Friday, July 31, 2009

2 week checkup

Although Jackson turned two weeks on Tuesday, he had his two week checkup with the pediatrician today. I was most concerned about his weight since he lost almost a whole pound when we brought him home. But alas, he not only gained his weight back (birth weight was 7lbs 9.4 ounces) but he also gained almost five more ounces. YAY!!!! He also grew a whole inch since he was born so he's now 21.5 inches long. My baby boy's growing fast already.

My next big concern was his fussiness after eating. Since we've switched to pumping/bottle feeding, he's sooo fussy after eating. I thought maybe it was gas, but I never hear to much gas after he eats. So then I was thinking colic and someone else mentioned acid reflux. And then someone mentioned maybe he's still hungry. So I was so confused. The doctor wasn't too worried and he said he's obviously eating well since he's growing well so he told us to either play with the amount we're feeding him or to try gripe water. So we'll see. We attempted to feed him more today, which he took and did not fuss about at all, but it ended up on Justin's shirt afterwards, ha ha.

Other than that all went well. He had his heel pricked for his PKU test which he HATED and screamed through but everything else was normal and he doesn't need to go back for almost 6 weeks, which then he will start getting some immunizations :(

Anyhow, since I'm sure what you REALLY want is some pictures, here are some more recent ones from the week! Enjoy. ( For some reason my computer will not let me rotate my pictures right now so I'll have even more to post soon)

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Monday, July 27, 2009

Since we've been home..

We've had tons of new experiences, individually and as a family. The first few days home were great but very tiring, especially at 3 am when we had a screaming baby and no clue what to do with him. We had lots of visitors and most importantly when we got home, we were finally able to introduce Jackson to his two fur brothers, Jiff and Carlin. This wen't suprisingly well. The boys were interested enough to sniff him, but that's it. They were more excited to see Justin and I. After the first few days we had our first Peditrician visit, which we were late to of course. It was a pretty routine appointment. They checked his weight and just did a little physical. As far as his weight goes. He was 7lbs, 9.4 oz when he was born, he was 7lbs 0.8 oz when we left the hospital and then at the doctor's he was 6lbs 12 oz. So he definitely lost some weight but the doctor wasn't worried. We're scheduled for a 2 week visit this friday to recheck his weight. If it's not back to his birth weight then he will talk about supplementing with us.

As far as feeding goes, I started out strictly breast feeding. When he said that his weight was down I decided to also start pumping so that we could give him at least one 2 oz bottle a day on top of the breast feeding. It just so happens that this one 2 oz bottle was our key to actually getting some sleep when we gave it to him during one of his night feeds. YAY!!!! Well, then he started getting fussy around 8pm every night and he would want to eat every hour and it still wasn't enough. For some reason I feel like between 8pm and 12 am I don't make any milk. It's really weird. So now we've decided to switch to strictly pumping and giving him bottles so we know how much he's getting and so we're sure he's getting enough. Occasionally a 3 oz bottle doesn't settle him so he'll still breastfeed a little after, but then he's content. Since we've been doing this, he's sleeping much better in between feeds and he's much happier at night. The only problem we've had is me not producing milk around 8pm at night. It's so weird but I'm hoping that the constant pumping every 3 hours will change that.

Anyhow. Since we've been home we've also taken a couple store trips (babies r us, walmart, BJ's, etc.) and while some have gone well, others have made me very anxious especially when he gets fussy. It's made me realize just why people don't venture out for a while after having a baby, ha ha. One of our other trips included having lunch with Justin's family on Justin's birthday, which is just 6 days after Jackson's. Justin's very excited because they're both Cancers and now he can pass down his grandfather's ruby ring to his son. :) Well the lunch trip went well but once it was over I was glad to be home because I was only 5 days into my recovery. And boy they do not tell you how sucky postpartum recovery is. I've taken care of patients after they've had a baby but not for very long, so I never got to see just how uncomfortable and sometimes painful it can be. Especially when you throw stitches into the mix. That has got to be one of the worst parts. Even almost two weeks later it can be uncomfortable to sit down or move around. But it gets better by the day. I've compared it to having the flu: when you're in the middle of it you feel like you've never felt worse in your life and that it's never going to end, but day by day you get better and then once your well you forget how bad it really was. The only difference is, I won't be forgetting anytime soon, ha ha. I'll be keeping this recovery in mind until I'm good and ready to do it all over again, which will be no time soon.

Another one of our outings was to my brother's friends house for a cookout. Lenny and Jess just had a little girl about 4 weeks ago and my brother was excited to get the two of them together. Of course Jackson and Isabella could have cared less. They both slept the whole time. But it was nice to get outside and my brother enjoyed holding his nephew for quite a while.

The rest of our time has been spent at home feeding and changing the baby. As far as changing goes, we quickly learned that with boys, the pee pee has to face down in the diaper, ha ha. We've had a couple of accidents warranting new outfits. I've also had quite a few incidents where Jackson has continued to poop as I'm changing him, or he'll decide to pee once I get the new diaper under his butt. Sometimes I'll go through 3 diapers before we finally reach the finish line. Justin just recently had his first round of pooping during the change and getting sprayed with pee. And here I was thinking that Jackson would christen him first. Oh well. At least he's changing diapers, and that's all I can ask. He was scared to originally because of the umbilical cord and the circumcision. But the circ has healed well and the umbilical cord fell off on Jackson's one week birthday. Now with his very own belly button, Jackson enjoys baby tub baths much more than he enjoyed those cold sponge baths. Bath time in our house is a family event. Justin gets to hold him up in the tub while mommy washes him down. Then, when we put him in the towel and he pees, daddy gets to hold him again while mommy washes him down again. ha ha.

On Saturday night I had my first crying episode since we've been home, and the funny thing is, it wasn't even over the baby. He was doing great but when Justin came home from work around 2:45 in the morning he woke me up asking where Carlin was because he wasn't chained up outside. Apparantly Carlin broke his harness AGAIN and jumped the fence. So Justin spent about an hour walking the streets looking for him, while I fed and changed the baby and cried because I knew how mad Justin was. Carlin eventually came back but it made for a very long frustrating night.

Yesterday was our first trip to church. We were late of course, but we made it, and Jackson slept the whole time. Everyone was excited to meet Jax and we were glad to make him the newest member. Jackson is the fifth baby born this year I believe so the church family is happy to have all of the new additions. After church we made our way to my parents house so that Jackson could meet his great grandmom porter. She has had a rough year and is recently recovering from a heart attack and pneumonia. In fact, it seemed to me for a while that she was just giving up. But when we walked in, she was dressed (she has just been in her housecoat since she was sick) and she was very excited to finally meet the baby. I was worried about her holding him because she's been so weak, but she held him for almost an hour. She even snapped at me saying "I got him" when I tried make sure he wouldn't wiggle out of her arms. It was definitely priceless and I think it made her day, week, month and year. She was a very proud great grandma and she seemed to be doing so much better than she had been just two weeks ago.

That brings us to today. So far we've spent our morning eating, answering emails, and writing this blog while the baby sleeps before his next meal in 15 minutes. Since we've had a busy weekend we'll probably stay home all day and hopefully I'll accomplish some cleaning and maybe even get to take a shower :) Tonight Julie and her boyfriend Nate are bringing us dinner (our 3rd lasagna since we've been home, ha ha) and then hopefully we'll have an early bedtime. I'll keep my fingers crossed for that one. Tomorrow Jackson will be two weeks old already. It seems like much longer ago that I was in the hospital waiting for the Pitocin to finally start working.

Since it's time for lunch almost, I'll post some new pictures later. Until then...

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Jackson Scott Smith: The Countdown is Over, Forever Begins

So I'm sure everyone has been anxiously waiting for this post, but, knowing it would take a while to put together I decided to wait for a bit (which means right now both Justin AND Jackson are sleeping and have time to do it, ha ha).

So anyway, here it goes.
On Tuesday morning Justin and I woke up around 4:30am. We finished getting everything together to go to the hospital (after not much sleep at all and after not eating since 9:30 pm the night before) to start our 6am induction. We got to St. Joe's at 6am and went to our room. I gowned up and waiting to get hooked up to the monitors. Jackson hates those monitors, so it immediately woke him up and got him kicking away. Well, the nurse came in after she got me in the computer system and told me my doctor failed to send my chart and my orders for induction so we had to wait until they got a hold of him before they could start the pitocin. This took TWO hours and was extremely frustrating since he is the one who called and scheduled the induction. Anyway. The doctor came in around 8:15 and checked me (I was still only 2cm) and at 8:30 the pitocin got started and after bumping it up quite a bit I started contracting. The contractions didn't hurt at all. I could only tell I was contracting because I could feel my stomach tighten. Jackson looked GREAT on the monitors and all seemed to be going well. Well, around noon, the doctor came back and checked me (the pitocin was pretty high so I should have progressed) but I was still not feeling any pain and when he checked, I hadn't dialated anymore at all. He then told me that he would come back later that afternoon to check me and if I hadn't progressed we would either stop the pitocin and I'd go home and try again next week (NO WAY JOSE!!!), we could stop pitocin, I'd eat and then start another drug and start pitocin again in the morning, OR we could do a c-section. I was very very disappointed by all of this and really worried that things were not going to go how we wanted. Well a lot of nurses came in throughout the day to see how I was doing (since I just did my practicum there) and the nurse manager suggested asking the doc to break my water. I completely agreed as I'd thought about asking him to do this before starting the pitocin. Well the doc came back around 4 and said IF I had dialated some then we could do that, but otherwise he wouldn't want to since I could ultimately end up with a c-section if breaking my water didn't work (since you can't go home once your water's broken due to risk for infection). So he checked me and i was dialated to 3 (thank God) and he broke my water at 4:15. Immediately the contractions started hurting (mind you the pitocin was nearly maxed out at this point) but I was handling everything very well. Justin decided to go and grab some lunch and by the time he got back 30 minutes later my labor went from painful but manageable to the worst pain in my life. Jackson apparantly flipped and was face up and a face up baby = bad back labor. At this point my idea of an epidural free birth went out of the window. The contractions were one on top of the other and I had no resting time at all. So the anesthesiologist came in and did the quickest epidural ever, thank God because I've seen them take a while before. After about 10 minutes I was pain free and doing quite well.

Anyway. 7pm is change of shift for the nurses and midwives. My doctor had gone home for the evening as he wasn't expecting me to deliver until early morning and so he'd wait for the call. In order to give report the nurse midwife came in to check me around 20 til 7. She didn't say anything at first and then she started laughing. I was only expecting her to say I was dialated to four or five (especially because I wasn't feeling a thing at all), so when she asked if I was feeling any pressure I was shocked and said "Nooooo, whyyyy??" Well, apparantly in 2 1/2 hours I had dialated from 3 to 9 and I was almost ready to push. It was crazy. Well she went in and called me doc and the new nurse came in to greet me. About 20 minutes after the midwife checked me, I told Justin I was really starting to feel the "I have to poop"sensation and to go get the nurse. Well finally the doc came in and checked me again and I was 10 cm and ready to push. So the nurse came in and we started pushing. Everything was going extremely well. At first I couldn't feel a thing and the nurse had to tell me when to push. Then I started feeling pressure and I could tell when I needed to push. Eventually the pressure got so strong, pushing was the only thing that made it feel better. Finally I started feeling the burning sensation and I knew he'd be here soon. So the nurse told me to stop pushing and they called the doc to come in. I wasn't pushing at this point but I could still feel him coming so I started getting worried and asking where the doctor was. He finally came in and in maybe two pushes, his head was out. I could have never imagined what any of that would have felt like. It was extremely painful and then all of a sudden i felt a huge relief. Once his head was out, I was still having pressure from the rest of the body, but they suctioned him first. When the doc told me to push again, I didn't think I could, but one good push later, Jackson Scott Smith was born (at 8:16 pm, less than an hour after I started pushing). I already had tears rolling down my cheeks as a natural response to trying not to push through all the pressure, but when he was born, the tears kept rolling. It was truly amazing. They put him on my chest and let us hold him for a bit before taking him to the warmer, and I don't think there's any way to really explain how it all felt. We were both in awe and amazed by everything. Eventually they took him to the warmer and Justin went with him while the doctor stitched me up and I started texting everyone about his arrival, ha ha. A little while later, the rest of the family was able to come in to meet our baby boy. Since I hadn't eaten in 24 hours, our friend Julie was kind enough to run out to get me and the family dinner, so once I ate, the nurse got me cleaned up and took me over to mother/baby where we'd be until Thursday morning.

The first night with him was very tiring. He went to the nursery for an hour to get a bath while I got settled in and then they brought him to us for his first feed. We held off a bit until feeding him because he was spitting up a lot of amniotic fluid, which scared the crap out of us, but finally I got to breast feed him for the first time, and wow is it painful. After feeding, I was extremely exhausted from no sleep and then pushing, so by 2 am i needed sleep. The nurse told me that they would need to take him to the nursery to get some vitals and check him out around 3am, so at this point I told them to keep him there until he was ready to eat again. So I slept for about two hours before they brought him back. The rest of the day was filled with feeding, diapers, visitors, vital sign checks for me, a visit from the pediatrician (who we LOVE), a visit from my doctor, and complete exhaustion. I was also in a lot of pain from my episiotomy so moving around and heading to the bathroom was very difficult. Later that night we decided that we would send him to the nursery for a bit so I could get some sleep. This helped a lot. Thursday morning was our discharge day so I spent the morning "learning" and signing lots of papers while Justin spent the morning with the dogs at home for a bit and then carrying all of our stuff to the car. Finally around 12:30 we were able to go home.

I'm going to end this post there as it's time to feed the little guy again, and I'll post again sometime soon with more pictures and an update of how home life has been since our special delivery arrived.

A special thanks goes out to my sister Krista who stayed in the room with us throughout the delivery and took most of these pictures to help us remember this forever.

Enjoy! And thank you so much to all of you for the prayers, support, and congratulations throughout the whole experience!!!

And approaching 1 full day old: