Friday, November 29, 2013

(Almost) three weeks!

This little guy is three weeks on Sunday!

It's amazing how fast the time flies once these babies are on the outside and not the inside.... three weeks while I was pregnant dragged on forever!

I love him more each day, if that is possible. It's funny, when you have your first child you think you will never love anyone as much as you love them. It couldn't be possible. And then you have your second and your heart grows. And then it grows again with a third! It's crazy how in love I am with all three of these boys, and how even though this is my third go around with a newborn everything he does seems as magical and special and new as it it did with the first two.

I love him lots.

He's gaining weight like crazy and he loves to eat. At his two day pede appointment he had dropped from 7lbs 10oz to 7lbs 1oz..... totally normal weight loss for a breastfeeding newborn. At ten days we went back for his circumcision and he was up to 8lbs 4oz, which we were so excited about! Then they had us come back the next day, just to check on his circumcision, and he was up 2 more ounces! 2 ounces in one day! Needless to say, we know he is eating plenty!

He is nursing like a champ. I love nursing, and I think the fact that I missed out on it with L2 makes it that much more special this time around. He still likes to comfort nurse and he cluster feeds occasionally, but he is starting to even out to an every two hour schedule. He usually eats around 9:45-10:00, right before we go to bed, and then is up again between 1:00-2:00. After that feed he tends to only sleep for about an hour or two before he wakes up again, but at that wake up I let him come in to bed (if he's not already there) and we side nurse and sleep and cuddle. It's one of my favorite times.

The one thing that is a lot different about R than the first two is he does not like sleeping in his bassinet. He can be fast asleep in our arms or after a nursing session, but the second you move him to the bassinet he will wake up and fuss, but if we let him sleep with us he sleep like..... well, a baby! I love co sleeping, and I'm very comfortable with it, I'm more worried about creating a bad habit. S is worried about that too, but the truth is I love having him right next to me and the last few times we have gotten him down in the bassinet I haven't slept nearly as well..... I kept waking up to check on him! 

Anyway, he is a joy and his brothers love him and we love him!

Thanksgiving 2013

Well, we have our first Thanksgiving as a family of 5 under our belt.

It was a little hectic, a little exhausting, and a lot wonderful. My parents came into town to celebrate us, which made everything seem a little more festive and the house a little more full. It was also perfect timing, as the morning they came into town I had been up with the baby most of the night and realized in the morning we were out of coffee (Not OK. Not OK at all.), and as if that wasn't enough our garbage disposal broke and flooded our kitchen. So there I was with three screaming kids, no coffee and severely sleep deprived, and a flooded kitchen.... pretty much on the verge of a nervous breakdown..... and in came my mom with a venti Starbucks and my dad ready to take me to home depot to fix the leak.

Anyway, I digress. Thanksgiving was great. We cooked a fairly large meal (considering there was only four of us) and have food laid out to snack on pretty much all day. I did a lot of the cooking, but thank God for S since I had to keep stopping to nurse baby R!

I didn't take very many pictures, since I was either cooking or juggling the baby the whole time. I managed to snap a few cute ones though!

I even got to enjoy some beer and a card game.... decidedly adult activities and very enjoyable since I have been mired in dirty diapers and nursing and toddler tantrums!  I wouldn't change it for the world, but it was nice to site and have some "grownup" conversation for a few hours!

(Nursing, nursing nursing! This kid sure does love to eat! And I love every second of it!)

Happy Thanksgiving from my family to yours!

Thursday, November 14, 2013

11 days old and some newborn photos!

Baby R is 11 days old!

How is that even possible? Eleven days when I was pregnant took forever, but the last eleven days have flown by. Already R is putting on weight (although he still has the sweetest, scrawniest legs) and he is becoming more and more alert everyday.

 I find this to be so bittersweet. I love watching the way he changes and grows everyday, but I love the newborn phase and I feel like it flies by far to quickly.

Anyway, so far R has been pretty much a dream baby. We have nursing down, which is such a huge relief to me since I was not able to nurse L2. We had a small issue the first week where his latch was really shallow. He was still eating fine, but it was really hurting me and I was having some cracking and blistering. It was the worst at night, when he would be tired and a little lazy, and I would be tired and a little lazy, and I wouldn't correct his latch even if I could feel it was shallow. But I watched a few videos to remind myself how to get them to get that "perfect" latch and it's been fine ever since!

He's not on any type of schedule yet..... it's still pretty much eat, sleep, poop, repeat. He eats A LOT!!! I feel like I"m nursing most of the day, but I"m perfectly OK with that! He is pretty good at night. He usually eats around ten and then I put him down and he will sleep until one or two, which is a nice long stretch for me. However, once he wakes up at two he eats only enough to put himself back to sleep. He will only eat on one side and then he is out. Then he will wake up again at three and repeat. And then four. And then five. He definitely likes to snack and snooze in the early morning hours! Usually at the five o'clock feeding I will bring him into to bed with me and side nurse and then let him sleep with me. I know it's a horrible habit, but he snuggles up with me and sleeps so well and I just love it so much!!!!

S went back to work on Monday and my family left on Wednesday. Luckily S has a schedule that is allowing him to take every Tuesday and Thursday off through Thanksgiving, so he is only on three day work weeks. This is a huge help to me as Tuesdays and Thursdays L has school so S is in charge of getting him up and dressed and off. As much as I miss having my family here, and it is a little overwhelming still, being home alone with all three of the boys, and I am looking forward to getting back into a routine. Next week I am going to go back to the gym and see how R does in the nursery and see if we can figure our some sort of nursing schedule there. I also ventured to the store on Wednesday and survived. The biggest pain right now if getting everyone in and and out of the car, and of course if one of them has a meltdown it can move to crisis mode pretty quickly.

L adores his new baby brother. It's probably the sweetest thing ever. He always wants to hold him and smell him (he says he smells like pineapple?) and is asking how he is doing. He is a little confuse by the whole nursing thing. I explained it to him several times that this is how mommy feeds the baby and that he is getting milk and that this is the same way I fed him when he was a baby. He is concerned that the baby is biting me! He is also very gentle with him, and although we've seen some acting up (which we expected) it hasn't been bad.

L2 has taken things a little harder. He was really mad at me for the first few days, after we brought the baby home. Like, he wouldn't be in the same room. It broke my heart, but he has since warmed up and is back to loving his mama! He is also fairly gentle with the baby and seems to be getting more interested. We have to remind him to have gentle hands, but so far he has been OK. I knew it was going to be harder on him. He was "babied" for a long time, not only because he was the youngest but because of a lot of the medical issues we had when he was younger.

We also did a newborn photo shoot last weekend (obviously that is where all these adorable photos are coming from!) Our friend Ali, who also did our amazing maternity photos did them for us. I didn't realize how much work and time a newborn photo shoot would take! R had to nurse like four times before he finally went into a deep enough sleep that we could get some good shots! Ali was super patient with us though, and I am in love with the way all the pictures turned out!

So that's where we are right now. We are tired, the house is a disaster, my kids hair hasn't been brushed in days and they are eating for more Popsicles than we normally allow...... and I couldn't be happier. I feel like I am floating on cloud nine all the time. I know the next few weeks are going to be a time of adjustment for our whole family, but it already feels like baby R has always been here, so I don't think it's going to be too difficult (knock on wood!)

Plus we have the holiday coming up, which is my favorite time of the year, and I am so excited to see the excitement of the older boys and have R with us this year!

I'm going to try to keep being good about updating the blog, but if like gets a little crazy over the next few months, please forgive me!!!

Saturday, November 9, 2013

The birth of Baby R

He's here!!!!

I am so happy to introduce to you all, Baby R!!!!

(Yes, we've moved away from the L names!!)

R was originally due on November 9th. Today actually. He was born last Sunday, November 3rd, 6 days early. He was 7 lbs and 10 oz and 19.5 inches long. Smallest baby we've had yet, L was 8.4 and L2 was 8.7. He is also, by far, the craziest and most dramatic birth we have had!

I was soooo ready for him to come last weekend. At 39 weeks pregnant, I was done. Everything hurt, I was so uncomfortable, and I was just ready to meet our little man. I had a feeling he would come sometime during the 39th week, as L2 had come 5 days early. My main thing was I had wanted him to wait until after L2's bday (10/24), after Halloween, after my mom got here (she got in on the afternoon of the 2nd)..... and, I admit, I really wanted him to wait until I had gotten a manicure/pedicure with my mom!

Well my mom got here on Saturday and on Sunday we went and got a wonderful and relaxing manicure and pedicure, so I told him it was perfectly fine for I'm to come now! I had been having contractions for a little more than a week, some even painful, but I was only dilated to 1cm at my last Dr appointment and the contractions always tapered off. Well, on Sunday night they started up again and we're definitely getting painful. Not too bad, but bad enough that I would have to stop and breath through them a little, and they were about 15-20 minutes apart. I told S and my mom that I thought this might be the start of it, and regardless, if they kept up I thought we should probably go to the hospital tonight to see if I was in labor, rather than wait until S was at work the next day.

Well, after dinner my mom headed home (my parents own a vacation home in the same area as us that they stay in when they come to visit) and promised to keep her phone close. I decided to get in the bath and see what happened with the contractions. The last week every time I had gotten in the bath they had pretty much stopped so I figured it would be a good indicator if they were going to be the real thing or not.

I got in the bath and had my cell phone next to me to keep timing the contraction to see if they started coming any closer. Within about 20 minutes they had gone from hurting a little bit and being about 20 minutes apart to suddenly being excruciating and 2-3 minutes apart. This is my third child, and I had never felt contractions like these before. I was literally crying out/ almost screaming through them. Needless to say I jumped out of the tub and hollered for S to start helping me get stuff together to go to the hospital. Our bags were packed for the most part, but I had a list of things to throw in right before we left (chargers, phone, makeup, hairdryer) and I was trying to double check everything. S called my mom and told her she needed to come quick and ten minutes later she was here and we were in the car. I was dying..... seriously it hurt so bad, but I figured I was probably about a 6 or 7 and we would get to the hospital (only 10 minutes away) and get my epidural, put in a movie, get some sleep, and have the baby in the morning.

When we got to the hospital S dropped me off in the lobby and went to park the car. I was hit by a super hard contraction that sent me to my knees in tears and I'm pretty sure scared of a cleaning woman. We checked in as quick as possible while they asked me questions that I was in way to much pain to answer politely. (Seriously, when was my last period? Probably about ten months ago.)  We then rushed upstairs and I remember vaguely thinking that I felt like I needed to go to the bathroom and I really needed to pee. The moved us straight into a labor room and asked for a urine sample, but as much as I felt like I needed to go I couldn't get more than a few drops. At that point I was like, "OK, let's check me and get me that damn epidural!"

I got on the table and the nurse went to check me. In that back of my mind, despite all the pain, a small part of me was worried she was going to tell me I wasn't really in labor and I needed to go home. The last thing in the entire world i was expecting to hear was that I was already 9 cm!

Immediately I told them I wanted the epidural. It was the first thing out of my mouth. The nurse looked at me sadly and said it was probably too late and they needed to call my Dr right away in hopes that he would get there in time.

I handled this news with some disappointment, but overall, grace and acceptance.

Yeah, no. Just kidding.

I freaked the F out.

Seriously. I immediately started crying/swearing/screaming at everyone in the room. I pretty much told them I would not be having this baby without an epidural so the better figure it out!!! I was dropping F bombs and was pretty much hysterical. I was in so much pain and I was not mentally prepared to even attempt labor without the epidural.... that had never been in the plan.

Well, my Dr got there about ten minutes later, after flying down the freeway. I then proceeded to freak out at him, and swear at him, and tell him had to tell them to get me the epidural. He checked me and said I was already at a ten and the only way to get the pain to stop would be to deliver the baby. He told me that even if they tried to hold out and get me meds, it would be quicker to just give birth. I felt like I was having a panic attack, but the pain at this point was overwhelming and I realized I really didn't have much of a choice.

Everyone got set up, with S on one leg and a nurse on the other. I was screaming and crying and trying to push. This is my third baby, and I know how to push the right way, but I think part of me was holding back and not really wanting to push. My doctor was trying to talk me through it, and so was S. Two more nurses had to join S in holding me legs because I was literally coming of the table in pain and pushing them across the floor. I remember S saying he could see him and my Dr telling my just a few more pushes.

At that point, I really felt like I was having an out of body experience. I screamed that baby out. Every ounce of my being was put into pushing him, but I was practically delirious.

And the next thing I knew, there he was. In my arms and absolutely perfect. I felt like I could barely open my eyes, I was so drained, both physically and emotionally. They put him on my chest right away, and besides listening to his lunges and giving him some suction, that is where he stayed for the next two hours. I seriously love my hospital and the fact that they encourage that initial bond so much. We didn't even get his weight for two hours, but it was so amazing to just hold him and then nurse him right away. He latched on right away and nursed for almost an hour!

Finally they brought my some pain medicine (!!!) and took R to weigh and measure him. This was also the first time I handed him over to S! I was shocked when they said he was only 7 lbs 10 oz! I knew he felt a little smaller than the other boys the second they handed him to me, but I was going to guess 8 lbs 2 oz.... I was never expecting to have a baby less than 8 lbs!

We finally made it up to our room a little after midnight and tried to sleep a little. R was pretty tired and only woke up to nurse like twice, but I was still riding high on the adrenaline and had a really hard time sleeping. I was so happy, and so relieved everything was OK, but also so incredibly shocked that things had happened that fast!

We spend two days in the hospital where R charmed all the nurses! It was so amazing to have my mom and the boys come and meet him the next day! You could tell L was a little freaked out by everything, but he has really taken to R. He is always asking to smell him (I know, weird.) and he always says he smells like pineapple! He also is a little confused as to why the baby is biting mommy's nipples, lol.

L2 has had a much harder time adjusting. He is obviously a little mad at me and is not loving the baby. Today has been the first day he has warmed up to R a little and was sitting next to him and gently patting him. I know it's the age and he will come around, but it does break my heart a little that he is "mad" at me for bringing home the baby!

Anyway, that is R's fast and furious birth story. I'll admit, it's a pretty good story, but it has not changed my feelings towards getting an epidural.... if anything it has reinforced them! I told my Dr if we have another I will be checking myself into the hospital at 8 months to make sure we have plenty of time to get it!

I'll leave you with some more picture from our first few days, and I will be updating as soon as I can!

The boys meeting R for the first time in the hospital!

My amazing doctor!!!