Sunday, June 28, 2009

It's Just Too Darn Hot

Only activities worth doing: sitting in the air conditioning or sitting in the pool!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Shout Out

Waving to all his peeps!!!!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Look What Clayton Got!

We've been waiting for this bike for over a month!! It didn't take long for Clayton to figure out how to do it on his own!

(Excuse his bed head--he had just gotten up from his nap when Brian got it put together!)

Three Weeks Tommorrow

Wow! On one hand it seems like just yesterday that Jackson was born and on the other it seems like he's always been here! He is doing great--breastfeeding issues are behind us and he got an A+ on his weight check last week. I'm so glad I was able to tough it out and make it past the miserable parts of breastfeeding (it seems "they" always talk about how natural the whole process is, but it is DEFINITELY the combination of both art and science with a whole lot of teamwork thrown in!).

Jackson got his first bath in the actual bathtub this morning. He was one wiggly little guy! It's definitely going to take two people on guard for a little while to bathe him. I don't remember that with Clayton and he was just as little when he came home . . . I was just glad Jackson didn't cry--he seemed to be trying to figure things out the whole time. He saved his crying for once he was out and I was getting him dressed!
I'm still staying close to home (mainly because I'm not driving yet), but we did venture out Friday night so that Clayton could ride GoKarts. We weren't there that long, but I felt like I had been gone all day by the time we got back! It's amazing how just a little bit of activity can wear you out when you are getting over surgery. I honestly think I pushed to hard the first week because I slowed waaaaay down last week. Decided lots of things could wait while I slept with the baby!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

I Guess He's Comfortable

But sleeping with your feet up like that for two hours just doesn't seem like it'd be comfy to me!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Yes, I Still Scrapbook

Did all of these before the baby came:

Journaling: Wheelchair. Feeding pump pole. Oxygen tanks. It doesn't really matter because Daddy and I will do all things possible to get you in the middle of the action. (Backyard--helping Daddy, June 2008)

And I make cards too!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

He's a Keeper

Clayton must have decided that Jackson was in The Cool Kids Club because last night he wanted to take him for a ride in his chair. This is BIG--no one gets to sit or ride in the chair, so it's definitely brotherly love!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

New Roles

While I was pregnant, we got a small taste of the new roles we would each play in the new family. I was forced to let go of some of the control of Clayton's care and Brian and Clayton became best buds with all the time they were now spending together. (Not a bad thing, but I couldn't help but wince as he slowly started choosing Daddy over me). And now that Jackson is here, the roles are even more defined. For the most part, Momma takes care of Jackson while Daddy tends to Clayton. And Clayton is learning to "help" be a big brother and learning to share his Momma/Daddy time with Jackson.
The only thing I hated about having a c-section--I can't do ANYTHING with Clayton because almost every activity involves lifting him in some manner. Can't even change his diaper without help. I'm simply not used to being this dependent on others, even if those people are Clayton's own Dad and grandparents! I admit it: it's all bittersweet. Clayton really doesn't care much about spending time with Momma anymore (I think he's on strike since I'm with Jackson constantly!) and I can't even talk him into sitting in my lap. As a result, I'm having Clayton withdrawals! Having Jackson makes me love Clayton that much more and I so wish he would let me show him more these days, but he is mainly in to riding in Daddy's truck, going to Granny and Pop's, and spending time with my friend Rhonda. But on the other hand, I'm spending 95% of my time with our new little bundle of joy. I'm building a new close, cuddly relationship that can only happen between a mother and son. I suppose as they both grow the balancing act will become easier, but right now it seems so, so different from "the old days." I used to be consumed with Clayton's care in both thought and action. Nowadays, I have to just think and let someone else do the actions. Meanwhile, I get the privilege of spoiling this new, sweet baby God has blessed us with!!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Born Hungry

So if you remember this post, then you remember how important breastfeeding was going to be for me. I was determined to make it work no matter what--and I guess little Jackson decided he would test me to the limit to see just how serious I was about following through with my plan. He literally came out of the womb hungry. Everyone reported that while they worked on him in the nursery, all he did was gnaw on his hands and anything else that passed by his mouth. So when he tried breastfeeding for the first time I was excited to see he was an eager eater and had no problems latching on. I had been prepared for us to need time to learn to work as a team, but he took to it first thing. Only problem was he was way too eager!! By the next day, I couldn't bear the pain because he had done so much damage. And to put it bluntly, the lactation consultant called him a "friggin' barracuda!" (He gets that from his Daddy's side of the family). LOL!
I was doing my best to avoid a bottle until at least a couple of weeks from now, so we went home doing finger feeds (attached a tube to my finger and pushed colostrum and formula through a syringe as he sucked on my finger). That in itself was working, but a little cumbersome to say the least--felt like I was back to feeding Clayton since I was using the exact same syringes and everything we use with him! I continued to pump and it was Saturday night when I had the meltdown. I was pumping bloody milk and that's never good (anybody thinking TMI??). So I decided to take a break from even pumping and call the hospital the next day. And wouldn't you know, my milk came in that night. I was miserable by Sunday morning and of course that's the one day the lactation consultant doesn't work at the hospital. So I had to wait until Monday morning to actually talk to an "expert" and get some direction on where to go from there. Meanwhile, I was having a nervous breakdown about the whole thing. How long could I go without pumping/nursing and my milk still stick around? How long does it take before mastitis sets in? I was so frustrated because last time I had all this milk and my babies couldn't drink it, and now I have a willing baby and no way to get the milk to him! Talk about irony! But my visit with the lactation consultant Monday went really well, and since I had let my body rest for over 24 hours, when Jackson actually nursed again the pain was at least bearable. My confidence boosted, we came home with a new plan of pumping/nursing/supplementing with formula that will hopefully help the situation work itself out. My milk production is on the low side since I had such a rocky start, but I'm hoping with diligent pumping I can get it back up to enough to satisfy my baby. But in the meantime, it seems that no matter what/how much I feed the little guy, he still wants more! It's just hard to see the constant chewing on his hands and blankets and not wonder where all this milk is going I'm giving him!

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Making His Way

I was originally supposed to report to the hospital last Wednesday morning at 5:00 am. And when they called Tuesday night to tell me to wait until they called me due to overcrowding in Labor and Delivery, I started getting nervous. But a nurse did call about 7:00 am and we made our way to the hospital, not even really expecting a room since they had so many babies coming. But to our surprise we were led to our room right after check-in and the action began.

The doctor started me on pitocin and broke my water soon after I arrived. All seemed to be going well and my contractions slowly started getting stronger. Around noon, the doctor showed up because of some small signs of distress the baby was showing during contractions. Nothing serious she said, just enough to make her curious. She ended up attaching a monitor directly to his head to keep a close eye on him. And from then on, it was downhill. Jackson wasn't a big fan of contractions, and he sure didn't like a probe on his head! They ended up trying to replace my water (yes, there is such a procedure) in order to give the baby some floating room if he was pressing down on his cord. And even with that and with the pitocin turned off, Jackson continued to show signs of stress during the weaker contractions that I was having on my own. All of this hub-bub happened really fast and I got REALLY emotional even faster. The doctor had already said she wasn't going to tolerate much from me and the baby before she suggested a c-section, and after just that little bit of a scare, Brian and I were all on board for a section delivery. I just couldn't bear anything going wrong, so off we went to the operating room.

And as it turns out, the decision was a great one--little Jackson had his umbilical cord wrapped around his neck twice and as he moved down the birth canal, things would have just gotten worse. I'm so glad we didn't wait until it was a complete emergency!

Jackson cried almost immediately and after hearing that cry, I was an absolute wreck!! I was laying on the operating table sobbing--it was such a blessing to hear my baby cry since I hadn't had that pleasure when the twins were born. I cried so much the doctor had to get on to me since she was busy trying to collect cord blood--I was shaking the whole table!!! When I realized I might mess up the cord blood banking, I sucked it up and did my best to keep the crying in check, but this momma was just so overwhelmed it was a hard feat to say the least!!!

And as far as my fears of recovery after another c-section, I have to say that this one has been MUCH, MUCH easier on me than the first. I'm still not my old self of course, but I'm getting around much easier than I thought I would be--the only bad part is I can't have ANYTHING to do with lifting Clayton and I hate it. Hopefully he won't remember and hold it against me!!
Jackson is perfect in every way. I'm so thankful God let us experience "normal" childbirth and blessed us with all these typical experiences that some might take for granted. Life is already so different, I can't wait to enjoy all the happiness this little guy is going to bring us!

Saturday, June 06, 2009

Welcome Baby!!

Baby Boy #3, Jackson Elliot

6 lbs, 10 oz. 18 1/2 inches long

The last few days for our family (in pictures):

And yes, I am biased, but he is absolutely beautiful!! And I am marveling once again at the enormity of love you can feel for your child the moment you lay eyes on them--such a miracle of life this little boy is!!!

Monday, June 01, 2009

A Song from Clayton

Last night we sat on the porch and listened to Brian play the guitar. And even though it was dark, I thought I'd record a little bit of Clayton singing. So even though you can't see him, you can hear his sweet voice. These days his songs are usually about riding in the truck or "praising the God." I guess he was in a praising mood last night!