Sunday, February 22, 2009

What's that in the freezer?

A few days after the delivery, I opened up the freezer looking for something to eat. I noticed a clear Tupperware container with what looked like frozen fruit salad inside, but I didn't remember freezing any cut up fruit & berries. Before I investigated any further I realized what it was--my placenta. If you think that's gross, I apologize. I think it's a little gross myself, and it's my placenta.

Prior to the delivery the midwife had asked if I wanted to keep the placenta to plant or anything. Apparently it's pretty common with home birthers to save the placenta for some other use. I wasn't sure at the time, so I guess she erred on the side of caution and froze it so I could decide later. For quite a while I still wasn't sure what to do with it. It didn't seem right just to throw it out, but we live in a house we rent, and I didn't want to worry about having to dig up a placenta tree every time we move. So it remained in the freezer.

Now I am excited to report that my placenta will have a new home. A non-profit dedicated to developing a sustainable local food system just started an adopt a tree program. You donate toward the purchase of a fruit tree that you can then name and plant on their farm here in town. I was a little nervous about asking the farm manager if it was OK to plant my placenta with our tree. I left an odd message on her voice mail, but she called back and said she loved the idea and that my placenta was welcome there. So in just a few weeks my placenta will become part of the earth that nourishes a fruit tree that will hopefully provide great fresh fruit to local families for years to come. That makes me smile--even if it is a little gross.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Home Alone

Jonas is 5 weeks old now, and today was our first day home alone together. MM took the first 3 weeks off, then my mom and grandparents came the day before MM had to go back to work. My mom stayed for two weeks and left on Saturday evening (she returned for another brief stint later in the week). It was great to have help for so long, but I also felt like it was time for Jonas and I to get into our own groove.

I know it's different for everyone, but bonding didn't happen instantly like I imagined. I love him deeply, but the feeling of closeness and attachment just wasn't there for a while. The complete dependence of an infant and the selflessness that's required of a mom is intense, and was harder to handle than I thought it would be. Now that we're on our own and some time has passed (and breastfeeding is finally getting easier) The feelings I was missing and wanted at first are coming.

Everything went pretty well today. No major melt-downs for either one of us. I ate, he ate, we walked, he even let me shower while he hung out in his bassinet looking at a book. Not a bad first day home alone.