Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Hank's Birth Day

Our little boy has finally arrived! We were so excited to meet our bundle of joy on November 26th, he came into the world at 4:47am, weighing 9lbs, 0ozs and was 21.5 inches long. Here is a breakdown of our last week with Hank...
My last week of pregnancy was filled with a lot of anxiety and a bit of frustration, and of course I was starting to feel pretty miserable and uncomfortable (understandable since I was carrying a 9lb baby in my belly!). My entire pregnancy we had planned to induce early (as long as my body was ready) so that we would have a smaller baby in order to avoid the tearing and surgery I had after Lucy's birth. At my 39 week appointment I was 3cm and 50% effaced, but the doctor said my cervix was not low enough so he wanted to wait on the induction. That meant, because of Thanksgiving week, the only day to induce would be Tuesday (two days before my due date). Unfortunately because of Thanksgiving, the timing was not ideal for our families (to help with Lucy) so I opted (out of stress and anxiety) to not do the induction on Tuesday - I just didn't feel comfortable with our plans for Lucy. And so, again unfortunately because of Thanksgiving, my only other option to induce was the Tuesday after Thanksgiving (5 days after my due date) - not early at all (as I had planned)!

This left me feeling worried about having a baby that would be too big, let down that we wouldn't have the baby when I had thought we would, stressed about the baby's movements and his health (suddenly I felt like he was still all day long) and anxious about what our plan would be for Lucy and Ruthie once the baby came (every day was a different plan depending on grandparents work schedule and what family was in town taking up bedrooms because of the holidays). So on top of feeling absolutely miserable physically, emotionally I was starting to lose it too.

Needless to say, every day felt like an eternity as we waited. As if all of the above wasn't bad enough, my body started contracting almost a week before Hank came. Every day my braxton hicks contractions would get stronger and stronger (to the point of waking me out of sleep), and closer together - but just when we thought it was time to pack our bags, they would go away. Even Thanksgiving morning, we were timing contractions 5 minutes apart for a 30 minute period, and then they just suddenly stopped. Talk about frustrating! With Lucy I felt nothing before the actual labor, so I was really confused about what my body was doing this time around.

Finally on Friday night (November 25th), Ben and I were getting settled in, watching a movie, after having spent the night cleaning up Lucy and our home because Lucy had thrown up 3 times that evening, my contractions picked up! Of course, the night Lucy is puking all night is the night Hank would decide to enter this world! The contractions came on pretty fast and strong and because I'd been contracting all week we had a feeling we would need to get to the hospital fast. Ben's dad came to stay with Lucy and fortunately she had stopped puking for the night.

When we got to the hospital I was 6 cm and my water had broken. I wasn't really sure if my water had broken, but I had a feeling it was, and sure enough when they checked it was broken. I think they said I must have had a small tear that led to a slow trickle which is why I wasn't totally sure if it had broken. We did paperwork for what seemed like hours and I made sure the nurse knew that I wanted an epidural as soon as they could get it to me - I was starting to get extremely uncomfortable!

Once the epidural came, things were much better - I was still at 6cm and thought I'd have some time to rest before pushing. I think I slept for about 15 or 30 minutes, but the nurse kept coming in to check on Hank because his heartbeat was dropping when I was contracting. After making me change positions a lot she decided to check me again and announced "you're complete, I'll go call the doctor" (which is why Hank's heart rate was dropping)... I was shocked! I think I'd had the epidural for 30 minutes and it was already time to push!

The next part happened so fast, it was surreal... we did a practice push and the nurses said I was pushing great (even though I couldn't feel anything because I'd just gotten the epidural). The doctor came in, I pushed during one contraction, then during my next contraction she had me start to push, then stop, pulled the baby out and put him on my chest! What?!?! I was not expecting Hank to come after 4 pushes when Lucy had taken 2 hours of pushing.

What an awesome experience- they laid Hank on my chest and Ben cut the umbilical cord (neither of which we got to do with Lucy because NICU had to check her right away since she had taken her first poop in my uterus). Of course I fell in love with Hank right away and any fears I had about loving him as much as I love Lucy were gone as soon as I held him in my arms. Nothing can compare to the feeling of holding your own baby for the first time after thinking about him and praying for him for over 9 months.

The doctor stitched me up, and left - I think she was at the hospital a total of 30 minutes! All in all I think I was in labor about 5 hours (including an hour of labor at home)- we were admitted to the hospital at 12:30am and Hank arrived at 4:47am. Talk about a fast entrance into the world!

Because Hank came down the birth canal so fast he did have some bruising on his face - I felt so bad for him, his little body was pink but his face was black and blue from slamming into my pelvic bone as he shot down the birth canal. Fortunately the bruising began to clear right away and was almost not even noticeable within the next couple days. And the nurses said it didn't bother him at all. Other than the bruising, Hank was a perfectly healthy baby boy. I was so relieved, thankful, and in awe all at once!

Waiting for the doctor (you can tell my nurse was kind of spunky!)

Holding Hank for the first time...

Getting cleaned up...

Much happier with mom! (you can see some of the bruising here)

Proud dad!

Warming up before his bath... you can see the bruising here as well...

The next day, meeting his big sister for the first time! She couldn't come on Saturday because she had thrown up again at her grandma and grandpa's house... I was really sad, but knew that it would be better for her to stay home and get better.

Handsome boy! Bruising almost all cleared up!

A shot of Lucy for comparison... twins I think! Looks like we'll have another Ben clone :)

Snuggle time with mom...

All dressed ready to go home!

And another shot of Lucy to compare...

Looks like they both loved their pacis!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Lucy 18, 19, 20 months

Well we are still waiting on Hank to make his arrival, so I figured I'd do one last update on Lucy before our lives get turned upside down. I haven't done a general/monthly update on her in a couple months, so I wanted to make sure to write down what things are like as Lucy moves closer to her 2nd birthday.

Things have been great! I think these have been some of my favorite months, of course I think I keep writing that... maybe I just keep falling more in love with this little girl! She sleeps so well, and continues to love her big girl bed. She usually sleeps 11-12 hours at night and takes a 2-3 hour nap in the afternoon, but will always play in her bed if she is not quit tired yet or wakes up a little before I am ready to get her. It's amazing, she has no desire to get out of bed till I come get her.

Lucy's temperament has been pretty great too - she continues to be a very happy baby, and as her vocabulary has grown I have been able to interpret her needs better. She still has melt downs, and I am currently still just walking away and ignoring her as a punishment, but overall she seems to be a really happy kid. We haven't started time outs, I'm not sure when we will, but overall she seems to do pretty well at listening and when mommy says "no" she knows I mean it.

She loves, loves, loves babies right now. Baby doll usually accompanies us wherever we go, and usually does whatever we do - takes baths, eats dinner, gets her diaper changed, etc. I love watching her be a mommy to her baby, but sometimes it gets a little crazy when I am doing something and Lucy needs help with the baby (i.e. she needs me to wrap the baby in the blanket so she will say "wrap it", and continues to repeat that getting louder and louder until I come, "WRAP IT", "WRAP IT"... we are working on not whining and asking politely for things right now!

Which reminds me, she is talking up a storm and I have found myself sometimes missing the quiet during the day! She likes to say things and then repeat them until I repeat what she is saying... I need to record this someday... it's cute, but makes for a long day sometimes! And she picks up EVERYTHING we say... I find myself not wanting to say words like "dangit" or "shoot" because then Lucy walks around saying "shoot, shoot, shoot"... but it's also pretty fun because she'll sit at dinner and say the most adorable things like "hey girl"... and one of her favorites, "no way".

She loves singing and music, I downloaded a couple kid songs on my phone and we usually listen to them when we are driving and at least one time at home (if not several times more). She knows the names of all her songs and is even picking up on some of the words. She has specific requests and again, repeats these requests until I comply. A car ride usually goes like this... "elmo song, elmo song, elmo song"... elmo song playing... "spider song, spider song, spider song".... itsy bitsy spider playing... etc.

She continues to love reading and would probably sit in my lap all day and read if I would let us. She loves being outside and taking walks to the park, although we haven't been able to do this as much since the weather is getting colder. She seems to be very sociable, but she still mostly plays by herself when we are with other kids or when she is at the church nursery. Although she seems to love it there - we go twice a week (once for Bible study and once for church) and she always goes right up to the door and walks in without even looking back to say bye to me!

I'm sure there is so much more to say, but these are the things that stick out to me. I'm trying to soak up as much time with my baby girl these last days she is an only child. I'm so excited for the joy Hank will bring to our lives, but I do find myself wondering if I'll be able to snuggle and cuddle and give as much love to Lucy once he comes. I know it's worked for millions of families before ours, so I'm sure we will adjust and not even remember what life was like before Hank in a couple months, but for now I am cherishing the one on one time I get with Lucy as much as I can.

I wanted to get some updated pictures of Lucy in this post, but I realized I hadn't taken any since I last posted - so I made sure to go out and grab a couple before publishing this... for that reason, these are a bit random, but still showcase our adorable, goofy little girl!

The weather has been pretty crappy lately, so we went to the mall twice this past week to play at the indoor play park and get some pretzels...


I'm so thankful for indoor kid areas!!

We did still venture out this week, but just bundled up to make sure we stayed warm...

I love this little girl in a hat :)

Instead of playing at the playground, Lucy decided to walk around the softball fields - which were super muddy so Ruthie and Lucy had to get washed and changed once we got home!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Happy Halloween!

We started our day with a fun Halloween bow from "aunt" beth...

And here I am trying to distract her with one camera while I take her picture with another camera...

Later in the day Lucy dressed up as a scary pink skeleton! And I attempted to capture a few shots of Lucy next to her age pumpkin...

And here she is last year - wow, she has grown so much! (we did .5 because Lucy was a half year old, but looking back I wish I would have just done 0, oh well!)

I had trouble getting her to sit still and smile at the same time so here area a couple other shots...

And at this point we were chasing pumpkins down the driveway, so I gave up taking any more pictures!

I wasn't planning on taking Lucy trick or treating, but we wanted to stop by and see the grandparents, who wanted to show her off to the neighbors so we actually ended up going to a couple houses. Lucy got the hang of it right away!

It was pretty adorable, she would go up to houses and take a piece of candy and then reach in to get a second piece of candy. We would tell her no, that we just take one piece, but most people thought she was so adorable they let her take as much as she wanted!

And soon enough she was eating the candy straight out of the bag...

Fortunately she got some practice in grandma and grandpa's neighborhood, because then we headed to mimi's house to trick or treat with the big kids...

A quick picture with mom (and hank's in there somewhere too!)...

One last picture... still going strong at the end of the night!