Saturday, October 13, 2012

One Month Old...Well...Sort Of

I'm not sure how people with children have the time to blog. I'm guessing either you stay up super late or you carve out specific time. But I'm having a hard time keeping up with the blog. There I've said it. It feels like a weight off of me. I enjoy blogging and even have a couple of posts built up in my head. But it seems impossible to find the time to get it actually typed in. Maybe I need one of those voice recognition programs where I can talk while holding a baby. That might work. Anywho...

Nearly a month ago, our little Zemery turned one month old. (Let's hope that posting his two month pics next week won't take me a month to do!) While we searched everywhere for another Star Wars buddy for his One Bear, One Chair photos, we could not find one. So instead, he gets an elephant.

Here's Zem at one week old:

His neck control is a bit lacking! :)
 And here's our little guy on his one month birthday. At birth he was 7lbs and 19 inches. At his one month check up, he was 21.4 inches and 9lbs 4oz. He's in the 25th percentile for height and weight, but he's right on his own trajectory. We've got a grower on our hands!

Who the heck is this guy?

I'm going to have to do this how often?

Our contented Zemmy!
He's had a bit of reflux, so we had to switch his formula. His new one contains a bit of rice starch to help thicken it and help it to make it to his belly rather than have it come up. It seems to be making a difference. It's also helping him sleep more because he's not waking up choking on spit up. We're grateful that he's not choking AND that we're getting a bit more sleep!

Vince went back to work full time this week, and it seemed to go pretty well. I've got two more weeks and then it's back to reality. While I have enjoyed being at home, I'm pretty confident that I don't have what it takes (re: patience) to be a stay at home mom. So, I'm grateful to have a job waiting for me!

I have a post brewing in my head on how life with a newborn is a lot like life on the show The Walking Dead, but I just have to find the time to get it down. Thanks for checking in on us, friends!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

The Longest Short Labor

This is a long story to go with my longest short labor. If you want to skip to the excitement, head down to the “all caps” line and start reading there.

When I went to my 37 week appointment with the midwife, my blood pressure was high (110/90). Apparently, high blood pressure can be determined by the bottom number being over 80. This was my first high BP for the whole pregnancy, and I got to take all kinds of fun tests. My favorite being the 24-hour urine. There is nothing quite like peeing in a cup and storing it in your fridge for a day…and THEN getting to carry it by the gallon to the hospital. But I digress…They found that there was nothing to worry about. And two days later, my BP was back to normal.

However, the next week, it was up again, and I was official diagnosed as having “gestational hypertension.” Since I was only one day from my 39th week and there was no longer a medical necessity for being pregnant, the midwives recommended that I be induced to cut the risk for me and the baby. And thus began the long journey to birth…

I was originally scheduled for an induction at 8am on Friday, August 17. We got Gumbo and Julian off to their respective caretakers (thanks, Dorvacs and Downings!) and headed to the hospital. We had not gotten far when the hospital called to say that labor and delivery were swamped, and we needed to postpone to 2pm. So, we headed home. At about noon, I got another call (this time from the midwife) saying that they were still swamped and not going to be able to take me at 2pm either. However, I needed to come in for a couple of hours to do an ultrasound, some fetal non-stress tests, and BP monitoring for me, and then they would send me home and have me return the following morning at 8am.

While I certainly wasn’t excited about getting induced, the anticipation of being induced was unbearable! (When you’ve been through the pain of labor, thinking about it and waiting for it is not a lot of fun.) So, at this point I had been prepared and put off twice, and my patience and mental status was not at its peak. Vince and I made the best of it, and we went out to dinner and to the book store.

The next morning (Saturday, August 18), we called the hospital at 7:30am, and they said the next bed was mine. So we made our way there. Turns out that neither the next bed, nor the next bed, nor the NEXT bed was the bed for me. In a freak turn of events, every time a free bed would open up, someone would come in labor and would usurp my position. Now clearly, they needed the bed more than me, since I wasn’t in labor, but they could not start my induction until they had me in a delivery room. And a mere 12 hours after I arrived at the hospital, they set me up in a room.

HERE’S WHERE THE STORY GETS FUN. That’s right! At 8:30pm on Saturday, I finally had a room…36 hours after my original induction time. They started me on Cervidil at 9pm. Cervidil ripens the cervix (I have never felt more like a pear) and makes Pitocin effective. It’s a 12-hour drug, so the plan was to remove it at 9am, and I would be ready to move to the next stage of induction. I slept pretty well overnight.

At about 5:30 in the morning, I began feeling contractions akin to menstrual cramps and I relaxed, ate some breakfast, and read my book. At 7:30am I encouraged Vince to get a shower and some breakfast since I felt fine, and we would be getting serious with this induction about 9am. So he showered and headed off to the cafeteria. And then things changed…

About 8am, I felt a pop, and it felt as if a battering ram was being used on my pelvis. My contractions went from a dull annoyance to an insistent prisoner digging his way out of my body as fast as he could. Luckily, the cafeteria was closed, and Vince returned to find me in agony. The contractions were fast and close together, and when the midwife came in at 9am to remove the Cervidil, she assured me that with a little Pitocin I would have this baby by lunch time. I was three centimeters at this point and had to be on the fetal and BP monitors for half and an hour, but then she encouraged me to take a shower and try to relax before they would start Pitocin.

The monitoring went fine and I reluctantly (b/c of the pain) made my way to the shower. My head pressed on the cold tile and super hot water pelting my back did help me relax a bit through the contractions. While I was in the shower, my resolve to have a natural birth was washed away, and I told Vince to get me an epidural. He hesitated (recalling my insistence pre-labor that whatever else happened I did not want an epidural), and I yelled at the nurse walking by the bathroom door to get me an epidural. And she started to order one and prep my bed.

I stepped out of the shower and had two contractions hit like gangbusters. And then the sensation happened. I felt the overwhelming urge to push. I told Vince, “I think I need to push,” and I yelled again to my nurse, “I need to push!” “You don’t need to push, and I’m not delivering a baby in the bathroom, so come in here,” she said to me. I made my way to the nurse and informed her that she needed to “call the midwife and get someone to check me DOWN THERE because this baby is coming!” She called Amy, the midwife, who was there in a matter of seconds. The Cervidil had apparently done its work and had “melted away” my cervix. Not only would there be no time for an epidural, but there was no need for Pitocin. I was ready to push. The room wasn’t ready; all the “necessary” people weren’t there, but this baby was coming.

Two pushes later, Zemery Luke came into the world at 10:01am on Sunday, August 19, 2012. The active part of my labor only lasted two hours, while the inactive part of my labor lasted 48 hours. It was the longest short labor! Even by 10:30am, everyone in the room was still trying to figure out exactly how I had gone from three centimeters to ten in a matter of only a few minutes, and Vince and I just kept saying, “I can’t believe this just happened!”

Later, the midwife Amy said that she kept getting goosebumps think about how my labor went. My body knew what it was doing, and my boy was ready to be here. In the end I know that the 50-hour “labor” with only two hours of hard work was physically much easier than the all-painful 32-hour labor I had with Julian. But the 48 hours of anticipation was just a different kind of agony. I think I would still choose the later!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

We're back!

Did you think we had gone forever?! We thought that we were too. In actuality, our home computer died, and we only had our phones to work with at home. We thought we had lost all our photos and documents, but we've finally been able to recover them. We are also trying better to stick to our budget and not put anything on credit cards, so we needed to save a bit before finding the new computer of our dreams.

The other mitigating circumstance is that I also became pregnant. While that wouldn't normally have prevented me from blogging, this child (who we are affectionately calling "Rascal") gave me the worst "morning" sickness. It was more like all day sickness, and I was pretty well down for the count for the first 16 weeks or so. I spent all my energy trying not to throw up that not much else was a priority. Those days have now passed, and we are expecting a little boy in mid-August.

So, sorry we've been gone. We're back up and running and will have a full post soon!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Things I Want to Remember

There are a bunch of things about Julian right now that I just want to remember, so what better place to archive them than our dear blog.

1. This weekend Julian finally switched from saying, "Mama, hold you," when he wanted to be picked up to saying, "Mama, hold me." I think he said the former because when he would asked to be picked up, I would ask him if he wanted "Mama to hold you." I have corrected him on occasion but never pushed it. This weekend when I told him that he should say Mama hold me, he just made the switch. Warms my heart and makes me nostalgic at the same time.

2. When he sings Baa Baa Black Sheep, he sings, "Baa baa black sheep, have you any woof?" This cracks me up.

3. This is how he sings Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star (and usually quite loudly):

Krinkle, Krinkle yittle sar
How I wonda whatchoo ah
Up above the worl so high
Yike a diamon Krinkle Kai
Krinkle, Krinkle yittle sar
How I wonda whatchoo ah

4. When he's pretending to be on the phone, he almost always says, "Hello, Tia!" (Referencing my friend, Courtney, who he calls Tia.)

5. He has started saying, "Aww, man..." when stuff happens that he doesn't like. This morning when it was time to put on his coat....Aww, man.

6. When we went to my grandmother's funeral during the holidays, we talked a lot about how this devout woman would often say, "O Lord," in her German accent. Julian has taken to saying, "O Lord" in my grandmother's German accent.

7. Julian says OK a lot, but as in the movie Princess Bride, Vince and I often say, "You keep using that word, but I don't think it means what you think it means." He will ask to watch a show (something on TV or online) and we will say no. He says ok, and then proceeds to whine about watching a show...or having a balloon...or getting his diaper changed...or whatever. He says ok like he understands, but then perhaps he's showing his disappointment.

8. I'm sure there's more, but that's about all my brain remembers at the moment. Thanks for checking in with us!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Happy New Year

Christmas 2011

Sorry that we've been out of touch the last few weeks. The holidays and end of the school year were super busy. We didn't even manage to get a card out. So, I just thought I would post a picture of Julian from Christmas. We hope to be around the blog a bit more in 2012!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

What we love about Julian...the two-year post!

Every day, I am truly amazed at this little boy we have in our midst. Julian is super sweet, sensitive, and funny. He can also be raucous, loud, and whiny. But he is certainly a character. Here's an incomplete list of the things we love about Julian:

1. He can count to ten and say his ABC's, and we didn't teach them to him.

2. Whenever we pray at meals, he either claps when we say "Amen" or he won't let go of our hands because he has a few more people he'd like to pray for. And then he goes on and on and sometimes on naming people.

3. He's an amazing sleeper, and he still mostly goes down without too much trouble. Although he is fond of calling mama a few hundred times just in case I'd like to come back in.

4. He is super observant and wants to be sure that you've seen what he's seen. So, he repeats himself until you confirm (sometimes twice) that you too have seen it. School bus. School bus. School bus. School bus. School bus. School bus. School bus. School bus. And then it's more school bus. More school bus. More school bus. (He doesn't quite understand that we can't make more school buses, trains, ambulances, dogs, etc, appear whenever we want them to.)

5. He says "tank you much" whenever you give him something, do something for him, or help him in any way. And he does this without prompting. We're still working on "please."

6. He and Gumbo have found their love for each other. Gumbo finally has someone who will chase him around the table a million times without tiring....even when Gumbo finally gets tired too.

7. Julian is really coming into his own on playing alone. If he gets up earlier than we want to be up, we can put him on the floor in his room and shut the door and he'll play sometimes up to an hour on his own.

8. He loves to sing, and he picks up words pretty quickly now. Lady Gaga's The Edge of Glory is still a current fav, but he's also currently into the Blackeyed Peas I Gotta Feeling. He recently started ending the phrases with me when I sing him to sleep with Go to Sleep Little Baby from O Brother, Where Art Thou?

9. He's willing to share just about any toy, snack, or chair with someone who asks. Until he's not.

10. He looks you in the eyes and gives a sly smile when he's about to test your limits on something he knows he shouldn't do...and then he does it anyway.

11. He really loves his friends, his family, his "family," and people he encounters daily. He loves a good hug and kiss when you leave. Most people tell us that he is the happiest kid they know. We think so too.

12. He's an adventurous eater and isn't a fan of typical kid food. He'd choose cauliflower over chicken nuggets any day.

This is a small and definitely not exhaustive list of what we love about Julian. I could really write forever. It's awesome to see him learning and growing, being brave and being shy, being hilarious and being whiny. It's all a part of who he is, and we love him!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

2 years old....already?!?

I'm working on a longer post, but I know you've all been dying to see the two year old/Yoda photos.

In case you've forgotten, here's Jules at one month old:

And here he is at one year old:

Getting a two year old to sit still for a photo shoot is not too tough, but getting them to smile is another thing.

And don't worry. He's not all smiles. He is two afterall!