Thursday, March 27, 2008


Sometimes, there is so much going on in my life, and so many emotions all at once, that it is overwhelming. I avoid my blog since I don't hardly know where or how I would start to describe it all. I am in one of those times.

Baby girl, my snuggle bug who I love to call Little Bean, is absolutely amazing. I love her sweet little face. I absolutely love all the funny expressions she makes. She sure can communicate a lot with just her little face that is the size of a small grapefruit.

I know she needs to grow and get bigger. Health equals growth. I know that, and of course, I want her to be healthy and grow. Yet, my heart aches at the thought of it. I know that she is changing each hour and day and I'll never get these moments back. I try to take as many photos as I can, only to be frustrated at my cameras in ability to capture her sweetness. Instead, I resort to spending hours snuggling her close and trying my hardest to remember how she looks and feels. Yesterday, I fed her and she fell asleep in my arm afterwards. We snuggled and I tried my hardest to hold her close and not wake her. We sat like that until it was time to feed her again a couple hours later.

My most favorite thing about her right now is the complete satisfied, drunken look she will get on her face after she's eaten (or in the midst of eating, more like it). It cracks me up. Usually, it's during a feeding, and I need to rouse her to get her to eat some more. Oh... I hate to interrupt her drunken bliss, it is just so sweet.

There are not enough words for love, sweet, adorable in our language.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

She's Here!!!

Baby girl has arrived! I think she's the cutest thing ever, but I'm sure all moms think that.

She weighed 6 lbs, 5.5oz, and was 19.5 inches tall. She's tiny! She is swimming in her newborn clothes, so I'm glad I got a few newborn sized things (some people advised just to let her wear big 0-3 mo clothes...but I think they would just fall off). I need a few premie hats, since her little hats just fall off - they are way, way too big. She is a huge snuggle bug, and is most content snuggled up with someone.

What a blessing during Holy week. She is such a great miracle and gift from God. After all of the drama about my preeclampsia, I was blessed to be able to deliver naturally at our birth center. It all went very quickly... I started labor at about 10pm at home, had a handful of contractions that were 10 minutes apart, then they immediately went to 4 minutes apart. We got to the birth center at about 2am and they were 2 minutes apart. She was born at 6am on the dot. Ha - her punctuality did not come from her parents! I'll post the full birth story later. For now, we're just working on learning to eat. It's been more difficult than I anticipated. I'm so thankful hubs is here to help - he is having to help me feed her more than I thought he would. I'm doing fine, but Snuggle Bug would rather snuggle and sleep.

Praise God for his merciful love.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Passing the time

I started a bedrest project that I'm excited about. Now, I should be spending more time writing my thank-you notes, but they will get done in time.

I've been talking for a while about making Snapfish photo albums, but it has yet to ever happen. Part of the problem is that the first step is loading all the photos into snapfish, which takes a really long time, since I'll be doing a year or two at a time.

It's the perfect bedrest project! I don't have to pull out lots of craft supplies, or make a big mess that needs to be cleaned up later. I can just do it all on my laptop from whatever chair or couch I'm in, and I can just do as much or as little at a time as I have energy for.

Maybe by the time baby girl arrives I'll have the last couple years in albums we can enjoy.

So far, I've only uploaded a ton of photos. After I do the rest, I'll let you know how it goes. Any of you ever made photo albums on Snapfish before?

Monday, March 17, 2008

Monday gratitude

Today was ok, tonight was hard. Just long. I couldn't remember the day of the week to put in the title of the post, and when I realized it was Monday, I groaned inwardly. Only Monday. A whole week ahead. I guess I really do need this post.

I went to the midwife today. Everything is looking great- holding steady. That's the best they can hope for right now. That should be great...I should be thrilled. I just keep thinking about how I might be on bedrest for 2.5 more weeks. I'm so selfish - that's really selfish. I should be ecstatic that I'm not being induced today.

So, today, on this Monday, I am grateful for:
  • Sleeping in my bed tonight, rather than a hospital bed
  • That baby girl has more time to come out on her own
  • A friend of mine called today and will be coming over on Thursday
  • We lasagna tonight that another friend brought over yesterday
  • Hubs hugs me when I cry, which is about daily right now
  • The midwife thinks the baby is 6-7 pounds, which sounds a lot easier to push out than a 10 pound baby

That's all I've got. Happy Monday.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

the nursery

The nursery is as done as it's going to get before the baby arrives. I was hoping to sew the crib skirt and bumper in these weeks, but it will have to wait. I'm not a very experienced seamstress, so taking on such projects is not conducive to keeping my blood pressure down.

I am so thankful for the hours of work that hubs put in to painting the furniture, for my mom spending her entire Saturday afternoon yesterday sewing the curtain for me, and for my Grandma who made the beautiful Beatrix Potter quilted wall hanging. I know baby girl will love all these gifts!

This bassinet will be baby's first bed, in our room. It was a gift from a couple at our church. I think it is so adorable! What a gift!

Everything is washed, folded and waiting. all we need now is a baby!

being grateful

Today is day 11 of bedrest. I never thought I'd still be on bedrest, sans baby to hold in my arms, this much later. I've told people that I will be shocked if I'm still pregnant on my due date (on Friday), but only God knows...this could be a long time still. I have two appointments this week, which means there are two opportunities for my blood pressure and labs to be too high and send me to the hospital.

I have a new appreciation for women on bedrest. Especially those on bedrest for weeks and months. This is really depressing, and I'm tired of it. It wasn't so bad until I hit the point that I was lonely and enough days had gone by that there was no new news. The few people that would call or email or stop by wanted to know how I was doing and what was going on. Sigh... I don't have any good answers. I'm bored, lonely, and nothing is going on. I sit all day and think about going into labor - trying to will my child to come out on her own. It hasn't worked. Then, I repeat the whole process.

Today is hard. Hubs just left for church, and I'm home. Next week is Easter and I'll miss it. I don't even think my family is doing anything, because I'm usually the one who encourages it and pulls it all together. Tonight is our church's small group meeting, but I'll be here on my recliner. My counter has a pile of dirty dishes, and that is where they will sit until hubs has a few minutes to put them away. Here I sit, in my green bathrobe, in my green recliner...feeling blue.

Yet, I have SO much to be grateful for. I know I do. I need to start thinking of those things more. And thus, I'm going to try to start posting things that happened the previous day or today that I'm grateful for.

Today, I'm choosing to be very grateful because:
  • Yesterday my mom came over for the day and sewed the curtain for the nursery for me.
  • Hubs and I finally found adhesive that made our alphabet/animal cards stay on the nursery wall, after 3 attempts. All 26 of the animals are still up. Hurray!
  • I have been given the opportunity to stay pregnant longer, giving my body a chance to dialate and prepare, so that when I do go into labor or get induced, I will have a better outcome.
  • After days of rain, it is a sunny morning with blue skies. I'm grateful for this, as well as my dog, who has multiple sunny spots on the carpet to choose from.
  • Simplicity patterns are going to be on sale for 99 cents at the end of the month, and Butterick patterns for 1.99 next weekend. Hurray! Hopefully there will be some cute baby patterns.
  • I don't have to try to care for a house full of kids while on bedrest. It's just me and the dog.

I am grateful.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Guardian Angels

I'm still here, on bedrest...still pregnant. I have a lot of conversations with baby girl, trying to convince her that it's time to come out. I don't mind being pregnant right now, like some people think. I just know that if she doesn't choose to come out now, they will likely take her out, which I really don't want. Come out!

Two interesting things have been happening with my condition...

My blood pressure is still high, and has been creeping up a bit. It's still not above the danger line, but it's high. However, the most recent bloodwork came back and my levels (of whatever it is they are measuring) have actually gone down. Hurray! That's a pretty mysterious, not normal thing.

Also, the midwives were consulting with the hospital I was sent to on another client, who also has pre-eclampsia symptoms. They already knew that at another hospital, I would have been induced immediately. But even at the same hospital I was at, they were talking to a different doctor who said he would have interpreted my labs the same way they did, and he would have induced me right away. Basically, it is a mysterious, not normal thing that I was sent home, especially sent back to the midwife's care.

I told my midwife that I have angels looking out for me. I'm so thankful that God has given me time to go into labor on my own. I don't know if that's how it will end up, and if not...then what this break was for, but I'm so thankful for it. If nothing else, it has been a great time to get more prepared for labor and this little one...both emotionally and in our home.

Please be praying that I will go into labor soon. I've been mentally preparing myself to be induced. I can do that. I know the contractions will be stronger and harder, but I can tough it out. People deal with immense pain all the time; I can deal with it. However, I've been told that if I'm admitted to the hospital for pre-eclampsia, they will give me magnesium sulphate as a first line of treatment. That is a treatment I really, really don't want. I've been told it feels horrible inside (like being cooked in a microwave), it affects the baby, and the baby is usually groggy after it is born, which can effect breastfeeding and bonding. Please pray for wisdom for me, and all our care givers.

That's all for now. Time to go lay down and hang out with my guardian angels. =)

Friday, March 07, 2008

bed rest

I'm on bed rest. Not really though. I'm not supposed to be laying or sitting in a leaning back / reclining position. I'm supposed to be laying on my left side, sitting on my ball, or leaning on top of the ball. These are not really the most comfortable positions for watching TV or reading for hours on end. Oh well. Bed rest didn't sound so bad at first, until they clarified the rules for resting.

I've been watching TV while doing stuff on my computer. Daytime TV is slim pickings. From 10-12, Little House On The Prairie is on. So cute. Unfortunately, the one on first today was one where Mary and Adam's house (the school for the blind) burned down, with her newborn son inside. Just what a pregnant lady on bed rest needs.

Yesterday, hubs signed me up for a month-long subscription to Blockbuster, which works sort of like NetFlix, except you can also exchange movies in-store. I love that man! That was completely his idea. Even if the baby comes soon, I'll have it to enjoy during the first weeks of nursing. I'm very grateful.

My big thing to do today is to write up a birthing plan of some sorts. I really don't know where to begin. We don't really need one for the birth center, but my plan all along was to write one just in case of transfer to the hospital. Now, we're in limbo... I need one birth plan that assumes we start at the birth center but get transferred part way through, and there's a possibility of just starting at the hospital. Either way, it's more complicated now than just saying "I'm doing this naturally; don't mess with me." I'm not sure where to start w/ the birth plan. Is it even worth it? Part of me just wants to rely on hubs and the doula to help look out for what we want.

Time to switch positions to leaning over the ball. At least that one doesn't squish my hair. =)

Thursday, March 06, 2008

In limbo

I'm in limbo.

Yesterday, I went in for my weekly midwife appointment. She was concerned about my elevated blood pressure for the second week in a row (high for me, but not for everyone), and the continued high protein levels in my urine. Both are signs of preeclampsia. So, she sent off some bloodwork for the lab, and let me know that she thought it was about 75% likely that I did have preeclampsia. If I did, I'd I've to be transfered to a hospital and doctor, and would most likely have to be induced. Preeclampsia can lead to stroke or seizure for me, so it's a game to have the baby (the only way to end preeclampsia) before anything bad happens.

I was upset and pretty bummed, but thought I'd have a day or two before the test results came back. I went to lunch and shopping with a friend. I came home and started working on putting our labor bag together, since I'm horribly behind on getting that done.

Then, my midwife called. My labs were back, and the results were horrible. She said I was beyond the gray area...I was in the red flag area. I needed to go to the hospital today and be induced (natural methods first, then drugs if needed). No debates. I needed to call hubs home, and call my doula. She was calling the local hospitals to see what OBs were available and determine the best place to transfer me to.

The next hours were a blur. Hubs came home. We packed our bag. We picked a name for baby girl. We (ok, me) cried a lot. It was all so fast. This was not at all how we imagined. I have played through the scenario in my head of having to go to the hospital during labor, if things weren't going well. It was so weird to go before labor ever started. I wasn't mentally ready for labor. I had no idea what was really going to happen when we got there, but I still wanted to try to do things as naturally as possible.

We left, got dinner on the way, and made it to the hospital. Our doula happened to pull into the parking spot next to us at the same exact time. Perfect timing.

The hospital people took my blood pressure, monitored the baby, checked my urine, and took more blood tests. We hung out for about four hours. The labs were high, protein high, but in the end, they decided that my blood pressure was high for me, but not past their "high blood pressure" threshold. Apparently, they don't worry about blood pressure until it's over 140/90, regardless of what your blood pressure typically is. Personally, I think this is odd. Mine is normally about 110/65 or so... so this would be really, really high for me.

After all was said and done, they said I could go home. They wanted me to do a 12 hour urine test, and then go back to the midwife on Friday. My midwife was pretty surprised, but is fine treating me, if the hospital is ok with it, until the point that my blood pressure were to go over the magic line. My platelet levels from my blood test are still bad though, but apparently the doctors are more concerned about the blood pressure than the platelet levels.

So, we're in limbo. Be induced. Wait, don't be induced. Be induced, wait don't be induced. I really, REALLY want a spontaneous labor, but this limbo part is hard. It's weird that any day or time we could get a call to go in and have the baby...when my body isn't sending the same message.

We're in a game of time. I need to go into labor before the pre-eclampsia gets worse. Even then, I need my blood pressure to stay below 140/90... that's the magic number. Unfortunately, I'm on bedrest and can't walk around, which would help start labor.

As always, but more clearly today, it's all in God's hands. His timing is perfect... this I know.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

WFMW - Surviving with a newborn

I love backwards days on Works For Me Wednesday!

Baby girl isn't here yet, although she's due in just about two weeks. I've been nesting a lot... getting everything ready. Still, I know there is a lot of change coming, and much of it I don't know how to prepare for... if that's even possible.
I'd love some advice on life with a newborn. I'd like really specific advice, not things like "have people come help."
I'll be at a birthcenter, and home the same day she is born (after we've both eaten and are feeling good). Hubs will likely only be home for a couple days, and then my mom will be staying with me for probably 2-5 days (not totally sure how long). All in all, I might only have full-time help for about a week, although I do have a good set of stay-at-home friends who could stop by if I needed them to.
Are there things you either prepared for, or just did when the time came, that made this newborn time easier? Or just more manageable? What worked for you?