It has been a long time since I last blogged, but I am back! You might be wondering what I have been doing for the past 10 months. Well, I had a baby!!!! My apologies for not announcing my pregnancy on my blog. With the pandemic and some end of pregnancy complications I never got around to writing one single post. Let me start off by giving you a brief summary of my pregnancy.
On February 28th 2020 I found out I was pregnant. By the time my first ultrasound appointment rolled around the world was dealing with a global pandemic. As a first time mom, and a hypochondriac being pandemic pregnant was a challenge. I had to attend all appointments alone, never got to take any in person birthing classes, never toured a hospital, and never met with any potential pediatricians. All in all my pregnancy was pretty easy. My only complications were morning sickness and high blood pressure.
With the pandemic seeming to control everything around my pregnancy, we decided to keep the gender of the baby a surprise. This made shopping and nursery decorating a challenge, but I was up for it. We chose a boy and a girl name, and bought a whole lot of gender neutral things. We decorated the nursery with things that could work for either gender. Honestly, not finding out the gender was a great surprise, and I recommend it!
By the third trimester I was having blood pressure issues and needed lots of tests and hospital visits. I was prescribed a blood pressure medication in the beginning of month eight and the doctors hoped that it would control my blood pressure and allow me to make it full term. Unfortunately, the baby had other plans and my water broke a month before my due date. After calling the nursing line, and being instructed to go to the hospital right away, my husband and I got in the car and made our way to the hospital. When we turned the car on the song ” The Final Countdown” was playing, how appropriate!!
After about sixteen hours of labor our baby girl was born on October 9th 2020 at 6: 38pm. Josephine Rose weighed 5.11 ounces and was 19 inches long. For a month premature she was born at very healthy weight. We were overjoyed that she was here and healthy. Josephine spent one night in the NICU. I was able to have a vaginal birth with an epidural. I am not sure if I received my epidural too early, or maybe it did not work, but I did experience a lot of pain during labor. The nursing staff were amazing and really gave me lots of encouragement. It was the hardest and most painful thing I have ever experienced.
My husband was able to be with me the whole time in the hospital, and I was able to take off my mask once my COVID test came back negative. Trust me, the pandemic is the last thing on your mind when you are giving birth. You are so overwhelmed with having your own human being to take care of that you completely forget about the outside world. We were in the hospital for about three days before we came home. With Josephine being a premie we were able to get a visiting nurse to help us at home once a week. The visiting nurse has been such a blessing, as caring for a newborn with limited help during a pandemic is very stressful.
Josephine is now seven weeks old and doing well! She is gaining weight and is a very good baby! She does have bad acid reflux which makes her very uncomfortable during and after feedings. We did have to go the hospital during the night for a very bad reflux episode a couple of weeks ago. She was admitted and had to spend one night for observation. Only one parent was able to stay with her so my husband stayed. These new rules are very tough on new parents as we both want to be there for our baby, and for each other. Josephine had to get a COVID test which was very difficult to watch. In the end they doctors gave us feeding advice and different teqchniues to use to help us manage her gas.
The past seven weeks have been a whirlwind of emotion and sleepless nights. I am very tired and constantly worried. The postpartum period is hard enough but during a pandemic with limited help and isolation, it is is incredibly difficult. I have been lucky that my husband has six weeks paternity leave and is always willing to help with the baby, and curb my anxiety when I feel overwhelmed. During the last few weeks of my pregnancy I decided to start to take an antidepressant to help me feel less anxious during the weeks leading up to labor. I am so happy I made this decision as it has helped me manage my stress and anxiety during my postpartum recovery.
Being a new Mom is so very rewarding, but also mentally draining. I miss sleeping all night, me time, and only worrying about myself. I think missing all of these things are a completely normal part of parenthood. I can only hope that my daughter knows I love her, and I am doing the best I can. Every baby smile makes each hard day worth it.
Cheers to the all the new moms! We got this! Here are some pictures from my maternity shoot and a few pictures of my little Josephine Rose. I hope to have a new blog post every month. My next blog post will be a holiday cocktail recipe! Stay tuned!