Saturday, August 29, 2009

post pregnancy clothes

There are those few women who fit into their regular clothes 15 minutes after they give birth. You know them. We love them, because they are our friends, but secretly, we're a tad jealous.

Well, no need to be jealous here. Still in sweat pants and still looking for T-shirts that fit properly. Somehow all the shirts I wore before and during pregnancy have magically turned into crop tops. I swear someone came through my closet and cut and hemmed them all. How on earth did they get so short?

Today I went to the mall to try and find any top that would make me look remotely cute for my first day of church. The only ones that make me look good are all priced above $70. Why is that? And then Old Navy is only stocking solids and stripes. Not a good look for the jelly belly around the middle. Then there is the milk producing jugs that need to find a place. Thankfully I found a great nursing bra for $12.99. A success to be noted, for sure.

So what is a girl to do in transition. I'm thinking I'm going to have to suck it up and wait a few months until some deflation has occurred. Until then, it's sweat pants and crop tops. Cute!


Tuesday, August 25, 2009

we'll keep him

I've said that the newborn stage is not my favorite. It still isn't, but knowing that this is our last baby, I'm enjoying the small things a bit more. It makes those moments in the middle of the night just a bit more tolerable and I'm savoring the snuggling knowing that they grow up so quickly.

Our family is enjoying this new little guy, especially the girls. They are absolutely smitten with their brother and can't wait for him to grow up and play. Poor guy is going to have 3 mama's.

Here's some of my favorite moments of the last two weeks.

Our last family of four picture. The night before we had Sam. We were at Multnomah Falls

The morning after I had Sam. The first snuggle of the day.

I love this shot. It's like she's saying, "get your hands off my baby!"

Oldest and Youngest

the relaxed look

Big sister love

peacefully sleeping

this is one of my favorites

Thursday, August 20, 2009

when sleep is good...

...the milk is not.

Most mama's know that a sleeping newborn is priceless. It's something you can't plan or predict for, you just have to take it as it comes. But when you are a breastfeeding mama, this can have a backfire effect.

ENGORGEMENT!

It's that wonderful feeling when you want your child to nurse and they are sleeping peacefully so you wouldn't dare wake them. No way! And what's worse, is you wish you were sleeping but for some reason you have two rock hard melons preventing you from getting comfortable in ANY position.

You debate, should I get up and pump? If I get up, will they wake up? And let's just be honest, the pump is not the most comfortable feeling in the world. Plus, finding it at 3 a.m. and putting the pieces together for the first time sounds like ALOT of work.

So you lay there in pain. Desperate for sleep but so thankful this little one is asleep.

Finally, he wakes! Relief. But it's like trying to nurse a watermelon. If only the rock hard feeling would let down. Finally after tears, pain, and yet ANOTHER let down, he latches. No it's time to break out that pump. Mama's got LOTS of milk.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

the wall

There comes a point in every new mama where you hit "the wall". For some this is just a day, for others, a season.

I hit my wall last night. And it seems the rest of my family is hitting theirs today. Last night I was overcome with emotion, sleep-deprivation, and thoughts of how I'm going to navigate through this. Today, Lily lost it in a way I've never seen, leading me to believe she hit her's. And then Dave this afternoon. He is out spending some time alone regaining his mental state as well. Eloise has yet to hit her's, and very well may not.

The best advice a fellow, seasoned mama gave me, (Jenny) was to give myself the first 6 weeks. In those first 6 weeks don't think about schedule, don't think about feeding, just survive. At 6 weeks, come up for air and look realistically at what you are ready to take on. But before that time, just survive. This has been the best advice and I've passed it onto many a friend. So you would think that I would take it to heart, right? It takes me just as much energy to put it into practice as anyone else.

So I give myself grace. Today and everyday. I will get through this time. We will all adjust to a new normal at some point and at that point there will be complete peace in a new way. For now I just snuggle, sleep when I can, discipline the best that I know how in the moment, and leave the dishes for another day. They won't be small forever, they won't be able to fit in the crook of my arm or play carefree as sisters. I pray I will enjoy each and every moment to the fullest.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

pictures - finally

Here's a few from the big day:

Dave still in shock, and me too for that matter!

not so cute, fresh from the womb look


Daddy's first boy. (and only!)

Okay, I'm finally ready to take a look

The girls first look at their baby brother


Eloise is smitten






First family of 5 Photo! We've got some work to do.

Checking things out.



Saturday, August 15, 2009

processing labor

Now that I've had 3 days to step away from the crazy intense labor I had, I've been able to remember details that I didn't recall immediately.

**I heard this at one point around 1 p.m. or so and it stands out as the most random exchange ever.
my mom: It's time to make some guacamole
Angela: How do you just whip up guacamole?


**Ellie, my midwife, told me at one point my mom was getting nervous so she decided to make a pizza. It seems there is a trend to what my mom does to get rid of her anxiety.


**I went through transition TWICE. Yes, TWICE. Once with an anterior baby and once with a posterior baby. I prefer anterior and believe that labor would have been much easier if he would have taken that route.


**This little guy decided to flip to anterior right before coming out. Ellie had only seen that once before and Heather, my other midwife, had never seen it. He really did move constantly inside me and proceeded to follow suite upon entering the world.


**I sobbed the moment my girls walked in. It was the most precious moment ever and I knew they would fall in love with their little brother the moment they saw him. Eloise was a bit overwhelmed but kissed him all over. Lily kept posing for all the camera's and paid little attention to Sam.

There's more I'm sure, but I wanted to get these down before I forgot. Pictures will come soon.






Thursday, August 13, 2009

picture

Angela took pictures for me and I am planning on getting them tonight or tomorrow but until then here is baby Sam's picture. Here's her small write up.


the birth of sam

He's here! After a much awaited arrival little Samuel Fenimore Ahl has made his appearance and he is one BIG kid. He came last night at 9:16 p.m. weighing 9 lbs 13 oz and 20 1/2 inches long. The most impressive part, he has a 14 inch head. That was fun to push out.

Here's how the day progressed.

Our plan was to start some herbs 10 a.m. Around 8:30 a.m. I started to go into labor naturally. It was slow but at least I knew we wouldn't have to work at making it start which gave me some relief.

Ellie checked me at 10:30 and my fore bag of waters had broken and I was already 6 cm. I hadn't even had any real contractions at this point so I felt encouraged that this labor would progress quickly.

Around 11 everyone started to arrive. I had an amazing group of women that I'll call the "birth team". My midwives, Ellie and Heather, the apprentice Jenny, my friend Angela and my mom. Dave of course is part of this team too but my husband doesn't do well watching me in pain. In fact at one point during pushing he said that he might have to go outside and "punch something". He's happy to surrender a first post position to a group of women helping me to labor through the pain.

Let the party begin. My mom arrived with tons of food and magazines. We watched TV and relaxed until the real labor began around 4 ish. It was perfect. I loved having people distract me and joke around with me during those early contractions. I couldn't have asked for anything better.

Around 4 hard labor started to kick in. I got in the birth tub and it started to slow down. Right before I had gotten in I was at 9 cm and felt really optomistic but something happened to make me think that things had slowed. I have as yet to give birth in the tub so I felt like I should get out and labor elsewhere. What happened, which my midwives didnt' tell me, which I'm glad that they didn't, was that he flipped posterior and took me back to 6 cm.

I got out and took another 3 hours to progress back to 10 cm and pushing. It was alot of pushing on my back and rocking in a standing position.

I tried to remain positive but I have to say at this point I was falling apart a bit. I felt discouraged and overwhelmed. I had in my head that this baby would make his appearance quicker than the other two. I didn't think it would be 2 hours but I thought maybe 5 or so. So I had to adjust my expectations and muster up strength to go the distance.

At 8:30 I was finally complete and felt like pushing. With Lily I only pushed 3 times, so this couldn't be that much longer right?....wrong.

A few minutes into pushing I knew this wasn't the same. My fear was that it was going to be like Eloise (3 1/2 hours of pushing). I started to lose all motivation. Thankfully I had great women around me cheering me on.

Here's why it was taking so long. This little boy was presenting posterior. At one point I made the statement, "I feel like I'm breaking in half". Finally at the last minute he flipped anterior (the right way). After 45 minutes of pushing the little guy finally made his appearance.

I cried many tears of joy but more tears of relief. I was done. I was crying so hard I didn't even notice this little slimmy person laying on my belly for 10 minutes.

It was an amazing birth experience and I appreciate the women who attended me, my husband who supported me, and my family that cheered me on. It is great to finally be holding this little baby in my arms. We are all happy baby Sam is here.

I'll post pictures soon.


Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Wow! 2 weeks!

I never imagined that with my 3rd baby I would be overdue by 2 weeks. I knew the 3rd baby was always the question mark as far as how long birth would last, but I never thought that it would be late. But, here I am, 2 weeks overdue.

It's been interesting to watch how the people around me respond. Most are shocked. Some anxious. Others worried. Some perplexed why I would even allow myself to get to this point. But most incredibly supportive and excited to see when this little man will arrive.

I know not allowing a medicinal intervention is not popular. I'm no stranger to that, I am choosing a home birth. But I know that my baby is doing well. He has a great heartbeat, I have energy and show no signs of stress or anything going awry. When I feel worried or overwhelmed I call my midwife and talk through those issues with her. THAT is why I chose a home birth. I have an incredible relationship with the woman who is going to help me bring this child into the world. I trust her implicitly with my life and know that she would never, ever take a risk that would endanger me or my baby. And as I have said many times, I trust the Lord and His timing and I know that he is in control of my life and this birth. I rest safely in that.

So I have waited. Tomorrow we will do some homeopathic tricks to get this baby to move. I'm hoping that all will work and I will get to meet this tiny baby tomorrow. I'll let you know!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

first bible verse

First, where did the ticker baby on the side go? Apparently he came before this little baby.

Second, the girls learned a bible verse a while ago. I've been meaning to get it on tape and keep forgetting. Finally this morning, I managed to capture both of them repeating John 3:16.


video


video

Friday, August 7, 2009

Favorite Link Friday

I didn't really think I'd be posting this week but here I am. Enjoy the fun links and hopefully I'll have something to report soon.

* I have found Eloise's birthday party theme. She loves mermaids and I've been trying to avoid the Ariel theme and when I found this it was perfect. Plus you can buy her party packs. Great idea!

*Sew cute dresses for girls.

*I like this post because it describes where I might be at on Sunday.

*This is my favorite, go-to recipe for mac and cheese. In fact there is a single guy at my church that begs me to make it for him. If I wasn't huge prego I would make it. It's the best mac and cheese ever!

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

no baby yet

it's 6 a.m. and I'm laying here in bed trying to make sense of why this child has decided my womb is the perfect place for him to reside until kindergarten. It will be interesting to see what type of personality he ends up having and how is coincides with his long awaited arrival to birth.

I'm doing okay, but slowly losing patience. My mom came yesterday just to see the girls, help with the house and do some cooking. It's nice to finally have a clean house, happy girls who get a special day with their nana and a mama who is not having to figure out what to eat. There are good blessings.

Today we try the pedicure trick. I'm hoping some points in my feet might trigger some contractions. But when all is said and done, this baby will come when this baby is ready to come.

For now I am praying for peace and patience for myself and for the rest of my family, mostly Dave. I get that this is hard on him, especially being without a job and processing through everything that goes along with that.

Currently I'm listening to Be Thou My Vision which is helping to keep my mind in perspective. Interestingly enough we sang this at our wedding and it seems fitting in this time to keep the Lord in my perspective and knowing that He knows our perfect timing for this little boy to come into our family. I'm praying in the moments of losing patience that this comes to mind. Simple Gifts is also a great help.

Hopefully news will come soon.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

waiting

I'm still here waiting for this tiny little boy to arrive. My dates are fairly accurate but I'm not one of those people that is on a normal cycle, usually long. So that being said, I don't feel like the date is all that off of where it should be.

I remember waiting for Eloise to arrive. I was a week late and going absolutely crazy. I could have run someone over with my car I was so impatient. But it was my first baby. I was waiting to meet this person (we didn't know the sex) and was dilated to a 4 for 2 weeks. I also suffered from a horrible rash called PUPP's. It was simply awful. When I heard a friend of mine due 2 weeks after me had her baby before me, I came unglued. I felt like that episode of Friend's where Rachel watches all the other women have their babies before her. Maddening.

I know what lies ahead this time. I'm already a mother and I know how it feels to hold a little newborn. So when everyone around me is anxious, it makes me retreat to a place of complete peace. Maybe it's a way to counter balance everyone else, but so far it's working wonders at keeping the peace for those around me.

Tuesday is the day I have given myself to start thinking of ways to induce. But to be honest, it freaks me out. I just want to go into labor naturally and not know when. To know when, is almost too much for me to cope with.

As a family, we have enjoyed our time with the girls and continue to seek the Lord in this time of waiting. There have been amazing blessings that the Lord has bestowed upon us and we are so thankful that we had the opportunity to experience them.

So we continue to wait....