Monday, July 30

He's a Month Old Today

When you breastfeed (at least for me), it's always hard to tell if your little one is getting enough.  It's not like you have a set amount you give your just nurse them until they seem full or satisfied.  I was a little worried going into his first check up at two weeks.  "What if he's not gaining?  What if he's not getting enough?  What if I am not enough for him?" were the thoughts swirling around in my head. 

Had I paid a little closer attention, I would have noticed that that second chin he now has?  Yeah, that wasn't always there.

And yes, I am just getting around to posting this.  Nearly two weeks late.  Ahem.

His lowest weight was the Friday after he was born at his follow up hospital appointment.  He weighed in at 8 pounds 14 oz.  His birth weight was 9 pounds 9 oz.  His two week appointment with his pediatrician was a week and half after that hospital follow up.  

He weighed in at 10 pounds 7 oz.

I'm no expert, but I'd say he's doing just fine.

Our Peanut?  Well, she just loves her baby brother.  Always wants to hold him, kiss him, and hug him.

Now, that's not to say we haven't had our challenges in the last month.

Because we have.

Boy, have we.  

But at least she is only acting out towards me and the Hubs--not her little brother.  She's figuring out that she's not the center of attention any longer--which is good.  But hard--on all of us.  No parent wants to feel like they are disciplining their child 24-7.  And I know it's not that often, but it sure feels like it at times! 

We are all finding our footing in this new chapter.  Her, me and Hubs.  And the little guy?  Well, he's just along for the ride right now.  I am sure he'll have his two cents to add before we know it!

Oh, and finally--here is our first official family picture......from the Fourth of July.  Don't judge. 

And this is just 'cause is so stinkin' cute......and because this stage goes SO fast.....


Tuesday, July 17


Trying to keep up on my promise to take lots of pictures of our second born...

don't think that should be too hard, considering it took me nearly 270 shots to get this priceless one. 


Saturday, July 14

The Day Our Little Guy Was Born: Part II

We left off before and our little guy had just entered the world.  The nurses set him on my chest and I got to hold him for the first time.

He was perfect. 

Ten fingers, ten toes--they were all accounted for.  His arms and legs were a little blue, which of course I was concerned about, but the nurse assured me he was just fine.  He was crying really well and the rest of him was as chubby and as pink as could be.

And he had a head full of hair.

Blond hair!!!

That probably was the most shocking part--at least for me.  He had blond hair.  In all my imaginings of what he would look like, never did he have blond hair.  When Peanut was born, she too, had a head full of hair.  Dark hair, just like her daddy's.  Then as she got older her hair lightened up. 

Hubs and I both had very similar dishwater blond hair as young children and our hair has darkened as we have gotten older.  Hubs is nearly black and mine is probably a medium brown (with a sprinkling of gray.....why no, this blond hair is not natural--it's completely out of a bottle).  All that to say, I just assumed that our little guy's hair would be dark too, just like ours and his big sister's. 

And speaking of hair--our little man is hairy little guy!  He has a thick little layer of peach fuzz all over his body and his sweet little ears?   They are little elf ears.  He has little tufts of hair on each of his ears.  I've never seen that before on a newborn--but this mama thinks it is pretty darn cute!

The nurses weighed him and measured him and we were all a bit shocked at how sturdy our little guy was.  He measured in at 9 pounds, 9 ounces and 21 inches tall.  Wow!   They gave him his bath and once again he got to snuggle with his mama.  He nursed like a champ the very first time (and he still continues to!), so that has been a huge blessing! 

Everything seemed to be fine for that first day.  He was born late Saturday afternoon and despite us not getting much sleep that night, things seemed to be going fine overall.  The pediatrician stopped by and he passed his first little check up--the midwife stopped by and things were going well for me too.

Then late Sunday afternoon are when things started to get hard. 

But lets back up for a moment.  Several weeks before I delivered, I was given the GBS Strep test and found out that I was positive this time around.  It's strange (although completely normal!), because I was negative with the Peanut.  Anyhow, this means that they had to treat me with intravenous antibiotics during my labor and delivery of our little guy.  My labor went really fast this time, so I was only on the antibiotics for about two hours.  Ideally, they want you to be on the antibiotics for at least four hours in order to insure that this GBS Strep is not passed onto baby.

They ran a test/culture on our little guy several hours after he was born and they continue to watch the culture for 48 hours after birth to insure he didn't have the GBS Strep.  The culture seemed to be doing fine, however he had/has an elevated respiratory rate and they were concerned, as this is often a symptom of the GBS Strep being passed on to the baby. 

So they put him on his own round of antibiotics.

Which meant that he had to have an IV.  They took him out of the room to have his IV inserted--Daddy went with him.  Mommy stayed in the room and cried--postpartum anyone?  While they were gone, another nurse came in and told me about the two different rounds of antibiotics they were going to put him on.  One was to be administered every 8 hours, the other every 12 hours.  She then told me that I needed to be my son's advocate and be aware that the 12 hour antibiotic is known to cause deafness in babies if not administered correctly.  This meant that I needed to make sure when the nurses came in to administer the medication, that a pump was used to administer this certain antibiotic, as it shouldn't be administered by hand.

Um, okay.  This is not what a stressed out Mama wanted to hear.

In addition, while Hubs and our little guy were gone getting the IV inserted, another nurse came in and told me that his bilirubin levels were a lot higher than they would like to have seen, so he needed to spend all night under the blue lights.

Talk about break your heart because all you want to do is hold your newborn and all your newborn wants is to be held.  Not really possible under the blue lights. 

He doesn't understand why he can't be held, why this eye shield keeps getting put on him, and why he can't be close to mommy or daddy.  Not to mention the fact that he has an IV in his tiny little arm that is taped on so tight and so firmly (with a cardboard piece beneath it, so he can't bend his arm) that his little arm is bright pink and irritated from all the tape.

That and then the nurses keep coming back every eight hours to administer more antibiotics in his arm.  And that seems to be painful in and of itself for our little guy.

It was a rough twelve hours to say the least.

As they say though, it is always darkest before the dawn.  Which was both figurative and literal in our case, as he was under the lights from about five in the afternoon until about seven the following morning.  The nurse came in that morning and tested his bilirubin levels and they had dropped dramatically--Praise the Lord!  No more blue lights--meaning, we got to hold our little guy to our hearts content! 

I was discharged that Monday morning, however our little guy wasn't.  Of course we weren't going anywhere without our son, so we got to stay in the room just like we had been.  It basically meant the nurses were no longer monitoring me--they were just monitoring our baby boy.

The initial culture for the GBS Strep in our little guy had been monitored for more than 48 hours as of Tuesday morning.  And it was still negative--Praise the Lord once again!  Meaning no more rounds of antibiotics and the IV got to come out!!!!!  So, so grateful for that!

However, even with his treatment of antibiotics, they were still concerned with his elevated respiratory rate.  Most newborns take anywhere from 20-60 breaths per minute and our little guy was consistently at around 70-80 breaths per minute.  So they decided to run an echocardiogram on him before we went home.   Although a little stressful, it went just fine and the results were good as well.  (This is despite the fact that they told us we would have the results later that day and we didn't end up getting them until late Friday morning.)  In the end though, his heart was just as it should have been, so no reason to be worried. 

It was a lot rougher start than either Hubs or I expected, but we are so grateful that we are all home now settling into our family of four.  It was an incredibly stressful 72 hours at the hospital--but that is probably more on me than anyone. 

I am a control freak.  And all of these circumstances were way beyond my control--and if I can't control things? 

I worry. 

BIG time. 

And we certainly prayed for our little guy......but I still worry.  I know I not supposed to.  I am supposed to give it all to God and let Him carry our burdens.  And I try.  I really do.  But then I worry some more.  And then I give it back to Him and start the process all over again. 

Thank goodness He isn't done with me yet.  But enough about me. 

And our little guy?  Hubs and Peanut just love him to pieces. 

And me?

He has completely stolen my heart.  


Tuesday, July 10

The Day Our Little Guy Was Born

Whew....I can't even believe that a whole week has passed since our little guy was born.   But here we are, a full week later and I am just getting around to sitting down and posting his story.  Hopefully, after reading his little story it will make a little more sense as to why it's taken so long. 

So last Saturday morning....Hubs had to work early, so I got up with him to fix his coffee and give him a kiss before he left for work.  Why, yes I do this every early morning that he works.  And no, I don't look like June Cleaver or Betty Draper when doing so--not by a long shot.  I am every bit the fright when I get up with him--and he still loves me!

Our last "progress" photo--40 weeks--and less than 24 hours before he was born!

A friend of mine was having a baby shower that day so I got moving that morning to get showered and dressed before our little Peanut woke up.  We had been at my parents fairly late the night before, so she actually slept a little later than usual.  She got up and I was still in the process of getting ready, so I made her some breakfast and while she was eating, I went to our room to finish getting ready.

10:00 that morning

As I was getting ready, I thought perhaps my water might have broken--as I had some fluid leak from down there.  I apologize if that is TMI, but I'm just sayin'.  Plus, right after that, I started to have some pain, just for a minute or so and then it went away.  Then sure enough, ten minutes later--same pain again.  Hmmm, I thought, I just might be in labor.

During about the next hour or so, I started having regular contractions at about ten minutes apart.  I wanted to call Hubs, but then I didn't want him to have him come home and have it turn out to be false labor.  Ever the practical one, I was trying to avoid having him waste precious vacation time.  But then I also heard him in the back of my head saying, "Jackie, you know it's going to go quicker the second time around."  Plus, he was very concerned about getting stuck in traffic on his way home from work and making sure he/we got there in plenty of time, etc, etc.  So I ended up only waiting about an hour into the contractions before I called him.  Oh, and also note too, that at this point in time, the contractions were very manageable--which was another reason for my hesitation.

11:00 that morning

Anyhow, Hubs got home a little less than an hour after that.  I called the hospital where we were planning on delivering. They told us to go ahead and come in so they could determine things from there.

My parents also came over during that time bringing over some groceries they had picked up at Costco for us.  I had packed an overnight bag for Peanut that morning so she was ready to go have a fun time spending the night at Grandma and Grandpa's.  I took my time saying good-bye to her, knowing it would be my last moment with just my girl.  It was bittersweet, at best.  Of course she didn't understand why Mommy was crying, but I knew.  I knew our world was about to change radically--all for the better of course, but from that moment on, things would be different.

1:30 that afternoon

So Hubs and I finished rounding up the things we knew we would need for our stay and we headed to the hospital. Once we got checked-in, I went through all the details with the nurse and they ran a test to determine if my water had broken.  From the way things were sounding, I thought they were going to be sending us home--but Hubs didn't think so.  My nurse came back in and sure enough, she told me they were going to send us home.  By this time (around 2:00?), my contractions were starting to get way more intense.  Still not unbearable, but much more uncomfortable then they were before and that made me very nervous.  The nurse went to go finish my discharge paperwork and she told me to go ahead and get dressed and she would be back in a few minutes.  So like the good little patient, I went and got dressed and laid back down on my side on the hospital bed.  That standing up and moving around moved things right along--I started to have another contraction (while Hubs was messaging my Mom and sister on my iPad--so he wasn't even really paying attention at that point) and I felt this pop right during the middle of the contraction and warm fluid gushing out.

2:30 that afternoon

"OhMyGosh!" were the next words out of my mouth.  Hubs head snapped to attention (by the way--I had asked him to keep my Mom and sister posted of my status--just so y'all know he wasn't neglecting me at all) and I told him my water just broke.  He walked around the foot of the bed to see for himself and started laughing (because he was excited!) and then immediately headed out to the nurses station to let them know to forget about discharging me.  No, he wasn't that rude--in fact, I think his exact words to our nurse were, "Um, I think my wife's water just broke," when of course, he knew without a doubt that it had.

The nurse came back in and was laughing as well, saying our little guy just wanted to make clear that today was his day and they weren't going to change that.  Me?  I was just thankful that that little episode hadn't happened in our car.  Yes, me the ever practical one.  But seriously?  Cleaning up amniotic fluid from the seat?  And knowing that cleaning wouldn't happen until after our baby was born?  Um, gross.  Very thankful that so didn't happen (and Hubs was thankful too!!).

4:00 that afternoon

From that point on, that was all he needed.  Everything seemed to kick into high gear after my water broke.  Not long after they checked me and I was at 4 cm and by 4:00 that afternoon, I was at a full 10 cm and was ready to push.

It looked like there was some meconium in the amniotic fluid, so a team of nurses were brought in to help assist immediately after our little guy came out.  They were all hanging around in the back of room busying themselves getting things ready for our baby boy.  I'd say there were 4 or 5 them?  Including a male nurse, which like my mom always promised, when you are in the middle of labor you won't really care who can see down there.  And you know what?  So true.

So, so true.  

While I was laboring through my first round of pushes, the team of nurses finished their tasks and then they proceeded to hang out a while......and then they all left.

So I clearly I wasn't as far along as I thought.  I understand that they just can't wait around all day for me to get my act together and push that baby out, but talk about deflating your expectations!  It was so disheartening for this mama! 

Everyone I know that has had multiple children says that the second one is way faster and the pushing?  Way less pushes and and way less time pushing....but me?  That SO was not the case.  Well, I guess it was in part.  With Peanut, I pushed for three hours.  Yes, three hours.  With our little guy though, I pushed for about an hour and a half.  It was faster, but it certainly was not the 20 minutes or three pushes I had been praying for.

This was for several reasons--first, my babies like to be born in the posterior position.  Meaning they are face up during the delivery.  Apparently that typically makes for a much longer/tougher delivery?  I didn't quite understand it, however Hubs gave me a really good analogy.  It's like trying to crawl under a fence.  You would never think to crawl under a fence face up--you would always do it face down.  The fence is like the pelvic bone and it's simply easier to get under it heading face down.

Second, this "little" guy was exactly 2 full pounds bigger than his older sister.  Yep, I couldn't believe it either.  I mean I could, judging by my size this time around, but a full two pounds?  That's 20% bigger, ladies. 


Last, because I am stubborn and because I made my stubbornness known to both my midwives and my husband, like last time, I wanted to avoid pain medication if at all possible.  And please, don't kid's not like I didn't ask for pain medication this time around.  I did.  More than once.  But because Hubs, the midwives and all the nurses knew of my request before hand--they were all great cheerleaders/coaches. They cheered me on and in some cases got in my face (which I definately needed!).

When my contractions first started to get really intense, one of the nurses (the one who successfully set my IV) cheered me on, telling me what a good job I was doing and that how that contraction was one more I didn't have to do before I met my baby.

Then towards the end during one of my last pushes, the baby nurse (I am SO bad, I don't remember any of their names!) came and got in my face when I was begging the midwife and Hubs for a shot of the Fentinel like I had with Peanut.  She told me I was truly almost there and that I didn't need that shot and with one or two more pushes I would be able to hold my baby boy, so I better get serious and put my game face on. 

Both of these instances may sound simplistic, but it's those little accomplishments/encouragements that helped me through!

And my dear, sweet husband?  There are no words......I simply couldn't do it without him.  I know at the end of the day, their job is pretty easy in relative terms to what we go through.

But is it, really?

Our husbands have to watch the one they love and adore go through incredible pain to bring life into our fallen world.  And there wasn't anything my sweet husband could do, but hold my hand and tell me a thousand different ways how I was doing such a good job, how I was almost there and how proud he was of me. 

I tell you, I can't even begin to describe how much I love this man.  

5:32 that afternoon

So finally an hour and a half and tons of pushes later, we finally got to meet our sweet little boy.  He was finally here, but little did I know things were about to get even tougher......

Read Part II here.

Sunday, July 1

We Would Like You to Meet..........

Please welcome our son and Peanut's little brother.....

Saturday, June 30, 2012 
at 5:32 pm
weighing in 9 lbs. 9 oz. 
and measuring 21" long. 

Mommy and baby are doing well.  I apologize this is about a week late--however stay tuned for his birth story--it's a great one.  I will get it posted soon.


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