Friday, January 13, 2017

On the mend...FINALLY.

It's been a looooonnnng couple of weeks. On December 31st, I came down with what I later learned was a sinus infection. I took me out of commission for several days, then my medicine finally kicked into gear. Then, the boys came down with it. Nolan ended up having a double ear infection (his first), and Zack had the same sinus infection I had. Blah. Needless to say, it's been a long week!

Thankfully, everyone has started to get back to their old selves, and we are ready to kick off the new year...13 days later!

So, HAPPY 2017! Here's to a wonderful year full of adventure, laughs, and lots of love!

Monday, December 12, 2016

Zachary's Birth Story

*This was written in January of 2016, right after Zack was born. When I discovered it saved to my log, I knew I had to save it to post on his actual birthday. So, here's Zachary's birth story....

I've wanted to sit down, and write this post since we brought Zack home from the hospital. But, life has prevailed, and truth be told I'm neglecting loading my dishwasher (for the third time today) to sit down get get this story written while it still fresh.

Let's start at the beginning. On Friday, December 11, 2015 I was having a very run of the mill day. Jake had left for work, and Nolan and I were just finishing up lunch, when I grabbed the broom to sweep up remains of PB&J. Half way through the task, I felt a huge gush of water. My immediate thought was, "Oh man, I hope that's not blood" (a particular paranoia I had since my bleeding problem during my pregnancy with Nolan). I quickly realized it was my water breaking, and that it would soon be showtime. I put the broom down long enough to call Jake at work, then the cascade of family that I needed to notify. Somehow, I did manage to sweep up the sandwich before everyone rushed in.

We got to the hospital about an hour later. They confirmed that my water had broken, and we were sort of in-limbo waiting to see when my contractions would begin. Our doctor came to see us (the 1 doctor that I prayed wouldn't be on call the day I went into labor (read: Nickname C-section King), was the exact person on call...figures) and told us that we would give it until the next morning for my labor to begin, then if nothing happened, they would start me on pitocin. It's no secret that I loved the L&D experience I had with Nolan. It was a beautiful, natural delivery that went exactly like I had imagined it. I was prepared mentally for another natural birth for Zack, but the old adage, "No two births are the same," is horribly accurate. That night  I walked the halls like I was in some sort of race trying to get contractions started. I was practically running back and forth for hours, dragging my IV pole along for the ride. When I wasn't walking, I was sitting on a labor ball, rocking back and forth.

Nothing. Absolutely nothing happened. I attempted to sleep, knowing that the next day we would meet Zachary, and begin our life as a family of 4, but trying to sleep on a labor and delivery bed is sort of like trying to sleep on a bed of plywood. No matter what it will never be comfortable.

The next morning I was up at 0400. I decided to take a hot bath, thinking that if I could relax maybe it would be a last ditch effort to get labor going. Still nothing. So, around 0600 they started the pitcoin. Let me just preface the next few sentences by saying, that I have an incredibly high pain tolerance. I had no problem breathing through contractions, and visualizing the end goal while in labor with Nolan. But pitcoin is a devil. A very mean devil. It comes on strong, and doesn't let up. I literally went from having zero contractions to having contractions every 2 minutes. After about an hour, I was hardly able to breathe through each one, and told Jake that I would definitely need an epidural. It was either that, or poor Jake would probably lose a hand. I held off as long as I possibly could, then prayed I could make it through the epidural process before the medicine kicked in. (Think sitting indian style on a bed, with a huge pregnant belly, while trying to bend over and keep your entire body relaxed and still.)

The first contraction I had after the medicine kicked it, I was able to talk through. I was giddy that I could no longer feel the pain of the contractions. I kept saying, "It's so weird, I can't feel my legs." And I literally couldn't feel my legs at all. You could of amputated it with me watching, and I wouldn't of felt it. It was about an hour later (around 9 am), that I was fully dilated, and ready to start pushing. The last thing my best friend said to me before I left for the hospital was, "Push like you are pooping." (Blunt and kind of gross, but true.) So, what do you do when you're numb from the waist down, and they tell you to push? You guessed it. I must pause to say, that a few weeks later Jake told me that I actually did poop. More than once, and that basically traumatized me. Real life moment right there...YUCK. (I'm so sorry Nancy! <my L&D nurse) I pushed for about an hour when I started to feel different. The only way I can describe it, was a loopy kind of dizzy feeling. Jake said that my lips turned blue, but my amazing nurse Nancy was quick to respond when she realized my blood pressure had tanked. (75/45) I've always been insanely sensitive to medicine, and I guess the epidural was a little to much for my body to handle. I only mention this because of this lovely picture.....Thanks, hubby. 

After my epidural was turned down, we came to the realization that even after an hour of pushing, Zack still hadn't moved. They contorted my bed into a weird chair like configuration, in an attempt for gravity to help him move down, but after 2 hours of sitting like that Zack still hadn't budged. It was then realized that he was "face up," and no matter what I did, I wasn't able to push him past my pelvic bone.We knew that a C-section was inevitable, seeing as I had already been in labor for several hours, and we were starting to risk putting Zack (and me) under stress.

I can honestly say that before L&D, a C-section was my worst fear. I absolutely didn't want one. But when the time came, I was so at peace knowing that this was how Zack needed to enter the world, and that God would take care of me. Jake and I prayed together before I went back to OR, and we were ready to meet our sweet baby. The OR staff was very friendly, and my doctor explained that it would only take 20 minutes or so, and that I would be in recovery snuggling with Zack.

True to his estimate, Zack was born not long after Jake came into the OR. They told him he could stand up, and watch Zack enter the world, and I have to admit that I was a bit horrified that my husband could see my organs laying outside my body. But it didn't matter when I heard that sweet little cry. Oh man, my heart grew instantly, and my arms ached to hold my little man. It was then that we realized in the rush of prepping for OR that we forgot our camera, our video recorder, and even our cell phones. (We are so with it, let me tell you.) Thankfully, the anesthesiologist was kind enough to take pictures with his phone, and text them to me. (THANK YOU, doctor!) Not long after these pictures were taken, Jake left the OR with Zack, and I was to "be right behind them."

That's when the proverbial crap hit the fan. After a few minutes of listening to my doctor repeatedly "sigh," he told me that he was having to use some different stitching techniques to stitch up my uterus, and that was what was taking so long. I laid there counting ceiling tiles, praying that this would end quickly, so that I could be with my husband and baby. Nancy again was such a comfort, popping around the curtain to tell me that they would be finished soon. (That meant more than you know, Nancy!) That's when it hit me like a ton of bricks...a rush of nausea washed over me so quickly, that I could hardly utter the words, "I think I'm going to throw up," before I put the words into action. To throw up, while laying on your back, numb from the waist down is an experience. To paint a picture, I threw up all over the surgical curtain, all over the anesthesiologist, all over the floor, all over myself. Thankfully, I hadn't eaten but it was still ugly. The rest of the story, I didn't learn until the next day when the doctor came to check on me.

My violent throwing up, caused all the fresh stitches to rip out, and in doing this, it also caused me to start bleeding from other places as well. We were right back to square one, and he had to stitch me up all over again. I was still clueless at this point about what was really going on, but when I heard the doctor tell the nurse to "put 3 units on standby," I knew that I was majorly bleeding, and all I could do was lay there and pray. I don't remember a whole lot after this time, and I later learned that I had been given some versed, and only remember waking up "snoring," and being mortified that I was sleeping through my C-section.

The next thing I remember was being wheeled out of the OR and into recovery. Seeing Jake, and then holding my sweet baby was priceless. I had lots of questions about what had happened, but at that moment the only thing that mattered was holding my baby.

I found out later that because I had been in labor for so long prior to my C-section, it caused my uterus to be "boggy." Which in medical terms means soft, and uncooperative. That caused my doctor to struggle with stitching it up initially. Then like I said before, throwing up caused everything to be ripped out, and the bleeding to start up again. I found out the next day that another doctor was called in to assist, it took 19 suture packs to finish the surgery, and I was "in the top 5 worst C-sections" in my doctor's 20 year career. Not really a list I wanted to end up on.  I walked away with 22 staples across my belly, and had the pleasure of having a JP drain coming out of my stomach for 24 hours to drain off excess blood. (That's really fun to deal with when nursing.) The 20 minute surgery ended up taking a little over 2 hours, and the recovery was one of the most difficult things I've ever experienced. Jake had to lift me into bed, help me get dressed, and even help me shower. We joked that the "for worse" part of our marriage vows had come a little early, but I've never been more thankful for his love and support. 

Despite all of this, I feel like I can't complain. We were blessed with a beautiful, healthy son. Ultimately, that's all that mattered. I moved slowly for several weeks, but my body healed, and now I have a scar to show what we have been through. Kind of like a battle wound of sorts. Zack's birth was unlike anything I had dreamed about during pregnancy, and it will be quite a story to tell Zack when he's older. But our faith brought us through, and God was with me the entire time. I'm exceedingly grateful for my doctor, nurse Nancy, and all the other medical staff that took care of me. It made the process bearable knowing that we had people helping us that truly cared. And our family. How can I even express how grateful I am for them? I've heard the adage, "it takes a village," but when you walk through something difficult, you realize just how amazing that village of family truly is.

Happy 1st Birthday, Zachary. You'll never know how much you are loved. 

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Here we go...again...

Hello, internet.

I've been away. Adjusting to life as a family of 4, and like other things (working out, cooking from scratch, reading) this blog has fallen to the back burner. It makes me sad. I enjoy writing about our life, even if it is mundane at times. So, after some thought I have decided to start writing again. It has always been a stress reliever for me, so I thought "Why not?"

So, here we go. Again.

A few things I'd like to keep doing from before are "Thankful Friday's." Because starting your weekend out being thankful is always good. And something new, I'd like to bake/cook (from scratch, of course) something new once or twice a month. We'll start slow, and then adjust as I see how it works into our schedule. 

I'm looking forward to using this outlet more to record our family story. To share, to learn, and to hopefully have some fun.

Please join me!


Friday, January 9, 2015

{Random Thoughts}

Have you ever stopped in the middle of a busy day looked up at the sky, and just took a deep breath? That the realization of today's "worries," will be forgotten tomorrow? So many times I have ignored the very basic beauty of life, because current demands make it too stressful to focus on anything but my to-do list. 

Well, in 2015 I want to stop, take a deep breath, and focus on the bigger things in life. Worrying less about things I can't control, and enjoying moments of peace more often. Even if those moments are only a few seconds. Being present in the moment really is the only way to live. 

Here's to turning over a new leaf in 2015.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

{Life at the moment}

It's 2:30 in the morning. I'm sitting in my dark bedroom, pumping, and snuggling a worn out, and very congested baby. Sometimes you just have to stop, and say a prayer of gratitude. Hopefully we can get some sleep. 

Thursday, December 18, 2014

{Nolan - 5 Month Update}

Dear Nolan, 
Oh you are growing so quickly! Yesterday you turned 5 months old, and left Mama wondering where time has gone? You are really starting to develop a sweet, little personality. Your laugh is contagious, and your constant baby babble melts my heart. A few of your likes....

Your comfort blanket is an absolute must to sleep through the night. It's a cute little football, and you love to chew on it....

You have loved your moose toy for awhile....

When I lay you down on your changing table, you immediately start kicking your legs like crazy! It's comical, because you don't stop the entire time I'm changing you. Which has made for some interesting diaper changes. Haha. 

 We got to see your cousin Kaden last weekend, and you still aren't too sure about him yet....
I'm certain both of you, (and the new baby cousin), will have many fun adventures in the future. 

You met Santa, but you were zonked out from milk....

You love to be nestled into our Boba wrap. Especially if we are someplace new...(Can't wait to try our new Beco carrier...Santa is bringing it...)

I don't have a picture of it, but you love music. We listen to countless hours of "Lindsey Sterling" pandora channel (she's a violinist), and we like the Disney pandora channel during bathtime. 

You also LOVE to watch Baby Einstein. Anytime, anywhere. For example, we had to wait in a long line at the post office the other day, and when you started to fuss, I played it on my phone, and you were pleased as punch. 

Of course there are things you don't absolutely hate 'tummy time.' I can distract you with a toy for a few seconds, then you take matters into your own hands, and roll over onto your back.  Sometimes in your sleep, you will roll from your back to your belly, and that's the only time you will wake up crying. 

A recent development is throwing yourself into hysterics if your bottle isn't ready in time. During these frantic moments is the only time I wish we had a normal breastfeeding relationship. But we rock the pump. This usually happens when you are also really tired. It makes Mama and Papa a nervous wreck! Thankfully, it doesn't happen too often. 

I can't believe we are already 5 months into this parenting thing. I honestly can't imagine life without my sweet boy. Since having you I've slept less, worried about even the smallest nuisances, learned how to make coffee with one hand, and basically stopped wearing makeup. But I've grown so much as a person. I have more patience, am more observant, and truly cherish quiet time with Jake (and with myself). There isn't a day I don't thank Heavenly Father for making me your Mama. Can't wait to see what new thing you'll do next! 

All my love forever, 

Thursday, December 4, 2014

{Daily Snippet -December 4, 2014}

Dear Jake, Four years ago today, we started dating. We went to volleyball, and dinner at Ruby Tuesday's on our first date. I was totally smitten. (And still am). Let's have brownies and peppermint ice cream tonight to celebrate!  Love you to the moon. Dear Little, Your smile lights up your entire face, and melts my heart completely. I'm so in love with the little man you are becoming. Dear Rain, This is December. You are supposed to switch over to snow. Please make the necessary corrections, and bring me loads of the 'white stuff.' Dear Wild, I'm beyond excited about seeing you, but you aren't being released in any theater's around me. What gives? Dear Erin Condren, I'm ready to order my 2015 planner. Do I want a cute print, or lots of pictures? Decisions, decisions. 

After a short sabbatical, we are back! Or I am back...whatever. Happy Wednesday!