Wednesday, August 31, 2016

why i'll never hire a birth photographer

I have been thinking about how I need to write down Mylo's birth story, but I kept choosing sleep or shower whenever I had a chance to write.  I am going to try to write it now.

This story begins around Monday July 11, 2016 if I remember right.  My Mom wasn't due to get to our house until Thursday evening and I was already having steady contractions.  They were about 4-7 minutes apart but never really got as intense as I knew they would have to get for me to be in active labour.  Our friends were on-call and after a whole day and a bit of these, with some starting to have added intensity and Luke begging me, I finally went in to get checked by the midwives, and I was dilated to almost a 4 (from being dilated to a 2 the last time I had been checked a few weeks before).  I was sent home to see what happened and then had an appointment the next day so we could see the progress I was making.  My Mom flew in and we were relieved that now when I went into labour we wouldn't have to worry about what to do with Tracen and Rai.   The contractions were doing something and the next day I was almost 4.5 cm.  The midwife said that she didn't want to check too much more or she might put me into labour (not a bad thought to me at that point) but she didn't think it would be too much longer.  I prayed that she would be right.  That Saturday we went to Golden and walked down the creek and went to the farmers market - and I was still having consistent contractions.  On Sunday at church they were about 4.5-5 min apart, this I know because Luke was staring at me all church and timing them, and then my friend Suzy was too.  I started to get so sick of Luke asking, "Are you having a contraction right now?" or calling and saying, "are you having contractions?" because the answer was always YES, but I knew i wasn't in active labour yet STILL.  I was mostly just feeling exhausted!

Tuesday July 19th the contractions were a solid 8 minutes apart.  Nothing fit me and I put on this big grey and white muumuu feeling dress, not significant but I remember sending my friends a snapchat of me in all my pregnant glory.  Mom and I headed to the library and I remember sitting on the bench watching the boys play and just hoping that I would go into labour soon because these contractions were wearing me out.  We left the library and headed to Cafe Rio (our Tuesday tradition for the cheap food) and then came home and I took a nap while Rai did.  I can't remember what else we did that day, but we found ourselves at Yogurtland after dinner before bed. It was so delicious and my contractions were still 8 minutes apart, but starting to feel a little more intense.  I had my suspicions that that might be the night, but I kept them to myself because Luke has a tendency to worry.  After the boys were in bed, my contractions started to be 9-10 minutes apart, but a lot more intense and I sent Luke to his weekly night at Buffalo Wild Wings, just to have him not staring at me worrying.  Mom and I watched some "Poldark" and throughout it the contractions got harder and harder, the pain made me sleepy and I fell asleep for a bit.  When I woke up, Mom and I went upstairs and I told her that I thought we might have to go to the hospital that night.  I went in my room and ran a hot bath where I sat for the next hour and around midnight I text Luke a simple, "where are you?" He didn't think much of it, just that it was getting late and he wasn't home yet, he was surprised to come home to me in the tub saying that I thought we needed to head to the hospital soon.  We called the midwives and they basically said that I could come in if I wanted, or try to labour a bit more at home.  I was group B positive and they wanted me to get 2 doses of antibiotic if I could, so we stayed home for about an hour or so more and got to the hospital around 2-2:30.  We got to my room and got all hooked up and I was only dilated to a 5, but my "waters were bulging".  I met the midwife and her student for the night and knew that we had to wait 4 hours between doses of medication.  As soon as I could, I got into the jacuzzi tub.   The water was too hot at first, but it did feel good.  I sat in there with lavender oil beside me and coldplay and the shins playing on Luke's iPad (which he repeatedly had to come and turn on again and again.  It was quiet and Luke went and laid on the couch in the room and I laboured as long as i could like that.  Around 5 the contractions started to get harder and I turned on the jets, just on low but the change was enough to combat the discomfort and allow me to keep focussed and relaxed.  I knew i had to wait until 6 to get my next dose and then after that they would break my water if it hadn't yet.  I made it to 6, but I had to get out of the tub and back on the bed to get monitored again while receiving the antibiotic.  Although things were starting to get a lot more uncomfortable, I managed pretty well and the midwife student kept commenting on how great I was doing (I was about to make her take that all back though).

After getting that final dose, she checked me again (about 6:30 am), and I was only at a 6, but my waters were still bulging a lot, so she broke my water. That feeling will always be so weird to me.  Anyways, I had to wait a few minutes and I was just anxious to get back into the tub and i started to tell Luke that I didn't think I could do this natural again (i had been having major anxiety about this labour because of how things went with Rai - i was in transition for like 4 hours or something).  I was really defeated about only being 6cm and because with Rai it took so long for me to get to 10, i knew i couldn't labour for hours longer.  I was finally allowed to go back into the tub and when i stood up something happened and I freaked out not knowing where to go and what to do during that contraction and the pressure! So much pressure! So the nurse told me to sit back on the bed and see what happened, I had another contraction on the bed and it didn't feel as intense so I decided to get back into the tub.  7 am was shift change and i met my new nurse, who is actually the nurse that gave us our hospital tour.  I had about 2 contractions in the bath when i started to BEG her for something for the pain.  I kept saying how i couldn't do it and that i felt like i need to push.  She was so calm and said, you might need to, but i didn't think there was any way because they had just checked me a few minutes earlier and i was at a 6.  Then the urge to push was undeniable and I felt my body taking over.  The midwife student and nurse were both in the bathroom and telling me that I HAD to get out of the bed, and I was telling them I couldn't and I just needed to push because it felt like the head was about to come out.  Finally the midwife student told me that they could deliver the baby on the floor of the bathroom but just not actually in the bath.  This finally urged me to get out, basically step out of the tub, and then I couldn't make it any further, and I got on all fours during my next contraction and felt like I had to push.  Luke said within seconds there were all sorts of nurses and people in there getting towels and things to put down and I was pushing.  The pain was there, but it felt good to finally push against it, and to my surprise I had already delivered his head my first or second push out of the tub, which I realized when they said, "Okay, now another push for his shoulders" and before I knew it they were handing a new crying baby to me between my legs (I was on all fours still on the ground of the bathroom).  He was born at 7:19 AM, so I really went from 7 to 10 cm quick.  They all helped me as I carried this new baby to the bed and I marveled at how small he was.   He was perfect and due to the quickness of everything, his head was perfectly shaped and he had a lot of hair compared to my other babies.  Once he was delivered I realized how crazy it went down and how crazy I was during those last few contractions, and for the rest of my stay at the hospital, all the hospital staff commented on where and how I delivered him.  I am just hoping that should I have another baby, that they allow water births by then.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

4 weeks = 1 month

The other night, when driving home from a late dinner run to Cafe Rio with Angie and Mom I noticed the moon - it was full.  I was instantly brought back to the night I went into labour with Mylo and the drive to the hospital where I gazed at the moon during contractions, and said to Luke  "I bet the hospital will be busy tonight."  Then I was overcome with feelings of disbelief that it has been long enough for their to be another full moon.  

This past month my life sure has changed, my love grown and the evidence that I am not quite as young as I used to be (literally) staring at me in the face (when I look in the mirror).  We have had 1 case of mastitis, 3 bilirubin tests, too many chick-fil-a meals to admit to publicly and Luke out of town for two of those weeks.  We are so lucky that my Mom is approaching her 6th week here and and that Angie could spend 10 days here as well,  Jamie, Erika and Papahashi got to visit so Tracen and Rai have been spoiled with attention.

Tracen has taken to playing games, real games like Sequence, UNO (that Rai calls "who knows"), connect 4 and chutes and ladders.  All our guests have played lots and lots of games and it has been a lot of fun.  The boys also have taken a few trips to the nature park Two Ponds, and each time they have seen different things, the one day they had a run-in with a rattle shaking rattlesnake (poor Angie and Mom) and it was a great learning experience.  There have been trips to the zoo, museum and library and lots of soccer playing and play-doh too.  Angie built and re-built Star Wars lego with Tracen, counted his money and made a paper chain countdown to his birthday and the first day of school.  My Mom showed the boys a video of "make em' laugh" from Singing in the Rain that they just love and Rai loves to try to sing it and dance to it.  Rai sure seems to have grown up so much in the past month and with me being occupied, had to give up some of his momma's boy ways and has really gotten some independence.  

Mom leaves Saturday, and I am trying not to think about what that means for me, but I guarantee that i am just doing my best everyday.  Tracen was supposed to have his first day of school but caught a stomach bug from Rai and I'm just praying me and Mom don't get it.  It has been fun to see the boys filling their older brother role to Mylo and they do it so well, he is sure loved.  

Life is changing quickly and so is Mylo.  So far he has weighed in the 28th and 26th percentiles respectively making him our smallest baby, but the past couple days I have had to put his newborn sleepers away because he is too long.  He is also fussier than my other boys, putting me on a quest of what I can/can't eat and what he likes.  He has a definite witching time of day that hits around 8-9pm - usually a fresh diaper, essential oils, a tight swaddle and change of position help a bit.  He also has more hair than the other boys as well, which is crazy after baths and he loves getting it washed.  He loves to be held sitting up, and has gotten strong and pushes hard against my hand when he wants to lay back.  He has the same peace fill my heart when I hold him that I had with the other boys and they must feel it too because the boys love to hold him.  

 Finding our routine with him hopefully will come soon.  We are so fortunate to have become this family of 5 and I am learning and growing more and more each day which hopefully means I am becoming a better person through it all.   Last night, while my Mom soothed a fussy Mylo in his witching hour, I tried to make muffins (that Rai loves and actually eats) and I forgot the sugar, I had to laugh.  Perhaps that is the most challenging thing for me, making sure that each of the boys gets quality time with me and knows that I still love them SO much.  The sleep can wait, the patience will grow and these days won't last, which is comforting and sad all at the same time.  

This post is a little all over the place, but that is my mind lately haha.  

Unfortunately this face is one we see a lot of lately.  


2.5-3.5 weeks old pictures

Thursday, August 4, 2016

two weeks

Tracen has been tracking how many days old Mylo is because i told him the older he gets, the more awake he will be.  When he found out that tomorrow he'll be 15 days old he said, "He's gonna be so awake tomorrow".   In these pictures he's 14 days old. 

The past two weeks have been a whirlwind of cuddles and apparently doing way too much because i felt great and then came down with mastitis and have basically been just trying to nurse and nap and take hot baths most of this week.  I think I am finally starting to feel better again... but I'll be taking it easier now.  it's been humbling and i can't be grateful enough for my Mom who extended her stay and has been taking great care of all of us, especially Tracen and Rai.