Sooo…I was gonna write about all my readers questions…when I realized I only had a handful. So…I solicited and nagged all of my friends and got some great questions about pregnancies, babies, and post pregnancy jazz!
So, to my friends, thank you!
PRE BABY BABBLE
Is it better to stock up on newborn clothes or 0-3 months? (my husband doesn’t think we will need many newborn things)
Okay let me tell ya- John was the SAME way! He kept telling me we wouldn’t need many newborn clothes because she’d grow out of them in a month. WELLLLLL…she was in newborn until 3 months old!!! So really stock up on newborn stuff! And it’s kind of good that you get to go stock up because you get to pick YOUR favorite things for her to wear first since what everyone else got will most likely be a little too big for the first few months! AND I loved that newborn sleepers had mittens so they cant scratch themselves. That was a big issue. Carters fit the BEST!!! One more thing on newborn clothes, they hate being changed so the quicker you can make the process the better, buy some zip up footed PJs so you can just quickly unzip change and zip back up in a jiffy! Then baby’s feet stay warm too!
What needs to be in my hospital bag? (several people asked this!) I partially addressed this in a previous post! http://birminghambell.com/2011/11/27/and-so-it-has-begun/ BUT I will alter it a bit and re list it!
Pack TWO separate bags. One to STAY IN YOUR CAR. That way you are prepared for every doctor’s visit towards the end!
What do I keep in the bags?
Well for the bag that stays in the car:
LOTS of onsies, winter fleece outfits (because I liked the room COLD and baby stays warm. win win., hats, socks, and pants.
One swaddle that I like in particular from swaddlekinz. The hospital swaddles are the bomb. Forget bringing your own. SERIOUSLY.
House shoes, because you will be walking on that COLD floor and don’t need any kind of sock or shoe that doesn’t have the sticky tread to keep you from slipping. That could be a major set back, especially a possibility with a C section.
Large/medium leggings- BLACK ONLY… ladies you probably know why.
Button up pj tops (easy for breast feeding or skin on skin time).
Cute (probably maternity) shirts that you might get your hospital photos taken in.
I liked my maternity fitted gap t shirts a lot paired with leggins. Comfy and cute.
DON’T DARE PACK JEANS. YOU’LL CRY. SPARE YOURSELF. DON’T BRING YOUR EXTRA SMALL YOGA PANTS. YOU’LL CRY. JUST DON’T.
Tooth brushes for you both.
Mini Body Spray (not always up for a shower if you get a C)
Hair dryer/irons – honestly I only used mine the last day at the hospital.
Travel size shampoo, conditioner, body wash, shaving cream, and razor. (I was induced and that am I shaved my legs lol)
Granny panties only if you have vaginal birth. You’ll have to sport the mesh panties if you have a c section!
Always pads (the extra heavy flow long and wide with wings kind)…the hospital will give you pads that are similar to a subway sandwich in size and cushiness. And you can SEE them through your pants LOL
A pair of PJs for Daddy.
A pair of regular clothes for Daddy.
Spare cell chargers if you have them.
In my bag I grabbed seperate to take in the room with me immediately upon admission:
Makeup especially with waterproof mascara!!!
Glasses and contact case with solution.
My security item: my blankie
My favorite pillow, as well as Johns.
Digital camera with memory card and charger.
The hospital will provide you with this swag:
Diapers and wipes (ASK FOR MORE OF THESE EVERY SHIFT CHANGE AND HIDE YOUR STASH. IT’S BEAUTIFUL)
Swaddle blankets (TAKE A STASH HOME THEY’RE THE BOMB)
Breast pump accessories
Breast pads for leaking
Gel pads for soothing sore nipples
What are your top ten baby items that you could not live without, and feel others should register for?
MILK STORAGE BAGS
Extra set of crib sheets
Extra baby wash cloths and burp cloths – we use those instead of any bibs so far.
NEWBORN Onesies with mittens.
NEWBORN zip up night time suits with footies
baby monitor with camera not just sound
at least 8 -5 ounce bottles (I loved medela and momma brand) You won’t need those big bottles until she is like 6 months!
6 Pacifiers (not the kind they give at the hospital I like the kind that have the round button on the end because she can hang on to them better)
The little baby Einstein fish tank you can put in their crib. Harper is memorized by the fishies swimming and gets so tired watching she will sometimes pass out!
Baby bath tub with infant insert
NEWBORN size diapers! LOTS of them! You will use 15 a day at first.
Baby Tylenol for the babies first shots. (it says not for infants, however the DR will tell you how much to give after the shots!)
Will someone at the hospital check my car seat to make sure it’s properly installed?
My personal experience was no. I had to go to a fire station and get them to do it. They made me feel super safe! I loved it! It WAS hard finding a station that had a person certified to do that. I was surprised!!!
How many people were in the room with you while you were giving birth?
ONLY JOHN. We had kind of agreed that from the get go. Once I started to have SEVERE pains, I didn’t want to see anyone but him. I didn’t want to hear any talking going on except him talking to me. I was afraid if others were in the room they would be chatting or watching TV while I felt like I was dying and I was not okay with that. I made a deal with the nurse beforehand. We had a code: I would ask her if she could check me, she would ask everyone to leave to do so -and then I could tell her to keep them outside because I was in too much pain. I think we even had a code word for her to just ask them to leave to check me lol! Good deal to work out!
What was your favorite craving?
Holy Jesus! FRIED PICKLES, PIZZA, ICE CREAM, FISH STICKS. BOOM. PERFECT BABY CAME FROM THAT.
When did you first know that you were pregnant? (What made you run and go get a test?)
I started to have really strange dreams, was very emotional, and spoke with a girlfriend about it and she mentioned that’s how she was when she was pregnant! SOOO I immediately RAN to Walgreens and bought SIX pregnancy tests. 3 were the standard one or two lines, and 3 were the “pregnant” “not pregnant” text kind!!
Do you miss your baby being inside of you or being pregnant at all?
I only miss when she was little (maybe 6-7 months old) and her kicks were really light and sweet. I lived for those. I also miss how the public was so accommodating and nice to me. I miss not having periods. I miss being able to know she’s protected inside me at all times. I miss my fluffy hair and pretty nails too! BUT THAT IS ALL!!! NOTHING ELSE DO I MISS! LOL
What is the best part of motherhood that you didn’t expect?
The extreme and constantly growing love I have for her. The want to be with her almost every hour of my days. I NEVER expected to want more. But as soon as I saw her and fell in love with her I knew my heart wanted more and that was what was missing in my life. She was the person who completed my life!
What part of motherhood was the hardest that you didn’t expect?
Feeling guilty when I had a hard time getting her to latch on. Feeling guilty when I couldn’t get to her crib fast enough when she would cry because I was in pain. Feeling guilty because I didn’t talk to her much the first couple of weeks because I didn’t know what to say to her. GUILT was a predominate feeling I had the first few weeks. I shouldn’t have felt guilty for any of those things, but as a new mother, that just happens. Feeling so SAD when I couldn’t figure out what was wrong with her, so I would just cry with her. It was hard for me to not resent John when he wouldn’t wake up to her cries. I also resented that I had to get up and pump every 4 hours no matter what- I knew it wasn’t his fault but I still just kept thinking “this isn’t fair”!!!
Was it hard to have your baby sleep in her crib, and not your room or with you- and how did you do it?
Not hard at all!!! She did well in her crib. The only hard part was getting to her in the middle of the night when my pain medication had worn off and it was so hard to get out of bed and walk to her room.
What do you think the benefits for breastfeeding your baby are?
GOSH there is just NOTHING bad about breastfeeding benefit wise!!!!!! It’s so self satisfying to me as a mother to know she thrives from my nutrition. It’s best for her digestion. It builds her immune system. I would do it a full 10 months if I was able!!! No questions asked.
POST BABY BABBLE
Do you nap when she naps?
I used to nap EVERY TIME she napped because the first month was so exhausting! Now, I occasionally do, because I enjoy bonding with her that way. I just love holding her while she is still and peaceful.
Does she sleep all night?
She only slept 2-3 hours for the first 2 months of her life. At 3 months she started sleeping 4 hours. NOW at 4 months she sleeps 5-6 and RARELY 7 hour stints.
How do you feel without a lot of sleep?
It was really hard at first. It makes you go a little crazy. It makes the both of you moody and causes bickering, but you get used to it after a few weeks, and after a couple months it’s MUCH better. At 4 months I feel like I get enough sleep to get up at 9am an function fine the rest of the day now!
How hard was it to lose your baby weight?
EASY at first when I was breast feeding. I gained 35 lbs. 3 Months after birth I lost all but 5 lbs, THEN I stopped producing as much milk and gained 4 lbs back! I am now eating better and exercising so hopefully I will get to my goal of 130lbs in 2 months!!!
Do you like how you feel now or did you like it better before?
I was seriously depressed while pregnant. I SHOULD have seen a doctor about it, but I didn’t recognize it as being as bad as it was. I was sick all the time, I was tired all the time, I was in pain, I was emotional, I hated my job, and was stressed about finding a home. It was entirely too much and I kick myself for not recognizing that and talking to someone about it. NOW I am the happiest I’ve ever been in my life. I think God let me skip post partum depression because I was so sad for my pregnancy! I did however, get severe anxiety the first 2 months with Harper. But that’s eased up and I’m almost anxiety free.
Do you feel closer to John now or before? Is he different to you?
While pregnant, I did not feel closer to John. I was resentful that I felt terrible and he felt fine and could do basically whatever he wanted to. I wasn’t allowed to take my normal sleeping pill regimen anymore and he could do things to help him sleep, and it really bothered me. It bothered me that he could hang out with friends while I threw up in my apartment toilet. I hated it. He would get frustrated that I never wanted to do anything, but I just mentally and physically felt like I couldn’t. We were both VERY stressed. And to be honest sometimes our families made it worse. I often felt like I needed a break from everyone except John. Not because I don’t love them, but because it was just a lot of stress building up. When I would hit my breaking point, I would drop all contact with anyone and stay in my bed. They didn’t understand this and had no idea how depressed or stressed out I was either so it wasn’t fair to them that I didn’t communicate this.
When we first laid eyes on Harper McKenzie I felt the closest I’ve ever been to him. That moment was unforgettable and I am so thankful we got to experience it. We were both in heaven together with this precious Angel of ours who we immediately fell in love with. I loved watching him with her and hearing the things he said to her. I loved that when I had hard times he would talk me through them and tell me I was being a good mom.
Now that we are at home I do see such a huge difference in him. He seems less stressed and so happy to see the baby. I love that he wants to spend time with her. I do often wonder if he wishes I would pay more attention to him because I do focus a lot on the baby. He is more attractive to me because I love the way he loves her. He’s a different person in almost all aspects.
How long is breast milk good for out, in fridge, or freezer?
Keep in mind I’m not a doctor! You can keep freshly pumped milk out room temperature 4-6 hours, then put in fridge. I think it can stay in the fridge 5-7 days until you need to freeze. I was pumping so much at first, I just automatically skipped the fridge and used the freezer. Milk bags were my best friend! Frozen milk should stay good 8 months I think! Which is plenty! We are starting to run out at 4.5 months
How long did it take for your stitches to come out?
I had the c section and they used disolvable stitches so I never noticed when they completely dissolved!
How many dirty diapers should your baby have in 24 hours?
I was told that she should dirty a diaper every time we feed her for the first month so a dirty diaper every 2-4 hours! After a month or 2 she would only poop once or twice a day! at 3 months, she would poop once a day. NOW that we are starting to supplement with formula she poops 4 times a day!
When are the best times to pump, and how do you increase your milk supply?
I pumped at 11pm, 2am, 5am, 8am, 11am, 2pm, 5pm, 8pm the first month. Yea I know, it sucks.
2nd month I spaced it out 4-5 hours if I wasn’t in pain or leaking too much.
3rd month I kept the same daytime pumping schedule, but only pumped at night at midnight, and 6am.
Month 4, my milk supply has dropped and I only pump once every 24 hours only to get 5 ounces. SAD
What are some postpartum exercises that I can do until I can lift heavier weights?
Girl, I was on LIGHT duty for the full 8 weeks because of my c section, then I got mastitis and was down for even more time so I’m NOT the girl for that advice!!!
I hope I pleased my ladies, please feel free to send more my way if you think of any!!!
SOON TO COME, THE BOYS QUERIES!!!!
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