17 de gen. 2012

The rugby position and other obsessions

No mother, sister, auntie or girlfriend can prepare you for the moment in which you find yourself getting to know your newborn baby. Babies, in this case. Throughout my four day-stay in hospital, I made a mental list of a hundred things that could have been dealt with in the pre-natal classes and which were never touched upon- but which I then came to regard as vital. At that point, I couldn't get my head around trying to understand how the classes could have been so poorly organised.

I was coping with everything well enough for the first two days- it was an intensive course of getting to know and recognise my two daughters and their most essential needs. The basic one, the one that worried me the most, was feeding them. You might not believe it, but during my pregnancy I became obsessed with the "rugby position" to breastfeed twins. I looked up some information but luckily, I did not become hooked on the internet to search for more tips- I 'd have gone nuts and often, the articles were not too reliable. What I loved was a National Geographic documentary about a simulation of twins in the womb. Watching how they already interacted in the belly was so exciting- did the girls do the same?

I've lost track. Oh, yeah. Breastfeeding. In this regard, alongside many other aspects of the pregnancy and the upbringing of the kids, we were clear that we would go with the flow of what we were experiencing. Without getting ahead of ourselves. Without getting obsessed and leaving aside certain comments or suggestions. The only problem is that it's very easy to say but hard to do, right? It was complicated for many reasons. When we left the hospital I still did not have any breast milk. I couldn't bear to hear how the little ones cried because they were hungry. We complemented breast milk with formula. On my third day in hospital, I got really down because I was told that I was discharged and I did not picture myself at home AT ALL. Fortunately, a lovely nurse- who must have seen me in big trouble- called on an amazing midwife who helped us with breastfeeding a lot. Perhaps if I had had her from day one, things might have turned out differently.

But you can't go back and change the past. You act the way you do at a given moment and given the circumstances which surround you. What did I worry so much about? The girls were well (their sugar blood tests had been within the normal range, which worried us because I suffered gestational diabetes) but I panicked over the idea of going home. Hours before I was discharged, I already had an endless list of questions to ask. I took notes as if I was in a press conference- looking at things from a journalist's perspective. I was looking forward to going back home, but what would life be like with them, outside the hospital?

6 comentaris:

  1. Wow, it sounds like a massive shock to your system. I know that with my first, I was scared to pick him up and was waiting for someone to tell me what to do, but they never did. I wanted so desperately to hold him close, but didn't want to do anything 'wrong'. Bad nursing. Bad start, but having two must have been even worse

  2. That endless list of questions doesn't end.... It seems as kids get older, the questions just get more complicated! Eventually you'll start to trust your own instincts as a mum, x

  3. well done, I always regret not feeding my twins - am making up for it with the third child! x

  4. As a first time mum I had loads of questions and worries too. I was four days in the hospital and dreaded coming home. By the time the twins came, i couldn't get out fast enough. Experience and confidence counts for everything, and it's such a shame that mums don't get more support when they need it.

  5. It is really overwhelming. I remember having my first (singleton) and skipping out of the hospital with delight to be going home after 8 hours. With the twins I felt really nervous but after a day as the hospital ward filled up with yet more twins I realised I'd be better off at home.

    I really think though that more could be done to support All new mums in hospital. In other countries mums stay in for longer and are given a break with babies taken away so they can get some sleep to recover from labour and to prepare for being at home. It might not suit everyone but it would be amazing to have that option here.

  6. Those early days are so hard aren't they? I think that's the part where it's harder having twins first and not an older child as its such a steep learning curve. Breast feeding one is hard enough let alone twins, there really isn't enough specialist help.