Monday, December 9, 2013

Baby Emmett

Birth Story beware:

Back at 32 wks, my midwife noticed that I had been measuring large for the last couple of appts.  Just a couple weeks larger than I actually was.  So I was scheduled an ultrasound to see if baby boy was just going to be big or if there was extra fluid.  I was 34 wks when the ultrasound was taken.  Laurie, the midwife was busy looking at the results of the ultrasound while the resident with her was measuring me.  The resident didn't know why I had gotten the ultrasound, and proceeded to measure me three times before finally asking why I was so large.  I measured at 39 wks that week.  Baby boy wasn't overly large and the fluid levels were fine, so why was I measuring large?  He was breech.  Apparently, if they don't flip, they take up more room.  I wasn't too concern, there was still plenty of time for him to flip.  Laurie tells me there are some positions that I can try to encourage him to move so I tried a few of them, but I never felt that major motion.

 As it got closer and closer to the date, and I was still measuring large, we started talking about possible scenarios for if he remained in a breech position.  The first and foremost obvious solution is a C-section.  I wanted to avoid this at all cost and Laurie was well aware of this.  She had delivered all three of my children up until this point and we both wanted to continue to have her deliver this one. She would not have been able to do the C-section.  She mentioned a procedure called ECV.  They would take an ultrasound at 38 weeks and depending on his positioning, (things like if his foot was in the birth canal, or the cord was around his neck, mean C-section) they would at 39 weeks, give me an epidural and try to manually turn him from the outside with the guidance of an ultrasound.  If they were successful, I would immediately get induced.  If it wasn't successful, which they were only about 56% successful, C-section.  With all of this, my hopes of going into labor naturally went out the window.  Oh well, I could live with that.  I know that some people would try to do a vaginal delivery of a breech baby, that is a risk I wasn't willing to take.

At my 37 wk appt., Laurie got called into delivery 10 minutes before I arrived, so I met with Dr. Cypher.  I am not a big fan of him.  He is extremely good at his job, but his bed side manner is rather cold.  We talked about when, if a C-section was going to be schedule, it would happen.  My ultrasound to determine everything was scheduled the day before Thanksgiving and I would hit 39 wks the Sat. afterwards.  Ideally, they perform C-sections as soon as you hit 39 weeks, however it is a holiday weekend and a Saturday, so he said, maybe Friday or most likely, the following Monday.  Ok,  I have all the realistic scenarios going through my head and I am trying to plan around them.  I had a prenatal massage schedule for the Monday before Thanksgiving, but that fell through, Dr. had an emergency and they had my old cell phone number and couldn't get a hold of me to let me know.  I was very disappointed, but we were going to see if we could get me in the next two days.

Tuesday morning, 5:45, Ethan was "getting ready" for work, which usually consist of trying to sneak back into bed for a couple of minutes before leaving the house at the very last minute.  I was awaken by him and trying to get him to head to work.  I went to the bathroom while he was getting dressed and when I climbed back into bed, my hips creaked and groaned the way they had for the last 4 weeks, and as I laid down, my water broke.  Let me remind you, my water broke with Mark and Lyssa (Ryan was induced).  They were small trickles.  This wasn't.  I pretty much flooded my bed.  I was horrified.  I wasn't due for almost another 2 weeks.  Ethan was ecstatic because he no longer had to go to work.  Timing wise, it worked out well, because had he left I wouldn't have been able to get a hold of him for at least an hour and it would have taken him an hour to get back.  Called the birthing suite and they were asking me all these questions, like how dilated or effaced was I, how was my last internal exam, all of these things I didn't have a clue about because I was supposed to find out the next day with the ultrasound.  One thing though, I was sure I was going to get the C-section.  Since my water broke, getting the ECV was out of the question since you need to fluid to help move the baby.  I wasn't prepared at all.  We didn't have the bassinet set up, I didn't have my hospital bag ready.  I had only just brought down his clothes from the attic the day before to get washed.  You get the picture.

The nurses when I called told me take my time and get a shower, eat something small and light, which I was a little surprised at with the C-section, I thought they wouldn't want me to eat at all beforehand.  Ethan called Mom and had her come over for the kids and we left for the hospital at 7:30.  I was not having any contractions.  This was the same reaction as with Mark and Lyssa.  Water breaks and contractions didn't start until a couple hours later. The nurses were hesitant to believe that my water had broken, so they did a test and because I had suspected a yeast infection the day before, the monistat messed with the test results.  They ended up using a brown paper bag and just having me sit on it.  I guess it is their old school method of doing it, the bag absorb water after an hour or something?  I told the nurses we were concerned about him being breech so Dr. Cypher, who was already there doing a C-section came and did the ultrasound.  He had flipped.  I couldn't have been happier.  I firmly believed that him flipping is what caused my water to break.  Not only had he flipped, but lucky for me, it was Laurie's day for delivery.  Everything I was wishing/hoping for was happening.

Laurie checked me about 9 am and I was only barely at 1 going on to 2 cm.  Not at all effaced.  I had literally started off at zero coming into the hospital. They got me on Pitocin and it was a long time before anything really happened.  They measured me again at 1pm and I was at 3cm.  I asked for the epidural then.  I knew how long it could take for them to come up and I didn't want to be in too much pain while they were trying to administer it.  Well the anesthesiologist apparently was already on the floor and came like two minutes later.  She was this little islander lady and she was fast.  I had a hard time understanding anything she was saying and she was done in like 5 minutes.  The epidural didn't help much.  It numbed my legs and the upper half of my abdomen numb, but left the lower part pretty much untouched.  At 2pm, they checked me again, 4 cm, and decided to administer extra fluid to the baby, since his heart beat kept decreasing at each contraction.  It was done with Ryan so I knew what to expect, doesn't make it feel any less weird.  It was a very slow moving day in my opinion, but come 4pm, I finally started making the move in dilating and hit 5-6, and at 5:30 they were at 9. Laurie stayed with me for the delivery, even though she could have left since the actual pushing didn't start until after she was done, but she stayed for me.  This is why I loved her. The actual pushing only took about 20 minutes and he was out at 6:05pm. 

Emmett Levi Fike weight in at 7lbs 2 oz, and was 20 inches long.  He has a very nicely shaped head, which Laurie said comes from his lack of being in the birth canal for long.  He also had a full head of hair, and had been a very mellow baby.  A little Jaundice, but nothing that has been a concern. As for his name, Ethan had asked if we could have another ELF in the family after I had suggested Emily Louise as a name if it had been a girl. So Emmett, was the only E boy name that we could agree upon that wasn't Ethan, I personally hate family names as first names.  Ethan's initials spell out Elf.  I could work within those parameters.  Levi was after his favorite companion on his mission.

H greatly reminds me of Mark in looks, but he already surpasses all of the older kids in sleeping and mellow-ness.  Took him a few days before he would take to nursing but he does well now









Sunday, August 11, 2013

Think before you speak, or MYOB

I am currently 23 weeks pregnant with another boy.  This particular pregnancy has me even more annoyed with comments and statements from other people.  Not that it is anyone's business, but yes, this was a planned pregnancy.  Yes, I am aware that Ryan and boy#3 will be rather close in age.  Yes, I know this is my fourth child.  Yes, I know how birth control works.  No, I wasn't upset to find out it was another boy. 

When we got married, I had always thought that I would have three kids.  I fully intended on Ryan being the last.  However, about 6 weeks after he was born, it became very apparent to Ethan and I that our family wasn't done.  Ok, fine, we are supposed to have another kid.  Ok, I can handle this.  Thinking it out, 18 months between pregnancy doesn't sound bad to me.  Mark and Lyssa are 20 months apart, and Ryan is 2yrs and 8 mths younger than Lyssa.  The first two are close, the second two will be close.  As for planning, we have not had any issues with getting pregnant.  We have been very blessed, if anything, we have to be very proactive in not getting pregnant.  That time line would have had me pregnant sometime Nov/Dec-ish.  Start of 2013, I start getting another impression that this baby needed to come within the year.  As in born within this year.  That scared me.  I wanted my body to have more time to heal between pregnancies.  I don't relish the idea of two children in diapers. I didn't want it to be that soon.  I talked to Ethan about it and decided, well we don't know what the next year holds for us, but we were going to try anyways. 

I find out in April that I am pregnant.  I wasn't even sure what his due date would be, I hadn't regulated since Ryan so I didn't have a consistent time frame to work with.  Since the previous pregnancies have gone very smoothly and morning sickness is not an issue for me, I didn't even bother with scheduling an appt. with an OB/GYN until the end of May.  She scheduled an ultrasound to determine due date for Dec. 7th. This baby will be born within 2013.  Ryan will be 18 mths.  Just barely old enough to go to Nursery.  I can't wait for Nursery.

Now that it is Aug. there are several possible reasons that have shown up as to why this possibly needed to happen now.  Ethan's parents have just moved to Tennessee.  After serious consideration and a myriad of reason that I am not going into, I have agreed to the idea of moving, pending a decent job.  Maybe the pregnancy needed to happen while we are still on this health insurance. While I still have the same access to Laurie, the midwife who has delivered all three of my kids.  Maybe it has something to do with all the new healthcare laws.  I am not inviting any sort of political debates with that statement.   I don't ultimately know why.  I will probably never know why.

With my first pregnancy I announced pretty early, and with each subsequence pregnancy, it has been later and later.  I didn't publicly announce this one until I had a due date, at which point, I was about 14 weeks.  I told the grandparents and sibling and said something on FB.  That is all I have done.  This is baby #4, there is no need for a lot of attention to me.  And frankly, where as most people have stuck with the normal "Congrats!", there have been a lot of other comments that I just do not want to hear.  I know in my heart that the people who say these rather hurtful things do not mean it to be taken that way, but really?  I don't need to hear about "Wow, they are going to really close, I don't know if I could do it." or another one?  I don't want to hear negative things about pregnancy, implied or otherwise.  I am the one who has to live with the consequences of my choices, good or bad.  This was and is a good choice.

A friend of mine didn't find out that I was pregnant until 2 weeks ago. She called me a brat for not telling her.  I honestly didn't realize she hadn't know.  We did talk about it a little as to why I had been so secretive about this pregnancy and we both came down to there is sooo much about motherhood that is badly judged.  How many kids you have, how much age difference there are between them, how you raise them, circumcision, vaccinations, public school/private/home schooling, etc.  I don't want to hear about I didn't do things the correct way, or how they wouldn't have done it that way.  I don't want to hear judgement about this.  This is a private thing between my husband and I, if I chose to share it with you, then I trust you, but WE, Ethan and I, get that choice.  I didn't decide to get pregnant with you (generalized audience), so unless it something nice to say, don't say it.  No pregnant woman wants to be told that they are huge, that are you sure your due date is right, that is a lot of kids, how can you afford them, you know how birth control works right?  That is rude, condescending and flat out mean. 

The worst thing about this is I am not surprised when a guy says something, most of the time, they genuinely do not know better, but when it is from another mother.  Do they honestly not remember how awkward it is to have a stranger fondle your stomach as if you aren't actually there? Or how close their own children were?  Hormones aside, we are already sensitive to the changes our bodies are going through, the sickness that afflict many, the supermom fa├žade that is the only thing that can be accepted when you walk out the door.  Yes, we love the weight gain, the swollen feet, the tenderness and freakly medical things that happen to us. 

I get gallstones while I am pregnant. This is not uncommon for pregnant women. It hit about 10% of pregnant women.  It has something to do with the estrogen levels messing with the bile producing and the bile is what breaks fat down.  If the bile isn't being produced, then fats aren't broken down and they can form gallstones.  Gallstones don't dissolve for the most part, there are some long term remedies for dissolving them but I mean like years long.  If they get too large, they can get stuck, similar to a kidney stone.

 They don't bother me when I am not pregnant, so I haven't gotten my gallbladder out.  I don't really want to get it out.  They started with Lyssa, even though I wasn't aware of what they were until half way through Ryan's.  All any doctor(6 to count at this point) will say is, well there is nothing we can do, so just get it removed after you aren't pregnant anymore.  If it turns out that it is infected or inflamed, then I will consent, but I would rather have it working at a lower percentage then not have it there at all, not being able to do even the low percentage.  I had 4 different attacks within the month of July, the last two of which I ended up in the ER for, one lasting 4 hrs and the other 6 hrs.  The second one would have been an er trip, but the pain stopped before Marme was able to get there to watch the kids, so we didn't go. To get an idea of the pain, it is an intense tightening feeling right below the rib cage, the whole way around.  It feels very hard to breath, even though you are capable of it.  I would compare it to late stage contractions with out the breaks in between.  They can be brought on from eating an fatty meal, carbonation, things of that nature, but also a baby's kicking can do it.  The relief from the pain usually happens the stone is dislodged and no longer blocking anything.  Not usually passing the stone.  So another words, it is still there to come back and haunt you.  They really don't like to do surgery on pregnant women, which I completely understand. Remember the story with the Duggar Family and their preemie child, Mom had emergency gallbladder surgery and it did affect the baby leading her to be premature.  With that said, they have given me different pain med to help "manage" the pain.  The one that was 6 hrs, I was on Vicodin and they still had to give me Demerol for it.

I have set up an appt. with an GI to talk to them about any other possible things that can be done, beside the watching of fatty foods and carbonation.  I have been watching what I eat and avoiding carbonation.  I can't do much about a baby kicking.  I refuse to believe there is nothing else they can do besides just wait until I am not pregnant anymore.  I am not the first person they have encountered that was unacceptable candidate for surgery, so I would like to hear what else is available from someone who specializes in these matters.  I felt bad, when I was making the appt. with the receptionist, she just kept going on and on how there really wasn't much they could do for me, until I finally yelled at her that, " Then you have 5 weeks until my appt. to find a possible fix/solution  to get me through, because I am not going to keep going to the ER 4 times a month for the next 5 months, scaring everyone in my family, as well as myself."  I know doctors hate Web M.D. and such as that, but if I can find different things, I don't know why none of them have been presented as options.  Almost all of what I have found say they are only temporary fixes, but that is all I really need, something to get me through the next couple of months.  I have also done a cleanse, and will be doing a repeat of it shortly, in hopes that this will help either pass the stones that are causing problem or help prevent new ones from forming. I have had a small attack since the cleanse, but it was far more manageable than the last three, so I have hope.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Ryan

Ryan is now 6 months.  He had a check up a couple of weeks ago, where it was discovered that in the last two months, he hasn't gained any weight.  He grew in height and head measurements, but not it in weight.  12lbs and 15oz. 

I have had some concerns with my milk this time, it just didn't seem like he was getting satisfied, no matter how much I drank or ate.  I had started to supplement with some occasional formula, but now it is a regular addition.  He has started baby foods and hates rice cereal. Ryan has eaten everything I let him get his hands on baby food-wise, including regular mash potatoes and rice krispies. But, the biggest reason he hasn't gained any weight would be...

Crawling.  He has been crawling for a month.  The boy doesn't hold still. He burns all of his calories. Try holding him and it is a like holding a cat that knows you want to give him a bath.  But he loves to be held and gets mad at you when you won't.  Ryan spends a lot of time on the floor.  The result?  He is now pulling himself up on anything and everything he can.  Yesterday, we watched him furniture walking. That is right. Climbed the side of couch and moved from one end to the other. 

I am a little disturbed by this.  Don't get me wrong, I actually love when the babies start to crawl.  LOVE IT.  It means I don't have to carry them everywhere so they can be with me.  They can now come to me. However, the pulling himself up and furniture walking already... he is so little. Not to mention the extra baby-proofing needed.  He was only in the 10th percentile for height and head that I just want him to slow done a bit.  Gain some weight, chub up a bit. So now we are on Operation: Fatty.  Feel free to feed him at anytime.

He is a really sweet little guy.  Loves to smile and makes this really weird noise when he is "laughing".  Aunt Fishy calls him Pterodactyl because of the weirdness of the sound. Every time we are around lots of other people, such as church, he just starts yammering away.  My Mother-in-law could hear  him yesterday from several pews in front.  Ryan loves to make noise.  He has sent me to the mother's lounge many of time, simply because he wouldn't be quiet enough to hear what was being said.  Not crying, mind you, just yammering.  He has two teeth that have started and you can see them cutting through.  Ryan keeps you on your toes.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Busted

I will be talking actually bras sizes.  Just a heads up.

Anyone who has ever seen me, is well aware that I have been "blessed" with an ample chest.  It was large in high school and hasn't gone down.  I have three kids, and I have nursed everyone of them.  The girls have been put through the wringer and nature has taken its course.  It is a common joke between my friend Kate (of similar chest size) and I that after we are done having kids, we would love to get a breast reduction.  In fact, when I was getting married and trying to come up with something for a bridesmaid gift, I found a little ceramic jar that said "Boob Job Fund" for Kate.  She loved it.

 The thought mainly comes up after I have had a lousy day trying to find new clothes.  The thought of being able to shop without having to make sure the fabric is stretchy enough to accommodate the girls, or going into the plus size stuff and needing a tailor to alter to actually fit the way it is supposed to, or be able to actually shop in the petite section, and not worry about the shirt becoming a mid-drift shirt.  Buy a button up-shirt that I don't have to wear a white shirt underneath because I risk impaling someone with a flying button should I button it the way it was intended.

 There are the days where my back will be bothering me, but as I have said, I have always been large, so I don't know if the discomfort I feel is so natural feeling to me, that should it be relieved, that I would be kicking myself for having left it for so long.

Well all of this leads to yesterday.  All of my bras are either worn out, wires poked through, or nursing bras that I intend on throwing away soon, so I, with Mom and kids in tow, went to Lane Bryants to get some new bras.  I walked in, found an employee, and ask to be remeasured.  Last time I was measured at 40DD.  It is very hard to find those in normal department stores that don't have the push-up feature to them. But seriously, if they are that big, do they really need pushed up?  I digress.  She takes me to the dressing room, I tell what I have been wearing lately, 42DD, and she promptly says that is not my correct size.  She measures and I was 39 underneath, so I need to be put into a 40 for comfort sake and she doesn't tell me the cup size, just that it is larger. Mind you, I am still nursing, but I had just fed him about 45 minutes before this. She goes and brings me one to try one.  I am spilling out on top.  Big surprise.  I always spill out and it is a huge pet peeve of mine.  She sees the issue and gets me another one.  It fits wonderfully.  Then I looked at the size.  Now I am horrified.  40H.  Not 40E, or F, G, but H. That is equivalent to 40DDDDD.  That is right, 5 Ds.  Explains a lot as to why I can never find a comfortable bra. 40H.  On the plus side, that was the fastest I have ever been through a bra fitting. I bought one and have ordered 3 more to come with in the next week.

Now the idea of breast reduction seems like it a far more realistic possibility.  Something to consider about a year after I am completely done breast feeding.  Anyone know anything about it? I know of one lady who has had it done, but she is the only one.  Feel free to leave a comment.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Random kid tricks

-If you have a girly girl and you want to find cheap hair accessories, go to Claire's.  They have a 10 for $10 deal that they do at least once a month, sometimes more. They have little girls to teenage girls stuff.  I have not been able to find stuff cheaper anywhere else.

-Have Legos that need washed?  Put them in a pillow case tied up and throw it in the washing machine with bleach or white vinegar.
-For the beginning of a diaper rash, cornstarch if it is pee related, olive oil or bag balm if it is poop related. Use regular diaper cream if it is a full blown rash.

-The Just Ask Series of books by Chris Arvetis are a wonderful.  They explain things simply for children to understand.  Some of the titles include: Why Does It Thunder and Lightning, Why Do Leaves Change Colors, etc.

-When giving kids a Go-Gurt, rip the top off yourself and have the kid open their mouths', then put the Go-gurt in yourself, so that when they are finally grabbing it, it doesn't spill all over them or the floor, it just goes straight into their mouths'.

-Teach the kids about death, please. No need to traumatize them, but let them know.  Mark caught a minnow the other day, put it in a bottle with water and rocks.  Left the bottle in the car during the 90 degree weather and when he saw it again, it was belly up.  After looking at it, he simply said,"It's dead, isn't it?".  No drama, nothing, he still wanted to show that he had caught it, to his cousins, but that was an easy to live with thing.


We are doing pretty well.  Ethan is busy with work, but is starting to look for a different job, he is very tired of customer service. If you know of anything, give me a buzz.  I am getting annoyed with the union/company negotiations over the contract, which have been going on for over a year now, so as long as he can find something that pays well enough, he can change it to whatever he wants at this point.

 Recovery from Ryan has gone smoothly and now it is just time to take advantage of the nursing and use it to help me get back into shape.  Ethan, as encouragement, said he would by this dress for me if I reach my final goal weight/size. It's a specialty dress, because it from a company that specializes in busty women, so it is pricey, but it is so cute!



Mark is still obsessed with bugs, as ever.  I wish I could accurately portray his obsession, but until you see him in action, he is always underestimated.  Aunt Kate took Lyssa and Mark with their cousins to the pool the other day, and as much as he loves water, he is easily scared.  He kept calling himself a 'fraidy cat', which I still don't know where he got that one from.  There is a slide at the pool and after his cousins went down, Lyssa went down, but she was a little too little for the slide and and ended up flipping on to her stomach on the way down, which he saw and it freaked him out a bit.  Kate asked him if he wanted to go down still, he did, so she sent him down.  Right at the first bend however, he slams his hands against the sides, stands up and promptly walked back up the slide.  Kate talked him into going down again, she sends him off and he got farther, but did the same thing again, only he was too far down to get back up by himself, so she had to walk down the slide to get him. (Kate is a lifeguard at that pool.) She asked him why he was scared and all he would say is," I'm not scared, I 'fraidy cat'!"  It was pretty amusing.  I told him next time we go, he'll be bigger so I hope he'll try it again.

Lyssa has been a growing weed this year, she has had so many growth spurts, she is close in height to Mark.  People keep asking me if they are twins. She has always been a girly girl, but she doesn't have issues with getting dirty. Lyssa loves to dote on Ryan, but I'm always telling her to be more gentle, she smothers him with her love.  Kisses and wanting to hold him and trying to get him to stop crying by covering his mouth, yeah, wonderful things like that.  She changes her clothes as often as she can. She is sneaky, that most of the time I don't see her doing it, if I do, I keep making her change back into the original set of clothes.  She doesn't approve.  Loves to wear dresses, and she and Mark play wonderfully together, even with all the fighting.  They stand up for each other and if one has been punished and is crying, the other comes to ask me why I made said person cry and that I need to fix it. I got Lyssa her first Barbie at a yard sale a couple of weeks ago and ended up having to get another so Mark would have one to play with, with her. She is talking very well, and is about the same level as Mark.  I am trying to potty-train her, I didn't really try earlier, due to baby coming and I know most kids regress in that area with a new baby around, so we are trying to now. She'll do number 1, usually, but she is constantly telling me 'it not working' for number 2.  She is my adventurer, very few fears, occasionally she'll need encouragement, but she'll do and eat just about anything.

Ryan is getting big, he was 6lbs 12oz at birth and was at 9lbs 12oz at his one month and his 2 month is next week, we'll see how big he is then.  I just switched his clothing into 3-6 month.  He is jabbering and very attentive when awake. Hearty appetite, I finally am getting to the point where he is going longer between feedings.  He was like clockwork, down to the minute, of every 2 hours.  Ryan has a gift.  He is incredibly strong, physically.  Hold his neck up well and for a long period of time. He also is able to stand on his legs for long periods of time and loves it when we make him do it repeatedly.  About two weeks ago, he threw me for a loop,  I put him on his stomach on a blanket in our dining room and walked into the kitchen, come back out and he had rolled onto his back. Figuring this was just a freak occurrence, I put him back on his tummy, and watched him consciously roll over again.  I watch him do it 3 more times and now he does pretty much every time I put him down.  He doesn't do back to front yet, but he'll get it soon enough.  Ryan is getting consistent about his sleeping habits at night, does a 4-5 hour stretch then 2.5 hours afterwards. He does have his bad nights, but what babe doesn't.  A new thing, he just started, is sucking his thumb.  I need to get some bitter nail polish and I hope that will stop him.  My brother was a thumb sucker and I remember how hard of time my Mother had trying to get him to stop.  Ryan is a very lovable little guy and we are very pleased with his presence in our family.   We had his baby blessing at home on July 1st, it was beautiful and nice, but if we have another kid, I want to do it at the church.  We went camping that weekend with the rest of Ethan's family up to Erie and knew we wouldn't be back on Sunday until the afternoon, but we wanted to do it while Auby and Patrick were in town.
I saw an ad on our local flea market page on FB for a photography deal so the kids and I went the other day while Daddy was at work and got some new pictures with Ryan.  I originally had no plans to be in the pictures, but Ryan wasn't having that. 









Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Ryan Alexander Fike

Last Thursday morning I was induced and at 1:02 pm, Ryan Alexander Fike, joined our family. This is his birth story, it may be TMI for some, so I warn you now.

The induction was voluntary, and I am happy I did it. Laurie, my midwife, offered to induced me at 39 weeks, while we were talking birth plan, after I mentioned that my water had broken before contractions with both of the other kids and that Ethan works over an hour away. This is not normally a cause for concern, but should anything have been odd, such as the cord coming out or there were signs of infection, you need to get the hospital asap. I was checked at the following appt, and I wasn't progressed enough to be induced, so I went last week Monday at 39 wks(4 days later) and I had progressed to 2 cm and 50%. We scheduled the induction Thursday morning.

As with Lyssa, I had Ethan and my dear friend Kate there with me. I love Ethan dearly, but he is a lousy coach, so Kate was my coach. They had a slew of LPN in training in the maternity ward. For my room alone, I had 4. One of them had had a child of her own, the other three had never seen a birth. I didn't know this until afterwards though. I got the hospital about 5 am and they started the pitocin at 6:30.

What you hear about inductions are true, the contractions are far more painful, and closer together. Laurie came in and broke my water at 8am. I was asking for the epidural about 8:30, at 4 cm. They gave me the epidural and unfortunately, it didn't completely numb everything like it should, I could still feel the lower left part of my abdomen, and my feet. Feeling my feet made it a lot easier to be moved around, so it wasn't a total loss. I wasn't registering the clock anymore, so I don't know how much time was passing after that. Ryan's heartbeat had been doing pretty well until a little after the epidural, when it started to dip into the 70's range whenever I was having a contraction. It was averaging about 130 otherwise. This had the nurse concerned obviously, so I was being bounced around from one side to the other for about 2 hours, nothing was changing.

They called Laurie back in (her office is right next to the hospital), and they decided that they needed to do two different internal monitors, one for his heart beat and one to see the severity of my contractions. Not long after, they decided they needed to push fluid back into me to see if that would give Ryan's the cushion he needed. It was an extremely weird sensation, but it worked. I have never heard of this being down before, but I won't knock it. They had also stopped the pitocin and that seemed to bring me back up to speed. They checked me again after that and I was at 7-8 cm.   Laurie said the baby could be at 10 cm within 5-20 mins, and for me to mention when I felt the need to push.  Remember the whole epidural didn't numb everything, I was feeling the need to push pretty quickly.  I didn't with Lyssa.

 I had been dealing with the pain pretty well, but once I hit the 10 cm mark, I got slammed with back labor pain.  Kate was massaging that out on my left side with Ethan holding my hand on my right.  Don't forget the 4 LPN's and the regular nurse with the midwife, there was a full crowd in that room. I started pushing and I was hoping it would be like Lyssa's, three sets of contraction and out she came, but no, this kid had other plans(Mark's took an hour and half, with the epidural already worn off).  It took about an hour, and he came "Sunny side up", meaning he had been posterior, which also explained the back pain. All the LPN's were crying.  As I said for three of them it was the first birth they had ever seen.  There was no tearing for me, so recovery has actually been a lot smoother.  I got him to nurse once they handed him back to me after the initial clean up, and he has been a pro ever since. His apgar was 9/9, and since he was small, the labor was relatively smooth.  Laurie said that had he been much bigger, it would have been a much harder delivery.

  He weighed in at 6lbs and 12oz and 19inches long, has hair, and is doing well.   Had his 1st dr. appt. and is already back to birth weight, which is excellent. He is doing the 'eat, sleep, poop' pretty well and the kids love him.

Monday, April 30, 2012

Day 8: A place you’ve traveled to

When I was 16, I was invited to join People 2 People Student Ambassadors program. The basic gist of it was giving teenagers a chance to go foreign and learn other cultures. You had to pay for the trip yourself, but it was a chance of a lifetime. My brother, Roger had been invited two years in a row, but wasn't willing to earn the money for it. The invitations were done by referrals and recommendations by previous students and teacher involved with it. I went in July 2003 to Sydney, Australia, for a two week adventure. We flew into Sydney, toured the sites there for a couple of days, eating the local cuisine, which wasn't to far off from what we were used to. Toured the Sydney opera house, attempted wading at Bondi Beach(our summers are their winters) in the 40degree waters, did the Sydney Harbor Bridge climb, which is scary as all get out even if you don't have a fear of heights, which I do. After that, we went to Alice Springs. Did a night at a bush Camp, slept under the stars in the desert with negative temperatures(dropped from 63 degrees to -4), learned how to crack a whip properly and rode camels. Walked around Ayers Rock, we did not climb up out of respect for the Aborigine's religious beliefs. Also walked around Kata Tjuta, which is similar to Ayers Rock. Got to watch the sunset and sunrise on Ayers Rock, which was pretty, did the sunrise in a 25 man hot air balloon. I wish I could remember the name of the restaurant/hotel we stayed at the last night we were there in Alice Springs, I know it have it written down in the journal, but it was a do-it-yourself barbeque. They served crocodile, kangaroo, emu, barramundi, and a variety of other different things. P.S. Emu taste like sausage and kangaroo is similar to steak. It was pretty awesome. We got to ride camels in a dried up river bed of the actual Alice Springs. Got to learn how to thrown a boomerang. I sucked at it. Following that we traveled to Cairns. That is easily the prettiest place I have ever been too. The Hotel was named The Tuna Towers. Behind us were mountains, on the right sugar cane fields, to the left the Rainforest, and straight ahead the Pacific Ocean. It was gorgeous. During our time there we did a Home-stay with a family. I went to their school and then spent the night with them. There were three kids in our family. A girl our age and two younger ones in elementary school. The younger girl loved animals and even while living in a pretty suburban home, they had a goat, some chickens, a rabbit and a dog. The next day at their school was track and field day, so we were able to participate. I don't know if this was a normal thing, I would assume it was, but the kids were not required to wear shoes. I am serious. If you wanted to compete in the track and field stuff, you had to be bare foot. I am someone who doesn't really like wearing shoes, so I thought it was great, but then again it was their winter time and the coldest it got when we were there was 80 degrees. Wouldn't exactly work here in PA. The place was also the cleanest place I have ever seen, no trash anywhere, in the school or the town. We also went to do a tour in the rainforest and saw an Natural animal habitat where they had the largest captive crocodile there. Held a Koala and watched someone else get sneezed on by one. It was gross. Saw my first nude beach driving back from the rainforest to the hotel. We went to the Great Barrier Reefs and snorkeled in the corral. My friend, Val and I got mooned by some french guys while we were there. On the way back from the reef, a humpback whale swam right passed our boat. That was the last day we were there. Then there was the 16 hour flight back. Long plane trips are annoying, but we had such a great time it didn't seems soo long.