Tuesday, April 1, 2008

First Few Days

In honor of my son's upcoming first birthday, I'm going to reminisce a bit about the first few days with my new baby after he was born.

Since I had a c-section, I was pretty immobile that first night. New Daddy Jon was on his own with JD as far as diaper changes were concerned. I remember that first diaper change that was full of yucky black stuff (like an oil spill) and JD peed all over Jon. I was trying so hard not to laugh (because it hurts like crazy after a c-section), but it was so funny.

JD had a little bit of trouble with the whole nursing thing. Or maybe I had trouble getting him going. I'm not sure. The lactation specialist came in and helped us out (no problem, since all of my modesty had gone out the window at that point). From the very first feeding, JD LOVED to eat.

He stayed with us in the room and Jon toughed it out on the miserable fold out couch that pretended to be a bed. Jon brought JD over to me for feedings and I loved to hold him in my arms. Somebody very wise (my sister) gave me some good advice about c-sections and what to eat (or not to eat) while staying at the hospital. I stayed on a liquid diet during my stay at the hospital and although I was pretty hungry, I never regretted that decision.

We had so many visitors during those first few days - family and friends. As I was getting up and around again and learning how to stand up and walk around, it was nice to have some distractions with all the visitors. Jon was so patient with me and helpful, forcing me to take walks around the hospital while JD was getting tests and things done. This helped out a bunch. I never needed any major pain medication - just Motrin.

We ended up going home on Thursday afternoon. We were so ready to be in our own home with JD. By the way, I had to send my mom over to my house to get me different clothes because the ones I brought wouldn't have worked with my new incision scar. I was still pretty huge too. They say to bring clothes for when you were 4 months pregnant, but I think I looked like I was still 6 months pregnant. I was still carrying around a ton of fluid.

That first car ride home was nerve racking. I felt every bump on the road because of the c-section, but also because I was thinking about what JD must be feeling in his new car seat in his VERY first car ride EVER! We enjoyed having him home with us and set him up for his first photo shoot pretty quickly.

Easter Sunday was that weekend, so we went over to visit my family (one block away) and show off our little guy. I was still feeling pretty sore and huge. JD slept most of the time, but still managed to look like a sweetheart.

Jon was on paternity leave, so he helped out a ton on the night shifts during that first week. I think he and JD bonded over late night viewings of Bobby Flay and pre-recorded Stars games.

I developed mastitis in that first week, which you can Google if you don't know what it is. It gave me a 104 fever which lasted about 4 days and I was pretty miserable. Again Jon was SO helpful during this time and took over much of the babycare except the feedings.

JD lost some weight during this time because I was being so stubborn about not supplementing with formula. I really wanted to give my body the chance to feed him as much as he needed, but looking back, I should have supplemented with a few formula bottles until I got well. As soon as I got well, JD's weight took off and he hasn't stopped since!

The whole nursing thing at that point made me feel like a cow and not a mom because all I did was feed him over and over again. And I was extremely sore from all this feeding to the point that I could barely hold JD in my arms. If it makes any of you new moms out there feel any better, I was very frustrated about nursing and cried a lot in that first month. I put in lots of phone calls to experienced moms and lactation consultants. But after the first month, everything was much more smooth. JD took to nursing like a champ and I am so glad that I stuck it out for so many reasons.

We became such a great little family in those first few days. It feels wonderful to be starting a family and have a bond together like no other.


Rachel said...

I've enjoyed reading your stories and experiences...thanks for sharing!