It's a good life

It's a good life

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

March 26th, 2016

Friday, March 25th. It's the middle of March Madness among other things. I had been on bedrest trying to delay your arrival for the last 3 weeks. Medications had now been stopped and I had been released from bedrest as of Monday that week.
Yet, no activity. Nothin. I had been having contractions consistently for the last 3 weeks--breaking through the medications used to stop the contractions. Everyone, including our doctor, predicted that I would go into labor within hours of stopping the medication...but nothin' doin' had gotten cozy again and there were no signs of progress. So i started to prepare to go back to work. Which sounded completely overwhelming to me. For the last month, I had not walked further than the distance between my couch and my kitchen. And i had gotten really good at puzzles. So the thought of having to be on my feet and use my brain for a 10 hour day sounded more than daunting.
That week a friend had asked what would be "good news" for me in all of this? What could she pray for specifically in regards to your birth day? And I answered... if i knew that you would be ok... If i knew that i could avoid the NICU and you would be well and healthy and have everything you need to thrive outside of your internal home...good news would be for you to come before i had to go back to work....which consequently, was the following Monday. Just a few days away.
But before Monday, was Saturday, March 26th and KU was playing in the elite 8. Oh also- it was your Daddy and I's 6th wedding anniversary. So we decided to celebrate on Friday the 25th, to avoid having to spend our anniversary celebration watching the KU game at a bar. Romantic...but not my jam.
We went to the plaza and walked around. I wore a dress. We ate at season's 52 and had 4 desserts. We went shopping on the plaza and took selfies in the dressing room, completely unaware of what was going to follow in the hours to come.

As i was heading to bed around 12:30 that night, your daddy said to me, "just don't have the baby on our anniversary." And i responded confidently, "ok. I won't."

You had different plans.
1:45am--I had been in bed for about an hour and your daddy was just climbing into bed. I got up and went to the bathroom, as i was getting back into bed, i felt a sudden, gush of fluid.
"Oh shit!"
"I think my water just broke!"
And so you began your entrance into this world.
Your daddy started running around the house in a bit of a panic trying to get everything ready. And i sat, on the toilet, trying to figure out how to get up without making an amniotic mess.
2:20am- We were loaded up in the truck and headed to the hospital. I had called your Nanny and your aunt Jamie to let them know you were coming and instructed them on how to rally the troops.
We checked into the hospital.
3:00am- Sitting in triage, the nurse checked my progress--Only dilated to a 3 and 90% effaced--not much change from the last few weeks. Contractions had started, coming about 5 min apart. They were painful, but manageable.
4:00 am- We got to our room and i started walking around in between contractions. I remember thinking to myself, and actually saying out loud as i paced, "i can do this." "I got this." "This isn't so bad." The contractions were terribly painful, but i had a nice break of a few minutes in between. This was a doable.
The nurse told me she would check me again around 6am to see if i had progressed, but assured me it was only because Dr. Kimmel wanted to know where i was at, and that i shouldn't expect much progress.
2 hours. I thought we should get settled in and try to get into a rhythm, thinking we would be at this a while.
4:50 am- less than an hour later- things were happening. I was starting to feel a lot of pressure and was having a hard time managing the intensity and frequency of contractions. I asked your daddy to have the nurse come in. She put me on the monitor and said that contractions were picking up, lasting longer and coming faster. I asked if i could get into the bathtub. The nurse had originally told me i shouldn't get into the tub "too early" into labor as it can tend to slow labor if i wasn't far enough progressed. At this point, I was sitting on the birthing ball and my body was shaking uncontrollably. She mentioned she thought maybe i was in transition... the final and most intense stage of labor... I heard her, but thought to myself, it's only been like 2 hours..there's no way that this is almost over. She suggested that the tub would be a good idea at this point.
I got into the bath and continued to labor with the help of your daddy. He called your Nanny, Aunt Kelsey and Aunt Jamie and told them if they were going to be here for your birth, they better get here quick. Nanny got to the hospital sometime while i was in the bath. A few min later Aunt Kelsey arrived.

I didn't notice. All of my energy was focused on the work that was upon me and before me.
Pain would come in waves, i would lock eyes with your daddy who would calmly nod and whisper, "just like that. you're doing great. yup just like that."
5:30am- I had been in the bath for about 30 min and your daddy thought it was time to get out. Something was changing again. We called the nurse and she came in. I asked to be checked again.
7 cm. 0 station. 100% effaced. You were coming.
"have you called Dr. Kimmel?" I asked anxiously. Shoot. 4 cm in 90 min...she better get here FAST.
"I called her a few min ago, she's on her way."
I have no idea when she arrived, but i remember hearing her voice and a wave of reassurance rushing over me. She was the most calm and steady woman. She brought with her peace and confidence. Just the things you want in the woman who is helping you bring your baby earth-side.
6:15am- your Aunt Jamie arrived.
Dr. Kimmel checked me again- 9cm. She let me have another few contractions and then it was time.
The pain and tension between 7 and 10cm was unlike anything i had experience thus far. The pain of contractions, everything in my body, surging to expel the being inside me, and the knowledge that if i did before i was ready, i would do damage to my body, causing me to have to hold back. Tension. That's the best word to describe it.
Then pushing.
i was told that pushing would "feel good" because it would take away the pain of contractions.
Not so.
Did it lessen the pain of contractions? Sure. At least i think it did.
Did it "feel good."
Hell no.
I won't go into detail--but if you so desire- you can inquire about "the ring of fire" to any woman that has had a baby without pain meds....they'll tell you. Oh they'll tell you.
However---8 min later---8 minutes of pushing, ended when i heard your heart rate drop on the monitor and was told that if we couldn't make some serious progress with this next push, scalpels and stitches would be needed to get you out.
Hell no again.
I gave it my all, with the thought of you, and the desire to avoid unnecessary incisions, out you came.
Those watching said it was a good thing Dr. Kimmel was a good catcher, because neither of us wasted time--you would ready and so was I.
6:47am- 5 short hours of the most intense, most painful, most beautiful process i have ever been apart of. You and me. We did it. You were in my arms. You were mine to love. Forever.

Bowen Thomas Blake
Born March 26th, 2016 at 6:47 am--three and a half weeks early, but right on time.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Motherhood. One month in.

Who kept Noah safe from harm?
Who brought him safely through the storm?
Who kept his promise? Yes it's true!
Who does just what he says he'll do

Yes, God's the one. And guess what too?
Yes, God's the one.
He does just what he says he'll do.

Little one, in the storm, God cares for you.

Little one, in the storm, he will keep you safe from harm.
Little one in the storm, God cares for you.

My sister gave me the "Rain for Roots" album a few weeks ago. It's an album of bible stories put to the sweetest little's of course for kids. Except I've listened to it about 100X in the last week and maybe cried at how much it speaks to my heart in this current season (i mean, see above lyrics)
I'm currently wearing my baby while i type because it's the only way to get a thing done around here these days.
My baby...who is a month old today. One whole month! I'm heartbroken and relieved all at the same.
I love him so much it hurts.
No, like it physically hurts.
I stare at him and am overwhelmed with both love, and the fears of all that could happen to him. I feel completely and soley responsible to keep him alive and to protect him. To protect his physical being, his emotional state, and his heart and spirit. I've never looked at the world, or lets be real, my own house, as such a treacherous place to be and live. But it seems that I can turn just about everything in my home into a threat to my child's life. I mean, the ants that i keep finding in random places in my house, like on my bedspread...certainly those suckers are carrying some deadly disease that they could pass to my child with their ginormous fangs right? And that window just above his bassinet? What if a burglar, or ya know, a bird! breaks through that window, shattering glass all over him. Or lets say by the grace of God, he does make it through his first year, surely all of the furniture in our house that isn't bolted to the ground could fall on top of him and crush him.
You think I'm kidding. I've thought through all of these scenarios. You can send my husband a 6 pack of beer or a plane ticket to Mexico as a way of saying, "I'm sorry motherhood made your wife crazy."

Motherhood is everything and nothing that i thought it would be.
I love the little noises he makes. My favorite is this little gasp after he yawns. When he sneezes, his arms fly up in the air--i wonder if my arms would do the same if i didn't hold them down. He also never sneezes just once, but at least 3 times and as many as 5. it's the cutest.
He gets the hiccups like 9 times a day. Also the cutest.
Sometimes i look at him and see me, a little tiny boy version of me. With my blue eyes, set far apart and my stubby nose. And other times I'm sure that he is 100% my husband, with his perfect little mouth and auburn hair. I love how he holds his hands clasped together when he sleeps. I love the weight of his body on my chest. He is the best miracle there has ever been. I literally love everything about him.
How can i love everything about him, but at the same time, question whether having a baby was the worst decision every made? Its confusing.
Yesterday, i didn't want to be a mom anymore. I actually had the thought--"mmmya...maybe this isn't for me." That feeling has mostly left me today, and in it's place....guilt.
I've had mastitis for the last few days. which means that i have been on antibiotics. Those antibiotics have upset the baby's tummy causing him to literally be inconsolable at times and only happy if i wear him- and sometimes not even then.
I had been giving him probiotics to help his tummy digest, but of course, between the intense boob pain, fevers and body aches, had forgotten to give them to him the last few days since i started the antibiotic. Which also makes me feel guilty and wonder if i could have avoided the tummy issues all together.
This morning when Kyle offered to take him for a bit, i thought, sure..but it doesn't really matter, because I'm going to have to nurse him again in another hour--and even if i didn't nurse him, I'd have to pump otherwise my boobs would explode. (sorry for the visual)
So I'm just feeling a little trapped all of a sudden. Like its impossible for me to get out of this "situation" I've gotten myself into.
I've known all of this for quite some time--that i really am no longer my own, but my body now belongs to this tiny emperor. But for whatever reason, it just now seems to be settling in. It took one month to the day.
Blame it on the sleep deprivation, or the 103 degree fever--but the fact still remains: I'm trapped into being a mother for the rest of my days.
I actually had the thought that maaaaybe i should just give the baby back to where he came from...just for like a day. Or maybe 12 hours.
While we are wishing for things. Id like to be skinny again too please.
Like I said, motherhood is everything and nothing i thought it would be.

A few days after we had gotten home from the hospital with this tiny human, who came three weeks early, and would therefore allow me to say on a daily basis in defense of my irrational anxiety and worry, "but he shouldn't even be here yet!"--my daddy reminded me, it's actually not my responsibility to keep him alive. God's the one. It's actually not my job to protect him. God's the one. It is only my job to pray for him, and to do the best that i can with what God has given me. So good news. Pressure's off. God's the one. And guess what too? He does just what he says he'll do.

Also. Motherhood is the best. THE BEST. I wouldn't trade it for anything this side of heaven. It's hard. But what is good that isn't hard? The answer is not much. And Motherhood? It's the hardest. Because it's the best.