Sunday, November 3, 2019

Hospital Stay with Emmie Kate

Emmie Kate Butler arrived at 4:02 am on 10/16/19.
We stayed in the labor and delivery room for about 2 hours after she was born. My parents both got to meet her, then headed out to find some coffee for themselves and breakfast for us.
By this time, I'd been awake for over 24 hours straight but my adrenaline was too high to even think about sleeping. I was so thankful that I felt SO good! I remember feeling a little yucky the last time I had a natural childbirth (I think I just needed to eat & drink something) but thankfully that didn't happen this time.

Our sweet nurse Diana took us to our room upstairs. She pushed me in the wheelchair (holding the baby) while Jon pushed the cart with all of our things. I remember thinking the bumps (over the elevator,etc) felt really BIG.
They were SWAMPED (from the full moon a couple days earlier maybe? I've heard that's legit) and we were all the way in the back in a small little room. We saw lots of familiar faces when we were walking in- loved that! They were really close to shift change, and we were so excited to find out that we were going to get Rachel (who we know from small group and were totally hoping & praying we'd get!!) and Mary Kate (who was the stork nurse that helped take care of EK downstairs). They are both so great!
As soon as we got up there we had about 30 minutes left with the first nurse before shift change. They did all of my stats/vitals and the baby's, gave her the vit K (stealth mode- I didn't even know they gave it which is kind of scary). She got a little bit choked on some mucous, so I handed her to the nurse and she was super calm as she patted her on the back and walked around to the table to get the bulb to suction her mouth. I was watching Jonathan's face because I couldn't see, and he looked panicked. It felt like forever but of course she ended up being fine. He said later they probably are taught to remain calm so they don't freak out the parents. They told us downstairs she may have more mucous because she came so quickly, but thankfully that was the last episode like that. I kept the bulb close by just in case though. (The ones from the hospital are the BEST.)

We were so excited to see Rachel come in! She is so sweet & nurturing, and it was very comforting to have someone you know and trust taking care of you.

My parents came to the room and brought us breakfast. Jonathan and I both ate while they held the baby. I made sure to pee two more times quickly so I could get my IV out (the rule used to be 3 pees, so I was drinking lots of water & filling up the pan hoping to get it out), but it turns out they changed it and you have to wait 24 hours. Boo! I called Rachel in because I thought she needed to see that I was filling up the bucket AND she changed EK's first poop diaper for me. (For some reason I was thinking they needed to know all this?) She was probably wondering why I was calling her in for all this! Ha! But of course she was very sweet and helpful and gave me my Rhogam shot around this time.

A couple hours later Jonathan's sister texted they were heading our way. Her and Papa took all the kiddos to Longstreet for breakfast, and she told Jon Jase had thrown up while they were there. He hadn't been sick at all the night before, so we decided we would still let him come in and just not get too close to the baby. Honestly, we all think it was just that he was a little bit anxious. (He's not a super anxious kid, but this is the first time he's really been old enough to understand everything. I think he was a little overwhelmed watching me have contractions and waking up to us not being there.)

The boys wore their big bro shirts & I was so happy to see them! I wish I had let them come in by themselves to meet the baby first (& wish I had her in her bassinet when they came in instead of me holding her) but I didn't even think about it at the time & it all happened kind of quickly.
 I love Beau's facial expressions...he's not so sure about all this.
We had gifts for them in the hospital room from Emmie Kate.  Rachel also brought us some big brother stickers. I got them each a bag filled with goodies from Five Below & they LOVED that (sticker books, books, candy, a pencil bag filled with markers, a car you have to put together, etc.). 
 Gifts & candy "from the baby" definitely helped! (Wise advice from one of my mentors!)
The three handsome big bros...

Jase (6)
Kade (4)
Beau (2)
Jonathan's dad (Papa), sister (Aunt Jade who they all call "Jimmy"), and niece (Kayton) all got to meet EK too. That's one proud Pop, & KK was so sweet with her. Jade brought me a yummy omelette filled with veggies!
  Look at those proud big brothers!!
We had several more visitors throughout the day. Loved seeing so many sweet friends and family! SUPER grateful for our incredible support system. Emmie Kate snoozed through all of it so I went about 4ish hours without feeding her. I wondered if that was part of why she didn't pass her first jaundice test- since I went too long without feeding her? I know lots of poop/pee diapers helps flush everything out. (But I also one of the listed side effects from the vitamin K vaccine.)

EK met Aunt Tammie, Morgen, Renee, Laura, Stephanie, Gracie, & Chloe.
They were wanting to do the bath, but I kept putting it off for visitors. The tech was so sweet though!
I honestly wanted to skip the bath altogether but Jon told me not to be super weird, so I just kept putting it off or as long as possible. She finally got us around 4:30 or so.
Is this not so sweet of her combing her little hair?
Aunt Stephanie dressed her after her bath.
The pediatrician came in to check her and said she looked perfect. The lactation specialist came in & brought me some nursing pads and Lasinoah cream. She asked if I had ever nursed before, & when I told her I had nursed each of my three boys for around 15 months, she said I was probably an old pro (but I still had her check to make sure the latch looked okay). It did. Thankfully our girl was nursing great, but it only took that one bad latch and BOOM- blisters, the infamous 'lipstick," & curling my toes through every nursing session after that. I continued to need the After Ease when I was nursing because some of those after birth cramps were INTENSE.

After everyone left, I fed her and ate a little snack myself.  I remember the food being a little better with Jase & Kade, so I mostly ate my own snacks I brought from home.

My parents came back with the boys that evening for a little while & EK met some of the rest of the fam- two of my other nieces, Carsyn & Presley.
Aunt Tammie sent us this bear. So sweet! Kade wrote his name perfectly on it.
Still my baby.
The nurses has a shift change again at 7 pm and Mary Kate came back again. Jon ended up leaving around 9:30ish pm to go get us something to eat. Almost everything was closed so he ended up getting us both a salad from Zaxby's.

Emmie Kate did 2 poop and 1 pee diapers throughout the day.
I can't remember when the after birth pains started, but they were pretty brutal when I was nursing. I don't remember them being so bad with any of the other boys, but I also took Motrin after having them so not sure if that is part of it or if it's just that this is my 4th baby. Some of them were as intense as contractions. I brought some After Ease (by Wish Garden) and would take that any time they were bothering me.

I had been awake for over 36 hours at this point and I was so excited to sleep! Unfortunately she did a little cluster feed and wanted to use me as a paci, so I didn't really get any rest. My nipples were SO sore & it killed me anytime she'd latch.

Anyway, I remember everything, but the timeline is probably off on some of these things because I was so exhausted! Middle of the night baby...ha!

On an unrelated side note...aren't you thankful for swaddles with the velco? Those nurses put my swaddling skills to shame...they all swaddle like a boss!
ANYWAY. I do know they came back in around 4 am to do her bloodwork, bilirubin, PKU, etc. They gave her sugar water while doing the testing (like 3 viles of it, actually) & I was NOT happy about that. I didn't realize until it was too late because they were doing my vitals and taking my IV out (praiiiiise!), but I was pretty blown away they gave her that sugar water without asking. I guess it's just standard, but I never would have agreed to that. Jonathan was actually the one who brought it up to me when he realized & he didn't like that they did that either. The gal doing it asked him to come put a glove on  and put his pinky in her mouth. He said "wow, I Can see why breastfeeding hurts so bad. Geez!" Hahah! Labor was over, so his jokes were finally funny again.

The next morning Dr. Martin came by to check on me. I was doing great so there wasn't really anything to check. Uterus moving like it should, minimal bleeding, great blood pressure, no fever, feeling good (other than exhausted). He offered to call me in some medicine if I needed it (I hadn't taken any pain medicine at all) & reminded me to schedule my 6 week checkup. Said he was praying we'd be able to get home soon and gave me a green light to be discharged. One box checkced!

When the results came in from EK's blood work, Mary Kate let me know everything was perfect (praise!) except the bilirubin screening (boo!). Emmie Kate was at 7.1 and they wanted her to be below 6.5, so that meant we would have to stay and re-test in 8 more hours. Jon was not happy about having to stay the extra time. We were really hoping to go home around 7 am, but that meant we'd have to wait to re-rest at 12 pm the next day. I made sure to feed her tons and sit in front of the window some. Still no sleep at this point I don;t think??

They came in to pick up her paperwork for birth certificate & to do her hearing screening (which she passed). Around 12:40, Rachel came in to get more bloodwork. This time I asked specifically if we could skip the sugar water and they did. I was glad Rachel was doing it this time.

Around 1:45, the pediatrician came in to let us know she was back where she needed to be on the curve for us to be able to go home. HALLELUJAH! (Appreciated the nurses, but I was ready to be home in my OWN bed!) She showed me the chart & how her number was still increasing (as it does) but was only an 8, so it was more along the lines of where they wanted it to be at this point. (I'm super nerdy and always like to know allllll the details, which I'm sure doesn't surprise anyone.)  They wanted us to go back to the pediatrician in 2 more days to have it checked again, so I called to make an appointment. They came in and gave us all our discharge paperwork/instructions. There was a nurse in training, so she went through all of that with us. (She seemed a little nervous but did a great job.) I know it's my 4th baby and all, but I still like to listen intently. They talked to me about PPD & also gave me a survey to fill out. I was trying not to be know-it-all-Nancy but wanted to tell them magnesium has proven extremely effective in treating anxiety/depression and lots of women probably have depleted stores and deficiencies from pregnancy. I would think this could be really helpful, but I just didn't say anything because #iamlearningnottosayeverythingithink. I do think they should give a little more education on taking care of your pelvic floor because most moms probably have no idea and end up way overdoing it. For example, women should really not carry anything heavier than the baby for a couple weeks, should wear an ab binder for 6ish weeks post-partum, should really avoid stairs as much as possible, start doing kegels, and take it easy. Continue on prenatals and try to eat as nourishing/nutrient-dense of a diet as possible while drinking LOTS of clean, filtered water. All really important while your body recovers because there is a such thing as fourth trimester. (I learned most of this doing my own research after developing diastasis recti after Beau.)

We packed everything up and Jonathan took a load of our things out to the truck. She started crying as soon as we put her in her car seat so I went to get a paci for her from one of the nurses when Jon got back. Rachel walked us out to check the car seat and we waited on Jon to pick us up out front. The baby did great on the way home and we stopped by our PO box to check the mail. My dad took my older two boys to music for me and then him, my mom, sister, and nephew Zach brought all the boys out to our house later that evening. They also brought us dinner from Quillians Grill.

Welcome home, sweet girl!! We are so glad you are a part of  Team Butler! (Dad says the "finale" but I'm still not so sure yet that you'll be our caboose. I think you need a sister!) You truly are a gift from above and we are so very thankful you're ours. Let the fun begin!!