Wow! Time has been speeding by here at RBP. I hope you all had an enjoyable Halloween with your little boo boos. We are already in November! ‘Tis the season for shopping and family meals, but most importantly it’s time for us to feature another Mom of the Month!
I am delighted to talk about our featured mom this month. She was my first mom friend in Boston. When we first met, It was so comforting to meet another mom that shared my same fears, sleep deprivation, and postpartum anxiety. It has been amazing to bond with one another as our little ones grow.
I am thrilled to introduce mother, wife, friend, and registered nurse (RN)- Jaimie Medina!
Jaimie is such a bright person. Her aura is warm and kind, and she’s a great person to spend time with. We had a chance to talk about the special moments of motherhood and some of the challenges that come along with it. Our Q&A had me tearing up a little because of the raw and beautiful honesty Jaimie shares about being a mom. Take a look at our full session below!
Q. When did you know you wanted to be a mother?
A: Honestly, I can’t remember ever NOT wanting to be a mom. The running joke in my family is that I have been a mini mom since the birth of my little brothers. I have always felt such a deep connection to the mothering/nurturing role and dreamed of the day I would be a mom. My journey to motherhood was not as straight forward as I imagined, but such is life, right? It took us four years and three cycles of in vitro fertilization treatments to conceive our daughter, Maroula.
There were many times after failed cycles and month after month of letdown that I wondered if I would ever become a mother. In fact, right before the last IVF cycle that we conceived our daughter, I told our IVF doctor and my husband that I was done and giving up. I could not handle the emotional roller coaster infertility treatments bring. I felt so betrayed by my body for not being able to “just get pregnant.”
We ultimately decided that we would try another cycle (IVF) and I am thankful every day for that decision. Being Maroula’s mother (in addition to wife to my husband) is truly my most cherished role.
Q. Since having a daughter, what do you think has changed the most about you?
A: I struggle with this question because truthfully, I was not prepared for the ways in which becoming a mother would change me! There is no way to understand the overwhelming love and worry that comes with becoming a mother until you experience it for yourself. If I had to pick one change I would say my ability to truly slow down and be present with my daughter has changed most about me.
I am type A – I like to be organized and I begrudgingly admit – in control. Learning to let go of control and just be has been such a challenge, but definitely one of the changes I am most proud of and I am so grateful to my 16 month old for teaching me this lesson!
Q: What has been your toughest moment of motherhood so far? How has it made you stronger?
A:The postpartum period was the most challenging for me. We spent four years wanting this little human and once we knew she was healthy and really coming I thought the rest would be a breeze. However, I had horrible post par-tum anxiety. I couldn’t believe how anxious I felt about EVERYTHING. I imagined this little miracle baby would arrive and it would just be snuggles and happiness. I’m so grateful for the tribe we are surrounded by, they were my saving grace. Surviving those first three months and all the ups and downs they were filled with has shown me the true strength of a mother (and women in general!)
I have learned to give myself grace in the lows and to really cherish the highs.
Nothing is permanent. It’s okay – in fact healthy to need and ask for help. Motherhood has shown me my “humanness” and helped me be comfortable with it. I honestly believe this has made me a much stronger person!
Q: What advice would you give to moms that are struggling with getting their babies to sleep regularly?
A: You have to do what works for your family. Sleep is not a one-size fits all thing. Maroula has not been a great sleeper by most standards from the beginning. We found that she needs to contact sleep to really fall into a deep sleep. Using our Resilient baby ring sling was one of the only ways we could get her to take a decent nap while allowing my husband or I to be able to get other things done.
We co-sleep, and that’s what works for our family. Sleep training didn’t work for us. Sleep is so vital to our health and I have been in the depths of sleep deprivation, its such a discouraging and lonely place to be. I feel for parents struggling with this right now. I truly believe you have to stick to what feels right in your heart and for your baby. Ask for help. Take a nap. Share the night wake ups with your spouse or take turns letting one another sleep in the morning. It takes a village!
Q. How has being a mom in the medical field changed the way you think about family life?
A: This pulls at my heart strings. I think its both a blessing and a curse. I understand too much, but I still can’t be objective when it comes to my own child. Maroula had breast milk jaundice as an infant, and as an adult neuroscience nurse, watching her jaundice worsen really sent me over the edge. I did not understand why all I could see was the worst case scenario and the pediatrician was so confident she was okay.
Of course, breast milk jaundice happens regularly and my pediatrician sees this often. I had to 100% trust her and around 6 weeks the jaundice was completely gone. We still haven’t given up breast feeding but that’s another story for a different day 😁
Being a mom in the medical field is a regular reminder to be so thankful for my family’s health. It is truly a privilege to take care of people and a constant reminder of how fragile life is. I carry this sentiment into my mothering philosophy.
Q. What is your dream vacation?
A: Does four consecutive nights of uninterrupted sleep count as a vacation these days!?!? Haha. All jokes aside, there are so many beautiful places around the world we want to explore. At the top of our list are Greece and Colombia.
Q: Where is your favorite date night spot with your husband?
A: We are such homebodies. Our favorite date night spot is in our living room, with a wood fire burning settled into our little nest. If we venture out, our favorite neighborhood spot is Antique table on Essex street in Lynn. Its a small, cozy neighborhood restaurant with amazing homemade Italian food. Its so important to have date nights and still take that time to connect as partners.
Q: Now it’s time for our fashion question! Because we live in New England, what is your favorite cold weather brand?
A: I love all things local and hand made! Maroula and I have matching hats from Meggles Knits, a local maker who knits beautiful and cozy cold weather gear. I also live in my Love your Melon beanie all winter long.
A big thank you to Jaimie for bringing us along on her motherhood journey, and wearing her heart on her sleeve. I hope you are both encouraged and inspired by our featured mom this month!
I’ll leave you all with an adorable picture of Dante and Maroula meeting for the first time.
Stay Resilient <3 Mika