And then… Life takes a big crap

On your front porch! Metaphorically of course. One day you’re going about your life making tie dye onsies for your baby girl and your mother in law comes all the way to your house unannounced  and you see her walking up to your door, and you think “hmmm, she didn’t even call before”. Then you think the worst… And then it is… Not the Absolute worst. But it’s pretty fucking close.
What my mother in law came to tell me was that my parents and youngest siblings were in a car accident. They had left to spend a week in Baja before Nick, 12 and Alex, 16 went back to school. We have been going to Baja for about 20 years. We’ve been all the way to the very tip of the Baja peninsula, so it’s not like my dad isn’t an experienced driver down there. It’s just one of those stupid things; the ones that change your perspective, your relationships, your life.
I’m really grateful it was Rita (my mom in law) who came to tell me. She didn’t tell me to calm down or not to cry. She just let me freak out. As my brother in law drove us to the hospital my mom was at I called everyone I could to get information. I learned the accident happened 2 days earlier and it took them that long to get across the border. I learned my dad and nick had a lot of scrapes, gashes, and bruises but they were ok. My mom was admitted and shattered her shoulder, fractured her back and had deep lacerations. My heart got heavy and the blood rushed to my head when they told me my sister Alex was the worst. Something was wrong with her back and she couldn’t walk. To say that our family was changed forever is an understatement.
It’s been a month, to the day exactly since the accident. Since then my mom had shoulder replacement surgery. She’s recovering. She doesn’t let anything slow her down and will be back at it in time for tamale season (kidding, but I hope so, I know nothing about making them) Alex has a much longer road ahead of her. She fractured both her sacrum and L4 and had to have screws put in to stabilize the fracture and clear bone fragments that were pressing and obstructing her nerves. As of today she can transfer from her bed to a wheel chair, sit in it for up to 4 hours, take a shower in a shower chair, put on her own clothes, and is beginning to move her right foot more. These are the things we are celebrating.
So life took a big metaphorical shit on my family’s metaphorical front porch. At first I was very angry. Angry that my mom is going through all of this, that my dad carries guilt for being the driver, that Nick can’t emotionally deal with it, and that Alex hasn’t been home in a month… Now I am just grateful. That I am visiting with them in hospital beds and not wishing I had said “I love you” before I lost them. Who cares if they are a little banged up, it gives them character🙂

The Turning Tide

I have been so busy trying to get our new place in order that I haven’t had a chance to update this as often. We moved from my husband’s hometown of Rancho Cucamonga to Redlands and we are loving it. We loving having more room (we went from one to three bedrooms) and a yard for our Dusty to run around in. We moved when Juliet was 3 weeks old so it has been a slow process organizing and finding a place for everything, the term “everything is harder with a baby” is ringing very true for us right now. I have big plans for our new home. I’ve never decorated a placed I lived in so I am excited to do it in this house and really make it feel like home. I’ll make updates and post some before and afters as I work on each room.


Juliet is now 3 months! well actually about 3 1/2 months… She has developed so much in a short amount of time. I feel like the infant stage is over and we are getting to the fun stuff. She learned how to roll over so now every chance she gets she’s on her tummy which is making tummy time a lot more fun, or at least more tolerable. She’s holding things in her hand more and brings them up to her mouth. About a month ago she woke up from her morning nap and started this crazy cat/bird squawking. We realized she had found her voice and this lasted about a week, it was very entertaining. Now she babbles and does the meow/squawk but not as intense. Thank goodness.

I began teaching her baby signing. I kind of feel silly doing it but I am excited to see her learn new things so we are going to stick to it. I am starting with basics like mom, dad, milk, and “all done” for now to see how it goes. I’ll keep you all updated on how we are doing with this.

She finally took a bottle too. This is one thing that we really struggled with aside from her acid reflux. We didn’t introduce a bottle until about 2 months and it took a few weeks to find one that she would take. It was terrible watching her go from confused to flat out screaming as Dave tried to feed her.

I would say Dave and I are doing pretty well in our new roles. It is crazy to see where our lives have taken us in the last year and a half. I’ll be posting more on that as well as my new adventures in getting rid of baby weight, becoming a working mom, and finding my place in the roller derby world. I’m excited for the changes the next few months will bring.

Cues & Coos

Those are the two things that describe my first two months in my new role as mommy. I am learning so much about my little lady. I learned the hungry cry (which by the way shouldn’t really be happening because its more of a “I am starving” cry) from the overstimulated cry, or my not so favorite tummy ache cry. The first month was all about sleep. That was our priority around the Tirado house. Dave needed his sleep for work, Juliet was learning to sleep at night, and I was trying to get it anywhere I could. In the middle of this we moved to a new town and have been trying to get settled. There is a good amount to explore and lots of local establishments I am excited to start supporting.

The second month has been filled with cooing. I love the sound of Juliet smiling and “talking” to her dad in the next room. The two of them always light up when they see each other. A few days ago she giggled for the first time and it was the best sound in the world. Better than any song I’ve heard. I could listen to it all day. Two months also meant Juliet went for her check up and that also meant vaccines!
I was looking into the possibility of spreading them out and in the end I just had her get them all. It was terrible and I never want to hear that horrible cry again… But, guess what. We get to do it all again in 2-4 months. Yay. It wasn’t that bad after her crying stopped and the next couple days we just cuddled and slept a lot.
I don’t really have routine for her other than a bath at night and getting her to go to sleep by 9pm. This month I’m going to get her to sleep in her crib more and we need to get her to take a bottle since I’ll be returning to work part time in late August.
I’m so excited for the developments she making. She’s trying to roll over and her hand coordination has got a lot better; she’s been sucking on her hand and fingers. She got a playmat from her Tia so hopefully we’ll hear more of this happy baby’s giggles.

Milking It

I have never… Ever… Been comfortable having big breast. When I was 10 and I started developing I thought please god let these things deflate, they are completely useless. Man was I wrong.
At 10 years old I did not know what my body was capable of…

I knew from the moment I was pregnant I was going to breastfeed. I never though twice or had to weigh the pros and cons. I watched my mom do it with my younger siblings and I thought it was the norm. What I did not know is it would be the hardest thing I would do in my life. I took the class before giving birth, I listened to the nurse after Juliet was born but I still struggled.
I found that breastfeeding was not the norm and many people consider it “crunchy” (by the way, why do we have to label everything? that’s a whole different post) It’s normal now a days to give babies formula and never even attempt to breastfeed. That is crazy! To me, anyway.

So the first couple days before my milk came, I panicked. The nurses were some what helpful but most of the time they would latch her for me. I panicked so much that I even sent my mom; my level headed, baby go to, mom into a panic. I panicked because I felt like she wasn’t getting anything, like I was doing it wrong. Then my nipples started to crack and bleed, and… I panicked. I thought “that’s it, it’s over”. By Juliet’s 3rd day of life I was a hot hormonal mess with some seriously jacked up nipples and a very concerned husband. That night my milk came in and I felt more confident but my nipples were still bleeding and raw and I knew I was doing something wrong. We took her for her first check up that week and I was sent to lactation for some help. Sharon, the lactation consultant was my saving grace. She taught me to hold Juliet in a football hold and to start soaking my nips in warm Epsom salt water followed by lanolin ointment twice a day. I wanted to hug and kiss this woman for her help. I went home and did as she said. Within a day I was nursing my baby girl with so much ease that I looked forward to feeding her. I felt so happy that this little being was getting everything she needed from me.


Two months into mommyhood and I have it pretty much down. I’m not afraid to nurse in public, that’s how confident I am in what I am doing. I never thought I would get to that point. I plan to nurse for a year and I would even like to become a milk donor, I work in a hospital and there is a donation program for their NICU so I’m going to look into that.

My simple advice to new moms is do not give up. Really it’s that simple, it’s going to get easier. The first couple weeks are almost hell, almost. Also, get yourself some reliable resources and support. I go on the La Leche League website and forums a lot for advice and information.

I posted some links in the links page of my favorites. Happy milking.