Highlights of week two:
Elodie cluster-fed all day on Monday, her one-week birthday, so we basically spent the day on the sofa feeding and bonding. I really felt like the mom of a newborn as I spent the whole day in pyjamas, barely moving from the sofa.
Around 9pm that night, after about 24 hours of cluster feeding, Andy took charge of calming her and let me sleep for three hours solid. I think that was the longest stretch of sleep I had since the night before I went into labour, and it was one of the nicest things he has ever done for me. We all had a calmer night’s sleep.
She is so young and this time will go so fast. We learned that movement and massaging helps her calm down.
We took it easy most of that week, focusing on feeding and bonding, punctuated by walks around the neighborhood and her first visit to the Snooty Fox, our favourite neighborhood pub, for an afternoon drink, and lunch out on Friday at the Leconfield, our first meal out with her.
I also ordered a wrap, since she was too small for her carrier, and learned that works really well for taking Elodie for walks and errands around the neighbourhood. She goes right to sleep in there! I love it because it feels like she is back in the belly, and she loves the closeness.
We learned that music and dancing also help to calm Elodie down when she has her evening fussiness. By the end of the week, she began grabbing my face and hair and Andy’s beard! She changes so much every day and we also began to see little chubby cheeks and hands start to emerge by the end of the week. It’s hard to see that happen!
On Sunday, her first Easter, she had her first bath which, surprisingly, she seemed to enjoy! And, her Aunt Lindsey came to visit! It has been so lovely to introduce Elodie to her family. As I tell Elodie everyday, there are people all over the world who love her. 🙂 It really has been lovely to hear so many well wishes from our friends and family all over the world, via email, text, and social media. This is really a special time and it has been so heartwarming to feel this outpouring of love.
As far as my own adjustments, I was still quite sore this week and tried to give myself time to recover, but some short walks felt good both in my legs and for my mental health. Breastfeeding has gone well overall luckily, especially once the initial pain of the first week subsided. My chest pains and shortness of breath went away the day after she was born, and I was happily surprised to see most the weight drop off in the first week or two, although of course I haven’t bounced back to my pre-pregnancy shape. All in good time!
I’ve also been quite exhausted and had another night where I began seeing shapes, which I think can be attributed to both sleep deprivation and hunger. I have been extremely hungry and thirsty all the time.
It’s been hard to have a lifestyle change and adjust to spending so much time at home, just sitting. I was active up to the very end of pregnancy, so this new sedentary lifestyle, where I spend some days feeling like I’ve accomplished nothing, has been hard to be honest. But this is such a short, precious time with her. Everything is different, but having these days of just the three of us at home to bond is so precious and lovely. Andy is so good with Elodie and I love seeing them bond.
Elodie is good for me because she forces me to slow down, breathe and do one thing at a time. To focus on what is truly important.
Emotionally this entire experience has been completely overwhelming. I’ve cried every day, often feeling like I feel everything so strongly right now. I love her so much it scares me, and makes me feel so vulnerable. I want to give her everything and protect her from everything bad in the world, and these feelings are just overwhelming, like nothing I’ve ever felt before.