And then there were 4...

And then there were 4...

Monday, February 17, 2014

All the Firsts

Now that we have an infant again we find ourselves reliving all the firsts!!  First bath, first time crawling, first hair cut, first word, first step, etc...  Well some of those will take a while; not sure I'm ready for my sweet little Parker to grow up that fast, but in the meantime I will document the first bath!

Dominik LOVED bath time!  I'm not sure if this came once he was able to be submerged in the water (up to his chest), or if it started from the first one...but we were hoping that Parker would share the same love of the water that his brother continues to have to this day.  Since Parker still has the umbilical cord attached (deemed as "disgusting and smelly" by big bro), he had to lay in a sling above the water while daddy and big brother wiped him down with a washcloth.  We tried our best to keep him warm, but the sling got cold so fast, and the kitchen where we were bathing him was not overly warm. 

He cried a little bit, but was overall quite the trooper!  Dominik LOVED being able to take care of his little brother and felt quite accomplished when Parker was all clean and smelling great!! 

Sunday, February 16, 2014

To My Loves...

This year for Valentines day we have one more member of our family to love on!!  We have been a family of 3 for so long, that it's nice to have another little bundle of joy to snuggle and be grateful for!  Since Parker made his debut 2 days before Valentines day and we didn't get out of the hospital until the day itself, we decided to make this years Valentines day very small and not do anything big; although TJ feels like he gave me a baby for Valentines Day which is the ultimate gift.  Funny boy!!
Dominik got me some beautiful flowers (thanks MaryAnne) and I got the boys some candies and sewed a bag for TJ's spear fishing gun, and TJ ordered me a lens on Amazon for our I'm pretty excited for that, if only we didn't live in Okinawa and it would get here quicker than 18-34 days :( 

This year we have so much more love in our family and are grateful for Valentines Day giving us the opportunity to step back and recognize it.  Initially I thought I could never love a child more than I love Dominik, but when Parker was placed on my belly I realized that my heart just has more love to share.  I'm so grateful for my 3 boys and all the love and happiness they bring into my life!!  I can't imagine life without each one of them!!

Dominik's preschool Valentines...the whole family helped make them!!

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Labor of Love

Going into Parkers induction the only experience I had to go off of was my labor with Dominik.  The labor was relatively fast, and while yes it was painful, I had a great doctor who had a plan; keyword...a plan.  We checked in at 8 pm the night before, at 8am they started me on Pitocin, 11am my water broke and I got the epidural, by 3:05 Dominik was born.

This was Dominik shortly after birth; such a cutie!!
This is Parker; twins 4 years apart?

I knew Parker wouldn't come in exactly the same way, but I hoped that both would progress in the same way.  My boys like to take their time and really calculate the pros and cons of a situation before they jump in with both feet.  When the time came on Wednesday for us to check in we totally anticipated meeting our new little man within the next 24 hours.  The Mid-wife on deck had a "plan" to start with Cytotec (cervix ripening medication) to jump start the process and see how Parker and my body handled it.  This medication started the contractions....but at a snails pace.  After 4 hours I was still only a 1 and everything was a little squishier (keyword being little).  So enter Pitocin.  The Mid-wife, while not being ultra conservative was definitely not as aggressive as I wish she would have been.  She started the Pitocin at a 1 and then upped it by 1 every hour.  This made the contractions a little bit more intense and 6 hours later my body was a whopping 2...can you imagine laboring for 10 hours to progress 1 cm!!  I was totally deflated!  Not to mention the fact that I ate a huge breakfast that morning and had not been allowed to eat anything else; I'm just not wired that way...a girls gotta eat!

With the Pitocin at a 6, Parkers heart rate went from 140 to 110's and the doctors began to worry.  Pitocin was turned off and we waited to see how the little man handled everything.  Turns out it was just night-night time for him (someone should be able to sleep right?) and that 110's was totally fine.  Pitocin was turned back on and this time we went from up 1 every hour to up 2 every half an hour.  Pretty soon I found myself at a 14 with no meds and in a TON of pain.  The max Pitocin is a 60, but the hospital does not like going over a 20, so yes...14 is pretty intense. 

I knew that I didn't want an epidural too early in the game, but I was in so much pain and I needed to take the edge off so I could get some sleep (going on 24 hours with no sleep and no food = cranky mama) so the doctor offered an IV pain killer.  Approximate time of drug effectiveness was 2 hours, and the benefits were immediate!  Not too long after that clear fluid entered my veins I found myself in a pain free la-la land of sleep and happiness.  After the 2 hours I got up to use the bathroom and found myself unable to clench hard enough quickly enough to make it to the toilet.  Luckily my sweet husband called out to the nurses and said "can someone come in wife's not sure if she just peed on the floor or if her water just broke."  Love that man!  When the nurses came in they confirmed that my water indeed had broken and I was in active labor and was 4-5 cm dilated. 

Contractions now had taken on new life.  Labor was pushing 30+ hours and I was running on no food and 2 hours of sleep.  Time for an epidural!!  Luckily the anesthesiologist was there in under 10 minutes and the whole process was completed in about 30 minutes from consent to the sweet-sweet meds taking effect.  I'm not sure if it's just my body not wanting to relent all power to the medication, but epidurals for me only seem to take about 70% of the pain becomes tolerable instead of non existent which I hear is the case for some women.

About 2 hours after the epidural my doctor came to visit.  She was only on call and would come back for the delivery.  She made sure everything was okay and told me that she lived 20 minutes away and would be back when I was ready.  Well about 10 minutes after her departure I started getting contractions back-to-back with no reprieve.  The doctors checked me and it turns out...I was dilated to a 10 and ready to start pushing.  I was told to "hold on...Dr. Lennon was only 10 minutes out."  By the look of pure fire in my eyes the nurses then switched to "let's just start pushing and hopefully Dr. Lennon will make it."  That definitely sat much better with me! 

Let the pushing begin!  Oh wait...after 32 hours of labor, no food, and no sleep would you want to push a child out of a 10cm whole?  Well, I sure didn't.  After a lot of pain and tears I simply told the nurses, TJ, and the Doctors that I would no longer be pushing and someone else was going to have to take over.  The shock in everyone's faces let me know that I was being taken seriously, but bless the nurse who told me "you can do this!  Keep pushing."  It seemed to help and just after Dr. Lennon suited up and took position...sweet little Parker Willes entered the world and graced us with his presence.

Suddenly all the pain, all the starvation, the lack of sleep, and everything else that goes along with labor seemed totally worth it.  He came out screaming and at the first sound of my voice he opened his eye and looked at me, totally silent.  It was a blissful and euphoric moment that is a blessing beyond compare given to women by our Heavenly Father.  For this reason and this reason alone, I rejoice in womanhood and the opportunity I have been given to have children.  Parker was here; and he was mine!

Parker was born at 6pm on Wednesday February 12th at the US Naval Hospital in Okinawa, Japan.  He weighed in at 9lbs 2oz, and measured 21.7 inches long.  He loves to sleep and eat and is a genuinely happy baby.  He is content to just look around and is eating every 2-4 hours, with 4 hours at night (did I mention how perfect he was).  We find ourselves 4 days after delivery and wondering what life was like before we became a family of 4.  He completes our family in every way and we are so excited to see how life continues to evolve!!  We are so incredibly blessed!!!

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Forcefully Removed

Okay, so maybe my kiddos are just lazy, or maybe I just make the ultimate home within my uterus...but either way...they just won't budge!!  Dominik was 10 days late with 0 dilation and not effaced at all!  With Parker I find myself dilated to a 1, but no contractions and he still has not dropped.  Luckily with Dominik he just needed a little push; I'm hoping that it's the same case with little Parker.

Tomorrow morning we call the hospital at 6:30 am and get our check in that point we will drive to the hospital (on base) and prepare to meet our little man. We are grateful for the prayers on our behalf and know that Heavenly Father is mindful of us and our situation and will prepare a way for Parker to come in the best possible way!!

So our bags are packed, my toes are painted (can't imagine being a doctor delivering a lady with stinky toes), and we are ready to roll!!!  Our lives will never be the same!!!  And we could not be happier!!!

Design compliments of Dominik and Cocok's nail salon