Tuesday, January 31, 2012

1 month

Dear Annie,

I cannot believe you are 1 month old.  How the heck did that happen?  Dexter loves you more than I could have known.  I was worried he'd resent you because he had over 2 years of being an only child,
but he loves you so much. 

We can't even remember a time when you weren't with us.  Our little family of four seems natural.  I tell you every night how special you are to us.  Dexter holds his special place as our first born.  You also hold a special place as our "miracle baby."  Someday, I'll explain that to you.

I was talking with your grandma, my mom, tonight.  My wish for you is that some day, you and I have the same relationship my mom and I have.  It's good, baby girl.

Know that Daddy and I will always love you no matter what!


Monday, January 30, 2012

Stationery card

Modern Script Girl Birth Announcement
Personalized cards for babies, graduation, and Mother's Day.
View the entire collection of cards.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Dexter's Birth Story...

This is coming a good 2+ years after his birth, so forgive me if I don't remember every detail.

Up until about my 32 week, my pregnancy was pretty normal.  Then we hit that 32nd week, and my blood pressure started to creep up.  It became a routine, the nurse would do all of the pre-exam tests, and my blood pressure would be high.  Dr. Shaheen (typically, once Dr. Thomas) would come in and have my blood pressure checked at the end of the appointment, it would be a little lower, and we'd chalk it up to Monroeville traffic or driving in crappy weather, stress from work.

I hit 36 weeks and had my baby shower on a Sunday.  More than one person told me I looked like crap (thanks!).  I had to wear slippers at my shower because my feet were swelling, which I thought nothing of, being that hey I"m pregnant, feet swell.  After my shower was over, I took my slippers off to put my shoes on....my feet were so swollen they were numb and I had ridges all over where the slippers had been.  Hmm...


On Tuesday, I went to my doctor appointment.  The nurse took my blood pressure, looked at me, didn't say anything much, and left the room.  Dr. Shaheen (my most favorite doctor in the world, and no you can't have her) came in and wanted to take my blood pressure.  I could see the concern in her eyes, and started to worry.  She laid it out for Rob and I.  My blood pressure was definitely registering high, and I had elevated proteins in my urine.  She wanted me to go to the hospital for some more tests.  Being that my blood pressure had been playing games for a few weeks, she thought we'd probably be home later that evening.

Hearing that, we went straight to Magee.  I had my purse.  Rob had his wallet.

I expected to hit emergency and wait, but we were quickly (really quickly) shuffled into a sort of holding area, where they put me in a gown and started hooking me up to machines.  My blood pressure was being taken every few minutes.  Enter in an insanely old nurse.  They needed to do a clean urine catch.  I thought I'd be peeing into a cup.  Um no.  They needed to insert a catheter.  Without an epidural or spinal.  The nurse says, "I haven't put one of these in in over 2 years."  Yeah and it hurt like it.

An hour or so later (no I'm not kidding) another of my OB's comes into the room and makes a remark about probably not leaving without a baby.  Um, what???   I thought we were going home tonight!!  Well, she wanted us to stay overnight, and have me do a 24 hour urine catch.  FYI, it was almost 11:30 by the time we got to my room, which meant 24 hours put me at almost midnight the next day!  OMG.  Do you know how boring this many days in the hospital is???

Finally, my 24 hours has passed.  It's early Thursday morning when the same OB I saw in the ER came into my room.  She told me I had classic pre-eclampsia.  She also said that it was bad, they were worried about it going into eclampsia, and the only treatment was delivery.  I'd be 37 weeks the next day, so we'd be proceeding Friday.

I don't think we really had time for things to sink in.  Friday morning.  The doctors ordered an ultrasound. Even though they were sure they were inducing labor, they had to check and make sure his lungs were developed enough.  I was wheeled down (not allowed to walk) to ultrasound.  The tech measured Dexter and said he was measuring at 9lb. 12oz.  OMG.

My hippie doctor (as I call her) comes to see me and says they're going to induce me.  I'm wheeled to labor and delivery and they start my induction.  We call our parents, as I'm not dilated at all, and they're anticipating 36 hours before there is any action, and tell them to stay home, no big deal.  20 minutes into the induction, there is a shift change.  Rob has gone to get something to eat.  Dr. Shaheen enters my room, sits beside me to chat.  She saw the ultrasound and is concerned that a natural birth, with the pre-eclampsia, and the size of Dexter would be putting too much strain on him.  She was concerned about him having a broken collarbone, or dislocated shoulders.  She was also concerned I'd be in labor for that long, and end up with a c-section.  Her recommendation was to do the c-section now.  Rob walks in the room literally minutes later, having forgotten his cell phone.  We talk about what she suggested, and decide it's the best choice. 

We're told that there is only one other person on the schedule, so I'd be having a baby within the hour.  We frantically call our parents saying, um, change of plans, get down here.  My brother and his family also want to head down.  My doctor comes back in.  The woman ahead of me is having a change of heart, not sure she wants a c-section, so it's go time for me.  The anesthesiologist comes in to talk to me about my spinal.  The next thing I know, I'm walking to the OR.  My spinal is in, the curtain is up, and Rob is beside my head before I can even think about what's going on.  We hear Dr. Shaheen and the resident talking, but don't really know what's going on.

meds.  The next thing I know, there's a little baby face popped up over the curtain and we here Dr. Shaheen say, "Hi Guys!  I"ll be right back!"  They take Dexter over and clean him up.  They take pictures and bring him to Rob.  I'm stitched up, Rob leaves, they move me to my bed, and wheel me back to labor and delivery.

I never had a chance to be scared.  Everything happened so quickly.  I continued to have blood pressure problems even after delivery.  It was a crazy few days.  I never truly understood how emergent the situation was.  I'm glad that at the time, I didn't.  I didn't realize how severe the pre-eclampsia was.  Severe pre-eclampsia is diagnosed with a blood pressure over 160/110.  My blood pressure was 197/110.  My urine proteins were over 1000 mg.  I can't remember the exact number, but it was ridiculous.

We were very lucky that they caught it when they did and that Dexter was just perfect.  I had slight hypertension during the pregnancy, but thankfully, that's all it was and it passed after delivery. 

With Annie, I had so much time to worry, and no emergency situation.  With Dexter, we had an emergency, but no time to worry.  I don't wish the situation on anyone.  Ever.  We are blessed with our two wonderful children and choose to look at just that.

Monday, January 9, 2012

2011 in Review...

Borrowed from a fellow blogger....

I love this kind of stuff!  Plus it gives me a chance to reflect on the year that has passed...

1. What did you do in 2011 that you’d never done before?
Almost hosted Thanksgiving dinner for my family....until we had a plumbing problem and had to be creative for a week until our plumber could come out and fix the problem.  Yikes!

2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
My only goal for 2011 was to get pregnant, and  I did!  I definitely will have some goals for this year.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
I did.  On December 30 to our lovely daughter, Annalise.

4. Did anyone close to you die?
Yes, I lost my uncle after a long battle with cancer.  It's how we started 2011. A year and 2 days after I lost my beloved grandmother.

5. What countries did you visit?
None.  We remained in the USA.

6. What would you like to have in 2012 that you didn’t have in 2011?
no health problems.  End of story.
7. What dates from 2011 will be etched upon your memory, and why?
July 5th, the day I discovered I was pregnant.  December 30, the birth of my daughter.

8. What was your biggest achievement of this year?
I survived my first year as a home owner.  This may not seem like a big deal, but after renting in our teeny, tiny townhouse, where we had a rental company that took care of all of our problems, a year of being a home owner was a pretty big deal.

9. What was your biggest failure?
The baby weight from Dexter is still there. Why is it so hard??

10.  Did you suffer illness or injury?
 I had gestational diabetes and a c-section.  still recovering from the c-section.

11. What was the best thing you bought?
Rob's new car.  Thank goodness.  We can travel safely in his vehicle once again!  A freezer...so needed, and I have no clue why we put it off for so long!

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
My husband and my parents.  They were very supportive during a rough pregnancy and delivery.

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
I really don't dwell on the bad behavior of others.  It's not worth it.

14. Where did most of your money go?
Mortgage, bills.  The usual.

15. What did you get really excited about?
Discovering that after a year of hardship, countless complications, that we were finally pregnant.

16. What song will always remind you of 2011?
Party Rock Anthem...Dexter cracks me up when that song comes on.

17. Compared to this time last year, are you: a) happier or sadder? b) thinner or fatter? c) richer or poorer?

18. What do you wish you’d done more of?
Working out.  I need to get back into it.

19. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Letting people make me feel bad.  I need to let mean people stay out of my life.

20. How will you spend Christmas?
With our families...the way we always do and we love it.

21. Did you fall in love in 2011?
Rob and I celebrated 5 years married.  We are very much in love.  We love our son, and we fell in love with our little girl.

22. What was your favorite TV program?
Gilmore Girls, Criminal Minds, many HGTV shows.

23. What was the best book you read?
Twenties Girl.  My favorite author.  :)

24. What was your greatest musical discovery?
I have no clue...Really I don't.

25. What did you want and get?
A baby!

26. What did you want and not get?
The ability to be a stay at home mom.

27. What was your favorite film of 2011?
We haven't been to the movies in forever.  Though I loved Bridesmaids which I saw on DVD.  Hahaha.

28. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
32.  I don't remember what we did, but I'm sure we went out to dinner and enjoyed an adult only evening.

29. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
Knowing I'd be spending every day with my children, it's all I want to do these days.

30. How would you describe your personal fashion concept of 2011 ?
I wore maternity clothes for a big portion of it, so...comfortable, but work appropriate.

31. What kept you sane?
My husband and my mother. 

32. What political issue stirred you the most?
The changes in healthcare.  I'm sure it benefits some.  It made things much more expensive for us.

33. Who did you miss?
My grandmother.  I'm still not used to her not being here.  She was my rock.

34. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2011.
There are way more mean people in this world than there should be.  There are also a lot of people who are used to getting their way.  Sometimes these two people are one.  Dealing with them is not pleasant.

35. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.
Be not afraid.
I go before you always.
Come follow me, and
I will give you rest.

-John Michael Talbot

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Annie's Birth Story

Our beautiful little girl has officially joined our family!  On December 30, 2011 at 7:58 am, Annalise Lane joined our family.  Our Annie was 7lbs. 10oz. and 19 inches long.  She is truly perfect.  I know I'm biased, but, seriously, she's perfect.

This was totally different than having Dexter. That in itself, should be blogged as its own birth story.  As a matter of fact, it will be.  It was crazy.

Okay, that being said, Annie was a scheduled c-section.  It was the safest route for us.  Plus, I had my tubes tied.  I know, I know.  How do I know for sure I'm done?  After the emotional roller coaster of a second pregnancy, complications prior to getting pregnant, and complications during pregnancy, there is no way, emotionally and physically, I can be pregnant again.  God has blessed us with two beautiful children and we are thankful for that.  I've always been told, you will KNOW when you are done having children.  Ladies, it's true.  You will no.  Don't even try to second guess yourself.  You will know.

So Miss Annie was a scheduled section.  Problem with a scheduled section?  You get to start settling in to worry about a week before the section.  The day before?  Nerves.  Upset stomach.  Questioning the surgery.  The morning of?  Shaking, physically feeling ill, being so nervous.  During the surgery?  Constantly worrying, feeling like an elephant is sitting on your chest, wanting to beat the crap out of the smarmy anesthesiologist. (Dude you're my age, unmarried, have no kids and never will, have the quintessential barbed wire tattoo, shut the eff up.)

The surgery itself felt a zillion times longer than with Dexter (more on that later).  I kept asking Rob to peak around the curtain and tell me if everything was okay.  "Is that the baby??"  "No"  "What about that??"  "No."  The anesthesiologist's nurse was doing his best to try and keep me warm.  By turning on this like 454759487 million degree warming fan thing that went under 12 blankets that were on top of me.  I think he thought I was nuts when I was like, um dude, turn that thing off.

After what seemed like an eternity, we heard baby cries.  Then we waited oh so impatiently for them to clean her off, all the while listening to "Oh my, she's so beautiful." and "She's perfect, and look at all that hair."  While waiting, I got to hear the doctor teaching the resident how to perform a tubal.  They finally brought baby Annie over to Rob, but I was tilted down so far, that no matter how Rob moved and turned, I couldn't see her face. 

It seemed like closing up my incision took longer than the surgery, but really it seemed that way because I was anxious to see our daughter.  They finished up, took Annie from Rob, and took him back to recovery.  Then came the fun.  They disconnected all of my stuff, minus the IV.  Took down the curtain and then I had to move from the OR table to the stretcher/bed.  Oh yeah, I'm still feeling the effects of the spinal, which means I can't move.  I've been through this before but it's still weird to be tipped to one side, have a backboard put under you, moved, then tipped to the other side, and have the backboard removed.  At this point, I was FINALLY given my baby girl, Annalise Lane.

I moved to recovery, where I was able to start moving my legs in about 5 minutes.  I was stuck in recovery for a long time though.  The hospital had a ton of babies over that week, and I had to wait hours for a room.  Plus, baby Annie (sorry, it's what Dexter calls her and it's becoming habit!) was registering low blood sugar (thanks a lot gestational diabetes), so I had to nurse and give her formula to keep her out of the NICU.  That went on well into going to my room.

The only problem that hung on after her birth, was my elevated blood pressure.  GD??  GONE!!!  My doctor started taking my blood pressure manually, and as it turned out, it was actually fine.  The machines were registering 30+points higher than when taken manually.

I have never been so full of love in my life.  Dexter absolutely loves Annie (so far) and our family feels....complete.

Maybe an hour old??

Serious face..

Loving on little sis