Sunday, September 25, 2016

Denver's Birth Story

Hi Friends!!  I am SO excited to be writing this long awaited post. For those who may not know, our precious baby boy, Denver Benjamin Wolf, entered the world last Monday on September 19th. 

Though Denver was born on Monday, his birth story really begins on Thursday the week before. Thursday afternoon, I went in for my normal 39 week check up at my OBGYN, however, I was told she was stuck at a delivery and there was another doctor for me to see. This was the first time I had ever been seen by anyone other than my normal doctor and it was not a pleasant experience. This doctor promptly informed me that my doctor should have already made me schedule a c-section because my baby's head wasn't engaged and as a first time mom, if it hadn't happened by then, it simply wasn't going to...

Needless to say, I was absolutely devastated to hear this as I had been hoping and planning for an all-natural birth. I made the decision to make another appointment with my usual doctor for the following morning to get her opinion. Prior to this, we had never even discussed a c-section as I was having a very normal and healthy pregnancy and my doctor had no reason to think a c-section would be necessary unless in an emergency situation. 

Thursday night I got about 3 hours of sleep because I was so upset about the possibility of a c-section and had so much anxiety over the appointment I had that afternoon. 

Friday morning came and I had a wonderful appointment with my OBGYN where she apologized for the previous doctor's comments and reassured me that even though the baby wasn't engaged, scheduling a c-section was not something we were ready to do. We decided to move forward with a membrane sweep to see if that would get things going and encourage the baby to start moving down and preparing for birth. 

Friday night, Dakota and I took a long walk up to a little Italian restaurant and enjoyed what would end up being our last date night before becoming a family of three! On our way home, I started having some irregular contractions that gave us hope that Denver would be making an appearance sometime soon. Little did we know, this was only the start of what would be considered very long and very exhausting prodromal labor. AKA when you have consistent contractions but you are not considered to be in "active labor."

My contractions continued to get stronger and more frequent throughout the night, resulting in another night of only 3 hours of sleep. Come Saturday morning, the contractions were still there but they were slowing down and becoming less intense so we spent all day trying to rest and just waiting for the "real deal" to begin. 

At this point, I was physically exhausted from having barely slept in the past 48 hours and mentally exhausted from realizing this could go on for DAYS with no real progression. By Saturday night, I was trying to get some sort rest but the contractions were becoming too much to get through while laying down so I ended up waking up every 5-7 minutes to walk through my contraction and then trying to sleep in between them. 

Sunday morning, I was so mentally distraught that I was STILL having contractions (that were not going away) but baby time seemed SO far away. We decided to head into labor and delivery to see where I was and to make sure everything still looked good with Denver. The nurse informed us I was only dilated to 3cm and had us walk the hospital for 2 hours to see if that would help things progress. Unfortunately, it didn't and we were told we could stay and start pitocin or go home and wait it out. 

Still hoping for a natural birth, we decided to leave the hospital. I didn't want to go home and spend another day just waiting for labor to kick in so instead, Dakota and I headed to the mall to walk around some more and see a movie. We even got pedicures in hopes of kick starting labor ;). During the movie, my contractions had picked up again and I would have to stand up and breathe through them every 3-5 minutes. About 45 minutes into the movie, I decided I wanted to go home, check on the dogs, and head back to the hospital. At this point, I was ready to consider starting pitocin rather than go through another sleepless night with no baby in sight. 

We arrived at the hospital around 4:30pm on Sunday and immediately got settled into our room. The nurse informed us that I was now dilated to 5cm so we were excited that some progress had been made! Within an hour or so, the contractions really picked up and become much harder than they had previously been. I continued to labor through them with Dakota's help and finally asked to be checked again around 11pm. Unfortunately, I was still at 5cm. This was absolutely devastating because it meant that we still had quite a ways to go before Denver was being born, the contractions were already painful and becoming very hard to get through, and I was about to have another night of little to no sleep.

After a little meltdown ensued, Dakota and I decided it would be best for me to get an epidural so I could get some rest that night and to start pitocin in the morning if I still wasn't progressing. This was such a difficult decision for me because I truly wanted to have our baby without any drugs. I really had to swallow my pride, let go of feeling like a failure, and be okay with our birth taking a different route. Once the epidural kicked in, I immediately knew I made the right decision and I was able to sleep and rest through the entire night.   

At 7am on Monday morning, I was still at 5cm so we decided to begin pitocin. Within 4 hours, I was dilated to 10cm and ready to begin pushing. I had hoped and prayed I would be one of those women that could push for only 10 minutes and the baby would just pop out... However, I am not one of those women. I ended up pushing for two and a half hours and at 2:56pm our beautiful 8lb 10oz, 21 inches long baby boy was born. 

I honestly couldn't have done it without my incredible husband. There were many times that I was screaming that I couldn't do it and I was too tired to keep pushing but he encouraged me and assured me that I could and I was doing it. Delivery was by far the absolute hardest thing I have ever done in my entire life but seeing that sweet baby boy made it so worth it.

Denver has been one of the biggest blessings to our life. He is such a content and happy baby (unless you undress him) and I am head over heels and utterly obsessed with my baby boy. Being a mom has already brought such a sense of purpose and completion to my heart and I cannot thank God enough for this precious gift. Over the past week, we have been adjusting to life with our little guy and I have been focusing on recovering from giving birth. Dakota has been absolutely incredible at changing all the poopy diapers, calming me down when nursing seems SO hard, and letting me know that I'm doing a great job at being Denver's mom. I couldn't imagine doing this life without him and seeing him become a dad has been so indescribably beautiful. 

We want to thank every single person who has reached out to congratulate us! It means to much to us and your kind words touch our hearts. 

Now onto the baby spam!

Denver, we couldn't love you more! 

Monday, September 5, 2016

38 Week Pregnancy Update + Gift Card Giveaway!

Holy Moly yall!! First off, I can't believe it has been 8 weeks since my last pregnancy update! To be honest, not a whole lot has changed over these last few weeks so there isn't too much to update you on. Secondly, I really can't believe we are only 2-3ish weeks from finally meeting our precious baby boy. I cannot even begin to tell you how ready and excited I am for that day that is (hopefully) quickly approaching.  

In the meantime, here is my very last pregnancy update! My next blog post will hopefully be introducing you to our sweet Denver Benjamin Wolf, so get ready for baby fever ;)

Sorry in advance for the lack of pictures... feeling like a gigantic, pregnant whale means staying away from the camera as much as possible these days!

My Due Date: Funny story.... I've had my due date wrong for basically my entire pregnancy. How that happened, I'm not sure but my real due date is September 22nd! We are hoping and praying that he comes by then and doesn't decide to camp out much longer than another 15 days. If only babies would actually listen to us this early on, right ;)

What fruit is the baby this week? Since I am technically 37 weeks and 4 days, Denver is the size of a honeydew melon or romaine lettuce! It is crazy to think that by 40 weeks he will be the size of a watermelon! As of now, he should be in the 6 to 7 pound range and about 18 - 20 inches long. I'm thinking he is going to be a skinny but tall baby because when he stretches out, he covers the entire width of my stomach! I have also never been told how much he may weigh so I'm excited to see what he comes out at! Dakota was over 9 pounds but I was only 6 pounds so we think he'll be between 7-8 lbs at birth :)

Next Appointment: At this point I have a doctor's appointment every week. My appointments usually consist of me sitting in a waiting room for about 45 minutes to an hour and then seeing my doctor for a total of 5 minutes. At every appointment, all of my vitals are checked along with listening to the baby's heartbeat, measuring my fundal height, and a dilation check. Overall, I don't mind all the appointments because they give me an excuse to get out of the house and break up my day along with hearing that most precious heartbeat! 

Exercise: My current exercise routine includes lots and lots of walking. Dakota and I walk about 1.5-3 miles a day. I also like to swim at least twice a week along with doing squats, step ups, stretches, and bouncing on a yoga ball every day. AKA I am doing anything and everything that anyone has ever said has helped start labor or make it easier/quicker :)

Stretch Marks: Still no stretch marks but this belly is growing exponentially every single week! I lather it with coconut oil and coco butter every night in hopes that the stretch marks never make an appearance. Fingers crossed! 

Maternity Clothes: Yall... I am down to literally 5 outfits that I can still fit into. Even my actual maternity clothes are becoming quite unflattering.... It is not a fun task to get ready and most days are spent in oversized tshirts and my super comfy Walmart shorts. I also have a total of 4 pairs of shoes that I can fit into :( AKA my running shoes and three pairs of the exact same sandals in different colors LOL. I think at this point, I am just as excited to fit back into normal clothes and shoes as I am to hold our baby boy. #pregoprobs at it's finest! 

Sleep: I have been very blessed to still be sleeping fairly well every single night. There are the occasional nights when I'll wake up and not be able to fall back asleep but for the most part, I can sleep and nap just fine (even with getting up to pee every other hour) and I am SO thankful for that! On the other hand, I am slightly worried about adjusting to life with a newborn and a major lack of sleep but I can't wait to soak up those days and nights in all their glory. 

Food Cravings: Stillll sweets... and trust me, the scale is well aware of this craving. Hopefully, it'll be easy to kick this craving to the curb after giving birth.. I don't think I'll ever get back into those pre-pregnancy clothes again if I don't ;) 

Movement: Baby boy's movement is mostly lots and lots of stretching throughout the day! He LOVES to be all up in my ribs with his little booty or a knee and that I don't love so much but I'm so thankful for anyways. Denver also gets the hiccups about once a day! I still don't feel any crazy active movements but that is due to my anterior placenta "muting" most of his kicks and jabs. I think I will definitely miss feeling him move around in there when he finally does come out. 

What I’m Loving: I have loved getting everything ready for him to come home! We have all of his swings, toys, and bedding set up throughout the house and I love just imagining watching him in his bouncer or sleeping in his little crib. I am to the point where I am definitely anxious and impatient for him to arrive but I am trying my best to simply enjoy each day for what it brings and to be thankful for another day of him growing bigger and stronger in prep for the "real world." Until the big day, we'll continue to ask God for strength and patience and trust in His perfect timing! 

Belly button in or out: Most of the day my belly button is still flat but it will poke out a little after dinner LOL. 

Weddings rings on or off: Still off :( I am SO excited for them to finally fit again and I'm hoping it'll be sooner rather than later after giving birth! 

What I’m Looking Forward To: Needless to say, I am SO stinkin' excited for him to arrive! I'm so ready to snuggle him and love on him and begin adjusting to our new life as a family of three. I can't wait to see Dakota as a father and the bond I know him and Denver will share. I am also very much so looking forward to simply not being pregnant. I am so incredibly thankful for the gift of carrying and sustaining Denver's life, however, I am definitely to the point where I can't wait to be able to do normal day-to-day things without a gigantic belly being in the way ;). Another thing I am looking forward to is Denver's newborn pictures! These will be within 10 days of his birth and I can't wait to share them! They'll be taken in our house so that is when you will finally get to see his finished nursery along with some of my other favorite rooms in our new house :). Lastly, I am looking forward to being done with labor and giving birth. I am so excited for that day and that experience but there is also some fear and worry that comes with knowing that day is rapidly approaching. I can't wait to see how God designs and writes Denver's birth day and we are so excited to see Him and His glory through our labor and delivery. We would absolutely love for prayers of peace and patience as we await baby boy's arrival along with prayers for a healthy mommy and baby through the next few weeks! 

Now for the FUN part-
I am doing another guessing giveaway for a chance to win a gift card courtesy of me! 
Simply tell me what day YOU think Denver will arrive :) 

To help you out some, his exact due date is September 22nd and I will be medically induced by October 3rd if he hasn't come on his own.

The winner will be announce within 2 weeks of Denver's birthday! If more than one person guesses correctly, a winner will be randomly chosen from those who were correct.  

Good luck, friends!!