I am blogging my mommy-posts over on my daughter's very own blog. If you are interested, it is called Dear Lucy. It can be found at lucy-evelyn.blogspot.com. If not, I'll try to resume my more WLS-type posting here. I have been posting over there fairly frequently. As you can probably imagine (especially if you've been through this before), this is what is really my whole life right now, so I have a lot of thoughts to share with Lucy, and the world.
Meanwhile, my weight got down to about 2 pounds above pre-pregnancy weight, and I think it's stopped there for now. That's a 27 lb weight loss in 2 weeks, so I really can't complain. I think it has stopped there because I started taking a medication to increase my milk production, and it tends to cause a lot of women to retain weight (not necessarily gain) despite the increased calories required for nursing. We'll see if that changes soon, but I'm not too worried about it. Today I fit into pre-pregnancy jeans--two sizes above my "skinny" jeans, but still, not maternity clothes. I felt that was an NSV! And I'm able to wear heels for the first time since my first trimester (I got way too unstable after that for heels!).
I've been sorting my clothes, actually, packing away the maternity clothes and finding my fall and winter clothes, figuring out what fits now and what will fit later. I didn't expect it to be so bittersweet. I am still not totally mentally adjusted to no longer being pregnant. And I don't know if I ever will be pregnant again--I don't know if we want to have another child (I know my husband does, but I hadn't planned on a second) and I don't know if it will be harder in a few years or not. I don't know if I even need to keep the maternity clothes, or if I should pass them on again (I received most of them from my SIL's friend, and the rest were "fat" clothes I saved along the way).
I still feel a little weird going out into the "world"--in the first couple days, I felt like an alien disguised as a human. To other people I looked like a normal, somewhat overweight woman, but they didn't know I had just had a baby a few days before. I was emotional and exhausted and out in the world only for as long as I had to be. Now I feel more adjusted and normal, but still trying to get used to being a different person yet again--not a pregnant woman, but a mother of a very young infant. It's a big mental adjustment.
We'll try to return to our previously scheduled content soon, with occasional Lucy updates...
Thursday, October 7, 2010
Wednesday, October 6, 2010
The first 8 days have been wonderful, exhausting, and filled with emotion. I have definitely had stress (parents stayed with us for 6 days! until I asked them to leave a day early...) but we have been blessed with a peaceful and mellow (so far) child, and I am trying to soak in every moment of having a newborn. She loves to snuggle, and we love to snuggle her. Tonight I'm trying to get her used to sleeping somewhere other than one of her parents' arms, but it's hard because I want to hold her all the time.
One of the biggest joys and challenges for me so far has been nursing. My lap band surgery definitely impacted the pregnancy, but my breast reduction has a greater impact now on my life than the lap band. I had breast reduction surgery in 2001. At the time, I was 28, divorced for less than 2 years, and had no prospect or intention of ever remarrying. I knew I wanted to have children, and also knew that if I did have a child I would like to be able to breastfeed, but I felt that it was a distant possibility, while my back pain and difficulty with exercising were a present reality. My surgeon told me that breastfeeding was unlikely given all the manipulation of the duct tissue. And I had a lot of tissue removed, so when it came time to actually plan a pregnancy, I didn't know what to expect. I did a lot of reading on the subject, discovered that there are lots of women with my history who successfully breastfeed their babies, and that it was definitely possible. (For more information, visit bfar.org.)
I'm still glad I had the surgery, because for the past 9 years it has greatly improved my quality of life. Luckily, I have been able to nurse and pump milk for my daughter, although I have had to supplement with formula because I don't quite make enough to keep up with her. What I didn't realize was just how invested I would be in being able to nurse my child. She lost too much weight in the first couple days, and when I brought her back to the pediatrician and saw how much weight she had lost, I burst into tears. I cried again the first two times my husband gave her a bottle of formula, heartbroken that she was hungry after I had fed her, and devastated that I had to give her formula. I knew in my head that this was a possibility, but for my heart it was another matter.
Now I am discovering how closely stress is related to the ability to lactate and nurse effectively. Lucy can tell when I am tense and she won't latch then. When I am relaxed, she does great. What I am able to pump is also affected by how stressed I am. This is why I asked my parents to leave early--I just wasn't able to relax enough to get our nursing relationship the way I wanted it. My parents weren't helping out, they were expecting to be treated more like guests on vacation, and they were stressing my husband and me out. I love them, but it was too much with a new baby. So now we have our privacy to bond with Lucy, and I am working on keeping things as mellow and calm as possible with the nursing. As much as I am able to do, I will be grateful to have.
Time to feed and cuddle Lucy. :)
Posted by Gwen at 11:52 PM
Saturday, October 2, 2010
Finally! Lucille (Lucy) Evelyn arrived at 12:05am on Tuesday morning, September 28. It was a fast labor, especially for a first time mom, and she is beautiful and amazing. Everything was worth it, even the waiting. :)
I hope to get around to posting her birth story sometime soon. It will be long, as it was an exciting one, but also a perfectly healthy and normal one. She was very nearly born in the car on the way to the hospital! Right now I am enjoying the first quiet in the house since we got home Weds night; everyone is asleep, and I got up from a nap an hour ago.
I tried posting pictures, but it's not working right now, so I will try again the next chance I get.
Posted by Gwen at 5:00 PM