J and I joked a lot the day we were leaving the hospital. Mostly things like, "They don't need to do a background check on us before we leave with her??" "You mean, the nurse doesn't come home with us?" Nervous jokes filled the air as it settled in that we were taking our daughter home.
Now that we've been home a couple of weeks, we trade off being neurotic. "Is that normal? Is something wrong with her?" and the other typically responds with, "She's a baby, it's okay."
As a person who has struggled with anxiety, panic attacks, etc in the past - this is something I always try and stay keyed into as to avoid a problem. It hasn't been something that I really suffered with for years (college), but the anxiety will occasionally pop up in times of high stress. That has certainly been true with Lily at home. I have a harder time relaxing, especially if we're out, now that she's with us. I would call it more nervousness and nowhere near anxiety/panic attacks. But more on that another day. I can tell you what doesn't help - now Lily has started spitting up after breastfeeding. Not normally too big of a deal though, right?
Which leads us to last night. Commonly during the night I have to wake her up to nurse. It was 2:20 a.m. and about 3 hours since she'd eaten last. Lily was sound asleep when I picked her up from her bassinet. Our routine is to check/change her diaper, reswaddle, nurse, burp, snuggle, back to bed. As soon as I laid her down on the changing table - she was pissed. She started crying - and then she scared the shit out of me...
Her mouth was wide open, but no sound was coming out, she turned bright red and arched her back so that only her head and butt were on the table. I quickly picked her up, bounced and started firmly patting her on the back. She weakly burped and made this awful tiny little gasping noise. I immediately turned her over on my arm and smacked her good a couple of times on the back before she cried. (baby CPR style) I held her and kept trying to burp her while I woke J up for help. For about 20minutes or so she cried her little heart out while she worked up spit bubbles and a bit more spit up - through her mouth and nose. We tried to help clear her nose with the nasal aspirator, and basically did whatever we could think of to help clear her out. Three hours after she ate last.
By about 3:00 a.m. she was doing better - able to breath normally - so I was able to finally nurse her. We only went a few minutes at a time and I would burp her again before putting her back to the boob. Afterward I sat up with her - she was wide awake - for about another hour and a half. I didn't hardly take my eyes off her.
She's made a few gargle noises before when we'd lay her down after a
nighttime feeding. Talk about an awful sound. You mind instantly goes to
her aspirating on her own vomit while you fly out of bed to get to her
in the bassinet. But nothing like this. If I never have to see that panicky look on her little face again, it will be too soon.
Thankfully she's been fine ever since. But holy hell did she about give us a heart attack.
To help manage her spitting up I've been trying to feed
her for a shorter period of time (and more frequently) because I'm
certain she's overeating. She's a comfort sucker (loves her binky -
damnit), so she doesn't quit when she's full. We've also been trying to
keep her more upright for awhile once she's done to let her tummy
settle. I'm also trying to limit my diary. Some of it has helped, but I
still feel like she's spitting up more than she should.
Has anyone else had trouble with spitting up? Any other suggestions for things I could try or something you did that was helpful? I know that some babies are just more prone to spitting up and as long as she's still gaining good weight, she's fine, but if there is something I can do to make her more comfortable I want to try it. Our two week pediatric appointment is Tuesday, so I plan to chat with the nurse then as well.
Being a parent is clearly a 24/7 fright fest. One worry to the next. Let's hope I at least live to see another birthday before I have my first heart attack.