How do I beat the exhaustion? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 4 Old 09-14-2009, 11:35 AM - Thread Starter
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dd was born the 5th and has been in the NICU since then. She was born at 35+4, and has RDS. No infections thank goodness, but she's still really struggling on the cannula. She did really well coming off the vent then CPAP last week, and things have slowed WAY down. We're now on day 10, nowhere near home, our girls are tired and I can hardly keep my eyes open.

They discharged me 3 hours after birth so I could follow the ambulance to the hospital where she is (2 hours away from home) and I literally have not had a nap, nor laid down, since then. We're staying with a friend about 45 minutes with traffic from the hospital, and have to drive up there twice a day. We try to be there around 8-9am, then leave around 4-5, feed our older girls and put them to bed, then head back up till around 11pm. I don't know how long I can keep up, although I know I have to.

Is there any advice out there for what to do with all of this fatigue? They think stress put me into labor to begin with, so we have a lot more to deal with than just our sweet girl in the NICU, so I'm just beat! We're looking at probably at least another week there, and I just need some ideas. Thanks!

Jill, mama to three fiery girlies and a sweet baby boy: Grace, 11.30.2005,  Ayla, 3.22.2008, Norah 9.5.09, Reed 8.19.11 & dfs Gage 2.29.12   angel1.gif x4

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#2 of 4 Old 09-15-2009, 01:50 AM
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Although I'm sure you want to be with your baby as much as possible, I would suggest figuring out a way to sleep. Even just through one night, or for a few long naps.

I don't know if you are breastfeeding yet, or pumping around the clock, but I would suggest going somewhere comfortable. Pump more often before and after your long nap, but just find a way to rest. Check into a hotel, take something to help you sleep, do whatever you need to do. I know it's hard to leave your baby, but being well rested when she comes home is good too.

How comfortable is it at the NICU? Do they at least have big comfortable chairs where you can doze off?
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#3 of 4 Old 09-17-2009, 03:23 PM
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You need to rotate duty. You go alone 8-12. Go home, eat, rest, visit with your girls. Send your partner/huz/mother to sit with Baby from 1-4. Have dinner with your family; go back to the NICU by yourself for a little while, then go home and sleep. Your baby has lots of people taking care of her, so you need to take care of you. This is best for your baby, too--she needs a more-rested mama when she comes home!

If you aren't comfortable leaving your LO for that long, you should ask the nurses about a room for you there at the hospital. There may be somewhere you could sleep so that you didn't have to go back and forth so much....

Good luck to you and congradulations on your new baby!

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#4 of 4 Old 09-22-2009, 04:40 PM
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When my daughter was in the hospital, they had a room there in the NICU for parents to room-in with the baby right before discharge and during the day and on the nights when no parents were staying (which luckily ended up being her entire stay) they let me stay there. There was a fold out bed, tv, fridge, we brought food and just camped out there. I could cat nap between her feedings, then go visit with her. You might see if they had something like that so you could rest during the day while you were visiting. I had two kiddos at home (2 and 3 y.o.) as well and it was really hard, balancing time... I constantly felt like someone was asking me to chose between my kids... saying things like "the nurses are there to care for your baby, you don't need to be." That just didn't work for me...

I agree with PP though, get as much rest as possible... If they have comfortable recliners like our NICU, you could doze at bedside.. I did that alot. Good luck, and hold on tight... your darling LO will be home with you before you know it and suddenly the NICU will be like one big nightmare... still in the back of your mind but unable to hurt you any more.

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