It’s hard to believe that our little man is 2 weeks old today and I’m just getting around to giving you guys a proper introduction! It’s been a whirlwind couple of weeks and between soaking up family time, not sleeping, and being sick, I haven’t really had the time or desire to write a blog post.
But have no fear! I’m here now…so let’s back up and talk about the past few weeks, shall we?
Once I hit 40 weeks of being pregnant, I was pretty over it…but I really didn’t want to induce unless it was absolutely medically necessary. I went to my 40 week appointment on Oct 21st (40 weeks, 3 days). We did a non-stress test and an ultrasound and everything looked fine. She stripped my membranes – baby’s head was super low and the OB hoped that might jump-start things. We headed home to wait it out for a few more days. On Friday Oct 24th I went in again, got another non-stress test and everything looked fine again. I was tired and uncomfortable but decided to wait through the weekend to see if anything happened. Hubby sent me to get a manicure/pedicure, I got a labor-inducing trigger point massage, I walked a lot, I ate spicy food…nothing seemed to help get labor going.
On Monday, Oct 27th, I was still very pregnant and we headed back to the OB. At this point, I was 41 weeks + 2 days pregnant. My feet were VERY swollen and my OB was ready to induce me, but was leaving the decision up to us. We decided to keep waiting and induce Thursday or Saturday. I would be 42 weeks on Saturday. She suggested Friday, but that was Halloween and it seemed unfair to baby to pick Halloween for his birthday. She stripped my membranes one more time for good measure and home we went.
Monday night labor got started! I’d been having Braxton Hicks contractions for weeks. Monday night around 9pm they started to feel a bit stronger than they had. However, they weren’t super painful and I thought I might just be imagining it. Hubby was not convinced since I was calmly talking to him and walking around through my contractions. By 2am, I was still indecisive about whether I was actually in labor or not…but I’d determined that the contractions were definitely stronger. Since it was so late, we decided to try to sleep for a couple of hours and reassess in the morning. I slept for maybe 2 hours and then was up around 5 am to feed the animals and start timing contractions again. By 8am, I decided it was time to go to the hospital. I still wasn’t 100% sure I’d be admitted but I thought it was worth getting looked at. We figured the most probable outcome was getting sent home from the hospital.
My OB happened to be at the hospital and was excited to see us! She saw my name on the triage list and told the nurses she wanted me to stay no matter what. They checked me and I was 3 cm dilated (I’d been at 1cm for a few weeks)….so we knew this was the real thing. I was admitted and we moved to our room. I knew I was carrying a large baby and that it would likely be a long labor. I went into it thinking I wanted to have a completely natural labor. I didn’t want any medicine- none via IV, no epidural, etc. So that was the plan.
Things progressed slowly. Around 1pm I was 4cm dilated. They broke my water to keep things moving along and the contractions definitely picked up… and got stronger. I had really strong back labor and as the contractions picked up, I was in a lot of pain, but was managing through it. By 3:30 I decided to try the IV pain meds. They helped temporarily. I was able to rest and sleep a little bit to give my body a break….but once they wore off, I was right back where I started. In the back of my mind, I started contemplating an epidural, which is something I really didn’t think I wanted….but that pain definitely makes you rethink things. I wanted to wait as long as possible if I was going to get one, so I decided to try another round of the IV meds. But they didn’t even make a dent in the pain at that point. Hubby was getting concerned since I have a high pain tolerance and he had never heard me say so many swear words.
At 8pm I opted to get an epidural. I’d been having contractions for almost 24 hours and was in so much pain that I’m honestly not sure how I would have made it through to delivery without it. The bad news was that I probably waited a little bit too long. They had to give me a whole bag of fluid through the IV first and it took FOREVER. Meanwhile, the pain kept escalating. The first dose helped a little, but I was still having so much pain in my back that I ended up having to get another dose. At this point I was around 6 cm dilated. By midnight, the epidural meds had worn off and I needed another, but the anesthesiologist was unavailable for about a 30 minute window which was poor timing for the pain I was having. I think it was around 1AM when my OB came in to recheck me. We’d been hearing 6cm for HOURS so we didn’t expect to hear anything different. Much to our surprise she said it was time to push!
After 30 hours of labor, Baby Chase was born at 2:42 AM!
We stayed in the hospital Tuesday and Wednesday and headed home Thursday morning. My parents came in town for the two nights while we were in the hospital. They took care of the animals, did laundry, cooked us food and got to meet their first grandbaby! They headed home Thursday afternoon and we were on our own.
So, what have we been up to for the past two weeks? Taking lots of pictures, that’s for sure! We introduced the animals to Chase as soon as we got home. For the most part they’re doing pretty well. Abner is, surprisingly, in love with baby. Whenever Chase cries, Abner runs over to make sure he’s ok….he lays next to him on the couch and is just very interested in baby in general. Tucker isn’t doing quite as well. He’s a bit of a nervous wreck, especially when Chase sneezes…which scares him. He spends a lot of time upstairs or in the other room by himself, but will, on occasion, lay on the couch while Chase is in the room with us. It just depends on his mood. Marcus is semi-interested. He’ll lay on the floor of the nursery while I’m feeding Chase and isn’t afraid to lay near him on the couch…but he doesn’t especially like to be around when he’s crying. Poco is the least interested. He does his own thing as usual and we don’t see him very often.
Hubby was able to take 2 weeks off work after saving his vacation days and it was wonderful to be able to spend some time together as a family of 3. He’s madly in love with Chase and they are so cute together. Chase loves napping with daddy. Hubby was a huge help, doing all the chores around the house, changing almost all the diapers, making sure I was eating and drinking enough, etc. I love him.
For Halloween we put baby in his bean pod and snapped a few pics…but he wasn’t a huge fan of it.
Saturday we headed to the pediatrician for the first time. Chase was 9 pounds when he was born, 8 pounds 9 oz when we left the hospital and 8 pounds 3 oz two days later at the doctor. He was also having some jaundice issues so we had to go get his heel stuck for blood tests on both Saturday and Sunday. I spent all day Saturday nursing, pumping and supplementing with formula, trying to get my milk to come in faster because we needed to get baby peeing and pooping more to help with the jaundice. Luckily his levels dropped from Saturday to Sunday and the doctor was confident it was resolving.
Sunday Chase had his first bath. He loves getting his hair washed but wasn’t a huge fan of the rest of it. Monday we headed out for our first family walk! Other than that we’ve been spending a lot of time watching TV and cuddling. We’ve been to the grocery store and Costco and even eaten a couple of quick meals out. Chase has slept through all of that.
Tuesday we went to see a lactation consultant. I had some serious nipple trauma from an early bad latch and even though I was pretty confident I had fixed it, I just wanted to meet with someone to be sure I was doing things right. We tried using a nipple shield, but Chase doesn’t suck effectively enough with is so I decided I would just keep toughing it out. But let me tell you, it was PAINFUL. We determined that he was latching properly at this point, which was good. The lactation lady called in a request to my OB for some nipple ointment to help them heal, but I wasn’t able to get it until Wednesday.
By Wednesday I was totally miserable. I got the ointment late Wednesday morning after a pharmacy miscommunication and started using it. It finally got too painful to nurse so I switched to pumping and supplementing with formula. I took a nap that afternoon and woke up with a 102 degree fever. I was fairly certain I had mastitis and after talking to the nurse at my OB, it was too late in the day to get an appointment with them, so I headed to urgent care. They gave me a z pack and home I went. The next few days are a bit of a blur. I battled a high fever for several days, continued to pump and supplement, take meds (plus probiotics) and also tried to drink enough and eat enough calories.
We made another trip to the pediatrician because Chase had some serious discharge coming from one eye. We determined he has a clogged tear duct and got some meds for that. Other than that issue, however, he was in perfect health and already back up to 9 pounds 2 oz!
Finally, by Friday, my fever started to go down and I really started to push fluids and eat to try to get my milk supply back up. On Sunday I decided my nipples had healed enough to start nursing again and that meant nursing on demand to keep increasing my supply. After nursing all day Sunday and Monday, I was back at the doctor Tuesday for a yeast issue. No one ever said breastfeeding was easy, right? It can only go up from here.
In other news, Chase is not the best sleeper. He sleeps well during the day but at night, he sleeps pretty well when we first go to bed, but after he wakes up the first time, he doesn’t do so well for the rest of the night. I’ve been spending a lot of my nights watching Scandal on the ipad. I never watched it on TV so I started with Season 1 and am already almost through Season 3. When he does sleep, he does best in the rock and play- he likes the fact that it vibrates.
Monday, daddy went back to work 🙁 Baby spent the day nursing and pooping and I watched a lot of HGTV.
Some other good news? The swelling in my feet that I’ve had since week 35 is FINALLY gone. It got really bad after I delivered him and I wasn’t sure it was ever going to go away…but it finally did and I couldn’t be more relieved. That was definitely one of my least favorite parts of pregnancy. When I haven’t been sick, I’ve been super hungry thanks to breastfeeding…but while sick I’ve had to force enough calories in.
Exercise-wise, we’ve been taking some family walks but that’s about it. I’m definitely excited to get back into my workouts and get my muscles back in a few weeks!
Annnnd now that we’re at 2,000 words, I think I’ll wrap this up! We’ll be back soon!
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