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How To Save Money During COVID-19

Posted by Live Love Mom on March 24, 2020 at 5:05 PM Comments comments (0)
by: Stephanie McEndree



With businesses shutting down, many people are getting laid off, losing their jobs and put on unemployment or welfare, money has become tight. It has thousands of families re-visiting their budgets and wondering how they will make ends meet. Rainy-day funds won't last forever, and savings accounts will be drained, it's all a matter of time. So how can you cut down on your expenses to last as long as possible during this outbreak? Here are ways you can save hundreds of dollars by changing your lifestyle and cutting back.

Compare prices. Go to the dollar store and compare prices with your grocery store, and it's very likely lots of the items at the dollar store come cheaper. Buy every low-priced item you need at the dollar store. Whatever you can't get, go get at the grocery store.

Discount and surplus stores. There are even discount and surplus stores for groceries! Shop there when you can't get your groceries at the dollar store to get the most bang out of your buck. If you also need some clothes, be sure to go to a discount store and second-hand stores.

Use your reserves. Got canned goods and your freezer is full? Time to dig in. Frozen goods and even canned goods all expire eventually, and it's time to get through those foods. You won't need to go to the grocery store for a while, which will also prevent you from catching an illness.

Get it cheap. Focus on buying foods that are cheaper for now, such as pastas, ramen and chili. This too shall pass, but for a few weeks it can't hurt to go back to the basics. Also, get no-name brands or off-brand items. They may taste different than what you're used to, but the lowered cost at the cash register is sure to put a smile on your face.

Get multiple use objects. To cut down on costs, get 2-in-1 items. For example, get a bottle that is both shampoo and soap. This will avoid you from getting two different containers, hiking up the cost. It's also time for your kids to graduate to adult shampoo and body wash. It's less expensive and more efficient for cleaning. This goes for clothes too. Get reversible coats if you need a new one, a shawl you can use as a scarf, a hair brush with a comb, etc. 

Hang your laundry. Stop using your dryer and hang your clothes to air-dry them either around the house, outside on a clothes line, or both. This saves a valuable amount of energy and can cut your electric bill.

Have shorter showers. If you can go every other day, do that too. Some people in extremely tight monetarial situations lather up their bodies and hair with soap and shampoo, then turn on the shower to rinse off, and they're done. Use lukewarm water if you can, especially with the weather getting warmer. For baths, fill it up just enough to cover your legs, or your kid's legs. Bathe your kids together if they are young enough so you can save on water. 

Turn down the heat. With the weather getting warmer, you don't need your heater set up so high. Even lowering it by a couple of degrees will save you some money you can put elsewhere. If you get too cold, bundle up in your favorite sweater, thermals, or cuddle up under some blankets. 

Brick it. Put a brick in the water tank in your toilet. This reduces the amount of water that your tank pulls in, reducing your overall water bill. When money is tight, every penny counts.

Lay off staff. If you have services at home such as a nanny, cleaning lady, cook or babysitter, it's time to let them go. You can clean your own home and watch your own children. Note: if you have a nurse or home health care aide, it's recommended you keep them on unless you have a trained family member who can care for you. Speak to your doctor about any changes.

Re-think your packages. Call your phone, cable and internet companies and get rid of any extras you have that you don't need. You don't need your house phone if you have your cell phones, and if you have internet on your cell phones you don't need internet at home. You can always do this as a last resort, but if it's between these bills and homelessness then it's best to cut it out until things return to normal.

Reuse. Whenever possible, reuse items. Don't throw away some scrap paper or cardboard, keep it so the kids can cut it, paste it, paint it or color on it. Keep them busy and make this a cool indoor vacation time for them at the same time, without costing you supplies. It also cuts down on the electric bill as they're crafting and not watching TV.

Shut off the lights. When you're not in a room, close the lights. During the day, open your blinds and curtains and let the natural light in. Unless you have rooms with no windows, there is no need for lights during the day. Only turn on the lights at night and if you really need it. If you have more than one light in a room, use only one. 

Eat fresh first. It's important you eat all of the fresh food in your fridge before it goes bad, so it doesn't go to waste. Eat all of your fresh food before you open any non-perishable goods, even if you have to have salad for several days in a row.

Wear it twice. You don't have to change your pants or sweatshirt every day if they're clean. Wear them again so you can save on laundry and water costs and energy.

Shave it off. To remove costs of shampoo altogether, as well as beard oils, just shave your hair off. This works great for men who aren't particularly attached to their hair or beards. Use battery-powered clippers if you already have them as they don't cost you anything in the electric bill. For just a bit of stubble, use some razors.

Have any more ideas? Comment below!

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To My Ex: Coparent With Me

Posted by Live Love Mom on March 24, 2020 at 1:40 AM Comments comments (0)
by: Melinda Humpherys


To my child's father:

I wish you would look past my flaws and stop bringing them up. Ever since the day our son was born, it stopped being about you and me. It became all about our little boy, and we no longer mattered.

Yes, you and I didn't last and we broke up. But we still made a child together. We need to work together to parent that little boy, because that is what's best for him. Our son deserves both of his parents.

I want you to know I never wanted this for us. I never imagined our son would have two homes, two toothbrushes, two bedrooms, two birthdays, two sets of clothes and toys. I thought you and I would be together forever. I don't know how our breakup will affect him, but I hope it will have no impact since we broke up before he was born. At the same time, it's important that we come up with a parenting plan together. 

Our son is a smart, lively little boy. He loves to play and he loves to laugh and he eats a lot. He is getting so big. These years are the most precious for any child and we need to treat them as such. No matter what happened in the past, we need to stand together now. We need to be on the same team for our son. I know you love him as much as I do, so we need to do this for him.

To my ex, I know you don't like me. I know you harbor some hard feelings about us breaking up. I know you don't feel comfortable about my husband being around our son. But remember, you have a wife too and she is around our son all the time. I wish you would give me the same respect as I give your wife. Our son has four adults that love him so much. The more love, the better in my opinion. He has a dad, a step-dad, a mom and a step-mom. He is one lucky kid to have so many people he can fall back on and can take care of him.

I know you feel your position as father threatened because our son has a step-dad. I want to let you know that you will always be our son's father, just like I will always be his mother. Nothing can ever change that. In the end, our son needs everyone to get along to be happy. It's better we split up then stay in a relationship that we were both unhappy in. I don't want that for him, to learn to stay in an unhappy relationship. i know you don't want that either.

So let's come together and give our son the best childhood he can have. Let's spoil our little boy and shower him with love and affection. Let's offer him stability and comfort so he can feel secure in this big world. Let's have him feel safe and loved no matter what. Let's come together, for our son.

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To Those Who Shame Pregnant Women For Her Belly Size

Posted by Live Love Mom on August 15, 2019 at 9:45 AM Comments comments (0)

by: Stephanie McEndree


You who sees a pregnant woman’s belly…be careful what you say.

 

You don’t know what situation the woman is in. Don’t touch her belly without permission, especially if she’s a stranger. Don’t ask personal questions. It’s none of your business.

 

Imagine how heartbreaking and uncomfortable it is for a mother to answer to these questions when she’s experienced a loss.

 

“Is this your first pregnancy?” a stranger asks to the woman who had a miscarriage the previous pregnancy. What does she say? Does she lie, in order to avoid more personal questions and the awkward silence that would inevitably follow the truth? Or does she tell the truth, only to risk the person saying something furthermore insulting?

 

“Are you nervous about the birth?” asks an aquaintance, to the expecting mother of a stillborn baby. How does she put into words the mind-shattering pain and crippling anxiety that history will repeat itself?

 

“Is this your first child?” a passerby can ask a pregnant woman, who’s last child died in infancy. Does she say yes to brush off following questions? Does she say no and endure the painful subsequent inquiries?

 

These are dilemmas that no one should have to face.

 

Please be considerate when you see a pregnant woman. Feel free to appreciate the budding new life in private, or just say a polite “congratulations”. It’s safer to offer compliments than to ask lots of questions. In fact, just that small gesture of appreciation can make a swollen, nauseous, sweaty, bloated, hormonal, pregnant woman’s day.


 

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You Still Haunt Me

Posted by Live Love Mom on June 7, 2017 at 7:15 AM Comments comments (0)

by: Stephanie McEndree


A woman is raped every 6 minutes. This statistic is according to only reported rapes, which is 36%. Often, women are shamed, told they deserved it, they had it coming, that they caused it. Victim-blaming is incredibly real. Even when the rapist is found guilty or pleads guilty, people say it was consentual, that she changed her mind, that she regretted it, that she’s lying. The fact is that these victim-blamers are probably unwilling to wrap their heads around the fact that the world can be a cold, cruel place and someone they know can be a monster. They choose to stay ignorant, stay in the dark, to keep themselves sheltered from reality. In doing so, they further destroy the victim…and this is not alright.

 

Sentences for rapists are increasingly lesser, and more and more are getting away with it. Many sex-offender registries no longer have the person hold lifelong registry requirements. Many rapists get off on probation, having never seen jailtime.

 

In retrospect, what message are we sending to our daughters? That even if you report your rape, your rapist will most likely escape justice? What message are we sending to our sons? That you can rape, because society will shame the victim and you will get away with it?

 

Rape itself can have women confused, if it was actually rape. People’s individual definitions vary, but what matters is the legal point of view. Here are some (BUT NOT ALL!) situations where the law deems it rape:

 

You were forced or intimidated to have or endure intercourse.

You were forced or intimidated to have or endure unwanted actions such as oral stimulation, manual stimulation, or sodomy.

Someone committed actions on your body of a private nature while you were asleep.

Someone committed private actions on your body while you were drunk or high.

Someone committed private actions on your body, and you are disabled.

You were touched and penetrated with someone’s sex, hands, mouth or a foreign object without your consent.

You consented to sex, then withdrew your consent or told the partner to stop, and they continued.

You consented to sex, and said no to a particular sexual activity, and they do that activity anyhow.

You are a minor and the other person is of age.


The person that had “sex” with you is in a position of power over you, such as a teacher and you’re a student, a prison employee and you’re an inmate, a higher ranking military person, etc.


A family member sexually assaults you.

If your friend, family member or yourself have been raped, here are the steps to take.

 

Call the police. They will likely tell you to go to the police station and file a report, which is highly recommended that you do.

Do not shower, do not brush your teeth, do not even wash your hands.

Do not change clothes, but pack a change of clothes. The clothes worn while the rape was happening, will be examined for evidence.

Go to the hospital. A rape-kit can be performed that collects evidence against the rapist, that can help jail them.

Have photos taken of your injuries.

Rape has devistating concequences, no matter the age. No matter the punishment or justice to the rapist, the victim has the short end of the stick. (S)he has to live with the flashbacks, the memories, and the feelings of violation, disgust, and fear for the rest of their lives. It can affect their love lives, their sex lives, even their interpersonal relationships. Rape ends lives. Some are murdered after or before a rape, some commit suicide after being raped, and all of the time the person who they were before the rape dies.

 

A rape takes away your security, your feeling of safety. It removes your confidence, murders your ability to trust. No matter who it is that raped you, you feel dirty. You blame yourself, you wonder if you could have done anything differently that would have prevented this. It’s a living nightmare. No one deserves this. No one ever will.


 

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My Mom Has Cancer

Posted by Live Love Mom on March 24, 2016 at 10:20 AM Comments comments (0)

by: Stephanie Noircent


Never in a million years, did I ever think that I would be in this position.

 

How can you ever prepare yourself for this? How could you ever see these things coming? How can you ever even fathom how to accept it?

 

Just a few short weeks ago, I got the devastating news: my mother has cancer. A lot of questions sprung up after those words were spoken. What type? What stage? What’s the plan? So far, there are very little answers, but what we do know is that she has Squamous Cell Carcinoma.

 

This is a cancer that I have never heard of before. My mom found out she had cancer from a biopsy done on a mass in her tongue. Reading up on SCC, Mayo Clinic states that SCC is a type of skin cancer. Interestingly enough, my grandmother was diagnosed with skin cancer before christmas of last year, and my great-grandfather had lung cancer. Of course, this raises a scary question…is it genetic? Could I have a higher chance of getting cancer? Or worse….could my children have a high chance of having it?

 

When thoughts start to spiral this way, it’s important to try to block the flow of these thoughts. I tell myself, we don’t know much yet, there is no point in stressing about this. Surely, answers will arise in the future. Right now, all that I know is that my mother has cancer, and I need to be there for her. I want to be there for her.

 

You see, my mom is a survivor. No one has necessarily led an easy life, but I like to think of my mom as a phoenix who rose out of the ashes. She is an amazing, selfless person. She single-handedly reconnected two branches of our family tree by doing tireless research to find them, and by reaching out and finding them. Now, we have plenty of cousing that we know about, and love! She even went so far as to dig through old photos and clean them up with photoshop, to give her first cousin a photo of her when she was a baby, which is what my cousin has always wanted. There were many happy tears shed!

 

This of course, goes without mentioning the fact that she survived my terrible teenage years and morally supported me throughout my teens and adulthood. Even now, she continues to be a ray of sunshine in my life. She would do anything for the people she loves. She has truly evolved, become very open-minded and accepting when others of her generation would balk.

 

So many horrible people in the world…and my mother is the one that ends up with cancer.

 

It’s so unfair.

 

Treatment against this cancer is planned, and all I can do right now is cross my fingers. I do worry. I mean, how can you not worry when you find out that your mom has cancer?

 

She is strong, kind, and determined. She has a family that loves her, and friends who adore her. If this had to happen to my mom, at least she has an amazing support system to get her through it.

 

She’s spent so many decades taking care of other people. Now it’s time that we take care of her.

 

I love you, mom. ❤


 

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Choosing Your Birth Control

Posted by Live Love Mom on March 6, 2016 at 9:55 AM Comments comments (0)

by: Stephanie McEndree


For many reasons, more and more people are taking control of their reproductive choices. There are many different types of birth control. Here are some of the options, and some tips in choosing the right method for you.

 

IUD. A very effective method, an IUD is offered to be inserted at a postpartum checkup to women from their doctors. Easily inserted, a regular doctor can remove it. There are two types: copper and progesterone. Copper is most recommended if you are breastfeeding, since it doesn’t produce hormones that can reduce your milk supply. With progesterone IUDs, these include hormones that can alter your fertility cycle. An IUD is best chosen if you are monogamous and already tested with your partner, and would like to stop using condoms but are not ready for a child.

Condom and diaphragm. Used with spermicide, this can be a very effective form of birth control. This method is highly recommended when becoming sexually active with a new partner, as it doubles as protection against STDs and STIs. One of the easiest methods to obtain, condoms can be bought at many places including pharmacies, sex shops and even convenience stores.

Pill. For breastfeeding mothers, the Minipill aka progesterone-only pill is available to minimize impact on milk supply. For others, an estrogen and progesterone pill is available. These are a great idea for women who also have hormone imbalances, painful periods, irregular periods, iron-deficient anemia and who take other medications (so you already have the routine of taking pills every day, you can add this pill to that routine). The birth control pill can do many things at once!

Depo shot. This is an injection done once every three months. This is a good idea if you are a very busy person and can’t find time to take regular birth control, but you do not want a pregnancy. Be sure never to skip your appointments. Bonus if you are underweight, since the depo provera shot can cause weight gain.

Nuva ring. An alternative form of birth control, the nuva ring is a good idea for certain women.

Patch. Easily enough changed, a patch can be put on your skin and secretes hormones so you don’t get pregnant.

Sterilization. This is a permanent solution, for people who no longer want children. This can include a hysterectomy, ooferectomy or vasectomy.

Sponge. Also able to double as a menstral sponge, a sponge can absorb sperm to keep it from traveling up the birth canal to find an egg.

Cervical cap. Sometimes used as a “plug” to keep sperm inside the cerviz, a cap can also block entry of the sperm into the cervix to find a date with an egg. This needs to be fitted with your cervix and inserted properly for maximum effectiveness.

Implant. This can last up to five years and is usually implanted into your arm, the implant is very effective. This can come in handy when you are sick of using condoms but don’t want children yet.


 

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You Were A Woman First

Posted by Live Love Mom on March 24, 2015 at 10:15 AM Comments comments (0)

by: Stephanie McEndree


Having your first child can be overwhelming, especially if your very own newborn is the first baby you’ve ever cared for. No amount of prenatal courses and expert advice can prepare new parents for the reality that is parenthood. Not every pregnancy is the same, not every birth is the same, and not every baby is the same. There will be some good days and some bad days. You may feel overwhelmed and unsure if you’re doing anything write. This is normal, and you are not the only one.

 

I myself suffered from postpartum depression. I had no inkling of how hard it was going to be to be a parent. I was lucky I had people there to help me through it. Through the sleepless nights, the blur of breastfeeding, the laundry, diaper changes, cleaning and more; I never found time for myself.

 

There was a man that came to my apartment, a social worker, who would talk to me and teach me different things to do with my baby. Along with the many activities he suggested and all the information he gave us about my daughter’s development, he asked me how I was. He said I looked tired, and I admitted that I was. He told me something that changed my life. “Be sure to take some time for yourself every day, even if it’s just 2 minutes. Before you were a mother, you were a girlfriend. But even before you were a girlfriend, you were a woman first.”

 

I didn’t really understand what he was saying, so he explained it in a different way. “Before you had your daughter and before you got with her father, you were a woman. You had plenty of time to yourself. Since you became a girlfriend, you dedicated time as a couple together, and also time for yourself. Now, you have lost yourself in this whirlwind that is parenthood. Make time for yourself.”

 

I was skeptical, but I tried it. He was right. I took 5 minutes each morning to myself. I got up and went to the bathroom to get dressed in something nice, brush my hair, and do my makeup. I felt much better. I looked good, I was clean, so I felt better about myself. I was in a better mood, so everything that I did after that became much easier. I wasn’t too exhausted to go out as a family to the park, for a walk, even to an event. I blossomed, and with some encouragement, education and support, I came out of the depression. I learned how important those 5 minutes were, and I haven’t given them up since.

 

You can’t pour from an empty glass. You need to take care of yourself first. If you are not at 100%, then how can you give 100% to your baby? Be kind to yourself. Take that shower, even if you have to place the baby in their swing in the doorway of the bathroom. Put the baby in a baby carrier and get your makeup done. Remember; before it all, you were a woman first.


 

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What Does Not Kill You Makes You Stronger

Posted by Live Love Mom on February 3, 2015 at 7:10 AM Comments comments (0)

by: Stephanie McEndree


It is a very real situation. It can happen to anyone. Sadly, it most often happens to women who have been abused as a child. Some realize, that no one has loved them without abusing them. Therefore, they inadvertantly see abuse as a show of love. This is ingrained into their brains at an extremely young age, so it is nearly impossible to break this chain. One in every three women will be abused at some point in her life. These are disturbing, and staggaring odds. However, not only women get abused. Men get abused as well, and are shamed to keep it a secret.

 

Abuse comes in many forms.

 

Physical abuse. This type of abuse is when physical harm is inflicted upon you and your body. This can be hitting, punching, shoving, slapping, pinching, grabbing, throwing and more. Throwing objects at you is also a type of physical abuse.

Psychological and mental abuse. This is when the person uses psychological and mental ways to abuse you. This can include gaslighting (making you believe that what you heard/saw isn’t what you actually heard/saw), destroying your property, threats, intimidation, and more. This can also include forcing the victim to cut off contact and stay away from their own family members and friends, isolating the victim so they rely wholly on the abuser so the victim cannot leave, claiming they “know you better than you know yourself” and saying you are something that you’re not, etc. Psychological abusers also isolate you further by telling your friends and family lies about you. They will tell anyone and everyone lies about you to guarentee your isolation. If someone defends you or refuses to believe the abuser, the abuser writes them off as insane and more. They can also force you to eat too much and stop working out to destroy your self-esteem and insinuate self-disgust and hate. One of the most common forms of this, is invalidating thoughts and feelings. This can lead someone to question their own feelings, if they are logical, if they are real, and makes for a warped sense of reality. This is an extremely dangerous side effect of abuse.

Emotional abuse. This is when someone purposefully hurts your feelings, makes you angry, or does things to trigger depression in order to control you or punish you. This includes cheating, kidnapping your children, making advances on family members, spreading rumors, etc.

Cultural abuse. This is when a person prevents you from being your culture or doing cultural things, or forces you to stop or to change cultures.

Verbal abuse. This includes name-calling, threats, intimidation, instilling fear in you that if you don’t do as they say you’ll come to harm,

Spiritual abuse. This form of abuse is when someone prevents you from practicing, associating with, or being your religion or spirituality, or going to related events, worship and prayer.

Sexual abuse. This includes but is not limited to; groping, molestation, unwanted touching, intimidating you to not refuse, rape, raping while unconscious (includes sleeping and being drunk, high or otherwise inebriated), grabbing, sexual harrassment, making you do sexual things you do not want to do, using intimidation and guilt to force you to make them orgasm, and more.

Neglect. This can include someone ignoring you for days, weeks, months, even years on end, locking you indoors so you cannot go grocery shopping to provide for yourself, not caring for you when you are disabled or unable to care for yourself when they agreed to, keeping you from taking basic care of yourself like showering, starving you, etc.

Financial abuse. This is when you are not given access to the money you make, or are refused funds needed to take care of yourself or pay your bills. It can also be when someone forces you to stay home and not get a job, or prevents you from working, so you have no financial freedom, therefore no way to escape.

Abuse can cause countless mental disorders such as depression, anxiety, PTSD, and even more if committed while the person is still a child. The child’s brain wires itself to accept this behavior as normal, in order to survive. However concequently, the child will be unable to form healthy relationships in the future.

 

I am sad to say that I have experienced abuse in all of these categories. It can destroy you beyond repair. Finding a normal, SAFE relationship is a challenge for years afterwards. It’s traumatizing going through this, and is almost impossible to break free. But, you must. Go to a shelter if you have nowhere else to go. It can save your life.


 

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Fickle Friends

Posted by Live Love Mom on December 8, 2014 at 7:35 AM Comments comments (0)

by: Stephanie McEndree


It happens to all of us. Mothers across the globe get pregnant, labor, and give birth. Somewhere along this amazing journey of creating life, friends begin to fall away. It may be just one friend, it may be many, but they seem to lose interest. The speak to us less and less. They stop returning our phone calls. They de-friend us on social media, or stay only to ignore everything, even your birthday.

 

These are what I like to call fickle friends. In my opinion, true friends shouldn’t stop being your friend just because you had a baby, or are having a baby. In fact, ideally, they will come to your place so you don’t have to tote the baby far away from the limitless supply of diapers and wipes that you have in the comfort of your own home. If anything, a true friend would support you in your new milestone in your life and be happy to accompany you along the way. In turn, when those friends reach milestones of their own, you also support and accompany them through their path. However, not all friendships are as strong as others.

 

Why does this happen? No one can exactly pinpoint a single reason why. It depends on your friend. Here are the main reasons I have found that ex-friends have brought up of why they fell away.

 

Too many baby pictures is often the excuse of the childless, especially men. For those who are infertile, lost a child, or lost custody of their children; it can be painful to see all of those happy times they wish they could have. In this case, it is understandable. The solution? Offer them to just click the “unfollow” button on facebook so they won’t see your posts unless they specifically click on your profile to look. If they are willing to maintain the friendship but it’s too hard to be around your baby, have a girl’s night out with them once in a while. Are you a single mom and can’t afford, or don’t want, even a few hours away from your baby? That is perfectly fine. Let the friendship go.

 

Nothing left in common is often a reason why girl friends drop off the face of the planet. If your friends are single with no children, they may still want to do child-free things such as go to nice restaurants, go to movies, go out dancing, go to a bar, even travel. Often new mothers will have to say “sorry I can’t, I breastfeed and every time I pump the baby is hungry,” or “sorry I have to take care of the baby and I have no babysitter.” With these repeated reasons, your friend feels like you aren’t available anymore so they stop asking. Your lives have taken on completely different paths; and that’s okay. They may just be career-oriented, or more interested in partying. If the differences cause arguments and stress between the two of you, move on. There is no use in hanging on if it just causes negativity.

 

Money can be an issue when your friends want to go out somewhere that costs money, which is nearly everywhere nowadays. You can’t afford many luxuries since your last dollars went to diapers, clothes, food and maybe formula for your baby. Your friends want to go clothes shopping but you’re still losing the baby weight so you don’t want to go just yet. Your friends started going to the gym but you literally gave birth last week. Life goes on; if they can’t wait for you or won’t let you join in a little late, let them go. A solution? Make compromises. Check out free things to do that are nearby; wine-tasting, street music, street art show, and more!

 

Conflict of schedule can also be an issue. Maybe your friend works nights but your baby only has daycare during the day. Maybe you both work days but you want to spend every second with your kids after work. Maybe the only days your friend is available, you have those doctor’s appointments for the kids. It sucks, but it happens. What can help is if the grandparents insist on taking the kids for a day, then you can spend time with your friends. Maybe daddy wants to be alone with the baby, so you can do something as simple as going grocery shopping together with your friend. If you both work at it hard enough, there will always be a loophole. Even if it’s just a 5 minute skype call once a month or a short convo once in a while!

 

Those who use you will be upset that you are no longer available to cater to them. You won’t be there to buy them drinks, give them rides, or buy them dinner. They become resentful, and move on to the next person who can benefit them. In this case, you are better off without this friend. Let them go, and never look back.

 

Whatever the reason, think of your child. Is the friend someone you would want in your child’s life? Are they really good people, who are just unsure how to keep in touch and maintain the friendship? If you answered yes, you can do your best to maintain the friendship. If not, the friendship’s end will have been for the best.


 

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When You Miscarry

Posted by Live Love Mom on May 24, 2012 at 8:50 AM Comments comments (0)

by: Stephanie McEndree


Pregnancy loss happens. Not many people talk about it, and some see it as a taboo subject. I am here to break the silence about that subject, and shed some light on what it’s like.

 

I found out I was pregnant on April Fool’s Day in 2012. After having a blood test confirm in at the hospital, I came home and did a home-pregnancy test. My fiancee and I at the time, were ecstatic. We had always wanted a child together, and this would be our first child ever.

 

Immediately, I went out and bought prenatal vitamins. I installed the a pregnancy tracking ticker, and a week by week progress app on my facebook. My mother bought me “What to expect when you’re expecting,” a book I read faithfully every day. I read specifically the information that pertained to the week of gestation I was in. I loved learning about everything. I loved comparing my little baby to whatever size fruit she was that week.

 

The first time I saw that ultrasound, I had tears in my eyes. The OB-GYN I had seen wanted to do a dating ultrasound, and so according to the ultrasound, the baby measured at 6 weeks 5 days. The heartbeat was at 121 beats per minute. The doctor said that everything looked normal.

 

I showed the photos to my then-fiancee. She was so happy! She would not stop gushing about those beautiful photos. She loved hearing the heartbeat with the fetal doppler that I bought. My belly grew big quickly, and I loved every bit of it. I went to yard sales and bought what I needed for the child; a bassinette, a stroller, baby clothes, and a newborn bath.

 

The wonder of becoming mothers consumed us. We read everything there was to know about being pregnant. We followed the baby’s development closely. In May, I went to an OB-GYN appointment at 10 weeks 4 days. I could not physically hear the heartbeat, but the doctor said the machine picked it up just fine. My baby’s heart would beat around 150 beats per minute.

 

In the morning of May 21st, 2012 when I was just a mere hours shy from being 12 weeks pregnant, I had a constant contraction that wouldn’t stop. I went to the bathroom and blood came out. Terrified, I called an ambulance. There in a hospital room I was examined, where the doctor told me he couldn’t find a heartbeat, but that my cervix was still closed. When he left, I realized that I was losing clots. A nurse came by and said it looked like a miscarriage. I began to cry, and I informed my family.

 

After nearly five hours of losing large amounts of clots and blood, I birthed my little baby. She was a tiny, 4-inch baby girl. I gave her a kiss and held her in my hand. Then, I was taken to ultrasound, where I knew the baby wouldn’t be there. The ultrasound technician and doctor agreed that I had lost the baby, that all there was left in my uterus was clots and placental remains. After an hour, I was still bleeding, so I had an emergency d&c to remove the placental remains.

 

I was put into a labor and delivery recovery room, which I found both disturbing yet comforting. Disturbing because in other rooms were mothers with their living children, and the room was surrounded by mother and child photos. Comforting, because I felt validated as a mother who gave birth, even if that child was so small, and didn’t survive. There was an angel of a nurse with me, a beautiful blonde, that listened to me express my sorrow and heartbreak. I never got her name, but I will always remember her kindness.

 

I was sent home. I brought my baby to be cremated, but she was so small that no ashes remained. I nevertheless carry a small urn symbolicly, and I had a funeral for her. I then planted a beautiful pink lilac tree at a sanctuary in Perth, Ontario so that it can grow like Rowan would have.

 

My then-fiancee and I still mourn our baby girl to this day. She will always have a special place in our hearts.

 

The pain of losing a baby is unlike any other in the world. It is the worst pain that exists. It is so terrible that there is no word for a parent who has lost a child, like there is for a widow or an orphan. Seeing women pregnant at the same time as you, have their babies, have plump and healthy bellies, makes you ache for your child. Phone calls from the hospital to schedule your 5 month ultrasound and to sign you up for prenatal classes, painful reminders. People expect you to move on, but the truth is, you never do.

 

I am grateful to have my two rainbow babies. I wonder what it would have been like to have all three of my babies here, to watch them play, teach eachother, learn together. I tell my children about their older sister, because I feel it’s important that they know. I still speak of Rowan, because her memory is all that is left of her.

 

If you have lost a child, remember that you are not alone. 1 in 4 women have lost a child to pregnancy loss. My hospital was kind enough to provide me with brochures and pamphlets for grief support. If you feel you need it, reach out and get help. You are mother to an angel….you carried one in your womb, and in your arms. You are beautiful.


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