Friday, November 02, 2012

Giddy Every Four Years

I hereby declare that I LOVE politics. I adore talking about it, debating about it, laughing about it and hearing about it. I especially love major election years and the weeks leading up to them. So many people are sick of it, but it's almost like (gasp, I know, I'm practically a heretic for saying it) Christmas to a girl like me. There. I've said it. BRING IT ON. I love everything about it.

I am not being sarcastic.

I enjoy hearing any and all speeches and commercials (we are not a swing state so I'm kind of bummed that we don't get as many political ads as they do :( ) and the goofy antics that people get about this time of year. Sigh...I feel sort of let down when it's all over too. The worst part about the election time is when it's over.

Call me crazy, but it makes me feel ALIVE. It doesn't depress me or make me despair  Quite the opposite. It makes me happy and almost drunk with joy. Maybe it's pride that we get to be in this crazy mix and say what we feel and mean and nobody has the right to stop us because we're citizens of the U. S. of A. and PRAISE THE LORD WE ARE but I just don't get tired of it and I don't really understand people who do. I mean, I do understand THAT people get sick of it all and want to stick their fingers in their ears and go "la la la I'm not LISTENING" but heck if I would ever even consider that! I just lap it up. GOSH, that feels good to say.

God Bless the USA!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Cecilia Elizabeth (Birth Story)

I swear. I won't ever forget this birth experience. I was in labor, all alone, in the middle of the night. Much like with your brother, Niklaus. I was planning on having you much later but you came on your own. Around about 2 am, the contractions got serious. I debated calling all of the aunties at that early hour but realized that it was an insane hour to do such a thing. I did call your Auntie Anna around 2:30, just because I wasn't thinking clearly and I needed her cool head to let me know just what to do. She said that I'd better wake Daddy and that he'd help me decide to call the other aunties or just go to the hospital.

I called the hospital and talked to a nice lady nurse who had an interesting accent. I thought that it sounded sort of South African and New Zealand (funny thing: later that night, as I was in the terrible throes of labor, I asked her if she was from South Africa or New Zealand, she told me that I was exactly right. She said that she had been raised in South Africa but move to New Zealand later. I have a knack for accents! It's my weird superpower.) She asked me: "SO, are you going to come in?" I had one more bad contraction and said: "Yeah, I guess so...I have to get ready first though...within the next two hours we'll be there...I suppose."

I woke up Dad and he just kind of suspected that I was going to wake him and he was already awake so he got up and we woke up your sisters. I went down stairs at 3 am and told them that I was headed to the hospital and needed them to be upstairs with your other siblings. They maybe didn't quite believe me until I had a massive, painful contraction right there in their bedroom doorway. They came upstairs pretty quickly after that! I had more and more contractions as I frantically tried to pack a bag and get into the van.

I dreaded the ride to the hospital, since I remember driving with contractions with Katrina and Niklaus (went into natural labor with those guys too). The hospital was about 20 minutes away but driving with contractions every 3-4 minutes or so means WAY too many contractions for me! I barely made it into the hospital ER (the only door open at that time of night) and had a few nasty contractions (can't breathe, can't sign any papers) at the desk. The nice man at the ER desk wheeled me to the maternity part of the hospital. I kept wishing he would drive just a little bit faster!

I got into the gown and waited for the nurse to see how much I was dilated. It turns out I was about a "4" at around 4:30 in the morning. All of those contractions were working pretty good! She said that I needed fluid and that they couldn't give me an epidural until I had been given fluids for at least a half hour. I panicked and cried because the contractions were VERY strong and they hurt! She gave me a big exercise ball to sit on since I couldn't imagine laying in the bed at that time. I sat for a little while but there was just NO comfortable way to have those terrible pains. I ended up standing next to the bed and just crying and hurting for another half hour or so. Daddy would come and stand next to me so I could grip his shoulders and pull on his shirt and say naughty words a little during the contractions.

I was told that they needed to monitor the baby and to get into the bed. That was pure torture right there! They also told me that the person who was going to administer the epidural would be there soon since I kept mentioning it and I think I was driving the nurse crazy about it. I told her that I absolutely could NOT do it without pain meds and that she needed to go wake that guy up and tell him to RUSH to the hospital and that I didn't really care if the doctor ordered it or not!

He finally came and took the LONGEST time I ever remember to put the medicine in my back. I told him how the first medicines that they have put in in the past didn't work and that they always had to put in a different kind for it to work well. He listened well and the medicine worked VERY quickly and worked VERY well.

I was able to rest for a few minutes when I had total relief and my legs were totally numb! I felt a lot of pressure from you moving down and getting ready to come out but I was more in a mental panic because I knew that Daddy was trying to call the aunties to see if any of them would be able to make it to your birthday party! Auntie Anna was stuck in traffic, Auntie Nellie and Auntie Nina couldn't find anyone to watch your ten cousins that early in the morning in the middle of the week! Your uncles had to go to work and couldn't stay home with your cousins. You picked a funny time to come into the world, that's for sure!

Dr. Minke was the doctor who delivered Matthew and Analise in that same hospital years ago. He was the 'on call' doctor for middle of the night so I was happy that he came in and would possibly deliver you but my regular doctor came in about a half hour before you were born so that was okay too.

The two lovely nurses were very funny and laughed when I told them the only rule they had was that they couldn't say "push push push" over and over when it came time to push you out!

Dr. Lefebvre  raised his eyebrows when I told him that the only rule for HIM was that he was not allowed to CUT me. He mumbled that he might have to if you were too big...blah blah blah and I told HIM that there was NO reason he would have to do that because your sister was 10 pounds with GIANT shoulders and that I pushed HER out with no problem at all. I gave him the stink-eye about it and he kind of laughed (but I'm pretty sure he was scared of me).

The nurses and doctor and Daddy settled in for about 20 minutes and waited for me to be ready to push. The truth was, I was already ready to push but wanted to wait just in case the aunties could make it in time! When the nurse looked over at me and saw my face, she said "You are ready to push, aren't you?" and smiled. Yes, I WAS! So I told her "Probably, but I don't WANT to quite yet...but I supposed I SHOULD." and they calmly got everything ready.

I closed my eyes and listened to them as they told me to push and where to tuck my chin and not to hold my breath. I did just what everyone said and on the third set of pushes, I pushed a fourth time (Dr. L said, in a surprised voice, "Oh! She's going ONE MORE TIME on her own!...Here we go!") and you came out!

I was so happy you had come but I was a little bit sad at the same time that your aunties missed the whole thing. Auntie Nina and Nellie came in the delivery room about 10 minutes after you were born and talked to Daddy, held and played with you, and talked to me about what happened and when. I mostly remember little bits of conversation but I kept falling asleep and waking myself up with my own snoring! I was SO tired from not sleeping at all. You were born at 7:30 am and I hadn't slept for two days!

The nurses were marvelling about how much all of the water from the soaked up pads in the garbage bag weighed so they put in on the baby weighing scale and noted that it was TEN POUNDS! Since you weighed 9 pounds and 13 ounces...I figured I had just lost 20+ pounds in less than a few minutes! I could finally BREATHE again!

We left the hospital the next day. I liked Buffalo hospital but I got really sick and tired of the nurses checking in on me when I just wanted to get home to the other kids and regular life. The doctor and nurses were SO worried about the fact that I have "LGA" babies (large for gestational age...I didn't even know that was a "thing" hahaha!) and bleeding but it wasn't a problem at all for me. I never felt faint or had bad bleeding or anything.

(Trina with you on your birthday! Your brothers and sisters didn't even see you until later on in the afternoon on the day you were born. Trina took a few pictures but I was mostly sleeping when everyone was visiting!)

I didn't have a camera at your delivery or even video of you being born because there was no one to document anything! I don't even have a picture of me and you together because I was SO bloated and funny looking for the first couple of weeks after you were born. I didn't want you to remember me that way with you. I was SO tired and yucky looking and feeling up until a couple of weeks after you came...maybe it was selfish but I feel so much better now and can't wait to get pictures of you with me and Daddy, special on your baptism this weekend!

I did go back to the hospital with some bad abdominal pain a few days later but never figured out what that was. I think it was just a muscle issue. You babies are heavy and hard on a momma's belly!

So, your birth was memorable but not the worst and not the best. You are healthy and happy and everyone holds you ALL the time. You didn't even have any sort of baby seat or bouncy chair for the first month of your life! You slept on your brothers and sisters for every nap and slept next to me every night.

Maybe some people would say that you were "spoiled" but I just call it very very loved.

You are sleeping on my chest, right now as I'm typing these words. You are just over two months old and are smiling and laughing at us sometimes. You still can't hold up your noggin very well and sometimes cry when you are tired and want me to nurse you to sleep but mostly you take really long and good naps and snuggle with me all the time.

I think you'll be a red-head, like I was. Your eyelashes are impossibly long and look like I used an eyelash curler on them! You have blue eyes but I'm pretty sure they'll change color. You look a little like all of the kids in this family but you have your own look too. I think you look a lot like your Grandma Sue. You have her nose, almost exactly!

Welcome to the family, Cecilia! You were the best and most memorable thing about our lives in the year 2012!

Uncomferance (originally drafted around April 2012)

I am due to deliver this baby around June 16thish. I've looked like I am due "any day now" for about two months. I don't REALLY care, because I know it won't last forever.

I've done plenty of in-between baby time, watching other uncomfortable looking moms and thinking "Wow, glad I'm not HER." all the while, knowing that I WOULD be "her" eventually...again...someday...maybe.

I am realistic and I know that this tummy will eventually go (somewhat) away and I'll get back in shape (just like every other time...even if it takes two years, bleh) and start asking the silly questions other people have been asking me for the past few months.

 I can look back years from now and chuckle...or at least remember what NOT to think or say when I see a heavily preggo mom after my childbearing years!

The most annoying of all questions is "So, you due any day now?".

It wouldn't have been so bad had it not been asked around 30 weeks.

"Any day now." does NOT equal any time before week 39.

That is all.