a few days new

One of the perks and perils of having a C-section is being kept in the hospital for four days versus two.  Four days gave me more time to heal up, get extra help with figuring out nursing (invaluable), order almost everything they had to offer from the hospital cafeteria, and - most importantly - take a million pictures of this babe. 

Dave went home in the mornings to wash up in a more familiar shower, since we live a whole 5 minutes from Huntington Hospital, and instead of napping (like I probably should have) I used that time to take mini photo shoots.  I mean, can you blame me?

Tiny yawns are my undoing.

This is definitely one of my favorites - seeing that little profile on the ultrasound screen and then seeing it in real life?  Kind of amazing.

Can't resist that little wink.  I loved when Dave would swaddle him with his little legs pulled up so he just looks like this tiny little thing.

 This dad & son picture needs to be framed asap.  Hormones or not, it gets me every time.

And, yes, you can now safely assume that my blog will be flooded with pictures of this babe from now on. 
I offer my Instagram as proof. 


our baby boy's debut

When I was pregnant I loved reading other people's birth stories.  I knew I'd want to write ours down in detail for me and anyone else who runs by it, even if it turned out to be something I never expected!  Enjoy!

The date:
Wednesday November, 12th 2014

As of a few days prior we were ready to wait for contractions to get going and head to the hospital to push out a pink baby boy.  However, a few somersaults and a big surprise later, we found out this little peanut had other plans.  Baby boy was stuck in a complete breech position (aka: his head was up by my ribs instead of down by my pelvis) and he had little to no chance of flipping despite me doing everything short of handstands in the pool.  There was just so little room left! 

We woke up that morning with an appointment for a scheduled C-section at 12:30pm.  Surprisingly I slept incredibly well and felt very calm.  The night before we called our home teacher over for he and David to give me a priesthood blessing.  It promised me strength and peace and that everything would work out for the best to delivery our little boy.  I know that blessing strengthened and empowered me to get through that long and crazy Wednesday, and I am so thankful for it.

After waking up, taking one last long, indulgent shower, and getting last minute things thrown in hospital bags, we drove the long 5 minutes to Huntington Hospital.  I had always imagined making this drive fighting through contractions, running up to the maternity ward and excitedly informing them we were having a baby!  As it was, we were calm and collected.  We drove, parked, and walked to the maternity ward to check in for our pre-scheduled appointment.  I was fighting down some increasingly frequent contractions at this point that were slowly growing stronger, so I guess that part of my imagining was right ;)

When we were all checked in, the nurse took us back to triage where they would check my vitals and make sure everything was right before surgery.  They were just going to put the IV in when I reminded the nurse that I was only here getting a C-section because my baby was breech.  If he had flipped in the last few days (fingers crossed!), then we were a no go.  I repeat: a no-go.  She put the fetal heart monitor on my belly and wasn't immediately sure which way baby was positioned.  Two nurses then felt my belly and again couldn't tell if that bump up my ribs was his head or his bum!  At this point I was getting pretty excited - maybe he flipped!!  Maybe my hours of laying head down on our propped up ironing board were not in vain!  To be absolutely sure they rolled in the machine to do one last ultrasound.  At first things were still fuzzy, but not for long.

The verdict:
Baby boy was still very much breech. 
We were going through with the C-section.

I was very surprised with myself when I didn't start freaking out.  I just took David's hand and said, "Ok, lets do this."  They then got me outfitted in a stylish hospital gown (which was much more modest than I was expecting: bonus), hooked me up to an IV, and pumped me full of fluids. 

At this point, my anesthesiologist, Dr. Hill, came in to talk to us about my numbing process.  I'd always planned on getting an epidural when I went into labor and to be honest, a spinal block - what they do for a C-section - isn't far from it as far as the procedure goes.  However, I'd always planned on being distracted by waves of contractions to suppress my anxiety ;)  That aside, I will forever be grateful for a calm and kind anesthesiologist.  In my opinion he made the biggest difference for me that day.  While my doctor's hands were busy during surgery, he stood up by my head and patiently talked me through everything I was feeling and what to expect. 

After a quick pep talk with my OB, they sent Dave out to get scrubbed up and I was escorted over to the operating room with Jack Johnson playing softly in the background.  There is something completely surreal about walking into a room where surgery will take place.  The biggest medical procedure I've ever been through up to this point was getting my wisdom teeth extracted, so this felt like kind of a big step up.  But, honestly, this is really the best sort of surgery - the kind where you come out holding a sweet little babe!  Even so, I am endlessly grateful for wonderful nurses and doctors who were kind and thoughtful and kept me calm and collected. 

After getting my big shot (which was really not that bad - one stinging prick and then some pressure - I can handle that), I lay on the table waiting for the spinal block to completely kick in as Dr. Hill did his checks.  Only then did I have a sudden thought: Come on, I thought, there is no way some magical shot in my back would work well enough to numb me completely for a surgery that I would be wide awake for.  At this point Dr. Hill showed me a little sharp plastic tack that he would start poking me with: starting on my arm and then move down my side to poke incrementally lower, all the while asking when I couldn't feel it anymore.  At first I totally felt the pokes...but slowly they became more distant until I was sure he was jesting when he said he "poked" my stomach and asked if i felt it.  Modern medicine, I tell ya, it's pretty cool stuff.

At this point they mercifully draped me (who needs to see that, right?), and my OB, Dr. Matsuda, came in with his assistant, Dr. Henneburg.  Bless these two guys, I'm so grateful for their steady hands, light humor, and quick work.  I kind of thought someone would announce, "And now we're making the first incision..." or something like that, but they just got down to work, and that was probably for the best.  Soon after they started, Dave was lead back into the room and sat up by my head, held my IV-ed hand, and fed me encouraging words - all of which I very much needed.

The procedure started at 12:30 that afternoon and by 12:42 there was the cry of a little babe.  My doctor lifted our little wet boy over the draping for me to see, while I tried to sit up to get a better look.  Not so easy when your abs are numbed and won't respond to you, but it was worth every ounce of effort.

Baby boy's first picture - I just think it's amazing.  I love his little arms raised as if to say:
"Tada!  I'm heeeerre!!"

The nurses whisked our little one to a warming table to check him and clean him up.  Dave ran over to be with him and cut the umbilical cord, and I'd be lying if I said I wasn't a bit jealous.  Bless those kind nurses for their initiative to grab our camera to capture some of these sweet first moments for me to see.

After his scrub down, Dave and our little guy sat up by my head for most of the rest of the procedure, distracting me beautifully except for a bad case of the shakes that took me over due to the anesthesia.  I did experience some pretty intense referred pain in my shoulders during surgery (perfectly normal), the kind of pinch where you just really need someone to give you a massage, but staring at my baby boy helped immensely.

 I LOVE this picture of our new little bundle - our little gnome ;)

When I was almost done, Dave and our little guy were taken to the recovery room just ahead of me and I followed them out soon after.  Despite being in a bit of a medicated haze, holding my sweet baby boy for the first time was still the sweetest thing I've ever experienced.  His warm tiny body was just so fragile and new and perfect and right against mine.  And is it just me or are those little striped hospital caps the cutest things around?

It was love at first sight with our sweet little Clark Ernest Nemrow:

The rest of our afternoon was a bit of a blur of cuddles and visits and settling in.
It was a day to be remembered and one of the best of my life.

 We love Poppi and Grammy Tobler :)

Even though the debut of our little peanut didn't end up being anything like I had expected I am so grateful for the men and women that got our Clark here safe and sound.  I know C-sections can sometimes hold a pretty negative stereotype, but we had a great experience and ultimately I feel very comfortable that this is how things were supposed to happen.  

And now, 2 weeks later, it doesn't matter to me one bit how he got here, just that he is and he's ours and we love him to the moon and back.


baby journal: week 39

Well, as life is wont to do, the best laid plans of mice and mommas-to-be are apt to go awry.  Baby boy is still happy and healthy, my fingers feel like puffed up sausages/ 80-year-old arthritic claws, and my back is ready to say adios to this pulling weight on my tummy - these were all to be expected.  What wasn't in the game plan was going into the doctor Monday afternoon for one last ultrasound and the thumbs up for the all good when...things changed.  Baby boy is completely wonderful (and estimated around a whopping 8 pounds!), but he somehow has somersaulted himself to be completely breech.


Our doctor was shocked and, honestly, so were we.  With only a few shorts days left to my due date and a baby that our doctor is pretty sure will come this week, with very little likelihood that he will flip back on his own, he strongly advised us to call the hospital and set up a scheduled C-section for sooner rather than later.  Dave and I were pretty stunned and I would be lying if I said I didn't start crying some pretty terrified tears at this point.  A C-section was sooooo never in the cards, I hadn't even thought about it and, quite frankly, I was a mess about it for a while there.

Contractions?  Water breaking?  Pushing this little dude out?  Mentally I was so there.

Scrubbing up?  A surgery?  A spinal block?  Ummmm...what?  Yikes!

I'm so grateful for good doctors who are patient and understanding.  My OB sat us down and explained that if my water broke and I went into labor on my own with baby boy still bum down there could be some very real and very scary scenarios on the table.  Ultimately this is all about getting baby boy here in one pink and rosy piece so we decided the best thing to do was to pick this boy out a birthday and get things moving.  Scheduling for Tuesday just seemed like too crazy for me to even consider, so we scooted over to Wednesday and set go time for 11/12/14 at 12:30PM.

When we went home yesterday afternoon we started making calls and asking for added prayers in our behalf for this little nugget to turn head down again.  I mean, if we can avoid surgery, I gotta tell you, I'm all for it.  Then there was a host of Googling and some pretty funny contortioning going on all night long.  (And, no, laying on an ironing board is NOT comfortable, in case you were wondering)  Parts of me keeps thinking this or that is helping the little dude move, but really, who knows?? 

We'll have to see tomorrow...


nursery tour

So we finally got the nursery up and going and, of course, that warrants a few pictures before it becomes a lived in and loved room.  Right now I'll revel in its clean walls and unused, pristine sheets.  It won't be long now before baby boy claims it as his own!!  Due date is officially one week away and I'm a ball of nerves and excitement over here.

I kind of didn't mean to, but we ended up with this turquoise accent cropping up throughout the whole room.  The lamp (we already owned), the quilt (a sweet gift), the prints (a re-purposed calendar), they just all kept bringing this lovely blue/green back in and I just decided to stop fighting it ;)

This crib was a major steal off of Craigslist that I found when we were only 5ish months along.  It felt SO good to check off such a big ticket item so soon and I kind of love it.

These sweet city prints are from an old Rifle Paper Co. calendar that I decided were too cute not to be used again and I adore that print of Mt Timpanogos.  It was one of my favorite sights in Utah and I love having it be front and center over the crib (and, of course, it's turquoise so, you know, it goes).

We found this sweet little wooden animal banner on Etsy and it's among my favorite things in this room.  It's such a tiny thing that adds just a touch of love to such a simple crib.  It'll probably come down soon - once baby boy figures out how to grab things - but for now it's my favorite.

I'm also a bit in love with our rocking chair.  I kept going back and forth about it.  Some reviews were stellar, while others said it was much to rigid and not nearly comfy enough to rock a new babe in.  Well, I'm happy to report that it's a pretty perfect chair for me.  It's definitely not a squishy LazyBoy kind of ride, but it's just soft and comfy enough with room to break it in just a bit.  I've taken to curling up in that corner in the mornings with my book and rocking away.  Pretty sure baby boy and I will be plenty happy here.

I was a bit stumped about how to arrange things over the changing table, but they finally came together and I think I'm pretty happy about it.   I love the idea of a chalkboard that can be changed up as he gets older, but right now that sweet little bassinet just kills me.

Annnnnndd that's a rap!  Hopefully baby boy will like his little space as much as I do, but to be honest, I'm pretty sure he won't care one bit.  He'd probably be just as happy sleeping in a laundry basket in a room with blank white walls.  We all know the nursery is for the momma ;)


baby journal: week 38

(Because every pregnant lady has to attempt to take that Pinterest inspired bumpin' silhouette picture - this was ours)

I gotta tell you, it's pretty weird to be getting to the end of a lot of my to-do list:
  • Found a pediatrician - ✓
  • Got things hung on the walls in the nursery - ✓
  • Washed baby's bedding and newborn clothes - ✓
  • Installed the car seat - ✓
  • Got our hospital bags all packed - ✓
  • Filled in the beginning of our baby book - ✓

All these check marks make me realize that baby boy could come, well, any time now.  And that is both terrifying and exciting and ridiculous. Also telling 15 people at Target that my due date is next week was all sorts of craziness.

My fingers currently feel like they're 80-years-old and arthritic.  I feel pretty good about making it almost all the way with my wedding ring intact, but I've been missing it like crazy these last few weeks!  Soon...

We saw the doc again this week and all is good and quiet on the baby front.  I'm officially dilated to 1cm now (in case you were wondering) and we set up an appointment to see him again on Monday next week.  My heart kind of skipped a beat, though, when our doc looked at his schedule and was like, "well, we might make it to our next appointment or we might now...we'll just have to wait and see what baby does!"  Eek!  That made me want to run home, clean the whole house, double/triple check my hospital bag, and get a pedicure asap.  Then again, all the little old ladies at church are assuring me that baby boy could totally come 10 days late, so, there's that ;)

The only kind of exciting thing around here is that I've finally had a few Braxton Hicks contractions - aka: fake contractions, but it makes me feel like we're getting somewhere!  They make my tummy feel like it's hard as a rock and don't last much longer than a minute.  Much different from how I imagine actual contractions feel - more like a cramp and squeezing sensation?  What do I know.  I guess we'll find out (hopefully) soon!!