How is Elin?
She was born weighing in at 8lbs 9oz (3oz bigger than her brother!) via forceps delivery. For the first 12 hours or so, she was pissed off. Clearly, the delivery had upset her as she was really tearful and unsettled. The midwife even suggested then that she sleep next to me in the bed as she just wouldn’t be put down. Complete opposite to Rory who spent the first 24 hours of his life completely zonked. After those 24 hours she settled and started showing an incredibly sweet nature. Lots of very cute, pretty little faces and is generally very content and sleepy. She struggles with wind or reflux or something after feeds and that is the only time she will give any bother, apart from that she is generally a really good baby!
She does some adorable faces. She has this perfect little pout face which melts my heart. She has eyes that look into your soul and make you want to squish her. She makes hilarious little horse noises when she wants to feed. She is just beautiful.
Elin has taken to breastfeeding like an absolute pro. She was complimented numerous times in the hospital for how much of a natural she is! She loves the boob so I think she will be very loyal to it so I plan to bring in the bottle at some point as I need her to not be solely dependent on me.
I am absolutely loving breastfeeding which really surprises me. When I was pregnant with Rory I had slight ‘nursing aversion’ so gave him formula but regretted it later on. Breastfeeding feels so natural and lovely and I’m so glad we have both managed it so far.
I am still slightly sore. My right side boob can latch with no bother now but my left-hand side is still having the initial burning sensation. The best advice I’ve had so far is to count to ten as she latches as when you get to ten that pain has usually subsided.
At her 5 day check up the midwives seemed concerned that I was still having discomfort which worried me that our ‘perfect latch’ was actually not great. I obsessed over it all night watching tonnes of YouTube videos and actually just made things worse. The next day I calmed down and felt a lot better going with what Elin was doing and trusting her and we are in a much better place.
I’ve had two nights where I’ve been so sore that I’ve dreaded feeding her which were tough but I found out that at her 5 day check she had actually gained 2oz and she had gained ANOTHER 4oz by her 10 day check up! (it’s usual for babies to lose weight, especially breastfed babies) so I was pleased as punch about my gold top milk and that’s really spurred me on.
Her griping after feeds had reached a new level by two weeks, I couldn’t decide whether it was colic, lactose intolerance (like her brother), reflux (she is VERY sicky) or if I had an overactive let down (lots of coughing/spluttering during feeds on right-hand side) so far I am going with the latter and keeping her sat upright for 20 minutes after feeds and tonight (touch wood) we seem to of turned a corner. Normally by 6pm she would want to be held upright until bedtime, but it is currently 7:30pm at the time of writing this and she is in the Sleepyhead and has been for about an hour. Hurrah! I will keep you all updated on this as it’s come back to me all too quickly how hard it is having a windy/gripey newborn. Rory had mild colic and issues post feed until about 4 months and he would still get bad trapped wind even at 11 months!
The girl can sleep. So far she is a fabulous sleeper. I’m don’t really want to say too much at this point on sleep as it’s still super early days and I know newborns like to lure you in with a false sense of security but so far she’s golden.
She generally sleeps well in the day and settles by herself without needing too much of a cuddle. When having gripey/windy periods after a feed I normally pop her straight in the baby wrap so I can carry on and still look after Rory otherwise I just feel super guilty that she soaks up the attention and also he isn’t a huge fan of her crying. I am trying to watch how much I use the baby wrap as I want her to be quite happy sleeping on her own in her Mamaroo or Sleepyhead. Rory would only ever sleep on me or in the baby wrap and it was quite hard work.
Nighttime – she has had two bad nights, again she had really bad wind and just kept mistaking the pain for hunger, so wanted to feed and then would make it worse. The same nights Rory was quite unsettled too, so not much rest for the wicked but oh well. Otherwise, she wakes once or sleeps through! Complete opposite to Rory who would be awake ALL night.
I think her good sleeping at the moment is benefitted by the fact that I’ve picked up a few things being a second time Mum. She mostly co-sleeps in our bed which I didn’t even know you could do with Rory until he was three weeks and that solved our sleep problems with him too.
I was always quite open-minded about co-sleeping with her and it’s just kind of happened. On nights where she is settled, I will put her in her Chico Next2Me but otherwise she is on my left-hand side.
How is Mama?
Mama is very well. Surprisingly well actually. The first week was a little tough going, once the incredible newborn high wore off and in came the baby blues I was quite up and down. Mainly to do with Rory. I really missed him and struggled with the change in our dynamic quite a lot. I will talk more about this in a separate blog post as I’m still not 100% there with it but it’s definitely now less skewed by hormones. The day my milk came in I was sobbing over him. The best thing that helped us feel more “normal” was being left alone. Rich started to run errands and stick close by so I could get used to the logistical challenges of having “two under two” and that really helped us find our groove. Also taking them both out for the day, alone, massively helped.
My stitches from my episiotomy are starting to feel so much better, these hit peak soreness at around day 5 and lasted until around day 9 where I was just super pissed off about them. Also, my postpartum bleeding has very nearly stopped which is SO welcome because I am sick of maternity pads.
Week two was so much better! My hormones settled, we found a little routine and some ordinary and I felt so good about everything. So happy as I struggled to adjust to life with a baby when I first had Rory and was a little obsessed with him etc whereas now I just feel back to normal but with more precious cargo to tag along. I think it’s because I HAVE to get back to normal for Rory so there isn’t time to lose myself etc. I have to be back up to scratch to make sure everything is running normally and that’s really helped in making me feel on top of things.
I do still have moments where I get scared and feel overwhelmed, oddly this is never actually when things ARE overwhelming. It actually comes when things are very calm. I’ll be having a nice shower and will suddenly get hit with this fear that it’s ‘too many children’ but actually so far, when push comes to shove, having two children has been fine. I’m not naive enough to think things will stay that way but I know that it will be fine. It doesn’t get easier, you just get better – right?
Water Bottle – Breastfeeding is thirsty work. Like insane thirst. I currently have one water bottle but I am seriously considering investing in one for my changing bag, the lounge and our bedroom (basically all breastfeeding points) because I keep forgetting to take it along it with me.
Feeding Pillow – I have three breastfeeding pillows and shockingly keep forgetting to use them but they make such a difference in the first few weeks to helping get your latch positioning right. I have put these in better places now to ensure I use them.
Lansinoh Lanolin – Basically my saviour in a tube. If it wasn’t for this stuff, we wouldn’t still be breastfeeding. My nips have pretty much hardened up in two weeks but this stuff has been used in abundance from the first feed and it makes such a difference. Worth every single penny.
Start4Life Breastfeeding Friend – 24/7 Breastfeeding Support! Yup, you heard me right. Okay, so technically it’s a robot that you’re talking too but it’s still super handy and full of breastfeeding/latching information. You just pop it a message on Facebook. It also sends you daily messages with useful information or motivation. It’s recent golden nugget of information was telling me you could get a years supply of Vitamin D from your GP so I am going to be doing that!
Sleepyhead – So far this has been a great little addition. offering a safe place for Elin to sleep and make her easily portable. I’ve had her next to the bath in it, on the sofa, on the kitchen table etc. Having Rory running around means that I can’t really leave them alone together so nipping off to the loo gets tricky, but having this means she is less disturbed when picking her up.
Mamaroo – so far she adores this swing and I think its fab, however, I will keep you posted on that one as Rory was pretty good at napping in anything until he hit three weeks and then it all changed…
Baby Wrap – I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Thank god for baby wraps! It’s the best way to get anything done! It keeps her upright which helps with her wind and keeps her settled. Its fab for dinner/lunchtimes when I am running around like a headless chicken which would be 10x worse if I had to keep checking on Rory and Elin too.
Muslin Blankets – these were already an essential as Rory used them as comforters but having a very sicky baby they’re even more so now. The only problem? Despite buying them separate muslin blankets with good intentions, they both seem to get used for vomit and comfort which is pretty gross but Rory doesn’t seem that arsed!