Hi all! Shannon here.
This week, we’re talking about our own “labor day” recap and how having our baby girl (whom we are madly in love with) has changed everything, including our sleep habits.
We know there are a number of listeners who have been following our pregnancy journey closely, watching when we posted to social media for any sign that we “popped.”
Without getting into graphic details, here’s a quick recap of our labor story:
Our last doctor appointment was on a Friday and the doctor basically informed us that we were no closer to labor than the previous week’s appointment, but since we were overdue at that point (by three days) it really could happen at any time.
Well, our baby apparently was ease dropping and decided she didn’t want to wait for an induction, because less than two days later, contractions started. I powered through them at home for about 17 hours (they started around 4am on a Sunday) but we finally went to the hospital late that night in the hopes of being admitted (yes, they do frequently send you home if you’re not far enough along).
Thankfully, we got the thumbs up to stay and after another 11 hours of contractions, a number of which were seriously intensified due to a dose of Pitocin, I finally asked for an epidural. It had been a total of 28 hours of labor at that point – it was time. Things happened pretty quickly after that and about four hours later our doctor arrived to give us the go ahead to start pushing. Less than an hour later our little lady made her grand entrance into the world.
Some respiratory concerns resulted in a trip to NICU (neonatal intensive care unit), but thankfully, she recovered en route so that she didn’t actually have to be admitted. A couple hours of observation in the nursery later, she arrived to our recovery room healthy and hungry.
As new parents, we were terrified for those two hours, but we knew she was in the best possible hands. Finally getting to hold her and have her in our arms was the best feeling we could imagine though.
Two days at the hospital consisted of all the usual tests, check-ups, visits, baby care lessons, administrative chores, and sleepless hours, but we were still just so grateful and happy. Our baby’s nocturnal habits didn’t match up with hours though and he need to be fed every 2-3 hours was one of the more challenging aspects. We knew it was coming, had been warned in all our books, classes and by all our friends/family, but that doesn’t make it any easier to prep for. Regardless, our exact words on the whole experience were, “We are deliriously exhausted and deliriously happy.”
Once we returned home with baby in tow, life continued to change. Likely because we were struggling with sleep, a recent headline on the awarding of the Nobel Prize for Medicine caught our attention, as this year’s went to three Americans for their work on Body Clock Studies.
Their study focused on the health effects that the circadian rhythm has on adult humans who are naturally diurnal (meaning we are wired to be up during daylight hours). The scientists discovered that a protein actually builds up in the body during sleep (at night) and then dissipates during the day, which is concrete evidence that explains how our sleep syncs up with our natural body clocks. The discovery of this protein could lead to future advancements in treatment for chronic conditions that cause or are caused by a misaligned circadian rhythm (that is HUGE!).
At the end of the day (literally), sleep is crucial to your health, so if you’re not getting enough (like us right now) it is really important that you try to get back to that natural sleep rhythm. Until more studies result in a way to counteract or alter the circadian rhythm, we’re all attached to that body clock!
Nick and I will be trying to encourage better sleep habits in our household as soon as we can so that everyone stays healthy. In the meantime, we’ll stumble a bit through our days, but the podcast will keep coming!
In fact, we are making some big moves regarding the podcast, including a new sponsorship and a discount code for you listeners. Please make sure you share the podcast with a friend and give us a rating and review in iTunes and on our new Addicted to Fitness Podcast Facebook page.
Follow us on social media (Facebook, Instagram or Twitter) for loads of other updates and to see some proud parent pictures of our baby girl. We try to keep the posts balanced though, so don’t worry – they’re not all baby related.
Until next time, we hope you’re looking after your health and fitness and look forward to bringing you some new info in the next episode!
Links to this week’s episode