Scarlett and Me


Scarlett had her first well-baby visit with our pediatrician today.  When we arrived, the receptionist handed me a card from Diana, one of the nurses.  The entire staff has been there as long as I can remember (we’ve been with the same pediatrician since Kevin was born 15+ years ago), and Diana is the first nurse there I ever encountered – way back when Kevin was a tiny newborn and I had to take him in for jaundice.  For some reason, she’s taken a special liking to us, and every time I’ve announced another pregnancy, she’s just been thrilled for us.  I still remember when we took Finn in for his first well visit after he was released from the hospital, and how I cried and cried over his diagnosis and everything he had already been through in his brief life, and she just put her arms around me and let me cry and told me everything was going to be okay.

Anyway, so I opened this card today, and inside she had written a very heartfelt note congratulating us on the birth of another baby, and she had included a $50 gift card to buy something for Scarlett.  I was speechless.  Have you ever heard of such a thing?  It was incredibly touching.

So, back in the exam room, I stripped Scarlett down to her diaper for her first weigh-in.  Let me just say that she nurses about every hour and a half to two hours around the clock, so I was expecting to see her tip the scales at approaching 8 pounds (she was  7 lbs. 5 oz. and 20 inches at birth).  I was sort of taken aback when the scale said she weighs 7 pounds even, and she was measured at (still) 20 inches.  In fact, I almost started crying.  How can it be that at two weeks old, she’s not even back up to her birth weight?

This all hearkens back to the feeding difficulties Finn had and how I agonized over every fraction of an ounce he gained or lost in the first few months of his life.  I’m not saying that Scarlett has feeding difficulties – she nurses like a pro, and has from right after her birth, as far as I can tell – but this lack of weight gain was like a flashback for me today, and it kind of threw me for a loop.  I don’t want to obsess over it, or make more of it than necessary, but  . . . I don’t understand it.  The pediatrician isn’t concerned about it (although he does want me to bring her back for a weight check in a couple weeks), and I even called Sue, my midwife, and she’s not concerned either (although she said she’d come over in the next few days and weigh Scarlett on her scale so we can get a real comparison to her birth weight).

What am I afraid of?  I’m trying to figure that out.  I guess just health issues in general.  I guess, also, I’m afraid that for whatever reason she’ll prove to be a poor gainer, and the doctor will send me home with formula next time like he did with Finn, only this time I don’t have a freezer full of expressed breast milk to supplement with instead of formula.

I’m borrowing trouble, aren’t I?

Sigh.

Aside from the weight/growth issue (which I shouldn’t be concerned about, right?), Scarlett seems to be doing just fine.  She’s still crabby a lot of the time – and let me tell you: this tiny little lady can bring the house down with her screaming – but she appears to be healthy, just feisty.

As for me . . . I’m hanging in there.  Some days are better than others.  I’m still trying to come out of the fog of postpartum-ness (maybe 2 weeks is rushing it), and I very much still feel a little alien to the outside world right now, if that makes sense.  As corny as this may sound, I feel like Michael is the only person in the world who gets me right now, and so he’s the only one I really want to be around right now.  I still break down crying out of nowhere – not all the time, but here and there.  I think it’s safe to say that I have the baby blues – partly hormonal, and partly just feeling very overwhelmed at times – not necessarily by Scarlett and her needs, but by the other kids and their needs and demands and not minding, on top of Scarlett and her needs.  I’m on the lookout for PPD, as I’ve had it before, but I don’t think that’s what I’m dealing with currently.

Anyway, baby’s crying.

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5 Comments on “Scarlett and Me”

  1. starrlife
    July 7, 2012 at 2:43 pm #

    Hugs Lisa. BIrthing a baby is hard work and it takes a bit of recovery. If you could give yourself allowance just to be in the fog, not function so well and accept that that is just the way it is. It’ll get better!
    Well, that all sounds trite reading it back but the hug isn’t 🙂

  2. Alyson
    July 7, 2012 at 2:47 pm #

    First I want to say that the doctor’s office scale is going to be different than Sue’s anyway. My kids never had major feeding difficulties and BF around the clock but I remember Finn not being at his birthweight yet at 2 weeks. He was 8.12 to start with and barely over 8 at 2 weeks. Also trying to measure a newborn’s length always seems silly to me because of how curled up they are. Several of my babies ” lost” length from their birth length LOL
    I think sleep deprivation can really do a number on your mind,forget the hormones and 6 additional kids. As far as PPD I believe that Michael will spot it before you, so keep being open with him the way you have been.
    Lots of love Lisa,I know it’s going to get easier xoxo

  3. Lou
    July 9, 2012 at 3:16 pm #

    Scarlett is a complete beauty!

  4. Amy
    July 9, 2012 at 8:50 pm #

    Yeah I know the fog you are talking about. Hang in there girl, it will lift-and if not you and your husband know what to do about it. It seems like it takes me about 6 to 8 weeks to feel “normal” again after a birth. That’s when I usually get my groove on and my schedule honed in. I think for some its the lack of control over things in general thats overwhelming, at least for me anyway. New babies are hard work and it takes time to learn about your little one. And when you have a new member of the family it takes a bit for everyone to get into synch. It all pays off when when your baby smiles at you and starts kicking it’s little chunky baby legs when you get them in the morning. So fun, I miss that!
    I’m sending you lots of encouragement Lisa, you can do it!

    • Lisa
      July 9, 2012 at 10:12 pm #

      Thanks, Amy. When I read your comment, I felt like, “She gets it.”

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