Thursday, February 12, 2015

Andy Gareth Curtis -A birth story

My sweet son was born on January 4, 2015 at 3:33 am!

He was 7 lb, 8 oz and 20 inches long.
(They never actually told me the length. That was his length at the Dr's office two days later.)

He came in a whirlwind! 
The previous week, I'd been doing whatever I could to get contractions going and staying and consistent. I ate tons of pineapple, danced with C, went walking, cleaned, got my feet rubbed... It was crazy. 
None of it did much.

Saturday, the 3rd, we took down our Christmas tree, did some shopping, and overall spent time together as our little family. During a movie that night, I had a few contractions that were 15-20 minutes apart, so I wasn't concerned.

We went to bed at about 11 and at 1:22, I woke up from a strong contraction. I got out of bed to deal with it (breathe through it) and went to the bathroom. A few minutes later, I had another. 
J woke up from me getting up and I told him I'd had a few contractions 5 minutes apart.
I knew the system was to have an hour of consistent 5 minute apart contractions that last for about a minute, so I paced the bedroom for about a half hour. At about 2, I told J we were going to be going to the hospital, so I was packing the hospital bag. So I paced and breathed and told him to sleep for a little bit.
At 2:30, we called our friend, Jana, who had volunteered to come in the night to stay with C if we needed to get to the hospital. She was already up with her 8 month old, so she said she'd come over in minutes. 
While she made her way over, J gave me a blessing. {Any of my LDS readers, you should have your hubby give you a blessing before you head to the hospital. It really helps and makes you so much more calm.}
We left home at about 2:40 and got to the hospital at 2:50. It was soooo nice to have the hospital so close! For C, it was 30 minutes away, so I had to deal with a few more contractions and J had a hard time keeping to the speed limit. :)
We got into the hospital and they offered to get me a wheelchair. I definitely didn't want one. For me, sitting down or laying down is the WORST way to handle contractions. I really like walking around and when it happens, swaying and breathing. I got into the room-thankfully the very first room I could see- and they gave me a gown and some socks. I was able to get the gown on before the next contraction, but didn't even bother with the socks. The contractions were really strong and felt closer together. 
Then, they asked for the worst thing I could imagine. I had to lay down and be measured for a few contractions. ;)
I was 6 cm! (with C, it took 8-ish hours to get there!)
They kept monitors on me for a few minutes and I was having contractions every 3 minutes. Some poor nurse got to give me an IV thing in case they needed to add fluids or anything. She had to work around my contractions and then poke me in between them. The IV ended up hurting quite a bit. 3 weeks later, I still have a spot on my hand, and I had a tender spot by my wrist for a few weeks. I bled a bit as well, and had to have some extra tape put on my hand.
J held my hand and helped answer questions while they updated info on the computer and I dealt with some contractions for the monitors. During those contractions, I begged for an epidural. It was so difficult and painful, I just wanted to rest. The nurses said they'd get the dr in and we'd get an epidural going.
After my time to measure contractions, I was able to stand up for a few more contractions and then went to the bathroom again. While I was there, I felt like I needed to push. 
A little backstory: With C, I had an epidural for the pushing part, so I didn't know what it felt like to have the "urge to push." Oh my goodness, let me tell you. When you feel it, you know it. At the risk of saying ways too much information...It feels like you need to push out a bowel movement, but in a different area and just a little different feeling. It's intense and undeniable. Wow. I'm also not quite sure how to describe it any better than that. :)
So I came back to the bed and a nurse checked me. I was a 9! While she was checking me, my water broke. I complained again about needing to push and they asked me to hold off as best as I could until the doctor could come.  Those contractions were awful. I had to be on the bed and keep myself from doing the thing I wanted to the most. There was a flurry of commotion around me as they got everything out for the baby to arrive.The nurses were getting out stirrups, opening up the baby-checking station, etc. My sweet hubby was helping me concentrate on breathing. He held my hand while I squeezed with all my might and tried not to clamp my teeth on his knuckles in frustration and pain. He was a saint and offered to let me do it. I told him I didn't want to do that, so he came up with a great idea to get a wet washcloth for me to bite down on. I had one for my forehead since I was so warm, so they got another one and I was able to drink some water and chew on something that wouldn't hurt anyone. It was helpful.
A few contractions later, I told them I wasn't going to be able to stop myself from pushing anymore. My doctor's husband, who is also an OB doctor, was there with another patient, so he was there. He then told me I was welcome to push if I wanted. So I pushed. I got some praise ("good job, that was a great push," etc) and then I pushed again. I don't know how many pushes it was, but the baby was born in that single contraction. 
It was intense.
So at 3:33, Andy was born!
He was beautiful. His head was still rather round since he didn't take too long to get out. Immediately, I knew he was quieter than his brother. C had (has) a strong set of lungs, so he was very very loud. Andy was quieter. He cried, but it was just different.
After he was born, I was FREEZING. I didn't have goosebumps, but I was cold, my body was shaking uncontrollably, and so my chest was seizing up a little as I tried to stop it. It was painful.
I asked the dr about it and he said that my body was just trying to run away now that I'd had my baby-it was an adrenaline rush (You can google it ;))
They cleaned him up and I got some skin to skin. It was wonderful. He was so warm, smelled soooo good, and was so happy to be snuggling.

J's sister, Jolyn, was in town for Christmas. She is a photographer and wants to photograph a birth someday.-bucket list kind of thing- I told her that she could come to the birth but I had the right to kick her out.
She missed it. haha
Since C's labor was so long, we didn't call anyone until we were at the hospital. She got up and drove in from Boise, but didn't make it until about 3:40. Dang! 
Maybe next time? ;)

She was able to take some pictures of Andy minutes after he was born, though! 

I love how sweet J is with my boys. He is a wonderful daddy.

This one is neat since it shows what a hospital room really is like after having a baby.
Andy nursed for practically an hour. He just couldn't get enough. I was able to train him really quite easily to get a good latch. Quite a lot of tender moments.

2 hours after birth, we were transported around to the other side of the floor for recovery. We had vitals checked, all that good stuff that I can't recall anymore, and then were able to sleep some.
One of the hardest parts of having a second child? Figuring out what to do with the first!!
J's mom and dad were option one. If it was the middle of the night, we planned on calling Jana. 
So that part worked out just as planned.
However, Linda got the flu!
She was going to be the main babysitter, but thankfully we had some awesome friends and John (Grandpa) who filled in.
Jolyn went back to our house to meet up with Grandpa and bring C to the hospital and take more pictures.
Grandpa came out to our house to spend some time with C when he woke up. Jana said C woke up once and she went in and let him out for a little bit since she wasn't Mommy. He sat there and hung out a little and then went back to bed. John came to our place at about 8 and then he and Jolyn brought C to the hospital to meet Andy.
C was a little confused by us telling him that Andy is the baby that was in Mommy's tummy... but he was sweet. He held Andy all of 2 seconds and then wanted to push all the buttons on the walls. But he did stick around to check out the baby.

My beautiful family!
I asked C if he wanted to take Andy home with us and he looked at the baby, thought for a second, and then said "no." It was cute.

Grandpa C with Baby Andy

I've tried my hardest to make C feel as loved as possible. I don't want him to feel replaced.
I hope he doesn't feel sad about Andy being around. He definitely cuddles with me a lot more when I am holding Andy. I try to use "I'm holding Andy," as an excuse as little as possible.

(5 weeks later) He is a wonderful big brother. He gives Andy his pacifier as often as he can.
He likes to test the waters every now and then by pushing on Andy's tummy or trying to open his eyes... Freaks me out, but thankfully, Andy is a tough kid.
C got sick soon after Andy came home, so we struggled through sickness/acting up/new baby time... 

That was fun...

A friend of mine says that her heart bursts into a million tiny glitter hearts. I think that accurately portrays how I feel about my man with his boys. sigh.
J took C to Jana's and she was awesome and took him to church with her family. Then John was able to go to his church since he was to teach at 2. Our church switched to 1-4 this year. It's been interesting. Thankfully, it hasn't been too bad, though!
J showered, took care of C, and came back to the hospital.

This picture describes their relationship well. C definitely thinks he is awesome.
I'm a mom of 2 handsome, sweet, silly boys!!
I am a mom of 2!!! 


Look at those puffy eyes! I took this to send to family. (that's his hand by his mouth)
When he cried really really hard at the beginning, his eyes were so puffy that the lids turned inside out a little. A true sign of being super stressed! :)

We took naps during church and called friends and family.
It's been cool this time to have FaceTime to be able to show off the baby the very first day he's born!

I've decided I need more documentation of myself in my own life, rather than just the boys... (we'll see how this goes, but yeah!) so here's my "I just gave birth" photo.
Some things I've wanted to note:
(WARNING! Might be a little TMI!!)
1) I'm soooo thankful I put my hair in braids for this. Having my hair down for C wasn't ideal. It got in the way and therefore looked icky.
2) NO ONE told me about the cramps after having number 2!!! When I had C, my epidural wore off mostly by the time I was transported to my recovery room.
This time, I didn't have an epidural, but I don't think this changes the information.
As my uterus shrunk after C, I didn't feel anything except when the nurses squished my stomach around to help shrink it and see where it was... But apparently the shrinking hurts more for the second child and is worse for the 3rd! (who needs a third child anyway?!) Then, to add to it, it's worse when you're breastfeeding. Ugh! That was the biggest thing I took pain meds for!!
So, there's your warning, friends! lol
3) Nursing has been a zillion times easier! It helps that one of us knows what we're doing instead of both having no clue! I don't need lanolin this time! woot!
4) January birthdays stink because everyone is sick!!
Jana came to meet Andy after church. Gpa picked up C from her house and J took him back there to spend the night. Seriously, she was/is awesome!!

Our celebration dinner. Cute, huh?

Gpa and C watched Frozen during dinner. :)

New parents again!!

We went home Monday evening and my mommy came a few hours later! 
We love this little guy!!
I feel so blessed to have these boys in my family. 
I must have done something good! ;)
more to come soonish!!