Monday, November 30, 2009

Emme At 1 Week

When we woke up on Saturday morning I sang happy birthday to Emme. Then we took a 1-week picture of her in her chair. I can't believe how fast she changes!

Before Emme was born I begged Chris to let me buy a new camera, because our old one had a really bad flash. I felt like the baby deserved to have some decent pictures of herself to look back on when she grows up. Chris finally gave in and we bought a camera. Since then I've been saving my Amazon gift cards that I get for various things, for a video camera.

On Friday Chris said to me, "We need a video camera so we can video tape this little girl." I said oh, should we buy one for ourselves for Christmas?

His response was that no, we need to buy one right now so we don't miss any of her growing up. Too cute. Would have been useful if we'd thought of this before Black Friday, no?

Friday, November 27, 2009

Thanksgiving Thankfulness

This Thanksgiving we're thankful for our new little family, and for the Bambina's safe arrival.

Oh, and also apple pie. Yum!

The Birth Story

40 week belly picture

On Thursday the 19th ( 1 day past my due date) I'd been having pretty decent contractions about 10 to 30 minutes apart, for the last two days solid. The baby was posterior, so I was having terrible back labor. At about 7 PM that evening the contractions began getting closer, and when they were between 4 and 6 minutes apart, we went to the hospital.

The nurses got a kick out of my twilight t-shirt. They kept asking me if I was going to the movie that night. I told them I had a movie ticket, but I would rather be having a baby that night.

After monitoring us for an hour, I was only 1.5 cm dilated and not progressing, so they gave me a shot of morphine to help me sleep and sent us home, with the instruction to come back when my contractions were 2-3 minutes apart. Needless to say, I did not see New Moon that night. :(

The next day Chris stayed home from work with me. We tried to relax and watch TV, but all I could do was wander around the house, swaying and holding onto the wall during each contraction. It hurt so bad to sit or lay during the contractions that by four o'clock in the afternoon I literally thought I was dying. We decided to bite the bullet and get checked again.

When we were admitted, they checked me and I was at 3 cm. They sent us walking and said they would check back in an hour to see if they would keep us or send us home. So Chris and I walked the halls of labor & delivery for an hour, trying to get the contractions to speed up and progress me a little. I just kept praying that they wouldn't send us home again.

When they checked us in an hour, I was still at 3 cm. I started feeling not-so-hot, so I asked the nurse to check my temperature. It was a little bit high, so they decided to give me some tylenol and watch me for 20 minutes before they sent us packing. The doctor was due to come check me one more time before they sent us home, but there were 2 emergency deliveries right at that time (we kept hearing "It's breach! It's breach!"), so she was delayed another 20 minutes. I was in agony laying on the bed with my back labor! I wasn't allowed to stand up because of all the monitors they had on me. When the doctor finally made it in to check me, to our surprise and hers, I had miraculously progressed from 3 cm to 5 in about 40 minutes.

She looked at us an said "it looks like you're going to have a baby tonight!" I immediately broke down in tears of relief, and when the doctor left the room Chris started to cry and gave me a big hug. I think it was hard for him to see me in so much pain and feel so helpless.

They got me an epidural (saints be praised!) and they let me progress during the night. At about 6 cm the doctor broke my water, and could feel that the baby was posterior so she reached up and turned the baby's head to get her straightened the right way. My contractions NEVER got closer than 5 or 6 minutes apart. They even put me on a little bit of pitocin to try to speed them up, but that didn't help either. If I'd been sent home with the directive to come back when they were 3 minutes apart, I would have had our baby at home.

About 4 am I was at 10 cm finally, and they had me start pushing. I ended up pushing for about 4 hours all total, and it was exhausting! I had uncontrollable shakes, more fever, and I threw up at least 4 or 5 times in between contractions. It was a really long battle for us.

At 7am we had another shift change and a new doctor came on call. He came to check me and decided that due to the shape of my pelvis, they weren't sure if the baby's big head would make it through, which is why I had been pushing for so long. He calmly laid out our options. He said we could try pushing with forceps, but that it may or may not work, and explained all of the side effects of that option. Or he said we could opt to go straight to a c-section.

I felt exhausted and anxious to meet this baby, but I also felt a lot of confidence in this doctor I had just met. I felt that if we didn't at least try with the forceps, all of this labor and pushing would have been for nothing. So we opted to try with the forceps.

The room was prepped and covered with blue cloths and scary-looking tools, and two NICU nurses were called down to be in the room during the attempted delivery. When everything was ready, the doctor got the forceps in place and when a contraction came, he had me push while he pulled. During the very first contraction as I was pushing, I could feel bone on bone down there. I was certain her head would never fit through. But we kept trying. Another contraction came and I pushed as hard as my exhausted body could, while the doctor literally yanked on the forceps with all his might. (Ask Chris to give you a demonstration of how the doctor kicked his stool away and stood up and yanked. It was that hard.)

At some point during one of the contractions, I could all of a sudden feel some tension and urgency in the doctor and nurse's voices. They started yelling for me to push, push harder! I pushed as hard as I ever had. I didn't know it at the time, but the baby's heart rate had "tanked" as the doctor put it. And she was wedged good and tight in the birth canal, so the only option was out -- there wouldn't have been time for a c-section. (We also found out later that both operating rooms were in use at that time.) Somehow, the baby's head miraculously fit through and as it came out, the doctor could see why her heart rate had dropped. She had the cord wrapped around her neck twice and around her neck and hand once. (That darn little rogue hand that kept us from getting good ultrasound pictures!) They snip, snip, snipped and unwrapped the cord without waiting for Chris, and handed her off to the NICU nurses immediately. She was blue and not breathing.

I remember laying there on the bed, still flat on my back, watching three nurses hovered around the warmer, with my mom and Chris nervously trying to catch a glimpse of what was happening. For a long time I heard nothing and I kept asking "Is she okay? Is she okay?" Finally I heard some raspy yells, and then some real live cries from the baby. Her first APGAR score was a 2, but her second was a 9. After they'd fully checked her out and wrapped her up, they handed her off to Chris. I kept hearing him say, "She's so beautiful, she's so beautiful." I was still getting stitched up (I had an extreme third-degree episiotomy, so almost a fourth degree) and had to be flat on my back for about 40 minutes while the doctor worked. So Chris pulled up a chair and sat down by me low enough that I could see the baby's face and touch her hands. And he was right, she was the most beautiful thing in the whole wide world.

The next morning during rounds, the doctor stopped by to check up on me. He told me that the good Lord had been watching out for us yesterday. And we know He was. We thank Heavenly Father for Emme's safe arrival every day in our prayers.

The Many Faces of Emmeline Jean

The "Shhh!-It's daytime so I'm sleeping" face

The "It's 2am, wanna play mom?" face
(AKA, the "Aren't I adorable?" face)

The "drunk-off-milk" face
(Look at those arms, lol! So relaxed.)

The "Daddy's bed is comfier than mine" face
(Seriously. She'll fuss and fuss in her bassinet but the second you set her in our bed she's out cold. What gives!?)

P.S. I promise the birth story is coming. I'm a slacker. :)

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Home Sweet Home

We're home! We came home from the hospital yesterday and survived our first night without too much trouble (knock on wood!). Emmeline just sleeps and eats and is the sweetest baby. We have to wake her up in the night to feed her, otherwise she'd just keep on sleeping.

We gave the Bambina her first bath at home this morning. She loves having her hair washed but she gets sort of cold since we can't get her umbilical cord wet yet. We've decided it's definitely a two-man job having a baby at home! I'm so glad Chris is able to stay home for a few days while we get the hang of this. He is SUCH a trooper. If I ever need help with anything, even if it's in the middle of the night, Chris is willing to do anything I need. I think he's loving taking care of our little one as much as I am!

Emmeline's hair looks like a new baby chick's after she has her bath. It just goes POOF! I'm gonna have to figure out how to tame it like the nurses in the hospital did because it was so cute!

Here are some pictures of the proud daddy and his baby. She is enthralled with him -- she stares up into his eyes while he holds her and loves the sound of his voice.

We just love this little one to death! We think she's the most beautiful thing in the whole wide world. It's such a blessing to have such a pure, sweet little baby in our home. We love her so much and are so happy to be parents.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Emmeline Jean Spencer

November 21, 2009
8:04 AM
8 lbs 0 oz
21" long

My birthday is October 21st, Chris's birthday is December 21st, and Emme's birthday is November 21st. So now remembering birthdays should require no thought on Chris's part, right? (However, planning the next baby to fall on another 21st could require a little more effort...)

I'll save the birth story for another post, because it's a long (and scary) one. We're just glad to have our little one here safe and sound! We don't think she could possibly be any cuter, we love her to death already.

{Our first family photo!}

Chris went home to shower and rest for a few hours today, and when he got back to the hospital to hold Emme he said to her that he thought she got even more beautiful while he was gone. How sweet is that? She's already got him wrapped around her little finger.

{The proud daddy about to give Emme her first bath.}

She's such a good baby so far, and she's got a full head of dark hair. Who knew I could produce a baby with actual hair? I'm in shock. :) She just sleeps and eats and watches us. And she already knows our voices because talking to her calms her right down.

We feel so blessed to have her here safe and sound. Thank you all for your prayers! We couldn't be more in love with her!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

The Name and The Nursery

Well, I'm officially overdue. And I know you're all distraught about it. So here are some pictures of the nursery to cheer you all up. :)

The name we've chosen is Emmeline Jean Spencer, and we'll call her Emme (pronounced emmy) for short. Unless of course she comes out looking like something else...

(No seriously, that's what Chris says.)

Chris didn't love the curtains at first. He said it made the room too "bubblegum." But I think they're growing on him.

I love the quilt that's hanging over the back of the crib. My mom had it made for Emme. Isn't it adorable? I should take an up-close of it.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Itty Bitty Sockies

I've been washing lots of these lately. How cute are the Bambina's socks!? Chris is convinced she has more socks than one person could ever need in a lifetime. But I keep telling him that these are all of her socks for her entire first year of life, during which her feet will be growing like mad.

(...unless of course she comes out toddler-sized, in which case these won't cut it...)

We went to the doctor yesterday! (drumroll, please)

I'm dilated to a 1 and 50% effaced. (Apparently she thought I was 80% last week, but now that I'm dilated a bit she can get a better feel and she thinks I'm really more like 50%.) So we are making progress down there.

The doctor says if I make more progress by next Monday, she'll induce me on Tuesday the 24th. If there's not much change, she'll keep the inducement date for the 28th.

I'm still hoping this chica will come on her own!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Trio Pizza

On Friday night we went to Trio with some friends to eat their famous pregnancy pizza which puts lots of women into labor. We'd never been to Trio before, so we figured it was a good excuse to go. The pizza had whole cloves of garlic on it...and it was delicious!

I had a ton of contractions that night after eating it -- so many that we came home and threw the Bambina's carseat liner in the wash and figured out how to put her carseat in the car properly. Just in case.

We're still here, but in good spirits. (This no work thing is awesome.)

We'll keep trying and let you know when something happens!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

39 Week Belly Pic

Pink goes with red, right?

Only if you're 9 months pregnant and you have one pair of flats that barely fits your swollen feet (and they happen to be red) and you've exhausted your supply of maternity shirts that go with red shoes (and still cover your belly) by going to showers in the last week or so.

So yeah, pink goes with red today.

In other news, lots of people have been dying to hear the name we've chosen and see the final nursery pictures! We have chosen a name and we have put it up on the wall in the nursery, which is finally finished! But you're going to have to have patience, people. I've gotta have something to blog about next week while I twiddle my thumbs and wait for this baby to make her appearance, right?

Pregnancy Statistics
How far along? 39w1d
Gender: Girl
Current Cravings: Milky Ways and rootbeer
Weight gain: +35 lbs
Worst moment this week: Finding out I'm still not dilated at all. :( And the bad news about Michelley's knee was even worse.
Best moment this week #1: Had a girls night with Jules on Saturday and got a makeover. Nothing better than having someone do your makeup for you! It was delightful.
Best moment this week #2: Got to see the Bambina via ultrasound again this week!
Funniest moment this week: I stumbled across a website having a sale on Twilight paraphernalia. I excitedly bought myself a t-shirt...and then realized later that, duh, I actually need a maternity Twilight t-shirt! I'm so excited to not be pregnant anymore that I forgot I was still pregnant. (I guess I'll let Jules & Amy fight over who gets to wear it to the premeire...)
Belly button in or out: Out.
Labor signs: 80% effaced and at a -2 station.
What I miss: Driving a car comfortably.
What I'm looking forward to: Only 1 more day of work! I've got tons of crafty projects lined up next week to keep me occupied.

At the non-stress test on Tuesday, the technician was measuring my amniotic fluid levels with the ultrasound machine when she moved the wand down by the baby's face and exclaimed, "oh, look at her cute pouty lips!" She couldn't get over how cute the baby's lips are, and just kept showing them to me over and over. This girl's definitely got her mama's lips!

It was really fun to get to see her face, because she's always had her hand in the way before. (The rogue hand was still there, just by the side of her face this time.) She printed me a picture, which blurred a little when she froze the machine. But I drew a diagram over it so you can see what you're looking at. Hopefully it helps you view it, because it's stinkin' cute!

{This is how her face is situated in the photo}

{The Bambina has her mama's lips.}

Everytime I go for an ultrasound, Chris reminds me "have them check to make sure it's still a girl!" He's got this paranoid nightmare that she's going to surprise us come out a boy and that we'll force him to wear all these pink clothes because, gosh darn it, they were expensive!

The technician checked for me this week...and she's still a girl. :)

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Husband of The Year

On Monday night, we had some friends coming over to check out some of the things we've remodeled on our house (because they're thinking of doing the same). Since Chris gets home from work before I do, I asked him to tidy up a few things when he got home. Specifically I asked him to clean the bathrooms and take out the garbage. (I was thinking of the bathroom and kitchen garbage cans that were full.)

When I got home from work the dishes were done, the floors had been swept, the toilets were sparkling clean, and the big black garbage can was out by the curb -- as the lone garbage can on the street.

Chris said to me, "Tell me again why I was supposed to take the garbage out today, even though our garbage day is Wednesday?..."

My husband, knowing full-well that garbage day is Wednesday, took the garbage can out on Monday -- simply because his crazy pregnant wife told him to.

I'm pretty sure that deserves some sort of an award for husband of the year.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Tender Mercies

Does the nice man at the Banbury Cross drivethrough window giving me my doughnut free of charge because I'm-pregnant-and-I-look-like-I'm-on-the-verge-of-tears count as a tender mercy?

Went to my 39 week checkup this morning.

0 cm dilated, 80% effaced. (And I've been contracting for 3 days.)

And the doctor moved my induction back a day to the 28th due to scheduling. (Seriously!???)

I think I might be pregnant for ever.

That is all.

P.S. The doughnut was delicious.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

38 Week Belly Pic

I've come up with a list of positives to being induced ten days late if this baby doesn't come on her own. We're looking on the bright side here, right?

Why November 27th Could Be A Good Thing
1. I can go see New Moon!
2. I might actually get to finish crocheting this last blanket for the Bambina.
3. I'll get an extra ten days to wear Crocs wherever I want (including church) because "I'm pregnant."
4. More time to make lots of giant, obnoxious bows and spend all of Chris's money on adorable pink things! (That one's for you, Chris.)
5. I'll still be able to "eat for two" on Thanksgiving.
6. I won't have to worry about buying any newborn size outfits because she'll come out toddler-sized already.
7. I can get up the day after Thanksgiving and still have time to hit the Black Friday sales at Target before I head to the hospital!

Pregnancy Statistics

How far along? 38w1d
Gender: Girl
Current Cravings: Sausage McMuffin with egg and rootbeer (...but not at the same time.)
Weight gain: +32 lbs
Worst moment this week: Cleaning and organizing my office in preparation for being gone for 12 weeks. It feels like something died in me! I hate change.
Best moment this week: Staying home on Halloween (while Chris was at the U game), passing out candy and catching up on all my Thank You notes!
Funniest moment this week: Trying to get Chris to take my 38 week belly pic. (See below...)
Belly button in or out: Out.
Labor signs: Still 50% effaced and at a -2 station.
What I miss: I miss work already.
What I'm looking forward to: Only 6 more days of work! (How can I miss it and look forward to being done with it at the same time? No idea.)

Funniest Moment This Week
Last night I came home from work and asked Chris to take my picture, like we do every Wednesday. He snaps 3 really quickly so he can head back to the couch without missing too much of his show. I decide to check them out before I turn the camera off and put it away.

Not a single picture was in focus.

I ask him to come back in and take a few more because they were all out of focus, and he grumbles and grumbles. Then he snaps a few more.

Still all out of focus.

I tried to explain to Chris that he must be moving his hand while he's pressing the button, causing my face to be out of focus on all of the pictures. (Our camera even has image stabilization, for Pete's sake!)

Chris's response? "It's not my fault your face shakes while I take your picture."

{Me "shaking my face."}

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

The No-Update Update

Chris and I went to my 38 week doctor's appointment yesterday. Apparently there is nothing happening down there. Absolutely nothing whatsoever.

We told the doctor that we have a supplemental insurance policy that we're hoping to make it past the 11th for in order to be covered. She prettymuch laughed at the thought of this baby coming before the 11th.

She's so sure this baby's in there for the long haul that she scheduled my induction for November 27th. (Did I mention my due date is the 18th?) THAT'S 10 DAYS PAST MY DUE DATE!

If I'm still pregnant on November 27th, heads are seriously gonna roll.

That is all.

{Picture of Chris and I from Jaron & Jessica's reception last night.}

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Painting the Piggies

I got the chance to review some cool children's nail polish for my other blog, so Nora Jane and I painted nails on Sunday with Piggy Paint. All we had to do was put a sucker in her mouth and she was good to go.

The paint is odorless, non-toxic, and only takes about 60 seconds to dry, which is pretty cool. But Nora Jane didn't have any trouble sitting still -- she is all girl and enjoyed the pampering.

And I think she really liked the sparkly color. How adorable is this face?

I think Tucker secretly wanted his turn, too.