Sunday, March 29, 2009

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Welcome Ava Lynne

Born at Home
March 25, 2009
8 lbs 2 oz

Sunday, March 22, 2009

My Full-Term Journey

It's like something out of a movie. Or a bad dream. For starters, I've had a healthy and normal pregnancy from the beginning. Yes, I was sick sick sick for the first four months with all day morning sickness, but as horrible as that was, I came around and gained weight and the baby has been growing strong. I can't remember the last time I've had a cold or upset stomach or anything. In fact, our family has been so healthy since we moved to Iowa. It has been a tremendous blessing. All during my pregnancy, I've had a 'feeling' that I would go early. Cade was born 4 hours after his due date, so I figured the second time around things would happen sooner and faster. There was a time when I was just hoping and praying to make it to 36 weeks so I could have a homebirth.

36 weeks came and went and we set a new goal of making it to 38 weeks, giving us more confidence that the baby would be fully developed and most likely not need to go to the hospital. Let us go to March 5. The day before 38 weeks. I awoke with an episode of diarrhea that I assumed was from eating seriously greasy food at a restaurant the day before. The two days that followed were horrendous. If it went in my mouth, it stayed in my body for about 20 minutes, max. I drank as much water as I could, but it really didn't seem worth the effort since I was functioning as a human drain. Not an ideal situation for someone preparing to go into labor at any time! The 3rd day after the food poisoning, things cleared up and I actually felt really good after my unintentional GI cleanse.

March 7th ended one adventure and began another. Cade began to cough during the daylight hours. Nothing serious, just enough to cause us to give him extra vitamin C with echinacea and zinc.

Onto March 9th. I started to notice a pinching feeling on the bottom of my foot, near my toes. Each evening it would really bother me as I tried to fall asleep. By about day 2 or 3, the area at the base of my 2nd toe was starting to turn red and tender. Walking became very uncomfortable. Slowly areas of whiteness started to appear below the skin and I was walking only on my heel because of the pain. Here I was, 39 weeks pregnant and unable to walk because of some freaky sore on my foot. March 14 I went to see the chiropractor for a regular visit and she confirmed my suspicion that my foot was infected. Redness and swelling had moved to the top of my foot and was spreading up into my foot. Panic tried to set in. We went to a walk-in clinic since it was a Saturday. I hadn't been to a doctor other than a chiropractor in years. I knew the doctor would prescribe an antibiotic, something I did not want to take, especially this close to giving birth. 'Don't worry, this won't harm the baby.' Well, I'm of the belief that antibiotics aren't exactly harmless. I spoke with my midwife and decided it wasn't worth the risk of a serious infection, so I took the antibiotic and started soaking my foot and keeping the sore covered. After just one day of antibiotic, my foot started to improve. I also began taking probiotics to make up for the loss of good bacteria that the antibiotic was killing. After four days of my antibiotic, my foot was almost normal except for the sore. Thanks be to God, I was able to come off the antibiotic 3 days before I was 40 weeks pregnant.

Re-enter Cade's cough. It went from a week of annoying coughing during the day to waking up to him coughing and gagging during the night. Several times a night he would cough and cough and gasp and start crying because he wasn't able to breath through the coughing. We were taking him into the bathroom to steam him at least once each night. Some nights he would just sit in his bed talking and whining and making noises. Needless to say, a mother can't sleep when her toddler is suffering and awake. Everytime the coughing would start up, a surge of adrenaline would go through my body as I waited to hear if he would start gasping or throw up from coughing so hard. Then came a fever for 3 days and nights.

March 19th, the day before my 'due date' and I woke up with a sore throat. All during Cade's illness, I had been taking extra vitamin C and using Olive Leaf Extract nose spray. Just a twinge in my throat and I started taking Grapefruit Seed Extract in orange juice. Nasty stuff, but it seemed to keep my sore throat from getting worse.

Today, March 22. Cade slept longer last night, until about 4:30, before having a coughing and gagging fit. No fever, but still coughing a lot. My throat still feels sore and swollen, but no worse than the first day. Now I have itchy ears and some head symptoms. Yesterday I started taking garlic and I really feel that it is helping. I swallowed 2 cloves yesterday and 2 cloves so far today. Also, I chopped up the garlic and wrapped it to the bottom of Cade's feet to get it into his bloodstream. We're all pretty tired around here!

The moral of the story? God is in control. I thought I wanted more than anything to have this baby early. Now, however, I realize how totally crazy it would have been to be up all night with a sick toddler, go through labor, and then be caring for a newborn. Not impossible, God would have provided, but I can't help but think of how much safer it is for my baby to be inside where it's safe and warm. God has blessed me with an amazing toddler who smiles and plays despite his suffering. He has given me a wonderful husband who isn't afraid to step in and take care of housework and be up at all hours of the night holding our sick son. We may never understand why things happen when they do, but I am so thankful that God's timing is perfect.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Our Son

Before Cade was born, I always wondered how he would 'turn out'. Would he be more like Nick or more like me? Would he be loud and crazy or quiet and shy? While he definitely has some characteristics that we never dreamed of, he's also an interesting mix of the 2 of us. As I was looking through some pictures of the past couple of weeks, I realized that something that will keep me going, no matter the day, is how completely RANDOM he is!! It's amazing to stumble upon the things that he comes up with each day. One of my favorite activities, and something that I can't quite capture with a photo, is when he pretends to take animals from books and carry them around. He takes care of them and asks me to hold them and tells me what they are doing. Then suddenly they are gone and he's on to his next fun thing.

Seriously cool.

Frog man

Wearing a hard hat like Grandpa, saggin his pants like, Dad?

Walking around chatting with Grandma, wearing a headless Veggie Tales shirt.

This guy loves to help with dishes, laundry, and vacuuming! This was the first he's ever used a vacuum that didn't resemble his plastic golf club! I was impressed.

He was quiet. Too quiet.

"I'm just working on my sermon, Mom."

I don't feel that words can really capture what is happening here.