The Hospital Stay

The first few hours together as a family of three will always be a special memory to me.  We were so in awe of our new little guy.  We watched him sleep, yawn, stretch, coo, and stare back at us.  We looked at his little hands, huge feet, and hairy little head.  Doug and I were so happy.  We just kept talking about the journey to this point.  About all of the wonderful moments to come.  And, in hindsight, all of the little signs that had told us that we would have a boy.

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Doug and I knew that we wanted the delivery to be something for just us to share.  I knew that I needed it to be very calm and low key. It was really nice to have such a relaxing first day with our little man. We shared the news with family and friends via text and phone calls. We took our first family picture and posted it on Facebook…since nothing is real until it is on Facebook, right?

Our first family photo :)
Our first family photo 🙂

They had me up and walking around not too long after the delivery. By the afternoon, we were settled in our new room. On the way, I got to press the button that played Brahms lullaby through the whole hospital, to let everyone know that Donovan had been born.

Doug was a trooper since he stayed with me the whole time. The first night, while I was in labor, he slept on a chair that turned into a small bed. Luckily we didn’t sleep much that night because it looked really uncomfortable. In our recovery room, there was a full sofa that turned into a twin bed when you removed the back cushions.

The first shower was both wonderful and horrible at the same time. I wasn’t painful but the reality of the events that my body had been through were becoming more of a reality. My whole body was tired and a little weak. I had tape residue on my back from the epidural and on my arm from the IV.  I don’t think it completely came off for about a week. The shower was one of those open spaces with tile so it wasn’t exactly luxurious.   But it did feel great to be freshly showered and in my own clothes.

I had heard that your stomach would not go back to its normal size for a while.  What I didn’t expect was how weird it would feel.  It felt like jello and the skin was just saggy.  Luckily I never had any stretch marks, which I soon discovered when I could finally see my whole stomach!

Everyone tells you that new parents get no sleep. I just didn’t realize that the lack of sleep would begin at the hospital. Between the awe of this tiny human and the fear that somehow something would happen while you are asleep, I just couldn’t relax and rest. When Donovan wasn’t waking up every two hours to eat, it was the nursing staff who were coming in to check on me and/or Donovan. I had a stuffy nose going to the hospital, and by the end of the stay, it was a full blown head cold.

Doug thought that we looked alike here, so he took this picture.
Doug thought that we looked alike here, so he took this picture.

It wasn’t all bad. The food was actually pretty good and since my labor was so quick, I didn’t miss any meals. I do have to say that I had never been so hungry as I was after labor.  The French toast, eggs, and bacon was exactly what I wanted!

I had packed books and magazines to entertain myself while in the hospital. I thought that I would have all this time on my hands. We even brought the laptop to watch Netflix or Hulu. In the end, I don’t think I even opened the bag and the laptop was never even turned on.

My family arrived on Friday night. It was so special watching them meet Donovan for the first time. It was also comforting to be with my family and to celebrate such a special event in our family. We ate Hawthorne pizza and enjoyed the evening together.

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The next day we finally got to leave the hospital. It had felt like we had been there for so long. It was both a little sad and extremely exciting to leave the hospital. It was as if everything would become real once we walked out those doors. For some reason it was taking a while for us to get discharged, so I opted to skip the wheel chair ride and get on our way.

This is about how we felt after the hospital stay
This is about how we felt after the hospital stay
Looking a little concerned about leaving the hospital
Looking a little concerned about leaving the hospital
The view of Charlotte from our room. It was beautiful at night.
The view of Charlotte from our room. It was beautiful at night.

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That first drive together was the most nerve-wracking event of my life. Suddenly you are aware of every person texting, speeding, or driving recklessly, which was everyone! If Doug didn’t already hate my back-seat driving, I think it went to new levels on that ride home.

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When we arrived back at our apartment, Leah has decorate with signs that welcomed Donovan home.  Stella finally got to meet her little brother.  She was so interested in this new little person.  She just wanted to lick him and we had to teach her to be gentle, but she was very sweet to him.

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My last 'bump' picture with my little guy!
My last ‘bump’ picture with my little guy!

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It was so nice to be home and to get settled.  My family arrived after our little family reunion and they were so helpful by making meals and keeping things clean and organized.

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With Love,

From Me to You

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