My tiny girl - born at 30+5.(12 Posts)
My dd4 is now 2 weeks old and was born at 30+5. She is doing quite well and my recovery from the section is good but I need to talk to people who know. I need to know do you ever get over the pain of being away from your new baby? Does your heart mend? Do you ever get over the stress of all the 'bing bongs' from the machines in the nicu? At the moment every noise sends adrenaline rushing through me and I'm in a permanent state of high anxiety.
I don't feel like I 'own' my baby yet. I'm trying to get breastfeeding established but it's so hard because I can't follow my mummy instinct. Sometimes when she's rooting it gets suggested that she is too tired to give it a go. My heart just needs to hold her all day and all night and I need to look into her eyes so she knows I'm her mama. At the moment I don't know if she even knows who I am.
How do you manage other children? My 3 girlies are finding it so tough as I am trying hard to be everything to everyone but I always seem to give them less than need and want.
God this is hard, all I want to do is to go to the nicu right now and snuggle my little girl in my arms.
It's bloody hard, and scary. I didn't feel right for a long time, even after DS came home. So many emotions all at once take time to process.
I asked a nurse to explain the machines which helped, I started to not notice them after a while.
DS is my first so I don't know about other children but make sure you don't forget yourself
My DS was only in NICU for a few days but it was so hard being away from him and all the tubes and wires around his little body were intimidating. It was so hard for DH and I but it now seems like a lifetime ago even though it's only been 3 months.
It's horrible at the time because it feels so wrong to be apart from your baby, but I do feel it's strengthened our bond now as we all went through so much together.
Really hope you have your baby home with you soon. Stay strong, you're doing great!
Congratulations on the birth of your daughter .
DS2 was born at 31 weeks - he is now almost 10 and absolutely fine.
It is very hard, so be kind to yourself and look after yourself.
NICU is by far the scariest place on earth I have been to, but try to remind yourself that all the machines and warning bells are there to keep her safe. Hopefully with time, you'll jump less with every beep. And she'll beep less because she is getting stronger and more stable.
Does the unit where she is allow Kangaroo care? Here
We were v much encouraged to hold DS skin-to-skin as much as possible, both DH and I. Staff helped us to get him out of his incubator while he still had lots of lines; later we did it ourselves. It has been shown to be beneficial for babies AND parents to hold as much as possible.
And can be good for BFing. I expressed for DS for 5 months or so and then stopped. I had a 1 year old to look after too, so after initial difficulties at getting DS2 on the breast and him struggling, I left it because I felt I could control the timing of pumping more than actual feeding. That part was true, but me supply did not keep up in spite of lost of help and support. I'd try harder given the chance again, but don't beat myself up about it as I know I did what I could under the circumstances.
Rest. Recover. You had major surgery and she is well looked after when you are not there. Hold her when you can. Do not try to be everything for everybody: it's impossible and exhausting. Do what you can, accept all and any help (I got quite good at saying to vague offers of help "Oh, yes please, would you do some laundry?" ) and pace yourself.
My son was born spontaneously and rapidly following PROM at 33+1. He's now 21 weeks old and seems perfectly all right so far.
They took him to NICU almost immediately after the delivery and I was left in the labour ward, getting stitched up, fed etc. and they wouldn't let me see him for a few hours. I'm still quite sad about that. I got to see him briefly before I was transferred to the postnatal ward, and I still remember the empty cot next to my bed as I went into the room I'd been allocated.
I then took every opportunity to be with him, even though I kept getting told off by the sister in postnatal for never being in my room for food/checks etc., but I think it too a while to connect with him properly after that initial separation. I was quite nervous to hold him, especially with the monitors and wires, but this got easier and easier with practice. I was encouraged to hold and feed him as I wished, but this I suppose might be different depending on your situation.
We were there for 15 days. He definitely knew me (and your baby knows and loves your voice better than anything else in her life) but I don't think I felt fully connected to him until a little while after we'd got home, but it did happen, and now we're head over heels in love.
It must be very difficult with your other children at home, but you'll find a way through and this too shall pass (I love that phrase, it's something it took me a while to learn).
Good luck, and get some good hand cream to counter the hospital gel and hand wash!
Congratulations on your little girl!
DTs were born at 31+3 and spent nearly 7 weeks in NICU / SCBU. They are two and a half now and you would never know. They are ahead of most of their term peers in many ways.
Its hard but you'll get through it, I didn't have other children to manage so that must make it ten times harder. We found that having a routine helped, we went to the hospital at 11 and stayed until 7 so we were there for three feeds. We were advised to leave them in the incubators as much as possible, cuddles were only really at feed time so we wanted to be there for them.
I do think it affected how I bonded with them in the beginning, I was kind of detached for a while but it just took a while to process what had happened and we are absolutely definitely 100% bonded now.
On a practical note, check the parking situation at your hospital, they should do a discount if you are there every day and bring your food/ drinks in with you as it can very expensive very quickly. And, as Bank said - decent hand cream is essential!
DS2 was born at 30+5 and I had a 5 and 3 year old at home. Your post spoke to all my feelings at the time.
I couldn't believe that it would ever be over, whatever other people said, but it is over. It wasn't easy, it was the hardest thing I've ever done, but it does pass. We came out the other side - DS2 is loving, loved and absolutely attached to me and his siblings. His siblings coped and barely remember his time in NICU.
DS2 slept and slept and I imagined to him it was like being in the womb. He didn't know we were separate and we started our time together when he left the NICU just as if he'd been first born then (if that makes sense).
I hope you have lots of support at home to help you through this.
I'm fairly confident, after extensive testing of a number of brands, that Neutrogena is the best hand cream to fix hospital dermatitis. I also recommend the cotton gloves they sell in the Body Shop amongst other places - hand cream and gloves in bed leads to softer hands in the morning. Before I started doing this, my hands were cracked and my knuckles sore and bleeding - now they're almost fine again.
Congrats on the birth of your little girl
Both mine were prem so I at least knew I wasn't to go full term the second time I got past 12 weeks BUT nothing can seem to prepare for them to run out of the room with your baby straight after delivery. For me it has been the hardest thing to come to terms with.
I had ds1 who was three in a plaster cast with a broken leg and ds2 in an incubator 9 weeks early. It was a blur of 5 weeks. But we somehow survived. House was last on the list. One thing we developed a routine of was for bil to look after ds1 after we put him to bed then we drove,45 minutes!, to be with ds2. It was time for us three to bond. The nurses understood and left all cares and weighing and feeding until we got there.
Please do not be hard on yourself you are not superwoman! How old are the children. Explain to them at their level what is happening. We just involved ds1 in everythimg, not sure what he took in! Although he liked to help with nappy changes - still does - he does the passing and holding bag for dirties.
I know these feelings all too well. I'm still dealing with them. My little boy was born at 31 weeks and very ill. Quite a few touch and go moments. The machines were overpowering, after a while you learn what's normal and not normal when it comes to your baby and the machines that help them. I know on instinct if he's nudged a line or knocked his tubes because they'll be small changes in his stats. I was learnt how to adjust my hold and his CPAP mask if the machines or picked up signs his breathing wasn't quite right.
And then added to mix his twin sister was moved to SCBU so I had to divide my time even more then she was realised.
It's a lot to take in and very overwhelming. I felt a stranger to my son because I couldn't hold him for weeks. Touch used to send his stats out of whack. I felt and still feel like flake to my other DC because I was hardly there and now I'm 5 hours away from them. I haven't held my DH in nearly 4 weeks. He feels left out and guilty too. It's stressful on all of us but we make it work because we have to. I skype with them every day.
Have you asked about seeing a Child life worker? We had one and she was amazing, she spent time with DC helping them understand why babies were poorly and why mama kept going away. It really helped. Also, try talking to someone, I was really against it not wanting to talk to a stranger but it did help having someone tell ne that everything I was feeling was normal and talked me through things.
My boy is still a while from coming home after having a pacemaker fitted and dealing with his lung issues but we're helpful.
You're baby is still a little young to know how to suckle so it's natural and normal for her to feel tired and stresses, same goes for you. Give it time and try to relax she can probably sense your anxiousness.
I spend every moment I can with him whether it's kangeroo roo care or just reading him books and telling him about his siblings. I talk up close so we he opens his eyes he sees me and hears my voice and feels my touch. I also have something of mine in his incubator that smells like me and one that smells like DH because I want him to know he has a dada too.
His twin is thriving and a part from her size you would not guess she was a preemie. She is rolling over constantlyn, she can lift her head and is in the process of trying to sit up - no luck yet!
They are almost 17wo (almost 8wo adj). Preemies are strong fighters!
All the best to you and your baby
Congratulations on the birth of your daughter :-)
I too have a child who was premature.
My son was born at 32+4 by emergency c section and at the time he weighed 2lb 12oz. He spent 6 weeks in scbu and I took was terrified by all the machines and noises, constantly petrified with what was going on. He was almost 3 days old before I saw him (I had severe pre-eclampsia and was too sick to move before then).
It was a hard time but he came home at 6 weeks old when he weighed 4lb 8oz. He was seen regularly at my local scbu clinic till he was 3 and was a bit delayed in terms of physical development and speech but now he's almost 6 he has no problems whatsoever, he even started school a whole academic year earlier than he should due to being prem and he has thrived.
I won't lie and say the bonding was easy as it wasn't and he still seems to have a better relationship with my DH but I think that's more because they are both boys if you see what I mean xx
Have you tried expressing milk while cuddling her? It will help your flow and you'll get the feelings of bonding. That's what I recommend for the mothers of the Prems I look after
Kangaroo care is great and if you push for it then (unless its medically inadvisable) they'll let you. Do your research then approach them.
It will get easier I promise.
Any other questions just ask or private message - I'll help anytime x
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