Tuesday, April 30, 2013

project 365: April edition

Hate the sickies; love the snugglies!
First trip to emerg with the Fraselnut... sooooo grateful for Nana's support!
I hosted a Tupperware party and totally scored. I paid under $100 and ended up with THIS impressive haul!

Classic 'will it be a boy or will it be a girl' pedi!
Nesting kicks in full force.

Taking a break from the insanity of taxes to do a little Insanity workout.

I do love a man who shampoos rugs!

Stories with Auntie Julie Anne!
My friend Tiffany, the goddess of organization, helped me purge/organize our closet. She's DEFINITELY invited back ANY TIME!

Some final baby belly kisses!

One last swim with Auntie Chels & Nico before baby!

Computer notification the day before scheduled c-section... things suddenly seeming a little more real!

Welcome to the world Stefan Peter!

Big brother Fraser meets baby Stefan!

Some Stefan snuggles on our last full day in the hospital.

First night in his very own bed!

My three boys: happy, healthy, and home.

Stefan meeting family via Skype!

Helping Nana with the laundry! This little skill could come in verrrry handy in the future.
Cuddles with my wee zebra man!

Hot tubbin it with Daddy!
Nick drove us to church in our van as I wasn't able to drive yet post c-section. He obviously felt really cool in the swagger wagon and secretly wants a mini van of his own I'm SURE.

Just TICKLED for Spring!

Snuggles with Papa!

Admiring Papa at work.

Floor time.

Some solid outdoor play time with Nico!

Sucking on Daddy's arm as a little pre-meal snack.

Stefan's close-up.
Just chowing down a drumstick... no big deal.

Nana & Fraser having some quality time with Stefan's play mat!

And that's a wrap, folks!

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Part 2 - the afterbirth (hee hee)

After being thoroughly assessed in the NICU, Stefan and Lowell had some quality skin-to-skin-Daddy-and-son time before they met me in the place we would call home for the next 3 nights: room 311. I still couldn’t feel much from the chest down, and I felt like I had tubes going into and coming out of most orifices of my body (really there were only like 2), but I had sensation from the chest up and was ready and rarin for some Stefan snuggles!

Mommy's view...

Daddy was also eager to lather Stefan with kisses and let him know right off the bat just how loved he is...

He began rooting the moment I held him, and latched instantly. RELIEF. Fraser never nursed while we were in the hospital (which was sort of stressful), so it was a pleasant surprise that Stefan picked it up so quickly (and hasn’t stopped since, by the way).

Time to call family and friends! Lowell and I weren’t exactly prepared to be separated for so long, so we left our poor families in dire suspence. We had confided the specific surgery time, so when they didn’t hear from us shortly thereafter (and, in fact, for the next several hours), they became concerned. Oops! They were, however, super thrilled to hear about Stefan’s arrival.

Auntie Shareen was the first one to have a Stefan cuddle! And yes, she made the super adorable owl hat that Stefan is sporting...

Soon after, Nana & Papa came to meet their newest grandson...

And then the moment we’ve all been waiting for. Big brother Fraser meets baby Stefan!

He thought, 'WHAT? Does this mean I'm not the be all end all of your world anymore?'

Just kidding. Fraser seemed curious and a little confused, but said “baby” and “Step-uhn” (which my parents and Shareen taught him ever so diligently) several times, and was rather liberal with petting Stefan’s head and dropping kisses on any part of his body.

It was with me, however, that Fraser seemed more hesitant. It probably threw him off that I was confined to a weird bed wearing strange clothes and holding a baby. He normally requests “UP!” a million times a day, but he didn’t even ask me once. It’s like he KNEW the answer had to be no. Totally broke my heart, but for his visit the following day, I DID get out of bed and cash in on some good Fraser times.

It suddenly seemed like Fraser had grown 7 inches, gained 30 lbs, and matured 4 years...  such a big boy! But still a total ham.

And now a brief interlude from visitors for Stefan's first bath! He was being a little rascal and kept clutching the bath bucket and nearly dumping it when the nurses would attempt to pick him up or rotate him slightly. Muscles, I tell you... that boy has MUSCLES!

Next up was Uncle Nicholas & Auntie Chels!

I just love that our children have such amazing real AND pretend aunties and uncles!

The first night wasn't the MOST restful because if it wasn't my cough that woke me up, a nurse woke Stefan and I both up to check our vitals etc (which we DID appreciate FYI). Other than scaring us a few times by seemingly choking on his spew (which is apparently common in c-sectioned babes as the birth canal doesn’t squeeze excess mucous junk out), Stefan was fine, as was I.

Saturday the 13th was my half birthday (30.5!), and Shareen brought STARBUCKS! This is very important in my world.

Uncle Glen & Auntie Natalie came for a visit (and also brought Starbucks... SCORE!) followed closely by Grandma and Grandpa T...

And on Sunday, Stefan got to meet Uncle Ryan and Auntie Julie...

He even had a cuddle with little tiny fetus cousin...

Fraser was in good hands while we were at the hospital. He stayed with Nana & Papa, and Auntie Shareen and Grandma & Grandpa T were there too... lucky boy!

The first two days of the hospital stay were fairly low key and relaxing, but by Monday we were more than ready to head home. BUH-bye hospital!

And now for some random Julie thoughts:

1.    One can never be prepared for the way one’s uterus continues to hang out after one gives birth.

2.    The whole c-section thing went off without a hitch. The worst part of the entire experience was the relentless cough attacks that I couldn’t shake (during which, by the way, was the only time I could even FEEL the incision). I coughed frequently throughout the night, and was so stuffed up that I couldn’t breathe through my nose. Fun.

3.    There was a night and day difference between Fraser and Stefan’s deliveries. NIGHT AND DAY. For starters, Fraser was literally born in the night while Stefan was born during the day… but the differences span far beyond that. Loooong lasting labour pains (including back labour) vs no labour pains, nasty tearing vs no tearing, semi-private room vs private room. Given the choice between my two deliveries, I would choose the c-section route again. There is only one negative about the c-section, and it is indeed a big huge ol mammoth negatory: I can’t lift Fraser for 6 weeks, and it kills me. KILLS ME.

4.    Do not attempt to satisfy your curiosity by weighing yourself the day after you get home post-delivery. I still had 30 of my 40 extra pounds hanging on my frame. Depressing.

5.    I have surprised myself with my recovery. I was prepared to be bed-bound, struggle with stairs, and generally be out of commission for at least a week. I was, however, already mobile at the hospital and haven’t been taken down since. I’ve barely been taking my pain meds either. I definitely still have discomfort (which turns into outright pain if I cough or overdo it), but I think it’s good to feel SOMETHING so I don’t overdo it. The occasional reminder that I just had—you know—MAJOR SURGERY is probably for the best.

6. I no longer judge people for not looking fabulous post-scheduled-c-section. I used to think there was no excuse as it was SCHEDULED and SANS LABOUR. However, no make-up is allowed, you're laying down with a hospital cap on forever, and you're swollen from being pumped with IV fluids. Not the pretty picture I had been hoping for (hehe).

7. Basically, we're totally in love with our new little man.... I think we'll keep 'im!