Carla! Thanks for checking in. I remember how hard the evenings were after I had Grace. I would just cry and cry and my poor DH thought it was him (this is when he was home). Hang in there sweetie! Sounds like you are doing a wonderful job.
Carla, big hugs to you. I found that for those first few weeks when I was home, I appreciated company (expected company, that is - not MIL dropping in. :roll:). It's nice to be able to chat with 'grown-ups' from time to time - especially if they're willing to bring you food and hold the baby while you shower!
Carla, I'm so glad things are going so well with Claire. I understand the emotional roller coaster you are riding, and I'm so glad you have such wonderful support in your dh and extended family. Keep taking care of yourself!
I'm going to try to work on my birth story this weekend and I look forward to sharing it with all of you. Claire vomited at about 4:30 this morning. She was breastfeeding, broke the latch, looked up at me, and threw up everything she had eaten in the previous 10 minutes. It went all over me, the chair, her...then she screamed like I was sticking her with needles while I tried to clean us both up because she was hungry all over again. She ate another 15 minutes on the other breast and all went well.
Any advice from you ladies on staying awake toward the end of the middle of the night feedings? I find myself literally dozing during the 2nd breast and burping. Reading doesn't help (not to mention I'm not coordinated enough to nurse and read yet). We don't have cable (but I imagine that might help). I just hate that feeling of literally nodding off and it scares me a bit.
Congrats on your baby girl. I know I'm a little late posting that, I thought I'd already posted it, lol. She is beatiful and I love hearing how it's going. I've not BTDT yet, so no advice on how to stay awake at night during feedings.
Carla, you're daughter is gorgeous and you have a truly inspiring story, you were so strong through that really long time!
I suffered, as many women do, from horrible dreams and nightmares throughout my 1st trimester. They were all anxiety, fear, death sort of dreams. Well, it seems that my hormones are at it again because those dreams are back! Last night was the worst. After Claire ate at about 11pm, I gave her to DH and crawled into bed. I awoke sobbing at 1am with Claire in the co-sleeper beside me and DH still awake and reading on his computer. He came running at the sound of my sobs. I had been dreaming that I came home and DH was sitting on the couch next to our friend who is recently deceased. Our friend kept saying to him that you "need to tell her, you need to tell her everything" and a long distance friend was opening and closing cupboards in the kitchen. DH told my friend to get my things and take me and the baby and leave. I said "why?" and he said "because I never loved you or the baby and I can't fake it anymore and you need to take the baby and leave" and he just kept saying it over and over again and I kept saying "I don't understand, what is going on". Finally, I woke myself up sobbing and DH crawled into bed with me and kept saying "I love you and I love the baby and I want you stay right here with me". I must have cried for a good half hour. Wow, these hormones are real killers!!!
I had two separate dreams last night that I left the baby somewhere! I don't know if the hormones still at work, or just part of mommyhood.
I have been gone for a while and wanted to say a big congratulations on a darling little lady! She is just perfect. I look forward to reading your birth story and hope that the next few weeks will find you feeling more and more like your self.
:bigarmhug: I've had very similar things with the dreams and they were just awful in the first few weeks after. And my anxiety about falling asleep with Peyton on me or while feeding was HUGE. I still have nightmares sometimes now but less often. Of course, insomnia helps with that by eliminating sleep altogether! Haha... this, too, shall pass, but I know it's disconcerting.
We were bottle feeding in the beginning but I had the same challenges with staying awake. Soon little Claire will be big enough and you will be tired and confident enough to nurse side-lying during the night. I NEVER thought I could but it's amazing and is great for everyone. I'm even doing that with Peyton when he dozes and wakes during the day and my supply is increasing! Every situation is different, but it will get easier. I don't know if anything can truly prepare you for the challenges of the first few weeks.
I really look forward to reading your birth story! Thanks for sharing your updates
Hi, everyone. Just wanted to drop in and say we're doing well. MIL left on Friday and DD and I were alone (when DH was at work) for Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. My parents arrived a day early, on Sunday night, and it is good to have them. I tend to be short tempered with my mother and I feel awful about that, but I'm trying.
We had our WIC appointment today. My iron is good and I have lost 20 lbs since giving birth! Whoa! That leaves 19 lbs. to lose to get back to my pre-pregnancy weight, but I'll be happy to only lose another 12 or so because I was underweight pre-pregnancy. DD was 7lbs. 7.2 oz. at birth and dropped to 7 lbs. 2 oz. at 5 days....but today, at 12 days, she is 7 lbs. 14 oz....that is a gain of 12 oz. in one week. Go breast milk! DD and I were both exhausted from our morning out at the WIC office and we slept 2 hours straight when we got home.
Tomorrow I'm going to get fitted for nursing bras. I've been "foot loose and fancy free" since she was born. The baby blues continue, but I've definitely noticed the pattern of them hitting at about 6pm and lasting until about 8pm. Now that I see the pattern, it scares me a bit less...and I find that it always helps to call DH at work and hear his voice.
I'm about 3/4 of the way done w/my birth story...I'll try to finish it soon. I've started thinking about needing to pump and freeze some breastmilk for the coming months, in case I get sick, for when DH and I finally get to go out and alone and have dinner or something, etc. I hope everyone is doing well. I'm sorry that I haven't been keeping up with anyone else's lodges and posts, but I just don't know where the time goes...
Good for you for getting into the WIC office. I know that can be a bit of an ordeal--not sure if I've said before, but in my former life I worked for WIC in Indianapolis for about a year--but it's a great program and can be so helpful.
Isn't it amazing how the time just evaporates? I've always heard parents say time flies when you have children and now I know what they mean! I think the cycle of the early days is especially crazy. Hard for me to believe it's October already.
Hope you have a good visit with your parents and get on well with your mom. Take care and give Claire a sqeeze from us
Marissa---that pic of Peyton is stunning and I love what you wrote next to it!
My parents left this afternoon and it was a very tearful departure. My mom cried and cried and the last thing she said to me when she finished holding Claire for the last time was "you're a good mommy". My dad kept saying to both DH and I, "you've got some good times and some rough road ahead of you and I need to know that you're going to take care of each other and keep an eye on each other because we're not nearby enough to do that". DH even cried and it just broke my heart to watch them walk out the door. The image of my dad holding little baby Claire the last time, handing her to DH, and then kissing DH on the cheek is burned into my retina. I've been crying on and off all afternoon.
DH had to go to work, but when he left he helped me get Claire into the car seat and into the stroller and we went out on our first walk (and visit to the video store). It was cold (36F) and windy, but it felt good to get out. Thank goodness for the Bundle Me. Claire was snug as a bug, napped, and completely warm when we got home.
Well, it has been an eventful couple weeks with the prodromal labor, Claire finally choosing her birthday, MIL here for 2 weeks, my parents here for a week, and now I feel a complete and utter letdown but I think it is all okay. The every evening baby blues seem to have lessened (tonight doesn't count since I'm so sad about my parents leaving LOL). I am looking forward to settling into a routine with my new little family. 2 week Ped appointment went well...the Ped confirmed that Claire has an unusually strong neck for her age (holds her head up a lot when she is alert and is starting to try to turn it from side to side) and her weight gain continues to be good so we'll head back to the Ped when she is 4 weeks old.
I hear her stirring in her co-sleeper. Off I go...we'll do a visit to the right side of the milk bar, make mommy some (one-handed) dinner, and watch a movie. I look forward to DH getting home; I think it is my favorite time of the day!
Glad things are going well and that the visit with your parents went well. Hopefully now things will be able to settle down more into a pattern now that all your guests are gone. Have a good evening.
I'm glad things are going well for you, and I know it must be hard having your parents so far away from you. My Mum lives a long way from me and I don't ever see my dad. Everytime I visit my Mum it upsets me to leave.
Claire is looking lovely in signature. :bighug: I imagine we'll all be getting the baby blues at some time. You're perfectly normal, don't you worry.
Claire Helen P.’s Birth Story
Born healthy, happy, and beautiful on Thursday, October 5, 2006
19.9 inches long
7 lbs. 7.2 oz.
Awakened by a contraction at 2:30am. Awoke DH at about 4:30am to help me time them because they were getting closer and closer together. At about 6:30am the contractions tapered off to being 10 to 20 minutes apart and so we went back to bed. Slept a couple hours with a few minor contractions. After getting up continued with contractions throughout the day, but they kept going from 5 minutes apart to 20 minutes apart and didn’t maintain any sort of pattern or regularity. Spoke to midwife friend and she said that I was in early labor and reminded me about all the things I could do to breathe through the contractions. Midwife informed me that her mother was very ill and she may have to go out of town and be unavailable for the birth. I confirmed with the doula that she could be at the birth if the midwife was unable to attend. Fitful sleep Friday night as contractions came and went. DH stayed home from work Friday night.
Saturday, 9/30/06 and Sunday, 10/1/06
Contractions continued intermittently and, in retrospect after actual labor and delivery, were fairly mild. DH stayed home from work again Saturday night because I was now exhausted from the constant, but irregular contractions. He went out for groceries and to run a couple errands in the early evening and while he was gone the contractions went to 5 minutes apart for an hour and a half. I called him on his cell phone and told him to come home so we could go to the hospital. By the time he got home, I was having heavy bloody show, very liquidy and had called the midwife. The midwife said to go to the hospital immediately and call her after we were settled in. The Dr. examined me at the hospital and said that I was 1 cm. dilated and 80% effaced. He was very, very concerned about the amount and type of blood. NST for 20 minutes showed that the baby was fine and my blood pressure, temp, etc. was also good. Dr. left DH and I to labor for the night (while he was asleep in the room next door) and had the nurse monitor the blood and the baby. DH and I continued to walk, squat, hands and knees, tub, etc. through the contractions until 5am. The nurse was amazingly helpful and supportive. The Dr. checked me at 5am and there was no change in effacement or dilation, but the blood flow had tapered off. He took a sample of the blood to be certain that it didn’t have fetal tissue in it. He returned at 7am to confirm that the blood was not fetal and said he was concerned at my state of exhaustion from the now 48 hours of “false” or prodromal labor. He offered pitocin to either start labor or morphine to sleep. I asked him his opinion of what we should do and he said that he preferred having me sleep because he was afraid that with how exhausted I was that the pitocin would get me started on something I couldn’t finish and further interventions would be needed. DH and I discussed it and decided to try to the morphine. I had some breakfast so that the drugs would not hit my empty stomach. I slept on the morphine from about 8:30am to 2:30pm only mildly feeling the contractions occasionally. When I awoke I immediately started vomiting from the morphine, but had no contractions. Once the vomiting subsided, they sent me home to monitor my contractions from there. DH and I slept from 4:30pm to 11:30pm (contraction free), got up, showered, ate a little, and went back to bed about 12:30am Monday morning.
I was awakened by the return of the contractions at 4:30am. Still no pattern or consistency. DH had to go to the airport in the afternoon to pick up his mother, so the doula came to spend the evening with me. She was amazing. We walked, sat in the tub, hands and knees, and squatted, etc. everything through the erratic contractions. She gave me a hot foot soak and pedicure and that helped me relax some. About ½ hour before DH returned, the doula said that she would like me to consider returning to the hospital since I had been laboring for almost another 24 hours and she wanted the baby checked and also my cervix. When DH got home, the 3 of us returned to the hospital. NST was fine and so were my vitals. The nurse checked me and I was still 80% effaced and had gone from 1cm to about 1.5 cm dilated. She talked to the other Dr. from my practice and he said given this I could either opt for morphine again or go home and continue to labor. I didn’t want to take more drugs so we headed home once again. I was exhausted and devastated. DH and I spent the entire night going from the bed to the couch to the loveseat to the tub in an effort to ease my pain. It was absolutely the worst night of my life as I constantly felt like I was being split in half. I had been in prodromal labor for four days.
I had a scheduled 41 week appointment with my Dr. in the afternoon, but we went to the hospital late morning instead to see him there since he was attending other births. NST looked good, all my vitals were good, did an ultrasound and there was plenty of amniotic fluid and we watched the baby squeezing the umbilical cord with her little hand. Still 80% effaced and now maybe 2cm dilated. The Dr. said that he knew I was tired and overwhelmed and in pain but he preferred to let mother nature run her course because he was concerned that if they artificially started labor and my body wasn’t ready greater and greater interventions would be needed. I sobbed and sobbed. He suggested that I go home for the afternoon and come back in the evening to sleep at the hospital again. MIL stayed home with me for the day and DH tried to get a few hours in at work. I went to sleep with the morphine again at the hospital at about 9pm and DH came in to hold my hand and talk with me on his way home from work. I cried and cried at what I believed was my failure to have a natural birth and cursed my body for not doing what it was supposed to be doing.
I slept until 5:30am, still feeling the contractions but not as intensely. DH took me home at about 8:30am. Unlike the last time I slept on the morphine, the contractions continued as soon as I was awake. I continued to labor at home under the watchful eye of mother-in-law. DH went to try to get in a few more hours at work. At about 3pm, the contractions were once again 5 minutes apart and I passed a very small piece of plug. I called to tell the doula this and she said she would come over and stay with me until the contractions were 3 minutes apart and then we would go to the hospital. I also called DH and told him the news; he said to keep him posted and he would meet us at the hospital. During the first contractions after getting off the phone with DH, I felt a warm gush and immediately went to check my party-liner (worrying that the bleeding had returned). There was no more blood and the liquid was warm and clear. This warm gush of liquid continued with the next 4 contractions at which point I told MIL and we headed off to the hospital after paging the doula and calling DH. When MIL wheeled me into L&D all the nurses were so excited! They hadn’t cleaned my room since I left that morning because they said they “had a feeling I’d be back today”. It was so wonderful to have such positive vibes from the staff. A quick test to the pad I had been wearing confirmed amniotic fluid and the nurse called the Dr. to tell him “guess who’s back and she’s sprung a leak”. The nurse said the Dr. said a big “hooray!”. The doula and DH arrived at the hospital about 20 minutes after MIL and me. NST and all my vitals looked good. They started the antibiotic drip since I was GBS positive and checked me…no change 80% effaced and about 2 cm. dilated. I labored until midnight in every possible position…walking slow and fast, squatting, hands and knees, birth ball, lying on my side, sitting in the bathtub, crouching in the bathtub with the doula and DH taking turns spraying my lower back, buttocks, and vagina with warm water…however, the contractions continued to go from 3 minutes apart to as much as 12 minutes apart without ever remaining consistent. I asked to be checked again at midnight.
As of midnight I was 80% effaced and 4-5 cm dilated. I was disappointed and tired, but determined. The Dr., nurse, doula, DH, and I had a big conversation about timing because I was now 9 hours into the 24 hour clock since my water broke. After much discussion, we decided to go ahead with the smallest possible dosage of a pitocin drip. Within minutes, my contractions steadied into a rhythm of 3 minutes apart and lasting 45 seconds to a minute. I never imagined such pain and it took every ounce of resignation along with will power to continue with each contraction. I begged to know when it would be over, I told DH several times that there “won’t be a 2nd baby”, and continued to ask the doula how in the “he** she did this 3 times?!”. At 4am I asked to be checked again. There had been absolutely no progress…80% effaced and 4-5 cm. dilated. The Dr. said “let’s go like this for another hour or so and then talk about what we could do next”. If I could have gotten off my hands and knees at that point, I would have walked across the room and done some serious bodily harm to him! DH saw my response and said “let’s talk about those options now” and the Doula said gently and quietly “Carla, you’ve been in labor for close to a week now and you are the strongest woman I have ever worked with, but I am afraid we’ve gone beyond pain with a purpose and now you are experiencing pain without purpose”. I said that I didn’t want “wimp out” or put the baby in any danger and that I wanted a natural childbirth. Everyone in the room acknowledged my desire and said that I was not a wimp, but that I did have options if I wanted to listen to them. The Dr. suggested the smallest dosage of Nubaine, a muscle relaxant, to help me relax between the contractions, but said that I would still “feel” everything. I chose this option and do not, to this day, regret it. From 4am to 5am, I labored on my side in the bed, falling asleep between contractions (from the Nubaine), and waking up to feel the full force of each contraction and getting up on my hands and knees to rock through them. At 5am, I said “I need to push, I need to push”. I vividly remember the Dr. walking in wearing jeans and a t-shirt and carrying a cup of coffee. He put on his glove, checked me, and said “you’re 10cm, no lip of the cervix, let’s have a baby…but let me go get my work clothes on first”. I was so thrilled! In one hour, I went from 80% effaced and 4-5 cm. dilated to 100% effaced and 10cm dilated! The Dr. was back in moments and I got onto my hands and knees again and started pushing with each contraction. It felt so good!!! After a couple contractions, the Dr. said “knowing what I know about your uterus and cervix, I would like to suggest another position for pushing”. So, with many hands of help, I got into a squatting position, holding onto the birthing bar, and tried that for a couple contractions. It just didn’t feel right. The doula suggested lying slightly reclined (a position I never would have considered), with my feet up on the birthing bar, and my hands holding onto handles that came up from the side of the bed. This was it. During each contraction, I pushed with my legs on the birthing bar and pulled on the handles. I reached down to feel the head crowning and was amazed by the feeling of that little piece of our baby’s head. During the next contraction, I pushed 3-4 times while the Dr. applied mineral oil and put his fingers where he wanted me to push. I said “it burns” and the doula quietly said in my ear “that’s the ring of fire we talked about”. At the end of the contraction, I said I don’t have any more pushes in me for this contraction and the Dr. said “if you give me one more push, the baby’s head will be out”. I pushed one more time without the aid of a contraction and felt instant relief. I looked at DH’s face and he kept looking from my face to between my legs with complete and utter awe. When the next contraction came, the Dr. said “reach down and catch your baby” and I reached down, felt the rest of her slip from my body, pulled her onto my chest and burst out laughing. The rest of the room burst into laughter, too. I heard the nurse say “6:03 am”. I had pushed for one hour. Then the Dr. said, “move her down onto your belly, the umbilical cord is a little short”. The nurse said “well, Daddy, is it a boy or a girl?” and I realized at that moment that I really didn’t care. DH looked, paused for a few seconds, and said it’s a girl and I started crying. A few seconds later, I felt the placenta slip out and the Dr. said “you are officially no longer pregnant”. They covered our little girl in towels and I held her on my chest for at least 15 minutes (in one of the pictures you can see the wall clock in the background and she is still on my chest) and the doula helped me bring the baby to my breast where she latched and sucked for a few minutes.
I HEART your doctor!!! He is seriously fantastic!! What an amazing birth story - your increadible, what patience and perseverance that must've taken in order to labor for that long. Thank you so much for sharing your story with us!!
What an awesome birthstory Carla! I take my hat off to you laboring for so long! :udawoman:
Carla, I have been waiting so patiently for your birth story - and it was well worth the wait! Wow. It sounds like you had an AWESOME support team. I am so struck by the similarities in our labors - we both experienced exhausting days upon days of prodromal labor - and simultaneously even. I think you did wonderfully, and I'm so happy that your medical team was patient and supportive of your wishes - that is so rare these days. I do feel sad, however, that the experience left you feeling that you won't be having another child . . . do you still feel that way now that some time has passed? When my Michael asked me about an hour after Lilah was born "Would you do it again?" My immediate feeling was "no way!" but over the last couple of weeks, the memories of the pain I experienced have faded and have been replaced by a feeling a empowerment, and now I could definitely see myself doing it again. Anyhow, I guess because our experiences were so parallel, I'm just curious about how you're feeling about it all now.
Congratulations again on your determination, strength, and a beautiful and healthy baby!
Carla- you are amazing! Thank you for sharing such an inspiring story with us!
Your birth story is amazing, I've been looking forward to it!! The patience of your doctor - what a great thing. Glad to know that there are good ones out there.
Thank you for sharing your birth story, Congratulations!! Your dtr is beautiful !!
WOW! What a story!!! Your doctor sounds FANTASTIC!!! Hold on to that one! YOu did so awesome considering the length of your labor. You are WONDER WOMAN!
What a story, Carla. Thanks for sharing!
I was in tears at the end. I guess it must be so amazing to wait so long and finally see your baby. Well done. You did so well, Carla.
Carla~WOW!!! You are such a strong woman!!! WTG
Thanks for reading my birth story. It certainly wasn't the totally natural birth I had hoped for, but I did feel educated, supported, and do not regret any of the decisions I made.
Lisa...about having another baby... This is a hard topic for me. As you know I am 37 and DH is 43...we got a late start! LOL So, if we do decide to have another, we would probably start trying again in a year or so. I loved being pregnant, but after a completely uneventful pregnancy the prodromal labor really crushed my spirit. I do not think I would have said the things I said to DH during labor about not having a 2nd baby if I hadn't been in my 6th day of labor. If someone could tell me with 100% certainty that I would not go through that again, then I would not hesitate to have another baby. The days of prodromal labor are what I fear. A more "normal" (if there is such a thing) labor as far as time is concerned, does not cause me any fear at all. My Dr. said that subsequent deliveries are different 99% of the time, but what about that 1%.....? I think it is all too fresh and new still as I still have nightmares about being awakened by contractions that were not progressing my cervix. Only time will tell...but I am leaving the door open. Thanks for asking. Enough about me...I continue to watch your lodge, Lisa...how are you doing emotionally these days?
*bump* to save for printout...
bumping for ya
Thanks! It is printing out right now for my Keepsake Box.