Monday, December 31, 2012

Obsessed and in love

About GD time I get back to writing on here, aye comrades?  Sorry for the long delays in updating, but I've been busy loving on this little stinker for the past 2 1/2 weeks.   Seriously, how is he already 2 1/2 weeks old?

The past two weeks or so have been a whirlwind for Matt and I.  Time is flying, yet kind of dragging by at the same time.  It feels like Owen was born weeks and weeks ago, yet just yesterday all at the same time.  So many people told us that becoming parents would completely change our lives in more ways than could be described....and I have to say I 255% agree.  Our conversations revolve around how big and what color Owen's poops are, to how he is probably the cutest baby ever born (duh), to how he never seems to stop eating.  In short, we are obsessed and in love with him. :)  It's already hard to remember what life was like before having him.

Owen already had his first doctor appointment, or rather first three appointments, because of his Jaundice.  After his third appointment, on his one week birthday, we finally got the ok to stop using the Bili Blanket.  And he seems so much happier without it on.  The first week home he had a fussy "witching hour" every night from 11pm to about 1am where he would whine/fuss/cry and nothing would calm him down, but now that the blanket is gone, his witching hour has disappeared.

First doctor appointment (5 days old)

We also celebrated our first Christmas together at home.  Matt and I did a lot of Christmas movie watching and face stuffing, while Owen did a lot of pooping/eating/napping.

We've already been getting a little stir crazy around the house, so we've been making daily trips out around Madison for errands or just window shopping.  We figure it's good for Owen to get used to being in his car seat and being jostled around a bit when we're out of the house.  So far, he's a wonderful traveler and falls asleep pretty much as soon as he's but in his seat and loves to be in the car.  We'll be looking for things to do in the up coming weeks, so if anyone is interested in a day visit from us, please let us know. :)

On the way to Owen's first doctor appointment (5 days old)

Owen's days are pretty predictable so far.  He wakes up, gets his diaper changed, eats, and goes back to sleep.  He's usually awake for about a hour twice a day and likes to sit in his Momaroo (thanks Uncle Seth!) and stare at the Christmas tree....until he falls back to sleep. :)

We put the blanket underneath him because he seems to always be running hot (like his dad) and will otherwise be a sweaty mess when we take him out of the chair.  The Momaroo has six different motion settings, which are suppossed to mimic the way I walked/moved when he was in my belly, so it comforts him.  So far he likes "Tree Swing" the best....which I'm guessing feels like my waddle the last 2 months.

I took Owen out on my own for the first time last week (Matt was helping his brother move).  I had a doctor appointment and then we stopped at Target for bit.  He slept the entire time and only screamed for about 15 seconds when we were 10 minutes form home...and then went back to sleep. :)  I feel as though we're pretty spoiled with such a good baby right now (knock on wood).

~Matt, Steph, and Big O~

***Have you seen the movie "Pitch Perfect"?  Go and rent it and then buy it!!!!  Seriously best movie ever.***

Friday, December 28, 2012

The birth story

Most of you have probably already heard first hand or read the email about Owen's birth story.  I wasn't going to put it on the blog (or at least not yet), but I feel like skipping over it and into our current lives makes the blog and our family story somewhat incomplete.  So if you've already heard/read this, feel free to skip this entry, though I did add updates throughout the original story.  Here we go.

So anyway, I had started having irregular contractions Tuesday morning (December 11) which was our due date, so I stayed home from work, but they stayed very irregular and inconsistent all day.  Then Wednesday morning I had more contractions and some blood when I went to the bathroom, so we called the hospital and they had us come in.  We found out we were 3 cm dilated, but they sent us home to do some walking, since we weren't showing any other major labor symptoms.  We walked the mall for about 2 hours that night, hoping to kick things into gear.  But nothing happened.  Thursday morning (December 13)  I decided to go into work because the sitting around was driving me crazy, so I went in for about 5 hours and then had slightly more regular contractions that afternoon after some more mall walking.  They were between 12 and 7 minutes apart at this point, but still no consistency.

Then around 5:45 that night (still Thursday Dec 13), while sitting on the couch, I suddenly felt a big THUNK inside me which made me scared the hell out of me.  I told Matt what I felt and he very calmly said, "Maybe your water broke."  I went in to the bathroom to check....and sure enough, my water had broke.  Matt and I both showered and headed in to the hospital, with my contractions then suddenly being 2-3 minutes apart and a hell of a lot stronger than they had been, like to the point where I couldn't talk through them.  By the time we were admitted to the hospital, the contractions were about a minute apart and very very painful.  Our nurse said she figured we would have a quick labor/delivery because of how things had progressed....famous last words.

While waiting for the Epidural (yeah, that decision was made about three minutes after arriving), I received some Morphine, which caused me a lot of vomiting over the next 6 hours.  Once I had the Epidural, things slowed down a bit, so Matt and I were able to "rest" until we were fully dilated at about 2:00am.  However during the "resting" period, my blood pressure, heart rate, and temperature sky rocketed, so they did a test and found me to have a uterine infection (which can happen during labor and they aren't sure why it happens to some women).  And the baby's heart rate had fallen.  So after pushing for 2 hours (it was around 5:00am at this point) the doctor came in and said that we hadn't made any progress with the pushing, and with the baby's heart rate still being low and all my issues, we should do an emergency Cesarean.  Which we of course agreed to right away.

***Update: Word to the not let the anesthesiologist resident do your pain medication.  I felt every moment of my C-Section because he didn't give me enough to begin with and it was the most painful experience of my life.  I was screaming/bellowing throughout the entire operation.  Thank goodness for Matt being by my side throughout it all...I honestly would not have made it without him being there.  The same resident also had to redo my initial epidural three times before the main guy finally took over earlier in the night.

When the doctors finally announced that Owen was out of my belly all I could do was ask, "Why isn't he crying?  Why isn't he crying?" over and over.  Finally one of the nurses explained that not all babies cry when they're first born, especially with a C-Section.***

Owen was born at 7:11am (Friday, December 14) but was having some problems breathing at first, so we only got to see him long enough for a quick kiss (aka probably slobber) from me, then he was rushed up to the NICU.  After a long recovery time in the OR, Matt and I were finally able to go up and see Owen a of couple hours later.  By that time he was breathing completely fine on his own, but he had developed an infection from my uterine infection, so he had to be on antibiotics for 2 days and stay in the NICU.

***Update: We found out a couple days later that Owen had some of these issues because I have O positive blood and he has A (I can't remember if it's positive/negative) blood, which is not a good mix.  Why this happens is beyond my comprehension, but it at least gave us some explanation.

After being in recovery from surgery for about two hours, we were finally able to go up to the NICU to see Owen.  I was wheeled in on a hospital bed/gurney since I couldn't get up.  Although I was in and out of being awake (and looked/felt like hell), I'll never forget holding my little boy for the first time. :) ***

Over the next day and a half I ended up needing a blood transfusion from my blood loss in the surgery and being on antibiotics.  And the pain meds they were giving me through the IV made me vomit (again) and not be able to keep any food and very little water down.  Once I had the transfusion on Saturday, my blood pressure and heart rate finally started coming down a bit.

***Update: Apparently I looked like death run over twice up until I had the transfusion.  I could barely keep my eyes open and would literally fall asleep while talking to someone and then wake up later trying to finish my sentence.  In the middle of the first bag of blood they gave me I felt like I had woken up from being in a coma.  I was suddenly a Chatty Cathy and wanted to chug water like a maniac.***

Owen had to stay in the NICU until Saturday evening (December 15), but the nurses would bring him down to us every couple hours for feedings and visits, which was wonderful.  Our first overnight with him went great and he seemed to be on a pretty good schedule of waking up, eating, pooping, then falling back to sleep. :)  He developed some Jaundice, so he was wrapped in a Bili Blanket (which is a photolight therapy UV blanket) for a week, which pushed the Jaundice out of his system (Through his poop.  Yup, you poop it out).

***Update: We were finally able to go home on Monday, December 17 in the early evening.  We were excited, nervous, but so ready to get our little guy home.

Still so yellow from the Jaundice (Monday, Dec 17), But finally home!

So that was the birth story.  I'm sure I skipped over some things and or left some things out, but that was our experience in a nut shell.  On major thing....I will never be able to say enough wonderful things about every single nurse we had while in the hospital.  Honestly, how those women do the amazing things they do day in and day out.....despite everything that did not go as planned, the nurses made our stay so much better than we could have ever hoped for.

~Matt, Steph, and Owen~

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Christmas Baby

***Merry Christmas from the Kendall's***

While we're at home stuffing our faces with food and watching holiday movies, we hope you're all having a very very Merry Christmas.  Not gonna lie, I think our early Christmas present may just trump yours this year. :)

Lots of love,

Matt, Steph, and Owen

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Hi. I'm Owen.

Hi, I'm Owen.

I was born on Friday, December 14, 2012 at 7:11am.  I weighed 7lbs 11oz too, kind of crazy, huh?  I was 20.5 inches long, but am already growing like a weed.

My mommy ended up having to have an emergency C-Section, but she wasn't too scared because daddy stayed by her side the entire time.  I had to spend some time in the NICU right after I was born, but mommy and daddy got to see me for a quick minute before I was taken away.  All the nurses said I had dark blue eyes, lots of blond hair and big hands, so I'll probably be a handsome star quarterback one day.  This is the first time I was held by my mommy and daddy. They were just a little excited to have me with them. :) And mommy tried to put on a good face, but she was still not feeling very well.  But she was so excited to finally meet me.

First family photo :)

My mommy and I had to be on some antibiotics for a little while, so the nurses and doctors had us wired up like robots, but before too long we were both doing better.

Mommy and Daddy came up to visit me in the NICU and I was able to go down and visit them for cuddle time and for feedings.

And before too long I was able to finally sleep in mommy and daddy's hospital room all day and night.  Our first sleepover was fun - I got lots of cuddle time with mommy and daddy slept for about 1 hour.

I ended up with Jaundice, so I had to wear this glow-worm/spacesuit blanket (photolight therapy) for a while to help me get better.  It kind of makes me feel like an astronaut.  This is also a photo of when I had my hearing test, so I look like a mega robot glow worm.  Daddy insisted on taking this picture.

I had a lot of visitors when I was born too.  Man, I am one popular guy. :)

Grandma and Grandpa Kendall...Grandpa was being shy with Uncle Seth

Grandma Bell

Uncle RJ and my cousin Ari made the trip all the way down too!

Auntie Ashley and Uncle Bill

Auntie Courtney and Uncle Mike and Auntie Nicole

My best friend Nolan and his mommy and daddy

And more friends! :)  Seriously, I must be pretty awesome or something.

Then finally it was time to go home!  Mommy and daddy were so excited to being me to our house to meet the puppies and to get our lives started as a family of three.

Stayed tuned for more updates from mommy!


Tuesday, December 11, 2012

40 weeks Part 1 "Today is our due date"

Today is our due date.  And so far our little peanut is fashionably late for his birthday party.  I'll forgive him though, since he doesn't have any way to text/Facebook/email/call/S.O.S. me that he's running a little behind.

As we reach the tail end of this crazy and amazing journey of pregnancy, I thought I would write a bit about my thoughts and feelings on the past 9 months.  It's honestly more of a very public journal entry, so if my normal rambling thoughts annoy you, I would tread carefully from here on.  Or just shut your trap since I'm almost 10 months pregnant.

We're pregnant!
Finding out we were pregnant was one of the most earth shattering moments in my life so far.  Who knew that seeing those little lines on a pee covered stick could make such an amazing impact on you.  I think Matt and I were both in denial about it for some time, though still giddy over the idea, if that makes sense.  Even seeing him as a tiny little blob during out first ultrasound (7 weeks) didn't make it entirely real.  Weirdly enough, our first bleeding/spotting scare at 11 weeks was what made it truly real for us.  Worrying all day long that something could happen to our little peanut showed us both how much the pregnancy already meant to us (we had only known for less than a month at this point).  When we had the emergency ultrasound that day and we saw how much our little guy had already developed into a baby (and of course that he was 100% healthy and ok) gave me a sense of calm and relief I didn't know I needed.

Morning sickness:
The weeks upon weeks of morning sickness were more than worth it when we saw the above image....though I still don't quite understand how people go through that more than once.  I will definitely not forget how awful that constant feeling was, even when I have the reason for it all in my arms.  I know that I in no way had it anywhere near as bad as some people, but a constant feeling of being a second away from puking from 4am-10am and then 5pm-10pm everyday for about 3 months was a lot to deal with (at the time anyway).  Luckily I only got sick about a dozen or so times.  After many many trial and errors with food/drink, I finally figured out that snacking on dry Special K cereal, while sipping on water during my drive into work was what made me not get sick.  Who knew?

It's a boy!
The weeks leading up to finding out if Baby K was a boy or girl seemed like they took foooorevvvverrrr.  Knowing that appointment was also the half way point also made it feel like it was ages away.  And then, of course, it suddenly was upon us.  And like Matt and I had both predicted, Baby K was in fact Baby Boy K.  :)  Matt had hoped for a boy all along, while I was more in the middle.  Most of me wanted a little boy, but there was a smaller part of me that hoped for a girl.  When the ultrasound tech announced, "Here's one leg, two legs, and a third leg!" our little family of two finally felt like it was a true family of three.

Baby Naming:
Try and top the awesomeness of Owen Xavier's name.   Triple dog dare ya.  I'm very happy we decided to use a family name as part of Baby Owen's name.  Even though Matt and I never had the chance to meet his great grandpa Francis Xavier, I love knowing there is a piece of Matt's past in our baby's future.

On gaining weight:
When I first found out I was pregnant, I was the heaviest I'd ever been in my life.  I knew growing a baby would lead to a substantial weight gain and most of that weight would be for the greater good of the baby...but honestly, what woman is 100% thrilled to be gaining 20+ pounds?  Here's one of our first weekly belly photo from the blog when I was 20 weeks along...and I thought my belly was HUGE at this point....and then next to it is a photo from last week at 39 weeks.

Ummm, what the heck was I thinking back then?!  Everyone kept telling me, just wait until the 9th month, but for some reason I didn't believe it would make such a difference.  Holy hell, does it ever.  Oh and for those of you that are curious....(and try to be nice since I'm really putting myself out there right now)  I've gained exactly 30 pounds from our first doctor appointment at 7 weeks until now.  THIRTY. POUNDS.  That's like carrying an extra three Ty Cobbs around every where I go.

Preparing for baby:
Luckily, I am a nester/psycho planner by nature, so planning for Baby Owen's arrival was not stressful in the slightest.  Well, the most stressful part was being a psycho review reader for every single baby product imaginable.  Like even nose aspirators and wipes.  Otherwise, decorating the baby room, buying all the baby items, and organizing it all was a dream come true for me.

Matt and I love thrift store shopping, garage saling, and finding amazing deals, so when it came to baby items our buying sessions were no exception.  I had no problem buying about half of all the baby clothes at consignment shops and garage sales, especially when most of them still had tags on them and were a fraction of original price!

Maternity Photos:
You will never go through your first pregnancy again. So do them.  Especially if you have an amazingly talented friend to take them.  Try to ignore the fact your face may not be super photogenic and will make awkward faces without meaning too (unless that's your real face....hmmm).  I will treasure these photos forever.

Oh my god, we're almost parents:
Oh my god.....we're almost parents.  Like any second, I will be a mom and Matt will be a dad.  Strangely enough, we're actually not too worried about this.  We both had jobs in the past were we took care of people with disabilities, so we were responsible for another person's life, and they lived to tell the tale.  I have zero doubt in my mind that we will handle parenthood without major problems.  Hopefully...

Oh my god, I have to give birth:
Oh my god....I am terrified of giving birth.  Horrified and completely terrified.  I'm afraid of the pain and not being able to handle it.  I'm afraid I'm going to die and Matt will be left alone with our son.  (He loves when I bring that up)  I'm afraid something will happen to the baby.  Or that he will be born with some weird problem (like his hand attached to his face...that's my latest one) and he will have to struggle with it for his whole life.  Giving birth  is my kryptonite night now...if I can beat that, I like to think I can take on anything.

I am scared for breastfeeding too.  I'm worried my boobs won't produce or I won't be able to feed Baby K because of dumb choices when I was in college.  I am going into it with zero expectation beyond wanting to try (that way I won't be let down if something doesn't work) but I'm still worried it won't work.  The engorgement phase freaks me out too.  And a small part of me will always think breastfeeding is weird.

Keepin' the lovin' alive:
Though Matt and I have a very solid, loving, wonderful relationship, I'm still nervous for how it will change/grow/develop once we're sleep deprived and stressed.  or even on a great day with baby in tow...our relationship will never be the same.  We will no longer be the most important person in the other's life;  we'll both have to share the spotlight with a tiny cute little man who can do no wrong.  I'm scared for the future of us, but also excited to see where our relationship can go from here.

Friends and Family:
I am so excited for all our friends and family to meet Baby K and be in his life.  I think most of them feel the same way. :)  But I also know, that like my marriage, my friendships will change.  Sure everyone will want to see us and hang out with us when Baby Owen first arrives, but that newness will fade eventually.  We already have some friends that don't understand how we have to put our puppies before going out drinking all night long, how will they react to our having a baby with us everywhere we go or every time we hang out?  I know that friendships (and sometimes even family ties) can fade over time, but I truly hope those important to us now, know who they are and stick with us, even when we have a poop machine screamer while out to dinner.

Future Kids?
As of now, we're stuck on the idea of Baby Owen being our one and only.  And yes, we realize he'll probably be a little weird since he'll be an only child, but would any of you really expect Matt and I me to have a completely normal child?  I can't wait to meet his weirdness!  I honestly hope he's the kid who insists on wearing a super hero costume with a cowboy hat to the grocery store in June.  And says crazy strange things to anyone and everyone (until he's an adult...then it may be too weird...).  Besides it's the weird ones who change history and write amazing novels, paint crazy pictures, and invent world changing inventions.  So take that Judgy McJudgers.

And one last thought...
Oh maternity clothes.  How I will miss the stretchy belly bands you have.  Maybe I can still wear them even when I (hopefully) don't need them anymore...

Thanks for sticking with us during the last 9 months as our lives became a bit of a whirlwind.  I plan to keep the baby blog going once Baby Owen decides to make an appearance, hopefully with weekly posts, mostly with pictures of the little man for our family and friends that won't get to see him all the time.  If you have an requests or ideas for posts/topics to cover, don't be shy!  I love hearing from you all. :)

Lots of love and appreciation,
Matt and Steph

***Oh and if Baby Owen doesn't show up today, stay tuned for another 40 week post, probably mostly consisting of me complaining about still being pregnant.***

Sunday, December 9, 2012

39 weeks "I keep checking the clock"

39 weeks has officially become labor watch week.  Literally every single twinge, crampy feeling, or ache makes me whip my head to find a clock to make note of the time, in case it's the beginning of labor.  I've kind of given up on the "You'll just know" idea about going into real labor.  I'm just going to assume that after a while we'll figure out that it's the real thing.  Take for instance, about 2 weeks ago, I had bad cramps and a bad stomach ache for about four hours and was pretty convinced it was time...and yet here I am still mego prego.  And on Saturday Matt and I ran all over town all day keeping busy with errands and shopping, hoping to kick start some labor, which of course did not work.  Baby Owen was probably the most active he's been in months, along with my body giving me lots of weird and random twinges/crampy feelings....but I'm still mego prego today.

At our 39 week doctor appointment, the doc checked again to see if I was dilated at all....and we were finally getting somewhere!  Yes my friends, I was dilated to 1.5 cm.  Which pretty much means nothing at this point.  I could have gone into labor the very next day, or may end up having to wait to be induced in our 41st week.  But it gave me hope that there actually was an end in sight and we'll finally get to meet our little future kicker in less than two weeks. :)  Such a crazy, surreal, amazing feeling. :) :) :)

One weird thing...for the past two weeks my right hand has been numb.  It's just another fun symptom that can happen when you're this pregnant.  I have the numbness 100% of the time in all my right fingers (but not thumb) and after a really busy day at work, it spreads to my palm too.  One night my right foot also went numb, but only the one time.

Next week (or actually in 2 days since these posts are a week behind) we hit 40 weeks and our due date.  It seriously feels like we just found out we were pregnant a month or less ago.  It's insane how quickly the past 9 months have flown by.  Some days it feels like we were just talking about trying to make a baby, and now suddenly our made baby is about to be born.

For this week's photo, I wore tighter fitting clothing, to try and show you the actual size of my belly. (Sexy sounding, huh?)  I only have 2 non-work shirts that fit right now, both of which I wear every weekend so you've been seeing them every other week or so the last 2+ months (royal blue top: here,  here, and here  and grey and black sweater: here, and here, ), so I thought I would switch it up the only way I could this week with my limited leggings and a black tank top with a cardigan.  Which made me end up looking like a big butted, pregnant cat woman...only without any cat ears or ninja skills. : /

39 weeks along

Believe it or not, this is actually my belly after it's dropped too, though in the first picture it seems to defy gravity a bit, or it appears as though I'm pushing it up like a boob.

~Matt, Steph, and Baby Owen~

***Weekly words of wisdom: Not so much wisdom this week....but please send us happy thoughts as we reach the end of the pregnancy....and keep all your appendages crossed that we go into labor on our own and get to forego the inducement in week 41...which would make us 10 months pregnant....***

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

38 weeks "Are we having a baby today?"

Ever since the doctor told me I wasn't allowed to travel to Minneapolis a few weeks ago, we've had our selves set on high alert, expecting labor pains or water breaking or pre-eclampsia to happen at any moment.  And being on constant high alert has been exhausting.   I'm back to napping every afternoon (or any chance I get) for an hour or more, much like my early pregnancy.  And I've also been dealing with feeling sick at various times throughout the day.

Time has kind of stood still since the no travel rule appointment too, which has only made us more anxious.  Time leading up the finding out Baby K's gender dragged on, and then from that day until about a month ago has flown by.  And now it drags again.  Which I've heard from a couple people is very normal.  Any day could be THE day, which is scary and exciting all at once.  :)  We have finally settled down a bit this week, trying to accept that things will happen when they will.  Trying.  Every morning Matt has taken to asking me, "Are we having a baby today?"  to which I always answer, "I don't know, maybe" and we hope that today will be that day.  So far it hasn't been the day (obviously).  But we're happy to keep Baby Owen in his little cocoon for as long as he chooses, or until our doctor decides is long enough.  She told us that she only allows babies go a week past their due dates because after 41 weeks, it's no longer better for the baby to be inside the mom.  And about 90% of the time, once the induction is scheduled, the moms go into labor before their induction date.  Hopefully we'll get to schedule it at our next appointment (39 weeks).

Our 38 week doctor appointment went well.  Blood pressure, urine, and weight are good.  The doctor checked me again to see if I was dilated at all yet...which was a big negative.  However, my cervix has started to soften (become effaced) a bit, so it's a start. :)  We also talked to her about labor signs because I've been freaking myself out over the fact that everything I read or almost everyone I talk to says "You'll just know," when real labor starts.  But how do you just know something you've never been through before?!

Baby Stats
Weight: About 6.8 lbs
Length: Around 19 1/2 inches long
***Pelvic pressure is insaaane.  Sometimes when I get up to go the bathroom in the middle of the night, I have to walk/gimp down the hallway like there's an invisible horse between my legs, while bracing my hands on both walls to keep from falling over.  Also, Baby Owen seems to be following in his daddy's footsteps to be a kicker, except Mr. Owen appears to be a lefty.  When he kicks me, it honestly feels like he's going to burst through my skin Alien style.  He loves to stretch/kick and hold it for a minute or more sometimes.

38 weeks along

Having a hard time feeling cute these days....even on the one day a week I actually get ready because of these pictures...and it's really hard to smile in these pictures because I can't breathe through my nose very well.

~Matt, Steph, and Baby Owen~

***Weekly words of wisdom: Coca Cola will never taste as good as it does when you can't drink it all the time.  Enjoy your once a week caffeine free Coke down to the last drop.  Every. Last. Drop. Mmmmm.***