Wednesday, August 31, 2011

6 weeks old!

How come no one tells you that time will begin passing at warp speed once your child is born? 
My sweet angel will be SIX weeks old on Saturday. 

It's okay if you're feeling the urge to bite him. :) I do every day- so does his daddy! 
We've had a busy six weeks at home learning how to work with each other and trying to make a schedule. If you thought I was high maintenance before, you'll be astounded to hear that I now take about 30 minutes to get ready and don't even wash my hair every day! Thank you, Jesus, for dry shampoo! 

Dane and I have settled into a routine here lately. He's eating more on a schedule and taking three naps a day. Usually those naps can be timed like clockwork- every so often he gets a wild hair though. He's sleeping from 5-8 hours a night. When he does wake, he nurses and goes right back to sleep. Nursing is going so much better than I could have hoped. I'm so glad I stuck it out. It was, like everyone said, the hardest thing I have ever done but OH so rewarding. There's a sense of pride in knowing that you're responsible for those little chubby thighs and rolly cheeks! 

Mommy has started working on her chubby thighs and rolly cheeks this week by heading back to the gym. I gained 39 pounds during my pregnancy. The first 21 literally fell off. Given, roughly 9 of it was baby. :) These last few aren't in a hurry to go anywhere. That might be because nursing makes me hungrier (and thirstier, if you can imagine that, my friends!) than I ever was pregnant. I'm trying to eat healthy snacks (both for weight loss and healthy milk) and I've been spinning twice this week. Dane naps like a champ in his carseat next to my bike. He likes the lights at the gym and the sound of the wheels spinning, I think. I will not diet as long as I'm nursing so I'm hoping a healthy lifestyle will help shed the rest. 

Dane is starting to smile back at us and stares intently at you when you talk to him. He loves light fixtures, especially if they're on, and loses his mind over ceiling fans. Maybe he'll have a future career at Lowe's. He has amazing head and neck control and seems to enjoy laying on his tummy for a bit. He likes his paci, but only when he's sleepy. He pretty much hates being left alone, he wants to be able to hear you or see you. He also loves noise of pretty much any kind- especially the vent fan on the stove. :) He fights sleep harder than any child I have ever seen. He does best swaddled and held close... he'll finally stop wiggling and give in to rest. PS: Halo Sleep Sacks are the best. He can break free of a regular blanket swaddle AND the Summer Infant Swaddle Me swaddles- which use velcro, I might add! He's a strong boy. He hasn't busted the zipper on the sleep sack... yet. 

Every so often I am able to pump a bottle and share in feeding our growing boy. One of our favorite expressions of his is his "milk drunk" face after he's nursed or had a bottle of breastmilk. 
 All is right with the world when his belly is full of milk. Having a bottle on hand makes heading out of the house a little easier too, though I am learning the art of breastfeeding in public- and it IS an art, let me tell you! Here is daddy feeding the boy while we were out to eat the other night. 
 My best friend Lindsay came in for a few days last week. Not only was it good to see her, it was nice to have an extra pair of hands around the house. Especially the hands of an expert who is raising two fabulous kids of her own. 

My heart breaks for the mommies who go back to work at six weeks. If I had taken six weeks I'd go back Monday. Thankfully, my incredibly-smart-financially-responsible husband padded our savings account and this mommy is home for 12. However, the first six have gone by so fast, I'm scared the next six will too. I'll entertain alternate ways of paying a mortgage if you come up with any ideas. :) 

In other news, I read this article about c-sections the other day. Loved it. I did all the research and was prepared to have my sweet boy without intervention. However, in the end, we ended up choosing the safest way for our boy to enter the world. I wouldn't change a thing and this mom's thoughts are very similar to mine. I wasn't duped by the medical system- we did the research, saw his measurements and weighed the risks and benefits. Sometimes I feel like I'm almost apologizing when I tell people I had a c-section. I refuse to do that any longer. I have a perfectly healthy baby boy and my vagina is still intact. I call that a win-win. Sorry, dad, probably TMI for you. :)

 And finally, as I step down off my soapbox, just appease me while I show off more pictures of the most beautiful child God ever made.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Dane's Birth Story

I can't believe my sweet boy is four weeks old today.
My perfect four week BIG boy!
It seemed like it took so long for him to arrive, I didn't anticipate time flying by this quickly. Before any more of the details become foggy, I wanted to write down my memories of the day Dane was born. We want to treasure that day forever and one day he'll want to hear about it too. Not to mention, some other mommies facing a c-section might like a rundown of how things go on the day your baby arrives. :)

I was so afraid of the surgery itself, I didn't think at all about AFTER surgery. The first time I stood up I thought for sure my incision was going to rip open and the following week was hard. I was in a lot of pain, but because I am nursing tried to take as little medication as possible. Postpartum hormones are nothing to sneeze at. I would stand in the shower and weep uncontrollably- I cried because Dane was a day older, because I was in pain, because my parents had to go home, because I missed my husband (who hadn't gone anywhere!). I prayed daily that God would just get me through the day. Praise Jesus, after about two weeks I felt like I was again in control of my emotions and didn't feel like curling up in the fetal position and weeping. The last two weeks have been wonderful and I am making every effort to memorize every detail about the most beautiful child God ever created.
A bassinet, a stinkin' $500 crib, a bouncy seat and swing and where do I LOVE to sleep and sit? My car seat. The one piece of equipment we had to buy anyway.
Celebrating Daddy's birthday with lunch with Poppa T, shopping and dinner out!

To my sweet angel baby, this is the story of how you were born:

Friday, July 22, Daddy made plans to take me out to dinner. Papa J, Granna and Uncle Chase came into town that day. I had taken the day off so I got to visit with them for the afternoon. When daddy got home we got dressed for dinner and headed to Campbellsville to eat at Garcia's (fancy, I know- we didn't have the energy to drive to Lexington for Malone's like we'd hoped). Granna took a picture of us before we left and Papa gave us your beautiful, fully renovated wagon. It was mine when I was kid and I can't wait to see you play with it one day.

Daddy and I shared chicken fajitas and enjoyed our dinner together. After we ate we went to Wal-Mart to get some last minute things we'd need for you- namely a couple mega-bottles of GermX because I was terrified people were going to touch you with their germy hands. :) On our way home we decided to go to the lake, to the same place we'd gone a few weeks before and taken our maternity photos. We sat by the water, skipping rocks, laughing and talking about you. We talked about what we were most afraid of, what we thought you'd look like and what we wanted for you. I will always treasure that night with your daddy. We are so blessed to have someone who loves us that much.

It was hard for me to go to sleep that night. I was jealous of everyone else because they got to be excited about your arrival and I was too scared at the thought of having surgery. We set our alarm for 4:30am to get ready to head to the hospital but I was up way before that! I cried that morning- both from excitement and fear, I think. I couldn't have anything to eat or drink which made me a little grouchy because I drink water by the gallon and love a cup of coffee first thing in the morning. Papa J, Granna, Chase and me and daddy held hands and prayed before we left. It was a very special moment. Your daddy was so excited when we got in the car. We video taped pulling out of the driveway and he videotaped me walking into the hospital.

When we walked in to the labor and delivery floor they were all ready for us. I walked right in and put on my hospital gown, then our sweet nurse, Janet, hooked my belly up to some monitors so we could listen to your heartbeat. I tried to memorize every beat and really focus on every little kick and wiggle you made. I never want to forget how that felt. Another nurse came in to put in my IV. I HATE needles and was not looking forward to this. She apologized for how bad it was going to hurt- that's never good!- it was a big needle and it did hurt like heck! Someone else came in to draw my blood. She had to stick me twice- which made me cry. She was so sweet and apologized saying she never misses. I remember thinking, "Well, ya missed today, lady!" Daddy was very patient with me- I was not in a very good mood and I cried A LOT.

Dr. Crosslin came in and told us that the air conditioning wasn't working properly in the surgery suite on the L&D floor so we were going to have to go to the main OR on the first floor. He complained that he hated doing that because he didn't know where everything was- not comforting to an anxious, control freak momma! Papa, Granna and Chase got there in time to see me rolled away to surgery. They were so excited. Daddy videod as we went downstairs.

They made Daddy wait outside while they got me set up for surgery and did my spinal block. I was dreading this SO much because of my fear of needles. The CRNA was so good and gentle. Janet, my nurse, held a pillow up and had me lean against her and bow my back out while the CRNA did the procedure. I prayed so hard that God would give me strength to deal with the pain because I just KNEW it was going to be the worst pain ever. I felt the tiny little prick from the lidocaine needle and waited for more intense pain... and never felt another thing! They rushed me to lay down before it fully took effect and within in minutes I was completely numb. I thanked God for getting me through that part! When Daddy came in that was the first thing I said to him- "the spinal didn't hurt at all!" He got that on video before the nurse told him to turn it off. It took just a few minutes for you to be born after that. Dr. Crosslin said, "There's an ear" and just a few seconds later I heard your first watery cry, followed by the sound of the suction thing sucking all the goop from your mouth and nose. Then I felt Dr. Crosslin pull you out and heard your big, strong cry! Daddy and I cried and cried. It was the most beautiful sound I have ever heard. My ribs had ached for weeks because you were so long (22inches!) and had your feet wedged in my ribs. As SOON as Dr. Crosslin pulled you out I took a deep breath and felt instant relief, though my ribs were still tender for a few days. Daddy got to follow you over to the warmer and take lots of pictures of you. They were about to take you up to the nursery when I heard one of the nurses say, "mom hasn't seen him yet" (thank you, nurse, whoever you are!) so they brought you over to me, all bundled up in a blanket and little knitted hat. You were absolutely perfect and I cried even harder.

Dr. Crosslin finished up the surgery and they took me up to recovery. Papa and Granna came to sit with me and went on and on about how perfect you were. Your nurse, Wendy, came in a few minutes later to update me on you. Newborns are suppose to take less than 60 breaths per minute and you were taking 87- apparently this is common for c-section babies. She told me they were going to have to keep you for 3-4 hours to monitor your breathing. I completely broke down when she left. I wanted to hold you so badly and wanted to nurse you right away so we established a strong latch. Granna cried with me and your sweet uncle Chase, all of 14 years old, asked us to pray. He took our hands and said the sweetest prayer over me and you. He prayed you would breathe easier and that God would calm my anxiety. It was one of the most special- if not THE most- special moments I've ever had with him.

I watched the clock for what felt like an eternity. I wanted so badly to hold my baby boy. Thankfully, Dr. Garrett, your pediatrician, released you and they brought you to me. All of your grandparents and uncles came in to take pictures but then they left to get some lunch and left me and Daddy with you. We just stared at you and looked over every square inch of your perfect little body. You latched perfectly the first time (!!!!) and have been the best little nurser ever since! You are a hungry, hungry boy and only get mad when your belly is empty.

Some friends had told me that the medicine they give after surgery can make you sleepy and that they slept through their babies' first day of life. I was determined that was not going to happen to us so I asked them not to give me anything. Turns out, you get VERY nauseous when the spinal medication is wearing off. I started throwing up so they gave me reglan, then zofran, then more reglan... none of that helped. I was adamantly opposed to phenergin because I didn't want to go to sleep and miss any part of your first day. It was not fun throwing up all day, but I remember every moment of it! :)

The last four weeks have gone by way too fast. I treasure every single moment with you and love you more than you will EVER know. Well, at least until you have your own kids. I love your Papa and Granna in a whole new way because I finally understand how much they love me. You are more than I could have ever dreamt up in a million years. I love everything about you and feel blessed to call you mine.

With all the love in my heart,

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

birth announcement

Coming soon to mailbox near you!

I tell myself every day that I need to update the blog... but my arms are usually full a certain 8lb bundle of joy. I'm soaking up every minute of my time with him. I do want to write out Dane's birth story and other events from our first few weeks home just so that I don't forget these special moments.

Every minute with him is so wonderful. He is more of a blessing than I could have ever imagined! More to come soon... Lord willing! :)