Sorry for the lack of blog posts recently – BabyMouse has been keeping us very busy, and when I’m not feeding, changing, winding or washing BM, or expressing milk or trying to sleep my brain hasn’t really been working very well. We are sleeping, but our sleep is in two or three hour chunks (if we’re lucky and BM spaces her feeds out), rather than a full six-eight hours at a stretch, so it doesn’t really feel like we’re having as much sleep as we used to – probably because we’re not!
BabyMouse is progressing well – she is eating quite well and putting on weight, and the health visitor was pleased with her progress when she last visited. We did have a bit of a worrying week where she was seeming to eat all the time but didn’t put on weight – I think this was because she wasn’t latching on well when breastfeeding, so she seemed to be eating when actually she wasn’t taking much in. Partly due to BM not latching on, I got mastitis, which was horrible. I felt really ill, like having a bad bout of flu, and I was actually sick, which apparently can happen with mastitis, although it’s not common. As breastfeeding was already very stressful for both BM and me, because of her not being able to latch on properly, I decided that the mastitis was the final straw and stopped feeding her at the breast. I’m still expressing breast milk, though (partly in an effort to try and get rid of the mastitis), so BM is still getting all the nice nutrients, etc., but without the stress for her and pain for me. She is also having formula milk, as I’m not able to express enough to feed her purely with expressed milk. I know lots of people don’t think that ‘mixed feeding’ is a good idea, but it works for us, and is better than the alternative of a stressed mum and baby, and, more importantly, BM is getting enough to eat.
As a further ‘excitement’, I’ve also had the delights of postnatal depression (PND) to contend with. I took everyone’s advice and went to the GP, who gave me some medication, which seems to be helping, thank goodness. And thank goodness for a sympathetic GP, and for grandmothers – my mother in law and my mum have both been to stay to look after me and BabyMouse since Mr C has gone back to work. I don’t know what we would have done without them! This week coming will be the first full week I’ve been on my own all day every day with BabyMouse (apart from the health visitor’s appointment), so we’ll see how we get on! Mum has said she’ll come back if necessary, but I’m hoping that I’m well enough to cope on my own now.
Needless to say, becoming a parent takes a lot of getting used to – it was much more of a shock to the system than I expected it to be – apparently this is quite normal! We’re learning more every day; about BM and about ourselves. I was going to make a list of all the things we’ve learned over the past six weeks, but I couldn’t even count them, there were so many (and did I mention my brain isn’t working?). It has been a tough few weeks in many ways, but it’s also been amazing and fascinating and good. And BabyMouse is lovely.