A quick one (while he’s asleep)…
My, is it Friday already? Where has the time gone?
It seems like forever since Sunday, a lifetime since last Thursday. We’ve been through so much already!
What I didn’t tell you about on Sunday night was just how absolutely relieved I was at that point. You see, we got a little behind with the breastfeeding. I thought we were doing really well, but he was jaundiced (i.e., his skin and eyes
were yellow-ish looking, like he had a tan) when we left the hospital and no one told us that the jaundice would make him really sleepy. So we missed feedings. And since he and I were still learning the whole breastfeeding thing, I missed some of his feeding cues. So he got dehydrated.
Next thing you know, he hasn’t had a wet diaper in 36 hours. At this point, the pediatrician is getting concerned, I’m hysterical and Tim is getting upset as well (which, for those of you who know even-keel, ever-the-optimist Tim, is totally alarming). So we start giving him a 1/2 ounce of Pedialyte after each feeding by dropper.
Basically, it came down to a deadline: if August hadn’t had a wet diaper by Monday morning, we were going to have to “get aggressive” according to the ped. What did that mean? I could only imagine. Formula possibly? Probably. To a struggling breastfeeding mom, this is the ultimate shame. (Geez, I still get choked up just writing this!)
Anyway, Sunday night, I pulled out all the stops. I tried every trick I knew to get him to pee. I took off his diaper, waved cool air over his wee, put alcohol (cold! very cold!) on his umbilical stump and generally annoyed the heck out of him. Just when I was about to give up and rediaper him for the millionth time, eureka! A fountain of pee! I don’t know or really care if you believe this, but I literally sobbed with joy. Tim, who was on the phone with his oldest brother Lou, came running into the room and we immediately celebrated. Wierd, huh? Where most new parents hate changing dirty diapers, we party like it’s 1999, baby.
The next morning, he was extremely lethargic. He didn’t want to nurse. He didn’t even want to open his mouth. This was all very alarming to the pediatrician, so we took him in at 12:45.
Throughout all of this, even though I was an emotional trainwreck, my instincts were telling me that he was OK. His color wasn’t that bad, our feeding sessions were getting better every time (except for the one that morning) and he just didn’t act like he was sick.
At the doctor’s he was weighed, which showed that his weight was down to 6 lbs 1 oz. This wasn’t too disturbing since he had been 6 lbs 2 oz. on Saturday, and most babies lose up to 10% of their birth weight in the days after birth (especially breastfed babies). The doctor checked him out and declared that he looked pretty good. He told us to keep up the Pedialyte until the wet diapers became a regular occurence and to keep nursing him frequently.
Now it’s Friday, and I can’t believe how far we’ve come. He’s nursing like a champ now (with my sore nipples a shining and misshapen example of just how well) and he still sleeps great at night! It’s like he was born knowing that he should eat a lot in the evenings so he can sleep at night! We are blessed! (Of course, this could change at any time.) We’re still not totally where we need to be as far as the number of wet and poopy diapers every day, but we’re getting better. Best of all, he looks really good. His cheeks seem a little fuller and he even feels heavier. If all goes well, I’m hoping for a very positive two-week checkup next Thursday.
One wierd thing that they don’t tell you about in the baby books: he’s molting! He’s totally losing a layer of skin! We’ve used vitamin E oil and even the heavy-duty lotion they prescribed at the hospital, but it still keeps coming off. Crazy! We asked our friends Tim and Brooke if their son did the same thing and they said yes, so I stopped worrying about it.
Tim gets embarassed when I go on about how great he is, but he truly has been such a rock for me. During the delivery, he was everything. Through each contraction, he was there, holding my hand, reassuring me and looking into my eyes to keep me focused on anything other than the pain. Since we’ve been home, he has been right there any time I or August have needed him. He’s totally incredible. August and I are so lucky to have him.
Believe it or not: there were some funny moments from the labor and delivery of this little guy. Here’s one: When I started pushing, the nurse came in and said the doctor was on the phone wondering if she should come to the hospital now or run home first. I was like, ‘Where the hell does she live?! Next door?!’ I didn’t realize that some first-time moms push for a long time. Needless to say, she came over then and it only took me 45 minutes total to push him out!