5.28.2014

Thoughts About the Big Change

I've been working on this post for a couple days now but finding time to blog is a little difficult these days. But I wanted to jot down my thoughts about having a second child and update the blog on how things are going.

I was terrified to have another baby for many reasons that I don't wish to get in to. I can safely say that many of those concerns were false. This time I know what I'm doing. I know how quickly these precious days go by and I'm able to enjoy them more. In fact, I often cry because I don't want her to grow up. Besides not sleeping at night, I wish she could stay a little baby forever. She's such a sweet and special spirit and I feel so blessed to have her. I'm not freaking out every day wondering how I'll survive. Granted, I have my moments of worry, like how am I going to shower on days I'm by myself, but I'll manage. We all do. I'm soaking up the cuddles and trying to enjoy the quiet one on one time during the nighttime feedings.

Having two is obviously more of a challenge. I just doubled my work load. I'm drained by the end of each day and some days I wonder if I'll ever have time to myself again. But I also know that we'll get a routine down and it'll get easier and more natural as time goes on.

Kennedy is loving her little sister. It was a rough couple days coming home because she was feeling upset that we left her for 3 days and was still not feeling well, so she wasn't a gem. But now that she doesn't feel abandoned by her mommy and daddy and she's better, she's been great. She loves to help when Brynlie is sad and brings me blankets and her doggies randomly when she thinks the baby needs them. Today we went to Cabela's and she spent most of the time hugging and checking on Brynlie in the stroller.

Aside from big sister related stuff, I've felt immense guilt and sorrow for Kennedy. The poor little girl has spent many months stuck at home with me. That hasn't changed because I'm still in recovery mode, and this recovery is going to take longer than it did the first time. She's so lonely and so bored. She needs a friend desperately. She tries to make friends with other kids wherever we go or watches groups of older kids playing longingly, wanting so badly to go play with them. I can't wait to move home so we can be around lots of kids again. It breaks my heart and I feel like I've held her back in life. It's something I plan on fixing asap. I love that little peanut so much. I just want her to be happy.

Brynlie is a sweet, perfect baby. I feel like my heart is going to swell so big it'll start to ooze out my nose. How did I get so lucky so have two amazing, beautiful, sweet girls? Anyway, she absolutely hates being naked. So she will scream her lungs out when she's being changed, dressed, or having a bath. She is a major, major cuddler. Sometimes she will get fussy and all we have to do is pick her up and she stops. And yet so far she's sleeping great just laying on her back, but swaddled of course. She does have her days and nights mixed up so she's not doing awesome at night, but she's not terrible either. She eats every 3-4 hours and thankfully isn't a spitter. I can't get enough of her perfect little face. We are obsessed with her.

I'm having a harder time with recovery this time around. I do still have the pubic/pelvic pain but it's not as bad. I'm hoping it'll just keep getting better. But because of the crap my body has been through and the fact that I have had almost no physical activity in the last 20 week's, my body is in bad shape. I plan on giving myself plenty of time to recover and then not getting frustrated as I begin to rebuild my strength and endurance. It's a good thing kids are worth it.

Overall we're doing well. We just feel happy and blessed and lucky to have such an amazing family.

5.23.2014

Brynlie's Birth Story

Our sweet little Brynlie is finally here!!! 7 pounds 9 ounces and 21 inches long. And beautiful.









I know, I know, I said originally that she was supposed to be born on the 22nd. But for a couple reasons and with the agreement of our doctor, we changed the induction to the 21st and didn't tell anyone ha ha. So no, I didn't magically go into labor on my own.

It's also worth mentioning that we have stayed relatively healthy all winter except a couple bugs. But if course, Kennedy got really sick the Friday before and she passed it to me on Sunday. I was so sick Monday I hardly left my bed. Fever, terrible sore throat, aches, runny nose... it was terrible. After a blessing I felt a little better Tuesday but was definitely still sick going into this labor. ZE-RO--FUN!!

Let the story begin.

We checked into the hospital at 7 am. Walking in was much less terrifying than with Kennedy's induction because I knew what was coming. But, because I knew what was coming, I was also nervous. Labor isn't the most awesome thing in the world. And I really wasn't looking forward to what comes after it, either. Besides the baby, obviously.

I got changed into my super glamorous hospital gown while the nurses checked us in and started to get things ready. Before I was even hooked up to anything my doctor had arrived at 7:45 and broke my water. Ouchie!! He had trouble getting it and it took a lot of pushing on my belly from the nurse and a couple attempts. So not fun. Then I was promptly hooked up to an IV and pitocin and my contractions started right away. I tried to hold on as long as possible before asking for the epidural. My discomfort was pretty bad this time. I don't know what made it so different but I just wasn't able to find that zone again and relax. At 10:45 I asked for some relief and the anesthesiologist was paged. In the meantime I was given some pain meds through the IV that helped, but made me very dizzy and sick. I was feeling pretty lousy and was getting emotional about it all. So we turned on Hot Rod to try and make me laugh. It didn't work. At about 11:10 my epidural arrived. I didn't feel a single thing with Kennedy's so I was expecting the same experience. That did not happen. Holy crap it hurt this time. According to him I was an "oozer", whatever that means, so again, placing it was difficult and took longer and hurt like the dickens. I was fighting back tears and wanted to turn around and punch the anesthesiologist for taking so long. I wasn't able to look at Cory because it made me want to cry even more. He had such a sad, helpless look. I know he wanted to help me but obviously couldn't. But finally it was in, relief was on its way, and I was allowed to lay down.

The nurse checked me after all the epidural drama was over (11:45) and I was dilated to a 5. She said the last 5 goes faster than the first. In my mind I assumed we still had all afternoon. With Kennedy, I was really able to relax but this time I was having a hard time. Everything was so different this time and so much more painful. I was worrying how the day would play out and I started having the we're-never-doing-this-again conversation in my head. I was already tired, sick, dizzy, nauseated, and just not ready for it at all. But slowly the epidural did it's thing and I was able to calm down and relax. I was only at a 5 so Cory headed down to the cafeteria to get some lunch and I decided to try and take a nap, thinking I could sleep off my anxiety.

I was left alone and it was just me and baby's heartbeat on the monitor. That sound really is soothing. It helped me relax. About 20 minutes later, I had just started dozing off when the nurse came back in because the baby's heart rate had escalated. In her 5 minutes of investigating I had started to feel a lot of pain and pressure in the birth canal region that was quickly getting worse. She checked me again and I was at a 7. She said she was going to run downstairs to grab a salad but to page the other nurse if the pressure got worse. She wasn't even gone 2 minutes before the next contraction was so intense and I felt like I needed to start pushing.

I obviously paged the nurse and began to flat out panic. The pain was so intense I was terrified for what was coming. Cory arrived just in time to hold my hand as I started shaking uncontrollably. I was so scared. The nurse came back shortly after, checked me, (I was at an 8) and decided to go let everyone know we were having a baby. I kept frantically pushing the button on the epidural when no one was looking. I was too scared to endure that kind of pain. Not even 10 minutes later my doctor had arrived, the baby nurses were ready and waiting, and it was time to push. It was so FAST!!

I pushed 4 times in a total of about 10 minutes tops. Because I had been hasty on pushing the epidural, I couldn't feel my contractions anymore or when I even needed to push. So the final push wasn't even on a contraction, we just decided to try it and out she came. Due to my brothers surprise, Cory and I instantly checked to make sure she was a girl before anything else. I was so proud of Cory this time. He watched her come out and when her head was out he kept saying excitedly, "There she is!!!" He even asked to cut the cord this time.

The nurses cooed and awed over her and how perfect she was. Apparently she was an exceptionally sticky baby and hard to clean but we didn't care. She was so beautiful.  Cory kept showing them pictures of Kennedy to compare faces and hair and before she even made it to the hospital, Kennedy was famous amoung the staff. They all wanted to meet her when she was brought in.

Other than the painful labor, this delivery was much more special than last time. They cleaned her off on my chest so I got to see her right away. She was super pissed and kept screaming but I just sat there bawling staring at our beautiful creation. She was perfect!!! We were both instantly smitten and felt like we knew her already.  It was so cool. And nothing has changed since then. If anything we're even more taken with her. Cory has been a major baby hog and seriously has the magic touch with her. Those two have bonded already so deeply I'm not sure I'll ever get to hold her again ha ha.

The hospital and staff were incredible as well. I was the only one in labor there so we had the full undivided attention of the nurses and I saw my doctor longer than 5 seconds. No one ever made me feel guilty about my choices and we felt very cared for.

The epidural took FOREVER to wear off so they didn't move us into the post partum room right away. My mom brought Kennedy to meet her new little sister. It wasn't earth shattering. She was excited to see her but was distracted pretty quickly by all the buttons and things to climb on. We're hoping she warms up after time.

We are so happy. Brynlie is perfect and such a sweet cuddler. When she gets hungry or gets unwrapped she gets mad pretty fast but that's ok. We love her anyway. We both instantly bonded with her and can't put her down.  She's amazing.

I didn't have much damage from delivery but my back was in horrible shape from the epidural crap. I was so so sore. Everything hurt and the first night was kind of miserable. But it's gotten better since then. Hopefully in a few more days that won't be an issue anymore.

Kennedy is struggling with the adjustment so far. I didn't expect her to be those bad but it just gets worse as the day goes on. Heaven help us. We'll get through it though.

It's such a crazy thing to be a family of 4 but it feels like we've always been this way. We're happy and love both our girls very much.

5.08.2014

Overwhelmed

I have been incredibly overwhelmed with gratitude these last few days. Due to my recent inability to control my tears, I haven't expressed it much for fear of flooding our house. But that's a chance I'll have to take right now as I blubber like a baby while sharing it all with you.

I'm so grateful for Cory. Holy crap, I do not deserve that man. For 8 solid months he has done nothing but listen to me complain, watch me cry, silently put up with my crabby moods, willingly eaten the horrible dinners I've made, and has suffered in silence each night as I've taken over our bed with body pillows (and my large body) just so I can try and sleep comfortably. He's been there at night when I've woken up in so much pain I'm crying out, he's helped me keep the house clean, has bathed Kennedy for me, comes home from 14 hours away in pure exhaustion and helps put her to bed after making sure they get quality play time together first. He has been the most patient person alive. I don't know how he's doing it.

On top of all that he's been working his butt off for us. Things are still unstable at work so he's been busting his butt, working hard and saving as much as we can for baby bills and any unforeseeable problems that might arise in our future. He has missed out on a lot, just to provide for us. I often feel guilty that he's gone so much while I'm always home, but we know it's a huge blessing for Kennedy and our new arrival for me to be present in raising them. I am eternally grateful for the chance to be home with our kids and not miss a thing in their lives. I feel enriched each day in the joy of motherhood. It would not be possible without Cory working so hard. He does like his job, so that is a huge bonus, but we miss him all the time and are so grateful for all he does for us. I love that man with every fiber of my soul and the bond he and Kennedy have is unbreakable. He was worth the wait and I thank Heavenly Father for him every day.

I also don't have words for how grateful I have been to my parents for allowing us to live with them. You might think it's been rough, but it's been a huge benefit to us both and part of me is actually kind of sad to be moving home soon. My mom has always been my best friend so I've been lucky enough to have the 3 people I'm closest to under one roof. Without their willingness to help us and allow us to invade their house, we would not be in the position we are now. I literally cannot find the words for how thankful I am for that. I feel entirely unworthy of all the blessings the Lord has bestowed upon us these last few months. More on that later.

They haven't only been a huge help financially but have helped enrich Kennedy's life ten fold. I haven't been able to be the best mother lately. We stay home a lot to due my inability to get out much without suffering for it and she has been very bored. But having my parents come home from work is the highlight of her day. She knows she gets quality time with grandma and gets to boss my dad's dog around and play with him. Her speech has skyrocketed since we moved here because she's had more interactions with people other than just Cory and I all day. She has been fiercely loved and I'm really going to miss that for her. She is going to miss it too. I am literally wracked with sobs right now as I type this because I've felt sickeningly guilty that Kennedy has had to suffer from this pregnancy, too, and I would hate to think where she would be right now without the help of my mom. Kennedy is such a special spirit and I know my parents are going to miss her. Most of her, anyway. Maybe not the tantrums and dirty finger prints everywhere ;) .

Since I'm already crying I'll keep this next one short because I know I can't get through it without Kennedy wondering what's wrong with me, but I am beyond thankful for the opportunity and blessing to be a mother. The love I have for Kennedy and will soon have for little girl #2 consumes me and I can't imagine life without this feeling. I have never been happier and life just keeps getting better.

Life has been hard these past 6-8 months and I have been nothing but a black hole of complaints and misery. I'm aware of it and have tried to be more conscious of how often I gripe about things, but I know I've been annoying. For that reason, I am grateful for the friends who have stuck around anyway and have been there when I've needed them. One friend in particular has gone above and beyond. I complain to her daily with text message after text message and regardless of what she's dealing with in her life, she always finds a way to listen, respond, and talk me through it. I never feel ignored or uncared for. She's been a true friend, truly selfless, and I might have exploded by now without her. I'm so thankful for her and her love for me. Now she's pregnant and I've told her it's her turn to complain to me. Time to return the favor ha ha.

I'm so thankful for the Lord and his plan for me and my family. I have a blog post in progress dealing more in depth on this subject but I have been so humbled and thankful, to the point of struggling to stand, as I've looked back on our lives the last year or so and have seen how perfectly everything has fallen into place and how each tiny little blessing has made a massive impact. It's incredible. Truly incredible.

Life has been a whirlwind of craziness and happiness and I'm so happy I'm able to see the blessings that have changed our lives with each step we've taken as a family. I wouldn't want it any other way.

5.06.2014

Look Up

If you haven't seen the "Look Up" video that's trending online right now, you need to. It's about how addictions to social media are making us anything but social. We're spending all this time being robots on our phones and tablets talking to people who don't really care, robbing us of time with actual human interactions with those who mean the most to us.

I've felt for a long time now that Facebook is a total waste of time. I'm extremely picky about who I add on instagram since it's only pictures, and that has still been worthwhile as far as keeping up with friends who don't live close. But Facebook has been something else entirely. It is so commercialized. I find myself wasting so much time each day checking it to see almost nothing of significance.

Instead of friends posting about themselves, in most cases it's been shared news stories or articles, videos, games, and giveaways. I've seen superficial, fabricated and down right childish posts that should never be discussed on the internet. It hasn't all been bad. I've enjoyed the personal posts, the pictures of friends, and the occasional sales of products I like that I otherwise wouldn't have known about. But it has distanced myself from others because all I have to do is check my phone to see what my friends are doing rather than actually speaking to them and I've hated it. We are truly the least social generation ever.

Each time we get together with our families, the majority of the time is spent with us sitting in the same room, hardly speaking, while everyone is lost in their tablet or cell phone. And we're all usually ignoring the tv that's on as well. It's sad. But we haven't said or done anything about it because we're all guilty of the addiction.

I look around at church during meetings and a large number of people are surfing Facebook and the internet, tuning out the lessons and the spirit, missing out on things that could be vital to their lives. I think distraction is a huge tool Satan is using these days. He's cleverly distancing us slowly and surely from the things that are most important, like the family.

Technology is generally a good thing but it can also be very dangerous. I think we've reached the dangerous point in our society. The video mentioned above helped me to really see how bad it really is. So did the article, "Dear Mom on the iphone". That one really makes you see perspective. Google it.

That's why I've made a new goal with myself. I am drastically limiting my Facebook usage for now and possibly deactivating it, depending on if I feel like the major step back has made a big enough change. Or if the temptation to check it sticks around and I fall back into the habit of mindlessly checking it. My goal is once every couple days, then once a week, then nothing at all. I will keep my instagram account and will be updating the blog more for those who don't live close, and for journaling purposes. Instead, I will be spending more time interacting with my loved ones and sharing moments that will last forever. These days will go by fast and I don't want to miss them.

I'm actually really excited about the change. I'm ready to shed the robot inside me and become a human being again and show Kennedy that she means more to me than my phone time.

A Little Crazy

Things have been a little crazy around these parts. We had an exciting and fun filled weekend and Monday.

My parents decided to go camping for the weekend up at Crystal Hot Springs. None of us had ever been there before, but they decided to go check it out anyway.

Kennedy and I headed up for the day on Saturday to swim and hang out. Cory had to work. Bummer. The weather was an amazing 80 degrees all day so it was perfect swimming weather. The facility isn't the nicest place ever, but it was still a lot of fun and there was a lot of freedom with a little one which I loved. I also liked how cheap it was. We will definitely be going back.

Kennedy was just beside herself with excitement to go swim and play with her cousins. She is obsessed with Bradlee, and Bradlee is such a great cousin to her and takes phenomenal care of her. I love it so much.  She woke up pretty bored until she saw me pull out her swim suit and floaties and then she shot out of bed screaming with excitement. When I mentioned we were going camping with Bradlee and Brock I swore her face was going to shatter with how stretched in pure elation it was. I could not stop laughing.

Anyway, we had a great time swimming and I loved being weightless while in the water. Pregnant swimming is heaven, if you don't mind being in a swim suit. I did get sick towards the afternoon though. I think I had too much heat and too little water to drink. I ended up leaving earlier than planned and Kennedy stayed behind to camp out overnight with my parents and her cousins. You would think a night away would be awesome but my pregnant self spent most of the night bawling because I missed her so much. What the crap?? So I went to bed at 9:30 while Cory watched the playoffs. Riveting.

Sunday night my sister in law went into labor early. She ended up having the baby really early Monday morning. We were both expecting girls. But a girl is not what she gave birth to. A beautiful little boy emerged and surprised the crap out of us all. They named him Britton. He's adorable and I can't wait to go back and see him. And let Kennedy see him since they wouldn't let her in. She was so sad. I asked Cory if holding him got him excited and he said, "yes, I could have sat there all day." Awe.....


I also had my 36 week check up yesterday. To my delight I am dilated to a 2 which is great, but blood pressure was normal and I could be dilated at a 2 until I die. So, induction is still scheduled for the 22nd. It seems so far away but it really isn't. I just have to endure 2 more suck-filled weeks and then this nightmare is over. Yay!!!