Day 4: The big news on day 4 was that we introduced the dogs to Jack (they had been at the dog-sitter's until then). Tori and Zane love babies. When they see little ones on the street, they just go ga-ga: soft, swishy tails, gentle kisses, calm/protective stances. It's really cute. We were excited to see how they would react to Jack, so we brought them home and let them see him. They nearly didn't react at all. Tori was her usual sweet self, but it was more subdued than how she usually greets babies. She wanted to lick his toes and did a little swishy tail wagging, but nothing overly enthusiastic. Zane? He wouldn't come near me or the baby. He tucked his tail between his legs and went to the other side of the room.
We puzzled over this behavior for a while. Gradually, Zane warmed up a bit. He would pace his way into the nursery, give the air near Jack a gentle whiff, and leave -- only to return 5 minutes later to check on the baby again. He would sleep outside the room we were in, but he wouldn't come inside it for a while. The best explanation that I can come up with is that he's trying to show us that he is being submissive. Maybe he thinks that I'm a momma wolf and I'm going to bite him if he comes near my pup! We trust him; there's no malice or jealousy in his behavior, and he loves babies so thoroughly in other contexts that it can't be fear. We think he's just being respectful in his own way.
Day 3: Time to leave the comfort of the hospital and settle in at home! I had a hemorrhage after delivering Jack, which left me very weak. I couldn't do much of anything except admire Jack and sleep. He seemed to like his new digs:
Day 2: Jack sleeps for long stretches at a time! Excellent. I can handle 2-3 hour clips of rest. We are in the hospital but doing well. He is a lovely baby who only briefly cries or fusses. As soon as I nurse him or if one of us holds him, he quiets down and falls asleep again
Day 1: I didn't have a clear sense of what labor would feel like; my approach to pain management was to assume I could do it, and to figure out how I would do it when the time came. For medical and personal reasons, I knew I wanted it to be natural. I also knew that every women's experience with the pain of labor is different. My experience? I was overwhelmed, and slightly horrified, by the violence of birth. My labor was intense: 24 hours, no pain meds, and he was positioned posterior. In spite of the trauma I felt during labor -- or perhaps because of it, his arrival was a truly spiritual moment. It was an out of this world experience. I will save the full story for another day.
Jack arrived at 12:32pm on Sunday 7/18. The most perfect little being I could imagine:
I had insulin-dependent gestational diabetes, and I was due to be induced at 40 weeks (7/21). Hospital induction with Pitocin can be bad news for birth, so I took matters into my own hands. I tried the one natural induction method known to be safe and effective. It worked.
Here I am at 39 weeks and 4 days, 1pm-ish on Saturday 7/17, aware that within 12-72 hours, we'd be a family: