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Editor of The Motherload. Top Writer in Parenting. Her BSc. and RRT designations led to a fulfilling NICU career prior to becoming a mother.

It was part of the job description, but that didn’t lessen the heartbreak.

Photo by Aditya Romansa on Unsplash

Trigger warning: this story is about newborn loss. It discusses personal experience from the healthcare perspective but involves details of end-of-life care.

I am a proud Respiratory Therapist (RT).

I worked in the largest Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) in our province (I’m Canadian). The sickest newborn babies from up to 1000 kilometers (700 miles) away were flown to our center for our expert care. And it is the sickest of the sick and the smallest of the small who require a Respiratory Therapist.

On a daily basis, my job was to breathe life into these tiny, helpless beings. Though…


Motherhood

Even though his contributions make me a better mom.

Photo by Joes Valentine on Unsplash

My husband does the laundry. No one asks him to, and often no one thanks him for doing it. But somehow, every week, our clothes, our kids' clothes, the towels, the sheets; they all get cleaned. And with each load, the jealousy grows.

Throwing the piles into the washing machine is definitely the easy part. From there, he sorts them into mounds of hang dry vs. dryer items, hangs the clothes, folds the towels and clothes, and puts the fresh sheets on the beds.

A couple of times per week, I walk into our bedroom to find a tidy little…


Let’s just take a second to appreciate our achievements.

A woman in her undergarments kneeling beside a bed, rests her head on the mattress in defeat.
A woman in her undergarments kneeling beside a bed, rests her head on the mattress in defeat.
Photo by Sydney Sims on Unsplash

Lately, I have been struggling. Struggling with exhaustion. Struggling feeling overwhelmed. Struggling with mom guilt.

When I had the opportunity to talk to someone about how I’ve been feeling, there was no shortage of content in areas where I feel like I am failing. “You are dealing with a lot, however, you still have two happy and healthy children,” she said, “what are some of the things you are doing well?” We sat there in silence.

Why is it so hard to recognize our victories and so easy to dwell on our losses?

It wasn’t that I felt uncomfortable openly…


The benefits of formula can’t be ignored.

A mother embracing her baby while feeding her a bottle of formula.
A mother embracing her baby while feeding her a bottle of formula.
Photo by Lucy Wolski on Unsplash

With the birth of our second daughter, I went into ‘breast is best’ auto-pilot.

It was not easy, but it was just what I thought I had to do. We suffered through crackled nipples, the inability to tend to my older daughter during feeds, and hours upon hours of cluster feeding in the evenings. We persevered until we could no longer ignore the idea that she might not be getting enough to eat, that I might not have enough supply to meet her demands.

Once I had a taste of the flexibility one simple bottle of formula offered, there was…


Volume 2 — June 2021

Our second month was a shocking success!

As our story archives continue to grow, so does our readership! The Motherload publication is adding new followers daily and has now logged over 20,000 reading minutes in the last 30 days.

May Highlights

Our loyal and engaged readers logged some serious time on The Motherload this past month. Our top three stories for reader engagement were:

I Lost my Child at the River by Donna Sheehy

Proxy Mommy by Laura Culberg- Welcoming Opposites

4 Reasons You Should Absolutely NOT Homeschool by Sara Barnes

I’d like to give additional recognition…


PREGNANCY

Another pregnancy, another farewell.

A woman lays in white sheets, writing a letter.
A woman lays in white sheets, writing a letter.
Photo by Ava Sol on Unsplash

Dear,
The version of me I love the most,

You know who you are. The fun-loving, easy-going, and charismatic person you are when surging hormones and exhaustion haven’t beaten you down. The person you are outside of pregnancy and post-partum. The woman you identify as outside of being a mother.

As with our two previous pregnancies, I know you will slowly drift away from me. Those two pink lines your final boarding call before departure. I wanted to take a moment to make a pledge to you before you go. You are what makes me whole, you are who my…


MOTHERHOOD

Admittedly, I’ve become a bare minimum mom.

Young boy sits between his parents holding a baby ultrasound image.
Young boy sits between his parents holding a baby ultrasound image.
Photo by Christian Bowen on Unsplash

Raising one (or more) children while pregnant with another is a Herculean feat.

In the past, my two children under three would keep me on my toes, swearing under my breath, and left me exhausted by 7 pm. Now, however, we are expecting a third. During this first trimester, I’ve realized that parenting my living, breathing children has never been more difficult.

Every day I am struggling like never before and it is making me question my ability to raise a third child.

First trimester fatigue is debilitating. I was well aware that it was coming, but that doesn’t make…


PARENTING

In my case, the debate has been settled.

Photo by Charlein Gracia on Unsplash

My husband and I have always dreamed of a bigger family, but lately, we find ourselves questioning whether we should make that our reality.

We have two daughters, two happy, healthy, and perfect little girls. They have fulfilled us in a way that only a parent knows possible. We are overjoyed with the family we have, but our dream was three children.

When it comes to having another child, our heads say one thing but our hearts say another.

According to our heads, we are done having children.

Things have settled in our life as a family of four. The…


Today, ‘The Motherload’ hit 100 followers and beyond.

Photo by Guille Álvarez on Unsplash

This community is nothing short of amazing!

Twenty-seven days ago on a whim, I created our publication. The Motherload came to fruition with the goal of uniting moms around the world through shared experiences, valuable information, and inclusivity.

We have quickly grown into a large group of first-class mothers. Mothers who are strong. Mothers who are intelligent. Mothers who are incredibly supportive.

Our mission is to provide our followers with ‘the motherload of motherhood information’ and we are well on our way to doing that. We have published dozens of stories, the majority of which have been chosen for distribution…


Volume 1 — May 2021

First of all, let me just say, wow! In the three weeks since this publication was founded, I am astonished by how far it has come. I am so proud to have my name share space among the list of writers in this group. Women who are highly educated, creative, genuine, sensitive, compassionate, and driven. Women who are mothers.

Thank you all for joining me on this journey to make motherhood information accessible and free from judgment.

April Highlights

Our publication was founded on April 9th. Within one week we had 28 followers, 20 writers, and 12 published stories. Of the 12…

Erin Hendriksen

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