Saturday, October 17, 2015

Alice's Birth Story

After realizing Alice turns one in less than two months, I figured I'd better post this.
When we first found out I was pregnant we thought we were due Christmas Day. I was pretty bummed about it. After I progressed further into my pregnancy my date changed to December 15. We were relieved to say the least. We schedule an appointment at the hospital to be induced December 22. I would be a week overdue and we would still get out of the hospital by Christmas Day.
Once we knew we were in the clear for Christmas, we kept saying "as long as she's not born on Ryan's birthday" (December 2). As my pregnancy progressed I kept telling Ryan that I knew she was coming early. He pushed my worries aside and reassured me that it was very rare to have your first child early. On Sunday November 30, I woke up feeling strange. I told Ryan I felt really sick and that I was sure I was going in to labor this week. I was showing the same pre labor signs that I had been showing the entire week so once again Ryan assured me I was just excited to have her here and that all would be well until her due date. Monday December 1, I schedule a birthday celebration for Ryan. I was exhausted that day but my party planning obsession took over and I finished the food and decorations just before everyone got there. It was about 9:00pm when people started gathering coats and heading home for the night. I sat down on the couch and relaxed for the first time that day when GUSH. Yup, right there in front of all of our friends and family my water broke on my living room sofa. I sprinted for the bath tub while my sweet sisters in law cloroxed the couch. Everyone pitched in to get the house back in order while I sat in the tub helpless. After leaking in the tub for 20 minutes I shoved a towel down my pants, packed my hospital bag, hugged our loved ones goodbye and left for the hospital. We arrived at about 10:00pm.
My sweet mother was waiting at the hospital entrance with a smile on her face that gave me the confidence boost I needed. "Are you ready to have a baby?" She asked as I nodded my head. 
I walked to the check in desk and told the nurse my water broke. "Are you sure" she asked. To which I replied something like "positive, it's still running down my legs". They whisked us to our birthing suite and got me prepped for labor. The nurse told me we were in for a long night. 
After an hour with little to no dilation the nurse told me the doctor wanted pitocin administered because the longer I went with my water broken the higher the risk of infection. It was about 12:30am when she administered the pitocin and by 1:30am I was ready for the epidural. By 2:00am I was dilated to a 3 and by 3:30am I was a 5. By this time my catheter was feeling rather uncomfortable and I wanted to rip it out. I insisted to my mom that I wanted to sit up. The epidural was wearing off and at 4:00am we called the nurse in to discuss upping my epidural. I told her I wanted it to wear off a little because I wanted to be able to feel while pushing but I couldn't make it much longer. She checked my cervix one last time and said "oh, looks like you're ready to push" after one push her eyes widened and she told me not to do that again until the doctor arrived. I told her my body wanted to push and she told me I could start. Around 4:15am I started pushing and at 4:20am the doctor ran into the room, helped with the tearing, grabbed the baby and delivered her at 4:28am December 2, 2014. Ryan lost his birthday but gained so much more.
I will NEVER forget how it felt. Ryan and I just kept looking at each other saying "this is our baby, we made this". Ryan was smitten and I couldn't believe she was ours. All 6lbs 10oz 18 inches.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

The Name.

The name Alice wasn't even on our radar until the very end of my pregnancy. We had a few names picked out, one was a little more modern and the other was after my great Grandma (Emma Jane Thomas). We loved the sentimentality of Emma Jane but the name Emma has been on the top charts for YEARS. I didn't dislike the idea of my daughter having a popular name (at least not enough to make up a name out of the blue just to keep her unique) but I didn't want her to be one of 4 Emma's in her class. After going back and forth between our modern name and our traditional name, I realized I felt stuck with these two names. So I grabbed a pen and some paper and started brainstorming. I showed Ryan my list of names and at the top it said Alice. He was pretty set on our "modern name" up until that point, but once he saw Alice there was no going back. Ryan's Grandmothers name is Alice. She passed away when he was young and he could think of no better way to honor her than to name our first child after her. (Plus we loved the name). The story behind her middle name Jayne and its unique spelling comes from my side of the family. As many of you know, my Mothers name is Pamela. What you may not know, is that all of her children call her Jayne. It's something my sister started calling her because of her likeness to my Grandma Emma Jane, and from then on it just kind of stuck. By naming our daughter Alice Jayne we were able to honor both of our families. Not to mention it totally suits her. I hope she can live up to her name and posses the many wonderful qualities of the women she is named after.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Pregnancy; I'm so over it.

Patience is not one of my virtues, so nine long months of waiting is just not for me. I'm barely getting to the third trimester. I feel like I have gained so much from this pregnancy, but most of it on the scale. You know those girls who go the full nine months and don't put on a pound? 
I'm not one of them.

Before I got pregnant I swore I wasn't going to be one of those pessimistic pregnant ladies that complained until they were blue in the face, though that is not my intention, I need to vent for a minute. First thing on my list: weight gain. Don't let this phrase fool you, you will hear it a thousand times at the doctors office but the truth is, it's just the nice way of saying 'getting fat'. 
You cannot truly understand unless you have seen a morbidly obese person trying to tie their shoes. You watch them struggle for air as they try to hold their breath just long enough to get the bunny ear through the hole. That is how I feel every time I lean forward, or bend over or touch my knees for that matter. The saddest part, I'm not even a fraction of what I will become in the next three months.

On top of getting fat, I want to cry 98% of the time. Legitimately anything can set me off, I'm like a ticking time bomb. They could be happy tears, they could be sad tears, they honestly could be plain old water works. I hold back tears all day.

Oh fatigue, another perk of being pregnant. Every little task you complete expends all the energy you have. What I don't understand is how I can be so exhausted, yet the minute my head hit's the pillow I have a million things on my mind and sleep becomes a distant memory. 

I won't go into detail about the swollen feet, acne or "glow" aka oily skin. All you need to know is that it's not pretty. 

Let's talk about respect for a minute. Because I have major respect for women who can run while pregnant. Not only are you heavier and more exhausted than when you are not pregnant, but the pressure is unbearable. I'm not talking about mental pressure, I'm talking about the building pressure that starts below your belly button and with every step you take it worsens. My husband and I occasionally race from the car into our apartment (at least we did before I turned into a whale), and since getting pregnant I get about three steps into my sprint before it feels like something is going to fall out. 
I used to think pregnant women waddled because their stomach made it difficult to walk with their legs together. I may not be waddling yet, but I have a good feeling it isn't because your stomach gets in the way. Stupid groin pain. It has almost surpassed my aching back.

One thing I inherited from my Mother is her exact pregnancy. She suffered from morning sickness for the full nine months and had an aching back through most of her pregnancy. 
I've never had strong back muscles, maybe it has something to do with the fact that I NEVER work out those muscles, maybe it's genetics, either way, its a real beast. You are gaining weight at a crazy rate (all in your chest and belly) and your back starts freaking out wondering what the heck kind of test you are trying to put it through. So you lay down, only to find out that it doesn't help, so you sit up and readjust and roll over and stand up and kneel down and twist and turn all with no relief. 

My last bone to pick; morning sickness. Some sick son of a B thought it would be funny to call it morning sickness. Let me tell you, I've thrown up in the "morning" of every time zone. It really is the worst part of pregnancy (at least for those who truly experience it). Everyday when you wake up, you have a choice to make. You can drink a tall glass of water only to throw it back up. You can eat food and throw up chunks or you can do nothing and dry heave until you fill the bowl with stomach acid. It's brutal and quite repulsive, but there it is.

I have enjoyed certain parts of pregnancy. I enjoyed the excitement of our first positive pregnancy test, and sharing that news with my husband. Mainly feeling my baby kick and seeing her little heartbeat on the ultrasound. I loved finding out that she is going to be a little princess who I can dress up in bows and glitter covered clothes. I thrive over the fact that I am lucky enough to carry my own child, and give birth to her, regardless of the fear that is linked with that thought. I look forward to nursing (after the initial pain and hatred wears off). I enjoy the major milestones of pregnancy, not so much the in-between. I think pregnancy has been harder than I anticipated because I am just so flippin' excited to meet my little girl. That day can't come soon enough.

When we had our first doctors appointment with the fertility specialist I was so hopeful. I still am. I just need to find that hope again, along with some patience. Because we struggled getting pregnant and I wanted it so badly, I felt like I couldn't complain about anything pregnancy related. I mean, I fasted and prayed for this child, and here I am whining that I got what I asked for? It almost seems ungrateful. I wrote a post after my first doctors appointment with the fertility specialist, and in that post I said this:
"So here is to the future. To fixing what is broken. To a positive pregnancy test. To morning sickness and sleepless nights. To a long labor that is worth every minute. To dirty diapers and spit-up covered clothes. To midnight snuggles and nursing my baby. To a complete family that finally feels whole."
It seems that everything I wrote here has come true so far. 
Wish me luck with my long labor and spit up covered clothes.
 I know it will be worth it.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Pregnancy Update. Week 23: Already?

So, it has been a while since I last blogged. Mostly because I don't feel that I have anything too crazy to blog about. Yes I am getting bigger, and I crave different foods, but nothing else is really changing in my life. (Not until December at least).
 Before my pregnancy I had every intention of taking those cute progress pictures, you know, the ones where you can practically see the belly growing? Ya, that has not happened. I have taken a total of like ten pregnancy pictures and I am already 6 months into it. How disappointing. But the truth is, I'm so busy enjoying every phase of this pregnancy, I haven't felt the urge to document all the private details to my social media friends. I know what it is like to be on the other side of the fence, wanting to see all the progress your friend or acquaintance has made. I will try to be better so you can all see my bump growing (along with the rest of me). But in the mean time, here are my previous pictures along with some fun pregnancy details. I promise I wear more than one dress, but I wanted to take most of my maternity pictures in the same dress so the changes were obvious.
This was the day we found out the gender. A precious baby girl.

Week 18

Week 20

Week 21.
 Also the week we got to see our baby girl in her diagnostic ultrasound.

 10 fingers, 10 toes.

 This is the week I had a craving for crab that wouldn't go away so my Hubby took me out. Spoiled.

 Week 21.

Week 22.

 So far I have been terrible about taking pictures and posting. I will try to get better but don't be too surprised if it doesn't improve.
Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Withering away.

I grew up in a family that loves to cook, and when you love to cook, you love to eat. Last year a friend of mine got pregnant and I was so judge-mental. She was very fit and always informed me if I was making a poor choice in the food department. She ate lean meals and very rarely consumed sugar. When she got pregnant she basically threw her health out the window. She lived off of Reeses Peanut Butter Cups and fried food her whole pregnancy. I remember she got a burger and fries for lunch and within an hour she was on her way to getting a second burger and fries. I couldn't believe she just treated her pregnancy as a hall pass. I kept thinking "pregnancy is a time to treat your body better, a time to give your baby all the nutrients you can" I got so angry when people would have the mindset "I'm going to get fat anyway, might as well snarf it down while I can." Boy was I wrong! Not only are you hungry enough to eat your own foot, but sometimes, healthy doesn't sound good at all! I have been the opposite of most women. I gave up a lot of my sugar cravings and most of my fried food faves when I got pregnant. I love eggs, fruit, whole wheat bread, sandwiches and salads. I would be lying if I didn't say I craved cereal on a daily basis and I cannot stop thinking about this turkey leg from Disneyland. I'm sure this health kick craving will be short lived, but I hope I can balance out cravings and nutrition throughout my pregnancy. One thing I've learned the hard way, don't judge that pregnant woman you see scarfing down a chili dog, she needs it.  

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Tax Day.

For any new readers just tuning in, my sweet husband Ryan and I have been trying to get pregnant since December of 2012. We found out shortly after that we would struggle through the infertility journey as so many others have. It was a long painful process, that consisted of needles, medication and embarrassing moments. Our doctors were amazing and made the entire process manageable. But did you notice the past tense word choice? On April 15, 2014 we found out we are no longer going through the infertility process...

It was the hardest thing we had to overcome, but we did it together with the Lord's help. It seemed that the closer we became to the end of our trial, the more thin our patience was wearing. It wasn't until we fully accepted the trial that the Lord could free us from it. We learned that it is truly out of our hands. I am so grateful for our trials and the way they strengthen us. I look forward to the future. We couldn't be happier or more excited to get to know our little bundle of joy! 

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

A rant on my new attitude of gratitude.

Whelp, 2014 has proven to be one of the most challenging years of my life, but also the one in which I have grown the most. Our family struggles have brought us together in a way I never thought possible. My heart is full of gratitude for my Savior and the strength I receive daily from him. I am overwhelmed with love and compassion for all of those who have gone through similar struggles.
 Last night I snuggled up to Ryan and told him how grateful I am for the Lords hand in my life. Even though I don't understand why we are going through the things that we are going through, I am trying to stay positive and see the good in the situation. I had several "tough" days last month when getting out of bed seemed like more of a chore than anything. So I cried, and watched way too much TV. But at the end of the day I felt worse, so the next day I prayed, and prayed and prayed. It seemed like my only option was to exercise my faith. As I searched the scriptures and thought about what I should do I made the connection, I was exercising my faith. So I looked up the definition of exercise and found this: "something done or performed as a means of practice, mental exertion, especially for the sake of training or improvement". I knew we came to this world to be tried, I knew we came here to find our faith, but I didn't know how we would achieve that.
Ryan and I had our trials before marriage, trust me. I was a rebel in my youth, I was determined to defy God and all his plans for me, then I met Ryan.  My sweet Ryan filled me with a desire to become better, this desire shattered my defiance. I knew after a scary two weeks time that he was the roots to my crazy willow tree, he would be the one to keep me grounded.
 After our pre-marriage trials were over and we were sealed in the temple I knew we were in for a rocky ride. We are happy, faithful members of the church, but there is no room for growth. In order to grow we must be tried. As I was reading the scriptures thinking about what it meant to exercise my faith I had the thought; a body builder cannot bulk up without exercise, a pianist cannot play flawlessly without practicing and exercising their skills, and I cannot return to my Father without being tried to my very core and exercising my faith. I'm not saying I am perfect, or my life is perfect, far from it in fact. But there were very few things that could try me to my core.
 Not being able to have children was my biggest fear growing up, it still is. But when we decided to start trying and failed, my life was shattered. With faith and prayers I have come to accept that we will just have to try harder and push through this trial. I am so grateful that we have gone through it together. It has made our relationship and our testimonies stronger. When I think about our future children I have to swallow the lump that appears in my throat and picture the Lord with our children, sitting on His lap waiting to come down to their family, and to them, this is just the blink of an eye. I look forward to the day when I can meet them again.