Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Baby H: PRH Birth Story pt 2

Miss part one? Go here.

We finally made it to the check in desk in labor and delivery and I started filling out the little bit of paperwork and immediately got another contraction. I couldn't talk or stand still, was trying to concentrate on my breathing while gripping the edge of the counter. I'm not sure what the reasoning was (a slow night on L&D, a nurse with a good eye for someone in active labor, etc etc) but we were able to completely skip the triage room and got put directly into a labor room which I was so thankful for. On our short walk to our room we made sure to mentioned that I for sure wanted an epidural and to get the process started on that because of what a disaster it was with Mark trying to get one in a hurry. We also explained to my nurse that my first labor was under 7 hours and it was seeming like this one was taking the fast track as well.

Once in the room I was given a gown to which I immediately started changing into, before my nurse even walked out of the room. I think this was a sign to her that things were moving quickly! I finally got into bed to be hooked up to the monitors and she checked me for the first time. I'll never forget what she said, "Well... hmm, if I round DOWN then you're at a 9 and a half. I can only feel the tiniest bit of cervix in one place" Holy crap! Again, for the second time, I had progressed completely on my own.

At this point it seemed like word of my speedy delivery (and current progress) spread quickly because everyone started working at rapid pace. A nurse came in to start setting up the labor cart. My nurse drew my blood and hooked up my IV. She put a Stat order on my CBC because we couldn't start the epidural until the results were back and even called down to the lab to make sure they saw the order. The anesthesiologist came in and was brought up to speed about my history and everything going on and started my consent paperwork before the labs were done. Between the two of them things got taken care of so quickly and for that I'm so thankful. The anesthesiologist already had me draped and sterile before the results were in so that once she got the go-ahead (and I finished my contraction) she could boogie. Once I gave her the okay to start, she worked so quickly even saying she felt like she was holding her breath she was moving so fast. She gave me a bolus of meds through the catheter instead of immediately hooking up the pump system because that would take longer and I needed some relief. Two boluses later things were starting to change from pain to pressure and I gave a huge sigh of relief. In terms of timing, the orders for my labs were placed at 8:20pm and my epidural was finished by 8:50pm.
My contractions at this point were coming basically on top of each other and baby boy wasn't really liking them. So I was told to lay on one side to see if that helped which thankfully it did. A few contractions later and I was having the insane urge to push (which by the way blows my mind that the body just does that all on its own!) so we decided to do a few practice pushes. Two contractions and four pushes with J and my nurse and we decided to wait so we weren't catching a baby without a doc there. The on-call doc had been notified I was there and at this point the next step for me would be to break my water so she was called. J likes to say that she's a magic doc because she broke my water from the doorway when in reality my water broke on its own thanks to one really big contraction just as she was walking in. She introduced herself to J and I and started getting dressed. A nurse warned her that we hadn't done much pushing yet so she might not want to totally gown up yet so she told me to do one set of pushes with the next contraction so she could see what we were working with. Well one contraction with three pushes later and baby boy was here!

Patrick was born at 2116 on April 16th, 2016. Just under three hours after leaving his daddy's surprise party and 15 days early. We like to think he just wanted to join in on the fun! And I don't blame him.
This time around my new baby boy was placed directly on my chest and it was such a magical experience. I got to lay eyes on him, wrap my arms around him the moment he was born, stroke his hair and soft skin. It was so redeeming for me. And the coolest part of it all for this med school momma? I got to cut his cord! The nurses worked to dry him off and get a diaper on him while he hung out with his momma. In fact they didn't take him at all until after we had gotten our first feed in.
His APGAR scores were 9's and they told us he weighed 6#3oz and was 18.5 inches long. Unfortunately there was a bit of a mix-up with his birth weight and we don't actually know what he was at birth. When they did his 24hr check for jaundice, etc they weighed him a second time and he was 6#8oz which didn't make any sense. There was no way he gained weight in his first day. It turns out the scale in our original room was off. On discharge day he weighed 6#5oz so they estimate he was somewhere between 6# 10-12oz. For baby book purposes we're going with 6#10oz as his birth weight but it's strange to not really know.
We stayed in the hospital two nights until Monday afternoon and it was such a different hospital stay than with Mark. The first time around it felt like we were constantly getting help from the staff, nurses, docs, lactation consultants, etc. But this time it felt like we were just hanging out by ourselves with our new baby boy. Whether this is because Patrick is an easier baby or we had the experience under our belts already I'm not sure but it almost felt like a vacation. We snuggled in bed, watched movies, fed around the clock and watched the snow continue to fall outside. Both grandmas made multiple appearances to see the newest addition and most special of all was Mark coming to meet his baby brother. It's a moment I'll never forget even if Mark was more interested in baby brother's duck and the snacks in the diaper bag!
We were cleared for discharge around noon on Monday so after ordering one last meal from the hospital and doing one more round of checks from both our doctors we were headed home. The transition to a family of four has going fantastically so far and we are so thankful for our littlest boy. Thanks for making me a momma for the second time, Patrick Reece. I love you past the moon!

Monday, April 25, 2016

Baby H: PRH Birth Story pt 1

Patrick Reece was born on April 16, 2016 at 9:16pm. His birth was not what I was expecting by any means and just like his big brother, my labor with him tested my strength, my patience, my heart. But the moment we laid eyes on him we were smitten.

There's a bunch of back story here that plays into his birth that I need to catch up on before we get to his actual birthday. The week before he was born I had two doctors appointments. The first ended up with me going on the monitors to watch his heart beat because his baseline was lower than what my doc wanted to see. Everything checked out great with him though and at the end of my appointment we discussed my crazy school schedule and ended up setting an induction date for one week before my due date, April 24th. It worked best with my schedule to be induced that day and technically he was "fully cooked" but there was part of me that didn't like the idea of an induction. We decided that we'd put it on the calendar but wait to decide 100% until after my next appointment which included my first cervical check. It made a big difference if I was making any progress on my own or not as to whether we'd go through with the induction. At my next appointment I was 3cm and 75% effaced and my doc said "goodness you have a great cervix" which is only something you appreciate at the end of a pregnancy, haha, so we kept the induction date assuming I didn't go into labor on my own before then. I felt good about the decision that we wouldn't be forcing my body into something it wasn't ready for and got excited knowing little brother's potential birth date.

The second part of this story involves J's birthday. My due date was May 1st and J's big 30th birthday is May 7th. Obviously I felt horrible that our little ones "newness" would come in the way of celebrating his big day so I decided to plan him a surprise party 3 weeks before his actual birthday. And I scheduled it on April 16th. Because Mark was early I wanted to make sure I gave us a big enough window before my due date so that the party didn't get ruined. Well party day came and I was woken up at 4:30am with my first real contraction. I knew something was up because it was strong enough to wake me and I had to concentrate through the next few that came in those early morning hours. I remember thinking to myself, "No way, I cannot go into labor today. Everyone is coming to the party and it'll be such a fun celebration for J. We can't not go!" Oh and I forgot to mention that it was also a blizzard outside that entire weekend. Yes, silly Colorado spring predicted 8-12 inches of snow the weekend of J's party.

I kept having irregular contractions throughout the day but nothing consistent. I'd have a few in a row and then nothing for an hour or so. I ended up having to tell J what was going on because some of them were strong enough for him to notice my reaction to them. I tried to downplay them at some points because I knew it would be impossible for me to convince J to get out of the house for his party already. A 4:30pm super early dinner at a very specific restaurant while it was pouring snow and I was having crazy contractions? Yeah, he would have thought I was crazy. Well we ended up at the restaurant at the right time without him suspecting anything and it was the perfect surprise! He had no idea it was coming which made me so happy. The party was so fun, all our family and friends were there despite the weather, we enjoyed lots of yummy snacks and drinks and some delicious cake. And I kept having contractions. I tried to sit as much as I could and drank lots of water while trying to hide what was going on because honestly, I wasn't convinced it was really anything serious.
We got in the car to head home around 6:30pm and on the 10 minute drive home I had a number of contractions that felt stronger than they had before. I even told J "I sure hope I didn't put myself into labor throwing you this party" and at the time, I was totally joking. We got home and I told J I was going to lay down with a big glass of water and try to relax to make things settle down while he put Mark to bed. All my efforts did nothing to calm things down though and I ended up texting him as he's reading to Mark that I thought this was the real deal. My contractions were 3-5min apart and were getting more and more painful as they progressed. He ended up rushing through Mark's bedtime routine and coming downstairs to check on me where he realized this was serious. To add an additional complication, our plan was to have my mom come stay at our house with Mark at night but because of the snow, she was staying with a friend on the other side of town closer to her work meaning she couldn't get to our house for a good 30-40 minutes. And we knew there wasn't time to wait. Thankfully one of J's really close friends lives just minutes from us and was able to come over to be with Mark while he slept so we could jump in the car. At this point it was 7:50pm.

After a slippery but quick drive to the hospital J pulled up at the main entrance where he dropped me off so I could start making my way to labor and delivery and avoid the snowstorm while he parked the car. Knowing how strong my contractions were already I tried to move as quick as I could to avoid having too many contractions in random public places. I ended up having to stop once in the lobby then booked it to the elevator and had another one just outside the elevator doors on the L & D floor once I made it upstairs. J met up with me at this point and we made it the last bit through the doors to check in.

Part two coming tomorrow...

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Baby H: Happy Birthday Baby Boy

This little boy wanted to join the party and arrived 2 weeks 1 day early. He has stolen all of our hearts and is just the sweetest little thing.

Stay tuned for his crazy birth story and all things baby as we transition to a family a four!

Monday, April 11, 2016

Baby H: Week 37 (time two)

Full term! Full term! Full term! And it feels fantastic. Baby boy we made it!

Thankfully this week I'm feeling relatively good and it was a quick 7 days. For as miserable as I felt the past few months it seems like things might be easing up on me the tiniest bit or maybe I'm just getting more used to it. There are still moments where I feel like I can't move my legs without pain in my pelvis but they're equalled by days that I feel great. My heartburn is still around but manageable, I have numerous new stretch marks on the underside of my belly and I keep getting weird twinges in my boobs that I can only assume are "growing pains". I've actually been having less contractions recently which is fantastic. I'm not sure if my body got sick of "practicing" or if it has to do with sitting around all day on my current rotation but I'll take it no matter what!

My doctor's appointment this week got a little goofed up as I was supposed to have my appointment plus an ultrasound for growth and positioning but they had to split up the two. So I only had my ultrasound which, lets be honest, is the more fun of the two parts by far! Little man is low low low which didn't surprise me and spent most of the time with his little fists in front of his face. His heartbeat was 140 and he's estimated to be 6#11oz (57th%) already. Everything with him that we could see checked out perfectly and he even flashed us a few smirks & grins making this momma fall even more in love with him already. 

We ended the week by getting our maternity/family pictures done. I wanted to get something scheduled asap since who knows when this boy is going to make his arrival which unfortunately meant it's an awkward season outside for pretty pictures. Things aren't quite blooming here yet but the pretty winter snow is also gone making for lots of dead sticks in most places. Our photographer had the great idea of doing more of a city/modern shoot which is so different than all the shoots we've done before so I'm so excited to see them! On our way home we stopped at a new burger place I've been wanting to try and unfortunately, while it was probably the best burger I've ever had, it did not settle well with me the next day. Picture vomiting in a tupperware in my drivers seat. Yeah, it was glorious and meant I got an extra day to my weekend as I couldn't make myself go into the hospital after that. 

In random news the last minute laundry (rock n play cover, boppy, etc) is now complete and so is the hospital bag minus the last minute items we'll grab the day of. I picked up a second mirror for my car to peak on BOTH my boys and while I was shopping I got the boys matching 4th of July shorts for the summer. Little brother's "Hello, my name is ___" onesie came in the mail and quickly got hidden from the eyes of the grandmas to be revealed once he's earthside. 

It still sometimes doesn't seem possible that I'm going to be a momma to two sweet, wild, handsome boys in such a short amount of time! As my second pregnancy comes to a close I'm feeling all the feels... Trying to savor the strong rolls and hiccups at 3am knowing this might be the last time I experience this. Loving on my first born the best I can before he becomes a big brother. Being nervous as all heck about going through labor again but also so anxious to kiss this boys sweet lips and hold him in my arms. Baby boy, you have 11 more days of cooking and then you're free to join our family! 

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

The Cry Room: Nursery Reveal (times two)

Transforming Mark's old room into baby boy #2's nursery space has been quite the work-of-love and for one reason or another it's taken me what's seemed like forever to finally get it finished. But now that it's done I can't help but sit in there with my hands on my belly daydreaming about our baby boy. 

While we are just as excited and anxious for this boys arrival as we were for big brother, it's almost like the edge was taken off since this is round two which made the transformation a bit slower. We kept all the furniture in the room the same (one point for us for picking awesome, neutral, reusable pieces!) minus getting this boy his own new crib since Mark kept his. The layout and basic "design" of the room also stayed the same since it really just "worked" and we really loved how the space functioned. All of these reasons made it just about switching things out, finding new pieces and changing the color scheme for our second baby boy. 

Finding out we were adding to the boy-team a second time got my mind spinning on how to do a nursery that was specifically his. For this boy we picked lots of different shades of greens with bits of navy and gray. Boy colors without copying big brother's blue room. Lots of textures and touches of softness. And just as many special and personal items for this boy and our growing family. I am in love with how the room turned out and can't believe we'll get to bring him home to his own space so soon! 
Little brother has his own duck for his crib, one because it holds a special place in my heart for my dad and two because Mark cherishes his when he sleeps so we just had to get one. There's another blank white canvas on the wall that is ready for his green painted letter representing his first name. Going with the green color-scheme, baby brother has a custom made map that J built and I painted for his feature wall art above his crib and we continued the "map" theme with a large metal compass on the other side of the room. He has a canvas of his family and a print inspired by one of my favorite Disney movies, Dumbo. His book wall holds some of the books we've been reading to Mark the last year and a half along with a few we've picked up just for him. 

Your room is ready for you little one, whenever you want to make your appearance and join our family! 

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Baby H: Week 36 (times two)

We've officially hit baby month! And I'm absolutely shocked that we're already here. The 1st came and went and now here we are less than 30 days from meeting our littlest boy. I have an exam on the 22nd so I am keeping my fingers (and knees, ha!) crossed that he'll stay put another 20ish days. Strangely enough though J and I both had the same thought on the same day that we have a sneaking suspicion he's going to make his arrival before my exam. Let's hope he doesn't!

This week it seems like baby boy is even lower than before. I didn't think that was possible but it sure is apparently. He's pretty much been hanging out with his body on my right side and his feet dancing all over on the left. Well his kicks are definitely far below my ribs and it seems like his legs are over a foot long with how far he can reach those heals! Every so often he gives me lots of jabs and punches on the inside surface of my left hip which is such a strange feeling. And I can't forget to mention that his head is basically ready and engaged in my pelvis at this point often making it feel like I can't bend forward without literally squishing him. Between his positioning and my contractions I've definitely been waddling for weeks and am still loving my support tank to help hold this belly up. There are many days (including how I view the above picture) that I feel as enormous as a house which is pretty demoralizing so to say I'm ready for my body back in many ways is an understatement.

As far as other symptoms go I'm pretty sure I have a new stretch mark on the underside of my belly but it's hard to get a good look since this belly is large and in charge. Also on the growing trend lately are the lovely breasturants and I'm hoping and praying this means better supply to feed our boy with. My heartburn is still the same, being totally manageable some days and out of control/making me nauseous others and this is by far the thing I'll miss the least once this boy arrives. Thankfully my exhaustion has been bearable this past week as my new rotation has me basically sitting on my butt all day every day. It's boring as all get-out but exactly what this body of mine needs for the last month of my pregnancy.

Thankfully this week we made a good amount of progress towards being ready for his arrival. After two short conversations between J and I, baby boy officially has a middle name so his name is complete! Over the weekend we also got tons done including finding and boiling all the bottles, nipples and pacis and pulling the rock n' play up from the basement to be washed and ready for some baby snoozes. I also picked up the last minute toiletries and snacks I'll want and started throwing together our hospital bag. I went to my prenatal massage and it was heavenly on my sore muscles. Unfortunately it's not just my muscles giving me trouble at this point so I'm by no means "fixed" but it was nice to get away for a few hours of complete relaxation. We also placed a big Amazon order with our double video baby monitor for the boys to share along with some nursing supplies this momma is going to need. It was definitely a good week and we are now that much closer to baby boys arrival which is the best of all.


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