Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Will Bennett:: A Birth Story

For those of you who only know me through my blog, have I got a surprise for you! You see, 3 months ago, we went ahead and had ourselves another baby.

Meet Will Bennett:

(taken when he was 1 day old)

To go all the way back to his beginning, we must step back in time to last January. 

I had decided to lose my baby weight, once and for all, so I started to work out. About 3 weeks into the process, I became EXHAUSTED.

I was so tired, that it was about all I could to drag myself out to the couch in the morning so D could play with toys. I spent much of my time laying around, getting up only when necessary to change D's diaper or feed him. I couldn't understand what was going on, but figured it was just a combination of having a baby who woke up all  night long and my winter blues.

Finally, on Valentine's Day, when I couldn't summon up the energy to go on a date with my husband like we'd planned, Luke made me take a pregnancy test. I grumbled the whole time, because OF COURSE I wasn't pregnant.

Well, joke was on me, because, well, as you can see, there was indeed a baby in there!

My pregnancy was like Drew's in that I was very sick the first trimester (but this time I had a doctor, so I was able to get on medicine. it didn't make the nauseousness go away, but I was able to at least take care of D), very tired the whole time and didn't really care to be touched much. I was still nursing D when I got pregnant, and it was incredibly painful, even before I knew I was preggo. As time went on, my supply continued to drop and drop, until I finally weaned him at 13 months and my body didn't need to really adjust at all. 

However, over all I handled this pregnancy better. I was calmer, and did not have as many anxiety attacks. I knew what I was going through was worth it, which helped so much! I also didn't gain quite as much weight and my blood pressure stayed where it was supposed to, so no pre-eclampsia.

When the time came for our 20 week ultrasound, we were pretty sure it was a girl. We had even picked out a name and called the baby by that name for about a week beforehand. Well ... as you can tell, we were slightly off! However, it did not bother us at all that we were having another boy. We were so excited that Drew was getting a little brother so close in age.

So, I made it through the looooooooooooooooooooong hot summer (not always gracefully or graciously, but we all survived), and it was getting closer to our due date. Except, also like Drew, we had a bunch of due dates. LMP told us Oct 7, first ultrasound said Oct 25, and second ultrasound said Oct 19. So, basically we knew he was coming sometime in October, and we also knew that it would be bad if I went into active labor since it was too close to my c-section with D. The other kicker was that my doctor was going to a week long conference the week right before my due date (we have very bad timing with our kiddos and our doctor's travel plans. he had to put off his vacation by a day when Drew was born. we've agreed to plan a little better next time ;-)).

On Wednesday, October 10, we had supper at our friends' house, and while I was sitting at the table my stomach got really tight. It didn't really hurt per say, but I could definitely feel it. I didn't have anything like that with D, so it was a bit of a surprise. We went on with our night, and nothing like that happened again.

Then, the next morning I was talking on the phone to my friend Karla, and it happened again. We talked about whether or not it was contractions or Braxten Hicks, and she thought probably Braxten Hicks. After I got done talking to her, I texted Bethany and asked her if she had had BH with her kiddo. She said if I put my feet up and drank lots of water, they would most likely go away. So, that's what I did. Except, they didn't go away. They were never painful, but they were strong enough and often enough that I was definitely taking note.

Luke got home at 3:00, and we talked about what was happening. We agreed they were often enough and close enough together that we should at least call in. Our doctor told us to come in for a non-stress test, so we dropped D off with Grandpa (forgetting to give him diapers, a sippy cup or anything else he might need ... whoops!), and headed to town. I got hooked up, and while we saw some spikes for awhile, they mostly went away. However, our doctor is pretty cautious, so I ended up with an overnight stay to be monitored and hydrated in hopes it would cause the contractions to stop.

In the morning, another mama to be came in who was actually in labor. So, I got kicked out of our one labor room and sent to the (really nice) hospital room they save for new parents, so that I would have a claim on it if we did go in for a c-section (I LOVE LOVE LOVE the nurses at our clinic/hospital - they take such good care of us and think of things like that!). Eventually, my mother-in-law and Drew came to pick me, since the doctor wanted me to go home and see if bedrest would stop things.

Since I have some of the most wonderful in-laws a person could ask for, my MIL came home with me to take care of Drew. It was a little weird to just sit on the couch when I felt fine (I was on pretty strict limits - I could only get up to go to the bathroom and wasn't really allowed to eat much), but it gave me time to think about the contractions. And they didn't go away. I was texting with Luke on his lunch break, and we decided to pray that if it was time, God would make it really clear. I got one of my strongest contractions right then, so we took it as a sign to prepare for baby!

I called back in at 3:00, and our doctor agreed that we should just go ahead and have our c-section that night (it was Friday October 12 at this point). Since I figured it would be ok if I got up now that we knew we were having a baby, I showered and packed my bag (I had used my time on the couch to put together a list, which helped a lot!). I also packed up some clothes and whatnot for D to take to my in-laws, where he would be camping out while we were in the hospital.

Luke raced home from work, we took a couple of pictures for the last time as a family of 3, and headed to the hospital.

Well, it turns out that the mama who came in that morning was still working on having her babe, and since our doctor was also her doctor, we had to wait around a bit. But, it was finally time, and I was taken to the OR. And, at 7:37 this little cutie was born:

He was 8lbs 8oz and 20 inches long, scored perfectly on his Apgars and had no problems. We had gone into it thinking he might be a little early and with the knowledge that we might have to deal with a NICU situation, but obviously that wasn't anything we had to worry about! 

After I was stapled back together, they took me back to the recovery room, which is where we were when we started to text and call people to let them know baby had come (only our immediate families knew something was going on - so even my friends who I had talked to about Braxten Hicks were surprised!). It was also there that we found out that the hospital was on lockdown. Apparently, one of the patients was dealing with an unwanted guest. As a result, the hospital was on lockdown at night the whole weekend (when Drew was born, we had to go sit in a hallway with all the other  patients because of a tornado warning ... so apparently our presence is a sign of exciting times at the hospital!).

The rest of our time in the hospital was pretty normal: staring at our baby, telling people, trying to figure out a name, dealing with my pain, nursing, etc, etc, etc). My in-laws brought Drew to meet his brother on Saturday night. He was mostly interested in exploring, but didn't seem to mind the baby that got in his way of sitting by me!

After we got home, we were blessed to have tons of help. Since I had had a c-section, I wasn't able to lift Drew for 6 weeks (that's a loooong time!). Luke's mom came over to help the first morning, and then my mom came for the rest of the week. It was SO nice to have her here!

After my mom left, we had a weekend of Vander Ley family activity, and then my sister-in-law Julie came to help. She stayed for that next week, which was also AMAZING!

After all my family left, my MIL was so good to come over and help me as needed. It was rare to have a day where she didn't come over for at least a while. It was SO nice!! We are incredibly blessed by such loving family!

And, so here we are. 3 months later, one little boy more in our family, and as happy as can be!

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