Monday, December 31, 2012

Baby Time!

I am way behind at updating this blog, but I am happy to announce that I am still pregnant.
I got discharged from the hospital 2 weeks go, December 17th, and was able to spend the holidays at home with my family. It was absolutely wonderful!

Bed rest at home is way better than at the hospital. I have loved being at home with my family and spending the last 2 weeks with Emory. We played lots of dollhouse, board games, and watched tons of movies. It was perfect. 

Did I mention the food upgrade? I hope to never eat hospital food ever again. It makes me sick just thinking about it!

Believe it or not,  but today is the big day. My c-section is scheduled for 3:30 pm, a little less than 3 hours from now. I am very ready to meet this little guy and be done with bed rest. I am not so ready for the c-section. Not really sure why, but I am so nervous!!

I can't believe I actually survived 12 weeks on bed rest...

We are hoping for an uneventful surgery and a big baby!
Wish me luck!

Thursday, December 13, 2012

65 Days NICU Free!

I know I have mentioned this before, but my daughter Emory was born at 24 weeks. She spent 96 days in the NICU. She came home on oxygen and remained on it for 10 months.

Everyday I spend on bed rest, and remain pregnant, I know I am preventing our baby boy from spending that day in the NICU. I have now been on bed rest for 65 days. To me that means, 65 days NICU free for baby boy Oakey. Although I have felt plenty of guilt with this pregnancy, I always feel better knowing that my bed rest efforts are keeping my boy from a long and unpleasant stay in the NICU. This idea makes my hospital stay SO much more doable.

On Wednesday I turned 33 weeks. My belly is getting nice and big!

Unfortunately I have been experiencing nightly contractions again. They are only about 10 minutes apart and are not super painful, but they keep me quite uncomfortable.

My hospital diet has been a little painful. After eduring the food for the last 9 weeks, I can only stand to eat salads now. I eat the same salad twice a day. Today my friend Megan brought me these delicious cookies from Trader Joes. I may have eaten half the box already!

Zack leaves tomorrow morning and won't be back until next Wednesday. I get super bummed when he leaves. Thankfully it will be the last trip until after the holidays. As for the positive,  I am trying to focus on that fact that I get discharged on awesome is that?

Monday, December 10, 2012

7 Days...

In 7 days, on December 17th, I am getting discharged from the hospital and finishing off my bed rest at home. In order to make that happen, a few things need to stay stable.

First, my water needs to stay in tact. If it breaks, then delivery is in the near future and no going home for me. Second, no more dilation. Last time I was checked, I was still 4 cm. I think I will request to be checked before I leave just to help avoid being discharged and then needing to be re-admitted shortly after. Lastly, no regular contractions. My contractions have really slowed down and they are only coming randomly now.

As long as I can stay stable, I am going home! I'm trying not to get my hopes up too much, but I am so looking forward to spending the holidays in the comfort of my own home. By then, it will be almost 10 weeks since I have been home, driven in a car, or slept in my own bed. I am so ready.

Last Friday Em returned from Idaho. Zack's parents were kind enough to take her for 10 whole days while he interviewed for residency in Baltimore, Albany, and two places in Chicago. 10 days was a long time and I missed her so much.

We reunited with lots of kisses, cuddles, and even made bracelets together. I can't wait until I can take care of her again, I just hate the feeling of being helpless.

Zack arrived back from his interviews late Saturday night and surprised me by showing up at my hospital room with a poinsettia and cinnamon bread in hand. It was so sweet, I almost cried.

We spent Sunday afternoon just the three of us. Pretty sure Em missed having us around. At one point all three of us were snuggled in my hospital bed and took an afternoon nap. It was squishy, but she didn't want to miss out on the fun.

On Saturday Zack will have his last Opthalmology interview. Thank goodness.

Friday, December 7, 2012

4 lbs 6 ounces!

Yesterday I had an ultrasound to check on the growth of baby boy.
They estimated that he weighs 4 pounds 6 ounces!
I can't believe how big he is already.
Pretty sure if I went to 40 weeks, I would have a 9 pound baby.

Since I have to deliver via c-section at 36 weeks (cause of my previous classical c-section), I am thrilled that he is a big boy.
Hopefully I can make it to 36 weeks and baby boy can skip the NICU and come straight home with me.
What a dream that would be.

Yesterday one of the ladies that organizes our Wednesday bed rest lunch-ins, hooked me up with this awesome t-shirt!

When the bed rest ladies and I get rolled down to Starbucks to chat, we get plenty of people staring and multiple people have even asked to take our pictures!

Can you imagine the attention we will draw in our new shirts?
Should be fun.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

32 Weeks!

Baby boy Oakey did it, he stayed put until 32 weeks!

8 weeks ago 28 weeks seemed unlikely and 32 weeks seemed like a dream.
Besides the aggressive kicking I feel from my belly, it's hard to believe that I am actually 32 weeks pregnant. I guess bed rest is working!

Yesterday I got checked and I am still 4cm dilated. My contractions have really calmed down and my headaches are slowly going away. I feel so lucky.

My doctor came in this morning and discussed the possibility of continuing bed rest at home until 36 weeks. I am torn. Although I want nothing more than to go home,  I also want to do what is best for baby boy. After hours of contemplating this option, I have decided to stay until 34 weeks, which is December 19th.

Tonight I just might order myself a pizza to celebrate 32 weeks...fancy!

Sunday, December 2, 2012

The Great Escape

Since Zack and Em have been gone for the past 4 days, my alone time has become plentiful. One of the other bed rest moms suggested that we break out of our rooms together and sit at Starbucks and chat. I thought it was such a great idea.

At 8:00 pm on Friday night the nurses rolled us downstairs, out the front doors to see the Christmas lights, and then parked us at Starbucks. It was raining outside and felt amazing.

We were already in our jammies, but we didn't care, it was just so nice to get out of our rooms.

Today after church we met up again at Starbucks. We were able to recruit another bed rest mom too, and we all had a blast chatting away for about an hour.

I didn't realize how much I depend on Zack when he is around. I have missed him terribly since he left. He is the best at bringing me food, doing and putting away my laundry, rubbing my achy legs, cleaning my room, and playing games with me. He gets home at around 5:00 pm today and I can't wait. He really is the bomb.

Since I have had a lot of extra time on my hands, and an unfortunate constant headache, I've made an endless amount of baby hats.

I have really enjoyed making them but I think it is time to move on. Maybe I will try out a scarf or some dish clothes? Those always make great Christmas gifts.

Em comes back on Wednesday and I can't wait to kiss her face off. I also have another ultrasound this week to check on baby boys growth, all good things to look forward to.

I'm feeling much better about my bed rest situation now, I guess week 7 was just a tough one. From now on, only positive thoughts!

Friday, November 30, 2012

Day 52

Tomorrow is December 1st. It's funny to think that I did not leave the hospital grounds for the whole month of November. I wonder if I will miss this place when I leave here? Let's be honest, I doubt it.

My belly is growing nice and big. I know this is the case considering my nurses reactions after not seeing me for a couple of days. They always comment on my growth, which is a great thing around these parts.

 I am finally getting to experience some of the lovely side effects that accompany the third trimester. Some of those include: heartburn, itchy stretching skin, my belly button beginning to pop, using the bathroom 8(x) a night, reflux, and painful baby movements. Since my pregnancy with Emory ended so early, I never really got to feel her move much. It has been so fun to sit and watch my belly jump up and down. This little boy sure likes to move and I don't think that feeling will ever get old.

Emory is in Idaho right now and I miss her so much. I don't think any other visitor could make me as happy as she does.

She is very content to spend a couple hours a day in my hospital room, and fully understands that I will not be coming home until the baby comes. She constantly amazes me with her independence and her ability to adjust to the situation like it is no-big-deal.

My nights now include a whole bunch of contractions. It's getting really old. They usually start after dinner and continue on until midnight. They are not super painful but definitely make me uncomfortable and very nervous! Add a pounding headache to the mix and it's a party!

Megan & Max came to visit today. They are the best little visitors. Max is totally cool with just hanging out in my hospital room, he makes himself right at home by immediately taking off his shoes. It is the cutest.

Megan saved me today and bought me some more yarn. Since I've been spending way less time on the computer due to headaches, crocheting is my new best friend.

This week I figured out how to make a hat with ear flaps. I have made 4 hats in the last couple of days. Crocheting makes me feel productive because I always have something to show for it, and it is a mindless activity that gives my head a break.

I am slowly starting to hit my breaking point with this whole hospital bed rest gig. I think I've done pretty well making it to 7 weeks without going crazy, but I am definitely feeling ready to be done. I'm starting to get frustrated, grumpy, and just straight up annoyed. I potentially have 5 more weeks left, so I better get over these feelings real quick, because another 5 weeks is no walk in the park. 

I just want to be done.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Headache Headache Go Away!

Yesterday marked 7 full weeks of hospital bed rest.

Wow, it's kind of hard to believe that I have been in here that long. Especially when I start thinking of all the things I haven't done for almost 2 months. Most of the things are simple, but I must admit I miss them..

  • Driving or riding in a car
  • Taking and picking Emory up from school. I miss watching how excited she gets everyday when she sees me.
  • Walking & running.
  • My condo. It may only be a little shack, but I sure miss that place
  • Taking baths. My favorite thing about winter, if I had my choice, I would take one everyday.
  • Cooking dinner. Never thought I would miss this, but I can't wait to cook/bake again

Hopefully in a couple months, when life is back to normal, I can remember how much I missed the simple things.

Unfortunately, the longer my stay, the worse my headaches get. Monday night I had another contraction flare-up, which meant I was put back on a dose of Nifedipine. Although it seems to slow down my contractions, it aggressively ramps up my headaches. Since taking that dose, I haven't been able to get rid of them and I am constantly popping pills to manage the pain.

Yesterday Emory went to Idaho to spend the week with Zack's parents. She was so excited, she sure loves spending time with them, and I love that they are so willing to take her.

Zack left this morning for Baltimore and then New York. He has 4 residency interviews within the next week, which means this baby better stay put so his Dad is around for the big day.

Here's to hoping for an uneventful week!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

A Close Call...

The last four days have been packed full of excitement, well hospital excitement that is. Thursday afternoon (Thanksgiving Day) I started having contractions. At first the contractions were 15 minutes apart and then slowly moved to every 2-3 minutes. At this point, my cervix was dilated to 4 cm. 

Since the contractions were so frequent and starting to get painful, the doctors transferred me over to Labour & Delivery.

I arrived at Labour & Delivery around 4:00 pm, got an IV, another dose of steroids for the babies lungs, pumped full of fluids, and settled in.

The contractions continued all day and night, making me very uncomfortable and SO tired. Since I was contracting regularly, they were keeping a close eye on the dilation of my cervix, if it started to dilated more, we would deliver. I continued to stay at 4 cm.

Around 1:00 pm on Friday the contractions got really intense. In order to get me more comfortable and try and relax my body to stop contractions, my doctor gave me an hour dose of Fentanyl. I must admit, it was the best hour of my whole hospital stay. My body was completely relaxed,  I felt NO contractions, and was finally able relax a little. Since the Fentanyl can relax the baby was well, they put a little extra oxygen on me just to be safe.

After an hour, the drug wore off and I was feeling so much better. Amazingly my contractions stopped and I was able to get a little bit of sleep. They checked my cervix one last time, and I was surprisingly still 4 cm.

My cervix really makes no sense. It clearly is incompetent and dilates way too premature, but strong contractions don't change it...go figure?

Around 7:00 pm on Friday I got transferred back to my cozy hospital room. Every time I spend a day or two in Labour & Delivery, I am so grateful for my hospital room. It is 10x better than any of the Labour & Delivery rooms and has plenty of natural light.

I guess it was just a false alarm, I can't believe I am still pregnant!

I am now 30 weeks and 4 days and growing large. I feel like baby boy is getting big and his movements are starting to be painful. It's amazing that my skin just keeps stretching!


Today I started to experience heartburn for the first time. I have heard so many pregnant woman talk about how horrible it is, but have never understood it until now. Luckily the hospital has some pretty darn good meds to help with it, so I think I will survive.

Now onto our next big goal, 32 weeks!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

30 Weeks...

I probably shouldn't write this post tonight considering my not-so-positive attitude I've got going right now, but unfortunately that is my current reality. I feel silly having "down" days, clearly things could be much worse, and I am so lucky to still be pregnant with this baby boy. I am blaming these unnecessary emotions on pregnancy hormones and the holidays, neither of those things seem to be helping too much right now.

Since being admitted 6 weeks ago, I have only cried a few times. Tonight, I cried when Zack asked me what I wanted for dinner. Who knows why? These 4 walls are starting to close in on me and I am craving the outside world.

Tomorrow I turn 30 weeks.

For some reason, the farther along I get, the harder bed rest gets. Clearly I would do anything to keep this baby in till 36 weeks, but I am starting to feel less anxious about the idea of him being born before that. Silly really, but I would be a liar if I didn't admit that thoughts of lunging across my room haven't crossed my mind. Don't worry, I would never do such a thing.

I am plan on waking up tomorrow with a better attitude. Let's be honest, I can't be grumpy and celebrate 30 weeks, right?

Monday, November 19, 2012

A Rough Night: Day 41

I've been pretty lucky so far. In the last 5 1/2 weeks I have only had a couple of rough nights. Unfortunately, Friday night was a doozie.

At 10 pm I started having a couple of contractions. My lower back would ache and my belly would tighten. The nurse hooked me up to the monitor and I was having contractions about every 8 minutes. They were not super painful, but noticeable.

I then started to get nauseous and a large lump formed in my throat, it felt like I had swallowed something that didn't go completely down. Every time I would lay down, my throat burned. This was followed by vomiting, chills, and more contractions.

They quickly gave me an IV, pumped me full of fluids so I didn't get dehydrated, and put me on medications to try and stop the contractions.

All of the symptoms lasted until 5 am. At one point I was having contractions 3-5 minutes apart. We were concerned that I was dilating and would need to deliver. Luckily, I was still only dilated to a 4 and the contractions stopped shortly after. At 6 am I was finally able to get to sleep, I was exhausted! Yay for staying pregnant!

This weekend my Dad came to visit. It was a nice distraction from my regular routine and we had lots of fun. We played lots of games, ate yummy food, and went for several wheelchair rides. That's about as exciting as things can possibly get around these parts!

This morning both my parents left. I am super sad to see them go, but I know they will be back once baby boy arrives.  Hopefully not for at least a couple of weeks!

On Wednesday I turn 30 weeks...amazing.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Day 38

It's Friday today, which means my Dad will arriving in a couple of hours. Who would have thought that at 28 I would still be so excited to see my parents? Well, I am. There is just something special about having my family around, I sure miss them when they leave.

On Wednesday my Mom and Em came and set up a Christmas tree in my room. 

It sure brightens things up in here. According to the nurses, I am the first one to get my tree up in my room. I think a few of them might be annoyed that I broke the unwritten Thanksgiving rule, I blame it on my Canadian blood, we always start mid-November and I wouldn't have it any other way.

Emory has been such a good sport these last 5 weeks. She actually enjoys hanging out in my hospital room and she is getting pretty attached to my Mom. Pretty sure she would take a cuddle with her over me in a heartbeat. I'm just happy she knows she is loved.

On Wednesday I had a visitor from a former bed rest mom. She had been on bed rest at this very hospital 4 years ago with twins. She brought me the sweetest care package full of all sorts of goodies, including this beautiful necklace.

I am so touched by her kindness and she has definitely inspired me to be a better person.

On Thursday I had a routine Ultrasound to check the location of the placenta and measure the growth of baby boy. They estimated that he weighs about 3 lbs 4 ounces. Such great news.

As of now, they don't think that my placenta has attached to my uterus, yay! If this is the case, I won't need a hysterectomy at delivery. They will keep an eye on it but ultimately won't know until they get in there.

Last night I started having a couple of contractions. They checked me to see if I was dilating, and it turns out I am between a 4 and a 5 now. Although dilation has been slow, it is continual. If I continue to dilate without contractions, they will just leave me. As soon as I dilate with contractions, it will be time to deliver. 

Since dilation from a 5-10 can happen rather quickly, I'm starting to prepare myself for the inevitable c-section. Ugh, the recovery stinks!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

29 Weeks!

The time is slowly flying by. Clearly that makes no sense but everyday feels endlessly long yet the weeks seem to go quickly. Go figure. Today I turned 29 weeks.

What a relief.

Reaching 28 weeks was a big milestone,  and everyday past it is worth celebrating. I can't believe that hitting 30 weeks is a real possibility. If you would have told me that 5 weeks ago, I would have never believed you. 

Up until this point I have been hesitant about setting anything up for the baby, buying any clothes, or even agreeing on a name. I am starting to feel more relaxed about preparing for the arrival of this baby boy, I may even buy something for him soon :)

I am pretty sure I would be lost without technology. This morning my Mom, Zack, and Emory decorated the Christmas tree. I know it's a little early but I am a Christmas freak and I wanted to get it done while my Mom was in town. Although I wish I could have been there, FaceTime was the next best option and it worked great.

Em loved every second of it.

I am pretty sure I have turned her into a Christmas freak too, that's my girl.

Tomorrow I have an Ultrasound to check on the location of my placenta and measure the growth of the baby. He may even be over 3 pounds now, I can't wait to find out!

Monday, November 12, 2012

The Dreaded Sunday: Day 33

I am always glad to see Monday arrive.
For some reason, Sundays are long and painful around these parts. Maybe it's because everything slows down, less people are working, and I so badly wish I could be at home enjoying it with my family.
One Sunday feels like 3 weekdays, not cool.

I had a great weekend. Zack's mom was in town helping out with Em so Zack and I had a little "date". He jumped in bed with me and worked on some stuff for residency, it was super romantic!

It's been snowing outside for the last several days, I love it.
It is beautiful and helps my hospital room feel warm and cozy.

Also, last Thursday my wonderful nurse Nona taught me how to crochet.
My mom had bought me a starter kit a couple weeks ago, but I just wasn't getting it.
Nona taught me the ways, and I kinda love it now.

I had to unravel my first hat 3 times, I am a slow learner.

I have successfully made 3 hats and I am working on my 4th.
The hardest part is getting the sizing right, I just can't figure it out!

Em loves her hat, and I think it looks super cute on her.

My mom comes back today and my dad will be flying in on Thursday.
I can't wait, time seems to fly when they are in town.

Thursday, November 8, 2012


I didn't realize how stressful being on bed rest can be. Obviously my daily activities are not stressful, but trying to keep up with my families daily activities/commitments from a hospital bed is overwhelming at times. We have had lots of help which has made our new "normal" much easier to manage, but it's hard to explain the frustration I feel from not being able to do such simple tasks myself.

I feel guilty putting so much responsibility on Zack. We really lucked out with the timing of my hospital stay. Since Zack is in the middle of interview season for residency, he booked off October-January to travel to-and-from interviews. If he isn't out of town interviewing, he can be at home taking care of Em. 

This has been our saving grace. 

Not only is Zack juggling obtaining (the very competitive) Ophthalmology interviews,  traveling to interviews, and finishing up several publications, he is also taken over all of my daily responsibilities, including doing everything for Emory, plus managing to visit me on a daily basis. He is awesome. 

If you have ever known anyone to go through the medical school/residency experience, than you will understand the importance of getting a residency. Unfortunately, Opthalmology is one of the most competitive residencies you can apply for, making this whole experience extremely stressful. Top that off with a hospitalized wife and a potentially preemie baby, and...well, you get the idea.

Anyways, Zack is pretty much Mr. Do-it-all lately and I couldn't be prouder to call him mine.

Dads always seem to do things differently too, not necessarily worse, just different.
This morning he sent me this picture of Em in the tub, I love how he set up the iPad for her to watch. I'll give him points for creativity.

As we were Face-timing, Zack was finishing up Emory's hair (did I mention he can do a killer round brush?) and then he jumped on the ground to play a little doll house before they had to head out the door. I don't think Em will ever want me to come home.

It's the challenging times that make you stronger right? 
I guess I will just have to keep repeating that phrase to myself...

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Day 27

This morning my mom left, so sad.
She came back during my kidney stone episode and stayed for a full 2 weeks.
It was awesome. 
I can't be too upset though, she is coming back in a week with my dad. I already can't wait.

Although I find my hospital room rather pleasant, it has been so nice to get out once in a while.

My doctors have given me permission to go for a wheelchair ride for 30 minutes a day.
It sure is heavenly.
We stroll down and get a hot chocolate and then head outside.
It's amazing what a little sunshine can do for my mood.

Lucky for me, Zack knows all the great outdoor places at the hospital.
He took us up to the Huntsman Cancer Center's roof top deck. It felt so good to lay in the sun for a while...I almost thought I was on a mini vacation.

I've found that keeping a daily routine is good for my mental health.
Every morning I eat, shower, and then jump back in bed to get ready.
I have gotten really good at doing my make-up from a compact and my hair from a sitting/laying position.

This is pretty much as good as it gets.
Wet hair put in a bun, a little make-up, and some pearls.
It may not be fabulous but it helps me feel a little more "normal".

Tomorrow marks 28 weeks and 4 weeks on bed rest.
High-five to baby boy Oakey for cooperating so well.  
Love him already.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Day 23

Well the last couple of days have been very uneventful. No news is good news around these parts. They did check my cervix yesterday and determined that I am dilated to a 4. Since I am not having contractions, my doctors are not too concerned about it. Hopefully I will stay at a 4 for a while, I am really hoping to make it to 28 weeks or beyond.

28 weeks is quite a milestone for little preemies. Chances of survival are excellent and risks for major complications decrease significantly. Although it is still way too early for a baby to be born, it's worlds better than 24 weeks, which is what I was when first admitted.

Have I mentioned that I have some pretty darn amazing friends? They visit me regularly, help out with Emory, and text me daily to make sure I am ok. I am a lucky girl. Last night a few of them brought me cheesecake and we played games. Best night ever.

Em and my mom came and spent the morning with me. We went outside to enjoy a little sunshine. Em sure loved my wheelchair and I just can't get enough of her these days. I am going to be in trouble when I finally get out of here, that girl will get away with murder.

Friday afternoon now includes a non-stress test. I do them twice a week. It's funny how routine my life has become since being admitted to the hospital. I actually kind of like it, does that mean I am getting old?

I can't believe it's already the weekend, for someone who just lays in bed all day, the time really is flying by. No complaints here.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Day 21: 27 Weeks

Today is Halloween.

Emory has a school Halloween performance and costume parade for all the parents/grandparents and I can't be there.

My heart hurts.

I know it's not that big of a deal, but I have never missed anything before and I hate it. How do you explain to a 4 year old that you just can't be there? I hope she understands how much I want too, I get a lump in my throat and my eyes swell up just thinking about it.

She is the cutest Dorothy I ever did see.

So far Emory has adjusted well to me being hospitalized. My Mom has been an incredible help at keeping her on schedule and making her life feel normal. I really can't thank her enough, she has dropped everything to come and help us out. I will forever be grateful. I'm sure Em and my Mom will always have a special bond from this experience alone.

Today I got invited to a patient playgroup. Ok, it was just a get together with other patients on bed rest but my sister called it a "patient playgroup" and I find it rather fitting. I put on my best sweats and my mom even braided my hair...fancy.

I met 3 other woman on bed rest and 2 that had recently delivered. It's amazing what some woman go through to get babies here safely.

We painted pumpkins and chatted away for about an hour. It was just what I needed.

My doctors took me off of a medication today that was giving me bad headaches. It is used to stop contractions, but after 2 uneventful hours on the monitors (and off the meds) we determined that the medicine was no longer needed. Good bye headaches.

I am now officially 27 weeks. I couldn't be happier about that.