Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Clara's Birth Story

Here's the story of Meredith's second sweet girl and her arrival in May of 2010.  I get teary eyed at the part where she kisses Annabelle in the middle of the night before heading to the hospital - that's a moment I'm not looking forward to, myself!  I share Meredith's worries about our other "baby" and how she'll handle the birth of our second, but I remember talking to Meredith after Clara was born and learning that Annabelle was adjusting very well.  Her story gives me hope that all will be well at our house in June!  I also LOVE the way Meredith writes about the misconceptions of the perfect natural birth which can often scare new mothers into believing they'll never bond with their babies.  When she says her girls are well-adjusted and brilliant, she's being modest.  Her girls are the greatest!  Enjoy her second story.

Throughout this pregnancy, my biggest worry was my older daughter and what she would think when I abandoned her for a few days then brought home a new baby. It totally consumed me and I could cry just imagining what having a baby sister was going to do to her. Well, I hate to ruin the ending here, but she was fine. A OK. There was never a single problem with her being sad or crying -- the first time she saw her baby sister, she gave her hugs and kisses and loved her so much!

Okay - so on Mother's Day, I was 37 weeks pregnant and I was ready for the baby. I went to bed that night feeling incredibly restless, and I just had a feeling that it was the night. I even got up and paced around the house for an hour around 11 pm, and when I came back to bed, I brought a bath towel and laid it down under me. The minute I laid down, I felt a "pop" and a trickle. My water had broken! I woke up my husband and he immediately called in to work (yes, at midnight - that's the military for you) and then his mom, who immediately bought a plane ticket to arrive in DC at 7:30 the next morning! I texted my dear neighbor who was in charge of watching my older daughter and let her know that she wouldn't be getting much sleep in her own bed that night! I hopped in the shower, then came downstairs and ate a pbj sandwich. I was definitely having painful contractions. I started trying all the tricks I had read about, and deep low moaning seemed to help the most. Between each contraction, I'd run around making sure everything was set for my other older "baby" and finally got my neighbor to come over. By this point, I was a little out of it - zoned out - and I was using language that is unsuitable for repetition. haha.

I crept upstairs to kiss my daughter in her sleep, knowing that her life was getting ready to be changed forever. She would never again be the sole focus of my attention, from here out, she would be sharing her parents. My heart was aching as I closed her door behind me, hoping that she wouldn't be too confused when she woke up the next morning. (She ended up having a blast and my neighbor, of course, did what any mama would do for her mama friends and spoiled that girl rotten until Grandma got in later that morning).

It was a 30 minute ride to the hospital, but we made it in 20. Car contractions were NO FUN! By the time I was checked in and the nurse checked me at the hospital, I was convinced that I must be on the brink of delivery. Nope. 2 cm. I was ready to settle in for a long morning, but when the nurse took my blood pressure, that all came to a halt. It was HIGH. High enough that even my husband, who wanted me to have a VBAC just as much as I wanted to have one, said, "No way - showtime." When you're giving birth after having a c-section, you don't get a lot of leniency that you might get if you haven't had a c-section. Long story very, very short, my little darling arrived by C-section a little after 6 in the morning. How can I ever forget that shaky little cry? I was definitely less drugged during the procedure than I had been during my previous delivery, but immediately afterwards I begged to be knocked out (being awake during surgery caused me to have panic attacks both times). When I woke up, I was given my baby who was just perfect and tiny. Now that I am a few years out from the experience, I often consider if I have it in me to do it all again, and I'm still not sure how I feel about that, but I definitely wouldn't mind feeling that wave of joy from holding your baby for the first time!

Just as a side note: I have watched "The Business of Being Born" several times. I've read almost every book on the market about pregnancy and birth. While having a c-section was very hard on my body (I still don't feel like I have healed completely), I want to make it clear that it does NOT interfere with your ability to bond with your baby. I still had the moment of euphoria and the "high" that everyone shares in the natural childbirth books - it was just a little delayed! I was also able to exclusively nurse both of my babies until they started cereal at 5 months and they are both healthy, well-adjusted, brilliant kiddos. I think a lot of times in our quest to advocate for natural, drug-free birth (which I still think is the best way to birth), we can scare mothers who aren't able to have that experience. There's a misconception that you won't bond with your baby the "right" way. I humbly disagree. Thanks, Rachael, for the opportunity to tell our story!

I think Clara is about six weeks old in this picture, but it's one of the sweetest Mama/Baby pics I've ever seen!  They are both so beautifully happy, aren't they?  Thanks for sharing, Meredith!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Big Blueberry Madness

Anyone with a toddler will tell you that meal times are a gamble.  I've been having a really REALLY hard time getting Sylvia to eat good food.  I've tried every trick and tip in the book.  I think the biggest frustration is that her tastes and preferences change so quickly that I can't keep up with what she likes.  The only things she consistently eats are a ham sandwich every morning in the car and plain pasta every night for dinner - and I consider these to be HUGE successes.  So, you can imagine my delight when I was able to catch her doing this at our special GO CATS breakfast this morning:

She ate a blueberry waffle!  Hooray!  I was planning to make homemade waffles with her this morning, since UK was playing in the Elite Eight and she got that adorable bib/apron (I belive it's called a bapron?) from Laura yesterday.  I remembered at the last minute that we had some blueberries that were about to go bad, so I picked out the yucky ones and let her sprinkle the good ones on top of the batter before we closed the waffle iron.  The first waffle didn't turn out so pretty, so I started cutting the blueberries in half for the second waffle.  When I went to make the third waffle ALL OF MY BLUEBERRY HALVES WERE GONE out of the bowl!  Sylvia was shoving the last of them into her mouth and mumbling "mmmmm."  Geez Louise!  Who would have thought that all it took to get the girl to eat tiny fruit was to cut it in half and make it even smaller?  These are the things that make me feel like an idiot almost every day.  Anyway, she loved the berries AND the waffles, so our Big Blue celebration started with a bang this morning!

Next on the agenda - snuggle time with Daddy while Mama cleaned the kitchen.  This is why I love the weekends!

After we all got dressed in our finest UK attire, we ran some morning errands, which included going to Kroger.  Last week, I discovered that if we wander around the floral section and pretend to look at flowers, some nice lady will ask Sylvia if she wants a balloon!  Which she always does.  She clutched her balloon all day and wouldn't put it down, but I thought it was appropriate given our Big Blue theme for the day.  Here are a couple cute pics I snapped after lunch. She LOVES her cheerleader outfit from Grammy.  She shouts "Go Cat!" every time she sees it.

We went to Gina and Nick's to watch the game with the Sandfoss clan and Sylvia had a blast running around with "KC Puppy" (as she calls their dog) and Nolan, my cousin's little guy.  Luckily, UK won!  So now we get to play Louisville in the Final Four and OH MY GOODNESS I'm so nervous!  I loved being a Wildcat Family today, but I must say, a small part of me wishes this had happened when I was in college.  I know Lexington is going to be an amazing place to be this week! 

Not only do we have basketball to look forward to next weekend, but it's also the beginning of our SPRING BREAK!!!!  I can't wait to spend a whole week at home doing the things we love to do. 


Saturday, March 24, 2012

Happy Birthday, Scarlett!

Sylvia and I took a delightful springtime drive to Lexington today for a special birthday party - Scarlett is ONE year old!  Remember all those babies I was hoarding last spring?  They're all about to turn one and today they were all dolled up in their springy best!

Sylvia dove into a cupcake within ten minutes of arriving.  She's her Mama's daughter!

Emily made these adorable little Mad Hatter Hats for the kiddos.  Sylvia tried to wear hers to bed tonight.

Megan with Clover and Emily with Scarlett - these two babies are besties forever!

Audrey and Ellie, chilling together on the baby play mat.

Sylvia, Scarlett, and Clover, checking out the yard.

Audrey and her Daddy, Michael - LOVE.

Double LOVE!

Emily also made this amazing pull string pinata for the li'l uns to open.  It was full of snack bags of goldfish!  Score!!

Scarlett tears into her birthday cupcake - yummers!!

Sylvia and Clover watch the slide show from the couch...

...then enjoy some tickle time.

Scarlett, Clover, and Sylvia.
Pictures like that last one really get me choked up.  Scarlett's mama, Emily, and Clover's mama, Megan, were my best girlfriends and roommates in college.  Sometimes it seems like yesterday that we were painting our kitchen red and dancing on the coffee table.  Then I look at these three girls and I'm all...holy cupcake!  We have KIDS!  And we're allowed to KEEP THEM!  I wish I could go back in time and show this picture to those crazy college girls.  They wouldn't believe how well things turned out.

I wish I had more pictures of Ellie and Audrey, but alas, 'tis the nature of parties and cameras.  Those mamas are awfully special to me, too, and I know they know it!  It was so nice to visit with old friends today and celebrate the awesomeness of Scarlett!  Happy Birthday, sweet girl!

Thursday, March 22, 2012


Well, I was waiting for it to happen, and tonight was the night.  Say what you will about the state of our nation, your politics, your religion, your thoughts on war, peace and everything in between.  When you see a picture of your little brother like this, everything changes.  For me, the Army is a whole new ball game these days.  When I saw this picture of Evan, I stared at it for a good solid five minutes and held back tears.  Then I didn't hold them back anymore, so the best place to go is the blog, right?  Right.

My first reaction was pure and simple pride.  I am SO proud of Evan.  For leaving home.  For making it through basic training.  For going far, far away from his family and his friends to do something he is passionate about.  I can only hope that my own kids will be so lucky as to find something that empowers them the way the Army empowers Evan.

My second reaction was fear.  What's going to happen to him?  Is he okay out there?  Does he know how to do laundry and cook himself dinner?  Does he have enough friends?  Is he being careful with all those GUNS?!  Ack!  So scared.

My third reaction was a sequence of images from my memory that swirled around this picture in my head.  His scrawny ten year old shoulders when I would clench him against my waist.  His crooked tooth grin when he would sit on my lap in the backyard swing set.  His pajama feet hanging off the edge of the bathroom counter when he watched me put my makeup on before going out on a Friday night.  When did he get so big? 

Next I thought about how all of these feelings of pride, fear, and nostalgia are only coming from me because I'm his sister.  Looking at this picture as a sibling is probably nothing compared to looking at it as a parent.  I can't imagine what a picture like this does to the hearts of my dad and my stepmom.  I should call them tonight, but I'd be a blubbering idiot on the phone.  I know Sally reads the blog, so...I'm thinking about you tonight!  And Evan, if you're reading, I LOVE YOU!  And I miss you.  But I am so incredibly happy for you.  Proud is the only word that can put all of this together, I guess.  I'm proud of you.  You're amazing.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

A Great Weekend!

I don't know about anyone else, but I could really get used to this amazing weather!  If you told me this morning that the rest of the year would be brutally hot, but we'd get one, prefectly sunny, unbuggy, beautiful spring day like today, I'd take it!  Today (and yesterday, and last weekend) were absolutely magical!  Here's what we've been up to (can you tell I don't mind busting out the camera when the weather gets so gorgeous?):

Last weekend we started a couple of projects - I put together a little cabinet that should have taken me 30 minutes but took all morning because I'm an idiot and can't read directions.  Sylvia had fun, though:
No, Mama, you cannot put the shelves in.  Where else would I play?

Screwdrivers are not for babies!

You may or may not have noticed the brown streaks of dust all over Sylvia's sweatshirt.  That came from the project Sylvain started in the garage, which involved power sanding this old dresser:

So I could take over and start painting it to look like a new dresser!
This is what it looked like after two coats of paint last Saturday.  I did one more coat yesterday and will probably do some sort of clear varnish (or whatever you put on top of painted wood to keep it from getting all scratched up) next weekend.  The picture makes it look more pink than it actually is in real life.  The color is called Safflower from Olympic and I love it so much!  Painting the dresser has been a pain, though.  I keep reminding myself that we bought the dresser for $0.00, so a little work and elbow grease are probably well worth it.


On Friday, I was off work and I can't even begin to describe how happy I was that I got to spend the whole day with Sylvia!  I've been so busy at work lately, and we've been so busy on weeknights and weekends, that I could tell the Nugget was starting to crave some Mama time (or maybe it was the other way around).  Anyway, it was supposed to be a little rainy but warm, so we braved the weather and headed to THE ZOO!!!  Grammy came along, because she had the day off, too.  It rained on the way there, but once we arrived, the skies cleared and the sun was shining!  It was a great day and I know we'll be spending pretty much ALL summer there, thanks to our passes from Dad and Sally (thanks, guys!).

Watching the penguins
These guys are so cool!

Our buddy's beautiful backside.

A little break at the playgroud, because slides are just as cool as animals, you know.

On our way to the Gorillas.

Our buddy's beautiful front side!  Can you believe how close we got?  I thought we might get pecked to death, but he was perfectly well behaved.

She's sitting still!  Take a picture, quick!

All the other flowers weren't quite blooming yet, but these babies were bold and beautiful!  Sylvia adored them.

I didn't get many pictures of the animals, but Sylvia's favorites were the elephants, monkeys, manatees and polar bears.  In one of our favorite night time books (On The Night You Were Born, by Nancy Tillmann), it describes what the world was doing when "you" were born.  It says, "When the polar bears heard, they danced until dawn!"  then later it says, "Whenever you doubt just how special you are, and you wonder who loves you, how much and how far....just look for the bears asleep at the zoo.  (It's because they've been dancing all night for you!)"  Sure enough, two polar bears were sleeping, so I said that line to Sylvia and she yelled "Nigh-night po-bears!  Lah you!"  


Yesterday we spent all day working around the house and getting our projects finished.  Sylvain started working on our monster of a yard, Sylvia and I took many walks through the neighborhood, and we did lots of spring cleaning / organizing / ohmygodthebabyscomingwhatarewegonnado.  I had a mild panic attack when I thought about all there is to get done between now and June, but after yesterday and today I feel much better. 

This morning we woke up and dressed up to go to Claire's baptism!  I didn't tell Sylvia we were going to see Claire and *Charlie* until a few minutes before we got there, because once you say Charlie's name, she's going to scream it over and over again until she sees him.  Lesson learned.  They had a blast together at the post-baptism party.

The only boy she's never bitten.  Or girl, for that matter. 

The special girl!  Isn't she the sweetest?

Grammy and Poppy with grandbaby #3!  What pros.

Spinning and spinning and spinning and spinning...

...aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaand falling.

Sylvia and Callie crawled under this little cart and thought they were really cool.

A post-lunch chocolate snack.
 And there you have it!  Our whirlwind weekends in pictures.  We sat outside on our own deck after supper tonight and for a moment I almost cried because I was so darn happy to be in our own sweet house, looking out on our own yard, playing with our own Nugget and eagerly waiting for the next one to get here.  I imagined what it will be like when the baby is Sylvia's age, and Sylvia is about to turn 4, and we're out playing on the deck together as a family of four!  It was all smiles and hugs this weekend, and I can tell it's going to be a great spring!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Annabelle's Birth Story

I will never, ever forget, for as long as I live, the early morning call from Meredith to tell me her sweet Annabelle had arrived...four weeks early!  Meredith and I began our teaching careers together and became very close in our classrooms across the hall from each other.  She was the first close friend of mine to have a baby, so naturally, I watched her like a hawk during her pregnancy and asked her four hundred gazillion questions, because at that point in my life, I was NOT planning to get pregnant for quite some time, if at all.  Pregnancy was such a mystery to me, but Meredith seemed to glide through it like she'd done it a thousand times.  I was in awe of her (and still am).  The night before Annabelle was born, I sat at my computer for hours making my first baby song CD for Meredith, Justin and Annabelle.  So it was quite a surprise to find out she was born that night!  I was convinced it was because I spent so much time thinking about her.  So, you're welcome, Annabelle.  Glad I could help.

Here's Meredith's story of Annabelle's birth:

At 36 weeks, I was tired, tired, tired. I'd had one of my two baby showers and was going to have the other in a week, but for some reason, I woke up on that Saturday morning with a burning urgency to get everything ready for the baby NOW. I went shopping for a breast pump and got the car seat installed by a "professional". My husband thought I was nuts, but I came home around lunchtime feeling accomplished and ready for a nap. That night after a dinner of leftover Italian sausage rigatoni with tomato white wine cream sauce (yup - I remember the meal), we watched the UK - Florida game and man, oh man, it was one of those games. That was the year that UK struggled and Florida was #1 in the country and we lost at the very last minute. Around 10, I went to bed while my husband studied for a huge pathology exam that was coming up that Monday. As I drifted off to sleep, I started to dream that I had wet the bed. Suddenly, I woke up to discover that I HAD wet the bed - actually, my water had broken! My husband was coming to bed and I said, "Honey - either my water just broke or I wet the bed!" I was actually scared to death because I was only 36 weeks - everyone says that you're supposed to go late with your first baby and I knew that I was exactly 36 weeks - no miscalculations.

I hadn't really gotten around to talking to my doctor about what to do when I was in labor, how to know I was in labor, etc, etc. I called the on call number and the dr told me to come in right away if my water had indeed broken. I wasn't in any pain, so I took one last long shower, ate an apple, double checked my bag...then off we went, to the hospital! I will never forget that feeling on the drive to the hospital, knowing that it was the last time we would be just the two of us!

So we got to the hospital and checked in only to find out that I was only dilated one tiny centimeter. Boo! Although I remember every single detail, I am going to fast forward quite a bit...after getting pitocin through an IV, I dilated to 10 cm, but after over an hour of pushing, it became clear that the baby was stuck. She wouldn't budge and I couldn't move (I had an epidural - after 5 hours of pitocin contractions, I was begging for it), and then to top it off, my blood pressure started to sky rocket and the baby's heart rate was slowing. The doctor told me that I was going to have to have a Cesarean. At first I cried and begged and pleaded, "NO!" After all, I hadn't read any of the books' chapters on C-sections! It wasn't even an option to me. After some more pushing, though, it wasn't up to me - we had to get the baby out. I was prepped for c-section (definitely leaving out all of those details!) and I will always remember the moment in recovery when I was "with it" and got to hold my little baby for the first time (right before she got carted off to the NICU for a few hours). It was such a fun feeling to finally meet the little sweetie who had been kicking me and become my best little buddy...she still is! Sometimes, it still blows my mind that not only did I make and grow a baby, but I am responsible for teaching her so much. It's a pretty awesome responsibility, being a mommy!

...and Meredith is the best.  Here's sweet Annabelle, 5 years old and every bit as beautiful as her mother, but looking just like her daddy.

Stay tuned for another birth story from Meredith - sweet little Clara was born in May of 2010 and she is a DOLL!

Saturday, March 10, 2012

This is How I Nest

Two weeks ago, I was dreading the thought of putting together a baby room.  Then something crazy must have happened to my brain this week, and I suddenly got "the itch!"  Good thing, too, because by this time in my last pregnancy we were almost done with Sylvia's AMAZING room.  I think that's why I didn't want to start this one, because there's no way it could be as cute as Sylvia's was.  Oh, but WAIT...it can.  And here's why:

Blue Dusk!

I finally settled on a paint color after picking up tons of paint swatches last weekend.  I decided on Blue Dusk earlier this week, then I spoke to Emily and it turns out this is the exact same color she used in her bedroom - which I already knew I loved - so that sealed the deal.  I think it's pretty crazy that, out of all the "blues" out there, we picked the exact same great color.  I've been pinning lots of blue and coral colored inspiration pics like these...

...and I didn't want to overdo it on the pink, so I decided to go with blue walls, a white chair rail (you know I love my chair rails), and then coral/pink accents in the rest of the room.  I'm working on a little coral project tomorrow (that paint is called Safflower) that I'm really hoping turns out to be as amazing as I think it'll be in my head, so stay tuned!  Also, I loved doing the stripes in Sylvia's old room, so I'm considering taking it a step further with this one and trying my hand at chevron stripes or perhaps a stencil of some sort?  Who knows.  Time will tell!

We woke up early this morning and made a big ol' family trip to Lowe's for our low VOC paint and supplies.  We came home and I got straight to work!  It took me all day, even though it's a small room.  I took lots of breaks to play with Sylvia, switch out the laundry, watch the UK game...that kind of stuff.  And right around 5:30 I finished it up!  I'd post pictures, but it's dark and I want to wait until tomorrow, but just know that as of right now, I LOVE LOVE LOVE IT!!!  I love it so much that I don't even care how badly my hands and arms hurt!  It's really a beautiful color. 

I finished just in time, too, because we had some special guests for dinner tonight.  Ann, Andy, and Cecilia came over to pick up some furniture and knick knacks we had set aside for them, so naturally dinner turned into play time which turned into...


A flying leap.

It was nearly impossible to get a still shot of both of them at the same time, so I gave up.

Sweet Cecilia in her cow jammies!

When the pigtails come out, so does the Wild Woman hairdo!

"Hey Cecilia, lets see who can scream louder, kay?"

Since we had Andy here, I made the burly menfolk move Sylvia's new couch into her room (no, I have not moved out her rocking chair yet, but I will soon, yikes!) and the girls wasted no time climbing on it and squealing and screaming and clapping and jumping and having a dandy old time.  It was great to visit with the Reynolds' and I'm fairly certain that both of these girls will sleep very well tonight!

Tomorrow's little project invloves my Dad's power sander, so....I'm pretty darn excited about it.  Get ready for another post about how awesome (or how terrible) my little project turns out! 

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Amelia's Birth Story

Hooray for a repeat!  Here's my old friend, Katie, who was sweet enough to send me Annie's birth story two years ago.  Her second daughter, Amelia, was born a couple of months after Sylvia, and now she's expecting baby girl #3!  Katie's a labor and delivery nurse, so I always love to read her perspective on childbirth.  If you want to keep up with Katie and her girls, you can check out her blog here

As I lay here in bed (on my belly!) with my oh so beautifully dark complected baby snoozing beside me in the bassinet I will recall the story that started out, amusingly enough, with my last post.

I guess any girl can be fooled into thinking that she has 4 more weeks of being pregnant when she feels like she can conquer the world... look out! Gods little blessing of adrenaline preparing you for when you don't get any sleep for the next 24 hours ;o)

I remember when I was a young girl my friends mom having a baby (her 5th delivery at home). I went to their house with my mom just minuets after delivery to find that she had yet to deliver the placenta. I remember standing in her bedroom and the mid-wife showing my friend and I the "tree of life" in the placental blood vessels. I remember her mother commenting to my mom that she knew it was the day because she had so much energy and felt so good... I guess these are the things that you know when its your 5th baby :o) I suppose you also don't care about the neighborhood kids being in your bedroom either :o)

You see what I forgot to mention in Wednesdays post was that I was having a contraction with every positional change. I just wrote it off to being 36 weeks and having friends like Katie N who contract regularly for 3 weeks before they deliver! It may also have something to do with the fact that I worked triage a few days before and sent multiple women home who were all complaining of pre-labor symptoms and I wanted to tell them to scoot over and we would just sit in the triage bed and share sob stories. Then I would tell them that they needed to stop wasting their time and money, go home, and don't come back until you are actually in labor!

Wednesday night was a nice evening and I schemingly suggested we take a walk to the park which is only maybe 1/4 mile away so I wasn't going for anything labor inducing. Just aiding curiosity mostly.
After bathing Annie and putting her to bed I was still noticing the occasional tightening of the abdomen but no pain at all and nothing more than 3 an hour.

I was still wired! In a time that I usually fall asleep during a tv show or movie at 8:30 its now 11:00 and I am reading a book in bed while my husband works on the laptop. Lights out followed shortly after and the next thing I know it is 1:00am and although I must have been in and out of sleep, I am simply not comfortable, not able to sleep and restless but not contracting that I know of.

By 2:30 I decided that I was too uncomfortable to sleep and tossing and turning is just unkind to the man sleeping beside me who has to work the next day. So I get up and go downstairs to find that I am contracting every 3 minuets and wait... they hurt! How was I sleeping through this?  By 3:00 I have yet to take my eyes off the stopwatch because I felt I needed justification for what I was feeling... I know I'm weird, whatever :o)

These contractions that I now couldn't really sit still through were every 2-3 min apart and I decided to call work just to find out what doc was on and whether my friend Allie was working because she is on call to do my delivery (L&D perks) I told the charge nurse that I might see her later and hung up.

I woke Joe to tell him that I was contracting and was going to get in the bath to see if they go away. He is proud of himself for asking me if my water had broken because that was how it went down with Annie :o)  The bath did nothing so I decided to make myself delivery beautiful :o) Who needs all those pictures of yourself looking like you rolled out of bed when you had a perfectly good 3 minutes between contractions to apply a little eye liner :o)

Around 4 I finally decided to call the OB hoping that she would sympathize with me and confirm that I should come in and get checked out. My call woke her up and she didn't even know who I was which I have to admit ticked me off! She told me that it was normal to have 6-7 contractions an hour at 36 weeks and its a good thing they are not painful that I should drink a lot of water. She said that if I feel I must come to triage that it was on the 9th floor of Good Samaritan hospital in Clifton! Ahhhhh I was so mad! This is one of the docs that I dont care for in my group because she doesn't slow down enough to listen to you! Who said they weren't Painful?? How about 6-7 in 10 minutes??? Crazy Doctor!  I decided at that point I had justified a call to my nurse friend Allie so that she could sympathize with me and tell me to go to triage... however she didn't answer. :o(

By 5 I was mentally exhausted from over thinking this and needed Joe to talk out loud to. I went to wake him up and realized that I couldn't be quiet through them anymore either. He quickly jumped up and we were packed and ready to go about 30 min later.  Leaving Annie at the house with Good Old Aunt Kelly we headed to the hospital in the beautiful early morning sunrise.  My contractions still were the same and I was very wiggly through them. Joe exceeded the speed limit however we did not get pulled over this time :o)  In triage my colleagues hooked me up to the monitor and their eyes widened when they found that I was contracting like crazy and was already 6-7 cm with a "bulging bag"!!

I was SHOCKED! I couldn't believe that it was time! I was happy that I was so far along and surprised at how it still didn't hurt like I thought it should.  I was SO glad that I stayed home as long as I did. I knew they wouldn't keep me or break my water at 36 weeks if I wasn't far along.  I marched myself to my labor room remembering the awful feeling of having to sit in a wheelchair through contractions with Annie. After getting my IV started I decided to wait a while for the epidural which I hated the process of getting and also the feeling of being numb the last time.

Allie arrived and after chatting with her and a few other of my friends for a while I hand picked my anesthetist and summed up the courage for the epi process. Dont get me wrong, I wanted the epi more than I wanted the labor pain, I just really really wasn't looking forward to the creepy feeling it gives me! The process went MUCH better than last time and mid way through I got really excited about the rest of my labor process being pain free and happy fun time could begin!

My epi was perfect, I could feel my legs and some strong contractions, I could move my legs and even my body all by myself without the pain! Now THAT is what an epi should be!  The Doctor that took over at 8am is one of my very favorite people in the world. Picture an Oriental Jayne Barnett as your doc and there you have her!  She checked me and wanted to break my water however her head was still not engaged in my pelvis, to which I was not surprised because I knew I had not felt it down there yet!

So she left me to progress a little farther and I hung out in the room with Mom, Kara, Joe, Gerri, and Kelly even brought Annie up to visit for a while. Although she was not impressed by us all sitting in a room staring at me in bed and she took her to take a nap at Aunt Char's house. After Dr Choi attempted do a circumcision on post partum and getting called to another delivery she came back 2 hours later to break my water. I was 8 cm and when she left I started feeling my contractions very strongly and I could feel her dropping into my pelvis! We immediately called her back into the room and 10 min later Amelia had arrived!

I only pushed 3 times and it hurt! I admitted to Joe that if I were to ever go natural I would be a yeller because it was really hard to be quiet!  She was tiny and pink and I felt all the emotions that I was weirded out that I didnt feel last time. I was crying and excited and in love!

She had to spend some time under the warmer to keep her temperature up and she was grunting and retracting which is typical of 36week babies however a big red flag for lung problems so the NICU came to assess her. After spending some time doing "kangaroo care" she quieted down and everything was good!
She weighed 5lb 6oz and was 18.5 inches long. She has my dimple in her left cheek (her face cheek that is :o) We think she looks like Annie trough the eyes and nose however the dark hair throws everything off!

We wanted to go home after 24 hours however the pediatrician wanted to keep her for 48 hours just because of being early. She also detected a heart murmur and diagnosed her with a VSD. We are going to follow up with a cardiologist tomorrow so I will update you all more on what that is after that. Basically though its a hole in her ventricle that they are guessing is very small and typically either closes up in the first few years or just stays so small it never causes any problems.

Sweet Amelia was checked out by the doctors for a VSD and it was determined to be a very small hole which was likely to close up on its own.  Judging by the adorable pictures I've seen in the last two years, I assume all is well!  Thanks for sharing, Katie.  Your family just keeps getting sweeter!