November 14, 2008
I’ve been down at a friend’s house for the better part of the week, hence the no posting, and this evening went to go make my way home. Home from her house involves crossing the border from the US back into Canada.
I’ve crossed the border with the baby before and there’s been no problems. She gets cranky because she has a thing against being at a standstill while being strapped into her carseat. She absolutely hates it and just starts hollering.
This time was no different. I pull up to the border, the car is stopped in a twenty minute-ish lineup and she wakes up from her nap. The crying commences.
The crying escalates. Really badly. Then suddenly she’s opening her mouth wide and nothing is coming out and she’s gasping. She is crying SO hard and so bad that she was choking. I rolled down my window and was seconds away from screaming for help (at this point I was one car away from the booth with the guard) and she starts to catch her breath. And scream again. And choke again. And catch her breath again.
I pull forward when the car ahead of me clears and I’m sobbing. I tell the border guard to please hurry because my baby is crying so hard that she’s choking and I have to get driving again so she’ll calm down. He keeps asking me questions and I’m sobbing too hard to do anything except tell him that I just have to pull over so I can pick her up and hold her. I just have to pull over. Please let me pull over.
Another border guard knocks on my window and asks me what’s wrong. I repeat, I have to pull over. NOW. She is FREAKING out. The first guard asks me if I need medical to come out. I say that I don’t know, I don’t think so, I don’t know. He finally lets me go so I can pull over and I pull over right past the booth.
I hopped out of the car and flew around to get her out and I just held her so tightly. It took her a good five minutes, but she finally settled down. The whole time another guard is standing with me asking me if I’m okay and if I need medical and if she’s okay. GAH.
Once she was calm for a solid five minutes, I belted her back in and the guard gave me the all-clear to go. She cried all the way home (another fifteen minutes), but at least she didn’t start choking again.
I’m still really shaken up by this. Is this normal? I usually never let her cry like that, but I can’t get out of the car in a border lineup to get her out of her carseat. There’s nowhere to pull over. Obviously if I had thought her life was peril I would have been out in a heartbeat, screaming for help the whole time, but that’s the thing- I was not far from that point. Not far at all and I was so fucking scared.
I was so fucking scared.
November 8, 2008
I know I said that I wanted her to sleep in her crib. And I do. I think.
Except that she’s been asleep in there for the last four hours and I cannot sleep a wink. I keep getting up to check on her and sitting up to listen for her and damnit, I can’t sleep without her next to me.
I’m not going to go get her. I’m not going to go get her. I’m not going to go get her.
You’d think she was in another room from me, people, but NO. She’s a mere three feet from my bed. And I can’t sleep.
I’m not going to go get her.
October 28, 2008
Oh, internet, it’s been a while since I’ve written a real post. Mainly because I’m a whole lot of tired and a whole lot of occupied with baby and also because I’ve been a bit blah and overwhelmed.
In reading news, I’ve been reading slowly but surely. I just finished a book (Acheron by Sherrilyn Kenyon). I’m about 20 pages into a romance on my nightstand (Just For Kicks by Susan Anderson) and a book in progress on the coffee table (Toddlers Gone Wild by Rebecca Eckler). I have another book that I’m a few pages into on the end table (Blood Noir by Laurell K. Hamilton) and another on the bookshelf that I’m also a few pages into (When Christ And His Saints Slept by Sharon Kay Penman). I’m also carrying a book in my purse (Pieces Of My Sister’s Life by Elizabeth Joy Arnold) that I haven’t managed to crack yet. So the reading is happening, albeit at the pace of molasses.
The baby is an amazing little girl. She’s just over eleven pounds now and babbles away at nothing. She kicks up a storm and loves to watch hockey. She had her first shots last week and was quite angry (understandably so), but forgot it all by the same evening. She sleeps like a champ through the night, but hardly at all during the day. Which brings me to a plea for advice – the baby has been sleeping with us in bed since she was eight days old. She refuses to sleep by herself. She’ll sleep great in my arms, she’ll sleep alright in her swing, but she will not sleep in her crib or bassinet. Just won’t do it. We’ve tried using a stuffed animal with a heartbeat sound to soothe her, we’ve tried rolling up a blanket next to her so it feels like she’s curled up next to someone. We’ve tried putting her in there when she’s already asleep, but she wakes as soon as she hits the mattress and won’t resettle. So tell me. How do I get her to sleep on her own? I’m not ready to let her cry it out yet, but I just have the feeling that it’s going to come down to that. Advice is welcome.
I took on a new mission recently to start commenting on the blogs that I read. I’m usually a lurker and then I thought about it some more and realized that if I love to receive comments, other people probably do, too. I mean, us bloggers tend to be a vain bunch and we want feedback. So now I comment. It means it takes me a hell of a lot longer to get through all my blogs, though, so if I’m commenting three or four days after you post, well, that’s the soonest I could get to it. I subscribe to so many sites that if I don’t read for three days I wind up with well over a hundred new posts to read and catch up on.
I’ve also been looking for some good new recipes. I’m not a really great cook and I’m a really picky eater which means that I make my five or six tried and true meals and not much else. It’s getting old. I need some variety. If you have anything good and yummy that I should try you should send it my way. Just remember that onions are from the devil. The devil, I say!
I’m going out on the town on Thursday and I’m getting really amped for it. A group of us (the same group that I went to see Gwen Stefani with) got a limo again and we’re heading to see Madonna. It’s going to be AWESOME. I’m a little nervous about leaving Derek with Ana for that length of time as he’s never had her by himself for more than an hour, but I’m sure he’ll be fine. My bigger crisis is that I have nothing to wear. Zero clothes. Nada. Nilch. I own two pairs of jeans that fit me (you can hate me, but I’m actually smaller than I was pre-pregnancy so everything is too big) and well, none of my shirts fit right. I’m also on the broke side until the day AFTER the concert so a new outfit is out of the question. I’m really not sure what the hell I’m going to wear.
My poor friends. I feel like I’ve really been neglecting my friendships as of late. It goes back to that feeling blah and overwhelmed thing I mentioned. I don’t like talking to other people when I’m feeling a bit down and so I haven’t been talking. Or posting. Or doing anything. I am amazingly in love with my daughter, but lord, she sucks the life out of me (no pun intended).
Lastly, I’m getting excited (and nervous) for an upcoming trip. I’m taking Ana to go see her grandparents in Idaho for two weeks. It’ll be great to get away and it will only be the second time my parents have met their granddaughter. She’s changed SO much since they met her last at just 2 weeks old. I’m just nervous about the airport and getting through security with the stroller and then wondering if she’ll nurse good enough to stop the ear popping and will she sleep on the flight or will she be a pill and cry the whole time… oh goodness, I’m going to give myself a panic attack just thinking about it.
So that’s that. That’s what is going on with me. How about you? How’s life out there in the world of the internet?
October 17, 2008
Not that I’m biased or anything.
September 20, 2008
6:50 – Stealthily creep out of bed making sure not to wake the baby who just finally fell asleep. Go to the kitchen to peel potatoes for potato salad.
7:05 – Go get the baby who has started screaming her little head off. One potato left unpeeled.
8:25 – Set the fed and changed baby on the play mat and head into the kitchen to finish peeling the last potato.
8:28 – Pick up the baby who doesn’t want you to peel that last potato, damnit.
9:30 – Place the half-asleep baby in the swing and tip-toe into the kitchen. Finish peeling the last potato and put the potatoes on the stove to boil. Put the eggs in a pot on the stove to boil.
9:36 – Run to grab baby who is shrieking again. How dare I set her down.
9:37 – Run to turn off the breaker that the smoke alarm is on because something was on the oven element causing it to smoke and set off the WAY TOO FUCKING SENSITIVE alarm. Ahem. I’m cool, calm and collected. Cool, calm and collected. Deep breath. Deep breath.
10:05 – Bounce the baby (who is still crying*) in one arm while trying to transfer potatoes and eggs from their respective pots onto the cutting board to cool.
11:00 – Wonder how in the hell this potato salad is EVER going to get done if this poor baby won’t stop crying.
12:30 – Gently gently gently place the sleeping baby into the swing. Sneak into the kitchen and slice potatoes as fast as humanly possible without chopping off appendages.
12:50 – Go pick up the baby who is making almost-crying noises. She’s tired and can’t work up a full cry.
1:35 – Thank god that husband came home so he can take the baby and the potato salad can be done before 2 o’clock in the goddamn morning.
Rargh. Why did I decide that I really wanted potato salad and that store bought just was not going to do the trick? Why?
*This constant crying while awake seems to be a new development over the last three days. I just may lose my mind.
September 10, 2008
Well, you said you didn’t mind baby baby baby…
August 30, 2008
Okay, let’s see how much of this I can remember clearly. So when I left you last, I had received my first bit of gel to start getting my body ready for labor and we were waiting to see what happened. I was miserable, crampy, and starting to get scared.
The rest of Sunday night, nothing happened. About eight hours after the insertion of the gel, it wore off and so did my pain. It was about 4am and I got a few hours of sleep. The next morning, (so we’re on Monday the 18th now) the hospital called me much earlier than they had on Sunday. They told me to come in and we’d check things out.
I headed in to the hospital and, well, nothing was happening. They gave me a second gel insertion and sent me home again. This time things seemed to move along a little nicer. I was having contractions semi-regularly, but they weren’t very strong. Enough to make me uncomfortable, but nothing to take my breath away or to make me think that I was progressing AT ALL. I had been told by the hospital to come back at 5pm and they’d do the third and final batch of gel.
I went back at 5. I sat in an assessment room for three hours. I was hooked up to the fetal monitoring machine the whole time so I had limited mobility and the contractions that had never gotten worse were now also getting fewer and further between. The gel was wearing off again.
Finally the doctor showed up and took a look. I was barely dilated. Even worse? They weren’t going to do any more inductions that night. The reason? There were no more beds in the maternity ward. If I went into full labor on my own, I’d show up at the hospital and they would transport me via ambulance to another hospital, but they weren’t going to induce me without a room to put me in. I tried so hard not to cry in front of the doctor that instead I ended up giving myself an almost panic attack. I was hiccuping sobbing and couldn’t look him in the face. I was beyond frustrated. Here I’d been, having contractions all day – that they started – and now they were telling me that they wouldn’t finish because they ran out of room.
i finally calmed down a bit and stood up to get dressed. Except that when I stood up, my water broke. Derek called the doctor back in and guess what? They still sent me home. They said there was a good chance that I’d go into labor on my own overnight, reviewed what I had to have going on before I came back in, and said that I’d be back on the induction list for the next day and I’d get a call to come in. I was also told that since my water was now broken, something would happen within 18 hours because they didn’t want me going that long without a baby and no water – the risk for infection is too high.
Nothing happened all night. Nada. It was beyond frustrating.
The next morning I had breakfast with my parents and then I had to give them a hug and a kiss goodbye as they had to go back to Idaho. Yup, they missed the birth of my daughter. Their granddaughter. Stupid work obligations. My sister stayed behind to be with me through the day and after breakfast she came with Derek and I to look for a bassinet. We were just paying for one when the hospital called and told me to come on in. It was time to get this party started. It was just after noon on Tuesday, 16 hours after my water broke.
Back to the hospital, back to the assessment room, back to the monitors. Wheeee. The doctor showed up pretty quickly this time and checked me out. Guess what? Nothing. I was only 1 cm dilated. This baby did NOT want to come out. The nurse started getting the third gel ready but the doctor, bless him, said no. We were going straight to the IV of Oxytocin and we were getting this show on the road. Well, as soon as they could find a bed for me…
I sat in the assessment room for about two hours. At about 3pm I was given my room- the last available room in the maternity ward. Another woman had her water break at the exact same time as me, but I lucked out and got the room instead because my diabetes gave me priority.
We sat in the room (my sister, my best friend Jacquee, Derek and I) for another few hours. Then the nurse came in and hooked me up to all the fetal monitoring machines yet again. I had to stay on them throughout my entire labor so anytime I moved positions, they had to be readjusted and using the shower wasn’t an option. She went to go hook up my IV and blew a vein in my left hand. Then she blew up the one in my right hand. Then she called in another nurse to give it a try and the other nurse refused to because of how badly bruised my hands were already. They called in the IV team and I finally was hooked up.
At 5:30, the Oxytocin was started and we were under way. By 8:30, I’d moved to the rocking chair and the contractions were regularly 5 minutes apart and starting to get more painful. The doctor laughed at me because I was still smiling. He said he’d know it was time when I wasn’t smiling anymore.
At 10:00 things started to get a bit gnarly. I was getting contractions every minute and a half to two minutes and they were getting bad. I caved and asked for the gas. I was frustrated because I’d done so good for so long without drugs, but yikes, I was starting to hurt and the breaks in between weren’t lasting long enough to let me catch me breath.
At 11:30, I made them take the gas away because I was starting to feel completely out of control and loopy and I cannot stand feeling like that. I’d rather deal with the pain then loss of control. The nurse reviewed with me my other pain options. I could try the Fentanyl – up to six doses allowed – or I could see where I was at dilation-wise and opt for an epidural. I decided to see where I was at and see about the epidural.
They did a check and god. I was only 2 cm dilated. The nurse told me later that she didn’t want to tell me- that she felt so bad. I was contracting like crazy, but nothing was happening as far as getting this baby out. She said that 2 cm is normally a bit early for an epidural, but based on my contractions and the fact that I probably had another good 7 or 8 hours of labor to go (the general rule is an hour per cm), the epidural would be my best option. The Fentanyl would only last so long and it would only take the edge off.
I agreed and the anesthesiologist came in. A normal epidural takes about ten minutes to put in. After twenty minutes, when the anesthesiologist was asking me if I’d had any back injuries as a child or if I had any known back problems, I began to get concerned. And I was contracting this whole time, of course. And sitting on my ass hunched over and not really allowed to move because I’m being stabbed in the back repeatedly. Derek swears he counted twenty-six attempts before he finally stopped hitting bone and got a soft spot he could insert whatever he needed to insert. It took an hour.
Once it started to kick in, at about 12:45, they had me lie on my back slightly angled to the side using a wedge pillow so the block could settle and I’d be numb evenly. They use ice packs and they run them down your body and ask you to tell them when it stops being cold. Except that it was cold all the way down each time they did it. I could tell that it was kinda working because the contractions were uncomfortable, but didn’t have me saying, “I can’t do this, I can’t do this, I can’t do this.”
At this point, Jacquee and my sister had to head home. They’d been hoping to meet the baby, but had to be at home in the morning so they were heading out. It was 12:55. Derek walked them downstairs.
While Derek was gone, I was severely uncomfortable. I had all this pressure on my tailbone, like if you’ve been sitting on a hard surface for way too long and I had this incredible need to be OFF my back. I kept asking if I could roll over, practically begging the nurse, but she kept saying I had to stay there or the block wouldn’t settle evenly. They tried the ice again, but I could still feel it all the way down.
At this point, the head nurse came in – she floats from room to room and checks on things and sees how people are doing – and she asked me to show her where I was hurting. I rolled onto my side and showed her and she said that maybe they should do another check to see where I was at. She checked and looked up at me and says, “Honey, you’re having a baby. Are you ready to push?” Then she turned to the other nurse and said that I was fully dilated and we were getting this show on the road.
You should have SEEN the commotion. The room was nowhere near ready for pushing and for actually delivering the baby. Fortunately, most first babies require an hour to an hour and a half of pushing. Unfortunately for the nurses, my baby wasn’t feeling like taking her time. The nurses were running around like crazy trying to get the table into position and all the gear needed to take care of baby once she was out. I was panicking because Derek wasn’t back yet and he was going to miss the birth of his own baby! He was walking down the hallway to come back and he heard me say, “He’s going to miss it!” He ran in and found the room all in a flurry. He called my sister and Jacquee to turn around and come back because it was time, but only managed to get ahold of Jacquee.
I pushed for a few minutes and the nurse told me that she thought with my next push that my child would be born. The doctor was called in and barely made it in time to play catch. Just seven minutes-ish of pushing and at 1:10, my daughter was born.
She stunned us all with her decision to quit stalling and to get the hell out of dodge, but she made it easy on me, that’s for sure. I really can’t complain about my labor experience. Another nurse later told me that if and when I have another child, that if I have just one contraction, I need to get to the hospital. I went from barely in labor to contracting hard and then to delivering in three hours. From the time they put me on the IV to the time I delivered, was just under eight hours.
It was crazy, it was intense, it hurt like hell and it was totally totally worth it.