Monday, January 30, 2012

Meltdown Mondays with Mama

Photo for this week...
While I feel better about my body...I still look pregnant I was a bit discouraged by this sight so I forewent my measurements. I did the Shred 6 days this week. It is starting to get easier. Eating is something I have always struggled with(unfortunately eating is about 80%). Awhile back my sister mentioned the book "Eating Clean" and last night I bought it. I finished it this afternoon (I skimmed a lot of the information on exercising and the different diseases/disorders that it covered. The book made a lot of sense - we should only be eating things that are natural and things that haven't been tampered with by chemicals and processing. So this afternoon I went through all of our cabinets and pantry and threw all of the "bad" stuff away. This is what it looked like:
Gross! Now our pantry and cabinets look pretty bare so it looks like tomorrow will be grocery day. And now for a dose of cuteness:
The love of my life!

Sunday, January 29, 2012


Aubrey was given the cutest pink outfit. I call it her "snow star" outfit. Without further ado... Miss Aubrey Rose (Little Monster)
"Mum, it is 71 degrees outside and you have me in this snow suit..."
"I suppose I will pose for the camera, as long as you promise not to make this last more than five minutes...'Hi!'"
"Ok, new pose please"
"Thanks for the change of scenery but I am NOT looking at you."
**Diva Moment** Note: some of these photos have been edited, most have not. I have very little attention span and/or patience for things like this. This little girl has stolen my heart. I cannot get enough!

Saturday, January 28, 2012


I go back to work February 29th. I am so not ready...Fortunately for us we have both sets of parents within 20 minutes of our house to help with watching after Aubrey. His parent's house is actually on the way to work so it will be a breeze (driving wise) to drop her off on my way to work. His parents will be watching Aub Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays at their house and my sister will actually be caring for her every Wednesday at our house. Anyway, my sister is only 20 years old and doesn't have much experience with babies aside from the one friend that has a child but she doesn't really talk to her much so that doesn't count. So she has started coming over for a couple of hours to "shadow" me with Aubrey. She has learned how to change a diaper, prepare a bottle (of breast milk), calm her down, etc. She's doing quite well actually; so comfortable that she offered to come over last nite to watch Aubrey so that Roy and I could go on a date. Going on a date wasn't an option for last nite so she came over for a couple of hours in the afternoon so that I could get out of the house. My original plan was to head to Michael's craft store for supplies to make head bands for the baby but Roy came home so we went on a lunch/coffee date instead. Why doesn't anyone ever warn you about the feelings that might occur when you leave your baby for the first time? I mean, I totally trust my sister but I was so anxious! I felt like I couldn't focus on enjoying my time (alone!) with Roy and enjoy my burrito. I caught myself staring off into space. I kept thinking that the baby was crying. I felt strangely naked, like a huge chunk of me was missing. I felt really bad because Roy kept asking what was wrong and I didn't want to admit that I had Aubrey on my mind. But he figured it out anyway and tried to distract me by whisking me off to Starbucks. Not even my Grande Caramel Macchiato Upside down could hold my attention. We were gone for only an hour and by the time that hour was up we could not get home fast enough. We literally hit every red light! I practically jumped out of the (moving) car when we pulled up to the house. This is what I came home to:
*Ahhhh* Sigh of relief. My sister said it was a bit scary at first because she kept crying but that all was well. I go back to work in about a month - how am I going to handle that? I am a general manager that works 45 hours a week...surely I will not make it. How did you handle your return to work? Any advice?

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Let's Face It

...The truth that is.

The truth is that last week I only completed one day of the 30 Day Shred because I was scared that I wouldn't be able to finish it.

The truth is that over the weekend I took a good long look at my body and while I am in awe of the fact that my body created and carried a baby I HATE the way it looks now.

So tonight I am going to post my "before" pictures. I am nervous because this is something I have never done before and I am worried about what people can say. However, I know that if I don't do this I may not hold myself accountable.

So here it goes...

**Please ignore the brightness of Aubrey's nursery and my dirty slippers!!**

There it is.

Even though I am only 7 weeks postpartum I am still grossed out by the way I look.

My measurements are the same as last week.

This week's goals are to complete 5 days of the Shred, wear Aubrey as much as possible for resistance cardio and clean up my feeding habits. I will be going through the kitchen and chucking all of the crap from our pantry and cabinets.

So here it goes...

Operation Get Your Body Back!



P.S. This was supposed to be posted yesterday for Meltdown Mondays with Mama but you know how things work around here!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

To the Bottle...

Dear Aubrey,

Tonight we gave you your first bottle of breast milk. I will be returning to work very soon and have been pumping after our feedings to build up a stash for you. Anyway, it was my idea to give you a bottle just to see how you would take it. I must admit that at first I was a little bit excited by the idea because that meant that Papa and I might be able to get out and have a date ALONE (don't get me wrong, my love, we do love taking you out with us but I get so distracted by making sure that you are okay that it kills the romantic vibe).

So as Papa bathed you I prepared a bottle. Since Papa doesn't get to have that bonding time with you I had him feed you. It's funny, as soon as he lifted the bottle I had such a sudden change of emotions - I was sad, angry, jealous, to name a few. I was sad because I know that by giving you bottles that it means that I will be heading back to work very soon. I was angry because I would give anything to be able to stay home with you so that I can raise you in my terms and continue to breastfeed exclusively without a bottle. And I was jealous because feeding you is something that only I have been able to do for you and now anyone can take a bottle and fulfill that need.

Tomorrow you will be seven weeks old - where has the time gone?

I love you.



Monday, January 16, 2012

A case of the Mondays...

Well....I totally had this great idea for a Monday series that I wanted to start this morning. But you know how it is taking care of four dogs, a baby and a household :)

I know, I know: "Moe, excuses are like...." I get it.

Moving forward.

Today marked the 6th week after giving birth to Aubrey meaning Operation get Your Body Back.

First a few stats:

I gained 25 pounds with Aubrey I was 179 the evening I checked into the hospital. I have yet to look at the scale since then, I have a serious issue with numbers on the scale which we can all discuss later.

As of this morning my body looks like this:

Bust - 40 inches

Waist - 35 inches

Hips - 39.5 inches

Biceps -12 inches

Thighs - 27 inches

I'm still rocking my maternity pants because I don't want to face the bitter truth about my pants size. I lied. I tried on pants the other day and I fit into a 10. So I have still been rocking the maternity pants. : (

Ugh, not a pretty picture in my mind.

In my ideal world I would be wearing a size 4.

Anyway. I have chosen the Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred.

My goal is to post on my progress every Monday which will include a "weigh in" (measurements) and how I have been eating. I should include a picture but Aub is screaming at the top of her lungs --- I must feed. Picture tomorrow.

I think I need a name for this new Monday series ---- suggestions?



Monday, January 9, 2012

Reaching Out!

I really want to take a legitimate attempt to blog regularly....So I posted to the Mom Blog Monday Blog Hop!

Saturday, January 7, 2012

One Month

Dear Aubrey,

So much has happened in this first month:

- You were born. It was the longest five days of my life!

- We brought you home and life is no longer the same. I mean that in only the very best way.

- You have several nicknames that I have given you. Aub, Aubs, Little Monster, Booger Bean, Little Bird, Stinkerdoodle. Most commonly used: Little Monster. Your Papa's parents have made comments about their disdain of that name; it encourages me to say it more.

- You experienced your first Christmas and you slept through all of it!

- You make eye contact with me and your papa now and you coo and 'talk' to us.

- When you cry actual tears it melts my heart.

- You smile

- You are starting to like taking baths

- Your eyes are still blue

- You are still pretty pale...I have been told that you will gain 'color' as you get older :)

Aubrey Rose, I could stare at you for days! My heart as exploded with love, affection, and admiration for you. I love every moment with you, yes, even the ones where we are up at all hours of the night.

You have grown so much it amazes me. The other night I realized that you've outgrown some pajamas. Your papa found you and me sitting on the bed with tears streaming down my cheeks. I told him I wanted to keep you in a little box so you couldn't grow anymore. You are heavy now. I think I will weigh you tomorrow. People think I am crazy when I talk about how huge you are because they think you are still so tiny.

I now think I have an inkling of understanding of how/why some people have so many children - I would do this again and again.

I love you so much. You being here motivates me to write here more often. So much happens; I do not want to miss anything.

I love you.

I love you.

I love you.



Aubrey Rose the Finale

....things felt like they were moving along.

Monday Morning:

7 a.m. the Dr. Koning comes in. He asks how I am feeling and tells me that I have been contracting all night long (as if I didn't know!). Then he checks me and I brace myself a) because cervical checks hurt like hell and b) I didn't want to get my hopes up. He tells me I am at 3 cm. 3 cm. 3 effing cm.

I was trying to hold back the tears as Roy rushed to my side and asked about the options. I was given two options: c-section right then or pitocin. Being the stubborn girl that I am I once again chose to stick it out.

Pitocin it was. The doctor said ok and left the room. I cried. This wasn't the plan at all.

The nurse comes in and starts me on pitocin. They allow me to get out of bed and sit in a rocking chair hoping that gravity will help me progress. It doesn't. Aubrey's heart rate does not respond well to the pitocin and they make me get back in bed and lie on my side.

These contractions were considerably worse and I have to focus through 85% of them. I visualize my body opening and Aubrey moving down. I was determined to will this baby out.

11 a.m. rolls around and my nurse (Misty) walks in, checks me and then informs me that Aubrey is not tolerating well at all. She has spoken with Koning and he is stopping the pitocin. After watching the monitor I am put on oxygen because Aubrey really isn't doing well. I start to cry and I say "Just gut me like a fish, cut me open. I do not care anymore, I am so tired. I want to be done."

Roy wasn't too happy. He knew that that was not my wish. I had to explain to him that my body was exhausted and that mentally and emotionally I was dead.

Roy's parents were already there : - s and, boy, were they driving me crazy.

I text my Mum to tell her the news. She was at school so I figured she wouldn't respond right away but she did! She told me she was on her way.

1 p.m. Dr. Koning walks in and explains what's going on.

My mother and sister came.

The rest is a blur.

2 p.m. they started prepping me for surgery.

By 3:30 everyone was kicked out of the room.

It was so strange knowing that there was a light at the end of this looonnnnnnng tunnel.

4:45 Misty comes to walk me to the O.R. and I kiss Roy goodbye.

There were so many people in there. I shakily got onto the table and they talked me through the spinal. Misty wrapped her arms around me and held me because I was pretty nervous. It wasn't as bad as I thought it would be.

They lay me down on the table and finish whatever they needed to do. The blue curtain went up. Roy came in. When I saw Roy I felt at peace. I was ready. He was ready. He told me he loved me and kissed my forehead.

Then it began. Roy looked over the curtain as he held my hand. The pressure came and for a moment my world went silent. I closed my eyes. The sweetest sound I ever heard rang in my ears. Aubrey Rose was born at 5:21 p.m.

Tears poured.

When I opened my eyes Roy was looking at me, tears streaming down. He said she was beautiful. I told him to go over to be with her and make sure she was ok.

I could hear her crying and Roy talking to her telling her she was okay and that he loved her. Then he started to sing "Three Little Birds" by Bob Marley to her and I started to cry again.

They bring her over to me to meet.

It's a feeling I can't describe.

They sent Roy and Aubrey out and they staple me up.

Recovery was a blur. I fed her and did skin to skin. I watched Roy and the nurse give her a bath. There were mass texts sent out.

We had family time.

My life was changed when I saw that the pregnancy test read "pregnant." My life took another turn when I saw her on the ultrasound screen for the first time and heard her heart beat. Watching my belly grow and feeling her kick were the best things in the whole wide world. But nothing compares to the feeling I felt hearing her first cry nor seeing her for the first time nor holding her.

I would do it again and again.

My whole life I have wanted to be a mother and now that it is here I cannot imagine my life without her.

"They didn't have you where I come from
Never knew the best was yet to come
Life began when I saw your face
And I hear your laugh like a serenade

How long do you want to be loved
Is forever enough, is forever enough
How long do you want to be loved
Is forever enough
Cause I'm never, never giving you up"

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Aubrey Rose Part 3

....There is only one more part after this, I promise!

The next morning Merisa came back and I was so thankful because I felt so comfortable with her.

The day went as followed:

I was put on an all liquid diet because I was having a baby that day and we all know how the hospitals don’t want you to nourish your body with anything but ice chips.

I was checked and I was at about 2 cm and still contracting every 2 minutes or so.

The doctor came in and said I was contracting too frequently so they gave me a pill to slow them down. I was still contracting on my own a few hours later so I was given another pill to slow them down some more.

Family and a few friends start to arrive. Roy’s mother insists that she will be there for the delivery and acts incredibly offended when Roy tells her otherwise.

………………………that’s about it.

Aubrey’s heartrate was acting weird which required me to stay in bed the whole time! I was only allowed to lie on my sides – Aubrey hated when I was on my right side so I was only to lie on that side for 10 minutes at a time, the rest of the time I was on my left. My body ached.

Around 6 p.m. my families arrived right as Merisa came in to tell me my doctor requested that I get up and try walking the halls to get Aubrey to move down. I was allowed to walk for one hour and then I was to be on the fetal monitor for ½ an hour. Merisa suggested that I walk and then be monitored and then if I wanted to I could shower. I was so excited! I had been lying in bed for over 24 hours with the only movement being getting up to pee – I could not get unhooked and into my slippers quick enough! Roy and Emily (my little sister) came with me. The first couple of minutes I needed to hold on to Roy because I was a little shaky. I came back to be hooked back up only to discover that her heartrate dropped. No more walking….my doctor was notified and I was then denied my shower. I was super bummed!

I was allowed to have a bed bath. At first I was not happy but once the nurse rubbed my back and neck I felt so much better and I could not stop thanking her.

They gave me some Benadryl for my itching and another round of the pill to slow my contractions. I fell asleep so quickly! Around 3 a.m. I needed to pee and once I got back into bed I couldn’t fall back asleep. My nurse asked if I wanted to sit up. I thought she meant in bed and I started to refuse but then she said she would bring me a little foot stool and a warm blanket and set me up in a chair. I took it. I sat up for 4 hours. I watched Aubrey’s heart and my contractions. I watched Roy sleep. I tried to take everything in.

Sunday morning:

7 a.m. the doctor comes in and says that if I am feeling patient enough that he will allow me to labor some more with the Cytotec or that I could go ahead with a C-section. Right as I am about to answer Roy wakes up…

I was about to say, “Just gut me like a fish, I want to be done.”

But Roy jumps up and says “No C-section! Remember our plan? You can do this baby, we are getting there! She will come”

My head wasn’t in the game. I wanted out. I wanted to be done; I was tired of the guessing game. My guess was that she would have been here by now and the contractions were getting the best of me. I was ready to give it all up – no more laboring without drugs, no more toughing it out, no more putting on the happy face.

I chose to wait it out. She had to come today; she had to. I told the doctor I was patient and I flashed my most realistic smile. He told me I could take the Cytotec up to 6 times and that I hadn’t met my limit.

So we I forged on.

Merisa came in and told me that she was the charge nurse that day but that she would be my nurse because I liked her and she liked me. : )

When my doctor and nurse walked out I lost it. I turned back on my side and cried. I wanted to go home. I missed my dogs. I missed my bed. I missed life –

I had my breakfast of clear liquids and continued to contract ever 2-3 minutes with the contractions lasting a minute or so.

Roy went out to grab something to eat.

I contracted. We hung out and kept everyone updated.

We got the remaining doses of Cytotec.

My contractions became more intense. I visualized my body opening up and Aubrey moving down. There were contractions that I had to concentrate and breathe through. Things were moving along.


Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Aubrey Rose Part 2

The doctor comes in and straight up tells me that I do indeed have Cholestasis and that if I don’t deliver her soon she will die.

He walks out to call my doctor. I start to panic. I can hear him laughing and chatting away like it was just a casual phone call. Seconds pass and I can no longer hear the conversation my mind start to spin and I feel like I am not in my body. He comes back in.

“Dr. Koning says to head to the hospital immediately. Go straight to Labor and Delivery, not to his office.”

I do my best to focus on what he is telling me but my ears are buzzing and the only thing I could think of was that this wasn’t my plan. And, who is going to take care of my dogs?

I thank the doctor and make a beeline for the door. In the elevator there are two other girls and I struggle to keep it together. How am I going to tell Roy we are having a baby? What’s going to happen? This is crazy.

I make it outside and I pull out my phone and before I could even press a button the tears are streaming down my face. He answers and I can’t speak. He asks me if it’s time and I try to reply but it comes out all jumbled and makes absolutely no sense. I barely made it to my car before I start sobbing and I tell him what happened in between breaths.

I didn’t head straight to the hospital.

How could I? I was freaking out.

I called my mum and left her a message as I drove straight home. I wanted to make sure the dogs had food and I wanted to pick up my bags. Most of all, I wanted Roy to meet me at home so he could drive to the hospital. There was no way I could have done it alone.

There were so many emotions running through me. Roy called again and we laughed about how our daughter’s delivery was not going to our plan.

I got home and got everything ready while I waited for Roy to make it. He came home and showered and we were on our way.

We made it to the hospital and when we pulled into the parking lot and turned off the car I burst into tears. We were about to walk in as a couple and if everything went well we were going to be walking out as a family of three. We went inside and walked to the Maternity Ward. It was surreal; a couple of months ago we walked through on the tour and now we were actually here for a reason. When we got to the check in desk I explained what we were doing there because it was apparent that I was not in active labor.

They took my weight and set me up in a room. I was given a gown and told to change and to pee in a cup. It was around that time that everyone was getting the message that the baby was on her way and they were starting with the calls and texts.

My nurse’s name was Merisa and she was amazing. She calmed my nerves. She was a fast talking; witty woman and I thank the universe for allowing her to be my nurse because I was really anxious. I got into bed and she hooked me up to the blood pressure cuff, fetal monitor and contraction monitor and explained everything that she was doing. I was to be given Cytotec at the minimum of every 4 hours and I could have up to 6 rounds of it before other measures were taken. She checked my cervix as she gave me the drug and told me that I was about 1 cm dilated and that Aubrey was still pretty high up. At about that time the doctor strolled in and repeated what the nurse said about the drug. He added that most women’s bodies will take 2 rounds of the Cytotec and then their bodies intervene and then they labor on their own. It made me so hopeful because it was in my plan to labor naturally with little to no intervention.

Meanwhile the “cramps” that I had been having all week turned out to be contractions…

The rest of the evening played out like this:

Mother and sister arrived and sent Roy out to get me something to eat. I contracted. Mother and sister left after making sure we were going to be alright. I contracted. We laughed at the horrible television selections and made predictions about when Aubrey would arrive. The nurses changed shifts and I met my evening nurse, Lisa. We were told to get some sleep. Roy fell asleep. I contracted and couldn’t fall asleep because I was so excited.

11 p.m. brought on another round of Cytotec.

I would sleep in 20 minute increments while I contracted in 2-3 minute increments. The contractions were intense but nothing I couldn’t manage with focus and deep breathing.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Aubrey Rose Part 1

It started with an itch.

Three weeks before my due date I started itching. Not just your typical scratch it and its gone, no; the kind of itch that starts at your neck and travels down to your pinkie toe. I am not joking, and the itching and scratching would last for at least 15 minutes if not more towards an hour. And it would happen a couple of times a day.

Fast forward to Monday, November 28th, it was my 38/39 weeks appointment and the nurse did the normal pee in a cup, weight, blood pressure gig and asked me how I was feeling. I mentioned this itching that would last an hour at least a couple of times a day and her eyes got really wide…she leaves the room and Karen walks in and asks about my itching. She sends me down to get blood work done saying that we will have a better idea about what’s going on by Wednesday at the latest. So off we go to the blood work place.

And we wait…

Tuesday we didn’t hear anything. Roy comes home and asks if I heard anything from the doctor and I hadn’t so I told him I didn’t think we needed to worry.

Wednesday morning rolls around and I am basically staring at the phone waiting for it to ring. Fortunately for my sanity, my girlfriend, Casse calls and says that I should not spend the day at home waiting for something to happen so I pack myself up and head over to her house. She has two sweet little girls under two so my mind was happily occupied for the whole day.

The doctor’s office never called so again I told Roy that everything must be fine.

Now, I have yet to mention that I had Googled my symptoms. In this day and age how can you not Google things? “Excessive itching” brought up a few different explanations: hormones, stretching skin and Cholestasis.

Cholestasis is a liver problem. Basically it means that the liver isn’t or is having a hard time processing bile.


Thursday: no phone call.

Friday morning I was getting ready to get my nails done with a friend when I miss a call from the doctor’s office. I listen to the voicemail that basically says that they have scheduled an appointment for me with a specialist at 2 p.m. and to call them back to confirm and get the address to the place.

I call them back…get the address and an explanation from the nurse that the doctor doesn’t have much experience with this situation…

I go to get my nails done, trying not to panic.

I go to the doctor’s appointment alone because it was so last minute that no one could come with me. Lo and behold it’s an ultrasound place. My fear’s are eased a little bit as they complete the exam – they asked me if I knew the sex and I asked them to please tell me that she is still a girl because I had gone all out on her nursery. She was still a girl and they guessed her to be about 6 pounds and 14 ounces. They told me everything looked good so I thought I was clear. Then they led me to a little room and said the doctor would be in shortly. Meanwhile I am texting my friends who keep asking me if she had arrived yet, telling them it would probably be another week.

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