The first couple of weeks I couldn't hardly walk. When we first came home from the hospital, Alex carried Adara in her carrier to our apartment, and then helped me up the stairs to our third story apartment. He basically carried me up the steps. I had some pain from my episiotomy, but I'd been given plenty of numbing medication. My abdominal muscles were incredibly sore from pushing. I've never been so sore in my life. I've run a half-marathon, and that was nothing compared to this. Showering was refreshing, but I could barely get in and out of the shower by myself. I walked when I needed to, but it was a struggle. Alex helped me get in and out of our bed to sleep. When I sat down, I stayed there until I needed to get up again. I took acetaminophen or ibuprofen once a day for the first few days when I absolutely needed it.
The first couple of nights were also rough because Adara would cry and cry and we couldn't figure out why. During the second night we realized that she was becoming dehydrated and remedied the problem. I'm saving my thoughts on breastfeeding for a whole different post.
We received a lot of much needed support in the first few weeks. My mom stayed the first few nights with us, and I'm forever grateful for her help. Because of my limited ability to move, someone needed to take care of Adara and also take care of me. She cooked food for us, washed our dishes, did our laundry, and helped out however we needed. She held Adara for a couple of hours so that Alex and I could both get sleep.
More than once Allison brought us home made food, and also brought us some fast food when we realized last minute that we had no food for dinner. She also brought Alex's work clothes with her to be ironed and then returned. She's also watched Adara a number of times so that Alex and I can both get out of the house. We received many other visitors with meals and words of encouragement.
During this whole time, I still felt like a mess. By the third or fourth day, I started crying. Alex was wonderful and made me some signs saying things like, "Calista is the best mommy ever! Alex and Adara love her so much!" and put them up around our apartment. They are still up, and I smile every time I see them.
By Thanksgiving, almost a week after having Adara, I was back to my weight when I first found out I was pregnant. I was excited, but also exhausted. I enjoyed being with my in-laws for Thanksgiving lunch. My sis-in-laws looked at me worriedly because I was walking funny and super slow, and I assured them that not everyone's recovery is as rough as mine. I started crying in the early afternoon because I was so tired. I took a nap in my sis-in-law's room, and then Alex took us home for the rest of the day.
By the third week I was still feeling sore, but did see some progress every single day. When Alex and I walked around Walmart to get Christmas decorations, I was the slowest walker in the whole store. I called the doctor's office to see if me being so sore was a problem. The nurse that I talked to said it was pretty normal, and also said that being dehydrated can make me feel worse. After that I drank more water and noticed a significant improvement. I even stopped bleeding by the fourth week.Unfortunately, by Christmas "Aunt Flo" had decided to come visit. I was hoping that breastfeeding would have keep this delayed a bit longer, but it was not to be. Bummer.
My six week appointment was today. I brought our Christmas card and my doctor put it up on the board with all the other baby pictures. I weighed in at 124 pounds (about ten pounds less than when I first found out I was pregnant), which is how much I usually weigh when I eat healthy and exercise. My temperature and blood pressure are great. Doctor says I'm completely healed! I had a PAP smear and shouldn't need to come back for another year. Because I did start back on my cycle, I am starting the progestin-only pill. Doctor said this is a safe option while breastfeeding. I love having Adara, but I'd like to be able to wait a little while before having another tiny baby.
Tomorrow I'm going to go grocery shopping, and plan to carry up all the jugs of water by myself. I don't have much strength or endurance yet, and want to be able to run around with my child when she gets to that point. I'm so incredibly excited about everything we're experiencing, and what God has for our future!