I fed him for what seems like hours before he went down for a 30 minute nap. His rooting couldn't be for more milk...
I've been wanting (daily) to come to this blog, and dump my feelings and frustrations out.. but the rule of "when baby sleeps, you sleep" is really something I'm trying to adhere to. I don't sleep at night. I'm up with Theo for 1 and a half hours per feed. I might get 3-4 hours collectively each night if I'm lucky. And those 3 hours usually come in 30 - 40 minute doses. If I ever get a good nap in during the day that's longer than an hour, I feel like a new person.
I let Daniel sleep at night. I need him during the day to be as functional as possible. I feel so wired, and at times borderline crazy. I try not to lose my shit with visitors, constant feeds, advice... etc.
But I'm getting close.
And I can't ever really talk about what's really pushing me to my edge.
I miss Alexander.
I ache with now evident his goneness is. With Theodore here, it is a constant reminder of what so should have been last year.
And I don't know if I'm normal. Am I normal for a baby loss parent even? Are my unravelling emotions normal for any "new" mom? Is this overwhelming feeling of sadness over the loss of my first born normal? Is the feeling like I cannot possibly do this another day without having Alexander here normal? Is the endless amount of joy I have in the arrival of Theodore supposed to make having Alexander not here easier? Because right now, it does not.
I love both my sons. Endlessly and equally.
How is it one of them is out of my reach? Inaccessible? Untouchable? So completely gone?
Several people "outside" of my circle commented on how next Sunday will be my first Mother's Day. It hurt me more than I expected.
Today, MY MOTHER said, "look at you, you're a mom now". Happily, and without thinking of any consequence, she said this.
I didn't get it. I don't get people who don't remember that I had a son last year, and he died. And then still think that with Theodore's arrival I now qualify as "mom" status.
It hurt. My mother says things without thinking. My temper was short and is getting shorter day by day with the lack of sleep, and I told her she's pissing me off. Getting mad is easier than getting emotional. If I let myself get sad... it's hard to reel it in.
Theodore is a little Jaundice. It's 12 days old today. Everyone told me that after a week old it should start to go away on it's own... and as long as he's wetting enough diapers.. and having 3-5 poo's a day... not to worry.
When the poo turns yellowish... the jaundice will be well on its way out.
Today... I started to see yellow. I saw yellow once or twice a week back, but then they went back to green. I want to get a follow up, but his numbers weren't high enough for anything to be scheduled.
I want one anyway.
The whites of his eyes are still yellowish. And I swear... his face comes and goes with colour. Tan to yellow to red. It tears me apart. I want him well. I want him thriving.
He falls asleep on the boob. He sometimes wants it every 2 hours... for over an hour. And with that math, he's feeding some evenings for 5-6 hours straight. I tickle his ear... blow on his face... stroke his cheek... just keep eating baby... but the jaundice makes for a sleeping eater.
I can't help but think what kind of mother/person I would have been last year with Alexander as my first living child. Would I be filled with peace? Would I have a sense of glee with my new baby? Would I be high on love to no end, and make for a wonderful host? I
The other day, I was in the kitchen, and something triggered a memory from last year. Daniel and I went to Vancouver for a few weeks 3 months after Alexander died. All of a sudden, in the middle of my kitchen making my tea... I ached to be back there. I ached to be so close to losing him. I wanted so bad to feel that enormous amount of fresh grief. I wanted to crawl into a ball of sadness over losing my son. Instead, I was in my kitchen, quickly trying to get a meal and a cup of tea in before the baby wakes and my presence would be once again dominated by a needy newborn. How could I want to be anywhere but with this new little life, this new little cranky boy who keeps my up and has me thinking I'm at my wits end... why would I want out of this new life?
But I did. I wanted Alexander back more than I wanted anything else.
The moment passed.
I try to stay present with my new son.
But I'd be lying if I said I was only over the moon happy-go-lucky-I-love-my-life now that Theo is here.
I still hurt all the time. Maybe more now that Theo is here? Maybe more now that we made it to the other side of a subsequent pregnancy with a living child? Maybe more now knowing/confirming all that should have been... could have been.
If I were still pregnant, Theodore would be 39+3 days gestation.
Alexander died and was born at 41+2.
As Theo gets closer to his brother's final age... the similarities are increasing. He looks most like his brother while in the car seat. Cheeks slouched and face drooped. Lips completely pouted out... looking a little lifeless.
Yeah, when my son looks lifeless, he looks like his brother. Ouch.
Theo in his car seat. Looking like Alexander. Beautiful.
At the doctors at 4 days old... Mr. Billy Reuben came into our lives.
I don't have an appropriate way to complete/end this post. My time is limited. I feel like I haven't scratched the surface with my constant battle of emotions. But I'm reaching out for what it's worth. This is where I'm at right now. There are tons of moments filled with SO.MUCH.GOOD, but today I'm choosing to let out the sad. Let out the heavy.
I know it's "bilirubin"