Tuesday, October 25, 2011

adios

yesterday was the one year anniversary of this preggo enginerd blog. and i think the time has come to let it lay to rest. for obvious reasons. like i'm no longer preggo.

i'm heading back to confessions of an enginerd with leila in tow. i had so much fun documenting our journey to conception, through all the tears, ovulation charting, and fertility appointments. then i had an even better time documenting the pregnancy (made possible by clomid- woo hoo!). the birth story seems like a good place to conclude the past year.

thanks to everyone for their advice on all things fertility and pregnancy. now it's time to live life with all things baby (and husband too, of course). and based on the past week and a half, it's going to be great. :-)

Saturday, October 22, 2011

birth story

my darling girl is snug as a bug in a rug right now, swaddled in a blanket and sleeping on her boppy next to me on the couch. jake, laura, and ava went to round rock to do some shopping, and my parents are running errands and getting a reservation at the renaissance for the night. so here i am, finally with a minute to write up leila's birth story. i want to do it now so i won't forget later.

and of course, it'd probably be good to know this is a reeeeal labor story, including some graphically anatomical terms. so you've been warned.

jake and i arrived at the hospital on thursday, october 13th at 7pm. i was still only 2cm and 50% effaced with a high cervix when i arrived and had my first dose of cytotec at 9pm with hopes that i would progress.


cytotec is taken every 4 hours so the nurses were checking my progress throughout the night. but alas, at 1am, 5am, and 9am, i was STILL only 2cm. i got another dose at 9am and was starting to get pretty discouraged. the nurse said they could give me up to 6 doses of the medicine, meaning i could still be 2cm into the evening. the monitors were picking up contractions with the cytotec, but nothing i could really feel. then at 1pm dr. meadows came in and broke my water. we were actually surprised, we didn't anticipate her coming in to do that at all.

once my water broke, the contractions started. i knew i wanted an epidural the moment it was available, but it turns out it wasn't available as soon as i was hoping! i had to get started on the pitocin for a while and intake an entire bag of fluids before it was an option. jake was really good during the 2 hours of contractions, but he joked his hand almost fell off because i was squeezing so hard. once i got the epidural life was carefree again!

the doctor came in at 4pm and i was excited to learn i was 4cm. she said that i should expect to progress at about a centimeter an hour. i loved my nurse brandi, and was sad her shift was ending at 7pm because i would probably only be about 7cm by then. at 5:30 i was on track with the centimeter an hour thing and was up to 5.5cm. then at 6pm, i felt like i was bleeding. i called the nurse and she said it was probably just amniotic fluid but would be in to check. when she checked, i was indeed bleeding like crazy. within 30 minutes i was up to 8cm! jake went out to the waiting room to tell our moms and my sisters, who had been in and out of the delivery room all day visiting with us. the nurse told me that if i felt more pressure to give her a buzz.

while jake was in the waiting and my sister steph was in the room, i felt like i was bleeding again and had a bit more pressure, but nothing significant. the nurse came in to check and said "jill, you are 10cm and i can feel the baby's head. you will have this baby in the next 30 minutes." steph rushed out to the waiting room to grab jake and by this time it was about 630pm. the man left the room for 5 minutes and suddenly i was having a baby!

by this time everyone involved in the delivery started bustling in the room. everyone except the doctor. my doctor had to leave at 5pm to pick up her son from daycare so someone else had to deliver our little peanut. the nurse instructed me to start pushing and the delivery began. after 10 minutes the nurse instructed me to stop because "half an inch of hair was hanging out and we needed the doctor." that cracked me up! when the doctor arrived i started pushing again and within 3 contractions, leila was here! when they said we only had one contraction left jake and i exchanged teary eyed glances and prepared for her arrival. i pushed for just under 10 minutes and only had a couple of stitches from tearing. the delivery was easy breezy, i didn't feel any pain whatsoever. all i could think was that pushing longer and harder would give us our baby girl even sooner. i will admit that there was one moment and scared the heck out of me. after the last push, i could see the doctor holding her and i could see the umbilical cord wrapped around her neck and shoulder but could not hear her cry. my mother's first child died during childbirth because the cord was wrapped around his neck. i wanted to cry but nobody else seemed to be concerned and i realized there was nothing to worry about.

they placed our mop top little girl on my stomach while jake and i admired her. they whisked her away a few moments later to clean her up and take care of me. jake watched them take care of her while i had my stitches put in. then we had a couple of minutes alone to admire leila. we allowed our mothers and my sisters to come into the room to say hello before i could breastfeed for the first time.



so far breastfeeding is going well. she latched on beautifully from the first moment and is still doing well. we're trying not to implement bottles until absolutely necessary. i hope this keeps up!

well that's all i've got for now, we'll see when i've got a free hand again. :-) later gators!

Friday, October 21, 2011

pictures

oh! and here are a few pictures from her first week too.











i'm a mommy

hello hello everyone! our little girl is a whole week old now and it has been a week of nonstop bliss. we love our daughter so much, it's hard to put into words. i'm planning to post her birth story soon, but give me some time to get it all typed up. i've started and stopped this post alone about 6 times. it seems like every time i start i remember something else i'd rather be doing like, umm, hang out with my baby! lol. right now she is in the swing taking a little nap because i'm trying to adjust her to sleeping other places besides mine and jake's chests. she sleeps like a pro, but really doesn't like being on her back, so we're using naptime to try to acclimate her to it.

anyway, we had lots of guests at the hospital, it was wonderful that both mimi (jake's mom) and nana (my mom) along with aunties steph and ashley could meet leila within literally 30 minutes of her birth. i was a little overwhelmed at the hospital, between adjusting to our new life, nurses coming in and out, visitors coming to see leila, and needing to get my body recovered. we were relieved to come home on sunday, where we weren't restricted to one room and hospital food, haha.

we love being home with our little monkey, she is so much fun! jake is the greatest father, just as i imagined he would be. he fights over the opportunity to hold her so basically if i'm not nursing he steals her. :-) we have a little sleep regime set up that's working out great. i give her a full feeding around 8pm and jake watches her from 9pm to midnight so i can get 3 hours of sleep. then i take over with her from 12am - 7am. i wake her up around 3am to eat, otherwise she keeps sleeping. then she's back to sleep by 4am and sleeps until i wake her up at 7am. so there's another 6 hours. then depending on if we have a doctor appointment or something else going on that morning, jake will take her another 2 hours while i sleep or we all get up for the day. i think we can still make this work when jake goes back to work on monday, but we might have to change her to an 8pm instead of 9pm bedtime. i know every couple is different, but since i'm breastfeeding exclusively, i don't see any point in jake getting up with me in the middle of the night. i mean what can he do, watch me have a baby latched to my boob? wake up to change a diaper? i'm already awake feeding her, so i don't think it's necessary to wake him up to change that. of course the one night she was really fussy and i couldn't console her, jake gladly got up to help. hopefully that isn't the case too often...

now my parents, sister, and niece are here from iowa. jake is outside grilling burgers and leila is laying with grandpa on the couch. my texas mom will be here again on sunday to see laura and ava and stay a couple more days, then i'll be on my own. ah! i'm hoping to get a routine going once everyone clears out. it's kind of hard when we're all bustling about. i'm also hoping that we'll have found a successful way to get her sleeping on her back. will it be the miracle blanket that gets her on her back? the swing? the miracle blanket in the swing? who knows, but i hope something works soon because all the SIDS stuff petrifies me and i don't think chest sleeping is in her best interest.

i better go hang out with my family, hope everyone else has this much happiness in their life too. :-)

Monday, October 17, 2011

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

scheduled induction

i started this blog almost a year ago (october 24, 2010) when jake and i were having issues conceiving. now here we are, a year later, and i'm blogging about the upcoming arrival of our daughter. unreal.

i had my 39 week appointment yesterday and am still 2cm. i'm also 50% effaced. we are going to induce on friday, october 14th. actually, i'm going to go in at 7pm thursday night to begin the um, "ripening" of my cervix. then friday morning they'll administer pitocin to get the real labor under way and hopefully we'll have a new baby girl on friday. i will only be 2 days shy of 40 weeks.

it's been pretty interesting to hear all the viewpoints on having an elective induction. yes, admittedly, this one is elective. my blood pressure spikes here and there, but i don't have pre-eclampsia. i don't have diabetes. my water hasn't broken without the onset on contractions. i'm not scheduling because i live 2 hours away and am afraid i won't make it to the hospital in time. those are typical reasons for required inductions. we do think the baby is already around 8 1/2 pounds, which is one reason i'm opting to induce. but that's just an estimate, maybe she'll be a small baby after all. overall, this is mine and jake's choice.

i've read a lot about the risks associated with inducing. an increased chance of c-section and increased need for forceps or the vacuum, stronger and longer contractions. i'm willing to accept those risks, and i think it has a lot to do with what you do and don't expect from labor.

i would love to give birth vaginally, but i've known since the beginning that i wouldn't care if i had to have a c-section. there are instances when that becomes medically necessary, like if the baby is breech or sunny side up. same thing with induction. if something happens and there is a medical need to have a c-section, that is totally fine with me. the recovery period might be longer, but if a c-section is the best way to deliver a healthy baby, i'm okay with that.

i've heard countless times that induced labor causes stronger and longer contractions. but ya know, i've also heard the exact same thing about first-time labor without being induced. the horror stories go both ways. i know women who have had successful home births, and some women who almost died. i know women who waited until 42 weeks to have their baby naturally and went through 30 hours of labor. i know women who were induced at 40 weeks and went through 6 hours of labor. every woman and every baby is different, you can't possibly know which experience you are going to have. and if you go into labor with the mindset that labor and delivery is going to go one specific way of perfection, you're going to be upset when it doesn't.

i know thursday and friday might not be smooth. quite frankly, i'm pretty sure the whole ordeal is going to be painful and sucky. i'm crossing my fingers that an epidural will help curb that, lol. but whether it's scheduled for this week or happens on it's own next week, that doesn't change my painful and sucky viewpoint.

the point is, no matter how painful and awful labor and delivery is, there is a baby at the end of it. and THAT is the most important thing to us. we look forward to welcoming leila diane in a few short days.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

what i've learned

here are a few things i've learned about pregnancy in the past month.

1. any and all references to a pregnancy symptom and its associated timetable should be stricken from the internet. they are junk.

i know every person is different and every baby is different, and i definitely expected to not exactly be on target with everyone who ever posted something that made it to the google search engine. but i've gotten a smidge frustrated with how far off i really am.

it's like "oh when you lose your mucus plug it happens like 2 weeks later, tops." here i am, still pregnant, over 3 weeks later. "and when you have the 'bloody show', labor is immiment, within about 72 hours." no no, 6 days later i am still preggo.

last night i started having contractions, albeit they're hours apart. i was hoping oh so hard that this meant the real deal. but alas, all i've gotten out of it is these 1-2 minute long bouts of excruciating pain. i dare not google how long some women go through contractions like this. if i see that it's one day, i don't want to hold my breath that it'll be the same for me. if i see that it's 2 weeks, i'd prefer to be oblivious.

sigh.

2. you do, in fact, just KNOW when you're having a real contraction.

there i was, on the phone with a coworker in fort worth discussing a 3d surface model he was working on for my project, when i started getting some pain in my stomach. i thought huh, that's odd. and then it wasn't going away. it got worse within seconds. i had to tell him to hold on while i clutched the phone with all my might, lost all voice capabilities, gasped for air amidst the pain, and thought very simply "holy fuck nugget". a minute and a half later i returned to the phone and said "um, i think i just had a contraction.

it was unlike any of the braxton-hicks contractions i've had before. it was like a menstrual cramp was radiating up my stomach and around to my back. i used to get annoyed when people said "when you're in labor, you'll just know." and although i'm not in active labor so to speak, i've learned that you do, in fact, just KNOW when you've had a real contraction. because that shit hurts.

3. ultrasound measurements can be off by a pound.

at my appointment on monday the doctor said that leila was measuring around 8lbs 2oz. she said there's room for error and perhaps leila was on the smaller side of that. i have since come to discover that those measurements can be off by a pound. one friend was induced because they suspected her baby was over 8lbs and she arrived at 6lbs 10oz. i'm not-so-secretly hoping that leila follows in avery's footsteps. big babies are intimidating!

4. pregnant women should enforce a sobriety rule for the last 2 weeks of pregnancy.

obviously i don't mean a sobriety rule for ourselves. i mean that mothers (ahem, no names) should be cautious about pain meds that may debilitate driving. and that husbands (again, no names) should not drink a 6-pack whilst playing video games.

ok, i'm kidding. my mom's back was hurting and jake had a really bad day at work, i would've done the same thing. except i'd opt for a bottle of wine or margarita drunk fest at baby a's. anyways, we've had one close call and now contractions that'll probably lead to a close call, and ya gotta make sure everyone is on their a-game.

unless of course you want to tell you child that their grandma was high and their father was puking when they were born. which you don't. (for the record, my mom wasn't actually high and jake wasn't actually puking drunk. i'm exaggerating for the purpose of encouraging this rule lol)

that's all i've got for now... i'm sure i'll post more lessons learned post-delivery! my due date is 10 days away and if she doesn't come this weekend i'm pulling for an october 14th induction date. with any luck, we'll have our baby girl this time next week!

Monday, October 3, 2011

38 weeks

hello hello! in case you've been checking my blog after the craziness of this weekend, you now know that i am STILL pregnant. which makes perfect sense because i'm only 38 weeks along. i will also probably enlist my sister to post a blog for me saying that i'm in labor or had the baby. so don't worry, you will all know when it happens, i won't disappear for weeks and leave you hanging! you know, since i'm sure everyone's life revolves around this pregnancy. jk ;-)



how far along: 38 weeks

how big is baby: according to babycenter, leila is around 7 pounds and 19 1/2 inches long. BUT i had an appointment this afternoon and my little girl does not appear to be so little- she is measuring at 8 pounds 2 ounces!!

weight gain / loss: i'm now at 176.2, an increase of exactly 2 pounds from 2 weeks ago and a 32 pound overall pregnancy gain. my rings still fit and i can still shave my legs, so i feel good about this weight gain lol

symptoms: all sorts of braxton-hicks contractions and continuous spotting since friday. however, i haven't made any progress since last week and am still 2cm dilated. that surprised me, but it is what it is!

cravings / aversions: veggies have sounded soo good lately. fresh salads, a side of peas, sandwiches chock-full of spinach and tomato. mmm! what does not sound good is fried food. yuck.

movement: she's running out of room in my belly so i don't feel her as often as i used to. sometimes i wonder if she's even in here because i feel contractions, but not her. then she does something cute like get the hiccups and i know she's biding her time to arrive.

gender: girl

belly button: outtie, and i sincerely hope it goes back in after i have leila. it creeps me out

sleep: sleeping is going just fine

what i'm looking forward to: having my baby this week or scheduling an induction next week. can't believe the time is already here.

what i miss: being skinny. sorry that sounds vain, but it's a sad day when you realize you are as deep as you are wide and you can't squeeze between two tables the way you used to. i miss my pre-pregnancy body

highlights this past week: honestly, having the spotting thing happen this weekend got me really excited for the baby. like i was almost convinced she was coming this weekend. after all, labor is usually imminent once that happens. several friends shared their stories of how they had the "bloody show" and went into labor that day, the next day, few hours later, etc. i'm a bit bummed and surprised that labor hasn't happened yet, but at the same time i'm glad it all happened because it prepared us a bit for how ready we need to be when the real deal takes place. and ya know what, the real deal is going to take place soon! :-)

Saturday, October 1, 2011

wake up call

disclaimer: this gets anatomical around paragraph 3. you have been warned! :-)

this week has been nothing short of a wake up call. at my appointment on monday my blood pressure was high, but when the nurse came back 20 minutes later it was back to normal. all day wednesday and thursday i had a bad headache and nausea, but i just assumed it was what people meant by "the last few weeks of pregnancy suck." of course my dear friends in the medical field and sister were freaking out because those are actually signs of pre-eclampsia. i had no friggin clue! at their adamant request i went to the pharmacy across from my office and took my blood pressure there- 142/79. apparently this is high. sooo i called my doctor and they asked more about my symptoms then told me to take a higher dose of tylenol and see how i felt from that. they also asked that i take my blood pressure again a few hours later. the tylenol worked its headache / nausea magic, my blood pressure was back down to something like 122/83, and i felt better. my doctor said i needed to rest a lot more, so jake banished me to the couch, propped up some large pillows, cooked dinner, and took care of me. such a good husband!

then yesterday i felt decent all day, but still not fantastic. i didn't overexert myself at work but was on a mission to get to a decent stopping point on my big project should i go into labor this weekend. i hung out with hailey and cole after work, then per my doctor's orders- lounged on the couch watching a movie for a couple hours. and at 1030pm, i noticed i was bleeding.

i'm clearly not well-read on medical things, but what i DO know is that blood is something to be concerned about. i spoke with the after hours nurse line and coincidentally my doctor was the one on call at the hospital, so the nurse conferred with her. they concluded that i did not need to come in and explained that the bleeding i was experiencing was as a result of blood vessels rupturing. apparently this means i'm dilating more rapidly and my cervix is thinning out.

what does this mean to me? shit just got real.

from what they explained and i've researched, it's one thing to lose your mucus plug like i did about 2.5 weeks ago. it's something different to have a "bloody show". some people use the terms interchangeably, but they're not really the same. also from what i've read, labor is imminent. we're talking days now, not 2 weeks. i find this hard to believe because i still haven't felt a single contraction! but if you are dilating, it means you're having contractions and it's possible you simply aren't feeling them. if you are bleeding, you are also having contractions and still not feeling them. i was already 2cm dilated on monday, i swear i'm going to finally go in with contractions and already be at 5cm! haha.

anyway, jake and i were pretty overwhelmed by all of this last night and realized this was a huge wake up call. we've spent months preparing ourselves for the time when i go into labor and our baby girl arrives, but now i don't think you can quite be mentally prepared enough until that time actually comes. we thought last night may have been that time and our minds were frantic! now we shall sit and wait for leila to arrive. i'm going to do a bit of cleaning today, but mostly hang out on the couch. i still want my little pumpkin to stay put a bit longer so that she's really ready and healthy, and if that means being a bum, then so be it. :-)