Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Hospital Photos

We had Brody at Methodist Willowbrook Hospital about 10 minutes down the road from us (hooray for a short drive to the hospital!). We were thoroughly impressed with the hospital and really recommend it!

Because labor came fast and furious, we parked the car in the front of the hospital with all our bags and hurried in. So we didn't have our camera with us at the birth. Thank God for smart phones! After Brody and I were had settled in, Jon ran to park the car and get our camera. Here is the first shot we got of him!

Brennan came and visited the next morning. He ran in, saw Brody in the little clear crib and said, "aww, he's cute!".

I wasn't sure how it was going to be in the hospital this time around because the day after Brennan's birth, we had a mini party in our room with almost all of our family! I was worried we'd feel lonely without any family there. But, let me tell you, we have a surrogate family down here with our pretty amazing friends. I was overwhelmed and grateful by all the visitors and food and gifts and love our friends poured on us. I'm still kind of blown away by it when I think of how God provided.

The Emerts meeting Brody

Dane and Melissa (who gave birth the following Saturday to baby Evelyn!)

Cydney, who sooo blessed us by watching Brennan while we were in the hospital. She's amazing.

Someone needs to be nursed. So glad I had a second to look back at the photos of us in the hospital and remember how grateful we are!

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Brody's Birth Story

Caveat: I don't want to forget Brody's birth, so this post is for me. If you're a male, or get grossed out easily, or whatever, you probably want to skip this one. Sorry for the length, I don't wanna forget the details!

At 6:30 am on February 8th, I rolled over in bed and my water leaked just a little bit. It was definitely amniotic fluid and it was probably a cups worth. I woke Jon and told him what had happened. He decided to hurry up and get into work because he had a stage design he needed to finish! We decided not to get excited or tell anyone because with Brennan, my water sprung a leak but labor never started (on it's own). So we started the day and went on as usual!

I started right away having contractions, but they were totaly do-able and sporadic- every 5 minutes to every 15 minutes. I had been having braxton hicks contractions for a month that were pretty consistent, so I still kept my hopes in check. My constant braxton hicks actually landed me in the hospital about six weeks ago, but it was determined to be braxton hicks and I was fine. So Wednesday morning, I decided to stay home from Bible study because I wasn't sure what was going on and it felt like the right decision. Brennan and I putts around the house all day- me doing occasional squatting (thank you Bradley classes!), and constantly going pee and tracking my contractions. It was weird, like every contraction made me have to pee.

Around 4:00, I was just ready for the day to be done and I texted Jon and asked him to make sure he came home on time. He got home around 5:00 and we sat on the playroom floor talking. I told him I still wasn't sure this was it and at that point, it had been like 20 minutes since my last contraction. Then around 5:30, Jon and Brennan were wrestling in the living room and I was on the couch and I had a pretty painful contraction. I went pee about 5:45, stood up (at the same time Jon walked in to ask me a question), and my water truly broke. We both kind of looked at each other like, "holy cow, this is it!". I was grateful it broke over the toilet, but come to find out later, that didn't really matter. ha!

Jon called our babysitter for Brennan and told her, "this is not a drill, come over!". As soon as my water broke, I was in labor, like, holy cow, this hurts, labor. I stood over the toilet having contraction upon contraction and cried. About 15 minutes later, Brennan was picked up and we left for the hospital. I was leaking water like crazy, had already changed outfits twice and leaked through two towels on the way to the hospital (about 10 minutes away). For some reason, it felt really good to cry, so I did. I was a hurtin'. When we pulled up to the hospital, I started having contractions super close together. I tell you what, that ride through the hospital to labor and delivery was crazy. I was embarrassed that so much water was coming out of me and part of my brain was embarrassed because I was wearing purple socks, brown shoes and black capri yoga pants. I was in super pain, yet still aware that I was a bawling weirdo going through the hospital. tehehe

Jon wheeled me to the nurses station and we got bombarded with questions like, "do you need to push?" or "do you feel pressure?". I didn't answer one question. I just sobbed big heavy sobs that made me feel better. One nurse asked me, "whats the matter, honey?" and I distinctly remember Jon replying, "uhhh, she's in labor." HA!

Jon told them my contractions were about every 3 minutes and they sent us straight to a delivery room, skipping triage. The doctor checked me and I was 9.5 cm dialated, pretty much fully dialated. I think I told the Dr. that I loved her when she said that. No joke. I believe I hit transition in the bathroom and car ride.

The nurse told me I could push, but I told her I didn't feel pressure down there and didn't feel like pushing. I was afraid of the pain. So I labored on. I had really bad back labor, and poor Jon had to put counter pressure on my back the entire time. I think we got to the hospital at 6:15 and Brody was born at 8:29. But that 1.5 hours was TERRIBLE. Not gonna lie. Thank God we had a really great nurse because our midwife didn't make it in time and the dr. on duty was not used to natural childbirth. She was no help. :)

The nurse realized that my back was killing me (I wasn't aware enough to even realize that), and she had me get on my hands and knees. Turns out, Brody was posterior (sunny side up). So had I started pushing earlier, it probably would've taken a while to get him out. Thankfully, getting on my hands and knees rotated him the right way. When I turned back around, I kind of squatted a little, I'm not sure why, it was just a position that felt better. The nurse told me that pushing might help with the pain and I was finally feeling pressure down there, so I pushed once, HARD, and his head came out. :) And she was right, pushing was not the painful part, it actually was a relief. And get this- the doctor was not prepared for him to come out that fast, she was texting on her phone in the corner of the room. And the bed wasn't torn down. So they all yelled at me to stop pushing, the doctor got in position, and I pushed him out the rest of the way in one more push. And then, it was over. :)

You guys, God was gracious to us. My water could have sprung a leak that morning and I could have not gone into labor on my own. But I did. I didn't have to have pitocin. Thank you Jesus. And mentally, it was totally doable, especially knowing I was already fully dialated when I got to the hospital. So natural labor was just the "natural" thing for me, I didn't even think about pain medication. And Brody was healthy. He never once had a high blood sugar reading. He even came out with a knot in his cord (because I had so much fluid, he could swim around a lot more and that's how he caused the knot, one of the things they were worried about). But the knot didn't kink and he was fine!

After Brody was cleaned up and nursed (yay!!!), we called the parentals and shared the news. We didn't even know this, but one of my dear friends, Lynne, was in the waiting room praying for us while I was in labor. Jon went and got her and it was such a blessing to me to have her there for her support and love. She ran out and bought us Sonic since we hadn't had dinner and I had a chocolate shake that I had been longing for since I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes.

I am so glad I stayed home as long as we did, and that I was able to labor at home where I was comfortable and able to move around and distract myself. If I could give any tip, it'd be that, stay home as long as possible!!

Here's a photo of him just minutes after birth- you can totally see how bruised his face his from being posterior.

I was so relieved that it was over, and happy I was able to do it naturally, and estatic that I was no labor pregnant, that I couldn't even sleep that night! I was up the whole night with a big smile on my face. We had such a good stay in the hospital, we joked that it felt like a mini vacation. Friends came and visited, we ate food people brought to us, and hung out with the Brodster. I kind of didn't want to go home. :)

Anways, Jon is telling me this is too long so I need to wrap this puppy up. If you lasted this long, congratulations! :)

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Brody is here!!

Stats: Brody O'Neill Ackerman
7 lbs 11 oz.
21 in long
Born at 8:29, Methodist Willowbrook Hospital
Cuter than you can even imagine.

I haven't had the chance to take the photos off of our camera, so hopefully I can do that soon and get some good photos of him on here. But to put it concisely, he's a doll. I don't want to count my chickens before they hatch, but so far, he's amazing. He sleeps like a rock star, eats like a champ, likes to cuddle, smiled (for real smiled) at 6 days old, and only cries when hungry or getting his diaper changed. I feel like this is my first time being a mom because it's so different from Brennan and for the first time, I'm really bonding with my newborn and loving being a mom to a baby. I cherish him so much, even in the middle of the night, I cuddle and love on him. With Brennan, I felt like I was in a fog, was constantly tired, and would've handed him to the first person who showed up at the door. With Brody, I would rather sit and cuddle with him than do anything else. Anything.

All that to say, we are grateful to God. Grateful for a good delivery, grateful that my water broke and I went into labor (instead of last time), grateful he's a good nurser, grateful I am healing well, and grateful that I'm no longer pregnant! Woohoo!! Those last 3 weeks were a doozy. I hope to tell the birth story soon, especially so I don't forget any of it!

Prayer works. And this delivery and recovery was covered in prayer and for that I am thankful. Thank you guys!