Sunday, July 13, 2014

Grayson's Birth Story

I first started writing Grayson's birth story the day after he was born. Since then I've started it a few different times. Not completely happy with how it's turned out. Trying to remember as much as I can (funny how fast you forget things) and write down all the details so I can go back to read later on and reminisce.
 
   So I'm going to start off at my 38 week prenatal appointment. On Monday June 30. Dr. Bierer did my regular ultrasound and was now about to do the cervical check. Come to find out that I was dilated at 3 cm and 80% effaced with baby's head down right where it should be. I asked him if he would just go ahead and strip the membranes, and was happy when he did so. Although, it was very painful at the time I thought it was worth it.
   Dr. Bierer told me that if labor were to start it would happen 24-48 hours after the membranes had been stripped. I was so excited! I seriously thought that labor would come by itself from there and I would just progress. Well, two days later on Wednesday I woke up to tightening in my tummy. I woke Alex up and we decided to go for a walk in the cul de sac that we live in. The contractions were consistent and were about 5 minutes apart. When we finished with our walk I decided to call the hospital to see if I should come in. Talking to a nurse she asked when my last appointment was and how far I was dilated. After answering her questions it was determined that I should come in to be monitored.
   I called my mom to tell her what was going on. She came right away so she could stay with Wyatt while Alex and I were gone. While on the way to the hospital I listened to my hypnobirthing affirmations and rainbow relaxation. About 20 minutes later we were finally there.
   Admitting took forever! At least that's what it seemed like to me. But when they were done receiving all of my information one of the nurses took me and Alex back to one of the admitting rooms. Where I got into one of those lovely hospital gowns (seriously, yuck!) and gave a pee sample. After that the nurse came back in to get my medical history and ask more questions. Finally it was time to be monitored.
   The nurse left me hooked up to the monitors for about a half hour. When she came back she told me that contractions were 5 minutes apart. She then did a cervical check and determined that since my last appointment (two days ago) I had not progressed. From there she had me walk for an hour to to see if any changes would occur.
   By the time the hour was up I was so tired! The contractions had not subsided. There were a few times that I had to stop to hold onto Alex for support. When I saw my nurse on my walk I asked her if I could stop. Luckily for me by that time the hour was just about up. Alex and I went back to our room where I got settled in the bed. When my nurse came back she did another cervical check. Much to my disappointment I had made no progress. I was SO disappointed. I was more than ready to have this baby. I asked her if she could talk to my doctor and see if he would break my water. When she came back I was told that because of hospital policy he was not able to. :(
   I was heartbroken. I know, that probably sounds so silly! I had gotten my hopes up and was let way down. :( It really was a sad day for me. A sad week really! Sunday came and absolutely nothing had happened. The contractions had eventually subsided and then altogether stopped. Sunday afternoon I was soaking in the tub when I just had a break down. Alex heard me crying so he came in to see what was wrong. I was so upset that I couldn't talk! But I was able to make out the disappointment that I felt. Alex just held me while I sobbed in the tub.. it wasn't the best time for me. I felt defeated.
   Fast forward three days. It's Wednesday July 9, I had my 39 week prenatal appointment. When I saw my doctor I think he immediately got the point. I was upset. I told him that I was truly disappointed and that I was ready! I told him I wanted him to break my water. I honestly thought he would say yes but I didn't think he could do it right then and there! But he did! Oh my gosh! I wasn't even prepared! I didn't bring my hospital bag, pillows, or anything I thought I would need! I asked him if it would be safe for me to go home real quick to grab everything but he said that since this wasn't my first baby he wasn't sure how fast I would progress. He said it would be safer for me to just go straight to the hospital. So I did!
   Alex dropped me off while he went back home to grab everything we needed. I checked myself in. When Alex arrived back to the hospital I was already in my gown, had my iv put in and was hooked up to the monitors.
   I told my nurse that I wanted to have a natural delivery. I wanted to be able to walk around, sit on the birth ball and labor in the tub. She was very accommodating to all of my wants and needs. It was amazing! They still needed to monitor me and the baby but it would only be for 20 minutes every hour. I could definitely do that. So after my first round of being monitored I got into my labor undies (really just a nursing bra and a pair of my own underwear) and walked around my room for a bit before I decided that I wanted to have the birth ball.
   When I had had my appointment a few hours earlier my doctor said that I was dilated to a 4 and 85% effaced. When my nurse checked me I was dilated to a 5 and 90% effaced! Wow! I asked Alex what he thought and we decided to call Kelley, our birth photographer. When she arrived I was still happily bouncing on my birth ball. My demeanor was a shock to her. I was literally laughing out loud while having contractions. She thought Alex had given me drugs! Haha :)
   In my hypnobirthing class that I took we were taught that laughing and kissing were good things to do because they made endorphins! Alex and I  kissed but I can definitely say that the laughing, being happy and just having a good positive attitude overall really did help. I hardly felt the contractions when I was laughing.
   Before my next round of being monitored my nurse did a cervical check. While bouncing on the ball was good and helped me feel relaxed it wasn't really helping me to progress. So we decided to go for a walk. I put the gown and my slippers on and headed out to the hall. I walked for about a half hour. The contractions were coming consistently but were not totally uncomfortable. It wasn't until the end when I had to grab and hold onto Alex for support to help get me through that contraction. My nurse saw this and said this was the first time she was seeing me be so serious! I told her that the contractions were pretty much non stop and that I needed to rest. So we headed back to the room where I laid in bed to be monitored and she checked me. I was dilated at a 6 now.
   After being monitored I decided that I needed to get into the tub. The water felt so amazing! It was very comforting. And it did actually help with the contractions. I was still my same happy self, but feeling a little more serious at this point.
   While I was in the tub I was surprised when I looked up and saw my mom and Wyatt there! Well turns out my mom had accidently left my house keys at the house and was locked out. She was freaking out! She kept apologizing like it was some big deal. Well, for me it wasn't. I was actually really happy to see her and Wyatt. I hadn't expected to come straight to the hospital so I didn't get to say a real goodbye to Wyatt. And although I wasn't able to hold him (being in the tub) I got to hug, touch and kiss him. I felt so much better now that I was able to see my babe and tell him that I loved him!
   After my mom and Wyatt left that's when things really started progressing. In the tub the contractions were one on top of the other and were lasting longer and longer. I needed some sort of relief. So Alex while sitting on the side of the tub (he had been pouring large cups of water over my belly) he pushed on the soft parts of my knees to give counter pressure. Oh. My. Gosh. It works.
   I started feeling pressure. Like I had to poop. (awesome right?! haha) And I had to pee anyways so I told the nurse and she let me pee. But when I started feeling like I needed to have a bowel movement she MADE me get off the toilet. (no one wants to have a baby in the toilet, am I right?!) I remember telling her that I was more than positive that it wasn't a baby, it was poop. I said "Wanna bet?" Haha She didn't take me up on that and I'm kind of glad.
   From the tub I went back to the bed. My nurse Morgan wanted to do a cervical check. If you've ever been pregnant and experienced that. You know how it is. Well I declined it but she insisted. In the end I was basically forced into the rest of the cervical checks. :(
   I was now dilated to a 7 and very uncomfortable. I remember my eyes being closed. I was trying to stay in tune with everything that I had learned from my hypnobirthing. I was doing my breathing, I had been listening to my affirmations and rainbow relaxation. I even made a hypnobirthing folder with affirmations, scripts, visualizations and other things.
   Alex was by my side the entire time. Didn't leave me once! He was either holding my hand or putting counter pressure on my knees. I am so grateful for him. I don't know if I could have done it without him! He was my rock, my advocate and my yellow. (yellow is an inside joke, unless you're Alex you won't understand it ;) )
   I didn't want to get up but I didn't want to lay down anymore. Luckily the bed is awesome and basically turned into a huge chair! Morgan, my nurse, put the back of the bed all the way up and the bottom of the bed down. (does that make sense?) Just imagine the bed like a big chair.
   At one point I started feeling super nauseous. Kelley had been next to me the entire time. She grabbed a container and was by me in an instant! I am so glad that that feeling passed rather quickly. Probably because of a strong contraction coming along.. All of a sudden I'm frantically pointing at my knees, Kelley drops the cup and runs in front of me and is putting the pressure on my knees. (Good Lord I am SO  grateful for Kelley. She is the most amazing person!)
   By this point I'm in the transition. That was the most intense part out of everything. Although I'm declining the cervical checks they're still happening. I'm at an 8. My body is shaking uncontrollably. I have no control over what is happening. I still have my eyes closed, I'm still doing my breathing. I'm trying desperately to keep my body relaxed. Especially my lower body. I'm hearing Morgan having someone call my doctor so he can come. There are so many people in the room. Getting all of the equipment ready. I'm trying to tune them all out. I remember Alex being on my right side holding my hand. Every time a contraction would come (honestly though, when weren't they coming?) I would just grasp his hand as tight as I could. I had started to be vocal at that point. Kelley had told me earlier that low tones really help to relax the diaphragm. They do!
   With the next cervical check I'm dilated at a 9. At that point I'm feeling tired and in pain. I asked for the epidural. By the time I would have gotten it Grayson would have already been here. I looked at Alex. I just needed some relief! He looked right back at me and said "20 more minutes" I'm not sure why or where but from that point I felt a renewed energy.
   Dr. Bierer came in. I felt somewhat relieved to see him. That meant the time was near. He told me he wanted to check me. I told him no but the back of my bed was being moved so I was laying down. I think I screamed when he checked me. It was the worst feeling. Ever. The only good thing to come from this check was being told that I could push.
   Alex was on my left side holding my hand. Morgan was telling me it was time to push. She would count to 10 and in those 10 seconds I would push. Or try to. A few times I told her that I couldn't but she told me that I could.
   A renewed energy filled me. I tuned out everything and everyone. I pushed. Hard and long. I asked Dr. Bierer if he could see the head, he could! I pushed again. Ever heard of the ring of fire? I hadn't until a few hours earlier when Kelley had mentioned it. I had no idea what it was. (she wasn't talking about the song from Johnny Cash?) Kelley had a natural delivery and she said that the ring of fire is when you're crowning and your vagina feels like it's on fire. Silly thing to think in a time like that. But yep, all I could think was "My vagina is on fire!!"
   I was pushing SO hard!! I was wanting and waiting for that relief to finally come. To feel my baby slip out. I remember hearing everyone talking. Saying they could see the baby and I think how 'sturdy' he looked? Alex was talking to me, telling me to keep pushing. So I did. And after what seemed like a loud scream to me, out came Grayson. Dr. Bierer put him on my stomach. At first I did nothing. I didn't touch him or even try to. I was in shock. I don't think I really knew what to do. But eventually I  came to and I grabbed my baby and held him to my stomach. It was weird. I could still feel everything down there. It was uncomfortable.
   I held onto Grayson, not really looking at him. Just in shock of what happened and what was still going on. One of the nurses asked me if I wanted to keep holding him or have him cleaned, I chose to have him cleaned. I was still having contractions, my doctor said that I needed to deliver the placenta. So with another big push out came the placenta. Oh sweet relief! I asked Dr. Bierer if I had torn. Praise the Lord I did not! I'm sure I would have known if I had, but I needed to ask and find out.
   This next part is kind of fuzzy for me to remember..The only clear thing to me was that I was in shock. I remember my breathing since I was almost to the point of hyperventilation. My body was going back into the state it had been in when I was in transition. Uncontrollable shaking.
   Things are still fuzzy at this point.. I think the nurse brought Grayson back to me and I immediately started nursing him. We had a good latch from the start! Such a champ I have. :) After nursing him for about 20 minutes my nurse, Morgan, came to check on me. She had to massage my stomach. :( I honestly don't know which is worse. The cervical checks or having my stomach massaged after delivery. I was very vocal at that point. To the point of tears. Now I know how important it is that we find the uterus and get it massaged but I just didn't want any of it. She came back another 15 minutes later to massage again. Then it was every half hour then once every hour.
   The next thing I remember is needing to go to the bathroom. I was scared! Going to the bathroom after pushing out a baby just doesn't seem ideal. But the nurse had come in and helped me out of bed. From there I chose to go by myself. I felt good enough. Well to my surprise I could actually go!! With very minimal pain. :) I know that sounds so lame but it was an accomplishment for me. I was SO happy. (I had a terrible recovery with Wyatt so this was huge for me) Alex was fast asleep on his bed. I needed help. I started calling Alex's name. He didn't hear me. I started calling louder. He still didn't hear me. I yelled a few times and he still didn't hear me. I eventually grabbed the package of pads that was right by me. I threw them across the room hitting him in the face. Absolutely nothing. After that I grabbed a few paper towels to hold underneath me while I walked across the room. I grabbed the package of pads that I had thrown and slapped Alex on the arm. Still nothing. (seriously?!?!?!)  I hit him again and he FINALLY opened his eyes.I told him I needed his help and to get up.
   I walked back to the bathroom and grabbed the ice pack. I dropped it on the ground and tried stepping on it (don't worry of course it was still in it's packaging!) to break up the chemicals and to activate it. Nothing. I couldn't do it. Now Alex still hadn't gotten out of bed. I was almost in tears at this point. I needed his help and he wasn't helping me. I called him once more and he finally came, broke the ice pack for me and then left me to go back to bed.
   Grayson had spent a few hours with us but he did visit the nursery while Alex and I tried to get some rest. My nurse brought him back to me when he was ready to be fed. After that he stayed with us the rest of our stay.
   Around 8 in the morning the on call pediatrician came by our room. He explained the procedure to us (circumcision) and then about a half hour later took my little boy away. I was upset. I was told earlier that we could watch through the glass, but after speaking with the pediatrician he told us that due to other babies and patient confidentiality reasons we would not be able to. :( I just wanted to somehow be there for him!!! I was very upset. I spoke to my nurse about it and she said that it depends on who is doing the procedure as well. Darn it!
   I remember having to go to the bathroom again. Hallelujah! It wasn't a fluke! I was going potty pain free! (you think I'm lame or joking but I am being completely serious) I actually yelled out to Alex "I just pooped! And it didn't hurt!!" Hahaha Well Alex, being the amazing supportive husband that he is, was very happy for me. We definitely laughed together at my outburst. From there I went straight to the tub. Ahhhh it has never felt so good to just sit in the warm water and relax. I was (still am!) surprised by how well my recovery was going. I didn't hurt to sit down in the tub and it didn't hurt to get up and out. Although I needed help getting up I wasn't feeling any pain.
   Grayson was brought back in about an hour later. My poor bubba :( I felt so bad! But I was told that he slept through the entire thing! I wish Wyatt would have had the same experience. :(
   Around noon my mom came back with Wyatt. She was so cute. So emotional! She cried almost immediately! And Wyatt was more interested in the room and what cool things he could get into. My big boy! He said baby (for the first time for me and Alex)! And he gave his brother a kiss. It was the sweetest thing. My mom got to hold Grayson for a few minutes before Kelley came back to get a few family pictures.
   For the rest of the day Alex and I just hung out with Grayson and rested. Getting a few naps in here and there. Close to 8 Alex's mom, Julie came to see Grayson. She was so excited to meet him. She stayed probably about an hour. Then she and Alex both left. She going home and Alex going to Costa Vida to get us a late dinner. After we finished eating we decided to have Grayson go to the nursery so we could get some sleep. It was my first time leaving the room since I had given birth. I was slow but I pushed the little cart that Grayson was fast asleep in.
   The next day (Friday) we were to check out. The nurse who was on shift came in and took Grayson to get some labs done before we were to leave. While Alex and I ate breakfast I filled out the discharge papers. We were held behind by one of the ladies who was late in coming in to gather some paper work and bring us what we needed, so we didn't leave till little after 12. But Alex and I did get a good nap in! I think it was just the hospital and the environment that we were in but both Alex and I were having the strangest dreams! So we were happy to be going home and sleeping in our own bed.
 
You know, all in all I am VERY happy and pleased with how everything played out. I feel accomplished and a new sense of joy and confidence in myself. I had set out a (in my mind) pretty big goal and I reached it! Giving birth naturally is by no means easy. But it helped me with my mindset about birth, labor, how I feel about myself and body. I knew I could trust my body and my baby. I feel like Alex and I have grown so much after this experience! I counted on him and his support and he did more than I could have ever thought possible.

This birth was perfect.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Hormones and Hurt Feelings

   Hormones. They. Suck. I think every woman can agree with me. And men too. It's not so bad when it's regular PMSing. But pregnancy makes it 1000x worse.
   Today was a normal day for me. With the exception of being in an overly heightened emotional state I got my feelings hurt and was absolutely hysterical. And it's for the dumbest reason ever. Stupid Facebook..
   Monday I had posted a picture of an early surprise I had gotten for Alex. (his birthday is right after Mother's Day) We were in need of a new one and I knew that Alex would love and appreciate it. So I got him a new (to us) lawn mower. The one that we had before was an absolute POS. It would some times be frustrating for Alex to mow the lawn.
   I was SOOOOO incredibly excited to show him what I had got him. I think I was more excited than he was! (I just love giving people presents. It just makes my day!) He really did seem to like it and even mentioned today that if it hadn't been for the rain he would have mowed the lawn.
   But today on Facebook a couple people commented and made it seem like all I do is make him work...  :( I read those comments and I just immediately broke down sobbing! Like my face was all blotchy my breathing was out of control and yeah. I was just a wreck. (You don't want to see me cry. I'm an ugly crier) I called Alex bawling asking him if he really did like his present or if he wanted me to take it back. He reassured me multiple times that he loved it and he wanted to keep it.
   Over the phone he tried to help me calm down but I was so upset. I really thought I did a bad job! The mower wasn't even his real present. I have a different surprise for him and this was just an added last minute gift. Something I found for a good price and that we actually did need a new one.
   Later this evening it was brought up again but this time in person. He told me that it shouldn't matter what other people think of it. It's something that is for him that he loves. While I know that's true I think it was just the chemical imbalance in me that made me break down. The comments weren't rude but I chose to take offense to them. Ugh. Stupid hormones!
   I'm grateful that I have such a sweet caring husband who reassures me when I'm full of doubt. Someone who loves me when I don't/can't seem to love myself. What a guy! I'm so glad that I get to be with him for eternity. I'm very excited for his birthday that is coming up in less than a week. A day to celebrate his life! I don't know where I'd be if I hadn't met him. He is my better half.  <3

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Postpartum Recovery

Lately I've been reading a lot about pregnancy, labor and postpartum. It got me to thinking that I'd write my own post about it! Just remember, no pregnancy is the same and I am by NO means an expert. :) I am writing about my experiences. And my hopes with my next baby.

   My first pregnancy went quite well. Maybe a little too well?.. So well in fact that my recovery was an absolute nightmare. Seriously. I feel like maybe Karma thought I needed a little visit. So many women go through morning sickness and other things and I had just didn't have any of it! The worst was probably the heart burn. Lucky eh?
   Everyone tells you how great and awesome pregnancy is. -And really it's a miracle!- But they don't tell you the ugly parts about it. Let me just say there are some seriously UGLY parts. Sure, you get the 'glow'. But it doesn't last. Especially after you give birth. You get that really cute baby bump, but what happens when you've given birth?
   When I was in labor I was literally asleep. When I'd stop pushing -took me THREE hours- I'd go to sleep and wake up when it was time to push again. When I was crowning that was when I got really scared. I asked the doctor if it would hurt if I were to rip. Nope. But apparently I had already. <---ugly right??
   Finally Wyatt made his arrival. I was in shock. In my head I was like "What the HELL just happened?!?!" (I am being completely serious) I was not crying or cooing my baby. I was silent. I was in shock!
   At the hospital where I delivered at they have you go into a postpartum room after giving birth. Well about an hour after having Wyatt it was time for me to move. But I couldn't! I had gotten an epidural and still couldn't feel anything down below. And yet, here all the nurses wanted me to move my ass so the next person could have my room. Umm hello?! The lower half of my body is numb and you want me to get from the bed to a wheelchair. Without help. Well you're so kind!
   When I was finally all settled in my new room I felt much more at ease. I had my darling baby with me and was able to rest without being bothered. Or so I thought. One of my biggest fears for the next birth of my child -and all future children in fact- is when the nurses come and press seemingly very hard on your stomach. I remember one of the nurses saying that she couldn't feel my uterus so I had another nurse come and 'massage' my stomach. Not. fun.
   Also, unless you want to be scared for life I highly suggest you don't ask for a mirror to see yourself down there. Never again will I do that.
   You know that pearly thrown? Aka the toilet. I don't know about any other moms but that was the scariest part for me. Who knew going to the bathroom could terrify someone SO much? Well the first time you go you are going to be assisted. When I went my nurse came in with me. I wasn't so shy because I just had a room full of people see my who ha. So what was going to the bathroom in front of the nurse?
   Well she filled a peri bottle and handed it to me. Ughhh what was I supposed to do with it? Well if you're at all sadistic then go ahead and wipe away! Seriously that peri bottle was my saving grace. You fill it with warm water and then squeeze the water on your nether regions...pretty huh?
   I felt like a hunch back for about a week. I couldn't for the life of me stand up straight. I had a lovely hunch going on. I had my first shower the next day. I was really grossed out by the bathroom floor and really didn't want to be barefoot let alone naked. Those flimsy curtains were terrible. I like to be warm when I take showers. Having a draft is not okay!
   When I was all showered and cleaned my parents stopped by. My cute mom combed my hair for me because I couldn't get the tangles out. My parents didn't stay long but they took plenty of pictures of Wyatt and loved on him. I especially loved seeing my dad hold him. He doesn't seem like the baby holding type. He actually scared most kids! Hahaha
 
   Okay fast forward to going home.

   Everything seemed to going fine. Except for the fact that I looked like I was still pregnant. (I was horrified by my tummy) I was still a hunch back. And I really was absolutely terrified to go to the bathroom. I remember very vividly crying on the potty (yes I use the word potty) because I needed to go but couldn't. I was in SO much pain. So much more than the contractions I had. With me pushing for three hours and bearing down for that long I had HORRIBLE...must I say it?... Hemorrhoids... My mom was in the kitchen cooking dinner (THANK YOU MOM) while Alex sat in the bathroom with me while I literally sobbed. I cried almost every time I had to go to the bathroom. That lasted a few weeks. :(
  I was exclusively nursing. Wyatt did so well! Some times we struggled. He would get so impatient and so upset that he couldn't latch. Then I would get upset. So we both usually ended up crying. Which didn't help anyone!
Have you ever experienced porn star boobies? -A boob job without the actual boob job.- I was exclusively breast feeding and my nursing pump hadn't been shipped yet. Well my milk came in no problem. But it didn't take long for my boobs to 'perk up'. I was constantly in the shower trying to relieve myself of the pain I was experiencing. I couldn't pump and Wyatt was eating everything that I was producing. Literally my boobs were hard as rocks. Ugh! Thank heavens when my pump finally came. I felt so much relief! And I could finally start pumping and storing my milk away!
   Have I scared you yet? This post really isn't meant to scare anyone. These are MY experiences. You might experience some of the same things but everyone is different. And trust me things do get better. :)
   If I could offer you any advice these are the things I would -and will- say. Before you leave the hospital take everything they offer you. And more! (seriously you paid for it, take it) They'll offer you pads, mesh undies, a waffle (unfortunately not the kind you eat. I used mine for my back and bum) a peri bottle, and a spray for down there. (the spray helps to take away some of the pain) Also Tucks pads. (stupid hemorrhoids)
   When you're home if someone offers you help take it! Whether it be by helping you clean the house a little or bringing you a meal. If someone offers you help take it. If you're nursing and are having a hard time with latch problems, call the lactation specialist. That's what she's there for. If you're having potty problems try to relax. Trust me crying doesn't help. The best thing you can do is to take a stool softener and try to relax when you finally do go. Don't force ANYTHING. That peri bottle? He's your new best friend. Use him. Also, order or go buy a breast pump before baby gets here. It was save your poor boobies a lot of pain!
 
   Alright, I think I've told enough about my body. But if I could leave you with just one more thing. It's taken me a while to learn this but self love is so important. You may not love or even like your body after having a baby. But you know what? It's worth it. I promise. Your body housed your baby. Your baby will never look at your body like it's flawed or ugly. Your baby sees you as perfect. I have many stretchmarks on my belly and sides. I have a few spider veins on my legs. My tummy is bigger and my skin is stretched. But I love my body. It carried my Wyatt and it's carrying my little Grayson. My body is my child's home.

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Sexy Love Weekend!

^^ That is what I have marked on my calender. Sexy Love Weekend. Which means it's our anniversary!!

   In a previous post I mentioned it being March Madness in the Littlewood household. The first week of March it seriously was. We had way too many things going on that week. Luckily now that that's done with everything has calmed down and is back to normal.
   So Wednesday March 5 was mine and Alex's second anniversary. Such an exciting time! We didn't really do anything because of it being a weekday and with our schedules being hectic. So that night we just hung out as usual. We did go to dinner at Sizzler though. That was nice. I had been craving their malibu chicken. Mmmm, I was very lucky to even go there. Alex hates Sizzler! cough*stinker*cough!
   So the next day Thursday, I found out one of Alex's surprises! He would be taking Friday off so we could start our little retreat early. I was so happy! And kind of shocked..Alex works a lot, so I didn't really think or even ask him to take time off. I'm so glad he did though. Seriously. I miss him! He maybe home but mentally I know he's kind of checked out. I have such a dedicated man!
   Alright, it's Friday. I'm up and ready to go!! I was sooooo excited!! I wanted to look extra special for Alex so I splurged and bought myself a sexy dress. (as sexy as you can get with maternity clothes anyways) And I scheduled an appointment at Sephora so I could get my makeup done. I was VERY pleased with the outcome. The lady did a wonderful job! I still looked like myself (as in I didn't have makeup caked on my face) but more sophisticated.
   When I got home my mom was already there. So Alex and I gathered our overnight bag, said a very long goodbye to Wyatt, and headed out. We headed first out to Salt Lake. We had a late lunch at the Joseph Smith building at The Garden. Which I highly recommend. :) After that we walked to City Creek to Cheesecake Factory. I of course had to have my cheesecake. Which was AMAZING as usual! From there we walked around for a while until we decided to go check in at our hotel.
   Okay, so originally we were going to stay in Salt Lake. While yes, we could afford it we decided we wanted to stay within a certain budget. So I found a hotel on Groupon! The pictures looked way nice and we got a sweet deal for a king suite. But. Looks can definitely can misleading.
   Ever heard of a stupid tax?? Cause I sure have!! And unfortunately this wasn't my first one. So...while I won't say what hotel we were supposed to stay at I will just say I will NEVER stay in Ogden. Ever. When we finally got the hotel I was seriously freaked out. The area was VERY questionable. And so was the hotel. (we got there after dark so the pictures I saw on Groupon were not even close) We checked in and headed to the elevator. Well we had to go up 8 flights. And honestly it was the shadiest elevator I have ever been on. Honestly I was terrified. Usually I'm the one who is jumping in the elevator to freak everyone out, yeah. Not. At. All.
   When we got into our room I flipped. I was scared and pissed. This was not what I had paid for. To be blunt it was shit. Just plain shit. Didnt' even sit down. Alex and I stayed maybe 10 minutes. I convinced him that I was scared enough that we couldn't stay there. So we headed back to Layton. Phew!! Never in my life have I ever been so grateful to go back to Layton. I was closer to home and Wyatt. And in an area I knew and was comfortable with. There we decided to go to the Hilton. SO much better!!! A world of a difference.
   Remember that word stupid tax? Yeah. I paid it. Over $100. I would do it again though. To get out of that dump we were in? Hell yes. (we couldn't get a refund because of the deal being from a third party) Okay! So we checked in, went to our room and laid on the bed. It was heaven! Alex and I have a queen size bed so laying in a king was amazing. We didn't touch each other. Once. Oh my gosh it was amazing!!!
   After we had rested enough we got into our swim suits and headed to the pool. While Alex swam I had my legs in the hot tub. What I wouldn't give to actually sit in it!! It felt so good.
   After swimming we decided to go out and get some snacks -we were going to go see a late movie but lately there doesn't seem to be any good movies!- so we went to walmart and got a few things. From there I kept asking and almost cried because I missed Wyatt SO much! I needed to go home to check on him. Finally Alex got sick of hearing me so he caved. haha :)
   It was almost 10 by the time we got home. Surprisingly both Mom and Wyatt were still awake! I was so happy! I got to hold, kiss and love on my baby. Until you have kids you won't know how good it feels to get away -even if it's just for a night- but miss your kid(s) SO bad!!! I was so conflicted! Alex and I definitely needed alone time but we both missed Wyatt. -I think I missed him more though lol- So while we were there we just went ahead and put him to bed ourselves then headed back to our hotel.
   What did we do when we got there? Absolutely nothing. We were so tired that within an hour we were both out asleep. But I tell you, the bed sucked!! I could not get comfortable. My back was sore and laying on my sides didn't help. It just wasn't a good nights rest. I was up at 6 in the morning. I didn't want to be alone so I woke up Alex. Of course he wasn't very happy with me but... -I didn't really care-
   After just relaxing, talking and watching tv we headed down stairs to the restaurant and got some breakfast. Afterwords we headed to the pool again. It was about eleven when we checked out and headed home. Sure did surprise my mom with how early we arrived! But Alex wanted to change the oil on the Jeep and get some house work done. So he was able to do that while my mom and I chatted and hung out with Wyatt.
   So that was pretty much our weekend. After my mom left we ran errands and just relaxed. Probably sounds amazingly boring but it was so nice. I really enjoyed myself. It was nice to have alone time with Alex.
   I don't think our next anniversary will be any better. As in I will be a big baby and be missing TWO children! Still surreal that I'm a Mommy and about to have another boy. I am SO excited!!
   So yes, moral of the story is if something looks or seems to be good to be true, it probably is. I know I learned my lesson!! Until next time :)

Monday, March 10, 2014

Being a Misfit

So before I go into what is on my mind I wanted to give an update on what's going on in the Littlewood's lives. Last week after church Alex and I were invited to go to the gun show with a group of friends. I had never been before so I was especially excited. After church we all went home to change and get ready then headed out. Before we left Layton I of course got hungry so we stopped for food. I sat in the back with Wyatt so I could feed him. Holy. Hell. That kid is so naughty!!
Instead of an infant carrier he has a toddler size car seat. A lot bigger and less room in the back of the car. Well the little stink thought it was a riot to kick mommy in the boobs. Ha. I was getting so annoyed that eventually I made Alex pull over so I could go back upfront.
Anyways, we spent a good three hours there at the gun show. From there we went to Ikea. Oh. My. Gosh. I love that store. I found so many things I wanted to get! Wyatt was absolutely tired. Poor guy! But he did amazing. Seriously, I have no idea what I did to deserve such a great kid. :) So we spent another couple hours there looking around. It wasn't until we were standing in the check out line that I started having a ton of pressure down there. Once I started feeling that I went and sat down. But soon enough it was time to get back up.
After Ikea we headed back north. Before we went home we went to my best friends new house. How exciting for her and her family! They are in the process of building a home. I am SO excited for them!! They seriously deserve it. I was surprised by how much I actually loved the neighborhood! And their home looks BEAUTIFUL! I can't wait to see the finished product!
   When we finally got home I was so worn out. My feet were killing me! I immediately jumped in the bath. It helped relieve some of that pressure I had been experiencing and my feet felt a little better. But when it was time to go to bed that's when I really started feeling sick. Like body aches, that horrible pressure and tightening in my abdomen. Ugh.
I was trying desperately to remember exactly what labor pains felt like and what my doctor said I should look out for. Well I kept getting the pressure and the tightening in my abdomen was getting more and more intense. It was almost happening constantly. Well I finally woke Alex up and he held me while I almost started balling like a baby. It was almost 2 in the morning when I finally asked Alex to give me a blessing. After I received the comforting words I was able to fall asleep within a half hour.
    The next day I felt a big difference. I still wasn't feeling 100% but it'd take it over the night before. So I called my O.B.'s office and talked to a nurse to get advice and see what she thought what going on. She confirmed that it definitely sounded like contractions. She told me to try Tylenol, drinking lot's of water and staying off my feet. She also said that if I had more than 6 contractions in an hour to just go to labor and delivery.
    So the rest of the day I stayed off my feet as much as I could. Luckily Wyatt is such an easy going baby. I think he somehow understands when I'm not feeling good. And he know's that he needs to help mama as much as possible.
    Things were going okay but I started feeling the pressure down there again. I had to go to the store-and I was by myself- and the tightening in my abdomen was happening again. This time it was consistent with my walking. Crap. I wanted to hurry and get home but seriously? I had to sit. After things had calmed down I finally got back up and headed home. Now of course I didn't think to time my contractions but as soon as I got home and layed down the tightening started subsiding.
    Since then -a week now- I haven't experienced anymore contractions. No more tightening in my abdomen or anything. I still do get pressure down there but since I bought a belly band that has helped immensely.

   Alright!! Now back to the original post. Being a misfit. I read a blog post today (it's been going around on facebook) and realized that yeah I'm a misfit. A black sheep.
    I'm sure all of you know my story by now, getting pregnant out of wedlock, getting married then having a baby. A year later working towards the temple and reaching that goal of taking Wyatt to be sealed to us.
    Although no one said anything to my face I did feel like I was being silently judged. Being in Utah and not doing the norm. Being sexually active before I was married. You know what? Those who silently judge others can stick it. Why? I may have done things out of order but it worked for my husband and I. We don't owe anyone an explanation. Those actions made me grow up. Finally stop acting like a child and be an adult. A kid can't raise a kid. It's just not going to work.
   This past weekend Alex and I celebrated our second anniversary. It's been a tough two years but I wouldn't trade any of it. I love Alex more than life. I love Wyatt and Grayson. We have an amazing little family. I can't wait to see what The Lord has in store for us. I feel I have so much to offer. I want to share my story, my strength, my love and understanding to those who are going through the same or similar experience. I want to help people. I want them to know that they are loved and that just because they didn't do things in a 'proper' order doesn't mean that they have any less worth. They can overcome the struggles and trials.
   Simply, I want to inspire people. I want everyone to realize that we are all loved. It doesn't matter if we are the misfits or black sheep. We are just as equally amazing and loved as the rest of the world. :)

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Let's Catch Up

I feel so dumb. I have been trying to blog for two weeks without success. All because I couldn't figure out why the icon to sign in wouldn't show up. Two weeks. I finally asked Alex and less than two minutes later.. wala! 
   Alright so right now I am 21 weeks 2 days. Finally past the halfway point. Finally! This pregnancy has not been great. It has just straight up sucked. I've heard a lot of women say that every pregnancy/labor is different. I don't know about the labor part yet but this second pregnancy has been a world of a difference. And not in a good way. 
   While I haven't struggled with morning sickness I've had night sickness. Which I feel is worse. Because it's a night and obviously I should be sleeping. But the nausea sets in, heartburn and the occasional cramps/tummy pain. I have not had a normal sleep schedule for well over a month now. I am seriously up ALL NIGHT long. No matter what I do I just can't fall asleep. And when I take a sleeping pill to help I end up feeling so guilty that I can't sleep. Good Lord please help me!
   So along with the night sickness there's the no sleep that goes on. Although the house get's cleaned in that time it's not worth it. So do any mamas have any advice or suggestions to help? I'm going through the nesting period WAY too soon. 
   During this pregnancy I've learned that I have a chemical imbalance and have been put on an antidepressant. Ummm what? Chemical imbalance? Me? That would explain why my sanity has been lost at times and the terrible feelings/thoughts that I get. 
   Whether or not you're pregnant depression is a serious thing. It is an illness and one that should be addressed more. If you ever have thoughts of suicide, hurting yourself or loved ones I encourage you to talk to someone. Let someone know immediately what is going on. It might just save a life. Having dealt with depression years ago I knew I couldn't afford to not get help. Having Wyatt and now Grayson I knew I needed to take care of myself.
   Sometimes I just have to put Wyatt in his crib and walk away. And that's okay. My sanity needs to come first in order for me to properly care for my children, my husband and myself. I do have to say I've noticed a difference with the medication. Alex has noticed a difference and I'm sure Wyatt has too. I still have my bad days but the good seem to outweigh them lately. 
   I'm grateful that I am able to get myself out of bed. For two weeks I stayed in bed. Didn't get out, didn't go anywhere, didn't take care of myself. Thank God for Alex. He cared for Wyatt -and myself- while I was 'out'. During that time I noticed a difference in my weight, skin color and overall being. I was clearly not well. 
   I can't say how grateful I am for my family, friends and ward family. The constant love was definitely felt. The other day one of the achievement day leaders (that's my calling in church, be jealous!) brought over some meals. Seriously? I just can't get over the love and generosity I felt. I am SO grateful for that act of kindness she showed me. It probably wasn't a big deal to her but to me it meant so much!
   
Blah. I'm running literally on two hours of sleep right now. I barely woke up in time to get my butt to church this morning! Like twenty minutes before it started. Ugh. I tried going to bed three hours ago but I just couldn't. Have you ever been so tired that you can't fall asleep? That's me. I went to bed at 8 Alex came in at 9 and yeah. Still awake. I layed there for an hour. Hadn't touched my phone or laptop. I just can't get my brain to shut off. :( HELP!! I NEED my sleep!
   This week is freaking March Madness. Literally. Instead of events being throughout the month the majority is happening this week. Every. Freaking. Day. 
   BUT! I am SOOO excited for Wednesday and this weekend. It is mine and Alex's two year anniversary!! WHOO! It has been a crazy/hellish/awesome two years. I can't believe I get to spend eternity with Alex. He's my very best friend. He's given my two of the greatest gifts ever. Wyatt and now Grayson. <3  Added point; the awesome thing about having kids early is that by the time we're done we're still young! 
I seriously said to a friend of mine that by the time I'm 25 I may have knocked out all the kids! When Wyatt is 20 I'll be 40. I can definitely live with that. And while going to school maybe (will be) harder for me it is definitely still possible. I can still go for my dreams while being a wife and mother. :) 

Alright, I've got a long week ahead of me. I've gotta TRY to get some sleep. Until next time friends! 

Monday, February 3, 2014

Late Night Thoughts

So tonight I've been going through some of Wyatt's baby pictures. I sure do miss my little squish! Looking at these pictures makes me think back to when I found out I was pregnant. Such a scary time for both Alex and I.

I don't think many people know this but Alex and I talked about adoption. Getting pregnant so soon was not in our cards. We never thought that would happen to us. Surprised was not even what we were. Shocked. terrified. Speechless.

When I look at pictures of Wyatt I can't help but think 'what if?' What if we went through with the adoption? If I were to see him out on the street would I recognize him? Would I have the natural bond or pull? I honestly have no idea. And I'm glad I don't know. I hate thinking it.

Getting pregnant so fast and so young. There are many who will understand this. There are many who won't and will never. Luckily I have great friends who loved, helped and supported me through out that time. I was lucky to have a man step up and take responsibility. And a wonderful family. Even though they didn't agree with what was happening -and it took some time to get used to the idea- they stuck by me.


So next month is mine and Alex's two year anniversary! Holy cow!! Crazy how fast time goes by. It's been the best two years I could have ever asked for! Getting the man of my dreams, the sweetest babe, strengthening my testimony, making my goal of going to the temple, finding out we're expanding our family! Just so many wonderful things with many more great memories to be had. :)