Thursday, March 3, 2016

Extremely Long Update

This is ridiculously long, but I love to record all the little details, so feel free to skim. :-)

First Night
The first night in the hospital was a little rough. I was feeling pretty good- better than I did so soon after delivering the girls. The epidural wore off faster - probably because it wasn't in as long as it was with the girls. I could actually walk that first night. I know it took like 12 hours after the girls. I was amazed by how little pain I was in. Small baby+lack of tearing+quick delivery=happy mommy!

Levi was very sleepy and hadn't successfully nursed since that first try in the delivery room at like 11 am. So I was constantly trying to wake him up to eat. We finally decided to try and sleep around 9:00, but I was being as paranoid as a first timer. Because he came out so fast, he didn't get "compressed" in the birth canal as much as he should have to expel the amniotic fluid he swallowed. So he spent a lot of that first day/night choking on/spitting up fluid. He actually made this funny "purring" noise for the first 24 hours of his life - almost non-stop. The nurses/doctor checked and double checked and assured me that there wasn't fluid in his lungs, and it wasn't a problem. He just had to get it out on his own. The problem is, anytime he was flat on his back, he would gag on it, so I felt like I couldn't sleep in case he choked and I wasn't awake to lift him up and help him get it out. I laid in bed dozing off for ten minutes at a time, then waking up to check on him. #rookie

Finally, around 2:30, he woke up ready to eat. And eat. And eat. He nursed every hour on the hour. I was relieved that he had a good latch and was definitely getting some colostrum, but I was exhausted. At 6:00, I woke Justin up to take him and slept for an hour and a half until the doctor came in to check on us.

Day Two
Wanna know a dirty little secret? I love being in the hospital. Haha. I know so many women who are itching to get home after giving birth. We were warned that we'd have to stay the full 48 hours since I never got that second dose of antibiotics and they had to watch Levi for infection. I didn't mind. I love calling and ordering room service. I love having pain meds delivered to my bed side. And the anxious side of me loves that the nurses are there to address all my little worries and concerns - to assure me that I'm not bleeding too much, that he's not sleeping too much, that I'm not dying or about to be paralyzed because my epidural site hurts. Haha.

While we were at the hospital that second day, the world around us was getting covered in 8 inches of snow! Remember how worried I was about going into labor during a blizzard?? Whew! I barely missed it! The snow ended up keeping a lot of visitors away, so we spent most of the day just resting, watching TV, and trying to nurse a sleepy baby. Levi got circumcised early that morning and spent most of the rest of the day sleeping.

Circumcision and Projectile Pee
Oh circumcision. We knew we wanted to have it done, but I still hated it. And I hate taking care of it. I am so worried about hurting him. Again, I feel like a rookie mom every time I change his diaper - trying to clean him up and change the dressing without hurting him . . . or letting him pee on me. I forgot how hard it is to maneuver his tiny little legs when he just wants to keep them bunched up against his body.

Everyone has warned me about little boys peeing all over the place. I was pretty good at the quick change while I was nannying for Chase. But I have yet to master it with a newborn. Yesterday for the first time, I was changing Levi on my bed when all of the sudden he started peeing all over the place - my bed, the Boppy, and himself. But the best part is that Lola was laying within range on my bed and got totally saturated! Lol.

Life at Home
We finally got discharged around noon yesterday and came home to a couple of very eager sisters. They are adoring Levi. They both want to hold him non-stop. Lena was very excited to have him try out every piece of baby equipment we own: the Rock n' Play, swing, bouncy seat, even the bathtub. The girls helped me give him his first sponge bath last night. (They don't give baths at the hospital anymore - isn't that weird? Something about new research shows leaving the vernix on is good for babies.)

Lucy is adorable with him. She strokes his head while she holds him and says, "I love you, Levi! You're so cute! I love you so much!" She keeps exclaiming to me, "I can't believe he was in your belly! It seems like you were just pregnant yesterday!" Lol. It seriously melts my heart.

Lena is learning all kinds of new things. Haha. She watched Justin change Levi's diaper for the first time in the hospital, and immediately remarked, "What is that squirty thing?" Lol. It wasn't squirting when she asked. I guess she just figured that was what it was for. Haha. And both girls were surprised that I don't feed him with a bottle. Lena asks lots of questions, like "Where's the milk? I don't see it." and "How does he get it out of there?" One time I kind of grimaced when he latched on and she said, "Does it hurt?" Lucy plays it cool and tries not to act too interested. Haha.

Breastfeeding
At first, I was worried that Levi was going to take after Lucy with the breastfeeding. She could not figure out the latch and we had major difficulty the first couple of weeks. Lena latched on from the get-go, so when Levi struggled at first I started to get nervous. And then with all the sleepiness and lack of successful sessions, I was worried we were on the same road as with Lucy: losing too much weight, supplementing with formula, a lot of crying from both us all night. Haha. But he's already catching on and getting much more adept. When he's good and hungry and awake, he usually latches on after a couple tries and goes to town no problem. He's sleeping too much and stretching his feedings out too much right now, but I'm a big proponent of not waking a sleeping baby and letting him eat when he gets hungry. It's impossible to feed him when he's sleepy anyway. My milk came in last night, so I'm in pain from the lack of feedings, but we'll get in our groove soon!

Recovery
As for my recovery, I'm feeling amazing recovering from the actual childbirth part, if you know what I mean. But my back, hips, SI joints, sacrum bones, and sciatic nerve are screaming in pain. It's pretty bad and I'm pretty discouraged that my weekly visits to the chiropractor over the past 6 weeks didn't help prevent it. I know this is exactly how I felt after having Lena, and it lasted for months. Although I think it's worse this time. With Lena it was just my back.

I broke out my belly bandit yesterday. I'm really hoping wearing it will help me recover faster. But I underestimated how difficult it would be to get it on. Haha. It is extremely tight and I can not fasten it by myself. Justin helped wrestle me into it yesterday. It's awkward and rigid - I can't really bed over while wearing it. But the pressure did feel really good on my back, and it feels good to let it hold in my stomach instead of making my abs do all the work.

I still haven't gotten the spinal headache they warned me about. The nurse insisted the odds are good that I won't get it if I haven't yet, but I had a couple friends who said they got it after they got home from the hospital, so I'm still a little worried it could show up.

Sleep
Last night he slept all evening again without eating. I finally got him awake enough to nurse 11 and we went to bed around 11:30. He woke up at 2:15 to eat, back in bed by 3. And then we both slept 'til Lena woke up at 6:50! I'm still being my Nervous Nelly self, and waking up every once in a while to make sure he's still breathing, but for the most part, I feel pretty well-rested! It also helps that my fabulous sister came over this morning to take the girls for a few hours. Levi nursed at 7:30, was awake and happy for a good hour and a half, then fell asleep around 9 as the girls were leaving with Niki. He and I both slept until 12:40!

Thanks
We are so fortunate to be surrounded by amazing people who love us and are taking care of us. My mom and Niki each took a day off this week to stay home with the girls so Justin could stay with me in the hospital the whole time. My mom did all our laundry, cleaned the girls' disastrous rooms, and gave up being at the hospital when Levi was born in order to be home with the girls. Niki has spoiled my kids, taken them so I could sleep, bought us groceries, and brought Justin meals in the hospital. My friend Missy has already brought us a meal (including mac n' cheese for my picky eaters), pop, diapers, and adorable homemade burp cloths. And more of my friends are lined up to bring meals the rest of the week!

Rest
I'm already sad about the newborn phase slipping away. This is my absolute favorite and it goes so fast. I'm giving myself permission to ignore the world and just soak him up for a while. I've barely left my bed today. We're just sleeping and nursing and snuggling and watching Netflix. Not sure how long I'm going to be able to pull this off - tomorrow I have to get Lucy to school and Levi to his pediatrician appointment - but we're going to enjoy it as long as we can.

A Word About the Name
And to close with, a word about his name. We did not want another L name. Haha. We actually really wanted to branch out this time, but Levi has been our boy name since the first time I was pregnant and we just couldn't find anything else we liked as much. I'm sorry in advance for all the confusion the 4 letter L names will cause. Haha.

Thanks again for all the love on facebook. We're so happy to share these moments with all of you!

6 comments:

  1. I love this update!

    I'm so glad your recovery and nursing are going so well! I hope your joints recover more quickly this time. I'm curious about the belly bandit thing.

    I don't know about you, but I had pretty much ZERO instruction about caring for a circumcision with either of my boys, and that came back to bite us. You have to pull the skin all the way back every single day (every diaper change is even better) basically until he's potty trained or it will heal incorrectly!! Be vigilant! Haha :) Message me if you want specifics or have questions!

    I really like his name! He's so adorable... congratulations again and enjoy this special time!!

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  2. I love this update!

    I'm so glad your recovery and nursing are going so well! I hope your joints recover more quickly this time. I'm curious about the belly bandit thing.

    I don't know about you, but I had pretty much ZERO instruction about caring for a circumcision with either of my boys, and that came back to bite us. You have to pull the skin all the way back every single day (every diaper change is even better) basically until he's potty trained or it will heal incorrectly!! Be vigilant! Haha :) Message me if you want specifics or have questions!

    I really like his name! He's so adorable... congratulations again and enjoy this special time!!

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  3. That last photo is giving me major baby fever...how much longer do I have to wait?! Ha ha. I'm glad you are all doing well. The circumcision sounds stressful. We opted out for our boys. It's great to hear the girls are so in love with him :)

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  4. Mallory actually had a bath which surprised me. I came out of the bathroom after getting cleaned up to find her getting one. I didn't expect her to have one.
    Sometimes when I nurse her Eleanor will say "Mallory eat your boobs?" Lol. I tried explaining that actually she's getting milk out of the nipple but thAts to much for a 2 year old to get. Oh and pumping had her like whoa!

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    Replies
    1. Haha that's awesome. Lena thinks he's drinking out of my stomach. I haven't corrected her . . .

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  5. And Mallory was/is hard to wake to fed too. I just base it off if she's having enough wet/dirty diapers.

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