Sunday, April 25, 2010

Such a Slacker!

I'm sorry I've been such a slacker on the blog front. I will blame it on just being busy! For awhile there, my posts probably would have been fairly depressing and full of complaints about breastfeeding--the one part of being a mom that I was having the worst time with. I also was slightly hormonal and crazy for a few weeks there and totally felt like an inadequate mom. I wouldn't say it was depression, it was the fact that sheesh, I couldn't think right with all these hormones dumping out of my body. I cried no less than three times a day. 90% of the time though I was crying happy tears. I thank God multiple times a day for blessing us with this beautiful little girl that we waited for for way too long. She's perfect and actually a pretty easy baby and I would do everything all over again if I had to for her. Other times I'd cry because I didn't feel like a good mom and would feel guilty over all sorts of stupid things. It was hard....but I've been loving most every minute of it.

Savannah turned a month old yesterday and I can honestly say that just now, I'm finding my groove as a mom and she's learning more about me. We're clicking. She's getting on a schedule. I'm getting on a schedule. Breastfeeding is getting easier. I can't count the times I wanted to give up on it. It's painful, it's time-consuming, it's tough. But we're getting it. She's latching on better so its not so uncomfortable, I'm figuring out what works for the both of us. I knew it would be tough, but its a lot tougher than I thought it would be. If Justin had it his way, I'd exclusively pump. It's easier on me, it's more efficient, we can see how much she's eating, it would let him be more involved, etc. etc. I didn't want to exclusively pump, I wanted that mother-baby bonding experience you hear so much about. However, I'm still waiting on that. I guess I can't expect much from a 4-week old, she still nurses half-asleep or closes her eyes while she eats a lot. I'm so lucky to have the support of many of my friends from the Nest that have been along for the ride of dealing with infertility and then having their baby (or babies). They've been very sympathetic and encouraging and they've been right too - it's getting easier. You've just got to stick it out for six weeks or so. I wouldn't say that we've mastered breastfeeding yet, but its definitely gotten so much better than it was.

Otherwise, I love being a mom. I never thought I'd love the newborn stage so much, I've never been a "baby person", I was always looking forward to the toddler years, but I love her this small already. She's growing so fast though and I know there is so much to look forward too. I'm trying to enjoy this while I can and she makes it easy to enjoy since she's an easy baby. Maybe I just am so scarred from growing up with quads in the house, but one is so much easier than four. However, one is still time consuming. I don't know how my parents didn't end up committed in an asylum or something.

We had some rough nights with sleeping, but overall, it's going well too since the first week. She lets us sleep about 7+ hours most every night which I think is awesome for a newborn. I was expecting more like six max. Last night we got about 9 hours! ::knocks on wood:: I hope it continues. Now granted, we have to do about a million things to ensure that quality of sleep, but its worth it. She's in the pack-n-play down in our room. We have a sleep positioner (the "Supreme Snuggle Nest"), we swaddle her up tight, turn on the giraffe that has a heartbeat noise, turn on her night light (it's cute and looks like a puppy), make sure her binkie is nearby, and turn on the classical music on my iPhone. She's finally getting a hang of the routine and the past few nights has been closing her eyes as soon as we get all our lights turned off and all her things set up. Like, "Alright, I know the drill now, I'll try to go to sleep". We're lucky that she's a really good sleeper, once she gets to sleep. She would fight it for awhile. I'm sure we're up for more rough nights still, but I think they'll start to get more rare.

Long story short, we're doing great and loving every minute with her - even in the middle of the night when she's fussy.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Our Beautiful Baby Girl

We are so in love with our sweetheart.

Here are more shots of our little baby doll.


Monday, April 5, 2010

Newborn Photo Sneak Peek

We had newborn photos done last Wednesday at one week. We're still waiting on the proofs, but we got a sneak peek at one of the photos. We had one of our pitties, Peyton pose with Savannah since he's been so good with her already and because he's very well trained to pose.

Look at how fantastic it turned out!

Savannah & Peyton

Peyton is a mama's boy and my lap dog. He's taken the addition of Savannah to our "pack" quite well. I try to pet him and love on him while Justin's spending time with Savannah so we can still get our "Mommy and Me" time in. I hope things continue to go well with the dogs, but so far, so good.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Savannah's Birth Story

This is a little late, obviously, but I've been busy with a newborn. She's fantastic though, and I'll post pictures later. ;-)

March 24, 2010

We arrived at the hospital at 5:30 am, as they requested for a 6 am induction and checked in. We had to sit in the waiting room and didn’t get an L&D room until after 8 am because our assigned nurse had not arrived and our assigned room wasn’t clean. Things didn’t seem to be getting off to a good start as that made me pretty cranky from the lack of sleep.

8:40 am – Penicillin IV got started (because I was GBS+) and was checked for progress. 4 cm dilation, still about 80% effaced….Baby was at -1.

8:50 am – Doctor broke water. Ick, ick, ick!

Contractions didn’t start coming regularly or with any intensity until about 11 am. They went from 0-60 immediately. I started walking around the room and standing up to try to get baby to drop. It must have strengthened labor too as contractions got really intense. They were still manageable though. Justin was an awesome husband/coach and tried to rub my back to take my mind off the pain. They started getting strong so at 11:30, I went ahead and asked for the epidural since they said to ask about 20 minutes before I’ll really want it.

In the meantime, contractions got really bad and I felt all of them in my back at my tailbone. I felt excruciating pain to the point where I was screaming for the drugs and got really grouchy and irritable. There was no sense in holding out any longer….even though I was probably going to end up slowing down labor, I couldn’t take it—it felt like I was being stabbed in my back and I’d have to say that was some of the worst pain I’d ever felt. I’d had kidney surgery before and that recovery was painful and rough, and I have a tattoo on my back ribcage, which was very painful, but this was above and beyond any of that.

12:45 pm – FINALLY got epidural (an hour+ after requested) and was at 8 cm dilation. I felt relief immediately, knowing I was getting close and that the pain was gone. The epidural was the weirdest thing ever. My legs tingled like they were asleep and I could feel when DH put his hand on them, but I didn’t feel any pain nor could I move them.

We spent the next few hours hanging out—my parents, Justin, and his mom. The afternoon was a blur. I tried to relax and take a nap, but I was so hopped up on adrenaline that I couldn’t sleep. I was so excited, I had been waiting for this for so long—counting all the months we tried and the whole pregnancy, I was so ready to meet her. Around 4:00 or so, I started to feel pressure a lot lower than where I had felt before so I asked to be checked again. 9.5 cm. So close!

I started to get the urge to push at about 5 pm. I was at 10 cm finally (a full freaking day’s work) and the L&D nurse said we could start pushing. She got my doc on call and got everything set up so I started pushing. My epidural started to wear off, which was worrying me, but the nurse sounded like that was better so I could feel more and push better. It wasn’t too terrible at that point. I didn’t know how long of a haul I was in for, but I was optimistic it wasn’t going to take too long to get her out. So I pushed. And I pushed. And I pushed. And pushed more. An hour later, I was worn out and baby was still in posterior position and hung up on my pelvic bone…and the nurse was getting concerned about her heart rate. It was mostly steady but it would drop at times and she didn’t like it. (This was where details started to get fuzzy……) They put an oxygen mask on me and called my doc in. By now I was starting to be in pain. My nurse’s shift was over so someone else came in to take over the delivery. This switch meant my third nurse of the day!

My doc came in, told me the baby was stuck and that they’d let me push for another hour. She would inform the on-call doc what was going on, but she told me there was a 50-50 chance that I would need a c-section. At this point, I’m worn out, emotional, confused, so I started crying. I knew then and there that I’d need a c-section. I just knew it. I know I might have joked around about wanting one early on in my pregnancy, but when it came down to it, that’s the absolute last thing I wanted. I wanted to deliver my baby vaginally like most other people can, I didn’t want to deal with a c-section recovery, and I wanted to prove to myself that I could do one of the most difficult things I’d ever have to do. I also felt ditched by my doctor. I’m not sure if because she wasn’t on call that she didn’t have OR rights that night, but if she was already there, why not just stay and deliver my baby? Why did I need to push for another hour? Why didn’t she make the executive decision to proceed with the c-section? She was so excited for me when she found out I was pregnant and earlier in the month, she wanted me to hold out for another week so I wouldn’t deliver while she was on spring break. With that comment, I assumed she wanted to be the one to deliver my baby. She didn’t really give a reason for leaving other than hinted that it was time to go home-- I guess it was about 6:30 pm by this point. (Needless to say, I’m pretty ticked and we have some things to discuss at my six-week postpartum check. I think I’m going to have a different OB for #2 –this really disappointed me).

Justin’s freaking out as he’s already seen me in so much pain, I’m bawling, Justin calls my mom in for a pep talk. I thought she asked to come in, but reading his text messages later (shhhh! I was curious what he said.), I think he was completely freaked and didn’t know how to deal. They didn’t cover this in our childbirth class. I’m pretty sad that I don’t remember exact specifics, but it was the best damn pep talk I’ve ever had and boy, did I need it. She calmed me down about the c-section possibility and gave me motivation to push for a while longer provided it was safe for me and safe for the baby. Nurse #3 assured me I was in good hands and that they were monitoring both of us. Nurse called the anesthesiologist to get me another round of an epidural since the first one had worn off. I ended up taking a break for about 30 minutes between my doc coming in and my mom’s pep talk and we start up on round #2 of pushing.

I gave it a go for another 50+ minutes and didn’t make much more progress than I had the first hour of pushing. Nurse makes the call to get the OR ready and things set up. At this point, the room becomes slightly chaotic with everyone coming in to get us prepped and ready for the surgery. I’m not quite sure what all they gave me, but whatever it was, it knocked me out. I was in and out of consciousness at times and I was shaking uncontrollably. I was slightly cold, but even when they gave me a warming blanket, I was still shaking. They cart me in to the OR, its bright as the sun compared to the nice dim lights in my L&D room. I don’t remember much, as like I said, I wasn’t fully all there, but I remember the pressure when they pulled her out, I remember hearing her cry (it was more like a cute squawk), and I remember them saying what a big girl she was. They took her over to the warming bin (which had “Panda Warmer” stickers all over it, I guess that’s a brand or type of warmer, not sure) to get her cleaned off. Justin said that he was afraid to touch her until the nurses gave him the ok, which of course they did right away and she grabbed his finger instantly and wouldn’t let go.

They were still working on me and I felt them staple me up. It didn’t hurt, but I heard the stapler and felt the pressure every couple seconds. Justin brought the baby over to me and I remember he asked if he should go with her to the nursery or if I wanted him to stay with me, I told him to go with her; I’d be ok with the doctors and nurses. I asked how big she was – 8 lbs, 4 ounces and 21 inches long! How did that ever fit in 5’2” me? I remember giving her a kiss before they took her off and she was wide awake and alert and not crying. She had her big eyes open and looked right at me. It was the most precious thing I’d ever seen. I started crying again…or maybe just kept crying.

They finished me up and wheeled me off to recovery. At this point, I felt the drugs wearing off again and I felt a lot of pain at the incision site. My nurse kept asking if they should bring the baby in and I felt so bad, but I wasn’t ready to see her yet. I couldn’t function other than continue to cry. Justin came in to tell me about her, he was so excited and I could tell that he was already in love. I wanted to meet her so bad, and I can’t explain it, but there was this urge to just be at my best for her and I couldn’t do that just yet. My mom came in and they gave me enough drugs to make me comfortable. I think I spent an hour in recovery before they kicked me out to my postpartum room where I finally got to meet my beautiful daughter, Savannah Jane. It was the crazy instant connection that I always heard about. I didn’t even know her but loved her and would do the entire day all over again in a heartbeat if that’s what it took.

We had a rough first night; she wasn’t born until 8:56 pm, so she was bent out of shape a bit trying to adjust to being an outside baby. I was stuck in bed and exhausted so Justin had to try to comfort her (and me) all night. Poor thing. I feel really bad, but he handled it like a champ and was so great at being the father and husband we needed him to be. We finally asked the nurses to take her to the nursery because we needed some rest after the long day—even though that wasn’t the plan EVER. Well, she was inconsolable and we wanted to hold out on giving her a pacifier, so they brought her back…..twice. Justin though stayed up and held her, because even I couldn’t make her feel better.

The rest of our hospital stay was better, but she ended up dropping a lot of weight in two days because apparently she got dehydrated. We had no choice but to start supplementing with formula—our pediatrician said we didn’t have other options. However, our pedi is AWESOME and everything she has suggested or told us has worked out for the best. Thanks to the Austin nesties for recommending Dr. Cepeda. We’ve been patients for a little over a week and already love her.

My milk came in pretty quickly which helped, but the first couple days were rough. We used the SNS tube thing which gets taped above my nipple to help her try to latch on, but we really struggled there for awhile. We got to go home on Sunday of that week, after having Savannah Wednesday night and it really helped us all coming home and being able to relax. My recovery is going pretty well, I’m getting around well, and the lingering pain is getting more manageable. Breastfeeding is slightly rough, but she’s getting it. It seems to get easier and easier as we both get the hang of it.

Now she’s a week and a half old and we’re all smitten!! She’s a pretty easy baby and very alert when she’s awake, just watching the world around her. She doesn’t cry much at all, but when she does, it’s usually because of an easily solved problem—she’s hungry, she needs a diaper change, or she needs to burp. I’ve enjoyed being a mom more than I ever imagined, not that I didn’t know I‘d love it, but I thought I’d despise the newborn phase and not be able to wait until she was a toddler. I love her like this and already dread her growing up. Like I said, I’d already do it all over again for her.