Update: Life As We Know It
Hello! I owe you all a quick update on Life As We Know It. I originally wrote a draft post that I never published at two weeks postpartum, and I can’t believe now at 3.5 weeks how much different life is already from that post! Such is life with a newborn, I suppose. Here’s a quick round-up!
Birth Story: I’m not writing a birth story but I know people are sometimes curious, so here’s a quick synopsis. My entire labor & delivery lasted about 6 hours. My water broke at 10:00pm with no contractions (and in the bathroom, no less…hooray for no clean-up!). Contractions started on the way to the hospital around 10:45ish. Got to the hospital at 11, upstairs to L&D by 12:30, epidural at 1:00am, ready to push at 4:00am. Pushed for about 45 minutes, and he was out! He came out ghostly white and was having some trouble breathing (initial Apgar score was 5). So, they called the RT for extra suctioning…about half an hour later I was holding him! His second Apgar score was a much better 8.
Yeah…the newborn outfit we brought for him to go home in? HUGE on him. Like, he is almost four weeks old now and is JUST starting to fit newborn clothes properly. Luckily, he is gaining like a champ! He was back up to birth weight at our first pediatrician appointment two days after we got home (5 days old), and has finally breached the 8 pound mark.
Recovery: Ok, if you don’t hate me enough for having a short labor & delivery and having my baby early, you are allowed to hate me now…I had no tears, stitches, hemorrhoids, or any of the other typical issues related to having a baby. The nurses remarked both days we were in the hospital that I was definitely having the easiest time of anyone on the floor. I was able to shower, shave, etc. both days, and never had any issues using the bathroom. Aside from some sore muscles from pushing, physically I felt pretty normal after delivery. Now, 3.5 weeks later, I am definitely feeling just fine and I have no residual bleeding left.
Family Photo at Thanksgiving at my parents’ house!
Mentally, though? Wow. Those post-partum hormone drops are NO JOKE. I feel like the books and blogs and such just gloss over this but WOW is it an extreme adjustment. I was a mess for about two weeks, and had a lot of “What in the F did we do?!” thoughts. I felt very anxious and I cried a lot. I’m not afraid to admit that the newborn days, while precious, are really hard. But every day gets better and better so I know we won’t always be so sleep deprived and feel so amateur. And I am definitely enjoying my time at home with the little one. He is so darn cute and we just love him so much! I can’t believe how much he changes every day.
Breastfeeding: Hands down, the hardest thing I’ve ever done. It is SO HARD, y’all. The first two weeks were pure hell. First, Little Man wouldn’t latch. He was so tiny at birth (5lbs 14ounces) and he had a lot of lanugo and other preemie qualities that they suspect he was actually late pre-term (meaning my due date was off). Little guys like him often have trouble latching, so I spent a lot of time with the lactation consultant in the hospital. Eventually, we used a nipple shield to get him to latch, but thankfully I only had to use that for a few days. My milk came in on the day we got home from the hospital, so that definitely helped. THEN, after we finally figured out latching, we figured out that I have an overactive letdown and oversupply issues. I am thankful to have enough milk for baby boy, but boy is it hard to watch him sputter & gag & cry & sometimes scream during some of our feedings. Thankfully, our pediatrician is also a board certified lactation consultant, so we have had a lot of help. I am block feeding to help ensure he gets enough hindmilk and am anxiously awaiting the day he grows into my letdown.
Blogging: As you can see, it’s been hard to do! But I’m ok with it. My primary focus is spending time with MJ and not worrying about anything else. In terms of blogging about him, I am still trying to decide how much I want to post. We will not be using his full name on the blog, however, so I would like to please ask you to refrain from doing so as well. Any variation of MJ, M, Little Man, Dude, etc. is ok, but please do not refer to him by name in the comments. It’s my choice to blog, not his, so I want to keep his name off the blog (which is why I put it in the Week 39 photo and didn’t write it in the actual post, since that won’t be Google-able). I am still trying to decide how many pictures, etc. I want to post. Obviously, I want to share, but the Internet is kind of a scary place and I want to make sure we are protecting him. We’ll see how it evolves!
Gee, they look nothing alike!
[Please note that this photo was posed.
Brad was very much awake and alert so baby was safe
napping on Daddy like this.]
Everything Else: I’ll be really honest here. Having a newborn is definitely harder than I thought it would be. We have good days and better days (I can’t say they’re bad days, at all.) B went back to work this week after having three glorious weeks off and I was really nervous about it. I don’t know if I’ve mentioned it but his hours are quite long…he works from 8am to 8pm every day. So we are alone from about 7:30am to 8:30pm, and it can be very difficult at times! But we had a great first day alone together. I was able to shower, cook/eat & do laundry, visit Daddy at work, and even rest a little! But then that night was horrible and Mister Man was up at 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5. So yesterday was spent entirely on the couch, trying to get baby to sleep for a longer period of time, with no shower and barely any time to eat. But then he slept great again last night! So, I try not to be too hard on myself and remember that he is not even a month old yet. We’ll get into a routine soon enough, and there’s no need to rush it. That said, we are so happy he is here and healthy and growing. It’s hard to remember what life was like before we had him! He is so darn cute and sweet and we love having him in our lives. I am trying to soak up all the moments—easy and hard—because I know he won’t be this little forever.
So that’s what’s been up with us! I have a few more posts in the works, whenever I can get to them…including our Christmas decorations for this year (only 3 trees this year, booo!), and even a special giveaway. How are things with you guys?