Monday, March 30, 2009

love pregnancy, hate labor

Nothing happens as it was originally planned. I have learned this lesson a lot in the past week. However, it is not without thankfulness that I write it. I have seen the Lord's plan unfold and meet our needs--needs we didn't even know we had. We were to be induced on Tuesday but around midnight I started have contractions. I wasn't sure if they were contractions though because it was showing on the uterine monitor. After realizing that these pains were not going to let me sleep (the nights before I would have the same pain but then it would go away) I called the nurse. She moved the monitor down on my belly and then we could see the contractions registering. Soon after, the pains got worse and more frequent. and the worse and even more frequent.

At around 2 or 3, I allowed them to give me some pain killers through my iv. I still wasn't dilated enough for the epidural. Well, the pain killers were not helpful other than in making me so sleepy that I would immediately sleep between contractions. When the contractions did start I would moan and even scream. I did have a small part in me that felt bad that I might be instilling fear to the other pregnant mothers but the thought was fleeting as survival took hold. I just gripped the side of the bed. David, the champ that he is, hung with me. He would rub my lower back, remind me that it was almost over and encourage me. I yelled at him a couple of times because my patience was lost during the intense pain. He was calm and sweet. I had moments were I was just yelling about where the anesthesiologist was. I was angry when I heard him tell a nurse thank you for having the time to take a shower--who said that he had time to take shower? Not me!

Anyway, I got the epidural and the contractions quickly passed under my pain radar. Unfortunately, what took its place was a very strong urge to push. I wasn't allowed to push because I wasn't enough centimeters dilated. I was surprised to know that the epidural doesn't necessarily mean that the rest of my labor would be painless. Granted, it was a lot easier without the strong contractions. When the doctor got there around 9 something, she thought I was ready to go. They got things set up and I just kept thinking, "hurry, hurry, hurry, hurry".

Once I was told I could push I realized how painful it know...down there. I was being stretched. As much as I was ready to see the end of labor, I was feeling so much pain from the pushing. Everyone was yelling at me to push and we did that about 4 times and the baby was out--and with the baby out came immediate relief of the pain.

There was no emergency care needed or resuscitation. They cleaned up his 5 lb. 2 oz. body and gave him to me. I talked to him and he looked at me and that was very cool. Once he went into NICU, I hadn't seen him the rest of the day. I spent the day recovering.

He is no longer in need of respiratory care. He is feeding through an IV but they have seen him eat through a bottle so his suck/swallow reflex is getting strong. He is on antibiotics for a possible bacterial infection. I got to hold him today for an extended amount of time and that was good for me. I feel more bonded and think he is such a cutie.

I am getting released from the hospital tomorrow. We aren't sure how long it will take for David Olson Hogue Jr to be released. He will be here as long as 10 days. That beats the possibility of a month. We truly have been blessed with the best possible circumstances in this situation. I need to write a whole other post about all the details the Lord saw to.

Thank you all for the voicemails, notes, visits, prayers and encouragement. We have been so humbled by the support and helpfulness we've experienced. We praise the Lord for you all.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

a change in plans

On Tuesday, early morning, I woke up at around 1:15 and discovered (through my muddled and sleepy reasoning) that my water was broken. David called the hospital and they told us to come in. Next thing we know, we are in our own labor and delivery room and told that we weren't leaving without a baby. Well, I don't think I have to say that we were shocked and bewildered. I took a good while to process this change in plans and all the while was telling myself verses that were helpful to me. "I can do all things in Christ who strengthens me" and "He works for the good of those who love Him" and "He will never leave or forsake you". I vascillated between feeling peace and feeling panic. Imagine--nothing is ready. We thought we had at least 7 weeks to pack our bags, read about circumcision, even come up with a name. None of that was done and I felt so emotionally unprepared. Yet, I kept thinking that the Lord knew what He was doing and was in control and was good. That night offered little sleep (naps here and there). We met with the doctor who told us that there was not much to worry about for me or the baby. She said I needed no steriod shots because the lungs have already developed enough. She proposed that we put myself on antibiotics to avoid infections and keep external fetal monitors on me to check if there is any baby distress. After an ultrasound, they saw that I had plenty of amniotic fluid left to keep baby comfortable. I am in no pain and had only few random (and painless) contractions. The doctor was hoping to keep me in this state until 34 weeks just to give the baby a little more lung maturity. The ultrasound also showed a healthy baby that was 4lbs and 14 oz. Regardless, the baby will have to be in the NICU for some amount of time. It could be a day or two on up to a month. We'll have to wait until he is born to know.

Today is Thursday and I passed the 48 hour mark. This is good news to my doctor (and therefore to us). I've not had any labor, there has been no fever to indicate infection. The ultrasound today said that I had less fluid but was still well within the normal range of fluid. The doc believes that I am doing well enough that she is thinking Tuesday, rather than the original Saturday, will be the date for induction.

CONCLUSION: We have had nothing but good news since we've been here and have nothing but hope for what is to come. I have always wondered what it felt like to "feel others prayers" and now I know. I am certain the Lord has heard your prayers and have given us a peace beyond understanding. Thank you so much for your prayers--they are worth more than gold to us!

Monday, March 23, 2009

50% off

Uppercase Living announcement- From now until March 31st, when you buy one product at full price you get a second at half-off.

Ideas for using UL:
~ Easter decor on jars and plates for candy and other foods
~ Graduation gifts
~ Mother's day and Father's day gifts
~ Spring planters
...and more.

Just check out the link on the right for ideas!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

my beloved left for france

This morning I dropped David off at the airport at 7am. I was feeling fine until we said goodbye and he got teary-eyed. As soon as I saw that I told him not to but it was too late. It was as if a floodgate opened (that I wasn't even sure existed). I drove home in tears and for some reason felt as though David were dead rather than just traveling. I got home and then felt even more emotional as I walked into an empty house. So, I cried some more. I knew that I needed to sleep and got in bed, teary-faced and all and tried to sleep. That didn't work because I was too engrossed in unhappy thoughts. So, I pulled out my trusty Foxtrot comic book and started reading. As sleepiness overtook me, I was able to put it aside and take a nap until 10am. Since then, I got to talk to David on the phone 4 times (each time he arrived and left an airport--Atlanta and New York). Right now, he is currently on the flight across the Atlantic Ocean (pray for him!) and I won't hear from him until tomorrow morning about his arrival (just b/c he won't be able to get to a phone until then) (pray for me!). I'm leaving for my parents' house friday afternoon with Cora. I hope to be busy with baby, shower, and everything else going on. Distraction is key. Since my nap, I've felt better, by the way.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

i heart u2

U2 is going on tour again. I am somewhat surprised that they are still pulling out albums and touring. Don't get me wrong--I'm thrilled. I am always slow to like their new albums just because I get attached to the music that I like and don't break out very often. It is neat to see david and my in-laws try new music all the time. It is cool but it isn't me. So, I've listened to a few of the songs from "No Line on the Horizon" and some of them are pretty good. I can see myself liking them in the future. They have a song named "Cedars of Lebanon" and I was disappointed that it wasn't better sounding. Anyway, back to what I first started saying--they are going on tour. This past monday they posted their tour dates for the first half of the tour (mostly european). However, the second half (without listing dates) will cover Atlanta, Houston, Dallas, and Tampa. All of these are options for us. David would love to go so maybe that is something we can shoot for. We just don't know which city to go for. But there is time for that. We have a few months (or at least weeks) before the tickets go on sale. I am pleased especially since I couldn't get tickets with the last concert tour they went on. Not because I didn't try.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

30 weeks pregnant and counting

I can't believe I have 10 weeks left (Lord willing). I rather refer to it as 2 and 1/2 months--it sounds longer. Overall, things are well. I am expectedly uncomfortable. I wake up every night between 4am and 6am. I need to go to the bathroom and then it takes up to two hours for me to fall back to sleep. Thankfully, working part-time has afforded me mornings to sleep in. Generally, I catch up on sleep and these days I am tired if I don't get around 9 or 10 hours. I have occasional heartburn that is beautifully and wonderfully eased with a Tums equivalent (the cheap kind!). I find myself very thirsty and very often. I hope that is normal. I was told I don't have gestational diabetes from the glucose test but for some reason I wonder if they did it wrong. I sometimes feel what I think is high blood pressure. I feel this increase in blood volume in my neck. I don't know what that means.

The doctor told me that I was probably going to be 40lbs at delivery. I've gained about 27lbs at this point. That bummed me out but David assured me that I don't look like a cow. I wonder how I could of done anything differently to have gained less weight. I have eaten relatively healthily. Oh well, I'll worry about that later. I also wonder if carrying a boy made a difference. My hips, thighs, and rearend have gotten bigger but I'm still fitting in my pants.

I am getting hot more easily. I used to be quite comfortable in a house that was 76 degrees. Now, if it hits 71 degrees I am turning on the air conditioning.

Emotionally, I have had mild mood swings. It is hard to remember that these swings are a normal part of pregnancy and not just personal issues. I feel nervous sometimes when I think about the exhaustion that is ahead of me. I also feel concerned that my panic attacks will return. Other times, I feel excited--especially since we started getting the furniture and gifts. So fun! It is like getting married all over again.

David leaves for a week in March for France. We've never spent a night apart so I wonder how that is going to be for us. David will be so busy that he might not even notice but I will notice. I'll be going home for a lot of that week and hope to hang out with family and friends. Pray that the week will go smoothly.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

missing some music

Disclaimer: I love Redeemer Presbyterian Church, where David and I attend. I respect what it sets out to do.

I have been really missing hymns and ruf songs. Before Redeemer church I was going to First Presbyterian Church. It was my first church. I was baptized there and attended for 6 or 7 years. I really enjoyed the music. It lifted my soul. It brought me to a place of meditation and worship. The Lord ministered through that music. I would also have this experience with the RUF (Reformed University Fellowship) songs. I was in my car today listening to the New York RUF CD and truly enjoying it as if it were filling a hole I've had for a few years. Redeemer's music is well done but it does not have this effect on me. I suppose I'm just stuck with where I grew up as a Christian. I sorely miss that kind of worship service. The high church music. I know that this kind of music is usually associated with the stodgy litergy and prickly traditional presbyterians. I consider myself transformed from being this kind of presbyterian but my love of the music has not wavered. I still can't completely swallow the worship of Redeemer. It just doesn't speak to me the same way. I guess I can still be a girl who knows Grace and still not enjoy the contemporary or gospel sound. I feel bad sometimes that I'm not rockin' and swayin' or getting into the spirit of the worship songs but I'm just not feelin' it. Oh well. I think I'm too white. Or too presbyterian. Or too serious. Or too set in her ways. Maybe a few more years at Redeemer will change that but I never want to lose appreciation of those classic hymns, organ music, and RUF songs. It is/was a part of my soul and it IS good.