Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Life Since Baby Emília Joined Us

Since Emília was born, life definitely seemed to be non-existent before her. I often sit and wonder to myself how incomplete life would be without this little miracle and that I truly didn't no the beauty life held until I met her. Things went very well with the delivery and I couldn't have asked for things to have gone any other way. Every time I look down at her, I am in complete awe that this was the little human who was inside my big round belly and grew inside for nine months! It all still feels so surreal and as though it never actually happened! Looking at these photos taken by Portraits by Lucy I can't help but smile because I waited nine whole months to meet our little peanut and I now have transitioned those hands holding the perfect baby bump, to be holding the most beautiful baby girl.

Days before she arrived I was extremely emotional and grew anxious to meet her. Everything leading up to labour and delivery seemed to have irritated me or made me cry. I was not settled and I kept wondering why the baby wasn't here yet. Especially as the days got closer to her due date, I would wonder to myself if I was doing something wrong, and why my body was not having this baby. I logically knew that there was honestly no control on my part, that the baby made the final decision of when she would come into the world, but emotionally I felt I was lacking in something and doing something wrong. Truth is, a lot of women actually become very emotional leading up to their labour and delivery date as your body goes through some hormonal changes! I couldn't believe the roller coaster this was though. Now we laugh about it but in the moment I know for a fact my husband was a saint to have put up with me!

Delivery and labour went better then I expected. It was actually crazy because I had put together a birth plan which I feel is something people do as more of a wish list for themselves, but I actually had my birth plan followed to a "t". I wanted a home-birth and was able to successfully have this, no drugs, nothing; all natural! We ended up having a water birth and that was incredible and the warm water was so great to help keep the pain under control. Honestly, this day couldn't have gone better. I felt I was mentally and emotionally prepared for this day which is why I grew so emotional along with the hormonal roller-coaster. Either way, there isn't a thing that I would change about my delivery and I would do it over and over again if it meant I got to embrace in that moment of meeting my daughter over and over as well!

Recovery was probably the most difficult for me. Not the actual recovery itself because I was actually doing very well in that aspect. For me, the most difficult aspect of recovery was having to be in bed and doing essentially little to nothing. I am a busy body and very independent so having to depend on someone else for things was something I had to wrap my brain around. I have to say, the recovery was not as bad as I thought it was going to be. Healing happened quickly and I was lucky enough to not have a lot of postpartum bleeding; within 3-4 days I was finished! I have to say though what saved my life were some homemade 'padsicles' that I had prepared months in advanced! These I truly believed helped a lot with my healing process. Checkout my post about pre & post labour tips that I'll be posting about!

Breastfeeding, I don't even know where to start with this? The night she was born she latched very well but I had help from the midwives. The next day when I did it myself was actually difficult and hurt. Now thanks to the prenatal classes I took with Healthy Birth Choices I knew that if it felt like a bunch of paper-cuts happening baby was not latching well. I definitely needed help and called my midwives. It was so bad that I would cry with the thought of having to feed her again. Emotionally and physically I was not coping well. My midwives were amazing and helped my with my latch. Things went well, but then my milk supply never increased and we ended up finding out that our peanut had a high palette plus slightly tongue tied. Needless to say breastfeeding ended at about three months, it was short-lived and hard for me to accept it but it was what it was.

First few days after she arrived were a little scary. The first night we woke up to her choking - literally turned purple! - on amniotic fluids. We knew this was going to happen because our midwives did warn us about it but it was still scary to deal with it. I also knew that she would be cluster feeding especially to try getting my milk supply in, but I didn't realize that sometimes cluster feeding would mean babies could feed for long periods of time in one sitting, so to speak. Having an idea but not knowing the extent of it did make things a little difficult at times. Once we got over that, motherhood didn't appear to be that bad. But gosh was I EVER exhausted the first little bit. I know they say to sleep when the baby sleeps but I have a hard time doing that because I am not a napper. I think since the baby was born I maybe took one nap with her and it didn't last very long! Regardless, I have found a way to make it work and still holding up strong nearly seven months later!

Half a year and our little angel is doing amazing! I celebrate the little wins everyday. I have learned so much but most of all, I am mostly pleased that we've been successful at keeping this little human alive and she seems to be thriving! I love hearing her giggle, I love the cuddles I get, and most of all, I still love looking down at her, still in complete and total awe that this was the little human I waited nine whole months to hold in my arms and now, I am blessed to hold her in my arms.

One take away for me in all this was the power of patience. I honestly learned so much about myself during the nine months and still after baby. I have learned to let go of things I cannot control - like breastfeeding - because wasting time being upset about those things is only taking time away from embracing in the amazing things motherhood brings.