Thursday, August 27, 2015

2 months

  • We have our two month well check a week from tomorrow, but I weighed myself holding her and she is about 9.5 pounds
  • Eyes are still blue, still pretty bald on top with a funny little brown mullet on the back
  • Mama started back to work this week, which has been hard. I am working 24 hours a week for 4 weeks, then going up to 30 hours a week after that. I have an awesome mom, mother-in-law, and sister-in-law who each take care of her 1-2 days a week while I work, so she is in great hands. I just miss her!
  • She is getting more used to getting dressed, being buckled in her car seat, etc. She doesn't cry much, but she will cry if her diaper is wet or dirty, or if she is hungry. She also gets a little bit fussy starting at about 6:30 p.m., and she'll fall asleep for about 30 min around that time every night.
  • She still doesn't notice the cats, but she is very interested in the monkeys that hang from her bouncy seat. She also started talking to herself in the last few weeks, and we just love to listen to her little voice.
  • I got her a Boppy chair to help strengthen her neck and improve her balance, we are going to try that out this week
  • She eats between 4-5 oz per feeding, between nursing and formula. She still eats about every 3 hours, although the two evening feedings are closer together.
  • She sleeps so well at night, about 9-11 hours without waking up. (knock on wood) She takes 15-30 minute catnaps during the day, but seems to have the schedule down because she does more cluster feeding in the early evening before bedtime. She goes down between 8 and 8:30, wakes up between 6:30-7 a.m. We moved her into her crib about a month ago and she has slept so much better 
  • She mostly wears newborn clothes, with a few 0-3 onesies here and there, and 0-3 jammies (newborn onesies and PJs are too short). I need to try shoes on her again, I haven't for awhile.
  • Mama was cleared to start exercising again, which has been great! Went to the gym one day and have been walking a lot on my treadmill. I can also sleep comfortably on my stomach again and have very little pain - just a twinge every now and then.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

One month old!

  • Haven't weighed her in awhile but I can tell she is growing because she fills out her onesies better and her socks actually fit (sort of)
  • She has blue eyes (like mama) and brown hair on the back from when she was born, but I think the hair growing in on top is starting to lighten.
  • She is a very sweet baby. She cries when she is hungry (and boy can she let me know when she is hungry) or when she needs to burp. Otherwise she is pretty content to just hang out in the Boppy, bouncy seat, swing, etc. 
  • She is not a fan of her car seat. She will fall asleep in it when we are out and about (unless she is hungry) but as soon as we get home, she will wake up within a few minutes of still being in it. It also makes her sooo sweaty.
  • She doesn't seem to notice the cats much. Sully doesn't care much about her either - he will stay asleep on his bed when she is right next to him crying. Caesar seems to worry more about her and will come in when she is crying to smell her head and meow at us to make sure we know she needs something.
  • She is getting super strong - can almost hold her head up on her own and loves to kick, keep her legs straight, and kind of stand up when I hold her or sit her up to burp.
  • She eats about every 3 hours. I nurse her on both sides first, where she usually gets about 3/4-1 oz, then she will have a bottle of 3 oz of formula. She tends to fall asleep during feedings so we are still working on that. It happens more during the day than at night.
  • Sleep is going well, she typically sleeps 4-6 hours when I first put her down (usually around 11pm) and then another 3ish hours after that feeding. She isn't a super great napper in the day, maybe 1-2 hours max at a time, but this is also probably because she isn't finishing the full feeding so she wakes up sooner to eat more.
  • She doesn't always want to be in her bed, so during the day she often naps on the couch in her Boppy next to me.
  • She sleeps in a cradle in our room, but I anticipate moving her into her crib in her room within the next few weeks since she is only waking once per night.
  • Still wearing newborn diapers and newborn clothes, jammies. We have tried a couple pairs of newborn shoes but she always kicks them off because they are too big.
  • Mama is doing well also - since she sleeps well, I don't usually take naps in the day. C-section scar is healing well and overall I feel about 75%. I still have some pain and soreness when I do too much. I REALLY want to sleep on my stomach again but every time I try, I get a little sore and my body tells me it's not quite ready yet. No exercise until 6 weeks after the surgery, but I am looking forward to getting active again. We will also start going for walks with her in the stroller once it cools off a bit.

Thea's Birth Story

June 21, 2015 was my due date for my baby, and I had tons of dreams throughout the pregnancy that I would have her early so that's kind of what I expected. On June 4, I started having regular contractions that were about 7 minutes apart and lasted all day and my midwife thought I was in labor so I went down to L&D to have a non-stress test and figure out what was going on. Turned out I wasn't in active labor so I went home and the contractions stopped that night. Nothing ever happened after that, despite my best efforts to try every option to naturally induce labor, so my midwife scheduled the induction for June 28, 2015.

The night before we went to a wedding reception for one of my childhood friends and then went home to get a good night's rest (right). The next morning we checked into the hospital and the nurse started a medication that was supposed to prepare my cervix. I started having cramping and contractions so a few hours later, the anesthesiologist came in to give me an epidural for pain control. It didn't actually work very well, so after six doses of medication (which all went into my left leg) he had to come back and take it out, then put it back into a different spot in my back. That one worked and the next few hours of contractions were much more manageable.

At that point, my contractions weren't hard enough to help me dilate (I was only at a 4) so the nurse started me on Pitocin. That's when things got scary. With every contraction, my baby's heart rate would drop so they worried that she was on her cord. They moved me around in all different positions to try to get her heart rate under control, but it just wasn't working. They stopped the Pitocin and let me rest for awhile to see if I would contract on my own, but it still didn't happen and I wasn't any further along. The nurse started Pitocin again, but we had the same exact result.

I remember this moment very clearly because Chris, me, and the midwife were watching Celebrity Family Feud and she turned the TV off to discuss options. I immediately knew what was coming and started getting really emotional but she explained that I wasn't far enough to start pushing, and they couldn't risk the safety of the baby by continuing to give me Pitocin. So they called the OB/GYN doctor who was on call and he was there within about 15 minutes. He came in and talked to me for a few minutes and then they wheeled me into the OR.

The anesthesiologist gave me some more medication through the epidural so I would be numb, but I could feel something sharp when they started, so he gave me another type of medication that was more of a sedative and after that things went fuzzy. I remember Chris saying, "it really is a girl" when she came out and I remember the doctor bringing her around to show her to me and I knew her and I remember the nurse commenting on how long her eyelashes were. Other than that, it was a blur and I couldn't keep my eyes open. I woke up in recovery to a nurse pushing as hard as she could on my stomach (worst part by far), which she continued to do several times in the next hour, and that I could barely stay awake.

Chris came back and forth from recovery to the nursery and told me details about my sweet baby. I couldn't hold her because I was so sleepy and out of it, so I worried I would drop her. A few hours later, they took me into our room and brought her in to me so she could nurse. It was really hard and painful, mostly because of my incision, so that experience was tough.

Having a c-section wasn't my plan but it turned out that she had her cord wrapped around her neck and body so she never would have been able to come out on her own. I am glad that we made the decision to go ahead with the c-section, even though the recovery has been really hard. It's amazing how I have already forgotten some of the pain and struggles associated with healing from a c-section, but I guess if you could remember the birth (no matter what type), no one would want to have another baby!

Friday, May 15, 2015

Sully Bear

If you don't like cats or pets, might as well skip this post.

I have been volunteering at the local animal shelter for about a year and a half and it has been a great experience. I am learning so much about animal welfare and it has helped me realize my ultimate dream of working in that field. When I first started volunteering, C had one request: don't bring any animals home. We already had one feisty cat, Caesar, who we weren't sure would ever get along with anybody else. I reluctantly agreed, but after about six months of volunteering, I had already fallen in love with three different cats (all of whom were adopted, yay!) So C knew it was a losing battle, and we made a deal: if I got another cat, he could get a different car.

Fast forward to last June, when he picked out the car he wanted and I found the perfect cat. Sully was a big 16-pound guy who was as gentle and mellow as they come. For the first couple of hours, we weren't even sure if he could meow. It took a week or two, but he and Caesar became friends and now they are best brothers. Every vet visit that I took Sully to, they would tell me that he was overweight and we should work on that. He was on a pretty regimented diet, so I didn't think too much of it. After all, when we adopted him from the shelter he was already a pretty big cat so I figured that was just his size.

In the past couple of months I started noticing that he was losing weight and I could feel his ribs and spine more than ever before. He also had a wound that wasn't getting much better so I took him in for a checkup. He weighed in at 12.1 lb, so almost a 4-lb weight loss in just a few months (which is a lot for a cat - imagine losing 1/4 of your body weight in a couple of months!) I also mentioned that his thirst had become insatiable and he was using the box a lot more than Caesar. They took some blood and urine and sent us on our way, and I took him home fearing the worst.

The next morning, the vet called and gave me the news: Sully has diabetes.

She went over the basics: insulin shots twice a day and a different diet. With my volunteer work at the shelter, I have been able to get to know some amazing people who foster and care for special needs cats, so I reached out to one of my friends who has a diabetic cat for help. Her advice along with the help of the staff at the vet has helped us realize that it will take some time and patience for both cats to adjust, but that Sully can still have a good life with us. It makes me really sad every time I think about him having to get shots and make such big changes in his life, but I also am grateful that he has something treatable.

He is a very unique cat. When we first got him, we noticed some trigger signs that he may have a history of abuse. Since living with us, he has relaxed completely and seems to feel very comfortable. He has a special bond with C and showers him with lots of love. I am hopeful that this won't change his personality, but that he will continue to feel better as we get his blood sugar regulated.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

28 and Pregnant.

In October, Chris and I took a trip to the East Coast to visit my sisters and see NYC (Chris has never been). Since he is studying civil engineering, he has a special interest in bridges and other unique structures, which there are plenty of in NYC. His professor also gave them an extra-credit assignment over fall break to take pictures of themselves with the class textbook in front of something cool that applies to civil engineering, and the best pic would get extra credit points. So we went all around the city to find the best bridges and took pictures with Chris and his book in front of them. It was such a fun trip. Then after a few days there and in New Jersey, we drove to North Carolina to spend a few days with my other sister. Super fun.

When we got back, I found out that I was pregnant! It was perfect timing, because the first trimester was super tough and I am so glad I wasn't sick on the trip. It would have ruined it completely. I am now almost 18 weeks along, and the sickness comes and goes. In the first trimester it was pretty much nonstop, so it's getting better but still not totally gone. I have also been able to exercise a little bit in the past few weeks, which I couldn't do at all at first, so that has been great.

Almost six years ago, my roommate found out she was pregnant and it was pretty crazy. She was going to be a single mom, which she knew would be really tough, but she went through with it and had her little boy five years ago today. I lived with her until her son was about three, so I have a really close relationship with both of them. I have seen firsthand how tough it is to have a baby, so I feel like I am a little bit more prepared than someone who hasn't ever lived with a newborn. During her pregnancy, MTV started the series "16 and Pregnant" and my roommate and I would watch it together every week.

Since I found out I was pregnant, I started recording every episode of 16 and Pregnant to "get ready." Chris thinks this is a very strange thing to do, since we are not 16, but I am so interested in the stories of these girls. I am happy that I have a stable relationship and home to bring this little girl into, but it still feels scary and overwhelming to know that I am going to be completely in charge of this tiny person.

Monday, August 11, 2014

July and August

Well, the good news is that I have been running consistently for all of July and August! After my last flare-up, I went back to the doctor and he gave me a list of shoes that I should be wearing with my orthotics. I noticed that under the running section, all of the shoes listed were stability shoes....which got me thinking.

Last fall, I went to a different running store to get some new running shoes (because my favorite running store closed). I wanted to start from scratch, since I had been wearing a version of the same shoe for the past 7 years and started wearing stability shoes when I was about 70 lb heavier. So the salesperson watched and recorded me running on the treadmill, then told me that I really didn't pronate much so I probably didn't need to be in stability shoes anymore.

Now, I am no doctor but this is the first time in my running life that I have ever had foot problems, and I hadn't drastically changed any of my habits. I was still running every other day, using Hal Higdon's training method for half marathon #5, same plan I used for the other four, and pretty much doing things the same way I always had. So I started to wonder if it was maybe because the stability shoes I had been wearing this whole time had been keeping my feet more stabilized.

So I went back to that running store and got similar shoes, but the stability version (Mizuno Wave Rider 10) and lo and behold, my problems are solved! (knock on wood) I have been sticking to treadmill runs, partly because it's unbearably hot outside and partly because I want to be able to stop if I have any pain. Thankfully I haven't, so I have been slowly increasing my mileage and getting back to running every other day. HOORAY!

The rest of the days are spent with my two cats, who are best friends and should have been together all along, and with my family, some of whom came to visit in July, and at camp, where it rained for most of the days and was quite chilly. It's been a busy summer!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

plantar fasciitis is a four-letter word.

Well, I'm just going along in life, complaining about being busy and being happy that I am running again, and BOOM.

Plantar fasciitis rears its ugly head again.

The doctor warned me that it can flare up at any time, and I might be able to run a lot with no pain, or I might run a tiny amount and suddenly feel it again. So, apparently he was right. I am trying to figure out if there is any option (besides another shot in my foot, yikes that was brutal) like maybe wearing a walking boot or something so that I can at least walk around at work and for things I have to do, without being in so much pain. I'm not sure if that's really something they do, but I am trying everything I can. I'm taking some time off from running, but I want to stay active with biking, swimming, weight training, etc. I am just frustrated with this.

Especially because my #1 favorite 5K is coming up next weekend and it doesn't look like I'll be able to do it. It is the best race ever because husband proposed to me at the finish line, it is one of the first 5K's I ever ran when I started running, it costs $8 and includes a huge bag of candy (it's sponsored by Nestle), and they give away tons of prizes at the end! I've never won anything at it, but the same year that Chris proposed, my dad won a new TV! So I am so sad to not be running it with my parents this year. I didn't run it last year either because it was the day after my grandpa passed away. So sad.

But I am trying to be positive and not lay around and cry all day. I got a Fitbit so I am going to work hard on sticking to the diet plan that it gives, to try to lose weight and ease up on the pressure on my poor foot. My usual tactic is to just become very lazy and mad at everyone, but that's not really working out for me... I am also doing anything and everything I can to help with the symptoms- ice, night splinting, etc. Fingers crossed!