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Sunday, June 26, 2011

Nicholas: Week 1

Nicholas is 1 week old today!

He is beginning to be so alert and he stays awake for longer periods of time. Today he spent a lot of time looking at me, and he doesn't seem to need his pacifier as often anymore to soothe himself. I think he is beginning to know us and trust us. Sometimes he seems content to have me just hold him and talk to him. That is such a change from the hospital, when he was in an incubator under lights for days. I bet he was so lonely and I felt so bad. I finally feel like we're bonding and I love it. Here are some of my favorite pictures from this week:

Our first family photo

Catchin' some rays in the nursery (phototherapy to control jaundice)

Almost ready to go home!

This is what happens when Daddy is on duty:

One week old today. Here he is looking at the animal pictures on his crib bumper. He was staring at them and the crib rails for a 1/2 hour! Such an alert little guy!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Baby Nicholas is Here!

I have a son! Here's his story:

My water broke at home early Sunday morning, June 19. I woke up at 5am to a small trickle of fluid followed by menstrual-type cramps. Once I got up, I had several gushes of fluid come out and I decided to wake my husband to tell him my water broke. His response was, "You're kidding." I said, "Nope. You'd better go pack."

We got to the hospital at about 8am and they monitored my contractions for about a half hour, then checked and I was 1cm and 50% effaced. Pitocin started (gradually) at 10:45, then a trigger-happy nurse was increasing my Pit every 1/2 hour!

At 3:30 I was told I could get the epi now or wait an hour until the anesthesiologist was free again. Even though the pain was manageable, I decided to get it then...thank goodness. 5 minutes later I was in excruciating pain with contractions every 1-2 minutes. Damn that nurse! The epi worked great though.

At 4:15 they checked and I was still only 1cm but 100% effaced. Nurse increased the Pit again. About 15 min. later I was at 4cm. 5 min. after that, we heard a faint alarm sounding and DH went to get a nurse since baby's HR had dropped. She checked and I was 6-7 cm! Suddenly I had 5 nurses around me giving me oxygen and I started shaking uncontrollably. They called the doctor in and she checked me and said I was at 9cm! Baby's HR was down to the 60s and they shut off the Pit. The contractions slowed his HR improved and I was able to rest for a bit.

A little later, I tried 2 practice pushes since baby's head was already past the section of cervix that was left. But his HR dropped again and we opted for an emergency c-section. Nicholas was born at 7:08 pm. 7 lbs, 7 oz., 19 1/2 inches. We found out that he was "sunny side up" (head down, but face up) and had the cord wrapped around his neck, which caused the distress.

The surgery went well and I was calm throughout, but I don't remember much from recovery except that I was shaking terribly again and falling asleep every other minute. They had given me a lot of anti-anxiety meds and I was really out of it. I didn't nurse until about midnight.

The next morning a blood test showed his bilirubin was increasing so he spent 2 days in the nursery receiving light therapy to control/prevent jaundice. He was given a lot of formula to help flush out his system, and I was really sad that he had to be introduced to bottles so soon.

I pumped so my husband could feed Nicholas breastmilk from a bottle, and once my catheter was taken out I went up to the nursery to breastfeed several times. He was brought to our hospital room on Wednesday and I was thrilled beyond words.

Breastfeeding on my own was really tough, and I had to call the nurse in at 3am to help me because he wouldn't stop screaming. She was amazingly patient, and she held my breast and the baby's head while I cradled his body and manually expressed milk into his mouth to encourage him to suck. Without her, though, I felt like I didn't have enough hands to do it all and I was so emotionally drained.

We are home now, and I am currently exclusively pumping. I know the most important thing is that he gets breastmilk, but I feel like a failure. I think he got spoiled with the bottle feedings in the hospital, and he gets so frustrated when he has to work for his food that he just starts screaming. It makes me feel awful. I plan to call a lactation consultant this week, but I don't know if the damage can be reversed...

Saturday, June 11, 2011

38 Weeks

How far along? 38 weeks and 0 days

Baby’s Size: 19 1/2 inches

Baby’s Weight: 6.8 pounds (probably more in my case)

Development: Baby is getting plumped up and his organs are ready for outside life. He has a strong grasp now, and I can't wait to feel him grab my finger! My internal exam this week showed I wasn't dilated at all yet (again), so I won't be meeting him for a while.

Weight gain/loss: Up over 40 pounds already. Damn.

Best moment this week? Honestly, it might have been the ice cream I had yesterday...(see cravings below)

Symptoms: Stuffy nose, back and hip pain, Braxton Hicks contractions, fetal movement, indigestion, swollen feet and ankles

Food cravings/aversions: I had the strongest craving for Cold Stone this week. This was the first specific craving I've had that wasn't a result of seeing a food or hearing someone mention a food. It came out of nowhere...I was driving and just HAD to have Cold Stone right then and there...so I searched on my GPS for the nearest Cold Stone. It was delicious!

What I'm looking forward to: Contractions! Bring 'em on...I'd like to make some progress this week!

What my baby and I look like this week:

Saturday, June 4, 2011

37 Weeks

How far along? 37 weeks and 0 days

Baby’s Size: 19 inches

Baby’s Weight: The doctor that did my ultrasound last week thinks the baby is about 7 pounds already. The average according to Babycenter.com is 6 1/3 pounds.

Development: Baby's lungs should be mature enough by now to allow baby to breathe on his own if he made an appearance today. I had my final ultrasound and found that baby looks completely healthy and "fully cooked" (doctor's words).

Weight gain/loss: I'm up 41 pounds. I am just not motivated to eat healthy foods...

Best moment this week? I've been nesting and shopping like crazy. This kid has just about everything he needs for the first 6 months of his life!

Symptoms: Stuffy nose, allergies, back and rib pain, leg cramps, fetal movement, swollen ankles & feet, indigestion, occasional mild contractions

Food cravings/aversions: More of the same...I crave sweets and fruit. Vegetables sound awful. I've also been craving high fat foods lately as well.

What I'm looking forward to: More contractions...I was not dilated at all at my last appointment. Let's get this show on the road!

What my baby and I look like this week:

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