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To the mama in the thick of it—it won’t be like this forever

Slowly but surely with time, everything will change.

To the mama in the thick of it—it won’t be like this forever

I am IN IT.

I'm totally 100% in the thick of it with three kids ages four and under. I recently said to someone how it feels like we're finally getting into a good groove of life now that we're out of the newborn stage again. We just celebrated my youngest daughter's first birthday and I was going on about how I've been feeling good about where we were.

And then, almost as soon as those words escaped my lips, things felt overwhelming again.

That's motherhood I guess.

The highs are high. Like waking up to the best kisses from the cutest 1-year-old who was placed in my bed by my hard-working husband (with a kiss from him, too) before he left for work. Like the magic that is snuggling with my 2-year-old. Like randomly hearing, "Mom, you're a really great mama" from my 4-year-old.

Some days I'm just in awe of this life I lead, and these three little girls I've created. Some days it all lines up—the good attitudes, the seamless plans, the cooperation—the happiness is abundant, the worries are few and the beauty of motherhood shines.

But then the lows are low. Like crying in the shower (a shower I hardly even have any energy for, but know will be good for my soul) after a day of shuffling the kids this way and that way, while my brain was checking things off one after the other, while my heart was pounding faster and faster each time I watched a fall or bump, while my anxiety increased with each scream or whine I heard.

Some days I don't know how I'm going to do it all. The weight of the world feels like it's crushing my shoulders. Some days I have to force myself to ask for help from someone because I feel like I'm drowning—and I desperately need their lifeline.

And most days I experience highs and lows. The ups and downs and zigs and zags happen in the span of hours, minutes even.

As you can see—I am so IN IT right now.

With a home and a mortgage and toys and loads and loads (and loads) of laundry.

With random paint splatterings on the wall and dirty clothes on the floor and—what the heck is this, anyway??

With the cleaning and the cooking and the figuring out how to get it all done in 24 hours.

With to-do lists and running mental lists of remembering and planning and fixing.

With a husband and a marriage and trying to find time together, trying to make time together.

With needing and craving more time with my kids and hating the busyness that takes me or my mind away from them.

I am IN IT.

With the anxiety and worry and stress. And the frustration and anger.

With the inadequacy and guilt and fear.

With the loneliness and weariness and sadness.

With the joy and the mess and the beauty.

With the awe and the gratitude and the happiness.

I am IN IT.

With the missed events and pictures without me to prove it.

With the "one day's" and the "future goals lists."

With the hustling and the burnouts.

With the late nights and the early mornings.

With the exhaustion and the appreciation.

With the pity parties and the heavy moments.

I am IN IT.

I'm in it so deep right now I've lost myself a little. I'm caring—physically, mentally, emotionally—for three tiny humans. I'm tending to my marriage. I am putting myself last. I am not making the time for myself that I deserve.

My eyes are wide open to these facts, and I don't plan on life being like this forever. I am aware and I am ready to work on finding myself again. And slowly but surely with time, I know I will.

This is where I need to be right now. And this is where I want to be.

I am IN IT with my heart. With my soul. With every fiber of my being.

And I will be back. And I will do the work to rediscover myself and reconnect with who I am and what that means to me. But right now, I'm IN IT.

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By its very nature, motherhood requires some lifestyle adjustments: Instead of staying up late with friends, you get up early for snuggles with your baby. Instead of spontaneous date nights with your honey, you take afternoon family strolls with your little love. Instead of running out of the house with just your keys and phone, you only leave with a fully loaded diaper bag.

For breastfeeding or pumping mamas, there is an additional layer of consideration around when, how and how much your baby will eat. Thankfully, when it comes to effective solutions for nursing or bottle-feeding your baby, Dr. Brown's puts the considerations of mamas and their babies first with products that help with every step of the process—from comfortably adjusting to nursing your newborn to introducing a bottle to efficiently pumping.

With countless hours spent breastfeeding, pumping and bottle-feeding, the editors at Motherly know the secret to success is having dependable supplies that can help you feed your baby in a way that matches lifestyle.

Here are 9 breastfeeding and pumping products to help you no matter what the day holds.

Customflow™ Double Electric Breast Pump

Dr. Brown's electric pump

For efficient, productive pumping sessions, a double electric breast pump will help you get the job done as quickly as possible. Quiet for nighttime pumping sessions and compact for bringing along to work, this double pump puts you in control with fully adjustable settings.

$159.99

Hands-Free Pumping Bra

Dr. Brown''s hands free pumping bra

Especially in the early days, feeding your baby can feel like a pretty consuming task. A hands-free pumping bra will help you reclaim some of your precious time while pumping—and all mamas will know just how valuable more time can be!

$29.99

Manual Breast Pump with SoftShape™ Silicone Shield

Dr. Brown's manual breast pump

If you live a life that sometimes takes you away from electrical outlets (that's most of us!), then you'll absolutely want a manual breast pump in your arsenal. With two pumping modes to promote efficient milk expression and a comfort-fitted shield, a manual pump is simply the most convenient pump to take along and use. Although it may not get as much glory as an electric pump, we really appreciate how quick and easy this manual pump is to use—and how liberating it is not to stress about finding a power supply.

$29.99

Nipple Shields and Sterilization Case

Dr. Brown's nipple shields

There is a bit of a learning curve to breastfeeding—for both mamas and babies. Thankfully, even if there are some physical challenges (like inverted nipples or a baby's tongue tie) or nursing doesn't click right away, silicone nipple shields can be a huge help. With a convenient carry case that can be sterilized in the microwave, you don't have to worry about germs or bacteria either. 🙌

$9.99

Silicone One-Piece Breast Pump

Dr. Brown's silicone pump

When you are feeding your baby on one breast, the other can still experience milk letdown—which means it's a golden opportunity to save some additional milk. With a silent, hands-free silicone pump, you can easily collect milk while nursing.

$14.99

Breast to Bottle Pump & Store Feeding Set

After a lifetime of nursing from the breast, introducing a bottle can be a bit of a strange experience for babies. Dr. Brown's Options+™ and slow flow bottle nipples were designed with this in mind to make the introduction to bottles smooth and pleasant for parents and babies. As a set that seamlessly works together from pumping to storing milk to bottle feeding, you don't have to stress about having everything you need to keep your baby fed and happy either.

$24.99

Washable Breast Pads

washable breast pads

Mamas' bodies are amazingly made to help breast milk flow when it's in demand—but occasionally also at other times. Especially as your supply is establishing or your breasts are fuller as the length between feeding sessions increase, it's helpful to use washable nursing pads to prevent breast milk from leaking through your bra.

$8.99

Breast Milk Storage Bags

Dr. Brown's milk storage bags

The essential for mamas who do any pumping, breast milk storage bags allow you to easily and safely seal expressed milk in the refrigerator or freezer. Dr. Brown's™ Breast Milk Storage Bags take it even further with extra thick walls that block out scents from other food items and feature an ultra secure lock to prevent leaking.

$7.99


Watch one mama's review of the new Dr. Brown's breastfeeding line here:

This article was sponsored by Dr. Brown's. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.

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