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Tuesday, August 7, 2018

The Birth of Sailor Augustine

November 30th, 2017-That day started a little different then most days. I woke up 36 weeks and 6 days pregnant, and full of energy! I had a few errands to run and and then a doctors appointment. I wobbled out of bed to shower, and SHAVE MY LEGS yes at almost full term I shaved my legs. It was so hard but I don't regret it one bit! I got ready and then left for the day. I ran my errands, jammed some music, and ate some chickfila in my car. Finally made it to my appointment still feeling amazing and full of energy. My whole pregnancy I had dreamt of having my daughter naturally at a birth center. I took classes to prepare me for that, so I felt ready, nervous but ready. The teacher of my class assured us a bunch of times that it is rare for 1st time moms to go super early, and they are usually late. So we booked my husbands plane ticket for the 11th of December, so we could have some time together before we had our girl. Now in the past at appointments I would initially have higher blood pressure, due to being nervous, and from moving around. The midwife waited until the end of my appointment to check. 160/119 She checked 3 more times and it never lowered. That's when my whole plan had to change. She told me they would send me to the hospital to have me checked out but I would not be able to have my birth center, birth. I was heart broken. So she loaded me into the car and drove me the 3 minutes down the road to the hospital. At this point I was worried, but still not ready for what was to come next. That high of blood pressure was very alarming and they were unsure how I was feeling normal and even still conscious. Once hooked up to the monitors, after being asked a billion questions, they tell me I'm not leaving until we have the baby. And that's when the real panic set in, my husband was 1000 miles away, I was alone, and I didn't have any of my stuff with me. I got in contact with my husband and my family so everyone was in the loop. I'm sure there were 101 things going on behind the scenes to get everyone there. Once my family started to arrive my nerves were calmed. The baby was still moving fine and had all normal activity. I was also notified that I did not have pre-eclampsia which is very dangerous. I had gestational hypertension, which is very common.

A few hours passed and my husband had a flight out at the end of the night. He would make it to Denver around 12am. My midwife decided to put me on the induction medication at that time. Waiting for him to get there felt like forever, but once he finally made it, I felt so much relief. Then it finally was real... We are having a baby!! They gave the meds and checked me, I was 1.5 cm dilated... it was going to be a long ride. We took our last picture of it being just the 2 of us and settled in for a night of "rest"!


December 1st, 2017-After a night of constant blood pressure checks, continuous fetal monitoring, and what felt like very little sleep, we braced ourselves for the day! We were absolutely sure today would be at the day she was born. They gave me another round of meds to hopefully speed things up. When the next check rolled around thats when we realized my body was really no where near ready for labor. I was till at an 1.5cm. It was decided to try a foley catheter to help manually dilate my cervix. About an hour or so later I started to feel strong pain, and I was set that I needed and epidural. The nurse suggested that I try the bath tub, so I did and I felt so much relief. Soon after getting out, the balloon fell out! That put me at  4.5cm. It was about 7:30pm at that time, my family had been there all day and decided to wait the night out to. I was exhausted to say the least, so I got some sleeping meds and was out for most of the night!


December 2nd, 2017-  Today HAS to be the day I had my baby right??? I had been in the induction process for so long at this point, fear started to set in. Was I putting my baby and my body under too much stress? Would I need an emergency c-section? Was my body really made for birthing a baby? I was assured that I could do this and I was strong enough! It was finally time for some pitocin The day went on and I slowly started to progress. When I made it to 6cm they broke my water. After that everything started to move really fast. I felt a lot of pressure about an hour after my water broke and it was another huge gush of water, then the contractions came on. I was informed that my blood pressure would sky rocket every time I contracted and that they were worried it would eventually cause the baby stress. I was advised to get the epidural so it would help, and I did. As much as I didn't want one, it felt more important to me at that point that my baby was kept healthy. I got the epidural at around 6pm and I was feeling great! If I wasn't numb from the waist down I could have walked a mile! I did some more resting and spent more time laughing with family.  The next time they checked me, I was at 7.4 cm! I was given a huge yellow peanut ball for between my legs, and I know for certain that made a huge difference! At around 9:30pm I started feeling a lot of pressure... but the midwife was in another birth and couldn't check me. I was feeling the need to push and the pressure was almost constant! Once I finally got check at around 10:15pm, they told me I was at a 9.5 and that I couldn't push just yet! They set the room up for baby and turned on the huge bright lights. At 10:45pm I started to practice push... and she was coming down fast. My contractions slowed a bit, and I was able to talk, joke around, and even pick some music to play in between them. I remember looking down and seeing her shoulders come out... I closed my eyes and then I heard her cry. At 11:06pm on December 2nd... My perfect angel was born! I was so scared to open my eyes, after everything we went through to get to her, it didn't feel real. I felt that if I opened my eyes I would wake up to reality and she wouldn't be there. But it was real... She was real. Sailor Augustine, you will never truly understand the way you changed me on that day. Our golden hour flew by, and it was time to hand her off to daddy! He was in love and you could see it all over him. My birth may not have went according to plan... It was very long, emotional and physically exhausting. I would do it all over the same just to have my girl.
















Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Breastfeeding Journey



Disclaimer: This blog contains photos of a baby breastfeeding. So please click away if you aren't comfortable viewing that! 



During my pregnancy and even before I knew I wanted to breastfeed. So I spent so many hours reading blogs, articles and watching videos on how to make it easy for you and your baby. I read about the health benefits, the amazing bonding experience, and how it even promotes weight loss after baby! Not to mention its free... so it was a no brainer for me. I also felt like I even knew what I was doing before going into it... and boy was I wrong. Everything I needed had been purchased, a pump, bags, a breastfeeding pillow, and even boobie ice packs.(not really free haha)
After all my research I knew that our golden hour after birth is very important. Skin to skin promotes bonding between mommy and baby. Once it came time to latch her on I got nervous. All the time I spent went out the window, and I felt like I knew nothing. Sailor latched pretty well and transferred a little bit of colostrum and went to sleep on the breast. I was immediately discouraged... Did she get enough? Why did she fall asleep? Do I even have any colostrum? The nurse assured me that the little bit was enough and she was just tired from being born... which is actually very hard work for babies too! After hearing that I felt better and decided to get some rest.
Sailor's First latch.
Since Sailor was born at 37 weeks, they had to monitor her blood sugars to make sure they were normal. Her 3rd check came back too low which forced us to give her some glucose and then they encouraged us to supplement. I was again heart broken, I felt like I had already failed at breastfeeding. We were able to give her donor milk through a syringe to prevent nipple confusion, and I was able to pump after letting her latch for a while. As hard as it was to feel like a failure so early into being a mom, I knew I made the right choice. Plus daddy really enjoyed doing this part... I'll never forget the excitement he had when it was time to feed again. The next day, I had a lactation consultant come to see us and they noticed she had a lip and tongue tie. Which would explain why she was so sleepy at the breast, and why she was unable to properly transfer. They showed me how to use a nipple shield, I was skeptical and worried about nipple confusion but wholeheartedly believe this is what saved my breastfeeding journey.
Daddy feeding Sailor.
Once we made it home, and the stress of my baby being under photo therapy lights for 48 hours was gone... my milk finally came in on day 6!! I was sure that it wouldn't come in but once it did I was so happy, even in all my engorgement pain! Everything was going good until we went to her 1st doctors appointment. She wasn't gaining weight, and you guessed it, I felt like a failure once again. After 3 more appointments, lots of pumping and syringe feeding... Sailor finally started to put weight on again!! She was eating like a champ, as often as she wanted.



 Until about 5 weeks old, when the colic came on. I was sure she had reflux because she was unhappy all the time. After more research and talking to friends, I realized that she was still getting a lot of air from the ties and the nipple shield. We had an appointment with a pedicatic ent who evaluated her and confirmed all ties. She then told me that Sailor would need to be put under anesthesia to have them repaired. That was terrifying. There was lots of time and thought behind our choice but we decided not to go that route. And we were back to square one. Thanks to some amazing Facebook groups we were put in contact with a pediatric dentist who did the procedure in office, and in under 10 minutes. At around 8 weeks old, her ties were finally repaired! The healing process was long and tough, but we made it though! Finally my girl was nursing like a champ, with no shield, and no other issues! 

Our journey was no where near easy, and not at all what I expected it to be. More often than not, I felt like a failure of a mom, and would cry while feeding her. After all is said and done I am so happy I stuck with it despite all the hardship we had. I do believe that,"Fed Is Best"so if you breastfeed, formula feed, or supplement you are doing amazing. 


In honor World Breastfeeding Month Here are some of my favorite breastfeeding photos! 
Not all of them are glamours, but I love documenting this journey.











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