Monday, November 25, 2013

The Ten Things They Don't Tell You About After Birth

The Ten Things They Don’t Tell You About After Birth

  1. Angry Aunt Flow
You will have the HEAVIEST, period you've ever had in your entire life.  I’m talking about huge maxi pads that you first started wearing in junior high when your Aunt Flow decided to introduce herself to your body.  You will bleed no matter how you deliver that bundle of joy of yours whether it be from a C-Section or Va-jay-jay, you will bleed.  There’s no way around it. Keep in mind that every woman is different, so yeah, the bleeding will vary.  A c-section birth might not bleed as much as a vaginal birth, but like I said, everyone is different.  The bleeding will last about 2-3 weeks, but for some it can be as long as 6 weeks…YIKES! So ladies, take advantage of the supplies the hospital gives you.  I’m talking giant maxi pads, disposable underwear, baby wipes, the whole nine yards that you will need to clean yourself with. I found that if you make friends with the nurse she’ll give you a good stock pile to bring home. When your period does return back to its normal cycle, it may come back with vengeance.  After not being allowed to make its monthly appearance for almost a year, it will be angry at you and heavy.

  1. Unfamiliar Territory
Your southern region may be a little scary looking.  Keep in mind you just pushed a small person out of there and it will be swollen for the first couple of days.  Lots of Motrin, or any other anti-inflammatory, to help keep the swelling down worked well for me! It will be sore and difficult to move the first day, but it does get easier.  Sits baths, ice packs, tucks pads, Perry bottle, use them all! They will help the healing process move along quicker and it will make you feel better.

  1. Stitched Up
If you do have an episiotomy, find out what degree it is.  They range from 1st degree to 4th degree, 4th being the most severe meaning that you either tore your premium during delivery from your va-jay to your butt, or they ended up having to slice you because the baby was that big. The more stitches, the more severe the episiotomy. Also, if you had an episiotomy, the stitches will itch when they are starting to heal, it’s not all that pleasant having the urge to scratch them 24/7. 

  1. Aches and Pains
You may have aches and pains.  Besides the obvious pain from delivering, your back may hurt and be sore for awhile.  You’re laying in a hospital bed for hours while in labor and your tailbone, lower back area sits right where the bed crease is, and moving the bed to a different angle doesn’t always help the situation.  You may feel uncomfortable afterwards for a few days or up to a couple of weeks.

  1. Thick Around The Edges
Your body DOES NOT bounce back right away.  You will still be fat.  You’ll feel skinny, but you will still be fat. You skin on your stomach will sag and hang down causing what looks to be a flap.  It’s not sexy, it’s ugly.  It may look wrinkled and lose, but have fun creeping your hubby out with it, by squishing it and playing with it.  It made my husband’s skin crawl.  

Your emotions will be through the roof.  Your hormones are trying to get back to normal and for that to happen you may have a few speed bumps along the way.  This is a very important matter that you need to pay attention and you’re loved ones.  Speak up if you’re starting to feel depressed, angry, or if you have the urge to cry all the time.  Postpartum depression after pregnancy is real and it is scary.  You might not realize how bad you had it until you’re over it completely. If someone who loves you and cares about you tells you that you’re kind of acting crazy or of the like, listen to them for your sake and theirs.

  1. Milk and Cookies
Breastfeeding may be a challenge.  Again, this could cause you to become discourage or upset.  You have to learn how to do it, and your baby has to learn it as well.  Don’t pay attention to the volume you got when you’ve pumped at first.  You need to remember that the baby’s tummy is small and your body is catering to the needs of your baby and that the baby stimulates the breast milk better than what a pump does.  Once you’re over that hump, it comes natural to you. You’ll know when you need to either pump or feed because your boobs will feel and look MASSIVE!! I’m talking huge porn star boobs.  They look nice and they feel hard as a rock.

8. Swollen
Your swelling will get worse before it gets better.  You think to yourself that once you have the baby the swelling will go down in a day or two…WRONG! The swelling will go down in about a week.  You feet, ankles, legs will swell a bit more during labor and delivery and again after. Once the swelling starts going down you will feel it when you walk.  For me, the best way to describe it is Grandma Bingo wings on your calves.  I could feel them flapping or jiggling when I walked.

  1. #1 and #2
Yes, the glorious ventures of pooping and peeing postpartum.  When you pee after birth it will feel like you’re peeing bucketfuls at a time.  Your body is getting rid of the excess water that your body has retained during the past nine months.  It may last that way for a week-ish until you’re starting to pee normal amounts again. 

Pooping is a different matter. It is probably one of the scariest things you’ll have to do after you delivery your little bundle of joy.  Most hospitals don’t let you leave until you have a BM.  It will not be fun, it will be painful for some, it will be huge, it will be gross, and it will be glorious! Once you get it out, you’ll feel like a new woman ready to take on the world.

10. Bumps and Loses
You may have hair loss and break outs.  Yes you read that correctly, you may lose some hair.  You’ll still have a full head of hair, but you may be able to run your fingers through it and have a nice hairball the size of you palm in your hand.  Don’t freak out too much, its not forever.

You may or may not suffer from the hideous breakouts afterwards, but it can happen.  Just remember to keep your skin clean and SHOWER!! Yes, you’ll be busy and won’t realize that it’s Tuesday at 2:30 in the afternoon when you’re thinking its Sunday at 8AM. Make time to shower to help with the breakouts.

There you have it ladies, the wondrous after-effects of pregnancy. Keep in mind, not everyone will have the same effects as you.  A majority of the time, you won’t really pay attention to them nor will anyone else because they’re ooing and aahing over that bundle of joy you just brought into the world.  Don’t pay attention to the negative comments you hear from people, you just had a baby; they don’t know how strong of a woman you really are. 

Bonus!!! I found this one from another blog and almost died from laughter from it.  Enjoy!

You might hate your husband. I have two theories of nature. One, babies look like their fathers when they are born so the father is reassured that the baby is his and won't take off. Two, nature takes care of you not conceiving right after giving birth by making you want to punch in his face every time you see him. Again, it's probably hormone related. Again, this isn't always the case but I'm just warning you that you might stare at his peaceful sleeping face at 2am and wonder what the hell the point of him is and how can that son of a bitch just lie there sleeping like while you try to get your baby to sleep for the umpteenth time. You're not alone and a jury full of mothers with newborns wouldn't convict you if you bludgeoned him to death with a breast pump. That said, he may be worth keeping around so take a deep breath and ignore the urge......for now.” Courtesy of Pregnant Chicken


Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Kingston Knox

I wanted to share with you all the days leading up to Kingston's birth.  I've been thinking about it a lot lately.  Kingston is already 2 months old and about to turn 3 months; and these past two months have been flying by.  We've had countless laughs, tons of wet and poop filled diapers, smiles, tears, spit up and ...shots.  He's growing up and I'm excited for him to get older.  Heck, I'm just excited for him to sleep through the night.  I shouldn't complain, he only wakes up once a night.  Sure we have some nights where he wakes more than once or doesn't want to really sleep more than an hour at a time, but luckily enough, he's a good sleeper like his daddy.  (Who is sleeping peacefully next to me as I write this now.)

So here it is, Kingston's birth and the days leading up to it.

We were originally doctoring in our hometown.  I didn't have insurance at the time so it was cheaper to doctor there instead of the town we are in now.  Dr. Maurer is a fabulous doctor.  She's my primary doctor and I feel so comfortable with her.  Throughout the pregnancy she told me how good I was doing.  Sure, there was a few speed bumps along the way.  I had developed gestational diabetes, but was able to control it by poking my finger 4 times a day and my diet.  

I started to swell up--what pregnant woman doesn't? My blood pressure had been normal through my entire pregnancy until the third trimester.   My BP got higher and higher so I ended up on bedrest.  For the first week, I was only on half day bed rest so I was still able to work.  The next week my BP still wasn't good so Dr. Maurer decided I would be committed to bed rest 100% and take medication to help reduce my BP.  For the last month and a half of my pregnancy I laid on my couch watching Grey's Anatomy on Netflix.  I often joked to my friends and family that watching that show wasn't doing anything good for my blood pressure since I was getting really into the show.  I often got stuck in the couch as well.

August 13, 2013

We went to our then weekly appointment. Joni called me back, I gave them my urine sample, got weighed and then and went to the exam room and waited for our nurse and Dr. Maurer to come in and do what they needed.  

Joni, our nurse, chatted with us like normal and took notes.  She took my BP and her expression changed in a blink of an eye.  She looked at my husband and me and told me my BP was incredibly high and that she was going to get Dr. Maurer right away.  They had both explained to us that my BP had reached 174/118.  I told them that I had forgotten my BP medicine back at home, but I was picking up my second refill at the the pharmacy before we left to head back to our home. I was having no headaches, dizziness, or blurred vision.  They were very worried that I would have a stroke because my blood pressure was so high. Dr. Maurer checked my cervix and informed us that I was already dilated to about three centimeters. I was excited. Dr. Maurer  told me to get dressed and that she would be back in shortly, she was going to call the doctor in our town we are living in.  She came back in and told us that Dr. Lloyd wanted me there right away! So we packed up our things and headed home.

We met Dr. Lloyd two short hours later.  He walked into my room with a smile and asked if I was ready to have a baby.  I automatically thought, this is it, today's going to be the day that I'm going to have my baby. WRONG! Dr. Lloyd checked my cervix and I had dilated to four centimeters. I was having contractions at 6 minutes apart, but wasn't feeling them..hardly.  I felt a couple of them, but not a lot.  He decided that today wasn't the day for my baby to come.  I had laid in the hospital bed for 4 hours.  I hadn't eaten anything at all the entire day and I was starving.  He sent me home for the evening to rest and expected me back at 10:30 the next morning for some more observation.

August 14, 2013

The next day rolls around and Grant and I head up to hospital to meet with Dr. Lloyd again.  Dr. Lloyd again entered the room with a smile and asked how I was feeling. I told him that I felt great.  I had only felt very few contractions.  The hooked me up for a non-stress test and he checked me again.  I was still only at four centimeters and contracting on my own every 6-7 minutes. He looked up at my husband and I and said, "Well, what do you think about having a baby tomorrow?" We were excited that the next day we would get to meet our little boy. Dr. Lloyd sent us home again and told me rest and that Grant needed to cater to my needs for the day.  He mostly stressed to stay on bed rest and to get as much sleep as possible for the both of  us since tomorrow would be the start of not sleeping for awhile (he was right by the way).

We went home and prepared to have the baby.  We gathered our things, loaded the car, and relaxed all evening.  I was worried that I wouldn't be able to sleep that night because I would be too nervous, worried, excited, etc... I was surprisingly calm all evening until it came time for bed.  It was starting to sink in.  I fought back tears while I laid in bed that night.  I was scared; I was nervous; I was excited.  I prayed to God that night asking him to keep everyone safe tomorrow during labor and delivery.  I prayed for a smooth delivery and for safe travels for our families. I fell asleep by 11:30 and slept through the entire night, only waking once.

August 15, 2013

5 a.m. rolled around and we began preparing to leave for the hospital.  I was a giant bundle of nerves.  Normally I'm not one to get nervous, but that day was an exception. We headed to the hospital about 15 'til 6.  Grant held my hand the entire way to the hospital.  He reassured me that I would do great and we would have our baby boy with us soon enough.

After checking in, I changed into the very fashionable hospital gown that they had given me and got into bed. The hooked me up to my IVs and started my labor.  Dr. Lloyd came in around 7 or 7:30 and asked how I was doing.  I told him that I was fine, nervous, but fine.  I hadn't taken my blood pressure medicine yet since I had been instructed nothing in my system after midnight.  He said that they would get me some to keep my BP under control, but my blood pressure would be taken about every fifteen minutes.  He then informed me that the fun was about to begin.  He was going to check me and then break my water.  He checked me and said I was already half way at 5cm. and then broke my water.  I told him that I was only feeling some contractions and they weren't to terrible, yet. I started to think, hey this might not be that bad, I'll be able to do this without an epidural.  Dr. Lloyd smiled and said that would change.  He was right.

By 8:00 when my mom had arrived the contractions had started and were starting to get painful, but nothing I couldn't handle.  They say when you can no longer walk or talk through the contractions that you're in true labor.  That's true.  My contractions were starting to get stronger, but I didn't want to talk during them. I had made myself comfortable, relaxed in my mental state that would help me get through the pain.  My mother cried every time a contraction would start because I would get quiet and sometime made a pain face. Thank goodness my Doula, Shannon, had arrived and my mom left the room. We filled Shannon in and continued on with the process.

I spoke with her again about the birthing plan and she said that she would cater to our needs.  She even offered to photograph the day for us since we didn't have a camera...just our phones.

They kept the room dim and made it seem like I was on bed rest still to keep my blood pressure under control.  I was told just to rest and we were to keep talking to a minimum.  The nurse would check me every 30 minutes to an hour, I think.  I was slowly moving along.  However, the contractions intensified and I was starting to reach my breaking point. I was at 7 cm and I was having 2-3 contractions on top of each other every 5 minutes or less.  I let out low moans, relaxed my lower jaw, did breathing techniques that helped some until it became to unbearable for me.  I said those words that I didn't want to say, "I want an epidural". I had felt angry at myself and leaned on Shannon as I waited for the anesthesiologist to administer the epidural.  I told her how I didn't want it because of what happened to her when she had her first baby. She reassured me that this doctor was a veteran and knew what he was doing and that I had nothing to worry about it.  She was right.  Dr. Lyndhart gave me the epidural and I didn't feel a thing. By 11:30 I wasn't feeling anything but great.  There was no more pain and I was able to get some rest.  I woke up during strong contractions.  What most people don't realize is, you don't feel pain with an epidural, but you still feel an amount of pressure.  It can be unbearable, but you get through it.

About two hours into my epidural, I woke up to an oxygen mask being put on me.  I was so out of it that all I heard Nurse Lolly say, just giving you some oxygen.  I had to really bring myself out of my sleep for a moment to ask again, then I heard Shannon say, "They're giving you some oxygen, his heart rate is starting to drop some. It's just a precaution."  I wasn't too worried about it.  A short time later, his heart rate was still a little too low for Nurse Lolly's liking and she said the baby just didn't like the side I was laying on.  So they helped me turn to my other side and I informed her that I was much more comfortable on my right.  Turning me did the trick.  His heart rate came back up to normal and I continued to rest.

After about four hours of rest, contractions, and pressure, I had the strongest urge to push! I don't know how many centimeters I was at when I started pushing, but I only pushed for about an hour and a half.  Dr. Lloyd was called down when I was about 9.5-10 cm. dilated .  They hold told me to stop pushing while we waited for Dr. Lloyd.  Let me tell you something, being told by someone who doesn't have a watermelon coming out of them not to push, you tend not to like and may tell that person they're crazy.

It seemed like just seconds after Nurse Lolly made the phone call that the room filled with people.  Dr. Lloyd came in with a smile, asked me how I was doing, and said, let's have this baby.

My husband was on my right side and Shannon was on my left.  Both Grant and Shannon knew just the right things to say to me and comfort me while pushing.  Having two soothing voices in your ears would seem annoying to most people, but I actually tuned one of them out at a time.  I mostly heard Grant's deep, excited, yet calm, soothing voice as he encouraged me and told me to "Dig deep, Baby" or "C'mon, you can do it, almost done!"

Shannon held the mirror so I could see the top of his head.  He had hair, some any ways. After I delivered his head, I opened my eyes and looked up at the ceiling.  Two bright spot lights hung  on each side of a standard hospital light.  It was causing a reflection so I could see everything that was going on.  He told me ONE BIG PUSH and I watched myself deliver my sweet, baby boy.

At 4:44 p.m. Kingston took his first breath of air.  He weighed in at 7 pounds, 2 oz and was 20 inches long.  He had SOME hair of what my mom called Dish Water Blonde. Immediately, he was laid on my chest as they cleaned him up some.  I held him close, shed a few happy tears and shared a kiss with my husband.  It was the perfect moment.  After a bit, Dr. McKenna, the pediatrician came in to examine Baby Kingston.  Her exam took only a few minutes, at least, that's what it seemed like to me.  Grant went over to the warmer with her where he got hold our son for the first time.  Shannon stayed by my side congratulating me and telling me how well I did.  She left the room to go show pictures to our family who was anxiously waiting out in the lobby!

Grant carried Kingston back over to me and I began breastfeeding.  He latched right away and silently, Kingston and bonded.  Our family came into the room sometime after and oohed and awed over how perfect he was.

We made it back to our room and I was up walking around only a few hours after delivery.  I gorged myself with pancakes and hash browns while a couple of friends came up to visit.  Grant sat on the bed that night when it was just us and said over and over, I love him so much, he's so cute. I will never forget that day or the days leading up to my delivery of my first born.  The day was perfect!

August 15, 2013, will forever one of the best days of my life!

Kingston Knox McClymont

Daddy holding his son for the first time.

Holding my sweet boy for the first time.  Right after he was born. 

Sharing a kiss.  Our first family photo of three.