Loving Arizona and Missing Hawaii

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Happy Birthday Dad!

Here's to the greatest Dad and Grandpa in the World!  Here's to your life and our memories with you!  We love you!

Happy Birthday Grandpa!  We love you!  

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Our Story...the long awaited...

Just a little note before I begin:
Thank you for reading.  I know you look at our blog and spend a few of your precious minutes reading our stories because you care about us and what is happening in our life.  It means a lot to us and so we try to share those things that are more personal and most dear to us.  We know that those who don't really care won't read it anyway, so we're not worried about "casting our pearls before swine."  So, thank you again for being a friend and being interested in our life.  

I love writing stories.  It has been quite some time since I have written very many because my college classes stole all of my writing time and since graduating and becoming a full time mom of my two little babes, I haven't quite embraced writing again... but it is time now, and as we all have a story to tell, this one is ours:

I have been meaning to share our story for quite some time now, and it seems with each passing day the story grows more detailed and more dear to our hearts. It's the story of our baby boy, our little miracle.  

Loving the 20-month age difference between our two little cherubs, Catherine and Ethan, we decided that we would LOVE to have another little jumping bean join our family following the similar time frame.  We were reminded once again, however that it's not about OUR timetable, but about our Heavenly Father's and His blessings.  So, we tried for several months to have another baby but it wasn't until the month after our little Ethan was completely weaned that we were able to conceive our little miracle.  

A little bit of history:
With Catherine I experienced what some may call "morning sickness" but for me it was more of "night sickness" from about 5 weeks to 13 weeks... for 8 weeks total. The rest of the pregnancy was pretty uneventful until at 37 weeks when I was put on bed rest for 4 days with pre-eclampsia and then induced 2 1/2 weeks early. With Ethan, however, I thought I was in the clear until I started experiencing "first thing in the morning" sickness at 8 weeks along...  still hopeful, I thought to myself... "Well, at least I only have 5 weeks to go until I start feeling better."  But for some reason 8 weeks was just my magic number, so it wasn't until 16 weeks that I started feeling better.  The rest of the pregnancy was a little eventful with varicose veins setting in at 25 weeks and bed rest with high blood pressure for the last 2 weeks until I was induced 4 days early... and how grateful I was to be induced being nine months pregnant at the end of July in Mesa, AZ in the 115 degree heat!  

This pregnancy has been challenging to say the least and a whole new ball game for us.  I didn't even have the chance to wait until 5 or 8 weeks to try to "guess" if it would be more like my boy pregnancy or my girl... I was so sick at 3 weeks along that I took a positive pregnancy test that early along and began wondering if there was some explanation for all of this... Could it be twins??

I should have known better than to think that I would possibly feel better earlier on... you know, by 11 weeks after I had fulfilled my '8 week dues.'  No, no such luck, and probably just to teach me a lesson, the sickness lasted another 8 weeks until about 19 weeks.  The first 6 weeks of sickness were long and wearing.  Then we had a scare at about 9 weeks and thought we were losing our baby. Thankfully, we were able to keep our baby and I felt a renewed sense of gratitude and patience in enduring the sickness.  After all, we all would walk through fire for our babies, wouldn't we? 

If this pregnancy wasn't eventful enough already...my varicose veins flared up right at 12 weeks as I entered my 2nd trimester, and let me tell you, the pain is fierce. I never could have imagined the agony without experiencing it for myself... but for all of you women out there who have experienced those intense labor pains... the pressure just as the contraction peaks... that same kind of "labor in my head" that those who suffer from intense migraines experience... THAT'S what it feels like in my leg... that "peaking" kind of intense "almost going to explode" and "I'm going to scream" kind of pressure.  Hats off to the person who invented maternity support hose.  I can't get out of bed without them!  One good thing about all of this pain is that it distracted me from how sick I was feeling.  

On a lighter note...
For a "not so funny at the time but funny now" experience... I really thought we were having a baby girl... not just that I was HOPING or WISHING for another baby girl, but I REALLY WAS CERTAIN (however certain you can be when you are wrong) that we were having a baby girl.  I had already bought her cute little pink "bring me home" outfit and all of this sweet pink crib bedding... At 19 weeks we went in for the LONG ultrasound, during which Larry was certain he had seen those "3 white lines" indicating it was a girl.  At the end of the whole thing, the technician smiled and said, "I'm happy to announce that it's a girl!"  Well, of course, I thought... 'no news to me... I already knew it was a girl.'  The next unfolding of events is still hard for me to believe... "Oh no, wait.  I lied.  It's a boy," she said.  I asked her, "Are you joking?" because this really was not a funny joke.  "No, see there, it's a boy." Well now, where did THAT come from?  After another 5 minutes and 10 different angles of the obvious, we left the office bewildered that we are really having a boy!  

It only took a couple of days to get over the shock of the news and within the week we were full swing into "boy mode."  Everything started looking bright... we are having another boy, this will be a great experience for Ethan and our baby... brothers so close in age... I was feeling much better, regaining my energy and feeling much more like myself.  We were all back to our usual activities and enjoying our outings to the zoo, park and library!  Five weeks later, the storms started rolling back in.  

I had been experiencing contractions for a few weeks but didn't feel worried because I generally experience Braxton Hicks contractions from about 25 weeks on in my pregnancies.  These contractions were starting earlier, but then again, so was everything else in this pregnancy, and they were a little different from before... so I decided to mention it to my doctor at my regular visit.  He told me he was a little concerned but just to let him know if they became more frequent or intense.  Four days later they became much more frequent AND intense, and the next day they put me into the hospital.   It has been a long, worrisome couple of days trying to understand what is going on with my body.  Though there was some reassurance from going to the hospital:  I wasn't dilating, and there was no detection of the protein that indicates I will deliver in the next two weeks, there were also some things that we just didn't understand that gave us a sinking sick feeling.  Why would they monitor my contractions every 3 to 5 minutes for 2 hours, administer two injections to try to stop the contractions, and while still contracting though resting and laying down, send me home from the hospital with the instruction to come back in if the contractions don't stop when I lay down to rest? The sweet nurse could not answer all of my questions but urged me to go in to see my doctor and get the answers I needed.

Thankfully, I was able to get in to see my doctor today to ask my million questions and finally understand what is happening with my body, what to watch for, and what to worry and not worry about.  There are a lot of details that I'm sure you don't want to hear, but the basic verdict is that my body is just going to have these contractions for the remainder of my pregnancy.  These contractions can make me progress into full labor, which if before 36 weeks, will put me on strict bed rest, or at worse, in the hospital on an IV to try to stop the labor... OR my uterus may tolerate the contractions just fine and I'll just carry this baby to full term no problem.  Our goal is to do everything we can to keep the contractions from getting any worse.   I have to be monitored more frequently to make sure that the contractions I am currently having are not making me dilate.  

For all of the reasons and complications I have already shared, our little baby boy is our little miracle. We are very grateful to our Heavenly Father for sending this baby boy to our family.  We understand that everyone makes a sacrifice for their children in so many different ways and different stages of life.  It has been our experience that we have learned the most and grown the most from the experiences we have with our children.  How sweet and perfect they are.  What a divine plan.  How honored we are to be a part of this great Plan of Salvation and witness the miracle and gift of life.  May we always honor and reverence our little ones.