Thursday, January 31, 2013

Happy Birthday to Buttin!

Today is Buttin's 37th Birthday!

I wish I could say that we did something fabulous, but for us - fabulous is two healthy boys, take out food and maybe a little television before I fall asleep holding Chicken.

Here's Chicken today getting kisses from Aunt Liz's dog, Flynn.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Big Boy Bed

The past few nights Cash has consistently slept in his big boy bed.

The first night I was a little worried because he told me wanted to sleep in his big boy bed right as I was putting him to bed - no prior warning.  I was a little skeptical and thought he might be calling me in his room 30 minutes later.  

Not a peep.  Until . . . .3:30 AM (and of course I was awake at that time because I'm always awake).  I heard this very sudden cry and I could tell that it was different from a usual nighttime sleep cry.  I quickly woke up Buttin (because Mac was eating) and told him to go into Cubbie's room.  

Buttin went into Cub's room and reached down to where he thought Cash should be and couldn't find him.  Buttin could hear Cash crying, but couldn't find him.  As it turns out, Cash moved around so much in his bed that he had managed to push his mattress down and wedged himself in between the mattress and the head board.  

Buttin spent the rest of the night in Cub's bed and in the morning Cub came into our room and immediately pronounced, "I GOT STUCK! "

Now what everyone wants - a picture up Cash and Buttin's noses. 

Monday, January 28, 2013

Misfit Monday

Last week we had goal planning meetings with our sales misfits.  I was pretty impressed with their goals (one of them wants to be fluent in Spanish). 

Here are some of my goals for the year (personal and work related):
  • Once Chicken starts school, take at least one day off every couple of months to just be alone.
  • Once Chicken starts school, take one day off a quarter and keep Cub out of school and spend the day with him - just a mommy and Cubbie day.
  • Once Chicken starts school, I will go see movies during the day with Buttin. 
  • Try to be more understanding with our installers. 
  • I will let go of all the unimportant stuff and most of the stuff is unimportant. 
  • Allow myself to be still.  
I have other goals, but it's time to go feed PupPup.

Here are Cub and PupPup today - Cash is pretending to blow away (it was windy out) and Mac is sneezing.


Sunday, January 27, 2013

A Story By Buttin

Buttin always says I get the best pictures of Cash, but that's only because I take 500 million of them. 

He might not always take the best pictures, but he always has the best captions.

Yesterday, Buttin, Dadoo and Cash went to Wal-Mart.  Buttin knows that I hate guns, but I found this little story hilarious.  Yeah, I know - Wal-Mart and guns - it was a classy trip to see Mormor and Dadoo. 

Everyone on the ground!

No one try and be a hero and just put the money in a bag!!!

Dammit! Cops are already on my trail.

Just needed a more experienced getaway driver. 

Friday, January 25, 2013

Filanthropy Friday

Africa has been in the news quite a bit lately - Secretary Clinton's testimony on Benghazi, the situation (understatement) in Mali and the Algerian hostage standoff

Some might say the region is just beyond hope, but I'm certain there are people in Africa (and throughout the World) desperate for help but unable to escape their situation.  There are many relief organizations in the region and this week I donated $25 to the International Rescue Committee.  They describe the work they do better than I ever could:

The International Rescue Committee responds to the world’s worst humanitarian crises and helps people to survive and rebuild their lives. Founded in 1933 at the request of Albert Einstein, the IRC offers lifesaving care and life-changing assistance to refugees forced to flee from war or disaster.  At work today in over 40countries and 22 U.S. cities the IRC restores safety, dignity and hope to millions who are uprooted and struggling to endure.

I also think it's pretty cool that they were founded (kind of) by Albert Einstein.  I'm sure in some way, my donation will make me smarter.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Misfit Monday

One day late . . .

It's just going to be a crazy work week (not to mention regular mom duties).

Buttin and I have a big presentation tomorrow morning so Mormor and Dadoo are coming into town tonight so that they can stay with Mac-man.  Thank goodness they don't live too far away and are retired.  

Here are Cub and PupPup (what I've started to call Mac, kind of consistently) talking yesterday at the park.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Potty Training Update

Our little going potty bribes are backfiring (a little).

When we started the bribes - we gave prizes for "trying".   Now, Cash is consistently going #1 in the potty, but he also likes to frequently "try" so that he can get the prize.

We've decided we have two boxes of prizes - one for a successful attempt and another for successful production.  We'll see how it goes. 

Here are Cash and Mac hanging out today.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Dear Mac - 1 Month

Dear Mac,

I can't believe it's already been a month. We still call you Chicken  - I wonder how long the name will stick. 

I missed your one month birthday letter because your older brother was a little sick and we decided to have a slumber party in mine and daddy's bed.  It's difficult to write with a one month old in your lap and a two year old holding your hand (but I wouldn't change our time together that night for anything).

You are an excellent little baby.  You seem a little more head-strong than your brother did at this age, but you only really cry when you're hungry or tired.  Your tears are much worse when you're tired, and you are already fighting sleep.

You seem bigger than your brother and you also seem to be growing faster.  I'm not sure if this is real or if time is just moving by even faster now that I have two children.  I really wish time would slow down.  I already miss the newborn you.

I think you're starting to smile, but you might just be making poop - I'm just not sure.   

We already love you so much little Mac.  You fit into our family like you've always been in it.  

Please be sweet to me and your dad  (and your older brother to) and please stop growing so quickly. 


Friday, January 18, 2013

Filanthropy Friday

I might have mentioned that I'm up at all hours of the night (newborn baby and all) so I watch strange television.

There are two charities that I see frequently :
  • ASPCA - this one is horrible and I immediately change the channel and I would give my entire net worth (which granted, isn't much) if they would just please, please stop playing these commercials; and 
  • Wounded Warrior Project - these commercials are very inspiration and uplifting.
This week, I decided to give $25 to the Wounded Warrior Project.  I don't think we treat our veterans very well.  It's a shame there's even a need to have to be veterans charities - we should pay our soldiers like kings and queens and all their needs should be prioritized above most other government spending.  I also think we should stop engaging in non-essential foreign conflict so that we don't have veterans with traumatic physical and emotional injuries, but that's an entirely different post  

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Potty Training

At Cub's school - he has a couple friends who have moved up into the next classroom.  Cash can't move up into the next classroom until he learns to go to the bathroom.

Apparently at school, he rips his diaper off and runs screaming from the toilet.  I'm not sure if he finds the toilet scary or he's just trying to entertain his friends and teachers. 

This weekend we decided to try little bribes.  We have a little surprise bag (cars, lollipops, dinosaurs) where he gets to pick a little trinket every time he goes to the bathroom.  We talked about the little surprise bag and here's a rough transcript.

Me:  Cash, if you go potty in the toilet - you get a little surprise.
Cash:  I get a surprise if I go in the toilet?
Me:  Yes, you do.  What kind of surprises do you think are in the bag?
Cash: Trains, Dr. Peppers and Trampolines

Trampolines?  Not likely.

Cash also really, really wants legos.  I hate the idea of one bazillion little pieces all over the house, but we've told him once he starts wearing underpants everyday - we'll get him some legos.  With the promise of legos, Cash decided he wanted to wear underpants on Sunday morning - and he pooped in them (Buttin got to handle that disaster).  Those underpants got thrown in the trash and Cash's butt got a diaper.  Legos will have to wait for another day (thank goodness).

Here is Chicken sleeping comfortably.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Running More!

On Saturday I went for a two mile run in real running clothes (because it was really warm out) and it felt almost decent. I would like to be doing 10 mile runs consistently by my birthday (June 5th), but I have to be very patient with myself and with my family. 

In tingly feet news, my feet only tingle a very teeny-tiny amount.  I have to really think about it to even notice it.  I'm very hopeful that one day it will be completely gone.  Thankfully this small amount of tingly feet doesn't seem to bother my running.

Here are Cash and Buttin doing "cheers" with their coffee. 

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Shelley's Side

A couple days ago, I posted Mac's Birth Story.

Here is my marvelous doula, Shelley's, version of events. 

Baby Naylor's Birth Story

Stephanie had experienced a relatively fast and furious labor with big brother Cash. We anticipated another with Baby #2... here is her birth story from my perspective.

On Monday, 12/17/12, Stephanie texted me around 2am just to give me a "heads up" she was having contractions every 6-7 minutes, but they were not strong and she was going to rest. By 4:15am she texted again, saying she was getting "warm and shaky" with them-- I recommended she call Nurture OB to check in, it was probably time to think about heading into the hospital. Soon after she let me know she had just talked w/ Andrea Campaigne and they were headed in as soon as Grandma got there.

I met them at North Austin Medical Center at 5am. They were in triage, Stephanie standing over the chair, breathing calmly through her contractions. Matt was gently rubbing her back. She said they were not awful, and she felt like she was handling them ok. She was a little worried they had come in "too early" and I assured her she looked very "labory" to me.

The nurse did an exam, and announced Stephanie was already 7cm dilated and 100% effaced! We were definitely not heading home. We took a long walk to room 16 and got settled. Stephanie kept remarking how much calmer this felt than last time. She really liked standing leaning over something best, and the nurses completely worked around her preferences.

We listened to the baby for a while... all looked good. The nurse set up Stephanie's IV and drew her lab work. Matt was doing some quick texting to notify folks they were busy getting a baby here and would not be showing up to work today! We kept the room dim and quiet. Stephanie was doing really well-- beginning to vocalize a bit to work through the contractions.

By 6:50am, Andrea suggested breaking Stephanie's water if she was ready to "get this thing going". Her contractions were strong- but probably not the transition kind yet, and still a little spaced apart. We talked about the pros/cons- how it might change labor and Stephanie decided to "go for it". When Andrea did the exam, she said "You're 9cm". Stephanie was delighted to hear it- almost chatty! "Are you lying to me?" Andrea assured her no lies-- she was almost there already!

Stephanie decided to stay in bed and rest-- she was moaning softly with the contractions, almost sleeping. She started getting a little more pressure within 10 minutes and Andrea got her "baby catching gear" on... anticipating a potentially quick delivery. Stephanie kept saying "this one is so different"... we kept the room quiet/dim and were patient, waiting for her to feel like pushing.

By 7:35am, Andrea suggested that we do a little pushing to see if we could go ahead and move things along-- Stephanie didn't feel a strong urge but cooperated. We tried for about 20 minutes when Andrea checked again- there was still a slight lip of cervix left. She suggested getting up and laboring down a bit more and waiting for a stronger urge to push.

I tried to get Stephanie to sit on the toilet, but that didn't feel good (that's my trick to get babies down) so we labored in the bathroom, leaning over the sink, for about 30 minutes. She was feeling a little deflated- "Why did we go from pushing back to laboring?" I told her it was probably because the baby needed a little more time and space to get into the right position. We did some lunges in the bathroom, trying to make space. Soon she started getting a little "grunty" with the contractions, so I asked her to move back to the bed, just in case things moved fast. (We still anticipated a potentially quick birth!)

We got Stephanie comfortable leaning over the bed, and within minutes, she was clearly grunting through the contractions-- her body instinctively pushing. We asked her to get back in bed for a delivery- she asked- "Are you sure it's time?" I told her she was already pushing-- we just needed to add to it and the baby would be here.

Stephanie didn't like the idea of hands and knees, so we got in a traditional position for pushing. Stephanie requested assistance and guidance- it was hard to really hold her breath and push hard, she naturally liked to release the air as she was pushing... which would have worked ok if the baby was coming down fast. But at this point, Andrea and I suspected this baby was in a funky position and was giving mama trouble. Stephanie started doubting- was this baby every going to come? She just wanted to be DONE! She even asked Andrea to just get the baby out-- and we all reassured her she was doing just fine.

After about 30 minutes of pushing, Andrea confirmed what we had suspected- the baby was facing up, not down. That's why it was so much work pushing. Stephanie was definitely moving the baby down though, so we kept encouraging her. It was really hard work-- "What happened to two pushes and the baby is out?"

Stephanie worked hard another 20 or so minutes-- she was making great progress and the room started getting filled with lots of excitement. Andrea was encouraging "yes, yes, yes!" and finally we called in a baby nurse for delivery. All of us had been saying "She" and "Her" most of the labor-- we kept thinking we would be welcoming Georgia. Well, as the baby came out, Andrea announced, "This is NOT a Georgia"... it was a boy! It was 9:31am on 12/17/12. And that boy came out completely OP- face up. Little George Cormac was here!

Mac was placed onto mom's chest skin to skin where she welcomed him with joy! Matt was right there-- saying hello to his second son! Cash had a little brother! Stephanie was so relieved it was all over and her little man was finally here. Welcome to the world, Mac!

Here are my two sons snuggling. 


Friday, January 11, 2013

Filanthropy Friday

Since I'm now up all hours of the night  - I watch a lot of news (I also watch a lot of infomercials - so if your birthday is coming up, don't be surprised if you get a Flexible Hose).

I've been watching the news about Vice President Biden meeting with various groups to develop some ideas to prevent school shootings.  I have no answer or great solution.  I don't exactly understand why people need military-type weapons for personal use, but I also think as a culture we're extremely violent. 

I find it strange that we show horrible violence on basic cable television (honestly, one time I saw a Criminal Minds where it actually showed people having joints dismembered - while alive - so that they could be turned into human puppets), but women get harassed for breast-feeding in public. Our priorities are messed-up and I don't know if any amount of gun legislation (no matter how much I might be for it) can change our culture.  Buttin and I might disagree on this (especially as our sons get older), but I'd much rather our children watch sex in movies than violence.  As a culture, I think we're too casual about violence and too up tight about sex. 

This week, I'm doing my part to help those hurt by violence (this is a repeat donation, but a good one) and donating $25 to Safe Place

Thursday, January 10, 2013

The Full Truth - Mac's Birth Story

Just as with Cash's birth story - this is the entire truth (as I remember it) - you've been warned. Since I now have a 2.5 year old AND a new born - I haven't been able to edit this story very much - so it might be a little all over the place and messy - which is kind of like having a baby. 

If you want the really LONG background story - it's best to read Cash's birth story.

The short background is that I wanted a natural childbirth.  I found a wonderful new doctor (not at all like Dr. Bitch) and new doula and already had the wonderful husband/coach.  I was prepared for a great birth experience, but wasn't planning to use hypnobabies to the extent I used it (and by "used it", I mean screamed the word "Peace") during Cash's birth.  I was also prepared for a relatively quick birth (Cash was pretty fast) - my doula and doctor both said to get to the hospital ASAP and that the baby would probably be out in a couple of pushes  - hmm, we'll see.

This is my version of events and some of the details are a little hazy (it may also be mellowed by post-birth hormones).  My doula, the marvelous Shelley, took very detailed notes so I'm kind of anxious to get her version.

Overall, I was much more relaxed during Mac's birth and I did my very best to absorb everything and be a little more present (with Cash - I would say it was more of an "out of body" experience) because I'm not sure if I'll ever do this again - but a little girl might be nice. 

So, Mac missed my original prediction date of the 14th or 15th of December. It's amazing how quickly you can go from  - "take your time baby" to "OK, TIME TO COME OUT BABY".  By Sunday (the 16th), I was ready.  Truth be told, all day long I felt a little funny and I was having some strong Braxton Hicks contractions; however, I didn't want to say anything because I thought it would jinx me.  On Sunday night, I ate Mexican food (not Chuys, but still spicy quesadillas - from Chipotle) and made my husband have sex. Poor Buttin was a piece of meat.

I went to sleep without any indication that Chicken would be born soon, but by midnight I was awoken (is that correct? maybe awakened) by contractions - real ones this time.  I started to time them - about 7 - 8 minutes apart.  Crap, I don't want to feel contractions for a long time.    I was very concerned about striking a balance between complete denial (again, read Cash's story if you want the full version) and being overly aware.  I didn't want to feel contractions and then be in labor for 48 hours or start warning people prematurely.  

Around 12:30 I got up and started walking around the house doing chores.  At around 1:30 Buttin got up to go to the bathroom and I told him that I thought Chicken was coming soon, but I told him that my contractions were still pretty far apart so to try and go back to sleep.  I was planning to rest too.

At  1:56 I called my mom and told her to start heading to Austin (again, I was a little hesitant about being alarming because my contractions weren't very severe and were still pretty far apart).   At 2:03 (I have the text messages, so I can be precise), I texted doula Shelley and told her that I was having moderate contractions and that I was going to try and rest.

Buttin decided to take a shower and I laid down and listened to some of my hypnobabies tracks. Buttin never went back to sleep - he just played video games and read in bed.  I was relaxing pretty well, but by 3:30 the contractions were starting to become more severe - I was moaning in bed and having to concentrate to work through them.  I told Buttin that he should probably go put my hospital bag (I did pack it about a week in advance) and some pillows in his truck.  

I think Buttin could tell that my contractions were getting pretty intense and he kept asking me if we should go to the hospital.  Again, because my contractions were still about 5 - 7 minutes apart (I would actually get two pretty quickly and then get about a 6 - 7 minute break) I didn't want to alarm people prematurely and I certainly didn't want to get to the hospital too early.  

By 4:20, I was starting to shake and sweat during contractions (although they were still pretty far apart) so I texted doula Shelley and told her that I was shaking during contractions and that the contractions were much more intense.   She thought it was probably time to go in and even though I was hesitant about going into the hospital, I was in some pain and knew it was time.

Around 4:30 I called my doctor's office and got Dr. Bubbles (I knew it would be her or midwifey) and told her it was time.  She said she'd let the hospital know that I was on the way and that she would be in shortly after I was checked by a nurse.  After I got off the phone with my doctor, I asked Buttin to call my mom and ask her where they were - drive faster Mormor! .  Thankfully, they were less than 10 minutes away. 

When I originally called my mom I was thinking that we would sit and talk for a while before I left for the hospital, but by this time I knew that we would be running out the door around the time they were coming inside and that's exactly what happened.  

By 4:40 Buttin and I were on our way to the hospital.  I don't really remember the ride to the hospital, but I do remember disliking the seat and being uncomfortable because I couldn't get the seat to recline - someone's car seat was in the way.    

I remember telling Buttin on the way to the hospital that we should drop the credit card off at the office (our cleaning technicians use it to gas up in the mornings), but Buttin said I was crazy and that we were going straight to the hospital.  We arrived at the hospital around 5:00 - Buttin dropped me off and I waited inside for him to park.  

Buttin and I headed upstairs together.  I was working through my contractions, but I was still having a nice 4-5 minute break in between them  (again, I was extremely concerned that I was arriving too early).  We were met by a nice nurse (I don't remember her name) who took us to a triage room.  In the triage room, I put on my gown and shortly thereafter doula Shelley arrived.  She put the birth ball on the chair and I leaned over it and labored in a standing position while Buttin rubbed my back (I actually didn't mind being touched this time).    The nurse accommodated my request to stand while on the monitors (actually doula Shelley held it in place the entire time - that must have been a nice view for her)).  I remember the monitoring and questioning (is my current weight really THAT important - am I at risk of collapsing the bed?) seemed to take forever - all I really wanted to do was get into a room.  Buttin rubbed my back during contractions and I talked to the nurse, doula Shelley and Buttin in between contractions.  Poor Shelley sat on the floor the entire time holding the monitor on my stomach.  She was very encouraging during contractions - she would say things like, "yes, that's it" and "it's all working to bring the baby here".   During contractions I was just doing a very low moan - no hysterical screaming (I kind of screamed hysterically during Cash's birth). It felt a little strange to be so relaxed.   

After what felt like forever, it was time to get on the bed and be checked (I wasn't really looking forward to this part because it had hurt so much last time).  Turns out - I was already 7 cm - WHOOPPEE -  and the exam didn't really hurt - DOUBLE WHOOPPEE.   The nurse mentioned that she was anxious to check me because she wanted to call Dr. Bubbles soon because she had a feeling I was pretty far along.  I have no idea how she could tell, but apparently doula Shelley could tell too.  The nurse went to call Dr. Bubbles and a new nurse returned - her name was Katie and she stayed by my side until Mac was born.

Katie, Buttin, Doula and I all walked the fifteen miles to my room (I remember doula Shelley saying maybe the long walk would get me to 8 cm) - apparently, they had been busy.  I don't remember what we talked about during the walk or if I had to stop to moan through a contraction.

We arrived in my room and I remained standing.  Katie went to go get the stuff for my saline lock - I hate needles.  I told Katie that I really, really hated IV needles.  She asked me if I wanted a little lidocaine to numb the area before she used the IV needle.  I had no idea this was an option and I was delighted! Why didn't they tell me this last time??!! The IV was a much easier procedure with a little lidocaine (yes, I do understand the strange irony of using pain medication for a IV, but none for actual childbirth).

Shortly after my saline lock was in, nurse Katie took some blood.  I remember teasing her because she said it was only going to take about 10 seconds, but it actually took much longer (apparently, my blood just wasn't flowing very well). She also had me sign some forms.  Again, I have NO IDEA why you can't sign these forms before you're in the throes of childbirth. Also, all the signatures are on about 23 different pages.  Why can't they just make one signature page?

Soon after I signed enough paperwork to mortgage our home, Dr. Bubbles arrived.  It was a very relaxed and calming environment and I remained standing while laboring and chatting in between contractions.   The only people in the room were Dr. Bubbles, doula Shelley, Nurse Katie, Buttin and me.  This was a much different environment from Cash's birth - were it was a revolving door of lots of hospital staff.

After a little while,  Dr. Bubbles asked me how I was doing and if I was ready to have the baby.  This seemed like a silly question  - I don't know any woman who would prefer a longer labor to having a baby quickly.  She suggested that we break my water.

At first, I was a little hesitant.  I didn't really want medical interventions and I was concerned that my contractions would get much worse.

This is where timing starts to get a little fuzzy. 

Dr. Bubbles assured me that breaking my water was not invasive and would feel similar to a cervical exam.  She also said (and this is what I was hoping for) that usually when the water is broken this far into labor, the baby just comes right out – like a “water slide”. Yes, her words were that the baby would simply slide out of me as though at Sea World.  This almost sounded fun, but not really; however, I was ready for things to progress and to meet my baby.

Around 7 AM (give or take a half hour, I’m not exactly sure), Dr. Bubbles broke my water and checked my cervix -  I was 9 cm.  I was in disbelief – so much disbelief that I was laughing and talking (I must have been delirious).   I remember Dr. Bubbles and Doula telling me – “this is you at 9 cm”.  This ME at 9 cm was a lot more relaxed than the ME who had Cash and was at 9 cm.

I just kind of laid in bed for the next several contractions and continued my low moaning.  Hmm . . when was this water slide fun going to happen?  Then I started moaning a little differently and felt a little more pressure (but not a ton) and Dr. Bubbles quickly put on her baby catching head and body gear.  I asked her if I sounded different because it was starting to feel different and doula Shelley assured me that I was making – “baby coming noises”.  Yeah!  This is it!

Even though I wasn’t feeling a very strong desire to push, Dr. Bubbles encouraged me to try pushing.  This was very strange because with Cash the urge to push was EXTREMELY strong, but this time I didn’t really feel like I needed to push yet.  I tried pushing though a few contractions, but didn’t feel like I was doing it correctly.  I remember asking for some specific pushing directions because I just wasn’t accomplishing much.  I pushed for about 20 minutes and was well past the whole “one or two pushes and the baby comes sliding right out on the water slide” that Dr. Bubbles and doula Shelley had promised (liars!).

Around 8:00 (again, give or take a half hour), Dr. Bubbles suggested that I try to go back to laboring through contractions because she thought the baby might need more time to move down and into position (again, I’m thinking – liars – this is the WORST water slide EVER).  There is nothing (well, that I’ve experienced) that is more discouraging during labor than going in reverse.  THIS SUCKED!

Doula Shelley asked me if I’d like to go sit on the toilet (because that’s how doula Shelley likes to party) and try to go to the bathroom and relieve some of the pressure.  She had told me numerous times that she’s had many clients sit on a toilet (preferably a clean one) and they instantly feel relief and then the baby comes!  Um, this sounded like another “water slide” fib to me.

I sat on the toilet – no tinkle and it felt HORRIBLE – like a watermelon was trying to come out my pee hole.  I stood back up immediately.  Doula Shelley had me lean over the sink area and elevate one foot at a time to try and get things moving.  I remember looking down and thinking – wow, this looks bloody – but Shelley assured me that this was a GOOD thing.

After about 20 minutes of fun in the bathroom, I guess I started making some more “baby coming noises”, so doula Shelley and Dr. Bubbles encouraged me to get out to the bed area because I didn’t want to have the baby in the bathroom.  At this point, I wasn’t sure when the baby was coming and I didn't really care if it came in the bathroom.

I made it out to the bed and Doula Shelley suggested that I push while on my hands and knees.  I was not a fan of that position and quickly rolled onto my back.  At this point, it must have been around 8:30 and I just started to feel tired.  In some good news, I was having a much stronger urge to push. 

Dr. Bubbles, doula Shelley and nurse Katie all encouraged me to take deep breaths leading up to the contraction and then to start pushing right at the height of the contraction.  They also wanted me to do at least three good (count to 10) pushes per contraction and (here was the difficult part) not to vocalize during the pushing.  I guess that last bit of “uhhhhhh” that you let out can be better directed towards pushing, but at this point, it sounded like bologna science to me - they were all liars (have I mentioned the whole "water slide" thing yet?).  I NEEDED to grunt and to vocalize, but they really didn’t want me to.  I REALLY wanted to say mean things to them, but I didn’t.

Every time I would push Dr. Bubbles (and Shelley and Katie) would say things like “yes, yes, yes – you’re doing it” and “go, go, go”.  In between every push I would say something like, “where is this baby – in my rib cage?” and “why isn’t the baby coming out?”.  Dr. Bubbles assured me that she could see the baby rotating and that the baby was just trying to get in the right position.  Also during each push, Dr. Bubbles would reach into my who-ha and do something that wasn’t very comfortable (I later found out that she was pushing down a small lip of cervix that was still there and preventing the baby from fully descending). This child was already in BIG trouble with me.  After about 30 minutes of this kind of pushing, I started to get very discouraged (not to mention TIRED).   This is how the conversation went between me and Dr. Bubbles for a while.

Me:  Can’t you please HELP me get this baby out?  PLEASE HELP ME!
Dr. Bubbles:  I can help you, Stephanie, but it’s better for you and the baby if you push the baby out yourself.
Me:  But you’re like elbows (or at least) wrists deep in my who-ha – can’t you just find a little baby arm and pull it out?!!!??
Dr. Bubbles:  Stephanie, I want you to focus on how you’re going to push this baby out all on your own.  I don’t want to hear any more discouraging talk from you.
Me:  Ok, sorry.

Dr. Bubbles and I had a variation on the above conversation about fifteen times.  I would vacillate between “GET THIS BABY OUT” and “I’m sorry, I’m going to do this.”.

So, I returned to pushing (again) – it must have been around 9:00 or 9:10. (Side note:  I'm actually pushing in a "yoga" position.  My feet are touching and are pulled up close to my head, which was a new position for me.) Dr. Bubbles asked me if I would like some oxygen.  I’m not exactly sure what made her ask, but I said yes.  I’m not exactly sure why I said yes, but I guess I thought at this point I was going to take whatever assistance (even if it was colorless, odorless and tasteless) I could get - since my doctor wasn't going to pull the baby out! 

At this point, I also remember my stomach was starting to growl – I was really hungry. Thankfully,  I was starting to make considerably more progress (although I was still occasionally demanding that Dr. Bubbles pull the baby out somehow).  At one point, I actually felt the head right in my who-ha opening.  I remember I stopped pushing and Dr. Bubbles said (kind of in a funny voice), that it would certainly be a lot of pressure, but that I could rest. Sadly, I felt the head go back inside - another discouraging moment. 

Soon, Dr. Bubbles told me that it really was almost time (again, I think she's lying) and they were calling the "Baby Catch" nurse.   The Baby Catch Nurse (I don't remember her name) came in and I had Dr. Bubbles, Shelley, Katie and Baby Catch Nurse all cheering for me.   We were also talking about the sex of the baby and Dr. Bubbles and the nurses were all convinced that Mac was a girl (they thought he was a girl because he was so cooperative with the monitoring and was never in any distress - even though I felt a ton of distress). So, they were all saying "Come On, Georgia."

After about five more extremely pressure filled pushes - Dr. Bubbles said, "Here Comes The Head - Keep Pushing".  It was so hard to keep pushing, but I did not want to go through any more contractions or pushes, so I pushed though.  The first thing Dr. Bubbles said was - "Nope, not a Georgia."

Nope, not a Georgia - A George. It was 9:31 AM.

As it turns out, little George Cormac (that wasn't his name right away, it took us a day or two to agree on it) was born in the posterior position or "sunny-side up".  Babies are usually born with their heads down, facing down (toward the ground), but Mac was born, head down, facing up.  This means his skull was up against my pelvis bone and hence, the reason for difficult pushing.  This is from the interwebs, so it must be true:

Mothers whose babies are face-up at birth tend to push longer, more commonly need Pitocin to stimulate contractions, and have a significantly higher risk of having an assisted vaginal delivery or a c-section. They also have a greater risk of a postpartum hemorrhage.

Those who do give birth vaginally to a baby who is posterior are more likely to have an episiotomy and severe perineal tears than moms whose babies are in the more favorable face-down position, even after taking into account the higher rate of forceps and vacuum-assisted delivery.

The posterior position at birth also is associated with a higher risk of short-term complications for the baby, such as lower five-minute Apgar scores, an greater likelihood of needing to be admitted to the neonatal intensive care unit, and a longer hospital stay.

Thankfully, Mac and I had none of these complications and that has a lot to do with Dr. Bubbles, doula Shelley and nurse Katie.   That's right - I had absolutely no tearing!

I learned (after the fact) that Dr. Bubbles and Doula Shelley had suspected Mac was in this difficult position (Dr. Bubbles probably KNEW, since her hands were all up in my stuff), but didn't let me know - just kept encouraging me. 

Dr. Bubbles put Mac on my chest right after he was born.  He was more gross than I remember Cash being, but he was healthy and strong (apgar scores were 8 and 9).   We worked on nursing right away and he latched pretty well.

While Dr. Bubbles was pushing on my stomach  (ouch) and delivering the placenta (gross) - I really don't remember what we talked about - but I think I apologized (some more).  Doula Shelley went to get me a snack and a drink.  She brought me a turkey tortilla wrap and it was the best thing I had tasted in a long time.  It was bland hospital cafeteria food, but to me, it was wonderful.  She also brought me cranberry juice and Sprite (a drink I'm now addicted to) and it tasted awesome.  She also put some peanut butter on graham crackers and (guess what?) those tasted really good too. I was really hungry. 

Buttin said that Mac's birth was easier than Cash's - , I'm sure both were easier for him than for me!  Here is my very nice drawing of my labor and delivery room.

Buttin didn't look at anything happening south of my neck.  He told me after that he pretty much memorized the entire back wall of the room.  Even if he didn't see anything, he was still an excellent coach.    Buttin also said that Dr. Bubbles, Shelley and Nurse Katie were all fantastic and they were the perfect combination of authoritative, encouraging and sweet.   I really had a pretty perfect birth experience.  A side benefit to having a somewhat long pushing phase of labor - NO TEARING!!! 

I am so sad that I did not get a picture of Dr. Bubbles, doula Shelley and nurse Katie.  I remember being disappointed after Cash's birth that I didn't have a picture of my nurse, Patty, so this time - at least I got a picture with Katie. If I ever do this again, I am going to instruct doula Shelley to remind me to take a picture with everyone. 

One brief after note - just as with Cash, my bladder was shy so I had to have a catheter.  Those things are really uncomfortable and I'm just happy I had a baby to distract me.  Overall, my recovery was easy. 

Giving birth isn't pretty, but I do love having done it.  I love it because it makes my body feel purposeful.  It's kind of like running a marathon - I feel the pain, but after the pain there is an incredible rush and satisfaction of finishing. It's difficult to explain, but coming home from the hospital (even though I was really ready to get home) kind of felt like the day after Christmas - there is a little bit of sadness because it's over, but it's also pretty wonderful because I have this great little gift.  


So again, congratulations if you finished this story with only one or two naps. 

Monday, January 7, 2013

Misfit Monday Interrupted

Today's misfit Monday is being interrupted.  

Mostly because I don't really have anything work related to write about; however, today is HAPPY THREE WEEK Birthday to Mac!

I was really trying to get his birth story finished, but Mac is going through his grouchy phase of infancy and he just really wants to be held.  This makes it difficult to type efficiently.

Here is Mac-man showing off his eight chins.  He's probably not going to be the next Gerber Baby.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Dear Cash - 2.75 Years

Dear sweet boy,

You are a magnificent son.  I don't know how it's possible to love you more than I already do, but I know that next month  - I will.

You are starting to do so many mischievous things these days.  It's difficult to get upset with you because you're so clever and charming in your deviousness.   This morning I went to the grocery store and left you, your brother and your father at home.  Apparently, you decided to take Chicken's bottle and go running around the house - smiling - while your dad chased you.

Speaking of Chicken, you are a wonderful big brother.  You get upset if we try to change Chicken's diaper without your "help".  If Chicken cries, you hold his hand and say, "it's OK Chicken - don't cry."  You snuggle Chicken and I just can't wait for you two to be best friends. 

I love you so much my little sugar man.   Please continue to be sweet to me, you dad and your brother and please don't grow up too quickly.


Saturday, January 5, 2013


So - since Chicken was born I have gone on four 1 - 1.5 mile runs.  These aren't very speedy runs (or very long for that matter) and since it has been so chilly in the mornings - I just wear my pjs with sweats over them.  No fancy running clothes for me right now, but I'm warm and moving. 

Here are a couple pictures from today.

A self-portrait with the boys.

All the boys snuggling. 

Friday, January 4, 2013

Filanthropy Friday

A little over a month ago a dear blogging friend of mine, Becca, wrote asking me if I was registered somewhere for Chicken.

I told her that between Cash hand-me-downs and Grandmothers, Chicken would be set until about college.  Instead, I told her a nice gift would be a donation made in honor of the new baby to a charity of her choice.  Last week, she made a $25 donation to Smile Train in honor of Mac so this week I'm matching her donation.

Smile Train is the world's largest cleft palate charity and provides over 120,000 free surgeries a year.  I love Cash's smile (and I know I'll love Mac's too - once he smiles for real and not just because he's farting) and every child should have the chance to smile. 

Thanks Becca - I can't wait to put your note in Mac's baby book!