Well, people, with no further ado, I introduce the new bedtime ritual.
Tah dah! (applause)
First off, we start a lot earlier. Now she is going to bed at 6:30 pm. We are the early bird special dinner hour people. I think Dyami has started wearing his pants up around his ribcage. With white shoes and black socks.
It's a little less involved. No swaddling, no squeezing every last drop of poop out of her. We have found she sleeps okay without these interventions. And that sometimes she sleeps poorly despite them. Well, and she refuses swaddling.
I still nurse her to sleep. This usually takes over an hour. I wish it were shorter, but it's pretty consistent. At some point (maybe when we don't care about the amount of time takes to get her to bed?) we may try Other Methods of putting her to sleep. But nursing so reliable. Reliable/long vs. Unproven/possibly shorter in the long run? Remember, I'm not good with unknowns.
I wait until her breathing slows down and then I unlatch her. Usually it takes a couple tries for it to work. And then I verrrryy carreefullly get out of bed. Dyami helps (after wedging myself in place with pillows, it's not so easy to move).
Usually, she wakes up again, once or twice, and I have to go back in there and nurse her some more.
The biggest change is that I'm more relaxed. A few weeks ago (or was it a month or three days? It's all very fuzzy) I was complaining about spending two hours in the dark by myself. Now I don't notice it so much. I was even okay with Dyami closing the door on me tonight. Time really goes pretty quickly while nursing (unless you have to pee, and then it slllllllooooooowwwwws down.) I don't know why. I think it's kind of like birth: God grants us a sort of time warp as moms.
Oh, I was remembering a funny story about my birth while in the bedroom. It's a little gross, but it makes me laugh.
So my labor was extremely short (3 hours), and I drank a bunch of fluids during, to keep my strength up. It didn't seem like more than a few sips, but a few sips between every contraction is a lot of fluid when the contractions happen every minute or so for three hours.
For those of you who haven't been through labor, it's kind of a carnival down there at that end of your body. So you kind of tune out the more mundane body cues, like peeing.
At one point, I remember shuffling to the toilet because my midwife, Andrea, said I needed to pee. It was news to me, but I was pretty obedient at that point. I think I got about three drops out when a new carnival ride started: pushing.
I promptly forgot about peeing.
So by the time Lucy was actually out of my body, I probably had several gallons of fluid inside of me. I was laying on our bed, and the midwives were cleaning me up. "You probably should try to pee again, Heather," said Andrea. "It's okay to go on the bed. There are a lot of absorbant pads down."
I wrinkled my brow. How did one pee again? I thought for a long time, and finally, some muscles clicked.
Well, the juices flowed.
A lot of juices.
"Hey, Andrea," I said. "Ummm, you might want to get some more absorbant pads."
The midwives (Andrea and her assistant, Sarah) were facing away from me. I was laying down on the bed. It seemed like a lot of fluid to me.
"It'll be fine," Andrea said, not turning around.
I couldn't move, but I could feel a small lake of pee traveling up towards my armpits. "Okay," I said, still obedient. (After everything that had happened in the last three hours, pee getting in my armpits was No Big Deal.)
A minute later, Andrea turned around. "Ohmigod," she said. "Sarah, get some more absorbant pads."
Wow, that was a long time ago.