Sunday, January 18, 2015

Wrap-up of last week

This past week has been both bumpy and happy at the same time. I figure I should write a little wrap-up, mainly for myself so that I remember all of these little things later on down the road.

The week started off with the colic "diagnosis." That night was a rough night with very little sleep had by me. I've been sleeping with Caroline in the living room or guest room simply because it's easier, lol. I am most comfortable nursing in the corner of the couch so those middle of the night feedings work out much better if I'm right there to begin with. An added plus for K is that he isn't awakened by a crying baby and he is able to get a good (usually 6 hours or so) night's sleep since he needs to go to work. I do miss my bed. I'm not going to lie there.

Tuesday I managed to get bunny and me to the mommy club run by a lactation consultant at my hospital. It's a free club that meets every Tuesday from 10:30-noon. I wanted to go talk with the LC about breastfeeding and diet modifications that I should make. She was amazed at how well bunny has adjusted between bottle/nipple as well as how alert she is. She also didn't think that I needed to go dairy free completely right away. She first suggested to cut things like onions and garlic. Tuesday afternoon was the second afternoon in a row that she didn't really want to nap. Like, at all. From 10:30-4am into Wednesday, it was a battle (again). She had a diaper blowout at 6 am that K handled before waking me up to feed her (since he was now running late for work and couldn't do his normal bottle feed for me).

She and I slept from maybe 7-9am and then she was up pretty much all afternoon. Over the last day I had really started to try to piece together all of the signs and symptoms I could find that could be causing her this distress. My mommy's intuition really wasn't convinced she was just entering an extremely fussy stage. She was now fussy during the day and night and not the typical only 3-4 hour pattern she had been (and most colicky babies are). I began to think it was a silent reflux issue. She has always had horrible hiccups, sort of gasps out of nowhere both during feedings and not, she started spitting up a lot more once we went to mostly breastfeeding (coincidence I'm not sure???), she arches when feeding sometimes, and the list goes on.

Because I was at my witt's end, I called the pediatrician again and told them my new theory and asked about having her put on baby zantac. Before prescribing it they wanted me to bring her back in to evaluate her. So at 6:10 pm, back to the doctor's we went. The on-call doctor thought that we could be on to something and gave us the prescription. We got home and K gave me a much needed break to sleep for 2 hours. After that first dose that night, she was up longer than I wanted after a feeding, but by 1 am she fell asleep for an hour, I fed her and she was back down by 3 am for another 3 hours. She slept well during the morning but was pretty much awake all afternoon - but not fussy for the most part, just awake.

Thursday night I got another wonderful nap from 8-10 pm before feeding her. She actually konked out a little before midnight and slept all the way until 4:30 am! I woke up and was shocked at the time. She fed and slept another 3 hours. I was able to actually take a shower, straighten my hair, brush my teeth, and put on real clothes! :) She has done a LOT better with naps today. Friday afternoon was an improvement with a few shorter hour long naps. I will gladly take them. Maybe they are her gift to me for her 1 month birthday, lol. K gave me another round of sleep from 8-11:45 (holy shit amazing) and I fed her and she was down by 12:30...and she slept until 5 am!!!

Saturday was another good day with breastfeeding and napping. My mom and grandma came up late in the evening so I sent K out with a friend to go to a local concert for a bit. She had her general fussiness from 8-11 but as soon as I was done feeding her at 11:45 and put her down shortly thereafter, she was out until 5 am again!

I have no idea how long this nice stretch will last but oh my word am I thankful for it. I was ready for a meltdown mid-week. K keeps telling me how proud he is for me doing the research and trying to figure out what was really bothering her. It just didn't sit right with me. I knew something more was going on.

So that has been my week. It's always something new in this parent world!

Friday, January 16, 2015

Dear Bunny - Happy 1 Month!

How are you one month old already? This does not seem at all possible. 

It was just yesterday my water was breaking. 

It was just yesterday that I saw your daddy holding you for the first time and my heart completely melted and I saw my whole world in front of me. 

It was just yesterday that I held you with tears streaming down my face knowing that I was holding my own daughter by her first Christmas tree. 

You are the light of my life.  You are the light of your daddy's life.

Today you have the first of many "birthdays" to come. Each one we will celebrate because we are overwhelmed with love for you, our little miracle child. The last week has been a bit rough with your colic and silent reflux but we are getting there. We will get to the other side of those nasty things. You are still so incredibly sweet and loving. 

Your alertness surprises most people when they meet you. You seem to be on some sort of accelerated pace. You have had incredible neck strength almost since birth but it is even stronger now. You still have beautiful deep blue eyes like your daddy and I hope you keep those. Your hair was almost black at birth but it is lightening up a bit now to a more medium brown with some reddish tinges.

At your last doctor's appointment you weighed 9 lbs 11 oz! I'm well on my way to making you my cute little cubby bunny. Breastfeeding you is going much better. We continue to work at your latch. You prefer my left boob...as do I at this point and that is only because I don't have to hold that boob with my free hand so I am free to change the tv channel or play on my phone when I need the distraction. 

Happy 1st Month of Being Alive my Sweet Caroline - I love you to the moon and back!

Monday, January 12, 2015

The Dreaded Colic

Oh what fun the last week has been...

I have tried to not do much complaining about anything pregnancy or baby related on here. It just always felt wrong to do so for two reasons. One, I was/am happy to have these problems. Morning sickness and exhaustion? Awesome. I'm pregnant so it's totes a-ok. Two, it never felt right to complain being an "IF survivor." Which is totally stupid I know. Just because we went through infertility doesn't mean I don't get to have rough days or have a hard time dealing with things relating to babies. 

I do know the above. It's just hard to get past those things. So I have tended to gloss over the "bad" on here. Which is dumb. This is my place to blog it all out anyway.

That brings me to what I have to complain about today. A little over a week ago I noticed that Caroline was starting to have these stretches of fussiness. For hours at a time. Then about a week ago it started being a nightly occurrence, generally starting anywhere between the hours of 7-10 and lasting for 4 hours each time. Prolonged nursing sessions, multiple nursing sessions, skin-to-skin, swing, bouncer, nothing seemed to do the trick for more than a short period of time. There would be times she'd be nursing and latched and then pretty much spaz out - pulling and thrashing (with nipple in mouth - ouch!) and crying. I felt helpless to calm her.

Last night I finally just hit that point where I was crying with her. I wasn't mad or angry. I was just heartbroken that it felt like I couldn't calm my sweet, beautiful, angelic little girl. It broke my heart. I just wanted her to be happy and not uncomfortable. K made me promise to call the pediatrician today. 

Of course today during the day would be the first time she decided to be colicky during the daytime hours as well. From 9:30 until 2:20 she was pretty much up and unhappy. I got her down for about 30 minutes around 12:30 and had enough time to call the pedi and get an appointment for 3 pm today. 

I managed to change my clothes and I think I brushed my teeth (I am not positive on that one though, lol) and got her bundled up and we headed off. The car put her to sleep and she slept until I had to undress her in the exam room. On the plus side, she must be feeding very well as she is now up to 9 lbs 10 oz a day shy of 4 weeks old. My little peanut is becoming a little chubby bunny. I love it. On the downside, her pediatrician diagnosed her with colic pretty much right from the get-go. I was expecting it but still wanted to cry when I heard it. Why I have no idea. I mean, I knew that was going to be his answer. 

So now I am doing all my research and getting fb feedback on things to try. It sounds as though giving up dairy is one that is highly recommended. Selfish mom moment - I did honestly think for a minute, "Um yeah, I live for dairy. I live in effing Wisconsin, the land of cheese. There's no way I will be able to give up dairy when it's a huge (!!) part of my diet. On to formula she goes." But I know that's not the answer, at least until I give it an honest try. But seriously y'all. My daily breakfast for years has been yogurt. I eat string cheese most days. And put cheese on all the things. All.The.Things. ;) Another culprit can be onions I guess. Guess what else I love? Onions. I've had onions at least once a day for the last 5 days, lol. Sigh. This is going to be hard. 

I know this too shall pass. I'm kind of still wondering when I am going to catch a break over here in this house.

But she is the cutest baby (biased opinion) in the world. Seriously. How did I get so lucky to have this beautiful, sweet, angelic little being as my daughter? She's amazing and I love her little colicky butt to pieces. 

Friday, January 9, 2015

Jinx

I totally shouldn't have blogged that yesterday afternoon, lol. 

After that post she woke up and was up from about 3:45 until 8. I had questioned how much milk she was actually getting throughout the day off the boob because I fed her at 4 and she seemed to be full after a short nursing session, fell asleep, as soon as I put her down, she woke up. Rise lather repeat for the next several hours. In the end she got both boobs and at least 6 oz of formula in that time. The only thing I can come up with is maybe that was one of those "cluster feedings" they talked about in the breastfeeding class? 

I don't know. Either way, today is going just as yesterday did up until this point. I really hope that she doesn't do that again tonight. The only nice part is that at least K was home and he was able to help as much as he could. Thank God he's an awesome daddy and supportive husband. I've needed the help and he's been fabulous.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

First day on our own

Today is the first day Bunny and I are on our own. K went back to work today and it was a sad parting. I have loved having him home with us. He was so heartbroken to have to leave us. He is so incredible with her. He's an amazing father, almost like he was born to be a dad.

I think I am finally seeing the light at the end of the first haze of newborn fog. I say that knowing that I am jinxing myself - and full well knowing round two will come shortly. The last few nights have been a little easier in terms of at least being able to get a minimal  amount of sleep. Plus then I have been able to sleep a couple hours during the day during naps. Woo hoo! 

Breastfeeding yesterday went well. We had been trying to get K into a work morning routine and so he had been taking the 5/6am feeding and so he gave her pumped breastmilk or formula but every other feeding yesterday was directly from the boob. That's a huge change. So far today it has been the same. I haven't been able to pump the last couple days but I'm hoping that I after she wakes and feeds this next round, I can get a couple ounces between the two. I hear her stirring now so I will know soon enough. 

I just can't believe that this is life now. It's wonderful. All the "bad" is so worth it to be able to give that sweet little bunny hugs, kisses, and cuddles. I love her so much.

Monday, January 5, 2015

Bunny's Birth Story

Because I am incredibly lazy - ok not lazy but adjusting to life with a newborn - I am going to simply copy over the birth story I shared with my online friends down below.

Life has been busy in the last couple weeks. I still struggle with breastfeeding and have shed tears over this latest setback. I always thought it would be easy. It can be. For you know, people who have bodies that work properly. We all know that hasn't been the case for me in the reproductive world. I curse my flat nipples. It's made for a rough road getting breastfeeding off to the right start. On top of that, I feel selfish because of how much time it takes and how I just want to get into routine. I felt like I was pumping and feeding for hours. And then leaking everywhere overnight because there was no way I would be able to get up in the middle of the night to both feed her, change her, and then pump for another 30 minutes to get one bottle. I feel like I'm always covered in sour breastmilk, lol. But "they" all say that's normal. Anyway...we're working on it. I want to keep trying. I also have to find some compromise. 

As for the birth story...

Around 4 am on Dec 16th I woke up, like normal, to pee. Went back to bed. About an hour later I woke up and felt a little trickle. I thought my bladder basically leaked a little. I honestly was so tired that I just didn't care to get back up and go to the bathroom so I laid back down. I have no shame obviously. 15 minutes later I felt a huge WHOOSH of fluids while still laying in bed and it just didn't stop. I though to myself, "omg am I peeing myself?!" and tried to stop the flow. Didn't work. Of course I hadn't been sleeping on a towel or waterproof pad or anything. I shook (ok, maybe punched) my K awake and told him "My water just broke!" That's one way to see your husband spring to life, let me tell you. I was still leaking fluids pretty heavily so I got up to get myself to the bathroom. I left a wet trail behind me the whole way there. After sitting on the toilet for a while, I decided I would just get in the shower next because I was soaking wet and felt nasty. After I showered, I got dressed and came out to the living room to call the hospital. When I called them it was about 6:15 am. The on call doctor told me to wait until the office (my ob/gyn office is actually located in the hospital) opened to talk with my doctor to formulate a plan for me since I wasn't having contractions much at all. Meanwhile I'm still leaking heavily and gushing at times so I was changing pads often.

During the next 90 minutes or so I text a few friends, called the parents and my grandma in Texas to let them all know that today was the day, I was smart and ate some greek yogurt and a clementine for breakfast. I finished packing up my hospital bag and straightened out a few areas since we would be having family up that day now. K was a nervous wreck. The poor guy had so much nervous energy that he started vacuuming under the refrigerator! 


At 8:15 I called the doctor's office and they had to page my doctor because Tuesdays he doesn't work out of that office. When I heard back they wanted me to go ahead and come in whenever we finished packing our bags (in case they admitted me) and got ready. We took our sweet ass time since I really had wanted to labor at home for a while and the contractions weren't really regular or strong at all.

We got into the office at about 9:45 and I was checked by another doctor who confirmed it was my amniotic fluid and was only at 1 cm. Because it had been almost 5 hours since my water broke they sent me down to L&D to be admitted. Boo - I wasn't a total fan of this but nothing I really could do.

For the next couple of hours I basically hung out and met the nurses. Around noon my doctor came in to check me and he said I was at maybe 2.5-3 cm. Contractions still weren't coming regularly or very strong. He decided that it was important to get me going into active labor since we were at 7 hours since my water broke. They started the pitocin at about 12:30 pm and I was back to the waiting game. The tentative plan was to see if the pit would push me over into active labor (greater than 4 cm) and then I could come off the pit and get in the tub to labor in there instead and to give me my planned water birth.


Contractions started to get a little stronger after about an hour and a half, two hours. Another internal check by the nurse showed that I was at "maybe" 2. I wasn't really a fan of this nurse too much - esp at 5 pm when I was in so much pain and K remarked on how well I was doing 12 hours into labor but she made a comment on how "I wasn't even in labor yet". Another 3 hours went by and by this time my MIL, FIL, and my grandma had arrived and were hanging out with us in the room. It was nice having them to distract me. At this point (around 6 pm) the pitocin was turned way the heck up and contractions were coming every minute and were hard to breathe through. I was having to hold K's hand to squeeze and I moved back into bed from the birthing ball, which I had been sitting on for the last two hours or so.

Another internal check showed I was still hanging around 3.5. My doctor came back around 6:30 or so and verified that. I was not lasting well in the pain department at this point because there wasn't any rest between contractions and since I had been planning a water birth this whole time, I had been thrown off my game big time. I finally broke down and asked for the drugs during a contraction. She ignored my request. Another 15 minutes went by and I told K in the meantime I wanted the epidural. When the nurse came back I was having another contraction and said once again, "I want the drugs." She finally said ok and then another 30 minutes later they were finally starting to get me prepped for it. I was worried it wouldn't work because of multiple previous surgeries I've had on my tailbone area and I have severed nerves there so it was a crap shoot for me. 


Once it took effect I hated it. Absolutely hated it. I still could tell when contractions were happening and still had to breathe a bit through them but their intensity was not as bad at all. However, I hated the dead, legs fell asleep feeling my legs had. Hated. I also didn't know I wouldn't be able to lay on my back anymore - which I guess I should have but since I was never planning on an epidural, I didn't research that part. I had to have pillows wedged behind me and lay in this awkward semi-side laying position that wasn't comfortable in the slightest. The area where the epi was placed also killed. I was in a lot of pain in that area and couldn't get comfortable at all. I have no idea how some people are able to be all smiles and naps as soon as they get the epidural. That was not my experience at all. I just all around was not happy and regretted my decision, even though I'm not sure I would have been able to last much longer going without.

Around 8:00 pm I could tell something else was going on with the baby. The night nurse, who was much better in my opinion, explained that they had been monitoring the baby and noticed that bunny was having late decelerations after contractions. It was explained to me that early (going into a contraction) or mid (during) decelerations aren't concerning but late ones are as oxygen isn't getting to the baby (possibly). They consulted my doctor and decided to pull me off the pit to see how my contractions continued without them and how the bunny would rebound off the pit. This was the first time a c-section was brought up to us.

At 8:45-9 my doctor was back in my room and talking to us about the next steps. The contractions had basically gone away without the pitocin and the baby was doing fine off of it. They wanted to kick the pit back on for a bit and see what would happen. At 9:45-10 he came back in and told me that the same thing was happening and that he thought that at his point a c-section was the best course of action based on how bunny was tolerating labor plus if even if they allowed me to continue to labor, it would be an extremely long labor. My epi was wearing off at this point on top of all of it and I was so uncomfortable with back pain so I basically was ready for the c-section.

By 10:30 they were ready to wheel me in and get me prepped. I was so afraid that I was going to be one of those people who feel everything because it took them forever to get me numb. I kept feeling the sharp test pokes they were giving me. Finally they were able to bring K in and get everything started. For the record, I'm not a fan of the phrase, "lots of pressure" from nurses anymore because it was more than lots of damn pressure. I'm not sure what word to use but it wasn't pain but it sure as hell was more than just pressure. I was skeeved out by the whole, lots of hands inside my belly while I'm awake thing. At 11:25 Caroline Virginia was born with a full head of hair. She weighed 7 lbs 14 oz and was 20 inches long. K got to announce to us all what she was, and that was perfect.

After a little while they brought Daddy and bunny back to the room to finish being checked out while they finished sewing me up. They had asked me if I preferred for his parents and my grandma to be in the waiting room vs my room when they brought her in for the first time but I elected to have them in the room if they wanted to be. K got to tell them it was a girl just as I had wanted. I think the in-laws and my grandma were finally heading back to our house around 2:30-3 am and K was passed out shortly thereafter on the couch/bed in my room. I managed to get about an hour of sleep in before my mom walked in the door at 4:30 am. She had driven up after she got off of work - she's nuts! She and I sat up and talked for a few hours until she went back to my house for some sleep around 8:30. 


The next few days in the hospital were pretty nice to be honest, lol. Other than the fact that I was struggling with breastfeeding and her jaundice (which didn't require the lamp), it was nice to have 3 meals a day catered to me, lol. The first day after surgery I was very sore and it hurt to move but painkillers are awesome. I highly recommend the pain killers after a c-section. Don't be a hero.

Some side notes/commentary:
- I was not aware that if you have your water gush out like I did, chances are, it will keep on gushing. For hours. It like, doesn't stop. I went through so many pads and pants before even getting to the hospital and then even in the bed, we kept 4 "puppy pee pads" as we liked to call them, under me at all times. Nothing like sitting in your own fluid pool for hours on end, gushing every time a contraction came.


- the pushing on the uterus after birth by the nurses effing sucks. I obv didn't have a vag birth but I wonder how much more that actually hurts vs the damn pushing on the uterus. Honestly. It blows balls. And you will have them pushing on you regardless of vaginal birth or c-section. Consider yourself warned.


- stay up on your pain meds, even through the middle of the night. Waking up in pain sucks.


- you might have flat nipples and not know it. I didn't and it has made breastfeeding a bit more complicated - especially if your baby doesn't like nipple shields. Stick with it if you can or pump to try to bring out the nipples before each feeding. We're starting to get a much better latch now. I'm exhausted but it's worth it. I wish I would have pushed harder to supplement sooner bc I knew she wasn't getting much from my boobs at all those first days (less than the small amount they tell you is fine) because she was down to 7 lbs at her first appointment, one day after leaving the hospital (so 4 days old)


- 4 to 5 days post birth I had the massive swelling that can happen from all the fluids pumped into me during my labor. I have never seen such swollen legs/feet/wrists. It was terrible. Sleeping with my legs propped up on pillows on the couch seemed to help. My skin on my calves still feels loose to me because of the massive swelling.


- about a week past birth I developed this horrible pain in my right shoulder/neck/ribs. It was residual gas/air pockets from the surgery that manifested itself there. It was incredibly painful. It hurt to take a deep breath. I was miserable. Nothing helped except time. It sucks.