Tuesday, April 28, 2009

I don't know why this is so hard for me to admit this time around, but I'm really struggling with this whole postpartum depression idea. I had it pretty badly with the twins and went to see my primary care provider early on. She's a mom of twins, as well, and knows all too well the individual issues we MoMs deal with that singleton moms never experience. I clearly remember breaking down in her office and begging her to help me. I was overwhelmed with extreme guilt because, after all, I had been to hell and back trying to have my kids. How could a woman who has spent her entire life only wanting to have children possibly feel the way I was feeling? We had sought out the medical community to have a child after a devastating loss and 12 years of being told I'd never have kids. We prayed with our priest. We made bargains with God. We promised. We begged. We cried. So, how is it after carrying those two precious babies in my body for so long, that I could actually feel the way I was feeling? Of course, I knew the answer. I'm a psychology major. I was premed. I know the logical answer to the question...but that was other women.

So, how is it that after two years of successfully raising twins, that I find myself back in this position? I knew what to expect. I planned it out, perfectly. I prepared myself and asked for help from friends and family so that I could avoid this.

Yet, here I am. Again.

I'm feeling hopeless. Agitated. Anxious. Angry. My thoughts are irrational. I can't sleep. I have moments of suicidal thoughts. I truly believe my family would be better off without me. Then...a moment of clairy takes over and I realize I'm being completely irrational.

My husband stayed home with me the first week. Bless his heart, he tried his best. Men just don't understand, and he's no exception. He tried, he really did. But, how can you possibly understand unless you've been there? So, my mom stayed home last week and I can't possibly begin to explain the relief I felt, instantly. I slept. I nursed. I enjoyed my two year olds because someone else was paying attention to them. My stepmom arrived on Saturday and I know she has the best of intentions, but she isn't being a world of help. It's nice to see her and to visit with her, but she came out here with the intention of helping and hasn't done that. She brought my aunt with her and they show up to the house around 11:00 in the morning. I've explained that I need help early in the morning, but apparently the traffic is just not ideal for them. So, rather than showing up to actually help me while I try and adjust and figure out a schedule and routine, they show up an hour before lunch and sit on the couch while I prepare lunch, feed the kids, change diapers, feed Meghan, and get them in bed. And then, of course, I feel the need to keep them company. So, instead of napping like I really should, I am sitting downstairs with them. Add to that the fact that she smokes like a chimney, I'm buiding big resentments because I don't want her holding Meghan while she reeks of smoke. As a result, I'm limiting her contact with the baby.

So, here I am. I'm 18 days postpartum and I'm exhausted and finding myself back in the same spot I was two years ago. I feel like I should be able to pull myself up by the bootstraps and move on. I feel like I should be ready to go and have everything figured out by now. After all, I've been doing this on my own everyday for two years.

I feel like a tremendous failure tonight.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Nearly a week, now.

Things are going beautifully here. I feel like I don't have much time to sit down and respond to e-mails, but I hope you understand. :)

Meghan is simply a marvelous baby. She's definitely a most demanding baby, more so than I remember either of the twins being, but it's okay. We are still dealing with Figgy and her mommy phase. I cannot keep her away from M. Not that I'm trying to, mind you, but let's remember that we're dealing with a 2 year old that doesn't realize she's being rougher than she should be. So, the hugs turn out to be squeezes. There is such a fascination with her when she sleeps and that seems to be the time when Figgy wants to be near her most. What we have always known is that we will not keep them apart and away from one another because I don't ever want any of them to feel like they're less important. Now that I'm feeling better, physically, I'm quite content with allowing Figgy on my lap while I'm holding Meghan or feeding her. Neither kids understand the concept of breastfeeding and are constantly bringing their sippy cups over with their milk in it. It's cute. The Professor is afraid of Meghan, I believe. He constantly talks about her, comes over and says hello, makes sure to tell me when she's crying and she is the first person he asks about when he wakes up. BUT...he will not touch her, hold her, kiss her, or sit on my lap while I'm holding her.

We have a weight check scheduled for tomorrow with a bili check as she was slightly jaundiced on Monday at her appointment. I think I mentioned that I simply love their pediatrician. She walked in and gave me a big hug and then sat and just held Meghan while we talked about the delivery and how the twins are handling having her here. She talked about possibly supplementing formula to get Meghan past the jaundice and could sense that I felt disappointed with that option as I really wanted to be successful with the breastfeeding this time around. So, she jumped back in with other options such as walking her outside in the sunlight (among a few other ideas). She called later that night (Monday) just to check in with us. We're really lucky to have such a great practice, especially after the disaster of a practice we were with for the twins' first 6 weeks.

The Professor and Figgy have reached a new phase. They are parroting everything we say. Every question is repeated. Every word is repeated. The Professor can count to 6 on his own while counting his cars. Figgy has finally taken to sitting still for a few minutes to play with something...anything. LOL! I'm just happy she will sit still for a moment. :)

I have always made sure they make eye contact with us when we are giving instructions or disciplining them. My phrase of choice has always been, "_________(Ethan/Ellie) look at me..." and then I will tell them what I need them to understand. This way, I know that they're not preoccupied by something else. Well, Ellie has decided this is her new catch phrase. Meghan was crying the other night and Ellie went up to her and said, "Meghan, look at me....SHHHHHH!" We were outside for a walk today and the kids were getting close to the creek at the bottom of the hill by our house. My husband was down with them, but I kept saying, "Hey, guys...be careful!" Ellie turned to me at some point and said, "Mommy. Look at me. Caaaareful!" My daughter has a sense of humor. Oh goody.

Well, that's it for me, folks. I've topped the kiddo off and tucked her in, so I think I'm going to go curl up and hope for a few hours of sleep. I've made my way upstairs, finally, and will try to sleep in my own bed with my husband. I've been sleeping downstairs in the living room with Meghan because it was too painful to sleep laying down. Let's see how this works!

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Baby Meghan is here!

Meghan? Where did that come from? We're not sure, either. :) I know we talked about it at one point in time, but it just wasn't one of our "that's it!" names.

I started with minor contractions last Monday (April 6) that were approximately 15 minutes apart, but not patterned. I had my peri appointment and then my ob appointment that day and my doc told me to call once they were patterned and a few minutes closer together. I spent the week feeling weird, not sure how else to describe it. Thursday, I was really off kilter and postponed my morning trip to Target with the kids after my appointment. The baby looked good that morning and the bpp was great. I went home and just took it easy the rest of the day. By afternoon, I had a deep desire to get my errands run and get the pantry stocked with snacks for the kids. Picked up my husband from work, along with my mom, and we ran to Target. Coming out of the store, I turned to my husband and said, "I think I either just involuntarily wet my pants or I'm leaking fluid." Either way, we knew dinner needed to be eaten so we headed over to Red Robin and got the kids something to eat. Midway through dinner, the contractions picked up hard and steady. Timing-wise, I was measuring 12 minutes, so we headed home and got everything taken care of. I climbed into the shower and wasn't sure if I should call my doc. I gave it another 24 minutes, then called her and she wanted me to come into l&d to be looked at. Once I got there, we all started chatting and they hooked me up to the monitors. After about 45 minutes of gabbing, the nurse checked on the contractions and wanted to know why I wasn't saying anything about them. Turns out, I wasn't feeling them. I was feeling the stuff that was off the chart, but not the basic ones that were measuring 4-6 minutes apart. LOL! Turns out my pain tolerance is higher than I originally thought it was. Between that, the slightly elevated blood pressure and the low-grade temp, it was decided we would go ahead and deliver. I was in the operating room within 30 minutes with my bp crashing and Jason being told to wait outside. Once that was controlled, he was allowed back in and the delivery began. All told, it took an extradoridary effort to get her out. She was so big and comfortable that they had to use a vaccum to get her out - during a c-section!

Megan was born shortly after 1:00am and weighed in at 9lbs. 6oz. and was 21" long. :)

We're home after talking my doc into letting us come home a day early (Sunday vs. Monday) and I'm feeling an unusual peace. This one newborn thing is a piece of cake, I must say. She is a nursing champ, which shocks me because it didn't work out with the twins. It's all a very new experience for me; for us. We're enjoying every moment of it and feel tremendously blessed tonight.