Thursday, July 07, 2011

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Gavin's Birth Story

It was a typical Monday. Mike was off to work, Ethan was off to school.. I stayed home with every intention to relax but somehow "relaxing" only made me more anxious. I had watched every show on DVR, trolled craigslist for baby gear, did a few loads of laundry, even finished painting the mural in Gavin's nursery. I went to Target that morning, got some Chinese food for lunch, Walgreens that afternoon to buy snacks for Mike (for whenever I go into labor). It was becoming quite apparent how exhausting it is just waiting to go into labor. Gavin wasn't due for another week, but I did convince my doctor to push my induction to Wednesday morning. 2 more days, I kept thinking... 2 more days...

So you can imagine my surprise that Monday night... we had just finished watching the latest episode of House. I felt like crap, as usual, but wasn't having any contractions. And then... the uneventful event happened. My water broke. No... I didn't stain the couch. I didn't pee all over the carpet either. But it broke alright... it was around 9:30pm. I yelled for Mike, and after calling my sister to tell her "this is NOT a drill" and a few minutes of last minute packing and Mike nervously looking for a "rope" to tie off the umbilical cord in case we don't make it all the way to the hospital... we were off.

By the time we got to the hospital, my family was already there. They wheeled me off to Labor and Delivery and I got comfortable in that horrid hospital gown pretty quickly. Slowly, my pain rating climbed from a 2 to a 4 to a 6. It sucked, but it was manageable. My mom said if I was still texting, that it couldn't be THAT bad.

I told the nurses the first chance I got that I wanted the epidural, but for some reason or the other, they couldn't give it to me right away. I had to get my blood drawn, they said. I don't know what the hell was going on at 10pm that it took them forever to draw my blood and get it to the lab.

Within 2 hours, the contractions have gotten so bad that I found myself yelling in pain -- something I didn't remember doing when I gave birth to Ethan. For what it's worth, Mike talked me through breathing through the contractions. I found a spot on the ceiling to focus on and held on to the siderail because I didn't By the time they drew my blood, the lab got the results, and the anesthesiologist got to the room, I was already 9 cm dilated. I was ready to push. I remember the anesthesiologist talking to the nurse, telling her it was too late for me to get it. I just kept thinking.. holy shit, this hurts.

No, no, no. Unacceptable. I don't remember if I spat out profanity, I don't think I did.... I just remember saying "please" a lot. I could've cursed them out politely, I suppose. Mainly, I begged for them not to let me go through it without drugs. Sure, people do it all the time. But I wasn't about to if I could help it. Mike kept saying "you can do this, I know you can". No offense, hun, but I hate you right about now.

They ended up administering the epidural after much begging. By then I was already ready to push. The anesthesiologist told me he can't sit me up because I was in too much pain, so he'll have to do it with me laying down - which apparently takes his difficulty level up a notch. I promised to stay still through the contractions, which is A LOT harder than it sounds. He stuck my back and waited inbetween the peaks. It took maybe 20 minutes for me to feel it, but it was too late..... It was go time. I don't remember much anymore after that.

Next thing you know, he was in my arms. He was finally here.... there's no feeling like the first time you see that baby. He was perfect. But my favorite part of it all was introducing Ethan to his baby brother.

Ethan, meet Gavin. Gavin, meet Ethan.

Gavin, meet the world.

Saturday, January 01, 2011

Happy New Year!

Sounds cliche but I really can't believe a whole year has come and gone. So much has happened, and I regret not being able to blog about it all, but life happens...... and well, even all the apps in the world can't help me in that department :)

This year, there'll be a lot of blessings to count. Baby Gavin is due mid-May, Ethan is going back to Kindergarten next week, Mike will be continuing his second year of his Masters program, and I will hopefully be finding better advancement opportunities.

So bring it 2011! Let's make it memorable!
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Wednesday, October 20, 2010


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Sometimes, First Place is just Better!

Didn't seem all that long ago that we're bribing Ethan to ditch his training wheels. Why am I ever surprised anyway? This kid has far excelled in everything he does!

Still, when we entered him into his first bike race, we knew we had a lot of work to do as far as teaching him good sportsmanship.

"It's not always all about winning."

"Always do your best and have fun."

We try to focus on making sure he has fun, above all else. But really, kids know the difference between winning and losing, regardless of whether or not there's a scorekeeper or medals or trophies. I've learned that ranking achievement is something they pick up on their own, and as parents, the best we could do is try to help them not be discouraged whenever they do end up on the losing end. I am a firm believer that sometimes, it's in losing that we learn the biggest lesson, and failing is what propels the greatest to succeed.

As my Tito Jess would say, "Try and try until you succeed!" :)

In Ethan's eyes, of course, things are much simpler than that. Competition is competition. And at 4 years old, he's pretty convinced that you're not a winner unless you cross the line first.

So he did just that this weekend!

This is Ethan BEAMING after he won. His excitement was priceless!

Proudly showing off his medal

Family support is very important to us and there sure is no shortage of that when it comes to cheering on Ethan!

Ethan's biggest cheerleaders!

THIS IS MY FAVORITE SHOT: Ethan telling the baby all about him winning the race!

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

And the Puking Begins......

Queasy, check.

Lightheaded, check.
Sometimes, it comes in the most unopportuned moments (like working) and I've learned if I closed my eyes, the world will pausily stop spinning at least until I open them back up again. The puking, is a whole other monster that I don't seem to remember from the first go-round, but that's not saying much considering I don't remember much of anything these days. Why do they call it morning sickness anyway when the stupid thing can hit you any time of the day, or worse, last the whole day! I met my fate yesterday in the girl's bathroom, and some good samaritan offered some saltine crackers and Sprite. So guess what I stocked up on during lunch......

Luckily, my work is pretty understanding when it comes to these uncontrollable spikes of estrogen and I suspect they're going to be pretty easy to work with for the rest of the pregnancy.

When I was pregnant with Ethan, I worked up until the day before I delivered, and unless something dramatically changes with this one, I would imagine I would working until this little peanut decides to pop out sometime next May.

Had our follow up appointment with the doc last week. He confirmed the due date from the ultrasound and stressed that I take it easy and to take time off work if I felt the need. Blood pressure was a little high, but nothing to be concerned at this point. We're waiting on the results from the blood work to see if we're gonna have to monitor the gestational diabetes a little earlier this go-round.

Fingers crossed!

Friday, October 01, 2010

Five on Fridays: Fried Brains, Lost Photos, and a Peanut in my Tummy

Hello Blog. My name is Anne. I used to like writing on you... remember that? Why is it that I could never keep up with telling you about all the wonderful crazy things that go on in my life? I tend to forget things a lot. So I really should be taking advantage of you to remind me later about all the things I had done. Last week, I forgot my purse in the restaurant after lunch and didn't even realize it was gone until half an hour later. In 20 minutes, I will have already forgotten what I wanted to write about.

My brains are fried.

With that said, it's Friday. It's been a really long work week, with half of it spent nauseated. There's a lot going on, and everyday that passes, I can only hope I had done something worthwhile.

1) Meet our little peanut. I'm only 8 weeks along so we wont' find out for another few months if Mike will get to painstakingly help me pick the right shade of pink for the nursery. Ethan is set on having a little brother. He keeps threatening to "give it away" if it doesn't come equipped with a penis. We're still working on convincing him they don't come undecided... that God has already made that decision for us... and that he will love him (or her) unconditionally, no matter what. I suppose we have a few months to work on it. The little peanut's not due until the spring - May 17th to be exact. Although I love the idea of being pregnant, there are some moments that make me wish I could bake a little faster.

There's a lot of pressure to have a girl (as if I had a hand in the drawing board), and I have to admit, I'm a little tired of being outnumbered. In a way, I'm as freaked out as Mike is about the whole idea (although he would never publicly admit it) of being responsible to raise a girl. Is it really that much harder to raise a girl? They poop and puke the same I suppose, but then they grow up and menstruate and go boy crazy and you have to worry about giving her enough foundation to make sound decisions about not letting boys pressure them into having sex at 14, going to college on their own terms and not because they are forced to, because unfortunately, women are still paid half of what their male counterparts make. And then I think about doing her hair everyday before school, encouraging her it's ok to ride bikes, and short skirts are inappropriate, that she's beautiful and she can do whatever she sets her mind to do.

But I'm getting ahead of myself. Boy or girl, we are one happy bunch. Ethan would be a GREAT big brother either way!

2) I had a talk with the Principal of Ethan's school the other day, but it was a great talk, the kind I wouldn't mind getting called into the principal's office for. He said Ethan's done a tremendous job in school. He's very smart and that we have given him a great foundation. He's actually started to read. Every day, he gets one-on-one time with his teacher, reads a few pages, brings home the book and we work with him to read at least 5 pages and sign off each time. He even passed his first reading test this week!!

It's amazing how much he loves books. My mom bought him a story book with a CD and that's all he listens to when we're in Mike's car. On Sundays, I have to referee between one who wants to listen to Sleeping Beauty and one the other who wants to listen to the Browns game. Guess who always wins?

3) Our big anniversary eurotrip is over, and 1 month later, I still haven't gotten to the photos we took throughout our trip which is probably in the upwards of 1500. I blame it partly on laziness, but mostly sad because it's over. We planned it for so long and looked forward to it for months and despite our differing levels of tolerance with hotel standards and walking til our legs fell off, we had a blast.

We found out I was pregnant just 2 days before the trip, so that put on a damper on our great plans to get plastered on the streets of London. There was not a single day where we just relaxed, even when we said we probably needed to physically reserve some energy to survive the rest of the week. See... Mike and I are not the type to go on vacation and lounge around. Ironically, we nearly killed ourselves trying to fit in as much culture and history and sightseeing in 8 days, that we needed another 8 days to recover from it.

But that's ok.

So here's a sneak peak. I hope sometime this year, I'll get to share the rest of the photos we took on our trip........ before they get lost in the sea of other untouched photos in my external hard drive. *sigh*

Stonehenge, London

Piazza della Signoria, Florence

Colloseum, Rome

Canals, Venice

4) Halloween is just around the corner. Gone are the days where I get to pick what Ethan will be for Halloween (which is usually whatever I can get on clearance the year before). After letting Ethan peruse through the Party City catalog, he's decided that he's going to be Robin, that I will be Batgirl and Mike will be Batman. So as Mike graciously agrees to wear tights for one night, I'm on the hunt for costumes that won't cost us a gazillion dollars. I've already bought Ethan's (somehow got lucky and saw it on sale for $5 on Amazon), and I've tracked down someone selling a Batman costume on craigslist, but no such luck on mine.

Now as far as decorating, I've learned from last year that my neighborhood's actually pretty gung-ho about decorating their houses. I felt pretty blah with my fake cobwebs with a few hanging spiders. I promised myself I would do better this year, but ever since my lovely sister took Ethan on a scary ride at Universal Studios, he's now pretty freaked out about everything -- I'm talking aliens, ghosts, "scary noises", even the strawberry smellin' bear from Toy Story 3 -- so I don't know how much I can get away with this year without putting my son in a Halloween coma.

5) Last month, I turned another year older, maybe a little smarter, but definitely more vindictive. And because of the recent no alcohol and no sushi restriction (boooooooooooooo for mercury!), I opted for a more low key dinner at my mom's house with family. Cake and good company, what more does an old lady need? The gifts were of course a hoot. They were actually terrific gifts, things which, now that I have them, I realize I quite like but would probably never have gotten for myself. Which is maybe the essence of a good gift. Although I have to say to this day, no one has ever gotten me the one thing that I have constantly asked for every birthday, Christmas, Anniversary or Mother's Day.... and that's either a house cleaning service or a detail for my car. My sister screamed at me once and told me she refuses to give me a carwash for Christmas.

Friday, September 03, 2010

London-Bound with Baby News

It started with a dream. Just a dream. I dont really even remember what I dreamt about but it prompted me to take a test and sure enough! 3 for 3 and the doc confirmed. Can't tell yet how far along I am until the ultrasound. I kept it from Mike for 2 days, thinking about some special way to tell him on the way to London. The scene from the Wedding Singer kept playing over and over in my head. I hoped I could find a flight attendant cool enough to make the announcement on the intercom....

But I saw a perfect moment last night. Just me and Mike on the couch. Nothing fancy. He gave me the biggest hug and we both couldnt wait to tell Ethan. His reaction was priceless!! He couldn't stop jumping on the couch!

"I made a wish to have a baby brother, and it came true!" he said. And he's right. For months, he's been praying for a baby more than he does for any toy. I can't wait til he actually meets her! ;) We got a while before we find out still....

Well we're on our way to London. I am happily and gittyly imprisoned on my Droid, but I'll prob need to wait til we get back to write more. This keyboard is so darn difficult to write a novel with. Gotta love technology.
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