Sunday, April 11, 2010

Recovery

Sometimes you're the tornado, and sometimes you're the trailer park.

Right now I feel like a big ole double-wide.

It's funny, but what I was fearing the most (getting the spinal block, as lame as that sounds) felt no worse than a bee sting, literally. And the rest of it since... well, more like being stung by a Mack Truck going 80 mph.

I don't want to complain, because damn am I thrilled to have given birth to healthy full-term twins. I am blessed to have my Mom here, I literally do not know what we'd do without her. I am thrilled at how well DH is handling everything, he is taking care of me and the boys and actually seems to be enjoying it. I am grateful that Bean is adjusting well to siblinghood so far. I know that could change at the drop of a hat, but any good day is still a good day. (Special thanks to my friend Sarah who suggested the twins "give" Bean a special gift when they came home from the hospital... he has spent hours upon hours playing with his Little Tykes b-ball hoop from the babies. Genius!) And thank goodness I was wrong about the gestational diabetes diet ruining yummy food for me for the rest of my life because of the guilt factor. I had absolutely no problem having cinnamon rolls for breakfast and then downing that cookie ice cream sandwich (and the remainder of DH's chocolate pudding with Oreos and whipped cream) after lunch.

But for the sake of honesty, I must say -- I am struggling. I don't remember the C-section recovery being this difficult last time, but maybe it was. I'm feeling a bit better today, but after this and the bedrest, I am just incredibly sick of not being physically able to do simple things. And I still have a ways to go.

The biggest challenge of caring for the twins from my perspective is nursing. Or lack thereof, at this point. I was thrilled to be able to breastfeed them right after the surgery, they both seemed to latch right on and go to town. But that went downhill... downhill... downhill... by last night, they were obviously suffering. Lost 12% and 13% of their body weight and still declining. Not enough filled diapers. They were too exhausted to even latch. We have been meeting with a lactation consultant for days, and today I agreed to make the plan to put them on formula (using a supplemental nursing system at the breast) meanwhile I pump and we work out our issues. (Any breastmilk I pump is substituted for the formula, naturally.) I am so pissed at myself for having the same problems this time as I did last time. It's hard not to feel like a failure, even though intellectually I know that's ridiculous.

The other thing I'm working through is the post-partum hormone let-down. It happened with Bean, too -- basically three weeks of crying. I think of it as my body just has to release these pregnancy hormones (maybe twice as many this time) and it happens to come through my eyes. Bean gets concerned when I cry, then he says something cute to cheer me up ("Mommy, look! Mister Fork and Mister Spoon are dancin'!") and I have to try not to cry even harder because of his pure sweetness. Maybe I should just lock myself in my room with "Everybody Hurts" by R.E.M. on repeat and see if I can get it all out in a couple of hours.

Last night, my Mom brought Bean downstairs in his jammies to say good night to me and DH, who were holding the babies in the family room. Bean looked just like a sweet angel in his white footie PJs. He happily bounded between us, giving us kisses and smiles. When he disappeared upstairs with my Mom again, eager to pick out a bedtime book, DH turned to me with tears in his eyes and said, "Sunny, we are so lucky. We are so lucky to have this family."

And everything considered, he's exactly right.

I'll get there. Eventually.


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29 comments:

Kristina P. said...

Yes, you will. I can't imagine how difficult it must be to breastfeed two babies!

Hang in there, my friend!

Meredith said...

So proud of you for this superhuman feat of giving birth to not one but two full term babies! I can't imagine how much your body has been through given the bedrest, twin pregnancy and c-section. The feedings will work out in some great fashion with help and support. Thanks for the awesome post! What a wonderful family!

K said...

First, *hugs*

A C-section, twin babies, post-partum, breastfeeding: those are all huge changes and are all real things you're dealing with all at once. Its awesome you are grateful for what is going right, but its also OKAY to feel frustrated, tired or anything else you are feeling. I'm sure you already know this but I just wanted to say it.

Hang in there- we're all rooting for you :)

Red said...

I can't imagine double the hormones post partum. What your body has done recently is amazing - give it a bit of a break with the breastfeeding issue. It'll all come good soon enough - it did with Bean.

I also substituted for a few days at the start with Champ until he got better at sucking and my milk came in with force. They are big boys so they need lots of milk!

Hope the recovery is easier than you imagine and remember to be kind to your body.

Alana said...

Awww, what a wonderful DH!

Sending you hugs and wishes for a speedy recovery.

Glad your Mom is still there as a fabulous means of support and that Bean is adjusting well thus far. :)

'Murgdan' said...

Hang in there...I can't imagine how difficult it must be. Thinking thoughts of you and hoping for a quick recovery on all counts.

E said...

Well, you have basically been run over by a mac truck! It is going to be awhile before you bounce back!!

I'm sorry you are having BF issues. Hopefully it is temporary and it will become extremely easy for you very, very soon. I can't imagine BF twins! I had a very difficult time as well with my first.

Your mother and DH sound so wonderful. You really are lucky!!

I hope you feel better soon and eat some sweets for me dang it!

Jen said...

You know from experience that it WILL get better. Those first weeks are so tough. And you are recovering from so much more than a c section. You just spent most of your time since January lying on your back and delivered nearly 15 pounds of baby. It will take a little while to get your strength back after that. Add on top of it the stress of breast feeding and pumping (oh how I loathe pumping) and it makes for a very hard time.

You will get through this, and a year from now you'll wonder how you ended up with three fun and rambunctious little boys!

I'm sending lots of (((HUGS)))!!!

Sarah said...

You just delivered 14+ pounds of baby, which your body carried to full-term. Logically, don't you think it would be worse this time around? In addition, you couldn't get up to exercise either, so the muscles didn't prepare to help either. These first few weeks are always a mess. If any mother says otherwise, she's in complete denial! I don't care if you are Michelle Duggar! Ever wonder why her voice is so high and annoying? She's like a tea kettle, waiting to explode... Seriously... I had to do the breastfeed, pump, while daddy finger feed too (not with two babies though), and it never seemed like it would end - add to that many trips to the doctors for jaundice and a husband out of state - but it all did end happily!!! I wish I could be there to hug you when you cry just to tell you that you are amazing and to remind you of how much better it gets, just in a few weeks even! There is no harm in crying...we all do/did it, what a great release it can be too - just not so much fun when you can't stop due to the hormones! ;) I'm glad you have such a wonderful family to be there with you. Say hi to the hubs and your mom! I'm fully impressed with them too! Such a team effort! ;) Breastfeeding will work out especially because I know your drive - this is just one hurdle in a marathon of boobie bliss. Glad to see your post!

Soxy Deb said...

Yes Sunny, you WILL get there. Just remember to keep talking. To DH, mom or us and not keep it bottled up. The left half of your brain (or is it the right?) knows this is all normal. "This too shall come to pass".
Get as much rest as you can too. Take full advantage of the extra hands you have right now. Take care of YOU too. {HUGS}

Coffeegrljp said...

Hang in there! I know how bumpy the road can be after pregnancy (with just a singleton) - I can't imagine factoring in the C-section recovery AND twins. Which is just to say, I don't think it's at all surprising that you'd feel physically and emotionally drained. Good luck with the ongoing bf-ing. Sure it can be done in lots of instances, but you and I both know from experience that this doesn't make it easy or quick! So happy to hear that you're all at home together - safe and sound!

Beautiful Mess said...

Sending you so much love, hon! It's hard to take care of one newborn, there's bound to be a few bumps with two. Hang in there, you're doing GREAT!
*HUGS*

Nicky said...

I remember feeling shocked at how awful I felt after my c-section, and I only had one baby! Right around the one week mark, I remember thinking that I'd never be able to move normally again. But it DOES get better. It sounds like you're doing fantastic, even if it doesn't always feel like it in the moment. Be sure to lean on your support system (mom and hubby and friends) as much as you need, and you'll be up and about and feeling more normal soon. We're all pulling for you!

Mary said...

Hang in there friend, it WILL get better, just take it one day, one hour, one minute at a time. And you are right double the babies equals double the placentas equals double the hormonal change (which I hear is worse in second pregnancies anyway). You CAN do this and it WILL be worth it in the end. Sending a prayer and a virtual hug, wishing I lived closer so I could provide some physical help as well.

strongblonde said...

twins are hard....but you'll totally get there. girl, you know those postpartum hormones will getcha every time!!!

Aunt Becky said...

Hang in there, girl. Postpartum hormones are a bitch. You're just fine. You're going to be great. You're no failure! Nursing twins is insane! Do the best you can do.

xoxo

MrsSpock said...

BF one was hard- and you have two!Eventually the surgical area will heal, you'll start feeling better, and supply will increase. Keep on movin'!

Denise said...

I have a feeling that prolonged bed rest does such a number on your body that even healing takes longer. I was not on bed rest as long as you, nor as strict and I had a number of health issues after the twins birth. I remember being so frustrated because I felt like my body should recover from things faster, but I really think it was the result of bed rest. You will get there eventually, it just takes time.

I struggled with breastfeeding our twins, but got to a good place eventually (although it was never exclusive). I'll send you an invite to my private blog that goes back to those days if you feel like reading through it. But you are way ahead of where I was if you're working with a LC.

Hang in there and enjoy that amazing family you've made!

Kate said...

I had enough trouble coping after a vag birth of a singleton. Feeding issues here too. Can't imagine what you're dealing with, but it sounds like you've got the support to get through it. Good luck!

Michelle said...

After all you have been through the last 9 months or so I think it is natural to feel the way you do. I think it is Awesome that you are trying to breast feed both babies. Try not to beat yourself up about it not going according to plan. What does?

I am happy to hear that Bean is adjusting well. Giving the gift from the babies is a GREAT idea. My sis did it when she had her 2nd and it was a good thing (for a couple weeks anyway).

You will get there eventually just do not be too hard on yourself on the way there. Try to take care of yourself and just enjoy the ride. I know easier said then done...

Thinking of you and sending lots of hugs!

Chad and Gena said...

I just wanted to echo what everyone is already saying...you have been through a lot and you are doing a great job. I have been where you are w/the constant crying for weeks post giving birth and the breast feeding issues and feeling like a failure. BUT you are not failing. It is not your fault or anything you can even control. You are doing everything right and the very best you can. I have no doubt that you will get to where you were w/Bean regarding breastfeeding. Just give yourself and your body and the boys some time to adjust. It took me 5 months to get to where I was exclusively breastfeeding the twins but we got there and I know you will too. Just remember these are the hardest weeks. It gets a little easier every week and before you know it, it will be a piece of cake...mmmm cake :-)

Martha said...

Oh, dearest Sunny, it's so many emotional highs and lows with a hormonal and physical recovery thrown in. Sending you Big ((HUGS)) for the best and better sooner, real soon.

Hollyween said...

Honey, I know you know this... but you gotta give yourself a break. Let those tears come and just 'let it be'. Do you want me to sing the Beatles song to you? Cuz I will.

Do you know what I got most from this post? That I wish so badly I lived closer so that I could help you out. I'm so grateful you have your mom's help. But still. I'd tkae Bean and then your mom could help you more with the babies... ya know... in dreamland where I'm your next door neighbor. Oh, and I'd also bring food. Food always helps.

Loves and Hugs!!!

Hollyween said...

p.s.

In my neighborhood (hello, I live in Utah) there are 4 women with twins. Two of the women had their sets of twins just a couple months ago. Though I know they still have their challenges, they have ALL said how much better it is now that their babies are a couple months old and they're in a routine, etc. So... this too shall pass. Hang in there.

lisawitt said...

I second everything everyone else said!! You have been through the ringer these last few months so naturally its going to take time to get back to feeling like YOU again! As for the bfing, you persevered with Bean and did it! It may take a little longer with twins but I have no doubt you are doing the best you can! Lean on that support from your mom and DH and anyone else...and before you know it, the boys will be 6months old and you will be wondering where that time went! HUGS!!!!!

Furrow said...

Oh, sweet Sunny. You have been through quite a battle! True, you were victorious, but still wounded and it's not surprising at all that it's going to take time to heal. I'm so very glad that you have the support of your mom and DH. I'm rooting for you and hoping that the healing is faster than you expect. Take it easy on yourself, emotionally, if you can.

Jingle said...

It is huge, you have been through it, which is a major achievement!
Happy Tuesday!
Happy Wednesday!
Happy Everyday!

Kami said...

Congrats on 2 healthy and beautiful babies!

You sound like me - only I beat myself up over the birth instead of BF - both beyond our control. Oh, those post pg hormones. The sobbing! It will get better and it is often worse with twins.

Hang in there . . . one day at a time!

Gerardine Baugh said...

It has to be harder with twins. I wish you luck and tons of happy days ahead.
Gerardine