I think the hospital forgot to give me my baby instruction manual when they discharged us from the hospital!
We’ve survived the first 2 weeks :::round of applause::: It’s had it’s up & downs, but mostly ups.
Right before we were discharged from the hospital, the nurse noticed Paisley was a little bit yellow. She checked her bilirubin, told us it was 11, and then sent us on our way.
The next day (Christmas day) we noticed she was getting even more yellow; she had a check up with her pediatrician on Thursday, so we just watched her and waited until her appointment.
Thursday came & her pediatrician was pretty concerned about the shade of yellow her skin had taken on; the whites of her eyes were also yellow.
You can kind of see the yellow in her skin
Here is what we learned about newborns & jaundice; it is very common. Pretty much everyone we talked to had a kid that had jaundice, or had it themselves. Shoot, Chris & I both had jaundice as babies.
Here is what we learned, after the fact, but should have been told prior to being discharged.
Babies will not always wake up and cry when they are hungry. You have to physically wake them up to feed them every few hours.
I sort of remember the nurse, or maybe it was the Pediatrician who discharged us, telling us that Paisley needed to eat every 2-3 hours. I was totally under the impression that she would cry and wake us up when she is hungry, and if she didn’t cry, then we should let her sleep.
Yeah, no. Totally wrong. Apparently, newborns need to eat every few hours so that they produce enough pee & poopy diapers to get rid of the extra bilirubin in their system, which causes jaundice. When they don’t pee/poop enough the bilirubin starts to build up, and shows up in the color of their skin.
again, I am not a Dr., so I’m sure my explanation of that is a little off – but that is the way we understood it when the pediatrician explained to us WHY it was so important for her to eat every 2-3hrs.
SO, the pediatrician sent us to the hospital to have a bilirubin test done on Paisley so that we could make sure her level wasn’t to high. The Pedi also said that she wanted me to supplement because she didn’t think I was producing enough milk yet to ensure that Paisley was getting enough to eat. This was important because, again, she needed to produce a lot of diapers to get rid of the excess bilirubin in her system.
:::cue a meltdown in the pediatricians office:::
hormones y’all, they are real.
I was devastated at the thought of having to feed my newborn formula so early in the game. I had it IN MY HEAD that I HAD to breastfeed. HAD TO.
So I had a good cry, then bought some formula.
After we got Thursday’s lab results, the Dr. wanted us to go back on Friday to have her level tested again. The number came down by .1
We went back to the hospital on Saturday to have her level checked again. After some miscommunication with the lab, the pediatrician called to tell us that her level had dropped quite a bit and that we could follow up with her in 1 week, instead of Monday, like we had originally planned.
My heart sang when I heard her level was coming down.
There has been no worse feeling than feeling like I failed my child.
The recommendation was still to feed her 2-3oz every 2-3 hours. The Pedi gave me the okay to feed breast milk exclusively, IF I was able to produce enough.
I desperately wanted to feed her only breast milk, but I also wanted to make sure she was getting the recommended 2-3oz; so I decided that pumping would be my middle ground. I pumped as much as I could & fed Paisley formula as needed. This was a happy medium for me – sort of.
Don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with formula, I just had it in my head that I would breast feed Paisley, and needing to supplement was a hard pill to swallow.
Deciding to pump has been a bit of a blessing, we’ve had a bit of a rocky road with breastfeeding, but i’ll write more about that another day.
It’s time for me to hit the hay; I have a sweet babe that will need me to get up and feed her in a few hours.