Sunday, November 18, 2012

Welcome Our Son! Baby Easton is here!

LOOK WHO JOINED THE PARTY!

Easton was born 11/8/12 @ 7:16 pm to two VERY proud and exhausted parents.
(Thank you to Daddy for delivering him safely and soundly!)

He weighed in at a sturdy 8 pounds 5 oz and was 21 1/2 in long!

So new and so alert.  I was amazed by this little face.

Fortunately for him, he favors his father.  Check out these profiles.

Deep (space) discussions with Daddy inspired by adorable space jammies.

Mommy & Easton falling more and more in love by the minute!

Our first day home is a success!  Maybe they will let us keep him after all?

Allow me to show you my surprised face! Ooooooh!

Daddy has never claimed to be stylish.....at least we have stripes as a constant here?

Showing off the Herrmann nose and lips.

When it comes to saving the world, he's your man. Check out those muscles!


There just aren't words....  "Love" is so inadequate a word.


Ok, so sorry for the delay in posting this gorgeous piece of news out here.  I honestly have no idea how you all do it the day of or the day after delivery.  I was busy trying to recover.  Yikes!  I will post his birth story in the next few days.  Now that I feel less like a swamp monster, I think I can squeeze it in!  We have his newborn photo session tomorrow so maybe after that, I'll take a little time and jot it all down before I forget (or block it out).  I am 100% amazed at how much my heart has grown in the past week and a half.  I never knew.  I thought I knew.....I had no idea.  My friends have all told me, just wait till you have your own.  They were right.  It's honestly a religious experience to look at the face of your child and KNOW that God blessed you with them and that your body was just a vessel in the process.  I've never been more thankful for anything in my life.  The relationship that Rik and I have is forever changed, deepened, opened, strengthened.  It's amazing.  It's like I went in to the hospital one person and came out two days later someone completely different.  The world is a whole new place.  This little boy has made me new/whole again.  I can't wait to share him with all of you.  I hope you love him too.  :)

Finally a Mommy,
Shannon

Monday, November 5, 2012

38 Weeks & 6 Days - L&D Thoughts

Yes, I could have waited one more day to post a 39 week update, but in all likelihood, I will forget tomorrow and then you won't get another update for a week or more and who knows if I'll be able to update then?  So, today it is!

We're still on baby watch.  So far, I am dilated 1-2 cm and I am 70% effaced (this is as of last week's appt so who knows what tomorrow will hold for us) at a -2 station!  The doctor said I could have Easton at any point,  and honestly, I wish she hadn't said that.  What I've managed to convince myself she said was, "Easton will be born today and you will be holding him by the end of the afternoon!"....NOT the case at all, but when you're excited, well, you're just excited.  I've been doing my level best not to put too much pressure on the situation because I really do want him to come whenever he is most ready but the last week has been one of those crazy weeks where all we do is walk around the house cleaning things up, moving things from one place to another, stocking diapers in every corner of the house and looking rather expectantly at each other all day long.  I am assuming everyone that makes it "full term" goes through this and so far, we've done really well.  Hurry up and wait.

Everyone is so excited for us that we're getting texts all day that say things like, "You need to hurry up!" or "You need to tell that baby to get a move on!  I'm excited to meet him!"  or "Tell him not to come until XYZ day!" and so...I am feeling the stress a bit more.  Silly, huh?  :)  It's nerves, obviously.   It's not like I can control his arrival so I might as well not feel the pressure, but I do.  I had a friend who would literally CRY daily after she hit 35 weeks because she felt like she was failing everyone for not having her daughter sooner.  I remember thinking she was NUTS b/c after all, she has no control over any part of it!  I chalked it up to her age b/c she was "young".  I sort of understand her now, though.  I don't feel like a failure by any means, but I definitely feel like people are sitting around waiting on me to have this baby and are just as antsy as we are about it (which is pretty freakin' antsy).  I know they aren't but you know how it is when you're excited and nervous about something so huge....Which leads me to my next point!

The labor and delivery portion of the show.  Oh what a topic!  We have chosen a birthing location here in town that is less hospital, more birthing center.  It's a women's center that caters more to the birthing experience than your standard hospital does.  The accommodations are awesome, they supply you with birthing balls, squatting bars, more freedom to move about, etc.   My biggest disappointment was finding out they recently have gotten rid of their birthing tubs which I was extremely excited to use.  Argh.  Anyway, because I have decided to go as natural as possible for as long as I can handle it (I know, I know) I don't want any "extra" distractions, visitors, pressures, etc.  I know me and I know I need to be able to focus 100% of my concentration on every part of my L&D just so I give us the best chance of success.  It's so important to me.  Obviously, if I'm feeling pressure from text messages about having this little guy, knowing there are 13 people in the waiting room WAITING on us to get the job done so they can meet our son, well, that's a huge distraction for me.

Originally, we were going to labor as long as possible at home, head to the center whenever we felt ready and send out a baby alert when we were about 7-8 cm dilated.  That way, family could come out then and would not be out there for hours and hours just pacing the halls and waiting on us to deliver.  There is also the fact that we plan on having an hour or more with just us and the baby after he is born and cleaned up and returned to us to bond, try our hand at breastfeeding, enjoy meeting our son, rest a bit and then have visitors.  We neither one wanted to feel rushed through this special time.  We've waited a long time for this and we really do want to enjoy those first moments as a family so that we don't "forget" what it was like before the room was filled up with people and he was passed from one eager, loving person to another for a while.

This information (our plan) was handled pretty well by most people, but there were a few family members and friends who protested and have been so adamant about being in the waiting room while we labor that we've finally relented b/c it's just too exhausting trying to explain my heart and to continue arguing about it is not how I want to spend my last week or two.  My mom's argument is that she wants to be there in case something goes wrong or we have an emergency.  She says she'd never be able to live with NOT being there if something horrible happened to me.  (Let's hope and pray THAT isn't an issue, shall we?)    She just keeps saying I don't understand and one day, if I have a daughter I will understand.  Maybe I will, but I also would like to think that I'd try to understand where she's coming from, who she is as a person and why her wishes are so important to her.  It's not that I'm being selfish or overly independent - it's that a natural birth is important to me and if I know something is going to jeopardize that (b/c I know me), then I want to try and prevent that from happening.

I may not make it three hours naturally, but dangit, I wanna give myself the best chance possible.  I want to limit the chance for a c-section, I want L&D to go as quickly as possible, and I want to do it the way we've hoped for.  I know I have NO control over what happens to an extent, but some of it, I can.  (Side note-Don't you love when people say, "I can't wait to see how long it takes you to ask for an epidural!" - Some folks just don't get it!  Support, not hope for failure is what is needed here!)

Anyway, we've heard it from several folks and honestly, it's not about everyone else's interpretation of the situation or their intentions, it's about cause and effect for ME.  It doesn't matter how or why from everyone else's perspective, it matters how it impacts me at that very important time in my life.  I just wish I could convey that without being interrupted with the "Just wait, you'll see one day" or, "You're being ridiculous, no one is pressuring you by being there!" and so forth.  Oh well...some things are just too hard to explain to everyone.  Especially if they don't really understand the reasons behind your wishes.

We've decided we'll just address the situation in another way.  We'll let our family and close friends know when we're headed to the hospital and then once there, Rik is managing the phones/texts and the nurses will be instructed NOT to mention who is in the waiting room or what they are doing.  I don't want to know if Rik's dad is pacing the halls or trying to get in to see us.  I don't want to know if my mom is a nervous wreck (she will be - she is just so excited).  I don't want to know if there are 6 people there or 16.  I don't want to know if the British are coming!  We're just gonna pretend no one is there and I'll focus all my energy on getting this little boy here safe and sound with as little medical assistance as possible.  :)  Problem solved.  Rik won't go out and visit or update, I won't be checking my phone for texts, etc.  I won't have to worry about people wanting to come in for a visit.  If we change our minds, that's our choice to make then.  No pressure, no distractions.  Everyone's happy!

There is only one exception to all this.  My best friend, Keesha, is a nurse and we have a very special relationship.  We've been best friends since we were 15 years old.  She's been one of the only people I have ever depended on for emotional support and she's never let me down or disappointed me.  When I didn't have anyone else during those tough, late teenage years, she was there for me in all her brutal honesty.  :)  When I went through rough times in my early twenties, she helped me through them like a sister would.  She always understands where I'm coming from and if she doesn't, she tries her best to.  That girl is the most supportive person I've ever met.  She's also very practical and level-headed about these types of things - she's a nurse.  Our sons very well may be born on the same day and if her baby boy isn't here yet, I have a feeling she'll be there for me if I need her support or her guidance - in house or otherwise.    It's funny how some people just have a calming effect on you - that's my Kiki.  If we have any medical questions, she'll be our go-to for sure.

Well, this post turned out to be a long post about L&D, not really an update of any kind.  I guess that means I will just have to post again tomorrow assuming Baby E isn't here by then.  I hope this doesn't come across like I'm being unreasonable or anything.  I love all the support I've gotten from my closest buddies and our family.  They are amazing and have never done anything to make me think they'll be banging the door down to get into our room, it's just ME and my anxiety.  HA!  I wish I could explain it better, but I guess I can't.  I'm usually pretty good with words but I guess this time, I am struggling.  What are your thoughts on the subject?  Am I being unreasonable?  Selfish?  I really don't want to hurt anyone - especially people I love so very much!  Who knows, I may go into labor and beg 8 different people to meet me at the entrance to the hospital to hold my hand.  :)  That's how unpredictable I feel labor and delivery might be!  I just want to be IN the moment.

Until next time,
Shannon

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

37 Weeks & Stuff

"My humps, my humps, my lovely ginormous lady lumps, CHECK IT OUT!"

You know, you see those memes these days that say, "What I think I look like while xyz" followed up with "What I actually look like while xyz".  Well, I'm there now.  The only problem is, the two images in my head have slowly but surely morphed and now I KNOW what I actually look like.  Luckily, I have a husband that's an excellent liar and tells me I'm beautiful every day right around the time I'm about to complain or wimper about needing help to raise myself to an upright position.  :)  He's awesome.

SO, I had my 37 week checkup yesterday.  Our normal doc was out of town so we finally met another doc in the practice.  I was glad about that b/c who knows WHO will deliver Easton with 9 other doctors in the practice?  Last week, I had my cervix checked and was happy to hear I was already dilated 1 cm!  I was surprised!  I DO wish that someone had taken to time to tell me that having your cervix checked was much like a tonsillectomy via the va-jay-jay.  Holy discomfort, Batman!  I mean, sure, I've been through worse as an infertile, but still....I just wasn't quite prepared.  Plus, my doctor has tiny, short fingers which means she was short on reach and had to really go jamming her knuckles and such all up in there.  Bruise anyone?  Not fun.  I survived.  

They measured the little rascal last week during my last ultrasound (sniff) and he was weighing in at a healthy 6 lbs 9 oz already.  I'm sure that's not 100% accurate based on everyone's stories I've heard but it's nice to pick things up that weigh about 7 lbs and be impressed with myself for carrying that around in my belly.  :)  The tech was still impressed with his fat cheeks and his hair.  Apparently, he's gonna join the Afro Circus that is my family and fit in very nicely.  I'm one proud mama.  He may hate me, but I'm definitely hoping for curls....lots of them.  Somewhere between Justin Timber.lake (of old) and Matthew McConaughey (also of old).

Baby E is insanely active.  It's one of those things that even the doctor and nurses comment on.  He usually has a higher heart rate at my appts b/c he's flipping around, doing the cha-cha-cha or the worm and they have a hard time getting a good reading on it.  

Yesterday, the new doctor checked his heart rate and for once he was still after a ten minute workout session.  It was in the 150's and she said, "Is he an active fella?"  Rik and I both had to laugh and just say yes.  He's insane.  Maybe every baby is super active and I'm just finally getting to have the experience myself, but either way, it's hilarious and amazing and I'm gonna miss it when it's not there anymore.  I wonder how often I reach up to rub his little booty that he's constantly sticking out after he is born?  I know I'll be so happy to have him in my arms, I won't be sad per se, but I will definitely miss having the little Scrip Scrap all safe and sound in my tummy cracking me up with his moves like Jagger.  He's like my own personal comedian, my pick-me-up when I'm sad, my company when I'm lonely, etc.  Once he is here, I'll have to share him.  Luckily for my family and friends, I'm dying for them to meet our little guy so, I promise not to run away with him and hide in a cave a la Lord of the Rings (My Precious).

So, at the checkup, I managed to slightly embarrass my sweet hubby.  Remember above where I mentioned my doctor has short tiny fingers?   Well, the nurse mentioned the new doctor checking my cervix, I had a thought and before I could even think it through, it came out of my mouth.  I asked, "Does Dr. Allen have long fingers?"  Her face said all I needed to know.  I looked over at Rik and he had his head down, hand over his eyes, shaking his head.  "What?  You have someone put their hand up there and check your cervix and we'll see how important finger length is!" The nurse just said, "I think her hands are slightly bigger than your doctors," and left the room.  Then it was my turn to be embarrassed.  Ugh....  Sometimes my brain is just not as quick as my mouth, but I still think it was a logical question.  And the nurse was right.  Slightly longer than my doctor.  Still uncomfy, but not like last week.  :)  I'm dilated 1-2 cm now and Scrapper was at -2.  She said she could feel his head through the bag of waters and when she touched him, he started squirming all over and it startled her.  She laughed and said, "Oh, he's on the move now!" and he kept moving his head back and forth.  It was amazing to think she was touching our sons head.  Rik didn't hear another word she said for probably five minutes b/c he was so focused on that.  :)  It was cute.  We were both a little jealous she got to feel his head.

So far, I've gained 20 lbs.  I haven't gained any in three weeks but he has so I'm not worried.  My gestational diabetes is still under tight control and I've done a great job if I do say so myself!  I feel like my tummy is massive and couldn't possibly stretch any further but it does.  The doctor thinks I'll have him a week or two early so that's a week or two away now.  I can't believe we made it full term.  When the doctor mentioned that yesterday, all I could do was grin because after all we've been through and all this time, we're closing in on the finish line/start line.  Finishing one race just to start another race.  It's unbelievable!  I'm having a son.  Pretty soon, I'll get to look at this little person that looks somewhat like me and somewhat like Rik and know that the desires of our heart were granted and we have been blessed beyond measure.  I can't wait to hold our little boy.


Thursday, October 11, 2012

Alright! 35 Week Photo Update

These were taken Tuesday evening. I thought I would share our sneak peeks from the shoot! I was 35 weeks Tuesday so it is truly a 35 week update! :) Hope you like them!



Test....

Tried to post twice yesterday....no luck.

Monday, October 1, 2012

34 Weeks

Well, let's see.  I'm due an update, I think.

Weight Gain:  17 lbs.  I actually lost a lb this week, which I find strange considering the amount of food we had at the baby shower this weekend but Rik thinks it's because we've been going nonstop.  (In other words, fatty got some exercise!)

Cravings: Still none.  I'm disappointed here.  I was actually hoping for some weird cravings but so far, nothing.  I have wanted to eat hot wings more frequently but that could be just b/c we found some we really like at a restaurant downtown.

Stretch marks:  Tiny on my butt.  Nothing on the tummy so far.  Let's hope this skin of mine holds up a few more weeks!  I still can't imagine my skin stretching any further, but I know it's going to.  I feel MASSIVE.

Heartburn?  Nope, none.  Doc put me on an antacid in the first trimester and it's been wonderful.  I even eat Indian food and have ZERO problems.

How do I feel?  HUGE.  I think I've lost FAT weight while gaining a steady amount of BABY weight so I am not tiny by any means.  I went from not showing at all in July to looking like I swallowed a pumpkin.  There was no gradual growth here.  :)

Sleep:  What's that?  Between the hip pain, the cramps in my legs (not as bad as my BFF's though!), being hungry, having to pee, pre-pregnancy sleep issues that are still present and having SO much on my mind now, I'm up several hours a night.  On weekends, I'm up by 7 at least every morning.  We were at Wal.mart by 8 am on Saturday.  I managed to wake Rik up to spend some early morning time w/ me. ha!

What do I miss most?  Being able to bend over comfortably and being able to move quickly.  I never realized how fast I do things until now.  It's brutal.  I may also miss Ambien.  (See above)

What am I most concerned about?  Lately, pre-term labor.  I don't know why, but I am scared of going into early labor.  Each week has me breathing a little easier, though not comfortably yet.  I had several people tell me they don't think I'll make it full-term over the weekend.  I'm guessing it's b/c they think I look about ready to pop.  Let's hope he stays put at least till 38-39 weeks.

What am I most looking forward to?  Holding him and kissing his little face.  There are so many reasons I have these days to be grateful for my healthy boy and thankful that God has allowed us this blessing.  I just want to hold him and kiss him and let him know how precious he is to us.  I know we aren't guaranteed that everything will be a-ok but I'm going to keep believing it will be.

Showers?  I had two!  My best friend on the planet hosted one for me with my mom (pics to come).  Keesha did an AMAZING job with the decorations and the hand-made gifts for Easton.  I can't even tell you how blown away I was by her creativity and how well she obviously knows my taste.  There are few times in life when you really KNOW how much you are loved and cared for by another person and this was one of those times.  I don't know that I'll ever be able to properly thank her for her generosity and thoughtfulness.  My mom was the cook/financier of the event and I'd be completely remiss if I didn't mention that she has spoiled me absolutely rotten since I've been pregnant.  I've always been her kiddo that never needed anything from her and have always been very self-sufficient.  She has taken this opportunity to give and give and give some more b/c she knows I won't turn it away if it's for the baby boy.  ;)  I think she may need some rules put in place for when Easton gets here. haha....He'll be ROTTEN otherwise.  Our other shower was this weekend and it was an awesome couples shower thrown for me by my buddy Ashley and her husband, Easton's namesake (Andrew), Drew and my other friend April.  We reused most of Keesha's awesome decorations and ideas and had an awesome spread of food.  My step-dad made pork tenderloin and jalepeno popper thingys and then we had baked beans, cole slaw and mac n cheese catered in.  It was awesome!  I was concerned b/c many of the invitees couldn't make it but since it rained and we moved it indoors, the crowd was just the right size and it was a blast.  I can't believe how blessed we are to have such wonderful friends.  Drew gave an amazing toast that made us all cry and pledged to help us raise and love Easton as much as we have loved his children.  It was precious and I will never forget it.

Nursery:  Almost done!  I'm having commitment issues when it comes to wall art and furniture locations.  Ergh.  We finally got our glider!  It's amazing and I can't wait to spend LOTS of time in it.

Ok, that's all I can come up with right now.  I go to the doc tomorrow and will see how the little fella is doing.  He was measuring right on target again two weeks ago after having a few ultrasounds where he was measuring ahead of schedule.  Thank goodness, that was apparently just a growth spurt and not anything that needs to be a cause for concern at this point.  My gestational diabetes is under control and I'm doing well with the diet.  It's not a tough diet to stick to at all since I don't crave sweets or anything. The biggest thing that bothers me is pricking my finger so often (four times per day).  I only prick three fingers on each hand so every other day, I'm pricking those fingers again.  Ring fingers and pinky fingers are free-bleeders and they friggin hurt!  :)

I hope you all are doing well.  We've been so busy lately, I have some catching up to do on my blog reading.  Forgive me for all the late comments I'll be throwing your way!

from the couch,
Shannon


Friday, September 7, 2012

Pertussis - Whooping Cough

So, I know I said I'd post about the nursery next, but I wanted to post this little gem first before I forget and hey, you get two posts out of me instead of one!  :)

A lady at work may or may not have/had whooping cough for the past three weeks at work.  Conflicting stories from her about whether or not she had the test done has every one in panic mode.  As does her coughing fits in the staircase, breakroom and bathrooms with an uncovered mouth.  We've all complained to our manager about her coughing fits and how horrible it is and to his credit, he sent her home twice in the past three weeks.  I felt awful for her b/c she sounds like she is dying, I kid you not.  Yesterday though, it got bad.  She was so sick, she was coughing up blood in one of the downstairs bathrooms and the right people got together and it created the perfect storm of drama, panic and gossip.  Before the poor girl could blink, one of the other managers (who is terrified of germs) sent her home indefinitely and had called a serious meeting w/ all the managers to decide how to proceed.  This turned into upper management contacting the health department, researching information on the CDC's website, etc.

I got a call late last night from the CEO asking me how I felt, if I had any symptoms and if I would be willing to work from home for a few days to keep me and the baby safe.  They realize, I think, that it's a little too late to be keeping me home since my coworker has been spewing germs all over the place for three weeks (did your mother teach you to cover your mouth?  MINE DID!) but it was a nice sentiment nonetheless.   So, I'm working from home the next few days while they work out what to do.

They sent her back to the doctor and made her get the test today, because apparently, she never had it due to something that happened with the lab and the doc told her she wasn't contagious anymore anyway b/c she'd been on antibiotics for five days.  Blah, blah, blah.  My boss's want to know if we've all been exposed because the incubation period is apparently 14-21 days and they want everyone to be prepared for a possible "outbreak".  Let's hope that she didn't have it and we don't have to worry about it.

Pertussis Gate 2012

EEEEK!

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Sugar Baby

So, I failed my second glucose test.  They tested my blood four times and I failed three of those tests; the only one I passed being the fasting level before I drank Satan's koolaid.  Most of you have tried the original Satan's koolaid they give you for the first test, but the second batch...oh boy, it's even more satany.  I put a few drops in the cap and made Rik taste it.  ((I always make him taste my medicine if it's nasty b/c misery loves company.))  He agreed with me, Satan's koolaid.

Anyway, they called me the other day to give me the wonderful news that I failed and have gestational diabetes or "diabeetus" as I've been calling it because it reminds me of my great grandma and it makes me laugh when I want to cry.  I'm really NOT happy about having this.  I find it insanely difficult to believe considering I've always had low blood sugar and several low blood sugar attacks since I've been pregnant.  I also have none of the "risk" factors that typically fit people with gestational diabetes.  I'm not overweight, I eat a healthy diet, I don't have anyone in my family who's ever had gestational diabetes, etc.  The only thing I do have against me is that I'm over 25 years of age and pregnant.  Who knew?

Everyone I've spoken to about this gives me the "you'll be fine, people deal with this everyday" speech and it's honestly, a little grating at this point.  I know people are thinking I'm worried about keeping it under control or worried about having diabetes, but I'm not.  I'm not concerned with controlling my sugar levels.  I'll follow the diet, I'll do what I'm supposed to and it will be kept under control.  I have self control and I love my little guy.  What I'm upset about is the possible side effects that may affect Easton in the future.

He has more increased risks than I do.  He could have macrosomia (which literally means "fat baby") at birth and be a large baby due to the fact that he can't convert the sugar in his body to energy so it's then stored as fat.  He could have hypoglycemia at birth and have to be given a glucose supplement to help regulate his sugar levels (which could interfere with breastfeeding as well).  He could have respiratory issues.  He could struggle with obesity his whole life.  He could develop diabetes himself at any time, including childhood.  I'll not even mention the other things b/c they aren't going to happen because I'm going to keep this mess under control for the next 10 weeks.   I know these are all RISKS....but they are increased risks because of this issue.    If I get Type II diabetes in 5-10 years because of this, fine.  I'll deal with that.  I just can't stand the thought of him having to deal with something like this because my body didn't handle being pregnant properly.

You can probably tell I'm a little down about this.  I know it's NOTHING that I did wrong and I had no control over this.  It's just one of those fluke things that happens with some pregnancies b/c of the hormones in your body and yada yada yada.  It doesn't mean I'm not still pissed off about it.  I grew up so healthy.  Never sick, always in great shape, super athletic/active, never abused my body w/ drugs/alcohol, took care of myself, etc.  Why is it that now, when I want my body to do what God intended it to do, it won't cooperate?  It took us this long to get pregnant and we had to trick my body into getting pregnant in the first place.  Then it was touch and go for a while because of my partial placenta previa issue.  I'm deficient in Vit D, Iron and now I have gestational diabetes and could potentially be a harm to my son.  It's very frustrating when your body just doesn't seem to want to do what it should be doing.  I just keep reminding myself that I'm blessed to be able to experience this because I couldn't have gestational diabetes unless I was pregnant and that's all that matters.  So, I'm trying to stop feeling sorry for myself and baby E, suck it up and just be thankful I'm going to have a son in a few weeks.  That makes it ALL better because I know what a blessing that is.  

Easton is already a little bigger than average, but not abnormally so.  He is in the 77th percentile.  At first, they said it could be because of genetics (Rik is 6'4" tall) but now it could be because of genetics OR gestational diabetes.  We had a huge growth spurt around 26-29 weeks but he has since leveled off a little bit.  At my 27 week appt, they said he measured 29 weeks.  On Tuesday, our 30 week appt, he was measuring 31w3d.  The doctor said we may come back in two weeks and he'll be right on target again and that the 27 wk measurement could have just been due to a rapid growth spurt we were catching at it's end.  Who knows...  I expect him to be long, I just hope he's not a big baby.  I don't want to worry about him getting stuck in the canal or hurting his shoulders because he's too big or me having to have an emergency c-section b/c he won't fit through through my pelvis.  These are all new worries I wasn't previously concerned about b/c I've done great on my weight gain and had no reason to think I couldn't deliver him vaginally.  Now, we wait and see.

We met with the high risk doctor yesterday.  I didn't even catch his name b/c all he did was walk in, do a little work on the ultrasound machine and tell me that he doesn't need to see me again unless I can't control my sugar.  The dietician/diabetic counsellor was amazing though.  Her name was Linda and oddly enough, Rik and I both know her son from work.  She explained everything to me and showed me how to prick my finger and check my blood.  I have to check it four times per day.  When I wake up, aka my fasting level, and then two hours after breakfast, lunch and dinner.  So far, not a single test has been over the limit they gave me.  It's actually been way under.  The diet isn't really that different from what I was already eating other than not having any milk until dinner or later and not eating fruit except for afternoon snacks or later and even then, sparingly.  I'm a fruit eater so this is a little different for me.  I can pass up a cake or doughnut any day of the week but you put some fresh pineapple in front of me and it's ON.  :)  The only other real sacrifice will be my every-other-day glass of sweet tea.  I love sweet tea.  Anyway, so far so good. No blood sugar issues.

My best friend is a nurse and she still thinks the only reason I failed those tests is because I'm NOT a sweet/carb eater (except for bread and potatoes now and then) and they overloaded my system with 100 grams of straight glucose and my body flipped out b/c it never has to process that much glucose.  haha....  My other friend is a dietician and she was a lifesaver that week between the test results and the high risk appointment.  She gave me a lesson in diabetic eating and I was able to get through that week without panicking too much.  It's awful to get your results and then hear you have to wait a week to know what to do and how to handle it.  I was afraid to eat ANYTHING!  

So, that's what's new in our world.  My fingers are sore from the pricking and ya'll know how much I hate needles, right?  I mean, really.  Childbirth freaks me out less!  Say a prayer for us.  I'm doing what I need to do to make sure Easton and I are healthy as we can be and the rest is up to the big man upstairs.    The doctor said hopefully, this diet will help slow Easton's growth down a little bit so that he gets back on track by the time he's born.  He weighed a chunky 3 lbs 12 oz on Tuesday.  :)  So far, I've gained a total of 16-17 lbs.

Next post will be more upbeat, I promise.  We're almost finished w/ the nursery and I have photos to share.  :)  If any of you dealt with gestational diabetes, I would love to hear how you handled it and how your baby handled it at birth and later on.

XOXO,
Shannon

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Bump to bump!

Just a quick photo of me with my gorgeous friend, Emily. Hope you all are having a wonderful day!


Friday, August 24, 2012

Blood Draw #3 kicked my butt...

Veins aren't cooperating since I am dehydrated. No clue where they will get blood for #4.


Thursday, August 23, 2012

Glucose Rematch, Swag and Namesakes

So, I made mention of the fact that the glucose test kicked my butt last week, right?  Good.  Well, I failed that test.  I have to retake it tomorrow and I can't say that I'm thrilled about it.  Luckily, Rik is going with me so I should be able to make it through without keeling over and revisiting the fruit punch shower of 2012.  I guess we'll know in about 12 hours.  I have to have blood taken 4 times so that's 4 excellent opportunities to test my theory that Rik is my security blanket and if he's there, I'm all good.

Things are going pretty great around here as we get ready to meet our little fellow.  I know I still have all but a week of my third trimester left to go, but this is the point where it all gets real.  Like, really real.  There's a crib upstairs for goodness sake.  A CRIB.  Amazing.

I haven't had that many symptoms to complain about the past few months.  The back pain finally eased up and I thoroughly enjoyed being pregnant my whole second trimester.  I had my energy back, no pain to speak of, no moodiness or anything like that...It was rather nice!  I mean, I'm a pretty pleasant person naturally, so what else did you expect? Ha!

I haven't had any cravings other than wanting hot wings a few times.  I've gained a total of 14 lbs at the last dr's visit (last Tues) but I think I've gained 2 more lbs since then.  I have only gotten one little stretch mark and that's on my tushy which I find kind of odd since that's not the part of me that's stretching or expanding that much (YET).  I've always had a bigger bum though so I can't say I'm shocked really.  I'm expecting that I'll end up with a few on my stomach for no other reason than I can't IMAGINE my skin stretching any further without tearing and yet, I know it will.  My belly button is almost flat now, which I find very peculiar looking.  The inside of a belly button is not attractive.  I know you grow up with your parents telling you your perfect in every way and all that jazz, but they never looked in your belly button.  Seriously, yuck.  ((And what's up with these websites making jokes about "look on the bright side, you can finally clean out all that lint"?  Ga-ross!  If you've been harboring that much lint in your belly button for that long, I find it highly doubtful you're going to be excited to part with it now!))  

The baby is super active and I could honestly sit and watch him wiggle and move and kick 24/7 and never get tired of it.  I always wondered if it'd freak me out or if I'd be all into it....Me? Totally into it.  I love it and I'll miss it when he's here.  Sure, I'll be thrilled he is here to hug and kiss but just in case this is the only time I get to experience this, I'm going to relish in every bump and nudge I can.  So far, I have carried him pretty low but also very out....He hasn't once gotten up in my ribs or anything like that.  I am sure he will soon, but so far, he's stayed more to the right side (if I'm looking down) and pretty low.  I don't know what he's got against my left side, but the kid rarely makes it all the way over there for a visit...ha, he just kicked or punched over there just now so apparently, he's letting me know what's up.  I've gone up a bit in the booby contraptions.  That was a n awesome day too b/c it was like going from feeling imprisoned in a straight jacket to running free in the warm sunshine after a long winter!  I haven't had any serious swelling other than my rings getting a little tight the other night.

Scrip Scrap's room is adorable so far.   Of course, all we have is paint on the walls, a crib and a dresser, but hey, it's a start.  I love just going in there and looking around at his little space.  I have a few ideas of what I would like it to look like eventually but I'm not in a huge hurry to finish it since he'll probably be in our room for a while.  Our bedroom is on the main floor and his is up about 20 stairs on the opposite side of the house.  I don't think we'll be leaving him up there alone for quite a while.  We're converting our front room into a playroom and I think that will be much better for him since it's just around the corner from our bedroom.

I will say that our boy is going to have serious swag.  I mean, that's my goal anyway. (I've been obsessing over little boys clothing lately.  Not in an unhealthy way, but still....it may need to be addressed.)   Rik was a ballplayer (still is) and a coach, we are obsessed with the Atlanta Braves, I was a ballroom dance instructor and a hip hop dancer for years and love dressing up little boys.  Recipe for disaster.  This means he will definitely have sports swag and just the regular ol' super awesome swag.  Case in point?  This sweatshirt on the right:
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It's just too cute for words! haha

I seriously doubt though that his Daddy will allow the flat-bill hat though, we're a little more traditional when it comes to baseball gear.  I have found the cutest Braves outfits that I can't wait to get the little guy.  They even have a jacket for a 12 month old that matches ours.  Too cute!  Anyway, this is a total tangent now that I'm not sure how I got on...but anyway....he'll have some swag, ok?  :)  

Well, now I guess I should go ahead and share with you our little tot's name!  I know I left you hanging last time but I have to do what I can to get you back for more, see?   We really thought long and hard about what his name should be and I had several different criteria that ended up taking several "potentials" out of play.  The criteria was this: 1) It had to be easy to pronounce on sight 2) It had to be easy to spell when heard it said 3) It couldn't be too trendy/unique 4) it had to sound good with our last name (no small feat there) and 5) I wanted to avoid all dirty nicknames and initial/monogram fiasco's 6) it had to feel/sound natural being yelled up the staircase.

Here is a running list of names that we kept adding and subtracting from with a dry-erase marker on our bathroom mirror based upon the above criteria (minus the one we chose):
Rowan
Tucker
Ryne
Nolan
Rhyce
Lincoln
Hudson
Robinson
Most of these are baseball names, if you're not familiar with the sport, and we liked several of them quite a bit.  For a while, I was hung up on the non-baseball name of Tucker.  Rik was then crazy about Nolan and I almost relented and gave the nod on it.  Then, I re-stumbled upon a name that we had discussed in passing a few days into the pregnancy when such things were not to be discussed b/c it was still a scary time and we didn't want to jinx anything.  That day, I jokingly told my mom that if we had gotten pregnant with twin boys I would have named them Easton and Weston.  She thought that was a riot and then I remembered how much I really loved the name Easton.  Shortly thereafter (next day, I believe), Rik was flipping through the baby name book and said, "What about the name Easton?"  All I could do was smile because it just sounded so right.  So, we put it on the mirror.  A few days later, we were sitting at this little country diner talking about the little guy and discussing his name and Rik just said, "Easton.  Let's do it.  I love it," and so did I.  So, we did.  

Our little boy's name is:

Easton Andrew

Andrew is the name of Rik's best friend and we've always planned to name our son after him if we ever had one.  That one's been in the books since 2006 when we were making a very long trip home from Colorado during a snowstorm.  I am absolutely in love with my son's name.  Just reading it above makes me a little teary eyed.  Knowing he has his own identity and it's a good strong name just makes me feel wonderful.  I was so stressed about his name and what a huge responsibility it is to name someone you've never met, seen, etc.  Having it decided upon and loving the outcome is fantastic!  I hope you like it.  :)

Ok, toodles for now.  Keep us in your prayers tomorrow.  I am a nervous wreck about the possibility of having gestational diabetes.  I've read up on it and I do not want to chance my son being sick or overweight at birth.  That scares me to death.  I'm hoping that tomorrow's test goes off without a hitch and that last test was just a fluke. 

Till next time, 
Shannon

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

BU - This one's for you girl!!!!!!

(shower button above designed by Natalie @ "pajamas are comfy")

BU over at "Relaxing Doesn't Get You Pregnant" is having a baby girl!  This is in spite of her Bum Uterus (BU)!  After living in a house full of boys and testosterone, some of her blogger buddies decided to glam up her life with the girliest of girly things!

BU, I couldn't be happier for you!  I am thrilled that you are having this little girl and I can't wait to see how she shakes up your household!  Pink, sparkles, ribbons, hairbows, pearls, lace....ah!  I can't wait!  To help the little miss out with that, I've packed up and mailed out the following goodies and a few others that I didn't get a good photo of!  I hope you love them and I hope Miss Thang gets lots of good use out of them!  

Every little girl needs a pink onesie with a love bird on it!

What kind of online baby shower attendee would I be if I didn't make her a very feathery, sparkly, rosy headband?  I mean, c'mon!  :)

BU, enjoy this special online shower.  We all love you!  Here's to your Bum Uterus and it's wonderful cooperation!

Muah. 
Shannon




Saturday, August 18, 2012

Super fast update!!!!

I've been admonished for not updating recently!  I'm sorry!!!!!

I decided the best and fastest way to update everyone on what we've been doing is to post a ton of pics out here and show you.  :)  Sorry I've been missing in action lately, we've had a lot going on not related to the pregnancy that's kept us pretty busy and distracted.  However, no excuse....  I'll do better!

ENJOY!


We babysat the cutest and sweetest kids on the planet.  I even found the girls playing "Shae Shae" and cannot express to you how much I absolutely adore this photo.  Mallory (L) and Reaghan (R) lumbering around the house acting like me.....too precious. 

We've been cramming as much information as we possible can into our brains about labor, delivery, pregnancy and being a new parent.  Hugemongous thanks to Oak over at Acorn Chronicles for sending me these wonderful books to help me through this crazy process.  These books have been a Godsend for certain!  I'm feeling more and more prepared by the day! (Amazing how unprepared I will still be come show time though!) 



We registered!  Rik picked out his diaper bag and we went ahead and bought the little guy his first stuffed animal.  It's a curly-furred puppy dog that is currently sitting in his new crib (more on that later)!  We registered in stages so that we didn't get overwhelmed and I think that made it so much easier.  We still have the bath and safety stuff to register for but are mostly finished. 



This is me at about 26 weeks.  I'm really loving having a baby bump.  I may even be slightly obsessed with the fact that I have one now.  I waited a looong time for this!  



We got the crib!  The original delivery date of August 1st was pushed back b/c the boutique we bought it from had a snafu and sold our crib to another couple b/c they thought we didn't need ours until September 1st.  Needless to say, I was not a happy camper since I took the day off to be here when it was delivered and was over-the-moon excited to just have it HERE.  Oh well, two weeks later, it made it.  Obviously, there was some assembly required.  Rik and I got right to work that night and obviously, Rik had NO problems figuring out which piece went where and with which screws. 

I got in on the action and worked my allen wrench like it was nobody's business....and it wasn't!  Those screws had another thing coming once I got started!



We had a little help from our Quality Control Team.  Tess, the Director of Operations, gave us the "Ok to go" when she deemed everything safe and secure enough for the baby to sleep in.  So, we proceeded.



Here is the finished product!  Quality Control was doing their last inspection, but we got the green light.  This was me at 26 weeks 5 days.  The walls will NOT be this green color for much longer.  We just hadn't yet gotten around to picking out which color we wanted to go with!  



We bought our bedding a few weeks ago and went through what felt like 200 paint swatches before narrowing it down!  I love the bedding and I love the color we chose.  We're actually painting today (once I get off here and help Rik tape off the trim!) so wish us luck!


We also went car shopping on the hottest day of the year.  It was a balmy 104 degrees this day and as you can tell by Reaghan's cheeks, it was a scorcher!  Uncle Rik reallllly loves this little girl, can you tell?  She helped us make the final decision on the car we ended up with!




We ended up with this!  A Honda Fit.  The color is what Rik has taken to calling Olympic Bronze.  It works.  The car needed to get great gas mileage, be roomy enough for his 6"4 frame, easy to get a carseat in and out of, have enough room in the back for all of his baseball equipment and have less than a certain number of miles.  This is the only car we found that fit every need and they took $2k off the asking price b/c Rik's dad has been such a good customer at the Audi retailer. 

We made room for the baby in the front room of our house which will be his temporary home the first few months and eventually, his playroom.  Thank goodness Matthew (blonde) and Owen (brown) were here to help Rik move this couch!  It's friggin heavy!

We snuggled and spent time getting used to our new belly.

 We played in the rain.  (her life is a stage)



 We took our Olympic Swim Team to show off their skills in the natural spring beside our house.


We had our huge backyard fenced in for the dogs to enjoy a good romp around out there and to have a place to stash them once the baby gets here!  We've been planning this since we moved in 4 years ago and just haven't gotten around to it or wanted to spend the money on it (either way).  The dogs are LOVING it.



I made a few things for a friend of mine who is due a few weeks before me.  Emily had a baby shower last weekend.  It was the sweetest couples shower and everything was so beautiful.  I'm waiting on her to send me a belly shot we had taken together so I can share it with all of you.  She is so adorable and we are so excited for her to have Madelyn!

I had my glucose testing this past Tuesday.  Just looking at this picture makes me slightly queazy.  It didn't go so well.  I had an early dinner the night before and fasted that morning so obviously, I was completely starving by the time this got started at 8:45. I drank it down in 5 mins as required and then went to meet with the doc.  Scrip Scrap's heartbeat was 150 and strong.  I gained 2 lbs since my previous monthly visit and she said I was looking great.  I have gone through a serious growth spurt the past two weeks and my belly is really going places these days so I was anxious about weight gain and his size.  The tech that measured my belly said the baby was measuring 29 weeks but she measured a little higher than where my uterus actually ends so I think that's a little bit off.  I asked the doc why I would be measuring 2 weeks ahead and she said that it could be either a chunky baby or a long baby.  I laughed.  Rik wasn't with me so I had to tell her how tall he is.  She said, "Well, there ya go! I'd rather you deliver a tall baby than a really chunky baby!"  She said it's likely though that next visit, he'll be back on target and it could just be that he went through a growth spurt the two weeks before our appointment.

After I met with her, I went back to the lab and waited to have my blood drawn for the testing. Thank your lucky stars I don't have a photo to post of this!  I started getting woozy.  That's NEVER a good sign with me.  I have low blood sugar on a regular basis AND I used to faint with needles.  I wasn't sure what was going on but I was cursing Rik for not being there right at that moment.  He is my security blanket.  I never pass out when he is with me.  NEVER.  It's been years!  Dealing with infertility has made a huge difference too, so I never even worry about it.  

Anyway, you can guess what happened.  The nurse drew my blood, I keeled over and proceeded to throw up what seemed like 2 gallons of fruit punch glucose "beverage" (it should NOT be referred to as a beverage, for the record).  When I woke up, I was sitting in the same chair, surrounded by four or five nurses with wet towels, dry towels, water, ice packs, etc.  And I had fruit punch coming out of my nose.  Fantastic.  I threw up all over myself.  It was NOT pretty.  Sitting in a puddle, my clothes were ruined, my dignity pooled in the floor at my feet and filled my shoes.  It was horrible.  I had to borrow scrub pants (they brought me a SMALL!!!!!  I barely got them up over this rear end people!) to wear out of there (who cares if you have vomit on your shirt right?) and had to go home for the rest of the day b/c I was so sick.  Once I got on the road, I had to throw up again in a cup at a red light because it was lunchtime traffic and I couldn't go anywhere from the turning lane I was in and then pull over on the interstate on ramp to finally rid myself of the last of the fruit punch.  It was a day I will NEVER forget.  Absolute mortification.  I thought I'd never show my face there again until they told me I had to come back Friday (yesterday) to get a Rhogam shot.  Ugh.  I survived.

So that's what we've been doing the past few weeks.  I hope this update has been informative.  :)  I guess the last piece of news to share with you all is that we finally picked a name for our sweet boy.  I'll be sure to update you with his name in my next post.  I mean, I have to keep you coming back for more, right?  Love you all!

Shannon




Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Guest Post - 1,000 Needle Sticks

I asked my husband to guest post a while back because honestly, I love his writing and it always sticks with me regardless of what he writes about. This post is no different. I hope you enjoy.

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1,000 Needle Sticks

Shot of what? Inject it where? Mix it how? Give this why? Is it time? Hold your legs up? How long has it been?How long do we wait? One day two days three days four days one week two weeks two weeks and two days two weeks and four days now your’re late we’re late really we’re late how do you feel I feel nauseous a bit you do yep I do man man man oh man do you think we got it right this time yes I feel like we finally got it right this time holy cow I think we got it right this time how late are you we are late baby baby baby –STOP – I STARTED TODAY….blank expression…watery eyes…turn around, turn away, walk away, stay away for two more weeks of avoiding the topic and wondering how on Earth we’ll ever get pregnant…

Infertility kills. Infertility hurts. It will –and yes it will – beat you down. It will be the elephant on your shoulders, weighing down your every step. Making every movement slow, deliberate, burdened, unnatural. You lose the flow of life. Lose the simple joys of a mockingbird on your brick wall somehow mocking the sound of a red tailed hawk. Normally, that would be fascinating – absolutely fascinating. But you just shrug that off and put your hand on the car door, open the door, sit down, close the door, sit in your silence for a few seconds, then put the key in the ignition and spiral your way back down into your own private hell. Every. Single. Cursed. Day.

The mechanism of infertility. The steady, methodical demolition of the self. The brutal machine that quite quickly condemns one of life’s greatest joys into one of life’s greatest failures. That “BFN”. Big. Fat. Negative…Big. Flaying. Nife.

You may never feel this alone. You may never feel as alone as you will as you endure this arduous process. But it is a process. But you are not alone, unfortunately. There is no solace in that, however – because who gives a rat’s rip that other folks are in your unique position. It doesn’t help. There is no help when there is nothing to help you. Either you get pregnant, or you don’t. If you try to look much beyond that, well… then I wish you the best of luck, friend.

Luck. Faith. Work ethic. Talent. Humor. Perhaps we’re not as solid as we thought? Perhaps we aren’t the strongest person we know? Perhaps we will never, ever get pregnant? Perhaps. I mean, it’s been over 2 years (I quit counting the months when I realized it’d been two years) so why should it change now?

And then I came home from Dick’s Sporting Goods around 8:00 one night. Had to get a new team catcher’s mitt and new BBCore approved bat. I walked in from the garage. I took two steps into the kitchen. And then I saw her emerge from the hallway. Her hand outstretched. Her face a beautiful display of one thousand raw emotions at once. In her hand a white stick. But I already knew because I had already connected with her eyes – her beautiful, oceanic eyes. She was shaking, barely able to speak, barely able to stand, barely able to barley be able to. Her body, like a life-sized tuning fork, hummed and sung with limitless energy. The test said we were pregnant…

So did the next test. So did the third test. And the fourth. And the fifth. And the sixth. So did the bloodwork. So did the next round of bloodwork. So did the ultrasound. So did the world-changing sound of the “thwump-thwump-thwump-thwump-thwump” sound of a beating heart – the beating heart – of our baby. Yes, yes – it finally worked. It finally, finally, finally, finally, finally actually worked.

Look. You may be down in that deep, dark, dank emotionless cave that only you can reach. You may be as cold as a mountain stone. You may be one step away from either retreating for good, or taking your first step towards the mouth that leads out of this damned cave. I wish I could take your hand, look you in the eye, and tell you that it’s going to be perfect. I wish that would make a difference. At some point, you’ll either get pregnant or you won’t. At some point, you’ll either keep trying for one that is of your own blood, or you won’t. Just don’t ever quit trying to fight your way out of this. Fight your way through it. Fight your way to your own unique sense of peace with your path –whatever that path may be. It isn’t easy. It was never meant to be easy.

I wish for you that which you need most right now. - Rik

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Hello me....

I have been thinking a lot lately about how strange it is to be ME again.  Not the old me really, just a new me.  A better me.  A peaceful me.  I haven't been "Ok" in a long time.  2009 was the beginning of what ended up being three of the hardest years of my life.  TTC, Infertility, pregnancy loss, job loss, my grandfather dying, surgery, treatments, etc.  It just felt like the hits kept rolling in.

Infertility hung around.  Dragging me under.  I couldn't get my head back above water.  I was drowning more and more every day.  To be so down and have so many disappointments and just want a child of your own to love with every part of your soul, to ground you, center you, firmly and decisively establish you as someone meaningful in this world and then not be able to have it month after month with no real idea as to why....it just does something to you mentally.  It leaves you feeling like you've been stuck on a Tilt-A-Whirl.  Going around and around, dizzy, sick, scared.  I thought things and felt things that I would NEVER admit to anyone these past few years.  There were times I thought my marriage couldn't last through another week.  Thank GOD it did.  There were times I thought I would go insane from the hurt and confusion of it all.  Thank GOD I didn't (completely).  There were days I couldn't even speak to people because it felt like uttering one word would take every ounce of strength I had and I needed my strength just to get one foot in front of the other.  And I thought I was a strong person before.  You find out just how much you can handle (or not) when you're dealing with being infertile.  I hit the lowest point of my life last year before finally, slowly, I began to claw my way back.  Back to life, back to Rik, back to myself.  But I still wasn't ok.  I still wasn't ME.  I felt unsteady.  A bad case of vertigo.  No real sense of which was up.  I was trying....I just wasn't getting very far.  The sadness was always there.

Until March.  Out of the clear blue my life did a complete 180.  When I had finally stopped expecting it, I received the biggest gift of my entire life.  I went from wanting a glass of wine to peeing on a stick and then being completely face down in my bathroom floor crying and shaking and freezing and saying the only two things I could say: "Oh my gosh" and "Thank you.  Thank you.  Thank you."  I think I spent two hours saying ONLY those two phrases...  I was pregnant.  After years and months and weeks and days of never getting anywhere but further down, I was suddenly present.  VERY, very present.  Those first few days were such a blur.  Terrifyingly happy and just plain terrified.  Loss does a number on your faith.  It's true.  People say you've gotta have faith....it's hard when you have gone through a loss.  I was beyond scared.

I've heard people say their lives changed in an instant when something specific happened to them.   That night changed my life.  Just the knowing.  The beginning of something beautiful I thought I would never get to experience.  It took weeks to sink in.  It took months to finally feel that fear of loss start to slip slowly away.  It took even longer before I realized I am REALLY going to be a mother.  I will have a son.  In a few months, my house will be filled with tiny things.  Tiny clothes, tiny shoes, tiny toys, tiny diapers.   We will be exhausted and stressed and 100% in love with our baby.  We will go from a couple to a family.  Just reading that puts tears in my eyes.  My husband will finally get to hold our past and our future in his hands and let all that love in his heart pour all over our little boy.  Six months ago, I never would have believed we'd be here now.  This place is so.....content.  Six months and I am so me again.  The new me, but me all the same, only different.  I no longer feel like I'm hanging on to my sanity by a thread.  I'm no longer feel like every breath I take is through a tiny straw.  I'm functional.  I'm happy.  I found my smile.  I am at peace again.  I finally see my husband again.  Not the soldier beside me fighting his way through, but my soul mate.  It's so unbelievable to feel this way after so long in the dark.  And it all started to change that night in March.  I haven't spent one day since then living in sorrow or pain or anger.  I didn't even realize it until recently.  The rubberbands around my chest are gone.  The weights on my shoulders have been lifted.  The blinders I was wearing have been removed.  It's like I hopped on a speeding train back to LIFE and never looked back.  I hadn't expected that, I guess.  Not so quickly or so completely.  Our lives are changed.

There are so many people out there still dealing, dragging themselves through every day, trying to breathe in and out, hurting, aching and longing for all these same things.  It seems wrong sometimes that I stand on the other side of infertility now when so many people I know are still in the throes of battle, chest deep in the hurt.  I don't understand why the timing of things has happened this way, but I know that anyone I've met, talked to or followed out here who has gone through the valley of infertility and come out on the other side with their dream, regardless of if it's a child of their heart or a child of their body, they all say the same....The timing was perfect.  The child that was meant for them is theirs and they wouldn't trade a single moment of what they went through to get there.  That's so easy to say from "the other side" but I keep telling myself it is true and God's timing is perfect....if not painful at times.

I don't know what's got me thinking about all of this other than I had this amazing feeling of being present and completely content today.  It's been so long since I felt truly at peace that it was almost a surprise to realize that's what I was feeling.  I am so incredibly grateful.  I'm amazed at God's trust in us and amazed that He has given me the opportunity to build my life around my husband and our little boy.  I know I'll make mistakes and I know there will be days when I do hurt and suffer and struggle again...but for now, I am relishing in this light and soaking up every possible ray of peace and happiness that I can.  I've waited a long time for this.




Thursday, June 21, 2012

19 Weeks & Stuff!


Well, we went to the doc on Tuesday and unfortunately, Rik couldn't make it to this appointment.  It was the anatomy ultrasound so I decided to take my Mom with me.  She was so incredibly excited!  We saw the doctor first and did the ultrasound second.  Dr. N said I looked great, there wasn't any concern about the weight gain (or lack thereof) and then we got down to talking about some of the labor and delivery questions I had.  

She said we'd pow-wow about this a lot and in greater detail in the coming months but she still answered a lot of my questions and made me feel completely normal about it all.  

Epidurals: We talked about epidurals and she said she would put in my chart that this was not to be offered, but given upon request only.  
Episiotomy: I know what this is and enough about it, but I asked about episiotomies b/c honestly, my husband showed me a picture of one from one of his books and now I can't stop thinking about it.  I just wanted to her to explain when/why they are used.  Yikes!  She said she only does them when absolutely necessary and explained those necessary situations.  She explained it's a lot easier to suture up a straight cut than a very jagged tear. *shudder*  
Silver Nitrate/Antibiotic ointment for baby's eyes: She said it's the law so she has to do it regardless of if I test negative or positive for the strep B virus.  I may read up a bit more on this.
Skin to skin contact immediately after birth: She's 100% for it and supports that as long as there isn't an emergency w/ the baby (obviously).  She explained she had her daughter on her immediately, but her son was not breathing and they had to whisk him away to be worked on.  
Delayed cord clamping:  She said she used to always do it b/c studies showed it was better for the baby.  Now, she is a little more hesitant due to back flow of the blood while the placenta is still inside the mother.  There are reports of infant deaths from this as well as other complications.  She feels it's benefits and risks have to be weighed by the doctor and mother basically.  She said she is comfortable with a shorter delay in clamping but not a full delay till it stops pulsing.

We are going to take a birthing class at the hospital and I am going to take a breast-feeding course as well.  I'm trying to talk Rik into Daddy Boot Camp, but so far, he seems hesitant.  It's mostly a class on how to change a diaper, how to swaddle, how to feed, etc.  He probably does know most of this already from all our nieces and nephews, but I thought he might make some friends or just enjoy the experience.  I forget how different boys and girls are sometimes.  :)  

I have hit a stumbling block with the nursery.  We have picked out a crib and dresser from a dark brown furniture collection.  ALL the bedding I like for boys is shown in a WHITE crib.  I'm picky, I'm not going to fib to ya.  I don't want animals or trains or tractors or tools or any other type of theme really.  I want something with a design but not something w/ bright colors.  I don't want it to be too dark b/c I want the room to feel light, especially now that the furniture is darkish.  The problem is, everything I like really only looks good w/ a white crib and ours is dark brown.  I'm having a rough time matching something to our crib without actually seeing it in it.  It's a mess!  I found a really cute heirloom voile quilt that I ordered a swatch on from Restoration Hardware.  We'll see what it looks/feels like when it gets here.  I may just go the plain route and just mix n match the other pieces of the bedding to jazz it up a bit.  

We found a few gliders we love, but of course we both like different ones.  Go figure.  We are going to convert our front room/library into a play room or nursery for the first floor so maybe we'll put his in there and mine in the baby's actual room? haha.   I'm just excited to finally have this opportunity.  So far, it's been really fun shopping for his little room.

I will leave you now with some adorable pictures of my little scrip scrap!  Hope you think he's as sweet as I do!

Cutest profile in the business!!!


Doing his "Thriller" dance moves!!
(I told Rik he'd be a dancer!)


I don't know if he's yawning, smiling, or yelling at us to quit smooshing him....


Waving hello to his Daddy!


Sunday, June 17, 2012

Sweetest Crib in the 'Hood.


We seriously have the sweetest crib in the neighborhood...and I don't mean our house.  We literally bought our baby boy the sweetest crib in town yesterday.  We love it!  I can't wait to officially get started on his nursery.  I'm almost finished cleaning that room out and thankfully, during my napping phase a few weeks ago, Rik got a head start and took down the bed and moved the heavy stuff out!  I love having a husband with initiative!  

I am planning on working up there all day today so I can't write for long.  I'm going to attempt to post a picture of the crib below, we'll see if blogger will let it stand.  If not, click on this link and you can view it that way.  We bought it in dark walnut.  I love it!

More on the nursery building soon!  




bon_shef_wal.jpg
My sweet boy's new crib.

To all you Father's out there, both NEW and OLD, HAPPY FATHER'S DAY!!!!  I can't wait for our own little one to be here for next year's Father's Day.  :)  Rik is going to be the best.Dad.ever.  

Oh!  If you have any boy names you'd like to throw our way, I'm taking suggestions.  We have a dry erase mirror (our bathroom mirror) with a list of about three or four names we love but aren't sold on just yet.  Let's see what you guys can come up with!

XOXO,
Shannon