire to be a stay-at-home mom. I thought, "I worked really hard for my degree, I'm going to put it to good use, damnit!" Now that Em is here, though, I totally understand why women take a break from their careers to take on the hardest job in the world. Children are the greatest gifts. I would gladly spend all my days with Em if I could make it work within our lifestyle goals. (It would take forever to upgrade from our condo to a house otherwise, among other things. And we love living in Los Angeles near our families and such great culture, so I don't see us moving to lower cost of living areas anytime soon.) I envy moms who have found a way to make staying at home work for them.
I still hadn't found a daycare before Em arrived, and I remember one day I burst into tears while researching them online. Don't know if that was a result of a massive hormonal shift or what, but I couldn't bear the thought of someone else taking care of our sweet pea. I've circled back around to acceptance, though. I know she'll be just fine and she'll even benefit from going to daycare.
I admit, I'm looking forward to some more adult interaction when I go back to work. But I'll definitely look forward to seeing Em's smiling face at the end of the day. I think I'll be ok when I go back to work, but we are doing a daycare "warm-up" the week before I return. I'll be leaving her at the daycare provider a couple hours a day that week - partially to ease her into it, but likely be more for my own benefit.
*****Even though I've been reading for a couple years at least, I don't think I know the story of how you met your man. I love a good love story. What's yours? - From Doahleigh
I blogged about it P.D. (pre-Doahlegh). You can read it here. In a nutshell? We met in college, nearly 10 years ago, where we were both journalism majors.
*****Did you have any postpartum with Em? - From Nessouita
No, thankfully. I was fortunate to not have dealt with that, which impacts an estimated 10 percent of all new moms.
I'll be sure to let you all know when I eventually finish the assignment!
*****I've been researching strollers and car seats for some time now. There are so many different ones and they all obviously have their pros and cons but I'm so drawn to the look first (bad mom). What kind of stroller and car seat do you have? - From Mrs. M
Right now we mainly use our Graco Snugrider, a stroller frame, with our Graco Snugride infant car seat. It's great because the stroller frame is soooo light and easy to pop in and out of my trunk. The bigger travel systems, where the car seat sits on a full-on stroller, were just too big and bulky for shorties like me. And we got the Graco Snugride because it's the No. 1-rated car seat. The stroller frame is good as long as Em fits the car seat.
We have another stroller, which I originally got for when Em outgrows the system above. It's called the Red Castle Whizz, a European stroller that tried to make it big in the U.S. to compete with the Quinny and other high-end strollers.
I didn't want to spend a ton on a second stroller, but I was able to score this one nearly a third of the price via a deal-a-day baby bargains site called Mamabargains. (I warn you - it's an addicting site, so proceed with caution!)
Em is just big enough to use it now, so we've taken it for a few strolls and it rides reaaaaallllly nice. I love the simplicity of my Graco, but I love the smoothness of this stroller. I also just scored a great deal on a used carrycot (a bassinet) that attaches to the frame of the Whizz, so Em will get to ride in style like this (but in black and grey, no blue).
In addition to the pink pad you see on the one above, I have additional black and turquoise pads in case our next little one is a boy.
If you're REALLY into researching strollers, check out this Yahoo group. Those folks are hardcore, but a wealth of information.
"It is better to know some of the questions than all of the answers." - James Thurber