Apr 22

Hey, remember that blog I use to write…

Posted by Lori | Posted in AWESOME, baby, big kid, kindergarten, life | Posted on 22-04-2014

Well hello there! Long time, no blog, huh? Yeah, my last post was January 4, 2014 so it has been a while. What have I been doing since then? Working full-time, taking care of the kids and just keeping the household plugging along. As I am sure you are aware, the winter was a long one. A stomach flu ripped through our home in February. Aaron left for two conferences in March leaving me solo parenting for nearly two weeks.

On the bright side, my wonderful, smart, hard-working husband was awarded tenure by the university. This means that Pittsburgh will now be our HOME. For so long, Aaron and I have moved from place to place for work (both together and during the years before we became a couple.) Now after nearly four years here, we can really put down some roots. We are buying a home and moving in mid-May. It really is our dream house and we are very excited to spend the rest of our years there. Porter is still wrapping his head around this moving business and just refers to the new house as “that house that I love.”

Speaking of Porter, would you believe he turned FIVE YEARS OLD last week?! And today I started filling out his Kindergarten registration paperwork! THIS IS CRAZINESS!

Miss Quinn just started crawling two weeks ago and her seventh tooth broke through today. She is 10.5 months now and loves to wave. She says “hi!” and waves at everyone and everything. She is all about table food and feeding herself. Her first table food was bacon (thanks, Aaron) and has pretty much wanted nothing to do with pureed food ever since. I should do a proper update on her. Will I? I don’t know.

photo 4

photo 5

So a lot of great stuff is happening over here and I have put blogging on the back burner so I can enjoy my kids and time with my husband. Maybe I will be better at this over the summer!

Jan 04

A New Year

Posted by Lori | Posted in family, life | Posted on 04-01-2014

Happy 2014!

I hope you and yours had a lovely holiday. As you well know, I didn’t post much in the later half of 2013–which a new baby and new jobs, I just didn’t have the energy for it. Quite frankly, I don’t know if I will have the energy for it in 2014 either. I’ve enjoyed writing this blog so much, but to be honest, there is really only so much one can say in five and a half years time. If I don’t feel like writing, I don’t. That’s the beauty of just blogging for a hobby and not for profit. I blog when I wanna.

Do you make New Year Resolutions? I usually do. I like the idea of a fresh start so I try to make the most of it. Last year, since I had a baby on the way and wanted to avoid PPD again at all costs, I kept my resolution as low-key as possible…so I didn’t make one. I just hoped to keep on keepin’ on. I just wanted to survive the year with my sanity and family in tact. I didn’t want to put too much pressure on myself. To my utter amazement, a lot of great things came my way and I decided to greet every opportunity with open arms. That meant that I did do a little “fake it ’til you make it” but in the end, I didn’t really have to fake anything. I just had to be confident in myself and my abilities. 2013 taught me not to worry about anything that wasn’t right in front of me. And even if it was right in front of me, I just had to calmly see it through. I think I did ok.

Somehow–even with all of our life changes, 2013 somehow felt simpler. I want to keep that going in 2014. I want to unclutter and simplify my life. With that in mind, I have brought an end to the blog Pinterest page and I will soon be deactivating the blog Twitter account. Both things I didn’t use much and didn’t get a whole lot from (having 100, 000+ Twitter followers does not mean 100, 000+  blog readers.) I am keeping the blog Facebook page though. I enjoy the interaction on that page very much. I seriously thought about pulling the plug on the blog, but I just can’t bring myself to do it quite yet. I do like writing here, even if I write as often as I use to. I have the driving urge to streamline and with the prospect of buying a house this spring/summer, I can’t wait to start purging, organizing and eventually nesting. I just want less extraneous stuff around me, know what I mean?

2014 will be another big year for us: Porter will turn 5 (!!!) and Quinn will turn 1. Aaron is up for tenure and if that goes well we will buy a house, which means another move for us. A move across town will be so much easier than a move from FL to PA!

What does 2014 hold for you? Do you make resolutions?

Nov 25

Long time, no see…

Posted by Lori | Posted in baby, big brother, family, infant, life, Me, milestone, post-pregnancy, post-pregnancy, Postpartum Depression, preschooler, siblings, sleep, work | Posted on 25-11-2013

Hi guys!

Sorry that is has been so long since I have posted. It has been a busy two months: adjusting to working full-time with two kids, husband turning in all of his stuff for tenure, lots of laundry. I have been focusing on family and work and that is pretty much it. It has been difficult to muster up the energy to blog since whenever I get a spare moment in the evening I choose to hang out with Aaron or sleep.

I know that I am two months behind on Quinn’s monthly updates, so here is a short overview:

Five Months

Five Months

  • Quinn’s first two teeth came in simultaneously just after she turned five months old. Her brother got his first tooth at 4.5 months, but that was only one tooth. Girlfriend is efficient and busted out two at once!
  • She is in size 9 month clothes and is growing fast.
  • She is in size 3 diapers and is about 18 lbs.
  • Quinn continues to be fascinated with her brother Porter. He loves to make her laugh and she thinks he is the funniest person in the world.
  • She is getting really good at grabbing things. And then throwing things. She also grabs my hair and tries to eat it.
  • Since she can roll around now, she prefers to sleep on her tummy.
  • She has had both rice cereal and oatmeal but isn’t really crazy about either of them. I still haven’t gotten her to eat more than a few bites. The teachers at daycare have better luck with that. But Porter wasn’t into baby food until six months so I am not really worried. She definitely is a good eater otherwise.
  • Little lady still does not consistently sleep through the night. On a related note: I’m tired.

The little man of the house…

Minding my P and Q

Minding my P and Q

  • Porter loves all things about the solar system. It is all he talks about right now.
  • He is slowly trying and liking new foods. Thank goodness!
  • He loves doting on his sister.
  • He understands that we will probably move next year in the late spring/early summer and has plenty of opinions on what our new house needs.
  • We still have issues with Porter not listening (happening at school too.) This started shortly after Quinn was born and about the time a lot of his friends at preschool left/changed schools. Don’t know if there is some sort of attention deficit issue or if this is just typical four year old boy behavior.
  • He loves maps and puzzles. He has a puzzle of the United States and knows in which states his relatives live.
  • Talking. About the solar system. So much talking.
  • He likes to sing along with songs on the radio and has strong opinions about what songs he likes or doesn’t like (totally gets that from me.)
  • Still working on his eye sight issues. He now has to wear his patch four hours a day (up from two.) Doctor says he isn’t making progress as quickly as he did in those first two months with the patch. The “lazy” eye also drifts now–a side effect of the patching. In a few months we will find out if he needs eye therapy.

And as for me, I’m really good. Postpartum depression is nowhere to be seen. I get about 6-7 hours of sleep a night. I still have about 10 lbs of baby weight to lose and I am guessing I am not going to really try to lose it during the holidays. I am liking my new job quite a bit and I love the class I am teaching. My life is very full and I am very happy! Is my house a mess? Sure. But my family is well-loved and well-fed and I am really enjoying each day I have with them. I feel very lucky for all that I have: a great husband, a full-time job doing something I love, two adorable kids. Yeah, more sleep would be nice, but I’m dealing without it!

Hope to go not so long between posts, but no guarantees! Thanks for reading!

Sep 10

Big Brother

Posted by Lori | Posted in amblyopia, baby, big brother, family, infant, preschooler, siblings | Posted on 10-09-2013

I realize that a Porter update is way, WAY overdue! Here is Big Brother himself holding Quinn when she was around 6 weeks old. He is beaming!

Porter’s life went through a lot of changes around the time Quinn was born. He started back in daycare full-time in mid-May, partially to give me a break when I was SO pregnant and partially to give him a solid routine and his own special place he can go to be with his friends. A place that is totally NOT about a new baby. On the day that I went into labor, Porter got fitted for his new glasses and got them just a week or so after Quinn was born. About a month after that, Porter started wearing an eye patch a few hours a day to help with his amblyopia. Dealing with a new kid in the house as well as new glasses and an eye patch is a lot for a four year old to handle, but for the most part he has been doing really well.

The first weekend home with both kids was probably the toughest for me and for Porter. Aaron had to go back to work less than a week after Quinn was born and so I spent the Saturday after she was born with both kids. Porter was a real handful that day. Lots of whining and uncooperativeness. I was tired and recovering and handling a newborn, so it was hard.

There have been some changes in Porter and I can’t tell if they are related to Quinn’s arrival or if they are happening just because he is a four year old and these are just some sort of phases he is going through. He has gotten more defiant and straight up ignores us when we tell him to do something. It is so bad sometimes that I wonder if this is some sort of attention deficit issue or possibly a hearing issue. His teachers tell us there has been instances of him not listening to them at school as well. I’m really hoping he will just grow out of this.

 Another thing we are dealing with is trying to get Porter to play quietly. Yes, this is a very tall order for a very vocal and imaginative four year old boy. It seems that Porter chooses to play loudly right at the bottom of the stairs right as Quinn is going down for a nap. This wouldn’t be a problem if Quinn’s room had a door…and a full fourth wall, but it doesn’t. Her room is open to the stairway, so any noise that Porter makes (and he makes lots of the noise) wakes her up. And we would put her in our bedroom, but our bedroom has a bi-fold door–those slatted doors that are usually found on closets–that is pretty terrible for noise reduction. Often times we tell Porter to go play in his room if he wants to be loud. Sometimes he is ok with this, but other times he gets mad at us. I feel bad about this because I feel like I tell him to go to his room to play a lot, but Quinn also needs to sleep so it is a tough battle. Hopefully we will be able to buy a house next year where every bedroom will have proper walls and a door and this won’t be a problem!

Beyond a shadow of a doubt, Porter loves his sister. He loves showing her off to everyone at preschool. “This is my sister baby Quinn!” he tells everyone. Its adorable. And he loves baby talk to her and she loves to watch every move he makes. To Quinn, Porter is always the most fascinating thing in the room!

Seeing them admire each other fills my heart with so many emotions that I can’t possibly describe them properly. I tear up just thinking about it. I know it won’t always be like this, so I am trying to enjoy every moment of their sweet sibling discoveries.

Sep 09

Quinn’s 3 month update!

Posted by Lori | Posted in baby, baby stuff, daycare, family, infant, milestone, siblings, work | Posted on 09-09-2013

Yes, I have not posted since last month’s update–but we are in a stage of transition here. I start a brand-new full-time job next week, I’m teaching a college course and Aaron is hard at work getting items ready to present for tenure this semester. We are busy! But I did want to carve out some time to make a 3 month update for you so you can see how Quinn is growing.

3 months

3 months

What Quinn is Wearing:

  • Size 2 diapers
  • A few 3-6 month sized things still fit, but she is gradually moving on to size 6 months–she is growing so fast!
  • Still shoeless. I can’t even keep socks on her. She is always kicking them off!

What Quinn is Eating:

  • Still formula. Four to five ounces per feeding.

What Quinn is Saying:

  • Girlfriend likes to talk a lot! She is always babbling, especially after diaper changes.
  • Sometimes she tries to talk to me while she is eating, bottle still in her mouth. The formula runs all down her chin but she doesn’t care–she has important information to share!

What Quinn Likes These Days:

  • Still likes having her hair combed and brushed.
  • Loves her playmat.
  • Likes trying eat or chew everything. Teething probably isn’t too far off.
  • She actually smiles when I put her in the carseat now!
  • Quinn really likes watching her big brother. She finds him fascinating!
  • She seems to be growing fonder of the pacifier.

What Quinn Doesn’t Like These Days:

  • Still doesn’t like baths. At all.
  • If she is in the car or in the cart at the store, she definitely does not like stopping. This makes shopping a bit challenging!
  • She no longer likes being swaddled. She likes having her arms free so she can suck on her hands.
  • She still doesn’t like tummy time, but she is getting better at it even though she doesn’t like it.
  • She really doesn’t like the sun in her eyes (but who does?)

What Quinn is Doing:

  • Quinn is going to daycare one day a week and will start full-time next week. It is going well and I didn’t even cry when we dropped her off the first day! I may cry when she starts going every weekday, though…
  • Quinn can grab and swat at toys so she really likes playing in her bouncer and on her playmat.
  • Quinn likes to kick too so I make sure there at hanging toys on her playmat that jingle. She likes to kick this one particular jingly owl quite a bit!
  • As of today, Quinn can sit in a Bumbo seat for a few minutes at a time.
  • She is tolerating the Moby wrap. I got her in it and settled for all of five minutes–which is much better than our previously tries during the last few months!
  • Quinn occasionally sleeps through the night. Maybe one or two times a week.
  • Quinn had her first cold and got over it rather quickly. She was only stuffy for a day or two.
  • Smiling. Quinn is a happy baby! So different from just a month or two ago when all she did was furrow her brow at us.

What We Are Working On:

  • Eating, sleeping, growing.
  • Sleeping through the night every night–not just once or twice a week. Honestly, we aren’t “working” on this–I am just hoping this happens soon!
  • Preparing her (more like “preparing me”) for daycare five days a week.
  • Tummy time.

I can’t believe how fast the first three months flew by. I got very emotional today thinking about how fast she is growing up, knowing that she is our last baby. I wish I could remember these days forever!

Aug 13

Quinn’s 2 month update!

Posted by Lori | Posted in baby, baby stuff, family, infant, milestone, siblings | Posted on 13-08-2013

2 months

2 months

Yes, our little lady is all ready two months old! And yes, I still haven’t completed her birth story or told you how Porter is adjusting, but I will get to it…sooner or later.  More like later…

At her two month well checkup on Friday, we learned that Quinn is 13lbs 10oz, 23.75 inches long. She is over the 90 percentile for everything across the board. So different from her brother who has always been in the average range growth-wise.

What Quinn is Wearing:

  • Still in size 1 diapers but that won’t last long.
  • She is wearing size 3-6 month clothes. Straight size 3 months won’t do–she is just growing so fast!
  • Feet are still too small for shoes.

What Quinn is Eating:

  • Formula and delicious gas drops.

What Quinn is Saying:

  • She isn’t talking, of course, but Quinn is very vocal–lots of cooing, grunts, squeaks.

What Quinn Likes These Days:

  • She likes her hair brushed and her head rubbed.
  • She likes being gently bounced on your knee.
  • She likes sitting in the bouncer with us at dinner.
  • She likes just hanging out with me on my lap, face to face.
  • She likes observing her brother. She finds him incredibly fascinating.
  • She likes sucking on our shirts if we are holding her close. She also sucks on her fist quite a bit. Can’t seem to figure out the thumb sucking thing quite yet.

What Quinn Doesn’t Like These Days:

  • The volunteer fire department call siren. It sounds like an air-raid horn. Quinn HATES it.
  • Quinn doesn’t like when the car stops moving. Or slows down.
  • Same as above but substitute shopping cart for car.
  • Baths. She HATES baths.
  • Tummy time.
  • Gas.

What is Quinn Doing:

  • Growing. A LOT.
  • She has more head/neck control now.
  • She has started sleeping through the night! Twice this week. Hoping this become the norm!
  • She hates Tummy Time so much that she pushes herself over, from tummy to back! She doesn’t do it every time, but she has done it quite a bit. We told the doctor about it and our doctor tested our theory–and Quinn flipped onto her back right there on the examining table.
  • She is smiling at us. I love it when we go to pick her up from her crib in the morning or after a nap and she smiles up at us!
  • She looks at us very closely, studying our faces and expressions.
  • Quinn makes a lot of facial expressions (definitely gets that from me.)

What We Are Working On:

  • The usual baby stuff: eating, sleeping, dirtying diapers.
  • Tummy time.
  • Getting use to baths.

Want to see how Month 2 compares to Month 1? Click HERE.

Aug 03

Convo with Porter

Posted by Lori | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 03-08-2013

I know that I’ve been a terrible blogger lately. I’m sorry. I have a lot going on–a baby, an active preschooler, a husband who is working his butt off this summer and soon to be preparing for the upcoming semester, just to name a few. I know that I still need to finish Quinn’s birth story (she’ll be two months next week!) and to tell you all about how Porter has been doing. But finding time and energy right now has been very difficult.

Speaking of Porter, little dude is battling a summer cold he caught at daycare. Fever broke over night, but he is still sick. Here is a conversation we had moments ago. I just had to share it with you.

On the couch…

Porter: I want to sit next to ya because I love ya. 

Me: Ok, buddy.
Porter: (puts his hands on my feet) I am putting my hands on ya so you might get a little bit more sick.
Me: No, buddy! I don’t want to get sick! I have something very important coming up next week and I can’t be sick.
Porter: What’s coming up next week?
Me: I have an interview for a job.
Porter: Are you going to touch him?
Me: Touch who?
Porter: John. For your interview.
Me: No, no, no–JOB! Not John!

Jul 09

One Month Postpartum

Posted by Lori | Posted in baby, breastfeeding, breastfeeding, breastfeeing, daycare, family, infant, lady stuff, life, marriage, maternity leave, Me, milestone, post-pregnancy, post-pregnancy, Postpartum Depression, Second Pregnancy, sleep | Posted on 09-07-2013

So many friends, family members and readers of this blog have been checking in with me to see how I am feeling after Quinn’s arrival.  I am absolutely grateful for all of the calls, messages, e-mails, comments and tweets. It is really comforting to know that so many people care about how I am doing physically, mentally and emotionally.

A few months ago I wrote a post about how I was preparing to fend off postpartum depression (PPD) this time around. Since it has been four weeks since Quinn’s birth I wanted to take some time to give you an update about I am dealing with all of the changes that have taken place. This Sunday marks four years since I first told my husband that I thought I was suffering from postpartum depression and that I needed help. If you had told me four years ago that by the summer of 2013 I would not only have another child, but that I would also be blissfully happy I would have gotten incredibly angry, called you a liar and then cried for a good, long time. But here I am, one month after the birth of my daughter and I feel absolutely fantastic. I don’t think I have ever been happier.

I’m serious–I love my life so much right now that I can barely believe it.

I’m not anxious. I’m not weepy. I’m not worried. I’m not struggling to feed my child. I’m not angry. I’m not feeling hopeless or lonely. I’m not crying in the shower. I’m not dealing with sleeplessness. I’m not overeating or facing loss of my appetite. I not convinced that my baby doesn’t like me.

Why are things so different this time around?

  • Quinn was born full term. Even though I haven’t told you the entire birth story yet, there was nothing terribly dramatic or traumatic about her birth. Porter was born five weeks early so all during labor I was stressed that he wasn’t going to be ok and shortly thereafter, we were back in the hospital with him dealing with jaundice. After that were lots of follow-up doctor’s appointments and blood tests. Just more stress surrounded Porter’s birth.
  • Because Quinn was born full term I haven’t had to struggle to feed her. She has a healthy appetite. Porter had trouble latching and sucking for the first two weeks–breast as well as bottles. Because he was small, we had to wake him up to feed him every two hours and in the beginning he just wouldn’t want to wake up. Then he wouldn’t want to eat. Then I would worry and feel frustrated.
  • I’m formula feeding this time and it has been a blessing. I’m not worried about my lack of milk. I’m not crying while pumping. I’m not cluster feeding.  I am much happier without the pressure of breastfeeding. Formula feeding is letting Aaron and I share feeding responsibilities and therefore we are getting a decent amount of sleep compared to what we were use to with Porter.
  • Speaking of sleep, I actually can sleep. I’m not lying awake worrying about the baby. I get up one or two times a night to feed Quinn which means I get four hour stretches of sleep which is much better than what I was getting after Porter was born.
  • I had my placenta encapsulated and taking those pills did wonders for me–especially in terms of my physical recovery. Two and half weeks postpartum and I felt completely recovered from childbirth.  It is hard to tell right now if the pills improved my mood, but I think they were worth getting just for the speed of recovery alone.
  • The midwife who delivered Quinn put me back on Zoloft right away–which none of the other OBs in the practice I was going to was willing to do. This made me feel really prepared for an anxiety issues that may have arisen in the first weeks. Unfortunately, at three weeks postpartum I noticed that the medication was causing insomnia (a side effect I have never experienced with these pills before.) I carefully made the decision to stop the pills cold turkey (I don’t recommend that and I should have talked to my doctor, but…I didn’t.) I noticed a change in my sleep pattern within 24 hours and I haven’t taken a pill since.
  • Our in-laws are helping us cover the cost of having Porter in daycare full-time for a few months while I adjust to life with Quinn. This has been an amazing gift. Aaron went back to work full-time six days after Quinn was born and I wouldn’t have been able to physically handle two children by myself that soon after giving birth. Having Porter in daycare provides him with a lot of attention, social activities and ways for him to burn off energy while giving me time to focus on meeting Quinn’s needs.
  • I’m not only asking for help but I am welcoming help when people offer to give it.
  • I’m being totally open and honest with Aaron about how I am feeling. If I need to get out of the house just to have some “me” time, I’m not afraid to say “Hey, I love you guys but I need to get out of here and be away from you for a while!”–and I don’t feel guilty doing so.
  • Overall, the one thing that has been the most helpful is experience. I have four years of parenting under my belt which means that over time I have built up some parenting confidence. I know that the sleepless nights are temporary. The baby won’t cry all the time. I know that this parenting thing is worth it even though, in the moment, I may be frustrated or hungry or tired.

I know that I am not out of the woods. Postpartum depression can strike long after your baby outgrows the “newborn” size clothes. But I do feel that this time I have experience on my side and resources at my fingertips. I’m taking each day moment by moment.

Jul 09

Quinn’s 1 Month Update!

Posted by Lori | Posted in baby, baby stuff, infant, milestone | Posted on 09-07-2013

I know, I know…I haven’t finished telling you all the details of Quinn’s birth yet and she is already a month old. Blogging: FAIL. However, it is hard to find time to write with a cuddly baby and a very energetic preschooler in the house. More of the birth story is coming, but today I am going to tell you all about how Quinn has been doing these last four weeks…

1 Month

1 Month

What Quinn is Wearing:

  • Size 3 months baby clothes.
  • Size 1 diapers.
  • Feet are still too small for shoes, but it isn’t like she is walking any where any time soon…

What Quinn is Eating:

  • Formula, or as Porter calls it “burping milk.”

What Quinn is Saying:

  • Although she won’t be talking for some time, Quinn does make a lot of noise. It isn’t that she cries a lot, she just is very vocal. She even makes little squeaks and grunts as she sleeps.

What Quinn Likes These Days:

  • Having her hair dried with a towel after bathtime.
  • Having her hair combed.
  • Falling asleep on mommy.
  • Being swaddled.

What Quinn Doesn’t Like These Days:

  • Baths.
  • Tummy time.
  • Having clothes pulled over her head.
  • Mommy putting her in the carseat. Daddy does it and she doesn’t cry. Mommy does it and instant screaming.

What Quinn is Doing:

  • The usual baby stuff: eating, sleeping, dirtying diapers.
  • Quinn eats 2-4oz every 2-4 hours. She is an excellent eater, very different from her brother.
  • She isn’t sleeping through the night yet, but we have had at least one night when she slept from like 11pm to 5am.
  • Quinn is just now starting to focus her eyes on things like our faces.
  • Last night she was upsetting herself by pulling her own hair and therefore making herself cry!

What We Are Working On:

  • The usual baby stuff: eating, sleeping, dirtying diapers.
  • Tummy time. She’s good for maybe two minutes. After that, she usually starts getting upset.

I’m very much looking forward to doing these posts with Quinn. I am so grateful that I did them with Porter and it was so fun to share them with all of you!

Jul 05

Quinn’s Birth Story, Part 2

Posted by Lori | Posted in AWESOME, baby, birth story, crazy stories, family, lady stuff, life, marriage, milestone, pregnancy, Second Pregnancy, Third Trimester | Posted on 05-07-2013

Aaron and I made our way to triage and before I knew it, I was sporting two hospital gowns (one open in the front and one open to the back) and peeing into a cup. Birthing a baby–though remarkable–is very far from glamorous!

Soon an OB came into see us and I explained that contractions had been coming all day and that yesterday my doctor said I was 4cm already.  She checked me internally and said, “Well, you seem to be at 5cm–and I can feel the sutures! Let’s get you admitted!” I was relieved to know that I would not be leaving the hospital without meeting my baby first. I was happy that this was finally happening. I felt ready. I was ecstatic to know that I was already halfway dilated!

And Aaron and I did have to Google what the doctor meant by feeling the sutures. What she was saying was that she could already feel the  lines where the baby’s skull join together! That blew our minds!

Soon we were filling out paperwork for donating cord blood to a public cord blood bank, getting things in order so I could take the placenta and pass it along to the women who would be encapsulating it for me, having my blood taken, having an IV started and answering a bunch of questions from the nurse and other staff members. I was in a good mood. I wasn’t scared. Having done this once before really put me at ease. I knew the experience wouldn’t be the same since obviously so many factors were different, but I felt like I was in familiar territory.

Before I knew it,my bed was being rolled onto an elevator as we went to Labor and Delivery. Soon the pleasant lady who rolled me up from Triage was gone. In her place was one mopey, surly nurse. I immediately deemed her “the Eeyore of nurses.” She was far from pleasant. It was like me being there just really ruined her shift. She answered our questions with short, snippy replies. She slowly shuffled in and out of the room. Bedside manner was not her strong suit. Luckily, everyone else was lovely. But Eeyore…we weren’t going to see eye to eye.

In came one the of the midwifes from the OB office (out of the two in the office, she was the one I preferred) with a student assistant. They would be delivering my baby. Though I preferred this midwife over the other one, she wasn’t my favorite. She was knowledgeable but I just didn’t like her personality. However, the student assisting her was really sweet and that made me feel a lot better about the situation.

Though I was at 5cm and still feeling pretty good (no real pain, just discomfort with contractions) I decided to get the epidural sooner rather than later. The anesthesiologist had her student do the honors and she was really great. And even she noticed the bitter demeanor of Nurse Mopeypants! Soon after the epidural was started and pain med began to kick in (making me extremely relaxed and chatty) the midwife started me on Pitocin and her student broke my water. Or she tried to…she inserted something and said she broke it, but there was no gush of fluid. They said it would slowly trickle out…but I didn’t feel it…

Since I was medicated, things are a little fuzzy for the next bit. Hours flew by. My contractions were strong and coming quickly, but I was still stuck at 5cm. I began to notice that there was one spot on my lower back, left side that was some how unmedicated. I mentioned this to Grumpy Nurse, but she just said “push the button”–meaning send more drugs into your system to relieve the pain. What I wanted her to do was talk to the anesthesiologist and send them back in, but apparently I wasn’t clear about that. Contractions were getting stronger and more uncomfortable and I felt pain concentrated in that one spot on my back. I didn’t feel like trying to argue with this nurse. I would just wait to mention it to another one.

Soon it was in the wee hours of Sunday morning. Contractions were still strong. I was on my side, white-knuckling the bedrail with every contraction while practically sleeping in between. I was just feeling a lot of pressure–especially on my bladder. At some point, a different nurse came in (YAY!) and I managed to tell her about the spot on my back and she had some suggestions about repositioning myself to help the situation and that helped a bit (that would have been helpful hours beforehand, Grouchy Lady! Ugh!) But even with all of these contractions, I was still at 5cm. It seemed like a lot of work (and discomfort and pain…) for little results. I tried not to be discouraged. I knew we would get there.

Aaron was a champ all through this–calling and texting family and friends to let them know what was going on. We both tried to sleep when we could.

At 5:00am on Sunday, June 9 I woke up with a scream.

My water FINALLY broke. It startled me and Aaron leapt off of the couch to my bedside. It broke in one big gush and I yelled. I nearly gave my poor husband a heart attack! We called the nurse to let her know and then things started to get moving…

More in Part 3!