It’s Friday. I return to work on Monday next. Eleanor was born 10 days ago. Something is very broken in our country that I am a new mother of a 10-day-old and yet I am going back to work next Monday. I suppose here’s a recap of my first 10 days with Eleanor.
Eleanor was born August 11th at 3:11am, so Sara could have had an extra day at the hospital if she wished. Those hospital “beds” made the decision very easy to get home as quickly as possible. So I picked up the members of our new family the very next day on August 12th around 11am or so. We drove to Carl Jr because Mom was starving, and then went home for naps all around.
As I’m sure other parents can attest, the next few days are a blur in my memory. I was up every three hours to feed Eleanor, whether she asked for it or not, because the hospital said to feed her on a schedule at their early stage.
I remember us playing video games with the bassinet between us on that first night home as a family. I also remember getting LOTS of texts and phone calls from friends and family asking how we were settling in and if they could bring us anything. I distinctly remember our answers mostly being, “we don’t know yet. We’re still trying to get our feet under us. We’ll let you know once we know what we need.”
I remember my sister-in-law telling us we needed to pick our “up-all-night show” to have on in the background as we didn’t sleep at all for 24-hours at a time at first. I also remember waking up in the morning, after taking all four overnight shifts, to Sara feeding Eleanor in the 7am shift and not feeling that bad.
I was groggy, but not wiped or exhausted yet. Some of that may be the rose-colored glasses of being a new mama to the cutest little blob on Earth. I will also say that with bottle feedings, I was only up for about 25 minutes at time total between mixing a bottle, feeding, and then changing Eleanor each time.
Sara’s parents, Grammy and PopPop, came down for a quick visit on Thursday the 13th to see the baby, take some photos and bring us some lunch. They chatted for a bit, but I don’t remember most of it (which I’m assuming is going to become a common trend over these next several months of motherhood). I remember PopPop stating very clearly that his version of Grandfatherhood did not include changing another diaper ever again. It’s always good to clearly state expectations.
Our visit was cut a little short because Eleanor had her first pediatrician appointment at 1:30. First visit went well, and both Sara and I are invited to the next appointments until Eleanor turns two months. Trying to navigate traveling with a baby will definitely be easier with both parents there.
Gramma & Grampa deserve their own post because they have been here a week and plan to stay for a week more. Family visiting is always a blessing with minor drawbacks. Although we love the extra help keeping the house clean and taking the first baby shift of the day so I can sleep in, they are also a very large disruption to our newly growing family figuring out how to be … well, a family.
More on this incredible gift of Gramma & Grampa’s time in a later post.
That leaves me with the Friday before I return to work, a new baby still not distinguishing night from day yet, and my sleep cycle all sorts of messed up as I try to re-enter the workforce. As of today, I am awake every four hours or so around 10pm, 2pm, 5am and I sleep solid from 5:30ish to between 9am and 10am. So that’s over 4 hours of solid sleep mixed with a few hours here and there earlier in the evening.
I am able to do this because Sara takes the early morning shift and Gramma & Grampa take her until I wake up. As of Monday, this schedule will no longer work since I’ll need to be at my computer no later than 9:15am.
I cannot tell you how this experiment will go starting next Monday, but I can tell you … I don’t remember much of these past ten days. Thank goodness for photos to help fill in the gaps in my new mama brain.