Thursday, October 04, 2007

Coming up for air

So sorry to leave things hanging-the last post was from the hospital, and things got a bit interesting from there.

BabyA did end up flirting with full-blown jaundice. Her bilirubin levels were up in the 90th percentile, so we ended up having to run to the hospital for three days after we were discharged for blood work. She was so sleepy that she wasn't feeding well, so the formula routine was pushed on us pretty hard. Part of it was justified-she would get so tired from trying to nurse that she couldn't do it for very long, which in turn slowed down my milk coming in and getting my supply established, and so on. She really didn't seem to like the formula too much-she ended up spitting more of it up than actually keeping it down. I decided that I would just have to set an alarm and make sure that she was eating every three hours, at a minimum.

The first week was tough-she was hungry at night, but wouldn't/couldn't nurse, would sleep for an hour, max, and then be up again. Not a whole lot of fun. Her bilirubin levels finally leveled out, so no more trips to the hospital lab, which was a relief. At her two week check, she was down from her birthweight of 8lb 12 oz to 8lb 4oz, which was pretty crushing to me-I had been doing everything that I could to get food into her, and it just didn't seem to be working. Again, the pediatrician pushed formula (grrrr) but also asked a good question about how I was doing nutritionally and with fluids.

That caused me to have one of those moments where "doh!" is the only sufficient way to describe it. I hadn't been eating much-I simply wasn't that hungry, and was having a GD hangover of sorts-luxuriating in not having to worry about when and what I was eating. Fluids were another issue as well. I'm not a big drinker as it is, and at the time everything down there still hurt, so I think that I was subconsciously trying to limit what I had to do. Anyway, I addressed both of those issues post haste. Seriously, within 36 hours after I started pushing water, I could feel my supply increasing, and it didn't hurt that BabyA was finally waking up and taking an interest in food. She started sleeping a little better (still not stellar, but better than the 30-90 minute increments that we had been getting). A week later we went back for a weight check (no actual appointment unless things weren't going well), and she was back up to over her birth weight by two ounces. Hooray! She's still not the Hoover of a nurser that Son was, but she is still filling out and looks much more like an infant now than the pinched, old lady looking newborn that she was for the first couple of weeks. I got a bit of reinforcement of my perception when my parents, who hadn't seen her for a couple of weeks, noticed right away how much better she looked.

Overall, recovery has been a lot easier this time around than with Son. Part of it was that this delivery was a lot easier. No baby that didn't turn the way that he was supposed to, no vacuum, no monster episiotomy. I still had a cut, but it was much smaller-well, at least that is what Husband told me, and my bladder wasn't half as beat up as last time. I'll detail more later when I actually write a proper birth story, but put it this way-after having the wonderful, competent nurse that we had this time, I realize how poor my care was with Son. I had a catheter as soon as I got my epidural, and gee, no huge, full bladder to get in the way of actually delivering the child. With Son, the freaked out nurse didn't do that (although BabyA's nurse acted like that was the standard of care) and part of Son's problem was that his enormous noggin was getting stuck with my over-full bladder. But I digress.

I was back into my pre-pregnancy clothes at around two and a half weeks. I still am dealing with the saggy middle, but I honestly think that it will resolve itself with a sane regimen of crunches. Since I didn't gain any weight, I'm still below where I was before I got pregnant. At three weeks, I was a little over 20 lbs lighter than before I got pregnant. I just need to get back into the swing of eating like I did while I was pregnant-it really made a difference. I don't want to go back to where I was. I'm almost at the point of getting rid of all of my clothes that would allow me some comfort if I backslide. I don't know if I'm that brave yet, but I need to keep it in mind. My closet can't handle to sets of sizes anyway, so I can give myself a kick in the butt for the sake of space in my dinky closet.

I could just keep on adding things as I have been for the past couple of days, but I should cut it off here. One up side is that we had a stretch last night from 10:15 to 4:30...for the second night in a row. No happy dance yet...don't want to jinx it...please.....

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