Friday, May 11, 2007

still in the fog

Totally overwhelmed. I completely forgot how hard it is to care for a newborn. Add that to taking care of my toddler and I'm half-drowning. How do you even know what a newborn wants? I feel like I'm shoving my breast in his face every time he cries. Is that the right thing to do? I seriously can't remember what to do.
The Birth
Long story short, I went in for an appointment, the midwife did some manual manipulation "down there" (sweeping the membranes) and I started cramping right away. A few hours later I was pretty sure I was in labor. I had an acupuncturist come and she helped things along as well. I don't know how I would've known when to go to the midwife because my contractions were irregular-- 10 minutes apart, 4 minutes apart etc. Jessi came and checked my cervix and told me to get going (Thanks Jessi!). Got to the birthing suite at 7:30 pm. Most painful two hours of my life and then Alex was born.
He was breathing really fast all night and they wanted to transfer us to the NICU. Even longer story short, we went to the newborn nursery at Bryn Mawr Hospital, where Alex was admitted but I was not. I, therefore, had to sit on a chair near the newborn nursery 12 hours after I had given birth and just hang out. Fun. No one really did anything to him-- he had some bloodwork to make sure he didn't have an infection. Honestly-- he looked great but was just breathing too fast. They diagnosed him with TTN- transient tachypnea of the newborn, supposedly from coming out too fast (not fast enough in my opinion).
Then they sent us home. Talia was happy to meet her brother, I was feeling pretty good (energetic, happy to be home, ready to get started on my new life). The first afternoon we all took a family nap and nighttime wasn't too bad.
More newborn problems/ Breastfeeding
Of course Alex stopped pooping and peeing within the first three days. Same thing with Talia. Everyone knows I had low-milk supply with T and gave up breastfeeding pretty quickly. This time I was determined to work through it. We supplemented him so that he wouldn't die and kept going. Then he got jaundiced from not eliminating. We are still breastfeeding and supplementing. Breastfeeding is actually going better this time around. Every time he falls off the breast his mouth is filled with milk but then he starts crying and rooting and all that. Pretty much he seems like he's starving and downs two or three ounces of formula really fast- even if he's just eaten. I hate not knowing how much he's eaten. I also hate having to park myself for 45 minutes every few hours and then STILL have to give him a bottle. I'm sure he's going to start refusing the breast soon anyway. I'm having trouble taking care of Talia and breastfeeding at the same time. It's fucking with my head. Very confusing. I'm not sure why (or even if) I'm attached to nursing. I don't love it or anything. I remember that once I gave up nursing Talia I started feeling much better emotionally. So I don't know how long I'll hold on.
Bottom line/ Update: I still have no sensation in my breasts that milk has come in and definitely haven't ever felt a "let down". I think he's getting less and less-- lately there is a lot of sucking and little swallowing. Certainly there has never been a DROP of milk in my bra or anything. Alex is 11 days old now and I think I'm going to give it up. It's my
mother's day gift to myself, Talia and Ron. I'll find some way to make it up to Alex... someday.
Baby Blues
I miss Talia so much. I miss her when she's sitting next to me. I miss her when I'm hugging her. I miss her right now. She's not acting up too much. She has said, "Put Alex down" or "hold ME mommy" or other similar things.
As I said, I have NO IDEA how I'll handle two. I feel like I'm a terrible mother to BOTH kids. I just want Alex to sleep and I just want Talia to be a good girl. We've never really been big on discipline (our fault, I know) and now we're stuck on a few issues. Bedtime has just gotten longer and longer and more elaborate. We FINALLY are out of her room by 9:45 each night, regardless of whether or not she naps. The bedtime routine, which begins with her bath starts at around 8pm. She didn't cry tonight when I left her room. I guess that's a start.

I have quite a lot more to say but not a lot of time or energy to say it right now. More later, I'm sure.

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