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First Doctor Appointment

Blair had her first doctor appointment 8 days after she was born. Her first two nights at home were really rough. My milk hadn’t come in and baby girl wasn’t getting enough nutrients. If she was awake she was screaming bloody murder. It honestly sounded like she was in so much pain. A nurse ended up coming out to our house and we learned that she had lost too much weight. We ended up having to supplement with formula. We gave her three bottles before my milk finally came in. I was still pretty emotional at this point and was having a really hard time not blaming myself. Mom guilt is real, and a horrible horrible feeling. Since my milk came in Blair has been a completely different baby. She is so happy and content.

When she was born she weighed 7lbs .05oz, when we left the hospital she weighed 6lbs 12 oz (still within the normal weight loss amounts), 2 days later she weighed 6lbs 4oz, which was concerning since it’s more than 10% of her birth weight.

Her doctors appointment was 4 days later. When we put her on the scale I was holding my breath. in my heart I knew she had gained weight purely by the change in her behavior and demeanor but it was still such a relief to see she weighed 6lbs 12oz! She gained 8 oz in 4 days! Weird proud mom moment. ;) They checked her hips and vitals and everything checked out great!

Percentiles:

Weight: 6lbs 12 oz 25%

Height: 21 inches 72%

Head Circumference: 13 inches 12% (Thank you baby girl for having a small head…..)

At the Doctors!

At the Doctors!

Her next Doctors appointment is in March when she is a little over a month old. I can’t believe my baby is already 2 weeks old!

Last night she slept in her bassinet for the first time. (During her two horrible nights sleeping with me was the only way to calm her down) She did great in the bassinet. I, on the other hand, cried for a good half an hour.

In her bassinet! (Also she is swaddled in a Miracle Blanket, they truly are miraculous....)

In her bassinet! (Also she is swaddled in a Miracle Blanket, they truly are miraculous….)

 

We love this little girl so much! We are getting pictures taken on Saturday! I am so excited!

 

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Blair Monroe Allred- A Birth Story

Disclaimer** Having a natural, medication free birthing experience has always been very important to me and something I have looked forward too. I am absolutely not against epidurals and would never think less of any one getting one. I just didn’t want one myself. So my disappointment in this event stems from that desire, not because I think less of those who decide to use pain medication. Also this is really long.

The night of February 4th I was having extreme lower back pain. I had been having contractions off and on for a little over a week and I had been dealing with back pain for around 10 weeks so I didnt think much about it. I did mention to Garren that I wondered if thats what back labor feels like. I managed to get comfortable and fall asleep around midnight. I woke up around 1:30 to go to the bathroom and could hardly walk. The pain and pressure was insane. I said a little prayer begging to go into labor. At 3:00 am I was lying there half awake when I felt a little pop, I thought “Thats how I imagine my water breaking would feel”, next thing I know warm fluid is gushing out of me. I was so surprised! I told Garren my water broke and he shot up and said “Ok let’s go to the hospital!!” I told him it was ok no rush. I called my doctor and normally she would have let me labor at home for a while but a crazy snow storm was about to start so she told me to collect me things and head on in.

While getting ready fluid just kept gushing out of me. I could not believe how much there was. Garren gave me a a beautiful blessing, I think before that I was in shock because I was shaking pretty bad but after that we both felt so calm and excited.

When I got to the hospital my (amazing) nurse checked me and was shocked by how low baby’s head was already. Unfortunately I was only dilated to a 1+, so I knew I had a long day ahead of me.

My hospital is very pro natural childbirth and I didn’t have to be hooked up to an IV or anything. I did have to be monitored intermittently. Since she was so low it was hard to get the first strip needing for monitoring but we eventually got it.

I walked the halls with Garren for a little bit and was having contractions every 3-4 minutes. They were uncomfortable but not painful at all. We went back into the room and after I had been sitting down for a while the contractions stopped. The nurse I loved had left and told me she would be back at 7:00 pm. She said she hoped I had a baby by then but to not be discouraged if I hadn’t. I remember thinking she was crazy. There was no way I wouldn’t have my baby in the next 13 hours. The new nurse came in and said the doctor had ordered pitocin. I instantly felt disappointed. They said that since my labor wasn’t starting on it’s on, they needed to help it out since my water had already broken. Personally I felt like they didn’t give me enough time to walk and get things started that way, but it is what it is. Through out the day they would randomly come in and up the dose I was getting.(They even tried to hide the fact that they were upping it) I was having contractions ever 2-3 minutes and by 4:00 they were unbearable. I had spent hours dry heaving, and breathing through contractions and was starting to feel pretty weak. Garren was amazing, constantly rubbing my back, reminding me that our little girl would soon be in my arms, and cheering me on. I tried basically every position I could think of to get through the contractions. The best seemed to be leaning up against Garren.

No one, and nothing can prepare you for labor. It literally felt like my insides would explode. It was now 7:00 pm and I had been in labor for 15 hours. I was exhausted and my nurse started talking to me about pain medication and epidurals. I was being stubborn because I felt like such a failure for even considering it. I decided to have the doctor check me again to see if I was close. He checked me and after 15 hours of labor I was at 2 cm. I had barely progressed. I completely lost it at this point. I just knew I didn’t have another 6 hours or however long it was going to take in me. I talked to Garren (more like cried and asked him if he thought I was weak and a failure for wanting the epidural) and he just wanted me to do what I needed to  get our little girl into the world. I asked the nurse a ton of questions about the risks of epidurals, both to her and me and finally consented. The anesthesiologist was in within 5 minutes. The epidural didn’t hurt at all going in and was instant relief. I could feel when I was having contractions but there was absolutely no pain. Blair’s heart rate started to get stressed with each contraction, so the nurse checked me again. It had only been about 40 minutes since I had last been checked but I went from 2 cm to 10. The baby’s head was literally right there. I was shocked. Basically my body desperately needed me to relax to progress. The doctor was delivering another baby so they had to keep telling me not to push.

Finally the doctor came and after 3 contractions, and some wonderful coaching from Garren and my amazing nurse (the first one was back!) our baby girl was born! The first thing I say was her head full of hair. They put her on my chest and she started crying. Girl had some strong lungs! I don’t remember much about all of this but I do remember telling her, “I’ve waited so long for you,” and completely losing it. It’s crazy how much you love them from the very beginning. I had a 2nd degree tear, but haven’t had any problems with it so that’s good.  She weighed 7lbs .5 oz and was 20 inches long.

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While it wasn’t the birth experience I have always dreamed of, it’s the labor and birth that brought me our precious daughter. I knew that if I obsessed over what I should have done differently I would get depressed, so I have made myself let it go. It is what it is and honestly the only thing that matters is that Blair is healthy and here! We are truly blessed to be this little girls mom and dad.

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Baby Red: 39 Weeks

Ok this is a horrible picture but it's the only one I have for week 39! It's kind of hard to see the bump... but it's huge don't worry about it.

Ok this is a horrible picture but it’s the only one I have for week 39! It’s kind of hard to see the bump… but it’s huge don’t worry about it.

Thoughts: Are we there yet? Baby Girl and I are officially full term! She could still wait another 2 weeks to come but I am sincerely hoping she comes later this week. I have had a date in my head since the beginning of this pregnancy and considering I knew we would conceive in May, I figure why shouldn’t I be right about this date as well! Chalking it up to intuition for now ;) It’s still hard to believe this pregnancy will end and parenting will begin! I can’t wait for this journey and I am so grateful to have Garren by my side for what is sure to be the hardest and best part of our life together.

Dr Appointment/Baby: At my doctor’s appointment last week my doctor was feeling around the bump and asked me how much I weighed at birth (6lbs 8oz) and then how much Garren weighed (over 9 lbs) and proceeded to say, “She will be closer to Daddy’s size.” We got a good laugh from that! While you can’t put too much stock into estimations I am hoping her bigger size now will mean she is ready to come sooner. Yes it’s wishful thinking but whatever! My baby app says she is about 20 inches long and 7 lbs 4 oz. Basically she is just getting cute and chubby right now :)

Weight/Cravings/Aversions/Eating: This week at my appointment my weight leveled off. I weighed the exact same as last week so still at a weight gain of 18 pounds. Nothing new on the eating front. No real aversions and still downing way more milk than should be allowed.

Movement: I can tell she is feeling a little squished, but she still moves around quite a bit. It’s very uncomfortable now but still very much welcomed. I am excited for this little wiggle worm to move in my arms instead of my belly! I do think it will be weird not falling asleep to her movements. I have gotten use to that nightly ritual over the last 20 weeks.

Sleep/Workouts: Sleep is basically the same, I feel like two people each grabbed a leg and tried to walk in opposite directions. I wake up each morning feeling like I had the most intense workout of my life the day before. Nope, just walked to the bathroom 45 times! I don’t remember what it feels like to sleep longer than 1-2 hours before needing to go to the bathroom, or what it feels like to wake up and not have everything hurt.

Signs of Labor: Sunday night I had some pretty intense contractions for SEVEN hours that were 2-4 minutes apart. Naturally at 5 in the morning they just completely stopped. I was really starting to get excited, but hopefully they at least helped me progress! Up until then I never had a painful contraction, but these were bad enough that I couldn’t get comfortable and had to move and breathe through them. Active labor will obviously be much worse but I am glad I got a tiny taste of what I am in for.

Garren: I think every pregnant woman needs a Garren. He is always willing to make me something to eat, rub my back, and do a load of laundry on top of being in Physical Therapy school. I feel so blessed and loved to be married to this man. Being pregnant has been very rough on so many aspects of my life but it has only affected our marriage in a very positive way. I did have to tell him to stop asking me if “It’s time”. It was maybe driving me a little crazy….. ;)

Really hoping I don’t have to do another one of these updates, and that Baby Red is in my arms this time next week ;) Wish me luck!

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Baby Red: 38 Weeks

Oomph, I swear every day that I wake up the bump has doubled in size.

Oomph, I swear every day that I wake up the bump has doubled in size.

Thoughts: I’m ready. I am ready to have this baby in my arms and ready to not be pregnant. I adore feeling her move and talking to her, and I know I will love cuddling and smelling her sweet skin even more. My sciatica has reached an all time high and I am very surprised I have not fallen. Getting in and out of bed is the most painful thing of my life. It’s weird though because each and every day I am so in awe of my body’s ability to grow this sweet girl. Sure it’s beaten me up quite a bit but SHE is perfect. She is completely healthy and when it comes down to it that’s all I care about. Every time I feel her squirming around or I pull out the doppler and listen to the rhythmic beat of her heart I feel so much love and gratitude.

Dr. Appointments/Baby: At my Dr appointment Thursday I found out my strep b test came back negative so that was great news. I was a little nervous about having to be hooked to an IV while laboring. Everything else was normal. Good blood pressure, no protein in my urine, perfect baby heart beat. At 38 weeks baby girl is estimated to weight 6 lbs 8 oz (although she is measuring a week behind) and is almost 20 inches long! She is basically just hanging out, putting on weight, and letting her brain and nervous system develop a little more.

Weight/Cravings/Aversions/Eating: I am a little embarrased to say that 1/3 of the entire about of weight I have put on this pregnancy has been during the last two weeks. I gained 2 more pounds, with a total weight gain of 18 pounds. I am actually having a hard time eating right now. I feel nauseous all the time. I have been craving pineapple lately though.

Movement: No decrease in movement here! My little wiggle worm likes to make her presence known. She is so strong and it always surprises me how uncomfortable some of her kicks can be. She hates when I wear my pregnancy support belt, so it makes me wonder if she will hate being swaddled once she is here. She just seems to dislike being confined. There is a lot of room out here baby girl! Come on out! ;)

Sleep/Workouts/I get about 2-3 hours of sleep at a time. I am starting to get some pretty gnarly looking bags under my eyes but I am sure they will be a constant accessory over the next couple of months ;) I basically live on my yoga ball! A miracle has happened since Sunday night (Garren tells me to not mention it because it might jinx it… haha) But my crazy sciatic nerve pain has decreased SIGNIFICANTLY. As in I can walk like a normal person and I am no longer reduced to sobbing at 2 in the morning from having to get out of bed again. <—- This lasted all of about 18 hours and by the time I got into bed last night I was limping like crazy. Boo. Oh well those 18 hours were glorious. I will take it!

Physical Therapy: Yesterday I had my first official physical therapy appointment and it will be my last. She really was no help at all. Garren has been a much bigger help than she was and he has been in school for 2 semesters. She asked very few questions, didn’t evaluate me at all, and then proceeded to show me how to get into bed… Basically that was it. I can last another two weeks with out going back. Garren was super frustrated after it. He is going to make an amazing physical therapist.

Signs of Labor: So for the past 5-6 nights I have been getting much stronger contractions for an hour at a time. What’s weird is they always come at 2.5 minutes apart. It seems weird to me that they come so close. They last about 50-60 seconds and once it’s been an hour, they spread out to like every 15 minutes. It’s weird. They are much more uncomfortable than my braxton hicks but only a few have made me completely bend over and need to concentrate. I hope they are at least doing something productive. My stomach always feels like I did a crazy ab work out in the morning. I can feel my body getting ready for labor. It’s unlike nothing I have felt before (which makes sense) My sister had both her kids during the 38th week and I was born during the 38th weeks as well. I am about 99% positive I wont be in their little club though. I think baby girl will come a lot closer to her due date. As much pain as I am in, and as much as I want to hold her in my arms, I am prepared to let her come when she is ready!

Garren: Garren just finished the last of his tests for the next couple weeks. I am praying baby girl is not late because he has finals February 17-21. He, of course, will be there for me and our little girl if she does come late but I would rather him not have that kind of stress put on him. Luckily my sister in law and mother in law will be here during that time to help me out! We are so blessed to have so many people who love us and supporting us.

I am seriously hoping I only have to do one more of these ;)

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A Date Night Travesty

Date nights are super romantic when you are 9 months pregnant and waddling like an obese penguin. Yeah not so much! Today we decided to go walk around the mall and indulge in my current craving: Taco Bell. No judging people. We had a lot of fun and maybe hit up a clearance sale at Gap for Blair. I might like buying cute baby clothes, but Garren is by far the worst offender. He is wrapped so tightly around this little girl’s finger, I fear what it will be like once she is actually born. I can’t decide what I am more excited about, holding my daughter for the first time or seeing Garren hold her.

Back to our date night. As we were pulling into Taco Bell we hear this horrific clunkity-de-clunk sound coming from the engine and then the Engine light starts flashing like mad. Oh. Lovely. We parked and ate while Garren looked up auto repair shops on his phone. Most were, of course, closed because it was Saturday, but not 2 blocks up the road was Sullivans. (Blessing) After we ate our heart burn inducing lunch we prayed, held our breath and drove to Sullivans. Thankfully the car made it that far. In Utah to get your car’s issues diagnosed is completely free. Here it would be $100. Awesome. It was cold outside so we stayed in the warm lobby and watched HGTV (huge plus). I naturally started having contractions. Having a baby would certainly make the situation more fun! I was pacing around the waiting room, getting contractions every 8 minutes, and laughing as Garren and I discussed how awesome of a story this would make if we ended up needing to call an ambulance. A guy comes in from the garage and makes this face that makes me worried about what we are about to hear. Luckily some valve thing (very technical I know… Garren knows the actual details don’t worry) needed to be replaced and the Lexus dealership had the part in stock. While the bill was still more than we really wanted to spend on our date night it could have been so much worse. An hour and a half later we were driving home! My contractions stopped completely. Figures ;)

Gap Purchases

Gap Purchases

Grateful to be home!

Grateful to be home!

I am obsessed with this swim suit.

I am obsessed with this swim suit.

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Baby Red: 37 Weeks

Everything hurts.... hahha

Everything hurts…. hahha

Thoughts: Well 37 weeks is considered “Term” which basically means you can have your baby safely and the chances of them needing the NICU are the same as if you had your baby at 40 weeks. What does it mean for me? Basically nothing. I am certain I have a few more weeks of pregnancy ahead of me. It is exciting realizing how close to the end I am! I literally spend way to much time day dreaming about what our little girl looks like and what it will be like to hold her or to see Garren hold her. I decided to condense some of these categories mainly because I tired of writing all of them, but I still want to update for future purposes.

Dr Appointments/Baby: Thursday I had my appointment. It was more of the same stuff plus I was tested for group strep B. I don’t know the results yet. Basically strep b is a bacteria every one has, but it is active or dormant at different times in your life. If it’s active while pregnant/delivery they give you antibiotics while you labor to protect the baby. I am guessing they will let me know the results at my appointment this Thursday. Baby girl is still head down and her heart beat sounds perfect. We have found a physical therapist who takes my insurance so I will be doing that this week as well. The app on my phone says baby is now considered “full term” but with in the last year they changed it to “term” and “full term” is 39 weeks. Regardless baby girl will come when she comes! She is now a little over six pounds and 19 inches long. Kind of crazy to think a baby that size currently occupies my abdomen.

Weight/Cravings/Aversions/Eating: Apparently my body was waiting til the last minute to pack on the pounds because I gained THREE pounds in one week. Thats the most I have ever gained between appointments and my appointments are now only a week apart. So I have now gained 16 pounds. The doctor said it’s still a low weight gain but baby is still measuring with in the “recommend” measurements. I weirdly have only gotten stretch marks on the right side of my bump. Almost like a group of )))) around that side of my belly button. I knew I would get stretch marks no matter how much I lotion my belly because my skin does not stretch well. My freshman year of college I ran a ton and got some pretty sweet calf muscles which caused stretch marks. Annoying, but whatever. My love affair with milk continues and I have yet to find pebble ice. I have been chewing on our massive ice cubes and I am sure I will break a tooth one of these days.

Movement: Last week there was a 4 hour stretch where baby red did not move AT ALL. I could feel exactly where she was and now matter how much I poked and prodded her she would not move. I started to panic and called the on call doctor because it was after hours. It was the one male doctor in the office whom I have never met. He was not helpful whatsoever. He basically acted like I was bothering him. He told me to call back if she went a whole day with out moving. WHAT? Every time I go to the doctor they tell me to call and then go in for monitoring if I notice her patterns of movement change or if she hasn’t moved in a couple hours. I drank some coke and laid on my side and she did start moving again. Since then she has been her active crazy self, but every time I think about this doctor I feel so angry. I had an appointment scheduled with him in two weeks and I made sure to change it to a different doctor. She seems to favor my right side. I constantly feel her legs in my ribs and she is also head butting down below which is creating some…. very odd feelings. We will leave it at that.

Sleep/Workouts: My sleeping schedule is just plain weird now. I fall asleep around 3 am and wake up at 7 am. I then have breakfast, watch tv, bounce on the yoga ball and shower. Then I sleep from 10:30 am til 2:00 pm. I wake up eat lunch, bounce on the yoga ball, stare at the door until Garren gets home and then go back to bed. I sleep from 5:00 pm til 6:30 and then I wake up, eat dinner, and spend the evening with Garren. Basically, I eat, sleep, and go to the bathroom….much like a new born. This seems to be the best way to get actual sleep though so I guess I will do this while I can.

Symptoms: My energy levels are at an all time low. My SPD and Sciatica have become debilitating BUT I have figured out a heat and ice regimen that makes me feel like a human being again for a couple hours. So really that is amazing.

Signs of Labor: The only signs of labor around here are in the apartment. The bags are all packed, the family has guessed when she will come, and I have a sign on the door of things to remember to pack last minute. I haven’t had any “real” contractions but the braxton hicks contractions have been happening a lot more.

Garren: I decided Garren needs his own section on these updates because he is seriously amazing. I have been pretty miserable the past couple of weeks and your wouldn’t believe how much he has stepped up to the plate. I haven’t had to do dishes or laundry in 2 weeks. He is constantly researching ways to relieve my pains as I am curled up in a ball crying, and he never fails to tell me how beautiful he thinks I am. At this point in my pregnancy that means a lot because I am feeling very huge and very not pretty (awesome sentence I know). Plus he tells Blair how much he loves her and how excited he is for her to come every chance he gets. We are the two luckiest girls in the whole world.

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