- I feel like a much more relaxed parent the second time around. I don’t really have much more parenting knowledge than I did before. In fact, after 3.5 years, I’ve forgotten a lot about newborns. I just realized that my son turned out alright and so will my daughter. It is quite freeing not being so stressed out about every single thing.
- I am amazed at how energetic (relatively speaking) that I feel postpartum. I’m sure a lot of that has to do with the fact that I did not have a C-Section (VBAC success!!). It also might help that I had a clue about what to expect of a newborn. I’ve only had one tearful exhausted breakdown so far. That was the night when the pacifier popped out every 5 minutes for an hour from 11:45PM-12:30AM.
- Breastfeeding is going very well after the typical painful (cracked nipples, oy!) start. I’m proud to say that Si.mi.lac (or any of its brethren) has not gotten a dime of my money so far. At 3 weeks old, I had already decided to exclusively pump with my son and had to supplement because my supply wasn’t adequate. I know I can make it to 6 weeks at the very least. I’d like to make it a full year, but I won’t get ahead of myself. I’m doing everything I can now to ensure that I have a full supply when I return to work and don’t have to supplement. That is the next big hurdle.
- Where are all these breastfed babies that go way beyond 2 hours between feedings?!? Peri has only slept more than 3 hours a few times and that is always at night. During the day, she usually eats every 1.5-1.75 hours.
- I am really glad that we waited until my son was older to have another child. I cannot fathom dealing with a toddler now while managing a helpless newborn. My son has gotten even more independent over the past few weeks and I am extremely appreciative of that fact.
- The transition from 1->2 kids has gone pretty well so far. Lewis has done a bit more acting out than normal but I expected that. I mainly feared him hating the baby or being annoyed by her or hitting her. He’s not obsessed with her (only asked to hold her once) but he shows a concern for her that is super cute. Better yet, he doesn’t seem to resent me for having to put her needs above his right now. I hope this continues.
- The hardest thing about my postpartum experience so far is that The Mister is suffering from a cycle of what we now know are cluster headaches and not migraines as we once thought. Awesome timing, right? This is right up there with him getting laid off the month before our wedding! Anyway, these headaches are generally thought to be the most pain a human being can feel – much worse than unmedicated childbirth according to a female sufferer. The Mister says it feels as if someone has a knife in his brain and is moving it around. When he gets a headache, all he can do is sit still in the dark and use some coping techniques he’s developed over the years. He gets several of these headaches every day and this will continue for another few 3-5 weeks. Then he won’t have anymore for 3-5 years.
- This headache thing sucks for me because he obviously can’t do anything when he’s having an attack. I didn’t think it was that big of a deal at first. He said he had a headache but didn’t really talk about the severity. From my perspective, which was highly influenced by crazy hormones and lack of sleep, he’s lying on the couch all.day.long and not doing anything to help me. How dare he be tired and so lazy when I’m the one up all night?!? I was unable to depend on him for basics like taking my son to preschool on time. I have been very resentful of the whole situation and taking it out on him. I made the appointment for him to see a neurologist and now we have a diagnosis other than “my head hurts.” There is really not a treatment at this point (with the exception of LSD…magic mushrooms anyone?) because his cycle is almost over, but we are both relieved. He’s relieved because now he knows that he’s not dying and that he isn’t crazy. I’m relieved because I really understand what he’s dealing with now instead of imagining that he’s being overly dramatic about a “headache”. I feel bad that he is truly suffering and I’m very sorry that I treated him so poorly. I now act with more kindness and understanding. It sucks to be unable to depend on him for some things because he may be having an attack or exhausted from recovery. However, I feel so much less resentful because I just expect to take care of things on my own instead of getting disappointed and annoyed because he has a headache.
- I signed up for this race. I think I got all caught up in the post-Boston tragedy runner’s spirit. I have no clue how or when I will train. I do know that I don’t have to stay the full time and I can always walk as much as I want. I’ll just be happy to hit the ultra scene again! It should be really interesting trying to figure out how to pump during this event. Hmmm….
- Aside from signing up for the race, I have done no exercise yet. I think I might get started walking on the treadmill next week (4w postpartum). My doctor basically said to go forth and do whatever you feel is right when he released me from the hospital. I feel great physically but I am trying to respect that fact that giving birth is a major physical event and I’m still quite tired. I also don’t want to mess up breastfeeding in any way, so I’m content to sit tight for 4-6w. The desire to exercise is there and that is what matters the most to me.
- When I do return to work, I have NO idea how I will exercise. I think a lot of home and lunchtime workouts are in order for a while. Pumping and waiting until Peri sleeps through the night are going to take a big chunk of my free time and energy. This is a little bit different than with my son because The Mister was not working then. I was able to come and go more easily. We were also using formula so I had time in the early AM hours to exercise instead of being forced to pump. Figuring this out will be interesting!
PS: Wow! The baby took an extra long nap. It is all so unpredictable with newborns. I should have been sleeping instead of posting. I thought I wouldn’t get this far because she would wake up. Maybe I can catch a few before she hits her 1.75 hour limit?
PPS: To avoid a pictureless post… Milissa at Birth Story Photo took some beautiful pictures of Peri @ 10 days old. Can’t wait to see the full set! BTW, it turns out she had a “nubbin” on the side of each pinky and not just one. You can totally see them in the pics if you are curious. We will be getting them tied off soon I think.