Sunday, December 13, 2009

Tired

Since Cody's surgery, I've taken up 100% of everything around here. I'm doing all the dog-walking, cooking, cleaning, etc., in addition to taking care of him and the baby. I wake up with her in the middle of the night to nurse, then am up early to walk the girls. This is all just making me feel so drained.

Then last night was spent in the ER. Cody's been not doing so well. Among other things, he's had a fever between 100.4 and 101.2 consistently. Since the doc won't be in until Monday, it was to the ER with us, to make sure nothing serious was going on. So now he's got a script for Keflex that I need to go have filled before noon.

It doesn't help that I'm starting to feel sick.

Oh well. I'll get over it.

Friday, December 11, 2009

The first week

Latching issues aside, Charlotte's been a dream of a baby. She doesn't cry often at all. When she needs to eat, she makes this cute cooing sound and puckers her lips, moving her tongue in and out. As long as she gets fed within a minute and a half or so, there's no crying. Now when she's got gas bubbles, she gets fussy and cries a little then. But even at night, she will grab at me with her hands and make that smacky sound, which wakes me up and she eats. Yes, she sleeps with us.

The first three says were spent with me in bed.

On the 6th, she met my aunt Sandy and one of Sandy's friends. I hadn't seen Sandy in years, so this was especially nice.

On the 7th, it was Daddy's birthday, and the 8th was mine. I made roasted chicken on Cod's birthday and his mom came over. On my birthday, he made pot roast. Our midwife also came over and we had a lovely visit. I absolutely adore Karni.

On the 9th she went to see Santa and got a picture. It was her first time outside, and she was wonderful!

Yesterday she spent the day in the out-patient surgery department while her dad had his tonsils taken out. We were waiting with him for him to be wheeled back, and it was harder for me than for him. I'm not used to being on this end, waiting for a loved one to be taken into surgery. Knowing he was going to be hurting afterward was hard for me. Afterward, his throat started bleeding a good bit more than it should have, and he was nauseated enough to need a cocktail of anti-nausea drugs. By the time I got to see him, several hours later than expected, he was very ashen, paler than I am, with blue lips. They said he was actually doing a lot better than he was. It breaks my heart seeing him like this. With the surgeries I've had, this would be a walk in the park, and I'd gladly be in his place if it could keep him from having to hurt like this (but that's impossible, plus mine came out when I was 8).

The dogs have been very good girls. They're so protective and check on "their baby" several times a day. If Charlotte makes a sound that isn't so happy, Emma will give this throaty growl and cock her head as if telling me to take proper care of the baby! They also both have a tendency to sit guard over her. If you want into our bedroom when she's in here, they'll be sitting in the doorway like little protectors.

Daddy's changed diapers!! He's changed every single once except for three. The first time he asked me why I didn't get him up to change her. The second two times were today. Oh how I hate having to use disposables right now, but she's too little still to fit her Bum Genuinses. Among other things, the chemicals in the diaper absorb so completely that it can be hard telling if she's wet or not. So I decided to change her, even if it doesn't look/feel like she needs it. Sometimes when her diaper is off, the weight indicates that she did indeed pee. Cloth will make it so much easier.

It's been a busy week, but I think we're doing very well, all in all. Despite being new parents, we still have the time to actually cook (Charlotte sleeping so well at night, waking me up usually just once, helps this) and clean and do whatever we need to do, plus the critters aren't neglected. I'm pretty proud of us, really. We've managed to hold it together very well. Baby care and all that's new seems so natural to us. I do think this has something to do with our old-fashioned mindset of "You've gotta do what you gotta do, quit making excuses and just do it."

I am so very happy!! This doesn't seem like it can be my life. But it is!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Birth summary

The full birth write-up will take a little while. I'm still mentally processing parts of it.

The summary is labor did start at about 11:45 on the 2nd, her due date, and she was born about 18 hours later. The labor itself didn't really hurt much, so it surprised me when the midwife got here and I was full dilated. Birth pool ftw. Things got hard when we realized she was coming out chin-first. She was sunny-side up, chin first, and she wasn't coming out straight. As this was something I'd never heard of, I was terrified out of my mind. Breech would have been fine, but I'd never heard of a head-down baby that wasn't crown-down (whether posterior or anterior), and never even knew anything else was possible. So I was delivering without knowing what was happening. Her chin, then her nose, her eyes, eyebrows (Cody saw her face peeking out and she was sticking her tongue in and out), until the crown of her head was able to flip out and around. From there, the rest of her came right out in the same push. I lost a lot of blood but not enough to need to be transported, thankfully.

So much for the calm, serene birth I'd imagined full of happy tears and songs (yes, I'd envisioned singing since Cody plays guitar and there are some songs I really wanted played, like House at Pooh Corner, which always makes me cry). I swear I'm going to find some humor in how this birth was almost the polar opposite of what I'd hoped for. But she's a healthy baby and I'm okay (not even a slight tear, a miracle unto itself), and this is what matters.

When I finish my write-up, it's going to be pretty detailed. We're all doing well now, but it was just so hard and the scariest and yet the best thing I'd gone through in my life. Our baby was pretty banged up and swollen with her face bruised, but that started going away quickly. Now you have to look hard to tell.

We did have her at home, and I'm so very glad for that. We were assisted by midwife Karni Seymour-Brown, who I can not recommend highly enough. She's amazing. In her 30 years of midwifery, this is the third face-presenter she's had. And Cody was incredible. While many dads can't handle a birth where all goes as planned (his own dad passed out!), he was a rock and never wavered. He admitted he got into the mindset of something being wrong, a problem to be solved or fixed, rather than getting to be in the moment with his daughter being born. Regardless, his strength gave me the determination to not give up when I swear I thought I was going to die from exhaustion.

Maybe I'm nuts, but I'd actually go through it again. It was harder than anything I've ever gone through, but it all was okay in the end, and I've got a little girl sleeping beside me, and she's ours!


You can see the poor thing had quite a wild ride.




I don't even think I was comprehending anything much yet at this point. This was about three hours after birth. That's as cleaned up as I felt like getting. I wanted to get back into bed!




Daddy's first moments holding her. Her poor little eyes were so swollen!




This was on Sunday night. If you look hard, you can still see a slight mark by her nose. Lots of Neosporin has helped. Soon you won't be able to tell at all!




This was taken Monday. It was her daddy's birthday! (And mine was Monday. Talk about a busy birthday-week! And our anniversary is the 6th!)




A funny thing really quick:

After delivering, I had to have a shot of Pitocin to help with uterine contractions to help stop the bleeding I had, and when the needle was brought in, the first words out of my mouth were, "Will it hurt?" Um, I just pushed out a baby in one of the hardest positions possible to actually deliver, and I was chicken of the needle! This makes me laugh.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

She is here!!

Charlotte Elizabeth made her debut at 6:26pm.

Talk about traumatic for all of us. She's in rough shape right now, but will be fine. Details within a few days. I'm too exhausted to go into it all now.

Maybe...? Please?

8 contractions in 29 minutes of a minute or slightly longer. We are timing them.  Pretty please let this be labor starting!! Watch Twitter for updates.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Three of my friends gave birth today.

THREE!

So congrats to Dawn on the birth of her son, Jacob, at 8:06am pst, Latavia on the birth of her daughter, Anya, at 2:53pm est, and Angel on the birth of her baby, stats/time unknown!!

Only now I'm feeling very discouraged. I am at 40 weeks, not by estimation either. We know exact dates thanks to having had IVF. Charlotte is still content to stay in there, and I've got an NST (test to make sure the baby's not stressed) scheduled for next Wednesday if she's not here by then.

We actually got a tree today, a 7' noble fir. It's decorated, and sheesh, I forgot how long our light strands are. We kept having to wrap unwrap, and rewrap then, to fit them all on. They must be 1,000-light strands or something. I'll get some pictures as soon as I find the digital camera. Also I found a box in the garage with a ceramic Christmas train set y grandma made years ago, as well as these "Dueling Banjo Bears" my dad used to get a kick out of, a carousel, and a bunch of other holiday stuff I'd forgotten about. Somewhere, I think in my sewing room, I've got the nativity set Grandma made years and years back. The wood manger my dad made is in the garage. Need to decide where to put that. Even though we're not Christian in this household, it's still tradition to have it out, so out it goes.

Cody had a pre-op today. He's having his tonsils out next Thursday. He'll be hating the world for a few days. It's the first time in his life he'll actually be having something medical done. He's had just a couple blood draws in his life aside from regularly donating blood. He's never had an IV or anything else, so this is a new experience for him, and, understandably, he's a bit nervous. But he'll be okay.

We also got fabrics today for a couple toddler regency dresses for someone who already bought a little navy dress. Getting started on that will help occupy my time tomorrow, washing the fabrics (cotton broadcloth is so easy to care for, and I think my favorite cotton fabric) and starting the pattern-drafting. Maybe if I stop thinking about my own little girl for once, she'll get jealous and decide to come out and distract me. Eh, I know, that's not how it works, but I'm trying to amuse myself.

Also Apple said they're going to make United pay. Our complaints aren't isolated. They've been getting enough complaints to finally notice, and I guess we're the ones who finally tipped the scale with the extent of what we have documented. So Apple's taking action and we have it in black and white that they're going to force United to pay for the midwives they've been denying. Who knows how long it'll take to get United to actually do it, but it's something for someone much higher up in Apple to be doing something, and to even contact us directly to let us personally know.

I'm just so discouraged. If she goes another two weeks, I can't have a midwife-assisted delivery, and it has to be at the hospital by law unless we go it unassisted altogether. A hospital-delivery just is not the safest option for me as it would mean I'd be forced into a c-section. Have to be at the hospital unless it's unassisted, but the hospitals here won't admit me without my consenting to be cut open. So two polar opposites. Please, Baby, be born. Please let labor start tonight.... I'm getting so desperate.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Ha!

Movement under way in California to ban divorce

The effort is meant to be a satirical statement after California voters outlawed gay marriage in 2008, largely on the argument that a ban is needed to protect the sanctity of traditional marriage. If that's the case, then Marcotte reasons voters should have no problem banning divorce.

"Since California has decided to protect traditional marriage, I think it would be hypocritical of us not to sacrifice some of our own rights to protect traditional marriage even more," the 38-year-old married father of two said.


And it's true. It's just as absurd to ban divorce as it is to ban gay marriage. I'd gladly sign this petition. Equal is equal. If the voters are all about "protecting" traditional marriage, then this seems like another way to help do it, right?

I remember years back, some politician in Washington State, I believe it was, said the purpose of marriage is children, which is why gays shouldn't marry. I chewed off the ear of anyone who'd listen that I guess that means that infertile straight people should also be banned from marriage unless they can find a way to have a baby.

But of course, the government should really just keep the legal hell out of it altogether. If two consenting adults want to marry, it's not the government's place to say no, nor is it the voters' place.


Also I am exhausted. Luthien was a pain last night and kept trying to jump all over the bed. I know she was just trying to be protective of me, but I kind of need sleep to eventually push this little human out of me! I'm tired, but don't want to sleep. Want to eat salad, but too tired to eat. Too hungry to sleep, to sleepy to eat.