Monday, September 22, 2014

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

New Nursing Job

Today I made it official.  I decided to leave my part-time night shift oncology nursing job and take on a new job as a full time day shift clinic nurse.  I will be doing advise nursing in the ophthalmology clinic.

Making this decision was very difficult.  I love working in oncology.  I learned a lot and I love the people I work with.  It has been very emotionally draining to be at work.  Working with really really sick and dying patients was taking a toll on me.  Plus the lack of sleep from working nights.  I wanted to have a normal life.

When my sister who is my sitter for my baby decided to take a full time job, I decided maybe it is time to make the change too.  To be honest I was not sure what I was getting into.  I know I wanted to have a day shift job, but I want sure if I wanted to leave my unit.  I applied to a handful of positions.  I had a callback for 4!!!

I interviewed for 3 positions: clinic, care coordinator/case manager, nurse reviewer.  I finally told my boss about my applications.  She was disappointed to hear I was considering to leave.  I was thinking of staying and waiting for a day shift on my unit to open, but realize I did not want to continue giving chemo and deal with stress and drama.  My biggest reason to leave was for me.  I was thinking about when I was pregnant and how high my blood pressure was from the stress of work and  nights.  I have a family now and if I want to be around for them and have more babies I need to stop working here!!!

I received an offer for all 3 positions.  I was torn to which one I should get!!!  I also got a call back to interview for the breast cancer care coordinator.    I decided not to interview at this time.  I examined the pro and cons of each jobs and decided it would be better to take the clinic job.  I would rather deal with traffic because it is farther away from home so that I can I can be on day shift, Monday to Friday, some Saturday on, holidays off, same pay and protected by nursing labor contract with full time benefits for medical dental vacation and sick pay.

It is bittersweet to leave however I am looking forward to the change.  I am looking forward to the new opportunity.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

How does a mommy balance it all?

How do you balance taking care of a baby, cleaning, cooking, working and above all save money?  I work part-time so I work 3-4 days which mean I get 3-4 days off.  My days off goes by so fast.  I need to figure out how you mommies do it.

Looking back at my grandma and mommy, it is definitely hard to balance it all.  My mom worked 3 jobs one point of her life to put my sister and I in preschool.  My mom would work full time her day job, part time evening shift and on the weekend.  My mom or dad would drop us off to school.  After school we went to after school program then my mom would pick us up and drop us off at my grandparent's house so she could go to her evening job.  I spent a lot of time at my grandparent's house with my cousins.  I was lucky to have a great grandma who cooked a home cook Filipino meal every night.  My dad would then pick us up from our grandparent's house to go home.  On the weekend when my mom was not working her full time job she spent it doing laundry, cleaning.  If she cook it was a big pot that could last a couple days.  As children, my sister and I had to help do chores around the house since our parents were so busy.  We were good kids...

Me and my sister were talking about how this and I am trying to figure out solutions to making life easier.

1.  Cleaning schedule.  On my days off instead of spending all day cleaning I will break up tasks during the week so that I am still able to go out and hang out.

Clean Bottle and dishes
Wipe down kitchen and table surfaces
Sweep kitchen and carpet

Days off
Day 1: Laundry and bathroom 

Day 2: vacuum, mop, dust, doors and light switch

*Once a month 
Clean out fridge
Sanitize Trash can
Organize mail and receipts 
Ac and dryer vents 

*Once a year clean
January: Organize personal files
organize cabinets, drawers, closets
Blinds and Curtains 
Light fixtures 
Stains off Carpet 
hard to reach 
Windows and outdoor
Toss expired medicine and foods
December: Donate clothes 

2. Budgeting.  The hardest thing to do, but since I got a new car and after my tax return is done I can pay off some bills and figure out how to free up some unnecessary spending.

3.  Meal planning, freezer and slow cooker meals.

4.  Continue to work out... haha hope I can.

Saturday, February 8, 2014

New family car

I am so happy I was able to trade in my BMW for a 2014 Rav4.  I am super happy with this trade.  It is spacious and a perfect family car!!!  I love the color, the interior and backup camera!!!

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Lets do it again, the GAR

So I signed up for the Great Aloha Run.  I'm a little nervous since I'm a new mom and wondering how I will schedule runs/exercise, chores, breastfeeding, pumping and now work.  It has been a challenge trying to juggle the new life changes.

My goals for this GAR
1. run in the morning before my BF goes to work and while my sister is here babysitting baby
2. walk daily with dogs and baby or with my sister and the babies
3. when not walking try to do exercise video, Jillian Micheal's 30 day shed

Before I gave birth, I weight about 185 pounds.  I am now 166-169 pounds.  I need a little push, so hopefully I can get down to my pre-pregnancy weight of 159-164.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas

This week we have decided to stop using the shield.  I took a chance and we have been quite successful.  She has been sucking better.  Only problems is she spits up a lot, but not to worry she pee and poop a lot!  Have a great Holiday!!!

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Breastfeeding update: 8 weeks

After 9 weeks of maternity leave I finally went back to work.  It is so bittersweet.  I would love to stay home with my baby but we gotta work.  Thank God I'm not full time anymore.  My hours at work is enough and I still have time to spend with my baby.

My sister has been babysitting and she has been a great sitter.  She is very patient with her.  When I come home from work I will breastfeed or pump, spend time with baby, exercise, eat then sleep.  Only problem I have since I have been back to work is the breastfeeding and pumping routine.  I have a oversupply of milk because of the extra pumping I have been doing.  My freezer has the proof of my pumping efforts.  I have a good stockpile of milk since baby doesn't need supplement milk.  We give her a bottle a day with her vitamins or if we are out in public.

My fear was when I went back to work that my milk supply would decrease or baby would not want to breastfeed.  My supply is not going anywhere as my baby enjoys breastfeeding.  So I only pump for work and exclusively breastfeeds when baby and I are together.  I have been more engorge more often since we are not pumping as much as before.  So hopefully my supply will regulate and I won't have to pump just to relieve the engorgement.  

I am now less shy to breastfeed in public.  I have breastfeed in the car, dressing room and restaurant.  The breastfeeding cover is my best friend!!!  Thanks God I'm surround by my family who supports breastfeeding!!!

We have been determine to keep breastfeeding even if it is with the shield. The shield has saved us from giving up so soon.  Now that I'm back at work hopefully we can maintain the milk supply  so she can breastfeed for 6 months or more and stop pumping extra.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Breastfeeding and pumping

It's been 6 weeks since Jazlyn has been born.  Since she was a late preterm I have been trying to breastfeed but her latch is sometimes good and sometimes bad.  Since she was in NICU I did not spend too much time breastfeeding since we only had 30 minutes outside the isolate for feeds.  She had feeding problems: her suck was weak, frequent spit up, constipation.  She had a feeding tube place.  I tried to breastfeed then supplement with formula till my breastmilk came in and gave her via bottle or tube.  I became obsess with pumping since I felt this was the only way to help her get better!!!

The lactation consultants were very helpful.  They guided me with positioning and latching.  The problem was I have flat nipples.  They gave me a nipple shield to use.  This helped with latching since I was starting to have crack and sore nipples, engorgement and mastitis on the left breast.  I got very sick and feverish for about 3 days.  I felt like I wanted to stop breastfeeding.  I kept pumping to help maintain my supply.  

So it got worst before it got better and I wanted to give up many times.  I was disappointed that baby and I was not latching but I kept trying.  At first I would only breastfeed for 15 minutes then offer expressed milk in the bottle then pump for about 15 minutes. This process was so long.  I felt like I could not get anything  done!!!  

As she got stronger she was able to suck better and stay on the breast longer to get her full feed from there without supplementing.  We still used the shield.  I would try to go without it but latching is still not so great.  She is content after her feed.  Poops and pees a lot!!!  I would keep pumping after feeds to have a good stockpile of milk for when I go back to work.  Baby feeds every 1-3 hours.  At night she can go 3-5 hours.   I have a oversupply of milk right now so I have to pump or I will get engorge.  I try to simultaneously pump and feed to save time.  

Breastfeeding in public has been interesting.  I have breastfeed in a fitting room, car and in a restaurant.  I have a pumped in the car.  It's been awkward but gotta do it.

By 5 weeks of age we offered her the pacifier.  At first I tried to offer it but she did not seem interested.  Then we tried again and she seem to like it.  I felt really guilty because I was afraid she would like it too much and have nipple confusion.  But she still likes breastfeeding with the shield so no problems there.  It's been a life saver on her fussy days!

Breastfeeding and pumping is not easy but I kept doing it.  It's very tiring plus you need a lot of patience.  Now that I will go back to work we will see how breastfeeding and pumping will go.

Products I use and love

Medela Symphony - rent monthly from insurance
Medela Double Ease - borrow from family
Avent double breast pump
Avent Comfort manual pump
Medela nipple shield  
Lasinoh lanolin cream 
Lasinoh breastmilk storage bag
Avent nursing care breast set
Johnson & Johnson nursing pad
Nuk nursing pad
Simple wishes hands free pump bra
Medela Easy Expressions bustier
Avent Classic bottles
Avent microwave steam sterilizer - save time from boiling
Gerber burp cloth - big and thick!
Thermos Raya lunch bag
Fit and Fresh cool cooler slim lunch ice pack
Thermos mug
Uddercover nursing cover