Mocktail Monday: A Pop of Pomegranate

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Forget Manic Monday, it’s a MOCKTAIL MONDAY Baby! Our resident foodie, Ray, has provided us with a pomegranate martini, or for the sake of wordplay: momtini.  I am just going to let him explain this one to you…

This simple pomegranate spritzer is kinda sweet, kinda tart, but totally refreshing. A uniquely zingy pick-me-up for any warm day. While this can quickly be whipped up with pomegranate juice, I’d highly recommend you give pomegranate molasses a try. It’s a common, but super tasty and simple middle eastern ingredient with a bevy of uses. An outstanding base for mocktails, it’s also great drizzled over warm roasted vegetables, used in sauces, marinades or in a vinaigrette. It takes your hummus to a whole new level with just a few healthy glugs. It packs a uniquely seductive flavor — not terribly sweet, not quite sour, tangy and bright. [Editor’s Note: he likes adjectives.]

While pomegranate molasses may sound exotic or complicated, I assure you that it’s anything but. You can totally make this, at home, in sweats and slippers with very little effort — plus, you’ll be able to impress your friends with your refined palate! You can find it at specialty markets and it’s also widely available online. Check out my fail-proof recipe:

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Juice version [8 oz serving]

In a glass filled with ice add:

  • 3 Tablespoons pomegranate juice
  • 1 teaspoon of simple syrup (if desired)
  • Squeeze of lemon juice
  • Top with sparking water or club soda

 

Pomegranate Molasses version [8 oz serving]

In a glass filled with ice add:

  • 3 Tablespoons pomegranate juice
  • Top with sparking water of club soda (ginger ale is also a nice alternative)

 

To make your own pomegranate molasses you’ll need:

32 oz pure 100% pomegranate juice (if you want to juice your own pomegranates, be my guest, but this is the fast version)

3-4 oz freshly squeezed lemon juice

½ cup of raw sugar

 

Instructions

Pour pomegranate juice, sugar, and lemon juice into a small pot. Heat at low/medium until liquid begins to just simmer ever so slightly. Stir to dissolve sugar. Allow liquid to simmer for approximately 60 minutes. This can burn, so make sure you’re stirring every 10 minutes, until the liquid is reduced by 75% to about 1 cup (8 oz) or about a quarter of what you started with. Don’t let it reduce too far, or it will harden after it cools.

 

When the liquid just coats the back of a spoon, remove the pot from heat. The syrup will continue to thicken as it cools. If you’re unsure about the consistency, measure the reduced liquid– it should be between 1 and 1 ¼ cups of syrup. If it’s a lot more liquid than that, continue reducing.

 

After the syrup cools completely, store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 weeks.

 

His description is most likely longer than actually making, drinking, and remaking the momtini.

Make it, drink it, love it, post it, share it. @motherhoodmaternity #mocktailmonday

Cheers!

Daina & Ray

BACK TO SCHOOL; I MEAN WORK.

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Hey there September! I used to get so nervous this time of year. First there was the whole going to school after Labor Day thing, and then I was a teacher for a few years. Now, September is my favorite month. In fact, autumn has become my favorite season. The weather is always so pretty and everything in nature is at its ripest before winter. Style is at its best, the streets are clear of kids on bikes, Halloween is almost here. It all falls into place. [See what I did there?]

When I gave birth to Val back in 2016, I returned to work right after Labor Day, so I felt like I had the summer off and then school began. All of those end of summer blues came flooding back to me.  This time I came back the very first day of July, giving me a few months under my belt. In other words, I can really enjoy the end of summer and the start of autumn again.

Going back to work with 2 kids has had its moments. It is hard to get out of the house, twice as hard in fact. It’s been tiring, sometimes isolating, but also oddly refreshing. I work with a lot of my best friends, so I enjoy talking their ears off all day. I am not sure how they feel, but whatever, this is about me! [Editor’s Note: I am going to watch them read this, then wait for them to cringe.]

This month we are all about honoring our working mamas, the ones expecting and the ones who have to return after their maternity leave, well, leaves. Motherhood® Maternity was founded by a pregnant woman who couldn’t find any professional clothing for expectant mothers, so Rebecca Matthias made them herself. And today we are the largest retailer of maternity and nursing clothing.

To honor her and all working moms, those who are raising families, educating the youth, creating art, instructing yoga, earning their degrees, working in healthcare, giving someone a new look, coming up with the next best idea, running to their meeting, sitting in their desk, typing from a coffee shop, or getting the job  done wherever that happens… we have YOUR work wear for anywhere.

Our newest campaign is all about mamas wearing the pants! We will be breaking down our best professional bottoms that would make our founder proud. No worries, we have some career-worthy styles to top them off with too. For boss babes with a bump, and new moms making it work – we’ve got you covered from 9 to 5 and them some.

In case no one has told you lately; I am so proud of you. You are amazing!

Let us keep you posted. @motherhoodmaternity – Daina

LABOR DAY MEANS SOMETHING DIFFERENT TO US!

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Yes, yes, yes, we know – Labor Day marks the end of summer and the start of school. We are so trained to feel this sort of sadness, or at least we are impacted by the transition from season to season. But for those of us who work all year around, and more specifically those of us who work with pregnant women, Labor Day means more than just the Monday off.

Labor Day here is still both the end and start of something. The end of pregnancy marks the start of motherhood. And as our name suggests, Motherhood® loves motherhood. For all of the mamas counting down to their personal labor day, I wanted to provide some sage advice, as well as some suggestions for your hospital bag. I am not the expert in giving birth, but I have done it twice, once within the past 6 months, and I haven’t gotten so far removed that I, “forget what birth is even like”.

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#1- Comfort is the actual key. I know there is a part of you that is worried what the pictures will look like. But when push comes to shove, quite literally, you’re not going to be thinking about how you look. BUT there are aspects you can control. For starters, we have a labor gown that doubles triples as a pregnancy and nursing dress. It allows access to fetal monitors and an epidural in a snap, again quite literally. There are snaps in the front, back, shoulders and sides for skin-to-skin, IV drips, and breastfeeding. Get yours in black, florals, or gray. If you do wear this for labor and delivery, it probably will need a good washing, so pack 2 more outfits for your hospital stay.

#2- If you plan on nursing, you’ll need the support. This support I speak of is both tangible and then also emotional. On one hand, you should have bras that are made for breastfeeding. If you bought one during pregnancy, it already has the nursing access, so throw that in your bag. You can go topless if you choose, but family, friends, people you speak to once a year but are local, just might come see your baby; you may want the coverage. Also, take the lactation consultant’s advice, or at least hear her out. You may be so drained at that point with doctors and nurses coming in and out, but she is there to help you and make sure baby is getting your milk. Take the support.

#3- Smile… you’re on a not very candid camera. People will be snapping away all willy nilly. Either you have your cell phone out, or someone else will. I was shocked at how the hospital was more than okay with cell phones everywhere. Aren’t they supposed to be the dirtiest things in the world or something? The first thing my nurse said was to get the phone ready to take baby’s first picture. So, dress up, but act casual about it. Maternity or postpartum leggings look put-together with a cute graphic tee or one of our new nursing styles. Ya know, something you just threw in your bag.

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Are you due in September? Are you due this week? Is your labor day on Labor Day? Let us know and congratulations! @motherhoodmaternity #mymomtruths

– Daina

A LITTLE Q&A WITH A LACTATION CONSULTANT

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For National Breastfeeding Month we wanted to hear stories from real moms and real professionals. I sat down with lactation consultant and owner of Blissed Out Mamas, Lisa Broderick-Cohen, to discuss all things breastfeeding. Check out her tips and info’ for getting help when nursing and pumping, and the personal journey that comes with both.

Make sure you share your stories with us too! [@motherhoodmaternity #mymomtruths] All of us at Motherhood® love being inspired from other real mamas out there. Enjoy!

  1. Tell us how you became a lactation consultant.

I really got into breastfeeding after I got pregnant with my daughter, now 16 years ago. I had difficulty getting her to latch and it was 5 weeks until I found our rhythm. At the time, I felt that there was very little to no support for women from hospitals, doctors or even older generations. It was truly my own experience that inspired me to pursue lactation consultancy. I found La Leche League where I have been a member and leader for over 15 years and studied at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania. It took me 4 ½ years to become a lactation consultant. With my experience and years working with pregnant women and new moms, I wanted to create a safe place for everyone to meet and get answers or help. In 2015 I opened Blissed Out Mamas!

  1. How do you find your clients?

Mainly word of mouth. There are really great resources to finding lactation consultants. A lot of women find me through zipmilk.org. What I do want people to know is that I do accept insurance (and many other lactation consultants do too)!

  1. What is the first thing you do to ease new moms into breastfeeding?

Almost everyone who calls the first time is looking for help on feeding. A lot of times women are defensive and defeated, but I let them find that fear, so we can get to the root of the problem. Then we work together on a creating a goal and then reaching that goal.

  1. What is something you would tell a pregnant woman who may not be considering breastfeeding due to different personal reasons?

I would want to know what is exactly making them uncomfortable. In my experience, it is usually a lack of support, education on breastfeeding and past trauma. I believe, personally, that breastfeeding is a public health issue.

  1. Do you have any advice for milk production supply, especially for women who are returning to work and have to pump?

I like to have a back-to-work consultation to discuss meditation and relaxation techniques to reduce that underlying stress. Together we would need to be honest about how difficult that transition may be. I also encourage after work cuddle sessions with baby and a lot of them! Nursing as much as you can while you’re home helps to keep that natural supply up.

  1. Do you have any bra or clothing suggestions that help make nursing/pumping a little easier?

I recommend seamless/wireless styles to keep ducts from getting clogged. I love nursing camisoles; I tell all my clients to keep them in their closets. And when I was pregnant, I lived in those pants with that band that covers your whole belly! [Editor’s Note: Lisa means the Secret Fit Belly®.]

  1. What are the best practices for storing frozen breast milk?

Fresh pumped milk is okay at room temperature for 4 to 6 hours. It can stay in the refrigerator for 4-6 days and can remain frozen for 4-6 months.

  1. What are some suggestions for easing sore, aching nipples and breasts due to nursing?

Pain is common, but it needs to be addressed. If you have another common issue, like a closed duct, try a warm compress and massage to release the milk and soothe irritation. Nipple balms are not used to necessarily heal pain, but rather as a band aid to keep the nipple healthy.

  1. How do you help women who want to throw in the towel on breastfeeding after a couple days/weeks/months?

I let my clients know this is a safe, judge-free zone. I let them know that the goal is for baby to eat. We work on trying to preserve milk. I use empathy; I ensure her she is a good mother and that breastfeeding, or formula feeding is not an either/or. Formula can be used as a tool to help her reach her nursing goal. I encourage the bonding aspect of breastfeeding. I also let everyone know that you, as the mom, are the #1 expert on your body and your baby, so listen to your gut.

  1. How can our followers reach you?

My website is blissedoutmamas.com. My Instagram @blissedoutmamas; I am also on Facebook and Pinterest.

REAL MOMS. REAL STORIES. REAL LIFE. – LET’S PLAY DRESS UP

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At the end of the day, we sell clothes. That isn’t shocking, but you know what can be? Showing up to work in a dress feeling cute just to realize you’re going to be [almost] completely naked soon in a little room hooked up to a machine.  It happens to the best of us… but it doesn’t have to.

When it comes to nursing clothing, we listened to our customers. I am not a number’s girl, but I do know more than 65% of you return to work in some capacity. Oh, and I know you like to leave the house. And for these reasons, I wanted to sit down with our in-house designer, Jennifer Sack, and chat about the team’s inspiration behind the pieces. 

Jen has been with the company for over 8 years and has been helping design nursing/pumping clothing for over 3. The actives styles [seen on Thara below] are brand new. Jen said “versatility of the end use” is how they approach creating new clothes. They thought about the customer’s journey after birth, where she will be home for a while [hopefully] and then have to transition back into the working world.

The postpartum workout pants are what Jen referred to as the compression capsule, which now includes double fabric to help reduce chafing, as well as a pull-string to tighten and loosen as the body recovers. There is also a workout top with cross straps that offers different levels of lift and support. Jen and her team decided to include an inner-shelf bra, so that our girl doesn’t have to wear another underneath. There are also new clip-down functions that feature a sliding clasp, which is less noticeable, so that she feels like herself. For Jen, it’s those little details that make all the difference.

Keep reading to shop the shoot and see what Jen has to say about some of the featured styles. 

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Thara is wearing our Nursing Hoodie and our postpartum active leggings.

The lift-up hoodie is perfect for when this unbearable humidity finally goes away! When we say lift-up, we mean there is a separate layer on the sweatshirt that you, well, lift up to get easier access to your breasts. This way you can feed your baby or pump without having to remove your top completely.

The pants must be worn after birth, so mamas-to-be, wait this one out. They feature stomach muscle compression, which is only safe once baby exits the body. These are workout specific, so they have a side pocket, are moisture wicking, UPF50, chlorine resistant and ready to run with you.

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Audra is wearing our maternity overalls. That’s right – MATERNITY! Keep these in your closet for the comfort alone.

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Darlene is wearing our plus size waist-tie maternity dress in leopard print. Again, another maternity style that is more of a wear now/wear later look.

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Alex is wearing our ruffle hem nursing dress in a floral print. This dress works with a mock layer underneath, so when you undo the wrap, you have the ability to breastfeed or pump without disrobing completely. [See my opening paragraph!]

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Sarah is wearing our nursing hoodie. This kind is my favorite. The hidden zippers are on the side and they go from mid-stomach up to mid-nipple. I wore one when we went to the LatchOn Event in Philly. It was roomy enough to stick a Willow pump in! Jen told us that this drawstring hoodie has been a best-selling maternity top for years, so it made sense to extend the option to nursing moms.

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Chakari, who was pregnant at the time of the shoot, is wearing our wrap maternity dress in golden floral. [Insert hands praying emoji.] If you are pregnant, which I am sure most readers are, then what else do you need for fall? This dress will be perfect for after baby too; it’s nursing/pumping friendly!

What pieces do you pump in? What fashions do you feed in? We showed you ours; now show us yours. @motherhoodmaternity #mymomtruths

 

WHAT’S SO GREAT ABOUT BREASTFEEDING? HER SMELL.

MH BLOG RealMomsHappySmell 2019 TOP v2I’ve been writing a lot about the emotional state that breastfeeding and pumping can leave you in, but it’s an emotional pendulum – which of course, swings both ways. I love nursing my babies. I yearn for the smell of my baby’s head. She smells like lavender.  

Both my babies smell like lavender… because I use a lavender lotion on them haha!  The smell is supposed to make you tired and calm. It enlivens me. I try to soak in lavender salts and bath bombs. None of it is relaxing because I often share my bath with BOTH a 3-year-old and 5-month-old, who I am nursing simultaneously while making sure no soap gets into the toddler’s eyes. But to me, that scent brings me back home.  

It is said that breastfeeding releases oxytocin (the love hormone) into your system during the let-down of the milk. So, you are quite literally being filled with love when you nurse. Yes, breastfeeding is draining; yes, pumping can be stressful, but it is also beautiful, wonderful and happy. Don’t just take my word for it… 

Kim and Sarah are married, and both have given birth. Wait until you read this amazing story that Kim shared: “My milk actually started coming in when he was born. We have lots of babies in our life and that has never happened with another child. It was an interesting experience to have that happen from the very beginning. I did the first skin-to-skin with Theo while Sarah was getting stitched up and recovering. I think it created an instant connection between us, not just spiritually and emotionally, but physically, which is why I think my body responded (like that).” 

Thara, a yoga studio owner and model fondly looks back on nursing and the way it calmed not only her, but her life and her family. “A few weeks after I stopped breastfeeding my husband and I were sitting on the couch and he looked across at me and said, ‘You know what? I miss you breastfeeding.’ I was shocked for my husband to say that me, but he enjoyed the stillness it gave me. It forced me to sit down; it forced me to stop. Whereas now I am always moving; I am always doing something. I have to go somewhere, I have to clean up, have dishes I have to wash, I have to organize a closet, whatever it is, every moment I get free I find something to do. So, he kind of missed the stillness that it brought into our house.” 

Lifestyle Influencer and CEO of @bloggerhousecurvycloset, Darlene, speaks about the way in which nursing gave her back the control that you sometimes lose when a tiny human comes into the world and knocks you off your axis. “As a new mom, with a new baby, you constantly wonder if she’s OK…but breastfeeding was the one thing I could control. I could give her everything of me, and that meant that she was satisfied, and she was happy, and she was well in that moment and that’s why it meant so much.” 

Audra, a Photo Editor said, “I wanted them to be breastfed. It gives them the best nutrients, it’s good for their immune system, and it’s a beautiful way to bond with my babies. I feel like it’s a gift that I was excited to experience” 

Now, of course, breastfeeding is not the end all, be all. It’s not always a given either. I feel really blessed I never had any trouble doing it. But my beautiful co-worker, Alex, had a hard time with keeping her supply up. “I’ve experienced both breastfeeding and bottle-feeding. I mean, it’s different for everybody. There definitely is a special bond when you can breastfeed, and when it’s great, it’s great – but when you’re anxious and stressing out about it, that stress transfers. So, at that point you’re just happy to see the baby eating.”   

I want to leave you with some words from my boss’ mom, Annie, because at the end of day, this is the real mom truth about not only breastfeeding but finding what is right for you: “Women should be able to make choices for themselves without any pressure whatsoever. In this day and age women work; women work simply to provide for the children they are giving birth to.”  

Make sure you see new episodes of our video series Real Mothers. Real Stories. Real Life.

Here’s to all the moms making it work!  -Daina  

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EAT LOCAL – PHILADELPHIA

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A few co-workers and I did something BIG last Friday. We were a part of the Global Big Latch On Event hosted in Philadelphia! The goal was that at the same time across the globe breastfeeding moms feed their babies to unite, to raise awareness, and to normalize breastfeeding.

The Maternity Care Coalition hosted the Philadelphia meetup and said, “This was a true team effort and it all translated into a beautiful event with a total of 131 event participants, including community partners representing 21 organizations and companies. During the Big Latch On at 11:00am, synchronized with moms and babies all over the world, 28 moms latched their babies in Franklin Square. It was truly inspiring to see the room completely filled with mamas and babies! Breastfeeding families and partners alike expressed their enthusiasm and joy for this event.”

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We set up right in front of the carousel. Fun fact, Philly apparently has a rich history in carousel making. Anyway, we were there to support the mamas, nursing and not, by providing bra fittings from our in-house specialist Alicia, gifting a free seamless maternity bra (not to brag, but it’s a best-selling, 5-star rated, award-winning bra), handing out our new “All Boobs Are Good Boobs” totes, and making sure everyone was hydrated for the latch on! The totes are an in-store only gift with purchase, so make sure you head to your local store this month if you want to snatch one up.

I was super excited because I got to try out the Willow Pump that was gifted to us for a shoot. I just slipped that baby into my own seamless bra and went about my business. Thank you very much to the hidden zippers on my shirt! I also munched on lactation cookies, because why not? Oats are healthy, and mama must eat! [Keep tuning in because one of our weekly Real Mom videos is all about making sure breastfeeding and postpartum women in general are continuing to take care of themselves.] How was that for a segue?

The pictures speak louder than any word I can write, so I leave you with some of our favorite images from the day. That is our team wearing our new boob shirts, me in the Eat Local nursing top, and some of the mamas we were so happy to meet. A lot of these women took the day off from work to be there with their kids. It was a hot one, so the 28 nursing moms were able to sit and do the latch on in an air-conditioned pavilion. This was really helpful for those who needed to store their milk [like me], so that it didn’t spoil in the sun. So many of the women were local and just wanted to see what their neighborhood had to offer, from healthcare, to mom groups, to nursing merchandise. Moms were encouraged to breastfeed in the park; there was food to keep everyone healthy and happy, and lots of support. We watched a couple little ones while their mamas got measured! There are such amazing communities out there with people who understand you; I was thrilled to know I am so close to one.

Throughout the rest of August, besides the videos, you can expect a new segment called Monthly Cravings, which will cover recipes, mocktails and style suggestions. There will be an interview with a lactation consultant and so much more that we hope resonates with you!  Let us know if you went to a Latch On Event or how you celebrated, acknowledged or even just posted about World Breastfeeding Week. @motherhoodmaternity #mymomtruths – See you there! – Daina

BACK TO LIFE. BACK TO REALITY.

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Let’s kick off the week by taking a look at Motherhood Maternity’s latest campaign: Real Moms. Real Stories. Real Life. It may sound a little strange to say, “real moms”, because what is a fake mom? I’m talking no prosthetic bellies or models with kids they never met before. Our “models” are actually pregnant, the babies and kids belong to them, and we, as a company are influenced primarily by real women wearing our clothes.

To honor National Breastfeeding Month, we sat down with new families, friends, and co-workers – even a pregnant model (who has since given birth), to start a conversation on breastfeeding, pumping, and using formula.

These are their successes and struggles that begin and end with the boob.

I’ll start. The thing no one tells you is how connected your emotions are to nursing. Who knew breasts hold that much power? Okay, we all knew – but did you know that once your milk supply dwindles you feel tired – like first trimester, ran 9 miles, worked a double shift, haven’t slept in a week, hit by a train tired… Honestly, I think my body is trying to navigate its way back to before the baby was in the belly and it is on complete overdrive.

I also, selfishly (vainly), don’t want to gain weight. This is a topic that we all as smart, strong, worthy women try to glance right over. However, it is known that breastfeeding helps you lose weight or at the very least burn calories. I am ashamed to admit it, but I can already see myself stressing out about what I eat once my milk completely dries up. Being pregnant already is emotional, but the changes in your physical form can be shocking, even if you have done it before. I do not want to feel this way, but I do – and that’s okay.

I gained 60 pounds with my first daughter Val and did not lose it all by the time I was pregnant again with Roni. I did have Polyhydramnios the first time (excess of amniotic fluid) which caused some of the weight gain, but let’s be frank, it was the ice cream.

This past pregnancy I gained 40 pounds, but I have since lost 50, leaving me 10 above my pre-pregnant weight. I despise math, yet I can rattle these stats off effortlessly. This is where my underlying issues lie: My relationship with food and the numbers on the scale. I am working to work through caring so much. I have 2 daughters and I need to let it go. Give me some time and until then I will pump until I pump air. This is my truth.

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Throughout the month and starting this Thursday the women featured in the images on this post (that’s me rocking our new All Boobs Are Good Boobs tee) will be telling their stories through episodic videos. Make sure you check them out! We also interviewed two women for our sister store, A Pea in the Pod. These are their stories:

I met Narelle when her daughter Frankie was 4 months old and I was 8 months pregnant. She was in our studio shooting for a real moms wear-to-work campaign. She has 3 children and is currently nursing 2 at the same time! She said the last thing she wants to do is pump at the end of the day after nursing 2 babies. She told us, “Breastfeeding takes a lot out of you; it’s exhausting. And to sit there and be hooked up to a machine is… well I gave up on it at some point.” This is her truth.

Lauren is a friend of one of our copywriters; she has a toddler and is pregnant now! At first, she was shy and self-conscious about breastfeeding in public. But juggling the covers and the wraps and the shawls became an ordeal for her. So, she decided feeding her baby without covering up was more natural and best for her and her son. One day at work, she was in the bathroom pumping when an electrician walked in. She was mortified; he was mortified. She will never pump in a public place again. This is her truth.

Make sure you head over the Motherhood.com on Thursday to watch the full video featuring these fabulous women discussing Breastfeeding: The Good, The Bad & The Bizarre.

Oh, and tell us your stories @motherhoodmaternity #mymomtruths

‘Til next time!

Daina

WE’RE BACK: FOR REAL

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Motherhood’s blog is back and we’re keeping it real: Real Mothers, Real Stories, Real Life!

Hi, I’m Daina and I work for Motherhood® as an editor and copywriter. I also reside in the real hood of motherhood.

I have two daughters: Val is a little over 3 and Roni is fairly new at only 5 months.

I came back to work this summer after giving birth and have been doing that crazy balancing act of nursing in the morning, pumping at the office and trying not to cry about the reduction in my breast milk. [Editor’s Note: I’ve cried.]

At the moment I am an exclusive breastfeeding mom. I was able to get my first daughter to 7 months with nursing. I would pump at work, wake up in the middle of the night to pump [by hand so no one would wake up from that oh-so-soothing noise] and yet by 9 months I would produce a total of 3 ounces a day.

With the change in my hormones, the loss of my milk and the day-to-day life of being a person I never was before with responsibilities I didn’t even know existed… I was drowning, unfortunately not in breast milk.

You see, with Val, I felt it was my sole job to provide every last drop of breast milk. When she was born, she was not a peachy pink or even a plucky red. This kid was purply-blue. Having what the doctors thought was a seizure, she was immediately taken to The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia to be put on a cooling bed.

Now despite me watching the first 6 seasons of Grey’s Anatomy, before Denny came back from the dead, I am not a true medical expert. But I believe the cold was to slow down any brain damage that may have happened when she didn’t get that first breath of life.

While I was left alone, my mind kind of went numb. The only thing I asked for was a pump, because I had to do something, anything.

It was not until day 5 that she was able to eat. She was being sustained with sugar water via a feeding tube through her belly button. I blame my now toddler’s need for fruit snacks and chocolate milk on her introduction to life. Jokes aside, she latched, and I was in awe. I was warned by the lactation specialist that she may not because she took a bottle and pacifier prior to a nipple. I think she was just starving. And despite her traumatic entrance into this world, she is a normal little girl. She remains a drama queen, but the apple doesn’t fall too far, ya know?

So, this time around I made a promise to myself that I wouldn’t allow nursing and pumping to cause any heartbreak for me. But, at month 5 Ron hardly wants much to do with these boobs. I had an oversupply early on, so luckily, I have enough frozen bags to thaw for the babysitter and at night. I must put my pride aside and succumb to the adage that fed is best.

I still pump at work. What began as 3 times, quickly became 2, because meetings are scheduled, deadlines approach and work is due. Drinking water has taken the backburner to forgetfulness, and I am left with producing 4-6 ounces a day. I am refusing to set an alarm for 2 a.m. pumping, but lucky me my baby doesn’t sleep all the way through the night, so I feed her then. She isn’t as picky in those wee hours; bottle be damned.

The fact that the start of National Breastfeeding Month is not lost on me. I clearly support breastfeeding and pumping and understand the frustrations of feeling embarrassed when in public. In 2019 women should not feel that shame, but it still happens. Every time I am out, and my baby gets hungry I get that hot body, cold sweat hoping no one will notice me doing something so natural. But again, it happens.

If I am away from my baby, but need to pump to keep my supply up, I am frantically searching for a private room or bathroom stall with a plug as to not cause a scene. It’s rough. It’s still taboo and it shouldn’t be. I am fortunate to have access to nursing bras and nursing clothing, as well as a workplace that provides an actual pumping room. But, women all over the country are still in dark offices and repurposed supply closets.

The easiest and quickest thing we can do is be real about the struggles and successes that come with breastfeeding and pumping. This is National Breastfeeding Week and as a company we really wanted to get people’s truths about this topic.

I am attending a Global Big Latch On event in Philadelphia. We also sat down with 10 moms to talk about their experiences, including the good the bad and the ugly beautiful.

Whether you have been here before, or you are new to us and motherhood – welcome to this crazy new life of yours. Learn more by visiting us at motherhood.com.

With Understanding – Daina

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HOLIDAY WORK PARTIES

MH BLOG HolidayWorkParty 2018 v3

This is for our corporate mamas, the ones who hold down the nine to fives and then some. The holiday work party comes but once a year. However, it doesn’t look the same for everyone, of course! There are the “parties” that happen on your lunch break, in the company kitchen with homemade cupcakes and sparkling cider when you are still #clockedin. That’s okay. Don’t feel blue; dress in blue.

We have the outfit you need to add some light and life: the tie waist maternity top with a gathered cuff design in teal blue. [This also comes in a burgundy floral print.] Add a black pair of maternity pants, or if your office leans on the casual side, a nice pair of black maternity jeans.

Is your work party #outofoffice? Okay, so this is your chance to dress up. The featured puff sleeve velvet maternity dress is the epitome of LBD, which can also stand for luxurious black dress. Put your bump on display, grab a mocktini and get ready for all the compliments. Your boss may even give you one. Unless, of course, you are the boss.

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