Thursday, May 27, 2010

Month 2 of motherhood.

So, Brian had went back on the road and I am moving out of my parents and in officially with Brian. What a job that was?

Brian's place was more of a bachelor pad. He's closets were cluttered and the kids bedroom with no much of a bed room but a storage room. I spent about 2 weeks cleaning and hauling stuff off to either storage or the dump so that I could move me and Gretchen's things in. Doing this with Gretchen was hard at times. It was a big adjustment now having to try to take care of her and do house work and move all this stuff. I had to do the majority of my work when she was asleep. This was hard because that would have been the perfect time for me to rest since I was up every couple hours at night with her by myself instead of getting to take turns with Brian.

My plan during pregnancy was to go back to work after 6 weeks. But since my plans changed and I was doing this alone wit out my parents help I told Brian that I just wasn't ready to go back. I needed more time to adjust and get used to how I was going to do this alone. If I had went back to work I would never had gotten any rest. Not as if I was getting any to begin with but if I had to go to work to I would have died.

Instead of going to an outside job every day we lined up a couple of kids for me to keep at home. The first kid was Brian's neice Gracelynn and the other was a girl named Kaylee. This was an adjustment getting used to having another kid around, and they had to get used to me. I still worked at the group home PRN for the time being.

Nights were the worst at this point with her getting all the time. But I started relying on a babyswing to help me. I could get up and feed her and then put her in the swing to rock her back to sleep while I drifted back off for another 2 hrs.

By week 7 I stopped pumping breast milk. I was drying up and only making about 6 oz a day so she was receiving alot more formula then she was milk anyways.

Remember that I said Hayley liked playing with the babystuff. Well we got Gretchen a little puppy . So one weekend Hayley first wraps the pup in one of Gretchen's blankets, put the pup in the car seat, and tried to feed the pup a bottle with Gretchen's bottle. Oh my gosh, so now I have 4 kids and only one I actually gave birth too and one is a grown adult.

Gretchen's first true holiday was Halloween. I was so excited but totally disappointed that Brian didn't make it home. But she dressed up like a flower and we went to visit Haley and Isla ( who is exactly one month younger).

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Month One

So I had Gretchen. My mom and sisters were taking pics on there phone and calling everyone. Brian had called several times to enquire how I was doing. Mom sent him a picture and he said that she looked angry. Well she had just been born and was still yucky. I was surprised how swollen she was the first time I saw her. But by the next morning that had went down and she looked less like a sumo wrestler.

Staying at Rutherford Hospital was not fun. I mean they bugged that crap out of me. After I had Gretchen I was so tired. I had been up 32 hrs at that point and just wanted to get comfy and sleep. Instead every little bit they came in and even asked if I wanted my baby. Well of course I want her but I'm tired. I decided to keep her in the room with me that night. She stayed in the room with me and wouldn't go to sleep unless I kept the light now. Ok little girl you are only 12 hrs old, your too young to start being picky. Seriously, I would feed her and get her to sleep, put her down, crawl in bed, turn the light off and just a few moments later she would start crying. When I finally kept the light on she ended up sleeping for 2 hours.

Moving on

So now it was Wednesday morning and time to check out. Brian got there when the nurse was going over all my paper work. I was so happy he was home.

Gretchen had developed jaundice and we had to take her back to the hospital 3 times to have her bilirubic count done. I hated to see my little girl get pricked.
The poor thing had to be kept in the sun to help clear it up. She was so yellow,even the whites of her eyes were yellow. We would strip her down to just her diaper and lay her in the sunniest part of the house. I was so afraid that she would get sun burned but instead she got a nice tan. She was red for months. Gretchen and I stayed at my parents for a few day and then moved to Brian's. I know this made my mom mad but Brian is her dad and he is only home for a short while. There is no point in staying at my parents when he has a house 20 minutes away. Brian took good care of me and he taught me alot in the 4 weeks he was home.

One of the biggest adjustments was getting Hayley and Jacob used to having her around. They both loved having a new little sister but keeping Hayley out of the baby stuff was a job.

Gretchen was a typical newborn. Up every few hrs, peed, pooped, and sleeped. I tried to breast feed but then I got really sick . My back hurt a lot and I was throwing up. I called the doctors, went to the doctors,and finally went to the ER. The only explaination they could give me was that my pregnancy hormones were still really high and they were trying to get back to normal. Theoretically your hormomes go back to normal the second after you deliver. The ER doctor though I was pregnant again. Are you serious? She is a week old. I mean, I'm still bleeding, I'm still healing from an episotomy, I'm not pregnant. Since I didn't feel like nursing and really didn't feel like pumping while I was sick G stopped laching. I didn't have any choice but to pump, but pumping makes your milk dry up.

When Gretchen was 3 weeks old we went on our first family vacation. Brian and I had talked about going somewhere while he would be home. I figured that we would go to Gatlingburg TN, instead we went to Niagara Falls. Brian wanted to go to Las Vegas. Excuse me! I am not going to Vegas with a 3 week old and while I am breast feeding. But Niagara Falls was great, and taking Gretchen wasn't that hard except for the fact that my car is too small for a bunch of louges, camping equipment (that we didn't use), and a bulky stroller. It was so cramped. At the Falls we did everything and it was very affordable. For $35 a person you could watch a movie, go to the Cave of the Winds, ride the Maids of the Mist, ride the trollie, go to an aquariam that had seals perform, and go to the look out desks. The park was very clean and beautiful. We even got to see a wedding being performed. Our plan is to go back next year and go to the Canadian side. Everyone said that it is much better and you can see the falls better from that side since the majority of the falls are on this side and its hard to see it at an angle. The only thing that Gretchen couldn't do was go on the Cave of the Winds. The stairs were really wet and they wouldn't let us take the stroller. Carrying her would have been too scary for me so Brian and I took turns. He went first and then I went. While I was waiting for Brian there was a couple from Asia with a videocamera that stopped to look at Gretchen and asked me how old she was. When I told them three weeks they went " Oh, you Superwomen" while they were video taping us. So somewhere on youtube a bunch of Asians are looking at me and my 3 week old amd making comments about how us Americans raise our kids. Im sure they are going "Look at that crazy woman, she should be at home in bed. Not draggin her newborn 12 hrs from home just to see a big waterfall."

We continued our road trip and went down to Hershey PA and then to Laray VA. I remember when we went to the cavans in Leray we had to carry the stroller down the stairs and back up and Brian tripped and hit me in the back of the leg and I had a huge bruise.

By Saturday I was ready to come back home. Instead our trip got extended and we drove to Concord NC to go to the Great Wolf Lodge with Brians other kids and family. No offense I love Brians kids but I was ready to go home. We had been gone all week. But to make everyone happy we went. My opinion about the Great Wolf Lodge is that it is way over priced for what you get. The food got nastier the longer we stayed. Brian and I played with the kids in the water park area until closing the first night but by the second day we just rested waiting for the best time to bolt. I have decided that I will not boycott the GWL but simply go for the day and do a day pass. Its just not worth the money to stay over night. And besides my daughter was only 3 weeks old. She couldnt swim, all she did was sleep. I'm going to wait until she is big enough to enjoy the whole park. Also, the park is too big to keep up with your kids. Wait til you feel comfortable letting yor kids out of your site. Perhaps when they are about 12 or so. Jacob ran ahead of us and it took 4 adults almost an hour to find him. For younger kids I would suggest Ray's Splash Planet in Charlotte. It is smaller, cheaper, just as fun, and you can stand in one place and keep an eye on all your kids.

After a month Brian had to go back to work. I took him to the bus station and he was off. I didn't know when I would see him again.

My plan was to move back in with my parents. Brian said that I could move to his house but I thought that I wouldn't beable to do it alone and that I would need help.

Lets just say, 24 hrs after being at my parents, I went back to Brian's house.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

The End of the Pregnancy Race

The thing about being pregnant is that you are like a ticking time bomb without a timer. I mean, you are given a "due date" which in my case ment nothing.

I was at almost 37 weeks when I went to my last doctors appointment. It was suppose to be the doctors appt before I had to start going every week. That following week I was suppose to make out my birth plan.

I measured at 3 cm and 80% thinned. I was exstatic. But every told me that it could still take weeks for me to go into labor. The next day at work I worked from 7 am to 2 pm then they had a babyshower for me. After that I went to my neices birthday party. By the end of the day I was so ready to get home and get off my feet. My this point in my pregnancy I was hurting. My back and feet were sore, I had gained 6 lbs in two weeks, and Gretchen was still kicking the crap out of me. I was ready to have her but at the same time not ready.

Brian wasn't at home. I still had 3 weeks to go and he wouldn't be home for 2 weeks. Our awesome plan was for him to be home a week before my due date and be home for a month. I knew that there would be a chance that he would miss the birth but what if he had come home and then I end up being 2 weeks late? Then he would be on the road and miss it anyways.

So obviously plan one didn't work so on to plan 2. Instead of having Brian my mom and two sisters were in the room. Which for the most part was ok. Now years later we can look back and tell Gretchen how 3 amazing women helped deliver her.

I went into the labor the following Sunday night after my last doctors appointment. I was in bed trying to sleep but keep feeling this pain in my left side. I called Brian and told him that I thought it was time. He convinced me that I needed to get to the hospital immediately so I could get an epideral. Haha I will never listen to a man again on that part. I mean, they don't know what labor is like. But I had to go wake my parents up to take me. I was afraid to wake them, what if it was a false alarm. I kept going in and out of there room waiting to get my nerve up to wake them. Finally woke them up and then it was caos. It was caos on my part because I didn't have a bag ready. Ha ha, normally I am ready for everything but not this. Maybe it was my way of being in deniel that I was even ever going to go into labor. Instead I would just be pregnant forever.

So, long story short. I get to the hospital, they hook me up, give me an epideral at some point,break my water, then my labor stops. What the.... I knew it could happen but seriously this wasn't a good time for it to just stop right. For a second I thought this was great. I could go home and go to bed, cause at this point I had been up over 24 hrs and was exhausted, and then Brian could come home and just try this again later. Well, my sister laughed and had to remind me that they had give me an epideral and broke my water so I had no choice but to stay and have a baby. So they started my labor back up with pitosin but then it started to effect her heart rate so they stopped it again, but a monitor on her head inside of me, and they started it back but did it every slowly. I didn't really notice anything, I was feeling fine except being tired.

Finally hours later I felt alot of pressure on me. I thought I needed to do a #2 or something. I wanted to get up and go to the bathroom. Well I need to poop then. My sis Annie went and got the nurse and she came in and checked me. I was completely dialated and thinned. Oh so it was a baby trying to get out of me that caused the pressure, that makes sense.

So I start the pushing process, Dr Sobalavic finally comes in. He came in twice actually, the first time he forgot his glasses. Hell, is he that blind that he can't see a 7 lbs baby coming out of my you know what. At that point I started crying and told my mom that he wasn't taking this seriouslly and that he was going to leave her in me. Shit I was hurting. I had stopped pressing my epideral button. Hell I had other things on my mind and they told me it would help me feel my contractions. So anyways, I push, have an episiotomy, and Bamm. In a split second I went fromm being pregnant to not pregnant ; from being a nobody to being the greatest thing in the world, a Mom. 37 weeks of pregnancy, 12 hrs of labor, 45 minutes of pushing, and I got a beautiful baby girl.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Finding out I was Preggo

Where does this story begin? I guess at conception, whenever that was. I'm guessing somewhere in the first half of December of 2008. No I won't go in to details on how she was concieved. But it had to be before December 15 be Brian left going on the road with his new trucking job. He was going to be gone for 6 weeks. I had been staying with him at his house so when he left I went back to my parents to stay.

Around the beginning of January I started feeling exhausted all the time. I filling in at work on third shift for someone so I though it was my body not being used to the change. I also figured that perhaps I was anemic and was about to start my period. Well, my period never came. I went to Wal-Mart to get a pregnancy test just to make sure. I literally thought that it would come up negative and then I would start my period the next day. Wrong! The first test I didn't really know what it said. It was like a combo of positive and negative. Thats what I get from buying a cheapo at Wal-Mart. I called my sister Annie freaking out. We went back to Wal-Mart and got another test. This time it came up positive.

Woohoo I'm pregnant. But Brian was God knows where in the middle of the USA and wouldn't be back for 2 more weeks. He already know I was late so I couldn't keep it from him. How romantic, telling your boyfriend that you are pregnant over the phone.

I hated having to go to the health department and gettng on medicaid. I always said that I wouldn't be on welfare and look. On the bright side I am grateful cause it has kept me out of serious medical debt but going to the health department is just horrible. If I ever have another baby I will find a mid wife with a nice comfy office that reminds me of home.

Ok, maybe the health dept is horrible. I mean, the women there were for the most parent every helpful and caring. It was the atmosphere that makes you hate it. You go to this crowded office with tons of other preggers and alot of yelling kids. Maybe its a way of getting used to what is about to come. But I hate going to the doctor and spending hours of my time waiting just to see the doctor for 10 minutes.

It took me two weeks to tell my parents. We'll I didn't exactly tell them. They already knew. I got up early one morning when my dad was getting ready for work. There we were standing in the kitchen and I looked at him and started crying. He hugged me and said that he knew. You knew? How did you know? I guess since they are my parents and can just sense something. My mom said that since I was sleeping almost all the time and being all quiet and secretive that she could tell. Fortunately my parents were so excited. Woohoo grandbaby #7.

Moving on...

So, at 9 weeks Brian was home and he went with me to have an ultrasound to determine my true due day since I couldn't remember when my last period was and they were saying that I was 6 weeks further along then I actually was.

Seeing my little baby and hearing the heart beat was so surreal. I mean, it made the pregnancy real. I could see and hear this little thing that was growing inside of me. At 9 weeks she looked like a peanut with arms and legs. I got so tickled cause I could see her kicking her little legs. I look at the pictures now and just melt knowing that that was my precious little girl.

I had morning sickness from 6 weeks until 12 weeks. I couldn't take my prenatals or brush my teeth without getting sick. I lost 6 lbs due to that and the fact that I was scared to eat cause I knew I would get sick. The over the counter med , enulose I think its called helped some and switching me from the large minerally prenatals to flintstone vitamins helped the most.

For the most part my pregnancy was average. I'm saying this cause I knew it could have been alot worse. I went to the doctor every month and always got terrific reports. I didn't have blood pressure problems or gestatioanl diabets. I was gaining weight but not too much so I was the right size. They told me I needed to gain about 25 lbs. I thought that since I had lost 6 lbs that this would play to my advantage cause I would beable to get back to my normal size quicker after dilivery. Oh no, they also was you to gain that back as well plus the 25 lbs. I have always obcessed about my weight so gaining weight tortured me.

I experience everything that the book What to expect when your expecting said i would. Nausea, constipation, constant urge to pee, the works. It seemed to me that while you are pregnant you can experience every illment known to man. When someone at work or in my family would comment about their health I would say "Oh yeah? Are you pregnant?"

Around April I found out what I was having. Brian was home for my original appointment but it got canceled due to the techician having a death in the family. I was devestated. I wanted him there so much. I hated to fact that I was going to have to tell him over the phone cause I knew I wouldn't beable to keep it a secret from him for a month til he came back home. Everyone in my famiy offered to go with me. But I still wanted Brian to be the first other than me to know what it was.

For some reason I swore I was having a boy. Boy Boy Boy! Thats all I could think about. When the technician told me she was a girl I was surprise and kept asking if she was sure. Dr. Sobalivic guarnteed me that he was 99.9% sure she was a girl.

Oh Girl!