Sunday, August 24, 2014

Dear Ehren: Week 1

Dear Ehren,

In the first week of your life, we spent the first 3 days of your life in the hospital and 3 of the remaining 4  in doctor offices. It was a lot better in the hospital than I realized. Someone brought me all of my medications at exactly the right time, you always had diapers in the right spot, the bed did all of my movement for me, food was delivered to us right to the room, and there was always someone there to answer my questions. Always.

We went home Saturday afternoon and just getting you into the house and being home was enough to make me forget that I had medicines to take. Hours of excruciating pain later, I figured out what the problem was and tried to be patient after getting back on board with the pain medication. It wasn't a good time for any of us, but it was a good lesson in getting on a schedule. Dad put all of my medications on the calendar to coincide with your feedings and we were already on better footing.

When we came home from the hospital, I was supplementing you with formula. A rather painful process that I'd rather not recount, but after our appointment with your doctor we decided to just switch to breastmilk only. And then you didn't soil a diaper for more than 48 hours. Never have we been so obsessed with someone's bowel movements. Fortunately, you celebrated being a week old by messing 3 diapers in a row and a trip to the doctor wasn't needed.

Sleep is another thing that has changed. We feed you every 3 hours, whether you wake up or not, so we get about 1.5 - 2 hours of sleep at a time after feeding you and pumping whatever extra I have. The structure is nice in this otherwise chaotic time, but the sleep is starting to get to Dad and I. We're a little snippy with each other and my current favorite pastime is crying for no reason, but I have hope that things will get better eventually. Like all things, it will just take time. Right now, it feels like time is both fleeting and dragging on forever and I imagine it's the same for nearly every new parent. I just don't want to hear someone tell me to "enjoy these moments" again, because right now, I really need to focus on surviving. I'll revel in memories later with photos and these letters, but there won't be much to reminisce about if I don't figure out how to sleep, feed you, recover from surgery, and deal with these hormones.

On the bright side, here is a list of things I know for sure - I love wearing you around and hearing people tell me how cute you are. Your dad is the best partner I could have asked for. He's up with every night feeding (unless I'm sneaky and grab the alarm before he stirs) and makes sure I'm well taken care of while feeding you. I love snuggling with you and kissing the top of your head especially since you smell so sweet. I love our new family, but I'm still getting used to (and figuring out) our new normal. I love how far we've come in a week and how bright the future (even if distant) seems.

Love always,


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