This day has been a rough one from start to finish. Here are some of the highlights, starting with last night, which pretty much blended into today:
* Liam didn't want to go to sleep, so we asked my mom (who is visiting) to give him a bottle, thinking that Ben would go down and get him in a little bit. Liam fell asleep on Mom, and she brought him up to our room. The door opening startled Bryn (who goes to sleep with us at night, and then Ben moves her over to her own bed), who hadn't quite drifted off to sleep yet. Liam then woke up and cried, so Bryn couldn't sleep (and neither could Ben and I). We eventually had to pass Liam off to Mom again for the short term, but all told, it was 10:30 before our 4-year-old made it to sleep. This made for a very cranky girl today.
* Following this precedent, Liam decided not to sleep last night. I nursed. And nursed. And nursed. And when that supply gave out, I gave him bottle after bottle. We rocked until my post-partum body was one big chair-shaped cramp. He repeatedly fell asleep while I held him, only to awake, crying, minutes after being placed in the Pack 'n' Play at the foot of our bed. Multiple diaper changes yielded no relief. Ben slept fitfully, waking often from the noise. At one point, he relieved me as bottle-giver, but by that point I was too frustrated to sleep, so I switched him back, thinking that at least one of us should be getting some rest. Ben eventually carried Liam's swing upstairs and we put him in that. It always knocks him out during the day, but apparently does not have the same powers at night. Liam eventually fell asleep at about 6:30 (yes, a.m.), and his exhausted mommy finally fell into bed.
* Ben's alarm went off at 7:30. Thankfully, Liam slept through it. Ben got in the shower. Bryn knocked at our door at 7:45. Thankfully, Liam slept through this as well. I, unfotunately, did not sleep through either.
* With my back and posterior regions aching from my many hours in the rocking chair, I rolled onto my side in an attempt to find some comfort. I have not been able to sleep in any position other than flat on my back since Liam was born, due to my poor recovering legs and hips, but in my hazy state, I did not think of this. When I awoke a few hours later, my entire body had cramped into an incredibly painful position and I could barely stand up. This pain persisted for the entire day.
* I had not set an alarm, as I figured that Liam would be my alarm. However, after his late night of milk-chugging, he was content to sleep and sleep. Shay eventually woke me at 10:00. Unfortunately, Bryn needed to be picked up from preschool at 11:00. I rushed around frantically, pumping milk since the boy wouldn't wake up, laying out clothes for Shay and Liam, showering and getting dressed, packing a diaper bag, and hustling Shay, Liam, and Mom into the van, all without either me or Liam having breakfast. We arrived at preschool 10 minutes after pickup, but thankfully, our friend Eric had picked up Bryn for me and ushered her out to the playground.
* I left both girls playing on the playground under Mom's supervision and went indoors in search of a place to nurse Liam, who was quite fussy by this point. We settled in the nursery. Let it be said that Liam is not a good nurser (thus the much feeding apparatus, such as the special Haberman bottles and the nipple shield, as well as the need for frequent pumping of milk). He has been catching on more and more in the past few days and really is improving, but he still has a long way to go. This was the first time that we tried nursing in any location other than our rocking chair with Liam on the Boppy. And it did not go well. He couldn't get latched on right, but he was voracious. We raised several blisters and acquired a new bloody spot (both of which have made nursing for the rest of the day sheer torture), and after half an hour of me trying not the scream out profanities, he still went away hungry.
* We decided to go out to lunch for Baby's First Outing. As we settled in Einstein's Bagels and my mom went up to the counter to order her lunch, the girls got into a fight over who got to sit next to me (both have been wanting more Mommy time than I've been able to give in these first few days with the baby at home). I ended up sitting at the table with three crying children, feeling like everyone in the restaurant must be staring at me and thinking I was the Worst Mom In The World.
* When we got home from lunch, I tried to hurry the girls upstairs for naps. They will typically take any excuse to avoid this. While I was going to the bathroom, the girls dumped out two buckets of dress-up clothes and started playing, while Liam (who my mom had put in his crib) started screaming for all his little lungs were worth. This fiasco ended with me sending Mom downstairs to give Liam a bottle, while I forced the girls to clean up. Then I did stories and diaper changes, got both girls in bed, and pumped yet again, all while despairing over my own rapidly disappearing naptime.
* Turns out I would have despaired anyway. A half hour into naps, my mom let our dogs out, since they'd been in the basement all day so far. She let them stay out there to run off some energy. Unfortunately, this translated into them barking with wild abandon for the next hour, preventing me and the girls (and probably the rest of the neighborhood--sorry, neighbors) from sleeping.
* Following "naps," it was time to get ready for Bryn's dance class. Shay was in an absolute snit (I'm guessing due to lack of nap), had a big tantrum, and didn't want anything except Mommy. Unfortnately, Mommy was again pumping, as Liam refused to wake up from the bottle-induced coma that Mom had fed him into, no matter how much I tickled him or pleaded with him to wake up and do his job. I again attempted to move the entire crew toward the car, again behind schedule. Thank goodness, Ben (my hero!) returned from work at this point and spirited them away for me.
* Throughout this whole ugly day, my legs had been cramping fiercely, and I'd been bleeding more heavily than the past several days, passing several blood clots during each bathroom break. Add this to the blisters and sores that Liam created during his morning nursing session, and I was just one big ache.
Life did improve significantly after Ben got home. He got me to go lay down for a while. Our friends the Willmans brought over dinner, so we didn't have to cook. We gave Liam his first at-home bath, and while Shay cried through the whole thing ("I scared baby Liam belly button," which still has the stump of the umbilical cord attached), Liam did not cry at all. He did fall asleep while nursing and utterly refuse to wake up, necessitating yet more pumping, but I did this while Ben and Mom handled naps, and we all got into bed at a decent hour. My wonderful husband even convinced me to take some Tylenol PM, which has yielded the first decent night of sleep I've had in a long while, in between nursing/pumping sessions of course.
Here's hoping that tomorrow (or rather, today, since it's 4:19 am as I finish this after several pauses) will be better!