Thursday, November 29, 2018

My mom left this morning.  After 3 weeks of mending hearts and clothes and settling fights and baby girl.  She cooked, cleaned, painted and was always up for a walk or trip to the park.  She gave attention where it was needed and so much love. She played countless rounds of the fishing game, read books, played trouble with trolls and was entertained by boys with their playlists and dance moves.  She watched movies at night with me and was always available for me to hand Cove to while I got sleep in the night or during the day.  She was patient as emotions ran high and low and wrangled them back into check.  I can’t even explain how grateful I am for her and her sacrifice of time and her never ending love, my thanks never feels like enough.

Erika came with Papahashi too! It seemed to be just what Tracen and Rai needed.  Tracen loves sharing his music with Papahashi and getting introduced to some new songs too, he also spent our day shopping happy and content with my dad.  Rai has always had a special place for Erika and having her here brought out his best side.  No one makes forts with him and listens to his ideas the way that she does.  The timing couldn’t have been more perfect, but it makes the goodbyes that much  tougher on us all.  Rai knew they were leaving around lunch and asked me to make the time not go by too fast because he believes I make the time (I do always seem to know what time it is, or when we need to go or how long we have).  It has made my heart hurt because we live so far from family and family is the best. 

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Monday, November 12, 2018

And baby makes SIX

SIX?  Can you even believe it. I can hardly wrap my head around it.  It really doesn't feel so different yet, she just seems to fit right in.  On the eve of her being one week old,  (and I have no idea how it has already been a week) I thought I should write down her birth story.  I hope I get it all down right now, because who knows when I will have a chance again.

Cove Emi Allred November 6 2018 5:07 pm. 6lbs 11 oz and 19.75 inches long.

Her due date was November 16th, and on Saturday November 3rd I was having contractions, up until this point all the contractions I was having seemed to be pretty sparse and non-existent, so I was thinking that she might come late.  Then on Saturday they started to get more intense.  By some miracle, Luke and I BOTH got to have a nap while Mylo did and the boys watched a movie, and I fell asleep to the rhythmic lull of contractions (they make me sleepy).  When I woke up suddenly and thought, I could have this baby tonight if these don't stop.  We had a group date planned and I had about an hour to get ready, but decided to try the tub to see if they would stop.  They didn't really but I got ready for the date while also throwing stuff into my hospital bag.  Of course they stopped eventually, but it got my mind going, and I decided I needed to be ready for her to come at any time.  My mom was getting here on Thursday the 8th, and I just wanted her to come after that because it would be the easiest.  But on Sunday I text my friend Amanda asking her to be on alert, just in case.

During the night on Sunday I started to feel SUPER nauseous, and the next morning I threw up (and peed my pants at the same time - thank you pregnancy) and had aches and chills all day long.  I didn't eat anything, and just felt like I had the flu.  I googled it, and it said it was a sign of labour, and I thought it was just pure torture.  I forced myself to go meet my friend at the park, and came home and had a bath that I couldn't get hot enough to break my chills.  Luke and I are working on making our front room in our house an office, and he needed my help and I laid on the floor complaining and miserable while helping him.  I told him I could possibly be in labour, I even made a lunch for Tracen in case I didn't have time the next day. He gave me a blessing and eventually the contractions I had been having stopped, and my chills went away and I was able to get some sleep.

Tuesday morning I got up around 4:45 to go pee, I laid back down and then fell asleep for a bit and when I changed positions I noticed it was wet between my legs. It was now about 5:45. I thought it was weird, and went to see if my water had broke.  I sat on the toilet and nothing, so I went to go change and there was another little trickle.  And then another, and it was like when my water broke with Tracen, just little trickles.  I got changed and went to go tell Luke my water broke, there were no contractions at this time, just little trickles.  Luke jumped out of bed and started to get things into action.  he texted Amanda's husband, who was awake and made plans for us to drop our boys off there.  I wasn't in any rush, because I the contractions hadn't started, but Luke did not want to risk him having to deliver a baby in any case.  I was also group b positive so they wanted me to go to the hospital to get some antibiotics in my before baby delivered.  So we packed a few things for the boys, got them up and in the car, and took off.  Every time I got in and out of the car a gush of water came out, such a weird feeling.

We got to the hospital about 7 am, got situated and I got my IV of antibiotics.  It was Election Day, and there wasn't much on TV at all.  Mild contractions had started, and they didn't check me because they didn't want to get things going because they wanted me to get at least 2 doses 3 hours apart.  They did let me order food and eat which was really nice, as I hadn't eaten anything the day before, but still didn't have much of an appetite.   After 2 doses (and like 4 hours) the midwife checked me and I was 4 cm dilated, 60% effaced and -2 position so basically nothing.   I decided to take something that was supposed to help active labour going, and it did help get the contractions stronger and more close together, but I was anxious to get into the tub (which I never got to do) and couldn't' because of the pill I took they had to monitor baby for TWO HOURS.  I hate laboring in a bed, it reminded me all too much of Rai's labour (which I hated) and this is where I started to tailspin.  My mental game was not up to par (unfortunately).  So after the 2 hours I started to walk around.  It was probably close to 3:30 at this time, and I felt like I was making no progress.  once I started to walk around I felt like the contractions were getting further apart again, and I knew I had a long way ahead of me.  I was feeling so discouraged and so tired.  I thought of Rai's labour and how it took hours for me to get to the pushing stage and how I started to panic and hyperventilate and feel like I couldn't breathe and I didn't want to go to the place again.  It terrified me.  after walking for a bit, I kept telling Luke that I thought I wanted an epidural, I just needed a break and I was so tired (really it was all just a mental thing...).  He was so encouraging, but I was feeling so scared about the whole thing. we went back to the room and I wanted to get in to the bath, but they said I needed another dose of antibiotics, which meant more laboring on the bed/birthing ball.  For some reason it broke me, and I asked my nurse about an epidural.  All my natural birthing plans went out the window.

Things moved quickly - in regards to the epidural, and by 4:30 the doctor was putting it in.  My contractions still weren't feeling that strong, and I just wanted to rest while I could and hopefully pass the time away sleeping.  Luke almost passed out when it went in, but I didn't think it was too bad.  by 4:45 things were numb, and the nurse was telling me to nap.  Luke decided to go get something to eat, and made sure I knew that he had his phone in case things changed, I was like "where are you going to get food?" and was like "downstairs, but just in case" and I was like "you think things are going to change in the next 15 minutes?"  we laughed and he went to go get food.  Just before 5 my midwife came in and asked how I was doing, I told her I was feeling a lot of pressure and contractions in the front, but not in the back like when you have to push.  I thought it was maybe just an epidural thing.  She decided to check me, and sure enough I was complete.  So in those 15 minutes everything changed.  Luke walked in right after she checked me, and said we could wait til he was done eating or after I had a nap, but then when the next contraction came, I decided that I wanted to push then.  I wanted to meet my baby girl.  Luke was shocked that it was time to push, but excited.  I am not sure that my body would have relaxed if not for the epidural, and it might have taken me a long time to get to that point with out it, but I guess I'll never know.

They got everything they needed ready, and through one contraction I pushed.  They thought it might take me a few contractions to know where to push, but it didn't at all.  I had to stop for a second so that her arm didn't come out beside her head, but I only pushed a few times through that one contraction and next thing I knew the nurse was telling me to look down and there she was.

 I hope I never forget that moment.  My baby girl was here.  Immediately they put her on my chest and her little cries stopped and it was pure heaven in that room.  Luke by my side and her in my arms.   She was so perfect.  Luke knew immediately that she looked like Rai, including a little skin tag by her right ear, similar to one rai had.  I knew she was smaller than he was, and just herself (but she really is a mini Rai).  I held her skin to skin on my chest and she was just so calm and so peaceful.  I couldn't stop poring over every detail of her (as I have with all my kids).  And it continues to amaze me how she grew inside me, her body knowing what to do, and my body knowing what to do.

Eventually they cleaned her off a bit and weighed her, and she was 6 lb 11 oz, our smallest baby.  They gave her back to me to try to nurse and then Luke took off to go pick up the boys to bring them back.

Long story short, Tracen had gotten sick and threw up at our friends, and so plans for them to meet her that night got cut.  He decided to take them home and get them to bed. We were so worried about them waking up sick and not having one of us there that Luke should be at home with them just in case.  Luke hadn't even held her yet, and I was losing my mind over that fact but knew what a nightmare it could be if more of them got sick in the night.  But, luckily  our good friends husband came over to the house after the boys were asleep so that Luke could come back to the hospital for a few hours and cuddle baby girl (stilll not officially named yet).  And there is nothing like seeing Luke holding his newborn child for my heart and this was no different (except she is going to be spoiled by him I can tell).

There is so much more I could write, so much more I want to remember forever.  The boys meeting her and their pure excitement, Mylo not being able to resist grabbing her feet and toes, the prayers they've said, the way they are always making sure she is okay, the night time feeds and quiet moments where I try to memorize everything so I can never forget, the help, the happy sounds of boys playing with my mom while I rest or feed her,  the way Luke loves to hold her and stares at her, how Tracen has found how calming it can be to hold a sister, they way Rai loves that she looks like him.  All of it is so magical right now.  And I want to remember the magic.