My stay at the hospital had its ups and downs. Sunday was a pretty good day, minus the pain of moving around. C-sections are no joke. The movement to sit up in bed or get up out of bed was pretty painful, obviously. I did take a shower Sunday, which actually was nice. It felt good to wash my face and hair and put on real clothes again. For the most part, once I got up and moving, I felt ok. It was the getting from one position to the next that was so painful. I stayed on top of my percocet and ibuprophen for the first day or two, then I think by Tues afternoon I had started stretching those doses out a little.
Greg was great about helping me during the night most of the time. He’d hand Henry to me (since I couldn’t very well lift him up out of the crib at my bedside), and did most of the diaper changes while we were at the hospital. I have to admit, he caught on to the diaper changes pretty quickly. Not too bad for a first time dad 🙂 Henry slept decent the first night since he’d only latch on to eat for about 5-10 mins at a time. The second and third night he did not sleep well at all. I ended up sleeping with him on my chest for most of those two nights because he seemed to want to eat every hour or so. My milk came in pretty quickly. I started to pump a few times a day, mostly just after feeding attempts where Henry didn’t latch for very long. I was pretty excited to get that first bottle of colostrum.
That first morning, Henry woke up and ate at about 5am. Then he was so alert for about 2 hours. We just snuggled and hung out while daddy slept for a while. I love one-on-one snuggle time with this little nugget.
Jordan, Eric and the kids all came to meet Henry on Sunday. It was Mother’s Day, and all the Boggs family were headed to Oak Mountain State Park for the day. My friends Abby and Christine came to visit us on Sunday as well. My family all headed to Auburn for my youngest sister’s college graduation. Emily was graduating with honors and had the top GPA of the school of architecture. So she got to walk the school’s flag in at the beginning of the ceremony, and they even had her stand up and be recognized at one point! Luckily, Auburn had a live feed of the graduation ceremony, so Greg and I were able to watch it online from the hospital. 🙂
Monday was a really rough day. I started having a headache early morning on Monday. I was still taking the percocet and ibuprophen on schedule (for the most part, when my nurse was helpful to remind me). The anesthesiologist came by to check in on me and to discuss possible side effects of the epidural, one of which was lingering headaches. The doctor also came by to check on me, and I told him about the heachache. He told me it could be epidural related or just general pain and that I should try to notice if it was better or worse if I was lying down or sitting up. It continued to linger through the morning and into the afternoon, but it wasn’t until I got out of the bed and to the chair that it got really bad really fast. Lactation had come to work with me, and I wanted to go to the chair for this feed (just cause I was getting sick of being in the bed all morning). I got to the chair and we started working on getting Henry to latch. Within just those few minutes, my head started throbbing and I was getting really light-headed and my neck started feeling stiff. I must have looked bad because the lactation consultant asked me if I was in pain. I told her I had a horrible headache and was kinda feeling nauseous. She told me I looked really pale and suggested I go back to the bed. She also called my nurse who immediately paged the anesthesiologist. About that time Greg walked into the room (he had run home to let our dogs out and shower). He immediately asked me what was wrong and could tell something wasn’t right. I got to the bed and laid down flat. Poor Henry was now fussing to eat since we had teased him for just a minute trying to get him to latch. I just laid there in side-lying position while the lactation consultant put him to my breast to try to get him to eat just enough to appease him. I could feel the world spinning. The anesthesiologist came and discussed that there may be a leak from my epidural that was draining spinal fluid causing my headache, dizziness and sore neck. He explained that this usually resolves on it’s own but it could take time. They could treat the symptoms with a caffeine pill and muscle relaxer. Or if that didn’t work they could do a blood patch. A blood patch is a procedure in which they draw blood from my arm and re-inject it into my spinal canal via another epidural. This adds fluids back into my spinal canal, which was likely leaking and causing the problems. I opted to try the meds and take a nap. When I woke up from my nap though, it wasn’t any better. In fact, my neck was even more stiff than before. I felt like I was wearing a neck brace because I could barely turn my head side to side or even look down enough to breastfeed without being in intense pain. And the headache continued to pound in my head. At this point my mom and sisters had arrived and were also very concerned. The nurse called the anesthesiologist back and we decided to try the blood patch. I couldn’t take the pain any longer, and I couldn’t even look down enough to help Henry to latch to feed.
They took me back to PACU for the procedure. Greg, my mom and sisters stayed in our room with Henry. The procedure itself was pretty quick. One anesthesiologist sat in front of me and drew blood from my hand while another stood at my back and started another epidural. They injected the blood into my spinal canal, which was a very weird feeling. I could feel it going into my spine and up my neck. I kinda freaked out a little and asked if that was normal, and he told me it was. As long as I wasn’t having sharp pain shooting down my legs he said it was fine. As soon as they injected the blood they withdrew the epidural and it was a miracle! Within minutes my headache went away. They monitored me in PACU for about 30 minutes just to watch my vitals and my blood pressure, but after that I was able to return to my room. And when I got back, I was a whole new person. The relief was almost instantaneous, and I could talk and carry on conversations without being in pain. Even my neck stiffness was pretty much eliminated immediately. I was SO glad we decided to do the procedure and not just wait it out through the night. Below is literally the only picture I took on Monday. That’s how rough a day it was.
Tuesday was a much better day. The headaches were gone and I was up a little bit more. We could have gone home on Tuesday but since Monday had been so bad we decided to wait the full 4 days in case the headaches came back.
Wednesday was my sister Katie’s birthday and our discharge day. We were finally ready to go home. I hadn’t left the hospital since Saturday morning, so I was eager to get home. Greg was getting stir crazy as well. We were ready to start our new routine at home 🙂