Less than a week after delivering sweet Mona Lu, I’m feeling almost back to normal and better than I have in a long time. After a nasty fall that I never really healed from at the end of my pregnancy and a belly that weighed heavily on my body, I am up and moving again.
Which is not to say that recovery has been easy.
After scheduling a c-section for last Thursday, a decision I agonized over in the final days. Consulting an additional respectful birth doctor, two doulas and a chiropractor to see if the size of my baby would really make a natural delivery near impossible. I have been on the mend at home returning to mi casa the very next day.
Of course, there was pain at the incision and the first few days I hobbled from the bed to the bathroom holding my organs up with my hands before gently setting myself down on the seat. Unsure of whether my urinary tract was back in working order with each sit. While the most surprising consequence of the surgery was shoulder and neck pain that appeared three days later. I assumed it was from breastfeeding or even perhaps latent muscular pain from clenching during the procedure. But when I consulted trusty google, I was surprised to learn that after abdominal surgery it it common to feel pain in the shoulders and neck due to gas buildup and shared nerve sensations with the diaphragm.
It was fucked up.
The pain was so intense I could barely move my arms. My hands useless. My head pounding.
That same night my milk came in. As night began to fall, I said to myself, I can make it until morning forgetting how quickly the body can work. By midnight I was in a world of pain. My pump was not setup. My baby blissfully asleep. And even when she woke, unable to unclog the ducts that had hardened into rocks. With one hand holding my intestines in place. The other weakly tried to express milk to no avail.
It would have to wait until morning.
The next day was a blur. A desperate attempt to fix my boobs whenever my shoulders and neck would allow any kind of movement. But it got better. Thanks to my husband and Maricarmen, our son’s nanny who over the years has become our most trusted friend here. The next day was better. And a few on from that, I feel great. Learning important lessons along the way.
Always take care of your boobs.
And when the doc says to eat healthy and avoid foods that bloat.
You do it.
While I didn’t quite understand the severity of the situation or the level of clean eating I should be adhering to. I’ll say. I do now. Quinoa. Chicken soup for fifteen days according to our Ecuadorian friends. Lean proteins. A little fruit here and there. Vegetables, but not the starchy or fiberous kind. In fact, before anything touches my lips I do a quick google search on gas.
And so it goes…
Aside from that things have been great. Mona is thriving. She’s a great eater, sleeper and pooper. Super chill and very sweet. Awake more during the day, testing those eyes out and getting acclimated to the world. Older brother Darwin is simply in love. Lots of kisses and hugs. Always wanting to hold her. Sharing his toys and a little bummed when she can’t reciprocate play.
In time, I say.
My husband has been my rock. Taking care of me, everyone else and then some. Homemade bone broths. Baking an orange and caramel cake with our son. Running out to get the birth certificate. Always making sure I have an ice water within arms reach. All while working and keeping the house up to my standards. Which is not an easy feat to do.
And of course, our friends. Dropping off food and supplies. Offering to watch Darwin and scheduling playdates to keep our active boy occupied.
We were thinking of bringing over a homemade pizza for dinner tonight, would that be okay?
So things are good. Better than good. In fact, great. In a way everything we wanted to achieve in leaving the United States coming to fruition with the opportunity to have this incredibly fulfilling lifestyle centered around our family. One that no longer feels rushed from here to there, but something that can be enjoyed and cherished every single day, even in times of great change proving to ourselves once again that no matter how crazy our decisions might somehow seem. We just maybe might know what we’re doing.