Tuesday, October 23, 2012


A photographic chronicle of the cutest daughter I have. 

Birth Story

January 18th. 1:30AM. I woke up very uncomfortable. A contraction? I didn't know, but had kind of hoped that's what woke me up. I sat there in bed for a moment then decided I needed to go to the bathroom. I come back and got into bed again. I think I fell asleep for like ten minutes before I was woken up again. I knew that time that it was a contraction. I laid in bed for a few more before I got out my phone and started timing my contractions on my Contraction App. I didn't want to jinx it. Before, whenever I had a hard contraction, I would get all excited but then no more would come and I would be bummed. At around 3:00 I started timing them, and they were coming full force every 5 minutes. I didn't want to wake Dallin up yet because I knew labor could last hours and I didn't see a point in him being awake if I could still handle the pains on my own. At 3:25ish a contraction hit hard and I knew I had to wake up the husband! I tried breathing through it but I couldn't do it on my own anymore. I reached over and grabbed his arm so tight. He woke up and asked if I was okay. I said, "I don't think you're going to work today!" He responded with "Are you serious?!" And practically jumped out of bed. Our bags were already in the car, all we had to do was grab our last minute items and we would be gone. At this point, the contractions were hitting about 3-5 minutes apart, and we were getting pretty excited that this was it; this was the day we would bring home our little angel. As I was scurrying, as fast as my contracting pregnant body would allow, Dallin looked at me and said, "Can I just take a shower real quick?" It made me fume, but laugh at the same time. How could I wait for him at a time like this? But, I conceded and he hopped into the shower. Luckily for me, my contractions were uncomfortable, but honestly they weren't terrible or gut wrenching yet. 

Once everything was ready to go, Dallin hurriedly went down the stairs while I waddled after pausing at the top to breathe through a contraction. The car ride to the hospital was so surreal. I kept asking myself if this was all real, and we both stole glances at each other with an accompanying hand squeeze. This was it, today we were going to be parents. Thankfully, the hospital was just a straight shot down the freeway, and we were there in a few contractions.
We got to the hospital at about 4:00, and were put into a room to be looked at. I was checked and was already dilated to a 5. I was so pleased, I was in labor! They moved us to our labor and delivery room and gave us permission to walk around, or do whatever to ease the pains. We decided to go on a walk around the halls, looking at all the cute baby pictures on the wall and stopping for each contractions. I could tell they were getting harder and I knew we had to get back into the L&D room. 

Back in the labor room, I tried sitting on a labor ball, but that only made me more uncomfortable. My back was starting to hurt worse than my stomach area, a sign that I was having back labor. The nurse said that my baby was face up, when she should've been face down which was causing my discomfort. I did not like that one bit. It was time to get back on the monitor, and I had to lay back down on the bed. I have never laid on a more uncomfortable bed in my life! The nurse later told me that their sole purpose was for L&D, and they weren't designed to be comfortable at all. Brilliant. Dallin's mom was there at that point and started massaging my feet (she's a masseuse) to help me relax through the contractions. She was heaven sent I tell you. If you ever are in labor, I suggest bringing along a massage therapist. It works wonders!

After another 40 minutes on the monitor, I was able to be off of them again. Hallelujah! I tried standing again but my contractions were hard, and it was almost impossible to be comfortable standing; so I kneeled. Sounds totally bizarre, but it helped so much! I kneeled on a pillow and rested my head and arms on the bed. Kim would rub my back, I would hold Dallin's hand across the bed, and my mom, along with everyone else, kept me sane and said encouraging things to me. Dallin was my main cheerleader and I don't know how I would've handled it without him. 

Things started to get unbearable, and I didn't think I could do it anymore. I was certainly loosing faith. I was still kneeling and Kim was still massaging. Dallin was holding my hands, and I was squeezing them so tight. I wasn't really relaxed at all during the contractions. I tried to be, I really did. It took all that I had to believe that I could get through each contraction. In between contractions I was pretty much asleep. It was weird, I don't know if it was because I was so tired, or if my body would just sort of shut down to conserve energy for the next contraction to hit. When it was time to get back on the bed, and I was so mad. I called it the "Bed from Hell" in a moment of weakness. I never say words like that, but this was the very truth, and I apparently thought it needed to be said. Everyone was laughing and said it was a good thing I was still keeping my humor in all of it.

Time was a weird thing at this point. I have no idea at what time, but I guess it must have been close to 8:30 when they checked me again and I was almost ready to push. My water was broken and they called the doctor in and told her I was ready at about 9:30. She was in between patients and looked a little annoyed that she would have to deliver for a first time mom who would most likely be pushing for hours on end. I knew my little girl was close, and I was determined to get her here sooner than a few hours. Apparently, it worked. At 9:54AM, the doctor and nurse exclaimed, 
"Here she is! Reach out and get her!" I lifted her up and onto my chest. I had done it. I had just had a baby! The emotions that flooded me in that instant, are too big and too complicated to write down. I was, in short, filled with such joy and such love that I never knew had existed before. After an hour of trying to comprehend that I had just had a baby, they weighed our girl and made sure she was alright. I sat on the bed while Dallin went with the nurse across the room. That was such a sweet sight to see. He was so loving toward her. 

The nurse left us in the room for another hour before we were wheeled up to our recovery room. We were alone, just the three of us, and everything was just perfect. It was such a surreal feeling to know that I had just given birth, naturally, to a healthy baby girl. I think about five or six times after I had her I said, "I just had a baby!" It was such a neat experience.
Our Maddi girl was here, and suddenly all those plans didn't matter. She was healthy, we were happy, and that's all that mattered. 

Friday, October 19, 2012

Trimester: 3

My third trimester was pretty low key. I was on bed rest for a little while, but eventually my body caught up with itself and I was in the good and could get up and do more; as long as I listened to my body. My mom had all of her kids early, so I was hoping I would be the same. I was anxious as ever to meet my little girl. Time during my pregnancy had gone fairly quick while I was in school, but when I was on bed rest time seemed to drag on. I did have a few things to look forward to though; including baby showers and upcoming holidays. It was also fun to see my belly grow so much the third trimester, along with my face. The face puffing was not as fun to watch though.

One of my favorite memories about my pregnancy was watching my amazingly talented husband make the baby's crib. We found a mini crib online that we loved; and that would also fit in our tiny apartment. We ordered the mattress for it online then got the dimensions of the mini crib and Dallin went to work on it. The day before I went on bed rest, I was helping him sand and stain the crib. I'm pretty sure a combination of bending, and working so hard on it all is what put me over the edge the next day; but it was oh so worth it.

31 Weeks; Pear Family Shower
Mini crib made by Dallin

We also had fun times with family and friends for the holidays. But let's be honest; when are holidays not fun? Never. Remember our Thanksgiving fiasco

Thanksgiving shoot out; 32 Weeks

Christmas time was especially touching for me. It was also very uncomfortable. When I was officially released from bed rest, I went a little crazy. Christmas shopping, apartment hunting, bridal shower planning, etc. The baby dropped incredibly low, and I was feeling it. I felt like I was walking, or waddling, around with a big bowling ball between my legs. Once Christmas came and left, I relaxed more and the pains seemed to ease up. I'm sure if I would've kept going, we would have had ourselves a little Christmas baby. After all, my doctor had assured me she would come "any day now" at my 36 week check up. Note to all future doctors, don't tell a patient the baby will come any day when she's 90% effaced and 2cm dilated, she may stay like that the rest of her pregnancy and curse you for getting her so excited about an early delivery. 

 Christmas lights with the Bensons and Barnes; 35 Weeks

We tried to cherish this Christmas, as it was our last one without children. It was a fun and special time for us. We started a new family tradition, homemade pajamas on Christmas Eve from Santa's Elf.

Sporting our pj's and goofy smiles; 36 Weeks

Between Christmas and baby girl's due date, we tried multiple strategies to naturally induce labor. Spicy food? Did it. Walks? Did it. I walked almost two miles on the treadmill a couple times a week to help things along. One night we decided to try out the swing method and off to the park we went. That was so fun, and a memory I'll never forget. We spent the night laughing, swinging, teeter-tottering, sliding, and all things park. But alas, no baby. I've come to the conclusion that they come when they're ready, and she just wasn't ready to make her appearance yet although we were more than ready.

Night at the park; 38 Weeks 

January 17, my due date, came with much anticipation. I spent the morning getting ready and wondering if today would be the day. I ate breakfast, and soon after lost it. I was thinking it was weird because I hadn't had morning sickness since my first trimester. I went to the kitchen to get some water, only to be running back to the bathroom to lose it again. I knew dehydration was a big deal in pregnancy, and since I wasn't even keeping water down I decided to call my doctor. She advised me to check into triage, since vomiting can be a sign of labor. Off to triage I went, again. This visit was particularly awkward because I was by myself, had to park so far away, check in on my due date with no labor signs except vomiting. After a few hours of liquids and graham crackers I was sent home, a little more discouraged than when I arrived. When Dallin got back from work, we decided to check out some apartments last minute. We found some we liked and told her them we would be back the next day, if a baby wasn't on it's way. She laughed and we left to eat what we didn't know then, our last supper as parents with no children.