Thursday, November 26, 2009

Birth Story

Monday morning, the 23rd started with an early wake up call from Abby. I was feeling crampy and then had a bit of bleeding. My midwife told me to go to the hospital to get "checked out". Paul and I came on down (an hour and a half drive) and ended up being at the hospital for 7 hours. They did all kinds of tests, monitored heartbeat, contractions, etc. For a bit, I had contractions about 8-10 minutes apart but it didn't last. Just as they were going to discharge me, they checked and I had gone from a 1 to a 2. Not very significant but asked me to stay another couple hours to watch. Nothing else happened so they finally discharged me and told me to stay in town for 1-2 hours "just in case".

Poor Paul! This is the last three weeks of classes for him before he graduates and he has spent so much time driving and being here. Great husband :)

Tuesday, I continued having contractions in the early morning which subsided when I got up. I made banana bread and washed dishes. Then I sat down and finished a baby quilt for my cousin. My contractions were pretty much gone! My cousins Laura and Jeff were flying into Denver that evening so we left a little after noon to go fetch them (3 hour drive). I continued having contractions every now and then, but nothing regular or intense. We got home close to 10 pm and crashed.

Wednesday morning at 3am, I woke up because of painful contractions. I couldn't sleep anymore so finally just went to the living room where I skyped with my mom and sister. I found a cool contraction monitor online which would measure how long the contractions were and how far apart. For several hours, they were right at the 10 minute mark but without fail. Around 6:30 my contractions were 6-7 minutes apart. The hospital had told me to wait until we were 3-5 minutes but I wanted to make sure I could get there in time. We were making plans for people to watch Abby and get ourselves in gear when the contractions went back to 10 minutes apart and just stayed there. At this point, I was exhausted so I took a nap - well, in between contracions that is! Around 9:30, my mom skyped me again and wanted to know how things were going. She encouraged me to get up and do some housework!!!! At this point, we weren't trying to stop the process. So I started laundry and then Laura and I took a walk with Abby down to the barn. I was still having contractions but they really weren't very bad. At 11, we went to chapel. About halfway through chapel, I had such a long, painful contraction and couldn't stay. I went home with Abby where I could walk around and "do stuff". I was hungry so I started making potato soup. Peeling and chopping potatoes is a great way to get through contractions by the way. Through all this I was timing the contractions and all of a sudden, they started getting shorter and shorter apart. When Paul, Jeff and Laura came back from chapel, I was telling them we should probably go to the hospital soon but let me finish the soup. The guys packed and got everything together. Beth Ann came to get Abby for the afternoon. And I worked on my soup. Paul was ready before me but I really wanted this soup that I had been working on. We took a few more minutes to finish it up and pack it in containers to eat in the car. The funny thing is that I never had any. As soon as we started driving, my contractions were 3 minutes apart. Can I just say "not fun!" And how about getting to the hospital in record time?

I got to the L & D desk, telling them I was having contractions 2-3 minutes apart. I was sent to the observation room where it was noted that I was already dilated at a 5, station 0. The head was already down pretty far! Since I had to have antibiotics for GRB, I had the IV put in and the penicillin started. As soon as that was finished, I was getting the jacuzii. Wahoo! I was so excited about that but my contractions started picking up in intensity. I was trying to ignore the fact that there was a lot of pressure and I kind of felt the need to push. I have a one track mind and wanted that jacuzzi. Thankfully the nurse saw what was happening and whisked me away to the delivery room. My penicillin was finished and so just before the jacuzzi she wanted to check me again. I was at a 8/9 --- too late for the jacuzzi. She also said the bag of waters was a huge bulge on babies' head and that as soon as they broke it, baby would be out. I did get to use the birthing ball and ladies, what a marvelous help that is. So much more comfortable than the bed or even standing up.

My midwife, Mary, was called, came over immediately - Praise God! As she checked me, I went to completely effaced. My water was broken and then we were pushing. With the second push, Mary said she could see the head and the hair. "He's almost here". With the third push, out he popped!!!!! So tiny but breathing well.  And this only an hour and a half since we arrived at the hospital....totally the way to go.

3:57 p.m. on November 25th!!! He weighed in at 4 pounds, 11.5 ounces and his length is 16 inches. His head diameter is a mere 12 inches. The most amazing thing to me is how well his vitals were. He has such big feet and big hands for being such a little guy.

Meanwhile, I was able to deliver the placenta and get just two stitches. Small babies = no tears.

I praise God for the wonderful timing in getting to the hospital. I praise God for great nurses who respected our birth plan and wanted us to have the best experience possible. I praise God for allowing me to go through this naturally and not to give up. I praise God that my midwife was working this day AND got there in time. I praise God that both Paul and Laura were able to be there for the birth.

We named our little guy Silas Anthony. The name Silas is after the Silas from the Bible. Anthony is a family name. Paul, his dad, grandpa and great-grandpa all have Anthony as a middle name.

Our family is a bit bigger now. We will have to put up a picture with Abby too, but that will have to wait just a little bit longer.

Thanks for all of you that prayed for us. Welcome Silas!!!!

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Saturday, November 21, 2009


Bad hair day? the last few days, Abby has been using her "imagination" a lot more to play. She also just likes everyday "things" rather than the toys that sit in the corner.
Right now she is demolishing this box and thoroughly enjoying every moment playing with it. Much better than the last few evening's activities - giggling while drinking out of our contact solution bottle, using her ink pen all over my glider rocker, coloring on the fridge....I'm finding it true....when all is silent, something is wrong :)

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Thursday, November 19, 2009

Cows have the right of way.....

I live in a rural area...most of you know that.   Today I was reminded just how rural it is.  I actually probably share this experience with my sister, Andrea, who lives in Zambia.   On my way home from the grocery store, I have two roads to choose from.  I chose Macy Lane.   A few miles into my drive, I noticed a herd of about 50 cattle coming my way.  Now this actually happened a few months ago and I turned around, went back to town, and took the other road.   I did not want to do this today so I backed up and sat in a driveway of a nearby ranch, waiting for the cows to go by.   The lead cowboy started coming toward me on his horse.   I thought for sure I was parked in the exact spot where they were trying to go.  Actually, the man was so nice and asked if I could just stay there and block the drive so the cattle wouldn't go down the wrong way.   But please back up so that I won't fall in the ditch.   This is where I must have missed the fact that he wanted me to turn my car sideways so as to "block" the road more effectively.    Mr. Cowboy went on his way to the next turnoff down the road.   Here was my chance to "help".  I backed up and turned my car off.   I thought how fun this was going to be so I pulled Abby out of her carseat and had her come up front with me to watch all the cows and the horses.  The first  3 or 4 cows went straight...then the rest surrounded me on all sides in an attempt to get around us and go down the drive anyway.   So much for me being a deterrance.  I think if anything, I was more temptation for the cows to find a way around.   The back three cowboys(girl) seemed rather flustered to have their cows out of control and then me in the middle of all of this.  You know the feeling when you are trying to help but actually are more in the way?   That's what I was feeling.  Once the last cow had passed me by, Ms. Cowgirl waved me on.   I still had Abby sitting right next to me but I started the car and drove down the road about a half mile and then put her back in her carseat.   Days are always so much more fun with a bit of adventure!

Can't Sleep

It's the middle of the night and I can't sleep. Ahh, the joys of pregnancy :)
As I sit here, I am wondering how my grandmother is doing. She's been back and forth between hospital and nursing home with various problems; none of them good.
I am wondering how my Mom and Dad are doing. They live in South Africa and it's especially hard for my mom being away from her mom when she is so sick. It's also super hard for them to be away from grandkids.
And how in the world did my baby girl grow up so fast. This picture was taken at her birthday party in May?
And finally, this is our most recent casual family picture. We have one from my sister Debbie's wedding but how is it that we don't have any family pictures? I guess we need to get our tripod out more often. Maybe subconsciously I am avoiding photos during pregnancy :)
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Monday, November 16, 2009


On Saturday, we had the privilege to drive just north of Colorado Springs to visit Peter
and Janet. Janet is my first cousin and I've known Peter for a long time. The last time
that I saw them was at a shower when I was pregnant with Abby. Neither one of them
had met Paul or Abby. It's so fun for me to have Paul meet my extended family. Granted
that is a huge task but bit by bit, he's getting to know them.

It was also just great to get off this mountain for the day. We had a nice drive where Paul and I just talked and talked. After we met up with Peter and Janet, we went out for some mexican food. Just saying though, we have NOT found a restaurant in Colorado that does justice to mexican food. My plate looked like chinese stir-fry with a slice of avocado on the side (does that make it mexican?).

Later in the afternoon, we just talked and talked, and then played a fun game of Settlers of Catan (Peter won). For me, it was such a refreshing day to spend with them and get reconnected. Thanks to my sweet hubby for being completely relaxed and willing to spend his whole day there.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

From the early years

We desire for Abby to be a helpful girl who loves to serve others. I am thinking more about the future but I am learning that it starts even now. And especially now when she wants to "help". Honestly, her helping at this stage is harder for us. She takes the dishes out of the drainer and puts them back in the water. When I am sweeping, she takes the swiffer mop and just twirls around. When I am making cookies, she's trying to dump extra spices in the dough. From watching other moms, I know it is worth it. She's being taught that she is an intregal part of our household. That she can help! I need to remember our vision for Abby and remain patient even when it's just faster to do it myself. On that note, Paul's been teaching her to put stuff away before dinner while I am cooking. Abby does not like that part at all, she screams and cries while Paul takes her hand and walks around the house putting the toys away. But pretty soon, her tears dry up and she figures it out, even feeling "proud of herself" that she puts things away.
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Thursday, November 5, 2009

Cherishing the moments

My sweet little girl taking a nap on Mommy's bed. Lately, I've found myself wanting to hold Abby more, to rock her to sleep and just be snuggly with her. She's been so good about always just going to sleep after I lay her down in her crib but I've wanted to cling to her a bit more. I think about the baby coming in just a few more weeks and realize I won't have as many of these moments with her.
Abby's favorite activity recently is dancing with Mama. She likes it especially when I am holding her and just moving all around - dips and twirls and spins :) She'll dance if she hears music in a store (or even church). Sometimes, she makes her own music and sings. Yesterday while I was tutoring, I looked up and she had her hand in the air and was just dancing and laughing.
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Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Snow/Mud Walk

It has started to warm up here a bit (in the 40's during the day).  Saturday we went out for a much needed walk.   Abby is getting used to the snow and was actually walking a bit in it.  You'll notice she is still wearing tennis shoes as her snow boots are pretty big on her.   Companies don't really make snow gear for tiny little ones.

Abby's feet got stuck in the mud and down she went for a face plant.   After a few moments of tears, she got down and actually enjoyed herself.   She found all the mud puddles that she could and stomped around in them.   It's only laundry right?

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