Hello! Again another late one, but I’m currently working around Olivia’s schedule, which is quite sporadic. Some days she’ll nap like a champ, some other ones she wants to be wide awake. I did want to touch base with how things have been going for the first few weeks at home with a newborn baby. To be honest, it has gone a lot smoother than I thought, but I have had tremendous help from my family. In fact, today will be my last day with help as my little sister is taking off.
I am extremely thankful that breastfeeding has gone so well for Olivia and I. We didn’t really go through any growing pains learning how to work as a team. She has also used a pacifier since the beginning and thankfully it hasn’t affected her latch. It was a bit difficult to get those 8-12 feedings in at the beginning, since she slept so much. In fact, we had to visit the pediatrician a week after her birth to check her progress since she had lost too much weight at first. Thankfully, she’s back on track and gaining weight, back at her birth weight on her 2 week appointment. The lactation consultants at St Luke’s were a great help at the beginning as well.
Now, we are feeding at least every three hours during the day, and whenever she wakes up at night. Still experiencing some cluster feeds every so often, which can be quite exhausting. She has tried bottle feeding only once, and according to Ryan it went pretty well. As far as pumping, I’ve only been pumping once a day and freezing the milk. Soon, I’ll start pumping a couple of times a day to create some stock for when daycare starts.
It’s safe to say that she is more active during the night than during the day. When she naps during daytime, she is out and I can move her around without disturbing her sleep too much. Plus, she doesn’t mind the crib then. Nighttime is another story. She is wide awake, fighting sleep and uncomfortable every night from midnight to around 3 am. She needs to be constantly carried, sang to and rocked. Quite needy indeed. We discovered that co-sleeping is the way to go for us right now. It ensures that we both sleep some during the night. Fun fact: I read that most parents that co-seep with their babies did not plan on it beforehand.
Soon, I’ll start trying to break her back into the crib. She used to be fine with it for the first week and then she started hating it afterwards. Swaddling doesn’t help much either. She hates having her arms swaddled, so we have to leave them out for her. We got a sleep sack now that I’m going to try and see how that works out for us.
Other than that, she sleeps alright and I haven’t felt super exhausted yet. Then again, I’ve had the help of my family so far. Also, I’ve been trying to take at least one nap a day, to restore some energy, which has definitely helped.
All I can say is that I’m quite happy/surprised at how well recovery has gone for me. I can’t say that I took the necessary rest at the beginning, but I wised up and took advantage of the help I had and stayed on the couch as much as possible. I feel well enough now to go on walks, the weather helps quite a bit too. I’ve been off pain meds for a while now, which has been great. Still taking my prenatal vitamins, which the doctor recommended as long as I’m breastfeeding. Also, without much activity, I’m only ten pounds over my pre-pregnancy weight and I can’t wait to get the go ahead from the doctor to start exercising again.
Olivia loves being sang to and rocked. She also enjoys her pacifier and being in the car seat.
On the other hand, she hates wet diapers and being changed, bath time and the dark. She also dislikes tummy time, unless it’s laying on Ryan or I. She’s doing great holding her head up though.
She has a gazillion facial expressions which are quite entertaining. Plus, she loves smiling sleepily, specially after a particularly good feeding.
Boone is doing great with her. He comes running to her rescue whenever she starts crying and looks at us waiting for us to soothe her. He’s also at guard whenever I’m feeding her, making sure nobody disturbs us. Although he had been keeping his distance, this week he started getting closer and closer to her, smelling her and giving her kisses.
All in all, she has been great and the transition has been amazing. Can’t really complain when she only goes berserk once a day. It feels like she has always been a part of our lives, like she was always with us. She’s changed so much already in three weeks and I fully enjoy noticing small changes every day.