The Taynors

The Taynors

Wednesday, March 30, 2011


This is a little bit of a rant but I am sleep deprived and worried so I need to vent.  Ryan hit 3 weeks old and turned into one very fussy baby!!  I feel so bad because I feel like he is so uncomfortable and I can't figure out what to do to make him feel better.  He has been spending most of his awake time screaming and crying and he is only sleeping for short increments at a time.  At first I thought he might be extra hungry, maybe going through a growth spurt.  Then I thought he seemed extra gassy.  Now I am starting to think that he might have baby reflux.  His symptoms seem to be matching those of a baby with reflux. 

Ryan is very calm and relaxed when he eats, but the hour after he stops eating is really bad.  That is when he is at his worst.  He has a very hard time relaxing back into sleep and when he does dose off, its only about 10-15 minutes before he is up screaming again.  He throws his head back, spits up frequently, gets the hiccups, coughs a lot, and can not be soothed.  When I attempt to put him on his back to sleep in his bassinet or change his diaper, the screaming is even worse.  All of these things point to reflux.  For a while Ryan was sleeping for 3-4 hours at a time over night, but not we are back to him only going about 2 hours between feedings, which means only about an hour or so of actually sleeping. 

We have a doctors appointment on Monday for his 1 month check up, but if this continues we will have to go sooner.  I feel soooo bad for him.  At this point I would do anything to make him feel better and to get my happy baby back.  There are many afternoons that I cry right along with him because I don't know what else to do.  Its extra hard being home by myself when he is this fussy.  It would be great to just have another set of hands or someone else to help soothe him.  I love him very much and it breaks my heart to see him like this. 

Keep your fingers crossed that we get this figured out soon!!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Breastfeeding Update

Like I posted before Ryan was born, breastfeeding was something that is very important to me.  So when Ryan struggled with it at first, I was very discouraged and upset.  I couldn't help but wonder if I was doing something wrong.  But I am thankful I did plenty of reading up on the subject before he was born.  It was because of the fact that I read many books, talked to many breastfeeding women, took a class at the hospital, and was aware of the problems that could happen, that I was able and motivated to continue to breastfeed.  I understand why many women just give up, but I do believe the benefits of breastfeeding are so great that it needs to be something women don't give up on so easily.  I have learned a few things... if a mom is determined to breastfeed successfully BEFORE she gives birth to her child, than she will be able to do it.  But if a mom goes into it without any information and without really understanding it, they will be likely to quit if there are any problems.  I really think that the mom that says "Sure I guess I will try breastfeeding" will end up stopping much sooner than the mom that says "It is very important to me to be able to exclusively breast feed!"  So whats my point??  It is really a topic that a mom-to-be has to think about and research before having her baby, and once the child is born she must be prepared to run into some road blocks along the way.  With a great support system (which I had) and the dedication to make it work, I believe most mothers can do it!! Low milk supply, bad sucking, can't latch, flat nipples, reflux, c-section pain, extra time in the hospital, etc etc can all be overcome!!

Ryan is now 2 1/2 weeks old, and his eating has gotten better and better each day.  Getting him to start feeding is a struggle.  He tends to fight against me and struggles to get a good latch.  I have been using a nipple shield to help him get suction, but I am now trying to ween him away from that.  I feel like he is much stronger and doesn't need that extra help anymore. He is now able to eat for longer periods of time and he is finally gaining some weight.  The doctor is happy with his progress and I feel more confident with breastfeeding in general.

So here are some of my tips/suggestions for any mom who wants to breastfeed:

1.  Read up on the topic before hand-  I read two books that were very helpful. "The Nursing Mother's Companion" by Kathleen Huggins and "Breastfeeding Naturally" by Hannah Lothrop.  Both gave me excellent information about what to expect, surviving the first few weeks, potential problems and how to deal with them.  I did read them before going into labor but they also serve as a great reference point now that we are home and working on breastfeeding. 

2.  If you are having trouble breastfeeding the first few days in the hospital, start pumping! I recommend the "Purely Yours" by Ameda.  I was unable to nurse Ryan for the first 3-4 days of his life.  I started pumping almost immediately and it served 2 purposes.  First, it helped build my milk supply.  Even though Ryan was not eating, my body was getting the message that milk was needed.  Second, it gave me the opportunity to give Ryan the breast milk (especially the colostrum that is there the first few days) by bottle.  We still needed to supplement with some formula, but I felt better knowing he was at least getting some of the breast milk. 

3.  Ask for help from many different people.  I was lucky to have lots of fabulous nurses, but they all had different advice and techniques for feeding.  I was able to take a little bit from everyone and put it all together until I found something that worked for us.  At one point we had different nurses coming in to check on Ryan and I every hour of the day.  It was overwhelming but it helped.

4.  Take a class.  Most hospitals offer a breastfeeding class, and it is well worth the time to go.  The class puts you in touch with other moms who want to breastfeed and many other resources that will be helpful once baby is born.  I can't stress it enough, but getting as much information as possible gives you the best change to succeed. 

5.  DO NOT GIVE UP!  If it doesn't work day one, or week one, don't give up.  Of course do whatever is needed to keep your baby healthy, but don't give up on breastfeeding.  The nurses kept telling me "put the baby to breast first".  So I would first give him a chance to breastfeed before going to any kind of bottle.  After a few days he was able to latch on, then he was able to suck for a few minutes, and eventually he got to the point that he was actually eating enough that we did not have to supplement anymore.  If I gave up those first few days, I would not be experiencing the joy of breastfeeding now!

6.  Last but not least, have people around who support you and won't let you just give up.  Luckily my husband, my best friend, and my mom were 100% supportive and encouraging.  They never even mentioned the idea of just giving Ryan formula.  They actively gave me advice, researched ideas, and sat by my side while I worked to figure it all out.  They were more confident than I was that I would be able to do it!  So thank you to them!

Not that I am an expert, but I hope to help anyone else who might be struggling with breastfeeding!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011


We have been home with Ryan now for 9 days, he will be 2 weeks old tomorrow!  Life has been busy, overwhelming, wonderful, stressful, and the most amazing 9 days of my life.  Due to the pregnancy hormones, its has also been an emotional roller coaster.  First of all, we have had non stop visitors since the day we came home.  Of course I love and appreciate every single person who wants to be around to visit with Ryan and I.  I also appreciate all of the help (people bringing dinner, boy clothes, doing the laundry, etc).  But... it is a bit crazy because I feel like we have a revolving door.  Its been hard for me to get into any kind of routine with Ryan because every day has been so busy.  For any of you reading this, please continue to visit as often as you want!  I am not at all turning people away, just expressing how busy we have been :) 

We have also had several doctors appointments to follow up with some of the health issues Ryan had in the hospital.  We have been to the hospital 2 more times and the pediatrician twice.  I was also at the OBGYN yesterday because I have a UTI... I know, we can't catch a break in this house.  Anyway, the update on Ryan's health is great.  He is back up to his birth weight, he is peeing/pooping like a champ, his jaundice number is down to a 4.5, and he is eating much better.  We have a follow up with the cardiologist on Monday so that will be the final piece to the puzzle. 

The big question everyone keeps asking is... "How is he sleeping at night?"  Well every night has been different.  We had a few nights that Ryan woke up every single hour and seemed to be hungry constantly.  Then we had a few nights where he slept for about 3 hours at a time, which gives me a chance to get a little bit of sleep.  So its been pretty inconsistent.  This seems to be our routine through the night:  Change diaper, swaddle, feed him (this could take up to 45 minutes), burp him, wait for him to fall asleep soundly in my arms, lay him down and pray that he falls/stays asleep.  If he stays asleep I am able to lay down and sleep too, yay!  If not, he starts to get fussy pretty quickly and I have to figure out what the issue may be.  Sometimes he just wants to be held close and snugly to me, other times he is still hungry and wants to eat more,  and it could mean that he did a big poop and needs his diaper changed again before going to sleep.  No matter what, it means I can be up for long stretches of time in the middle of the night.  After a short period of sleep, we repeat the the routine.

At first Ryan would not sleep flat on his back, so he hated his bassinet.  A few nights he would spend the entire night in his swing.  He seems to be getting more comfortable with back sleeping now which is a really good thing.  A pacifier is also great to help sooth him in the middle of the night, but as soon as it falls out of his mouth we have a screaming baby again.  I can tell he really wants to just suck his thumb.  I would be happy if that happens because it would make night times much more peaceful.

Mike had to go back to work this Monday, and I hate that he is not home with us.  I was very anxious, sad, nervous this weekend in anticipation of him going back.  I am EXTREMELY JEALOUS of any women who gets to have her husband stay home with them for an extended period of time.  I miss him tremendously when he is gone and I feel bad that he is not around to see the little changes that Ryan goes through each day.  I count my blessings that I have such a great husband that is able to provide for us, but I wish we had more time with him home.  As for me, I am feeling pretty good.  My stitches area is still very sore.  Like I said before, I also developed a UTI so I am uncomfortable there too.  I don't get to shower every day, and I am feeling pretty sleep deprived BUT it is all worth it when I look at my beautiful baby boy. 

Friday, March 11, 2011

The First Few Days

The first few days after delivery was not exactly what I had imagined it to be.  Don't get me wrong, there were tons of wonderful moments... but we had some scares too.  Its so easy to forget the great things that happened those days, so I want to make sure I talk about them first. 

Precious Moments
Well first of all, it was 100% love at first sight.  The emotions and pride to meet your child is indescribable.  His very cute little cry (almost sounded like a puppy dog) and his little cute sneeze had everyone laughing in the first day or two.  I could not believe how fast he changed in the first 24 hours, it seems like every time the nurses brought him back in to me he had changed a little bit.  My favorite moments while in the hospital were the skin to skin time.  I would take Ryan's onesie off and place him on my chest and we would just lay there and snuggle for as long as I could.  I will never forget that feeling. 

Secondly, the staff at the hospital was AMAZING from start to finish.  The nurses from labor, my personal nurses, and Ryan's nursery nurses were all so wonderful and helpful.  As I already stated, I was very lucky to have the doctor I wanted deliver Ryan.  Also, my second favorite Dr was the one to do all of my checkups and Ryan's circumcision.  We also had to deal with many other doctors (I will explain in a minute) and each one of them was so kind, understanding, and helpful.  I am lucky that we had such a great experience in the hospital.

Most importantly, I was pleasantly surprised at how Mike was instantly an awesome father.  For someone who did not have much experience with children, he was just unbelievable.  Every day, he continues to surprise me with his love and dedication to Ryan and myself.  I could not ask for a better husband and father to my child. 

Since we didn't know if we were having a girl or a boy, it took us a while to get use to saying his name.  In the meantime, he developed several different nicknames.  Ryan, RJ, Ry Guy, RyDogg, and Kermie (for some reason I thought he looked like Baby Kermit so I started calling him Kermie).  Who knows what nicknames will last. 

The Rough Stuff
I didn't really notice anything wrong or strange the first day at the hospital.  Ryan was struggling to breastfeed, but we were working on it.  I didn't really think anything of it.  So all the issues started on Friday morning when the pediatrician came to see us.  Dr. Intili told us that he checked out RJ and he had a few concerns.  First he still did not have his first bowel movement and he had not eaten anything really since birth.  Also, he noticed a heart mur mur that he was concerned about.  Dr. Intili had decided that he was calling the Pediatric Cardiologist and the NICU doctor for some second opinions.  If Ryan did not start eating we would have to supplement with formula and if he did not poop it would leave him concerned that there was something else wrong.  So we had to spend the day seeing doctors and observing.  I was really not happy about the idea of feeding Ryan formula, I am really determined to exclusively breastfeeding.  But after several more hours with no eating, I finally gave in and gave him some formula.  I started pumping at that time too.  My hope was I could at least feed him the breast milk with a bottle, and only use the formula if it was necessary. 

Well the waiting for him to eat and poop continued.  Ryan was barely eating anything, throwing up constantly, and showed no signs of a bowel movement.  In the meantime, we met with the pediatric cardiologist.  She confirmed that Ryan had a small hole in his heart.  The doctor did a great job of explaining the condition to us and easing our concerns.  She seemed confident that the hole was in a good location and would close up on its own in time.  For right now there is nothing we can do, and we will bring him back for a follow up in two weeks. 

Friday night came and went, and we still had no poop and still would not latch on to breastfeed.  Thankfully the nurses were so wonderful and they continued to help me attempt to feed every few hours.  On Saturday morning we were visited by the pediatrician again and he gave us the bad news that Ryan would not be coming home with us that afternoon when I was discharged.  I was really heartbroken by this.  I never imagined that I would be going home but my newborn baby would have to stay in the hospital.  Mike and I were told we could stay at the hospital until 11:59 pm but then we had to go for insurance purposes.  The doctors also explained to Mike and I that if he did not poop by the next morning we were going to have to take the next step.  Ryan would have to be transferred to a children's specialized hospital NICU for testing.  Just the idea of this was so scary. 

At this point all of our friends and family started praying for poop!  I was getting phone calls and texts all with the same question... "Any poop?"  I would never have guessed poop would become such an important part of my hospital experience.  Saturday came and went and there was no poop.  Finally at about 8pm I decided to check again, and there it finally was, a little bit of poop!!!  Yay!!  A few hours later it was time for Mike and I to go home, but we were feeling encouraged.  Hopefully we would return early Sunday morning and be able to take him home.

Sunday morning we got back to the hospital around 8am and had some time to visit with Ryan.  We were still only feeding him bottled breast milk and formula because the doctors needed to be able to keep track of exactly how much he was eating.  The doctor returned around 9 with bad news again.  Even though Ryan did poop a little bit the night before, it was not enough to make him confident that everything was fine, but he was eating more so that was a good sign.  Unfortunately, in this time his bilirubin numbers (jaundice) had spiked up to around a 12 which put him at the level of concern.  So the decision for that day was that we did not need to transfer him to the new hospital BUT Ryan needed to stay at this hospital for another 24 hours to be put under the blue light (treat the jaundice).  That meant Mike and I could come to the hospital every 3 hours to attempt to breastfeed but then he would go right back under the light.  We were not able to sit and spend time with him.  So Sunday became the day from Hell!

This is how our day went:  we would go to the hospital and take Ryan into this side breastfeeding room.  I would attempt to breastfeed while Mike got the other feeding supplies set up.  Sometimes Ryan would successfully nurse for a few minutes, and others would be a fight.  Then Mike would take Ryan and bottle feed him the breast milk and finish off with some formula, while I would pump for the next feeding.  After all of this we would have to return Ry to the nurses and go home.  By time we got home, we would have about an hour before we would leave for the hospital to repeat the whole thing. 

Considering I had just gone through labor and was very very uncomfortable... this was a miserable experience.  It hurt to walk and sit.  I was very swollen.  I had to pack a bag of all my personal hygiene items to bring with me anywhere we went.  It just sucked.  At about 5pm I started a mini emotional break down.  I felt like crap and all I wanted was to be at home with my baby boy.  Just walking past him in the blue light made me sob... my child should be cuddled up in my arms.  Not stuck in a box under this crazy light.  I just needed him to be home with me!

Luckily we had a positive visit that night.  Ryan breastfeed successfully for the first time, he had a really good poop, and he peed all over the nurse.  He seemed more alert and was doing all of the things babies are expected to do.  So again, Mike and I went home that night feeling encouraged, hoping that the next morning we could bring him home.

Monday was our lucky day! We got to the hospital around 9am and he was just about to come out from under the light.  We still had to wait til the doctor came in, but the nurses said he had a great night and they thought we would get to go home with us.  Thank goodness they were right.  Dr. Intili confirmed that his bilirubin went down and he was improving in all other categories.  We could finally take Ryan Joseph home!

So in brief, we had to deal with not eating, not pooping, throwing up everything, a hole in his heart, jaundice, and 2 extra days in the hospital all within the first 4 days of Ryan's life.  I feel very blessed and excited to finally have him home and to see major improvements.  He is pooping like a champ, much more alert, not so yellow, and overall doing great.  The breastfeeding is still a bit of a challenge, but its getting better every day.  At this point I do not need to supplement with any bottle, breast milk or formula.  We love him so very much and are excited to  see what the next few weeks will bring us!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

It's a Boy!

Ryan Joseph Taynor has arrived.  He was born on Thursday, March 3, 2011 at 11:17am.  I was 38 weeks and 2 days pregnant.  His birth weight was 7 lbs, 20 inches long.  My labor lasted 8 hours from start to finish (not bad for a first time mom).  This past week has been the most surreal, crazy, wonderful week of my life!  Below are all the details of the labor and delivery experience.  Warning... lots of detail!

The Day Before
On Wednesday, 3/2 I went for my 38 week doctor appointment.  The doctor told me that the head was down and in position, my cervix was soft, but I was still only dilate 1 cm.  She did say that labor could happen at any moment, but reminded me that first babies like to take their time.  I was kind of discouraged that I had not made any progress since my appointment 2 weeks earlier.  After the appointment I went to the mall for my daily walk and met up with my mom for lunch. 

Later in the evening I started to have a "feeling" that labor was close.  I had absolutely no reason to be feeling this way, but it was just a strange feeling.  I have heard a lot about different clues or signs that labor is going to start soon, but I had been having those symptoms for about 2 weeks (the cramping, nesting, IBS, leaking boobs, etc).  The only thing that was different was that I had a little bit of the bloody show (hints of blood in my discharge, I warned I was going to give all of the details). 

Anyway, we had dinner plans with Cindy and Mike (my inlaws) so we went forward with the plans since I was feeling totally normal.  I made a few jokes about how they were going to get in the car and drive all the way  home,  just to get back in the car and come back to the hospital.  After they left, I had Mike take a picture of my belly and said "I have no idea when labor is going to start so I want one last belly pic".  I also went to bed earlier, just in case I didn't get a good nights sleep.  Earlier that day I contacted my mom and Jackie to make sure we had a communication plan... Mike would give them updates when I went into labor and they would pass the news on to friends and family.  Soooo with all of these little things going on, I should have known that I was only a few hours away from Labor Day!

Mike, I Think My Water Broke!
I was sound asleep at about 3:30am when I heard a popping nose in my dream.  The dream woke me up, but I didn't feel anything different.  I got up to go to the bathroom, wiped like normal and headed back to bed.  I noticed my underwear was wet, so I went back to the bathroom.  My underwear was def. wet but there was not a gush of water like you see in the movies.  I changed my underwear and decided to walk around for a minute or two to see what happened.  I had a feeling my water broke but I didn't want to jump to conclusions.  Well the second and third pairs of underwear got wet just as quickly and it was finally time to wake Mike up. Thanks to Jackie, I knew I should wear a maxi pad so that I did not get all of my clothes/bed wet. My exact words to Mike were "Mike, I think my water broke... but I'm not sure".  But a minute later, I had a little bit more of that gush I expected and I said "Oh yea, my water definitely broke!!!"  So we called the doctors office and waited for the on call doctor to call me and let me know what to do. I was really excited to hear that Dr. Paserella was the on call doctor.  My whole pregnancy I had hoped she would do my delivery because I had formed a good relationship with her.  Anyway, I had planned to labor at home for a few hours before going to the hospital but by time the doctor called, my my contractions were already pretty intense and regular at 3-4 minutes apart.  Dr. P said to head to the hospital... so off we went.  We arrived at the hospital at 4:30am.

When people ask how my labor was the first thing I think is that it was exactly what I thought it would be.  I had done so much research, birthing classes, and talked to other new moms to get as much information as possible.  I was prepared to expect the unexpected, and I was prepared to lose control of my body.  When I got to the hospital I was still only 1 cm dilated but 100% effaced.  I was transferred to my labor room, hooked up to all the IV's and told the doctor was going to get there around 8am.  The first few hours were not so bad, contractions were getting more intense and coming faster... but nothing unbearable.  I was able to watch the monitor so I knew when my contractions were about to peak and when they were finally going away.  It actually helped to see that screen.  I was pretty controlled during the process.  No screaming, moaning, cursing etc.  I would just get very quiet and try to breath through it.  When I got to 4 cm dilated (about 8:30 am) I finally asked for some pain meds because I was pretty miserable.  They gave me a drug through the IV and pitocin so that I would feel sedated but the contractions would not slow down.  After that point, things moved very very quickly.  For about an hour, I dosed in and out of sleep, only waking up for the contractions.  The doctor checked me again and I was 6 cm and feeling very painful and intense contractions. This was probably the worst part of the labor. It is a very hard pain to explain and I decided it was time for an epidural.  The doctor came in and I was given an epidural around 10:00 am.  The doctor said that I should call the nurse as soon as I started feeling pressure in my butt or that I needed to push.  The epidural worked immediately, but it worked better on one side of my body than the other.  My right side was totally numb and I couldn't feel any contractions or pain... but I could still feel a little bit on my left side.  Eventually I was feeling the contractions on the left side of my stomach.  It was within a few minutes that I started feeling the pressure in my butt and had Mike call in the nurse again.  I thought I must be going crazy because it was way to soon to push. Well, we were all shocked that I was already at 9 cm and pretty much ready to start pushing any minute. 

Keep Pushing!
I started pushing at 10:40am.  At first it was very controlled.  I would wait until a contraction was starting and then the doctor would have be grab the back of my legs and push for 10 seconds, breath, and then do it again 2 more times.  After the contraction was over I would wait a minute or so until the next contraction started and push again.  It was very painful, even with the epidural.  I could feel a tremendous amount of pressure and pain, but I am kind of glad I could feel it because it helped me know when to push and push more successfully.  After about 20 minutes of pushing I could tell something was wrong. The doctor told me I had to push even if I was not having a contraction and she needed to use the vacuum to help get the baby out as quickly as possible.  Then several doctors and nurses that I had not seen before were all in the room trying to help.  I pretty much pushed back to back to back without any breaks.  I felt totally exhausted and was having trouble getting enough air to push the right way.  I could feel my face get all tingly and I was no longer in control of my pushing.  I could hear bits and pieces of what the doctor and nurses were saying but none of it was making any sense to me.  I do clearly remember seeing the doctor pick up a medical tool and I immediately knew that she was giving me an episiotomy.  At that point I did not care, but I was aware of what she was doing.  Once that was cut she was able to really get her hand on the babies head and help pull him out.  Finally, she said that the babies head was out and I needed 2 more good pushes to get the body out.  Once his body was totally out it was the greatest sense of relief I have ever experienced.  They quickly put him on my chest and said "You have a Ryan" but I didn't process what that meant at first.  I was so out of if and just trying to catch my breath.  Then I looked down and I saw his naked body on my stomach and realized I had a baby boy.  Things still seemed a little panicked.  They made Mike quickly cut the cord and Ryan still was not crying.  They took him off to the side and after a little bit longer I finally heard that much anticipated first cry!  The doctor then told me what was going on, she could see that his heart rate was dropping pretty quickly during pushing.  That is why they needed to get him out so quickly.  They found that the cord was wrapped around his neck and causing some distress.  Once he was out and they were able to remove the cord, he quickly perked up, thank goodness.  In the end everything was fine, but it was a scary 20 minutes.  In total, I only pushed for about 40 minutes.  The process was definitely expediated because of the urgency to get the baby out!

Post Labor
Just when I thought it was all over, the post delivery process starts. Since I tore during pushing and then I needed the episiotomy, I needed ALOT of stitches.  I felt like I was laying there for hours as the doctor stitched me up.  I also had to "deliver" the placenta which meant more pushing.  Because I had the loopy drug and an epidural, I was feeling pretty out of it at first.  I remember talking to the doctor and nurse but I can't really remember what we talked about.  I was jealous that Mike was able to hold Ryan and spend time with him while I was still being poked around.  Once everything was finished, I finally got to really hold the baby.  But even that did not last long.  We had lots of family in the waiting room anxiously waiting to come in and see us.  Within an hour of delivery, I had my mom, dad, sister, mother in law, father in law, brother in law, and sister in law, all in the delivery room visiting.  They only stayed about 20 minutes before the nurse had to take away Ryan to go to the nursery.  I must say, I'm a trooper for letting all of those people come see us so soon.  After the family left for a few hours and the nurse took away Ryan, it was time to get me up and moving.  When you give birth, you must check any modesty at the door.  The nurses helped me go to the bathroom and literally cleaned me up.  The bleeding for the rest of the day was very very very heavy.  You have to wear like a bed pad, a huge maxi pad, an ice pack, and tucks pads all in these huge mesh underwear for the first 24 hours.  But the ice really feels good after all of those stitches.  I remember being shocked when I looked in the mirror because I had burst blood vessels all over my face and neck.  I looked like someone took a red pen and made little dots all over the place.  I kept thinking "How come no one told me I looked like this!" Once that was all done, they transferred me to my room for the next few days.  That's about when they brought Ryan back in to me and all of the family members returned.  The rest of that first day is a total blur.  I know my brother and Ciri, Jerome, Jackie, Julian, and Tim all came to visit (along with all of the other people already there).   I know I was very uncomfortable but none of that mattered because Ryan was just perfect.  He changed so fast.  The boy I held in the delivery room was very different then the boy they brought to me a few hours later.  My first impression of him was that I was shocked by how light his hair is. 

Mike was wonderful throughout the whole process.  He really was helpful and supportive and didn't do anything to annoy me during labor :)  He was much more involved in the pushing part than either of us had anticipated but he was great! I don't think I yelled at him once during the whole process. 

Anyway, that is my labor story.  I could go on and on for hours about every little detail.  I'm sure I will add plenty more as the blogs continue.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Importance of Breastfeeding

Breastfeeding vs. formula... a very hot topic.  I have decided that it is VERY important to me that I do everything in my power to breastfeed my baby.  I have noticed that less and less people take the time to really try to breastfeed.  It seems to me that other women my age are very quick to give it up or go straight to formula feeding.  I am not 100% sure why this is happening, so I decided the best thing I can do before the baby is born is to educate myself on the topic.  I have read two books (Breastfeeding Naturally and The Breastfeeding Companion) and I took a nursing class at the hospital.  I am hoping that if I am more aware of how it works, tips for successful breastfeeding, and what problems might come up... then I will be able to be a breastfeeding mommy.

Don't get me wrong, I know there are many things that can make breastfeeding difficult and that it is a full time job, but I believe it is worth it for the sake of your child.  Research has proven that a mothers milk is better than any kind of formula.  Below is a list of all of the benefits to breastfeeding...
(Thanks Jackie, I stole some of this from you)

*Breastfed children are proven to have higher IQ's.
*Breastfed children have higher visual acuity (less need for glasses).
*Breastfed children get fewer ear infections.
*Breastfed children have improved muscle development of their face and have less need for orthodontics later in life.
*Breastfed children are less likely to have to get their tonsils out.
*Breastfed children have fewer and less sever upper respiratory infections, less wheezing, and less influenza
*Breastfed children may have lower cholesterol as adults.
*Breastfed children have less diarrhea, fewer gastrointestinal infections.
*Breastfed children have a lower risk of food allergies and a lower risk of Crohn's disease.
*Breastfed children respond better to vaccinations and decreases the risk of childhood cancer.
* Breastfed children are at a reduced risk of getting diabetes.
*Breastmilk is easier on a baby's kidneys
*Breastfed children are less likely to have appendicitis
*Breastfed children are less likely to have arthritis
*Breastfed children have less allergic eczema
*Breastfed children are leaner at one year of age and less likely to be obese later in life.
*Breastfed children have less constipation.
*Breastfed children and breastfeeding mothers have lower risks of breast cancer
..... This is just the beginning of the benefits to breastfeeding.
Anyway with all of that being said, I am motivated and dedicated to breastfeeding.  I feel it is really important to have a support system while going through this.  Without an understanding partner, friends, mother, etc. it can be easy to give up.  I will need to surround myself with people who respect my decision and are understanding of the process.  I am lucky that my mother completely agrees with me and my husband 100% supports the decision to breastfeed.
I guess now we just wait to see what happens when baby arrives....

38 Weeks

I'm officially 38 weeks pregnant and soooo ready for this baby to come.  Since December, I have had people (including my Doctor) tell me that this baby was going to come early.  Well I am ready! I have been secretly hoping for a February baby, but today is March 1 so I guess God has plans of his own.  I have been having pre-labor symptoms consistently for the past 2 weeks.  Lots of cramping, irritable bowels, contractions, nesting, leaking boobs, etc.  Between the strange symptoms and all of the talk about baby coming early, it has made me very anxious.  I spend most days thinking "I hope today is the day".  I know its strange but I really hope my water breaks.  I understand that this doesn't happen to everyone, but if my water breaks it will take out the whole guessing game.  I would know for sure that I was in labor.  I really don't want to be that person who shows up at the hospital thinking I am in labor, just for them to send me home because it is not time yet. 

I have been keeping pretty busy during my month home from work.  My first job was to finish the nursery.  I am really happy with how it turned out.  It is not 100% finished yet because I want to add some decorative touches after we know if the baby is a girl or a boy.

I have also spent time packing my hospital bag, starting a baby book, cleaning every room and surface of the house, shopping, doing baby laundry, and relaxing with Sam and Andi.  Its nice that Jackie is also home on maternity leave with Ellie because she is always available for my goofy text messages or to visit for lunch.  On nice days we go for a walk around the park, but  the weather is too cold for that to be a regular thing.  Since it has been so cold, I have spent a lot of time walking the mall.  I figure its a good way to get out of the house and get some exercise.  It would be a bonus if it helps with an earlier, faster labor. 

I'll admit I have been trying all of the old-wives tales to bring on labor.  I eat pineapple and spicy foods, drink red rasberry leaf tea, do lots of squats and lunges, got a pedicure, and plenty of walking.  So far nothing has worked, but its fun to try.  So from here on out I am going to just do whatever I want and eat whatever I want, because we all know... babies come when the are ready!

Here are some other random things about this pregnancy:

Weight- I gained about 27 pounds as of today.  Not so bad, my goal was to stay under 30.  I plan to be working out again by May.

Nerves- I am nervous about the actual labor process and the first week or so home.  I have NO IDEA what to expect.  I am also nervous about how its going to change my relationship with Mike.  I am so use to it being all about just the two of us, that sometimes I worry our relationship is going to change.  I am sure I will love him even more than before... I hope he feels the same way.

Looking forward to- Here are some of the things I am looking forward to post pregnancy.
*Turkey sub
*Fried, runny eggs
*Sleeping on my stomach and back
*Getting my body back