Sunday, June 27, 2010

Welcome Anthony

Since our previous 2 boys were born via c-sections after unsuccessful labours, we went the planned c-section route with Anthony. So early (5am) on the 18th of March, Brad and I woke up and headed to the hospital. I was officially 38wks and 6 days. It had snowed/sleeted the day before and through the night so the roads were wet and a little slick. They had told us to be at the hospital, registered and upstairs on the 3rd floor for 6 am so we could be in the operating room first thing- but it didn't quite go that way.
Even with a planned c-section, apparently they need to hook you up to the monitors and check on mommy and baby before surgery. They needed to take blood again (two days before hand they took 3 or 4 viles of it), and start an iv. I've always been afraid of needles. I remember when they put in my iv with Ryan I thought to myself "Yay! My last needle for a long time." Little did I know they would draw blood again a couple of days later- or that I would get a spinal a couple of hours later when we went into the operating room for c-section #1. I don't think anyone tells you about all the needles during pregnancy and birth. There are a least I've always had a lot. But that is besides the point. My point is starting an iv. I've gotten used to needles. I even had myself more or less pumped for the spinal again (more about that in a bit!). What I was not prepared for, was the botched attempts at starting an iv at 6 in the morning. This was not the first time I have been on the unsuccessful side of starting an iv. Long story short...freshman year of University, week one, parents in Florida, middle of the night trip to the ER at the U of A hospital and three attempts at starting an hands and arms were black and blue for weeks. This time, two third floor nurses, two attempts each and still no iv. They brought up a nurse from the ER and she finally was able to get my iv in...weird spot too I thought, in my hand, by my thumb. It was frustrating and alarming for me that the iv was not going well because I was afraid that meant the spinal wouldn't go well either. Maybe my own nerves were playing a part in it, but I was trying to be as calm, cool and collected about it. But after failed attempt #2, I started to loose it. And if you've never had a failed iv attempt or a blown vein, let me just say, I don't recommend it. My dr. came in then, and asked why we weren't already in the OR. We just left it at, "we're having a couple of issues this morning". They tell me I was even having contractions; I don't know if that was to make me feel better, or if it was true but I do know I wasn't feeling them. Although that wouldn't be a first for me either! Once we were in the OR, it was time for the spinal. I had a different anaesthesiologist this time and after our pre- op meeting I was a little worried. It's not that I doubted her abilities, it was just she was someone new doing this to me, and since this was a scheduled c-section for the first time, we had the pre-op meeting and she went over all the "what if's" and worst case scenario- these were things I never had been told previously. For instance, I was informed that she would only try twice to get the spinal in, and if she wasn't able they would put me under general and because of the small size of my mouth, that might mean the loss of a tooth or two as they tried to put in the breathing tube. For me this was a scarier than heck thought! I couldn't stop thinking about it for the days between our pre-op meeting and my c-section. When the nurses started having difficulties putting in my iv, I grew less and less confident that things would go well in the OR. I am extremely happy to report however, that things went amazingly in the OR and the anaesthesiologist was an excellent member of my surgical team. I had a brief wave of nausea before they began but she was able to give me something for it. I felt a little more this time than the other times but it wasn't painful. With Ryan I couldn't remember feeling anything; with Adam I felt the cutting open but it didn't hurt (it felt more like someone drawing on me); this time I could feel the cutting again (again not painful) and I also felt the pulling and tugging as they took the baby out. Just after 8 in the morning, baby Anthony Murphy was pulled out. (You may notice that some of the pictures are time stamped for 7:41am but that is because I had the settings on my camera wrong.) Like always Brad went with the baby while I was stitched up, cleaned up and moved to recovery. I was very tired in recovery and tired to rest a bit but I watched the clock very carefully and hoped that the nurses would allow Brad to bring Anthony in to see me (with Ryan, Brad was able to bring him into recovery with me but not with Adam). I was moved from recovery to my room and thankfully one of the daytime nurses remembered me and got an electronic bed for me (much easier for me to get in and out of) but it wasn't quite as nice as the electronic bed I had with Adam (but much nicer than the crank style bed I had with Ryan). Brad was still in the nursery with Anthony and so I sent one of the nurses to go find them for me. I began to get very nauseous back in my room and in fact did get sick a couple of times. Brad stayed for a little bit but then he went home to let everyone know Anthony was here and to let us get some rest. He also needed some rest since it had been a very early morning. Later that day, Brad came back and brought the boys and my mom to come visit us. They were officially our first visitors. Adam was very happy to see me. Ryan and Adam were very happy to meet Anthony and fell in love with him instantly. We had a nice visit but I was very tired and I was ok with them leaving once the nurses brought me my supper. I was surprised that they brought me a sandwich for supper since I didn't think I was allowed "real" food yet and was still feeling a little nauseous. I did eat the rest of my supper though as it was liquidy (soup, jello and milk). The nurses agrred to take my sandwich and put it in the fridge in case I wanted it later. Anthony and I had a more or less quiet night alone getting to know each other. There were a couple of "code reds" that I remembered hearing later in the evening and that put me a little on edge. I did ask for my sandwich a little later that evening. The next day, the nurses came and removed my catheter and they put a lock on my iv and unhooked me allowing me to get up and move about a bit. I put on my own pyjamas (so nice, thanks mom for the cozy pants), and watched a movie. After lunch, I read a little of one of my books (more Christmas gifts) and had a nap. Then Brad's mom arrived to visit her newest grandson. We had a nice visit with her alone at first before Brad, my mom and the boys arrived again. Brad was surprised to see me up and moving around and that I had even gotten dressed. Again, everyone left as the nurses brought me supper but thankfully my mom bought me a couple of snacks from the snack vendor lady before they left. Brad came back later that evening and we watched a movie before they made him leave. I was so hungry later that night, I was glad for the snacks mom had bought for me. I watched another movie or two that night and read a little in my book.I don't know if it was all the movement that day, but I just couldn't get comfortable in bed that night. I hated bothing the nurses to help me all the time and sometimes I would push the call button and it would take a long time for someone to either come help me or bring what I asked for- if they came at all. I was very greatful that at one point after I had nursed Anthony, they took him for a bath and his stats and kept him with them for a bit at the nurses station allowing me a little sleep. I was a little apprehensive about having him away from me, but the sleep was welcomed.The rest of the night did not go as well. I still had difficulty getting into a nice sleeping position while Anthony was with me, I couldn't put him in the bassinet on my own and the nurses wouldn't come and help me with it because they didn't realize that I couldn't reach it properly on my own. Before breakfast came the next morning, I had already called Brad and begged him to come and help me sooner rather than later. I also warned him that if Dr H came by I was going to ask to be released. As nice as the quietness of the hospital was, I felt very alone at the hospital and was anxious to get home where I could get help when I needed it. And there is something to be said about sleeping in your own bed, even if it isn't an electric bed. When my doctor came by to check on Anthony and I that morning, he was ok with releasing me since I had help at home. He gave me a prescription for some pain relievers and my discharge papers, including when to come and get my staples removed. Brad and I still had some paperwork to fill out, including officially naming Anthony, and I still needed to shower before we went home. A shower is not an easy thing to do after surgery like this. Especially when you are trying to remove all the sticky tape residue. We dressed Anthony in his coming home outfit and then we left. As an aside note- while dressing Anthony, his little ankle bracelet slipped off his foot. The same ankle bracelet they are supposed to compare to my bracelet before allowing us to leave. Thankfully I was able to slip it back on him. We stopped to fill my prescription on the way home and grabbed lunch from the Tim Hortons drive thru. The boys stayed up (it was nap time) until we came home (and I had brought them home a treat from Tim Hortons) to welcome Anthony and I home. After a light lunch, everyone had a little nap. Home sweet home- to begin our journey as a party of five!

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Catch up post

Ok, it's been a while, a long while actually. Here is what we've been up to (in no particular order).
Ryan is potty trained. And it happened before the baby came. Actually it happened pretty easy once Ryan got into it. I would say Ryan was trained by mid -February. I had been putting him in diapers at night and for naps. Most nap times he was waking up dry so I stopped using diapers at nap time. Then we told him were were going to try to go without diapers at night and he was very excited to keep his underwear on. And he didn't have a single night time accident. Still hasn't. He will even get up in the middle of the night to go potty if he has to. Amazing.
Adam is out of our bed and in the room with Ryan. The key was switching beds. We moved Ryan over to the toddler bed which he was happy about since it is Winnie the Pooh and put Adam in the big boy bed. Some nights we'll find Adam snuggled up to Ryan in the toddler bed. He was still waking up during the night but now he is getting closer to sleeping through...except for his bed wetting...which I'll get to.
In February during the Family Day Activities at the JJ Parr, I took Ryan and Adam to a wooden Thomas the Train exhibit. The boys were given a train set for Christmas (I think it was Ryan's but Adam loves trains as much and plays with it now as much as Ryan) and so I thought this would be a good thing to do. The exhibit is amazing and maybe next spring/summer we can take a trip to Big Sky with either my parents or maybe the Seattle Melanchuks. There is also a small air museum that I know the"older" boys would enjoy.
The final trimester of my pregnancy went quickly and without any problems. And before I knew it we were hitting spring like weather and my mom was set to arrive any day. As a typical spring here, the temps were like a yo-yo as it snowed and melted, snowed and melted; Mother Nature couldn't seem to make up her mind. Then we were off to the city to pick up my mom. The boys were very happy and excited to see her again. We moved Ryan to the back of the van and he really seems to like being there.
Then of course there was the birth of our final little man, Anthony. I'll dedicate a separate entry to the birth and recovery from c-section number three. My mom was here for the full 6 weeks of my recovery and that was awesome. We are so glad that she and Jim are posted back to Cold Lake this summer. So while she was here we started looking at possible houses for them. We are expecting them back the first week of July for a proper house hunting trip and then hopefully they will be moved back by early August.
One of the last things my mom was here for was Adam's 2nd birthday. We invited some of our friends and had a great little party. I had wanted to have it outside in the back yard but the two days before it rained pretty steady, cooled down and made everything wet. So we moved everything inside and it went pretty well. It is easy to forget that Adam is only 2. He is very independent, he speaks very well, he is very strong physically and able to do things physically and is almost as tall and weighs almost as much as Ryan. I'll share more about the party and 2 year old Adam in a later post. Adam's newest issue is bedwetting. We haven't been potty training (although he did go a couple of times while I was in the hospital having Anthony) he is just obsessed with playing with his diaper. He often manages to get it pulled off at least partially and then wets the bed. It is very frustrating. We've tried many different things and just when we think we've found a solution, he figures a way out and wets the bed again.

Since my mom has left, we've all been adjusting into our new life as a "party of five" (a shout out to a favorite show from days at the UofA). There have been renovations at two parks near our house which have been big hits the boys. There will be lots of new park pictures over the summer I am sure. We've also been spending some time at our friends CSA garden. While my mom was here for the first 6 weeks of Anthony's life, it is hard to believe he is already 3 months old!! Again, these are topics that I anticipate blogging about in the near future with more details.
Stay tuned folks!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

New Look

I've updated the look of my blog today with a renewed sense of blogging more frequently again. Watch for a couple of "update" blogs in the next few days about all the exciting things that have happened in the last 6 months and then hopefully some regular blogging after that.

What do you think of my blogs' new look? I think that it is still a work in progress like me.