So we’re into the second week with baby, and although things are very do-able now, it’s because my husband is on a paternity leave. My thoughts (mostly worries) keep turning to what will happen when he goes back to work in November: how will I manage? What will we do over a long, long winter?
Here’s my brain dump of anxieties:
1. How will we avoid being stuck in the house when it’s winter and I’m trying to avoid exposing the baby to germs? I don’t take flu and RSV season lightly, since my daughter was hospitalized at three months with RSV and it was the worst experience ever. But my husband will be gone from 6:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday. That is a long day with no trips to the gym, no outings, no shopping, no playdates, no playgroups, no classes. The only thing we have regularly scheduled is Anna’s preschool: MWF from 9:30 to 1 p.m.
I know we can’t sit home and outdoor playing which is less germy will be done pretty soon. I go crazy cooped up in the house and it’s not good for a three year old either. I’m not sure what to do. We have lots of mommy and kid friends who are my daughter’s age and I guess I will slowly start bringing the baby with us to playdates and friends’ houses. But exposing him to lots of little kids is not that appealing either. I’m going to try to hold out for that six week benchmark (only two weeks after Walt goes back to work) and then see what we can do that I feel comfortable with.
What did you do if you had a winter newborn and an older child?
2. Juggling the two by myself. Getting my daughter ready for preschool with the baby nursing…timing feeding and getting out the door…I know this will just come with time and I already foresee it being not as bad as I thought. Of course this will change as Henry gets bigger and gets more complicated in his needs, too.
3. Sleep. Right now my husband is awesome and is giving Henry his first one or two feedings by bottle at night. This is letting me get uninterrupted stretches of five or six hours and often needing to pump is what wakes me up, not Henry! Of course once Walt goes back to work, this won’t work but I think if he gives him one bottle and I go to bed ASAP (8 p.m. with my daughter basically) I can get a jump start on sleep for the night. I am not the picture of mental health with no unbroken sleep at all so this is a major priority for my family. Ha.
4. Working out. I want to keep nursing as long as I can. I only nursed Anna for one month and it was pretty much a difficult, horrible experience. I really want to try to make it work this time, with my last baby. And so far it seems so much easier already. Henry actually eats in defined intervals (every two to three hours) instead of off and on all day. Although he does that too at certain times. He’s a good eater and I can see how nursing can be part of my life, as opposed to just nursing becoming all-encompassing and sentencing me to entire days on the couch. I’ve even nursed in public three or four times now, something I never did before. I want to get a sling or wrap that works for nursing…maybe the Moby?
But nursing while exercising seems pretty scary to me right now. Last time I started running after I had weaned. I can’t imagine how to balance or juggle the two…what about the bouncing and pain…soreness…chafing? Timing? Will it affect supply? Do the prolactin and all the hormones interfere with one’s ability or desire to run? I know so many women have done this before…I’m going to have to get their advice. I can’t see not running for a year…or six months…but I don’t want to stop nursing because I want to work out.
Anyone have any advice or been there done that stories?