Friday, May 30, 2014

One Month Update of Ezra Jett

I'm a few days late, but a month has already passed since we were blessed with our sweet boy! 

Ezra is doing great! He is growing like crazy. At his 2 week check up he weighed 10 pounds 9.5 ounces. That's a 2 pound gain in 2 weeks! We haven't weighed him since, but I don't doubt he's keeping up the trend. He also grew 1/4 of a inch. He grew out of the few newborn outfits he had in about 6 days and is now busting at the seams of his 0-3 month clothes.

As you can tell by his growth, he loves to eat! Breastfeeding is going fantastic! He did have some latching issues the first few days, but we were able to correct it pretty quickly. 

His sleep is about as good as you can expect from a newborn. He sleeps a lot, but not for long stretches. He wakes up every 2-3 hours for the first half of the night. For some reason from 3-6am he wakes up every hour. Which, of course, makes for a VERY sleepy mommy! Luckily, right now he and Karoline are napping at the same time so I can usually sneak one in myself. 

My girls have done great with the addition of their baby brother. They both adore him and can't get enough of him. I was a bit worried about how Karoline would do, but it hasn't phased her one bit :) 

This month has flown by, but I honestly can't remember life without him. It seems like he's always been with us. He is such a joy and blessing. I'm so excited to watch him grow and learn. I know how quickly it will go so I'm trying to cherish every second! 

Of course, here are a few pics of our beautiful boy <3 

           All dressed up for church :)

                    Chubby cheeks!

    He has lost most of his hair on the top            of his head :(

                       Napping <3

Monday, May 5, 2014

The Birth Story of Ezra Jett

This is the birth story of our beautiful baby boy. It is somewhat detailed, so if birth related details gross you out then I suggest skipping this post:) 

It's taken me several days to get this done. My sweet newborn eats every two hours so all of it has been typed on my phone. Please excuse any typos or errors :)

I realize this type of birth isn't for everyone. Every birth is beautiful. I in no way think my way is better than anyone else's. :)

I've been waiting 9 long months to write this story. For the entire wait I dreamed of having a detailed account of my perfect, unmedicated home birth accompanied with beautiful pictures of my perfect labor and birth. And I'm very blessed to be able to say I got almost exactly what I wanted. 

It all started in the early morning hours of April 27, 2014. I had a strong feeling that it was the big day. Besides being 1 day shy of 41 weeks, I had been having some mild cramping all night. I woke up with what I knew, without a doubt, was a real contraction at 5:30 am. Another one followed 9 minutes later. I got up, took a shower, brushed my teeth, and tried to make myself look presentable. During this time I had a couple more contractions all around 8-10 minutes apart. I woke Chance up at exactly 6 am. He got up, took a shower and started on the short list of things I had for him to do around the house.  I called my midwife at 6:20 am to give her a heads up about what was going on.  I told her that today was the day and that I would call her when my contractions were closer together so she could start our way. Over the next 20 minutes things started to speed up.... a lot. By 6:40 I called my midwife back and told her to leave now. My contractions that were 8 minutes apart just 20 minutes earlier, were now around 3 minutes apart. She said she was leaving right away and it would be anout an hour. 

Now, I have to mention that for the past 8 weeks I had been practicing Hypnobabies as the way in which I was going to manage my labor. I was fully committed to it, practiced it daily and was very confident that it was going to work. My intentions were to get a few things done around the house during early labor and then when I started active labor I would start using my hypnosis. This plan was great except that I all but skipped active labor. By the time I realized how quickly things were progressing, I couldn't get myself into my hypnosis. Even though I didn't use the hypno anesthesia, I was able to use tools such as positive thinking and deep, controlled breathing. Both were very beneficial and made the course worth it. 

 While waiting on my midwife to arrive I was trying everything I could to get comfortable. It wasn't pain that was so uncomfortable, it was the crazy amount of pressure!! I tried every position I could think of. Nothing helped relieve the pressure. The only thing that took the edge off was walking. So I walked in a circle around our living room for  a while. By this time I had stopped timing contractions because I was becoming worried about how quickly things were happening and I was so nervous my midwife wasn't going to make it. 
 Around 7:00 I decided I would try out the shower to see if that would help me relax a bit. I stayed in through 1 contraction, but I couldn't handle being confined and unable to walk around. When I got out Chance suggested I try the bathtub. I tried it out and it was amazing!! It was instant relief! The weightless feeling of the water helped so much with the pressure and the warmth of the water greatly reduced the pain. 

At this time my contractions were still every 3 minutes. In between them I felt fine and I was able to talk and converse a little. Around 7:40 I started feeling a bit "pushy". I had Chance call the midwife to see how far away she was. She was only 15 minutes away so I felt much better about her making it in time. That was until 10 minutes later when my body started pushing...on it's own!! There was absolutely nothing I could do to stop it. The contractions were right on top of each other. Not only was my body pushing on it's own, but I started making a very deep 'oh' sound. I'm a really quiet person and never thought I would be one to make any noise during labor, but it just happened. I couldn't control it and it seemed to help my body with the pushing. I'm pretty sure this noise made Chance  very nervous, but I promised it sounded like I was a lot more pain than I was actually in. Again it was more of the insane pressure than pain. 
 Luckily, my midwife arrived right at 8:00 just as I was entering the transition phase. Since I had planned a natural, unmedicated birth I had done lots of research on what to expect. I can say everything I read about translation was completely true for me. It was the quickest part. It was the hardest part. I was shaking because of the hormones and I even "shushed" Chance and the midwife. They were whispering and being very respectable, I just needed every ounce of concentration without any distractions. And it was when I had the only contraction I thought I couldn't make it through. As soon as the thought, "Forget it, I'm going to the hospital and getting an epidural" crossed my mind it was over. 

 After transistion, my contractions spaced out and shortened and were much less painful. Much like they were in early labor. By this time I was actively pushing during the contractions. Pushing felt SO good! It's hard to explain, but it completely took away any pain during the contractions. My water had not yet broken so it helped to slow things down just a bit. When it did finally break things started moving along quicker. 

 Two things surprised me during the pushing. One, I had no concept of time. It could have taken 5 minutes or 5 hours I would've had no idea either way. I was just focused on getting him here that I'm honestly not sure how long I actively pushed. Second, I was surprised at how sleepy I was between contraction. I have no doubt that if I had been in bed I would have been sleeping between them. I have never felt that tired in my life. That feeling ended as soon as he was born :)

 Sometime after 9:00 he started to crown. That was definitely the hardest part of pushing. It burned quite badly and I had to give myself a mental pep talk to push through it. It only took 2 or 3 pushes and his head was out. It was crazy/amazing to see him there, under the water, but still getting all of his oxygen from me. The next contraction his shoulders were born and my midwife told me to reach down and get him. At 9:18 am, 3 hours and 50 minutes after my first contraction, Ezra Jett was born. It. Was. Amazing!!! Reaching down and pulling him out all on my own was my reward for carrying him those long 9 months. I put him on my chest and we cuddled in the water for the next 5 minutes or so. When his cord stopped pulsing, daddy cut the cord and took him to cuddle on our bed. Shortly after I delivered the placenta and then it was time for me to get out. Within 15 minutes of his birth I was in my own bed nursing my son. I was completely overwhelmed. It was one of my proudest moments. It was physically the biggest challenge I've ever overcome. It was empowering and I've never felt as strong as I did in that moment. I would do it a million times over! 

While Ezra nursed we laid in bed staring at him and listening to a thunderstorm blow in. My midwife cleaned up the bathroom (so nice!) and then excused herself to our kitchen while she finished up her paperwork. After he finished nursing, she finished his Apgar and took our temperatures and my blood pressure.  She also took his weight and length. He was a healthy 8 pounds and 8 ounces and 22 inches long! He also got his Vitamin K shot. His chest was completely clear and his lungs were working perfectly. He was perfect in every way!! My midwife checked my bleeding one more time and gave us our post partum instructions and then she gathered her things and she was off.

 I loved every single thing about my home birth. I loved how comfortable and safe I felt in my home. I loved that I was allowed to birth my baby the way I wanted. I loved that I didn't have anyone taking him or interrupting every 20 minutes. I could not have dreamed of a better experience!!

 We spent the next several hours just enjoying him all to ourselves. The girls had just happened to stay with my mom the night before so it was just the 3 of us. After church my mom brought them over. They were instantly in love!! More family followed and we all sat in our living room adoring our newest addition. 

The entire day was absolutely perfect!! The only thing I didn't get were the beautiful pictures. Things just went too fast and we didn't give it much thought until after. I'm okay with it though. I will never forget that experience :) Here are a few that we did take. 

Chance snapped this one shortly after I got in the tub. 

Nursing in our bed just after he was born <3

Our perfect family of 5 <3

I couldn't end this post without giving a huge thank you to my sweet husband. I didn't want to be talked to or touched or even bothered at all through my labor so he had to just sit back and watch. I know it was hard for him, but he did it wonderfully. He never left me and did absolutely anything I needed. He stayed calm for me and kept my bath water warm :) I seriously couldn't have picked a better partner.

And of course, here is our perfect bundle if joy :)