I finally put her down to sleep. But there’s a problem. If I’m not holding her, I don’t think I can sleep. When she is on my chest, I can feel and hear her breath. Now, I keep checking to see the rise and fall of inhale and exhale. I continue to monitor her shifts and twitches. She is almost three weeks old and I can count on my hands the number of times I have put her down to sleep. Mostly, she lays on my lap or chest. Or I am carrying her around. There is a thing called “baby wearing” now. I have all these contraptions from our time with Jordan. He hated them all, so I didn’t really get to use the Moby, or the Baby Bjorn, or the Ring Sling. I carried Mariana in the ring sling tonight. It calmed her fussiness for awhile. Plus, I got to put some laundry away while still holding her. Seems like progress…
Mariana was born August 19th. She came slightly over a week early. And for the most part, she is doing great. She is eating well and should be back to her birth weight now. But she has laryngomalacia, a condition where the larynx is underdeveloped, a little floppy, and so it can partially flap over the throat causing airway constriction and wheezing, called stridor. For the most part, she seems unaffected. But when her reflux gets bad, we are dealing with obstructive apnea which is scary. We actually went into the ER the first week she was born. They put her on a monitor overnight to watch her oxygenation. And she did fine. So now we are just supposed to monitor at home and wait for her to grow out of it. Easier said than done some days. She is just so small.
Jordan was smaller, he came out 2 lbs 2 oz and then fought to get to 5 lbs before we finally got home from the NICU. He gained more weight once he was home. But still, this girl seems so little, even though she is almost 7 lbs. I know we are not even 3 weeks in, but I am wishing for time to fly so she is bigger and stronger and I don’t worry so damn much. But I suppose that is a foolish notion. I forgot how much worry there is when you have a child. I hope we get better at dealing with the anxiety. Right now, most days I have to make myself pray just so I don’t choke on the worry. I just give it over to the Saints she’s named after, St. Mary (Theotokos) and St. Anna, and hope they take over. They usually do.
I’ve bounced around with the baby blues. But I am feeling the better these last few days. Less hormonal, more rational, typical me. Which is good because I was questioning my mommy skills for awhile there and that doesn’t help with the anxiety when you don’t feel like you have a clue what you’re doing. (sigh)
These are the ramblings of a new mom. Well new to being a mom again.
I thought it would be so much easier than Jordan and I suppose in some ways it is, but the mental struggle has been harder. Perhaps because we lost Jordan and we have this persistent PTSD that we carry around, it has been more difficult to feel capable. Anyway, like I said, the last few days have been better and I am grateful.
I wish I’d written something sooner. It would have been a more celebratory writing. Because we were and are thrilled she arrived safely. But the sleep deprivation and the worry has etched some lines in our exuberance.
I read about the concept of the 4th trimester. The first 3 months of a baby’s life are still this huge adjustment. They are still developing, still getting used to the world. I think we are still incubating as parents as well.
Anyway, I will end this bit of chaotic writing with a a picture of the princess. She is lovely and sweet and 3 weeks tomorrow. Whew!