Tuesday, July 21, 2015

My 8 Months (1 of 3)


This is mostly for personal journal reasons, but I have had some people asking questions so I thought I would just get it all out there. Besides, when have I been one to hold back :)
My 8 months have consisted of 3 separate but intertwining parts: Spiritual, Emotional, and Physical challenges and growths. I'm finding it impossible to write it all out at once so I will separate it as best I can.

Post 1 of 3

From the Beginning to 33 Weeks: 

We found out we were expecting in late November. After a couple of early unsuccessful pregnancies we decided to hold off telling our families for a little while, which proved to be difficult because we were visiting them for Pre-Christmas (a couple of week before) and I wanted to shout it from the rooftops. Something was different this time. I was actually hungry. All. The. Time. This made me a little nervous because I didn't really feel like I was experiencing pregnancy the "normal" way (my past normal was puking from the start). Also, the recent unsuccessful pregnancies made me pretty skeptical about what was going on.
While we were visiting family the fatigue hit harder than the hunger had. Don't worry, though. I ate 2 of every meal before I took a nap. David was my superhero (and still is!). He made sure I was fed, happy, and rested. We hid some of the symptoms by designating me as the official nighttime aid to Grace. I would get her ready for bed then "fall asleep while putting her down." But lets be honest, my mom probably knew what was up. Any way, we had a lovely Christmas celebration with my family and enjoyed our time in Washington.
Shortly after arriving home from WA the nausea and vomiting hit, along with what was the start of (get personal!) a 5 week trial with diarrhea. Here it was! The NORMAL pregnancy! Since David's family was about to visit for the actual week of Christmas, we decided to let the cat out of the bag for both of our families before the Scotts arrived. This way nobody would know sooner than the other and also, it was impossible to hide my excessive projectile events. The Scotts arrived just in time to rescue our little family from its almost motherless state. They were able to watch Grace during my ER visits (4 total) and take care of me on the days that David had to work. At this point I was participating in 3 infusions of nutrients weekly. I had to go to the hospital for a few hours every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday to be pumped full of liquids that had some life saving properties! As awesome as these infusions were, they still hurt. Some of the ingredients in my infusions burned as they went in and they made it difficult for the IV to last longer than a day. That means I had to receive a new IV every time I went. Getting a PIC line was a no-go because my Maternal Fetal Medicine doctors were worried about blood clotting and risk of infection. These infusions lasted until I finished my 16th week of pregnancy (3 weeks shorter than with Grace!).

Wait a second! Let me back up to my first experience with the MFM (Maternal Fetal Medicine). At 7 weeks pregnant my OBGYN sent me to IMC to have an ultrasound and some tests done to make sure my hyperemesis wasn't going to impact the pregnancy. Since there was going to be an ultrasound, I told David to come with me so we could see the baby for the first time together. Also, it is hard to drive when your insides want to be your outsides. We were joking with the ultrasound tech (me with my exceptionally loud plastic blue barf bag in hand) about twins. She quickly told us that we were, in fact, having twins. David's reaction? "Yeah! We are having twins! Oh my gosh! Yeah!" My reaction? "We are having twins... (hand on forehead/covering my eyes) twins. Oh my gosh. Twins." Our reactions switched from last time, that is for sure. We set up times for me to get infusions in Tooele, sent the info to my OB, and finished up our appointment. We couldn't even wait to get to our car before we started calling our families, who had very positive and excited reactions. Duh. We were having twins. David and I had just entered family celebrity status. Not only do we make extremely cute babies (Grace), but we were going to have 2 at the same time.

Any how, the adventure was just beginning. During the course of the next 16 weeks we had four ER visits. Three of those visits were for dehydration and one was for bleeding. My first ER visit took over 5 hours, 5 different nurses, 13 needles (some in my feet), and an ultrasound tech to get the IV into my vein. I was pretty dehydrated. The next two were just routine I'm-so-dehydrated-I-can't-function visits (ending in overnight stays at the hospital), and the last one (around 13 weeks) was for bleeding. After the early miscarriages you better believe this messed with my brain. Luckily my mom was in town helping with Grace at the time and she rushed me to the ER. We did some tests and had an ultrasound. The babies were fine but I had a subchorionic hematoma (not sure if that is even spelled right). A harmless pocket of blood between one of the sacs and my uterus wall. This was the first of my experiences where I was told to "take it easy." No lifting Grace and no strenuous activity for 2 weeks. Easy breezy.

From the start of my pregnancy until now, we have had continuous help. David's parents, DAVID, my parents, other family members, and ward members have been more than generous. The weeks following the ER visits were filled with family and friends who were supportive and helpful.
{A quick story about David being amazing: One night I was up puking and had diarrhea. I would sit on the toilet and vomit in a bucket. Obviously I was crying (was I capable of showing emotion any other way? Uh, no). I kept pathetically muttering to myself "I can do hard things. I can do hard things. I can do hard things." David came in, turned on a hot bath, helped me get in, got me a toothbrush and toothpaste, and stayed up with me for hours even though he had to go to work in the morning. There were countless times that he did this for me and many other ways that he has been generous.}

Time after time David has proved to be an amazing husband. I could write a collection of short stories that would all be about David being the best guy a girl could ask for. Even with all his help and extra work, he never complained about our never ending disastrous house, no meals most nights, and an extremely grumpy wife. The weeks were long and full of of hard times, but he always stuck by my side.

When I turned 25 weeks pregnant I went in for a routine appointment. They detected that I had a "dynamic cervix" and said I was in labor. The contractions weren't that close together but when I did have them, my cervix disappeared. Weird, I know. Typically I would consider being dynamic a good personality trait, but not for a cervix. I was immediately rushed to labor and delivery, hooked up to monitors, given medication to slow contractions, and told to sign C-section papers because the babies would be too small to deliver any other way. I was given steroid shots to help their lungs develop faster and since the contractions went away after a few hours we were able to do both doses. After being monitored at the hospital for 3 days with no changes, I was sent home on modified bedrest. You better believe it was hard. I wasn't always the best at following the rules (laundry must be done) but I was able to make it another 8 weeks without any incidents. My mother came and deep cleaned my house (she is freaking amazing) and David's mom came and took care of Grace multiple times. I can't thank either of them enough. My house hadn't been really cleaned since I got pregnant (besides the usual dishes and toilet cleanings) and I was so grateful and embarrassed with the help. I couldn't help clean so I just watched as my mother and David destroyed piles of dust, laundry, and other unmentionable problems with our house. I cried because I felt guilty. I cried because I was grateful. I cried because I was crazy. But seriously, I am still crazy...

One of my great friends, Elise, offered to help with Grace when our families weren't able to be here. But for real, she is amazing. Every day for a week she would bring over a blow up pool, her cute little girl, and some fun toys and make sure that Grace was having a good summer. Did I mention she is pregnant too? Yeah, a saintly woman. Grace had such a great time with her daughter, who is adorable, and I was able to sit on a chair on our porch while they played. Thank you, Elise!

33 Weeks to Present (36 weeks and 5 days!): Hospital Chronicles

Weeelllllll, 33 weeks hit and I had my 3rd round of diarrhea and vomiting (If you are wondering, yes, they tested my poop. Nothing ever came up). I called labor and deliver (no more ER after 20 weeks) to let them know I was coming in for an IV because my dehydration was causing contractions. Thinking it was no big deal, I had my brother, Jensen, drive me to the hospital so David could spend some time with Grace. Turns out they weren't just contractions. This was actual labor. I was dilating and it was happening fast. Things started getting really painful which was pretty different than my labor with Grace, which was almost painless. Seriously.
So the contractions were right on top of each other so they gave me an epidural. (Side note: I thought about going natural this time, but after they told me we might have to do a breech extraction I decided an epidural would be great!). David still hadn't arrived and I was 5cm dilated. I had the IV pumping me full of fluid and the very painful epidural in place before he was able to get there. The anesthesiologist was not gentle and didn't end up administering enough medicine so I could still feel contractions, still felt the catheter going in, and still felt everything until he decided to come back and dose me up again. For some reason this caused my heart rate to take a nose dive (just like it did with Grace) so I had to have a different injection of something to bring it back up. Crazy things happening, people! My nurses were amazing and so supportive while David was gone. They started another round of steroid shots since the last ones were so far in the past. PS, those shots don't feel good and they go in your behind. Along with the IV and epidural, I was given 5 rounds of penicillin and lots of other meds to stop the contractions. David arrived and FINALLY after 8 liters of fluid, the IV, and all the meds, the contractions stopped. It was a miracle and a blessing for these babies to not be born so early. I was dilated to a 7 but when the contractions and pressure stopped, went back down to a steady 6 where I have stayed for the past 4 weeks.

After they turned off the epidural and waited a few hours for it to wear off, they removed the urine catheter. For some reason, my legs still didn't work. Turns out, the urine bag only had a half a liter of fluid in it. That means the rest of the 8 liters had decided to sit in my bloodstream and camp out in my legs. It wasn't the epidural that was causing problems, it was edema. They decided to leave the epidural catheter in my back for a couple more days just in case I went into labor. This was pretty painful because I wasn't actually receiving any medicine, it was just there. As my body slowly filtered out the water that I had been pumped full of, I was forced to take about a million trips to the bathroom. Typically this would just be annoying but since I had a tube in my back it was both annoying and painful. After 2.5 days I demanded that it be removed because I had a feeling these babies weren't coming for a while. Some guy came in, whipped it out, and left without saying more than two words. Ahhhh, I could finally shower again. You see, showers aren't allowed when there is a tube going into your spinal area.
Even though they removed the epidural, they still wouldn't take out the IV. That was SO annoying. I hate having to flush it all the time and take care of it. They made me keep it for over a week, replacing it every time it went bad. One time it wouldn't flush and I was super angry because the resident said I was, once again, going to have to get a new one (even though my doctor said after the current one went bad they wouldn't replace them anymore). I told them no, so an anesthesiologist came in and shot a flush of lidocaine through it. Man, I liked that guy. The one ended up lasting a few more days. I still have bruises from IV's that were attempted 3 weeks ago. So glad that's over.

Now, about hospital bedrest... it makes you go crazy. Sometimes you want visitors and sometimes you just want to wallow in misery by yourself. Sometimes you are overwhelmingly grateful for never ending food, and sometimes you wish you never had to eat again. Sometimes you want to get out of bed and run home, and sometimes, no...wait...that's all the time. Every day I wake up and go to sleep wishing it was in my own house, my own bed, with my own family, eating my own food. Nurses, doctors, and aids are constantly in and out of the room checking on me and asking me the same questions over and over. I have a button I can push if there is a problem... leave me alone. For the first couple of weeks I was being woken up at least every 2 hours during the night and asked if my water had broken or if I was having painful contractions. Did they think that I would just choose to birth these babies silently in a room by myself and not tell anyone? For Pete's sake! Then, the residents come in at 6 am to check on you. Breakfast is served at 7. Aids come around at 8 to take vitals. Nurses come at 9 to check fetal heart tones. Doctors come at 10 to discuss the daily plan. Cleaning ladies come at 11 to clean the room. Lunch is at noon. Busy mornings? Yes. Time to fall back asleep? No. 2 weeks into my stay I was going absolutely nuts. Its hard not to feel like a toddler in eternal time out when you never get any sleep and can't choose times to see people. A GEM of a nurse ordered me a fan for white noise (there are lots of crying babies and lots of commotion during the night on maternity floors) and said to me "You know, you could refuse for me to check on you at some point... *wink*" This was my first realization that I may be in prison, but I have rights! I asked her not to come in during the night and she didn't. She must have told other nurses and even the residents because they stopped bothering me after that point. I still have an occasional nurse or aid that is really loud when they do peek in on me during the night, but its not nearly as bad as it was.  I guess there was one instance where a nurse came in at 4 am to change the date on my whiteboard. Really, lady? 4? You woke me up for that? My MIL complained because I was too much of a wimp, and I haven't had problems since.
Besides being stuck in a place without my family and having very limited freedom, the most annoying thing is being checked on ALL the time during the day. Its the same routine. Its like I'm in daycare and can't be left alone or I will draw on the walls or something. Don't leave Addison alone for too long! She might stick a crayon up her nose!
Through all the annoying stuff, I really have met some amazing people. A lot of the nurses, aids, and residents are extremely kind and helpful. I have gotten to know quite a few of them and I'm so grateful that I have. Not only do I have family cheerleaders, but now I have nurses cheering me on as my family goes through this as well. They get excited when I'm excited and talk with me when I'm sad. Its been a roller coaster, no doubt.
Now I'm just a couple days away from the glorious induction date and there are nurses that aren't even assigned to me that come in to congratulate me and see how my family is doing. I won't soon forget these amazing women!

Well, there ya have it. My very long, first post out of 3.

(This is just my point of view. If anyone is wondering what David has to say, don't ask him. He might tell you how psycho I really am.)

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Everyone is Allowed to be Tired

Here is my cliche start to this post: I am not typically one to post dramatic stories or details online. Plus, I feel super nervous about posting a lot of this online. That being said, I am going to get real personal.
This summer I experienced a range of emotions. On a scale of 1 to 10 I think I hit every single number. Before I get into the nitty gritty I'm going to just give it to you - This is a post about miscarriage and hope. There will be plenty of side notes to explain my feelings and emotions, so be prepared. I will start from the beginning:

A little while ago David and I found out we were going to have a baby. MAN! Another baby! You bet I was excited. I immediately started "fake online shopping" (that's what I call it when I get online and put every single item that I want into the cart then delete it before I spend our life savings). Also, I looked at baby names, got out some old gift cards from my last pregnancy that still had money on them, and started thinking about how I was going to handle two little munchkins. I did all of this stuff the first time around but I wasn't any less excited. We decided to keep this one a secret a little longer than last time so it was on the hush hush and we went about our days. Not too long after we found out, I had a very personal and spiritual experience that led me to believe I was not going to be allowed to continue that pregnancy. I told David and he just said to have hope.

*-Cut out really emotional details-* After some blood tests (Thank you visiting teacher for watching Grace while I went alone!) we found out my pregnancy was going to end. Bam! Pow! Crush! It was over. Then I did something dumb. I got online and started reading. When does that ever end well? (Side Note: Why do we feel like we have to share our stories online? Is it the anonymity? I decided I prefer to tell the people I know and love so they can help me.) The posts were all full of happy endings, sad endings, and instructions on how to deal with it. I just wanted to tell everyone and tell nobody at the same time. We decided only to tell our parents, two close friends, and my Relief Society President (so she could help me with some of my responsibilities in RS). Why? Because that is protocol. You don't tell people. (Side Note: Who wrote that rule? I can understand that some people like to grieve differently. Some prefer silence, some don't want to burden others, some yell it from the roof tops.) Well, I will tell you somethings: I did NOT want to be alone. Being alone with my thoughts is one of my biggest fears when I'm not in a positive mood. David came home from work really early to bring me ice cream and take care of me. (Side Note: He is amazing. He did 1,000 favors for me and didn't ask for a single thing in return even though he was feeling the same crushed feelings as me.)
Nobody informed me what I was going to go through so here is what I learned while on the journey:

  1. It wasn't going to be quick.
  2. You are reminded about it every moment of the day because of the physical maintenance and pain that occurs.
  3. Crying may happen at any time. In church? Doesn't matter. Trying to have a normal conversation? Doesn't matter. In public? Doesn't matter.
You bet I was emotional! I felt like I was sinking. Have you ever seen one of those huge freight-liners carrying cargo containers? Well, each time I cried, one of my shipping containers fell into the water and I couldn't pull it back up. Eventually all my sanity, happy, and positive containers were gone and I was left with a growing number of pessimistic and unhappy feelings.  Sink, sink, sink. There is no other word for how I felt. Also, I was tired. Really tired. Tired of trying to keep up with my daily life, tired of getting up in the morning, tired of being a happy mom. Grace and I watched movies all day and ate really unhealthy foods and I kind of lost it for a while. Then the questions came. A few other people had found out what was going on they wanted to know. The most common question I got was, "How far along were you?" OUCH. Unless the person was a super close friend or family, I didn't think it was relevant. This question made me feel guilty that I was so sad because I wasn't that far along. All of a sudden I couldn't validate my feelings because I hadn't suffered as much as someone else who had lost their child later. I felt guilty for be sad. So now I was depressed for being depressed. I thought, "I shouldn't be sad. This is easy compared to other people. Buck up." (Side Note: This is not to say that it isn't harder if the pregnancy was more progressed, because I can't imagine that kind of pain!) But I tell you what, everything was real. Real to me and real to David. I told a few people how far along I was just to quench their curiosity and I felt even worse when I just got an "Oh" in response. In my opinion, don't ask that question unless you are there to comfort them. "Oh" is not a comforting response. I felt like I had to tell people that I was over it and it didn't matter anymore so I wouldn't be perceived as weak or wallowing in self pity. Well it did matter. 
A week after I found out the bad news, I passed my second kidney stone this year. I was an emotional wreck and the pits to be around. I'm lucky we were visiting family so they could take care of Grace and I could do what I wanted, which was nothing. If you have ever gone through pain, I'm sure you have felt the "nothing" stage. Even though things sucked, I decided to move on.
After a while I started becoming more optimistic (but still sad, the sadness lasted a while). I have a child that I love so much and I needed to be there for her. I have a husband who needs me to be here. I decided that everyone is allowed to be tired sometimes without feeling guilty. Everyone is allowed to be sad without feeling guilty. There should be no comparisons when someone is in pain. So I let myself be sad and tired. 
Well, I sank for a while. Then just a short while later I found out I was pregnant again. I didn't let myself get excited for 4 days because the last one didn't last long. After the fourth day hit I decided that it was awesome and I was going to be happy, no matter what happened. I started getting excited again and became a happier person. Turns out this one wasn't going to last either. I didn't tell a single soul besides my mom and dad and obviously David. It hurt and I wasn't happy about it. 
What happened next? General Conference. I don't know if it was just me needing to hear what I prayed for or if this really happened, but I felt like Hope was a big theme. David had been telling me to be hopeful for a very long time and now the Lord was telling me that I needed it. You know what? Living with hope is a lot better than living without it. What are some things I hoped for? Happiness, peace, and love. Well guess what. I already have it. Through the whole process David had given me blessings, my parents called me to tell me they love me, my sister-in-law called me just so I could talk, someone brought me a dinner, and I have an amazing little family. 
Conference weekend was full of heartbreaking news and some of the best talks I have ever heard. I am grateful for the peace the Lord has brought me through my never-ending prayer. One day I just sat down and started crying, praying, and telling my Heavenly Father what I was going through. It is great to get those feelings out and tell the person who knows. During the prayer I had one of those "Someone has already gone through this. He knows how bad it hurts and He wants you to be hopeful." kind of feelings. It is so true, ladies and gentlemen. So true. 
After the second time around a woman I hardly know and who has only met me once asked me if we were thinking of having more kids any time soon. (Side Note: I don't think this is ever a good question). But instead of feeling hurt and unhappy, which is what I imagined I would feel, I surprisingly felt just fine. Thanks General Conference and David for the hope. Without hope for better days, what would I have to live for? 

I know this story is kind of choppy and sad, sorry. But I assure you I am not looking for pity or attention or looking to make you sad. I think it is important for people to do what makes them feel happier after something bad happens. Telling my story is what is making me happy because I want to spread hope. 

I want all of you to know that you are allowed to feel tired. You are allowed to be sad. You are allowed to cry. Don't compare your situation to other people or let guilt get in the way of your grieving. At the same time, don't think you have it worse or nobody knows what you are going through. There are two people who know and they want you to be happy and have hope. Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ have created an eternal plan. If you don't know what it is, visit lds.org and read up. I can guarantee it will make you feel better. 

Monday, June 9, 2014

Quick Update

I recently realized that I haven't blogged in months, as per my usual. Some recent developments:
-Grace is now in nursery which means David and I get two whole hours at church without someone trying to throw goldfish down our shirts and smear crayon on pants. 
-We are excited for the summer and all the activities it holds!
-Grace still isn't saying many words but she jabbers ALL day. It us so stinkin' cute.
-I am half way done with my Spring semester at school.

Here is Grace in the cute dress her Grandpa Scott bought for her. Good pick, Brad!
 Food on her face. NBD.
 Thanks for sharing your Cheerios, Grace!

 Isn't it so frustrating when you ca n't push the weed n' feeder by yourself? It sure is for Grace. Poor kid. 
Good thing Daddy is there to help.

 Just sticking the suction cup Thomas the Train characters to her head. This is how I entertain myself during the day.

 Summer fun!

 Don't forget to was your stroller. 

Monday, March 3, 2014

David's Birthday

 For David's Birthday I had his sisters surprise him by coming into town. They both arrived on Friday night and then we had a day of fun on Saturday. We went to City Creek Mall, went shooting, and had a super awesome BBQ. Happy Birthday David!!!


Also, I can't believe Grace is growing up so quickly. We are so happy to have her in our lives. I'm such a lucky mom to get to stay home and play with her all day!
 Thanks Britt and Michael for coming over for the BBQ!

Friday, February 28, 2014

Can someone wipe my bum?

Lately Grace has been more and more independent. She picks some of her clothes, chooses what we play, and decides what room in the house we play in. I sure do love her.

Just a few days ago I walked onto the landing of the stairs to find this:
Grace was taking wipes out of the container to wipe her bum. One swipe per wipe. She started to laugh when I asked her what she was doing. At least she knows what is good for her, right?

Here she goes again, putting stuff on her head. 

 Stop! Paparazzi! 

She likes to climb onto the chair in her room by herself. Nobody is allowed to help her on or off, no matter how stuck she is.

 "I'm not stuck mom. I don't need your help. Look, I'm just playing!"

Every once and a while she dresses herself. Fur jacket, mom's shoes, yellow pants, and Valentine's shirt. 

 Looking foxy!

Isn't she so stinkin' cute? I love it when she grabs my hand and walks around the house with me in tow, starts jabbering, and screams and runs away when I chase her. She is so cute.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Sometimes Grace is Happy and Sometimes she is Sad

Before she turned one, Grace fell in the tub. She had to get stitches in her lip. I can't remember if I blogged about this yet... Lets just say I felt like the worst mom ever. I have learned that sometimes accidents just happen.

 Just after Grace's Birthday, Grandpa and Nana Scott brought her some goodies! This is Grace and David setting up the fun new dog! It sings songs over, and over, and over. Sometimes it is fun and sometimes I want to hide it in the garage so I don't have to hear "Do Your Ears Hang Low" one more time. 

Teeth coming in? No problem. Put an ice cube in one of these handy dandy mesh binkies. Seriously, she loves it! 

 Grace looooovevd her chocolate cake (so did I...)!
 Here's the deal: Grace has a fetish with putting things on her head. Mostly she loves this cardigan. I can't wear it around her because she will throw a fit and try to take it off me.

 Grace isn't always happy. Sometimes, when I make her come inside after we play outside for a while, she throws a fit like this. It was nap time.

 Later, when Daddy came home, she was all smiles. 

 They kicked an old milk carton around and played with sticky notes. Who wouldn't love that? 

 Here is her first experience with Mac n' Cheese. Her face doesn't look very excited, but she LOVED it.

 She found my cardigan again. Great.

 When bath time came she wasn't too excited. Also, I couldn't pry the cardigan out of her hands, so it went in with her. 

 Look at that face... I am seriously laughing out loud right now. 
 This is usually how bath time goes. She actually loves it. Notice the bag of Cheerios in the water? She loves to bring things with her into the bathtub. 

 She has the cutest cheeks!!! Oranges, hot dog (yes I feed my kid hot dogs sometimes), and yogurt are some of her favorite foods. 

As for me and David, nothing new... 
I am in school right now and so far it is going pretty well. David is still working at Academy Mortgage. 
We still love Grace.
Landin is doing well on his mission in Mongolia. I love getting emails from him. Maybe I will start posting those for everyone!