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Sunday, July 21, 2013

The Hungry Hungry Hippo

 
 
So, he is here. Our little man has entered this world, and not without a little drama and stubbornness! I wanted to take the time to write our story down before I forgot so many of the details. 
 
Well, we were in our final days of waiting....every little pain I felt sent me into an involuntary "is this it" it was exhausting....not to mention that I was exhibiting every single symptom of impending labor for two solid weeks. Seriously, look up "signs of labor"...I had every.single.one. From dropped way way low baby, to dilation, effacement, head engagement, weight loss, lovely bloody mucusy show things (I know....not the kind of show we are used to :) ) I had it all for 2 weeks. I went to the doctor on Monday the 15th. I had elevated blood pressure, which concerned her, since my b.p. had always been spot on.  I had also been steadily bleeding for a week with no major contractions...so my doctor decided that we should induce the next day. I was elated! Yay, it was finally happening! I had hoped to go into labor naturally, but as with so many things as we went along through this journey of labor and delivery, I would learn that what I envisioned was not always gonna happen, and sometimes was not the best thing anyway.
I woke up at 3am on Tuesday July 16. I couldn't sleep, I was too nervous, and excited, and scared. We left for the hospital at 5:30 am.  I started Pitocin at 07:30, and my contractions started almost immediately. They were pretty painless at first, and I was determined to do as much labor as I could without pain medication.
My labor and delivery nurse was an amazing woman named Sandy.  I feel like some prayer I never thought to pray was answered in her. She was the most amazing nurse I could have ever asked for. I absolutely adored her, and she made the entire rough day so much easier. Like..".I want to figure out a way to stay in touch with her" awesome.  She said it was "meant to be" since her grandson shared the same name as our little man.
The contractions got stronger and more intense, and soon I felt like someone was trying to rip my butt muscles in half. That was me...I felt my labor in my butt....how appropriate. I remember referring to my bed as a "cage of pain" and asked to have it moved into a squatting position chair thing. (The beds in these birth centers are like Transformers!) That helped a lot.  I squatted and rocked for the rest of my unmedicated labor.  The contractions were coming stronger and longer and almost constantly.  The Hubs was so amazing through this.  HE stayed with me every second, let me turn his hand red and blue, and let me hang off of his shirt as I had a contraction trying to make it to the bathroom. If I wasn't convinced before, I am now, I have the most amazing man for a husband, and he is my source of strength.
I had read everywhere through my countless hours of research on labor that waiting as long as you could to get the epidural was best, and would allow your labor to progress faster. Basically I was under the impression that once I got my epidural everything would slow way down.  After about 3 hours of enduring my squatting, rocking, husband hand crushing labor, Sandy checked me.....I had progressed ONE CENTIMETER! WHAT!!!??? F- THIS!!! Give me the epidural.
So a doctor who looked like a 12 year old boy came in to give me my epidural, while I was in hard labor, with about 30 seconds between contractions, and he tells me "relax your back"....um relax your balls while I kick them! Anyway...he got it in an started the meds.... and my belly pain went away...but this new bizarre pain developed....it felt like someone was popping my left hip bone out of the socket repeatedly with every contraction... "Hmmm" He thoughtfully said. Let me try a different med.....still med number 2...still bone ripping pain. They tried rolling me onto that side to get the meds to pool, that just made everything come back and made that hip hurt more. Just as Sandy was easing me into accepting that this may be my fate, and what I must endure, he decided to try a third medication. This one worked. Thank you Jesus.
So then they gave me a break, and left me and the Hubs for about 30 minutes.  Sandy came back, checked me...I had progressed to 6 centimeters in 30 minutes with epidural...seriously. All that crap I had read about the epidural slowing it down...TOTALLY NOT TRUE...atleast for me. Sandy said it was because I was finally relaxed. I have no idea...all I know is it worked for this girl.  About 45 minutes later she checked again, and I was at 10. It was time....time to push....time for the big show!!!
So we started pushing. And it was the most difficult thing I have ever done. Apparently I have legs of steel, because I kept pushing with my legs (not supposed to, and I kept getting in trouble for it ;) ) but I was pushing poor Sandy off the bed, and the Hubs said it was like wrestling an alligator.  Little man didn't like the pushing and his heart rate kept dropping. So we had to go slow, and only push every other contraction. After about 3 hours of pushing, little man was just not moving as fast as he should. Then Sandy felt it...his arm and elbow...he had his hand on top of his head, and his elbow bend and crooked off to the side. So his elbow was stuck in my pubic bone...and he wasn't moving.
 
Sandy told me to rest, she would call my doctor over, and then she could decide what to do next. Once we were alone I turned to the Hubs. "I don't want a C-section" I tearfully said. He assured me, that if that is what needed to happen it would all be ok. He then leaned down and whispered to my belly, as he had done every day for the last 9 months " Son, move your elbow so Momma can have you"
 
My doctor arrived, she checked me, he had moved his elbow, and was about to crown...he was ready.
 
I pushed for another 30 minutes or so, and was so exhausted but so close. My doctor convinced me to bring in the mirror so I could see how close I was. ( I was little miss "OH God, I don't want a mirror, hell no") Well smarty pants little girl who has never given birth...you needed it, and it helped. I could see the whole top of his head. I was close. And with one more final push and some sort of guttural primal scream that my sister in law could hear from the waiting area...My little man came into this world.
 
They dried him off, and immediately placed him on my chest. I have never felt such joy, such amazing happiness, I have never felt so much love for something so tiny.  I wept. The Hubs and I met eyes, and we held our new baby together. It was the most beautiful moment of my life.
 
He weighed in at 7lbs 2 ounces, and was 20 inches long.
 
He had a pretty good bump on his head from being stuck. And his little elbow was bruised, and he is slightly tongue tied.  but otherwise, he is amazingly healthy and perfect.
 
We have nicknamed him the Hungry Hungry Hippo...because he wants to eat all.the.time! And you know what....breastfeeding is HARD. I will save all that for another post. But we are working it out, and I am battling through the pain and exhaustion of trying to breastfeed a tongue tied infant. (Apparently it doesn't affect him so much, but makes the mom experience more pain than normal when feeding....so I got THAT goin for me :)  I don't care, we will get through it together. I have an amazingly supportive husband who I love even more now that I did last week. He helps me feed, helps me pump, my God, he is super man.
 
I may be sporadic in my posting in the near future...it is because I am snuggling a baby...or changing his explosive diapers, or sleeping at 10am because that is the only time he sleeps.

 
 
Pictures do it more justice than I can with words....


And oh yeah...don't worry, it is still smart ass sarcastic me.... and to answer the burning question...No! I didn't poop on the delivery table! Score!





Monday, July 15, 2013

So uh..Honey...it is time


I am being induced in the morning
It still deosn't feel real.
My next post is sure to include pictures of a tiny little alien who is finally coming to meet us.
Stay tuned everyone.....

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Something about Horses...

As the summer months march on, I am reminded to savor these last few days before the new baby arrives. The heat is sweltering in Texas in July, but by late evening, it is bearable outside.  We have been walking after dinner this past week, a tradition I hope I can keep up even after the baby arrives. At least once I recover. I think exercise, even walking, is so beneficial to bouncing back, and the fresh air out here where we live, well,  I think it would even be good for my tiny baby in his fancy stroller my lovely sister in law and brother gifted us with.

The Monkey and I went on a walk by ourselves last night. He does really well on our walks. He stays close and holds my hand, even wehn we both get all sweaty.  Summer for him has been tough so far. His lack of structure, and school have resulted in a sharp decline in his behavior and control of his autistic symptoms. It has resulted in me crying my eyes out, him crying his eyes out, and the Hubs often feeling like he is going to lose it if we don't figure out how to manage this. We tried looking into some options for structured autism specific therapy programs...but they are UNGODLY expensive, and our insurance company told us that they do not cover treatment for Autism.  So there we are right now.  Anyway, we keep pressing on, and these walks seem to help calm him. It gets rid of some of his excess energy, lets him be a little loud, and lets me focus on him and talk to him.  Soon enough, my focus will be shifted, that is just a fact, and I want to savor these times with him.

Last night we walked and talked. We talked about the life cycle of a butterfly, and the cartoons he likes, and the horses you see pictured above.

The younger, brown horse follows us as we walk and begs for attention at the fence. The Monkey is happy to oblige, and is not even the slightest bit scared. (Which is so surprising, given his fear of clapping, singing, crowds, noises, fireworks, dogs, you name it..) But a huge horse...no fear. His brain and how it functions differently than everyone else's fascinates me.


 
He walks right up to him, extends his little chubby hand, and the horse meets him half way. This young horse bends his neck and strains against the barbed wire to let this little hand touch his soft velvety nose. When the monkey shrieks and yelps, as his autism makes him do so often, the horse doesn't startle, he just accepts these sharp noises that have invaded our home for years now.  He even gently takes a few blades of dead grass the Monkey plucks up for him to eat, and graciously savors them. He plods along the fence line, following us, until his barbed wire makes him wait at the edge of his field for our return.

I love that I am raising my boys in an area where this is our view when we walk. I love the way nature and animals seem to recharge us, even when things are hard.  I will try to remember to take this journey one day at a time, and not be overwhelmed by adding a new baby to an already tough situation with autism rearing it's ugly head. And when it gets to be too much for me, I will try to remember, to just go out, walk in the warm air, and give this guy some attention.