Friday, April 26, 2013

Four weeks... forever

Greer turned four whole weeks old yesterday, but I feel like she's been mine forever.  It is really hard to remember or care about life before her.  That seems extreme, especially coming from an independent woman like myself, but I really don't feel like a whole lot has changed.  I don't know... it's just weird.  My life is very different right now than it was four weeks and two days ago, but it feels very natural.  I think it helps that I have the world's best baby.  ;)  Okay, that may be a bit of an exaggeration, but she really is so easy.  She totally goes with the flow and has already dropped a night feeding.  I may be the most well rested new mom out there.  Other than some fussy evenings where she's been tough to console maybe two or three times (usually if she hasn't napped well), she is just chill and if she's crying and I need to intervene, she usually calms down very easily.  I am following the Moms on Call schedule and Babywise techniques, and for us, they work.  I think she'll be going from a 9pm feeding through to a 6-7am feeding by 8 weeks at the rate we're going now.  She's down to a 9pm, 2-3am, and a 6-7am feeding with one random night where she went to 4:45am and then 8:45!  We have been lucky that nursing has been great, though she is sometimes difficult to nurse (we don't usually get it done in 30 minutes... sometimes as much as an hour thanks to gas).  I definitely have plenty of milk, which will be such a blessing when I go back to work, because who knows how my milk supply will be affected then.  I need to start getting on a pumping schedule so I can stock pile the liquid gold, but I've been able to pump at least 3 ounces in a short amount of time after nursing, so if I start pumping once a day, we'll be golden for a while.  :)

She's starting to get more interactive and I love the mornings with her.  She's so happy and talkative!  I am going to start back to CrossFit next week I think (waiting on them to get me signed back up), and the only downside of that is that she nurses at 9am and the class I'll be going to starts at 9:45 so I will have to rush out the door two mornings a week (she will come with me) and her happiest time of the day will be spent in a car seat at the gym.  But, she'll have lots of stimulation there for sure.  :)  We'll just see how it goes.  It's only two days and if I decide it isn't worth missing that playtime, I will just start going to the 7:15pm class after Matt gets home.

We had a little "scare" with her when I noticed a lump on her neck.  I had noticed it before but it was small and I really didn't think anything of it.  It's only noticeable when she turns her head in a certain way, and it didn't strike me as being abnormal in any way.  But last week, I was busy kissing her all over (this is something that happens ALL DAY LONG... I cannot kiss her enough), and the lump was huge.  So, I took her in to see the pediatrician and she has what is called fibromotosis colli.  It's a benign tumor and is generally not serious and should resolve itself.  However, she was sleeping with her head always turned one way, and that is either the cause of or a result of her head being turned that way.  So, we are doing some stretches with her and I got this little pillow that cradles her head and keeps her from turning all the way flat on one side.  She was also developing a flat spot on that side of her head.  It looks like the tumor is getting smaller, so I think it's working.  We'll discuss at her one month appointment Monday, but I don't think we'll need to do any physical therapy or other intervention at this point, thankfully.

We've been very busy in Greer's first month of life.  We've gone to a wedding, she's accompanied me for the best pedicure ever thanks to my dear friend Meredith (amazing gift!), we've been to the grocery store a few times and the pediatrician three times for good measure, gone on plenty of walks, gone to the Dogwood Festival and Botanical Gardens, attended Greer's first birthday party for her cousin Madelyn's fourth birthday, seen lots of visitors, gone to church, received so many amazing meals thanks to our friends, family, and church (SUCH a blessing... cooking is not high on my list right now especially with a 6pm feeding... I guess I will have to start cooking dinner at like 4 when the meals stop), changed more diapers than I ever imagined (three in the matter of her middle of the night feeding last night!  ha!), and experienced an amazing love and gratefulness to God for bringing us all together.  Oh, and taken a lot of pictures!!!  :)  Picture overload begins now...

Matt (top left) + Kristin (top right) = Greer - she looks more like her daddy here but she's got my mouth and I think my eyes (shape, not color)... I'm pretty sure she has her daddy's nose and I think she's going to have hazel eyes like him... no idea where she got her small head and forehead!  ;)
First bath... uncertain but she likes it now :)

Where do the groceries go??

True story.

First wedding with good friends!


Party outfit

Two of my favorite girls - Madelyn and Greer meet for the first time :)

The BEST friend (and aunt) a girl could ask for!
Rocking the bow... and maybe the last time in this little sleeper.  Waaaahhhh.  It's my favorite newborn item of hers!



Friday, April 5, 2013

Greer Elizabeth

We could not be more thrilled to announce to the blogosphere that our beautiful daughter, Greer Elizabeth, was born at 10:02P on Thursday, March 28, 2013.  She weighed in at a whopping 6lb 14.9oz and measured 20 inches in length (cone head and all) with a 12-1/4" circumference head (i.e., 1/2 inch smaller than momma's and a full inch smaller than daddy's... good thing too! -EDITED (4/16/13): I went back and looked at my newborn picture from the hospital and my head was actually 13-1/2"!! My chest was 12-3/4" which is what I was thinking of above... and I weighed less than her. Ha!).

My amazing friend Jenny came and took these pics of Greer when she was all of 12 hours old.  So precious, and what an awesome birthday gift to me!  We are doing her newborn photos this weekend, and I cannot wait to see them.  Jenny is so talented.

Anyway, I wanted to write out the birth story while it is fresh on my mind.  It was a whirlwind of a day!  As I said in my last post, I went in at 5:30 on March 27 to start cervadil.  It was very surreal yet normal to be walking in to be admitted to the hospital to have a baby.  I don't think either of us knew what to think, but we were so excited and anxious to meet our girl.  They took blood, hooked me up to monitors, and put the cervadil in place.  I didn't get a whole lot of sleep between being tethered to monitors and just being excited, so before I knew it, the morning had rolled around and it was time to get going.  Only it wasn't.  I was supposed to be induced at 6am but there were so many babies born the night before, they weren't quite ready for me.  So, I just chilled and at about 9:30, a nurse came to fetch me to get started.  Matt was out of the room making some phone calls, so I let him know where I was being moved and I think I may have been hooked up to the Pitocin before he even got everything moved from our antepartum room to L&D.  Oh, but to back up, I was not dilated a bit from the cervadil.  My cervix was thinned a little bit but that was it.

So, they start the Pitocin slowly and work the way up.  At around 11:30A, I was talking to my friend Kelly on the phone and had to abruptly hang up on her because I felt a gush of uncontrollable pee.  As I got up and tried to get untethered from the monitors and grab my IV pole, I could not stop peeing.  It was so embarrassing... Matt, my mom, sister and BFF were all in the room and there I am leaking pee across it as I hurry to the bathroom.  So, I empty my bladder and stand up and there's still fluid leaking from me.  At that point, I said call Lindsay (my L&D nurse), I think my water broke.  I honestly didn't expect it to break on its own, especially just two hours after being on Pitocin.  I was relieved I hadn't lost all control of my bladder and obviously excited!

The contractions were not terrible, but by 1:00P I was ready for the epidural.  Knowing it would take about 45 minutes after I requested it, I got on that.  Of course, so did several other women so it was about an hour and a half or so before I got it.  The contractions were not unbearable, but I wasn't smiling or talking through them either.  My doctor told me to get some pain meds that would make me feel like I drank some margaritas, so I did and it definitely helped me relax.  The epidural was pretty painless, and I wasn't nervous for it at all.  Plus, the anesthesiologist was hot.  I told them that when my mom had gotten her epidurals, she got really sick immediately after just as my BP dropped from 130/90 to 90/38.  They threw some meds in my IV and then lost Greer's heartbeat on the monitors.  So, they called in backups and it was a bit chaotic as I moved from side to side and they repositioned her heart monitor on my belly to pick it back up.  Poor Matt was about to cry, but I was surprisingly calm.  I just trusted that God wasn't going to get us that far for naught.

At this point, I was only 1cm dilated.  Not too long after getting my epidural, I mentioned to my nurse that I hadn't peed in a while before the epidural and they also pumped me full of fluids, so she cathed me and 500ccs later, I was complaining that it hurt only I just had an epidural so why could I even feel anything.  Around 4:30 they checked me and I was at 8cm and -1 station.  Within an hour I was fully dilated!  I was glad my epidural didn't fully numb me because I could feel the pressure of her descending and I could tell when I was having contractions.  I would have preferred to be a little more numb at the end but we'll get there.  :)  My amazing doctor and I did a little holy cow, this is working cheer and decided I would sit awhile to let her continue to drop before I started pushing.  She went to deliver another baby and I sat there for about two hours.  I started to feel very sick, so I was worried I wasn't going to be able to do it.  Thankfully they gave me some anti-nausea meds and that did the trick.  I started pushing around 7:40P.

We still didn't know if it was going to work, but I'll be damned if I was going to have gotten that far and not pushed with all I had to get her out.  After about an hour of pushing, I asked my doctor if it was going to happen.  She told me that if it was someone else, maybe not.  But my strength was going to get this baby out.  The CrossFit and walking a 5K at 38 weeks paid off.  It was very tiring, but I did it and I was pretty proud of myself!  It was getting pretty painful toward the end... something I was not expecting, but I also believe that if I wasn't feeling all I was feeling, I would not have been able to get her out of there.  I could feel when I needed to push and when I needed to give it that extra umph to push her through my narrow pelvis.  My doctor basically summed it up that the first hour and a half to two hours of pushing was just to mold her head to fit through (and you'll be able to see that in the pics) and then it was just getting her out from there.  And, it was true.  Once she'd passed through my pelvis, things happened pretty fast and I was pretty uncomfortable!  Matt's reactions to the things happening were pretty priceless.  I remember a few "Oh my Gods" and such come from him as she came out.  :)

They had the NICU team on standby because of her heart decels during labor, but thankfully they came and went quickly.  They placed her blue body on my chest after she came out and it was a bit before she cried, but once she did, she pinked up pretty quickly.  Her APGAR scores were 7 and 9, which is awesome.  I thought with how blue she was, things might not be so great.  But, she was just fine.  They cleaned her up and brought her back to me and I got to hold her skin to skin while they fixed me up.  It all seemed to happen so fast and I still can't believe it, even after having her here for almost 8 full days.  Such a miracle.

We are doing well at home, and my recovery has been awesome.  I am so glad I didn't end up with a C-section.  I was sweeping the back porch the day after I got home from the hospital (the dismal Gator game drove me outside) and was at Target Tuesday enjoying a solo shopping trip.  So far, Miss G is a really easy baby.  She's easily consoled and most of her crying is because she's getting changed, is hungry, has a dirty diaper, or just wants to be held.  Every night has been different, from the awful first night home to an accidental stretch of 5 hours from the start of one feeding to the next.  Oops.  :)  But, she's eating well and sleeping fairly well for being all of 8 days old.  I can't complain, not that I would anyway.  She's what we prayed for and so much more.  We are very blessed.

Home at last!  So tiny.

Happy Easter!

Maddie checking out her sister.  Max could care less but Maddie is a little momma.

Aunt Jenn finally gets to hold Greer!

My loves.

Greer's actual due date... already 6 days old.