Monday, October 26, 2009

Brianna is Two Weeks Old!

I can't believe it's already been two weeks since Brianna joined our family! In many ways it feels like it's been minutes, but also like she's always been a part of our lives. She's starting to sleep better-she only woke me up twice last night. We went to her two week check up today, and got nothing but great news. When we were discharged from the hospital she weighed in at 8lbs, 4oz, and at her "weight check" last week, she was at 8lbs, 6oz. I was given the goal of getting back to her birth weight (8lbs, 11oz.) by today's appointment. We waffled that goal, and she is at 8lbs 15oz! She doesn't eat a lot at each nursing session, but nurses often. She has only grown a quarter of an inch, but her height, weight, and head are all at the 75th percentile. The doctor even got her to show him her strong neck by putting her on a little bit of tummy time. He said she's doing great, and he has absolutely no concerns about her. I think the biggest change I've noticed this week is that her eyelashes are coming in long and thick, just like Daddy's and Gracie's.

Friday, October 16, 2009

My Girls

My girls are so alike so far, that I am a bit baffled at times. I must admit, it has made the transition into newborn momma again a bit easier. Here are some photos of what I see everyday. All of the first photos are of Gracie Jo, and the second ones are of Brianna Leigh.

Dancing Queen

Monday, October 12, 2009

Brianna's Birth Story

Sunday morning I woke up and went to the bathroom. Upon wiping, I discovered a lot of. . .slime. It was a very significant amount, much more than a mucus plug so I got a bit concerned. I called the hospital, and because I was already dilated to 5cm, they told me to come in right away to determine if my water was broken or not. After checking in and getting examined, they said it was not anmiotic fluid, but they couldn't figure out what it was. They were not happy with the thought of sending me home at 5cm, but also didn't think I was in labor yet.

After talking to the doctor that had scrapped my membranes on Friday, they gave me a choice; I could stay, they'd break my water and that doctor would come in to deliver Brianna, or I could go home and come back on Monday to have my regular doctor induce me. Since I have only been under my doctor's care since we moved in September, it's not like I have a big connection to him, and I really like the other doctor too so I figured why go home and wait another day?

The nurses decided to break my water. Sounds easy, right? Because of all the slime, they couldn't figure out where the sack was. It took three nurses three tries each and they still weren't sure if it was broken or not. They decided they had probably poked holes in it, and it would gush soon. They were right. Despite the broken water, I was barely feeling my contractions so they put me on Pitocin to make them stronger. At this moment, I was thinking I should ask for an Epidural, but I wasn't in pain yet and didn't want to jump the gun either. I decided to wait-BIG mistake! I wasn't expecting the Pitocin to progress so fast. In less than a half hour my pain scale went from 1 to about 8! It was torture to wait for the Epidural, but well worth the wait.

Brianna was "sunny side up" as the doc called it. I didn't find it all that sunny! Basically, most babies come out head first, facing down. This give the best flexibility in the neck to easily get the baby past the momma's pelvic bone. When a baby is "sunny side up," s/he is facing up instead of down. This makes it significantly harder to push the baby past the pelvic bone, and seriously almost killed me! I pushed about an hour and a half, but the contractions were so far apart that it seemed like a lot of my work was getting wasted between contractions. It felt like it took forever to get her to crown, and even longer to get her out! I thought she was stuck for a while. Just when I thought it was all over, the placenta got stuck. After forty minutes of trying to get it out with the help of occasional pushing, the doc had to "go in after it." The epidural had been turned off, and would have taken too long to put back on, so that was really painful. Then she had to search to make sure that no pieces of the placenta got left inside.

The biggest difference between Bri's labor and Gracie's was my audience. With Gracie, it was just the nurse and Brian with me. The doc had another woman in labor next door, so he ran in as Gracie was coming out. With Bri I told the grandmas and Carrie that they could stay as long as they were comfortable staying. At one point I had two nurses, the doctor, both grandmas, Carrie, and Brian in there! It was my own cheering section.

Big Sister Meets Little Sister

Brianna Leigh

is finally here!

Born at 11:19 p.m. Sunday, October 11th, 2009
8 lbs, 12 oz. 21" long

Friday, October 9, 2009

Week 40 Checkup

I had a very encouraging appointment today. Again, at first I didn't know if I wanted to be checked, but then she offered to strip my membranes, saying that would help labor progress. I took her up on that offer, as I am tired of the symptoms of pregnancy. She measured my belly (38cm), we listened to Bri's heartbeat, and then she got down to business. She said I'm now dilated to 5 (Woo hoo! Halfway there!), and stripped my membranes (OUCH!). She said everything looks good, and ready to go and "if that didn't cause labor, nothing will." She even said she will be contacting the on-call doctor to let him know to expect me this weekend; that's how certain she is that I'll be going in! My sub at work doesn't need my laptop, so I plan on bringing it to the hospital with me and if I feel up to it I'll post pictures and her birth story.

Today is the Day

Yep, it's here; Brianna's due date. So far this morning. . . nothing. Not that I was expecting anything different. Brian is expecting to meet her today. I told him not to, but he keeps saying today is the "big day." I have a doctor appointment at 1:30, although it's not with my regular doctor, as he is camping with his boys. I'm anxious to find out if another doctor there can run on time-but it's not really a fair comparison as my normal appointments are later because we have off of school today (wasn't it nice of them to give us time off in the schedule around my due date? Now if only she'd use it!) I have been expecting Bri to be late since week 18-actually even before then. I got extra ultrasounds because the doc couldn't find her heartbeat the first couple of visits after we should have been able to hear her, and I had to have three of the main ultrasounds just to determine if her heart was developing correctly. Each time they told me "nothing to worry about, the baby is just little." I guess I figured if she's been little the whole time either A: I wasn't as far along as they thought, or B: she'd need a little extra time to develop enough to join the world. Either way, that has her arriving late.

BabyCenter Says:
It's hard to say for sure how big your baby will be, but the average newborn weighs about 7 1/2 pounds (a small pumpkin) and is about 20 inches long. The biggest part of your baby's body is her head, but her still-pliable skull will give it the flexibility necessary to squeeze through the birth canal. Many parents are surprised by how long and sharp their newborn's nails are from the get-go. Clipping them right away (ask a nurse for help) can prevent your baby from scratching her face.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

18 Month Checkup

Gracie had her 18 month check up the other day. I know, she turns 19 months tomorrow-hey, I managed to make it in the right month! It's amazing how fast time is flying, yet how much it's dragging all at once right now. She now weighs 23.8 pounds (35%) is 31" tall (30%) and her head is 48cm (85%). In my husband's words: "Yeah, my baby's a bobblehead."

Uncle Tony's Birthday

We celebrated Uncle Tony's birthday a couple of weeks ago, but with keeping the camera in the suitcase for whenever Brianna decides to make her appearance, I kind of forgot about the pictures.

Enjoying Tony's birthday cake.

Toddler concert!
What a duet!
Watch out, Ben Folds!

Gracie's Peeps

One of Gracie's newest games is to dig through her dollhouse toybox and find all the people. This is no small task, as she has about 15 of them in there. She gathers them all up in her arms and brings them to the couch. Sometimes it even takes a couple of trips to get them all on the couch, but when successful she covers a whole couch cushion with her peeps. Then she climbs onto the cushion next to them, wiggles her way between them and the back of the couch and kicks them all off, one at a time. Once they're all off she points at them and laughs, climbs back down and starts all over with putting them on the couch. I don't really get it, but hey, if it keeps my toddler busy and isn't dangerous I'm all for it!

Friday, October 2, 2009

Week 39

The last couple of days can be summed up in one word: FRUSTRATING. Even thinking back on them is frustrating. After all the progress of Monday, I wasn't sure if I wanted my doctor to check if I was farther along. It's not exactly a pleasant thing to do, and I didn't want to be disappointed in the answer. After waiting about 40 minutes past my appointment time, I was finally called into the exam room where I talked to the nurse about it. She said I should talk to the doc and decide together. He came in, and we decided that we should check-so he left. He came back a while later, checked my belly (grew an inch), listened to the heartbeat (140s), and checked the progress (dilated to 3, baby indeed dropped). He told me that means she "could come next week, in two weeks, or tonight." Gee, that helps. He only has office hours on Monday next week, so I have an appointment with another doctor, and he told me he'd have his pager on him all week but won't be available on Friday as he's going camping with his boys. Great. Friday's my due date. He said to get dressed and we'd chat some more. So he left and I got dressed-and he never came back. By 6:30 my apt. was at 4:20) I was downright mad so I just left. He was on the phone, and no one else was around. My biggest puzzle is why do I keep rushing out of work to get to my appointments on time??

My contractions started while I was at the doctor. They were very mild, so I didn't think much of them. However, they continued all night. I woke up at least every hour in intense pain throughout my abdomen and lower back. They must have subsided around 3 a.m. because I awoke with a start to my alarm clock. I've had more contraction here and there all day, but nothing consistent. I feel like my body is betraying me, making me feel like I'll finally get to hold little Brianna but giving me nothing. Luckily, next week is a two day work week, so I think I can handle it. I keep reminding myself the longer I hold out, the better for Bri-and the closer my maternity leave is to the holidays which means easing myself back into working and leaving my two babies at home.