8.27.2015

Rowen’s Birth Story

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First of all, I just want to thank Kevin for taking notes which helped make this story possible. He did this with Ryder’s birth and it was so helpful so he took notes for me again during Rowen’s birth.

And secondly, this is SO long. I am not a concise person and I wish I could be, but I am not. SORRY if you are reading ha.

AND Before we get into Rowen’s Birth Story, feel free to read Ryder’s Birth Story HERE… That would probably help in understanding the situation, with certain decisions that we had to make in regards to Rowen’s birth. Ryder’s birth story was a crazy one and I ended up having an emergency c-section.

Because of the reason of Ryder’s emergency c-section, I knew for awhile that I would probably end up having a c-section with my next kid or future kiddos. { In a nutshell, I had an emergency c-section with Ryder because he was big…but was overdue and born at 41 weeks. He was 8 lbs. 11 oz. Because he was bigger and apparently my pelvic/bone structure is smaller, he didn’t fit. I pushed for 3 hours, then with a vacuum, and he still wouldn’t come out. There was nothing left to do but an emergency c-section. When Dr. Vance delivered him, she said I could have pushed forever and he wouldn’t have ever come out. I am grateful for modern medicine so that Ryder & I ended up healthy and safe :) }

Then I got pregnant with Rowen. I always knew that I probably wouldn’t go past my due date because of what happened with Ryder’s birth. That was comforting because who wants to be pregnant a week overdue?! I also knew that my OBGYN, Dr. Micetich (who is awesome!) from The Women’s Clinic probably would order an ultrasound to check in on the baby’s size later in the pregnancy. Dr. Vance, who did my c-section with Ryder, cut me in a way so I could try for a Vaginal Birth After Cesarean (VBAC). I knew the big decision in the end would be VBAC vs. scheduled c-section.

>>> Then we get to add Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS) into the mix! AS is a type of inflammatory arthritis of the spine that affects other joints too. I had met with a rheumatologist before having Ryder and we had been suspicious of the disease but it wasn’t confirmed. My pregnancy with Ryder was SO painful! I thought I had “typical pregnancy back pain” but NO…unbeknownst to me, it was this disease, AS flaring up. This disease is WAY worse than pregnancy back pain ha. After having Ryder, it got so bad that I couldn’t walk, take care of Ryder (bathing, lifting, getting him in/out of the car in a car seat, moving the stroller, etc.), or even sleep. The only thing that put it into remission is a miracle medication named Remicade which is given via IV infusion for a few hours and that your receive every 8 weeks. It suppresses your immune system. I stopped getting Remicade when I found out I was pregnant but had to start it back up when my AS came back full force! (I cannot explain how painful this is, but I did EVERYTHING to avoid medication during Rowen’s pregnancy. I even went Gluten Free which is a bunch of bologna for the smallest chance that it may help. I could go on and on about this.) So, I received 2 infusions during this pregnancy with Rowen. BECAUSE of the disease & Remicade in my system, I was monitored very closely at The Women’s Clinic. I even met with their perinatologist, Dr. Schneider, about my medications and disease. I received monthly ultrasounds (which were fun) & weekly non-stress tests from 32 weeks on. Everything was looking great with Baby Rowen!

Back to the birth story. Basically, whenever I had OBGYN appointments, we would discuss the possibility of a VBAC and the option for a scheduled c-section. We talked about the risks of a failed VBAC (1% chance of uterine rupture and if that happens you often times lose your uterus, possibly your life and/or your baby’s, need blood transfusions, etc.) and the benefits of a successful VBAC which are kind of obvious. A successful VBAC would be easier than a c-section which people often forget is a major surgery – on top of having a newborn! Obviously, there are risks with a c-section, but they are kind of pointless to worry about because if that is the only way to get your baby out, then you just have to do it. The main problem I had with a repeat or scheduled c-section is that besides it being awful, is maybe limiting the number of kids you have. Obviously, you hear of people having more than 3 kids with c-sections, 4 or 5, maybe 6?! But you never know how you are healing until they perform the next c-section and look inside. Maybe you healed great and maybe not so great, and end up with a window, and then the doctors may say that you shouldn’t have any more kids. The main issue I have is having a doctor tell me how many kids I can and can’t have because of how my body heals. It is nothing against them but just a bummer that it depends on how your body heals inside. I definitely don’t want to have a ton of kids or anything crazy but maybe 2-3 more. I just don’t want to have another and then want one more and it not be an option. Hope that makes sense.

When I was around 8 months pregnant, we decided to schedule a repeat c-section at 39 weeks because Rowen’s head circumference was measuring 2-3 weeks ahead and he was kind of big. I could have chosen anywhere from 39 weeks to the due date…but as you get closer to your due date, you are more likely to go into labor and you want to try to do the scheduled c-section before you go into labor. But I was a week overdue with Ryder so I wasn’t too concerned with that, ha! We just wanted to get it scheduled so as it got closer we had it on the books, instead of trying to schedule it later and the hospitals being booked. So the big day was supposed to be July 2nd! It was nice having it scheduled because I was counting down and getting things ready and fitting in last minute ‘family fun’ activities with Ryder getting lots of attention. As it got closer, I started getting nervous and unsure. I wasn’t feeling as good about it anymore, probably just because it was coming up ;)

June 30, 2015 ~ 38 Weeks, 5 days ~ I met with Dr. Serniak, the OBGYN who would have performed my scheduled c-section at 39 weeks. I told her I wasn’t sure about the scheduled c-section anymore and actually was thinking about pushing it back to my due date, on July 9th. I just wasn’t feeling good about having Rowen on July 2nd, as much as I wanted to meet him and not be pregnant anymore! She said that it was fine to push it back if I wanted. She did say that the same situation could happen again for me ending up in an emergency c-section. I knew that could very well happen. The fact that they had tried a vacuum which failed wasn’t a good sign. I don’t think any doctor or midwife really seemed to think I was a great candidate for a VBAC or anything – just judging from how the appointments went, ha. And I met with a variety of the OBGYN’s and midwives since I was always at the doctor. They would tell me the risks and facts.

* My Reasoning: At least if I pushed back the c-section to my due date and he didn’t come on his own, I would have at least tried and did everything I could. And I went to 41 weeks with Ryder…so I was used to being pregnant for a long time. It sucks but is doable. Plus, it was the 4th of July weekend so I would hopefully be busy with fun plans, which would help. If he came on his own and I ended up with another emergency c-section, then again, I would have tried everything I could! I would not have to ever wonder if I could have maybe had him naturally if I had just waited a little longer. The worst case scenario would be if I went into labor and ended up with an emergency c-section. I had read how some people were able to go on and have successful VBAC’s birthing larger babies… So if Rowen was big, I still had a chance ;) If I could try to avoid a major surgery, it would be great! I could have an easier recovery and get my arthritis meds sooner, etc.*

…So, we scheduled my c-section for July 9th, on my due date, at Medical Center of the Rockies (MCR) with Dr. Vance. Then I asked Dr. Serniak to check to see if I had progressed or dilated any from my last appointment, just in case. At 37 weeks, I wasn’t dilated at all and 50% effaced. She said I was 3 cm dilated and 70% effaced. I was shocked and kept asking “Are you serious? You’re kidding!” I was freaking out haha. Because when I had Ryder I wasn’t dilated at all (maybe 1 cm) and I was 41 weeks haha. Judging from Ryder’s scenario and the past few weeks, no one really thought I would have progressed…I was more one of those eternally pregnant people with no change in their cervix ;) The kind of people who always go overdue with their kids…I feel for them lol!!! I was excited because this meant I had options to try to “induce labor.” Examples: Stripping the membranes (have to be 3 cm and 39 weeks AND Group B Strep negative) and Breaking the bag of waters. I would find out at my next appointment what the plan would be.

July 1st, 2015 ~ 38 Weeks, 6 Days ~ I decided to call Dr. Serniaks’ nurse the next day to see if she could strip my membranes at 39 weeks since Dr. Micetich (my OBGYN) was out of town.

July 2nd, 2015 ~ 39 Weeks ~ Dr. Serniak was so awesome and had me come in on July 2nd to strip my membranes! I felt so lucky that I had dilated to a 3 cm so I could even have the chance for this to maybe work. Also, I was lucky I was Group B Strep negative since with Ryder I was positive, and you have to be negative to do this. She said that I would probably know within 24-48 hours if it had worked (by going into labor). It was weird because that was the day we were going to have Rowen (via first scheduled c-section) and I planned to eat flag cake watching the fireworks on the 4th of July outside of my hospital room ;) Instead, Ryder & I went to Firehouse Subs with my mom, Zach, & Hunter. Then Ryder & I colored ‘Welcome Baby’ signs with chalk on our driveway haha ;) We were hopeful!

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After a day, I kind of knew that stripping the membranes wasn’t going to work :( The weekend came and passed but we kept busy by celebrating the 4th of July. I was thankful for the fun weekend of distractions! I looked forward to our July 6th appointment to see what our plan would be!

July 6th, 2015 ~ 39 Weeks, 4 Days ~ Early in the morning, we went into the Women’s Clinic and had a non-stress test. Rowen’s heart rate was doing something weird so we got an extra ultrasound to thankfully confirm all was well! We were so relieved. Then we met with Dr. Micetich. I told her that I really wanted to try for a VBAC even if it failed, so I would at least know I did everything possible I could to try to have one, and if it was successful, then great! I asked if I could have my bag of waters broken and we decided it was an option we would try, since stripping the membranes did not work. She checked to see if she could strip them more but it was basically done. And again, I felt so lucky I was dilated to a 3 cm to even try this AND Group B Strep negative. There aren’t really any other options to induce for a VBAC.

Once we made this decision, Dr. Micetich would need to see if there was availability in either MCR or Poudre Valley Hospital (PVH) before my due date WITH a doctor who may be willing to augment labor with Pitocin. Pitocin is a little controversial in VBAC’s. Many obstetricians are against all Pitocin, because it increases the risk of a uterine rupture. Some are okay with giving you a little bit if you are in labor and need a little push to have your baby. Some are not even okay giving a little bit in labor. As far as I know, I don’t think there are any (or maybe very few that I am unaware of) who will give you Pitocin to put you into labor.

So basically, Dr. Micetich was going to call and ask the obstetricians on-call at MCR and PVH (my second choice hospital) if they would be willing to take me for an induction (if there were even any openings) and possibly augment labor with Pitocin, should I need it. We basically had 2 days until my due date and we wanted to have him before my due date for the best chance of a successful VBAC. Oh and it was the 4th of July weekend so she said some obstetricians may be a little unavailable or slow to return her calls. But we left hoping we could do this!!!

Later that afternoon, I got a call saying Dr. Priebe at MCR would be willing to take me and augment the labor with Pitocin if I needed it…and the next day, July 7th, so we said yes!

All afternoon and evening, I was throwing last minute things in my hospital bag and also a bag for Ryder, as my family would be watching him. Also, I wanted the house very clean so when we came home with Rowen, it was all clean and organized. I hate clutter and dirtiness. We finished the night off watching The Bachelorette! I knew we should go to bed early because I would hopefully be laboring the next day and needed my energy and strength, but I can never say no to that dumb show haha. After it ended, we went to bed and of course, I had a hard time going to sleep. How can you sleep when you know you are meeting your baby the next day?! It’s like Christmas Eve :)

July 7th, 2015 ~ 39 Weeks, 5 days ~ Rowen’s Birthday!

5:30 am: I woke up and immediately called the Labor & Delivery floor to check with a nurse that they would be ready for me to come in at 7:30 am. They said I could come in! { There was a chance of me getting bumped until later (that day maybe?) or just the following day if too many people go into labor and fill up the hospital. Since I was getting “induced” they had priority over me. } Then I got ready. I curled my hair to hopefully look “better” than last time haha. With Ryder’s birth, I ended up looking (& feeling) like death haha. I actually did straighten my hair and attempt to look decent before having him but being in labor messed it up lol. Kevin thought I should just sleep in a little bit longer.

7:10 am: My dad stopped by our house and picked up Ryder, since he would be watching him for the day. My mom would be with Kevin & I and be our photographer. ;) He took Ryder immediately to Lamar’s Donuts for a fun breakfast! They ran into my friend Natalie Brown there.

7:30 am: Then we drove to MCR. It was a rainy and dreary day and I loved it. I just love the rain! So this was a good start! We arrived at MCR and carried our stuff in. We took the elevator to the Labor & Delivery floor and headed to the nurses’ station – with smiling nurses – to check in. We checked in and got taken to Room 5126. My nurses were Candice and intern, Kimberly. They told me to get dressed in a hospital gown and they would be back in a little bit.

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7:40 am: As soon as I got dressed, my favorite lactation consultant, Becky Boyd came in to say hi! I had told her that I was coming in the day before and to see if she was working when I would be in there. She is awesome and helped me SO much with Ryder. He was awful at nursing because of his traumatic birth. It took him 2 months to figure it out but we did it! That was nice of her to pop in right after we got there! :)

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9:15 am: Dr. Priebe came in to see me. He said that he saw me last time at MCR with Ryder maybe on the last day when I was discharged. I vaguely remember that ha? He said he had a c-section he had to go perform so he would stop by after to break my bag of waters. I think he didn’t want to break it before in case I went into labor quickly and would be unavailable doing a c-section. Oh, and he said that the baby had to be down low enough in order to even break the bag of waters. If the baby is too high and they break the bag of waters, it can be dangerous because of an issue with the umbilical cord. So then I was worried he may not even be low enough! It would have been a big bummer if we packed everything up to have our baby and then not even be able to break the bag of waters. We asked our nurses how long a c-section takes and got an idea of when he may be back. We thought we had maybe 2 hours to kill.

Meanwhile, there was a person in the room next to us who was in labor and moaning for awhile. It was kind of freaking me out and making me nervous haha. I was afraid for when I would hopefully go into labor lol. But really, it did kind of freak me out.

* Crazy Story: One of my best friends here in CO is named Abby DeGraff. We ended up both getting pregnant and having the exact same due date! We both also ended up having boys…and she had her son, Samson, the night before in the same hospital! So I was texting her because if I had any free time, we wanted to walk over and meet her little guy! *

Then her husband Ryann came in to say hi and we talked for a bit and heard how their labor and delivery went. Kevin & I decided to walk around a bit on the floor. Kevin hit up the snack room for some Oreos and Lemon Lime Shasta (important things to document, haha!)

10:35 am: Dr. Priebe came in after the c-section. He checked my cervix and it was 3 cm dilated and I was 70-80% effaced. This was favorable to break the bag of waters. Also, Rowen was down low enough to be able to break the bag of waters. I think they may have checked with an ultrasound to see if his head was still down but I am not sure haha. I asked what percentage of the time do you go into labor after breaking the bag of waters but couldn’t really get a straight answer or maybe I don’t remember it? I wanted to know my chances ha. Basically, we would find out soon!

The night prior, I had talked with my friend Sage Pierce who used to be a labor & delivery nurse at MCR and she gave me some tips for having a successful VBAC since she has had them! Plus, she was a nurse there so she knows all about delivering a baby - obviously. She said to move a lot and stay active. So Kevin & I did just that! { Also, she said she loved Dr. Priebe so that made me feel good he would deliver Rowen. }

Kevin & I hung out, walked around, I bounced on a big medicine ball… Oh and you can walk around on the floor, even when your water is broken. They put monitors on your stomach and you get to wear monster pads to catch the water leaking haha. So awesome. I was having pretty painless and irregular contractions so we just kept waiting. Below is a picture of…like no contractions haha.

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12:20 pm: Nothing crazy was happening and it had been a couple hours since Dr. Priebe broke my bag of waters. I was starting to get a little worried and thinking it may just not happen. We walked over to visit our friends, Ryann & Abby DeGraff & met their little baby boy Sam. What a cutie! We hung out with them for a good while…maybe an hour. I was talking normally and for the most part with no problem, so that was a little concerning ha! I think we asked our nurses if this was common or if this meant I probably wasn’t going to go into labor if the contractions weren’t consistent or getting stronger. Actually, I know we had this discussion multiple times. I was getting worried!

1:30 pm: We walked more! I told Kevin we needed to find a long list of questions to ask each other online because we were running out of things to talk about as we walked lol. We just walked and walked! I thought maybe we could watch something while we walked laps and he found one of the shows we watch, The Profit, (business type show) on his XFinity app on his phone. So for a bit he held the phone out and we watched it while we walked haha. It was probably funny to see. The plan was to meet with Dr. Priebe to check to see if I had progressed at all around 6:30 pm and go from there. If I got some good contractions going, we would have the option for Pitocin.

3:30 pm: I got tired of walking for the past 2 hours so we decided to hangout in our room for a bit. Kevin found a documentary called Fed Up on the hospital’s entertainment system so we watched that while I moved around on a large medicine ball. The nurses came in and I asked what else I could do to help have the baby… They said I was doing everything I could!

Meanwhile, all day, my mom had been texting us asking for updates and wondering when she should come to the hospital. She was willing to be at the hospital at 7:30 am when we checked in but we thought we should have her come once my water broke and things got going…if they did… So, I told her she could come whenever because it had been basically half the day and nothing crazy was happening. I also would know what the plan would be in a few hours.

4:30 pm: We started walking laps again. We went by and said hi to Abby again. We were just waiting around to see Dr. Priebe. Apparently, a bunch of people came into triage and he got really busy for awhile.

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5:15 pm: We met with Dr. Priebe. Honestly, things weren’t looking that great for me, at least, for me having a successful VBAC. I already knew that. I just knew it an hour or so after he broke my water that nothing was really happening. Even though I was having contractions, I wasn’t in labor. I could easily talk and wasn’t in pain. When I was in labor with Ryder, it was the opposite, and so painful. The nurses kept saying I looked great and wasn’t in labor… We all know what labor is and that wasn’t happening. Unless things started picking up real soon, I would be having a c-section. He said he would come back in an hour or so (after taking care of other patients), check me, and go from there. Since nothing really had happened at this point, chances are I wouldn’t be going into labor. When Dr. Micetich originally called me to see if I wanted to come in for an induction, she said that after Dr. Priebe broke my water, he would give me 8-ish hours (give or take, I forget) to see if I would go into labor. We were basically at that number! Dr. Priebe also said that I could wait a few more hours, or even longer if I really wanted, but the risk of infection goes up the longer your water has been broken. I kind of knew what was going to happen but planned to wait for Dr. Priebe to return.  { Oh, and you can’t just leave the hospital with your water broken ha, in case you didn’t know. }

7:15 pm: Sometime between 4-7-ish pm, my mom arrived? She arrived when, surprise, Kevin & I were walking around giving myself pointless contractions haha. OH, and we walked 8,100 steps…4.4 miles at this point! You can’t say we didn’t try! Since my mom was our photographer, we practiced with a camera she brought in different lighting (flash and no flash) and also our cell phones, trying to decide which one to use for the action shots when they pull out the babe ;) My mom was around for Ryder’s birth and got some sweet shots in the operating room! So, she was definitely invited for this again haha. I was worried about pictures being blurry so we were being crazy moving in the hallways trying different settings on our cameras trying to find the right one haha. This probably looked pretty comical to whoever was around… It was time to get new nurses so Candice and Kimberly found us in the hallway and we talked in the snack room. That was the closest lighting they said to the operating room ha. They did a shift change and I met my new nurse named Sarah. Oh and my aunt NaNet stopped by and said hi. She works in the hospital in Public Health, so just a few floors below the Labor & Delivery floor. She also stopped by earlier in the day to say hi and see if anything was happening. At this point, we were just waiting for Dr. Priebe to return from dinner and basically just have a c-section, unless there was something else he could do!

7:45 pm: Dr. Priebe came in and since I wasn’t in labor, we didn’t really have any options besides waiting for more pointless hours. So, we chose a c-section. I asked when they would perform the c-section and we would be able to after the anesthesiologists arrived. It could be anywhere from 30 minutes to a couple of hours. Someone went off and called for them. I thought we would have some time before they came but before you knew it, they arrived! The anesthesiologists came so fast! I guess they didn’t have anything going on at the moment. When they came, I almost didn’t even feel ready! I was kind of freaking out. So many things had lined up right to try for a VBAC which is why I think I had a hard time letting go of it. My mom and Kevin got dressed in the scrub type things you wear over your clothes if you are going into the operating room as a support person. The anesthesiologists asked me some questions and I signed some papers. I remember them asking about my disease, Ankylosing Spondylitis and I said that I had talked to my rheumatologist and my spine shouldn’t affect any of the medication. HA. Thank goodness my spine isn’t fused from my AS or anything crazy. Things work as they should :)

8:20 pm: Then it was time to walk back to the operating room. I remember being rolled back on a hospital bed last time and feeling like I needed to push Ryder out – that was weird. This time I walked back with everyone. I remember telling my nurse that I was still leaking water because I was mortified about that and she said it was okay haha. I was freaking out and everyone said, “But you are going to meet your baby!” Haha. Thank goodness I got a baby out of the surgery.

C-Section Time!

{ If you have had a c-section before, this will make sense and seem familiar. ;) }

We walked into the bright and sterile operating room and it was full of medical personnel – people for me and people for Rowen. It is pretty weird walking into a room where you are about to have surgery. I immediately trusted them so much ha! Apparently, not all obstetricians are in the room with you and stand next to you while you get your spinal block, but Dr. Priebe did (& does?), which was SO sweet and kind! I was very nervous and my nurse Sarah and Dr. Priebe were SO great at comforting me! I sat there on the table and got my spinal block with numbing and morphine instead of an epidural. I then laid down? with my arms out. I think at this point, they put up the drape so that you can’t see the surgery. Either the anesthesiologist or nurse anesthesiologist started scratching me with something on various parts of my body asking if I could feel it. I guess they do this to make sure the medication is effective. That made me nervous last time and this time, like, “yeah, I don’t think I feel it?” Ha! Sometime my mom and Kevin came in. Kevin sat down next to me. My mom was probably lurking behind lol. One thing I remember was that a lot of the people were counting things and taking turns? Like 1,2,3…etc. I guess they count things so they know nothing gets lost into you and then count the equipment before they sew you up?! I had not thought about this before! So crazy. Kevin & I both made a guess of Rowen’s weight and we both randomly guessed 8 lbs. 5 oz.

* It was pretty weird being so alert during this surgery because with Ryder, I had been in labor for like a day, and was so tired. After Ryder was born, I am pretty sure I fell asleep while they finished the surgery. *

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I guess they cut me open and thankfully I didn’t feel it. The weird part is when they try to get the baby out of you. I felt like people were pushing hard on my ribs with Ryder to get him out and it was so uncomfortable! You do feel “tugging and pulling” as they say. I felt the same with Rowen. I kind of hate this part. Sooo weird! My mom and Kevin kept me updated on what was happening and kept saying, “He is almost here!” These moments feel like a lot longer than they really are!

8:43 pm: Then I heard a cry and some exclamations of how big he was haha. Rowen was born! { Dejavu like with Ryder! Everyone was like “Wow! What a big baby! You could have pushed for days and he would have never fit!” }  I was like “Oh dang, how big is Rowen?!” But, I was so excited to see him! They showed him to me and he was so cute and mad…since he was crying! Then they took him away to do a quick look-over and get him swaddled before returning him to me. He calmed down from crying pretty quickly though :) Kevin cut the umbilical cord. They got his stats. They said his weight was 8 lbs. 4.5 oz., which they rounded up to 8 lbs. 5 oz.! Weirdly, Kevin & I both were right, so crazy. He was born at 8:43 pm and Ryder was born at 8:41 pm. So close! I should have told them to hurry up so they could have had the same time ha! He was 20.5 inches tall. His Apgar score was a 8/9 which was great. I guess Rowen peed in the air over the inspection table for Kevin and the nurses, ha. They thought that was funny.

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I guess there is new protocol with c-sections at MCR and PVH where they place the baby cheek-to-cheek with mom right in the operating room! I was super excited about this since with Ryder I felt like I didn’t see him for awhile. I think I saw him during my c-section and then after in the Recovery Room. I think having your baby next to you immediately helps with bonding and more successful breastfeeding. I bet there are more benefits too.

Meeting your baby for the first time is so awesome!! He was placed cheek-to-cheek with me and since your baby’s cheek is next to yours, it is really hard to get a good look at your baby because they are so close ha. He kept doing sucking things with his lips and my mom and Kevin were saying that they bet he would be a good nurser! I was hoping that was true since Ryder was so terrible. He was so calm just sucking on his purple hands. They were also saying how cute he was. Kevin said Rowen’s eyes looked cool…glazed brown with blue highlight. I think they will turn out brown :) Meanwhile, my mom was taking tons and tons of pictures. Oh, she also took some videos and of the surgery, ha. I got to watch a video of the doctors sewing some layer of me back up ;)

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While Rowen was cheek-to-cheek with me, Dr. Priebe and the surgeons were finishing the surgery. This is the part that felt MUCH longer than last time. I think it felt longer since I was so alert and awake. I kept asking, “Is everything going ok?” Ha. They kept reassuring me that everything was going great. I listened to their conversations and heard them talking about adhesions (which they removed). I asked, “How many more kids can I have?” HAHA. While I was finishing having one at the moment… Dr. Priebe said, “1 more, possibly 2.” I kept asking “How did everything heal?” It looked great lol. Here and there my mom and Kevin would exchange glances, which made me nervous ha. At one point, I guess my uterus was having a hard time contracting and I heard them saying things like “because the baby was so big?” So then the nurse anesthesiologist poked me in the right shoulder with some medication which apparently helped it contract? I have no clue. But Kevin & my mom were both watching this and later they told me that they removed my uterus and was massaging it - outside of my body - to help it contract and get smaller? No clue with this one here. But they placed it back in me lol. I heard some more counting, of utensils and surgical objects.

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Then eventually the surgery was finished up. I was glad and wanted to hold Rowen! They lifted my legs (SO weird to see your legs move and not feel them!) and my body and put me on a hospital bed.

They then wheeled me to a Recovery Room. Everything seemed like a blur and was so surreal. It is just so crazy meeting your baby! It doesn’t even seem real! It kind of feels like you are in a dream at first? Rowen was just a perfect baby! He looked great and healthy! He then nursed awesome which I was so thankful for. Kevin said I was doing much better compared to my last c-section with Ryder. I was a lot more coherent but had the normal shakes. Oh, I hate the shakes! You just shake like crazy and your teeth jitter. And I am always cold! Warm blankets are awesome. Come to think of it, that started in the operating room. Some nurses kept putting warm blankets on me :) Luckily, the shakes and coldness wear off.

The rest is kind of a blur but we got moved to Room 5118 where we stayed for another 4 days. Pretty sure this was our normal room and not the Recovery Room. OH, and on our way there, they played the lullaby music on the hospital’s loud speaker meaning a new baby was born :) Honestly, I don’t remember hearing it, either time ;)

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Because it was so late, we decided to have Ryder come meet Rowen in the morning. My dad and Zach came to meet Rowen this evening. Hunter stayed home with Ryder, since he was asleep. Oh, and my mom was obviously still here (photo above). I don’t really know what else happened but we were just enjoying having Rowen here, safe and sound :)

We are so grateful everything went smoothly and that both myself and Rowen were healthy and that all went well! We are so in love with Rowen and happy he is apart of our family, of four! :)

*** Weight Gate: In Kevin’s words-- Rowen was weighed 5 times 24hrs after birth, all registered at 8lbs 14oz. Doctors said they'd never had a kid gain that much weight (7+%) within the first 24hrs. Then he was weighed 36 hrs. after birth and was 8lbs 10oz. So with c-section babies losing an average of 5% within the first 24 hrs., Rowen's estimated birth weight was 9lbs 5oz... ***

Basically, the scale in the operating room messed up. They said it had been a little finicky and people had looked at it and apparently “fixed it?” Long story short, Rowen was much bigger than 8 lbs. 5 oz.! Kevin and I were wrong with his weight guess ha. It is kind of a bummer we won’t ever know his birth weight but oh well, what can you do? We are going to go with 9 lbs. 5 oz. because at least that has some science behind it (5% weight loss from birth to 24 hours in a c-section baby)… I just cannot believe I grew a baby that big! I gained a healthy amount of weight (within the healthy recommended weight gain range) and never measured big at any appointment! I think it was actually a blessing in disguise that I didn’t go into labor because I would have ended up with an emergency c-section again. That would have been worse than just getting a c-section like I did! I guess I just make big babies, ha! So so crazy to me!

8.04.2015

Rowen David Sloan

Introducing our son…

Rowen David Sloan

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Born on July 7, 2015 at 8:43 pm

Approximately 9 lbs. 5 oz.

{ more on his “birth weight” later }

20.5 inches long.

We LOVE him!

[ And yes, I realize I haven’t blogged since December of 2014 :( I am hoping I can get caught up! First up, before trying to catch up on months prior, will be Rowen’s Birth Story. ]

12.21.2014

Got a Sports Fan in your life?

RCL_BYU

Need a last minute Christmas gift for that sports fan in your life?

We recently purchased this Rockwell BYU watch for my dad for Christmas/for his birthday (2 days after Christmas) & I was very impressed! Guys love watches and not only that, one with their team on it! Rockwell is a high end licensed collegiate watch line.

And in case you are from the dark side…yes they have Utah watches…

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Mention my blog & use this promo code: FFChristmasEvent2014 to take 25% off through Christmas!

Get on it! You can’t go wrong with one of these watches. They are really that good.

Check out their site with watches HERE.

12.16.2014

A Big Announcement

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Santa asked Ryder what he wants for Christmas, but he will have to wait until July to get it!

[ Due July 9th & so excited! ]

December Catch Up

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{ December 1st – December 14th, 2014 }

These past couple of weeks have been crazy. I have been doing a lot of Christmas & vacation prep. Also, getting over a really bad cold that almost lasted 2 weeks that I started getting in KC! I didn’t document via photos that well, so I will just catch you up so then I can be good for Christmas, mostly. ;)  Some of the stuff that went down…

+ Ryder got his own Advent Calendar this year thanks to Omi & Opi. HE LOVES IT! Everyday he is so excited to look for the numbers on the door so he can open and eat his chocolate :) (Photo above)

+ Shopping ~ I found a Groupon for Christmas cards with Photo Affections & got a great deal! They were a better price than last year when I got ours with Tiny Prints on sale. I finally ordered a camera bag for my camera! I have been nervously carrying it around hoping it wouldn’t get damaged ha… I got the butterscotch Allison bag from JoTotes. I ordered it on Cyber Monday so it was a much better deal. Love it! I also went to Target more times that I would have liked.

+ Kevin went on a business trip to Indianapolis with my dad from December 2nd through the 4th. When the men came back into town, we ate at Bann Thai and got some pad Thai :P So good! (Photo above).

+ The Revenge finale happened & OH MY GOSH. It was good but yeah, can’t give anything away! :O And since we are on the topic of TV… Kevin and I got caught up on New Girl, Mindy Project, Shark Tank, & The Profit. Good times! We can’t wait for The Bachelor to start with Chris!

+ Ry & I joined my mom & Hunter for dinner at Dominic’s. I had never eaten there but seen the restaurant for years. It was good! They had a lot of Italian food as well as other cuisine. We went because Hunter’s friends’ parents own it.

+ We had a play date at Gwen’s house. Abby came too. The kids all “made” felt Christmas trees to decorate with felt ornaments… aka the moms made them ha! (Photo above).

+ Saint Nick came and brought us some German food (spaetzle, dumplings), some ornaments, German chocolates, & Gummi bears on Saint Nick’s Day… December 6th! (Photo above of treats in our boots) Love being German :)

+ We found a new home for Katinka which is a separate post in its own but all in all, I think we made the right choice for her and for us. Of course I am sad, but I think her new family couldn’t be more perfect and she even has a dog friend…and she is only a minute away! Will expound on this later.

+ We ate dinner and watched the First Presidency Christmas Devotional at my parents one Sunday evening.

+ Finally got my hair cut! It had been so long. The last time I got it cut was when I donated a bunch of it to Pantene Beautiful Lengths to be made into a wig for cancer patients (more on that HERE). My hair had grown out all wonky and it was time! It feels so much better now. I need it to grow a little longer now :)

+ Kevin & my dad also went on another trip to Atlanta from December 10th through the 11th. Meanwhile, my mom and Hunter went to Café Rio. Always a good choice!

+ I’ve been wrapping lots of presents which I love to do :)

+ I had Ryder make a card for Addie Lynn (photos above). If you Google Addie Lynn or look up “Little Addie” on Facebook, you can read about her and her family. Addie is a 6 year old girl who is actually tinier than Ryder. She stopped growing at age 3. Her mom first noticed she stopped being able to hold a crayon, or hold a spoon. She stopped developing in all ways and is slowly forgetting everything she knows. She has a mysterious condition of the brain that is atrophying. This will be her last Christmas. Her wish is for a lifetime of Christmas cards. So we sent her our card along with Ryder’s pictures! She has been receiving lots of cards (& the post office has had to hire more people to work there because of it). Everyone is sending her cards and presents from all over the world. Read her story. She is a sweet girl & send her a card if you can!

+ Bekah Wilkey & her girl Carmen & Ry & I went shopping for sandals for Ryder. ( Photo of Ry & Carmen above in Old Navy ha. ) We struck out everywhere! We tried: Once Upon a Child, Target, Kohl’s, JCPenney, Old Navy, Crazy 8, Children’s Place, Babies ‘r’ Us, & I called different Old Navy locations & looked at store inventory online for Famous Footwear, etc.… We were needing to get Ryder some flip flops for a trip we are going on soon where it is warm :) I ended up ordering some off Amazon. Thank goodness for Amazon Prime! We ate at Chik-fil-a after since we were all tired and hungry from shopping!

+ We went to our Ward Christmas Party. The food was delicious haha. I love funeral potatoes… The Primary kids put on a cute program. All the kids got little lights to hold and Ryder was in heaven because of that. We had a fun evening!

+ We saw Santa…more on that later!

+ We had the missionaries over to share a message.

+ Sunday usual ~ Church, Kevin or I have a church meeting (this week it was Kevin’s turn), we got home taught… the good stuff! I visited Katinka & brought her more of her stuff… and we watched Shark Tank to end the night!

Overall, everyday, I have been really busy, just getting ready for Christmas and our trip. So yeah, I think I will be prepared :)

Hope your December is turning out nicely!

xoxo

12.15.2014

{ 2014 } A Kansas City Thanksgiving

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{ November 21st – November 30th, 2014 }

This year we drove to KC for Thanksgiving! The drives are sooo fun ;) JK. Road trips are not really fun… Anyways, we got there late Friday, November 21st. We had Thanksgiving prep over the weekend and celebrated Thanksgiving early on Sunday, November 23rd! The Reeses & Anna were going to be out of town in Texas over real Thanksgiving so we celebrated with them early, as well as some extended family as well. The Thanksgiving feast was delicious!!! They know how to throw a Thanksgiving meal! Tara & I went shopping at Oak Park Mall & hit up Nordstrom Rack, Nordstrom, & some other stores. We had a fun night! Shopping is definitely one of our favorite things to do! Ry & I also went shopping at Gordman’s with Kathy & we had such a successful time that we stayed in there for a couple of hours! Kathy got Ryder some Thomas the Train toys & he was in heaven. Kevin went hunting that day and had a successful hunt. They hunted pheasant I think ha. On the 26th, we went with Greg, Kathy, Simeon (Kathy was watching him), & the Painter’s to Union Station in downtown Kansas City. Union Station is a fun place with restaurants, museums, movie theatres, & a big train area where they have hundreds of miniature trains for people to look at. When I heard about it, I thought it would be perfect since Ryder LOVES trains! Well, it was perfect. The kids all rode on a train and then looked at the model trains. Ryder’s favorite train was the most basic train, a Thomas the Train set haha. He waved every time Thomas went around yelling “Hi Thomas!!” They got to play with train sets at the end as well. (Train photos above.) Then afterwards, we ate lunch at Fritz’ which is a restaurant where your food is delivered by a train railway on the ceiling haha (photo above). The food is subpar but the environment is fun ha. Thanksgiving day we had Thanksgiving with Greg, Kathy, Kyle, & the Painter’s. After another delicious meal, David, Kevin, & I went to see the Hunger Games: Mocking Jay in theatres and it was AMAZING! Gosh, I loved it. On Black Friday, Kevin & I went to the Kansas City Temple which was great (photos above). We spent the evening at the Plaza, eating at a BBQ restaurant, and doing some shopping. Our last day, we met up at Penguin Park (where Kevin & all his siblings played at growing up) with the Painters & had fun. Ryder loved the swings and slides of course. We ate lunch at Zona Rosa at Noodles. Then later that evening we watched The Giver which was also good! I had read the book a little earlier in the year, so that was fun. I love when books I read, are turned into movies! We drove home on November 30th. We had a great trip!