Sunday, September 29, 2013

A First....And Hopefully A Last

Amelia has been saying she has to go potty and she has actually been sitting on her potty for a couple of months now so when she took off running down the hall yelling "poo poo", we didn't think too much about it.  My mom was the closest to her so she followed behind her so she could help Amelia pull off her diaper. Well, little Miss Independent didn't want Nannie's help so she proceeded to run faster and yelled NOOO to Nannie.  She made it to the bathroom before Mom and she shut the bathroom door.  This is a new phase for her.  She loves to go around and close all the doors in the house but usually she's on the hall side and not the room side. Since she needed to go potty, she was on the room side.  First mistake.
Once she was in the bathroom, Amelia started banging on the door and she wanted Nannie to bang back.  This little game continued on for a little bit until Amelia decided to reach up and turn the lock on the handle.  Second Mistake. 
At first, we didn't really know what to do so we just laughed and tried to give instructions to Amelia on how to unlock the door. After a few minutes, which felt like hours, we decided that we were going to have to get the door unlocked from our side.  We gathered screwdrivers, metal hangers, grilling skewers, butter knifes and a hammer.  We originally thought we would be able to open the door using the metal hanger but we quickly figured out that wouldn't work.  
After a lot of prying, Amelia sensed something was wrong. Her playful knocks on the bathroom door turned into panic filled knocks. This is when Jason tried to bulldoze the bathroom door down....true story.  He backed up and threw his weight on the door, not once but twice, without any luck.  I'm not sure how hard he was really trying because Amelia was right on the other side and she could have gotten hurt if he successfully knocked the door down.  
Mommy suggested to unscrew the handle and eventually that, along with some hammering, was able to free our little lady. 
I think it took us all by surprise how unprepared we were for a situation like this and it caused us to brainstorm and come up with ideas to prevent it from happening again. 
This is when our grand idea was born...

Tape on the door handles. I know they have door knob covers that prevent children from opening doors but the middle is cut out out that wouldn't help with the locking situation.  We will see how long the tape is able to detour...wish us luck!

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Short And Sweet Recap....10 Days!

A big sister excited for her ONE day old little brother (and the hospital latex gloves)
Mama's milk tastes so good to a growing TWO day old little boy (mouth is always open when he sleeps)
THREE day old little boys are determined to kick out of swaddles for a little more comfort
On day FOUR, our family of four went for our first family walk around the neighborhood
FIVE days later and big sister is still in love with her little brother and it brings Mommy and Daddy so much joy
SIX days of our new family and Amelia discovered a new way to ride on the stroller... big girl style
Newborn pictures were captured when our little man was only SEVEN days old
Barrett's first bath was on day EIGHT and the whole family was involved in making sure every inch of him was clean
NINE day old toes peaking out of the blanket at a weight check-up at the doctor's office
Frozen milk is taking over our freezer only TEN days after Barrett's arrival
It has only been TEN days but I'm speechless at how fast time has flown and how complete our sweet little family feels with our new addition.
Most days and nights are exhausting and I'm not sure how much longer my body can function in survival mode. Each day is full of more memories, laughs and joy that it makes the exhaustion worth it.
Two happy, healthy kiddos makes for one happy Mommy and Daddy!

Thursday, September 26, 2013

The BEST Big Helper

I knew that Amelia would be the BEST big sister when I would see her play and take care of her babies but I had no idea that she would be as hands on as she has been.
If Barrett is fussing, Amelia is right there trying to give him a pacifier or trying to pat his back. Sometimes we have to get on to her because she doesn't have the softest touch but we know that her actions come from a place of love and not frustration or jealousy.
Here are just a few pictures that I was able to get of our big helper...
--Wanting to help dad carry the car seat down to the car (with Daddy's help)
--Wanting to push the stroller during our morning walks (with Mommy's help)
--Wanting to carry the stroller up the stairs (with Daddy's help)
--Wanting to hold her brother ALL. BY. HERSELF


Barrett doesn't know it just yet but he has the BEST big sister. She is totally smitten with him and she wants the best for him...so amazing to see her sweet heart in action.
Thank goodness that God gave me such a beautiful, sweet, big helper!

Getting Settled: Our First Hours and Days At Home

We pulled into the driveway and we were greeted by some yard decorations and two crazy ladies (Mom and Aunt Diane) that were waving and cheering like we were Prince William and Princess Kate.
Amelia's face in the picture cracks me up. It's almost like she's saying, "I'm so over this picture stuff". She definitely looks unimpressed....our little girl is all personality. HA
We really took time during our first hours at home to ensure that Barrett felt comfortable, the dogs were aware of the new baby and that Amelia knew her brother was here to stay but that she had some structure and familiarity throughout the day.

It didn't take long before Amelia was sharing all of her toys with her little brother. Notice the little train on Barrett...that came in a book that he got for his big sister and she has been in love with the book and the little toy figurines. She definitely loves her choo choos so for her to share with him, is amazing!
We had an evening (Thursday) where Jason needed to get out of the house and do something that he enjoyed but being that we just got home with a new baby didn't really feel like a trip was something we wanted to tackle. Washing cars is a stress reliever for him so we all went outside to wash the car. It was a perfect first family experience....Amelia loves helping her daddy wash off the bubbles.
Later that evening, Barrett got his first sponge bath and we attempted to feed him his first bottle. Since I'll be going back to work full-time, we have to make sure that Barrett is comfortable with drinking his milk out of a bottle.

On Friday morning, 3 days post-partum, we decided that we wanted to try and tackle our first family walk around the block. The second time delivering was so much easier on my body and I felt like my old self pretty quickly so I was excited to get outside and get some much needed family time (pups included).
Amelia wasn't sure in the beginning...I was holding Barrett and she wanted to hold my hand. Usually she walks one of the pups or rides in her stroller but she wasn't a fan of either of those options.

Since the walk around our neighborhood is about a mile, she did eventually get in her stroller but she kept a close eye on her little brother.
Our morning walks are something that we are all used to and we want to get Barrett used to them too. Amelia has gotten to the point where she will walk up to us with her shoes in hand, ready to go on a walk. I love this! Outside time, family time is something that we want our kids to experience and love!
Our first few hours and days at home were a challenge. I wish that I could say they were easy and that everything flowed smoothly but they didn't. Amelia fell in love with her little brother from the second that she saw him but she didn't fall in love with the fact that she had to share her Mommy and Daddy's attention with him.
We are very much a family of routine and schedules so I know as soon as we get into a routine, we'll all feel a little more relaxed and stable. We are still getting settled in...probably will always feel like we are getting settled in but things are getting better with each passing day.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Our Hospital Stay: Barrett Albert

Once the epidural wore off enough for me to be able to get out of bed and go to the bathroom, they moved us out of the Labor and Delivery wing and into the Recovery wing.
I was actually pretty surprised at how good I felt after delivery. I showered pretty much after I ate some breakfast and that really helped speed up the recovery. It's amazing what some warm water and smell good body wash can do for a person!! 
Amelia was still at Ms. B's so we really took most of the day to enjoy our new little addition and rest up.
How sweet is that little hat on him?!  My mom made it for him the week he was born...I'm glad she started working on it early!! 

My co-workers were needing a field trip so I got a text asking if I could use some visitors and a Jimmy Johns sandwich. They were all pretty excited to see Barrett and we were pretty excited to show him off.
Our next visitor was by far my favorite visitor...Amelia. She walked into the room pretty hesitant and nervous of the room but the second that she saw Barrett (aka-Baby) in his bed, she immediately warmed up. She didn't like the hospital bed or the fact that I was in the bed so she sat with her Daddy and we introduced Barrett to his big sister.
She was so gentle and loving with him...it was the sweetest moment to watch. She was so curious and intrigued with her little brother and after inspecting every inch of him, she decided that she would give him some kisses.

Amelia wanted to give him his pacifier, change his diaper, put him in his bed and she wanted to do it all by herself. She got a upset when we would try to help her but for the most part, she did amazing.
Our new family of four (I think Amelia's homemade shirt turned out perfect)

Jason decided to take Amelia home and start the nighttime routine (dinner, bath, book and bed) and we got settled in for the evening. My mom stayed the night with me and I'm so glad that she did! Lacey came to visit us after she got off work but I didn't get a picture. Dang, sorry Lacey! She brought a sweet little card and a thing of daisies....the perfect pop of color for our drab room.
The evening didn't go quite like planned...there weren't suppose to be any big surprises, just a lot of baby holding! 
Since I requested to go home after my 24 hours, we had a procedure and some newborn tests that needed to be completed and they used our first night in the hospital to get them done. I was hoping that I would have Jason there with me when they took him away for support and the voice of reason but he wasn't. Instead, I sat there, watched the clock, prayed and couldn't wait to get my baby back in my arms.
At 9:30pm, I hear wailing coming down the hall and I just knew it was my little man. He was so pitiful and it broke my heart. Not how I planned our night at all...I cuddled him, nursed him and tried to keep him as comfortable as possible.

We survived the first night, with minimal tears from the both of us, and we were looking forward to a new day!
Around 11am on Thursday, September 19th, we got the paperwork that we were both approved for discharge.
Jason, Amelia and Aunt Diane all showed up around lunchtime to get our bags packed so we could go home. This is the first time that Amelia would crawl up in bed with Mommy but I guess having the baby with me didn't hurt. She wanted to hold her brother and she didn't let her fear stand in her way.

 
We got Barrett changed in his coming home outfit and beanie, loaded up all of our bags and made our way off the maternity floor and to our car. It was so surreal being pushed out of the hospital with Barrett in his car seat and Amelia walking with her Daddy.
**Something I want to remember about our walk from the maternity floor to the car--Amelia screamed the WHOLE time. She did not like me in a wheelchair!  She kept saying "No, Mommy" and had the biggest tears in her eyes and streaming down her face. It was too much for her to handle!  Once we got outside and we were waiting on the valet to bring our car, I got out of the wheelchair and she immediately calmed down.
We loaded up both kids and pulled out of the hospital driveway as a family of 4...such an amazing, surreal feeling.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Birth Story: Barrett Albert

I had just gotten off work on Tuesday, September 17, 2013 and boy, oh boy, was I ready to have our little man. I read online that sitting on an exercise ball helped open up the pelvic area and encouraged/sped up labor. I played on the ball with Amelia from about 5:00p-6:00p...nothing crazy, just some bouncing and chasing her around the living room. We ate dinner, gave Amelia a bath and waited for Jason to get home. He was the late resident on duty so we tried to keep Amelia awake so she could see her Daddy. Jason finally got home around 7:30pm and I noticed when I went to sit down on the couch that I had a little "leaky" feeling. With being 39 weeks pregnant, sometimes "leaky" feelings happen but it's not amniotic fluid. I went to the bathroom, made a comment to Jason and my mom about it and then pushed it out of my head. About 10 minutes later, the "leaky" feeling came again but this time with a little more leak. I was pretty certain that my water had broken, not a huge gush like it did with Amelia, but with little sporadic leaks.
We decided that we should probably get our things ready, call Ms. B to see if we could bring Amelia over to sleep at her house and head to the hospital. Jason was literally home for 20 minutes before we were heading back to the place that he just left. He did manage to get in a shower before we went back to the hospital so that counts for something, right?!
 Here is our last picture as a family of 3....
Amelia didn't quite know what to think as we were running around the house gathering things but she did so good with the chaos. We all rode in one car--Mom dropped us off at the front of the hospital and then took Amelia to Ms. B's house before returning to the hospital.
We signed in to Labor and Delivery at 8:20pm and we were taken to an exam room. The doctor wanted to make sure that my water did break before getting us comfortable in a room.
At 8:45pm, they confirmed that the "leak" was real and that we were on our way to having a baby. They took us to Labor and Delivery room 4, got an IV started and we started the waiting game. At this point, we called/texted everyone to let them know that Barrett would be arriving soon. Jason's Aunt Diane wanted to be in the delivery room so we called her to let her know that she should start her 4 hour drive to Hershey.
It felt like Christmas morning when you run to your parent's room telling them that Santa had come while everyone was sleeping and they tell you to go back to your room and rest for a couple more hours. Those couple of hours are brutal...no sleeping happens and all you can think about is opening your presents. This was me...I couldn't sleep when I knew good and well that I should be sleeping. The excitement was just too much for me so I watched the clock, played Candy Crush and took pictures of everyone else around me sleeping. HA
 

At 9:00pm, they checked me and said that I was 3cm dilated and my cervix was 70% effaced. The contractions weren't horribly painful (even though there were a few rough ones thrown into the mix) but I knew that I wanted an epidural and I didn't want to miss out if they got an emergency page or something that would take precedence over my epidural. At 11:30pm, I was dilated to 4cm and I decided that it was time for the epidural. The doctors were great but things didn't go as smoothly as they did with Amelia. I guess because her delivery was the only thing that I had to base things off of, I expected the same thing. The epidural wasn't horrible and it definitely did it's job but I had a few more stings and uncomfortable moments as they were placing the catheter in my back.
At 2:30am on September 18, 2013 they said I was 5cm and 100% effaced and they seemed pleased with my progress. I was moving in the right direction without any drugs to speed up the process so all-in-all, it was good.
At 4:37am, they checked me again and what they found was exciting. I was 10cm, 100% effaced and baby was working his way down the birth canal. The doctor said I could try to push but I decided to hold off until he made his way down on his own.
I think I heard too many horror stories of women that pushed for multiple hours and became exhausted and weak as a result that I didn't want that to be something that I forced. We waited 9 months, what was a couple more hours??
At 5:25am, I felt a good bit of pressure in my bottom (like I had to go to the bathroom) and I knew that he had finally made his way down and we were ready to push. The nurse and resident came in, asked for me to give a trial push and immediately had me stop because the baby was on his way out. The resident put on all of her protective gear, I got into position and two pushes later, Barrett Albert Conway made his entrance into this world. Our little guy was born at 5:34am on September 18, 2013.
Since I had a healthy pregnancy and delivery, I was able to hold him the second that he came out.

We were able to love our little man for about 30-40 minutes before they took him over to the warming station to get his APGAR scores, weight, length, etc.
We had a healthy (APGAR score was 9), 8 pound 5 ounce baby boy that was 20 inches long. The doctor thought that he would be closer to 9 pounds when she first examined me so during delivery, they had a side step brought in just in case his shoulders got stuck. Thank goodness that little man wasn't that big...he was pretty close to his sister's size.
Once Barrett was cleaned up, everyone wanted a turn holding him! The waiting game was finally over and we had our little man in our arms.

 
*Side story--Jason grew a beard for a couple of weeks leading up to Barrett's delivery because he grew one during Amelia's birth month for something going on at the hospital. He said that it was his "good luck" charm so he found it only fitting that he have some facial hair for Barrett's arrival.
We had a long day/night/morning (10 hours) but seeing our healthy little boy made it all worth it.

Happy Birthday, sweet Barrett. Welcome to our crazy, chaotic and loving family...we LOVE you!!