You know the saying: "When life hands you lemons...". You may have noticed that I stopped blogging during my pregnancy. During that time I wasn't dealing with lemons, but rather a piece of cheese that's been stuck in the back of the fridge for about 6 months. You can't make much out of that. I love being a mommy and boy do I love my little men, but I'm a HORRIBLE pregnant person. I feel wretched for 80% of the gestation, so I made the conscious decision to stop bogging for the duration. Anytime I felt the urge to write (and trust me, it wasn't often) it would be about feeling like crap. Or something that was really irritating me. Or how I thought that everything generally sucked. I was a serious sourpuss and that's not how I wanted to present myself to the world. It seemed like an excellent time to stop the presses.
Time passed, along with the grumpys. Then Ethan Christopher came into the world quickly and with a slight air of drama. He seemed to be determined to be born in the car. It was a mere two and a half hours after my first contraction and no epidural (which I had really been looking forward to) that he came along. The great thing about the quick labor was that I had no choice about the meds. If I had, I would have gone full bore on the drugs. That being said, I felt so much better after labor. Of course I had pain, and no dewy eyed interactions with my sweet little dude was going to make that go away. Somehow though, it didn't matter. I wasn't fuzzy headed and confused like I was after Alex was born. Granted Alex took 18 hours and my temperature had shot up to a blistering 103 degrees, but a lot of the dizzy aftermath was due to the immense amount of drugs coursing through my system. My lack of painkillers and subsequent clarity during Ethan's birth experience was my first lemon to lemonade conversion, post pregnancy.
A few days later we arrived home. As those of you who have breast fed know, it is not terribly comfortable the first few weeks. "Toe curling" seems to be the repeated feeling about baby's first blind attempts at latch. As ouchie as it was, and as many tears as sprung to my eyes, my lemonade glass was full once again. Ethan and I were able to engage in the feeding dance that Alex and I were never able to master. I was going to power through. Alas, my perseverance was going to be once more tested. I wrote to a friend of mine who had been successfully feeding her little girl for nine months. "Do you have a weird painful tingling after you feed your baby?" She said she had not and that I better keep my eyes peeled for mastitis. My reaction was "nah... there's no way I'll be dealt this hand after the craptastic time I had trying to feed Alex!" Yeah, well. Last I checked, your boobs have no sense of what is and is not fair in this life. I came down with a brutal case of mastitis that the nurse at my OB later stated was the worst she had ever seen. I went from a 99 degree temp to 103 (seems to be my magic fever number) in 2 hours. Luckily my mom had been at the house with me when this spike happened. By the time she got me to my doctor, I wasn't terribly sure what day of the week it was, and if someone had asked me what my address was I would have told them "Tokyo, China. In the USSR." I was insensible and in an incredible amount of pain. The doctor sent me home with a scrip for antibiotics and instructions to either feed or pump every 2 hours. That's a crate load of lemons. So I took the meds and my fever went down. I followed all of the physical therapy instructions they gave me. And guess what? Not only did I start getting better almost immediately, the antibiotics healed my sore nips and my supply of milk was suddenly like a dairy farm. No worries on supply after you work things out one way or another every 2 hours. And trust me, I pushed through the pain. It was pretty awful for a while, but it worked out extremely well. I made a couple gallons of lemonade from those nasty lemons.
But my tale of citrus woe isn't over yet. Guess what happens to unsuspecting mamas who recover from mastitis with antibiotics? They lose all the good bacteria too. And get something nasty called thrush. Suddenly a different kind of pain came to town. But after all I had endured for the good of my kid's nutrition, I wasn't going to let this last little bit get me. I called the doctor again. At this point the entire staff felt so bad for me (not to mention they are the most incredibly awesome doctor's practice I have EVER been to) that I got the doc right away and she called in a scrip to clear me up. I healed and all was right in mama's world.
At that point I knew, without a doubt, that what ever my little man combo dished out I could handle.
Because if I could get through unexpected drugless childbirth, the pain of early latch, mastitis AND thrush in three short weeks (without killing anyone in the meantime) I could get through simultaneous cry fests, poop fests and all around crazy fests with little to no scarring.
And unlike my grumpy pessimistic pregnancy I'm now leading a lemonade life.