Thursday, June 7, 2018

hannah's birth

Our little honey made it here safe and sound the morning of March 15, 2018 and I can't even believe she's nearly three months old now. I haven't written a single thing about her birth in my journal or anywhere really, and it is killing me. I feel like the whirlwind of a newborn can knock me off my feet for a minute, but I feel think we are starting to get into a decent rhythm (depending on the day) and I need to remember some of the details of this day while they are still relatively fresh.

The night before William's birth was just one panic attack after another for me, and I was so nervous this time around would be the same. I was absolutely nervous, but the night before Hannah came I was actually able to sleep for a few hours and I didn't have a single panic attack, which was a total miracle in my book. Robert's mom came the night before to sleep over so we could leave the kids sleeping as we had to leave our house around 5:30 am to be at the hospital by 6 am. I don't know what it is, but I always get choked up leaving the kids in the morning as I'm going to have a baby. I think it's an end of an era four our current family unit but also for the baby of the family in some ways, so I rocked William extra long the night before, albeit a bit uncomfortable with my huge belly. I wrote the kids a note and stuck it on the fridge before we headed out the door, telling them how excited I was for them to meet their sister, and teared up as I wrote it, thinking about the them seeing her for the first time. 

The drive to the hospital with Robert is always a peaceful one and I feel like it always calms my nerves. No on is on the roads, it's dark and quiet, and we just hold hands and talk about life and what it will be like with this new baby. It's the calm before the storm. It was a rainy and then quite snowy March day, but luckily the roads were clear.

My sweet friend Christine was kind enough to go back to work as an RN just for me. Ok, not really, but the timing of her going back to work was so awesome because it allowed her to be my nurse once more. She got me a great OR prep and recovery room with windows and lots of space and having her there, just like with William's birth, calmed my nerves. I had one mild panic attack as she was getting me ready, so I stood up (because I was so anxious about being numb for the rest of day) and Robert, Christine and I said a prayer. It helped a bit, but I just worked through the nerves and in a matter of minutes we were in the operating room.

The spinal block this time around really did a number on me. I started feeling like I was going to throw up and then I got super sweaty and felt like I was going to pass out. I'd never felt like that before and it was awful. The anesthesiologist was amazing, just like the three I'd had previously, and helped me get through it. Hannah was out in record time and seeing her little curled up body over the curtain and then hearing her little piglet scream was such a relief. That feeling of seeing them and hearing them for the first time will never get old. The doctors had me stitched up and ready to go within minutes and we actually had to wait until Hannah was ready to go to leave to go back to recovery. When they wheeled me in, Julia was there waiting and shortly after my dad arrived, ready to take a thousand pictures. 

Hannah looked quite a bit like Lou when she first came out. She seemed quite fair and her hair looked a bit red. She had more hair than any of my other kids had, and it was also darker than any of my other kids. After a bath she looked a bit less red, but in certain lights to this day, she definitely is a bit of a ginger.

Everyone commented on how alert Hannah seemed right when she came out. Her eyes were big and bright and looking around for a long time after she was born, which was so different from the rest of my kids who fell asleep fairly quickly after birth. Even now she is extremely bright eyed and sometimes looks like a deer in headlights because her eyes are open so wide. Once she focuses on a face the bug eyes kind of soften, but generally they are quite big.

My mom arrived a little bit later after wrapping some stuff up with the substitute and I can't even tell you how much I love having my parents around for my kids' births. It's funny how even when you're grown, you can't help but want your parents around at big life events.

I had been so thirsty, so as soon as I was in recovery, Christine brought me some ice water. I drank the majority of what she gave me, and as I was getting wheeled back to my more permanent room, I started feeling really nauseous. I was holding Hannah and felt totally helpless. They quickly handed me a bag and I threw up. I thought maybe it was just motion sickness, but over the course of the next few hours I threw up three or four more times. I felt terrible! I'd never had such a bad reaction to anesthesia before, but I just could't keep anything down. I don't think I ate until later that night and they had to start pumping me full of more fluid to get things moving through me.

My mom went over to our house and relieved Vicky of the kids, and then they all came over to the hospital together to meet Hannah. Minnie and Louisa were so dang excited and fought over who got to hold her first. William couldn't have cared less, but it was just so fun to see them all together and to be all together. One of my favorite nights in the hospital was when my parents had to go to a wedding reception so they dropped the kids off to be with us for a couple hours and we at snacks and snuggled in the hospital bed and watched Lady and the Tramp. Life is busy and wild with all four of them, but life just feels so good when we are together.

Hannah is named after Robert's mom's third great grandmother, who was the first to join the church on the side and immigrated to the United States from England. We discovered as we were looking for a name that she actually lived in Bountiful, and soon after we found out we were having a girl we found out she was buried just a few minutes from our house. I went to see her grave and as I stood over it I had a strong impression I should name our baby after her; Hannah Mary Ann. I feel like it suits her well.

Life with Hannah has been so sweet. I love and loathe the newborn stage, but I am trying to soak it up because there's a chance this might be our last baby. I am so grateful Hannah is here safe and sound and feel so blessed to be her mom.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

dear baby

Dear Baby,

Tomorrow we officially get to see and kiss your sweet face. We are all pretty giddy about it.

Minnie has been singing her own little made up lullabies to you in my belly the past few days because she recently learned you might be able to hear her voice in there. She's hoping you will recognize hers when you come out. I am so grateful for Minnie. She has filled the role as oldest sibling in such a big way since William was born and I know she is going to be incredible with you. I hope she will remember this time in the life of our family forever and know how proud I am to see her love and care for her younger siblings. I love when she rubs my belly and we dream up what you'll look like and be like and all the fun things we'll all get to do together soon. She's been telling everyone about you and is so excited about the blanket she and her first grade class are making for you.

Louisa is dead set on naming you Izzy and gets quite upset when we suggest otherwise. She also names all of her dolls and stuffed animals Izzy, but you would obviously be the best Izzy of all. Lou is also a bit concerned Robert and I will be stuck at the hospital forever and has cried a few times when she mentions us leaving to have the baby. We've reassured her it will only be for a few days and that she'll get to come and visit and see you and hold you, and as soon as that sinks in she's back to her happy self. She's been telling everyone I'm having you "tomorrow" for the past three months. Today she'll finally be right!

William has no idea what's coming. He's been a mama's boy 90% of his life, but in the last few months has slowly eased out of it, which was really great timing. Last night I rocked him in the rocker like I do most nights and got a little teary when I thought about his babyhood in our family coming to an end. This has happened with my youngest every time we're about to welcome a new baby, but the feeling is usually fleeting because there is no greater gift I could give to my children than siblings. Seeing your relationships blossom has been one of my most cherished experiences in life and I know you are some of each other's greatest blessings. William loves babies, and I'm hopeful he'll understand the word "soft" quickly so we don't experience too many traumatic incidents. The first time we decided on your name I asked William to say it, figuring he'd probably come up with his own little version of it, but it came out of his little lips clear as a bell. It was pretty sweet.

We've chosen a name for you from Dad's side of the family. Each of your siblings have received a family name and we have loved the meaning and depth each of them carry. I hope you will learn to love and appreciate yours. I've mostly left naming you up to your dad this time, as I did with William, and I really love the name he chose. Gosh, your dad is a good man. You are going to love him, just like your siblings do. He's as good and kind and as fun as they come, and you will not find a man with a better heart. He's the best storyteller in town, has become a human jungle gym in our house and is the wrestling, snuggling and tickling king. Bedtime routine is never boring with him around. I hope you will confide in him and feel his unwavering love for you. We are all so lucky to have him. He and I have spent late nights recently talking about you and the miracle you are to us. With each baby we've welcomed, I feel like he and I grow closer and happier and we are so excited for the spirit and love you are going to bring into our home.

The entire process of getting you here tends to bring anxiety into my mama heart. I don't think I ever  really knew anxiety until I became a mom. I just love my children in such a big way and want to do the very best I can for you. Please be patient with me. I know tears of joy and frustration are going to be shed in massive amounts these next few months, but it is a time of life where the spirit feels so close and life just feels so sweet, and all of the good outweighs the hard. Our family isn't perfect but we are dang happy and just can't wait for you to be part of us. See you tomorrow, little one!


Thursday, March 8, 2018

a lot of catching up to do

I looked at my blog the other day and realized the last time I posted anything (besides the recent Europe post) was July of last year!!! I started scrolling back through older posts and was reminded how much I love this blog of our family. There are so many memories captured here that otherwise drift off into neverland. So, here is my feeble attempt at trying to catch up on the last nine months in our family's life.

A fun little birthday celebration for Lou up at Pineview Reservoir with cousins! This was actually the day I got a positive pregnancy test and I was just feeling a million feelings. So happy to be with all these people I love, thinking about the new little bean inside me, and so grateful to be celebrating my sweet Lou and her four years earth-side.

Later that night we celebrated in our yard with ice cream sundaes and our sweet family.

A little day trip to Logan with the Adsero cousins before they headed back home for the summer. Seeing these cute pictures of all of these kids together has me so excited for this summer!

A quick escape to Robert's sister Liz's cabin in Idaho. It's situated right on a little lake and we had the best time.

I can't believe how much Will has changed! He's such a baby here and now he's almost two. I feel like he has definitely gotten the short end of the stick as far as babyhood documentation goes. #thirdchild

A little jaunt up Albion Basin with Grandma Mecham before she headed back to school for the school year. I'd had a lot of morning sickness and hadn't ventured out much and it was so nice to be out together. Grandma is always up for an adventure and I love her for that!

Celebrating Minnie's birthday with her friends Evie and Mie at Kangaroo Zoo. 

The last Collard cabin trip of the summer with Mikey and Nikki and their cute kids!

First day of Lou's second year of preschool!

Minnie's first day of first grade!

This is a little gruesome, but this picture above and the picture below were taken about 30 minutes apart. It was an insanely warm late fall day and the girls were playing outside (hence the static hair from the trampoline). Robert had stacked the patio chairs for the winter and Lou decided to climb them, not realizing how unsteady they were, and tipped straight forward onto the cement, breaking her front tooth and busting up her lip. Luckily the tooth didn't fall out but it was definitely loose. Although it's shorter than her other front tooth, it's no longer loose and didn't turn gray. Thank heavens it's a baby tooth!

About four months pregnant with baby #4.

Sweet Will with his blondie blonde hair. So nutty how much darker it has gotten since summer!

Cooler weather and puddle jumping.

A field trip to the fire station with Lou's preschool. She says she's going to marry Santana, who is the cute boy with the curly hair in the Spiderman sweatshirt. It kills me how boy crazy she and Minnie are.

Adventuring at a trail up the street from us.

The girls were playing with William on the rocker in his room in October and he stood up, fell off and just landed on his arm in such a way that he completely broke his elbow. The minute I heard him cry I knew something was seriously wrong. He wouldn't even let us touch it. It was broken in such a way that he had to have surgery, which I totally dreaded. He had it done at Primary Children's Hospital, and you better believe I was a wreck, but he did really great and did so well with only one arm for six weeks. Baths were annoying and we totally drained our HSA for this, but I'm so grateful all went well and this little guy is now back to 100%.

Halloween! We didn't do a family costume this year. I just felt so sick with this baby that I didn't have it in me. Maybe next year?

Minnie was Elena of Avalor, Lou decided to be Cinderella and we already had a dress up for that (high five!), and Will used the old hand-me-down skunk costume. I put my own costume together to coordinate with him, and I think we were all pretty happy. Robert was a creepy postman with his dad's old postmaster outfit, which he busts out frequently when he needs something last minute. He paints on a creepy mustache, puts a pillow in his belly and calls it good.

We found out our baby was a GIRL on November 1st! The girls were a little disappointed because they wanted a friend for Will, but they've come around to the idea. Robert and I had been trying to come up with names from his mom's side of the family this time, and when we found out the person we were thinking about naming our baby after was actually buried just two minutes from our home, I had to go see her grave. She was the first to come to the US from England as well as the first to join the church on that side of the family, and the minute I stood over her grave and looked down and saw my belly, I had a really strong feeling that this should be the name of our baby. It was pretty sweet.

My dad tripped and fell running and ended up tearing his rotator cuff and having to have surgery. Here are our two little gimps together just a bit before Will got his cast off and his pins out. Will calls my dad "Bonka" and loves to vacuum with him so much. I'm hoping he got my dad's cleaning obsession.

Elyse's sweet Eleanor Rex was born right after Thanksgiving. I love seeing her as a mom.

Our annual friend Christmas party did not disappoint! Shelly is the best hostess.

A magical, snowy Christmas Eve!

New Christmas jams, getting ready to head home before Santa comes!

We spent NYE up at the Arrington's cabin while my parents were visiting the Adseros in Abu Dhabi. No one slept very well, but we had a really great time partying together.

Minnie lost her top two and her bottom two front teeth within about a month! The Tooth Fairy has been very busy!

Minnie was begging to go up and ski, but since I'm pregnant and Robert doesn't know how to ski, she had to settle for the magic carpet at Park City. We had Lou give it a shot too, and although she wasn't the biggest fan, I was really proud of her for trying. She did better than I thought she would.

We had such a mild winter but the last couple weeks we have had some really big storms! William is obsessed with shoveling and must be outside with Robert whenever he's out there clearing the driveway. It's pretty cute seeing them work together.

Will is our little sunshine boy. He is so sweet and fun, really aware of other's feelings and honestly as snuggly as can be. It's funny because I was reading back at an old blog post when he was a few months old and I was saying how unsnuggly he was. It's funny how much things can change. He has been such a mama's boy and just loves to be close. I have loved it so much! He has recently become obsessed with his binky and his blanket. We should have taken that binky away months ago, but I keep telling myself that we will do it shortly after this baby comes. I'm praying it's not ridiculously hard.

And here I am last week, at about 37 weeks pregnant in front of my very dirty mirror. It's always unreal to me how big my belly gets. I think this has been my most uncomfortable pregnancy yet and although I'm anxious for surgery and a newborn and all that entails (which all goes down in ONE WEEK!), I'm so excited for all of us to meet this little girl and then to be on the road to recovery. It's wild to me to think this may be our last baby. Robert always says never say never, but at this point four is sounding pretty good. Maybe my tune will change in a year, though.