Sunday, October 28, 2012

Labor Pains... or the Lack Thereof

On Monday, October 15th, we went for our 39th week check up at the doctor. I was only 20% effaced still and dilated to 1 cm. Dr. H decided that she did want us to check into the hospital that evening and start inducing first thing Monday morning.  She decided to have us check us in Monday evening to start a drug called Cytotec overnight to thin my cervix. Then Pitocin would start first thing Tuesday morning to start contractions.  She decided that Caroline was just the right size and that we didn't want to risk her getting much bigger so it was decided to induce 2 days before my due date.

So, we left the appointment at about 11:00 and then ran a few errands and had lunch at Hammontrees. We had planned to go to a movie afterwards, but decided to do a last minute tour of a daycare that we're thinking of sending "C" to. (Nothing like waiting until the last minute, huh?) The tour ended up lasting longer than we thought so we missed the movie.  We went to McAlisters and grabbed some tea and desert before headed to the house to get ready to go the hospital. As much as I really wanted to lay down and take a nap, I knew that I would be laying down a lot over the next few days. So, we decided to play some Super Mario Brothers. :) About 4:45. we left for the hospital.

Me at 39.5 weeks. 1 day before Caroline's birth day.

We got all checked in, then my parents and Adam's parents arrived shortly after to keep us company.  I got the Cytotec at 6 pm and midnight. At 6 am, I was no more effaced and only dilated to a 2.  The Cytotec did start some contractions, but I could barely feel them.  The nurse started Pitocin at 6 am and immediately the contractions got intense, but still weren't too painful. The anesthesiologist came by around 8 and I got the epidural. Dr. H stopped by about 8:30 to check on me and I was still at a 2 so she broke my water.  At noon I was dilated to a 4, at 2:30 I was at a six, and at 3:30 I was dilated to a 10! I couldn't believe it when the nurse said it was time to start pushing... I nearly died! I had just woke up from a nap, ha!  
Adam and I when we found out it was gametime!

It was about 4:00 when the nurse said it was time to start pushing.  I remember laughing that it was time to push since I was in no pain and hadn't broken a sweat.  Adam kept asking if Dr. H was going to make it... I was convinced that she wasn't and that our nurse was going to deliver Caroline (which I was totally ok with- she was awesome and I totally didn't care at that point.)  Literally 5 minutes before C was born, Dr. H came barreling through the door. It's amazing how they know just how much time they need to get there!  We were so thankful that our favorite doctor delivered.  Adam was such an amazing "coach." I was so impressed that he was so into the whole process. I was a little nervous about how he would do since he doesn't handle blood well.  He cut the cord and everything! He also cried like a baby when our angel came into the world at 4:23 pm. It was the most amazing thing I've ever experienced. I have never felt love like that!
Our first look at Caroline Reese

lots of dark hair!

My loves

Our first photo as a family of 3

Adam and I had Caroline all to ourselves for about an hour. We wanted some time just the three of us and I'm so glad we held off on visitors for a bit. That time is so sacred and I knew we would never get it back. We let grandparents, uncle Lee, and Sarah in just before she was taken to the nursery for her bath. The rest of the time in the hospital Caroline rarely laid in her bassinet since someone held her ALL of the time. :)  We ended up staying 3 nights total in the hospital. I had planned on us going home the day after C arrived, but Dr. H and the nurses suggested staying another night... and I'm really glad we did. We felt much more confident taking her home after another night.

The most beautiful baby in the world!

While in the hospital, we had lots of visitors... which I loved! The day C was born I was glad it was just us and close family, but the next day I was ready to see some more faces, ha. It meant so much that people visited and wanted to hold my baby. I also loved the flowers and food we received.
Joodge and Baba with their 4th grandchild.

Pappy and Cece are in love!

Sarah, Caroline and I

Caroline with her DZ aunties... Becca, Britney, and Jessica

Our friends Brad and Mandy came to meet C

One of my best friends, Amy was in town working the day we went home from the hospital and came by to meet Caroline before we left.

Getting ready to go home! Caroline is wearing the same dress that I wore home from the hospital.

Our sweet friends Sean and Nicole had a doctor's appointment upstairs to hear their baby's heartbeat for the first time just before we left the hospital. They came by afterwards and walked us out. It was really neat to be ending our pregnancy journey as they are beginning theirs!

Me and my sweet baby girl in the back seat as daddy drove us home. We stopped at Back Yard Burger for lunch while we waited for my meds to be ready at the pharmacy. 
Gus was there to greet us when we got home. He could have cared less about Caroline... he was so excited to see us, though!
Our first night home with C, the Greens brought us dinner. Payne held Caroline for the first time and cried when it was time for them to go.

We just sat on the couch and stared at our new baby for hours before going to bed. We just kept talking about how surreal it was that we had a baby... and she was ours... and that we get to keep her! We survived our first night at home with Caroline and had 3 full days together, just us, before Adam went back to work the next week.  God is so good and we are so blessed.
While there was very little pain (ok -basically none) during actual labor and delivery, the pain afterwards was more than I anticipated. The first week was pretty tough. Of course, it was worth every ounce of pain, and about day 10 I felt significantly better. I probably overdid it the first couple of days too, getting out of the house to run around town the day after we were home and going for a walk down the street on  day 3. I kind of laughed when people said "take it easy" and "sleep when she sleeps" but now understand the importance of resting those first few days/weeks.  We truly had a wonderful labor/delivery experience and most of all a healthy baby and mom. For that we are so thankful.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Happy 1 week Caroline!

Caroline is one week old today! I can not believe how fast time is flying. I am trying to soak up every moment as I know that this phrase will be a recurring one throughout her lifetime.

We came home from the hospital on Thursday, October 18th- our original due date. I was so glad we got to stay another night as we felt much more confident taking care of a newborn than if we would have left the day before like we had planned.  Also, I didn't anticipate how incredibly sore I would be so I was thankful to have the help of the nurses for one more night.
Sweet girl the night before we left the hospital. she had lots of visitors so we had to dress her up cute!

Getting ready to go home. The dress Caroline is wearing is the same one I wore home from the hospital 26.5 years ago. 

Car ride home. Mommy sat in the back with C while daddy drove careful as ever.
On Friday, our first full day home with Caroline we went for our first walk in the stroller. We only went to the end of the street and back.
On Saturday we started getting a little cabin fever. We ran to Hobby Lobby, picked up lunch, then headed to the hospital to see our sweet friends Rich and Renee who had just had their new baby girl Vivvie. I love this picture with Rich and Adam holding their new baby girls.

On Saturday afternoon, my cousin Tiffany and her youngest child Avery came to stay with us from Benton. We loved having them here and Tiffany was a HUGE help since she is mommy of 3 and an R.N. Mostly, I enjoyed her company and it meant so much to me that she came to visit.

On Sunday morning, miss Caroline had her newborn portraits taken by Jessica Ritchie.  Here is a sneak preview I took with my phone. I can't wait to see them!
On Monday Caroline had her first doctor's visit.  She is healthy overall but the pediatrician was a little concerned about her weight.  She weighed in at 7 lbs 4 ounces- down from the 7 lbs 10 ounces she weighed at birth. We will go back for a weight check next Monday. I'm not too concerned since I spoke with the lactation specialist after the visit and she thinks that the weight is fine, especially since little C has been nursing great and filling up plenty of diapers. :) That made this new mama feel much better. After the appointment Caroline and I dropped daddy off at work for his first day back. We were very sad to not have him home with us and couldn't wait for him to get home!

On Monday night, my parents came up. Cece is staying all week (PTL!) and Pappy came up and stayed all day Tuesday with us. They took us to lunch at Gusano's with Unkie Lee and Daddy. We couldn't leave without snapping a pic of Caroline and Pappy. I'm sure this will be the first of many lunch dates.

It's been a busy first week for Caroline. The plan for the rest of the week is to lay low at home. I think I overdid it a bit these first few days as I've very sore the last 2 days and the lack of sleep is beginning to catch up with me.  I'm thankful my mom is here this week to help since Adam is back at work. She is good about making my lay down and not do too much. 

Caroline is such a wonderful baby. Not only is she beautiful, cute, and cuddly... she pretty much put herself on a schedule the day we got home. She nurses every 3 hours on the dot, and caught on to nursing very quickly. She sleeps like a rock in between feedings, and overall is a very happy and content baby. We're blessed not to be fighting reflux or anything else at this time.

We're enjoying every moment with our precious blessing. I just can't believe she's actually ours and we get to keep her. God is so, so, good.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Introducing Caroline Reese Fite

Our precious angel was born at 4:23 pm on October 16th, 2012. She weighed 7 lbs 10 oz and was 20 inches long.  She is healthy and we are beyond blessed to be her parents!
Nothing could have prepared me for the feelings I would have for her when she was laid on my chest for the first time. Pure love!

I love that hair!

Adam and I when we realized I was dilated to 10 cm and it was "game time!" Notice the smile.. thank you, Jesus for epidurals!

I love this picture of Adam with Caroline after she returned from her bath.

First picture of our family of 3.

I have about 1000 pictures on my camera to go through... 
I want to share more details of labor so Ill remember them one day...
I have never felt love like this... it's amazing how much I love this child and how much closer Adam and I have become in just one week!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Nursery Reveal

I'm so excited to have FINALLY completed Caroline's nursery. Of course there are things I still want to do, but for the most part, it is ready for our baby girl. I'm really pleased with how things turned out and I'm so thankful for my sweet husband's patience and help through the whole process!
This room is pretty small so it's difficult to get pictures. This is the view from the doorway.

Her monogram... I love it. I ordered it here. .
My sweet and talented friend Nicole hand made Caroline's bedding! I should take some better close up pics, but the skirt and bumper are a beautiful champagne rosette fabric.  The bumper has white minky on the inside.  I could not be any more pleased with the bedding and it's so special that such a great friend made it custom for my baby girl.
The crib is a Jenny Lind and I ordered it from I love that anything ships for $2.50.

The crib sheet is from Pottery Barn Kids and was on clearance! I ordered two so I could have an extra.

The curtains were my inspiration for the "new" nursery scheme. They are from JC Penny and were on clearance!

I knew I wanted floating shelves on the small wall between the closet and door.  I ordered these from Home Depot and they are great. They are similar to the trim in the room and can hold a lot of weight.  Husband will tell you that they are the devil. He had quite a time hanging these, but I SURE love them and love HIM for hanging them. :)  I filled the shelves with mostly stuff I had around the house, only purchasing a few picture frames. I'm not very good at "styling" shelves so I anticipate that I will change this soon.

Here is the view from the other side of the room. I got the glider from Babies R Us on clearance. It's a nice neutral color which I wanted. I almost splurged on a "Best" chair ($900+) but I'm SO glad I didn't. Nursery chairs aren't the most fashionable and I didn't want to spend that kind of money on a chair that I wouldn't use anywhere else in the house AND one that would likely be spit up on etc. This was a great fit and is very comfortable. On the glider are the blanket that Caroline's Baba gave her and a pillow in the same rosette fabric as the bed skirt. After the debacle with the dresser delivery to the store, I decided to pay extra to have the glider shipped to the house! The light fixture hanging from the ceiling is from Pottery Barn outlet in Memphis. It was the very first thing I purchased for the nursery. We had thought of replacing the ceiling fan with the fixture, but it wasn't quite bright enough to function as the only light in the room. Plus, we live in the south and it just impossible NOT to have a ceiling fan in every room so we left it. It's not beautiful, but removing it was not an option. There is a small glass table beside the rocker that is hard to see in these pics.

Caroline's dresser is from BRU and was really the only "splurge" in the room. I wanted a nice dresser that Caroline could use for a long time. This dresser is very well made with dovetail drawers and a nice dark finish. The mirror is from Kirklands and it is one of my favorite pieces in the room. I will totally have to refrain myself from moving this somewhere else in the house because I love it so much!

The closet. It looks really messy in this pic but is actually very organized. I've left some things in boxes until we need them. This girl has a ridiculous amount of clothes! Both of the bins up top have clothes as well. Her mom has a bit of a clothing obsession!

I'm not very crafty, but I did make this bow holder to hang inside the closet door. The frame is from Hobby Lobby and I just fastened ribbon to hang bows on and small hooks on the bottom of the frame to hang all of her headbands on. I'm thinking we will need a bigger bow holder or a second one this size before too long. I'm a bow lover. :)

Hanging on her dresser is Caroline's coming home outfit. This dress was my coming home outfit 26.5 years ago! It is a precious handmade pink dress. I of course have white ruffle socks, pink shoes, and a "sizeable" white bow to complete.  I plan to frame the dress and hang to the left of the crib after Caroline wears it home.

One last shot, I just can't wait to bring my girl home to her beautiful room! 

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

39 Weeks

I cant believe it... how is it possible that I am 38 weeks pregnant?! I feel like we just started this journey and now this part of it is closing. Of course I realize that my prize, the BEST part, is just a few days away... but  I have really enjoyed being pregnant! 
How Far Along: 38 weeks
Size of baby: baby is the size of a small watermelon, weighing 7 lbs or more
Gender: It's a GIRL! Caroline Reese Fite
Maternity Clothes: yes, although the top above is non maternity and I paired with leggings
Weight gain: 35 pounds
Movement: A lot more this week... I think shes trying to break out.
Sleep: For the most part I'm still sleeping well. I usually wake up at least once to use the bathroom, but go back to sleep pretty easily.
Symptoms: I am huge. I am just uncomfortable and it's hard to get into a comfortable position. FREQUENT bathroom breaks... (I mean it is seriously ridiculous), hip flexor pain, leg cramps, shoulder and back pain.
Cravings: I've been extremely thirsty and craving Mexican and other spicy foods.
Best moment this week: Husband and I went out on our last "date as a childless couple. We went to a new restaurant that opened in Fayetteville called Union Kitchen. It was delicious! Adam had the fillet and I had roasted squash ravioli.  We had a blue cheese dip as appetizer and creme brulee for desert. Afterwards we went to Walgreens to stock up on diapers that they had a sale on and Adam got a flu shot, ha!
Also, my last day of work is Friday... I feel like I have 1000 things to do before then, but I'm pretty pumped to wrap up work and start my "new job" as mommy.
This week at the Dr: At my appointment Monday I had dilated to only 1 cm and was still about 20% effaced. The heartbeat was strong and I had not gained any weight, PTL! Dr. H discussed "the plan" since she did not anticipate C coming this week. We planned to induce on Tuesday, October 16th.  I will go for my 39 week appointment (Ill be 39.5 weeks) on Monday and if I'm 3.5 cm dilated or more she will break my water and see if I go into labor on my own. If I'm not dilated to that, we will check into the hospital Monday evening and be induced first thing Tuesday morning. I will be given something Monday night to help efface more, then the Pitocin will start Tuesday morning. I'm not thrilled about the idea of being induced, but I also don't want to have a 10 lb baby. I was really looking forward to going into labor on my own... and will pray that still happens between now and Monday! Either way, I'm thankful to have an end date in sight that we will finally meet our girl!

Friday, October 5, 2012

Waiting on C

It's currently 4:45 am and I've been awake for the last hour. Actually, I've been having a tough time going to sleep at all and waking up in 3-4 hour intervals. This has happened a couple of times over the last 9 months, but since Monday night it's become the new normal. When I wake up, I'm WIDE awake. I'll lay there for a while, but have found it's best to get up, get a snack, and find something to do for a bit until I can fall back asleep. I usually find something on t.v. or peruse Pinterest, but this morning I have made a grocery list and now I'm blogging! I know that in just a few short days this new schedule will come in handy and "finding something to do" will be replaced by feeding/caring for my new love.  

It's amazing to me how your body knows what is about to happen and starts preparing for it. I have been fortunate enough to have mostly uninterrupted sleep over the course of the pregnancy. Like I said, this waking up thing just started this week. I know many women deal with sleep loss much earlier in the pregnancy and I'm thankful that I have had full nights of sleep 90% of the time. I'm also thankful that about the time that my new sleep schedule took over, I started working from home exclusively. As of Oct 1 I have been cleared to work from home every day until Caroline makes her entry into the world.  This has proved to be extremely helpful for both parties. I get a lot done from home with calls and emails and can spend time getting everything in order for someone else to handle my workload for the next 10-12 weeks. For me, it means being able to take it easy each day and even lie down for a bit if needed which is helpful when I'm running on a lot less sleep. Work slowing down means a lot less stress and working an 8 hour day instead of a 10-12 like I'm guilty of putting in with my travel schedule. I'm so thankful I have this flexibility!
Gus and I napping- this happens several times a day lately :)

I am 38 weeks pregnant. I can still remember finding out I was pregnant on Valentines Day this year. That seems like SO long ago! I remember thinking this day would never come and now we are literally in the daily countdown until our baby girl arrives. I'm getting a little anxious to meet Caroline and get the show on the road, but overall I am enjoying the quiet and relaxing that I know will be replaced with an increase in stress and activity once she arrives. I'm trying to remember that our lives are about to be forever changed and that while that is extremely exciting, we literally only have a few days left of "just" Adam and I. I want to soak up every moment... and we've been doing just that!

We finished the nursery last weekend. FINISHED. I consider this a huge accomplish since I'm really bad about starting a project and not quite finishing. We are only awaiting a monogram that I ordered from Etsy for above the crib and then I will share pictures. We've also worked hard on getting the house clean and organized inside and out. Adam worked hard on the yard over the last couple of weeks, I got the front porch set up with a beautiful "fall scene," and we cleaned out the garage. As for the inside, I got a little extra help by hiring someone to do some deep cleaning. I'm almost embarrassed to admit that, but I want to document it so I'll remember one day. It was money well spent and freed Adam and I up to do some other things as well as just spend some quality time together. We've been going on lots of walks, cooking at home (rarity, ha!), going to our Bible Studies, and Adam has been playing softball with some guys. The weather is getting cooler (it's supposed to be in the 50's today and we're expecting the first freeze on Sunday night!)
Lee has helped out a lot to help us get ready for C. Last weekend he helped Ryan and Adam install the dimmer for her room.
Gus enjoying the nursery
I came in to check out the new shelves that Adam and Lee were supposed to be hanging to find they had Gus in the infant carrier.Gus loved it and it was hilarious!

I did go to the ER on Tuesday of this week. Everything was completely fine, and I figured it was, but I was concerned that the baby was moving differently than she had been and I felt like I might be having contractions. As I suspected, everything was completely fine. I got to hear her sweet heartbeat for about an hour assuring me everything was just fine. I wasn't having contractions, but was dehydrated which was causing some uterine "spasms." As for the movement, I think sweet girl is just out of room and the slightest movement is very detectable and forceful. I felt kind of silly going to the ER, but it was going to be a whole week before I went back to the doctor and I knew I would drive myself crazy thinking something was wrong. Overall, I'm glad I went and got the peace of mind that I wanted.

My prediction is Caroline will come on the 14th. I don't think she's in any big hurry to get out, but at the same time I can't imagine her staying until the 18th! She feels huge inside of me and I can feel my body changing to accommodate her arrival... sleep schedule, hip flexor pain, low back pain, general discomfort, etc. We shall see how my prediction pans out. The 14th would be neat since that was my late grandfather's birthday.  Either way, we are ready for Caroline to come when she is ready. The bags are packed, the car loaded, nursery ready, and a mom and dad that are ready to love on this precious gift.
Happy Fall Y'all! Now... I'm hopefully headed back to bed for a while!