IN THE SPOTLIGHT WITH STEFANIE HEIMAN: SOCIAL DISTANCING WITH A NEWBORN AND TODDLER IN TOW.


Stefanie is the National Business Development Manager here at Motherhood Maternity. She went on maternity leave around the time that everyone went into lockdown. Stefanie delivered her second child and first son, on April 7th.  She shared her experience of having a newborn and navigating the strange new “normal” way of the world.

About the birth

My son Ethan decided to make his big debut on his own, a few days earlier than expected, on April 7, 2020 at 8:33pm. He was 7lbs 6oz and 20 inches. I had a pretty uneventful delivery, which was great! The hospital was fantastic, and it didn’t even feel like there was a pandemic going on outside our room. Big sister Eliana loves her baby brother, but doesn’t like that, “Baby brother is always eating Mommy!”

Meeting the family during Covid19

Ethan has met four of his six grandparents and one set of aunt/uncle/cousins, but from a distance through a window. When my parents brought my daughter Eliana (who is 2 ½) back to our home after Ethan was born, it was such a mix of emotions. Having our daughter meet our son for the first time was amazing, but not allowing my parents to come inside to meet their grandson was heartbreaking. They just peered in our storm door as I held him. 

My youngest brother and his wife also just had their first child, a son, on April 2nd. They live in a high rise in Philly, so they are even more secluded. It’s very sad that grandparents and aunts/uncles can’t interact with these new babies. 

Not allowing my parents to come inside to meet their grandson was heartbreaking.

The uncertainty of how long social distancing will be in place.

My husband and I hope this doesn’t carry on so long that Ethan misses out on knowing family until he is older. With our daughter, she knew everyone’s voices, faces and even smells very early on. We FaceTime our families and friends quite a bit and have even done a few rounds of Zoom game nights, but it’s not the same as actually interacting with them. 

But then there are moments, like when we’re cuddled on the couch together, that make it seem like nothing is wrong in the world and all is right where it should be.

Going to the pediatrician for check-ups

It’s very scary. Our practice has been great about taking extra precautions having two offices, one for sick and one for well patients, but it’s still nerve-racking taking a newborn out and possibly exposing him. As far as being home, isolated, it’s been very nice having this time as a family where normally my husband would be back teaching. That’s the silver lining for us. Our daughter is being really great about helping and loves her baby brother so much. Being “trapped” in the house has definitely made her a bit more restless than normal. We’re doing our best to keep her entertained, finding time for just her and us, as well as having her interact with her baby brother as much as possible. 

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