Wednesday, September 7, 2011

What I learned in one short week!

People don't tell you what the first week of a baby's life is really like!  Some moms may warn you that you'll be overwhelmed or how much your life will change, but nobody really tells you exactly what it's going to be like.  Maybe it's that no one in their right mind believes moms when they try to warn you.  I know I was shocked.  So for all you future moms here's what my first week as a mom was like!

While we were in the hospital Daisy slept well, cried almost never, and was sort of getting used to breast feeding.  However, each new shift change brought a new nurse with new ideas and tips on breast feeding.  "Try a nipple guard" "No, that nipple guard will chafe your nipple"  "Use a syringe to give a little formula while she's trying to breast feed"  "Don't do the formula it's just coddling her and making her more lazy."  Needless to say I was confused, upset, and had no idea what I should really do!  When I wasn't breast feeding I was trying to get used to the idea of dealing with taking care of myself and my stitches.  We won't get into all that, just take my advice... take the pain meds!

They shipped us home Sunday, I wasn't ready!  Next time I plan to make sure to tell them I'm not ready. I was still waddling, bloated, and swollen.  The morning we left, a pediatrician I'd never heard of before came in, woke us up, and announced Daisy's bilirubin was moderately high.  I realize now how much harder it must really be for parents with babies in the NICU!  Bilirubin being moderately high is really no big deal, but I thought the world might end then and there!  We were told to spend a little extra time in indirect sunlight and we were told to check in w/ our regular pediatrician in a couple days.

Sunday afternoon we got home, had more trouble breast feeding, and cried AGAIN.  I cried a lot that first week!  I wasn't depressed or baby blues like they warn about.  This was just tears streaming down my face sometimes for no apparent reason, sometimes I was just overwhelmed.  Once I cried just because I realized how crazy in love I was with her and her daddy.  I also cried every time I couldn't get her to stop crying.  Yea... that little thing that acted perfectly in the hospital got home and woke up!

We went to the doctor on Tuesday and saw his nurse practitioner.  The actual appointment was great, it was just the waiting and the cranky baby that made it hard.  The nurse practitioner was great, and wasn't worried at all about her coloring due to the bilirubin.  She was a little concerned with her weight though. Which meant we got to go back on Friday.

Tuesday night Daisy went from being a lazy sucker to giving up all together.  After much drama, tears, trying all the different ideas from the hospital, and talking with the lactation consultant... we finally decided formula was the way to go.  FB was so helpful and understanding during this whole process.  We both wanted Daisy to breast feed, but it just was not going to happen!

After we switched to formula and got a little used to Daisy's cries, life started to get easier.  FB could take a feeding and let me sleep.  I was finally starting to feel more normal physically as well.  We had a great weight check on Friday with the nurse practitioner.  She was really sweet about us switching to formula and gave us a couple sample cans.  So the first week finally wound down and ended on a high note.

I know this was a downer of a post and more serious than usual, but I think more women need to be really honest about the beginning of their babies' lives.  I certainly am not this honest when people ask how I'm doing in real life.  For some reason I felt like I hadn't done enough or that people would judge my decisions.  Anyway I know I still have a lot to learn and Daisy and I will still have our good days and rough days.  But we survived our first week, lived through the second one, and wouldn't change it for the world.  So worth it to see her precious face all the time!


Jessica Renee said...

Your delivery story and this post are SO helpful to the other newbie right behind ya! :) I am scared out of my mind but then I'm reminded that YES it will be tough but we all survive. I'm so glad y'all are doing well. I'm sure you can't get enough of that precious face!! :)

Melissa said...

The first few weeks are REALLY hard! I had no idea how much I would cry because my hormones were nuts and how hard breastfeeding is! I also didn't know just how painful and annoying stitches down there are! I have a few friends who had babies a few months before me who tried to warn me, but you really don't get it until it happens to you. For us, by week 5 or so, things got so much better. You're doing a great job!