Sunday, June 7, 2009

A Little Bit of Honesty

So I wish I could say that I have felt this blissful since I've been home from the hospital...but that's not reality. My intention for this blog is not to complain or ask for sympathy, but to just be honest with my experiences with this first week home. I've never claimed to be a supermom, especially when it comes to babies...perhaps this can bring some comfort to those who feel the same by knowing that you're not alone!


I'm not really experiencing anything that I didn't expect...I guess I was just hoping not to experience some of them this time around. One of the crazy things is how I can be on such an emotional high while in the hospital, especially when my body is physically at it's worse because of the surgery. But despite my physical condition my attitude is so positive. I am calm, excited, hopeful, delighted, and so in love with my family. My last day at the hospital this time around was hard. Although my surgery went extremely well, I had an unfortunate side effect which apparently only happens to 1 in 100 women...guess I'm lucky... It had something to do with my spinal block, which I can explain in further detail if you want, but it left me with an excruciating headache. This made my going home experience a bit rough. The only thing that made my headache better was laying flat, which makes being a mom hard. I have to say that God did heal me and I've been headache free since Saturday! Unfortunately, the rest of my pain was still around. The first couple of days weren't too bad, but it's the nights that were the hardest physically. Having to sit up from the lying down position 10 times in a row with my lower abdomen recently opened and shut is very painful, difficult and very frustrating. It's one thing when you just want your newborn baby to sleep for a few hours because you're feeling sleep deprived, but it's a whole other thing when you just want to lay flat for a few hours to rest your recently operated on body.

Breastfeeding is another issue. Again, something else that was going extremely well while in the hospital. But after a couple of days at home the pain began...a pain that brought me to tears. I was just hoping to have one part of my body not be in pain. So, of course, this led to a major breakdown. Another decision I would have to I formula feed now, try to work through the blistering pain or what??? So she formula fed for a day until Olivia's first doctors appt. in which he prescribed an anti-fungal for the two of us. So once I got past the guilt of no longer breastfeeding (which was very unexpected to be feeling guilt considering Alyssum was formula fed from 3 months on), I decided to give the prescription a try and give this breastfeeding another go. So far it's been successful...still tender, but successful.

There's a whole other body issue that I won't discuss...let's just say that being on what seems like 50 different medications is very binding...which is also very painful.


I suppose another word for this would be hormones! The ups and downs have been drastic. This seems to be an appropriate time to apologize to all of you that have called and texted me and I have been predictably withdrawn. This is typical behavior when I'm in emotional survivor mode. So please know that your attempts to get a hold of me have been sooooooooo appreciated...just knowing that you're thinking of me has gotten me through some of these tough hours. Anyways, some of these ups and downs are the typical ones that I experienced last time I brought home a newborn. The best ups being looking at how beautiful she is and seeing Alyssum give her love and kisses. The downs consisting of wondering why she's seems like she's in such pain...especially in the middle of the night and she won't go to sleep. An unexpected down was an extreme attack of guilt because I don't have the strength to take Alyssum out to play or give her a lot of time like I used to. She seems to get so bored which equates to my guilt. Also worrying how I was going to take care of 2 kids especially if I don't get any sleep at night. Just writing this down doesn't explain the level of intensity of my actual feelings...again because of the hormones, these normal worries are magnified by like a thousand. Thank goodness that hormones also go as quickly as they come, so now these concerns are on a more realistic scale and not blown out of proportion. Of course, this is also an answer to my breakdown prayer to the Lord.

Other Stuff:

As if my emotions weren't intense enough, there were some outside circumstances that added to them. The first morning we were home, we wake up to the news that Matt's grandpa died in the night. Although he was old and not in the best of health it still came as quite as a surprise. Matt's memories and relationship with him weren't the best so it wasn't as hard as it might have been, but listening the rest of his family process the news was difficult for him. The only fortunate thing about this is Matt's parents are now coming and staying a week with us. I must say this is a huge blessing to me as I'm still very unsure on my ability to care for a toddler and a newborn. Plus, they will be able to meet Olivia and see Alyssum again!

The other horrible bit of news came at the beginning of the week when we found out that a couple we know, who were pregnant and due any day, did have their baby, but was tragically born stillborn. I cried so much...not only because we know them, but also just having gone through the process of having a child and hearing her cry when she came into the world and knowing that she didn't hear that wonderful sound. I'm tearing up just thinking about it again.

Wow! What a week! I'm glad it's over...I'm glad my body is healing...I'm thankful for Alyssum's love for her sister...I'm extremely grateful that I got four hours of sleep last night...I feel so blessed to have two beautiful little girls...I'm forever in debt to both of our parents and their wonderful love, generosity and care!

Even though motherhood to babies is one of my greatest weaknesses, God truly was and is my strength!


Lizzie said...

sweetie, you are doing AWESOME. being aware of what's going on in your body and mind, and relying on God to guide you. that's what being a mom is about. take care of yourself so you can take care of others. congrats again, and keep your head up.

Sarah said...

I love you Sarah! You're amazing!
When I get back I'm gonna take Alyssum out on play dates! K?:)

Bethany said...

Wow, I can so feel for you and what you are going through! It sure is not an easy thing to be a mom! It will get better and easier as the pain begins to go away and you get your much needed sleep! If you need a break and want to drop Alyssum off for a bit her and Madison can play together, I watch Ruby every tuesday, they would have fun together. :) And im right down the street.

larry said...

We are praying for you! Hang in there...the first month is the hardest...having a newborn baby and a toddler...I would expect everyone in this position has the same emotions and craziness for a while. I pray God will bring you some experienced Moms in this arena and encourage you!!! (Its really weird for me to have 2 kids but never experience the 2nd newborn thing when I come to think of it...) One day at a time, sister. I love you!!!

Leah said...

I know it isn't exactly comforting to hear "I understand" but really, I UNDERSTAND the emotions and guilt completely! If it's any consolation, things will get better and better and after a little while you'll wonder if you really ever had a life without Olivia in it. You are such a strong, amazing woman of God and I know that this will be a time when you can grow closer to Him then ever! I will be praying for you during this transition!