Things To Expect + Life With Joel

Monday, February 21, 2011

There are a few things I wish someone would have told me to expect after giving birth.... Blood clots, for example, would be one of those things. The first time I passed a clot I totally freaked out. It was the size of a golf ball (sorry if that's TMI) and I just knew I was dying. A nurse assured me I was not dying but it was still scary. I knew I would bleed for a while but no one ever warned me I would pass clots. A few days after being home I passed one the size of my palm and, once again, I just knew I was dying. The nurse told me after I passed the first one that the only time I needed to be concerned was if the clot was as big as my palm or bigger, so of course I freaked out! I sat in the bathroom crying my eyes out while my husband called the doctor to make sure he didn't need to rush me to the hospital. Thankfully I wasn't dying and the doctor said it was normal, but it scared me and I really wish someone had told me to be expecting it.

Another thing I wish someone had told me would be that trying to get rest in a hospital is a huge joke. I constantly had nurses coming in the room. The funny part is they would all tell me "try to get some rest" as they walked out the room. J and I laughed every time they would say it because they seriously made it impossible! I honestly can't remember sleeping at the hospital other than during my labor. I'm not even kidding. By the end of the second day I was ready to go home just so I could get away from all the nurses! They drove me nuts!

So, if you are pregnant expect that you may or may not have some blood clots and don't expect to get any rest at the hospital. You're welcome in advance for the warning. :)

Anyway -
The first days home were rough. Lack of sleep due to a baby eating every hour (because I wasn't producing milk yet) + lots of pain from a tough labor = a mommy that cries at random moments throughout the day. Poor J, all he could do was hold me and tell me everything would get better. & He was right.. things are better. Joel is now eating every 3 hours which means we get more sleep, and I'm finally starting to feel better.

J went back to work on Monday.. and I will be honest, I was terrified of being left alone with a new baby. I was worried I wouldn't be able to handle it alone. Things have been going great though. It's not as hard as I was worried it would be. We are sorta on a schedule--Joel usually wakes up around the same time every night to eat and I'm starting to figure out his daily feedings. I usually sleep while he is sleeping and it really helps me.

Now let me just take a moment to say how amazing Joel's daddy is! He helps me every chance he can. He wakes up every time we wake up even if he is dog tired and has to get up a few hours later for work. He takes over when I'm done feeding if he notices that I'm exhausted so I can take a nap. He changes every diaper he can when he is home. He does all that plus so much more! He is my Superman. &He is quickly becoming Joel's best friend. Seriously the kid loves his Daddy and loves to play with him already! It's adorable! Maybe one day I will figure out how to post a video of it..  :)

P.S. ~ I know my blogging has been lacking lately and I apologize. Having Joel has definitely made me realize what is really important in life though, and blogging isn't at the top of that list! (Hopefully I will get a chance to post his 1 month photo before he turns 3 months.. Ha!)

Birth Story

Friday, February 11, 2011

On Wednesday, February 2nd I went in for my weekly appointment. I was hoping to find out if we had made any progress but I wasn't expecting much. Unfortunately the only thing that had progressed was preeclampsia and super high blood pressure. My doctor didn't want to risk letting any of it get it worse so she said I needed to be induced that day. I was SO nervous as we left the doctor's office that I was shaking! I couldn't believe we were about to head to the hospital to finally meet our baby boy!

{the view from our hospital room}

We arrived at the hospital after 1 PM. I didn't pay attention to the time after we arrived but I think they started me on Pitocin around 3 or 4 PM. I was already having small contractions when we first arrived at the hospital but oh man it didn't take long for the contractions to get stronger after I was given the Pitocin! Even though I was having contractions I wasn't dilated enough to get an epidural so I was given Stadol to "take the edge off" (as the nurse said). The Stadol instantly gave relief but also made me feel loopy. I couldn't open my eyes without feeling like the whole room was spinning. I didn't like it but it took some of the pain away and helped me get some rest in between contractions. (Jer said I would pass out in between the contractions to the point where I was snoring and then wake up instantly when the contractions would come. I honestly don't remember much of it.. Everything became a blur after I was given the Stadol.) Once the Stadol started to wear off I was given morphine. It didn't help at all though.

Thankfully around midnight my OB came in and broke my water and not long after I was finally able to get the epidural. I was terrified of getting the epidural but honestly I think getting the IV in my arm hurt worse than the epi. Then again.. I was pretty doped up already!

After I got the epidural I was finally able to sleep longer than 2 minutes. It was great! But around 2 or 3 AM I woke up because the baby's heart rate monitor was going nuts. Jeremy was asleep and none of the nurses were coming in so I figured maybe it was nothing.. until I looked at the monitor and realized his heart rate was almost to 180! I freaked! Of course I couldn't wake Jer up so I paged the nurse. The nurse checked my temp and said I had a fever over 100 so they immediately started me on antibiotics. I was given three different antibiotics.. one was a pill, two were given through my IV. Joel's heart rate stayed high for a few hours which was extremely scary for us!

When it came time to start pushing my epidural began to wear off. It was the most painful thing I've ever felt!! &It happened twice! It was horrible!!

I pushed for three hours but I had no clue of that until afterwards. Once my OB finally showed up she discovered that Joel was turned the wrong way--he was facing up and it was causing him to be stuck in the birth canal. She turned him around but he was still stuck so she said we had two options: either use the vacuum or a c-section. I honestly don't even remember making the decision to go ahead with the vacuum, but I did. I just wanted him out. Might I mention that my epidural had completely wore off once again at that point? Yeah.. So his head was stuck and I felt every bit of it. There was a lot of yelling involved at that point. It hurt, and I didn't care how loud I was being or who could hear me. (Can you blame me??)

At 12 PM our beautiful, 8lbs 2oz and 21.5 inches long, baby boy finally entered the world! While he was being cleaned up I was still in tons of pain and losing a lot of blood. I felt so bad for Jer.. I could tell he felt torn on whether he should stay by me and make sure I was ok or if he should have been next to his baby. He stayed by my side though, and every once in a while would turn around to make sure Joel was doing alright. Joel wasn't crying much which really freaked me out. I was terrified he was hurt from the vacuum. He was healthy and perfect though, praise God!

Seeing Jeremy hold Joel for the first time is a moment I will never forget. Jer was teary-eyed and couldn't stop smiling. It was priceless!

When I was finally able to hold him all I could do was stare at him and thank God. I couldn't believe the miracle that we had hoped, prayed, and waited for was finally there in my arms!

1 Week Old

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Despite the bad news I received today,
this has been the best week of my life.

It's only been a week but
I'm already completely head over heels in love with this little boy!

The Lord Gives & The Lord Takes Away

I just found out that my grandmother passed away.

My heart is breaking. Mostly for my dad.
He found her this afternoon.

It's times like this that I really hate this lifestyle and the fact that we have to live so far away from our loved ones.

Please keep my family in your prayers.
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