31 May, 2012

Don't do anything I wouldn't do...

 ....But HAPPY 21st BIRTHDAY to the two of you!!!!!
You see my baby brother and sister are turning the big 21 today!! If you'd like to hear
more about our story as siblings, you can read that HERE. In the mean time, I'd like to write
this as more of a post to them but you're more than welcome to eavesdrop.

 
Dear J & J,
I guess I should congratulate you on surviving ten years at mom and dad's without me. I really thought it couldn't be done. I put so much stock in the first ten years I invested in you, that it took me awhile to realize I really wasn't your parent.... lol j/k Mom & Dad!

On a serious note though, deep down, I don't know what you or other people think, but regardless of when you came along in my life and regardless of what I had to give up, I NEVER EVER for one minute hated that you two were born.
I love you two completely.
You may have broken a lot of my things and trashed my room "a time or two", (I blame mom for that though ;),) but I never wished you hadn't been born.
You got me through a lot of low moments.
Even for being ten years younger.
{I mean look at those smiles.}
 

I can still close my eyes and hear your first words and see your little steps. The way you bounced in your Snugli's, pushed your Mickey Mouse walkers up and down the hall.... 

How one of you held corn in your mouth for hours refusing to swallow it, the other that cried at the littlest thing cuz you were so sensitive. ;) 
Hours brushing hair, playing Memory, Life, Dutch Blitz, Uno, Skip Bo, and anything else I could con you into doing to keep me entertained.


  

Some people may say I was keeping you busy and watching you, but I think you were keeping me sane and out of trouble. 
I don't know what I would have done without your sporting and school events! ;)


We kinda started to go our separate ways when I went back to school and then moved out at 21 myself.  For awhile there, after Josh and I moved far away and you two were in HS, I thought maybe I was going to have to open up a few cans of some "W-A," (if you know what I mean.) But again, I'm not your parent, and all I could do was leave you guys in God's hands.

{The twins with our twin nieces:}

But here we are today to celebrate you two. 
I think maybe just maybe you might make it in this big wide scary world. Things are slowly falling into place for you guys and I think it might be ok.
I get to see you and meet your significant others this summer so we will make our 
final decisions than. ;)

{sis and her man}
 

{bro and his fiance}

Love you two and I hope you have the happiest of birthdays yet!!!

~ Love, your biggest and bestest Sister

29 May, 2012

Class of 1998

14 years ago tomorrow I graduated from high school. 
I realize 14 years isn't anything special, but since I kind of declared this "Way back May" at the beginning of the month, I figured I'd just go all out. I never did go with the norm anyway.

Class verse:
"Teach me to do your will,
for you are my God;
may your good Spirit
lead me on level ground.
~Psalms 143:10

Yep there's me. Don't mind the funny look on my face, I was kinda breaking up during my speech. 
I may seem like a tough girl, but I'm really all soft and mushy on the inside... ;)
  

 I'm just going to be honest with you right off the bat. Here's the shocker that usually leaves people with their mouths open.
I went to a small private school.
That picture below was my whole graduating class. Yep, 8 students. {My husband had 400 in his, so he really finds this WEIRD.}
The largest high school graduating class they ever had, (and still ever had, they no longer have a HS.)


 Ok you can all stop laughing....
We have stories we could tell you that could entertain you for hours.
I love those people dearly and am still in touch with all the girls to this day.

Don't start jumping to conclusions either because I said I graduated from a private school. Out of us four siblings, I was the only one to EVER attend a private school and my parents scraped and scavenged to make it possible for me to attend for my last two years of school, (I had gone to public and had been home schooled before then.) I thank them greatly for my opportunity!!
Truth be told, I think they felt a little guilty for making me miss out on so much in my early teen years, but I won't tell anyone! ;) ;)

My brother could write a novel about what was going on with his own life at the time, but we'll let him tell his own story at another time. This is my blog! ;)

My Aunties came from Washington, Canada, and even all the way from Florida to make my day pretty darn awesome!!!

All in all, you can poke fun at my small little school, heck we all do, but it was great. 
I loved it and wouldn't have traded it for anything.

Class Motto: 

Just think,
you're here not by chance, 
but by God's choosing.
His hand formed you and made you
the person you are.
He compares you to no one else-
you are one of a kind. 
You lack nothing that His grace can't give you.
He has allowed you to be here at this time in history to fulfill 
His special purpose for this generation.
-Roy Lessin

28 May, 2012

We Remember

{http://hopechurch.org/wp-content/uploads/Memorial-Day-2012-FINAL.jpg}

{http://mikenalleyphotography.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/01/Memorial-Day-2.jpg}

25 May, 2012

Fill in the Blank Friday

I'm linking up here at The Little Things We Do For Fill In the Blank Friday.



The best surprise ever would be:
~Finally getting to go on a honeymoon or finally owning our dream home with property that we didn't have to give up! ;)

Most Favorite Memory:
~Oh goodness, this girl is full of of favorite memories. But definitely hubby and I's first date was one of my most favorite day's ever! :)

The hardest, but most worthwhile thing I've ever done: 
~Delivering my two precious babies of course!!

The best part of my day:
~Ok this is where y'all might call me a horrible mom. I love love my kids, but my favorite part of the day is when they are in bed and hubby and I climb in to bed for some alone time. Sometimes we talk or watch tv, read or do our own thing, but it is so relaxing and peaceful. lol

Something I like that most people don't:
~To stay at home, to be submissive, to let my husband wear the "pants." Oh you mean that's not what you were going for?? ;)

Something I am willing to fight for:
~I will do anything and everything to fight for my marriage and my kids. My husband and my children are everything to me.

Something you might not know about me:
~I have a tattoo and I have a piercing where the sun don't shine! ;)

Have a great weekend!
:)

23 May, 2012

You are YOU

Yes I am a Marine wife and I am J's wife, but I am Marcella and a child of God first and foremost.

****

Before we had our second child, my husband and I were going through a rough patch. Mostly in life and his military career, but it was seeping into our marriage. As with most men he probably could have just let it go until he was so unhappy, he would just want out, but I kinda like to fix things before they are UN-repairable. ;)
And again like with most men, getting my husband to open up and communicate is near impossible, but um "big shocker," he finally said I just wasn't like I was before we got married.....
I had lost my "spark".......



Now before you wives go all postal on my husband, think about that for a minute.

In a way I could have gotten mad and immediately started to blame him for all of the million and one reasons on why it was his fault:
  • Married a man who joined the military, moved 3000 plus miles away from all family, friends and everything I'd known.
  • Married an introvert that didn't have a need for friends.
  • Had a baby, gained weight from baby.
  • Didn't have the extra money to pamper myself like I did before.
  • I am a Christian conservative thrust into a beer drinking, partying, cheating on your spouse life style etc.....
But hello, 
I am the only one to blame.
I let myself lose touch with what made me happy.
I let the negativity of what can happen with this lifestyle overwhelm me instead of standing strong for what I believe in.
There is no one to blame for that but ME.

So here I am today,
warning the young military wives and even civilian wives who might go through life changes.
Be careful.
Don't lose sight of who YOU are;
A child of God. 
(We are examples of Him wherever we go, whatever we do.)
We may have to say goodbye to everyone and everything we've known,
but you are still YOU.
Don't be afraid to StAnD oUt in what can be a very tough life.

Find that thing that still makes you jump out of bed in the morning.
Spend the day in your sweats and then throw on some jeans and put on some make up just before hubby comes home!
Talk to each other....turn the tv off.....even if it kills one of you...
ahem. ;)

to be continued......
 (more of my journey to get my spark back)

(taken in 2009 when my spark was missing ;))

21 May, 2012

When God's answer is....

....Silence.
~
And when God's best medicine is a taste of your own.....

I have no patience what-so-ever, and it is ever so hard for me to wait on God's timing.
Mostly because I don't know if His silence means I am suppose to take a step of faith on my own or wait until the last second possible for Him to make His move or show us the way.

We're praying about some serious to us issues right now and it seems like there is absolutely NO indication about what direction to go. So we wait.
Haha.

Sigh

Yeah I know. People have serious life threatening issues going on and I'm complaining about this.
I'm cool.
You'd think after being a Marine wife for 7 and a half years I'd have this down.....yeah not so much.

I actually can't complain too much about one part though. God did say no about two things we were praying about the last two weeks. One was for fun, so I was sad when we couldn't do it but such is life. The other was concerning hubby's job that would have saved us some $$, but none the less God closed the doors, and I'm ok with that. They were answers. Next.

And the bitter medicine I had to swallow over the weekend:
You remember THIS post I did last week about not judging other mother's?? Yeah well I had a bad attitude develop last week, (mixed in with a bit of anger and down in the dump issues,) and it was just a lot easier to start judging anyone and everyone to make myself feel better...
Absolutely everything everyone was saying on facebook, in blogs, or doing in general was pissing me off annoying me.
Now luckily I kept it all to myself, but the last time I checked, God knows what's in our hearts and He sure wasn't liking the blackness that was swirling in mine.
By Friday I was at a boiling over point and was looking forward to the weekend. I got a text from my husband saying he was going to be let out early and that put me in such a good mood I went upstairs and scrubbed our shower. When I came back down, I discovered another text asking if he could go golfing. My first thought was immediate annoyance, but my husband NEVER does anything for fun outside of the house with anyone else, so I was like ok, what's a few more hours, it will just be like the rest of the work day...
Well,
My husband got home at 8pm Friday night. Yeah, can you imagine with the mood you already knew I was in, how well that went over??
I didn't even take it out on him though. I spent the last 2 hours before he got home balling my eyes out about my attitude over the week and then crying some more over how I hated my attitude. It was one ugly mess.
Needless to say I limited my use of fb and blog usage A LOT this past weekend and even though I am still feeling down about a few things that I am hoping to touch on later, I feeling a little bit better. Anger and grumpiness will get you no where!!

So here I am pouring my heart out to you, or being honest, or maybe just complaining I'm not sure, but I just don't like being fake anymore.
Honesty and realness is the new in.
Life is hard sometimes and it just always seems greener somewhere else.
And even though happiness is a choice and even though some people may seem like they have it all together, they are having their own battles inside.

**On a side note, if one has to take meds to counter-act side effects of a prescription medication they are on, is it really worth it???? These are driving me crazy people!!



"We may have NO idea what's around that bend, but just hold my hand and we'll 
live this adventure together!"

17 May, 2012

French Toast

Those that know me or have followed me for awhile me know that I love cooking and everything to do with the kitchen > BIG FAT LIE.....

So when my husband made me aware years and years ago that he loved french toast, I immediately pushed my opinions aside and made him some, (another lie......)

Ok the truth: We've been married for almost 8 years and I have yet to make my husband french toast once in our relationship.
I recently decided that maybe, I need to put my stubbornness and dislike of the meal aside and come up with something really tasty like with Father's Day coming up! :)


{Image courtesy of: http://simplyrecipes.com/photos/french-toast.jpg}

 Now I know I could easily hit up the Pinterest boards or go on one of the gazillion recipe websites for french toast recipes, but I wanted to ask you, my readers out there in blog land if any of you had any tried and true french toast recipes that you or your family absolutely love and adore.
I want something that isn't a passing phase and isn't too hard to make, cuz well we all know I am not exactly a whiz in the kitchen....I have been known to boil water away. Ahem.
If you would be willing to share and it isn't some family secret that you and I would both be shot if you shared, let me know!!

Thanks peeps!

15 May, 2012

Who Am I


Fiction: You're family is always dressed so nicely.
Fact: I wouldn't know fashion if it bit me. If you see something you like on me, more than likely my husband picked it out. My idea of style is jeans and a t-shirt.
I do admit I pick out our daughter's dresses though, but since she has 8 polka dot dresses in her closet, that's not really saying much.

Fiction: You have it all together.
Fact: I often ignore my kids and procrastinate on the important stuff so that it seems that I have it all together...

Fiction: You remember everything.
Fact: I never went to college, hence never filled my brain with extra knowledge....

Fiction: Your house is always so organized.
Fact: Every OCD person has a closet....or a drawer.....ahem

Fiction: You love laundry.
Fact: Ok I can't lie, I really LOVE laundry.


Fiction: You don't care what others think.
Fact: Why then do I have so many mirrors and check constantly for my amount of followers?.....

Fiction:You don't have to worry about money.
Fact: I am the meanest wife EVER, I never let him spend a cent!

Fiction:You have the greatest marriage.
Fact: We choose to not air our "dirty laundry" all over the place. We have a lot of issues that constantly have to be worked through/on. It's a work in progress that we choose to keep God involved in.

Fiction: You're not fat.
Fact: Would you like me to take a picture without my shirt on to prove otherwise?????
 (Spanx) is my best friend people!! ;)


Fiction: You're such a great writer.
Fact: LOL, Not. You should read over some of my old old posts, apparently I didn't believe in proof reading back then!
{Most people say I write exactly how I talk, which is kinda scary...}


Hope you're all having a great week!
We're still waiting on nicer weather to hit here and counting the days til all the fun adventures we're going to have this summer! :)

12 May, 2012

Then there were NO more

*Note: I have honestly been wanting to write this post for months, but have just not been able to get past the base subject. It's something that's very important to me, but I just haven't been able to word it right without it seeming like I'm trying to get on anyone's case or give away too much of our personal information. I feel like by sharing what's on my mind I'm almost being a hypocrite in some way....
 But what I'm about to share has a lot to do with motherhood and I think it's a great finish for this week.
Ok now that I've totally confused you and and maybe somewhat peeked your interest, here is the final installment of my Mother's Day Series 2012:
What is the perfect number of children?
What's the perfect size family?
Is it the size family YOU have?      Is it how many kids YOU have?

Raise your hand if you have EVER, yes EVER, judged anyone for the amount of kids they have, (whether it be 1 or 19 {yes I just said 19 ahem,} even 0,)

"insert me raising hand"

Ok, now raise your hand if you've EVER judged how another mom raised her child, (disposables/cloth, breastfed/formula, tv/no tv, public school/homeschool, etc)...

"insert me raising my hand again"

If none of you raised your hand, I invite you to just x out of this window. You are just too awesomely perfect and I don't think you can handle my imperfectness any longer. My stupidity will just bring you down. I hope that one day, I can be that cool!
Why do we do that? 
Why do we say that the way we do things is right and everyone else is wrong?  
I know the main reason is to make ourselves feel better about our imperfections, but we should be supporting each other not bringing each other down. Just because I am able to breastfeed my babies until they are a year, does not mean my neighbor is able to. That does not make her wrong. Just because I choose to put disposables on my babies does not mean I need to burn in hell....
What really brought this on was the very first question I asked you. 
I have a few readers that need more than one hand to count their kids. ;)
I think that is awesome. I used to want ten kids. No joke. I wanted a house full of blessings and there was never going to be a dull moment. 
Those families are constantly getting judged by people that think there is a certain right amount of kids to have. 
They hear it all: Are you done yet? Are those all yours? You do know what causes that right? And SO much more.
Come ON, Are you serious people? Is it any of YOUR business? Also quit judging The Duggar family. Do you know most Americans think that they are on welfare and that everyone is having to pay for all the kids they have. These people are 100% self sufficient and pay their taxes. They are teaching their kids to be the same and already several of their older kids are in business for themselves.

But lastly, there is another side to this.
Families with only one or two kids get it also and often.
When are you going to have more? You are done, oh just have more! 
But what it you lose one? (cuz some how magically having another child would replace the one lost. Yes that's asked folks, people are thoughtless.)
But you make them so cute.
Well that's just being selfish for "insert name here," they need a sibling.
All the while, not realizing that some people might not be stopping because they want to, but might be stopping because of medical reasons or they can't have more.

Luckily, we don't fall in that last sentence. God blessed us with two very healthy children and even though in the past we originally wanted more, life had a way of changing things and a year and a half ago we made the decision that Monkey would be our last one, so we went the surgical direction of permanently making that happen. 
I don't regret it one bit and I know I will be the best Mommy I can be to my two. Some day down the road if God opens the door, I would love to be able to maybe make room for a child or two who unfortunately didn't have the joy of being born to a mommy that loved them or loved them enough that knew that they were better off being raised by someone else.
Who knows what God has planned!
Mom's are mom's no matter how many kids they have, how they choose to feed them, cloth them, school them or raise them. If they choose to stay at home with them or go to work. If they brought them into this world through their womb or through many years of prayers, tears and a lot of money.
I for one, don't always agree with everything my neighbors do, but who am I to judge them? What kind of character does that show?
What kind of example is that?

Happy Mother's Day to EVERY women out there! 
I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

11 May, 2012

2012 Military Spouse Appreciation Day!

Welcome! I'm linking up with http://www.ridingtherollercoaster.com/ and http://household6diva.com/ for this years military spouse appreciation day!


*****
My name is Marcella.
I am married to a United States Marine. We were together for about a year and half, got married, and then he left for boot camp a couple months later. That was almost 8 years ago!



We have a daughter, a son, and dog and have been stationed at two different places so far.
I have always been patriotic and supportive of our military, but there's nothing quite like being right in the middle of it!
We have lived on both coasts and dealt with earthquakes, hurricanes, and tornado's.
I've gotten use to be being 3000 plus miles away from my family and have always understood that supporting my husband is number 1. That means that I miss out on a lot back home and I'm ok with that!
My faith in God is what gets me through the tough times especially in those lonely moments when my husband is deployed and I feel like I just can't do it anymore.



I am a control freak though and that is probably been one of the hardest things for me in this lifestyle. Most of the time, we don't know what is going to happen until just before and I hate not knowing where we're moving or what the plan is! ;)
I love all the opportunities and fun extras that we get to do that we normally wouldn't have gotten to do without being a military family.
It is an adventure!!

Then there were four

{......Mother's Day Series 2012......}
 
*In case you missed it, see our daughter's labor and delivery story here: Then there were three

When we had our son, our second child, in the summer of 2010, I was already a blogger, but I only had about half the followers. Sadly the weeks, (heck months, let's be honest,) were such a fog for me after his birth, that I never got around to posting about my labor and delivery with him.
My pregnancy had complications, scares, major stresses, a cross country PCS move, on top of so much more. I invite you to check out my blog between January - June 2010 if you are interested in any of the details. (I didn't blog as much so I promise there isn't as much to read, haha!)

                                                                               ****

I was due July 6th and had been on bed rest/limited duty pretty much since January 15th to say the least. From the time we went out in public from 30 weeks on, I got the OMG are you going into labor right now look!! I had HORRIBLE heartburn that I never had with my daughter and I pretty much misplaced my ankles around week 32.
I was scheduled for another induction on Friday July 2nd because of my hypertension again. Even with the long labor that we had with my daughter's labor, I didn't mind because I like to be organized and in control. ;) ;)
We decided that my Mom and sister would fly in on June 30th so that would give us one day to go over Turtle's schedule/routine before we went into the hospital.
About ten days away no one thought I was going to make it. I had all the pre labor signs and all day long every day, I prayed asking God that He would make him wait so that we had someone to watch our daughter. And every day passed and I thanked Him again that we made it.

My husband got permission to get off work and go get my mom and sister from the airport. I decided at the last minute I wanted to come also and ended up walking a lot. I was extremely uncomfortable all day, (even more than normal,) and by the time dinner rolled around I was in pain and had no energy. Because of everything going on with having my mom and sister there, it wasn't until about 2330 (1130pm) that I realized my "Braxton Hicks" weren't going away. I decided that maybe then, I should kind of monitor them and watch the clock.
Everyone went to bed, but I knew what was going on. These were real contractions and they were in my back.
I really wish it hadn't been night time because then I would have been distracted, but because it was, the mind games started about what to do. They were getting stronger and stronger and to tell you the truth, I was already to starting to feel "pressure." That's where I was struggling. I wanted to stay at home as long as possible, but with SO many of my friends and family having close calls with their second, I didn't want to chance it. So I wussed out and told J. He showered and we left for the Naval Hospital at almost 0300. I called ahead and they had a pre op room ready for me. They were actually kind of busy that night so they hooked me up right away but said it would be a few before someone could check me.

All along, even though I was huge, nurses or doctors themselves would just say they thought I was going to have an 8 and half pound baby. Well the nurse that checked me, walked into the room looked at my belly, asked what I had been told and said, no girl, you have at least a 9 lb baby in there! Duh!
Anyway, I was actually 5 and a half cm, so we had a bit to go, but I was farther along than I thought.
I actually naively thought again, that because it was happening on it's own this time, things would happen faster and I'd be seeing my son a lot sooner.

First mistake: My control freak self immediately tried to rush things into my timing.
Second mistake: I kinda based my birth plan on how things had happened at the hospital when our daughter was born. Totally different here.
Third mistake: I thought I would go the route of the epidural again as it was so relaxing and I had hoped maybe I could get some sleep.

0530: received epidural

Well, for some reason, which absolutely no one could explain, when they placed my catheter, it hurt. It continued to hurt, I felt every bit of it. I complained about it. "Oh it will go away, especially after you get the epidural." "No, I checked it, it's fine, it's all in your head."
Well I don't know if you all remember or not, but epidurals for me, even at their strongest, just take the edge off.
Finally after complaining repeatedly to anyone that would listen it was changed for a third time and it finally felt better. Yeah ok at this point the head Dr and I, (who doesn't even deliver Monkey, but is training the guy who does,) are already butting heads.
[On a side note, I had never even met ANY of these people a day before in my life, except for my main nurse who had been with me the last 8 weeks of my high risk pregnancy.] Gotta love Naval medicine...
Well the epidural succeeded in doing nothing but slowing my labor down.
Yay for me. :(
A nurse walked in with Pitocin at about 0730. At this point folks, my labor "balloon" had deflated and all of a sudden I was thinking that I was going to be there awhile again. I then asked why they wouldn't break my water. "The Dr only does that as a last resort."
But it worked to get things moving really fast for my daughter.
"They just don't do that here." Well ask again please! "Nope." sigh.......

Apparently July 1st, is like national switch it up day in certain hospitals and there was so MANY training Dr's coming through my room, I don't remember who did what that day. It was just really annoying.
At about 0900 the contractions were constant and the pressure was getting intense and I was about 8 and a half cm so we knew that it would be sooner than later. I felt a little better, but in my mind, I still was trying to rush things and I hate myself for that. At 1000 they finally said I was far enough along that they would break my water, (my deliveries were SO opposite!)
After that I went straight to 9 and 3/4 it seemed, and the pressure was so bad I wanted to push but it wasn't time. I really wish we would have had a close group of friends here at the time to help keep me distracted. I know that would have helped and than he would have just slid out. As it was, even with the epidural full blown, I felt everything and I begged them to keep checking me. lol
The Dr finally said if they had me push a few times, they might be able to get rid of the last little bit (sorry TMI I know,) and then I could start official pushing mode after that.
Well it worked, but again, it was me rushing things and trying to take it into my own hands.
They clocked me as starting to push at about 1050am.
This time there was only my awesome nurse and awesome hubby in the room for the beginning part. Unfortunately, because I felt I rushed it so much at the beginning, I ran out of energy again really quickly and by the time the main Dr entered the room, I was frustrated with myself and not able to breath.
I threw a pillow.
I am so mature...
Thank God He was with me again, cuz all I could do was pray and this time pushing was only 34 minutes. My baby boy was here!


I was shaking uncontrollably though and I really wish someone would have offered me oxygen. I could not breath. Add the emotion and tears on top of it and I was a mess. I physically could not deliver the placenta and they had to intervene.
Then the stupidity happened.
              Now I realize a few things;
First, the main Dr was training people all morning/night and probably a little tired. Not only that, I am the emotional, obviously knows nothing patient, who complained about my catheter earlier in the day and was a little dramatic during and after delivery. But when I say I feel pain with a full blown epidural, please Do NOT argue with me and tell a brand new Dr to go ahead and sew up the extremely shaky jumpy woman who clearly said she can feel the needle!!
That poor guy. He looked like he wanted to be anywhere but between the two of us.
Sometimes I am so jealous of the people that got to pick their OB, establish a relationship and have a delivery the way they wanted....lol


 But as soon as I never had to argue with that woman again, I could focus on my son. My son that was so very different from his sister personality wise, but absolutely loved right from the beginning! Even everything to do with their labor and deliveries were almost exactly opposite.


He looked like a sumo wrestler at first.
He was given two middle names and all three names together mean "rustic noble ruler."
He was 9 pounds, 5 ounces and 20 inches long, there was no more room for him to stretch out on my shorter frame, lol.
He ate great at the very beginning, but could care less about what was happening around him and slept straight through for the first two weeks. He was our snuggler and much more shy. Every time we went out in public he frowned at people! ;)
We love him So much!!
Monkey was a great addition to our family and even though times were a bit rough in the first 9 months of his life, I am so Proud to be his Mommy! :)

10 May, 2012

Then there were three

{......Mother's Day Series 2012......}

*If you're interested in the long, but informative part 1 to this post, check out the first part in Love Actually.

       After I got out of my doctor's appointment on the 24th, I quickly texted my husband to let him know that I was to be induced. I knew he was in training, so I was surprised when I got a text back saying he was happy for me for the planned induction, he would be praying and he would pass on the info to his CO's.
My mom and I spent the rest of the morning and afternoon grocery shopping and doing last minute things. At about 430 in the afternoon I got the phone call that I will never ever forget.

"I'm on my way."

J had finished his day and his First Sergeant called him over and said "go." "Go be with your wife and be back here at 0700 Monday morning," (it was Thursday night.)
I couldn't believe it.
I was balling.
My husband was coming and he was going to be with me. God needed a major apology sent His way for my lack of trust.
I was too excited to eat anything the rest of the day. My husband arrived in Beaufort at about 0100 and the alarm was set to go off at 0430. He was so so tired. I felt bad, but at the same time, I was thanking the Lord every second and I couldn't help but smile.
We arrived and checked in at about 0530. Labor and Delivery was quiet and there was NO ONE in labor. We were good to go! By 0630 I had an iv and the pitocin was dripping.
My mom watched tv a bit and read and J read and snoozed. I did nothing.
I seriously was on such a high from J being able to be there and that fact that we were about to become parents, I couldn't concentrate on anything. By 10 am the problems (minor) started.
I get headaches when I don't eat, on top of other things.
Because I hadn't eaten since early in the afternoon the day before, it wasn't pretty. The nursing staff wouldn't even let me have any juice. They offered me a half an inch of water to swallow two Tylenol that I knew would be pointless. By about 1pm, I was discouraged. There was NO progress in labor and my head was unbearable.

At 2pm the Dr walked in and seriously asked if I had had an epidural yet. I looked at him like he was crazy! Um No. You kind have to be in labor for that....He said he be back in a few to break my water.
At 1430 (230pm) he came back to break it, (weird weird feeling by the way!) Within a half hour, the contractions hit.
I was surprised at how fast they came and the intensiveness of them in my back, but I breathed through them. At about 1630, the dr came in again and said he put in an order for my epidural.
 (At no point had I ever asked for one and I was kinda mad at him.)
I was only about 5cm at this point but the contractions were getting insane. Thankfully between J, my mom, my friend Becky and other random people that stopped in, I was kept distracted enough that it was easy to breath through them.
The anesthesiologist showed up soon after 5. My husband was PISSED that he had to leave the room. It was a weird feeling having the needle for the epidural put in, but I really didn't mind it and it didn't hurt at all. Within a half hour, I was relaxed, but still feeling every contraction.
[I'd like to note, that even though I hadn't planned or asked for the epidural, I truly believe the Dr was in communication with God on that one. I needed to be able to rest and save my energy for the pushing that was to come later and it took away my headache!!]

An hour later, a bunch of nurses rushed in and I had to be put on oxygen due to mine and baby's heart rates dropping crazy low and I was having trouble breathing. By 1930ish (730pm) I had only gone to about 5 and a half cm and the nurses warned we could be there through the night. :( Discouraged again. The prayers started flying as Mom got on the phone to the relatives. My friend Becky left to go clock some hours at work.
At a little after 9pm I started to feel what I thought were the contractions getting stronger and just pumped up the epidural button a bit and tried focusing on the replay of golf on tv, but the pressure kept getting stronger. When the nurse came in at 930pm to check on me I mentioned that I was feeling more "contractions." She decided to check me but none of us really felt that there would have been much progress in just those two short hours.
All of a sudden she looks up at me and says, yeah, it cuz your ready to go! After hardly moving all day, I had gone 4 and half cm in under two hours and it was (almost) pushing time! They paged the very busy Dr and immediately prepped.
I think that finally woke my husband up a bit and he quickly called Becky to tell her what was up.
In my naive mind, I thought the rest would go quickly and with a little pain and pushing we'd have our baby girl.
Yeah, not so much.
I think they clocked me at starting to push at about 2155 (9:55.)

Mistake #1: Don't push when the Dr tells you to push, push when you feel the urge.
#2 It's not your husbands fault that he was told to wipe you down repeatedly with a wet cloth, so don't throw it at him when you don't like.
#3 Make sure husband is well hydrated and has eaten something substantial so as not to faint.
#4 Ask the nurses to quit talking about personal life problems and focus on counting/breathing with you.
#5 Write it in blood on your birth plan that even with epidurals at there max, you have a odd drug tolerance and you feel EVERYTHING....so don't let them argue with you!!
#6 Oh yeah, getting mad at yourself for not breathing properly will not help you breath properly in turn causing you to not have the energy to push for an hour and a half.

Yes, I just said an hour and a half.

I know by no means, is that a long time in a lot of momma's stories, but I know a lot of Dr's give up way before then....In fact, my Dr told me after I had her that there was absolutely NO progress the first hour of pushing! Yeah cuz I SO knew what I was doing.....
He even tried to help by...
***warning TMI***
...cutting me THREE times. Yeah that's right, three episiotomies in one delivery.
I'm cool like that.
Eventually I got it though and the minute that overly large head popped out, I started balling. I saw her immediately and she was ugly. Ok I'm joking, but really people. With them all kinda purple and covered in blood and guts and they're cone shaped heads, they're not really the cutest bundles of joy until after they're all cleaned up a bit.


But I was smitten. She was ours. I was a Momma. My husband was here for the birth and I was on top of the world. I barely felt the pain when the Dr sewed me up as my husband and I gazed into her deep smoky gray eyes. She was wide eyed from the beginning and hungry almost immediately.
I actually let my husband hold her most of the time because I knew he only had a day a half with her.
Soon after she was born though, he disappeared for a few minutes. He reappeared with a soda and a bag of peanut m & m's. I started crying again. Even though he was a new very tired Daddy, with a daughter to ooh and aah over, he hadn't forgotten I hadn't eaten or drank anything in a day and a half and wanted to quickly get me something.
I knew I needed him there.
God knew what I needed.
So there I was, tired, exhausted, sore, but so completely full of love, emotion and fullness. That is what I wanted my whole life was to be a wife and momma, nothing else.
I'm living my dream!

Her first name means golden and was the only girl's name we could agree on in 5 years, and once my husband suggested it, we knew it was perfect.
Her middle name mean happiness and it is a form of my Aunt's name.
She was 8 pounds and 1 oz and 20 and 3/4 inches long.
We were the first to check in the morning she was born, but 9, yes NINE babies ended up being born that day in our very small hospital and she was second the last to be born. I couldn't be moved to a post-partum room because they were too full.
She could care less about sleeping, but she ate consistently and from the very beginning was independent and a people person.
I'm pretty sure she was a baby for only about 2 months. She grew up SO fast! (The sad part about being a momma.)

09 May, 2012

Love Actually

{......Mother's Day 2012 Series......}

**Note: I debated back and forth on whether to jump right into the labor and delivery or give you a little back story from the end of my pregnancy with our firstborn. Then I remembered this isn't so much a blog for everyone else to read as much as it is also a document for memory sake. I feel the last 6-8 weeks of my pregnancy had a lot to do with the emotions and feelings surrounding the big day, so if this post is too long, feel free to just skip it and wait for the next one! :)
*****
      I have mentioned this a few times while blogging before, but I'll give you a "quick" back story. We got pregnant soon after my husband returned from Japan in the spring of 2007 and there was no deployments on the horizon. My husband had tried frequently to get put on lists to go to Iraq and there was never room and he even went as far as requesting an IA billet, (where you leave your command and deploy with another group,) but someone else always got to go. 

Long before we even got pregnant I had always said I had wanted my husband there for the birth. He could be gone for the pregnancy, but I wanted him there for the birth. It was very important to me. As time went on in my pregnancy, it looked like the dream was going to happen.
We originally weren't going to find out what the sex of the baby was, but OCD and impatience soon got the best of me and a few weeks before the ultrasound, we made the decision that we would find out but not tell anyone else!
A couple days before Thanksgiving, word was passed down that there was a group leaving for Iraq out of Cherry Point, NC and they needed a few extra guys. At that point J was again passed over and everything seemed fine.
Until the following Monday.
I got a call just after 1130, (I'll never forget the time on the clock, it's all that kept me together on the phone.) One of the guys picked wouldn't be able to go and J was put in his place.

I was 32 and a half weeks pregnant.

We had 12 days,  
12 days, 
to pack J up and put together a birth plan that did NOT include my husband. My world came crashing down.
I couldn't go home for health reasons.
It was just going to be me bringing our firstborn into the world.

He was to leave to go up to Cherry Point for 4 months of training and then from there, deploy to Iraq for what could be up to 9 months. The only think I took from that was; gone for 13 months....missing his daughter's first year of life....maybe never getting to see her, (yeah cuz I'm not dramatic or anything.)  Of course looking back at it, you always want to slap your old self silly for how you looked at it, but come on, I was 34 weeks pregnant when he left. Give the hormonal pregnant woman a break! ;)
So we said good bye on December 9th not knowing how much we would see each other, if at all, and if he was going to get a chance to hold his sweet baby girl in his arms before he left for Iraq.
That became my new prayer!

I spent the next 6 weeks on bed rest trying to leave everything in God's hands. The days didn't really drag as I, as usual, had to go in to be monitored 3 times a week. Had L&D visits due to BP spikes that wouldn't lower and spent my nights curled up watching the movie Love Actually with intense Braxton Hicks wondering if that was going to be the night.
After my emergency room visits I had a friend offer to drive me to and from the Dr and monitoring visits and that helped my BP a little. I had another friend that was on grocery duty and was also scheduled to pick up my mom from the airport, (she was flying in the day before my due date,) and two other friends that were "on call" for labor duty. 
I should have been at peace, but I wasn't, I was terrified and I only wanted my husband.
He did manage to surprise me and come down from NC for two unexpected visits, (one being for Christmas!) Those weekends were wonderful and I prayed the whole time that God would make her come. Each time He didn't and J left, I was heartbroken and cried out asking why He didn't want my baby's Daddy there for her birth.


After weeks of stressing, my Mom flew in on January 23rd and I could semi relax. I had my 40 week Dr appointment the next morning and I think the doctor took pity on me because my Mom was here for only a short time, my husband was gone, and my hypertension was on the verge of pre-eclampsia.
He scheduled my induction for the next morning!
Some people are against inductions, but I didn't care. For me this worked out so much better and even though I hated that things weren't going "my way" concerning my husband, I felt a lot better about having the induction.

*****

Does everything work out?
Does my husband get to hold his daughter before he deploys?
Will this post ever end?
Find out in the next of the series!! ;)

*Bonus points to the readers who know why this post is called Love Actually and why I watched it so much in the last couple weeks! :)

07 May, 2012

The chicken had to come before the eggs....

{.......Mother's Day Series 2012.......}

....So before I get to the posts of how my two beautiful babies entered the world....

I called my mom a few weeks ago and asked her to jot down some details/notes of when I was born.
Most of it I had heard already over the years, but a couple months ago, when we were discussing something else, she mentioned a detail that I never remember her saying before and I wanted to get it written down and blogged for memory sake.

I was the second born to my parents (some sibling info here) and after having their boy first, were praying and hoping that I was going to be a girl. My brother had been an early baby, (only 5 and half pounds,) and 4 years later my due date weekend hit with no baby yet. My Dad was a truck driver and happened to be home that weekend so he and my mom decided to go to the annual mobile home show that Saturday and walked around all day long to see if they could get things moving.
It worked!
Early Sunday morning my mom felt the contractions starting, but they packed up for church and made the usual Sunday trek from Carlton to Forest Grove. My mom says she was having contractions all throughout church but no one noticed except my Grandma, (Dad's mom,) because my mom kept looking at her watch and my Grandma put two and two together. My mom even had to teach Sunday School that morning and was training another teacher during it all. That other teacher just thought that my mom was sweating like crazy and acting funny because she was training her, not realizing she was in labor. lol She was one tough cookie!
They even went to my Grandma's for Sunday dinner as the contractions got closer, closer and stronger. Leaving my older brother at my grandparents house, they headed back home to Carlton because my mom wanted to try to get some rest. {This is where my mom and I differ, lol, when I go into labor I want to go to the hospital immediately for drugs and then leave immediately after I have the kid. She is the exact opposite!}
At 5pm she told my Dad that she said they needed to leave right then. On the way to McMinnville she told him that she thought I was going to be born before 6pm.
He laughed at her and didn't believe her.
They checked into emergency but someone else was being dealt with so they were told to wait. Haha.
After a few minutes, my Mom looks at my Dad and says you better get them over here now, this baby is coming!
Well that got the nurse to react immediately! She got my mom on a bed, checked her and her face went pale, I was coming!
They immediately paged the doctor and told my mom to not push while they had to ride the elevator up. They got my mom in a room and the Dr walks in just as my head comes out! :)
Oh yeah. I was born at 5:59pm :)
After my Mom got settled into her postpartum room she started to feel a little funny and at first didn't realize she was losing a lot of extra blood. All of a sudden she was light headed and slurring words and it got worse. The Dr quickly removed a HUGE clot and she fainted soon after. They ended up having to give her a blood transfusion.
Everything ended up fine and she didn't end up with any long term complications. Thank goodness for the quick thinking of the hospital staff!
My parents were ecstatic, they got their little girl to, at the time, complete their little family!
I was 6 pounds and 8 ounces.
My first name came from a family friend and means Brave.
My middle name {Elizabeth} was my paternal grandmother's middle name and my maternal great great grandmother's name and means God's promise.
For at least the first 10 years of my life most people thought I was adopted, because of my blue eyes and blonde/dirty blonde hair, but there's no denying my personalities traits, facial features and hips that clearly come from my parents! ;)

Happy Almost Mother's Day to my Momma, (although I think she should have headed to the hospital a little sooner!) ;)
******
 My Mom and I:

 I was the second child you remember, and there isn't quite the documented photo proof of my existence as there was of my siblings. Which went along with my brother's tale of how I was adopted....;)

06 May, 2012

Mommy stories

Somebody PLEASE keep me accountable!!!

For like ever, I have had plans to "re"visit my babies labor and delivery stories as kind of a build up to Mother's Day. 
But within the last 2 and a half weeks, I have been put on two new medications, am now required to monitor my blood pressure throughout the day and this last week has been ku~razy. If I had a chance to sit down I've only wanted to sleep.

So, 
that being said,
I really, really want to do this!
So you all keep bugging me until I get these written up ya hear!!!!


02 May, 2012

Way back May

 Next week my parents will celebrate their 
38th wedding anniversary:

 And if my paternal grandfather (far right) were still 
alive, he would have been 100 yesterday:
{both sets of grandparents in the early 90's}

You don't choose your family.
They are God's gift to you, as you are to them.
- Desmond Tutu