Saturday, June 16, 2012

{one week}

It is hard to believe my little love is one week old today! In fact, a week ago at this time he was 25 minutes old, laying on my chest, and my husband and I were bawling our eyes out at the sight of our miracle baby. Makes me tear up just thinking about it.

Speaking of tears, my postpartum hormones have been crazy. Thankfully most of my tears have been the sentimental good kind of weepy, but I have had a few over the top meltdowns as well. So much has happened in a week I don't even know where to begin!

*So far his temperament has seemed to be on the easy end of the spectrum. When he gets upset he has been easy to console - he just needed to eat, get a diaper change, be rocked and shushed, or be swaddled. I feel like there has been little actual crying this week.

* That said, the most difficult times for us in the first few days were our nursing sessions. He would clearly be hungry, latch on, but then get really frustrate, scream, and pull away. We would spend a lot of time comforting him and trying to get him to eat, and I was getting really stressed out that we might miss a feeding if he got too upset. Then on Wednesday I got a home visit from a wonderful nurse who was helpful and encouraging in many areas, but especially with breast feeding. James has a short frenulum (the flap of skin under the tongue) which can make latching on and getting enough food challenging, apparently. We knew about this at the hospital, but all the nurses there thought he had a great latch and strong suck, so we figured his frenulum wasn't as issue. But this nurse thought that might be the cause of his frustration, so she gave me a nipple shield to try and it has made a HUGE difference!!! Nursing has been a breeze now that I use it. (By the way, per our pediatrician we are going to go to an ENT and have his frenulum cut to help with nursing and avoid potential speech problems down the road)

* I love my squishy little newborn, and already cried that he is getting older. Yesterday when he was 6 days old I realized we would start saying his age in weeks soon and got all weepy. His cuddles, warmth on my chest , squeaks and grunts, and even his little cry are too precious.

* He is a happy little guy when he is swaddled, and the two times we have gotten a 2-3 hour stretch of sleep were when he stayed swaddled. However, I kid you not, my less than a week old baby kept busting out of his swaddle! The Aiden & Anais blankets seemed too stretchy - he could kick a lot in them and wake himself up. Most of the other blankets we have already seem too small for him, so we can't get them snug and tucked in enough... So he busts out. We have a miracle blanket that I thought would do the trick, but the legs are looser and he just stays awake/ wakes himself up kicking. We ended up going to a fabric store and buying a big piece of flannel, and had some success with it last night. I also have a swaddle me that was given as a gift that we haven't tried. Any suggestions?

* The first night in the hospital, James choked on some amniotic stuff that the nurses said was somewhat common in the first 24 hours. I happened to be awake and saw it, but I didn't know what to do and started screaming at my husband to call the nurses. Thy heard me screaming and came in before we could even call, and they suctioned him and he started breathing again. Seeing him trying to breathe but unable to - and feeling like I don't know what to do - scared me so bad. I followed the nurses out into the hall sobbing as they took him to the nursery for evaluation, trying to see if he was really ok. One of them had to escort me back to our room and help calm me down. In the 3 hours he was in the nursery that night, my husband got in the twin hospital bed with me so I could be held. I still cry about it when I tell anybody, and am teary eyed as I write it here. Needless to say, the nights have been really scary for me and I can't sleep because I feel like I need to watch him. One night I had the melt down of the century over how scary the nights are, and my husband and mother in law took turns staying with him in the living room and brought him to me to eat so I could get some sleep. That did help - I don't think I had slept but a few hours in those first 4 days, and every successful night calms me a little more.

* My little love makes the absolute cutesy faces! I could just look at him all day.

* Life is SO different now. I feel incredible joy at this new season of life that we have entered in to, but the amount of change and learning that is happening is also overwhelming at times!

* I love feeling like me confidence as a mom is growing. From how I hold him, to relaxing during nursing sessions, to being able to calm him... I see myself growing. I keep telling him I learning and he's learning, so we will have to be patient with each other. :) by the way, I really feel like he knows my voice, and just hearing me talk is soothing to him!

* He loves to suck (haha), and I think we are going to end up giving him a pacifier at the two week mark (our pediatrician said to wait 2-3 weeks). I was not very opinionated on the subject, but after seeing how calm he is when we give him a finger to suck on... I just think he will be so happy, as will mom and dad. :)

* Family help has been HUGE! I know we would have done it, but I can't imagine how we would have made it trough this week without family staying with us cooking, doing laundry, an being extra pairs of loving hands with the baby.

Those are some highlights of our week that I can think of... James just finished nursing and I'm going to try to get a couple hours sleep!



29 comments:

Anonymous said...

He is just precious. So happy for yall. You already sound like you are a great mom. Relax and enjoy your sweet boy !!

Anonymous said...

He is just precious. So happy for yall. You already sound like you are a great mom. Relax and enjoy your sweet boy !!

Lee said...

Try the Swaddle me blanket. Those worked best for my son until he was about 6 Weeks old and then we switched to the miracle blanket. You just have to hold the babies arms straight down and tuck the first flap behind their back very tightly and pull the second flap over very tightly as well. The tighter it is then the less chance they have of getting out of the swaddle. :)
Also my son was tongue tied and it caused to have extreme pain for the first 6 Weeks of breastfeeding. Once they figured that out and clipped it nursing became a breeze. He is 8.5 months old and we are still nursing.
Congratulations and Good luck!

Samantha said...

We switched from the a+a swaddle blankets to the woombie. My girls slept in the woombie for months! Same effect as the swaddle but it zips.

Tiffany said...

Congratulations! God is amazing! Our miracle baby just turned 1 year old. I was told at the age of 16 I would never be able to have children, but God knew better. I do believe the Miracle children are truly happy spirits. Enjoy your little boy God has given you to raise for him.

Amanda said...

I'm so glad that you all are doing well. Make sure to take care of yourself!

On the swaddle, check out this video for the escape proof swaddle: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5K4VdZxwsu4. This was so helpful for us! We actually didn't have to use it too much on Michael, but we had to have an U/S of his testicles because he had a hydrocele and we were able to immobilize his arms and get the job done and he wasn't stressed one bit thanks to this little trick. I taught my SIL to do this and it saved them! They like to use their a&a blankets as the immobilizing blanket and use a regular halo swaddler over it. Whatever works, but this is a good trick to have in your bag.

Jessica R said...

I loved reading every word of this! I have been checking every day for an update, but I'm glad that you've been spending time with your little man. I can't tell you how much it warms my heart to read that you are finally at home with your baby!!! Thank you, God, for blessing Hillary and her husband with James.

Breastfeeding is very tough in the beginning, and for me very painful, but in a few months it will be such a breeze - someone advised me to just keep trying, and that was wonderful advice. The pain subsides after 1-2 weeks, and for me disappeared after about a month.

Halo Swaddles have Velcro! We used the newborn size for months, and LO was almost 10lbs at birth, so they're worth the money, and they WORK. Also, if you're nervous at night (I was!), splurge on the Snuza Halo. Go read reviews on the Babies R Us website - they're chilling, and amazing. That thing is the only reason I slept for the first six months. Also, if you're on BRU's mailing list, they send out 20% off one item coupons that can be used on it.

SO, SO happy for you! Please give James lots of kisses for me :)

Jessica R said...

Oh, and I agree with Tiffany, miracle babies are happy! Perhaps because their parents are SO thrilled to finally have them here. I remember not minding when she cried as a newborn, or pooped everywhere, and even now there are drool marks and fingerprints on the bottoms of our windows and I (the obsessive type A cleaner) could not care less! I don't rush to clean them; I love looking at them, because they mean that a little person - OUR little person - lives here. Oh, how babies change us! And thank God for that :)

Anonymous said...

Some may balk at this, but if you can't find a good swaddle when he is a little older, you might try letting him sleep on his tummy. The Moro reflex that startles them and causes them to sometime kick out in their sleep is much less an issue on their tummies.

Carrie said...

I agree with the Woombie or there's one call the Swaddle Pod at Babies R Us, I think. It zips up and is sooo easy! We used that for a LONG time! I didn't want to give Pearce a pacifier, but it comforts him at night, so he uses the Wubanub pacifier...it's a soothie paci with a little stuffed animal attached to it. It's good because I can stuff the arms under his car seat straps and it stays up. I also stuffed it in his Woombie for sleeping. Also, what baby monitor do you have? We use the Angel Care and it will beep if he stops moving/breathing. It's the only thing that gave me peace of mind at night. The first few weeks are the hardest because you are getting used to everything....it gets much easier!!!! He is just an angel....so cute!!!!

Carrie said...

Oh, I wanted to mention this too. We now use the Magic Sleep Suit. It's like a fleece snow suit looking thing, but he LOVES it because it keeps him all warm and snug, but he can still move around....his movements are just "muffled." When you get a chance, read about it online. We started using that at 3 months....in fact we just ordered the larger size. There are so many "tricks" for sleeping...you just have to find what works best for your baby :)

Adrianne said...

Try the woombie! It creates a womb-like environment and works great! We used it with the twins and love it!

Mellow said...

A previous comment said the Swaddle Me blanket...I agree completely with that. Marlo didn't sleep well until I started using it...I wish someone would have told me about it sooner than they did. :) He is beautiful, and I understand the weepy, yet happy feeling you have. And that choking issue...I so get it, and would have been panicked and crying right along with you. Happy for you!

evsmarie said...

James is just gorgeous!

We used the Miracle Blanket with both our first and now our second - so I have absolutely no advice there. I do have sympathy for the amniotic fluid scare. Our little Lila (1 month tomorrow) came out incredibly fast and swallowed a lot of fluid on her way. She gagged and choked constantly the first 48 hours. I had her Friday morning and Friday evening she turned blue around her mouth and nose while trying to get some out. I had her on her side in an instant and did my best to suction her out while patting her back - but it didn't work. She finally got it out herself. I paged the nurses immediately but they were slow (or it felt that way) to respond and arrived just after it ended. Ugh. I stayed calm, but only because it happened so fast. My husband walked back in the room 5 minutes later and I had a complete meltdown. :-) They did keep her in the nursery for observation that night for a few hours, but all of the nurses and Dr.s kept telling me it was fairly common and that she would be fine. I wasn't sure that I would be okay though! We went home Saturday afternoon and I'll be the first to admit that I didn't sleep much Saturday night.

So glad that life as a Mama is going well!!!

Polly Gamwich said...

At different ages, different swaddled will be best. I have one: miracle blanket (probably used the most in crib), swaddle me (for bigger babies but warmer), the halo Velcro arm wrap is FANTASTIC for in the carseat/stroller (lay it down under straps, put in baby and buckle per usual, wrap swaddle around arms and Velcro) this swaddle is also good to put OVER whatever swaddle you are fiddling with in the middle of the night - it has more forgiveness, the woombie never worked too well for us (too stretchy) ... I never tried, but I'll bet it's the best - swaddlebuddy. I'd suggest getting one of each and having them ALL on hand.

It sounds like you need to take an infant CPR class, get an anglecare monitor, try to trust the Lord as much as you can with this very precious boy - and get some more sleep! If LO did stop breathing and the alarm sounded, you would have time to attempt resuscitation (Angelcare won't avoid breathing problems, but will give LO a fighting chance at avoiding tragedy).

The best piece of advice anyone could give us? Harvey Karp Happiest Baby on the Block DVD and Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child book by Weissbluth. Waketimes of 45 mins for a very long time when they are newborn - do not keep that baby up!!

Anonymous said...

Congratulations! I also had babies that busted out of the swaddle. I ended up using an over sized receiving blanket but they ended up getting used to sleeping without being swaddled. My son also had a choking issue in the first few hours. I spent days worrying but God has him in the palm of his hand. This will be the first of many times you will have to give your worry about your son to the Lord. Something I struggle with daily still. Also all 4 of my kids are tongue tied. We had trouble nursing early on but opted not to have them clipped and nobody has speech problems. We were advised to wait until they were older and started talking to avoid any complications having it done while they were so little. Although might be nice to do it when he is too little to remember it. Enjoy your new one and God bless your family!!

Anonymous said...

Hi, my name is Jen from New York. James is a beautiful child. You are doing everything right, the first few weeks are tough. trust in yourself and God.

One Who Understands said...

He is just adorable. So glad you are settling in nicely and things are getting easier. I am over joyed he is here and your journey as a mother has begun. What a hard fought battle!

Becca said...

I cried when my little one turned one week old too! It sounds like you are doing a wonderful job of being a new mom! There are so many things I would like to say (I was a hormonal crazy mess in the very beginning too! So many changes it's overwhelming for sure!!) but I don't have much time to write so I will leave a link to the one blog post that seriously saved my sanity in those first few weeks. Seriously. I know you're busy and too tired to read anything.. But if you get 5 minutes of freedom.. You gotta read this old post by missy at "It's Almost Naptime"... It's a classic. And in my opinion.. EVERY new mom should read it : )

Here it is... http://itsalmostnaptime.blogspot.com/2010/08/how-to-be-perfect-mother.html

You're doin good Momma!!

BMar said...

Congrats on your little one! We have a lot in common- nipple shield, 8lb baby who likes to unswaddle himself:), long vaginal delivery, etc

Try the halo swaddle sleep sack. My baby is 17 days old and outgrown the swaddle me.

Ps here from lfca

Daniele said...

It sounds like you are loving motherhood!! Congratulations once again. I can tell you that you are not alone with all the emotions. I felt many of the same emotions. Elated, overwhelmed, fearful, sad my little one was growing so fast and more and more confident every day. With every day and month that passes the emotions even out. There are still times I am overwhelmed if I think of all the "what if"s, but the moment passes and I can go back to focusing on my little one:) Also, I agree with all the other comments on the swaddler-the SwaddleMe by Kiddopotomus or the HALO SleepSacks are nice because they stretch and have Velcro colsures so you can get them nice and tight. My girl LOVED being swaddled and it was the best way for her to sleep. The pacifier was great as well.

ceecee867 said...

He is absolutely Precious :)

Anonymous said...

Many parents I know who have difficulty swaddling or keeping babies in a swaddle swear by this: http://www.woombie.com/

Good luck!

AplusB said...

What a great update! He is so gorgeous!!

Rach said...

He is just perfect! So glad things are going well.

Jenny H said...

He is so precious! Welcome Baby James!!!

Jessica R said...

BabySteals has the Halo products on sale today! http://babysteals.stealnetwork.com/

hopingforababy said...

Congratulations!!! OMG, he is SO BEAUTIFUL!!! If you can believe it, it only gets better and better!
(:

Life Happens said...

He is precious!! I know the first few days/weeks are the hardest, but the pure joy you experience from holding your baby makes it all worth it.

Even though my baby is 16 months now, I still have to check in on him at night, just to make sure he's still breathing (even though I can clearly hear him breathing on the baby monitor). I think as mother's we never stop worrying. :)