E: To protect midwives and health visitors, there were no post birth home appointments. This did worry me a little as I’d never had a c section before so I didn’t know what was normal to experience post birth. But luckily, nothing came up that warranted needing to speak to someone. I had a phone call with our lovely midwife Geraldine on the first day I was home and explained I felt sore but that was normal.
S: The next few days involved a lot of FaceTiming! Our friends and family were obviously desperate to meet him after such a long wait but we were in the epicentre of lockdown so FaceTime and doorstop visits at a distance were all we could have. Because I hadn’t given birth, I didn’t have the physical side of having a baby to deal with but I definitely had the mental and emotional side and found myself in tears looking at him every day trying to believe he was real and here. I’d play him the playlist from the day he was born and be in tears. I think I was in shock for a while that he was at home with us and our responsibility now.
E: The following few days went smoothly for me, but it was James who had pulled the short straw in all of this! He had just started a new job 4 weeks earlier and had been loving it. Government guidelines to self isolate if anyone had symptoms meant he had to stop working on 23rd March as Theo had a dry cough. Little did we know it was going to go on for months! So James went from loving his new job to being full time childcare with nowhere to go except the daily walks. I really felt guilty but knew I had to fully rest in the first weeks as otherwise it would take me longer to recover. I think the first 3 weeks of recovery were the hardest for us as a family in the whole surrogacy process- not because I was struggling with the birth but because I couldn’t physically help with the kids who wanted to see their friends and go on outings, and I felt a bit resentful that I was feeling guilty in the time I wanted to just soak up the relief of Leo being born- but no one could have predicted the virus so we just had to crack on with it!
The original plan was for the children to be at nursery and James at work during my recovery. I planned to have solid rest watch box sets and dip in and out of work bits as and when I fancied it. With COVID-19 turning up, that all went out of the window! Everyone was at home and after over a week of self isolating already, we were already getting cabin fever. It wasn’t quite the peaceful recovery period I had been looking forward to! But a small problem to have in the grand scheme of what was going on in the world.
My milk did come in around day 3 and it was really uncomfortable but I was advised to just leave it be and put up with the discomfort for a few days rather than try to do anything about it. That part was much sorer than the scar at this point especially when the kids tried to hug me! It passed after a few days which was a relief.
S: Day 5 checks usually consist of the midwives coming to your house, however the new rules were that we had to attend the local hospital for this and that it would just be me, Em and Leo and Jack would wait outside. We picked Em up and this was when Mollie and Theo got to see Leo through the car window for the first time and see that the baby was no longer in mummy’s tummy! At the appointment Leo was weighed by our lovely midwife Geraldine and he had lost 3% of his birth weight which was within the guidelines so they were happy. Em was checked over and all was good with her scar. The hospital felt eerie with nobody in it!