Tuesday, October 14, 2014


Well, we did it guys! We decided to have another baby and it took rather quickly. We found out the beginning of this July and we are super excited!  This pregnancy so far has been very easy which has been nice since Zoey.....is a handful. Very little sickness, and all that I had seems to be gone now. I'm tired. Just tired, but I'm not entirely sure that is just from this pregnancy. My little energizer bunny has kept me busy since she could hold her head up so I think I've been tired since then. Honestly, for me, I would have had a baby a lot earlier if it weren't for Zoey. Partly because I wasn't sure I could handle it along with her energy and a good portion because I wasn't sure she could handle the attention being taken from her yet and worried she would eventually hate the baby. But, I finally decided I/We could do it.

 Then, the task became getting Zoey to stop breastfeeding. I wasn't entirely sure I could get pregnant while nursing (for a couple reasons) and I worried that if I nursed her until I had the baby then when the baby started nursing that she would feel like the baby was stealing something that was hers (and cause tension). I was terrified to wean her. She LOVED nursing. Like I called her the boob addict. And she is VERY persistent and passionate about what she wants. She nursed not just when she was hungry but anytime she needed comfort, hurt, tired, scared, just wanting cuddle and sometimes I really miss it. It was a bonding experience and time just for her and I that I can't really explain. Not to mention it was literally the only time she stopped moving. I got more than a few comments about my extended nursing, but I very literally don't care what other people think about that (and that's all I care to say about the matter). But it wasn't easy to get her to quit. She cried really hard twice about it. Like I had killed her best friend. And I almost gave in both times. It made me so sad to make her SO sad over something she didn't understand. I did tell her that it was all gone and gave her drinks of other things instead and she pretty quickly instead of asking me for nursing she would just say "All gone?" and I would tell her yes, it was all gone. Overall it wasn't half as bad as I thought it would be though and within a couple of weeks she had completely forgotten about all of it. She seems so big now and I'm sure will seem even bigger when I have another little one. 

Anyways, breastfeeding didn't end up being an issue because I got pregnant the first month we tried while I was still breastfeeding but that is done too :) I didn't tell anyone for a while. Not until I was 9 weeks or something and I basically did out of necessity too. I had begun to show soooo fast. I am obsessed with pregnancy as most people know. I know all about it, but I guess sometimes talking to a million people and repeating myself over and over about how far along I am or if I've been sick or when my due date is, is just not that fun the third baby around. I actually still do really love to talk about pregnancy, I guess just not to people I'm not close with or people that don't actually care and ask me the same things EVERY single time they see me. So we waited a little while (not that nine weeks is even that long). It killed Justin though, he can't stand to keep secrets. 

So I've just grown and grown. Like literally, I look like most people do at six months. I am huge. In fact, I kind of started to worry about it. Because I know everything about pregnancy (not really, but kinda) I checked my fundal height regularly and basically from the time I could feel it I was always measuring way bigger than normal. I told my family this and Justin (Justin always thinks I'm obsessing over nothing). We have lots of twins in both mine and Justin's family but none are fraternal (which are genetic), all are identical (which are not, just an anomaly that tends to happen evenly in families), but I still hoped/feared that I would have twins. So I had a prenatal check up yesterday and told my midwife that I felt huge. She assured me that it was perfectly normal and that after three children I had three times the relaxing hormone in my body and that those dang third (and on) births all made you stick out quicker. I said sure, sure but it's not just that, that my fundal height is measuring extremely large. She said she would check it at the end of the check up with everything else and we continued our appointment. So then the checking came. I laid down and the kids hopped up to my side with Justin so we could listen to the heart beat for the first time. We heard it very quickly and I relaxed (even if everything else is normal, I DO always worry that something is going to be wrong or something bad will happen). So then I waited for her to measure me. She stuck one hand on my stomach and immediately her eyes went wide. She smiled and even though she just confirmed that I was indeed measuring huge for assumed gestation I started to sweat and went bright red. I thought, 'Oh My Gosh. I am going to have twin.' Freaking out a little. She said, "It's either three things, the least likely is twins. The other possibilities are that you have a fibrous mass on your uterus which is really common  or you are actually a month farther along than you thought you were. It could be that the last period you had was actually the bleeding that sometimes happens during implantation." She told us that we could check right there on their small ultrasound machine though and find out how many babies we have. Which of course we said we wanted to do. She left to go set up. Justin was in a panic, I could tell. He was very good natured about it but I could tell he was totally freaking out on the inside. And then they took us back. It was really quick, they had me lay down and put the jelly on my belly and instantly we saw that there was only one baby. My heart ached a little. As hard as it would have been, how hard it would have been on my kids, how irritating it would have been to buy a new car to fit us all which would have been a bit of an unwelcome extra expense when we are in the middle of building a home, just doubling everything, not to mention that I wouldn't have been able to have my birth at the Birth Center I'm going to which would have pretty sad for me, despite it all, I wanted them. I wanted them both and had to get over the babies that I thought I might have for only a matter of a few minutes. At the same time I breathed a sigh of relief for all the reasons mentioned above. So that leaves a possible mass (non-dangerous) or possibly having gotten pregnant a month before we started trying. I find this scenario unlikely but we'll have to see. I have my ultrasound scheduled in a month so we'll be able to see for sure then. The other thing I was thinking as we left was that a couple of Justin's Aunts or Uncles were 10 almost 11 pound babies. Maybe I'm just in for a really big one. But I don't know that I would measure big this soon. I would imagine that the baby would grow in relative likeness to every other baby and then just gain quickly at the end but I really don't know. I haven't researched that matter so I'll have to see if I can find anything on it. 

So, there you have it! The due date that I was given before this was April 6/7 which would be perfect. We plan to be in our house by then so I'm hoping that I wont be expecting a baby any sooner :) Oh yeah, I almost forgot! Justin and I decided that we wont be finding out the gender of our baby. We are really excited to have this surprise right when we see our little one. I have always wanted to do this but never thought I would be able to convince Justin to do it but he actually agreed to it! I suppose it helped that we already have baby boy and girl clothes so we'll have everything we need and wont make us want to buy extra stuff  or clothes that we don't. Sooo yeah, that's all, we are so excited! Next year I will be a mom to three. My life keeps getting busier and busier. Me and James have become involved in this huge homeschooling community that we have here in Heber, he plays soccer and loves it, and will be turning FIVE in January. I can't even believe it. Zoey. I feel like I've said a million things about Zoey already but she is just my sunshine. She has this energy that shines out her eyes. She is so cute that I just want to eat her up. I have never met a little human who is so sure about what she wants and sure of herself in getting it. She keeps me on my feet. I have finally found two movies she will watch all the way through. Frozen and Mary Poppins. So now I know how to get my breaks in. I have insured myself that this next one will be mellow as can be ;) I am so grateful though. I love my kids with all my heart. They are my everything and have become my whole life which I am totally okay with and proud to say. I can't wait to have more :) 

Friday, March 1, 2013

Valentines Day 2013

I have always been a bit of a planner. And likewise, not generally very spontaneous (there are few exceptions to this). I think this is mostly because I really like to look forward to something. As soon as one holiday or vacation is over, I start thinking, dreaming, planning, scheming about the next one. Because of this I really am not very good with changed or canceled plans. Once I get all geared up about something it really bums me out if they don't go through, even if they hadn't been something I had really wanted to do in the first place. I think being a mom has really adapted me a bit; made me more well rounded because sometimes, things just don't go as planned. This is the case in everyone's life, though. So, as usual, Valentines Day was planned. A couple days before I had made heart shaped sugar cookies, with my faithful and ever-ready assistant James, and we decorated them for family and for some people in our ward. I found darling Valentines to make for James and we bought some CARS ones from the store just for fun. I also busted out the cricket to make some really cool Valentines cootie catchers and puppets. The night before V-day we had planned for James to have his weekly sleep over at Grandmas and then we planned to bring over Zoey the next day so we could start our morning. We had some unexpected visitors late that night so when they left just before 12 we decided to do a bit of celebrating right when it became Valentines Day. Justin, has always had a hard time with surprise gifts. He loves giving them but it almost kills him to. As soon as it arrives in the mail or he picks it up, he wants to show me. Sooooo badly. So at 12 a.m. the day of Valentines Day he gave me my gift. It is always jewelry so I knew what to expect but it always surprises me how good he does. It was a necklace. The pendant was in the shape of flower and each petal was made of a different metal. The top one was yellow gold, then white gold, then rose gold, then one studded with diamonds, then silver. It was beautiful. He is so good. Then he pulled out the bouquets. Bouquets? Multiple? I maintain, that while I might be more creative and lovey-dovey than he is, Justin is at least 50 times more thoughtful than I am. A dozen roses for me, a single rose for the sweetest old lady Margaret who lives below us and adores Justin, and then an arrangement with a rose and pink carnations for his Grandma.

I think that this attribute has become the one I admire the most about Justin. His thoughtfulness or mindfulness and even service towards others. Not just his family but our neighbors too. All the old ladies in our complex love him. When I go walking with kids I am frequently getting stopped by ladies and it's always, "Ooooh your Justin's wife! Your husband helped me move, lift, fix......" This whole time I'm thinking, 'I'm the one in your ward....and you know my husband." Haha, I'm just kidding though, I love it when I get told things like that. Once an old lady called Justin and asked him to come pick up some cinnamon rolls she made for him, haha. Justin made sure I knew that she had specified that they were for him. Then, one time we came home and there were a plate of cookies sitting on our bench outside our door. Apparently, this newly wed couple had just moved into our ward and Justin had been outside working on his truck or something and this guy had locked himself out of their condo. He asked Justin for his help and he got him in by getting our ladder for him to climb up to his balcony in hopes that a window or sliding door was open, which it was. So we got a plate of cookies. Anyways, Justin is great, now off my raw raw Justin tangent.

So we stayed up late and for some reason Zoey slept in. Zoey has become sort of my alarm clock. She wakes up between nine and nine-thirty every day and so I basically never set an alarm. But this day, she decided to sleep until 11:30. I was pretty frantic when I finally woke up because I needed to do my part of Valentines day which was breakfast. I quickly made one of Justin's favorite breakfast, Biscuits and Gravy and then arranged my gifts to him. I thought they were quite funny. A humorous V-day Card, my own version of a bouquet for men (tell you about this is a second), and the craft me and James made for him. We were eating breakfast by noon and rushed to get ready and take Zoey to my moms by 1:30. It was getting so late, we were barely going to squeeze everything we had in. We headed down to Salt Lake to visit Nanny (that's what they call their Grandma, and their Grandpa they call Papu because they are Greek). When we got there she was so happy to see us. Although she's had complications, she looked really good. More alert than I had seen her in a long time. . We sat down in their library and talked. She was so sweet and was telling us story after story about her family, people I have never known or even heard about. We talked for quite a while, more than we had planned but we just couldn't leave her. By the time, we left there really wasn't time to do anything and we decided it was best that we didn't eat since we had a dinner reservation with my parents at six. It was okay though. I was so glad that we did that. It really gave me a boost to know that we really showed some love to someone who needed it.

We went to dinner at Grub Stake that night and brought the kids. It was delicious. Far from romantic or relaxing. The kids were borderline awful at the restaurant, it was hard to talk much and my dad was in.....a mood. And, I did have to crawl under another groups table to retrieve a binky, all good though. We came home, pretty exhausted, put the kids to bed and watched a movie and stayed up late talking. You know those talks that just flow. There's no pause and no topic. Just anything and everything is said and if you were to recap it you wouldn't even remember really what was talked about. Overall, it was nothing like the Valentines I had planned or anticipated but it was actually pretty good. Haha, I was actually happy with it. Things don't go as planned. I'm realizing that more and more. And it seems that most the time, the things you remember the most were not planned. Good conversations can't be planned, the majority of babies are not planned, the best teaching moments with kids are not planned. Maybe life should just not be planned. ( Do not think that I am advocating that preparation is not a good thing, I'm speaking on more of a general day to day sense.) I was thinking about my wedding for instance, for six months there was probably not a half hour period where I wasn't planning for that day (minus when I was asleep) and that day is the biggest blur in my existence. If it wasn't for my wedding video I'm sure there are big parts I would forget entirely. Anyways, it was a good day, and it was good for me to be a little more spontaneous.

Justin's man bouquet is pepsi's stacked with some fake roses, thank you Pinterest!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Happy Halloween!

This was a fun and busy Halloween week. It was Zoey's first so that was exciting and James is almost three so this is the first year he really understood what he was supposed to do. Zoey was a witch and James was Spider Man.
 But it was so busy. I felt kind of bad, like I wasn't able to do very many Halloweeny things with my kids (well James really, Zoey couldn't care less).We didn't even carve pumpkins. Oh yeah Justin did because he was home alone one night and bored. Scary Clown I don't like to look at. But the Monday before we celebrated all the fall birthdays with the Luke's, then Tuesday was a Murder Mystery Party I was invited to and helped out with, Wednesday was Halloween which includes visiting all relatives so they can see the kids costumes, Friday was my actual birthday and date with my husband and Saturday was the party for fall birthdays with the Blair's. Yeah, it was a busy week. I loved everything I did but sometimes when everything is so fast paced you don't enjoy it as much, ya know. The Murder Mystery party was a blast. I love dressing up and it was the Roaring Twenties which is probably my favorite era. But because I helped set up and take down and the party was a good few hours, by the time I got home I was in physical pain. I'm still breastfeeding Zoey and it ended up being seven hours without deflating my boobs. Five hours is pushing a little long for comfort so seven....? I had pumped milk for my mom to feed her and had intended to bring the pump to sneak away from the party at some time and relieve myself but of course I forgot to bring it. It was all I could do not to rip my clothes off and pop a boob in her mouth before I was somewhere private. She was hungry when I got home but unfortunately the damage had already been done. I was full to bursting and it appeared I had gotten an infection. Mastitis, or however it's spelled. The next day was Halloween, I was exhausted from staying up so late and I was getting the flu like symptoms that often come with a breast infection. This has happened to me probably about six times with Zoey. And let me just tell you, IT IS the worst thing in the world. Sometimes it's easier and sometimes it's worse. The first time with Zoey that I had it, I literally cried myself to sleep. It wasn't that bad this time. The most important thing seems to be keeping your boobs drained. It seemed to be a milder version this time but I had a long day ahead of me. Around twelve, me and mom headed down to Salt Lake. My moms parents live down there. I just love them. They are probably the sweetest people I know. And James just loves them.   They have been nicknamed Grandma and Grandpa Duck. I used it once to help James understand where we were going and the best I could come up with was Grandma and Grandpa Duck. 
My Grandpa has this great Donald Duck impression that James loved when he was little especially. All I had to say was Duck and he knew exactly who I was talking about. And it stuck. Pretty funny. My aunt Kori was there as well. My kids love her. She is super high energy and so fun and animated. Zoey can't get enough of her face. She just busts out laughing, so cute. So after a more than sufficient candy raid of their house James loaded up a bunch more  and we headed out. 

That kid is a sweet tooth. It is a good thing he likes healthy food too because otherwise he would be destined for obesity. He has a talent for guzzling goodies, what can I say. We stopped a few places in Heber and then headed to Midway to see Grandpa Luke and the cousins.

James was so tired from the late night, early wake up and no nap that talking about going to see the cousins was the only thing that could keep him from tantrums and tears. We got there pretty late and hung out with cousins for a while before heading to the streets for some more candy round up. We probably didn't get out there until like eight so a lot of the houses had turned out their lights but we were still able to get more than enough candy. James trick or treated probably only about half the time. Justin started scaring him and once he ran up to a house and this little girl dressed as a skeleton out of nowhere was up in his face, hahaha he didn't quite recover and with Justin prompting James, not to let the stuffed decorations get him he had had about enough. He ended up sitting in the stroller the rest of the night. He is a bit of a scaredy cat. We had a fun night though and I started to feel a lot better by the end of the night. Oh yeah, I just threw together a witch costume last minute so I could dress up too. I had a day to rest before the rest of the weeks festivities but yeah, that was our Halloween!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

My Husbands the Greatest!

This July 17th was mine and Justin's two year anniversary. Wow, time flies. Although it kind of feels like we've been married for a lot more than that. Not saying that like it's a bad thing. Justin has been around since I was fifteen so it just kind of feels like I've been married to him since them. Two years and two kids later. Geeze. We had decided that we weren't going to do much for this anniversary since Zoey was only six weeks and we went somewhere last year. Justin still did his best to make it special though. He is way more thoughtful than I am. So we decided we would celebrate on the weekend since Justin had school and work during the week. He told me we would be going out on a date and to ask my mom if she could watch the kids but that was a much as I knew. Which I loved. I love surprises. So Friday night we dropped them off and headed down to Provo. This was the first time I had left Zoey with my mom for more than an hour so it made me a little anxious. Not that I don't trust my mom, I absolutely DO trust my mom. I wouldn't leave Zoey with anyone else.. but it was still hard. I'm sure I still have a good amount of pregnancy homrmones pumping through my viens (or...wherever the hormones are in your...body) at this point so I still imagine very crazy/scary/bad things happening to me and Justin and the kids. I can even start crying about it if I think about it for too long. Anyways, I didn't think so much about what could happen to Zoey but what about if something happened to me. My kids need me. I swear, hormones make your mind run wild and make you think worst case senario, always. I hate that, but that what happens to my thoughts just the same.

So we went to P.F. Changs for dinner. I love P.F. Changs, it's so good and we had gift cards so that was an added bonus. Dinner for free. And then we headed to West Valley. West Valley? I know there are plenty of nice places in West Valley, I've been to them, but when you think of West Valley, don't you think it's kind of....I don't know.... the ghetto or something. Anyways, he gave me clues to where we were going the whole night but I was having a hard time figuring it out. I really didn't want to ruin the surprise because I love surprises but it was still fun to guess. He told me it's something we have always wanted to do but never done. So I guess, Jump on it. I-Fly. Some play or concert. I couldn't think. I don't remember what actually gave it away but about five minutes before we got there I said, "Going to see a comedian?" And that was it! I was so excited. The place is called Wiseguys and it was sooo much fun. From the outside it doesn't look like really anything special but when you walk  into the room you feel like you are walking into a Club or something. Everything is really dark with flashing lights and loud music. I could tell I was going to love this already. The comedian we were going to see was Drew Carey. Most people know him from The Drew Carey Show (obviously) and Who's line is it anyway. There was also quite a bit of short comedic skits from a group...that I now ca't remember the name of. It was all really hilarious though. I absolutely loved it and recommend it to everyone, everyone like 18 and older. Sometimes it got a little crude, anyways, funny funny.

I just love Justin. He is so great. And for my anniversary gift he got me an essential oils kits. Not exactly a normal anniversary gift but I really really wanted it so I was so excited! And...props for me, I, for the first time in my whole life, surprised Justin with a gift that I knew from the second I saw it, he would love. That never happens to me. Normally I just make him pick out his own gifts because he is freaking picky. So I got him this really nice single serve coffee maker that supposedly make fantastic coffee. He loved it. It can even make hot chocolate because I looove hot chocolate. I think I've had it three times in the past week. So, overall I am pretty impressed with myself. And our date was great. Can't wait to do it again!

Saturday, July 21, 2012

My Beautiful Baby Girl

The time finally came! Thursday night we were hanging out at home, Me, James and Justin. Justin made ribs that morning (because he is a way better cook than me, hey I can't be good at everything) and they had sat in the crock pot all day and so at six we were ready to eat them. At six thirty I started to feel a cramp. I've had many of these practice contractions for about the last month but this was definitely the strongest one yet. It made me so excited. We hadn't even gotten up from eating when I had another one. Probably about ten minutes apart but that was improvement. Every time before, I would just sit really still and hope another one would come along but nothing ever did. So I told Justin right away of course. I had told him about every contraction I had had previously so he didn't think much of it. But by seven I was having them irregularly but still anywhere from four to eight minutes apart. I counted contractions for the next hour while running around the house cleaning and doing some last minute packing. I still wasn't sure sure because of how the time would go from closer to farther apart which could be false labor right? But I got this burst of energy to do things around the house. I told Justin he should get all of his stuff ready and the car seat and the bags in the car just in case. So he starts a load of laundry  What?  My contractions were so short, even though they continued and just as a general rule of thumb you should wait until your contraction are four minutes apart, lasting for at least one minute, for at least one hour so I was confused why they were so short.

At that point I had done everything I wanted to do so called my mom and told her I was having pretty real contractions. They had gotten to the point where I really couldn't do much during one. The pain was still plenty bearable but I just couldn't focus on much beyond one. We sat on the phone and she timed them for me for our whole conversation. Some three minutes, some four minutes but still barely making it past thirty seconds. We got off the phone and I told her I was just going to wait a bit longer then I was going to call her and head down to the Birth Center. I waited, then called Becky, my midwife. I told her that I thought I should head down now and told her the details of my contractions. She suggested that I go take a bath and relax to make sure they weren't going to slow down because contractions typically have to last a whole minute for them to be effective and she didn't want me to drive all the way down when they normally don't admit people until they are in active, progressing labor. So I hopped in the bath but they still kept coming. She called me fifteen minutes later to see how I was doing (one of the things I love about the Birth Center, personalized, individualized care that you wont find at hospitals). I told her they were still coming regularly but never lasting more than thirty seconds. She told me that I could continue doing this or I could head down. I wanted to be sure so I told her I would call back in fifteen minutes and let her know.

A couple more contractions had me convinced. I was getting quite a few at only three minutes apart and with how fast my last labor was I didn't want to risk having a baby in the car. Could Not Do That. So I jumped out of the bath, got my clothes on and told Justin that we needed to go. Amazingly he got his clothes dried in time. We made a few calls to family and to the Birth Center to let them know I was on the way. My contractions hurt really bad but I was so excited. I had been preparing for this. I had read so many books and articles, taken classes and talked about it for months and months. I was determined to have the exact birth I wanted. I did all of my non focused awareness and imagery techniques I had learned about. I did everything in my power to succumb to my contractions and not fight against them and I really was DOING it.  I insisted that Justin shut up whenever I started to have one and for some reason I had to push on my ears like I was pushing out all the sound that could distract me and creating my own white noise. I was much nicer to Justin this time around. I had to try really hard though. Sometimes I would snap at him to stop doing something or talking but I was really quick to apologize once I could focus. Poor Just. We got there just before ten and walked into the Birth Room. Becky was there waiting for us and talked to us about everything I was feeling. She checked my vitals and then checked my cervics....Only a three. What? When I got to the hospital with James I was already dilated to a four. I was bummed about that but she said we could stay and just relax. No one was going to come in anyways and I was definitely on my way. Within the next have hour Adrianna, my birth assistant was there. The contractions were starting to last longer. I was happy about that. I was progressing. Adrianna and Becky have the best voice for talking through contractions (when my ears weren't pushed shut). Just how they said the words made them SOOO much easier to get through. I don't even really remember what they said, but it probably didn't really matter what they said, it was how they said it. I was only there an hour when I had this strong feeling to bear down. I kept thinking I needed to go to the bathroom, but every time I sat, there was nothing. Pee sometimes I guess but that's not the type of bearing down I was doing. I got up and Becky, Adrianna and Francis were watching me go through contractions, getting me cranberry juice and just doing...birth things. I'm not sure exactly. It was so neat that they were always there. It wasn't like at a hospital where they have other births to attend or other things to do. They were here for me and only me.

Anyways, after I got up I had one more contraction and again that same feeling. I turned to Becky and said, "I'm sorry but can you please just check me again. I know you just did but I keep on getting this strong feeling like I need to POOP and every time I push down it feels good like that's what I should be doing. She said yes of course and I laid down. She checked me and then sat up. "Yep, you are a nine." Oh My Gosh. Everyone started to laugh and so did I. "I AM SO GOOD AT THIS!" I said. I dilated from a three to a nine in one hour. That's why they were so intense, I was making some SERIOUS progress. Not that any one doesn't think their contractions are extra intense. I texted my mom right after we found out I was progressing so fast and said. "Dilated to a nine. Don't know if you are going to make it." For some reason as they got stronger I had to rub my ears. The feel and the sort of white noise it created helped me get through them. I tried sitting on the big exercise ball like I did last time but I didn't like it. I needed to pace. They started filling the birthing tub but we didn't think I would make it that long. My mom still wasn't there and that was sort of stressing me out. We thought I would at least go half as long as last time but I had only been there an hour. It was kind of stressing Justin out too because we had James. I hadn't decided how much of the labor and birth I wanted James to see because he is really sensitive and aware of my emotions and how I'm feeling so I didn't want to freak him out. But we didn't really have an option at that point. Justin didn't want to leave me and James wouldn't let go of him. Luckily, I really just like to do things on my own so I wasn't feeling like I needed him. I tired sitting on the birthing chair. I really thought I would like this but at the same time I felt like I need to pull down on something or have something more solid to hold onto other than the assistants wrist so I eventually moved to the floor. This felt more like I was supposed to do but eventually my knees and elbows started to hurt. From there I moved to the bed.

I thought maybe this time would be easier but apart from it going faster, it was harder than my mind let me remember. I kept thinking (screaming in my mind really) please come baby I can't do it much longer. I'm never doing this again! How can I? I can't even handle it now! Why DID I want to do this again!? I just want it to be over!

My mom finally got there at about twelve with my Grandma Blair. She and Justin stayed with me and my grandma took James out. Mid-contraction you literally feel like the pain is driving you crazy, like you very well could...I don't know, pass out or something. I laid on the bed on my side holding one leg up. I didn't feel the relief when I pushed like I had with James. Then came the burn. Another thing I hadn't experience with James. I don't know why. The ring of fire, was a literal ring of fire. As my baby's head was crowning the midwife told me to slow down so that I don't rip. It was the hardest thing I've done. Slowing down when all I wanted to do was push with all my might! I started to whimper. That's the best I can describe it because it wasn't a full on cry but it was a whimper of desperation and exhaustion. Please baby come out, I kept thinking. They kept checking her heart rate to make sure that she was alright. This was really annoying to me but I'm glad they did it of course.

My water finally broke on its own. Finally, her head came through! But when she did, they saw that he umbilical cord was wrapped around her neck. There wasn't really any room in my head to think so I just pushed. As soon as she was out they got the cord from around her neck. They laid her directly on my chest and began rubbing her, moving her and trying to get her to breath. There was a moment of terror for me, but the midwifes were all very calm. It made me feel calm and I trusted them. "Come on, baby, breath, you are okay." I told her. She was beautiful. I was so exhausted but she was beautiful. And she had SOOO MUCH HAIR! For what seemed like forever but was probably not even a minute she finally took a breath and cried. It was over, and I was so happy it was over. I just laid there holding her. They never took her from me. They just did everything with her sitting right on top of me, which I loved because after I had James the hospital nurses took him away from me for about fifteen minutes. They gave me a shot to stop the bleeding, Pitocin I think but I don't think they ever told me that, I just assumed. After the cord stopped pulsing Justin cut the cord, another neat thing he didn't get the chance to do at the hospital.

Then my midwife reminded me that I still had to give birth to the placenta! Ugh! No! I didn't want to. I told her I didn't want to. I felt sick, in pain and horrible. I was still having these contractions. I kept thinking, I already had my baby, I don't want to feel like this anymore. I was finally able to push it out. It was pretty amazing to see it actually. Disgusting, but amazing. It was so veiny and bloody and colorful. This little nutrient sack housed my baby all this time. After she was cleaned up and all the vital checks were done we got a chance to talk about the birth a bit. The cord wasn't very long and because it was wrapped around her neck, it made it harder for me to push because not only was I having to push her out but It was causing me to have to push the placenta down with her. There were two large tears in the placenta where it had still been attached which probably didn't make it easier either but none of the placenta was left behind which could have caused some problems. Surprisingly there wasn't even any bruising on her little neck from the cord.

It was pretty hard for me to focus on anything because I was still having postpartum contractions. They were awful. I hated them. It made it hard for me to appreciate my baby right that second. I just wanted to feel good enough to sit there and hold her. It was hard though. So they gave me Ibuproffen and a perceset to help with the pain.

We brought James in to see her. He really didn't want much to do with her. It was really early in the morning though. He was really tired. They told me I had her at 12:15 a.m. Oh my gosh. I was only at the Birth Center for two hours before I had her and fifteen minutes, but still). That is crazy fast. Meaning only a little over an hour of crazy, unbearable pain. But it sure didn't feel like it was that short. I think I'd prefer a longer labor with a slower progressing pain over a really super quick burst of unbearable pain. Anyways, it took a long time before the pain became manageable. They fed us and then I took a shower. By a little after four we were ready to leave with our baby girl. My mom took James home to stay with her for the night. At first I thought I wanted us to all come home together but in the end I was really grateful I had her to take him. I was so tired. We got home around five thirty. It felt so great to lay down to fall asleep in our own bed. I couldn't believe it was over, but I was so glad it was over! Glad that it's going to be a while before I have to go through that again. So glad that I was able to do it completely naturally again. I am so grateful that I was able to do that for my baby girl. It is an incredibly empowering experience. We named her Zoey Leila Luke. I've loved the name Zoey for a while, it's on my list but we always wait to see our babies before we name them. We like to do the first name to be uniquely their own. The middle name we like to use a family name. Leila is my great grandmothers name on my moms side of the family. She was a really big part of our family. She passed a way just a little over a year ago. I think this picture of Zoey really looks like my grandma.

Some people say, "Why go through the pain when we have such advanced technology to avoid it." They think birthing naturally is a thing of the past but in all reality the majority of the world is still giving birth naturally. And that's not just third world countries. That includes countries that are as equally technologically advanced as we are. So why is that. My thought? Because they understand that "Birth is a natural function of biology, not a medical emergency." And if America is so advanced then why do we have the highest maternal mortality rate and the second highest infant mortality rate in the world? A very good question. God made us to be able to do it. Not saying that if you don't do it you're a failure, because I absolutely don't believe that. I believe all women should research their options though, because if you don't know your options, you don't have any. People have been giving birth naturally as long as there have been people, which is a lot longer than epidurals have been around.We don't even know the extent of the advantages of not exposing our babies to these harmful drugs and vice versa. When a woman gives birth naturally a women receives the biggest rush of Oxytocin they will ever receive in their entire life and will be communicated with your baby as you hold her afterward. With the use of an epidural those natural hormones are not created. It is a blessing to be able to give your baby the absolute healthiest birth you can. That is something worth fighting for.

Zoey Leila Luke

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Thirty-seven and a half weeks!

Whoa, kind of dropped the ball. I really thought I was going to document every month until I had this baby but I kind of forgot. This pregnancy has gone really fast for me surprisingly. Not the last couple of weeks of course but really everything has gone so fast. I played tennis with my mom really regularly. At least twice, sometimes even three times a week until we went to Mexico. So I got my fit pregnancy I was goin for. That put me at, what is that, seven months of something. We probably would have played more but then when we were playing in Mexico my mom hurt her leg. I think she pulled a muscle or something but it took quite a few weeks for it to heal and then I really started getting too big to run anymore. I have done some walking too.

There has been so much going on. Probably adds to why this pregnancy has gone so fast. I did a lot of party planning. My cousin was pregnant the same time as me so I planned our combined baby shower for the Nelson side of the family. She's had her baby now and she is sooo darling. I'm sure that has added to me being impatient for mine. Then I planned one of my best friends bridal shower. Then I planned my baby shower for the Luke side of the family. Then she had her wedding a couple weeks after that. And just stuff. Life happens continually. I don't work, I'm a mom of a two year old, I never spend more than two days consecutively at the house. We just stay busy. I don't even really know what I do, but I DO IT!

But to get to more current affairs. Yes, finally I have reached what is the realm of full term. So crazy. I could have this baby anytime now. And I could not be more prepared. I made lists of things to do this last month and I have really checked everything I care about doing off. I made crockpot freezer meals so I don't have to make dinner when the baby gets here. I stacked up on pads, witch hazel and dermoplast numbing spray and 300 infant diapers and 1000's of wipes. All of the newborn clothes, sheets, blankets, bottles, breast-pump and binky's are washed. My house is deep cleaned. Justin bought me a shark steam mop so that I don't have to use extreme chemicals all around the house and the new baby. SOOO happy about that. I packed mine and James go-bag (Justin is on his own for that one) for when the time comes to rush down to the Birth Center. I have been very crafty too. I made three darling binky clips and a carseat shade cover that is equally darling. As well as a bunch of head bands that I am just waiting to finish when I can measure her head. If I go too many more days I have a few other baby crafts I am going to attempt. The bassinet is set up in our room. There are fresh batteries in everything that needs them and the camera and video camera are all charged. I am running out of things to keep me occupied. And I am EXTREMELY anxious. I just want my baby girl so bad. I can't wait to breastfeed. There is nothing more bonding than that. I can't wait to dress her up in things from her giant wardrobe. A huge thanks to my mom who is completely obsessed with buying baby clothes, followed closely second by Rhonda, Justin's dads girlfriend. But really, I need my little dress up doll!

I am slowly getting less and less nervous about how James is going to take the new baby though. We have talked about it a lot by now and I think he may really be getting it. He is so funny. He talks to the baby in my belly. He says "HI baby! When you gonna come out?! Come out baby!" He is getting to be such a talker. At this point I have appointments one a week with my midwifes. A couple weeks ago I was having some stronger contraction so they checked me and I was already 50% effaced. That made me so excited. She really is coming. And I had James eleven days early so that would be about a week from now which statistically happens a lot. I hope she's ready by then.

 It is going to be very different having two kids. I am nervous but I can't wait. I am so excited to be going to a Birth Center to get exactly the kind of birth I wasn't able to have last time. The time will be here before I know it. Now's the time to relax and save up some strength.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Valentine's Day

I had a really wonderful Valentine's Day. I don't feel like I've had any bad ones but I just really had a good day. Justin has school most mornings so he was gone before I actually got up. But when I finally did decide to make me and James breakfast, I walked into the kitchen with a bouquet of flowers and a very Valentine's wrapped gift. I got sooo excited. At first I wasn't sure if I should open it without him. So I texted him (because he was in class) and while I waited his reply I took pictures of this cute little setup. He finally responded and told me to open it. Because I am a hopeless romantic, flowers would have been enough. I looooove getting flowers! But of course that wouldn't have been good enough for Justin. He also got me my very most favorite chocolates in the world, Lindt Chocolate Truffles and.....my equally most favorite thing to get on Valentine's day, JEWELRY. It was a box from Fred Meyer Jewelers! OOOOH I felt like I was getting proposed to all over again. And inside were beautiful diamond earings! Nothing huge but so so delicate and darling and beautiful. I absolutely love them. I got so excited to go on our date that night so that I could wear all the diamonds he has purchased for me. My ring (obviously), the diamong necklace from last year, and my new addition. Luckily I had planned to play tennis with my mom that morning at the rec. center so I had something to pass the time. Plus I also had a few things to finish up for his gift, which I was super excited to give him. I had worked hard on his gift. Now, my idea isn't original, but basically none of them are, don't judge me. I found the idea off of Pinterest. It is called 52 reasons why I love you. It is a deck of cards whole punched and tied into a book. And on each card of that book is a different reason why I love him. Truly and honestly, it wasn't ever hard to come up with them. It probably took me five minutes. Once I started writing I didn't stop until I decided to count and see how many more I needed. It actually kind of surprised me. Not saying that to be mean or anything but 52 things is A LOT of things and some were little but really are important and I'm glad I got to write them all out for him. I used scrapbooking paper and embelishments to make it look cuter and at the back I quoted bits and pieces of "How do I love thee, let me count the ways". It turned out sooo good and Justin really loved it.

Anyways, so after I gave him the gift we went to Bucca Di Beppo down in Salt Lake. If you haven't been there before, you should. It's super good. We went with my parents and it was really fun. I know that's not the most romantic thing in the world but I really enjoyed having them there. I just really appreciate the fact that I can go to dinner with my parents, with Justin and that actually being what he wants to do. When I was just dating Justin I never could have imagined him wanting to spend Valentine's with them. And... almost completely agreeing with what my dad has to stay. Justin really respects and listens to my dad. I didn't realize I would actually really want that, but since I have that, it's really important to me. And my dad just "eats up" the fact that Justin will listen to him, yet at the same time respects Justin for the things he does differently from my dad (religion). We ate a TON. Ate the Colossal Brownie Sundae for dessert which was huge. Then we went to a movie. We saw "This Means War" with Reese Witherspoon. I loved it. It was a romantic comedy, which is my very favorite and I basically only get to see with Justin on my birthday and Valentine's day. It was pretty crude (just how movies are these days apparently) and I got really uncomfortable sitting next to my dad in parts where they started saying things like "horny" "sex tie-braker" and "fingering the painting" but surprisingly my dad was laughing his head off??? Haha it was great, I realized that my dad's not so stuffy and now that I'm an adult he can enjoy some adult humor with me without insisting on being the example and moral beacon and making every opportunity a learning one.

So overall, it was just a really great day. And even though we had to hold off on the romantics until we got home that night, I was really just in love all day. In love with Justin, in love with life, in love with eating good food. I feel so special to be where I am. Blessed, very blessed.