My name is Fernanda, mother of two: a 4-year old boy (Lucas) and a 1-year old girl (Isabella). I am married to my college sweetheart, Daniel. We have been married for 10 years. I got my undergraduate degree in business and graduate degree in finance and worked for almost a decade in investment banking.
I couldn’t wait to become a mother and when I got pregnant I felt like the luckiest woman on the planet. During those long nine months, I read 4 pregnancy books, decorated every detail of the nursery, prepared a detailed birth plan and even had my hospital bag ready 1 month before my due date. I really thought I was in control and totally prepared for everything that was about to come: labor, newborn, motherhood… But boy, was I wrong! My labor was not as easy as I anticipated; it took 18 hours and the recovery was extremely painful due to certain labor complications. As I recovered, I had multiple breastfeeding issues including 4 mastitis, engorgement, plugged ducts, and the list goes on. Breastfeeding was very important for me and even with these complications, I did not give up. With the help of a lactation consultant and a local breastfeeding support group, I was able to nurse my baby until he was about 8 months.
I was also not prepared for colic. My son cried non-stop for hours. One day, he cried for 8 straight hours (he would only stop while nursing), that’s when I decided it was time to take him to the pediatrician. The doctor put me on a dairy free diet (she thought he could be allergic to milk protein), changed his formula to hypoallergenic, put him on reflux medication, and told me to see a lactation consultant. I did everything she suggested and he got a little better, but he was still extremely fussy. We could not take him to restaurants, to public places, to friends’ houses. I spent hours on the Internet researching ways to soothe him. I was so desperate and lost. My friends had perfect babies, or what they called “good” “easy” babies. I never felt so alone in my life. I felt like I stopped taking care of myself. Looking back, I am convinced I had postpartum depression. Postpartum depression is serious and a lot of moms like me are in denial about their condition or don’t realize that what they are feeling is simply not normal; they need to seek help. Asking for help was so difficult for me. I always thought I was super woman and could do it all. I should have asked for help.
As months went by, my son got better. We managed to get back to our “normal” lives and be social again. Until this day, he needs a lot of attention and we’ve had to deal with a lot of tantrums. I don’t think he was ever allergic to milk, or had reflux, or any other health problems — I really think I had a colicky high need baby.
After becoming a mother, my priorities completely changed. I learned that I could not control everything and that motherhood was the most difficult job out there. Difficult, but extremely rewarding. Motherhood made me stronger, less judgmental, more emotional, more compassionate– it made me a better person. After Lucas came Isabella, my little angel. After having her I realized that what I experienced with Lucas was an extreme case. She was not the perfect baby (I don’t think there is a perfect baby out there), but she was close. She was probably what my friends called a “good” “easy” baby. More than ever I felt the need to help parents struggling with their fussy babies, with sleep exhaustion, and desperately searching for soothing solutions. This was my motivation to create FefisBaby. There is nothing better than helping parents simply by sharing my experience.
I dedicate FefisBaby to Lucas, my inspiration.