In My House

To the Dad of a Cesarean Baby

To the Dad of a Cesarean Baby:

You are a special guy. In the days to come, you will be needed more than ever before, and you will step up to the plate. After watching your wife experience the pain of labor and major surgery, you will be the first to hold your new baby girl and ensure she feels safe and loved. You will change the first and most disgusting diapers while your wife still can’t get out of her hospital bed. You will help her out of bed to brush her teeth and promise her she looks more beautiful than ever even though she definitely doesn’t feel that way.

You will drive them home safely, taking each corner gently so the incision from surgery won’t hurt. You will do more than your share, hauling laundry down the stairs that she can’t yet take, and lifting your toddler when she can’t. You will be the one getting up those first few nights, bringing your hungry newborn to your wife to feed when her incision hurts too much to get out of bed.

You will assure your wife she is enough when she feels vulnerable and helpless. You will remind her what she did to bring your children into the world is amazing. You will love this little family unconditionally, and know this time of your life is beautiful, raw, and so fleeting.

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I write this five days post-C-section. I am sore and the simplest of movements, while becoming easier each day, are still challenging. My husband is amazing and has taken care of me as well as our newborn and toddler day and night. I appreciate him even more this time around than I did after my first C-section, and have more love for him and our two girls than I ever thought possible. This is for him.

Adventures

Letter to My (One Year Ago) Self

Dear One Year Ago Self,

It is July 2, 2014. You are currently 79 weeks pregnant, or at least it feels that way. Things are swollen. You want a glass of chilled white wine, or three. You want to sleep on your stomach. You want this child out of you! You will only be pregnant for three more weeks.

You won’t make it to your August 1 due date. Something scary will happen and you will have a C-section at 3 a.m. You will worry that despite your body feeling huge, this baby isn’t big enough to be born yet. She will be tiny. So tiny that when the nurses shout out her weight, you assume she is headed to the NICU. But no NICU! She’s healthy!

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Nothing about being a parent will be as difficult as people try to make you think it will be. People hype everything up. When things are difficult, you will still be more than happy to do them because that is how much you love her. You won’t sleep as much as you used to be it won’t bother you as much as you think. Your husband will be the perfect father, even better than you expected, and that will keep you sane as a mother. Here’s some advice for you, One Year Ago Self:

  • Make your husband take more than a week off after the baby’s birth
  • Don’t be afraid to tell people you just aren’t up for company: Your abdomen was just ripped open and a person removed- it’s OK to want some alone time
  • Don’t let the new nurse put in your IV
  • Don’t doubt your name choice for the girl: You love it just as much now as you did then
  • Buy more nightgowns-sweatpants won’t work on a post-surgery abdomen
  • Go ahead and just bring your dog to the hospital so you don’t have a hormone-fueled meltdown worrying that he’s afraid of the thunderstorm

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This is your girl and she is great. She has her father’s smile and your eyes. She is active and a fast-learner. She is sassy and has the most infectious laugh. She loves to try new foods. She is a bit of a Daddy’s girl but acts more like her Mommy. She’s almost one!

Love,

Me