News at Home: Baby Dante is here!
So it’s been a LONG while since I checked in – sorry! – but I’ve had a LOT going on. But the biggest piece of news first – Dante finally arrived Wednesday, September 18th at 3:58 p.m. He’s amazing, the best baby, and I am so in love. Here’s a couple pictures:
But let’s back up a bit… and prepare for a long post, so much to tell y’all. Feel free to skip/skim if not interested, my feelings won’t be hurt. But I know some of y’all do want the details so here they are!
I started maternity leave on Monday 9/16. Dante was due 9/14 and even though he hadn’t come yet – I hadn’t even had any Braxton Hicks contractions – I was exhausted and decided it was time to stop working. Plus, our apartment looked like it would be ready for move in on Tuesday 9/17, so I had plenty of work to do to get ready for the move. I worked super late Friday 9/13, making sure everything was perfectly ready for my sub and I haven’t looked back since 🙂
I spent the weekend packing and we came to the new apartment to clean it (so carpet could be installed Monday – perk of my husband working here, we had access before move-in). My husband also installed wire fencing on the patio for both security – he just feels unsafe being on the first floor – and also so that Buffy can’t jump out. I don’t think she could, but she might have hurt herself trying.
Monday I finished packing and getting everything ready for the movers. My brother hired us movers so that we could get moved during the day Tuesday, instead of waiting for my husband and whoever could help us to get off work. And, in hindsight, that was a VERY good decision. I also finally was able to get an appointment to get our car seat inspected, for Tuesday morning. I was nervous about the car seat and it made me feel better to have professionals check it out.
Well, I knew things weren’t going to go exactly as planned when Tuesday morning at 4am I woke up with a start to the feeling that I was about to pee my pants. Yep! My water broke. And then… nothing happened. I had talked to my doctor previously about my desire to labor at home as long as possible, and she told me that once/if my water broke that would put us on a time schedule, but I could stay home for a while. I would just need to monitor his movement and make sure I didn’t get a fever and be really careful about avoiding infection. So I went back to bed and called her office at 8:30 that morning to let them know that my water broke. They said to stay in touch and let them know if anything changed.
So I went and got the car seat inspected. I finished packing a few odds and ends that weren’t ready Monday. The movers came and spent roughly 3 hours moving us. Right when I finished signing the paperwork for the move, my phone rang. It was my doctor’s office. They asked me if anything had changed and I unfortunately nothing had. My doctor got on the phone and said (more or less), “Well Kim, I know you wanted to stay home, but we’re looking at 12 hours since your water broke. The risk to baby goes up at this point, so I need you to get to the hospital now.”
Well crap. I had wanted to get unpacked – at least the baby things – and I really wanted to labor at home, but I wasn’t going to risk Dante. So I called my husband – 2 times and he didn’t answer! Turns out, he had no idea my water had broken. Our middle of the night conversation was apparently one sided and he slept through it. I had to call the manager and ask her to call him on the radio to take me to the hospital.
We were in the hospital by 5pm and, in talking to my Doctor, the decision was made to start induction. Since I still really wanted to keep things as natural as possible, we did a cervical ripening drug. I started it by 10pm and by 7am I was only 2 cm dilated! I was, however, finally in labor. I started having real, active contractions by 11 pm and my doula came and joined us around 6 a.m.
At 7:45 a.m. a resident came by and said, “Dr. Leinauer says you need to start Pitocin.” Um… okay, why? What are my other options? Where is she? I didn’t like his manner and the idea that I didn’t have a choice. So I asked to wait and see my doctor, who was coming by at 8 a.m. My husband freaked, thinking I was risking Dante and not listening to the doctor. It took some work to get him to understand that the resident was not my doctor and that I wanted to know my options before deciding on this course that I had initially hoped to completely avoid. My doctor came in and said, “Well Kim, it’s time to make another crappy decision and I’ve got about 5 choices for you.” I just love her! First off, she knows it’s not what I want and doesn’t beat around the bush. Then, she gives me choices and fully explains the risks and benefits of each choice. The end scenario was yes, I did the Pitocin. It was the lesser of 5 evils.
So – for those that haven’t been paying full attention – I had been in full active labor since 11 p.m. and, no, I had not had an epidural. I was trying to avoid it because I hate the way drugs and anesthesia make me feel. So I continued in labor, now with Pitocin, which was being increased every 30 minutes, until 12 noon. At 12, I was told that I was getting too dehydrated. I had been throwing up every ice chip, sip of water, and even IV fluids for hours – likely my body’s reaction to the pain of labor. But it was serious because of the water having broken so many hours before. So I had little choice but to take an epidural. Once I got the epidural, I slept until 1:30.
When I woke up, I was shaking violently. Teeth chattering, body spasming. My husband asked if I was having a seizure. No, but this was just one example of why I hadn’t wanted an epidural. At this point several nurses and my doctor were in the room talking about Dante’s heart rate. It wasn’t bad, but he wasn’t responding to contractions well. My doctor told me to start mentally preparing for the possibility of a c-section. At this point, I kind of lost it for a bit and started crying. I had always said that I would do whatever I had to do in order to have a healthy baby, but a C-Section was the one thing I had ALWAYS been certain I did not want. My doula was amazing at this point (as she had been all along – I honestly don’t think I’d have done half as well without her). She calmed me down and reminded me that it was just about preparing myself for the worst, not accepting it as the definite end. Dante was still okay and we had more things to try before a c-section.
At that point we started moving my body around to try and get Dante in a better position to transition. He had been hitting my pelvis at that point and needed some redirection. After we did that it was a short time before suddenly they noticed another change in his heart rate – which scared me, until they said it was a good change and looked like possibly transition – and by 3:40 I was feeling him pushing down. Dr came in and sure enough I was 10cm dilated and Dante was crowning.
We got me into position – which is so awkward when your entire lower body is numb! – and I pushed for 11 minutes and then he was out! After flat out refusing to come for 36 hours, he was finally here and we’d avoided c-section. My doctor teased that when his head came out he was literally shaking it “no, no, no” like, “no, I was good. I don’t need to come out!” LOL!
He was 7lbs 9oz (which I misheard and spent days saying was 7lbs 11oz… it may even be on his birth certificate wrong now :/) and 21 inches long. Because he was out of the water sack for 36 hours they kept us at the hospital for 2 nights, instead of the standard 1 night to monitor him for infection. He had to do some blood tests right away. But everything came back good 🙂
Okay – so that’s labor and delivery – now for the week and 4 days since then.
The hospital stay was fine. Kiko went back to work and I spent the days mostly alone with nurses coming in and out constantly to talk to me or examine Dante. Nursing was a real struggle, we finally got the hang of it and he was doing good getting colostrum until Friday morning. Something changed, and looking back I think it was that my milk came in. But suddenly Dante refused to latch. I spent the day trying to calm him, while packing up the hospital room, signing forms and just getting ready to be let go. Kiko came and got us to go home at about 1 p.m. and putting him into the carseat was very stressful. It just looked wrong to me and so I insisted on messing with it, which pissed Kiko off. Our first baby argument 🙂 He just couldn’t understand, after all the time I’d spent checking the car seats, how I couldn’t be sure it was right and struggled to fix it. But we got it and Dante was safely secured for the ride home.
Here I am, in the backseat of the car, watching my baby and outside for the first time in 4 days, when suddenly I feel sick to my stomach. I asked Kiko to pull over but he couldn’t do it fast enough and I threw up all over the backseat floorboards. What fun our first drive home was! LOL!
When we got home, it was time to start reality. The first being, we had a hungry baby who refused to latch. The second, we didn’t know where anything was because we hadn’t had time to unpack from the move. Oh and we were exhausted. Ended up calling a good friend who has a 9 month old baby and got the name of a formula from her. Kiko ran to the store while I tried to find bottles. Found them and then couldn’t find dish soap… but found the sanitizing machine! Got bottles ready, fed Dante, first crisis solved!
Since then we’ve been working around the clock. Kiko works from 8-5 every day (this weekend he’s working 8-12 because they have inspection coming up) and when he comes home he helps with Dante and takes care of projects we need done – like installing our washer & dryer (which was no small task, seeing as he had to put in the hookups first) – meanwhile I’m at home all day, every day taking care of Dante and trying to unpack. We’re almost there and then I don’t know what I’ll do with my time.
I have such a mix of emotions these days – I’m pretty sure it’s the typical baby blues. On one hand, I’m so in love with Dante. And I’m even more certain of my husband being the perfect guy for me – he has been amazing during this whole experience. On the other hand, I’m lonely and restless. I miss going to work and going places and doing THINGS. Maybe this will be good for a return to the blog though!
I’m also really struggling with the emotion of not being able to breastfeed. It was a pretty big deal to me and while the most important thing is that Dante is eating and healthy, I hate that it’s not working out. When we went for his first Doctor’s appointment Tuesday (he’s doing fabulous BTW), I met with a lactation consultant. She said my skin reduction surgery – which included removing the areolas, is the culprit for his difficulty latching. We’re seeing if I can create enough milk through pumping, so that when he’s a bit older (4 weeks-ish) we can teach him to latch. I don’t know if I’ll make it that long, though, as pumping on top of regular feeding and all the other things we have going on is a lot. We have another appointment Friday, I’ll see then if it’s worth it to continue or if it’s time to throw in the towel and just go all formula.
So yeah, a lot going on over here in my part of the world! Sorry for the massively long post – it’s what happens when you don’t post for weeks and have a lot going on!
Now that I’m on maternity leave and my life consists of bottles, diapers, and naps… I’m hoping to have time to blog more. I know having a baby, in theory, eats up your time – but for someone who was as busy as I was, I’m not sure that’s going to be true. I already feel pretty restless and trapped in my apartment. I take a daily walk but I’m going to need more… maybe the blog will be it. fingers crossed
Last Week on the Blog
Michelle has been holding down the fort!
- [25 Sep] I am joining Blog Ahead!!#blogahead #mylist
- [28 Sep] When the Sky Fell on Splendor by Emily Henry
- [29 Sep] Sunday Post with Berls | Baby Dante is here!
- [29 Sep] The Sunday Post ~ *peeks out* Is this week over? Oh Thank goodness! ~ Week in READview!