Week 2 – Hanging in There

by Heather on March 23, 2012

Weston is a whopping 2 weeks old today and my brain can scarcely believe it.  How is it that just 13 days ago he was still living in my belly?  That’s the craziest thing about pregnancy and childbirth to me thus far – one day you’re pregnant and the next you’re not.  And BAM!  There’s a living breathing miniature human being that you get to look after, snuggle, and shower with kisses.

 

I’ve had so much fun, cried so many times, and learned how to change a diaper without getting peed on.  Well, sort of.  Hopefully.

Over the past two weeks we’ve learned more and more what it’s like to live life with an infant, and I *think* I’m to the point where the lack of sleep is doable and totally normal.  We’ve been lucky in that Nate had 2 weeks of paternity leave and we’ve been taking shifts to make sure that Weston doesn’t go without food and love for more than 3 hours.  Honestly the first week was incredibly difficult; most of it was spent in the hospital because of my C-section and although we ADORED the nurses and the care we received there, it was so nice to finally come home and sleep in our own bed.

 

Weston has been thriving this week and has passed his original birth weight faster than the doctor originally thought he would.  He’s now gaining about an ounce a day!  Well, that is if he can keep his eyes open long enough to eat.  My little guy loves to sleep and snooze through his feedings, which makes it difficult at times.  We’ve done just about everything we can to keep him awake (tickling his face, feet, armpits, blowing gently on his face, doing skin-to-skin contact, placing a cool washcloth on his face, burping, etc) and still there are times that he just will not wake up.  Overall his feedings are going well, and I’m super thankful that I’m able to breastfeed him.  It’s honestly one of the best times of my day when I look down at his adorable little face and know that we’re working together to make it possible!

 

In other news his umbilical cord stump fell off yesterday and I was surprised how sad it made me feel.  Sure, his bellybutton will always be a sign of him living inside of me, but the fact that the actual cord that connected us is gone was a bittersweet moment for me.  I’m not going to keep it though – like I said, his bellybutton is good enough for me!

 

One thing that I can’t wait to start doing is walking with him in our Ergo carrier in the afternoons.  I’m waiting to heal a little more myself and for the weather to warm up, but it’s something that I just can’t wait to start doing.  I have dreams of our little family of 5 going to our local dog park/hiking trails and walking miles and miles together – worn out puppies, exercise for mom & dad, and a snuggly baby are kind of in my top 5 of favorite things!

 

As far as things that have been working well to make a happy baby and happy parents, his Boppy pillow has been a full-on lifesaver on the nursing front.  My arms are so weak when it comes to holding an almost-8-lb baby, but the Boppy is phenomenal for providing support for both of us.  As Weston grows I’m sure we’ll figure out some other positions to feed in, but for now the Boppy is the way to go.  He still isn’t a fan of his Boppy Lounger just yet, but I think he’ll start to love it soon.  One thing that he hated at first was his swing (the Graco Lovin’ Hug), and now we know we can put him in it and he’ll fall asleep immediately.  The first time we tried it he screamed bloody murder and we had fears that we wasted a bunch of money on it, but now he’s loving it and we’re SO glad it’s working out.

 

Otherwise we’re just trucking right along, the three of us working together to figure out what works, what doesn’t, and how we’re going to grow together as a family.  It’s funny, when I got pregnant I had no idea how life would be changing over the next 40 weeks and this has by far surpassed every expectation I’ve ever had.  It’s incredible!

As for me, I’m happy to say that I’m healing really well.  I had a prescription for Percoset after leaving the hospital, took it for about 3 days, and have since been only using Ibuprofen (per my doctor’s instructions) to manage pain.  Honestly I could probably do without, except that I developed a small blood clot on the inside of my left knee and have been told to continue with the Ibuprofen since it’s a blood thinner.  I’ve had an ultrasound to make sure that the clot is nothing serious (it’s not) but it was quite the scare!  It felt like a bump and a was tender to the touch like a bruise, and I was petrified for days that I was going to go to sleep and then never wake up.  Let me just take this moment to say that you should always get that stuff checked out.  Always.  The end.

 

I’ve been told to take it easy for 6 weeks and I completely plan on following doctor’s orders there.  Other than having my wisdom teeth removed I’ve never had surgery before, and wisdom teeth aren’t nearly as invasive as having your entire abdomen sliced open and having a baby pulled out.  There are layers and layers and layers of stitches internally that have to heal and dissolve before I can really dig in and start on my post-baby body plan.  The good news is that I only gained 17 pounds while pregnant and as of last week had lost all but 3.  I have a feeling that with nursing and daily walks I’ll be back down to below my start weight in no time, which will give me a good jumping-off point for fitness once I’m cleared for activity again.  In all honesty though it’s one of the last things on my mind at the moment…I just want to make sure I’m feeling good and healthy to take care of my baby boy, my husband, and myself.  I’m thinking about doing a “body after baby” thing on the blog (although I will never give my specific weight or size or anything) more to track my fitness and be held accountable than anything else.  Thoughts?

 

All that to say I’m actually really happy with the way my body looks now.  It feels so bizarre to not be pregnant anymore, my stomach is a little squishy, and my chest is…different.  But my body made and birthed a baby – and that’s something I’m so proud of!

 

As for Nate, he’s an absolutely ridiculously awesome father.  He totally has a magic touch with Weston that calms him down when he’s at his fussiest.  I can’t wait to see them together once Weston’s at a point where he can interact with us more – my heart i melting just thinking about it!  Know what else makes my heart melt?  Imagining them in little matching outfits – totally something I never thought I’d encourage – in a few months/years.  I can’t even stand it!

And the pups?  Well, I think they’re still a little shell-shocked but the great news is that they LOVE Weston.  They’re still getting used to having to share us with him, but that’s been the hardest part.  At first I was a little worried about Keira and how she would react to him mainly because she’s been the “baby” for the past 2 years.  I wasn’t sure how she’d handle getting bumped from that position, but she’s handled it so well.  I call her little mama now because anything he’s crying she’ll pace worriedly outside of his room and always wants to sniff him and make sure he’s doing OK.  I love it, and I’m so glad that it worked out that we haven’t had to discipline either one of them for anything!

As for Bunker he’s been used to not being the baby for a while now, so he’s taking this all in stride.  His biggest setback is his barking – he’s always been a vocal one – but the great news there is that Weston doesn’t even notice it.  I guess he heard it so long in utero that it’s just another familiar sound!  This morning Nate was holding Weston on his lap and Bunker came over and sniffed his legs and was just wagging his tail like crazy.  It was so cute and so reassuring to know that our little guy will be OK with our two sweet puppies!

Finally, on the food front we’ve been so blessed to have such amazing friends who have been bringing us food every other day, which has allowed us to eat without doing a ton of dishes and to eat QUICKLY since things are not necessarily “normal” around here yet.  We’ve also had our freezer loaded up by family with all kinds of great food so that once our friends are done we can still utilize those meals on busy or out-of-control days.

 

Breakfasts have been pretty haphazard, but this morning I made myself 2 eggs in a tortilla with salsa and an apple on the side.  Not the breakfast of champions, but still probably better than other options I could have made.  Granted, I love a massive stack of pancakes just as much as the next blogger, but with my gestational diabetes scare I’m definitely making an effort to make good choices!

So there you have it – our lives two weeks in and we’re hanging in there.  There are good days, bad days, good hours and bad hours, but we’re working through it together.  The real test will be when Nate goes back to work from paternity leave and I’m here doing this by myself during those hours.  I know I’ll be able to do it and am so glad that I’m able to stay with our little dude while on maternity leave!  He’s been the most incredible blessing so far and I can’t wait to see where the next few weeks, months, and years take us!

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