Nap when the baby naps, ok. So far that has been going well I love the naps I get during the day and they are totally needed. It is tough because every day I have so much stuff I would love to get done while she naps but I need to also take care of myself. Night time has been a little tough but being tired at home is so so much better than being tired in the hospital so I am so happy to be home. I felt like Goldilocks trying to figure out where I could sleep after the surgery- my bed is too high, my futon is too low and the couch is juuusssstttt right. So for the first few nights I slept on the couch, Ryan slept on the futon in the living room and Claire slept in her bassinet. Then I moved to the futon with Ryan and I think tonight I am going to attempt the bed!! I am healing really well and I think my sleep between feedings will be a lot more restful once I am in my own bed. Claire is great at night, she doesn't cry unless she gets hungry before my alarm goes off for her feeding, she does like to play at the breast in the middle of the night more than she does during the day, hoping to solve that soon. She is a great little sleeper, her naps are long and she is out.
I should start at the beginning though because it was NOT easy at first. I had heard that breastfeeding would be tough and would be something that we needed to work at, thankfully my friends were honest with me and really tried to prepare me for what was to come. Well, there is no way to actually be prepared because it is all so new there is nothing to compare it to. My grandma described it as having her toe nails ripped out... It only felt like that for me a few times. In the hospital we had lots of access to lactation consultants and every nurse there was all about breastfeeding and would help me whenever we needed it. The latch - this part was the hardest part for me. I thought she would be on and all would be going swell and then it would start to HURT, not just a pinch but real pain, pain that I thought I could not nurse through, I would have to unlatch her and start again, which was just as painful since my nipple was already throbbing. Eventually we both got better at it but occasionally we still get a bad latch and it hurts. Favorite boob - Claire is picky. For her first few days she preferred the right to the left, once my milk came in this was super painful because the left would be rock hard and the right was fine. They were able to help me get her on the left but I was never able to do it by myself while I was there. During the day she and I worked much better together then we did at night and we can blame that on being super tired I'm sure. For a few feedings I just cried, Ryan would massage Claire's shoulder to keep her awake and interested, I would cry and try to help manually express some milk to my baby. Those were the hard times, I did not feel the bonding that I wanted to feel during the feedings and it was much more about getting through the feeding then anything else. Then I went home. I pushed to go home early because I was over the hospital but once home I realized I do not have a lactation consultant at my beck and call and how will I know if she is getting enough! The first feeding went something like this - started on the couch thinking "we got this" ended up sobbing on my bed with Ryan manually tried to express milk, my mom rubbed Claire to keep her awake and I just cried/was no help at all. At this time both of my breasts were engorged, had huge lumps and were so hard she could not even latch on. This is when I first tried the pump, I got some milk out, enough to let her latch and then she ate and I continued to cry. I will blame the crying on the hormones, the pain and feeling like a total failure. BUT then I had an angel text me, I will call Brittany an angel because I do not now how she knew to text me right then but at this moment I got a text that said, "how is breastfeeding" through my tears I think I responded with TERRIBLE. She asked if I wanted any advice because she did not want to overstep and just offer if it was not wanted. It was the opposite, please someone tell me what to do so that my baby can eat and I can get through this.
Her tips - take a hot shower and let the water run over your breast, this will help the milk come out easier and get rid of those hard bumps that I was feeling - drink mothers milk tea.
Now both of of these I could do! I already had that tea because a girlfriend had given me a few boxes and I hopped right in the shower and since that evening I have not cried during a feeding!
I highly suggest this tea, I have had it probably every day and not a joke my breast just leak when I think about my baby and it has been so much easier to nourish my baby which makes me feel so amazing. Night time is still a little bit hard and I am sure it is because I am tired but overall breastfeeding has gone well once we got into our groove. She likes to cluster feed [eat around every hour instead of every 2 or 3] that can be tough because then you feel like all you are doing is breastfeeding but once she settles down she likes to nap for awhile. I am so glad I kept trying even when it was hard and I am thankful I had support in the hospital, from my husband, my mom and Brittany! I really needed it. I am hoping to go 6 weeks before pumping and trying bottles, I need to start pumping to get ready for when I go back to work and I need to send breast milk with her to day care.
My relationship with Ryan:
The birth brought us so much closer and then our love for Claire has done that even more. He is my partner and I am so excited to go through this journey with him. Last night we took a little time to ourselves and went and got some frozen yogurt. My sister was here so she spent the time with Claire and they got to bond. Ryan and I were able to get the yogurt and go on a walk and catch up, it was wonderful. I have missed him while he has been away for the Conroy wedding and also while he has been at work. I am hoping that we are able to fit in a lot more us time, it was really a great way to recharge.
Healing from her birth:
This was not a section that i wrote about in the first blog because I had not really thought about a c section and how the healing would go. So far I feel great! I am thankful that I worked out for as long as I did, I think my body has healed much quicker because of it.
Healing at the hospital was the toughest part, I had a catheter in for about a day and once they removed it the first time going to the bathroom was one of the most embarrassing moments of my life. Not only could I not get out of bed without Ryan's help, I also could not get to the bathroom or go to the bathroom without his help. I had heard about the bleeding and the huge pads and the mesh underwear but I had no idea what it would be like and how useless I would feel. I am so happy that my husband is so strong and helpful because those few first trips to the restroom really broke me down. Once I could go alone I felt a million times better. He helped me take my first shower and then the next day I was able to do that on my own too, it was hard not to be in total control. I know it was a major surgery but those little things were hard to wrap my head around. Passing gas seemed to be like the only thing nurses cared about for awhile, I guess that is how they know that my intestines are working properly and eventually I became really proud of myself each time it happened haha. They highly suggested I walk laps in the hospital, my mom and I did a few and that was a really nice time for us. It was so nice to have her there with me and Ryan also got to have some alone time with Claire which I know he cherished.
My cut is healing nicely, I have a check up next week and I hope they clear me for a bath. I would LOVE a bath, showers are wonderful and all but a bath has been on my mind for days.
If you have any questions I would love to have something new to think about and blog about - just let me know
Hope you are having a great week! I cannot believe that it is already Thursday! Looking forward to concerts in the park tomorrow :)
have a good one!