Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Adjusting to life with Christopher

This past week has been a week of transition for us. I have had many ups and downs, but each day is getting better.

After being at the hospital for three full days, we were discharged home Thursday night at 11:00pm. We had to wait for the pediatrician to make rounds and write discharge orders for the baby. Also, Christopher looked a little jaundiced, so we were waiting for his lab results to return. We didn't see the results until 11pm, so we couldn't leave until the results returned. On top of all this, I was waiting for my OB doctor to come and write discharge orders for me. Finally, we were able to leave, but all three of us were tired and cranky by the time we came home at 11:45pm.

I have been having a difficult time with breastfeeding. Ultimately I had to rent a breast pump last week and pump my breast milk. Now in the last couple of days we have tried breastfeeding, but I am afraid that my milk supply is not sufficient enought to meet Christopher's needs.

Christopher has a voracious appetite. When he was born, he weighed 8lbs, 8 ounces. He lost about 1 lb after the birth due to me feeding him my colostrum. The day we were discharged, the pediatrician advised us to breastfeed him and supplement with formula for the next couple of days. My milk was just starting to come in, but at the time we were having a lot of difficulty with latching on.

I was able to pump over the weekend, and now we have started to breast feed again. However, Christopher seems to not be satisfied with just the breastmilk. I will feed him and then he will scream because he is hungry. Whenever he is asleep I will pump, but I am only able to pump out 15ml-20ml max. I try to either pump or breastfeed every 2-3 hrs, but it is the same cycle over again. Either I am only able to pump out 15ml or Christopher feeds and remains hungry. Tomorrow I am going to a breastfeeding support group at a local hospital. I am also interested in doing an outpatient consult with a lactionist.

I feel like a bad mother because I am not able to give my child solely breaskmilk. I have had to use supplements with my milk. Christopher seems to be doing ok though. We had him weighed yesterday and he was able to regain his birth weight and put on an additional 2 ounces. He now weighs 8 lbs, 10 ounces. Every day he looks bigger, his hair and nails are growing like crazy. He keeps scratching his face up, so we have had to cut and file down his nails a couple of times.

Sometimes he is a little fussy, but it is usually because he is hungry. He eats every 2-3 hours and this is with 60ml of formula. Sometimes I will mix in my 20ml of breastmilk and then 40ml of formula. We can usually tell what is bothering him because it could mean a couple of things- (A) he is wet or dirty (B) he is hungry (C) he is gassy and needs to be burped. He has his days/nights confused and often wants to be awake at night and sleep during the day.

We have had a few accidents with him spraying on us. Alfonso likes to "test" him and leave him uncovered for a moment while changing his diapers. The first time we were doing a diaper change in the back of the 4-Runner after eating ice cream at Coldstone. Christopher ended up getting himself wet along with the folded up chair that was a foot behind him. The second time was last night before we went to bed. Christopher ended up spraying his bassinet and the carpet. Also, during his circumcision with the doctor, Christopher sprayed the doctor and everything else that was in the sterile field. We are quite proud of our strong little boy. I prefer to not test him, and instead I try to cover him up with a 4X4 gauze to avoid getting blessed.

Tomorrow we are going to the pediatrician for his newborn checkup. I am sure everything will be fine. I plan on addressing some of my concerns with my milk production with the pediatrician. Here are some photos that we took earlier today. It was hard to get him in a good mood, so some of these pictures were taken while he was sleeping.

First walk in the baby bjorn

He moves very fast, so just a little blurry

Our sleeping prince

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

So happy and so content

Some more pics of the three of us. Right now we are waiting for the doctor to come by and write discharge instructions so that we can go home! Thank you all for your comments and kind words. I will try to keep you all updated. :)

Btw, right now I am in the waiting room (there is a better wireless connection) and I keep thinking that I hear little Christopher's grunts and sounds. Of course I am not hearing him, but I have become so attuned to his little noises.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Christopher is here!

Finally after 14 hours of labor, Christopher Alfonso is here with us now. I was admitted to Cedars at 10 pm Monday night and Christopher was delivered Tuesday, June 19th at 2:46pm.

Christopher weighed 8lbs 8 ounces and is 21.5 inches long. He has light brown hair with shorter hair in the front and longer hair in the back. His eyes are dark blue, but will most likely change to brown. His face looked pretty swollen yesterday, but today he looks less swollen.

He is pretty calm and even tempered. He likes to be held, but is content lying in his bassinet looking around. He is very curious and turns his head around to the sound of our voices.

Here are some photos of Christopher, enjoy!

Monday, June 18, 2007

Today is the day!

I am now overdue by 5 days. My due date fell on last Thursday, and so far nothing is happening. I think Christopher is enjoying himself, so he doesn't want to come out. I have been feeling some contractions and cramping, but nothing too exciting. Thursday night I started to feel contractions, and they lasted for nearly three hours. Alfonso was working that night, and he left work early to be with me. After he came home the contractions stopped and I felt better. I had called the doctor (not my own, the on-call physician) and he told me that he could not give me advise of whether or not I was in labor, and that I needed to go to the ED to be evaluated. It's some kind of legal restriction that they have. So, I waded it out and after three hours it went away anyway. By that time it was 3 am!

I had a regular doctors appointment the next day, so I mentioned what had happened the night before to the nurse and doctor. They set me up on the monitor (that measure's the baby's heart rate and measures my contractions). I had a couple of contractions, but nothing very exciting. They did another ultrasound to check the amniotic fluid and that was normal as well. My doctor was not going to be on call during the weekend, so I was hoping that I would not go into labor over the weekend.

This weekend was pretty quiet. I felt tired and uncomfortable for most of the weekend, so I did a lot of resting. I went out a couple of times to run errands, but my tolerance for running around is pretty low. My feet swell pretty easily, and it's really uncomfortable for me to walk around. I also felt nauseated and crampy in my lower pelvis.

I saw "Knocked Up" Saturday night which was actually pretty good. I normally don't enjoy the main stream comedies (40 year old virgin, Borat) because they can be really gross, but this movie was pretty fun. Afterwards the people sitting next to me asked me when I was due- they wished me luck after I told them that I was overdue and going to be induced on Monday.

I woke up this morning at 10 am. I had to push myself to sleep in since I knew that tonight was going to be a long night. I don't know how much sleep I will be able to get tonight with my induction. I imagine not very much. Alfonso is still asleep (it's 11:30) but I will let him sleep in. I call him the marathon sleeper because he can sleep forever without much effort.

Today I plan on getting an oil change and getting my hair cut. We were thinking about going out to dinner, but we have so much food in our fridge that we need to get rid of.

I am a little nervous about the birth, but I know that there will be an end in sight and a grand prize at the end. We can't wait to see our little Christopher and finally be able to hold him!

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

ho hum (Week #39)

Well, tomorrow Thursday June 14th is my official due date. We went to the doctors today and she placed a monitor on me to measure the baby's heart rate and to measure my contractions. Christopher's heart rate was between 140-160. I was having small contractions every five minutes apart, but nothing very significant. The other night while we were driving to Babies R Us to return my Diaper Genie II pail (waste of money) I felt very intense contractions. They soon went away after 20 minutes though. Now that I know what actual contractions feel like, I will be more attuned to them and not just try to walk it off or do some other intervention. The contractions feel similiar to pressure and cramping in the lower pelvic and abdominal region. It almost feels like a pressure on the bladder causing you to want to pee.

Afterwards she did an ultrasound to check the amount of amniotic fluid. Ideally you want 5cm total in all four quadrants. She calculated 9. something, so I am not low on amniotic fluid. We were once again able to confirm that Christopher is definetly a "he" (there is no mistaking it!).

She then checked my cervix and it was 1 cm dilated (10 cm is maximum for delivery). My next appointment is on Saturday, and then I am scheduled for induction (that is if I do not go into labor beforehand) Monday night at 10pm. It would be cool if Christopher was born on Tuesday the 19th, since my birthday, my sister's birthday and our wedding day falls on the 19th (different months of course).

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Yaaaay! (I can see an end in sight)

Just returned home from my routine doctor's appointment. I have my next appointment on Wednesday the 13th and then another appointment on Saturday the 16th if the baby is not here yet (I am technically due Thursday the 14th). She said that she will schedule me for induction on either Monday the 18th or Tuesday the 19th if the baby is refusing to come out. I am so happy to know that by Tuesday the 19th Christopher will be with us! (If not sooner!)

For those that would like a baby announcement, please email me your address! And to all of my aunts, uncles, cousins, brothers and in-laws, I need your address as well!I am starting to put a list together!

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

38 weeks

I haven't posted recently because I do not have much to write about. I have been on maternity leave from my job, and frankly my life hasn't been too exciting. My day starts at 6:00 am after a night of waking up nearly every 2-3 hrs due to indigestion (I usually wake up coughing from the irritation of my digestive juices coming up to my throat). I usually wake up at 2:00am and then 4:00am to go to the bathroom. By the end of the day my feet are pretty swollen, so all of the fluid returns to my vascular system during the night and then I have to pee several times during the night. So, after waking up at 6:00 am, I usually get out of the bed by 7:00 and eat breakfast and watch the news. I play around on the computer and then return to bed for a couple of hours before finally getting up at 10:00am. I usually watch "A Baby Story" on TLC before I get ready for my day. I run some errands and then return home by 3pm and rest on the couch. I usually hit the wall in mid-afternoon due to fatigue and swelling in my feet. I start to make dinner by 5pm, and Alfonso leaves for work just after 6pm. I clean up the kitchen, dust, do laundry, sweep the floors and do some kind of housecleaning chore. On Tuesdays I take out the garbage and recycling so that it can be picked up Wednesday morning. I used to watch "Dancing with the Stars" on Monday and Tuesday night, but now that show has ended. I usually channel surf and sometimes I go to Barnes and Noble (if I have the energy) and read books and magazines. I have been reading "Peace Like a River" by Leif Enger. I highly recommend it. Sometimes I will take a bath before going to bed, and I am usually in bed by 12midnight, 12:30 at the latest. And then my day starts over again.

I recently changed my name, so that was a little project that lasted for a week. Then I prepared my hospital bag (that took 2 days since I had to make a run to the store for mini-toiletries). I also wrote thank-you cards to everyone that has given us a baby gift. I still have weekly doctor visits, so that takes about half the day. Last week Julie and I had our nails done in Studio City and then we ate a late lunch together. We also ate dinner at Diego's mom's house with Diego, Julie, Diego's daughter and Lucy (Diego's mom). Lucy made enchiladas with rice and beans and they were really good. Earlier this week, Alfonso hung up the curtains to the guest room and to the balcony. He also hung up Christopher's window valance that I found in the clearance bin at BabiesRUs (I was sooo excited to find that it was in the clearance bin- someone had opened the package so the store had to rewrap it and mark it down.) Christopher's room is coming along very nicely. I am looking for pictures for the walls (animal/safari theme), so I am still searching for items that look nice and do not cost very much.

We finally bought our plane tickets to see our families in August. We are going to GA for four days and then to MI for a week. I am so excited to go home and see everyone. My mom is planning a family get together- a celebration of our wedding combined with Christopher meeting his family.

I have my next appointment tomorrow at 11:00. The appointments are pretty brief; checking the fetal heart tones with the doppler, measuring my stomach, and palpating my abdomen for positioning of the baby. She guestimated that he will be about 7-7.5 lbs for delivery. I am officially due next week! Yaaay!

Here are some recent photos of my belly at 38 weeks: