Thursday, October 16, 2008

Our Epic Journey - Day 1

Wednesday October 1st, 2008

We took off from San Diego and drove up to Los Angeles in order to catch a flight to Seattle. The kids slept on the 2 hour drive and we arrived at the airport in good time. Xaelen was an immense help! He packed his own little suitcase and pulled it behind him the entire time. That really helped! Bless his little heart:

From fall 08

The flight was easy and not too long. Quillan slept almost the entire time and Xaelen only fell asleep about 30 minutes before we landed. It was surprisingly difficult to get both kids off the plane without waking them. We opted to not bring a stroller with us due to the fact we were trying to travel light. Thankfully, we borrowed a car seat that has wheels, that made life easier. Here are my lads after we landed. Still sleeping, thank goodness:

From fall 08

We were picked up at the airport by my mother in law Cathay. She had her RV up in Seattle and tonight we would be spending the night in it parked at her sister's house. It was VERY comfy and we were asleep almost immediately. Quillan and I had the top bunk, Xaelen and Adam had the bottom bed and Cathay was in the 3rd bed.

Thursday October 2, 2008

We woke up early and drove to breakfast in the heart of Seattle - The Rusty Pelican. This restaurant was delish! I probably had too much coffee, but it was too good! We spent time with Adam's cousins Aaron & Rachel. Xaelen was elated to see Aaron as this was the first time since Aaron moved away. Aaron had lived with us since 2003 and moved away in late spring 2008. Here's Aaron & Xaelen bonding over breakfast, with Rachel in the background:

From fall 08

After breakfast, we picked up a few essentials: wine, beer and snacks and continued our journey south. The goal was to make it from Seattle to Redding, CA by Tuesday night.

(to be continued shortly)

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


There is so much I want to talk about that I'm overwhelmed.


The market.
I know I'm only in my 30's. I know I have many many moons left until I retire. I know that when the market is down, it could be a very good time to get in and make more money down the line.
It doesn't change the fact that it is VERY depressing to look at your retirement account and realize that 1/3 of it's value is gone. Poof. Gone. Blech.


We just got back from a fabulous epic vacation. 10 days on the road with my men. Craziness, I tell ya. Mayhem ensued. I plan on posting the details and oodles of fun pictures soon. Let me just say that we chose to travel WITHOUT a car. We had a 1 way airline ticket to Seattle, an RV journey through Washington, Oregon & Northern California, and a fascinating experience taking the train from Redding, to Oakland to San Luis Obispo to Los Angeles. Overall, we survived, unscathed and wiser. Even with some bumps in the road, it was a trip to remember and I'm sure it will be one of those trips we'll rehash for decades to come.


I've returned back to work. Halleluja! Can I get an Amen? Truly, I was meant to work. I thrive when I work. I feel vital and relevant when I work. I missed it and I'm elated to be back. Now having said that, I miss my boys! I do. A lot. I'm glad we had our big vacation right before I returned because I can reflect on all of our good times during the day and it fills me with the warm fuzzies. Everyone needs warm fuzzies.


The election. Man of man, when is this election season going to be over!?! Oh... right... November 4th. It really can't come fast enough for this gal. I love politics, I love talking politics and I love reading about politics. I especially love reading debate boards pertaining to politics, but even *I'VE* hit my breaking point. It's been a LONG campaigning season. It's time to move on. It's time. I won't espouse my opinions or preferences here for fear of alienating my friends who may not share them. Yet those who know me well enough, know how I feel.

And on that note, I'm going to go finish editing my pictures from the trip.


Monday, September 22, 2008

7 Weeks


My little man.
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This is Xaelen at 6 weeks. There are some similarities... X definitely has my eyes, and I think Q has Adam's eyes.

Man, did I look younger or what? Yikes. I have a feeling having kids ages you. Maybe it's all those sleepless nights? Or perhaps it's the added weight of being a new mom, but MAN do I look old.
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Wednesday, September 10, 2008

My BIG boy

Quillan had his checkup at the doctor today. He is 6 weeks old and an itty bitty baby he is not.
Drumroll please...

My bruiser of a VBAC baby is now:

14 lbs 13 oz


26.5 inches long.

No wonder he is wearing 3-6 month clothes.

He's a great kid. Super mellow with no major issues - except for GAS. Perhaps he'll outgrow it?

The thing that floored me today at the office visit was the question the nurse asked - "Is he sleeping through the night?"... HUH?? Xaelen didn't completely sleep through the night by himself without mom and dad until he was like 15 months or something. And here she is asking if my 6 week old sleeps through the night? HAHHAhahahhaha. I just have to laugh at that one. He doesn't sleep through the night, but he DOES sleep well enough for me! He wakes up every 3 hours or so, nurses and goes RIGHT back to sleep - works for me!

From end of summer 2008

From end of summer 2008

And here is my other big baby: My beautiful Xaelen

From end of summer 2008

Saturday, August 16, 2008

So, what's up?

I've been M.I.A. for 2 weeks. But only from blogging, because lord knows I've not been M.I.A. from my life. I've had my hands full with my ever expanding brood. So what's new? Quillan is continuing to grow grow grow... at our last office visit (2 week check up) he had grown to 11lbs 11oz (no idea on length as the nurse forgot to measure him). Let me tell you, he is a BIG boy. Forget wearing newborn clothes. Forget wearing 0-3 month clothes. The kid is wearing 3-6 month clothes and he'll be 3 weeks old on Monday! Holy moly! I guess I'm not surprised, given he eats and eats and eats.

Breastfeeding has gone better this time around. I didn't really have MAJOR issues with nursing last time, but it was harder. I guess it was all so new before, and it mostly hurt in the beginning. I guess now, after having nursed a toddler, nursing a newborn feels like nothing. I've got tons of milk, or so it seems as I drown him every time he begins a feeding.

I was planning on posting about a week ago to state for the record that Quillan is a much calmer baby than Xaelen was. I was pretty sure of that. I think I'm going to have to take that sentiment back though. We're having the similar fussy issues with Q as we did with X. Gassy tummy = SUPER cranky kid. This too shall pass though, right?

As for sleep, Quillan seems to be doing well in that department. He sleeps the entire night, nursing once or twice and going right back down. We co-sleep currently, so it leaves my sanity much more intact. I'm not sure I could function as well without the extra sleep I get from co-sleeping. I know it doesn't work for everyone, but for now - it works for us. He's been napping in his crib though, so there is hope for us yet! I really WOULD like to get him "trained" to sleep on his own, in his crib, through the night someday. But for now - we'll just keep on keeping on.

I'm slowly getting back to my pre-pregnancy self. I lost 30 lbs so far, but given I gained 50lbs (yikes!) this time around, I still have a ways to go to get back to my old body. No worries. It's only been 3 weeks. I'm still suffering from 1 minor(ish) ailment after giving birth. I can't feel my right foot. I'm not really sure what's wrong. Some have said it might have been from the epidural, some have said it was from the pressure Q's head put on some nerves in my hips on his way down the birth canal (he was sort of stuck for a while there in a less than optimal position). It's just weird. It feels like my foot fell asleep and just never woke up. Not fun!

So that's all for now. Tomorrow I'm going to try and post comparison pics of my 2 boys. They really do look somewhat alike, although I think X looks more like me and Q looks more like Adam. You'll have to tell me what you all think!

The man I married...


And he STILL looks great. Why do men age so damned gracefully?
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February 15, 2003


I was looking at old pictures today... we looked so young! This is from our wedding reception. We actually got married January 9th in Jamaica, but had our reception when we returned. Man, time flies when you're raising kids! LOL!
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Thursday, July 31, 2008

Coming off my VBAC happy cloud

So I'm feeling sad today. I miss my 1st born! It just makes my heart ache seeing him want to be close to me and me constantly have to say no because there is a new little one attached to me. It sad that the majority of the time I have to say "No Xaelen, don't do that" to whatever he is trying to do. He's been acting out quite a bit since Quillan's birth. I expected a certain level of this, but I didn't realize it would be so soon and so all the time.

I'm trying my best to still be there for him as much as possible, but ultimately that leaves me feeling completely and utterly exhausted. My body still hurts and I'm still recovering from birth. It's hard enough keeping up with the needs of a newborn, lack of sleep and all. But it's even harder to juggle the needs of a newborn AND those of my wonderful 2 year old. I don't know how mothers do it.

Every time I look in to Xaelen's big blue eyes, I just want to cry. It's like I know things between us are never going to be quite the same. He will never be my one and only little man again. I have to figure out a way to still make Xaelen feel special and to have OUR time together to be special, even with a new little one in our life. If anyone has any suggestions, I will be more than happy to hear them.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Mission Accomplished! Quillan is here!

IT turned out to be the real deal! After I wrote the last post, I continued to time things and they were getting more intense and coming about 7 minutes apart. I took a shower, got my parents to pick up Xaelen, finishing packing up some last minute belongings, called my doula and told her we'd be heading on over. Around 11pm we arrived at Doula Dawn's house. I labored on her couch for a while and then decided the jacuzzi was a much better place to be. I got in and the pain certainly became more manageable but still quite intense. The problem once again, as it was with Xaelen, is I was experiencing a tremendous amount of back pain. This one wasn't posterior, but his was cocked to the side a bit making each contraction more intense then it otherwise would have been.

Around 2am, I proclaimed that I think I was ready to go to the hospital. I think I would have stayed in the water the entire laboring process, but I was so scared of having to go the hospital in the middle of transition or even worse, as I was birthing. I was still more or less hanging in, so I figured now would be a good time to go. Our doula's house was just 6 minutes from the hospital, making it a quick journey for us. We arrived at the hospital, and the walk from the car to admissions was the LONGEST WALK EVER!

We arrived at Labor and Delivery, and they had no rooms available at the moment! Ack! I was asked to sit in the waiting room while they cleaned one up for us. Oh my goodness. There were no couches, just 6 hard chairs. While we waited, I had about 5 or 6 surges. I just kept breathing through them and reminding myself "I can do anything for just 1 minute". That was my mantra through each and every surge I had during the labor. After about 15 or so minutes, I was brought to my labor room and checked.

After an internal exam, I heard the words I so desperately didn't want to hear. I had only progressed to 2 cm. Holy crap! I couldn't believe it. I had been laboring so hard, I was sure that I had made more progress. I had already made a deal with myself. If they told me I was 0 or 1, I would immediately ask for a c-section. Obviously, my cervix was too scarred and would never open. If I was a 2 or 3, I would ask for an epidural, and if I was a 4 or more, I would just keep on truckin'. Based on that deal, I was on the verge of tears and told my doula - I think I need meds. I really didn't want to have a medicated birth, but it was more important for me to have a VBAC than it was to have a non-medicated birth. And with the epidural, I felt that perhaps I would still have a chance.

At 3:30am my water broke, at 4:00am I got my epidural, and at 4:30am I was checked again. The next statement made my whole world spin. The nurse exclaimed "You're between a 6 or 7". Oh my goodness! I was elated! In just over an hour I went from 2 to almost 7! It could have been the water breaking, it could have been the epidural, but whichever it was - it was magic! I rested as much as I could from that point on. The epidural was light enough for me to still feel the surges, although they were just tightening sensations rather than pain. The epidural was also strong enough to allow me some much needed rest.

About 2 hours, and a little bit of a catnap later, I was checked again. I was at 9! It was probably around 7am at this point. We did a couple of practice pushes while he was checking me. It was amazing! By this point my epidural seemed to be wearing away. I could feel my legs and the surges to some extent. About 2 hours later I was complete! I was at 10! Who knew I could dilate to 10!

I pushed with the help of my wonderful Dr. Biter, my doula Dawn, my nurse Julie and Adam. Pushing probably took around an hour. With my last push, out came my very BIG baby! Unfortunately, he was also covered in meconium and therefore needed to be rushed away from me in order to help him breathe. So here is a little about his stats:

He was 9lbs 14oz (if he hadn't passed meconium he might have been the full 10lbs!)
He was 20.5 inches long
He looks like a little Xaelen, only with darker hair and slightly more smooshed head.

I feel super human! I pushed a baby (a BIG baby) out of my vagina!!!! And I didn't tear!

We're home today, 26 hours after I delivered. I feel good, although quite sore. My bum hurts, my vagina hurts, and my uterus is cramping up like crazy. It's all par for the course though. I feel super accomplished and super tired.. And with that, I'm going to try and take a nap!

Sunday, July 27, 2008

This could be IT.

I'm not entirely sure... but IT feels much different than anything else I've felt this pregnancy, and IT feels somewhat similar to the little bit of labor pain I felt before the back labor kicked in last time with Xaelen.

We went out to sushi with Adam, Xaelen & my parents. I started having braxton hicks contractions, but much more intensely and frequently than I've felt before. I was thinking this might mean something, but shrugged it off.

We got home around 6:30, and I started noticing that I was now starting to feel some cramps - almost like menstrual cramps, but different somehow. I put Xaelen to bed around 8pm...

OH MY GOODNESS, that was a painful one.. ok.. back to the story...

It's now 8:48pm and they seem to be coming more and more frequently, but I still haven't established that they are coming regularly or at any consistent intervals. I will cross my fingers that this is IT, and the next time ya'll hear from us, we'll be parents of not one, but two beautiful boys!

Thursday, July 24, 2008


Today was not really a happy, shining day. Granted, it's only 4:29pm so it could still get better, but I'm not holding out hope.

I feel craptastic.
When I woke up I felt like I was getting a cold.
Throat felt funny, nose felt itchy.
My head felt a bit clogged.
Mostly yuck.

I got up, made everyone breakfast.
Oh.. did I mention we're hosting 2 students from Korea? They arrived on the day before my due date. Hahaha. And to think I was worried I'd be in labor when we would have to be picking them up to bring them to our house. That was a misplaced worry.

So back to my story.
I made everyone breakfast. Attempted to dishes from last night's dinner.
Trying my best to function and be productive. And I'm just DRAGGIN! I mean, I can't seem to move faster than a snail no matter what. I had coffee. Nothing. I had some juice thinking the sugar would get me going. Nothing.

I'm so tired. I'm so hot. I'm so over it.


And I think I'm feeling potentially down today as well. Well, no, potentially isn't the right word. I AM feeling down today.

I just can't seem to get excited about anything. I just feel like I wish I had never got out of bed. Blech.

So perhaps tomorrow, my spirits will be higher?

Maybe I need some exercise? Ugh. I truly can't imagine doing anything physical.

Enough venting for now.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Still Knocked Up

My appointment with the OB was today. Not the best news was heard.. but hey, what can ya do?

I'm still 0 dilated
I'm still mostly not effaced yet - just an itty bitty bit.

I have another appointment on Monday - my 41 week one. We will again discuss the options.

The good news about today was Dr. Biter's wonderful response to my question about whether I should be concerned about being past due. His response was simply "It looks like your kiddo is just not ready to come out yet.. let's let your body dictate rather than medicalizing it." How fantastic is that?

It's really nice that nobody is panicking.
Nobody is trying to push me to have a repeat Cesarean.
Nobody is trying to use any scare tactics on me.

In fact, I think of all the parties involved - My OB, My Chiropractor, My doula, etc. - I am probably the most "panicky" of all. So if my support team feels all loosey goosey about it, so shall I.

So we sit and wait. Let's see what hatches.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Past Due

I'm officially past due now.
I've never been in this position before. Xaelen was a week early, so this being past due business is a new thing for me. I'm trying really hard to not think of myself as broken. I know that pregnancies can go longer than 40 weeks and it's just a guess date, not a due date anyhow. But that still doesn't stop me from wondering what's the holdup!

Come on out baby!

Mommy truly can not get any bigger. If I did, I'd pop. Seriously.

I'd post a picture, but I really don't want to frighten anyone that knows me :) I have got a gigantically large belly happening here. I gained 29 pounds with Xaelen. I'm almost afraid to say what I gained this time. Ah screw it. I'll share.

45 lbs.

That's a whole lot of Rita!

The good news, if you see me from the back, I don't really look pregnant. I'm all belly and boobs. Although my face is much rounder too.. But whatever. That's where nursing comes in! I figure nursing will once again prevail in helping me shed all the weight in 6 to 8 weeks like last time.

Now if I could just find something to help pass the time while waiting. So far, my trips to Target, Costco, Lowes & Ikea are just eating away in to my maternity leave savings and disability pay. But man am I getting some good deals!

Monday, July 21, 2008

So flattered!

I feel completely and totally unworthy of this:

Thank you to Joanna over at "Sidewalk Chalk and Sippy Cups". Although again, I feel totally unworthy of this. But thank you so very much!

And now the rules for those I've nominated on here:

1. You should put the logo on your blog.
2. You then add a link to the person who awarded you.
3. You then must nominate fellow bloggers for this award.

I nominate the following:
The E Family In Sin City - Because I think she's pretty damn cool!

The Year of Frugal Living - Because I get inspired every time I read her blog.

Life as a Mom at 21 - Because I'm constantly in awe of how together this girl is at such a young age.

4. Add links to the recipients.

5. Leave a comment so the recipients know they have received an award.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Heading in to the home stretch

Tomorrow is my due date.

I wonder, does that even really mean anything?

No real changes to speak of yet. Nothing really brewing.

Full moon had no effect.

I'm thinking about having a glass of wine tonight. My doula seems to think that relaxing might help. Hey, I'm all for having some wine! And if it kick starts labor, amen.

I'll keep ya'll posted.

My doctor's appointment is on Weds. I suppose if nothing has happened by then, we'll discuss options. I just hope our "options" don't automatically mean c-section.

I mean, technically a full term pregnancy is anywhere between 37 and 42 weeks. I'll be 40 weeks tomorrow. That still leaves me with plenty of time!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Full moon = Labor?

Let's hope so!

I figured I'd check in with the world at large and let everyone know that there has been no change. I'm still just hanging out at home.. waiting for something to happen. Nothing really to speak of. No real changes. And I'm tired of being so close and yet so far from labor.

Tomorrow is a full moon. Perhaps? There's always talk of anecdotal evidence that labors pick up when there is a full moon. Could I be one of those?

Cross your fingers!

Monday, July 14, 2008

This is the face that slays me every time!

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Shouldn't I be done by now?

I know, I know... I'm kind of asking for a lot. I'm technically not due for another 7 days, but I'm getting all anxious and stressed that I wish the time was here already! I guess it's the not knowing WHEN it will all start that freaks me out the most.

It could be today.

It could be tomorrow.

It could be a week from now.

It could be at night.

It could be during the day.

Argh! All the whatifs are driving me BATTY!

On the other hand, I'm SOOOO not ready to have a baby! I'm nervous!

I'm nervous about labor.
I'm nervous about delivery.
I'm nervous about recovery.
I'm nervous about the part where you actually have to take the baby home!
The more I think about it, the more freaked out I get.

So. Either way, I'm freaked out.
And I can't sleep.
Which freaks me out more, because I truly need the rest!

Where is the nearest rock I can hide under?

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Dr. Wonderful just made magic happen

I just got back from the hospital and I would like to annouce my external version was a SUCCESS!

I was scheduled for a 4:30 version. I first visited my chiropractor one last time to make sure my pelvis was as loose and relaxed as possible and in the best position for the version. After my adjustment we drove the 1 mile to the hospital and checked in. My doula met us there. I kept thinking, is it really necessary for my doula to be there? But she offered to accompany us, so I figured why not?

We were brought to my room and I settled in. I was hooked up to monitors and just lay there for about 20 minutes while they checked on how the baby was doing. He was great, but still breech. My doula and I chatted for a while and then she suggested I put on my relaxation mix on the ipod. I've been praciticing hypnobirthing for that last 6 weeks, so I began some of those techniques. My doula rubbed my feet and I relaxed and visualized him turning. My doula was awesome. Her presence there I think was instrumental in our success.

The nurse came in and gave me my first shot of Terbutaline (is that what it's called? I forget the actual name), I just continued to relax. The terbutaline makes your heart race like crazy. I was actually having a hard time relaxing given it felt like I had just downed a huge amount of coffee. About 20 minutes later, I was given another shot of terbutaline. All during this, I'm listening to my hypnobirthing cd and breathing nice and slow.

The doctor came in a few minutes later and said we are going to start. I had my eyes closed, but according to my husband: The Dr. dimmed the lights, put mineral oil on my belly, closed his eyes and began the procedure. You heard correctly, he closed his eyes. He actually did the whole thing with his eyes closed. Apparently it helps him visualize the baby and really connect to what's happening inside.

Now the bad part. It hurt. Well, it didn't HURT like my c-section recovery from last time, and it didn't hurt as bad as labor the last time, but it was very uncomfortable. I breathed slow and deep, visualizing balloons on baby's feet lifting him up and lowering him head down. The actual physical manipulation of my uterus lasted about 6 minutes - and plop, he turned. I actually was so in my hypnosis state, that I didn't even notice he flipped. I figured we tried and it wasn't working and that we were just taking a break to try again in a few minutes. But when I opened my eyes, everyone had thumbs up for me.

I wound up staying at the hospital longer than I had expected. They wanted to monitor the baby's heartrate just to be absolutely sure that there were no complications from the version. At 7:45, I was finally allowed to go home. I'm currently wearing a belly band belt thingy they told me to wear which should keep him from turning back.

Fingers and toes crossed. I'm home now and utterly elated. I couldn't have done it without the help of my hypnobirthing coach (Carol), My chiropractor (Dr. Mawer), My doctor (Dr. Biter), my doula (Doula Dawn) and the wonderful nurses at the hospital. I am on cloud nine. VBAC here I come!

Today is the day

I'm heading over to the hospital today to have my External Cephalic Version preformed. I have people asking me if I'm nervous, and in all honesty - I'm not. But given all the people that keep asking, it's starting to make me nervous!

As my chiropractor, Dr. Mawer, told me - this procedure is normally rather painful. In fact, he said that he doesn't recommend any of his patients have one of these, EXCEPT if they are having it with Dr. Biter - my wonderful OB. Apparently Dr. Biter is so incredibly gentle and deft with his touch, that Dr. Mawer fully supports all versions preformed by him. I truly feel like I'm in good hands.

I'm going to go see Dr. Mawer today and have one last adjustment before heading over to the hospital to start the ECV. So I guess today is the day. It either IS or ISN'T going to happen. And then I can at least start coming to terms with what this birth will be like.

I've been in such limbo the last few months. I've been so gung-ho VBAC, and this breech thing doesn't quite play in to my plans. It's been hard for me to even focus on having this VBAC because I have visions of c-sections playing in my head. Once I have some sort of closure one way or another, I can just move on and be at peace with what is in store for me. If we're having a c-section - then so be it.

I have made one decision in regards to the c-section. If I'm having one, I'm letting it happen on OUR time. We will go in to labor first rather than just scheduling a c-section. I don't want to arbitrarily pick some date as his birthdate. I would rather let nature, my body and my son decide when it's right time to enter this world.

So now I just sit and wait.

4:30pm is just around the corner.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

36 weeks 1 day

Today I visited the doc again.
It appears as though our little one is as stubborn as ever.
Still breech.
We will be trying the external version procedure. I will be going in either this Thursday afternoon or Saturday morning. If that doesn't work - well, then I guess we've tried everything.

Think good thoughts for us.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

4 weeks and 5 days to go.

The countdown continues. This baby is coming. There's no denying that. The only thing in question is which opening this baby will be utilizing as his doorway in to the world. I vote vaginal. Who's with me? Oh VBAC gods, please grant me this wish!

I've been staring at my scar a lot lately. I was't fond of the scar when I got it 2 years ago, but over the time that's passed I've sort of come to terms with it. As the moment approaches that my scar might bring another life in to the world, I have been remembering more and more all the things that I hated about my c-section. Abdominal surgery ain't pretty. Truly.

So I sit and wait. Hoping this stubborn little man will do some gymnastics inside of me and turn turn turn.

I just ate a snickers bar. Truth be told, it didn't make me feel better. In fact, quite the opposite.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Visit to "L&D"

L&D = Labor and Delivery.
Yesterday I was feeling mostly funny. Achy, funky, strange.
In addition to feeling off, I barely felt the baby move. Usually, he wiggles, he kicks, he's doing all kinds of acrobatics.
Yesterday, not much.
I even broke down and grabbed a soda from the beverage fridge at work. I never drink soda, but I thought the sugar rush might get him dancing.
I drank an entire 12 oz can of Coke.


At this point I got down on my hands and knees (thank god no one happened to be walking by my office) and tried doing cat/cow stretches. I did some downward dog.


Normally I wouldn't be all freaked out about this, but I've been doing all kinds of things lately to get the baby to turn - laying upside down on an inverted ironing board, strange yoga positions, etc. I was paranoid that in doing all my twists and turns, I get him somehow wedged in an unfavorable position and his cord got stuck or some other doomsday scenario.

It was getting close to 4pm, and I was getting ready to leave for the day anyhow. I called my doctor.

"I hate to sound like a paranoid 1st time mom, but I haven't felt the baby move in a while, can I come in and see you guys?"
"Let's have you go down to L&D and get checked out" they responded.

I can do that.

Drove the 20 miles in traffic, thinking the whole way all kinds of "what-if" scenarios. I'm really good at thinking of "what-if" scenarios. Adam thinks I'm being a pessimist. Hell, I figure I'm being a realist. Shit happens. Heck, shit happens to me. It's a fact. If I can just prepare myself mentally for the what-ifs, then they are not as scary. But regardless, back to the story at hand.

I arrive at L&D. This place is so nice! It's calm, cool and collected. The nurses are all so sweet. Everyone is laid back and friendly. It is SO unlike the L&D at the last place I gave birth at. It's like another world. Thank goodness this is where I'll be birthing.

They checked me in, they checked my vitals, they checked the baby. I hung out for 20 minutes for some monitoring. And wouldn't you know it, the moment I lay down on the bed to be evaluated, the kid starts doing acrobatics. Not like little kicks here and there, but full-on, belly moving gyrations. That little monkey! The nurse wasn't surprised. She said I should rest more. Try and lie down a few times a day.


I don't have a cot in my office. Nor a couch nor even a chair that reclines very well. Not very practical for me in my current situation.

But, the important thing is the little man is A-Ok!

And now I know how to get to L&D.
And I'm preregistered.
Not a complete waste of my time afterall.

Thursday, June 5, 2008


I think I really need to get my thoughts off my mind and on to (virtual) paper.

It's been a very busy last few weeks.

1) We started Hypnobirthing classes
2) Been visiting the chiropracter twice a week
3) My OB every 2 weeks (soon to be weekly)
4) Working 40 hours a week
5) Still trying to convince X that he can sleep by himself... in his own bed...
without Mommy and Daddy... it's still a work in progress.
6) Setting up all the baby gear - crib, clothes, stroller, car seat...
7) We've been gone almost every weekend due to various weddings, birthdays,
graduations, parties, etc. It's hard to get things done if we're never home!

So with all that in mind, here's the biggest stress factor I'm currently experiencing: This baby is breech.


What the #$%^? Of all the reasons to put my VBAC in jeapordy, he's breech?!? Everyone tells me not to worry. They all say, you've got a few weeks, I'm sure he'll turn. But he hasn't. I've tried the following:

1) Chiropractic care
2) Laying on an ironing board upside down
3) Frozen peas on the top of my uterus, warm towel down below
4) Positive thinking (This one has been the hardest, because I'm starting to
lose focus. I can't help but feel negative and hopeless.
5) Downward Dog yoga pose a few times a day.
6) Hypnobirthing classes which are supposed to help me focus and relax more.

Here's what I'm going to try over the next 2 weeks:

1) Accupuncture
2) Swimming and attempting handstands in the water (We'll see about that)
3) Prenatal yoga with an instructor (Mondays & Weds)
4) Hypnotherapy (It could help if I'm somehow subconsiously preventing him from
turning because I'm scared of vaginal birth thus ensuring a repeat
c-section... hmmm... could be.
5) Bring my yoga ball to work and use that as a chair instead of this stupid
chair I'm currently sitting on.

And if all of that still doesn't work... it will be down to my last resort:

1) External Version

These things aren't fun. They're not as painful as labor, but they're not comfortable and they don't have a great success rate. But, if it's either having a version or having a c-section - I'll take the version. And then, if it doesn't work, I'll take the c-section (grudgingly).

So here is where my venting kicks in. Why oh why? I feel like I did something wrong. Like maybe I gained too much weight. Or maybe I didn't exercise enough. Or maybe I didn't think the right thoughts. Or maybe I'm scared and mentally causing this. Or maybe I didn't start chiropractic care soon enough. Or maybe this or maybe that. Obviously this kind of thinking isn't helping matters. Hence, I'm taking this from my thoughts and putting it down in writing in an attempt to clear my head of such things.

Oh. And this kid still lacks a name.
He's breech and nameless.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Musings on Hindsight

There was a time when tequila was a drink of choice. When staying up late meant 2am, not 10pm. When platform shoes were my footware of choice. When going away was as easy as logging on to travelzoo and finding a great getaway - and then just going. Jamaica, Laughlin, driving up the California coast and back - piece of cake.

I was young, carefree, nothing tieing me down. I had quit my job in 2001 to go back to college and finish my bachelor's degree. I was 28 years old, but I felt 18. We were poor but rich on experiences of life. We did what we wanted, when we wanted, the only thing that even resembled a responsibility was a paper that might be due, or a test coming up. What could have been easier? Really, school is MUCH easier than work.

This is me in 2004. No wrinkles yet. I look completely oblivious to the challenges of motherhood that lie ahead of me in just a few short years to come. I look well rested. I look thinner!

This is me at the end of July 2005. The lovely gentleman in the photo is Xaelen's godfather and Adam's friend since virtually birth. We're at a wedding. It was on this trip that Xaelen was conceived. The wedding was in Modesto, CA - and just further along our trip (in Santa Cruz) the miracle of life was created. Again, I look rested! I look tan! I'm so unaware of what's to come!

And this is me 2 weeks before Xaelen was born. Notice that the well rested look is starting to disappear. It's as if I know what's in store for me, and I'm plugging ahead nontheless. It will be just a few weeks more before I really realize what new road we've embarked on.

I tell you all of this, becauase I'm starting to realize that in hindsight - EVERYTHING looks better. There was no way in hell that I felt young, rested, spry IN the moment. I probably felt tired, I probably felt old, and I probably felt that my "best" days were behind me. But looking back just a few years, I think WOW! You looked young! You looked rested! You looked like you were enjoying life! I need to remind myself of this, because I will look back at myself in a few years and realize that THIS is a wonderful time in life. I will not be able to relive it, the same way I will not be able to relive the years that came before. I need to remember to see TODAY as the beautiful moment that I will remember come tomorrow.

(Mind you, I didn't post a picture of the current moment because I feel huge, tired and old. I tell you, this realization is still a work in progress.)

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Xaelen's Birthstory

I wanted to post this ages ago... but couldn't for the life of me remember where I saved it! So here it is. The original story I wrote about a week after Xaelen was born will be shown in regular text. Additional commentary that I'm adding in 2 years later is in italics.

I was due on May 12, yet on Friday May 5 at 11:30pm I was in bed reading when I felt a pop and a sharp pain in my belly and then a small gush of liquid coming out of me. It sort of felt like a gas bubble bursting inside me. I immediately called Adam in from the other room and asked if he thought that my water had broke and he replied that it sure looked like that to him. It was either that, or it looked like I peed the bed, and I KNOW I didn't do that. We grabbed our stuff, called the hospital and they said come on in. I remember my entire body shaking, I was so excited that it was TIME, but I was completely freaked out that it was TIME. We arrived at the hospital about 30 minutes later. At this point I am beginning to feel contractions and they appear to be occurring every 7 or 8 minutes. They are painful but tolerable. I spent an hour and a half at triage waiting to be admitted only to find out that according to them, my water did not break. What?!?! How could that be?? I know what I saw! In retrospect, I think what happened was that my outer bag of waters popped, but didn't actually break. I bet if we would have just left it alone, it could have resealed on its own. Either way, I should have stayed away from the hospital at this point.

Anyhow, they send me home and told to return if anything changes. We arrive back home close to 2am and attempt to get some sleep. Adam falls asleep right away, but I am unable to due to the pain of the contractions. I am in quite a bit of pain, but none of it is actually near my uterus. It's all in my back. Like a dagger going in to my spine and twisting twisting twisting. Oh my goodness. They were more intense than I had ever imagined them to be. They are also coming more frequently. I am trying to time them, but I'm not sure if I'm doing it right. Couldn't remember if you're supposed to count from the beginning of one? From the end of the last one? From some other point? My brain can't quite wrap around it. I don't want to wake up Adam in case I am not REALLY in labor. Finally around 4am I wake him and tell him I can't handle the pain anymore. The contractions seem to be 4 minutes apart. We scramble up and head to the hospital again. This is where things take a turn for the miserable.

I head up to triage to be evaluated. I had planned for a natural child birth but this pain is making me reevaluate. I am in triage for hours and they are short staffed. The nurses keep checking me and say I'm either 0cm or 10cm - they can't tell. I found some information about this actual concept of appearing either 0 or 10 at this website. It's in the section called "Stenotic Cervix". How can they not tell??? They do tell me that I'm 100% effaced. So I'm either ready to push or far from it. Would be nice to know. I am begging for medication and they keep telling me that as soon as they can get me a room I will get my medication. I am clawing the walls at this point. I'm terrified of having the baby right there at triage. The hours pass. It is now 7 or 8 in the morning. A head nurse checks me and announces that I am 0cm dilated and asks if I had ever had surgery on my cervix. I told them that I had cryosurgery back in 1990. She tells me that my cervix may have trouble opening because of that. Yikes! What does that mean??? She asks if I want to have her try opening it. I am moaning in pain through all of this but agree to have do what it takes. She is able to manipulate my cervix enough that it opens to almost 3cm. During this process my water breaks (officially) and the pain is even more intense. This was a big mistake. I should NOT have had her doing anything up in there. I was desperate though. I wanted to make progress, not realizing that if my water "officially" breaks, the baby could very well just get stuck in that "non optimal" position. I again beg for an epidural. I'm again told that they are short staffed and are doing everything possible to get me a room. After 6 hours in triage a room finally is available and I'm wheeled upstairs to be admitted.

It is now 10am. My epidural is administered at 10:30am and from then on I feel relatively human again. I swear it felt like a veil of fog had lifted and I was human again. I am given a most wonderfully calm and attentive nurse. She is going to oversee my care. She tells me that in her opinion my baby is facing sunny side up which would explain the painful back contractions I've been having. I settle in and wait for something to happen. I feel no pain, so I'm wondering if any progress has been made. None. Still 3cm dilated. 11am same thing. 12pm same thing. At 1pm they decide to start pitocin. 2pm no change. 3pm no change. 4pm they up the pitocin. No change. No change No change. I tried to sleep, but I was so nervous and people just kept coming in and out of my room that I was completely unable to. In retrospect, I should have slept or asked for something to help me sleep or something, because that lack of sleep made me feel truly out of it. I am now running a fever. I am given antibiotics. Still no change. It is 5pm and I'm beginning to feel like this is never going to happen. My contractions are starting to slow down. My cervix is starting to swell and seems to be closing back up. At 7pm I am evaluated one more time and my progress is now moving backwards. I am now 2cm dilated, cervix is swollen and I haven't slept, eaten, or drank water since what feels like day. The last time I ate and drank was at 7pm the night before. The doctor recommends a c-section. At this point she could have recommended just about anything and I would have been fine with it. At 7:30 I am off to the O.R. about to be cut. I was so scared, but I knew the payoff would be great. We would welcome our son!

At 7:51pm our beautiful little man Xaelen was born. He's perfect. I'm recovering. 4 days in the hospital and the I was home. The hospital stay itself was less than great. Just as everyone would start to fall asleep (me, Adam or Xaelen) and someone would need to come in and check something. My uterus, his temperature, my bleeding, whatever. Why couldn't they just let us sleep! The incision is having some drainage issues, but they say I should recover from that in about 10 days or so. The recovery from the c-section sucked. I know other people have had it worse, but for me that was the worst part of it all. My incision split open a few days after we got home and start leaking blood and fluid. At first I couldn't even tell where I was bleeding from. Adam wound up having to clean and stuff my wound with packing stuff every few hours. Bless his heart. It was gross. The c-section made sneezing, laughing, coughing, standing, sitting, you name it, much more difficult. I can't even imagine having to do this with a newborn and a 2 year old at home.

To the powers that be, please oh please let the next one be a vaginal birth!

Thursday, May 8, 2008

The power of 4

Since I still haven't loaded Xaelen's birthday party pics on to the laptop, I'm going to give you random information about myself instead. Thanks to Bridget's blog!

4 Jobs I have had in my life:

Bank Teller
Financial Services Officer
Market Researcher (those annoying survey people)

4 Places I’ve Lived:

Santa Monica, CA
Cambridge, England
San Diego, CA
Minsk, Belarus

4 TV Shows I Watch/Watched:

The Office
30 Rock

4 Places I have Been:

Negril, Jamaica - weddingmoon
Paris, France - on a high school trip
Vienna, Austria - one of the places we stopped before moving to America
San Diego to Seattle - not really a place, but a wonderful roadtrip! 3 weeks, there and back. It was so much fun!

4 People who email me regularly:

My husband
My boss

4 of my favorite foods:


4 Places I Would Like to Visit:

Any island in the south pacific

4 Things I am Looking Forward to in the Coming Year:

Meeting our new son
Having a cocktail
Dropping the pregnancy weight
Both kids sleeping through the night

4 Friends who I’m Tagging:

Sigh. Do I even have friends who read this?
Eenie. Meenie. Minie. Mo.
No idea.

I promise to have X's party pics up before tomorrow. It was such a great party! I can't wait to tell you all about it!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Raccoon Ate The Avocado

So for the last few days Xaelen has been talking about the same thing over and over again. Here's the conversation that is repeated (in the exact same order each time) many times a day.

Xaelen: Raccoon ate avocado
Me: Yes Xaelen, the raccoon ate the avocado
Xaelen: Xaelen's avocado
Me: Yes, the raccoon ate Xaelen's avocado
Xaelen: Meow Meow
Me: Yes, the raccoon looked like a big cat
Xaelen: Bite you bite you
Me: Yes, the raccoon could bite you.
Xaelen: Owie
Me: Yes, if the raccoon bit you, it would hurt.
Xaelen: Down down down
Me: Yes, the raccoon ran down in to the canyon when we scared him.
Xaelen: Raccoon ate avocado.

I swear, this is the exact same script each and every time he brings it up.
In case you're wondering, here's what happened:

The other night I heard some strange noises in the backyard. I stuck my head out and saw a raccoon eating an avocado that was left in the compost bin. I told Xaelen, come look at the raccoon eating the avocado! As soon as Xaelen poked his head out, the raccoon saw us and scuttled down the side of the canyon behind our house and ran away. All that was left was some bits of the avocado he was chewing on. Xaelen examined it for quite some time. Very excited about the whole raccoon adventure.

I just love how he recounts the experience over and over again, with the same level of enthusiasm each time!

Yesterday we added a new story to retell over and over again.

Xaelen: Mommy, balloon stuck in a tree
Me: Where?
Xaelen: Right there! (Pointing at a tree behind our house)
Me: Oh wow! It's stuck!
Xaelen: Xaelen get it! (grabbing any stick that is near by) (Mind you, the tree is at least 30 feet high and in the neighbors yard. But Xaelen is convinced that if he reaches high enough, he can get it).

He woke up this morning telling me about the balloon stuck in a tree. At least it wasn't the story about the raccoon eating the avocado.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Pics from Jan-Mar 2008

These are various pictures from the last 2 or 3 months. I think I ALMOST have the hang of actually posting them.

1st Attempt at Video

This is Xaelen at the zoo yesterday. Adam took lots of video, but for some reason this is the clip that I'm super fond of. It's just so very Xaelen.


Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Xaelen's 1st Ambulance Ride

I could have named today's post "Xaelen's first ER visit", but that would be false as we've already been to the ER once, when he was about a year old and sounded like he was wheezing.

I could have named today's post "Our first ambulance ride", but that would also be false, as I've had the pleasure of riding in one after I was crushed slightly being in the 1st row of a Morrissey concert when rabid fans rushed the stage. But that's neither here nor there.

Today's post is all about our ordeal last night. Adam has been out of town for weeks now, coming home on weekends and then flying out again to his next destination. I've been managing with the help of my mother in law (god bless her!) and my grandma. Last night it was just X and I in his room and my MIL in her RV outside. I've been sleeping in his room when Adam is out of town. X has had a runny nose for a day or so and a bit of a little cough. Nothing special, I wasn't too worried. I was laying there listening to him sleep when I realized his breathing had changed. It sounded more labored and somewhat wheezy. I wasn't yet worried, just aware that things sounded different.

After about 20 minutes of listening to his breathing get worse and worse, all the sudden he begins to cough. Like a barking dog. Like a seal. Like something he had never coughed like before. And he coughed, and he coughed, and it was getting worse. And his breathing sounded like his entire throat had closed up. He looked red, somewhat sweaty and was crying. But not his usual crying, but rather a choking cry that made me realize things were DEFINETLY not right. I didn't know what was happening, but I'm carrying around my toddler in my arms with him sounding like he was fighting to breath in between bouts of barking coughs.

I ran outside with him in my arms, knocked on MIL's RV and said "Something's not right, I don't know what to do". She agreed he sounded strange. That was enough for me. I had her find my cell phone and dialed 911. I've never done that before. The hold for someone to come on the line was ABSURD! What if something TRULY tragic had happened? Why is there such a delay getting someone on the line? Anyhow. 911 finally answered, patched me through to medical help which arrived minutes later. By now X had mostly calmed down, still breathing funny and coughing, but less dire seeming. 7 Emergency Medical Personell arrived. 3 vehicles. Wow. More than I had expected.

They checked him out, took all his vitals, listened to his breathing and proclaimed he probably has croup. They all recommended he get to the ER and be seen. Do you want us to take you? Or would you rather drive yourself? I asked the lead medic, is one way better than the other? And he states that in his oppinion it is better to have him looked after in the ambulance than to strap him in the car in case he has another coughing fit and needs help breathing. Ok. In that case, let's go in the ambulance. (I don't even want to know what my bill will be. The idea of it makes my head spin.)

The trip in the ambulance was fun for X. He took his Elmo with him and while they administrated his breathing treatment, he would make sure Elmo got some as well. (So thoughtful of him!) We arrived at the ER at Children's Hospital, the wait was minimal and he was seen within minutes of arriving. He did indeed have croup. He was treated with an oral steroid and was released after 20 minutes of being there.

So, lessons learned? I'm not sure 911 was necessary, but on the other hand - you don't mess around when your kid has breathing problems. Breathing is essential to life. You stop breathing = You stop living. I will obviously know for next time that barking babies = croup. But I'm glad I have good health insurance that covers everything under the sun. I'm glad that X is ok. I'm glad we live within 10 minutes of Children's Hospital. And I'm glad that I now know what to do with barking babies.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Disc Golf

I played in my 4th disc golf tournament this weekend. I didn't do as well as I would have liked to do, but I'm none-the-less truly happy with my performance. I am, afterall, pregnant, so my physical abilities are an itty bit affected. I came in 3rd and I feel like my game is developing more and more.

I also hired my doula today! Her name is Dawn and I'm hoping she will be our partner in making my VBAC a reality.

Pics to follow... soon!

Friday, March 7, 2008

Business of Being Born - Part 1

Last night I finally had a chance to see The Business of Being Born. I think I cried through at least 40% of it. Not tears of sadness, per se. Tears of release perhaps. Rather cathartic. Obviously, I'm still dealing with my previous birth with Xaelen. Don't get me wrong - I have a healthy, happy, amazing toddler out of all this. But it was everything that I had wished would never happen to me. Intervention after intervention.

I guess today, I really wanted to talk about something I don't usually talk about. I wanted to address the intervention that actually happened back in 1990 or perhaps it was 1991. The actual dates are lost on me now. I realize that my road to a c-section did not begin on May 5th when I went in to labor. My road to a c-section started when I was 16 or 17 years old.

I lost my virginity right before 11th grade started. I was in love, or I guess what was possible to be love at so young an age. I had sex. The only fear plaguing my mind at the time was the prospect of getting pregnant - god forbid. There was no pregnancy, so I breathed a sigh of relief and went on with my young and naive little life. I visited a gynecologist sometime that year. Routine pap. Nothing fancy. My first pap spear, and wouldn't you know it - it came back abnormal. 1 punch biopsy later (you really don't want to know how painful that was), I was determined to have HPV which leads to cervical cancer if not treated. I had cervical dysplasia. This was way more than I could really even deal with at this age. I was told the only way to treat this and come out healthy on the other end was to have cryotherapy (again, you really don't want to know how painful this was either). I did what I was told to do. It was painfully, emotionally and physically. It made me feel broken. What's worse, my boyfriend at the time seemed to claim no responsibility. In fact, he questioned whether it was even from him that this was derived. Sad. He was the only one, and would remain that way for years to come.

Over the years I had routine paps done. In the beginning it was twice a year. Then just once a year. Clean, every one of them. Over a decade of normal paps. I was in the clear. It never occurred to me that this situation would rear it's head again.

But it did. On May 5th, I went in to labor with Xaelen. For those who don't know my birth story, I never dilated. When checking my cervix, nurses couldn't even tell if I was 10 cms dilated or 0. That's common with a scarred cervix. My cervix is scarred. My brokenness wailed down upon me again. They tried Pitocin, which required an Epidural, which led to distress, which led to this, which led to that, which led to a long corridor leading to an operating room where Xaelen was removed from me. I didn't birth him. I had surgery to remove something from my uterus which happened to be my son. Sad.

The more research I've done, the more I've come to realize that my c-section might be a direct result of that chain of events back in 1990. With this next baby, I might be fighting an unwinnable battle to birth him naturally. I don't know, and no one else seems to know for sure either. We can only try and see what happens.

The reason I bring all this up, is that The Business of Being Born addresses what's flawed in American hospitals when it comes to birth. That avoiding unnecessary intervention can be achieved more likely through homebirths, midwives, birthing centers, etc. I can't take that risk. I may never dilate on my own. I may rupture. Anything can happen. So I'm left with birthing at the hospital and hoping beyond hope that I can do this.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Cravings & Tandem Nursing

I want pickled green beans. SO BAD! Actually, I am craving anything pickled although pickled green beans from New Orleans are my favorite. My food intake has been stranger than last time. I'm craving more and more ethnic food. I've always loved ethnic food, but this time I seem to be living off of it. It also might be the reason for my headaches I've been having. The spices and salt content in ethnic food have been known to give pregnant chicks headaches.

Another topic that's on my mind: Tandem Nursing. So Xaelen sort of, kind of, mostly weaned about a month ago. I say "sort of" because I have no milk left. No milk means no nursing. But he is still obsessed with "boobie" and wants "boobie" even if just to hold and nuzzle up against. The problem is, he'll say "just holding" and then slowly sneak his mouth over to my nipple and begin suckling. I don't have the heart to cut him off completely. I've been reading the book "Adventures in Tandem Nursing" and I'm thinking this might be the route we go with, although I'm not sure Adam is going to be super excited about it. I'll keep y'all posted.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

3rd day in a row

Well, it appears that 6:15am is the magic number. That appears to be what Xaelen has chosen as his new wakeup time. It wasn't a fluke! It's been 3 mornings now, in a row! And of course, he is sleeping by himself which makes it even sweeter! It only took 21 months, and we've finally gotten him to sleep through the night, by himself, and wake at a decent hour. Woohoo!

I guess we get to do it all again with #2. Speaking of #2, we had our big ultrasound last night. Everything looks good - organs are functioning properly and the penis is still there - so #2 is certain to be a boy!

My belly has official popped and I look fully pregnant, rather than just fat. The belly looks very similar to the way it looked with Xaelen. It sits up high and straight out. If you see me from behind - I don't really look pregnant. The horrid symptoms of early pregnancy have worn off, so I'm officially in the pleasant part of pregnancy - glow, energy, joy. I'm sure in a few months I'll be in the delightful last stage of pregnancy where I will feel like a beached whale with heartburn, backaches and a constantly full bladder. Such fun to look forward to.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Happy day!

Xaelen is an early morning riser. Really early. Regardless of when he goes to sleep in the evening, he always wakes up EARLY. Usually that would be between 4:30 and 5:30am. The sad part is, he never really goes back to sleep after that, no matter who cuddles with him or whose bed he's in.

This morning, I woke up at 6:15am in a bit of a panic. *I* woke up. Not *someone* woke me up with his crying "Maaaaaaaaaaamaaaaaaaaaaa". I actually woke up earlier than him! I should have been ecstatic and reveling in the moment. Instead, I got worried. LOL! I tiptoed in to his room, took a look and found a snoring Xaelen with his butt up in the air draped over his favorite pillow. Hurray!

I tiptoed quietly out, but I guess not quiet enough. As I was about 20 feet from his door, I heard "Mama?".

I'm stoked! Can we have a repeat of this tomorrow morning? Please? Pretty please? With sugar on top?

Monday, February 4, 2008

Wednesday, January 30, 2008


I just received a big box of maternity clothes in the mail that I ordered. That was the most excitement I've had in weeks! There's nothing like new clothes to make one feel better. My regular clothes just don't fit anymore and I decided to stop pretending they did. There was a huge sale online and I bought a bunch. 12 new articles of clothing just arrived. Yay online shopping!

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Here I am.

I've been avoiding blogging. Does anyone really want to see the yucky side of being a wife, a mother, a human. Blah. I've been dealing with emotional stuff. I guess I have a hard time sharing that kind of stuff. It's much easier painting a rosey picture than it is to paint in dark colors.

1) Today would have been my due date had I not had a miscarriage. I'm ok with it. It's just something I still think about, and perhaps always will.

2) A woman whose VBAC journey I've been following went in to labor a few weeks ago. She was attempting a HBAC (home birth after c-section). It didn't go well. After a failed 20 hour labor at home, she was rushed to an emergency c-section at the hospital. The baby was stillborn. Her uterus ruptured. She had to have a hysterectomy. And that's how that ended. I'm still shaken by this. A lot.

3) Work's been busy. And draining. And my stupid clothes don't fit me anymore. And I don't have any maternity clothes for work since my last pregnancy I was still in college and mostly just wore sweats, jeans, t-shirts, etc. Now I have to dress up and nothing freaking fits! Nothing a little online shopping can't fix, I guess.

4) Marriage is hard. Ok, not the actual being married part. But the part where I wind up feeling pulled in 50 million directions all at once. I have to be a good mother and since I work full time, I try and spend as much time with Xaelen before his bedtime at 6pm. I work, so I give 100% from 8am-5pm. I have to be a pregnant chick, so I try and rest as much as I can - usually collapsing at 7pm only to wake again at 5am to start the whole thing over again. Now, I ask you, how do I fit in the being a good wife part? I also failed to mention the being a good housekeeper part, the good cook part, the daughter duties, the friend duties. You catch my drift. Will someone please stop time for like 2 or 3 hours so I can catch up with my husband?!?

Ok. That was therapeutic. I'm done venting.

Thursday, January 10, 2008


Today is Thursday and it seems like a good day to share some confessions. In no particular order and mostly just of the top of my head, here is my short list:

1. At 20 months, Xaelen is still nursing. Not actively, mind you. Nor for any true nutritional value, given the fact that being pregnant has all but dried me up of milk. But he nurses none-the-less. I think he needs it still - on some level, and I'm perfectly fine with it. It's not round the clock or anything, at this point we're down to 2 nursings (at most) a day. The morning one being the most important for him. He anxiously bolts to the room I sleep in sometime between 6:00 and 6:30 to curl up with me in bed and have his booby time. Which leads me to my next confession.

2. At 20 months, Xaelen does not yet sleep through the night, on his own, in his bed. Our big accomplishment on this front was extricating myself out of the sleeping with Xaelen arrangement. We have co-slept with our child in some form or another since he was born. He only slept in his crib for about 3 or 4 months (and even that was not full-time). By eliminating mommy from the co-sleeping, he at least has started sleeping through the night (in bed by 6ish PM and waking at 6ish AM). Unfortunately, he still needs SOMEONE in the bed with him in order to actually accomplish this. Adazm has graciously accepted the job as this SOMEONE. They have a good sleeping routine down, but unfortunately, this means Mommy sleeps alone. Sad, but true. As I say to anything that I'd like to improve "We're working on it".

3. I am terrified of the birthing process that is in my future this coming July. I've never actually birthed anything in the traditional manner, given my cervix never dilated last time. No matter how you look at it, I'm considered high risk to the medical powers that be. Either I'm scheduled for a repeat c-section which carries risks and worries associated with major abdominal surgery, or I attempt a VBAC which carries the risks of uterine rupture. Hmm.. doesn't that just sound like a walk in the park?

4. I am also very nervous about adding another child to our life. Mind you, I know that adding another to our brood is VERY important (both for us and Xaelen), but actually making it a reality and all the logistics that go along with it is scaring the hell out of me. Xaelen is 20 months old and I just recently started to feel like we've got this parenting balancing act down somewhat. Add a newborn to this equation and I feel like all the spinning plates I have balanced on my nose are going to come crashing down on me. You know? But as with everything else in life, you just deal with it I guess. Ultimately it all works out.

5. And last confession. It is 2:54am, and I'm awake. One of the lovely symptoms of being pregnant for me is the interrupted sleep. I just can't seem to sleep through the night anymore. Sometime around midnight or 1am, the need to pee wakes me. I answer nature's call and attempt to go back to bed. I then lie there - tossing, turning, going over the days tasks, thinking of tomorrow's tasks, and countless mundane other thoughts. Eventually (sometimes hours later), I roll over and fall asleep. Not the case tonight. Tomorrow, or rather TODAY is going to be a rough one.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Wednesday, January 9th 2008

What is today? Today is many things..

1. It is Wednesday and therefore catered lunch day at work. My company orders lunch from a restaurant of our choice and we eat together talking about whatever is going on in the world/our company. It's always a midweek treat.

2. It is also hump day. That middle of the week day that always seems longer than the rest of the days of the week.

3. It is also the day that my brother Mark and cousin Ilana arrive in San Diego for a week long visit with the family.

4. It is also the day of the week that Xaelen goes to his great grandma's apartment for the day. Adazm works on Wednesdays at the disc golf course, and Xaelen gets fed lots and lots of tasty treats!

5. It is also the 9th of January. On this day, 5 years ago, Adazm and I exchanged our wedding vows. Just the two of us - under the gazebo - in the early afternoon sun - in magical Negril, Jamaica.

5. It is also the day I ALMOST forgot that it was my anniversary. I always laughed when I would hear/read stories about spouses forgetting things like that. How do you forgot such a thing? Well, then we had a kid, and a house, and responsibilities, and all the other minutia that occupies ones brain. And then I almost forgot. ALMOST. I didn't realize it was the 9th until I got to work, looked at my calendar and said "DOH!".

So, my dear husband, if you are reading this -

Thank you for being in my life. Thank you for saying yes when I proposed. Thank you for having the patience to put up with me day in and day out. Thank you for keeping calm when I'm blowing a gasket. Thank you for being my best friend. Thank you for being an engaging & ever present father. Thank you for helping me conceive our sparkling gem of a child (not to mention the one on the way). I love you more than I probably ever convey, I love you more than I am even able to fathom, and most importantly I love you more each and every day that goes by. Thank you for the last 5 years and the countless years to come.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Random thoughts for a Tuesday morning

I have so many topics I could write about today. I don't even know where to begin. For starters, since I'm pregnant, let's talk about the pregnancy! I visited with the OBGYN last night for my followup ultrasound. The heart is beating! There's a head! And legs! And arms! The one thing that is absent is the hemorrhage! It appears it has either been reabsorbed by my body, or perhaps just shrunk to a size that makes it a non issue! Happy day indeed.
Next let me just say, Xaelen is adorable. His personality is coming through more and more every day. I never thought I would say this, but I really think he's learned how to manipulate all of those around him. And I say this with all the love in my heart. I don't believe manipulation is a negative thing. It's just a fact of life. He's really getting good at extracting the emotional reaction he wants from whoever he is interacting with. Something tells me that will be a valuable skill to have living in our world. I just worry (there's that word again!) that he doesn't solely depend on said manipulation, and actually work on his other skills as well.
Moving on to another topic, I've recently discovered Google Analytics. Has anyone ever used it? So much information, I'm not even sure how to use all of it. But I'm intrigued and really enjoying learning about it. If anyone has any information on it or advice, I would appreciate any and all!
Oh, and can I just say OBAMA! I'm flying on cloud nine with his success in Iowa and his (hopeful) success in New Hampshire. Ever since hearing him speak at the California Democratic Convention last summer here in San Diego, I'm enamored with him. I'm inspired. I'm uplifted. I'm politically reinvigorated. Oh, the possibilities!
I'm off to make lots of phone calls this morning. We're looking for Xaelen to start preschool in the next few months, as Adazm (the Stay At Home Dad Extraordinaire) is beginning his travel season for work and we're about to be screwed unless we find some care provider for him SOON. Think good thoughts for us!

Thursday, January 3, 2008

I worry... Therefore I am...

I've been feeling worried a bit lately. Worry is not a new concept for me, given that I worry about most everything in my life. I worry about Xaelen's health and safety. I worry about Adam's health and safety. I worry about my own as well. I worry that we'll not have enough money, I worry that we'll not have enough time. Anyhow, you get the point. I'm a worrywart. The current worry of the day is a miscarriage. I really have been feeling pretty optimistic about this pregnancy. We've seen the heartbeat now 2 times - once at 7 weeks and once at 9 weeks. The last time I miscarried, I was measuring 7 weeks, so we've obviously come further than we did last time. I was feeling sure and confident.

Then Adam told me about a friend of ours who was pregnant and that they just miscarried at 10 1/2 weeks. I'm 10 1/2 weeks. Suddenly the worry washed over me again. I hear the chances are 1 in 5. What if I'm that 1 of 5 again? I know worrying doesn't benefit anyone. I know a positive attitude can go a long way. How do I put that in practice though, if worrying is what I do best? My next ultrasound is next Tuesday and the day can't come soon enough. I'm suddenly terrified to go in to that office. I'm scared of laying there in the darkened room, ultrasound wand inside me, slowly scanning the insides of my womb. What if the words I hear are "I'm so sorry." I've already heard those words before and I have to say I don't think I can bear to hear them again.

On a lighter note, I've been really impressed with Xaelen's blossoming sense of humor. He is one funny little cat. One of these days, when I can find the time to sit with a computer and our camera in the same room, I will upload the videos and pictures that demonstrate the funny that is our son. Until then, you'll have to take my word for it.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

The post holiday wrap-up

Another holiday season has come and gone. Thank goodness! The holidays always overwhelm me a bit. Too much food, too much drink, too many people, too many things to do, not enough rest. This year was no exception. It was a wonderful time as well, though.

The holidays began this year with Hanukkah at my parent's house. Xaelen loved the lighting of the candles, my mom saying the prayer, the latkes, the Hanukkah songs, the presents. Since he first experienced Hanukkah, he exclaims "Na-na-na" (his version of the word Ha-nu-kkah) every time he sees candles lit. Any kind of candles. All candles. We lit candles in the house one night to have "mood" lighting and he squealed "Na-Na-Na!" when he saw them. Too cute.

We then had Christmas at my in-laws. Wonderful food, beautiful tree, family and friends. Xaelen got to open presents, eat turkey and dance to holiday music. He can say "turkey", but it comes out sounding a lot like when he says "dirty". That's one of his favorite words right now. Everything is dirty. He is constantly commenting on state of things being dirty. Even when things get wet, they are dirty. His other favorite word is "Owie". Everything has an owie these days. He broke a stick, and exclaimed "Owie" for the stick. A grape had a little bruise on it, he commented "Owie". His stuffed Snoopy had a spot of juice on it, thus also having an "Owie". Great. My son is a neat-freak who's obsessed with injuries. Kidding. He's a great kid who is obviously very observant of his surroundings.

New Years was a fun trip up to the central coast of California - Morro Bay to be exact. It was beautiful. We drove up to Los Angeles on Friday night after work to stay with my in-laws. Got up the next morning bright and early and headed north. After about 3 hours we made it to Attescadero, CA to play some disc golf. We played 1 full round which took about 3 hours. There were about 15 of us playing and it was loads of fun. After we proceeded to the house that was rented for the next few days in Morro Bay.

The house was amazing. It was huge. It needed to be huge, as there were about 20 of us staying there. Friends from all over California had converged on this house - people from Oakland, LA & San Diego. There were multiple bedrooms and many communal areas of the house to hang out. We had a small room to ourselves with 2 twin beds. Xaelen slept happily 1 night with daddy and 1 night with mommy, until we realized -Doh! Let's put the dang beds together and make a king sized bed for us all to share.

The food at this house was amazing. Everyone pitched in and we gorged on ribs with all the fixins the 1st night, a giant roast pork with all the fixins the 2nd night, a turducken (for those not in the know, that's a turkey stuffed with a duck stuffed with a chicken. - I really thought it was a gross concept, but on my plate, it looked much like a thanksgiving day turkey and tasted lovely). Large communal breakfasts were had as well. Eggs, bacon, and french toast the 1st morning. Home baked blueberry muffins and banana bread, with grits and gumbo on the 2nd morning. And something that we missed on the 3rd morning. Poor Adam ate virtually nothing. As most of you know, he doesn't eat meat and this was pretty much a meat-fest. I tried making him plates of this and that, but suffice it to say, my poor husband fasted the entire time. Overall it was a wonderful adventure. Xaelen loved being surrounded by people who would play catch with him, read to him and basically oooh & aaah over him. He loves being the center of attention and he was certainly just that.

The actual evening of New Years eve, I was so horrendously nauseated (I swear, I don't know why they call it morning sickness as I never feel sick in the morning). I went to bed with Xaelen around 7pm and awoke at 11:55pm to ring in the New Year with all the intoxicated folks at the other end of the house. At about 12:07am, I was back in bed, toasty and warm next to my favorite little man. I would have been quite content to ring in the New Year in bed with my snoring toddler next to me, but I felt compelled to put in an appearance at the party down the hall . It's hard being around drunk people when you are completely sober. For starters, drunk people are loud. Lord knows, I'm loud when I'm drunk. But somehow it seems so much louder when sober. Another issue with sobriety and being around intoxication is how hard it is for me to relate to people. They are all on this communal high from the champagne and cocktails, and I'm on a totally different page.

The next day, New Years day, we got up early (not by choice - but Xaelen is a 6am riser no matter when he goes to bed), packed up the car and headed back in a Southerly direction. We made many stops along the way, as traveling with a toddler is not as quick a process as one would hope. We saw friends along the way and finally made it home around 6pm with Xaelen totally freaking out in the backseat. I think the kid finally had enough. He was tired and bored and annoyed at being in his carseat for the last 2 hours. He was ecstatic to be home and immediately ran around picking up all his stray balls around the house and throwing them with vigor. He slept well last night and ran to our bedroom at his usual 6am(ish) time slot to have his booby time.

Ah. It's good to be home.

My little family

My little family
Mama bear, Papa bear & Xaelen bear

About Me

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San Diego, California, United States
I'm gLobey, also known as Rita, also known as Mama. I'm a married mother of two awesome boys named Xaelen (age 3) and Quillan (9 months). They are super cute! My other half is Adazm, he's quite cute too.

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