Sunday, September 30, 2012

The Story Of Sully Vol. 1: My Little Pot Roast

Before my brain becomes completely foggy from exhaustion, pain killers, and being the mother of 2 boys, I need to get down the details of when Sullivan Richard Skywalker arrived on the scene and into our lives. It was an amazing moment, amazing day, amazing week, and has totally made my heart full.

After absolutely no sleep, Todd and I met Phoebe at the hospital and in case I forget to mention it, she was straight up incredible. If you want someone rad on your side in a somewhat scary situation, she's your gal. I was moved into a room, got a gown, an IV, some anti-nausea meds, signed some paperwork, and before I knew it, I kissed my parents goodbye and was walking down the hall to the operating room. I was quaking in my hospital socks!

I was sitting on the operating table surrounded by people in scrubs talking medical jargon and poking around my spine looking for the best point for the spinal. I knew it was coming and I knew it would be over in a flash but I was terrified. My doc and colleague stood in front of me telling me how great I was doing which only made me more aware that the horror was coming and then POKE! It was done. It wasn't awesome by any means but it was quick and I survived without tears. Lickity split, I was numbing up.

The next thing I knew, the drapes were going up, an anesthesiologist was at my head, they had started slicing me up (I was clueless), and they went to fetch Todd. Even behind a mask, I could tell he was nervous so I reached for his hand and held tight as we waited. After being told that I'd feel some pressure, everyone in the room started raving about how much hair they were seeing! And then there it was...the most beautiful sound...loud and strong. Sullivan Richard Skywalker Gansert was born at 10:38am on September 24th. They had Todd snap some pictures to show me. He looked perfect. I was so, so, so happy.

Todd got to cut the cord which he didn't with Spencer and a nurse was nice enough to snap some photos. She even captured the moment when I finally got to smooch on my cinnamon-haired son. Just because I'm split wide open doesn't mean you can forget about me! He was awesome. Soft and delicious. He was 8 pounds and 2 ounces (oink) and 19 inches, which is up for debate. 4 days later he measured 20.5" and that's a lot to grow in 4 days. Moving on...

I really could not believe that after all this waiting, here he was, laying against my cheek. Todd went to update our families while they cleaned Sully up (and shut down my baby-making factory...mama is officially sterile) and I took a moment to shut my eyes. The whole thing really drained me and things were only going to get rougher before I could relax. I warned them that after my section with Spencer, I tossed my cookies, so they tried to head that off in advance with some meds in my IV (welcome back, Zofran) and a patch behind my ear. Said patch made my dizzy and I felt uncomfortable even holding my son. So off the patch came!

And the cookie-tossing began. It. Was. Horrible.

I puked in recovery. I puked in my room. I almost puked as they were wheeling me into the elevator backwards. I kept sending my parents and Todd's mom to the hall because I despise throwing up and when I throw up, I cry. It's a disaster. Phoebe fanned me which made me feel awful like she was a slave...but it felt so good as I was overheating. It was great to have Phoebe. She did anything and everything we asked her to. And she probably saw more of my body parts and fluids than she wanted to. You know you have a good friend when she doesn't care about being in the room while nurses shave your junk or while you're sweating and throwing up foam into a bucket. I'm a lucky broad.

Everyone felt awful for me. They brought me a fan to try and give me some comfort. I missed Sully's first bath because I was in such a bad state. My only choice was to get the anti-nausea patch back behind my ear and hope that I wouldn't be too dizzy to enjoy my son's first day of life. Eventually, everything evened out and besides loathing being in a gown with a catheter and an IV, I was happy. Tired but happy. Sully is like a little pot roast or a meatloaf or a pork chop. He's scored a lot of edible nicknames because he's compact and solid. It was just instantaneous. And it was instantaneous how crazy bananas I was about my new son. I know all moms think this about their kids but he's just amazing. I was worried that I couldn't love anyone as much as I love Spencer but Sully is the perfect compliment.

Later Monday evening, my sister...who also deserves a boatload of thanks for how much easier she made this week on us...brought Spencer up to meet his brother. His interest was slim to none but just seeing them in the same place at the sane time melted my heart. My sisters and their husbands passed the little ham around and my sister graciously took Spencer home with her for the night so Todd could stay with us. I needed him. When I look back at Sully's 1st day if life, I wanted to remember him there always. We had the biggest amount of visitors on Monday but when the crowd died down, I put Sully in his basinet next to me and gave up in fighting my heavy eyelids. Everything went how I had hoped, even though I was physically wrecked and had a particularly rancid smell!

STAY TUNED. There's more meat to this story!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Sullivan Richard Skywalker: Welcome To The World, My Love

Sullivan Richard Skywalker
Monday, September 24th
10:38am. 8#2 oz. 19"

We've taken to calling him our little pot roast (or various other food products...turkey, meatloaf, pork chop) because he's compact and solid. I also call him my baby bird because his eyes are typically closed and he roots around like a maniac.

It was love from square one, without a doubt.

Our little family is complete, no more babies are possible. And that's a-ok. I have 2 incredible sons and I have no idea how I got so lucky. Yesterday, I had both Spencer and Sullivan in my arms in my hospital bed and I hadn't felt that happy in I don't know how long.

Spencer is on his way here to visit with his mommy and baby brother. He's a touch wary of the little guy he keeps being sat next to. In fact, when Sully cried babies tend to do...Spencer screeeeeeamed. Sully cries, Spencer cries. So I'm trying to give Spencer extra mommy time.

Hence, you'll get the story of Sullivan tomorrow!!

Monday, September 24, 2012

39 Weeks: This Is The Day

We're leaving for the hospital in half an hour and my stomach is in knots. I'm starving and I barely got any sleep, but I didn't expect anything different. I can't believe that in 3 hours, I'll be in the operating room. I can't think about it too much.

Phee-Bizzle is meeting us in the lobby and I can't tell you how much that means to me. She was there when Spencer was born and she was there with us for all the NICU nonsense. She knows how anxious I am and why and offered to hold my hand on the way up to Labor and Delivery.

I've been counting down and preparing and waiting for all of this to happen and here it is. Sullivan is coming today. My family is going to be complete. When you're young, you imagine what your husband and kids will be like. Mine have far exceeded my expectations and Sullivan is just going to seal the deal that life is good.

Wish me luck!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Appointment #13: The Non-Existent Appointment

3 days to go. Shock-o-Rama!

Also shocking is that I got an A on my 1st quiz. I guess my brain still works after all these years out of school. I've been working hard but still got overwhelmed taking the quiz. I missed HALF a point for a truly stupid mistake and I'm kicking myself for it. But hey, I still got an A. I feel pretty good about it. And I got a nice jump on my homework so I don't have to worry about school while I'm in the hospital.

Did I mention that I'll be there in 3 DAYS?!?!

And speaking of 3, Wednesday was our 3rd wedding anniversary. We had already celebrated on Monday since we were both home. We went to CLE Clothing which was a bust for Todd (shirts were too soft) but I scored 2! We did some other running around and had an awesome lunch at The Melting Pot, talking and stuffing ourselves silly. It may not have been as elaborate as our first 2 anniversary celebrations (last year we picked the name Sullivan for our imaginary next child while drinking frozen cocktails in Kalahari's hot tub), it was just as meaningful. As Todd said, "3 years. 2 babies. 1 love".

Today was our last OB/GYN appointment. I love my doctor and her nurse so while it's exciting, it's bittersweet. They were friendly, comforting and encouraging, really making me feel taken care of
during my (final) pregnancy. I'll always be eternally appreciative for how understanding and awesome they were to me...and Spencer. I'm so glad my doctor will be the person bringing Sullivan into the world.

So our appointment...never happened. The doc got called away to surgery so we had some time to kill. But while waiting, our nurse called my cell and said that as long as Sullivan was moving (elbowing me left and right), and since my section is Monday, I don't really need to be seen. So that's that. No more appointments! DONE!

I was feeling very...I don't know...yesterday. Spencer was napping in my bed and I was rubbing his back and just thinking about how we made him. Not HOW, perverts! Just how one minute he wasn't here and then he was, and every day he grows and learns and comes into his own. He is SO LOVED by so many people and I know I've said it plenty of times, but I can't imagine my life without him. It doesn't matter how many ups and downs we went through last year. He was clearly meant to be mine.

When Sullivan comes home, it's going to be amazing. This baby boy is going to complete our family. Now we just get to BE. We get to LIVE. We're going to have an incredible Fall and Winter holiday season with this new little guy. I'm so very excited to meet him and to see what kind of big brother Spencer will be. I think he and I will always have a special bond...and I'm hoping that he and Sully will have one, too. They'll be so lucky to have each other. And I'm going to be such a lucky mom. They've given us a far more awesome and full life, for sure. I hope I can be an awesome mom for them. I'm sure trying.

3 DAYS!!!

Monday, September 17, 2012

38 Weeks: The Final Countdown!

38 weeks down and 1 to go. 7 short days until Sullivan Richard *2nd Middle Name Pending* Gansert is in my lovin' arms. This is my last weeks ever with a baby bump which is a little bittersweet. If I had started popping out puppies earlier, I think there would be more in my future. I love being a mom and, at most times, love being preggo. But I'm not complaining and I have no regrets. I couldn't be happier than I am with Spencer and Sullivan for sons. I know exactly what a lucky mama I am!

There isn't really much else to report. We've placed our bets on how big he'll be (Aiden said 7#1 21", Todd says 7#3, 20.5", and I'm going for a big, ol' 7#7 20"), the car seats are in the Swagger Wagon, and everything is squared away with Spencer. All I have to do now is make it through this week. This very last week.

Today we're celebrating our 3 year wedding anniversary since we're both off. The past 2 years, we're gone somewhere overnight to celebrate but that really isn't wise in my current state. So we're keeping it local and kicking it off by going to The CLE Clothing Company to but hoodies, shirts, and a shot glass (anniversary tradition). Then we're going to the Melting Pot for lunch. Who knows what else will fill our day?

I'm just happy that we've made it this far, especially with all the stress of last year. That could've easily broken us. I think some people expected it to. We've made our house a home, brought 2 baby boys into the world and still love spending time together more than doing anything else. We're lucky. I know this. I look forward to our future as a family. A family that's increasing by 1 in only a week!!!

I can't believe that below is our final countdown! Especially since the very 1st countdown started with 105 days until the C-Section!!!

2 days until our 3rd Wedding Anniversary.
4 days until our next/last OB/GYN appointment.
7 days until the C-Section.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Appointment #12: One More Appointment Before The Big Show.

BP = good.
Belly = 37cm.
Weight = up 1 pound.
Heart Rate = 135, which is good.

And that's pretty much that. The nurse told me that from the next appt on, the doc would be doing internal exams. I reminded her that we only have 1 appt left and she retracted her statement. Since I'm having a scheduled C-Section, I won't be examined at all. In a way it stinks because I'd like to know if I'm dilated at all but on the the other hand, it's AWESOME because I don't want anyone poking around down there! Not fun at this stage in the game.

What IS fun is our new car, which thanks to Potsie, I've been calling the Swagger Wagon. I'll be honest, I LOVE the mini-van. Everything about it. It's got tons of room, lots of storage, and plenty of gadgets. I can answer my phone AND work the iPod (which doesn't even have to be plugged in) from the steering wheel. It's a great family car and I'm sure we'll have many adventures in it.

Also an adventure was Spencer's first salon haircut! The gal who does my hair did his and he was a trooper! He sat on his dad's lap like a champ and left looking adorable. Now he's set for all the pictures he's bound to be in when he meets his baby brother in 9 DAYS. Single digits. Awesome. I can't wait to have a picture of them together. My 2 baby boys. Swoon.

And now, homework. I'll be at my desk for the rest of the weekend. Sigh. I turned in my first quiz yesterday and feel pretty good about it. But I have homework due Monday and want to get as ahead as I can before the big day. The next 9 days will be crazy, no doubt. But at least getting the house ready and doing homework will make the days go by a little faster. Because despite loving having a bump, I. Am. Ready!

Monday, September 10, 2012

Officially Full Term: Any Time Now, Sully.

37 weeks down and 2 weeks to go.

Or less. 2 weeks or LESS! I'm officially full term as of today so really, Sullivan could come at any time. Spencer showed up at a smidge early so who knows how this will go? Honestly, while me and my body are anxious for him to get here, I do like that everything is scheduled. I'm not really in the mood for any surprises. And I want this kid carved out as planned. I have zero interest in pushing him out.

Today, he's the size of a smaller watermelon. Approximately 6.5 pounds and 19 inches. And I'll say "approximately" because Spencer came a week and a half AFTER this and was only 6 pounds 1 ounce, 20 inches. I have no clue how Sully will measure...but I'm guessing bigger. I'll make an official guess next week.

He's basically just hanging out in there. Sucking this thumb, blinking, practicing breathing, practicing for life in the real world after he gets evicted. And of course, he's boxing my insides and currently has the hiccups. He's just growing at this point and is probably as ready as I am for him to join the family.

My bag is packed. Spencer's bag is packed. I'm working on getting the house in order so I don't come home to a train wreck. And today, we're sealing the deal that we are actually the parents of multiple little ones: we're going to look at a mini-van. It sounds funny and lame but it's actually really sweet and who doesn't like a new car? We're a party of 5's our only option. Goofy as it may be.

4 days until our next doctor's appointment.
9 days until our 3rd wedding anniversary.
14 days until the C-Section.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Appointment #11: Passing Time With a Trip To The Spa.

Spencer is 13 months today. I'm as in love as ever.

Yesterday's appointment (only 2 more to go!) was as basic as they come. I don't know what my BP was but she said it was good. Didn't even measure my belly so it must look on track. Weight is up despite all the stomach distress so that's a plus. The heart rate was 146 when I asked.

I did spend a little time having a Fetal Non-Stress Test cause his movement had been a little slower the past few days. Well, that must've been a fluke because he was rocking OUT the entire time I was on the monitor. I felt silly for even bringing it up. But Spencer's decreased fetal movement was the beginning of the storm so maybe I'm just paranoid.

Todd and I celebrated another appointment down with lunch, Gelato, and buying matching swishy pants for the little boys (I can't believe in 16 days or less i'll have BOYS, plural) to wear during Browns games. Followed this up with Todd setting up my new school study space (lovvvvve it), our Great Food Truck Race marathon, and snuggling with Spencer in the big bed.

It was a good day but a bad night. I can't get comfortable. I can't sleep. The doc referred me to a Neurologist in case the migraines continue after delivery. She also said several of her patients have had similar stomach issues so there is some icky bug going around. I just have to tough it out. And I have to remind myself that 16 days is way easier than 280 days AND I'm getting off a week early. Just have to deal. And I'm dealing by whining.

Today, as I've said, I'm treating myself to a little pampering with one of my best pals, Carol High Hair. A full-on Spa Day (my 1st mani/pedi, eek!) and lunch. Feels very cosmopolitan! And it's going to be a rainy, cool, Fall-like day so what better to do that hang with a friend getting beautified? It's probably my last outing before surgery so I'm making the most if it. Hoping it'll take my mind off my discomfort.

Details to follow.

I just had a really great afternoon with a really great gal. I went to PJ's Day Spa and got some hi-lights put in my hair and had my 1st manicure (a sparkly fall orange) while I waited for Carol. When she showed up, I sat with her as she got her own (blue-green) manicure and then it was pedicure time!

Holy cow, I'm addicted!

I didn't realize how much my feet hurt until I started getting pampered. And Carol was the best pal to have around. We chatted and laughed and just caught up. And the weirdness I thought I'd have about the pedicure disappeared after a few minutes. I loved it and I'll definitely be back...with Todd in tow.

And I'm really happy with my hair, too. A haircut can always change an attitude. It's full of autumn-esque, caramel peek-a-boos, trimmed up, and healthy! Spencer is following the Spa Day trend and I'm taking him to get him 1st official salon haircut on Friday. I wonder if I'll cry. Regardless, today was a great day that ended with a full belly. Thank you, Carol. And now that I'm all cut, colored, manied, pedied, lotioned, massaged, plucked, and stuffed...the baby is free to come! SERIOUSLY.

And with that...good night. At 8:00. For real.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Hello Maternity Leave: A Sign That Things Are Wrapping Up.

We've had over 10,000 views since 1/1/12. Nice! And THANKS!

It was so weird to go to bed last night and turn my alarm OFF...for the rest of the YEAR. And it's so weird to be here at home, in bed, while Spencer is at the sitter's. I'm just here, trying to relax which is virtually impossible anymore. Welcome to the wild, and wildly uncomfortable, world of Maternity Leave.

I wasn't supposed to go on leave for 2 more weeks but the choice sort of stopped being mine. The skull-crushing headache is still hanging on and most other pregnancy symptoms have decided to show up to the party at once: nausea, vomiting, intestinal issues and their aftermath, tailbone pressure, lower back pain, numbness in my leg (he's on a nerve just like Spencer was), broken sleep, constant urination, and an all-around discomfort in my own skin. Yes, I am bitching.

Monday night, after a rather pleasant Labor Day, I spent several hours camped out in the bathroom. It was a nightmare. When my alarm went off mere hours later, I realized sitting on my bum at work was not an option. Sitting on my bum anywhere was not an option! So I had to call off and realized that I had officially become undependable there. It's not like I'm calling off just to have some free time...I'm creating life and having a rough time doing it. But it's a burden to never know when an employee might not be there.

So yesterday, I talked to my supervisor about today being my last day...but everyone concerned told me just to wrap up the day and start my leave. Hence why I am blogging from bed. I've got to say, seeing as I jusssssst made it in the door yesterday before I tossed my cookies and spent the rest of the night with raging heartburn, it was time. I knew it, work knew it, and my body REALLY knew it. I didn't want to miss out on 2 weeks with Sullivan but it turns out I won't have to. I'll still be out until 2013...I'll just miss out on a little more pay than expected. Fair trade. I'd rather have the Sully time.

Several of the pregnant gals I know, all due this month, are miserable for a variety of reasons. I hope they can all get some relief soon. We have a doctor's appointment tomorrow afternoon so we'll see what's what. He won't be full term until Monday. And I also have to take into account that while he's coming in 18 days...that's ALREADY a week earlier than he's supposed to, thanks to the scheduled C-Section. But I still plan to tell the doc about the cluster of things going on right now because they're making it difficult to function...especially with a 1 year old, who has really been nothing but a peach. He's smooching now and even when his tongue is all over my face, it's still cute.

So...that's where we stand. Or lay. I'll update tomorrow after I see the doc but I'm not banking on much to tell. Saturday is Spa Day and lunch with the lovely Carol High Hair. I'm getting my wig done (the peek-a-boo highlights are making a come back because I think I want some pink or purple hair for maternity leave...Hello 2006) and then it's mani/pedi time. My first! It'll be great to spend some time with a gal I love and get pampered a bit. I could use it!

Now, I have a date with Grey's Anatomy season 8.

Monday, September 3, 2012

36 Weeks: Wishing It Was Go-Into-Labor Day

3 weeks to go. 21 days. Can't wait.

My little buddy weighs about 6 pounds and is the size of a bowling ball. Bowling is something I look forward to doing when my womb is vacant. With the comparison, I've just realized how long it's been! Not important. This guy is running out of room for sure. We saw some major acrobatics this morning at my parents' which was funny because nature freaks my mom out! She laughed at the craziness.

Lots of the info this week on my Baby Making apps has to do with the baby's bones being designed for the birth canal. And there's a lot of chatter about episiotomies and other things I won't deal with. So we're just trucking along...this includes my headache. I gave up on the pain meds and am just trying to rest up as much as I can.

Yesterday, we went to an End Of Summer family get together and it was just what I needed. It didn't help my headache but it helped my mood. Good food, good people, and a change of scenery. It was really good for Spencer who got to play with his cousins. They're an awesome group of little dudes, no doubt.

Today, we went and bought a desk to put in our bedroom for school. We have an awesome office space in the basement now that it's all finished but I really wanted a space to be able to focus. A dedicated school space. I want to do everything this time around that I should've done last time. Making everyone proud is a priority. And this required a new desk! It's the little things that make me happy these days.

Right now, a bowl of pasta with tomatoes and garlic will make me happy!

4 days until my next OB/GYN appointment.
5 days until Spa Day with Carol High Hair.
16 days until our 3rd wedding anniversary.
17 days until my last day at work.
21 days until the C-Section.