Hanging out in the sunshine on the quilt Theresa made her
Ivey's umbilical cord fell off this morning. Jordan brought Ivey, wearing a little gown, upstairs for me to nurse her. When he came back down, Suzi was sitting in the recliner holding up a small brown object. She asked him what it was and he said "I don't know... what is it?"
"It's Ivey's belly butt!" And that's what it was alright. We saved it. I have the rest of the cord too. When Jordan encapsulated my placenta he had to dehydrate it, and the instructions also told how to save the umbilical cord this way. It's in a hard little coil, put away in a satin bag. I don't have Suzi's, but this time I'm glad to have the cord that connected me and Ivey for so long.
The placenta encapsulation process was not bad at all. It took Jordan two days (because the dehydration part took hours) but he did it all on his own. He never got nauseous or grossed out. I think it's really cool that he did it for me. It's hard to say if the pills are working yet, but I do feel a ton better than I did last time in several ways.
Breastfeeding is going beautifully this time. This is what happens when instead of a nurse with a nipple shield you have a midwife who is "the breastfeeding guru." I am making more than enough milk and Ivey doesn't need to nurse for very long until she's full. Even though I have a top-of-the-line Medela Freestyle, the other day I wanted to pump (just because I was so full and Ivey wasn't hungry) and I found the double electric nature of that pump to be a bit too cumbersome for my needs. Jordan and I purchased a $35 manual Harmony pump at Target and... I am mildly horrified to say that I like it better than any of the others I've tried. That's including the Symphony, which we rented at a cost of $70 a month for two months and the single electric Swing which we paid over $100 for. Most people love the electric pumps but I just don't take well to a machine doing what my baby ought to be doing. I have more control over the manual pump and have actually had more success with it! Crazy, huh? Since I was pumping anyway and Ivey certainly doesn't need it, we gave it to Suzi. She was very happy and told me to please make more.
We took Ivey to the doctor yesterday for her first visit, and the nurse practitioner was impressed that she'd already gained back her birth weight at just five days old. She said many babies take two weeks to gain it back. The NP also commented on how alert Ivey seemed for such a young baby. I think credit for this goes to her gentle birth! (The story is coming soon, like in a day or two. It took me several hours to write it last night and now I just need to read over it one more time and add pictures.)
I don't think I ever mentioned it, but everyone has mostly agreed that Ivey looks like my dad. She has his ears for sure and I think she also has his eyes and forehead. I am kind of hoping her eyes will stay blue, but if not maybe they'll be light brown like mine. We think she has my mom's nose and lips, but she changes a little every day so it's hard to say what she'll look like later.
Nighttime has been a bit of a challenge for us. Ivey sleeps well during the day, but at night she fidgets and makes little noises. I am such a light sleeper anyway that I hardly ever get into a deep sleep. Jordan's been so sweet to let me sleep in while he takes care of the girls for a couple of hours, but soon he'll be going back to work. We need to get Ivey's days and nights flipped back around where they belong!
Ivey smiled a big smile and laughed today for the first time. One time she laughed while she was awake and her dad was holding her, and later she did it again in her sleep while I had her. It was like she was having a funny dream.
We introduced her to our dog today and I think everything is going to be just fine there. Phibby is so laid back. She looked at the baby, at my (no longer huge) belly, and then at the baby again like she was thinking oh, so this is your puppy! Ivey's eyes got big when she saw Phibby.
Thursday is Jordan's first day back to work and my first day staying home alone with a newborn and a toddler. My mom has cleared her day so she can help me if I need her, but I was really hoping to be okay on my own. I'm a little nervous! Any tips?
The birth story is next! It's long, boring in parts, and TMI in others. Just a little disclaimer before you get halfway into it.