Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Coming Home From The Hospital

As my son's 1st birthday draws near, I will be taking the time to write a few posts about what this year has been like for me. And so it continues...

Jackson and I were released from the hospital on Friday morning. We video taped getting Jax dressed in his real baby clothes for the first time. He was chilly, so small and I remember putting baby lotion on his tiny dried out feet. I put him in his adorable fleece bear suit (which was ENORMOUS on him). We walk (I wobbled) down the long corridor to where Paul would pull up the car. It was a gloomy, dark nonwelcoming morning. I stood in the foyer between the automatic doors with Jackson in his car seat at my feet. He had started wailing at this point and all I could do was rock his car seat with my foot because I couldn't even bend over.

Once we were sure we had the baby secured in his seat base, I did something that I always said I would never do. I climbed in the back seat with him. Before having my son, I would see one parent "chauffeuring" the other parent while they sat in the back with the baby. I guess I used to feel that it was the parent who needed that more than the baby. Of course my husband had to comment on my hypocrisy at that very moment and I remember telling him that the ride home from the hospital was an exemption! Well, that became the FIRST of my exemptions. I do ride in the back seat on the occasion that we need Jax to stay awake until we get home in his crib to fall asleep.

We came home to an empty house and placed Jax down on the floor to allow our cats a good smell of the new addition to our family. Paul immediately left us to make a prescription run for me and I did my best to stay awake. I had Jackson at 1:09am on Wednesday morning, so I didn't sleep at all that first night/morning. And I never got any good sleep when I had to nurse the baby about every 2 hours. And we all know how much a production nursing is the very first time you do it, it would take about 45min - 1 hr just to feed him. I had to hoist my severely swollen bottom onto the doughnut ring, position the boppy around me, move the hospital tray out of the way, be handed the baby and try to position him correctly, attempt to get him to latch on and STAY on, choke back the pain from my cracked, sore nipples, breathe through the uterine contractions that breastfeeding brought on. After what seemed like forever, I would pass him back to Paul. Then it was time to gather myself and make the embarrassing wobble to the bathroom while attempting desperately to hold everything that was between my legs. Another side note: my nurses made me an actual diaper filled with ice. They would cut the lining of a huggies diaper and stuff ice chunks in it and tape it back up. Because those hospital grade "twist to activate freeze pads" were completely useless, I had my nurses pack my room freezer full of these diaper/ice packs. Wonderful thing if you were destroyed down there like I was :)

AH... back to my going home story. When Paul finally arrived home, I practically crawled in our bed for a long overdue nap. I had just fed the baby so I had about 3 hours to sleep if I was lucky. I had the BEST nap of my life! I was in the deepest sleep you could imagine! It was wonderful. When I woke up, I noticed a very unfamiliar sensation. Then I realized my milk had came in while I was napping. It was ridiculous, Ladies!! Unlike anything I had ever expected. Does this picture sound like any of you shortly after you came home from the hospital?... standing in the shower laughing about all the places you were leaking? Of course I was still draining from the delivery, my boobs were out of control dripping, I was crying for probably a million different reason... it was a mess! I was a mess! I always found it funny how little detail I had received about what delivery/labor would really be like... I had received even less about post partum recovery! UGH! No one had painted that pretty little picture for me beforehand :)

Those first few days were very odd to me. My husband and I would look at Jackson, totally in awe at what God had given us and completely head over heels in love with him. I had followed my hospital chart for feedings/changings... I wasn't in tune to Jax's cues yet as he was my first child and I couldn't recognize a hungry cry from a bored cry. I had previously blogged about my breastfeeding woes, so I won't go there again. We had the baby in our room at night for about a week and half before Paul couldn't do it anymore. He is such a light sleeper and wasn't getting any sleep at night... he was working and needing to be rested. So when Jackson was only a few weeks old, he went into his crib. That first night I cried as I watched Jackson sleeping from the LCD monitor.

Realizing now, since my son is mobile, those really early weeks/months when all he really did was sleep or lay in his bouncy seat- were so easy! I should have been a lot more relaxed. I should have slept a lot more during the day. All I really did was feed/change/talk to him. Now he's crawling all over the house, I have to say "Please give that to Mommy, that's not a toy" - "Jackson, no touch - owwwaaa, no no sweetie!" LOL Ah the days when all he did was sit there :). I know I will be much MUCH more laid back with the next baby. I will have confidence to know that if I do fall asleep with the baby in the room, I will wake up to hear him cry. I will have confidence to know which cry is signalling which desire. I will have confidence to know that I am providing for my child in every way possible and that she :) is happy and content... there is nothing more I should be doing.



Burtons Blessings said...

I remember everything feeling so surreal and as i look back on my experience I am amazed that we went through all of that! I love that sweet picture of you two in the hospital bed! That is one thing I wish we would have done is take more pictures and video during the delivery/hospital stay. I have tons of pictures of Boston with everyone but myself. Thanks for sharing your experience!

Steph said...

Look at Jackson all snuggly on his ride home! Thanks for sharing!

Kate said...

Oh my word, I could totally relate to every single thing in your post! The huggies idea was a great one, I has to use those dumb twist ones and wear mesh underwear that gave me a rash! Ahhh...motherhood, not a glorious site the couples days after delivery!!

Kelly said...

This is a great post! I love the pictures. Newborns are just the most precious little people ever!

Holly said...

I just love how you put things, have I ever told you that? :)

Those early days can be pretty tiring and full of surprises....oh, and leaking body parts. lol I am soooo that parent that sits in the back seat. I still do it. hahaha