I think a little post-partum "baby blues" has finally begun to hit. It's totally expected that I, being slightly more prone to depression than most people, would have it anyway. Doug is under constant vigilance to make sure I don't fall into PPD. I know all the signs and symptoms, and even know what to do when I have them for an extended amount. So we'll see what happens. It's a bummer with Charlie in the hospital, can't figure out what's normal baby blues and what's stress from the situation.
I'm not happy with what hormones are doing to my body postpartum either; specifically, acne. It was bad while pregnant, but now it's like my torso is one big zit. Yuck. I thought I'd try to cheer myself up today by slipping on a non-maternity shirt that I should be able to wear, forgetting that my "girls" are even bigger now than when I was pregnant. So my wardrobe currently is as follows: 2 pairs of velour elastic-waist lounge pants from K-Mart are the only "normal" pants that fit. My maternity tops are rapidly becoming too big; my prepregnancy shirts are too small in the bust. So I'm opting for the "too big" route, which makes me feel like a blob. I can't exercise for another 4 weeks. Who would've thought I'd want to exercise?
So. Back to going out in public. Friday evening I began to dread Saturday, partly because we needed to pay attention to Roman's needs and I couldn't see Charlie until late in the afternoon. I don't like weekends because I can't spend all day at the hospital. Anyway, I said I'd take Roman to a birthday party at the bowling alley because 1. Doug needed the break, and 2. I was feeling the depression coming on and knew I needed to force myself to go out. It sucked. There were a couple moms there of Roman's buddies that I made small talk with. They were nice, but I found it very difficult to chitchat when my brain is screaming, "my baby is in the NICU! I don't care about getting to know you!"
A couple moms also, of course, mentioned they'd love to organize a playdate with Roman & their own kid. I love that Roman has friends and that he's a nice friend, to be invited. I hate that I should do these playdates, but the energy I must round up to call these women (I really dislike talking on the phone) and work out a date & time (which would invariably take me away from the hospital) is too much. Then I feel guilty because Roman shouldn't suffer simply because I want to be selfish. And then these thoughts continue to go around in my head and I am mentally exhausted.
I went to church, too, today. Because I knew I had to get it over with, talk to everyone, say that we're fine, Charlie's fine, and thank them for their prayers and support and help. I figured also that it may help calm my brain. I didn't want to go. I didn't want to see everyone. And it didn't really calm my brain. I mean, everything really is fine - I'm feeling fine, Charlie is doing well, Roman's calming down. But nothing is fine, you know? My days are structured around my urgent need to get to the hospital (and my pumping schedule), and if I can make it for a feeding time, and how long I'll have to hold Charlie. Charlie is doing well so I kind of feel like I don't have the luxury to have a pity party.
I did, however, admit to a slightly closer group of women at church (who were marveling at how great I looked and were amazed at my upbeat attitude) that I did have down days and in fact, after church planned to go home, cry, and take a nap. Neither of which I have been able to do, come to think of it. One laughed and said, "I'm glad you said that. I was beginning to think you were superwoman." So am I supposed to tell people that well, I'm slightly depressed & I have a good cry over something every day?
Anyway. So that is my "woe is me" for the day. Yesterday we tried a hospital-local restaurant called Alex's for dinner as I got some tips from a coworker who grew up near the hospital. It's like an upscale Coney Island, it was good. Roman was thrilled to have 2 police officers sit in the booth behind us, and when one of them used the restroom Roman saw handcuffs on his belt! At least he didn't stage-whisper about the gun. We did have a brief meltdown when Daddy called Charlie his "buddy," which is also how he refers to Roman. Roman threw his head down on the chair and began to cry "because I am your buddy!" With some consoling from Daddy, however, Roman agreed to share the term of endearment.
Today Doug and I are taking turns with Charlie; I'm staying home with Roman right now and Doug is at the hospital, and then I will go up later and Doug and Roman will prepare for the Superbowl. Which the Patriots will win.