Friday, December 23, 2011

My Very Own Labor Story

Before you ask, I think it's clear by now that I had Emily :) Everyone has a labor story and I've been told that no two labors are identical. I'm thrilled that now I have my own.

I tried to get to bed a little earlier on Monday night around 8:00pm. It took a while to go to sleep because I knew that, by that time the following night, Emily would most likely be there with me. I woke up around 11:00pm to get one last snack before I had to fast.
Around 2:45am, I woke up feeling a little sick. My alarm was set to go off at 3:00am so I just decided to get up and hop in the shower. Eric came upstairs and saw me vomiting out of the shower into a trash can I was holding and I saw his face sink. He told me to call the doctor and was very worried I just got the stomach bug that he had on Sunday. I called the hospital and told them what was going on and they said to still come in for the induction and they would check on Emily then. I threw up again before leaving the house.

Eric got everything in the car (including a "barf bucket") and we left for the hospital a few minutes after 4:00am. I was doing pretty well for the car ride and then, we got to Huachuca City and I vomited again. We had to pull over because I was having a hard time throwing up in the way I was sitting in the car and then, the Sheriff's car pulled up behind us. Eric explained that we were headed to the hospital and I was pregnant. The Sheriff offered to escort us but we told him that it was okay.

We got to the hospital and saw Katie and Jonny at registration (who ended up being right across from our room). Once we were checked in, I got to the room and got hooked up to monitors. I'm so thrilled that my nurse was Ashley's mom - she made the whole day much better than I anticipated. They kept trying to get a longer time of monitoring for Emily but I was vomiting every 20 minutes or so and Jen had to readjust my monitors each time. When Dr. Van Oosten came in, they got me setup on an internal monitor, checked my progress, and had me reposition (which was about every 30 minutes for the rest of the day). I stopped vomiting around 9:00am (or shortly after) and I think it was just the anxiety of it all. Jen said that it was likely that I was going to go into labor on my own within the next couple days and nausea may have just been my first indication. My contractions started to get uncomfortable but I opted for IV pain medication instead of an epidural to see if I could handle labor like that instead.

Long story a little shorter - I ended up stalling at 5.5cm (4cm according to Dr. Van Oosten) and around 4:00pm, Dr. Van Oosten decided that we should do a C-section. I think at that point, I kind of figured that I wasn't going to deliver vaginally and I was actually a little relieved. I was relieved because I knew that the hard part of my labor was over and I knew a definite end and that I would see her soon. Still I was a little disappointed because I hadn't had to get an epidural and that I knew a C-section meant surgery. That didn't stop me from humming down the hallway, "I'm gonna have my baby, I'm gonna have my baby!"

I got the epidural (and would NOT see that needle if I wanted to). Eric had to stay outside while that happened, which I later found out was the most stressful moment for him was waiting. My mom wasn't allowed in the OR at all but a very wonderful nurse named Casey let my mom hang out so she could see Emily too. They strapped me down on the table and Eric was finally allowed to come in. I didn't want to think about what graphic things were happening behind that sheet so I kept asking Eric questions to have him talk to me. Then, all of a sudden, I started being moved from side to side. Eric said it was them trying to get Emily out.

Dr. Van Oosten finally got my HUGE baby out and asked Eric, "Is this yours?" Eric said she was all blue and that they had to suction out her nose and stuff before she breathed and all the color came into her face. She scored a 9 out of 10 for her final APGAR score :) Eric showed me her and I got teary. Eric took her away to bathe her and they stitched me up. I tried to tell them that they could do a tummy-tuck if they wanted, since they were in there anyway. They told me not to get greedy because I just lost 10lbs with Emily and 7 more with the rest that they were taking out.

After I was stapled up, they brought me back to the room and I couldn't stop talking. I think it was partially the drugs and partially because I wanted my girl back. Finally, Eric brought her in and I got to hold my new daughter. Let me tell you - better than I ever imagined. I had a lot of visitors in my recovery time, which I was a little upset about because I wanted that 2-hour recovery time with just my mom and Eric. She was born at 5:10pm and, while I appreciate people stopped by, it was a little distracting when I was trying to learn to breastfeed and spend time with my barely-an-hour-old daughter. If I could go back and re-do it, that door would have been locked.

There it is - I survived labor. I'll do another update with the last couple weeks of our little family but I started this one on 12/23 so I figured I'd finish it.

I'm headed to bed now - my beautiful girl is BIG on mornings.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Induction, licenses, and instincts, OH MY!

This will probably be my last entry before I have Emily.

I had my doctor's appointment today. My doctor said I'm close to 2cm and I've made progress on my effacement. He scheduled me to be induced tomorrow morning at Oh-dark-thirty. I mean, 5:00am. Which means I need to leave my house between 4:00am and 4:15am because he said that if I'm not there in time, they will cancel the induction. This means I'll need to be up no later than 3:15am (Or by 3:00am, if I plan to dry my hair and not just put it in a ponytail).

So, when I get there, I'll have the rest of my registration papers signed, get setup in my room, and wait. I discussed my pain management options with my doctor and I would really like to try other things before my epidural. But I certainly won't turn it down if I feel I am ready. :)

I'm a bit nervous about tomorrow. Like I've said before, I'm not so much nervous about the labor; I'm nervous about staying at the hospital for the first time and all the tubes and needles and blood. And to be honest, I'm getting a little anxious about Emily being here. She's just this little, defenseless, completely dependant person and it's my job to nurture and care for her. I know I will lose countless hours of sleep over wanting to provide everything I can for her.

I think that every parent should have to get a Parent License before being allowed to procreate. In the test, you would have to study up and learn all the facts and take a written exam. On this exam, you must get 100% or else you have to study up another 6 months and test later. There's no "try 3 times and figure it out by process of elimination;" you would have to fill-in all the answers. Then, once you pass, you are closely monitored by another parent as you "test drive" caring for an infant. Once you feel you are ready for this, someone from Child Services would put a spy cam in your house and if you pass, you get a parent license and can procreate.

I'm thinking about all the things I know right now and how few those things are in comparison to what I will learn. I mean, I know I don't even know close to everything I need to know about caring for Emily. And I'm sure there's no way to really prepare for all the changes I'm going to have or all the new things I'll need to know. But at least with the Parent License, I would know what I need to know.

I'm hoping that it's true what people say about it all coming naturally. And I'm sure it's natural that I feel nervous about a lot of these things, because so many people are. And I even know that once she's here, my maternal instincts will kick in and I will be the best mother I can be. But even though I know all of these things, I still need to believe them.

This is why I'm sure Friday will be the scariest and hardest and best day of my life - the first day that I have my baby girl in my house with no one to tell me I'm doing it right or wrong but her. And in the whole scheme of things, she's the most important opinion and evidence that I'm doing okay. Not anyone else.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

It's my birthday!

I'm old today. Yep. I've now been alive for 24 years. That's almost a quarter of a century.

For the record, Emily's still being shy and so I'm still pregnant. My mom said that I'm trying to copy her by being 24 and trying to have Emily on December 18th. I don't think she'll be born today though. I think I've had a hunch the whole time that she won't be born on my birthday. Tomorrow? Maybe. But not today.

I think I did have my first real contraction this morning but now, I need to see if they're consistent. I think I've been making progress on the Braxton Hicks - On Friday, I was having them every 6 hours; now, it's every 4. Today was the first time the intensity increased. I'm hoping that means I'll have one that is stronger or similar by around 1:15pm.

Eric has been working like crazy and called in this morning because I think his immune system just said, "I CAN'T TAKE IT ANYMORE! GIVE ME REAL FOOD AND WATER! TROOPS - REBEL!!" So he's feeling all crappy. He's finally asleep now, which is the longest he has slept since 5:00am. I was going to cancel having my family over for my birthday dinner but after talking with my mom, they are going to come over and we'll have cake and ice cream and Eric is hoping he feels a little better before. If not, he's going to rest upstairs.

The only reason I decided to go ahead and do this with my family is because, if I don't do it today, I don't think it will happen. Tomorrow, I have a doctor's appointment. Tuesday, I'll probably be induced (unless she comes on her own). Then, by the end of the day Tuesday, I'll have her, stay at the hospital for a day or two, come home, recuperate, and have Christmas. If I don't do something today, my birthday will probably be passed by and I know it's childish and immature but I want my birthday to matter still. Especially today.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

As Fast as She Can

Yep, still pregnant.

I'm trying to see the bright side to all of this and it's coming easier than I thought:

- I get to spend more time being able to have Emily as a part of me. I won't get this opportunity ever again with her and until she comes out, I get to value the kicks and stretches and rolls that are her body in mine.
- I don't have to go through labor pains yet. I currently have the luxury of being in no pain right now. Can't beat that!
- I have been home for my Christmas presents. I haven't missed any deliveries and all of my Christmas shopping is already complete! 9 days earlier than normal!
- Most of all, I have been able to sleep. I know I won't get a lot of this for much longer, but I was able to sleep until 11am, with a few interruptions of bathroom trips, last morning. I passed out at 10:30am. I know I can't really get used to it but I choose to see it as a blessing that I've had 12 hours of sleep for the last couple nights.

I've been keeping myself busy. I had a few big Braxton Hicks contractions today but they were about 6 hours apart. Which means my next one is at least an hour away :) Either way, I know she will be here soon. My mom is convinced that we're going to the hospital tonight but that's up to God and I'm not worried right now.

I've been putting off plans and doing ANYTHING because I'm so convinced that I will be in labor any second (which I guess realistically is true). I can't keep doing that. No matter what happens, at the very latest, I'll meet her by Tuesday night or Wednesday morning. So I'm watching a movie like I'll get to finish it. I'm planning to have a friend over tomorrow night like I won't be at the hospital. And I'm relaxing like I will get to go to sleep another 8-12 hours.

I won't keep trying to rush her out - I know she's coming as fast as she can.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Dear Emily

Dear Emily,

Today was supposed to be your due date but we're 24 minutes away from midnight so I don't think you're coming tonight. My family all bet on your due date and no one bet on December 14th so you will probably come that day. That's okay - I will just take it to mean that you really enjoy spending time with me all of the time. Keep this in mind - I'm a lot prettier on the outside and we can do way more fun stuff when you get here, rather than if you just try to stay in there forever. It's a little colder out here but everyone has bought you so many clothes that you won't have to worry about that either.

I really want to meet you. I wonder what color your eyes will be, if you'll have hair, how long your fingernails are. I wonder what your daddy will say when he sees you. If he cries, he's not sad or mad - he's just overwhelmed. If I cry, it's probably from being overwhelmed with emotion and exhaustion. I definitely want to spend time with you but I don't know how much energy it will take to get you here so I'm sorry if I sleep a lot. I'll try to sleep when you do because I don't want to spend a lot of time away from you right now.

Do you know how excited everyone is that you are almost here? Everyone wants to hold you and kiss you and see you. I'll promise you right now - you will never run out of love to receive because I know that when I meet you, I won't be able to ever stop loving you.

Right now, you don't have any brothers or sisters but you might in a few years. Right now, I want to enjoy the time that it's just you, me, and Daddy. When we do have some siblings for you, just remember - we loved you first :)

Your grandma (my mom) is very excited to meet you. She said you can call her whatever you want (or can pronounce) but I think she's going to teach you to call her "My Favorite." It's hard to pronouce but she's going to work with you on that. Just remember - I'm your mommy and even if Grandma/My Favorite lets you color on the walls, you don't get to at home. Unless we buy washable crayons and Daddy doesn't catch us.

Another thing - I know it's going to be frustrating for both of us before you learn to talk but if I can be patient with you, I hope you can be patient with me. I know that you don't really have a concept of patience yet but I'm hoping we can find a way to communicate.

Overall, I can't wait to meet you. Even as I'm typing this, you're kicking and jabbing. You're going to be such a strong, smart, beautiful girl and no matter how long it takes you to get here, I'm just glad you're on your way.

My friend Carmen said that God is never too early or too late; He's always on time. I know He knos when you will be here and I guess that is all I know. Hopefully, He sent you a memo because it would be awful if you were late to your first event ever. I sent you an eviction notice but I guess my date wasn't the same as His.

Either way, I love you. I can't wait to hold you. Please get some sleep before the big day - I know I am.

Love you,

Happy birthday? Or not...

I don't think Emily knows that it's supposed to be her birthday today.

Just so everyone is updated, I'm having (what I think are) mild contractions but they are not regular or consistent yet so I'm still home. I really hope to get this show on the road soon. It's not that I'm sick of being pregnant - I LOVE BEING PREGNANT! - but I am ready to meet my little girl.

It's the perfect day today - my house is being filled with the smell of laundry detergent, it's raining, and I started my day with an apple :)

Unfortunately, there are not-so-perfect happenings, like Eric's work schedule. He got home around 6:45am and told me that he has to be back at work by 3pm. It sucks because today, tomorrow, and Wednesday are supposed to be his days off. I just want a day home with him alone before Emily is here -  I know I'll miss our lazy days when Emily is here. We'll find a way to have them, though. Emily will just become part of the tradition! We got a couple hours of just-us time yesterday, curled up on the couch and watching SNL and The Office.

Luckily, his scheduled should be Monday - Friday soon. I'm looking forward to that and I'm sure he is too. I'm hoping that starts within this next week since my birthday is Sunday and so far, we are waiting to see when Emily is born to determine when we can do something. If she's born before my birthday, we'll probably have my parents over for dinner on Saturday or Sunday. I was going to suggest going out for dinner but I don't think I could leave Emily so quickly. I could teach him how to make tortellini or ask my mom to teach him :) If I'm still pregnant on my birthday (which means I would be induced the next day), I would probably rather sleep. But we could celebrate in the middle of the week or something with my parents and enjoy it together alone on Sunday or Saturday. I just wouldn't want to eat anything heavy right before she gets here and this girl needs birthday cake! Should I make it simple and ask for cupcakes? :) Or breakfast for dinner? Like pancakes?

There's so much happening for the next few weeks - Emily will be born. I'll turn 24. Christmas will happen. My mom's birthday will follow on January 2nd. These next few weeks will be crazy, but I'm so thrilled for all of it.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Bouncing from Subject to Subject...

I can't believe my due date is tomorrow. Even if she's not born tomorrow, I'm still in shock that my pregnancy is almost over. I feel like it's just flown by, even though it's been over nine months.

I think I'm ready for her to be here, to-do listwise. My Christmas shopping is done (except for 2 stocking stuffers which I'm picking up today). Her room is ready, including my glider. Her stuff has all been washed, folded, and put away. Her swing gets here on Wednesday.

Basically, all the "stuff" is done.

But now, I'm wondering, am I really ready for this? I mean, it's not like I have a choice because she'll be here. And I'm so ready to hold her in my arms. But am I ready?

Two nights ago, I had dreams I forgot her somewhere - one time at my Mom's house, the other in a library. I know this won't happen because Emily and I are going to stay home for a couple of weeks at least so we can get used to this huge change for us both. Plus, I don't go to the library and I'm pretty sure it's more likely that Mom would try to keep her there longer rather than me forgetting to take her home.

(On a side note, I had a talk with my mom about the perks of grandparenting. I'm thinking, next blog?)

Oh, I forgot to mention my OBGYN appointment! So I had my appointment on Thursday. I was totally nervous because I've heard from everyone who has mentioned it that checking for dialation hurts bad. I found out - apparently, I'm not everyone lol. He checked me, it took maybe 30 seconds or so. He said I was more than 1cm dialated and 50% effaced. He said he thinks he'll see me before my next weekly appointment (which is Wednesday). If I do make it to my next appointment and I've made no progress, he will schedule me to be induced on December 19th (the day after my birthday). I hope she's born before that.

I know I've been saying all this time how cool it would be to have her born on my birthday (and I still think it would be cool) but I realized a few days ago that it would really only be cool for me. So I hope we don't have the same birthday.

My last day of work was Tuesday. It's been nice to just be home and get ready this week, even though I still went to town every day but Saturday :)

I better go - gotta get to church!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Almost there!

39 weeks. I have been pregnant for 39 weeks. I'm a little shocked that the time has passed so quickly for me. I think I knew it was going by, but I didn't stop to think about the timeframe. If she's on time, this means I will hold my daughter in a week.

I have had a very up-and-down nesting thing going on. I've been told it's pretty typical for it to be like that but come on! I got up on Saturday morning and kind of lounged for a little while with my cereal. Then, I went upstairs and suddenly because a power-cleaner/unpacker! For a good 2-3 hours! Then, lull in cleaning. Then another crazy 2 hours! On the upside, the upstairs is now totally unpacked. All that I need to finish Emily's nursery is to vacuum (which Eric said he'll do) and put in my glider rocking chair (which arrives from Amazon by Thursday). I put those plastic safety covers on all of the outlets in her room and Eric reminded me that she can't really mess with those yet. I told him that she might if she's an overachiever! I'll probably go ahead and sanitize all the pacifiers and stuff this week, since my last day of work is tomorrow.

Yep, my last day is tomorrow. It's kind of bittersweet but I'm thrilled I get to stay home with Emily. I know I will never get another chance for those moments and I don't want to miss it!

I've been baking (hello, nesting!) for my coworkers this week since I won't be here for the holidays. No complaints so far! :) Tomorrow is my last chance so I'm picking the favorite - CHEESECAKE SQUARES!

Wow, I should nap right now. This is too much energy for a Monday.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Hormones? Go away!

I keep crying at stupid things!
I'm not sad - I just need to clarify that right away. I keep crying at happy things - songs, movies, whatever. I just watched an episode of How I Met Your Mother on Netflix Instant Play (hello, best friend!) when Ted finally gets a girl at the end of an episode! And I don't mean my eyes got teary - I had real tears come down my face!

A couple of weeks ago, I broke Eric's computer. I take 90% of the blame, but to be fair, he had it sitting above a bowl of water because the vent on the laptop was bad. I don't know what it was, but I freaked out because I knew I would have to tell Eric and I knew he would be upset. I texted him, only to find out that his phone died. Which meant I would have to tell him in person. I don't remember what else happened that night, but it was a Thursday night and I was just upset for some reason.

I woke up the next day and I was running late for work. I realized I would need to bring the computer to town so I was freaking out about the money we'll now have to spend on either fixing his computer or buying a new one. By the time I got to work, I was sick to my stomach and feeling overwhelmed and I decided to take a half-day at work. I cleared it with Bill and he said okay. I went to tell Joanne and I could barely keep it together!
This teary-girl just isn't me!! Why, pregnancy hormones, why?!