Today was so hard. Isaac really doesn’t ever want to be put down. I guess I need to put him down and listen to him scream or resign myself to finding some sort of carrier that he will tolerate. At only 4 weeks old, I don’t know that letting him cry is going to work or if it’s even a good idea. He doesn’t seem to wear out. He’s tired and needs to sleep, but if I lay him down and leave him, once he starts crying, he can’t seem to figure out how to stop. The sling that I have really hurts my neck and shoulder after a while. And I’m not sure if, when he’s crying, he’s just hungry again and I start wondering if he is getting enough milk from me.
And here is Isaac in one of his preferred positions- being held!
Isaac and I had our last lactation appointment on Monday morning. He weighed in at 7 lbs, 10 oz. He’s doing well and we’ve “graduated” to not needing to pump or supplement. The next hurdle will be getting him to space out his feedings a little more. He nurses about 10 times a day. I would love it if he would give me a good 3 hours between eating each time.
We spent Saturday and Sunday in Cottage Grove. It was Brian’s birthday. We celebrated on Sunday.Dad grilled and we had hamburgers for lunch. Then it was cheesecake for Brian’s “cake”. We also got to meet Brian’s friend, Missy.
Audrey has become more whiney lately. I think the days of 3 hours afternoon naps are coming to an end. She’s taking a really long time to fall asleep at night now. We’ll have to tweak her schedule to see what works. She’s ready for us to work on potty training too. I’m just not sure how to make it work with a newborn.
I’m feeling very tired and a bit overwhelmed with not being able to get the house clean or accomplish much. I’m also grumpy because my right ear is plugged and I can’t hear anything. I know it sounds silly, but not being able to hear is seriously contributing to my feeling depressed. I’ve also been looking at pictures from this weekend and I’m not happy with my post-partum body. I’ve lost 16 pounds. I have another 16 pounds to go to reach my prepregnancy weight. 15 more pounds to go after that for my ideal weight.
I need to run. Morning is the easiest time to get anything done since Isaac is more willing to hang out on his own.
It’s my due date today and I have a healthy, perfect 2 week-old. A McLeod County public health nurse will be here soon and I’ll have an updated weight for him. Isaac seems to be adjusting well to life in our house. We’re adjusting as well. I need to work on fitting in some naps. The middle of the night feeding times are tiring. Speaking of Isaac, it sounds like he’s awake. I better run. I’ll write more later.
Okay, I’m back. The nurse visit went well. I really liked her. She was really encouraging and told me that I was a “model” in regards to my approach to taking care of Isaac. I don’t know about that, but I think I’ve learned a couple of things from parenting Ethan and Audrey. She weighed Isaac and he was 7 lbs, 7 oz. That’s up 7 ounces in 4 days! It seems that Isaac and I are getting the hang of nursing. I finally have the milk he needs and he seems to be working hard enough to get what he needs. I’m proud of us! We’ve worked hard.
It’s just Audrey, Isaac and I tonight. The big boys went to see the movie Up. Ethan was very excited to go. He and Daddy watched all the previews and he’s been talking about the movie like he’s already seen it!
Where was I? Waiting for the anesthesiologist?
I was starting to get a little anxious. Our nurse finally set me up with an IV. My contractions were coming close together and were intense enough that I just kept my eyes closed. I didn’t even see her do it. I have bad veins, but this nurse got it in one try. Nathan was impressed. I would have been if I was really paying attention! I was more relieved that I was one step closer to getting some relief from the pain. I was happy to hear that she had called the anesthesiologist.
I don’t remember for sure, but I think I still didn’t have the belt on to monitor the contractions. Instead of having the print-out to tell Nathan when I was having a contraction, I would tell him when one started and when it stopped. I wasn’t getting more than about 20 seconds between contractions.
I told Nathan that I was thought I was in transition. I couldn’t just quietly breathe and focus on relaxing. I switched to shorter breaths, and saying “ow” over and over, but still did my best to keep my muscles relaxed. Since the anesthesiologist hadn’t arrived yet, I tried not to seem like I was in too much pain. I must have done a pretty good job of that since our nurse didn’t think she needed to check me to see how progressed I was!
At about 2:30, the anesthesiologist arrived! Woohoo! I was happy to see him, but I was thinking he was too late. The pressure was really intense. He asked me all the necessary health history questions and was telling me all the risks involved. I didn’t care. I wanted him to get the show on the road, stop talking and get the epidural placed. The contractions were so bad that I knew it would be hard to find a break in them for him to get it done. A contraction ended, and I rolled on my side and curled into a little ball for him and lay there without moving.
The contractions didn’t really cooperate. I decided that since I was getting the epidural, it wouldn’t hurt for the nurse to know how much pain I was feeling. I assured them it wasn’t the epidural, it was the contractions. Once the catheter was in place and taped, I think I announced that was going to have the baby right then. That was news to the nurse. She told me that I could not have the baby yet and decided to check me. She quickly realized that I wasn’t a hysterical woman who had no pain tolerance. I was completely dilated and baby was in place and ready to be born. This was only about 2 hours after my labor started and an hour and a half after arriving at the hospital.
The anesthesiologist was hanging out in the room. I think that’s protocol. They stick around for just a little while to make sure everything is stable. He took pity on me and made sure the pain meds were flowing. I know it seems silly to labor all the way to the end and then get an epidural, but the on-call doctor was not there. They wanted me to wait to have the baby until the doctor arrived (apparently, the nurse didn’t want to deliver the baby). Until the epidural took effect, I endured the contractions and pressure by using short breaths and telling everyone how much pressure I was feeling. The medicine finally took effect and I could relax a little as we waited.
30 minutes later, the doctor arrived. She put on her gloves and gown and had me push. Isaac was born a couple of pushes later at 3:13am. I was so happy to be done and ready to send a thank you card to the anesthesiologist.
I had a weight check yesterday for Isaac. He was 7lbs, .03 oz. So, just a tiny bit over 7 lbs. He’s surpassed his birth weight. That’s the milestone our doctor was looking for to indicate that she wouldn’t need to see us again until the regular 2 month check up. I’m very happy that he put on 13 ounces in one week. 1/2 – 1 ounce a day is kind of the standard for how much weight a newborn should be gaining.
As long as Isaac is nursing well, I don’t need to pump or offer him a bottle. I’ve cut way back and am only offering him a few bottles (just an ounce at a time)a day. However, he is seeming more hungry/cranky so he’s been nursing closer to every 2 hours instead of 3 hours. Hopefully, we’ll be able to space it out farther soon.
We’re almost 2 weeks into this adventure and I’m feeling very sleepy!
The Henning family may be happy to learn that I’m working very dilligently at teaching Audrey to roll her eyes. You can see my efforts are being rewarded with Audrey’s funny furrowed brow. She was thrilled to be able to hold her baby brother for about 5 minutes this morning. It’s fun to see Audrey transform from our baby to the “big sister”.
Isaac woke up to eat at 5:00. He usually wakes up twice during the night at goes right back to bed. I should probably be back in bed, but I decided to fiddle around online.
I’m thankful it’s the weekend. We did pretty well surviving our first week on our own. Ethan and Audrey have been so good with their baby brother. I’m so pleased with how they love him and put up with all the time it takes for Mommy to feed him. I’ve stopped giving Isaac a bottle after several of his feedings. I’ve cut out the middle of the night ones and at least one during the day. Sometimes he decides he is ready to eat again after only 2 hours when I do that, but he’s only 10 days old so we have some time to work on extending that time.
Having a newborn is tiring, but so far, this time around has been the easiest. It’s so much easier to stay calm now that I’ve done this twice already. Also, knowing for sure that this is the last time I’m going to get to snuggle a tiny baby of my own helps me enjoy the time a lot more.
I was going to write more, but I hear Isaac squeaking. Time for a little quality snuggle time!