I cannot begin to say how thankful I am to the amazing nursing/medical staff at Providence Pavilion for Women & Children. We had an incredible experience! About 1.5 hours after I was moved into the recovery room, we were ready for visitors.
We had asked our good friend Meaghan Swanson of Swanella Photography to come take pictures of our kiddos — Brooklyn (3 yrs), & Jameson (18.5 mo) —my parents, my sister, and her family meeting Madden for the first time. Check out a few of the pictures below and you can click the link above to check out her Facebook page!
I seriously cry when I look at these pictures (and I pretty much look at them daily. HA!) But she did such a beautiful job of capturing the first moments of Madden’s life.
A gift from Madden.
Prior to having our second child, Jameson, someone suggested giving Brooklyn, our first child, a gift that was “from Jameson.”
So, we decided to do the same this time around! Brooklyn and Jameson got the Peppa Pig family and a book for each of them “from Madden.” They were ecstatic!
I would definitely recommend this for moms having their second, third, fourth child.
One thing I forgot about...
And didn’t think about was that because I was having a surgery, I would also have to have a urinary catheter (again, totally apologize if this is TMI). BUT, the nurse in me really does love knowing what to expect when it comes to situations/experiences and particularly, in regard to a surgery! Thankfully, they take the catheter out as soon as possible, typically within 18 hours of surgery. The only blessing in disguise was that it allowed me not to have to get up in the middle of the night that first night to go to the restroom! HA!
That first afternoon was incredibly busy.
We had visitors, the nurses checking in, etc. Even my nurse anesthetist came back to make sure I was doing okay! Finally, 5+ hours after surgery, I began to get feeling and movement back into my legs and was able to move a bit more.
My in-laws, Dan’s parents, had driven back from Boise that day, so they came later that evening to meet Madden for the first time. As they arrived, I was taking my first loop around the hospital floor.
I had heard that the best thing to do for c-section recovery was get up and walk (albeit slowly and just a short distance). Though it was slightly painful, I was happy to be moving!
Despite the fact that the food at our hospital is quite good, Dan and I were craving pho, so, he went and picked it up and we had it in the hospital room while visiting with my kiddos and parents, who had come a second time to visit that day.
Jameson, our nearly 19-month-old, was a wild man, climbing on everything, pulling at every cord. My poor parents! They were so sweet to spend the two nights with our kiddos. They had come up bright and early Saturday morning and ended up staying until we returned home on Monday afternoon!
The sleepless first night.
Another thing I forgot about from previous pregnancies/hospital stays is the number of times you are woken in the night. Oh, man! I know they have to do their job, but it sure doesn’t allow for restful sleep, especially when you’re already up every few hours to nurse your baby!
That first night, as suggested by the nurses and lactation, I set my alarm for every three hours to feed Madden. It turned out he wanted to nurse much more frequently than that. The nurses kept laughing, actually, saying that it seemed he never left my breast. I felt the same way! HAHA!
However, I was just thankful he seemed to be nursing well.
We were woken to check my vital signs (heart rate, blood pressure, oxygen, temperature, etc.) and Madden’s vital signs, to give me pain medications/Ibuprofen/Tylenol/stool softeners, etc! They kept me on a great pain regimen while I was in the hospital, which helped a ton with my recovery.
Sunday morning arrived.
I was able to walk a short distance around the nurses’ station Sunday morning, and it sure felt good to get up and move!
My brother Grady and his wife Laura, my parents, and my kiddos came and brought my most favorite cinnamon roll from Maltby Café. (So good that Dan and I ended up doing a breakfast day there just nine days after Madden was born… Madden in tow!). Check out the size of this thing!
After my C-section, I actually had to have extra monitoring.
My heart rate was extremely low the first 24+ hours post C-section. I typically run in the mid to upper 50s for my heartrate, but in the hospital, I was in the low 40s, typically 40-42 and sometimes in the high 30s!
Since this was not my normal, the on-call doctor ordered labs and an EKG (electrocardiogram) to make sure my heart was okay. Thankfully, the EKG looked fine and labs looked good despite normal (but on the low end of normal) levels of potassium and magnesium. So, I ended up taking potassium and magnesium supplements for the next 24 hours of my hospital stay.
Thankfully, I didn’t have to continue the supplements upon returning home, as my heartrate had normalized during the last 12ish hours of my stay. Thank goodness!
Because of my low heart rate, they did continuous monitoring of my heart rate and oxygen, which meant I had the little probe on my finger or toe at all times. I have to say, I wasn’t sorry to see that thing go! It would beep like crazy when it would fall off.
Sunday passed quickly.
And unfortunately, Madden was too riled up for the hearing test, so they said they would have to come back Monday morning. Dan went and grabbed Thai food that night, and my parents and kids joined us for dinner.
I was so relieved to know that Madden’s bilirubin levels (which have to do with liver function and correlate with jaundice) were normal. And although he had lost approximately 8% of his birth weight (up to 10% is normal), he maintained his weight from day 1 to day 2, which was great news!
Monday morning, we were itching to go home.
We received amazing care but, there is nothing like being in your own home and we sure missed our two older kids!
However, the last thing we had to do was the hearing test, since he was too active/alert the day prior. Unfortunately, this process ended up being a few hours long.
The first woman to run the hearing test had trouble getting his left ear to get a reading. Dan and I were panicking a bit. Not that a hearing deficit would be the end of the world, of course, but any parent wants their child to start out with as few obstacles as possible, especially in their first days of life. She said she suspected his hearing was okay, but that it might be something going on with the machine. She left to test it and said she would come back.
Meanwhile, Dan and I were worried.
She came back, then and said that it was the machine! She brought in a new machine. But this time, Madden wouldn’t settle enough for her to get a good reading (the babies really have to be nearly entirely still and not fussing). Seems impossible with a newborn, right?! HA! No wonder it takes so long.
She spent nearly an hour trying, and then suggested I nurse him and she would come back. When she came back, she came with a second person to help run the test. Again, it wouldn’t catch a reading for his left ear. My anxiety was rising, when finally he passed the test. Thank GOODNESS.
I didn’t realize how stressed I was until they said all was well.
We packed up, got Madden dressed and headed home to see our kiddos and welcome Madden into our home!