We are a family of four now. We’re home and settling in and everything is a bit surreal.
David…is home this week with me until Friday, which will be my first day alone. I know he is struggling internally with a lot of anxiety about having two kids, but he is also incredibly proud and excited. When we first got home it was so cute to see him immediately call the dogs over to show off the baby. He’s also been trying to convince any of his friends (including my brother!) who are trying to decide whether or not to have kids that it is worth it. In addition, he and Meredith have already become way closer. During her inevitable breakdowns, he is able to hold her while she cries and talk to her and soothe her so that she is happy again. She also asks for him a lot more frequently now. It’s so special to see their relationship develop.
Meredith…is doing pretty well, all things considered. While we were in the hospital she switched off between both sets of grandparents and behaved wonderfully. Whenever she came to visit us she was also nearly perfect. She loves her baby brother and asks to hold him frequently. She will put her face really close to his and say, “hi!” and then turn to me, smiling, and say, “I say hi!” Then she’ll give him kisses and tell me, “I kiss him!” It’s all so exciting to her. Most of the time she wants him around and will ask for him to read books with her and such. We are all sleeping in the same bed right now, and although a little crowded it’s fine. She’s also still nursing and it hasn’t been a problem since I just make sure to nurse Liam first. So all in all I know she’ll be a good big sister and things will be okay.
But…there have been challenges with her. In the mornings she is a ball of energy. In the past I’ve taken her to school on my way to work, which is early enough that she was still sleepy. But now we don’t get her there until 8 0r 9 so she is kind of hyper and ends up throwing tantrums about what to wear, what to bring, not wanting to leave, etc. And since I’m still having quite a bit of incisional pain (repeat C-section…ugh) and David is not a morning person, it’s pretty rough. Then when she comes home in the afternoons she is incredibly needy and fussy and cries a LOT. I know this is where her jealousy and interruption to routine is being let out. So far we have been able to get her to calm down, but it takes a ton of effort and patience. There are times that I feel like I’ve ruined our family, but then when I see her being sweet with baby brother I know that soon she won’t be able to remember life without him and they will both be better people because they have each other.
Liam…is awesome. So far he has a very calm and quiet temperament. He sleeps a lot and isn’t demanding. I am more and more excited about the novelty of him being a boy. I love the little boy clothes and I’m excited about keeping his hair short, and just all the boy things that are different. At night he sleeps pretty well in bed with me, although there is a 2-3 hour period a little after midnight that he likes to be awake which is not a big deal right now. I had to put some effort into teaching him how to latch correctly for breastfeeding, and he is still not super into it, but hopefully he is getting enough to eat. While in the hospital he had some jaundice and had to be under the phototherapy lights for a day and a night (horrible experience!) so we went to the pediatrician to follow up already today. He is only two ounces away from his birth weight and was looking good. We are waiting to hear back about his bilirubin results but once that’s taken care of we are in the clear.
As for me…I am overall pretty happy. I have the normal postpartum emotions and I do go from feeling extremely excited and content to overwhelmed and sad and regretful fairly quickly at times. Medically I’m still dealing with some elevated blood pressure (I was starting to have some preeclampsia before I went into labor) and if it doesn’t go down soon I’ll probably have to be treated for it. My incision seems to be healing normally and the pain is under control. I’ve been able to be up and around the house pretty well, got myself cleaned up and thoroughly groomed, even did a few chores, but I’m trying to take it easy. I have a lot that I want to accomplish on maternity leave (I’ll share exactly what in another post) but right now I’m sticking to lazing on the couch, watching TV, reading, and stitching. Loving it.
Thank you…to everyone who has commented, emailed, texted, or otherwise contacted me. It has been so fun to celebrate with our friends and family near and far. I am sure that you will probably see many more cries for help or advice in the future, most likely on Twitter, and I appreciate anyone who chimes in. Special thanks to all of our friends and family who have visited and helped out at home (especially the grandparents!) and to our church friends who are bringing us meals. I don’t know how we would make it through this transition on our own!