Tuesday, October 23, 2007

A Strange Phenomenon

Sorry it's been awhile since my last post; my baby girl keeps me quite busy!

So last night I experienced a strange phenomenon...I felt this aching sensation on the left side of my girly parts. It was oddly familiar, but I couldn't quite place it. Oh! I'm about to ovulate! How quickly we forget, huh? I also had EWCM a few days ago, so I should've realized what the pain was sooner. All I can say is I've get a pretty foggy head ever since I had the baby. My memory is shot, and my mind is often 10 thoughts behind where it should be. My husband has laughed out loud on several occasions when he's asked me a question and been met by a totally dumb, deer-in-the-headlights expression on my face. I am surprised that the plumbing is getting back into working order so quickly, especially since I'm breastfeeding exclusively. I know, you can still ovulate and get pregnant while breastfeeding; I just thought it'd take longer than 2 months post-partum.

Things are progressing well on the baby front. Kiwi is now almost 10 weeks old, and her reflux has improved quite a bit on the meds. I was actually able to lay her flat to sleep last night! These past several weeks she would either sleep in her car-seat during the night, or in her swing or bouncer during the day to keep her inclined and stop her stomach contents from coming up. However, although her reflux has improved, her new problem is gas. She gets it often after a feeding, but sometimes not for an hour or so later. It's so bad I can hear her stomach gurgling, and feel all the gas bubbles as well. I spoke to the pediatrician today, who said it's just a part of the lovely reflux issue. He said to give her Mylic0n as often as every 2 hours if she needs it. I may try this gripe water called C0lic C@lm, which the doc said was safe, and is supposed to relieve gas/colic.

Other than the reflux and gas, Kiwi is now in a super-fun stage - she coos, makes lots of direct eye contact, and has real smiles! Sometimes when I pick her up for her night-time feeding she will just stare at me with the cutest smile on her face...almost coyly. I try not to give her a lot of stimulation at night so she'll go back to sleep quickly, but sometimes I just can't resist and smile right on back. It's just too cute...

Well, baby calls - so I have to cut this post short. Will update again soon as time permits!

Monday, October 01, 2007

The Reflux (ok, bad pun on the old Dur@n Dur@n song)

Wow, my baby girl is 6 weeks old! So much has been happening, and we've learned a ton...

What I originally thought was a milk allergy was in fact reflux. Apparently all babies have some degree of reflux, which is what causes spit-up. However, some babies have it to a greater extent, which makes them really uncomfortable as the acids in their stomach come back up, and this even interferes with their sleep and possibly weight gain (this wasn't an issue with my girl). She would also fuss quite a bit during and after feedings, arching her back and howling like she was in a great deal of pain (which I believe she was). The crying was getting to be so intense, often, and prolonged that we uttered the dreaded words...was it colic? And she couldn't sleep longer than 1.5 hours at a time during the day and night, when previously she took beautiful naps - she'd wake up constantly from gagging and coughing, the poor thing. So off we went to the pediatrician, who diagnosed it as reflux and prescribed Prev@cid. I was in turmoil about giving my girl meds at such a young age, but after careful delibration with hubby, we decided it was worth it if it could ease her pain and allow her to rest.

She's been on the meds for just over a week, and we are seeing a difference. It's not 100%, but I understand this may take a week or two to see the full extent of the improvement. One wonderful tidbit to report - she's now "sleeping through the night", which, according to the docs that study this sort of thing equals any amount greater than 5 hours. She's sleeping for a 6 hour stretch, which means I only have to get up for one night-time feeding! She's also sleeping in her car seat so she'll be more upright, which seems to really keep things from backing up as well. I may try one of those special wedge pillows that holds baby at a 30 degree angle, but am not totally decided on that point yet. Baby was previously a very noisy sleeper (clearing her throat constantly, gagging, coughing), and now she now sleeps soundly and wakes up rested and happy!

Breastfeeding is going well now. My milk supply is well established, and I also pump milk for hubby to feed her sometimes or for when Grandma babysits. DH and I actually got away on a "date" last week, and it was great!

Ok, now for some total honestly. I love my girl. I didn't right away. Don't get me wrong, I knew that I would at some point. But in the early days and weeks, I didn't feel like I knew her, and I was so overwhelmed at recoving from the c-section and learning how to be a Mom that it was all I could handle to breastfeed, change diapers, eat, and sleep. I didn't know how to soothe her when her crying jags started (before we figured out it was reflux and brought her some relief). I was actually a bit scared of her, and wasn't willing to be left alone with her, to the chagrin of my husband. Now, I feel like her Mom, and I really, deeply love her. And her crying doesn't freak me out anymore. Certain of her cries actually make me laugh, and others just make me melt. And she's starting to smile, which is a whole other reward in and of itself. It feels like a pat on the back for getting this far. And she's starting to coo, and of course I'm pulling for her first words to be Mama :) So I feel like I can handle this parenting thing. At least today.