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Thursday, November 3, 2011

Kashi Review

For more than 25 years, Kashi has stood up for real food, offering a variety of naturally nutritious foods and education resources for everyone to enjoy. Kashi products are natural, minimally processed, and free of highly refined sugars, artificial additives, and unnatural preservatives. Kashi offers a variety of all natural foods--cereal bars, waffles, frozen entrees, and crackers--that are nourishing and satisfyingly delicious. You can find them on Facebook where they frequently offer coupons and new product information.

I was recently given the opportunity to sample Kashi's new TLC Peanutty Dark Chocolate Layered granola bars through the Moms Meet program. They're made with a signature blend of seven whole grains and feature the smooth taste of peanuts with rich, dark chocolate for a sweet and savory flavor combination the whole family can enjoy. Each Kashi TLC Peanutty Dark Chocolate Layered Granola Bar has 7 grams of fiber and 4 grams for protein, making it a delicious indulgence you can feel good about. Kashi also sent a box of their Cinnamon Harvest cereal that wakes up sleepy taste buds with bite-sized organic whole-wheat biscuits, lightly sweetened and baked with real organic cinnamon. It has the goodness of over 20 percent of your daily fiber requirements and over 2/3 of your daily recommended whole grain intake. And finally, I also sampled Kashi TLC Soft-Baked Ripe Strawberry cereal bars that are made with real fruit and wildflower honey for natural goodness you can see and taste. The strawberry bars contain 3 grams of fiber and 11 grams of whole grain in each serving - making it an ideal morning or midday snack.

My son loves cereal bars, and he was a big fan of the TLC Soft-Baked Ripe Strawberry bars. I usually like to make him breakfast, but the cereal bars are nice to have on hand for when we're running late and need a quick breakfast. They're also good for a light snack. And I like that they're not too sweet and that they contain whole grains and real fruit. And a huge plus is that they don't contain high fructose corn syrup, like similar bars. I would have preferred the whole grains to be from an organic source, but other than that, they were the perfect bar. Needless to say, these bars disappeared quickly.

The Peanutty Dark Chocolate Layered Granola bars are the perfect combination of salty and sweet. I don't know that I would have been a fan of the bars without the chocolate, but they really helped out the flavor and made it easier for me to eat something that I knew was healthy. The packaging is convenient and would also make for an easy, on-the-go snack or breakfast.

The cereal was delicious with just the right amount of cinnamon flavor. My husband LOVED the cereal and said that it was the best shredded wheat type of cereal that he's ever had. He loved the cereal with milk, and I liked it dry as a snack. It was delicious with simple ingredients. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to locate the cereal in my local stores, but I already put in a request at the grocery store for them to carry it. In the meantime, I'm buying it off Amazon.

Kashi TLC Peanutty Dark Chocolate Layered Granola Bars retail for $3.89 and can be found at most major grocery stores nationwide.

Disclaimer: I received this product for free from the sponsor of the Moms Meet program, May Media Group LLC, who received it directly from the manufacturer. As a Moms Meet blogger, I agreed to use this product and post my opinion on my blog. My opinions do not necessarily reflect the opinions of May Media Group LLC or the manufacturers of the product.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

What I'm Loving Wednesday!

I guess this week's What I'm Loving Wednesday should really be called "Who" I'm Loving Wednesday, because I'm really loving Tim Hawkins! If you've never heard of him, you're in for a real treat. He's a Christian comedian, and he is hilarious! He pokes fun at church, prayer, homeschooling, parenting, and just about everything. Joshua and I have had the pleasure of seeing him live several times now, and he never disappoints. We recently sponsored an event through my husband's business and he was the featured guest. And because he lived here for several years, he even threw in a few local jokes.

Here are some of my favorite videos:

Chick-fil-A! This was recorded at a corporate event, and he called out the CFO - LOL!

Tim explains his favorite Bible verse:

Hand sanitizer in the church:

And one of my favorites that I couldn't find a video of is him describing the different types of prayers such as the thesaurus prayer: "Lord, we beseech thee, lead us, guide us, direct us..."

Have you heard of Tim Hawkins? Do you have a favorite song/skit/video/quote?

Baby Blessings Event: Bamboobies

When I was nursing my first son, I went through several boxes of disposable nursing pads. Even though I was using cloth diapers at the time, I never gave nursing pads much of a thought. When I started to really think about it, though, I realized that all those nursing pads were going straight to a landfill. I was determined to find something better this time around. Many of the reviews that I read complained that cotton reusable pads were bulky and not very absorbent. I was determined to find something more eco-friendly that worked, so I was excited when Bamboobies sent me some pads to review.

I couldn't wait to try out the Bamboobies when they first arrived. Right out of the package, they are so incredibly soft, which is a great feature for those first few weeks when your nipples can be sore and cracked. The pads are made out of organic bamboo and bamboo fleece. It's like having a pillow for your boobs. Much better than some crinkly, stiff paper.

Bamboobies are the most unique pad that I've ever seen. I had assumed that the heart shape was just a gimmick and were designed to make the pads look cute. It turns out that the shape is very practical. Instead of a conventional round or contoured pad that wrinkles underneath clothing, the heart shape contours to the breast and prevents those annoying lines. They're prefect for wearing with my running tanks.

They're super thin, too, which was surprising since I was expecting something bulky considering it was made from cloth. The hemp core is very absorbent, and a special milk proof backing prevents leaks. The bamboo fabric wicks moisture away from the skin so that you're not stuck with cold, wet fabric next to your skin.

And if you do need something more absorbent, they make overnight pads which are super thick (and made from super soft bamboo fleece). I thought these were great for the first few weeks of nursing, but they're a bit too bulky for me now.

Buy It:
Bamboobies are available on their website. Family of the Cloth readers can use the coupon code FOTC20 for 20% off!

Win It!
Bamboobies is giving one lucky Family of the Cloth reader a gift certificate for $16.99! You can use the code for a free two pack of pads, or apply it towards any of the other larger sets.

To enter, simply visit and let me know how you would spend your credit. *This entry is mandatory and must be completed before any of the additional entries will be counted.*

For additional entries, you can do any of the following:
- Follow my blog publicly through Google Friend Connect
- Subscribe to my blog through email or a reader
- "Like" Bamboobies on Facebook (be sure to tell them that Family of the Cloth sent you!)
- Follow @Bamboobies and @Family of the Cloth on twitter and tweet about this giveaway. You can tweet once daily of the extra entries. Just leave the permalink of your tweet in a comment.
- Add my button to your blog. Just leave me a comment letting me know where I can find it!

Good luck!

This giveaway will end 7-19 at 8 p.m. CST. Winner will be chosen via and will have 48 hours to respond to a notification email or a new winner will be chosen. I received a set of regular pads and a set of overnight pads for the purposes of review. The reviews expressed in this post are my own and were not influenced by any outside source.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

What I'm Loving Wednesday!

My friend Ashley participates in the weekly "What I'm Loving Wednesday" series over at This Kind of Love blog, and I always enjoy reading her posts. I thought I'd give it a go and post some of the things we're loving around here. For this week, I thought I'd post some of Shepard's favorite things.

Shepard LOVES to read (which makes his reading specialist mama super proud!). His favorite books right now (that we read at every day at nap time and bedtime) are:

by Bill Martin Jr. and John Archambault and Illustrated by Lois Elhert. Cute story about the lowercase alphabet racing to climb the coconut tree. We love the bright colors and the cute rhymes. Shepard loves to point out the letters that he knows, and then we work on the letters he doesn't know yet.

by Deborah Diesen
Adorable story about a sad fish who spreads "dreary wearies all over the place" because he doesn't think he can be happy. With the help of his friends, he discovers his true destiny. We love the rhymes, and Shepard cracks up each time the fish goes "Blub, Bluuub, Bluuuuuub"

Shepard loves identifying all the animals and making the sounds. Love Eric Carle's illustrations!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Baby Blessings Event: Organically Grown

I've had the privilege of working with Organically Grown several times now. I'm proud to support a company that plays an active role in the organic revolution. There is a direct connection between what we wear and the effect it has on the earth.

Why chose organic clothing?
The Organic Exchange estimates that 170 million pounds of pesticides, and 25% of the world's insecticides are used in the production of conventional, non-organic cotton. And 7 out of 10 of these pesticides used are on the EPA's list of "known" list of "likely" or "probable" carcinogens. These chemicals result in work-force illnesses, water contamination, and devastation of farmland.

Organically Grown believes in your right to affordable, safe, stylish, high-quality organic products from apparel and home decor to personal care items. With Organically Grown there is no need to compromise between your budget and your conscience.

GOTS Certified
Organically Grown's newest line of clothing is certified by the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) which helps to ensure organic integrity: from harvesting of the raw materials to environmentally and socially responsible manufacturing and labeling, in order to provide credible assurance to the consumer. And best of all, it's softer than ever!

There are so many adorable pieces in the new line for both boys and girls. I love the Pink Ladybug coverall (pictured on right) and the Little Lion bodysuit set (left).

Buy It:
You can purchase the new GOTS certified line at Organically Grown.

Win It:
One lucky Family of the Cloth reader will win an item from Organically Grown (Organically Grown will select the item).

To enter, simply visit Organically Grown, browse their collection, then come back here and leave me a comment letting me know your favorite item. This entry is mandatory and is required before any additional entries can be counted.
*Please make sure to leave your email address so that I can contact you if you win*

Extra Entries:
- Become a public follower of my blog through Google Friend Connect
- Subscribe to my blog through email or via a reader
- Follow @FamilyofCloth and @OrganicallyGrwn on twitter and tweet about the giveaway. You may tweet daily for extra entries. Just leave the permalink from your tweet.
- Like Organically Grown on Facebook. Be sure to tell them that Family of the Cloth sent you!
- Add my button to your blog (leave me a comment letting me know where I can find it)

This giveaway is open to US residents 18 and older. Giveaway will end 6.23 at 8 p.m. CST. Winner will be chosen via and will have 48 hours to respond to a notification email, or a new winner will be chosen. I did not receive compensation for this giveaway. All information expressed in this post is the opinion of the author.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Baby Blessings Event

Babies a blessing from the Lord, and in honor of Fisher's birth I've put together an awesome event I'm calling "Baby Blessings." So be on the lookout for some great giveaways in the next few weeks!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Scriptures for Pregnancy and Childbirth

As I mentioned in Fisher's birth story, one of my desires during pregnancy was to have a better birthing experience. Giving birth is hard work. Something I knew that I could only accomplish with God's help. Therefore, one of the things I found most helpful during my numerous prayers was to mediate over God's word. I compiled a list of verses and I would chose a verse or two to pray over. Scripture never fails to provide me with encouragement, and it became invaluable to me during pregnancy and birth when I needed a bit of encouragement. Whether it was dealing with the general aches and pains of pregnancy or during the tough moments in labor. I wanted to share my list of favorite verses in case anyone else can benefit from them as well.

So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic before them. For the Lord your God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you. - Deuteronomy 31:8

The eternal God is your refuge, and his everlasting arms are under you. - Deuternomy 33:27

"I command you -- be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go." Joshua 1:9, NLT

Look to the LORD and his strength; seek his face always. - 1 Chronicles 16:11

“But you, be strong and do not lose courage, for there is reward for your work.” 2 Chron. 15:7

I know the LORD is always with me. I will not be shaken, for he is right beside me. - Psalm 16:8

He reached down from heaven and rescued me; he drew me out of deep waters. - Psalm 18:16

In your strength I can crush an army; with my God I can scale any wall. Psalm 18:29

It is God who arms me with strength and makes my way perfect. - Psalm 18:32

The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped. - Psalm 28:7

You are my hiding place; you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance. - Psalm 32:7

I prayed to the Lord, and he answered me. He freed me from all my fears. - Psalm 34:4

Great is the Lord, who enjoys helping his servant. Psalm 35:27

Don't be impatient for the Lord to act! Travel steadily along his path. Psalm 37:34

“I waited patiently for the Lord to help me, and He turned to me and heard my cry.” - Psalm 40:1

God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. - Psalm 46:1

What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee. Psalm 56:3

He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart. - Psalm 91:4

Know that the LORD is God. It is He who made us, and we are His, we are His people, the sheep of His pasture. - Psalm 100:3

I look up to the hills, but where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth. He will not let you be defeated. He who guards you never sleeps. He who guards Israel never rests or sleeps. The Lord guards you.

The Lord is the shade that protects you from the sun. The sun cannot hurt you during the day, and the moon cannot hurt you at night. The Lord will protect you from all dangers; he will guard your life. The Lord will guard you as you come and go, both now and forever. - Psalm 121:1-8

The Lord himself watches over you! The Lord stands beside you as your protective shade. The Lord keeps watch over you as you come and go. Psalm 121:5

For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be. - Psalm 139:13-16

Bless the Lord, who is my rock. He gives me strength... He is my loving ally... my deliverer. Psalm 144:1-2

The name of the Lord is a strong tower; the righteous run to it and are safe. Proverbs 18:10

But those who wait on the Lord will find new strength. They will fly high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint. - Isaiah 40:31

So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. – Isaiah 41:10

Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you. I have called you by name; you are mine. When you go through deep waters and great trouble, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown! Isaiah 43:1-2

Before she goes into labor, she gives birth before the pains come upon her, she delivers a son. Who has ever heard of such a thing? ... Do I bring to the moment of birth and not give delivery? Isaiah 66:7-9

I will strengthen the weak. Ezekiel 34:16

The Lord your God is with you, he is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing. - Zephaniah 3:17

Come to me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. - Matthew 11:28

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. - John 14:27

A woman giving birth to a child has pain because her time has come; but when her baby is born she forgets the anguish because of her joy that a child is born into the world. - John 16:21

For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us. - Romans 8:18

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. - Romans 8:28

"My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." - 2 Corinthians 12:9

All glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think.- Ephesians 3:20

“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.” - Philippians 4:6-7

I can do everything through Christ who gives me strength. - Philippians 4:13

"For He has not given your a spirit of fear, but of POWER and of LOVE and of a SOUND MIND" - 2 Timothy 1:7

So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most. - Hebrews 4:16

Take a new grip with your tired hands and stand firm on your shaky legs. Mark out a straight path for your feet.... become strong. Hebrews 12:12-13

For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing. - James 1:3-4

Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. - 1 Peter 5:7 

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Fisher's Birth Story

Fisher's Birth Story

I wanted to write Fisher's birth story since we got home from the hospital, but a certain two year old and a newborn who loves to nurse and doesn't like to be put down have kept me busier than I expected. It's amazing how quickly 6 weeks can fly by! But I wanted to go ahead and get this all down before I start forgetting the details. Even though I didn't get the VBAC that I had planned for, I know that Fisher's birth was a testament to God's faithfulness.

My last pregnancy update on the blog was at 40 weeks. I had assumed that I would go into labor on within a few days of my due date (Shepard came on his due date), so imagine my surprise when the days surrounding it came and went without a baby. I knew that I had limited time if I still wanted a VBAC, so I placed the issue in God's hands and asked him to keep me from feeling anxious. I focused alot on Philippians 4:6-7 that week (“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.”). I had been having random Braxton-Hicks contractions for several weeks by this point, but I began to ignore them because they never seemed to lead to anything.

On Sunday morning (the 17th), I woke up several times during the night because the baby was so active. We went to church as we normally do, and I started having mild contractions during Sunday School. Unlike the previous Braxton-Hicks contractions that I had been experiencing, these contractions continued to come throughout the rest of the day. We went to lunch with Joshua's parents, and then went home and took a nap. After a nice nap, we decided to go to the park and do some walking in an attempt to pick things up a bit. The contractions definitely intensified while walking, but petered out once we stopped. We went out to eat afterwards, and after dinner, the contractions seemed to stop entirely. I went to bed that night feeling slightly disappointed. On Monday morning I woke up early in the morning with strong contractions. These contractions were more intense than the ones the day before and they were lasting longer and seemed to be occurring more frequently. I called my mom to give her an update. I also had Joshua stay home from work, because I had a feeling that this might be "the day." My mom decided to come pick me up and take me for a quick manicure to help keep me distracted.

I continued to have contractions throughout the morning, but they never intensified or got closer together. I had a doctor's appointment scheduled for 2 p.m., so I figured I would just wait and see what he had to say about any progress (if any). Mom and I picked up lunch, then she stayed with Shepard so that Joshua could go with me to my appointment. I knew that I would be having a routine ultrasound to check fluid levels, so I wanted him with me so he could see the baby. When the ultrasound technician put the wand to my belly, the first thing out of her mouth was a question: "Did you know that the baby is breach?" Say what?! I was completely shocked! I had been feeling hiccups down in my pelvis for the entire pregnancy and I had been so sure that the baby was in the correct position that I never even gave it another thought. I was immediately crushed, as I knew that breech equaled no VBAC. I did my best to hold it together through the rest of the ultrasound. When my doctor came in, the technician told him about the breech position, and he came over to tell me how sorry he was. Of course I immediately started sobbing. Huge, ugly sobs. My doctor was so understanding and told me how he knew how much I had wanted a VBAC and that he had wanted it for me too. The technician also told the doctor that the fluid level was very, very low and that there was indications of meconium in the fluid. Further nails in the coffin that was my VBAC. Due to low fluid and because of my prior c/s, my doctor didn't feel comfortable trying a version to flip the baby.

After the ultrasound, my doctor wanted to do a Non-Stress Test to check on the baby. The results from that came back normal, but with the meconium and the low fluid levels, he wanted me to be observed a bit longer, so he sent us over to the hospital. We had time to come home briefly to grab bags, then we headed up there. I was admitted to triage where they monitored my contractions for the next two hours. My doctor came by when we first arrived and told me that he wanted to either do the c-section that night or first thing in the morning depending on the results. After two hours, it was determined that the c-section could wait until first thing in the morning because my contractions hadn't changed. He would have ordered my c-section that night had I not just eaten before my appointment.


I held out hope that the baby might flip during the night, but I knew the chances were slim. Shortly afterwards, I was admitted to my own room where I was finally allowed to eat - it was around 9 p.m. by this point, and I was starving! I sent Joshua to get get some food for himself. Mom decided to stay with me, even though I told her she was welcome and get some rest. She didn't want to leave - gotta love my Mom! I was brought a turkey sandwich, baked lays, and a cookie, and immediately began eating. About halfway through my sandwich, my stomach turned, and I was no longer hungry. In fact, the thought of food made me want to vomit, so I had my mom move the tray as far away from my bed as she could get it. Almost immediately, I felt an incredibly strong contraction - one that was way more intense than anything I had felt up until this point.

The contractions immediately started to pick up and get more intense so I called my nurse to see what she thought. She did a quick check and determined that I was only at 2 cm. She told me to let her know if I started having a bloody show or lost any mucous. She also hooked the monitors back up so they could monitor contractions and the baby's heart rate. Around this point Joshua got back from dinner. The contractions continued to pick up and get more intense. I was doing great dealing with the contractions, though! I was so proud of myself! After I figured out that trying to breathe through them wasn't working (after yelling at my mom to stop telling me to breathe!), I started moaning through them, which really helped. I laid on my side and was having my mom and Joshua take turns applying counter pressure to my back. I was amazed by how much that helped! As the contractions continued to pick up, I called the nurse into my room several times to see what they were going to want me to do. Each time she told me to keep her updated on if the contractions changed any. I was a little frustrated because I felt like she wasn't listening to me when I told her that they were already changing. I knew I was in active labor, but felt like she wasn't recognizing it. Finally, around 11:30 the contractions were right on top of each other, with little to no time in between. Laying on my side was no longer working, and the only way I could get semi comfortable was to sit up on the edge of the bed with my arms around my husband's neck while mom applied counter pressure to my back. I was so mad at those stupid belly monitors, that I didn't even care if they were recording the contractions anymore. At this point I just knew that I was getting close. I asked my mom how much longer they would let me labor like this before they did something. I attempted to go to the bathroom and noticed blood, so again I called the nurse to let her know the change. When she saw how much pain I was in at this point, I think she finally took me seriously. She decided to do another check, so I had to lay down, which was not comfortable. At all. After the check she left the room without much of a word, then showed back up less than a few minutes later with the on-call doctor. The doctor told me that they were going to go ahead and do my c-section ASAP. I later asked the nurse how far I had gotten, and she said I was dilated to an 8, and had the baby been in the correct position that I would have been able to deliver soon after. She said it would have been the perfect VBAC birth, which was comforting, yet frustrating.

A team of nurses came in to place my catheter. Oh my word. I have never in my life experienced anything more painful than that. I would have gladly continued to labor for days than to go through that experience again. It was a difficult process because they had to go around the baby's butt and the catheter got stuck several times. I was trying to relax, but laying down on my back, while experiencing extremely intense contractions, and having the searing pain of the catheter was just too much. I'm not kidding when I say that I was literally screaming the entire time they placed it. I'm sure I was scaring the other women on the floor! I even made my husband and mother cry because they could see how painful it was for me. The nurses were so apologetic and told me over and over again how sorry they were that it was taking so long. Seriously, the most painful thing I've ever experienced. When that was finally in place my anesthesiologist came in to go over what the spinal would involve.

Let me take a side detour here to say that a member of our sunday school class is an anesthesiologist at the hospital, and I was super nervous that he was going to be the on-call doctor for my surgery. Since I had a prior c-section, I knew everything that's involved with it. Of course I knew that he was a professional, but I'd be lying if all the girls in the class don't joke about how embarrassing it would be to have him in the room during a procedure like that. I had asked the nurse in triage who the on call doctor was, and she told me that it was, in fact, Dr. T, and I remember feeling so relieved to know that he would be off duty by the time of my scheduled c-section that next morning. He came by while we were in triage to check on us, and gave me a hard time about me not wanting him as my doctor.

When he arrived in my room that moment, I told him that I was never more excited to see him than I was in that very moment! We had a good laugh about it. He asked me his list of questions while Joshua put on his scrubs and my mom left to go to the waiting room. I was wheeled back to the OR, and Dr. T was with me the whole time. They moved me to the operating table, and he began his work. He placed the spinal, telling me exactly what he was doing and explaining that I would feel immediate relief. I was laid down, the curtain went up, and I was prepped. Dr. T told me everything that was going on, and kept checking to make sure that my spinal had been effective. He was so comforting and I was so lucky to have him as my doctor. I can't believe I was ever nervous about him being there. Eventually Joshua was allowed in the room and the c-section began. I had the same sweet nurse as I did with my prior c-section (if you recall the last story, she was the one who talked sweetly to me and tried to calm me down). The on-call obstetrician was fabulous. She was very friendly and talked with us the entire time during prep and throughout the procedure (I wasn't ignored like last time while the doctors talked amongst themselves). We made sure to tell her that we didn't know the sex, and she was really excited to be able to reveal it. She told me that I would feel some pressure, and soon after she said "I think I see something…Yep, it's a boy!" After a few moments, she brought him up to my head so that I could see.

After they showed him to me, they took him over to check him out and run their tests. I remember being nervous because he wasn't crying. I felt silly, but I finally did ask if it was normal that he wasn't crying yet. I think everyone got a good laugh out of that, and one of the nurses said that he would be shortly. And within a few minutes, he began to cry. I hope it doesn't sound mean to be happy that your baby is crying, but I was very comforted by that sweet cry.

I sent Joshua with the baby to recovery while they finished taking care of me in the OR. Eventually I was wheeled back to recovery, and I was able to hold Fisher almost right away. The nurse helped me latch him on, and he took to nursing right away! What a blessing! After we were able to breastfeed, my parents came back to see us. They monitored Fisher for a while and noticed that his breathing was fairly rapid. They decided to monitor him for a bit longer before moving us to our postpartum room. After an hour I told my parents to go on home since it was fairly late by this point (around 3 a.m.). Finally around 4 they told us that they wanted to take Fisher to the NICU to continue to monitor his breathing. They told us it wasn't anything to worry about and that it was common for c-section babies to have rapid breathing. We finally settled into our room around 4:30, and aside from the nursing staff having to check my vitals every hour, we crashed until around 9.

I'll talk more about Fisher being in the NICU in another post, but I just wanted to say how much better this c-section experience was than my first. Maybe it was because I had been able to labor without drugs (until the spinal right before his birth), or maybe it was because the situation was beyond my control (the breech presentation), but I KNOW it was because I prayed throughout my pregnancy that I would have a better birth experience. And while I didn't get my VBAC, I know that the Lord was looking out for me and gave me the experience that He wanted me to have. And it was an answered prayer because my birth experience was definitely better. And maybe there was a reason why I wasn't supposed to VBAC. I don't know what that reason might have been, but I do know that He was with me the entire time and He was looking out for me.

A few pictures from recovery (Joshua is squeamish and didn't want to take pictures in the OR):

Getting to hold my sweet boy for the first time!



With Joshua


With my sweet Mom (so thankful for her!)


Thursday, May 5, 2011

Thankful Thursday

"Count your blessings, name them one by one,
Count your blessings, see what God hath done!"

I'm sitting here enjoying a rare moment of peace and quiet while Shepard watches a cartoon and Fisher naps in his bouncy seat. As I sit on the sofa, sipping my Dr. Pepper (a bad habit I can't seem to shake!), I can't help but have an overwhelming feeling of thankfulness. It was a rough morning, filled with one disaster after another (spilled milk on the carpet, both boys crying because they're hungry, diaper explosions, etc), but after all the rough moments passed, I stopped to count my blessings, and my mood suddenly changed. I thought it might be nice to list them out on this Thankful Thursday.

So this Thankful Thursday, I'm thankful for…

- a loving God who kept me and my baby safe during birth, who watched over and healed my son as he spent a few days in the NICU, and for blessing me with a medical care team who gave me a positive birth experience this time around.

- a wonderful son who loves his little brother and can't stop giving him kisses and bringing him toys. He has his rare moments of jealousy (mainly when he's not allowed in mommy's lap because she's nursing little brother), but who has been better than I could have ever asked for during what has to be a tough transition for him.

- a precious little baby who loves to snuggle and has the sweetest personality already. He is a champion nurser, and we've been able to bypass some of the problems that I had early on with Shepard. He may have had a rough start to life, but he is constantly showing me how strong he is.

- a loving husband and supportive family who have helped me transition into my role as a mother of two. I wouldn't have been able to do it without them. My husband and mother stayed with me the entire time I was in labor, and were my strong support system. Then my husband was beside me the entire time I was in the hospital, only leaving for quick showers and trips home to see Shepard. He was my rock while our son was in the NICU and gave me more support than I can ever express. My mother and mother-in-law took care of Shepard during the four days I was in the hospital, and kept my updated on his activities. They brought him the hospital to see me, they switched off when one had an event to attend, and I never had to worry about him.

Have you stopped to count your blessings today?

Monday, April 25, 2011

It's a....


Baby Fisher arrived on April 19th at 12:54 a.m. via c-section (more details on that to follow). He spent a few days in the NICU, but all is well now.


Thursday, April 14, 2011

Pink or Blue?


Just for fun...

Guess Baby J's gender:

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

40 Weeks!

Will update this later with a picture. Had Joshua take one, but it turned out horrible!

How Far Along: 40 Weeks + 1 day
Size of baby: Approx 7.5 lbs. and about 20 inches long
Total Weight Gain/Loss: I honestly didn't look at the scale today at my appointment. I know I'm over 40 lbs, though.
Maternity Clothes: Yep, it's pretty much all maternity at this point. I'm so sick of wearing maternity clothes!
Gender: It's a surprise! We'll find out when he/she gets here!
Movement: Lots and lots of movement. I think he/she is running out of room in there!
What I miss: Sleeping on my stomach, most definitely. I also miss being able to move without effort. And my regular clothes.
Cravings: Nothing significant lately. Still loving mushrooms, though!
Discomforts: I'm 40 weeks pregnant, so everything is uncomfortable after a while ;)
Best Moment this Week: Hmm...maybe my doctor's appointment today? I'm glad that I have a supportive dr.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Birth Story - Part II

I apologize for how long it took me to get the second part of my birth story up. I really struggled with this post. I didn't realize the depth of my emotions until I started writing, and while the writing process has been cathartic, I struggled with the idea putting my emotions out there for everyone to read. As I wrote and dealt with my feelings, I did alot of editing, and finally decided to post. I hope my story helps you to better understand what happened to me, as well as how I've come to terms with my (unnecessary) cesarean.

This post is a continuation of Part I of my birth story, which can be found here.

Coming to Terms with Happened:

If you know me, or you've been reading my blog for very long, you probably realize how much I desire to live as naturally as possible. I'm a fan of chiropractic care, I regularly take herbs, and I avoid medicines as much as possible. So to say that my birth didn't go as planned, would be a huge understatement. I had a certain vision in my head of how birth would go. I envisioned a normal, vaginal delivery with no drugs. I knew that a natural birth would be better for me, but more importantly, for my baby. I was deeply afraid of the pain, so I did go into it with the knowledge that I could turn to the drugs if I couldn't handle the pain.

I remember learning about the cascade of interventions (i.e. one intervention leads to another, which leads to another, etc, finally ending in a cesarean) during our hospital birth classes, I just never imagined that the cascade would hit me. I never imagined that I would become a statistic in the 32.9% cesarean rate. And further, I never realized just how much I would be affected by my cesarean.

In the hospital, I remember having a general feeling of disappointment in the way that my son's birth played out. I was disappointed in my body for not being able to safely bring my son into the world. I felt like a failure for having to resort to a surgical procedure to remove him from my body, and I was disappointed in myself for not being strong enough to deliver him. I was envious of the friends around me who were experiencing normal deliveries. I was thankful for my healthy baby, of course, but I couldn't shake the disappointment. I did my best to move on from the experience, and I took comfort in the fact that my cesarean had been a necessary procedure to save my baby's life. He could have died had they not been able to remove him when they did.

When I went in for my 6 week postpartum visit, I sat down with my doctor to discuss what had happened. I had been told in the hospital that the baby wasn't handling contractions well and that the cord was most likely wrapped around his neck which was leading to the heart decelerations. When the doctor reviewed the surgical report, he told me that there hadn't really been a cause. The cord was not around his neck, and the heart decels were "just one of those things that can happen." I brought up the idea of a VBAC (or vaginal birth after a cesarean). I had been encouraged when I found out that the old idea of "once a cesarean, always a cesarean" didn't necessarily hold water anymore. Unfortunately, my doctor dismissed the idea rather quickly by saying that it was far too dangerous and that he doesn't perform them. He went on to tell me that they used to do them all the time, but stopped when they started losing too many mommies and babies. I left the appointment feeling absolutely crushed. All along I had been under the impression that my cesarean had been necessary to save my baby's life. And that there would be a medical reason to explain why my body had failed. I had been clinging to the hope that my next delivery could go the way that I had originally intended. I left his office, and quickly headed to my car before breaking down into sobs. My poor husband, who had come with me to the appointment for support, was so confused as to what was going on. I did my best to explain in between sobs, and in the next few months, I tried to move on from my experience. I did my best to deal with the fact that I would never get to experience a natural birth.

So What Actually Happened?:

When Shepard was around 9 months old, my husband and I started thinking and praying about when to start trying for another baby. I had been researching birth options for months by this point, and had discovered the ICAN (International Cesarean Awareness Network) website where I had initially learned how VBAC's were indeed safe, and that they carried less risk to the mother and baby than a repeat cesarean. I also learned that my doctor's argument against them was based on old research from a time with VBAC patients were induced with strong drugs that made contractions too intense for a scarred uterus. I began to get cautiously optimistic that I could birth naturally. Luckily, right around the time that I became pregnant with this baby, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) released a policy statement that said VBAC's are a safe and reasonable option for most women.

Early on in my pregnancy, I decided to watch Ricki Lake's documentary The Business of Being Born. I had heard glowing reviews that it offered a true picture of birth in America. I was contemplating my birth options at this point, and thought it would be a great starting place. I had attempted to watch it during my first pregnancy, but had quickly turned it off because I felt like it wouldn't apply to me. I decided to give the documentary a second chance because I had seen it referenced so often in my research. When I finally sat down to watch it, I broke down during this scene:

It described exactly what had happened to me. It seems silly to say, but watching this scene was a life-changing moment for me. I rewound it and watched it several more times before finishing the film. It was at this point that I realized that my body hadn't failed me at all - it was the medical system that had failed me (and my baby). It was like a huge weight had been lifted from my shoulders. I had been carrying around all of this guilt and shame, and here was my explanation as to what happened - finally!

My cesarean was caused by a cascade of interventions - the first intervention being the pitocin, which lead to artificial, excruciating contractions, which lead to me caving and receiving the epidural, which slowed down labor and lead to even more pitocin, which ultimately put too much strain on my baby and put him in distress, resulting in the "need" for a cesarean. All of those months I had spent blaming myself and my body for what had happened - and to learn that it hadn't been me at all -I felt enormous relief. And then I was mad. I was tweeting my thoughts while watching the documentary, and so many of my followers shared similar stories with me. While comforting to know that I wasn't alone, it made me even more angry to know that women are constantly put through these experiences. I was mad at the medical profession for relying so heavily on interventions that don't necessarily produce the best results. I felt anger towards my doctor for allowing this to happen to me. I had trusted him with my body, my health, and with the health of my baby. I felt taken advantage of - because he had taken that trust and pushed interventions on me when he knew how important a normal birth was to me. I began to question his reasoning for having me on pitocin in the first place. Why was I given a drug to speed up labor when I was progressing without it? Why was the pitocin increased so often? And further, why was the pitocin increased after my son's heart rate dropped the first time? Why was I not removed from the drug to see if that's what had caused the heart rate drop? And more importantly, why was it increased the last time (right before my c-section was ordered)? Why would he make those decisions? Why needlessly cut me open, forever altering my body and any future pregnancies for shear convenience? Ultimately, I don't blame my doctor, and I don't think he's some horrible monster. I am forever grateful to him for his care during a miscarriage before having my son. But that's not to say I'm not disappointed in him for what happened to me.

Most of all, I was mad at myself. Mad for not being more informed about the interventions that I was given. Mad for being so trusting. And mad for allowing labor to go in the complete opposite direction that I intended. Ultimately, I know that it was my body and my choice to place so much trust in my doctor. I had assumed that my doctor and the hospital staff would always be looking out for me and my baby. I had no reason to believe otherwise.


After throwing myself into the research, I've been able to process many of the emotions and feelings regarding my unncesarean. I know that I'm not alone, and that my feelings are real and valid. I've grieved for my birth, and dealt with the trauma that comes from having an unplanned, "emergency" surgery. I've struggled and prayed through my emotions, and the more that I process them and turn them over to God, the ultimate physician, the more I feel like I can heal and move on. I plan to write a post detailing what things I plan to change with my upcoming birth, and I pray that I have a healing birth in the next few days.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

38 Weeks - Almost there!


How Far Along: 38 Weeks! Holy cow! Hard to believe that baby will be here so soon!
Size of baby: Approx 6.8 lbs and over 19 1/2 inches long (about the length of a leek)
Total Weight Gain/Loss: Ugh. I feel smaller this time around, but I'm already up 35 lbs, and I'm close to the same weight I was when I delivered my son.
Maternity Clothes: Yep, it's pretty much all maternity at this point. I'm so sick of wearing maternity clothes!
Gender: It's a surprise! We'll find out when he/she gets here! I've been thinking boy all along, but these last few weeks I've been having a strong girl feeling. But I go back and forth on that. Depends on the day you ask me ;) Guess we'll see soon!
Movement: Feeling lots of hard jabs in my ribs and the baby like to jam his/her foot into my side, which hurts, but is fun to see from the outside.
What I miss: Sleeping on my stomach, most definitely. I can hardly get comfortable and wish I could just flip onto my stomach. And I miss regular clothes.
Cravings: Nothing significant lately. Still loving mushrooms, though!
Discomforts: Everything is starting to get uncomfortable. Just sitting on the sofa starts to hurt, as well as laying down, getting up off the floor, etc. Basically everything hurts.
Best Moment this Week: Lots of Braxton-Hicks contractions. Not that those are great moments, but it makes me realize that the baby will be here soon! I can't wait to meet him/her :)

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

35 Weeks!


How Far Along: 35 Weeks!
Size of baby: Approximately 18 inches long and 5 1/4 lbs - about the size of a honeydew melon
Total Weight Gain/Loss: Gained 25 lbs, although I really think it's more than that. I was told I had lost weight at my last appointment, but I think the nurse just wrote the number down wrong. I think it's closer to 35.
Maternity Clothes: Yep, it's pretty much all maternity at this point
Gender: It's a surprise! We'll find out when he/she gets here! I've been thinking boy all along, but now I'm starting to get a girl feeling. Guess we'll see soon!
Movement: Feeling lots of hard jabs in my ribs - ouch!
What I miss: Sleeping on my stomach
Cravings: Nothing significant lately. Still loving mushrooms and ice cream (not together, of course)
Discomforts: Sleep is getting a little uncomfortable, so I started sleeping with a pillow between my legs which seems to help some.
Best Moment this Week: Got our double stroller this week. Makes it feel real to see those two seats.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

28 Weeks!

(Please excuse this horrible shot. I gave Joshua a hard time for taking it at such an awful angle)

How Far Along: 28 Weeks - Officially in the 3rd trimester!
Size of baby: 14.8 inches and 2 1/4 lbs
Total Weight Gain/Loss: Gained 18 lbs
Maternity Clothes: I'm mainly wearing maternity jeans and pants but I'm hanging onto my non-maternity tops. They're almost all too short now, though.
Gender: It's a surprise! We'll find out when he/she gets here! I think it's another boy, but we'll see!
Movement: He/She is pretty active, especially at nights. I often wake up in the middle of the night and feel him/her squirming around.
What I miss: Sleeping on my stomach
Cravings: Mushrooms! I could eat them for every meal. Which is strange for me, since I usually don't like them very much. Have also had a few cravings for Dairy Queen Blizzards (which I've managed to ignore so far)
Discomforts: Lots of pregnancy induced heartburn. Yuck!
Best Moment this Week: I went through all of our baby clothes, pulled out all the gender neutral stuff, and got the new nursery ready. I'll post pictures soon!

Birth Story - Part I

A few weeks before Christmas, I had the honor of attending the birth of my good friend Emily, who happens to be married to one of my favorite cousins. I served as their birth photographer, and was witness to an amazing, all natural birth at a birthing center attended by a midwife. It was an incredible experience, and I will be forever grateful to Emily for allowing me to be there. It has changed me in so many ways and given me much to think about for my upcoming birth. It also, unfortunately, had me reliving my son's birth and everything that went wrong that lead to my eventual cesarean. I've never written about this publicly, but the emotional hurt regarding his birth is still something that I struggle with. I've decided to post my story not only in an attempt to heal emotionally and get myself ready for my next birth, but also as a way to share my experience with others.

During the last few weeks of my pregnancy I ended up sleeping on the sofa at nights. It was easier to get comfortable there, and when I woke up a million and half times at night to use the bathroom, it was easier to go back to sleep out in the living room as my husband snores. The morning of my son's birth, I woke up around 4 a.m. with what assumed at the time was just a Braxton-Hicks contraction. I had never felt one, so I just assumed that's what it was, and a went back to sleep. I woke up around an hour later several more contractions, but still didn't think much of them. I tried to ignore them and went back to sleep. I woke up around 6:15 when my husband left to go running. I didn't tell him about the contractions, as I still assumed that they were just Braxton-Hicks. So my husband left to go running, and I went into our bedroom to try and go back to sleep. Well the contractions kept coming, so around 7 a.m. I decided that I should at least start timing them to see if there was any sort of pattern. Imagine my surprise when I found them to be around 7-9 minutes apart, and lasting for about a minute and half. I had a doctor's appointment scheduled for 9:30, so when Joshua got back from running, I told him about the contractions and told him we should just wait for the appointment to see if we needed to head to the hospital or not. In the meantime, I kept timing the contractions and packed my hospital bag (I had most of the stuff laid out on our dresser, but we lived less than 5 minutes from the hospital so I hadn't been too concerned about having everything ready beforehand). I got ready, straightened my hair, etc, which was all a little difficult to do with the contractions that were starting to get progressively more intense and lasting longer. I don't know why, but I still thought it was almost silly of us to take our hospital bags with us to the doctor's appointment. I was convinced I was only in early labor or that it would turn out to be false labor. I even told Joshua that we could go out to breakfast after my appointment. Around 9:15 we headed to my doctor's office for my appointment. The nurse called me back and could see that I was moving slowly. She asked me if I was having contractions, how far apart they were, etc. She told me that the doctor would check me and then let me know what our next step would be. I had to wait about 30 minutes for him to come to the room, during which time I had several more strong contractions. I remember thinking that it would have been nice to have had my husband in the room with me at the time. When the doctor arrived in the exam room, he checked me, and imagine my shock when he told me that I was 4 cm dilated already. He was able to see some bloody mucous and said that I was most definitely in labor and that we needed to go ahead and check into the hospital. I was shocked! I was certain that the contractions were going to taper off or that he would tell us to go home and wait until the contractions were closer together. I had always heard 5 minutes apart was when to go, and while my contractions were getting more intense, they were still 7-9 minutes apart. While I was getting dressed, my husband who had been in the waiting room the whole time, overheard the nurse telling the secretary that the doctor was going to get his wish after all (He had originally wanted to induce me that day, but I had asked to wait, hoping to go into labor on my own. The doctor was planning on going out of town the next day, and thought it would be easier if I delivered on my due date).

We headed to the hospital (which was across the street) and checked in. They took me straight to my room after doing all the initial paperwork. We settled into our room and they immediately started hooking me up to all kinds of monitors (blood pressure, baby heartrate, etc). At this point we decided to call our parents and let them know. The nurse came in to take my medical history and Joshua stepped out to call our our parents. My mom was there almost immediately as she was at a meeting not far from the hospital. It took Joshua's parents and my dad a little longer to arrive. My dad came in briefly to say hi, as did his mom, but mainly it was just Joshua and my mom in the room with me. Around 12:30 my doctor came in to check me, and I was still at a 4. He wanted to break my water in order to get things moving. The contractions picked up a bit after that. He also ordered that they start pitocin in my IV line. After the pit was started, I felt an increase in the intensity and duration of the contractions. He told me that I could request pain medicine whenever I felt like I needed it. I held off for a while, but those pit induced contractions where too much to handle. Around 2:30 I remember asking for something to help take the edge off. They gave me a dose of Stadol, but it didn't feel like it did anything at all. I remember being frustrated because I couldn't get out of bed much to move around. I remember trying several times to sit up or adjust my position, but I had wires everywhere. I had to use the bathroom several times, and it was always a huge ordeal, because I had to drag an IV pole with me, as well as call in a nurse to remove my belly monitor, blood pressure cuff, and finger monitor (can't remember what that one did - oxygen?). Even when I was free of the monitors, I still had the IV pole. My nurse, who I really did like, would wait for me to return from the bathroom and then immediately begin attaching me to all the monitors again. Around 3:30 I caved and requested an epidural. It didn't take long for the anesthesiologist to arrive and get started. I was worried about the pain, but was surprised by how easy it was. There was a tiny prick of the numbing medicine, then I felt a tiny jab on my spine, almost like two of my vertebrae were separating. It was definitely a weird feeling. Over the next twenty minutes I could feel the medicine staring to numb the left side of my body only. I could still feel everything on my right side. I freaked out a little and called the nurse assuming that the epidural didn't take on that side. She suggested that I lay on my right side in order to get the medicine flowing better. It helped, but it was very frustrating to lay like that because my mom and Joshua were sitting in chairs on the left side of the bed which made it difficult to talk to them. The monitors and computers were on the right side of the bed, so that prevented them from moving the chairs to the other side of the bed. It took a long time for the epidural to take on the right side, so I was stuck having to look at the monitors. Instead of struggling to chat, I decided I should try to get some sleep, but every time I would fall asleep, my blood pressure machine would go off, squeeze my arm, and then ring a little tune when it was done. It was going off about every 15 minutes, which prevented me from getting any real rest. The nurse came in several times with orders from my doctor to increase my pitocin.

I'm a little fuzzy on the times my doctor came in to check me, but I definitely remember when he came in around 5 to do a quick check. He had just ordered an increase in my pitocin, and the baby's heartrate immediately declined, but it recovered quickly. When he came back around 7 to do his check, I was at a 9 but not all the way thinned. The doctor informed me that the baby was coming out sunny side up and that he wanted me to do a quick push in order to get the head through a lip on my cervix. Well when he tried to turn the baby before I pushed, the heart rate dropped again, so he told me to hold off on pushing until the heart rate recovered. Well it took a long time. There was at least 5 minutes of silence in the room before it was back to normal. I was terrified because I could see on the monitors how low the rate was getting, and each second felt like an hour. At this point I was really scared and could see that it was something serious based on how everyone in the room was reacting. The doctor informed me that the cord was most likely wrapped around the baby's neck, and that it was the cause of the heart decels. He informed me that he didn't have a good feeling about it and that since the baby was already in distress, that it would not react well to pushing. He said he didn't want to chance it, and wanted to do a c/s to get the baby out ASAP. He told me not to worry that he would have the baby out soon, and then quickly left the room to get prepped for surgery, and that's when I got even more terrified. The nurse (I had a new nurse by that point) was on the phone with someone and was demanding immediate assistance in my room. It was only a few seconds before a team of nurses and other medical staff came rushing through the door with carts and monitors. I was given an oxygen mask and medical staff ran around the room barking out orders to each other. My mom was asked to leave the room, and Joshua was given scrubs to put on while another nurse started shaving me. There was so much commotion in the room, and all I could think about was how my baby was in danger. After my husband was in his scrubs, I pulled him down to me and we prayed for the baby, and before I knew it, I was being wheeled back to the operating room.

Joshua was not allowed to go with me at first, so I was by myself in a very cold operating room while a team of about 12 people busied around the room. I was freaking out and shaking so violently that a very sweet nurse sat down near my head and started trying to calm me down. She ordered another nurse to cover me in warm blankets. I could hardly focus on what she was saying, but I managed to nod a few times. Neither the calming words nor the blankets helped very much, though. I just remember laying on the table being scared out of my mind that my baby was in danger. I had not mentally prepared myself for a cesarean. I was convinced that I would have a normal, vaginal delivery. And I especially hadn't prepared myself for the thought that something might be wrong with the baby. My doctor came in and was informed that I was still shaking so hard despite all their efforts to calm me down and warm me up. He told the nurse to give me some anti-anxiety medicine and assured me that everything would be ok. After a few minutes, I could feel the medicine start take effect, and my body stopped shaking. The medicine helped me feel better, but I immediately began feeling like I was going to fall asleep at any moment. I was struggling so hard to just keep my eyes open. I was so loopy, but I remember hearing my doctor and the anesthesiologist chatting about the anesthesiologist's recent fishing trip. He asked me a few questions and determined that my epidural was still fine, and that there was no reason to put me under for the surgery. I was still struggling to keep my eyes open, so I tried to focus on the baby instead. I said a prayer and tried to will the baby to hang on until they could get him out. I had been so convinced all during my pregnancy that it was a girl, but I knew in that instant that the baby was a boy. Joshua was finally allowed into the operating room, and he helped me to try and stay awake by talking to me. I was so mad because I was having to will myself to stay awake for my baby's birth. Because I was so loopy and out of it, I'm not sure how long this whole process had taken. I'm sure it was much faster than it all felt, though. My doctor informed that I was going to feel some pressure and that the baby would be out soon. Next thing I know I hear a baby crying and my doctor informing me that it was indeed a boy and that he looked just fine. I was so relieved and loved hearing that cry! He told Joshua that he could stand up and take a look over the curtain, so he did, but he quickly sat back down saying that he saw too much red for his comfort. Eventually they brought the baby over to my head so that I could see. I looked over at my husband, and he was crying. He gave me a huge hug and just sobbed. He had been trying to be so strong for me and was just so relieved that everything was ok with both of us. They took the baby away quickly in order to do all of their various tests and get him cleaned up. Joshua went to inform our families, and I immediately passed out from a mixture of exhaustion and relief, but mainly from the anxiety medicine that I had been fighting the whole time. I was out for a good while (I was told it was at least an hour) and woke up in the recovery room.

At first I didn't see anyone in the room with me, but noticed that the little plastic bassinnet was close enough for me to see but too far to reach. After a few seconds I realized that my dad was in the room with me as well as a nurse. I asked to hold my baby but was told that I couldn't until his temperature had stabilized. That's when I finally noticed the lights he was under. Joshua came back to the room, and family members took turns coming in to see the me and the baby. My mom just hugged me and cried. Finally, I was able to hold my baby after what felt like forever. He had been crying when they moved him, but immediately stopped when he heard me talking to him. I don't remember how long we stayed in recovery, but they eventually moved us into our postpartum room. Joshua and my mom hadn't eaten all day, so my parents left for a few moments to get food for them and for Joshua. I had been starving all day (and not allowed to eat), but fortunately I wasn't hungry at all at this point, which was good because I wasn't allowed to eat anything anyway). Our families hung around for a little while, but it was past midnight by this point so they left to let us get some sleep.

Me waiting to get to hold my baby

Finally getting to hold him!

Our family of 3!

Stay tuned for my next post when I'll discuss my emotions regarding his birth as well as what I hope to do differently next time.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

26 Weeks!

How Far Along: 26 Weeks - Over halfway there!
Size of baby: 14 inches - the size of an English Hothouse Cucumber
Total Weight Gain/Loss: Gained 8 lbs (I'm sure this will have gone up due to the holidays)
Maternity Clothes: I'm mainly wearing maternity jeans and pants but tops are still regular. Shirts are starting to get short, though.
Gender: It's a surprise! We'll find out when he/she gets here!
Movement: He/She is pretty active, especially at nights. I often wake up in the middle of the night and feel him/her squirming around.
What I miss: Sleeping on my stomach
Cravings: Mushrooms! Which is strange for me, since I usually don't like them very much. Also weird because I never craved anything with my first pregnancy.
Discomforts: Lots of pregnancy induced heartburn. Yuck!
Best Moment this Week: Starting to show more and more!