Friday, May 27, 2011

Birth Story

Some people love birth stories, others... not so much. So, you've been warned. Feel free to skip this if you want to. I won't include gory details. ;)

My due date with Samantha was May 28. Because of a clotting issue (heterozygous gene mutation of prothrombin and heterozygous MTHFR, to be exact) that was discovered after my second miscarriage, my OB really didn't want to let me go past my due date. I was not eager to be induced, but after praying and discussing, and debating, Christoph and I decided to follow our OB's advice and go ahead with the induction.

We went to the hospital early the morning of May 25th and were admitted. Paper work, IV, fetal monitoring, blah, blah, blah. It was fun to be admitted into the same room where Katrina was born. I hope that was a good sign, Katrina's labor and birth were fast. I was so excited to find out my nurse would be the wonderful Heidi, a nurse I knew from working at the hospital back when Emily was a baby and also one of the coordinators of the grief program the hospital has. She is great!

We had asked the girls if they wanted to be at the hospital during the birth or go to a friend's house. They choose to be there, maybe even in the room if things weren't too intense. Micah went to a friend's house. My Mom got all the kids up and ready, dropped Micah off and then got the hospital a couple of hours after us, around nine. I had already been examined, was 3cm dialated and they put in the misoprostil, my induction tool of choice because it allows me to be up and walking after the first hour with only intermittent monitoring, unlike pitocin.

After the first hour, I tried to be up as much as possible. Gravity always helps, right? So, we walked the halls. Sometimes the girls walked with us, sometimes they stayed in the room playing and coloring. It was nice to have them around, reminding me of the reward coming after the pain was over. Not that I was having any pain. Yet.

Around 11am the girls were getting restless, so my Mom took them out to run an errand and maybe get some food. I was having an occasional contraction, but they were very sporadic and not real painful. About ten 'till noon they had me get back in bed to monitor the baby for a little while. My Mom called right then to say that the girls were eating and wondering if they needed to hurry back. I didn't think so, I'd had a few more contractions, but not much seemed to be happening. Christoph had a different opinion and felt they should come back as soon as possible. Apparently his intuition was better then mine.

At noon my contractions suddenly got more regular and more painful. I wanted to implement some of the Lamaze techniques I had been reminded of in the refresher course Christoph and I had taken and asked if I could sit in a chair instead of lying in bed. My Mom and the girls got back at about 12:10pm and the contractions were really intensifying. At 12:20pm my water broke and I got back into bed so the nurse could check me, ect. I was 4cm dilated.

Then things got crazy. I had some contractions so intense they made me vomit. That about did Katrina in. You know how she feels about vomiting. Christoph made a little barricade for her in the chair with pillows she could hide behind and a movie on the iPod with headphones to distract her. She was set after that. When it was all over it took a little coaxing to convince her to come out and see the baby. Emily sat on the little sofa in the room and turned her back during the messy parts.

Anyway, back to the craziness. They brought in the warmer for the baby and started getting things ready. I think it was around 1pm when I started to feel like I needed to push. mind you, I had only been 4cm 40 minutes before that. The nurse checked me and said I was almost completely dilated. I tried my hardest not to push, to do candle blowing, but my body had a mind of it's own. They hadn't even broken the bed down and I was laying on my side. I heard them saying to call the doctor and scurrying around. I remember looking at Heidi and saying, "I'm sorry, I can't stop." She just smiled and said, "Don't worry, I've delivered babies before. We can do this." A few seconds after that Samantha's head was out. Right then the ER doctor rushed in and took over. I looked up just a Samantha was being born to see my doctor come rushing in. I remember thinking, "She is barely holding herself back from pushing him out of the way and taking over." Then she was in my arms. It was 1:10pm. I stared into her puffy little face and feel in love.

We got cleaned up. The girls got to help with her first bath. We only got video and no pictures. :(  Poor Samantha's little forehead is bruised form being born so fast. That's contributing to her puffiness too. So far she has been pretty content and is a good little eater.

Later that afternoon my Mom went and picked up Micah and got some dinner from Del Taco (Christoph's choice). Micah feel asleep during the drive so he was a little crabby. He didn't say anything when I first showed him the baby. Then, when he was sitting next to me eating his french fries, he suddenly held one out to me. I took it and said, "Are you sharing with me?"
"No," he grumbled.
"Is this one yucky?" I asked.
"No!" he snarled.
"I'm sorry sweetie, I don't know what you want me to do," I coaxed.
"It's for the baby!" he said a note of exasperation in his voice.
I melted. You have to understand that this boy shares food with no one. Ever. Ask him for a bite of something and you'd think you'd asked him for his right arm. Yet, here he was, voluntarily sharing with his new sister. i had been worried he was going to have a hard time with this transition, that he would be very jealous. At that moment my fears died and I knew he would be fine. We all would. We are a family.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Five Years

Trinie Bee. You are five. My sweet, snuggle bug of a baby is five! You have really slimmed out this year. You have always been tall, but you kept your toddler chubbiness up until this last year. Watching you get even taller and losing your little tummy really makes you seem like a big kid, not a little kid anymore.

You finished your last year of preschool this year. It was a good year. You had lots of fun and you liked your teacher. On of your classmates threw up in school right before Christmas break. You really didn't like that and went through several weeks of crying and insisting that you didn't like school and just wanted to stay home. I felt so bad for you because you really loved school, but now you are fairly ambivalent about it. Which is better then a couple of months ago, when you absolutely hated it. It took me awhile to even get out of you what the problem was, but then I finally figured out that you are really, truly terrified someone will throw up again. You even stopped eating school snack for awhile, which is one of your favorite things about school. :) Back in January when I figured out why you were having a fit every time we pulled into the school parking lot, I sat with you and we talked. I reminded you of all the things you love about school. We talked about fear, how it's ok to be afraid, but if we let our fear take control it can cause us to miss out on some really great things in life. We made a plan, about praying, talking to your teacher and closing your eyes if the worst should happen. Then we prayed together. You were still afraid, but you stopped freaking out and started going back to school without tears. I'm so proud of you that you conquered your fear. My brave girl.

When you are not in school you love to play with your siblings. You do a pretty good job of playing with Micah, and you love to play with Emily. You love dolls, dress-up, and all kinds of imaginative play. This past year your love of coloring and making projects has really taken off and you are most happy when you are creating stuff. You still like to help, especially in the kitchen.

I love how you are so quick to make decisions and have complete confidence in your choices. I love your quick smile and your laugh. I love how affectionate you are, always ready with a hug or kiss.

I hope this year I can encourage your servant's heart. I'm not always very patient with little helpers. I hope you always keep your open heart that is so ready to love. i hope I can help you to balance thinking through your choices and making wise decisions, not always rushing in without looking ahead, while still keeping your spontaneity and confidence. I love you Katrina. You bless me and fill my days with joy.

Eight Years

Emily. You are eight. How is it possible that I've been a Mother for eight years. I remember sitting in the hospital in the early morning hours the day you were born, holding you in my arms and looking at you, absorbing every detail of your beautiful face and trying to wrap my head around the fact that I had a baby, that YOU were my baby. Sometimes it still seems hard to believe.

Well, what has happened this year... You finished first grade. You enjoyed having Mrs C. again and really liked Mrs P. You learned even more Spanish. You love Math and your reading has really taken off. Your favorite books are the Junie B. Jones series. You made some new friends in addition to the ones you had in Kindergarten.

Last Fall you decided to ask Jesus into your heart. You had a lot of questions and it was a very thoughtful decision on your part. Then you followed that decision by deciding to get baptized last month. You love going to Sunday school and think it's really cool that you can read the Bible on your own.

You also love gymnastics. You are getting pretty good at flips and twists. You conquered your fear of heights and are will swing on the high bar of the uneven bars. My favorite was watching you teach another little girl from church how to do a cartwheel. I think you have a gift for teaching.

I love to watch you playing dress up, ponies, and/or Strawberry Shortcake with your sister. The two of you get along pretty well. Of course you fight pretty often, but you love each other and usually want to be together.

I love how your sense of humor has developed. You can always pick up on when Daddy's joking and shoot the joke right back at him. You love magic and have learned several magic tricks. It's so fun to watch your face as you perform them. You have also developed a love for origami. You and Daddy even got to do a presentation for your class. I'm getting the impression you like attention to detail. :)

Well my sweet girl. I love you. Thank you for making me your Mama eight years ago. I'm so glad you did.

Sunday, February 20, 2011


"Baptism is an outward expression of an inward faith." ~Watchman Nee

Emily was baptized today. It was wonderful to see her make this choice, work out what she believed and why she wanted to take this step. She wanted to choose a verse to say at the baptism. After thinking about it she choose Psalm 56:3 "When I am afraid, I will trust in you." It is a good verse for our timid girl. She is working hard on doing things even when she feels afraid. It was wonderful to see my beautiful girl take this step of faith in her Christian walk. We love you Emily.


"Exactly one day in your life your kid will ski as good as you do. The next day, he'll ski better than you." ~Warren Miller

Ski Bunnies

Christoph was able to take the girls skiing yesterday. All three of them were very excited. A family friend and his two kids went too. I was happy to stay home with Micah. :D

Christoph was able to take Emily once last year and she had a blast and had been asking to go again. He was a little nervous about taking Katrina since she is pretty young, (4 going on 5) but of the two girls she is the more adventurous. After hearing Emily's stories she was excited about the idea. Things started off bumpy, Christoph actually called me a bit worried that the entire day was going to be horrible and half-debating turning around and coming home.

Gotta give you the back story. Right before Christmas break from school Katrina had a classmate who got sick and vomited in front of the entire class. Ever since she has been completely petrified of all things related to vomit. I'm sure it doesn't help that because of being pregnant I've been tossing my cookies pretty frequently. She had several weeks of huge fear, almost panic attacks related to going to school, just on the possibility that someone could vomit. If she hears the slightest gag she will run as fast and as far as she can.

You've probably figured out where this is going. On the several hour long drive to the mountain a couple of the kids started to feel car sick. Katrina FREAKED out. When Christoph called to let her talk to me she was crying hysterically and just kept saying, "Please Mommy I want to go home. I don't want to go skiing, I just want to stay with you. Please don't make me go." over and over. I was able to talk her down a little and between me and Christoph she kinda pulled herself together. Fortunately, that was the worst part of the day.

Ski School
Emily and Daddy

Christoph and Emily skied in the morning while Katrina did ski school and then they all skied together in the afternoon. The girls did really well and from what I've been told they had a blast.
Emily on the lift
Katrina on the lift

Friday, January 28, 2011

It's a girl!

Well, the doctor wasn't very happy with some of the views the got at my big ultrasound two weeks ago, so she sent my back for another one. Bonus! This time we decided to leave the kids at home. It was fun to do something just the two of us. It was quiet and we could just enjoy seeing the baby. this US tech seemed much less rushed and less eager to get rid of us (I wonder why!). She was able to get the money shot and told us we are having a girl! Then she stated that she needed practice with the 3D/4D machine and did we mind if she took some pictures. Did we mind? Are you kidding? We were thrilled!

I've always been so curious about 3D ultrasound, but never had the chance with any of my other kids. I was so curious if it would look anything like what my babies actually look like in real life. (admit it, we've all seen some of those more freaky looking 3D pictures.) After they couldn't determine the sex last time, we actually looked into going to one of those places that specializes in 3D ultrasounds, but we just couldn't justify spending $200+ on something so trivial, especially with three other kids to raise and all the regular expenses of having a baby. Oh, but I was sooo tempted.

So, she pulled out the big 3D/4D wand and went looking. Apparently, this little girl likes to snuggle with the placenta, which is also located toward the front of my abdomen. Not dangerous, but it makes getting pictures mighty tricky! Anyway, her picture is a little freaky looking I will admit. You have the placenta, plus her arm and the umbilical cord all getting in the way. I do see some resemblance to my other kiddos around the mouth and I love that her cheeks are already round. So fun!

Well, another girl. I really couldn't decide which I was hoping for. A boy would have been nice, to have things even as Emily says. A playmate for Micah. Easier for room sharing. But girls. Girls are so much fun. I love to dress little girls. So, far I have found girls to be easier to raise (I realize I have no teenagers yet). I'm happy. It wasn't my decision and I would have been happy with either. I'm just thinking of all the things I love about baby girls. Except for naming her. Now that's going to be a bear of a job.

We wanted to do something special to tell the other kids the news. Being that we are having a girl and Valentines Day is coming up, it was pretty easy to find something pink to eat. Blue would have be a LOT harder. We stopped at the store on our way home and bought some pink frosted cupcakes. The kids were thrilled, especially Katrina. Katrina was over the moon. Emily was disappointed, but she got over it pretty quickly and seemed to accept that God decided a girl would be best for our family, not a boy. For some reason I didn't take a single picture. Fail

Here's our girl, smush face and all. One is a profile, one is straight on.

Friday, January 14, 2011

It's a ??

Today we had our 20 week ultrasound. Twenty weeks already! We took all three older kids with us. Unfortunately none of them were on their best behavior. It was a little stressful and hard to focus on how wonderful it was to see our sweet, anxiously awaited baby. To hear the heart beat and see the little squirms. The kids were interested for about five seconds and then ready to move on. Micah was soo squirmy. Poor Christoph had to deal with the brunt of it. And, after all that the tech couldn't determine the sex.

Emily and Katrina have been praying for the opposite sex (Emily wants a boy, Katrina wants a girl) for well over a year now. Either way one of them is going to be disappointed. It will be a good lesson about how God answers prayer and how He always knows what is best for us. However, that lesson is going to have to wait a little longer. I hope we can figure it out before the baby is born. Meeting your new sibling for the first time is not a good time for lessons.

Despite the wiggles it was wonderful to see you little one. We are all so excited about you. Even though we are eager to meet you, I am trying to treasure every moment of this, my last foreseeable pregnancy. I love feeling you move inside of me. I love falling asleep with my arms cradling you and not have to worry about accidental suffocation. Nine months is just long enough. Stay safe and grow. Love you.