Saturday, August 17, 2013

Current Musings

This woman spoke my heart through her blog post...every teacher & parent should read this. Although I will not be returning to school until November, I feel the same way she does every year! Give it a read if you have a moment.

Monday, August 12, 2013


I finally have my body back to myself, well, mostly...breast feeding is a whole other story (in a fun way)! I cannot say that I had a terrible pregnancy. Other than vomiting for 18 weeks, I had a healthy and easy pregnancy. All of the tests, sonograms, and doctors appointments at the end were solely precautionary. Now that I am not pregnant, I am already down from my pre-pregnancy weight and I can wear all of my regular clothes again. Pregnancy yoga pants are still pretty amazing though!!!

I had zero swelling during pregnancy, but thanks to IV fluids and 2 failed epidurals, I now I have hugely swollen feet, ankles, and calves. I cannot wear any shoes except for flip flops, and my feet just feel stretched and gross. I cannot wait for this part to go away! Other than this, I am just tired. I am trying to sleep as much and as often as possible, but that is not easy with a baby who doesn't understand what her schedule should be yet. We are getting there though!

I feel blessed that I did not gain any weight and that watching what I ate really paid off. I'm hoping to continue losing weight, but my focus at the moment is just on Olivia and her needs and health. The rest will come in due time!

I wish I had a cute picture of O and I to post, but we have zero pictures together yet. We have a photo shoot coming up in the next couple of weeks so I know that we will have some good photos from that (thanks mom and dad)! More to come at a later date :)

Olivia Renée

Olivia Renée was a difficult decision for us. We have always known middle names for our children based on the middle names that have been passed down to us. Choosing her first name was a challenge. Since we are both teachers, it took quite some time to pick something that did not have a negative connotation associated with a former or current student. We never agreed on a boy's name, which was probably just as well since we didn't need one! We thought we had chosen a name, but then, a coworker used it for one of her pets and she talks about her all of the time. I know we still could have used the name, but once we settled on Olivia, it just fit. I don't know if she'll have any nicknames yet, but I've been calling her Little O since we chose it. 

She is starting to settle in, but we know that could really take weeks. We have had a couple of terrible nights at home and a few great ones as well. She'll get to a routine, but that could take weeks too. We are doing our best to rest, be patient, and just enjoy this time with her. Thankfully, Steve is off from work until early September, so it gives us time to just be a family of 4 (including Mo of course)! 

For now, it's lots of feedings, naps, diaper changes, adorable outfits, and watching her various expressions. It's definitely going to be a journey, but we are ready and we have God who is bigger than all of it!

2 days old
little piggies
meeting Mo for the first time
getting ready for bed...her head looks huge at this angle!
if she could get her fingers in her mouth for every feeding and with every pacifier, she'd be one happy baby!
say what? her faces are too funny!
Join us on this crazy journey! Stay tuned for updates, more cuteness, and I'm sure anecdotes as we attempt to be parents for the first time. Here's to a new and hopefully exciting life change! Welcome to the world my little O!

Saturday, August 10, 2013

The Birth Story

The big day finally arrived! Baby girl made her forced appearance into the world starting on Saturday, August, 3rd. Don't read on if you don't want to know all of the details...I'm not going to tell everything though! We called the hospital that night to see if they could take us to start being induced (see previous post). They said they could not but that we should come in for a non-stress test just to make sure she was doing well and that I was doing well. The non-stress test was perfectly fine, but my blood pressure was slightly elevated. I wonder why?!?!...4 days of thinking we were going in to have a baby only to be told no over and over again. The doctor came back in to check my blood pressure later and it was normal but she said they  were going to keep me because if she let me go home, she didn't know when I would get to return! 

I began cervidil around 10PM Saturday night and attempted to go to sleep. I watched FRIENDS on TV for awhile to drown out all of the beeping on the labor and delivery floor. Sunday morning I got to eat breakfast, take a shower, and then, begin the pitocin. We started pitocin around 8AM and between 10AM and 11AM, my water broke. Holy contractions! The pitocin on its own had been fine as the contractions were gradually increasing, but once my water broke, it went from 0 to 60 in record time. They checked me in the early afternoon and I was still only 1 cm dilated. The nurses originally thought that baby girl would make her entrance by dinner time; they were sadly mistaken! By that point, I felt like a sissy, but the pain was getting a lot worse and I was having intense back labor since baby girl was facing the wrong way. The nurses gave me an injection of nubain to try to relax me and get me through the pain. I was instantly groggy and able to take a nap for a couple of hours. It did actually numb my back labor as well for awhile. 

After a brief respite from the pain, it was back in full force in the early evening. I couldn't take it any more, and my doctor suggested an epidural even though I was still only 1 cm dilated. They made Steve leave the room which terrified me, but getting the epidural wasn't nearly as bad as I had thought it would be. The only didn't work! I was numb only in my legs for a few hours. My back labor was still intense and my labor was not progressing like it should have. Around midnight they tried a second epidural, but that one also failed and only numbed my legs for a matter of minutes. I think one of the nurses thought I was kidding about all of the pain but later realized how intense everything was. I have no idea what time it was when I was 3 cm dilated, but the doctor said she would come back to check on me in a couple of hours to see how I was doing. I could not have made it through those last few hours (2 turned into 3 since the doctor had another delivery!) without my amazing husband coaching me. He kept trying to get me to relax through the contractions and just breathe. I know many women say that you forget your labor and delivery, but that is a pain that I am not sure that I can never forget. I was absolutely miserable and have never felt pain like that in my entire life. If that's what having a kidney stone feels like, I am truly sorry for those who have gone through that experience!

A little before 3AM, I was fully dilated (thank you Lord!); if I was not, I was going to beg them to take her out of me! I found out later that I would have had a C-Section had I not been fully dilated. The pushing began, and that was actually much easier than I expected it to be. Looking back, delivery seemed like a breeze in comparison to labor because I actually got to do something about the contractions. Two hours into pushing, I was exhausted so the doctor suggested using a vacuum to help her along. I guess this is where taking a childbirth class could have helped because I expected an electronic-like device that would suck her out...I didn't know that I was still going to have to do all of the work! That being said, the vacuum suction cup helped get her over that last hurdle to make it easier for the final few pushes. It was immediate relief as soon as she was out; all of the pain and contractions seemed to disappear! 

Baby girl entered the world at 5:18AM on Monday morning. She didn't cry immediately, but once she did, it was the best sound in the whole world. Another nurse and the on-call pediatrician were there to check her out, and then, Steve was able to spend some time with her while I was stitched up a bit (that may have hurt worse than the delivery!). Once they were finished with me, I got to hold her for a bit. An hour later her birth, we were hanging out in the delivery room with my parents and Steve's dad. It was really nice to just have that family time without a bunch of people in the waiting room expecting to see us right away.

By 8 or 9AM, we were moved to the postpartum floor and awaiting her return from the nursery for her first real check-up. It felt like we had already been awake for all of Monday at that point, but I guess that's what happens when you have already been awake for 48 hours! Although both epidurals failed, I guess it was an all around positive birthing experience. My actual delivery seemed easy and I suppose I earned my merit badge for a "natural" birth (at least a semi drug-free one anyway). Either way, baby girl arrived healthy and loved!

Friday, August 2, 2013

No Room at the Inn baby surprise there since she's technically not due until next Saturday. We have been told since week 18 or 19 that we would probably be induced at 39 weeks since the doctors did not want my blood pressure to get high and then, later when my amniotic fluid levels decreased.

Fast forward to week 38 and we were told we would be induced 2 days ago. We were put on the list, told to call 1 hour ahead of time, and that we would start the process. We called about 5 different times that night and were told to keep calling back because the labor and delivery ward was full. They finally called us at about 8:30PM and told us to go to our regular appointment on Thursday and that I would be put on the schedule for Thursday night. Thankfully, the appointment the next day was extremely positive and everything still looks great with both the baby and me. I was not dilated at all on Monday, but Thursday was less than 1 cm...progress!

We were told to call an hour before the scheduled evening time for being induced again on Thursday, but we didn't even make it that far. They called us on Thursday night and said that they were slammed again with women in labor and emergencies so they could not start the process. We were told to call early the next day.

I called Friday morning and no one even knew about me! What!?!? I was a bit frustrated that I had to keep explaining what was going on (none of it being my fault!). I was told to call back again 2 hours later and I finally got a hold of someone competent. I still had to wait another 30 minutes while the doctors were switching shifts and then, I got a return phone call. I guess they can already tell how busy they are going to be today because I am now on the schedule for Saturday night. We still have to call an hour ahead of time to make sure they have space, but apparently, I am now a priority since I've already been bumped all of these times. Who knows what that means? I guess I could still go into labor on my own, they could still have a full ward of women who are actually in labor, or they could just keep screwing around with us. I am not expecting anything anymore.

We can only hope the labor, delivery, and recovery stages will be more positive. Our experience with the doctors in this practice has been fabulous, but if we do not have good hospital care, I may look into switching!

Hopefully, the next blog post will include baby pictures, but time will tell. We could end up waiting until I actually go into labor and delivering on or after my actual due date! Needless to say, it's been an emotional roller coaster this week! Wednesday was definitely the most difficult because we expected to go in and get this started. I thought I'd be seeing my little girl by now. The reality check has set in, and it is just one more reminder that I am not in control of any part of this entire situation...or my life in general. Thanks God for that wake-up call!

In the meantime, enjoy my little Mo...yes, that is his entire head down in Steve's water glass. He really has no idea what is coming or what is in store for him in the next few weeks :)