Saturday, September 27, 2008

The scoop on finding out...

DISCLAIMER: if you haven't read the Happy B-day Jake post, please read it first;-)

I don't know if this story will be all that entertaining but I will do my best to ad lib for "good story telling" virtue.

So, we went on a cruise...I did everything as anyone normally would on a cruise with the exception of drink alcohol (I just don't care for the stuff and I'm way too CHEAP!;-).

It was a fun time and I felt pretty much like my "normal-ha, ha" self.

Let me back up for a moment, right before we left (Sept. 4th) for the cruise I started "spotting" and called my sisters to joke from the movie The Breakfast Club (the 80's man) that I got my monthly bill early and thought how crappy a time for me to actually be early!!! So, I lugged all that "crap" along and never started but the light spotting was truly assumed to have been my "period"-I know this is oh so TMI and I'm *kinda* sorry.

Meanwhile back at the camp...

Once home, a Friday September 12th, I proceed to head back to work after my 4 day sabbatical. Once at work, I felt "off". I felt very much out of the loop and all of a sudden very sensitive and teary. I *COULD NOT* keep it together. I went to my boss and left CRYING (what a dork!). I zoomed home and was sobbing on the couch thinking "what is wrong with me"? And something inside of me decided to go place my dilute pee on a pregnancy test...2 seconds later I had a plus sign. I spent that afternoon (back at work) in la-la daydream world of the what if's and how the heck far along am I?

Why wouldn't I know that? Here's TMI:

Side note-I'm about to display my menstrual cycle history for sake of a profound least to me:

Cycle journal (I promise I am going somewhere with this):

Owen's Birth November 2006

Cycle 1 August 2007
Cycle 2 December 31st 2007
Cycle 3 April 28, 2008
Cycle 4 June 5th-a "normal" cycle
Cycle 5 July 4th, another cycle-though somewhat light
Cycle 6 08.08.08 another light cycle...this for me is UNHEARD of (a cycle 4 months in a row!!!) as we have struggled with infertility including PCOS, rare and irregular periods, annovulatory cycles, etc for 10 years!!!!

Screeeechhhhh...put those breaks on. I can't even call my fab MD because my benefits don't take into effect until October 2nd and if I get "diagnosed" officially through a medical test now, I would not be covered for maternity leave, etc (FMLA would be fine, just no moola;-). So, I got home that evening to Tim waiting on me and I told him right away and said for him to not say a word to anyone.

I'm a bit of a pregnancy freak so to speak. Having had infertility, 1st trimester spotting, a blighted ovum, and 2 preterm deliveries (not to mention the mess with the whole Owen saga;-). Ok so that wasn't really a complete sentence but, whatever.

Well, I found myself unable to *survive* so I had a pal sneak a peek with an ultrasound yesterday (9-26-08) and to my complete and utter joy, we saw a beautiful sac with a placenta and baby with a flickering heart beat and I even got to hear the little swishing sound! Pure joy! So, I called Tim asap and said we could tell people, so we began letting our boys spread the news. They are pretty excited and we are hoping our trend continues. They know (as much as they can) to pray for this journey we are embarking upon.

I know lots of people wait to tell, but I'm of the belief that once I know, I'm bursting at the seams to share it, plus, if an undesirable outcome results, we'll need lots of prayer and I'd rather ask for your prayers now and then if the bad stuff happens you'll know why we're so upset.

I'm also of the attitude that I have a living being growing inside of me and every second I fall more in love with the idea of being a mommy to 4...don't get me wrong-I'm terrified for the what if's...

Here's a few:

What if things don't continue to develop?
What if the baby has anomalies?
What if this is a girl-ugh-so scary!!!
What if I get sick again?
What if I deliver early again?
What will people think about our over-populating the world?
What will we do with 4 kids (kinda funny;-)?
What if I don't have enough love for a 4th child (really dumb!)?

And so on and so forth...a lot of irrational and selfish thoughts. A lot of "apparently I don't believe God is in control" thoughts. Just FYI, I really do BELIEVE with all my heart God IS in control and His will WILL be done...I'm praying for the best outcome but my ways are not His ways and His idea of a best outcome may not parallel with mine. But, I sure hope it does and I sure hope the Lord continues to bless us.

A few more valid concerns:

Previous PROM (premature rupture of membranes): apparently this occurrence is not necessarily associated with future PROM outcomes-good news.

Previous gallbladder issues: the good news, while I've had issues, my gallbladder is now gone;-) I do still have a small risk of some yucky associated issues but I'm not worrying about this small chance.

Previous PIH (pregnancy induced hypertension): This usually occurs in women less than 20, over 40, with multiple gestation's (twins etc), with a different partner, known anomalies, or in 1st pregnancies. Owen obviously had none of these things, nor did I, yet I still "won" this lottery pregnancy number 3 with a near unheard of PIH beginning at 20 weeks. VERY rarely does it start so early.

The upside, I still have none of these risk factors, but the downside, previous PIH does increase the risk of future pregnancy PIH. Bummer.

The upside, my B/P at work twice in a row sitting upright in a room full of on-lookers (I was the guinea pig) was under 120/70 (around 116/65ish both times!!!). So the point here is I have a healthy blood pressure right now.

Previous GDM (gestational diabetes): Yeah, I've had this too, but only with Owen and frankly, it very well could've been from the steroid shot the gave me to develop his lungs. The downside: many moms who've had GDM, will have it again with future pregnancies AND go onto have DM later in life-yucko! The upside, I still have my glucometer and yes, I'm a freak-I've started monitoring my blood sugars already and they are PERFECT! Let's talk about FBS (fasting) of 60 and 2hrpp (2 hours after a meal) of around 90-100- wa-who-that rocks.

So, my point is I am healthy as a horse (except that I am big as a horse too with wayyy too much weight on this bod;-( I looked 5 months preggo 2 months ago so imagine me now not caring and letting "it all hang out";-) The 7 week baby is "the size of a marble"....ha, ha, ha...I've got one big marble in there;-)

Last downer: previous cesarean delivery: yes, Owen was born via zipper-ouch! It was not an option. No trial of labor was attempted. He was just taken at 32 weeks due to my severe PIH and his unknown conditions (babies with dwarfism often have spine and neck issues so vag delivery is often contraindicated).

Anyway, there are fabulous stats on how much I shouldn't worry about this aspect as I should have no probs delivering this baby without a cesarean...but one contraindication is very unfortunately if I get it again, I'm guessing I'll end up with a stinkin' repeat cesarean which IS NOT the end of the world, but I know from 2 previous vaginal births, definitely not as easy a recovery-whoa.

So, that's about all I know until I can see my doctor and be officially dated, etc. Please keep the prayers coming and I hope to be really annoying with weekly pregnancy updates, etc.

Don't worry I will still post about Owen, Jake, and TJ and my other antics-but this will be a new thing for me to have fun with..the size of a marble-hhhhmmmppphhh!

And, I know that there are valid concerns that we would choose to have another baby...and that many people especially our family and close friends were very concerned during my last pregnancy-I get that. However, this is a done deal-there's no going back and nothing anyone would've said would've kept us from allowing God's will. I know that's not what some want to hear but for us, it's true and I have complete faith that everything will be ok-really. So please, just support us now.

Also, thanks so much to the NUMEROUS comments on the announcement post-wow! I could tear up at the support you all showed! Thank you!

Happy 5th Birthday Jacob Thomas!

I think back to exactly 5 years ago this moment today and I was crushed...worried...scared...guilt laden...just plain messed up!

Jacob Thomas Valiant entered this world 5 years ago today just moments after midnight-completely unexpectedly. My due date-November 4th more than 5 weeks away but my water broke-get this, while I was at work in a delivery-I was doing a baby's foot prints and I still remember my patient-a sweet nursing student. It had been an awful day (and night). I started off the day heading in to the doctor as I felt like I was contracting. He said I wasn't dilated and that he wouldn't stop me anyway if I were (or is it was???). So I headed off to work-a Friday (the 26th of September 2003). I told everyone I wasn't feeling so well, but stormy weather was looming so everyone and their sister was coming in for labor checks, etc.

Long story, long- just after 10pm my water broke (wow, was that painful) and about a half hour later labor started (full-force from 0 to 60 I kid you not) and then just under 2 hours from the time my water broke, I delivered our precious Jacob Thomas weighing in at a hefty 5 pounds 13 ounces-a porker for a preemie. I knew he wasn't ok at birth. I asked them to take him to the NICU. Just after 2am the Neonatalogist Dr. Chua came into my room (a VERY bad sign!) and I told her I knew if she was at my bedside things were not good. Jacob had HMD (which is premature lungs) and had to be intubated and given lung developing steroids, oxygen, etc. He eventually graduated to CPAP, nasal cannula's, etc. after 12 very long days, we got to bring him home.

He's been a little pistol ever since!

And I returned to work just 5 weeks later BEFORE my due date!!!

We celebrated his birthday last night with a small joint party for him and his cousin Jonah who nearly share a birthday (2 years apart though). Today we got up and went to the farmer's market and waited for daddy to get home to do presents. Jake and TJ were also invited to their neighbor friends birthday parties (sister and brother who are 5 and 10 now). So that was fun for them today.

Photo journey:

We just opened the presents and Jake is pretty happy (I hope). He has some money to spend so that's ALWAYS fun. I haven't gotten to do Jake's 5 year check up due to my stinky current work hours but if I can't take him this week, Tim will take him and Owen for check-ups. I'm guessing Jake will fall in his usual 25 percentile for everything. One concern we have is the massive size of his tonsils and how it affects his sleep, breathing and thus daytime behavior (he's often still tired after a full nights sleep).

Anyway, all this reminiscing about Jake's birth story leads me to another prayer request:

Yep, that's Baby Valiant #4 (any bets on the sex???)!!! I am about 7 weeks along with a likely due date of May 15th but we'll be happy to see April! I like to think of myself as a fifth of the way done since I don't do pregnancy so well-optimism here;-) I can't officially see the doctor until next week but was able to sneak a peek yesterday and see/hear a heartbeat (and see ONE baby!). So, that's it-can you believe it?

PS After sharing this news with my family I wanted to get the news out as quickly as possible (and request prayer of course) but I would've loved to have shared this with each of you in person! I hope you all will join us in rejoicing-we are very excited and feel very blessed to be expecting again. We pray this pregnancy goes better than the last (and even Jacob's abrupt arrival:-) but we are realistic and know things could be rough. I'm feeling very emotional already- (not to mention a bit of nausea, vivid dreams, poor sleep, and I'm VERY tired;-( I've cried a lot lately. I am definitely aware that not many agree with our desires "to over populate the world" and am struggling with knowing that not very many people think having a 4th child is a "good idea"-but we don't look at it as an "idea" but God's will for our lives. Anyway, I'm rambling...peace.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

F is for FUN!

We've been back for a full week now and it has been ROUGH to find ANY time for ANYTHING. I certainly haven't been up on this blog nor any other. I'm behind on email, laundry, house cleaning-yep, just about everything in my life.

Working full-time is ROUGH! Hats off to all who successfully manage this daily. I am getting my first paycheck tomorrow though, so I hope it makes it more worthwhile;-)

Oh, and for those who don't know, we are back from a cruise with my lil' sis Amanda and BIL Jason (and Tim, TJ, and Jake-thanks G-ma Becca for lovin' on Owen while we were rockin' away on a very large boat during hurricane season;-).

It was FUN-thus, the title of this LONG overdue and completely inept post. It's already 9pm and well past my bedtime, so I won't be posting much about it but to say it was so much fun and I'm glad to be back on solid ground (kinda). It definitely WON'T be our last cruise! And, I will post more about it soon;-).

In other news, I am one week *free* of caffeine. I am looking forward to Grey's Anatomy, Heros and many other fall premieres. I love ABC's campaign for National stay at home week in honor of all the previews next week;-) My only downfall is that I will be too much of a weeny to stay awake for them all. Thank God for the DVR;-)

Owen is doing great in childcare and I've commented frequently as I leave how awful it is to have him scream for me (not, he actually says "Bye" and closes the door in my face!).

Oh and my blog is 2 years old now! Wow! How shameful that I haven't posted in a gazzillion years.

Hmmmm...what else? Um, oh-I am glad my Wednesday night Bible study has started back up again. I also am having a great time being a "sponsor" (which is a glorified title for hanging out) for the College Ministry with my church. I feel really old though. I have discovered facebook because of the group which also makes me feel OLD!

I think that's all for now.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

We survived...

Day one of "our new life". Who knew it would be so challenging to get up 3 kiddos, feed them, dress them, make sure they have everything they need, make it out the door, get them all to their right places, and be to work on time?

Ok, ok-so maybe I knew it would be a challenge...but it was a good 1st day overall.

The highlight was this silly video, which I was so happy to've found on you tube-a must watch;-)

Day one down, a lifetime to go;-) Cheers!

Oh and the entire daycare is in shock over Owen's incredible adapting to full-day full-time daycare-THANK YOU LORD!