Many of you have asked the same question over the past few weeks:
“So… how are you guys doing?”
It’s been a little over 3 weeks since our little Deacon was born, so I thought I would take a few minutes to answer. I have to start off by saying that we have been immeasurably blessed with the arrival of our son. We never knew our family could feel so complete and full of love. What a blessing our little man is to us!
So let’s get to those questions!
Is Deacon a good baby?
I am so happy to say that yes! Deacon is a fantastic baby! Both of our girls cried…. a lot. Deacon hardly cries at all, and when he does cry, it’s more of a whimper; usually only when he is hungry or passing gas. He loves to be cuddled and is content in his swing, pack-n-play, or doing tummy time on the floor. After two fussy girls, we feel like we were due for a chill baby, and chill is exactly what he is!
How are the girls with their new brother?
Surprisingly, the girls are really doing fantastic! Sure, they both have their moments (sometimes days, ha!), but they have really done so well. They both love to hold him, but for a short amount of time, and LOVE to give him kisses and snuggles. Neither of them have acted out towards him negatively (something I was afraid of) and are constantly asking where he is or if he needs a spit up rag or his pacifier. Nora is the BEST big helper. She is always ready to go and grab me a diaper, find his pacifier, or help with Andi while I’m nursing. We have also discovered that Nora is an excellent lullaby singer. Andi thinks her little brother is pretty great, but she has struggled the most out of the two. She has had some sleep regression (like, waking up 4-5 times a night, this has resolved) and really struggled that I have not been able to pick her up because of my c-section. It breaks my heart when she cries for me to hold her and I just can’t pick her up. I’ve resolved to sitting on the floor and letting her sit on my lap.
Are you breastfeeding?
Great question, yes I am breastfeeding! Nursing was a huge struggle with Nora (I exclusively pumped for 9 months with her) and it took a little while to get the hang of it with Andi, but Deacon has been a natural from the first latch in the OR. He nurses every 2 hours during the day and has given me a few 3 hour stretches at night. We haven’t introduced a bottle yet, but plan on doing that this week with some milk that I’ve pumped. I use my Spectra pump before each morning feed, as my let down in the mornings is just a little bit too much for him right now. I LOVE my new pump! If anyone is looking for pump recommendations, I give the Spectra pump a 10/10!
How has your C-Section recovery been?
Oh guys, I can’t even…. this recovery has been 10 times harder than either of my vaginal deliveries with the girls. I had never had surgery before, so this was a whole new experience for me. The first 24 hours after my surgery in the hospital were the worst. I was able to get up and walk around about 6 hours after surgery and I feel like that helped my recovery tremendously. The second thing that was so helpful was the belly band/wrap that they gave me. I wore that for about 2 weeks straight and it helped, not only with pain, but gave me some core stability when I repositioned myself or was up walking around. The third thing that was SO imperative was staying on top of my pain medicine. God bless hydrocodone and ibuprofen. I mean really, God bless them. And stool softeners. Sadly, my incision has continued to be painful, it came open in a few small places, so I’m really trying to take it easy and keep the incision clean and dry. I’m hoping that I won’t have any infection pop up!
I lost quite a bit of blood when I went into labor. My hemoglobin went from 11.0 down to 7.8 and boy do I feel it. I have been struggling with dizziness, headaches, and general exhaustion, way more than I ever did with my other deliveries. Basically I have felt worthless these last couple of weeks, but with high dose iron supplements, I feel like my symptoms are improving. I was given the option of a blood transfusion in the hospital, and honestly I regret that I didn’t have one. I desperately wanted to go home, so I opted for the iron supplements instead, and I feel like I made the wrong choice. But you live and you learn, right? I’m hoping to have a vaginal vs c-section post coming soon to give an account of all of my labors and compare for those of you who are curious about the differences and similarities.
Have you gotten out of the house?
Yes we have! I’ve been to a couple of places with Deacon by myself, but we have been out multiple times as a family; church, Bible study, mom’s group, the park, family get togethers, etc. I’ve been pretty careful of who I let hold Deacon, as he is still so small and was born so early, but it has really been so great to get out of the house. We even went out to eat tonight and Deacon did great; he nursed while I ate my burrito 🙂
Have you had help at home?
Absolutely, I’ve had so much help! My parents came up to watch the girls while we were in the hospital and my mom has come up one other time since to help out. It was wonderful to have them here! My mother-in-law has also been a tremendous help with everyday things. She and my father-in-law have even kept the girls a couple of times over night and randomly will stop by and help with cleaning, laundry, getting meals ready, bringing food, etc. We are SO thankful for two sets of parents who have been more than helpful and gracious as we have transitioned from a family of 4 to 5. Our church and friends also set up a meal train for the first 3 weeks for us. This has been absolutely essential, as there was no way I could have made meals, especially the first 2 weeks. What a blessing it was to have our friends walk in our door with hot meals 3 times a week. We could not be doing any of this with out the help of our friends and family. We have a great tribe of people around us, and we know it!
How are your emotions/hormones after having your baby?
I had quite a few of you ask me this question, and I’m so glad that you did! Emotional health and awareness after giving birth is so important! For as emotional as a person as I am to begin with, I have done really well postpartum so far. I was so surprised after having Nora of how crazy emotional I got and no one had prepared me for that. After Andi and now Deacon, being prepared and knowing the hormonal shift that was ahead of me was so helpful. I also think that because we have had such a great support system around us, my stress levels have really been much less than I thought, and I think that has helped, too. God has been so gracious with my heart postpartum and I am so thankful!
What does Deacon weigh now?
Last week I took him into Milk Works and he weighed 6 pounds 1 ounce, but we will find out his new weight on Thursday at his 1 month appointment. I’m planning on doing monthly updates on him, so I will have all kinds of fun information on him later this week, along with his weight.
Who do you think Deacon looks like?
Deacon looks quite a bit like big sister Nora, but he shares quite a few similar traits to his daddy, especially when his little eyes are open. I can’t wait to see how his looks change as he grows older!
I’m so glad that so many of you have reached out with your questions; it’s been fun taking the time to answer them and share this new chapter of our lives with you. Praying that each of you are having a wonderful week, and hopefully I will start getting some more sleep in the next few weeks 😉