Friday, October 29, 2010

Carter Rockwell is here!!!

So, here is the birth story for all of you that are curious..

I had my 39 weeks check-up and non-stress test, NST, due to my GD on the 21st. The NST looked great, but my blood pressure was creeping up. It was about 130/90 the week before, but my OB wasn't too concerned. This week, it went up to 146/98, so she was concerned. They had me stay extra and re-took my BP several times. It went down to 130/90, so my OB told me to go home and rest and check my BP at work the next day. If it were high again, I was to call her and go into her office and possibly be induced that day. The 22nd was the one day we didn't want Carter to come because Graham had 2 midterms that day..

At 9:30 PM while watching The Office, I felt a large gush of fluid while sitting on the couch. We called the hospital to see what we should do. They told us if I soaked a pad and was having contractions to come on in. I was having consistent contractions, but just a small amount of leaking. They told us to come in anyways. A simple pH test and ferning told the nurses it was in fact amniotic fluid. So, I was admitted to the VIP suite--held for hospital employees and friends--and started on external fetal monitoring at midnight. My husband and I tried to get some rest.

Around 5 AM, my BP crept up to 156/102, so the on-call OB started me on MagSulfate, which is used to prevent maternal seizures due to high blood pressure. It causes extreme nausea, so I was given anti-nausea meds, and also causes slow-down of labor due to suppression of the central nervous system.. So I was started on Pitocin as well to augment contractions. Luckily, I tolerated all of that well and only had some flushing from the Mag. I was only about 8 hours into it, but this new development in my labor depressed me. I thought about all of the interventions I'd need, Baby Story on TLC was on TV and was stressing me out, so I just thought, oh man, just give me a C-section and get this over with! I calmed down a little, thank goodness. I was having consistent contractions, but they were pretty mild, like menstrual cramps, but worse. Due to my water breaking, they did not check my cervix due to the risk of infection.. So we had no idea how I was progressing until about noon when my OB showed up.. And I was only 1-2 cm, 50% effaced, same as the night before!! And, as it turns out, my water hadn't broken completely. We hypothesized that there was a small tear at the top of the sac.. My OB broke my waters at 1:15 PM and inserted a catheter into my uterus to monitor my contractions. It was like a bucket of fluid gushed out. Gross.

Then, the labor pains really started to get bad. At first, they were like bad menstrual cramps, but then they progressed to unbearable. My OB said I could get an epidural whenever, so I labored with these awful pains for about an hour, and then got an epidural. Ahhhh... RELIEF. However, my blood pressure dropped in response to the epidural, so the nurse started some meds to raise it. I felt better, i.e. no pain, but felt like crap. I had been in "labor" for about 17 hours by then, so I was starving and shaking. I was able to relax, post updates on Facebook and BBC, but by 5 PM, I'd only progressed to 2 cm dilation and 80% effacement. I almost cried.. I thought I'd have the baby for sure by now!

So, they kept upping my Pitocin (up to 24), and when I got to the active stage of labor or transition (I'm assuming), I started vomiting really bad. By 8 PM, I was still only at 4 cm dilation. I thought I would end up having to get a C-section after all of this, so I had Graham give me a blessing. After that, I was able to relax again, and by 10:15 PM, I was 8-10 cm dilated and effaced. My OB said I could start to push. I started vomiting AGAIN, blech. Anyways, at about 11:15 PM after an hour of hard pushing and not much progress, my OB suggested the vacuum because of my baby's changing heart rate and my extreme exhaustion (I could hardly hold up my legs, I was practically crying because I was so tired, and my epidural was starting to wear off). I could keep pressing the button to up the epidural, but I wanted to be able to feel to push. So, after 14 scary minutes of pushing with the vacuum assistance, and one point in which the vacuum slipped off the head, Carter was born at 11:29 PM. He was a total champ through this whole labor. His heart rate never dropped even with all of the stress and changes from drugs and stuff, which I consider a huge blessing.

My room was full of RN's and respiratory therapists due to the vacuum-assisted birth and the reputation of "Mag babies" for having weak cries and being very lethargic. My baby was wide awake, loud, and scored 7/9 on his APGAR's. He laid on my chest for an hour but he would not feed. He was very fussy and was taken to the Nursery overnight for observation due to the wound on his head from the vacuum. Turns out his head was wedged in the wrong position! I also had a 2nd degree tear, but couldn't feel anything while my OB stitched me up.

Carter was 6 pounds, 13 ounces, and 19 cm long. He measures in the 10-25th percentile for weight, length, etc. He's a tiny guy.. We were taking bets, and both Graham and I were guessing he'd be at least 7 pounds, so he was a surprise. Oh and by the way, my sister won the baby guessing game. We've had some challenges along the way with breastfeeding, and jaundice, but he is such a darling baby and we're amazed by everything he does.

Some pictures..

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Sensory Overload

I don’t know about all of you, but I often find myself craving some form of entertainment.. whether it be music, a book, the internet, TV, etc. It even got to the point where I’d require more than one form of entertainment at one time, like I needed the internet and the TV, or I needed to listen to music while reading a book. Total sensory overload. I constantly felt like I needed something to keep me distracted… distracted from what, I have no idea.

So anyways, I decided to institute a no-TV night in our house a few months ago. It seemed to me like the TV was always on. We ate dinner and watched TV, and would then sit there for the rest of the night. Now, every Monday, Graham and I get home from our days at school and/or work, make dinner, talk to each other, and actually interact without the background noise. I’m not going to lie, it has been really difficult, especially yesterday. We’d been gone all weekend and I had a list of shows I DVR’ed that I wanted to watch. Having DVR does make a no-TV night more easy and more enjoyable so I can record the shows I’d miss, but still..

It’s really been nice. We have Family Home Evening, we play music, and we enjoy the quiet in our home. Graham will play for me the songs he’s composed, and it makes for a really relaxing night. We are definitely going to continue this tradition as our family grows. I strongly believe in detaching yourself, even if just occasionally, from media and taking an old-fashioned break from the world.

Oh and P.S.. Sorry if you received a spam e-mail from my gmail account. Some freaking hacker sent an e-mail to 440 of my closest and farthest friends, colleagues, and acquaintances that I have ever sent or received an e-mail to/from. Thanks bud!

Saturday, October 2, 2010


So, I am now at the point in my pregnancy where every day seems to drag on and I hardly have the energy to get through the day. My cankles are practically thankles now (thighs--ankles), and my belly is stretched so thin I feel like I'm losing sensation around my belly button.

But.. there is light at the end of the tunnel.. Less than 4 weeks left! I will have this baby by Halloween.. I know it. I am honestly looking forward to midnight diaper changes as opposed to hobbit feet.

Anyways, I had a fabulous weekend in California last week. I flew down early Saturday morning, had a baby shower, went shopping (I had to sit down in stores most of the time), dined at Benihana's, went to church, caught up with some old friends, and had an amazing pregnancy massage. Just thinking about the massage relaxes me. They even gave me a brownie at the end. I would definitely go back!

My mom's family was amazingly generous with baby gifts. Seriously. I had 2 large suitcases PACKED full of stuff. Plus, my sister-in-law threw the cutest baby shower ever with the theme "Cute as a button". You can see pictures on my sister's blog. Believe it or not, I still have one more shower next week down in Portland with Graham's family. I'm not really looking forward to the drive down, but hey.. whatever works.

Anyways, I'll keep you updated on the progress with the baby. Hopefully he won't come too soon! I'll be 37 weeks on Wednesday. By the way, if you haven't guessed our baby's weight and due date, you probably should. You can go anonymous if you wish.

P.S. Graham's family.. If you are reading this.. Please do not buy any newborn diapers. We have a ton! Thanks.

Ch ch ch ch ch ch Changes

One thing is for sure about this home building process.. There will be changes! Quick Update : drywall is nearly done. Our project manager...