Friday, November 7, 2014

Garrett’s First Weeks

Well, my sweet little boy will be a whopping two weeks old on Monday.  So what did he do during this time in his new home?  One word-SLEEP.  This kid y’all…..I don’t even know what to do with him.  He literally sleeps roughly 20 hours a day.  He’s basically awake for feedings and that’s it.  He is so different than Carter.  Carter rarely slept in his first weeks.  In fact we had to go to the pediatrician to talk about what could have been wrong and the doc said that Carter was a “hyper-alert baby”.  In Carter’s first several weeks at home, he was getting MAYBE 10-12 hours of sleep a day.  So this 20 hours a day thing is a nice change of pace for me and Justin.  I figure I worked so hard and got so messed up trying to get him out of my uterus that I earned a baby like Garrett :)


We were discharged from the hospital on Thursday, October 30th (a day later than expected) so that was our first night at home with both boys.  When we brought Carter home from the hospital after he was born, we tried to let him sleep in our room, but after one night of him being the NOISIEST sleeper in the world, we moved his pack-n-play to the living room and he slept out there for his first few weeks.  Garrett is noisy like Carter, but not near as bad.  Every night so far, Garrett’s only woken up to eat 2 times.  We usually wake him up around 10 or 11 for one last feeding before Justin and I go to bed.  The next feeding is usually around 1-2am and sometimes we even have to wake him up for that.  The one after that is around 3-4am and he usually wakes us up for that one.  Garrett seems to be able to go longer between feedings during the day than he can at night, but my guess is that he’s got his days and nights mixed up.  We also realized the same thing with Garrett that we realized with Carter…that he sleeps better and longer at night off formula (more calories than in breast milk).  So we feed him two of those feedings from a formula bottle.


It’s weird, but I truly believe that my body remembers what it’s like to function off of little sleep with a newborn baby in the house and it adjusted very quickly.  There hasn’t been one morning since we’ve come home that Justin or myself been “exhausted”.  We’ve both felt relatively good in the mornings and that’s also a huge change from our experience with Carter.  One thing Carter did better than Garrett does is eating.  Carter had no issues breastfeeding at all and Garrett has had some issues.  First he did it fine, but then it started taking him forever to latch on.  Even when he did, he seemed to only want to nurse from the right side and never wanted the left.  This continued to be an issue when we came home from the hospital for a while.  I just kept pumping and feeding him my milk in a bottle.  He never had an issue with my milk, which is a huge blessing, I just couldn’t get him to nurse.  Then we found out he had jaundice and that it was probably the reason he was being “lazy” by just wanting a bottle instead of having to work for it to get it from the source.  Once the jaundice started to go away, he began nursing again.  By the way, I’m producing THREE TIMES as much milk as Garrett is drinking.  We already have a ton in the fridge and about 18 freezer bags in the freezer.  I’m about to start consider donating it!

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**Face was a tad swollen the day of discharge…excuse it!!**

Because of the jaundice, we had to put him on the same tanning bed-like lights that Carter had to go on.  Carter was on the lights for 4 days and it was miserable.  He hated them and cried constantly.  Garrett on the other hand couldn’t have cared less.  He slept amazing on them and because of that, we made him stay in the lights constantly.  Garrett only had to be on the lights for 2 days!!  Let me tell you real quick why I hate these lights….and why I hate Obamacare.  See our insurance covered the lights themselves at 80% and covered the nurses that had to come to our house daily to check on his jaundice levels at 100%.  Here’s the thing, Garrett had to meet an individual deductible of $2,000 before that was covered.  Are you kidding me?!?!?!  Why even cover it?  What freaking newborn has met a $2,000 deductible???  So Justin and I are forced to pay for it out of pocket.  We haven’t gotten the final bill, but we’re estimating roughly $600.  Awesome.  Anyway, Garrett’s bili number (the level of jaundice) was 9 in the hospital and then when we went to the pediatrician’s office a couple days later, it jumped to 17, which is why they told us to put him on the lights.  We got the lights around noon on Friday (Halloween) and he stayed on them until the nurse came again the next day (except for an hour break for trick-or-treating).  The next day his bili number decreased to 15.4 which showed some improvement.  They wanted the number to be around or below 12 so we were ordered to do it one more night.  The next day the nurse came back again and his number was down to 12.2.  The pediatrician said that the improvement was enough to go ahead and take him off the lights but he wanted the nurse to come back one more time the next day to check his bili number to see if it was going down on it’s own without being on the lights.  Sure enough, it was.  It was 11.3 that day.  So we are officially done with the lights!

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This was the only Halloween picture I got of both boys.  I’m a horrible mother, I know.  I should have gotten more pictures of Carter and been more involved, but I just couldn’t y’all….I was still in so much pain and I could barely move!

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These are the tanning bed lights used to knock out jaundice.

Garrett was born at 8lbs 1oz but just like all newborns, he lost some of that weight in his first days so we spent the week trying to get him back to his birth weight.  The lowest he got was 7lbs, 8oz in the hospital and as of today, he’s up to 7lbs, 15oz.  So almost birth weight, but not quite.  I suspect this is because of the eating issues.  I can hardly keep him awake long enough to eat so he’s not getting as much food as I want him to get.  There’s no concern with his weight though.  He’s gone up a little bit everyday which is good. 

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That one on the right is the ONLY picture I’ve been able to get of his eyes open!

Oh and speaking of Halloween…man was it cold in the south that night!!  My mom came over to come trick-or-treat with us.  Carter wore his doctor outfit that he wore at the hospital when G was born.  We all walked up and down our street letting Carter trick-or-treat.  I wore Garrett on my chest and wrapped him in a million layers.   He slept the entire time.  Shocker.  Our neighbors were SHOCKED that I was out and about moving around already.  I probably shouldn’t have been, but I was tired of being in the house all day every day.  Which, by the way, is another difference between my kids.  The post-partum depression.  I had PPD with Carter pretty bad.  I got put on medication and stayed on it for about 6 months.  I thoroughly did NOT enjoy Carter’s first months of life.  I never wanted to leave the house.  Well because my hormones developed PPD the first time, my doc said it was likely to develop it again this time.  To prevent it to the best of his ability, my doc put me on Zoloft when I was 30 weeks pregnant.  Best decision ever y’all.  I am nothing but a ball of happiness this time around.  I’m so tired of being cooped up in my house and am dying to get outside and see our friends and go to church and play with Carter in the sun, etc.  All of this is a great sign that I am not struggling with PPD this time around.


We went to Tuscaloosa on Tuesday so that my sister could take Garrett’s newborn photos.  I can’t begin to explain how much I CAN’T WAIT to see these photos.  Carter wasn’t my sister’s best subject when he was a newborn because he NEVER slept.  Garrett was the opposite.  He stayed asleep the entire time and Lindsey had some insanely creative ideas that she used on him and OMG I’ve never seen anyone spend so much money on props and blankets for a session!!  This pictures shows a little behind the scenes of how we took the pictures.  Justin helped Lindsey a ton while I laid on the couch to rest.


And when I say he slept all day I mean it.  We took a break from taking pictures to eat lunch so we just laid Garrett on one of the blankets in the floor and he slept the entire time while we ate.


This one was taken from my iPhone so trust  me, Lindsey’s edited version is so much better…but how stinking cute is this?!?!

I must brag on my husband.  He is AH-MAZING!  With Carter, he didn’t know what he was doing and was always second guessing himself.  He always took the stance of “you’re the mother-you’re made for stuff like this, not me!”.  Naturally he ended up getting the hang of it and low and behold, he’s Carter’s favorite parent now.  When Garrett came into the world it was sooooooo different.  He has done WAY more than I have for Garrett.  He has changed almost ALL diapers, he’s cleaned the house for me, he’s offered to do feedings at night for me so that I can keep laying in bed and not moving (moving was hurting like crazy the first several days), and he took 100% responsibility for Carter so that I could focus on healing.  His confidence level of taking care of a newborn skyrocketed and seeing him with Garrett makes me smile daily.  I’m so thankful that he’s been around and helping as much as he has because it’s really helped me to heal quicker.  I have no idea how I’m going to do it all when he starts going out of town again!


So that pretty much sums up the first week at home with Garrett.  We love our family of four and I know now that God always intended for me to be a mom of boys.  I’m loving having these two so much already!  Now if I could just get better a little faster so that I can keep up with Carter, then life would be pretty dang perfect!


Amy Faulkner said...

I know you're glad to have a good sleeper this go around! My first was a good sleeper so I'm worried I might be in for it with this one coming in December!

I'm also super glad to hear you aren't struggling with PPD this time. I've been praying about that since you mentioned it in a previous post a couple months ago.

Congratulations! You have a beautiful family!