Ask Liz 6 months ago by Liz Adams

Coffee with Liz • February 5, 2021

First of all, how are you doing?! How are you feeling? Do you think that this postpartum experience has been different than your other two?

I feel good! Thank you for asking! The first two weeks postpartum were rough for me mentally, emotionally and physically. I really tried to take it easy, acknowledge my feelings and let myself be emotional. I think as mothers we try to carry all of the emotions for the entire family and that’s just not something I’m capable of right now (or ever honestly, ha). Trying to give myself grace and enjoy the transition as best as I can!

Which transition do you feel was the hardest? 0-1 kid, 1-2 kids, or 2-3 kids?

I would still say 0-1 was the hardest transition. But so grateful for that experience and how it’s helped me after having Jack and George.

What are things that you worried about as first-time parents that just don’t bother you as much anymore?

I think just in general you have much more confidence in yourself as a parent. I know now that babies are far more durable than I originally thought. I have better expectations for myself, I know that the pace I usually go at in life isn’t capable right now and that it’s okay to slow down. I’m not so worried about every little germ or touch, I know that eventually they will sleep and that the messiness of life will pass! I’ve learned that babies respond to your stress level so I’ve tried my best to let this phase of life be what it is!

I have two sons, and while I could not love them more, I did struggle when the second was born and it was another boy (we didn’t find out the sex with either pregnancy because mama loves a surprise). It sounds terrible when I say it out loud, but I have struggled with this grief of not having a girl for the last 10 months now. Have felt that way at all? And if so, how do you deal with those emotions? I know our family is perfect exactly as it is and I would obviously never trade my boys in for a million girls. It’s just the sadness of knowing I will never get to experience that mother-daughter relationship like I had with my mom.

Yes! I felt that when we found out about baby #3. I cried and admitted that I needed to grieve the fact that I wouldn’t have a daughter. I don’t think those feelings are anything to be ashamed of. In fact, I felt sooo much better when I said it out loud and admitted to feeling that way. My friend Jackie, who has helped me a lot this past year, sat with me as a I cried and we talked through the family picture I had always painted in my mind and how just because it looked different didn’t mean it had to be different. You get to paint your own picture and make sure the mother-son relationship is just as strong and significant in your own life. It showed me that this is exactly how it was meant to be and makes me so proud to be a boy mom!

My BFF is pregnant with her first. What must-have goodies can I gift her for Galentine’s Day?

I feel like, anything mama related felt so exciting! I love this mama necklace.

You mentioned that you stayed healthier/more active in your pregnancy with George…can you notice a difference postpartum?

Yes! I mean let me start by saying that I am still very SOFT. I ate sooo many cookies during this pregnancy, ha. Legit sugar addict. But I think going into this pregnancy stronger and keeping up with my circuit training helped a lot. I can definitely feel my abs are stronger, I feel like my body is leaner underneath despite feeling soft on top (if that makes sense).

How is Webster doing with another little brother? 🙂

Ha, Webster is indifferent! He sort of keeps to himself and just tries to avoid all of them all together. George is such a little nugget that I don’t think Webster really notices. It’s more protecting Webster from Jack thinking he is his horse.

How rough is childbirth, really? I’m childless now but terrified when my time comes.

It’s honestly such an incredible experience that it outweighs any of the pain. I’m speaking from a grateful place in that I have had pretty standard, vaginal childbirths with all three of my boys. Contractions are brutal, with Charlie I described them to Dave as if someone was sticking their arms up my butt hole and breaking my back in half (haha I’m sorry for those of you who are about to experience!). I went into full labor with Charlie, had contractions at home for 8 hours and then had to walk the hospital for 2 hours to progress without an epidural. Once you get an epidural (if that’s your route!) that pain goes away and it’s just pressure. All the pain is so beyond worth it, I would do it 1000x over.

Can you please re-share the quote that you reposted from Grace Atwood? It’s the one you’ve been referencing in regards to your move to Charleston.

Yes!

There comes a time when you have to focus solely on your own path, regardless of what anyone is doing, regardless of what anyone is thinking. And I hope that time comes early on in your life. I hope you get to experience the peace & freedom that falls from the sky into your arms when you do what makes you happy. Especially if you are a woman; the moon is always full, it’s the shadows that shield her light. Be different. Be focused. Assert your identity. You can achieve whatever you want on your own. Don’t you dare wait until the right moment, or the right person before you understand this. Bloom for yourself. Always. And everything else will fall perfectly into place.” — April Green

What’s the first alcoholic drink you’re going to have now that George is here (if you haven’t enjoyed one already!)?

Margaritaaaaaa!!

How do you and Dave make big decisions? Is one of you more decisive than the other?

Lots of communication! We both like to be part of the decision making process. Even things that don’t really interest the other, we like to be part of the conversation. I would say I am more set in my ways when it comes to things and Dave likes to talk things out.

How did you decide on the name George? Any other names you were considering?

We went into the delivery room with 2 names – George and William. William is a family name and George was one we’ve always loved. George didn’t have a name for almost the entire time we were in the hospital but when we looked at him we just felt he was a George. He is such a little Georgie.

What tips do you have for sleep-training/getting a newborn on a schedule? I’m a new mom — HALP!

It’s so hard. My tips are don’t rush it, don’t try to control it every day – it will legit drive you crazy. I have always created a schedule based on awake times (this is the chart I use!) and never let them get overly tired/try to catch them in that awake window. I find that they go to sleep so much more easily when you don’t let them get overly tired!

Would love to hear any breastfeeding tips you have! Have you been pumping for George?

My biggest tip would be to meet with a lactation consultant! Having someone help me with adjusting the baby’s latch and the best positions for nursing. I’ve been working with Kate from Bumble Baby who actually came over a few days after George was born to help me get adjusted. I did get Mastitis early on and decided to give my boobs a break and exclusively pump for three days. Another tip would be to get the Haakaa – a great way to help with engorgement! Plus an easy way to store milk.

Can you re-link the bra that you’ve been wearing postpartum?

Larken! Use code liz10 for 10% off.

What infant car seat did you end up going with?

Nuna Pipa! We have used with all 3 boys.

We are moving out of state soon, too! Any tips for moving with a family?

I’ll do a big post once we move!

How would you suggest getting yourself mentally and emotionally prepared for having a baby? First-time mom over here and looking for advice!

It’s so hard! You honestly don’t know until you know. Just give yourself grace. You’re never going to be fully prepared so don’t have high expectations for yourself! Just be prepared to lay low with your baby and enjoy it.

How are you balancing the need to rest with the desire to get back to exercising and your routine after having George?

Patience! Reminding myself that there is no rush. I’ve done a few stretching videos, I’ll take Webster on walks and some arm circuits if I feel the need to move my body. It’s also pretty nice to binge watch Netflix and chill with my baby! There are very few moments in life where you get to enjoy the slowness.

Do Dave’s parents live nearby? Do you get to see them often?

His dad lives in Northern Michigan and his mom splits her time between Detroit and Florida! We probably see them every couple months!

What do your middle-of-the-night feedings look like? Currently struggling with my 4-week old!

Right now I try to put George down in his bassinet anywhere between 8/9pm. I’ll make sure to do a big feed before then and he usually gives me a 5 hour stretch and will wake up between 1/2am. I’ll nurse him on one side, burp him, change his diaper and then nurse him on the other side (he usually falls asleep on this side). Then re-swaddle and put him back down! Then he will usually wake up around 5am for another feed. Then i’ll put him back down until 7ish, feed and then put him back down again. After the 7am feed I’ll go downstairs to hang with big boys and Dave.

Right now, Dave is sleeping in our guest room in the basement so he can get a good night sleep for our big boys who love to wake up at 5:30am. That way I’m not worried about keeping him up durning night feeds. It makes us all run a little more smoothly!

What would you say the hardest part of parenting for you is? The hardest part of marriage?

Hardest part of parenting: probably the pressure to raise good kids. Worrying about your every action and how it affects them. Trying to be a good example for them every single day. The hardest part of marriage: communication and balance. I would say communicating has been our biggest struggle, this was something we worked on a lot over this past year. Since starting a family I think communication and balance are our biggest focuses. Talking through any issues we have so not to cause resentment and finding a balance between being parents and being in a relationship. Making sure we always make time for each other as husband and wife. It can be hard but so important!

Your skin is looking amazing in your IG stories! What is your current skincare routine?

Thank you!! My skin has actually been acting up since having George. I’ve been using my Tula cleanser, these Tula toner pads, these Tula sensitive skin drops, Vintner’s Daughter Active Botanical Serum and Sobel Skin RX Moisturizing Cream! You can use code LIZADAMS for 15% off Tula products!

How have Charlie and Jack adjusted to George?

They are so so sweet with him! Charlie is way more interested in helping, holding and loving on George and Jack loves giving him attention but isn’t so interested in the helping or holding. I’m so grateful Charlie and Jack have each other, they are best little buddies.

How do your boys feel about the move to Charleston?

They are so so excited! We are grateful to have some good friends that live there who they can’t wait to see, they can’t wait to live near the beach and are excited for their ‘new house.’

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  1. I love the question regarding grief for not having a girl. Your response was so great and resonates with me. I’m a mom of 3 boys and felt what both you and the questioner have felt or are still feeling. It’s comforting to hear other moms experience that too. You articulated it so well. It really is just about mourning your expectations for what your family would be. I can’t even imagine my life without my little rascals. Congrats! Enjoy your ride 🤪

  2. I have also struggled with “gender disappointment” after the birth of my son, and I so appreciate your thoughtful response and perspective. It’s something I’m still working through. And that quote, whoa! It made me teary eyed. From your posts this past year I’ve been really trying to focus more on my own family unit and ignore the outside noise and that is such a beautiful quote and reminder. I’m so glad someone asked, I don’t remember seeing it on stories. xoxo

  3. Three boy mom here too! Definitely wished for a girl each time, and each time got a wonderful baby boy instead. I agree that it’s important to let yourself work through your feelings and reasons for wanting a girl. Doing that freed me up to enjoy what I do have- which is pretty darn amazing. One thing I do that helps is follow other moms with all boys on Instagram (just added you, Liz, for this reason!). It is so fun to see all the cute little boys and their families, and to see how fun (and crazy!) it can be. Nice to feel part of a fun club.

  4. Love this and feeling so sentimental for you and in advance for me!! I bought my house myself 9 years ago, now I live here with my husband and we brought home our first baby in November. It’s a teeny starter house but I have so many great memories here and have poured so much of myself into it that it’s hard to know we’ll outgrow it and have to leave before I know. Love the letter idea and wondering how to make it work with a gas fireplace!! Looking forward to seeing your family make new memories in Charleston.