Thursday, December 8, 2016

Sadie June's Birth Video & Story

I can't believe the time has come to write the birth story for our second daughter, Miss Sadie June.  

At times, it feels like just yesterday we were bringing our tiny Lara home from the hospital.  Now here we are, wrangling a rowdy two year old while whipping up bottles for our new little one.  We've been home since last Friday evening, and I still pinch myself when I look across the room to see Lara eating popcorn on Daddy's lap, watching The Good Dinosaur, and I look down to see our little Sadie nuzzled on my chest.  

We are oh so blessed, and I'm not taking one second for granted.

Below I will share all the details for how Sadie came into our lives, but I've also put together a video that depicts the emotion we felt in those moments, much better than any amount of words can convey.

  This video is near and dear to our hearts, and to be honest, we debated not sharing it...but after much discussion, birth is a beautiful experience and one we are very proud of.  As some may remember, I had to have a C Section with my first pregnancy because Lara was breech.

I was absolutely devastated when I was told I could not deliver vaginally.  For me, it was a dream of mine, a goal...to bring my babies into this world the way my body was supposed to. That being said, statistics show that cesarean rates are increasing dramatically.  I hope by sharing this personal piece of my life, that I can empower someone who may be on the fence about attempting a VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean).

I chose the Hillsong's 'Oceans' for the background music to the video, because the words could not speak more true to my delivery experience.

"You call me out upon the waters
The great unknown where feet may fail
And there I find You in the mystery
In oceans deep
My faith will stand"

I was terrified multiple times, that I wouldn't be able to have a successful vaginal delivery and my dream would be taken from me.  But the Lord was ever present, every hour of that day, in the great unknown....giving me the strength to push thru.

Literally.

So without further adieu..
.


In my last post, I shared that we had decided to move forward with getting induced on Wednesday, November 30th.  To say my last few weeks of pregnancy were challenging would be an understatement.  I was absolutely miserable.  

So on my due date, we loaded up the car, dropped Belle off at the Vet to be boarded, dropped Lara off at my parents house and headed to the Plaza for a nice, big meal before checking into the hospital.  I wanted to walk around and enjoy the Plaza lights, but with how uncomfortable I had gotten, we ended up just heading straight to dinner.  I had purchased Jon a gorgeous Seiko watch and surprised him with it at dinner.  I mean, he'd need something snazzy to time my contractions, right? ;)


We were supposed to be to the hospital for check in at 8:00 pm, but we ended up wrapping dinner up early so we stopped by a CVS to pick up some last minute necessities.  And when I say necessities, I mean gummy bears & oreo's for Lara and a new eyebrow pencil for me.  
#Priorities

We headed to the hospital and arrived around 7:00 pm.  We made a quick FaceTime call to Lara and checked into our room about a half hour later.  


To finally be sitting in that birthing suite was just surreal....

Because I had a CSection with my first pregnancy, there are very limited options available when getting induced.  The route my doctor and I had chosen was a mechanical induction using a balloon catheter.  The catheter is inserted into the cervix and injected with saline.  The goal is for the inflation of the balloon to cause the cervix to dilate to 3-4 centimeters to which it will then fall out on it's own.  



When I told my nurse about this plan, prior to my doctor arriving, she freaked out and told me that the procedure is extremely painful and she highly recommended getting my epidural placed PRIOR to having the balloon inserted.  She told me she'd had another patient attempt to have one placed and was thrashing around to the degree that they could not place it successfully.

This of course, totally psyched me out and threw a total wrench in how I expected the process to go. I did not want an epidural until I absolutely needed one. I wanted to try and labor as long as possible before having it placed.  To hear that the balloon catheter was this painful scared the hell out of me.  While we waited for the doctor to arrive, the nurse attempted to place my IV and ended up bending the needle inside my vein.  She had to pull it out and insert into my other hand.

If this first hour was any indication for how the next 24 hours were going to go, things were not looking up.

When my doctor arrived, we spoke at length about different options and decided to move forward with placing the balloon after I received a mild dose of Fentanyl thru my IV.  I trust my doctor more than any other medical professional and knew she would never steer me down a path I couldn't handle.  Within about 10 minutes, the catheter was placed and we were officially on our way to meeting our baby girl!  It was approximately 10:00 pm.

The balloon stays in for 12 hours max, unless it does it's job quicker than that.  Around 2:00 am, the resident came in to check my cervix and the balloon fell out!  I was already 3 cm dilated and we were ecstatic!  I was hopeful that things would move quickly from here, but boy was I wrong...

The pitocin was started quickly after the balloon came out and all hell broke loose from there.  The contractions began and became painful much quicker than I expected.  I became unreasonably mad at ridiculous things, including Jon.  Poor Jon...  

At one point he chuckled about something he saw on his phone with regard to Elf on the Shelf and I became borderline hysterical.  

I mean, how could he be laughing right now?!?!  


Needless to say, there weren't many laughs for the next several hours.  

Around 3:00 am, I had him call my mom and have her head to the hospital.  In that moment, all I wanted was my Mom there with us.  She arrived shortly thereafter and I continued to labor thru the night.  My contractions were every 2-3 minutes and more painful than anything I have ever felt.  I always wondered what they felt like, well now I know.  

Like 1000 knives, knifing you over and over again, repeatedly in your uterus. 

I spent the next several hours camped out on the birthing ball with Jon and my Mom by my side, rubbing my back. 

Around 4:00 am they checked me and I was still at a 3.  I could've literally punched the doctor in the face.  She's lucky I couldn't reach her while laying down.

After she left, the nurse continued to increase my pitocin and at one point I told her I was going to take a bat and bash the pitocin machine to pieces.  Every time she came into my room, I'm convinced she was increasing it just for fun, which is completely irrational, I know.



Around 6:00 am I was checked again and still at a 3.  I wanted to just die in that moment.  I could feel my chances of delivering vaginally slipping thru my fingers.  Shortly thereafter, the nurse continued to encourage me to order my epidural. I continued to refuse until she told me that a few other women were getting ready to call anesthesia.  She didn't want me to end up third or fourth on the list and have to wait another several hours.  Again, that scared the hell out of me, so I went ahead and requested anesthesia immediately.  

At 6:35, my epidural was placed and rainbows and butterflies were now flying around my room. 


By 9:00 am, I was still only 3 cm dilated.  My doctor suggested we move forward with breaking my water to which I gladly agreed! Anything to make progress!  Throughout my pregnancy, I was told repeatedly that I had a lot of fluid around the baby, which wasn't necessarily a bad thing.  However, because of all the fluid, Sadie would continually float up versus lodging down into the birth canal. 

When my doctor broke my water, Sadie became agitated and her heart rate dropped.  Several nurses flooded the room and I had to put on an oxygen mask.  As we sat there waiting to see if her heart rate would pick back up, I was terrified I was on the cusp of being swept out of the room for an emergency cesarean.  About 30 minutes later, she had perked back up and her heart rate rose above 100.  We were back on track!

A few hours later, at 11:45 am, I had progressed to 7 cm dilated!!  We had officially turned and corner and I felt more confident than ever that I'd be having her vaginally after all, something I had dreamed of for so long!  I was so excited but absolutely terrified at the same time.  I kept asking Jon if he really thought I could do this, to which he always responded with the resounding vote of confidence I so desperately needed in those moments. 

At 1:47 pm I was still at a 7, however the baby had finally dropped another centimeter down into the birth canal.  Contractions began picking up quickly in the minutes to follow.

I began having intense pain shooting down my right leg. I was convinced the anesthesia was only working on my left side. They came in to check the placement and it had moved a bit, but they didn't feel it needed to be replaced.  We decided to move forward with a bolus injection of additional pain medication.  This didn't relieve the pain at all, so he gave me another bolus shortly thereafter.  I could still feel the contractions, but not nearly as intense.  


At 2:30, I asked my (NEW) nurse how long she predicted it would be before the baby would make her entrance.  She had been a nurse in labor and delivery for 40 years, so I figured she'd better be one damn good guesser.  She cautiously answered that she thought I'd have the baby by the end of her shift, which was another 5 hours out.  She may have thought she as comforting me with that statement, however the thought  of laboring another 5 hours made me want to throw myself out the window.  

Around 3:15, as the pain medication made it's round thru my body, I decided to turn on some Adele and sing a little bit.  

Let's be honest, I was snowed.  

I was so relaxed, it felt as if I was having an out of body experience.  I remember singing along...."Hello, it's me.  I was wondering if after all these years you'd like to meet."  I felt as if I had been in labor for years, so the song was actually quite appropriate for that moment.  

Little did I know, I'd be pushing out our baby girl in the next 20 minutes!!

At 3:22, my doc came in to check me for what would be the very last time!  I was at 10 cm and she asked if I wanted to practice push.

Wait, what? 
Now?
Are you sure?


A few practice pushes later, the nurses & nursery staff swarmed the room, my legs were up in stirrups and 3 pushes later, our Sadie June made her grand entrance into this world!!!!!

They immediately put her on my chest, and her little body was so perfect....so warm....so soft.  She was beautiful, just like her big sister!  Her cry was the most beautiful sound I have ever heard....




I was in total shock.  I had dreamed of this moment for so long, and it was finally here.  I had just pushed a human out of my vagina, and it was the most empowering experience I will ever have.  My Mom and Jon were clicking away on their cameras, capturing those moments we will cherish forever!






After delivery, they allow Mom's to keep their new babies on skin to skin for an entire hour.  I had quite the reaction coming down from my epidural and was shaking almost uncontrollably.  Thankfully we had brought a heavy blanket from home.  I snuggled little Sadie tight to my chest while Jon fed me my first bites of food in what felt like 100 days.  

That chocolate pudding might as well have been a bacon wrapped filet the way I scarfed it down.


Around 6:30, I was helped out of bed for the first time.  My body wasn't quite ready and I almost blacked out, but with the nurse & Jon's help, I made it back to my bed in time.  I rested for another couple hours and we were then transferred to our mother baby suite. By this point, I was able to get up and around and freshen up.  We got our bags unpacked and settled in for the night.  Sadie's temperature dropped quite a bit during the transfer, so they had me do skin to skin for 30 minutes to see if we could get her body temperature back up versus having to place her in a warmer. 

Of course the skin to skin worked wonders, and she was just fine.  
A little mommy medicine is all she needed!

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Now, let's talk about her name.  
We had all but narrowed it down to two names, Sadie being one of them. An hour or so after she was born, Jon was holding her and I asked him if he was leaning toward one or the other.  He immediately said Sadie, however at the time, I was leaning toward the other.  We even wrote out the other name a few times and had decided on the spelling and everything.  The next morning, I woke up with a strong feeling that she was, in fact a Sadie June.  

I requested that my nurse send in the birth certificate person ASAP.  I did not want the option to change my mind one more time.  She came in a little while later and we signed everything, making her officially our Sadie June, and we haven't looked back since. 

June is the middle name of both of our grandmothers, so that was the easy part.  Committing to a first name was tough, but Sadie just felt right.  

The way we love her is immense & deep.  It feels as if she has always been in our lives....which is an incredible feeling. Lara is adjusting much better than we both expected, which has been a huge relief.  
I'm going to wrap up for now because I have some baby snuggling to do!



Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Dear Lara.

Today was one of the last mornings you'll wake up as our only daughter.  We have loved you fiercely the past 27 months, and now, we're going to share our love with another little girl, your baby sister.



I know it feels like we've been talking about this baby sister of yours for quite some time now.  You probably stopped believing that she actually exists, and believe me, I've spent my fare share of time wondering if she'd ever join our family as well.

Well sweetheart, the time has come.  



Last night, when your daddy and I put you to bed, you began to cry when we talked about going to the hospital to have your sister.  Whatever part of you understands what's getting ready to happen to your world. seemed scared.  


You curled your bottom lip out and began to shake your head, saying "no no no."  
It broke our hearts, because little do you know, our love for you will never change.  


In fact, our love for you will grow deeper as we watch you fall in love with this baby sister of yours. 

You adore your baby dolls these days; carrying them around, patting their backs while you ssshhh and comfort them because they're "sad."  You are quite the nurturer, little one.  

You sneak into your closet and pull out 5-6 blankies at at time to wrap your little dolly up in, you know, in case she's cold.  When you're not looking, I fold them all back up and sneak them back into your closet for you to pull back out the next day.


A few weeks ago, you and I were in sis' room together.  I was hanging some last minute frames on the wall, and I set the hammer down next to me.  A few short seconds later, I heard a few loud bangs, turned around and there you were, bashing the hammer into your sisters dresser.

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At first, I was horrified.  But then I laughed, thinking of the day we'll tell your baby sis what you did to her brand new dresser, before she was even born.  While it may be the first time you ruin something of your sisters, I'm sure you'll both have your fair share of these moments in the years to come!

While at first it may seem hard, having to share your world with another little girl, I promise she'll be much more fun to play with in the coming years than your Mom & Dad.  As this sweet soul has been growing in my womb, I've often envisioned you two playing together, taking baths together...


Giggling late at night as you sneak into one another's room...


But most of all, I've spent the last 9 months thinking about how you'll always look out for one another.  

You'll be the first one there when a boy breaks your little sisters heart; staying up all night to console her.  You'll teach her that a man is not the key to her happiness and self worth.  God is.

You'll be there to hold her hair back after a few too many shots on her 21st birthday.

And you'll be the one to lift the veil over her face as she prepares to walk down the aisle to her new best friend.


No matter the season of life, you now have a built in best friend who will always be there for you, your very own wing woman.  


And that, my daughter, is the best gift we could ever give you.

 XOXO,
Mom & Dad

Monday, November 28, 2016

Baby Watch, Version 2.0



I pondered what word to use when describing this past year, but honestly, there's really no better word to depict 2016 for me.  And you know what, that's entirely ok.  We all experience some toughies and eventually come out stronger because of them, so I'll take it.  2016 was just my toughie. 

As most close to me know, this pregnancy has kicked my ass.  
But let's just get real, what pregnancy doesn't take it out of a woman?

Your organs are squished into tiny little balls; your skin is stretched to the point that your stomach feels as if it's going to bust open at anytime; your rectum will never function the same again (and we'll just leave that right there); and if you're like me, you literally feel like a dragon who could breath fire at anytime from the extreme heartburn.

But pregnancy is so beautiful.
Uh huh. 
Beautiful, that's sounds about right.
Let's get real.

This past week, things came to a head when we ended up in the emergency room the night before Thanksgiving...


I became violently ill, and I'll spare you the details.  My body became totally dehydrated and I ended up needing 3 bags of IV fluids, a few different medications followed by several hours of fetal monitoring.  But hey, on the bright side, we got a test run as to how triage will look at the new hospital we're delivering at.  

The whole family thought we'd be delivering that night, and I was secretly praying I would NOT. With how sick I had been, I had no business attempting to push a baby out that night and was praying I wouldn't have to.  Over the next few days I felt better than I have in several months!  Of course everything you read online tells you this is totally a sign of imminent labor.  Put your hand up if you googled "signs you're in labor" about 8 million times over the course of that 9th month?
Hand raised.

We all thought for sure she was coming on Thanksgiving or perhaps, Friday.

Nope, nothing.
Nothing but super strong, nearly unbearable contractions that subsided every time I laid down.  

For me, it felt as if I was walking up to a concession stand, time and time again, smelling the warm nachos & scent of fresh beer, only for the concession stand to SHUT DOWN right as I stepped up to the register.  I never got to eat a single chip.  Not to mention tasting the fresh, crisp Stella I've dreamed about for 40 weeks.



To wrap up the past week, I've now developed some sort of bronchial infection.  
That's been really fun, too. 

Especially the frequent, deep cough. You know, because I have super awesome bladder control these days.

Listen, Depends are not above me.


Needless to say, after much conversation, Jon and I decided to move forward with giving this baby girl an official eviction notice which will begin Wednesday evening at 8:00 pm!!!!!

I.
Am.
Pumped.

And so is my bladder. 
And rectum.


I so appreciate all of the calls and texts checking in on us, so I  wanted to be sure to provide a quick update to everyone interested.  I still can't believe we're going to be holding our little (still nameless) baby girl in just a few, short days!!

Looks like we'll be having us a December baby after all.
Bring on the holiday birthday party Pinterest board!



XOXO,
Anne

Thursday, November 10, 2016

9 Months.

Honestly, I can't believe we're here.  Hopefully my last and final BUMPDATE!!  While this pregnancy has been much harder on me, I can honestly say it's FLOWN by!  I am beyond ready to meet this little soul. 

If I'm being completely honest, I feel like I need to see her face to truly fall in love with her.  Our hearts are so full of love for our little girl that's right here in front of us, that it feels crazy to think we're capable of loving another little one as much as we love her.  I read lots of blogs and articles these days on becoming a parent for the second time, because I'm so curious how I can love another the way I love Lara.  I pray often that I love her as much....which in turn leaves me feeling guilty.  

Mommies out there--can you relate?  
Any words of wisdom??



How Far Along: 37 weeks today!



Due Date:  Still.......November 30th!

Weight Gain: 8 lbs

Maternity Clothes: Oh yes.  I've officially crossed the threshold of wearing strictly maternity.  I'm totally digging Wendy Bellissimo line from Motherhood.  I picked up this adorable shirt a few weeks ago and i've been LIVING in it!  The maternal is TO DIE for.  

 I throw fun cardigans over it and plan to pair it with a black plaid button down and vest in the coming weeks, because fall has officially made it's appearance here in KC!  





Stretch marks: Yes, and more are appearing by the day.  

Symptoms: Still lots of pain in my lower back and still lots of trips to the potty.  I'm getting my prenatal massage on Saturday (Thanks, babe!!) and can't WAIT!

Cravings: Hmmm....that's a tough one.  Heartburn is limiting me quite a bit these days.  I had a spicy italian dish last Friday evening and my body HATED me all day Saturday.  Thai, my favorite, is just totally out of the question.  I would say....baked potatoes.  I could eat a baked potato just about daily at this point.  Wendy's has some great options, so I've frequented their drive thru as of late.

Gender: Still a Little Lady!!

Mood:  Excitement.  Each cramp, I start to wonder if it's time....
While we still need to load the car seat and I have lots of wittle clothes to wash, overall, I feel like we are ready to rock and roll.  The part I'm most nervous about is having the strength to push thru a VBAC.  We have a birthing class next Saturday and I'm contemplating not going.  I don't want to psych myself out and I fear that knowing all the details of what's to come, may do just that.  I'd rather just let nature take it's course and tackle each phase of labor as it comes.  
Pray for me because I'm a bit terrified!!

Nursery: BEAUTIFUL.  It's by far my new favorite room in our home.  
A few more finishing touches and photos to come.  But let's get real, that will likely be after she makes her debut.

Movement: Yes, and PAINFUL.  I have a sneaking suspicion this little lady will be a bit bigger than our little peanut, Lara.  If you don't remember, Lara was a whopping 6 lbs and a mere 16 inches long.  I'm predicting this one to be over 8lbs.  And she packs the punch to prove it!

Sleep: Besides feeling like I'm shifting the Titanic when switching positions, good!

Workouts:  Please.

Names: Still........#nameless.
And yes, we realize we cannot leave the hospital without a name.  
If I had a dollar for how many times I've heard that, I'd be able to pay for the delivery. 



To wrap up, let's take a look back at how this little life has grown!

3 months - 4 months - 5 months

6 months - 7 months - 9 months

Monday, November 7, 2016

Oh, October!

Well, that month flew by.  I was looking at my Blogger dashboard and the last update I shared was October 6th, right before we headed off on our Babymoon.  I'm sure most of you follow along via Instagram & Facebook, but I'll share a few pics nonetheless.  

Eureka Springs was a total surprise!  We knew we'd enjoy exploring the little town, but we totally underestimated how beautiful and serene the setting would be!  


We spent the first day shopping downtown, grabbed lunch at this neat restaurant up on a balcony overlooking all the action, took a tram tour of the city up to the historic crescent hotel and wrapped up the evening with a nice, Italian dinner on the strip.  And yes, I most definitely indulged in my first glass of wine in 8 months.  And you better believe I savored EVERY. SIP.




Day two started off with one of the best pumpkin spice lattes I've ever had, a trip to their local cave called the Onyx Cave Park (which was SUPER cool!), followed by lunch in an old fashioned passenger car on the Eureka Springs & North Arkansas Railway.  I am so glad we booked this part of our trip because it was truly a one of a kind experience.  The train-car ventured thru the woods and thru a low part of the Ozark Mountains, all while enjoying a romantic lunch.  You could spend a few hours at the train station alone, just exploring.  They had lots of old trains on the grounds from different eras, that you could walk right up to and look at.  It was a really neat experience and would HIGHLY recommend to anyone taking a weekend trip to Eureka.  






We spent the afternoon driving around the Ozark mountains...


...and wrapped up the evening with one of the best dinners we've EVER HAD.  We ate inside a local cave that had been renovated into a restaurant, called Grotto.  The food was impeccable and of course my date was pretty amazing as well. 



Following the trip, October was a whirlwind of potty training adventures, baby sprinkles, Halloween parties, maternity photos & house preparation for our baby shower that was thrown by my girlfriends, at our home this past weekend.  

Work Baby Girl Sprinkle--Thanks Kirsten for putting this together!!

Trunk or Treat at Lara's School.

To bad my daughter hated it.

She had MUCH more fun at Grandma's Halloween party!







We always spend Halloween at my parents because their neighborhood is FULL of kiddos!  Lara, my little red gumball, had lots of fun watching all the trick or treaters come by. Maybe next year she'll be ready to trick or treat herself.  We shall see....

We almost didn't get maternity photos done this go around, but we ended up connecting with a local photographer who is just beginning to grow her business.  She was super sweet and insisted on doing them for us so she could get some practice in, and I am SO THANKFUL she did!  



We had them done in our backyard at sunset and just adore all of them.  I'm SO happy we have these shots to look back on and remember our last few weeks as a family of three. 





For all my local friends, check out Rachel Grace Media!  She is an absolute joy to work with!! 

Now, last but certainly not least, last weekends shower!

 I had envisioned a relaxed, low key gathering with close friend and family to celebrate this new little lady and  the evening was exactly that!  We had some BBQ catered in, the guests enjoyed a local beer tasting from beers local to Kansas & Missouri breweries and spent time gathered around our new fire pit patio Jon built.  











The GORGEOUS quilt my Mom made for Baby Girls nursery!!





My girlfriends truly went above and beyond to make the evening SO special and Jon and I most definitely felt the love!!!!!

And we have the diapers to prove it. 
:)



Now....onto picking a President.

XOXO,
Anne