Sunday, July 3, 2011

Baby J makes his way into the world

Well, I have a few minutes here while little man is in his swing (aka The Neglect-o-matic) after feeding, so I'll finally get to write a little bit about how the last ten days of my life have utterly, completely changed...and yet it's all getting to be routine.

I was due on the 18th, a Saturday.  That day came and went.  Father's Day came and went, although I still gave T a card.  We even went to brunch in hopes that if we got out of the house, I'd start having contractions.  No go.  Doctor's office on Tuesday:  zilch.  I'd had no water breakage, few contractions, and he seemed perfectly happy to stay where he was.  So we scheduled an induction for Wednesday afternoon at 4:30.  That day we managed to distract ourselves pretty well, re-cleaning the house and wandering the mall because I knew I couldn't sit through an entire movie.  Well, we got to the hospital, I changed into a gown, they told me they were going to give me something to dilate me, and then, the ultrasound....

The resident (who seemed very capable--I know from Dr. B. that residents are, indeed, "real doctors") couldn't quite find the head.  She called in another doctor who could read them better and "'s the head.  At the top.  Oh, yeah, he's feet down."  Ohhhhh, crap.  The awesome 30-year veteran nurse informed me that we could try to turn the baby and the other option was a straight c-section.  At this I began to cry, of course, out of fear and anxiety and about a MILLION hormones.  T immediately asked what the safest option was and we were told c-section.  Thankfully they hadn't given me any of that other medication yet.  However, I'd eaten a Kashi bar at 5pm, thinking I was prepping myself for labor, so we had to wait until 6:30am to actually do the surgery.  To be fair, when I spoke with my doctor, she honestly told me while she could do it at midnight, she preferred the morning so she could get a good night's sleep.  I had to agree--I preferred a well-rested doctor doing major surgery to remove a baby from me than one who'd probably be hopped up on caffeine.  Fewer chances of jittery hands.

One well-utilized Ambien and about eight hours later, I was anesthetized from the waist down (but awake--pain receptors are blocked but feeling receptors aren't, so I could feel some things) and ready to go.  T was an absolute champ, stroking my hair, holding my hand (which I could feel) and being extremely calm.  I found out later he took pictures of them weighing the baby and all those absolute firsts, and I vaguely remember seeing my mother and T's mom and stepdad right after.  The picture we put on Facebook tells it all: ecstatic father, tiny baby, and barely-post-op-already-crying mommy:

Four days later on Sunday we got to take him home, which felt almost surreal.  T drove exactly the speed limit all the way home; J slept the entire way, thank goodness.  We came home to a spotless house, flowers, and a completely full refrigerator, compliments of our families and friends.

It's been a heck of a steep learning curve since, let me tell you.  T's mother stayed over for the first three nights to help us out (and we needed it!), my friend M did the same on the night when J fussed for at least an hour and a half in the middle of the night and gave us all sorts of practical and much-needed advice (like how to relieve a gassy baby--I didn't know!  But how and why would I?), my sister M has called with all sorts of helpful advice, and my mother has been an absolute godsend, coming over every day when T is at work to help out.  For my part, it's taken a lot for me to accept the help offered because I really am not supposed to do anything but take care of myself and the baby.  This ranges from doing any sort of housework to going up and down the stairs a lot due to my surgery.  Fortunately, a mild case of mastitis the other day forced me to slow down--in particular the "flu-like symptoms" and I've finally realized that that's what needs to happen.  It also didn't help that two days after I got home, I found out I wouldn't be hired back at my current job and we had to scramble to find health insurance, but the latter's been taken care of and a job will happen, I know.  But not a good time for the old raging, rearranging hormones.  P.S. Insurance can get expensive.  Yuck.

Despite the bumps, I am totally in love with this little man.  We're already figuring out his cries and moods, what soothes him, and that formula is not the devil when used to supplement, especially when you're exhausted and sore and whipping a bottle together means your dear husband can take over one of the feedings.  We've tried to remember to give Penny extra love so she doesn't feel neglected and feels a part of the family unit.  My whole life has changed, and I wouldn't change it back for anything in the world. I never knew I had the capability of this much love...of my husband and my son.  (P.P.S. writing those last two words did indeed choke me up.)

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