Sunday, November 10, 2013

One Month Old!

Weight:  9 lbs 7.5 oz
Length:  21.5 in
Can’t believe it has already been one month since Sweet Pea's birth! In some ways it has gone by super quick and in others it feels like years since I was pregnant. There has definitely been a learning curve for this new momma; between the hormones, baby blues and complete lifestyle change, it has taken some adjusting. There have been days that I’ve cried more than the baby! He seems to be adjusting to life on the outside a lot better but I’m trying to catch up. We’ve been fortunate to have tons of help in the first several weeks and he's has been a great baby so far. He really only cries when he’s hungry, naked or his tummy is upset (some days are better than others for his tummy).
Since birth the Sweet Pea has looked identical to his dad when he was a baby – a true mini-me. My mom thinks he looks like my brother and me when we were babies and my mother-in-law thinks she sees a little of me around his nose and mouth and certain expressions he makes, but all I see is Jess! He’s been on a self-initiated schedule of feeding every 2.5 to three hours since he was born. The last week or so he’s been giving us four and some random 5 hours of sleep at a stretch during the night and it is much appreciated!

Sweet Pea, you have changed so much in this last month already. You’re definitely still a newborn, trying to work out being in this new world but there are some things about you that I didn’t expect until later. You are so strong! Within a few days of your birth, you were already able to lift your head while on your tummy and turn it. Your grip is super strong and when you’re on my chest, your arm grips my upper arm so tight that it’s hard for me to even move it! Sometimes you even manage to grip your bottle – I have to watch out because you won’t let it go so that I can burp you! And if someone does have the audacity to take your bottle away before you’re done, you cry bloody murder until it’s back in your mouth! A few days before your first month birthday you managed to turn over from your stomach to your back (and did it in front of your pediatrician so that it is legit!). I think it is your hatred of being on your tummy that motivates you – I guess I should add that to the times you cry. But since then, solo tummy time has been nonexistent since you immediately roll over. Luckily, you like laying on people’s chests so we’ll have to count that as tummy time.
Nothing can soothe you as quickly as your paci but when something else is wrong, like your tummy is upset, you will keep spitting the paci out until your issue gets resolved. You look like Maggie from the Simpson’s when you’re sucking on it. (I wonder if you’ll even get that reference!) You love falling asleep with it but spit it out when you’re ready for serious sleep. Then you throw your hands above your head and stretch out for a couple of hours. Like I mentioned above, you love cuddling on a person’s chest to go to sleep and would probably prefer to be carried 24 hours a day. You’re starting to focus on things around you more and more. I love it when you stare back at me and can’t wait until I can get you to smile at me. Most of your smiles right now come when you’re sleeping and they are so adorable. When you are awake you seem very serious. When I’m feeding you, I’ll look at you and talk to you until you look away, then if I look away and look back you’re staring at me again. It’s become a little game for me. We haven’t tried putting you to sleep in your crib yet, even for naps. It seems so big so we keep you in the MamaRoo, the bassinet, or Dad likes keeping you in bed with us. We’re going to have to get a bigger bed because, for someone so small, you take up a lot of room!

Things I love:  all the little grunting sounds you make during feeding; the wrinkles in your forehead when you look up; your hiccups and sneezes and the sound you make when you lose a sneeze is so cute; your cuddliness; and the flashes of personality that are coming out when you’re awake. Can’t wait to see what the next month brings!

Love you!

Getting jiggy with Halloween
First pediatrician appointment

Monday, November 4, 2013

Sweet Pea: The Intro

Overall, my pregnancy had been going very well. I had the usual nausea, heartburn, aches and pains that everyone experiences but nothing to really complain about. My belly did look enormous compared to how far along I was – I looked like I was having a kindergartener. Also, in my third trimester, I began having trouble with high blood pressure. At 37 weeks, my doctor said that inducing at 39 weeks would probably be a good option if my blood pressure remained high. I was completely against/afraid of being induced based on what I’ve heard and read from other people. I didn’t want a prolonged labor with a lot of pain and I read that inductions resulted in a high rate of c-sections and I was definitely not a fan of anything that might slice my stomach open. Plus, my husband was only able to get a couple of days off from work for the birth and I knew a c-section would require more help than that.

However, if there is one thing I learned in the years it took to get pregnant, it was that certain things are just not in my control. It is a hard lesson for a control freak like me! I prayed and talked with God through weeks 37-39, asking for the ability to let go and the guidance to make the right decisions for my baby and myself. By 39 weeks, I was physically ready to get that baby out of me: I hadn’t had a full night’s sleep in 8 months (though that wouldn’t matter once the baby came anyway) and I was worn out from carrying the baby around. At that point I thought I was ready for whatever my doctor suggested.
Flash forward to early in the morning of 10/7/13 at my doctor’s appointment. My blood pressure turned out to be at an all-time high and despite not even being dilated a centimeter, my doctor wanted to induce…that day! This threw me for a big loop since I thought an induction, if needed, would be scheduled for later in the week. I called Jess in a panic and told him that we had to go to the hospital that morning. He was still driving into work! By the time he got back home and I got packed, we didn’t arrive at the hospital until 11 am. Then the wait began…

12:40 pm:  I started on medicine to soften my cervix.
4:15 pm:  I was 50% effaced and barely 2 cm dilated.

4:40 pm:  Pitocin started
8 pm:  Contractions had been intensifying for the last hour; the nurse checked and there was no change in dilation. I was so frustrated and disheartened by that news. I thought inducing with no dilation was a bad idea in the first place. My idea of a good labor would have been having the option to be at home for the first part of it, being able to walk around a bit and not tied to the hospital bed. This was not what was happening and I was physically and emotionally exhausted. Again, I just wanted that baby out and to get the whole thing over with!

9:30 pm:  Told Dr. I wanted a c-section now rather than go through another 12 hours or more of labor and potentially end up having a c-section anyway. Jess' parents and sister had arrived in the afternoon for the delivery and really supported me in my decision. I know my own parents would have liked to have been there but the Dr.'s decision to induce threw everything off.
10:40 pm:  Sweet Pea is here!  7lbs 10 oz and 21 inches long. He was born with brown hair and stormy blue eyes that we wouldn’t see until a few days later.

My doctor told me during the c-section that I had made a good choice because the umbilical cord was wrapped around his neck twice. Though I felt like a major weenie opting for the c-section instead of going through with the labor, after hearing that I probably would have had to have a c-section anyway, I felt that God was answering my prayers and protecting Luke during the delivery.
The recovery from surgery was actually a lot better than I could have hoped for. Plus, Nana Emerson, Jamie and my parents came to help out during the first 3 ½ weeks. That helped out tremendously especially since they, amazingly, all took the night shift so Jess and I could sleep. Ah, memories!