The Motherhood Project: Sarah

“My goal is to let Clair just become who she is without me intervening a whole lot.”

Name:Sarah Rasmussen | Child: Clair Olivia

Did you enjoy your pregnancy?: Oh boy. Pregnancy wasn’t the easiest thing in the world for me. I wasn’t bed ridden, thank goodness, but I did not feel good for most of my pregnancy. It was also really hard for me to adjust to the changes my body went through physically. At the beginning of my pregnancy I went up at least a cup size and by the end I was up by 2 cup sizes! That was extremely hard for me to deal with because I have never been this chesty in my whole life.

How was your delivery experience?: Delivery was an absolute heavenly experience. Labor, on the other hand, was hell. I went into labor on Saturday at 3 am and didn’t deliver Clair until Monday at 12:23 pm. All of that time in between was labor pain every 3-6 minutes apart. Sometimes it was go up to 10 mins apart, but it was constant labor. I didn’t sleep more than 3 hours during those 2 days and I went to the hospital 3 times before being admitted. For whatever reason I was stuck at a 2 cm. By pure mercy they finally admitted me and gave me an epidural. I progressed really fast after that and when it came to deliver I was surprised at how peaceful I felt. The lights were dimmed. My midwife was sitting at the edge of the bed and I had Levi holding one leg while my mom held the other. Even though it was obviously work to push baby girl out, I felt empowered, courageous and strong as I helped Clair come into this world. I couldn’t help but think, “Hey this is hard for Clair too and she’s working as hard as I am.” And in that aspect delivery truly was a bonding experience for me and baby Clair.

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Whats your biggest struggle when it comes to being a mom?: With only a month’s worth of experience as a mother I would say that the biggest struggle I have faced as a mom is letting go of trying to see Clair as problem to be fixed and see her more as a person to be enjoyed. Let me explain what I mean by that. It seems like mothers, especially in the American culture, spend hours upon hours reading books and articles on how to fix certain things about their children such as sleeping schedule, eating schedule, awake time, etc.. Since Clair has joined my family I have felt myself constantly focusing on how to get her on a good schedule, how to help her eat at the times I want to her, how to get her to sleep through the night, and even to get her to suck on the pacifier I want her to suck on. (haha) The other day I had the thought “You’re not taking time to observe HER.” In that moment I realized that Clair knows what is best for her. She knows how long she needs to sleep and how long she needs to eat. Instead of me trying to control her I should just ENJOY and OBSERVE her. Since that realization I’ve been working on letting go of my want for control and just enjoying Clair for how she is-an adorable spunky person that God has given to me to enjoy.

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What is your parenting style?: Before giving birth I read the book “Bringing Up Bebe” and it blew my mind to learn how the French parent their children! Their kids are very well behaved and eat everything placed on their plates. If you want a good read, I highly recommend this book. It’s not a parenting guide, it’s just a true story about an American woman’s experience living in France and observing the way they parent. So, my parenting style derives from what I learned from the French. My goal is to let Clair just become who she is without me intervening a whole lot. I’m not really as concerned about stimulating her all the time or having her be above and beyond the learning curve, I am more concerned about her having time to enjoy life and learn at her own pace.

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What is the favorite part of the day with your child?: This might sound weird, but I LOVE night feedings. Yes I am tired and yes it makes me feel like a crazy person to not be getting sleep, but our night feedings have turned into sleepovers on the couch. I spend most of my night on the couch because I will fall asleep with Clair in between feedings and then wake up and feed her again. It’s the best. I love hearing her little moans in her sleep and cuddling with her. It’s honestly the best and has kept my spirits up even when I am SO TIRED.

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Who is an inspiration to you when it comes to motherhood?: My mother has always been an inspiration to me of what a mother should be. She gave birth to 7 kids in 8 years and I have always found her selflessness and love for children so inspiring! I didn’t grow up with a love for babysitting or anything like that so I always thought I would never be able to be a mother like my mom. I still don’t think I could ever be as amazing as my mom, but since having Clair I finally understand how my mom was able to love all of us so individually and perfectly. Loving your own child is so innate!

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Advice for fellow moms who need a boost?: My little piece of advice is something that I have to keep reminding myself on the daily. Let yourself feel the way that you need to feel. I remember during pregnancy that I felt really bad about myself because I wasn’t super excited to be pregnant. Everyone would ask me if I was super excited and I didn’t know how to reply or I just said what they wanted to hear because I thought that was the expectation-to be excited. I felt really anxious to be a mom and honestly felt sad for a little bit. Not because I didn’t want to pregnant, I just felt sad. There wasn’t any rhyme or reason to it. The same thing happened when I had Clair bear. For the first couple of weeks I just felt sad and I cried a lot. Not because I didn’t want Clair or regretted having her or anything crazy like that. I just needed to feel sad for a bit and after those first couple weeks I again felt completely normal. So my little tidbit of wisdom is that it’s okay to feel the way that you are feeling as a mom. Let yourself feel and don’t let yourself think that you “should” be feeling a different way. Sadness isn’t a sign that you don’t love your child or that you are a bad mother. It’s simply an emotion that needs to be felt sometimes for you body to adjust to the changes of life.

Favorite place to shop for yourself and your child?: I love boutiques! My favorite local boutique to shop for myself and Clair bear is Soel Boutique in Provo. I love that they sell products from smaller local business in Utah. It’s a little bit pricy so my next favorite place is Called to Surf, right next door to Soel. Called to Surf is a bit more reasonable and they also sell products from small local business. I just bought the most ADORABLE bow for Clair there. I also love their jewelry because it is reasonably priced and super cute

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(Lou Lou & Co bow)

I am also starting to become obsessed with online shopping for both me and Clair bear. I recently discovered Lou Lou and Co and am absolutely obsessed with their head wraps and bows.

Another side note: A lot of businesses that I follow on Instagram sell their products at The Baby Cubby in Lindon. If you haven’t been there, you MUST check it out. Again, a bit pricy, but so stinking cute.

Favorite product for yourself and your child?: One product that I can’t live without as a new mommy has been a nursing cover! I have the floral Covered Goods nursing cover and it has been a LIFE SAVER. Lets be real, it’s not super reasonable to have to leave the room or go out to the car every single time you need to nurse and you are around people. The nursing cover has saved my life because I can whip it over my shirt and keep one hand out. It does not fall off like a blanket would and it is breathable for Clair. As far as a product for Clair bear, the DockATot has been an amazing investment. Yes it is expensive, but it has been super worth it for us. We live in a one bedroom apartment so her crib is in our living room in a tiny little nook area. When Levi and I want to watch a movie we just put her in her DockATot in our bedroom and she is able to sleep without being disturbed. It’s also great for day trips to Nana’s house. I just throw it in the car and she has her bed with her anywhere she goes. Defiantly a good investment for you mommies!

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How has being a mom changed your life: This biggest change I have seen in my life is that my heart is so full as a mother! Like I’ve mentioned before I was completely terrified to be a mother because I knew my life with Levi would change so much. I was also just so unsure of my capability to be a mom and to love the life of a mom. When I met Clair it felt like my heart expanded and was softened. I have felt so much more meaning come into my life. I have felt so much gratitude come into my heart. My life is just full of much more Clair-ity (get it?). It’s true that I’m not able to just go to the movies whenever I want or to stay up late with girlfriends or even with my husband for that matter. But I wouldn’t trade this fullness of heart for those things. I’m so happy to be the mother of Clair bear.

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*If you have anyone you’d like to nominate to be featured on the blog (yourself included) send me their email or phone number and I will contact them/you! ceeceesparkles@gmail.com

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