Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Birth Story: Part 2

Part 2:

The least epic and worst organized Part 2 of a birth story!

I ended up pushing for about 30 minutes. Even though pushing was tougher than with my first two kids, I was still able to chat between pushes and joke about the work I had ahead of me. I felt wonderfully in control and things flowed very smoothly. Finally I got to reach down and grab Camille as she emerged and pull her onto my chest. She nursed straight away- a wonderful booby baby from the start. And guess what? Even though Camille was a full pound larger than my other girls, no tearing. Awesome!

While I nursed Camille, my awesome midwife cleaned up the room and got the shower running. When I was ready, I let Brett hold the baby while I peed (isn’t the first pee post-birth fabulous?) and took the hottest, most wonderful shower ever. I got in my pjs, climbed into bed with my newly-larger family, had a snack, the midwife left, and we all fell asleep- just as it should be.

Here’s the fun part.

As a doula, I know to remind moms to take it slow when they get up out of the hospital bed.

As a mom, I forget these things.

Cue me jumping up to pee, feeling great.

Cue me blacking out and hitting the floor about 5 seconds later.

Cue Brett having a freak out that I was bleeding to death.

I was fine- my blood pressure just tanked from jumping out of bed.


The next few weeks were really, really hard. Even as a lactation educator, even as a veteran breastfeeding mother, I had an incredibly hard time. Camille had a shallow latch and I have a strong letdown with a huge supply (likely from tandeming well into pregnancy).

My nipples were literally bleeding. I cried through feedings. I cried in the middle of the night because I didn’t want to feed my baby. It.was.awful.

I tried asymmetrical latch- it made things worse. I pumped to slow my letdowns- didn’t help. I tried nipple shields- Camille wouldn’t nurse with one. Then ONLY thing that made things a little more bearable was nursing in the laid-back position. It was a godsend. So I nursed, reclined, on the couch until things healed up and Camille’s mouth grew a bit.

Now, of course, I’m almost six months out. Camille nurses like a champ, and looks at both bottles and pacis with loathing. She’s big for her age- very different from my other two. She’s very mommy-centric, doesn’t like anyone else to hold her, and wants to be worn in a wrap 24/7.

I feel like I’ve learned so much from her already. I learned what it’s like to go to nearly 42 weeks of pregnancy. What back labor is like. How painful breastfeeding can be- even when you’re doing the ‘right’ things and there are no glaring issues. How it feels to be connected 24/7 to your baby because she won’t tolerate anyone else.

And I guess, both professionally and personally, that’s a good thing. 

1 comment:

Kacie said...

I forgot just how long you carried Camille, and I don't think I realized the challenges you faced with getting nursing going. I'm sorry you had to go through that!

The good news, you've prevailed -- and your experience is sure to help another mama someday.