Thursday, August 27, 2009

Today was an exciting day for THIS new Mommy!!

It started at 3:00 am when I was awakened by Hunter's cry. That is when it dawned on me that my little man had slept through FIVE consecutive hours of the night. Holy smokes! That is the longest he's gone yet and I have to admit, I woke up repeatedly before he did--pretty much scaring myself awake--to check and make sure the baby was still breathing and alive.
I just couldn't believe he was still sleeping!

Aren't those lips to die for? He is going to wow all the girls someday, my little man!!

After nursing at three in the morning, Hunter fell back asleep--for another THREE straight hours! Go, baby boy! Needless to say, Mommy and Daddy got some fantastic sleep last night.

After kind of a hectic, stressful morning (Hunter has been suffering from some unbearable gas, and spitting up, the past couple of days and it's made him a VERY cranky boy) I finally got out and on the road. I was heading over to my friend, Angel's, to borrow her breast pump (up until this point, I've been renting one from the hospital) and she made us coffee and lunch. I had an awesome time visiting, exchanging baby stories (she has three kids) and just catching up.

At one point, Angel asked if we'd done any tummy time with Hunter yet. We have only done it once or twice, and kinda leaned him on the boppy.
So today, we put him flat on his belly on the floor and to Angel's surprise, little Hunter lifted his head completely up and off the floor.

I keep tellign people how strong he is--that he holds his head, yes wobbily but still, up on his own and that he has already rolled over onto his side--but I think most people believe me to be exaggerating, the eager new Mommy.
Heh. Well, this time I had a witness.

He completely lifted his head AND legs up off the floor here. (He's crying cuz turns out he had an incredibly dirty diaper at the same time! LOL)

After that, he promptly rolled over to his left side and then, almost as if he decided he didn't like the view, Hunter completely reversed and rolled to his right side..and then COMPLETELY rolled over!!!

Thankfully Angel had her camera out already and was busily snapping pictures while we cheered him on.

Holy crap, Mom! WHAT just happened???

I am so proud of my big boy!!! I swear my love for my son grows more and more every day.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

As of Tuesday, Hunter will be three weeks old.

Three weeks? ALREADY? Where has the time gone??

And what happened to my newborn? Already, the skinny legs and arms he was born with have begun developing sweet little fat rolls. And his face is chubbing up nicely into an adorable double chin. As of last Wednesday, he is 9 lbs. 3 oz., so he made it back up to his birth weight (after losing a pound) and then some. That makes Mommy very happy.

And he's started making all kinds of adorable sounding noises...between those and his "smiles" I am smitten. I can't stop kissing him.
I can't stop staring at this little baby in amazement as he continues to change and grow before my very eyes. I can't stop kissing him and thanking God for bringing him into my life. I feel so incredibly lucky and blessed. I can't stop gazing at Daryl and realizing that my love for him has grown; he's helped me create this beautiful little life, this piece of both of us. Daryl's nose and forehead, my chin and lips, my feet and long toes and legs, and Daryl's wide hands...all of it we can see in our boy, Hunter. There is no doubt we made this boy!

Breastfeeding is going great. Hunter latches on and eats like it's his job, and I'm also up to pumping three times a day (granted, at least one of those times I don't get a ton of milk, but I'm still keeping it up). I've only just begun to freeze the breast milk for when I go back to work, plus I like to have at least 1-2 bottles a day that Daryl can feed his son. I think they both need that bonding time to talk to each other, and stare into each other's eyes. It is endearing to watch and listen to!

Oh, and we can't forget about Tucker. Tuck is quietly in love with his human brother. He doesn't bother the baby with unnecessary sniffing/licks but he does make sure to lay nearby. And when Hunter is crying from his pack and play, Tucker always makes sure to go check things out. He is also exceptionally gentle...we let the dog come up on the bed occasionally when I have Hunter laying between us and Tucker gently slides into a laying position so as not to disturb the baby. He gives him a cursory sniff and content, lays his golden blond doggie-head down in contentment.
All in all, we've fallen into a comfortable pace of life, even with the lack of sleep some nights, and I wouldn't trade my family for the world!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Squirrels suck.

After bringing baby Hunter home from the hospital on Thursday August 6th, we were in for a treat. A freakin' squirrel in our basement. And the best part was that I think he was in there since AT LEAST August 4th, induction day, cuz I had gone in the basement that morning and not only did I see insulation lying on the basement floor but weirdly enough insulation fell out of the ceiling while I was down there. I was nowhere near it and it just randomly fell from the ceiling and I couldn't figure out why. Once we realized there was a damn furry-tailed rat (Daryl's description of squirrels, heh heh) in our basement, it dawned on me that was probably what caused the insulation to come down.

Then began Daryl's plan of attack.

1. First Daryl left our bilco doors open, that lead to the outside, for a few hours hoping that Mr. Squirrel would get the hint and realize his presence wasn't welcome. No such luck.

2. Second, Daryl, realizing where the squirrel came in from (down the chimney and through a hole into the basement) cemented up the hole after chasing the squirrel back in. Then he put on the heat for about a minute or so (don't worry, he wasn't trying to fry the little critter!) to hopefully smoke the squirrel back up and out of the chimney. That did NOT work.

3. Third was the Hav-a-Heart trap that we borrowed from his Grandpa. The little squirrel-bastard repeatedly kept setting the trap off but NOT getting caught in it!

4. Then came the bee-bee (sp?) gun. Big D sat quietly in the basement, gun in hand, hunting his prey. But of course the furry brat stayed hidden. I guess that squirrel was no dummy.

5. This is actually a continuation of the bee-bee gun but it's sorta funny how it came about. Monday August 10th, my first day without Big D after Hunter was born, I was watching tv with my Mom who had come over. Suddenly, from out of the corner of my eye, I saw something dart underneath the door leading down to the basement. And I heard a strange "scratch-scratch" sound. When I turned to look I didn't see anything. But when it happened AGAIN, I looked and saw...a TINY GRAY PAW WITH RAZOR SHARP CLAWS desperately clawing underneath our basement door leading into the house! Mr. Squirrel wanted IN! Tucker tried to nose his way over but I yelled at him to go lay down cuz the last thing I wanted was the squirrel scratching my poor dog's snout. Anyway, I called Daryl and at first I was okay with it but the more frantically Mr. Squirrel started to scratch at our flimsy basement door, the more frantic that I became that he would claw his damn way into the house before the end of the day when Daryl came home!

Needless to say, Big D came home and brought out the bee-bee gun again. He lay on the floor in wait, staring under the crack of the door (cuz earlier I had shone a flashlight and found myself eye to beady eye with the damn squirrel) and when the animal came back up the stairs, Daryl shot it, point-blank. BULLSEYE!!!

Daryl threw open the door, positive the squirrel was dead or badly hurt as he saw with his own eyes that the shot hit him. The squirrel was a few steps down so he shot at him AGAIN and watched his furry body fly through the air...and then BEGIN RUNNING AWAY!! Mr. Squirrel then ran and hid and that was that.

6. Over that weekend, after more frustrating days of not being able to catch/shoot/release the damn squirrel, Daryl went back downstairs with his bee-bee gun. He shot at him one more time and then in desperation, began banging a damn shovel around and actually did hit the squirrel once, twice. THE SQUIRREL DID NOT DIE.

7. Next was the rat traps. Big D put up about four to five rat trips with big globs of peanut butter on each. The squirrel, who we KNOW was starving at this point (that's the reason I think he was trying to get into the house, it was always after I cooked something) did not go near any of those damn rat traps. SQUIRREL: 7 HUMANS: 0

8. A couple of days later I went downstairs to do laundry. It was a chore that I had been dreading cuz I didn't want to go near the "MANIAC squirrel". I banged on the basement door a bunch of times first, then cracked the door and peeked down. No squirrel and the rat trap Daryl had placed on the third step down was still there with its glob of peanut butter. I nervously crept down the stairs and as I stepped off the bottom step, it hit me.


After well over a week (possibly MORE) of no food or water, being shot with a bee-bee gun multiple times and whacked with a shovel (after all our HUMANE efforts had failed miserably, mind you!)...Mister Squirrel had kicked the bucket.

And now?

Now we have a dead squirrel SOMEWHERE in our basement, smelling worse and worse every day, accumulating disgusting flies that escape up into the house all the time. Even though the poor furry-tailed rat died, I feel like he's still gotten the last word...


Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Hunter's Birth Story

It was an utterly fantastic experience, my labor and Hunter's delivery, so much better than I thought it would be. As soon as he was out one of the first things I said to Daryl after laying eyes on my little love muffin, was, "I will TOTALLY do this again!"

We went to the hospital Tuesday (August 4th) morning at 8:00am for induction.

At that point I was 1 cm dilated, 80% effaced, and baby boy was READY and down low. The pitocin was started at nine.

I went up to 2 cm pretty quickly and then at 1:00ish my doctor broke my water. At the next check, I had gone up to 4cm, and at this point I was still pretty convinced we'd be in it for the LONG haul. I was determined to hold out as long as I could on getting any pain relief (even though I DID know that I wanted an epi), becuz I didn't want to prolong things more than necessary. But I was also anxious to not miss my window of opportunity TO get one.

And then once back labor set in, it wasn't a question anymore. I was sitting in a rocking chair (after realizing how horrible back labor felt in bed but being unable to get up and walk around through the now intensely painful contractions) and every time a contraction hit, I'd immediately get nauseous and squeeze the arm rails of the chair and start rocking and breathing (and swearing like a truck driver! LOL) . I even puked up the popsicles I'd eaten about a half hour earlier.

This went on for a little while before I finally begged Daryl to get the nurse cuz I needed relief. And during it all, Daryl was THE BEST labor coach ever...even better than I thought he'd be. He was calm and soothing, encouraging me to breathe (I kept holding my breath without realizing it when a particularly painful contraction would hit) and letting me squeeze the shit out of his hand. He applied pressure to my low back and that also helped so much.
I think by the time the epi was administered and it took affect, it was about 5:20ish pm. I enjoyed a good ten minutes or so of no pain, but I was so happy to realize I could still feel every contraction! I was so glad that the anesthesiologist gave me the perfect amount, not too much or too little, cuz I had told DH all along I wanted to be able to FEEL myself pushing etc. I could still feel my legs, they weren't completely numb.

Anyway next thing I know, I mentioned to my Mom (who was there) and Daryl that I felt kinda a "weird, intense pressure down below" and "should I tell the nurse?". Nurse came in and checked me, cuz Doctor wasn't back yet, and to my surprise (and hers!) she said "Wow, you are 10cm dilated and ready to push!" HOLY CRAP! Even though I was beyond exhausted by that point, I was pleasantly surprised to realize we'd be meeting our baby boy sooner than thought.

Just HOW soon, I didn't realize...on the first push, I heard Daryl cry out, "April, he's got hair!" Believe it or not, this has been a hot topic with us for a while, wondering if this baby would come out bald (like I had been) or with hair (like Daryl as a baby). Every push I was encouraged by the nurses about how great I was doing, and they called me a "show-off". The doctor still hadn't arrived yet and the nurse asked me to hold off on pushing for a minute if I could. I told her, "No way" and she said to just bare down gently becuz the doctor was coming. Later on, I found out the nurse was slightly nervous about Hunter having shoulder displasia (sp?). This was one of the main reasons we'd talked induction and about Hunter's large size, but thankfully my Doctor never dwelled on it when talking to me or I would have been very nervous about that during labor.

So my Doctor arrived, teasing me about how I couldn't wait for her, huh? I pushed, she told me I had "one more push" which actually turned out to be two, and after only thirty minutes of pushing, out he came!

Without a doubt, the best moment of my life was laying eyes on his beet-red, screaming and pinched up face. And hearing my Mom say, "Aww, he has Daryl's nose!". Up until that moment (and even during pushing) I'd been smiling but then at that, I burst into tears.

I am in love more and more every day with this sweet little baby. I can't keep my hands, and kisses, off of him!!
And we are not the only ones in love! Here are Daryl's cousins who couldn't get enough of him at the hospital.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Some more gratuitious baby-cuteness for you...

...I can't stop kissing this kid's sweet little cheeks. And his chin. And his belly. And his nose. Even in the middle of the night, with Mama bleary-eyed and Hunter on his fifth poopy-diaper and (sore and bleeding nipple) boob-drinking session. Even then, I still wanna kiss him.

I love my little man (and my big man).

Thursday, August 06, 2009

Home finally!

I am (of course) utterly exhausted...blissfully happy...but I had to at least post some pics for you guys.

And later on (not today!) I promise to post my birth story. I'll say this, I can NOT complain about labor and birth. I will definitely do this again if I get another adorable little bundle of love out of it.

I was in labor a total of nine hours and pushed thirty minutes and then the best moment of my life happened. I am still am in awe of this little creature that Daryl and I created. I look at Hunter and see Daryl's nose, my chin, Daryl's brow, and my long fingers and toes. AMAZING.

I am so, so in love. And my favorite moments so far? Watching Daryl--big, strong, tough Daryl--laying with the baby on his chest, skin to skin, telling him how much he loves his "little man".

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Hunter Richard Cashin was born at 6:14pm August 4th. 8 lbs and 11 oz, 19 inches. And a beautiful boy he is with his Daddy's nose and Mommy's chin! I promise pics when I can. :-)
Chugging along slowly but surely...2 cent dilated, 90 percent effaced and -2 station. My mom is napping and daryl and I watching Anchorman lol.
Sitting in my hospital bed, pitocin drip in, and I am bored. Lol and thirsty already!

Monday, August 03, 2009

No baby yet!

After definitely losing my mucus plus (all I'm gonna say is GROOOOOSS! LOL) yesterday morning, my Braxton Hicks contractions picked up. And a dull, steady period-like cramp kept up most of the day. But by evening, everything calmed down again.

So at this point, it is looking like we won't have any baby appearance till at least tomorrow, my induction date! (and of course depending on long my labor goes, maybe not till Wednesday?).

My low back has been steadily hurting for the past couple of days and sleeping is so uncomfortable (even though I'm still managing TO sleep in between my pee breaks) and I can barely sleep on my right side anymore from the throbbing in my hip. So I've been napping when/if I can.

Today I went with Daryl to his doctor's appointment. We found out some more info about his medicines (changing some, getting new ones) and one bit of info I was NOT happy to hear. He was recently changed to a new blood pressure med about a month ago and this medicine is brand new to the market. Anyway, today at the office, the RN told Daryl he is the THIRD patient she's seen who has been hospitalized with acute Pancreatitis approximately a month after going on this new medication! So she immediately took him off of it and switched to something else. Also she referred him to a Gasteronentoligist (or however that's spelled) AND I asked about a dietitian since we now have to make sure Daryl eats not only a diabetic diet but low fat/low cholesterol. Your pancreas is what helps regulate your sugar so since Daryl AND his pancreas are still recup'ing, his blood sugar levels have still been all over the board. He is giving himself insulin once a day now and I'm trying my best to find healthy things for us to eat.

In addition, since he is anemic, he gets very dizzy/light headed and tires out easily. So needless to say, BOTH of us have been napping/resting when we can. I feel horribly lazy cuz it's driving me insane that there is still stuff I want to do but I just can't.

But again on a good note, tomorrow is the day!!! I am so thankful and excited and can't wait to meet our little boy!!

Saturday, August 01, 2009

Just a warning...this post is gonna be TMI!

So, I am picking up my Big D from the hospital today (FINALLY) so I was puttering around the house eating breakfast etc., basically trying to kill time but still relax my tired body (which is hard to do when you're feeling antsy!) when I suddenly had a HUGE nesting instinct kick in.

I started washing dishes and then dusting and vacuuming the living room, but had to stop when I realized I needed to pee.

Ok, here is where the TMI part comes in for those who don't want to read it. Heh.

Before I sat down on the toilet I noticed a little something floating in the toilet (and not to be gross but I hadn't had a bowel movement since yesterday, just been peeing nonstop all night and morning, so I know it wasn't that) so I just shrugged and sat down to pee. When I wiped and looked down at the toilet paper, it was definitely more than just pee on it! It was tinted a very light, light brown with some little spots here and there of mucus. Not a lot, mind you, but enough to make me take notice that's for sure! And almost immediately after that I started having some gentle (not painful) low belly cramps, almost period-like, followed by instant diarrhea.

Could this be the start of losing my mucus plug? Do you think this could be the beginning of early labor? Is this wishful thinking on my part?

Like I said in my last post, at my internal exam on Thursday my doctor told me I was 80% effaced, 1cm dilated, she literally tapped on the baby's head and she did strip my membranes. I have an induction scheduled for Tuesday but now I'm wondering/hoping I go into labor on my own!

Of course I called Daryl just to give him a heads-up and make sure he tells someone there that he needs to be discharged SOONER rather than later. Well of course the nurses went to tell the doctor and he is a total asshole who doesn't like to do what others tell him, so he told the nurses he was too busy right now with other patients and that he'd stop by Daryl's room later. He said he'd be discharged by noon. Daryl is pissed, his poor, sweet nurses are pissed at the doctor, and and here I am at home still vacuuming. LOL

So I'm pacing, pacing, pacing, feeling anxious now (still nothing other than low belly cramps which is good)...heh heh...I know I probably still have tons of time but I'd feel much more relieved having Big D HOME with me while these changes start happening, ya know? It's disconcerting enough to not know what is happening but when it happens when you are completely alone, it SUCKS! And of course my Mom is LITERALLY in the middle of moving into her new apartment right now with a rented U-Haul so she can't even come over and visit me. I think I'll just go take a shower and then maybe lay down for a while and watch tv. The dog is watching me pace and HE is all anxious, crying and pacing. We make a good pair. Ha ha!

Anyway, fingers crossed everyone, how perfect would it be for my body to get this ball really rolling on it's own this weekend??? :-) Hunter could be here even sooner than we thought, if that is the case!