Sunday, April 28, 2019

Our 4th child, Nash James

Nash’s pregnancy came as a complete surprise. We were not trying whatsoever and my cycles were still wonky from breastfeeding. In fact I didn’t even get a period until nova was 15 months old and I only had 2 real periods. 
 We found out I was pregnant the morning of July 12th. I was waiting on my period for days. I was so crampy that I was actually anticipating my period any moment. After a few days of feeling like this I took a left over cheap pregnancy test and didn’t even watch the lines appear like I would in the past. I almost forgot about it honestly and when I seen two lines I almost fell backwards in the tub haha! 

Nash’s birth story: 

I wanted to start off by saying that I am not the best storyteller, and my postpartum brain is still trying to patchwork together all of the events of his birthday. You have been warned!

From the moment I found out that I was pregnant, I knew I wanted this birth to be different from my past births. With my previous births there was a lot of fear and anxiety pretty much right from the get go. I really wanted to experience a no intervention and hands off birth. Not only did I want no to low intervention, I really wanted to mindfully experience every part of labor and birth. So I did my homework. I talked and met with midwives. I researched every hospital and birth centers within an hour from my house. I asked for their policies. I switched from a wonderful OB to a midwifery practice in another city half way through my pregnancy. I watched hundreds of no intervention births online for inspiration. I listened to podcast. I watched Ted talks. I read lots of books including Ina Mays books and Mindful Birthing by Nancy Bardacke, which ended up being my pregnancy bible. I did everything I could to prepare myself for the birth I hoped for.

I would like to start his birth story starting on March 5. I had a routine midwife appointment and I have taken Nova with me like I had with all my other appointments. Except today she was a little bit more spunkier than usual. A student nurse midwife came into the room first and listen to the baby’s heartbeat. Then the midwife came in and asked me if I would like to have my cervix checked. I had planned on declining all cervical checks but curiosity got the better of me and I told her yes. She also asked if I would like to have her sweep my membranes and I told her sure, as long as my cervix felt “ready”. I had never had this done with the other kids so I had no idea what to expect. It was a lot more uncomfortable than I thought it would be. She told me she I would probably have bloody show.

 I left the appointment feeling cramps and period-like but that fizzled away over the day. The next morning I got up to go to work and didn’t feel any different. On Thursday the 7th I woke up to the beginning of losing the mucus plug, again something I had never experienced with my other pregnancies. I also had terrible period like pains and sciatica down both legs. I walked into work that morning really wondering if today would be the day. I already had all of our bags packed in my car so if I was going to go into labor I would just need to leave work and head to Ann Arbor. The rest of that day I was really uncomfortable, but what nurse working a 12 hour shift at 39 weeks pregnant isn’t? When I left work that day I told everyone that I bet I will see them Monday for my shift (I honestly did believe this).

 Friday March 8th I woke up and felt much better then the day before and even told myself “well not having a baby today”. I took the kids to school and came back home. Right before Cameron got out of the car for school he bent down and said “ come out today baby!”. I tried to talk myself into going shopping for something to do, or try to get with a friend who was willing to try some belly henna art. I decided that I didn’t really want to get out of my pajamas for the day, and I was just going to relax after the two 12 hour shifts I had just done. Around 11:20 I tried to convince Nova we should take a nap. We crawled into my bed and I remember thinking how gorgeous of a day it was. I opened the curtains so we could nap in the sunshine. We haven’t had sun like this in weeks it seems. It was so bright coming through my bedroom window but it was also so relaxing. KI was laying on my side next to nova while she played on my phone and I started to drift off. Nova wanted to nurse so I let her in hopes of it putting her to sleep. And this is where it all began. I had a contraction (which I did a lot while nursing nova) except this one came on pretty intense. I thought geez, maybe this is “it”. I had thought this several times over the last few weeks and it never was so I didn’t get too excited. But then when the contraction got intense I felt a sudden crack in my lower abdomen. It was incredibly intense and honestly it scared me. The contraction lingered and was not letting up so I rolled over to get onto my feet and I felt a small gush. I went right to the boys bathroom and sat down on the toilet, still with the contraction. I felt like maybe I had to go but I couldn’t. I sat there for a minute waiting for anymore signs that my water was broken and nothing. I stood up and went to our bathroom where I sat back down on the toilet with the same contraction, that eventually fizzled into just a constant lower abdominal ache. I stood in front of the mirror waiting for another contraction or for some more fluid, something that would tell me it was the day. I figured I might as well get around just Incase. I changed clothes and felt another small gush and this time it was clear with a hint of pink so I knew my water was broken. 

  It was 11:30 and I knew Tony would be going on his lunch break soon so I texted him to call me. A few minutes later I decided I should just call his work so they could page him. While on hold he called me and when I answered I told him he needed to leave, my water just broke. I told him to meet me at Karen’s. I also called my birth photographer Jenn and the UofM triage line for them to page the midwife. I also sent several text messages to friends letting them know that this was the day.

 I called Karen and Chuck answered and I told him. I asked him to go get the boys from school and that way by the time I got to Karen’s we could all just leave together. I am so lucky that chuck got out of work that day early. Tony beat me to Karen’s and when I got there I carried nova in because she had fallen asleep. I handed her off to Karen and had to go sit in the toilet. At this point I was irregularly contraction. Sometimes 5 minutes apart but more like 15 minutes apart. While waiting for chuck to get home with the boys I had a really intense contraction in Karen’s living room that I think made her and Tony startle a little and Tony said we should just leave. I said no, I wanted to wait for us all to go together. So we went outside and walked around waiting for them, which they came just a few minutes later. The boys jumped out of chucks car and ran up to me super bright eyed and bushy tailed. Cameron said he just KNEW it was going to be today. Dominic came running up to me asking me if the baby was a girl if we could name her “Sapphire “ haha. 

  On the way to Ann Arbor I took a few pictures out my window of just how gorgeous the day was. It was full sun and warmth. I held onto Tonys hand the whole way and we talked about how I really hope I could do this the way I want to. He reassured me that I can. I told him that I know there is going to come a point where I get really scared and he told me to just tell him when I felt that way. On the way there the midwife had called me back and I told her the story and that we were on my way. She apologized for taking so long to call back but it was because she had just caught a baby. I asked her if there were any tub rooms available and she said that right now they had an extremely full house but they were anticipating discharged so hopefully there would be one eventually. 

 During most of the ride there I only had a contraction about every 15 minutes. I had told my birth photographer to wait to meet me there because I didn’t want her to get there too early and have to wait all day. When we got to Ann Arbor I had two back to back contractions that were pretty intense. This is when I decided I would start my “sounding” technique that I learned in a book I had read. Sounding is when during a contraction on your out-breath, a women will make a long deep moaning noise. The more intense the contractions the lower the tone. The idea behind this is that during sounding, it’s impossible to tighten up and tense the pelvic muscles and one must also keep the face and jaw loose. It facilitates the mind body connection that is needed during mindful birthing. I had told Tony in advance that I planned on doing this so it wouldn’t startle him. I checked in with Jenn and told her it probably wouldn’t be a bad idea to head to the hospital since the last few contractions were stronger.

  We valet parked the cars and someone brought me a wheel chair. It was quite obvious at the time the reason we were there. I was wearing leggings and a black top only, I was way to warm for a jacket. I caught a glimpse of myself in the window and was shocked how low my belly was. I sat down in the wheel chair while Tony got all our stuff. After about 40 seconds of sitting in the chair I had to get out. The sciatic pain was getting more and more intense and i just couldn’t tolerate sitting. I had Tony use the wheelchair for all of our stuff and we headed up the elevator, all 7 of us. The elevator was packed with about 5 other people and I started to have a contraction on the way up to the 9th floor. I decided that I would try to keep a little more quiet so I wouldn’t scare the kids or the other people in the elevator, but my breathing made it obvious that I was in labor. 

  We got to triage and this is when the contractions started coming every 2-4 minutes. It was 1:30 when we checked in. I kissed the kids goodbye as they went with Karen and chuck to wait in the waiting room. Once  in the triage room I went straight to the bathroom where I noticed bloody show. I told Tony I hope they hurry because I think things are picking up. Jenn arrived about 15 minutes later. A nurse came in and hooked me up to the fetal monitor and got a set of vitals. I told her there was no way I could lay down so she had the cloth band type thing that held the monitors in place so I could stand. After she left I knew that this was not going to be a long day for me. I was contracting Every few minutes, using my vocal sounding technique and moving positions what seemed like every contraction. I asked Jenn to braid my hair because I was so hot and needed it off my neck. At about 2 pm the midwife came in to see me and check me. I asked her again about a tub room and she told me she might not have one available. Which I accepted, because I knew from the start a tub room would not be guaranteed. But then she said something along the lines of “were pretty full, but we have had babies in triage rooms before!”. My heart sank as I looked around this little room I was in and at the stretcher that I might have to give birth on. I decided right then that if this was meant to be than I would fully accept it. I know birth doesn’t go as planned lots of times and this was just an example. 

 I laid down and Heather (our midwife) checked me and said I was 3cm and 90% effaced. After she left the room another nurse, Suzanne came to take us to our new room (hurray!) and it was a tub room! Suzanne asked if I wanted a wheelchair or to walk. I asked her how long of a walk it was and she said it wasn’t too far. I knew I wouldn’t be able to tolerate sitting in a wheel chair so we walked. In the hallway I had three very strong contractions that I had to stop and just lean against the wall. I kept my voice in because I didn’t want to make anyone nervous, so I just focused on my breathing. In the hallway I met one of my friends and co-workers that was also a nurse manager at Von Voigtlander and she grabbed onto my hand and we made it to my room.

 As soon as we got into my room I started to feel lots of hip pressure. I sat on the toilet and had a contraction there and I asked if we could start filling the tub. Suzanne laid down some type of mat in front of the tub as she was filling it up and I got down onto my hands and knees in front of the tub. With each contraction I could feel the baby moving down and my voice at this point was very low and grounding. I said out loud to everyone “it won’t be long”. At this point I felt like I was so focused and internalized that if someone said something to me I either shook my head yet or no, or didn’t answer them at all. One thing I am so grateful for that during this entire process there was never a rush to do anything. Everyone in my birth space was incredibly patient with me.

 The tub filled up pretty quickly and I got in and it was so refreshing. The sciatica pain was instantly reduced. I was incredibly hot and the water although was warm, seemed cooler then my body. I was in my knees leaning over the side of the tub squeezing Tammy’s hand. At some point she handed my hand to Tonys. With each contraction I would start my breathing and sounding. Everyone in the room was pretty quiet. The hip pressure started to get really intense and this is when I started to doubt my ability to keep doing this. In between contractions I looked up and told Tammy I don’t know if I can do this. Tammy, Tony and my nurse reassured me that I was doing great. Tammy reminded me that this was what I wanted. I then asked Heather to check me at this point, hoping that she was going to tell me I was at least half way done. I laid back for her to be able to check me and I instantly felt relief. Just changing my position help take the hip pressure off immensely. She checked me and said that I was completely dilated! I feel like at this time my whole attitude changed. I felt so elated and optimistic in between contractions, I couldn’t believe I was almost done! During contractions I focused on the baby moving down and staying completely relaxed and loose. Heather told me to reach down reach inside to feel how close the baby’s head was. I did this and I was amazed that the baby’s head was just right inside and I would be done soon.  The next contraction I had a slight urge to bare down so I kept my finger inside felt the baby move down even more. I asked if we could listen to the baby’s heartbeat again just because with Nova her heart rate was low at the end and I had to push hurriedly with her. Suzanne was trying to find the baby’s heartbeat without trying to distract me but it did the opposite because I felt like it was taking too long. I asked her if I could use the doppler and I found the baby’s heartbeat super low. We listened while Suzanne checked my pulse and baby was doing just fine. With the next few contractions I just listened to my body’s gentle urge to push. I never had an immense urge to push, which surprised me because with my previous 3 epidural births I did and I really think it’s because this time I focused on staying completely relaxed. I couldn’t believe that I was literally birthing my baby into my own hand! Also I never got the “shakes” during transition like with my previous births. Again I wonder if it’s because I kept relaxed so there wasn’t a huge surge of adrenaline. I pushed through another contraction and brought the baby’s head down right to my perineum. I tried to keep pushing but I felt like I could not get his head past my perineum, it was almost like I couldn’t get leverage in the water. In hindsight I think if I would have gotten into a squatting position it would have helped. I told Heather that I was going to have to have her deliver the baby because I can’t do it, although I had told her I really wanted to deliver the baby myself. She told me that she would support my perineum as the baby was being born, so with one big final push I pushed his head out. Heather told me to reach down and grab my baby. I want to just pause here for a second and appreciate that she did this. I told her to deliver the baby, I couldn’t do it just moments before. She could have just said “ok, fine”, but she knew how important it was to me and had me reach down to bring him earthside. I will never forget that she did this for me. It was such a surreal and special moment for me. When I reached down his shoulders were just starting to come out so I grabbed under his arms and brought him up to my belly.  Heather held him upright to make sure his head stayed above water. I sat up slightly in the tub and look to see that we had a new baby boy! I couldn’t believe that I had just given birth! I looked around and it seem like everybody was crying and I just kept telling everybody thank you and I can’t believe I did it. It was such a surreal feeling, a feeling that I have wanted to experience my whole birthing journey. I looked right into his eyes with his wrinkly forhead and a good amount of vernix still on him. 

   We sat in the tub for a few minutes taking him in before we got out. I actually started bleeding in the tub and I could tell the bleeding was heavy. Heather also noticed the bleeding and I told her I think the placenta is starting to come out. I wanted to keep the baby and placenta attached for a bit after birth so my birth team helped me out of the tub as I held onto him. As soon as I laid down the placenta came out and my bleeding slowed down. The other kids came in right after and met their new baby brother. When I told them it was a boy the boys lit up. Nova was demanding that I give him to her right away. Everyone was high on baby love.


Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Confessions Of A Co-Sleeping Mom

I have co-slept with all three kiddos, and probably will co-sleep with future children if we have them.

When I first became a mother I had ZERO intentions of co-sleeping. Honestly I became a mother before I created a social media account so I didn't even know it was a thingy. With Cameron, my husband work night shift his entire babyhood and because I was a first time mom I thought if I didn't get more that 7 hours of sleep a night I was going to DIE (thats hilarious to me now as I can take on just about anything with a solid 4 hours). I discovered that he slept longer when he was in bed with me, so from about 6 months until, ahem, 7 years old he was in our bed.
Cameron and I in his crib he hardly ever slept in.

Our second bambino was born and initially he slept in a crib right next to our bed. I was worried about being so exhausted from chasing a toddler around that I wouldn't be able to co-sleep safely (which is a BIG deal to me). So as we adjusted to a family of 4, he spent some time in his own crib but as he grew bigger I eventually brought him into the bed with us. It was what felt right, natural, and instinctual. Tony was still working nights until Dominic was over 1, so every night it was just me, me and my boys.

Both boys slept with us until Cameron was 7, and lets just say Dominic's favorite place to sleep is still in his daddy's arms. But it was during my pregnancy with Nova that sleeping was becoming something of a nightmare. It was the 4 of us PLUS A DOG. Something had to give because turning over in bed started to become something of an Olympic sport and it was hard enough without having 6 inches of personal space. We decided to have the boys sleep in their own beds, in their own rooms or else they would lose electronic privileges. Cameron took to it right away and actually he cannot stand anyone in his sleeping space now. And obviously this tactic didn't work to well with Dominic, considering what I said above.

When I was pregnant with Nova I knew I wanted to co-sleep right from the start. I also knew that safety was top priority and I could do both. I bought a DockAtot bed which had high reviews for safety and a Owlet baby monitor which would alarm if babys vitals changed due to any type of airway obstruction. Almost $500 later (I know, I know) I felt so good about co-sleeping with our newest addition.

Nova has slept next to me since night 1, and although she still wakes to nurse 2-3 times/ night, its quick and easy (I highly suggest anyone with a newborn to learn the side-lying position for breastfeeding) and it feels like the most natural thing. I know co-sleeping isnt for everyone but it works for us and its one of the most treasured memories I will have of my children.
Our first night home, just over 24 hours old here.

Its funny the reactions I have received when I tell people I co-sleep. From the people who think I am trying to kill my baby all the way to other end where people will tell me stories of their co-sleeping. Some people cannot believe that N still wakes up 2-3 times a night and then go on to tell me about making their baby cry it out, which I simply say I am not willing to do that EVER. Its funny talking about co-sleeping with friends who do the same, because its almost like we have to have a secret conversation because of the fear of someone threatening CPS, lol.

But Honestly I think the reason I love co-sleeping so much is because I'm a lazy mom. There I said it. Now I have a sleeping baby I have to get to.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Nova's birth | part 2

Our third child was born with one big push and as soon as her head was out I knew our baby wasn't very big. As soon as her body was born it was instinctual to reach down and grab her. At first glance I couldn't tell if it was a boy or girl because her cord was in the way but then my Dr lifted her leg up a little and that's when I could tell. I couldn't believe it! I was certain we were having another boy. Every time I pictured the baby it was a boy, I dreamed it was a boy.

She was so alert from the moment she took her first breath and she looked right into my eyes. It was if her birth was happening in slow motion and it was just the two of us. It was definitely the most "present" birth I have experienced, maybe because I felt like a bystander in this birth because my body was in control and knew exactly what it was doing and I was just hanging on for dear life haha. It all happened so fast.

We named our third child, a baby girl, Nova which means "new".

Nova latched on perfectly shortly after birth while everyone kept saying how alert she was. Bright eyed and bushy tailed.

Cameron and Dominic came to meet their new baby sister shortly after she was born. They brought two bears, a brown one if it was a boy or a pink one for a girl. It will always be etched in my mind the moment they walked in. It was the air was knocked out of both of them. They were speechless and again it seemed time was going in slow motion.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Nova's birth | part 1

During my early pregnancy days I dreamed of the birth I wanted. I pictured in my mind laboring at home for as long as possible, not going to the hospital until I was good and ready, and having a super easy and smooth birth once I arrived. I even prepared myself for going past my due date and the date January 26th kept running across my mind (our due date was 1/21). 

As my complicated pregnancy grew bigger and bigger I had a feeling at some point one of the maternal fetal medicine doctors or my own physician would bring up induction. I had already been told that having an ANA antibody alone increase the risk for stillbirth, and having super high levels of HCG like I did even more increased that risk. At about 27 weeks I had a MFM appointment and the doctor talked about a possible induction at 37 weeks if our baby developed IUGR, which was a real concern with my issues. At our 36 week appointment our baby was in the 20th something percentile for growth and IUGR has to be 10th percentile or less, so we were good on that. But because of there still being risks she told me it would be ideal for me to be delivered at 39 weeks. My heart sank a little.

When I seen my OB again, I asked him what he thought about me not having to be induced, but just to continue having the NSTs and BPPs every few days. And he looked me right in the eye and said "it's up to you, but is it worth the risk?". I knew right then I was probably going to be induced because he was right. I had complications that could hurt my baby, and baby's safety came first before my birth desires.

I had been having lots and lots of contractions the last few weeks of pregnancy and a few times I thought it was go time for sure. But then as time went on, the contractions would space out and eventually go away. I was hopeful that labor would start on its own as it did with my first, but it never really did. So at 39 weeks and 2 days we headed to the hospital.

When we arrived, I walked into my birth room which was the same room I deliver the boys in. I requested that room just because of that. My Nurse was Carrie, who is also one of my best friends. She had decorated the room pink and blue and all over the walls were messages from my coworkers. How could I hold the tears back?!?

My water was broken shortly after arrival and it was mecomium, and right then I knew that this induction was definitely a good idea. Mecomium can be a sign that baby is in distress. The contractions started becoming uncomfortable about 11am and that is when we decided to call our birth photographer from Holt, I wanted to give he a good heads up because Dominic's birth happened so quick at the end, and also because it was icy that day. She arrived at around 1pm.

The contractions were so intense, even though it had been 6 years since my last birth it all came back so quick to my memory. We took a few walks in the hall as being upright was my favorite position. We walked to the end of the hall and looked out the window for a while, watching everyone scurrying around while time pretty much stood still for us. I thought how being in labor is really special, as your in between two worlds it seems.

Rocking while hanging onto Tony felt the best. I spent some time on the birth ball and hanging out on the toilet. I stayed fully clothed for the majority of my labor because that is most comfortable for me (especially in front of a camera). Carrie respected the fact that I didn't want to me monitored much, so I spent a lot of time moving around.

This birth was different then my first and second. As I labored I could actually feel the baby move down. I started to feel pressure when I was sitting on the toilet and Carrie asked if she could check me. I hesitated, mostly because I was worried there would be no change. I remembering looking at the clock and it said 2:19pm. She checked me and I was 4. Which seemed like a really small number for the pain I was in. The labor and delivery nurse in me was saying "this is going to go fast", but the women-in-excruciating-pain kept saying "this is going to take all day". Well let's just say that when the deep, low pressure came, it didn't stop and all of a sudden it was baby time before I knew it. At the end my body was pushing and I was not ready. I HATE the pushing stage of birth. Everything was happening so fast and it seemed to be like my body had a mind of its own. My doctor came in for delivery and everyone for ready. I asked my doctor if it was ok I didn't push and he said it was fine (my body was literally pushing the baby out without my help, talk about intense). 

After that contraction I could hear the baby's heart rate was low. Which is normal when baby is getting "the big squeeze " at the end. DR Farhat then looked at me and said I should probably push because the baby's heart rate was in the 60s, which is really low. I glanced up at the screen to see and it was the type of tracing that as a nurse makes me a little nervous. I decided right then that I was going to push the next contraction and not stop until baby was born, no matter how much I hated pushing....

Friday, July 14, 2017

My pregnancy with Nova | the scary stuff

 I went into my pregnancy with Nova with a little fear because I have a positive antibody that increases my risk of having a miscarriage/loss. I was also on a medication to control heart palpitations which I was told that i should continue throughout my pregnancy even though it does have a chance of IUGR or inter-uterine growth restriction (where the baby doesn't grow properly, is smaller).

At about 18 weeks I accepted the quad screening which ended up coming back with a high chance of the baby having Down's Syndrome. That was a hard phone call. The baby looked great on the ultrasound we had the week prior but my physician thought we needed to do the Panorama test (which is the same as the Materniti21 test to look for chromosome abnormalities. I had the blood testing done the next day and we started the week long wait. It was a hard week, full of worries and anxieties. In my heart I knew my baby was ok but my head also knew that there is a real chance that our baby would have DS. I would love our baby no different but every expectant parent wants their child to be born healthy. 1 week later I go the phone call to let me know that 1. our baby had normal chromosomes, and 2. if we wanted to know the gender of our baby. We decided early in the pregnancy that with this baby we wanted to wait until birth to find out gender, no I said no.

The reason our quad screen came back abnormal was because I had super-duper high levels of HCG. Which could mean twins but we had already had our anatomy the week prior so we knew it wasn't twins. My physician wanted me to meet with Maternal Fetal Medicine about this since really high levels of HCG can still complicate a pregnancy.

I met with Dr. Green in Ann Arbor at about 26 weeks after a very through and looooooong ultrasound. Because we didn't know the gender of our baby I had to keep my eyes shut during a good part of the ultrasound so I missed a lot actually. Dr Green (who is such a sweet and kind physician) explained to me that when there are high levels of HCG it can mean the placenta may not be the best placenta and at times this can cause IUGR. The plan was to measure the baby and placenta every 5-6 weeks until delivery. We met two other times where it was discovered that our baby was on the smaller side at about 15th percentile, which IUGR is 10th percentile. Beside being tiny our baby was doing great and we had a VERY active little one growing. I had to have non stress tests and ultrasound 2-3 times a week. During some of the tests our little baby was not passing so some days there was repeat ultrasounds and extended monitoring.

Friday, June 9, 2017

My pregnancy with Nova | Telling the world

   I told a select few people shortly after we found out. My sisters, some coworkers, and a couple other family members. We waited until about 12 weeks to tell the rest of the world and we met up with a local photographer for a announcement shoot. I couldn't have asked to have these turn out any better than what they did!

My pregnancy with Nova | Finding out

I really want to dive back into the blogging world because my intention was to use this blog as a journal and someday a book for my family. So I think documenting my pregnancy with Nova is a good reason to jumpstart my blogging.

We found out that our third child was on its way on Friday May 13th, 2016. After pretty much giving up trying after 2.5 years of unexplained infertility, to say I was shocked was an understatement!

   I came home from work that night after working a 12 hour shift and during my shower I noticed that my breast were a little tender. But whatever, they had been tender several times during the infertility months and I was never pregnant. My period was due in about 6 days so I chalked it up to that but decided to pee on a pregnancy test strip which are the ones that the dr offices use. They are super cheap so i bought probably 100 over the last few years because I was testing so much. I had done this routine several times while TTC that it wasn't  anything. I didn't even get a hope of excitement about the test  whatsoever. After taking the test I jumped in the shower and decided to check it after I got out. About 5 minutes later my husband was in the bathroom and I got out of the shower and picked up the teeny tiny test and looked at it and I thought I could see the faintest of the faintest lines. I have looked at these dang tests several hundred times and they never had any lines whatsoever so when I seen this I shrieked and asked Tony if he seen any thing. And his response was "nope". 

   I told Tony that I swear I see something and I swear it a line! By this time it was 11pm and I had ZERO more tests. Go figure right!?! After having cupboards full of them over the last years, here I am *maybe* pregnant and had no way to tell for sure. I told Tony I was going to meijers to get a more expensive and accurate test and he couldn't believe that i couldn't wait until the morning. How could I?!? I *might* really be pregnant!

  I drove WAY to fast to meijers but the whole time I felt numb. Could this be true? Am I pregnant? No, I'm not. Yes, I am. I tried not to get my hopes up but there was a line. Like I said earlier, I have looked at those dang test for years with nothing. At meijers I bought two test, a First Response early result test which detects pregnancy hormone up to 6 days early, and one of the digits ones that say +YES or -NO. With these test I knew I would have my answer tonight.

  When I got home Tony was sleeping so I woke him up and decided to just take the digital test. That would make it easy with a yes/no answer and I would save the other if it said -NO. In case you have never taken a digital test, once you pee on it a timer starts and it takes about 3 minutes for an answer. So for the 3 minutes your staring at a timer like this...
And then this happened.


The breath was instantly sucked out of me and I felt like for a moment I could explode. I remember looking at Tony and saying "OH MY GOD IM PREGNANT". 

I ended up taking the othe test.
It was faint but it was definitely positive!

Sleeping was hard that night. After spending the previous several months just trying to accept that we were only going to have 2 children and I was actually accepting that into my heart, our whole world changed in a matter of an hour. I went from not even suspecting to full blown pregnant in an hour. 

I wish I could say that I was super excited and bliss and free of worry, but anxiety quickly snuck it's ugly head in. The next several days I was on cloud nine but that would change in a matter of seconds and I would be having an anxiety attack. The anxiety mostly consisted of my fear of living through PPD and postpartum OCD again. And also I had just been worked up for having lupus due to a positive Antinuclear antibody which put this pregnancy at risk from the beginning. I even stopped my doctor in the hallway at work and told him I was pregnant and he told me to start taking baby aspirin right away.

 The anxiety faded away over the next several months thanks to the feel-good pregnancy hormones and I was looking forward to getting far enough along to feel comfortable telling our family and friends. It's just amazing that after all the perfect timing, tests, surgeries, medications, and supplements to get pregnant it just happened on its own when the universe decided it was time.