Friday, November 9, 2012

The Fastest Six Months of My Life

Well, it has been entirely too long since I have even logged in to this blog, much less written in it.
I was going to let it just be about my pregnancy, but now I regret not continuing it throughout Emerson's first 6 months. There is no way that I can tell you everything, we'd be here forEVAH!

Emerson is 6 months old now and the most wonderful thing that has ever happened to me. Period.

I love this child so much that I find myself looking at her and tears come to my eyes because she is so very amazing. What on Earth did I do for God to bless me with the most wonderful gift? I have no idea, but I ask Him no questions, I am just thankful. I am worried that I love her so much that I will have a had time punishing her. That's bad, I need to get over that--fast!

Next Sunday, Danny and I are dedicating her to the church and I am SO excited!! We'll have lots of family and friends there to celebrate with us. I'll be sure to post pictures!

In just these past 6 (way too short) months, Emerson has grown into the most beautiful, smartest child. She is a wonderful baby.
  • She sleeps all night, every night...since she was probably a month old.
  • She smiles all the time.
  • She laughs constantly. She loves we we scare her, smile at her, laugh at her, dance....
  • She loves her big brother something crazy! No, really. He will be sitting on the couch, and scratch his head, and she starts laughing at him. She loves that boy, my goodness! 
  • She is seriously the smartest baby.
  • She will give you "high five."
  • She will get you kisses.
  • She can sit up on her own now
  • She LOVES food. Her favorites are sweet potatoes, squash, carrots, applesauce, peaches, bananas, oatmeal & fruit mixed together.
  • Not a fan of anything green, but I sneak it in often.
  • She can roll over and continue rolling.
  • She loves watching the Baby Network on TV.
  • She hates to be alone.
  • She still wears her Pavlov Harness every night.
  • She loves to touch and feel your face.
  • She has recently started banging her toys on her tray when in the high chair.
  • A few of her favorite things to play with is her frozen teething ring, my cell phone, TV remotes, her baby paper, her pacifier...
  • She simply cannot sleep well without her pink, breathable blanket. She covers her face with it to go to sleep. (Don't worry, it's "breathable")
  • She is very content, doesn't cry much.
  • She usually only cries when she is so tired she can't stand it and tries to fight sleep.
  • As of yesterday, at her Shriner's visit, she weighs 15lbs 2oz. She's itty bitty.
  • She is so close to saying "Mama" and "Dada"...sometimes we pretend that she actually says it! haha
  • She's spoiled. Rotten.
  • She stays with Danny mostly during the week because of his awesome Fireman work schedule and with my parents and Danny's parents when he has to work. So like I said, spoiled rotten!
  • She enjoys strolling outside.
  • She already wants to be independent.
I could go on for days, but that's the gist of what's going on these days.


6 Month Shriner's Check Up
 
 October 30, 2012--6 Months Old
 
 After a bath
 
 Visiting PoPo at Northside Middle School for lunch
 
 Emerson, the bookworm, Halloween 2012
 
 Halloween 2012 Neighborhood Parade & Hotdog Dinner
 
 Mominy feeding me oatmeal
 
 Cousin Ryan Gunter
 

 I lurv foood!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Hip Dysplasia

As most of you know, Emerson was born with hip dysplasia in her left hip.

Hip dysplasia is the medical name used to describe a problem with formation of the hip joint in children. The location of the problem can be either the ball of the hip joint, the socket of the hip joint , or both.
What causes hip dysplasia?The exact cause of hip dysplasia is not easy to pin down, as there are thought to be several factors that contribute to developing this condition. Hip dysplasia occurs in about 0.4% of all births, and is most common in first born girls. Some known risk factors for a child to have hip dysplasia include:
  • A family history of hip dysplasia
  • Breech position in the womb
  • Hormonal loosening of the female ligaments
  • Etc.
In mild cases, the ligaments and other soft tissues around the hip joint are not tight, and they allow the thighbone (femur) to move around more than normal in the hip socket.

This is what our case is, mild.

How is hip dysplasia diagnosed?Diagnosis of hip dysplasia in the infant is based on the physical examination findings. Your doctor will feel for a "hip click" when performing special maneuvers of the hip joint. These maneuvers, called the Barlow and Ortolani tests, will cause a hip that is out of position to "click" as it moves in and out of the proper position.

If a hip click is felt, your doctor will usually obtain a hip ultrasound to assess the hip joint. An x-ray does not show the bones in a young baby until at least 6 months of age, and therefore a hip ultrasound is preferred. The hip ultrasound will show the doctor the position and shape of the hip joint. Instead of the normal ball-in-socket joint, the ultrasound may show the ball outside of the socket, and a poorly formed (shallow) socket. The hip ultrasound can also be used to determine how well the treatment is working.

This is how Emerson was diagnosed. Our pediatrician, Dr. Fuqua, came in and examined her each morning in the hospital. From the get-go she found the hip click. She called Dr. Timms in to reexamine her, he found the same thing. We left the hospital on a Thursday. That Friday we were sent to Shriner's Hospital for Children in Greenville, SC.
There, we saw a Pediatrician Orthopedic Surgeon. He (officially) diagnosed her with hip dysplasia. That day, she was fitted for and put in a Pavlik harness.

This is her, right after she was put in it.



What is the treatment of hip dysplasia?The treatment of hip dysplasia depends on the age of the child. The goal of treatment is to properly position the hip joint ("reduce" the hip). Once an adequate reduction is obtained, the doctor will hold the hip in that reduced position and allow the body to adapt to the new position. The younger the child, the better capacity to adapt the hip, and the better chance of full recovery. Over time, the body becomes less accommodating to repositioning of the hip joint. While treatment of hip dysplasia varies for each individual baby, this is what we are doing:
  • Birth to 6 months
    Generally in newborns, a hip dysplasia will reduce with the use of a special brace called a Pavlik harness. This brace holds the baby's hips in a position that keeps the joint reduced. Over time, the body adapts to the correct position, and the hip joint begins normal formation. About 90% of newborns with hip dysplasia treated in a Pavlik harness will recover fully. 
Each week to two weeks, we'll go to Greenville Memorial Hospital, get an ultrasound of her hips then walk over to Shriner's Hospital to see the specialists. I cannot say enough good about everyone that we have seen there. We are working with a doctor that is new to Shriner's. He is very hands-on. He does everything, the nurses do not. You usually don't see that. Lately, he's been walking over to Greenville Hospital to meet us in the ultrasound room to see for himself. Then he'll re-adjust her harness there. WE LOVE HIM!! Dr. Mendelow is his name and I recommend him to anyone!

In the past few weeks, he thought that the harness wasn't doing its job 100%. We talked about surgery. Thankfully he wanted to wait another week with her in the harness, then come back to reassess things.
After many prayers, we went back to find that it looks better! He gave her ANOTHER week. This time when we went back, he talked more in depth about doing surgery....unless she had made a huge change. Praise the Lord! Her hip looked wonderful! It was in the perfect position in the socket. So...no surgery at this time!!! We'll keep her in the harness another 6 weeks, for a total of 12 weeks.
I believe in prayer and it worked!!

We bathe around it, change her diaper around it, the harness does not come off for any reason, unless it is doctor ordered. She was put in the harness when she was 4 days old and thankfully I don't think she knows the difference. It doesn't bother her, it seems pretty comfortable.

We are so thankful to have these doctors, our family support and the good Lord on our side. Emerson is improving everyday and we are so proud of every big and little accomplishment she makes.



This was week 4 of wearing her harness. We were able to take it off at the hospital. She killed her sweet legs and we kissed her precious feet!
(Notice the big smile at the end...she's smiling at her big brother!)
video






Saturday, June 9, 2012

40 Weeks Come & Go

So my last post, 7 weeks ago, I was still with child...39 weeks along.
By that time, SURELY I thought Emerson would have been here by now.
I always thought that she would come early.
Boy was I wrong.

39 weeks came and went. Saturday, April 28, 2012 came...my DUE DATE...40 weeks! The day I have been anxiously waiting for since August 2011.
No dilation, no progression whatsoever. And no sign of anything happening anytime soon. Seriously?
Doesn't she know that I have a plan? I'd like certain things to happen and at certain times. hahahaha
Yeah right! Every. single. plan. that I had...did not happen! So if you have a "plan," well, get over it.

So Monday, April 30, 2012 around 12:30pm I went for my 40 week check up at Greenwood OBGYN. They hooked me up to the monitor, got my vitals, checked me, and then decided to send me to Self to get an ultrasound to check my fluids. ( I guess their ultrasound tech was booked)
Before I went to Self, I spoke with one of the nurses, who is also the mother of a close friend. Can I just say that she has been NOTHING but wonderful throughout this entire pregnancy. Thank you Wanda Witt!! You mean more to me than you can imagine!
She knows how I am...I want the truth, no beating around the bush, lay it out straight for me.
She said that I had not progressed, I was not favorable for induction. If I were to be induced, more than likely I would labor for HOURS, wear myself out and have to have a C-section in the end....more than likely. I did not want to put strain on the baby, I wanted a certain doctor or two, so I decided that I would plan for a C-section.

So that was it, she scheduled me for a C-section the next morning with Dr. Forrest. Emerson would be a May baby! May 1, 2012 would be her birth date. Thank you Jesus for giving us a plan!

When I left, I went by Self to get my ultrasound. Danny left and picked up Wells to spend some time with him and go to his ball game that evening since we knew we'd be in the hospital for the next few days.

Then they tell me, if your fluid level is low, we may want to admit you to watch you and the baby over night, then do the section in the morning.
Oookay. Plans have changed a little.
That was fine with me, as long as I could go home for an hour or two to get my (already packed) bags and to get my mind right.
My level was a 3. Wow. VERY low!
I call Danny..."They want to admit me now! But you go on and go to Wells's game, Mama will come stay with me until it's over."
Plan B...now happening.

I get picked up from the radiology waiting room by the employees that take you anywhere you need to go and she asks me "Do you need a wheelchair?" "Heck no woman, I feel fine!"
She takes me to my room where a nurse meets me and starts getting all of my info.
This was 6:00pm by the way.

Then the nurse tells me that Dr. Beaudrot was going to come in and talk to me. He did.
He asked me if I would like for him to do it tonight. TONIGHT??? Wait. Tonight??
So my mind started going 10000000000x a second.
  • I knew he was my 1st choice of doctors.
  • Danny was NOT here...he was in Ninety Six with Wells.
  • Wait, NO one was here with me, I was all by myself.
  • Danny would miss Wells's ball game and that's not right.
  • TONIGHT?
  •  
So then I asked, "Like what time are you talking about??"
I knew it was a little after 6pm and I knew he had been on shift since that morning and he was getting off at 7pm.

"Like, in an hour...," he said.

AN HOUR? Like ONE hour? Like 60 minutes? Holy moly!!
Obviously this was not a choice I should make alone.

So then I starting thinking again, and texting.

I asked him to give me a minute and I'd let him know.
If I were to wait until the morning, my fluid levels could drop in the middle of the night. No one from my doctor's office would be there, my family would not be there...it was just too risky.
So I made a decision.

Yes, let's do it tonight, in "like an hour".


Almost immediately, the anesthesia people came in and started telling me stuff, the nurses came in and started hooking me up to IVs, I started signing paper work, all while I'm texting Danny telling him....GET HERE NOW!!! So he FLEW from our house in Ninety Six all the way to Greenwood to Wells's grandma's house, back to the hospital to get there in time.

Oh, and apparently I was having contractions and didn't even know it! We were watching it on the screen...the nurse said, "Oh you feel that one? That's a big one." Nope, nothing.

In the mean time, Danny's mama comes flying in the room in a complete panic! She had ran from the car to my hospital room. Then came my Mama, Daddy, Abby, Mominy, Jackson, Breann, Holly, the preacher (in no particular order)....and then came Danny. The last one to arrive, bless his heart.
His nerves were SHOT!
He jumped into is scrubs and off we went.


Just like that. I was a nervous wreck. My nerves were DONE, I was scared to death, I hate anesthesia (and I was getting a spinal tap).
It all happened so fast, I cannot even explain all of my emotions.

Then came the spinal tap. Horrible. The prick wasn't that bad, but the numbness was very scary. It was hard to breathe, my legs were tingling, and they were minutes away from cutting me open.

ALL of that and the thought of meeting our little girl in just minutes.
Wow.
The most overwhelming thing I have ever gone through.

7:15PM, She was here.

Welcome to the world sweet baby:)

 Weighing in at 7lbs 5 oz (7 4.7), 19 1/4 inch, happy, screaming, healthy baby girl!
Thank you Lord.


There is more to come of this story, as I am 6 weeks behind!
You can find more pictures on the Facebook album. 
     
     

Friday, April 27, 2012

We're Hangin' in There!

Week 39
Holy Moly, my last week before the B-I-G 40!
This week, Emerson should be about the size of a Wintermelon.
A what? What is a Wintermelon? She's so big now, they're just making up fruit!


"Baby keeps growing, despite being so crowded in there. She probably weighs around 6.2 to 9.2 pounds and measures about 18.9 to 20.9 inches."

  • She's probably able to flex her limbs now.
  • Her brain is still rapidly developing -- she's getting smarter by the week!
  • Her nails may extend past her fingertips.

  •                                                                                                                 -The Bump

    On Tuesday, we had our 39 week check up. I was also scheduled for an ultrasound to see her position, weight, fluid levels, etc. Of course, she had her hands in front of her face...again. So I guess we know where her hands will be when she comes out! The results of the ultrasound were...
    • Her head is down and she's in the correct position.
    • She's weighing in at a whopping 7 lbs, 14 oz, and gaining about an ounce each day! (The tech did say they the test could be off +/- 9oz. Lord help me if she's 7lbs, 14oz + 9oz!! WHOA!
    • My fluid levels (in my stomach) were a little low. The number they gave was a 6.35. It needed to be at least a 7. So my duty for the rest of the day was to go lay on my side and drink a LOT of liquids.
    • She's still a girl, which is good!
    • All of her anatomy is looking good and organs are functioning like normal.

    The next day, after laying down and drinking until I float, I went back for another ultrasound.
    My fluid levels were at an 11!! Bam!

    If they would have been less than 7, we would start planning for an induction on Monday.
    If they were higher than a 7, we would "rethink" things.

    So with the levels being up and good, we have decided to let her come when she's good and ready.
    That's exactly what I wanted to hear. I don't want to force her out and I certainly do NOT want to have a C-section if at all possible. Of course, anything can change at any time, so all of these options are still a possibility. But we sure do hope that I go into labor on my own...and SOON.

    Have you seen me lately?? Geez! Wobble wobble.
    I love seeing people's reaction when they say...
    "Oh, you're about to POP!"
    "When are you due?"

    And I reply,
    "Tomorrow!"

    Who knows what they're thinking, but it looks like they are thinking...
    "Oh no, what if she goes into labor right now, standing here, talking to ME??!!"
    haha

    Well I know that I haven't posted not even one picture of myself this whole time.
    So here I am, 2 days ago.....at 39 weeks and 4 days.




    Thanks Abby Funderburk Photography for doing these:)
    And thank you to one of her awesome Brides for letting her take these in the middle of YOUR session!!

    We planned to do pictures like a week or two ago, with Danny, but I had a very bad day that day and ended up cancelling them. I wanted to have something to look back on, so we shot these in literally 5 minutes. No, literally.

    So now, we wait.
    Bags are packed and in the trunk.
    Birth plan is written and typed.
    House, well, it'll be cleaned by Saturday!
    Bassinet ready, crib ready.
    Who to call when something happens, ready.
    "To bring" list on the fridge for those last minute items that can't be packed ahead of time.
    Now, it's all up to the good Lord and Emerson.

    Come on, lets do this!

    

    Thursday, April 19, 2012

    Patiently Waiting...

    WEEK 38
    Emerson is about the size of a PUMPKIN...(dang girl!)
    "Baby is about 18.9 to 20.9 inches long and weighs about 6.2 to 9.2 pounds.
    Her head is now about the same circumference as her abdomen."


  • She may have about an inch or so of hair already.

  • She's slowly shedding that white goo on her skin (called vernix caseosa) but you

  •      might see some of it at birth.

                                                                                                                 -The Bump

    Well, it's getting close! I honestly thought "any day now"....literally.
    But after Wednesday's doctor's appointment, I'm not so sure anymore.

    I went in Wednesday morning for my 38 week check up. The last two visits, I had been 75% effaced and not dilated. I was SURE that the numbers would have increased by week 38. Nope. Not at all.
    I have had no contractions, therefore, no dilation. So I have been at a stand still for 2 weeks now.
    I feel so helpless and not in control whatsoever. Oh, that's probably BECAUSE I'M NOT!
    Hello Kendall!
    I have obviously forgotten who is in charge. Maybe that's why He's not allowing me to progress like "normal." I have had a schedule for all of this, this whole time, not really coming to terms that it's not on my time, it's not on her time, it's on His time. Once again, Duh Kendall!

    So here I am, patiently waiting. I know she will be here very soon, so I better enjoy my free time while I have it, get rest while I still know what that means, and enjoy one-on-one time with my husband. Things will never be the same again.

    A very good friend said to me yesterday, "She's still in there for a reason!"
    Well dang, that's a good point! Never thought about it that way.

    So I may eat a plate of eggplant Parmesan, I may walk around the block a time or two, etc. But I need to remember that she's already got a birth date and a birth plan, so sit back and enjoy the last few days/weeks of this ride! 

    Until that day comes, it will be days filled with work, baseball, baseball, baseball, putting a few last touches to the nursery, getting a few more things together, baseball, and ....sleep.



    

    Tuesday, April 10, 2012

    Soon Soon SOON!

    Week 36
    Emerson is about the size of a Coconut...
    "She's still in the 17.2- to 18.7-inch and 4.2- to 5.8-pound range and continues to beef up."

  • She's getting closer and closer to being able to breathe on her own.

  • Her skin is getting smooth and soft and her gums are rigid.

  • Her liver and kidneys are in working order.

  • Circulation and immune systems are basically good to go, too.

  •                                                                                                                 -The Bump


    Week 37
    This week, Emerson is about the size of a WATERMELON! Wait, they are huge!
    "Yay! Baby has reached full term. She likely measures around 18.9 to 20.9 inches and weighs about 6.2 to 9.2 pounds.She's gaining about 1/2 ounce each day."

  • She's practicing some skills: inhaling, exhaling, sucking, gripping and blinking.

  • She's getting her first sticky poop (called meconium) ready for her first diaper. (Really?!)

  •                        
                                                                                                                               -The Bump

    Wow, FULL term. It has really flown by. Three weeks sounds like, yes, I have a little bit more time. But then I hear about the girl that's a week and a half ahead of me, trying to walk to begin labor.
    Just a few days out from her due date. That freaks me out!!
    Now, no doubt about it, if she came tonight, all would be fine, but I am not 100% prepared. Mentally or nursery, bags, and all the small details. I want to be completely over prepared and be waiting on her. I've been doing as much as I can each day to prepare.
    So, we're getting there.
    Continuing working has helped pass the time. My schedule has not changed much at all from when I wasn't pregnant. I still work in Abbeville, do events, run errands, clean the house, cook (sometimes), get in bed at the same time, get up each morning at the same time, etc. I think not changing your life schedule while pregnant is a good thing. Because sooner than later, everything is going to change!

    I went for my 36 week check up last Wednesday.
    • Have not started dilating yet.
    • I am 75% effaced.
    • Blood pressure is right on.
    • Her heartbeat is as great as it can be.
    • I have swelling in my feet, but it's normal.
    • and the doctor said that it was very rare to see a patient still smiling and not complaining at 36 weeks:)

    So all is well with me, and with her...:)

    I have a "To Do" list the size of Texas, but getting smaller by the minute!
    People continue to come in the chamber and look in my office and say, "You're still HERE!?!"
    Yes, yes I am.
    Would I rather be at home filling drawers, cleaning, and packing bags? YES.

    Okay, so I am not posting pictures YET of the nursery since it's not finished. But I did want to post a picture of Emerson's bassinet and mobile.

    This bassinet was slept in my me, my brother, and even my mom. So it's very special to me:)
    The mobile was handmade by two very good friends, Holly Mitchell & Kristy Atkinson.
    It's ready for Emerson!

    Last Friday, the chamber was closed, so I had a craft day.


    Emerson now has a place for her bows...
    The fabric inside matches parts of her crib bedding (hint hint).

    I also made closet dividers for ALL of her clothes...
    ...these are just a few, unfinished.

    So in the days (weeks) to come, I'll be finishing up my to do list and hopefully I can get finished by the time "E" makes her appearance!





    
       
       


    


    Saturday, March 24, 2012

    Week 35

    Week 33
    Emerson's about the size of a Honeydew.
    "She weighs about 4.2 to 5.8 pounds and measures about 17.2 to 18.7 inches.
    And she may grow up to a full inch this week -- amazing!"

  • She's keeping her eyes open while awake.

  • She's also starting to coordinate breathing with sucking and swallowing.

  • Her bones are hardening.

  • And she is going through (more) major brain development -- that's one smart baby!


  •                                                                                                                                   -The Bump

    Week 34
    Emerson is about the size of a Durian Fruit.
    "At less than two months to go, she weighs in at about 4.2 pounds to 5.8 pounds
    and measures about 17.2 to 18.7 inches."

  • She's recognizing and reacting to simple songs, if you're singing them.

  •       (If you're not, start! She may find them soothing after birth.)

  • She's also urinating about a pint a day.


  •                                                                                                                            -The Bump

    Week 35
    Emerson is about the size of a Butternut Squash.
    "She's about 17.2 to 18.7 inches. From here on out, she won't get much longer, but she's plumping up. She's now about 4.2 to 5.8 pounds, and she'll put on a pound or more of baby fat before birth."

  • Now, her hearing is fully developed, and she responds best to high-pitched noises.

  • If it's a boy, his testes have probably fully descended. 

  •       (But she's not, so obviously this doesn't apply!)

                                                                                                                           -The Bump

    Three weeks of "size" updates all into one blog post. That's exactly how fast these past few weeks have flown by! I was anxious to hit the 30 week mark, now my phone just updated me and reminded me that I was 35 weeks today. Time flies when you're......BUSY!

    So far, I have had WONDERFUL friends host three different baby showers. I am so blessed to have such wonderful people in my life. Emerson has racked up on so many clothes, blankets, and anything else you can think of. Now we're working on finding the room to put all of her things. We're limited on storage in our house, so we're having to get creative.

    This week, we rearranged Wells's room to fit him and her in there. We switched beds, took out a piece, put the crib and changing table in, put a piece in our room for Emerson's things, decorated Wells's walls, nailed, moved, sweated, ached, and FINALLY, we are almost finished with his side. 
    Her side....well she has the crib bedding on and we have a few ideas on what will go on the walls. We'll hopefully finish the whole room within two weeks. That's the goal.

    After some thought, Wells is satisfied with his room side. THANK YOU JESUS!
    I was so worried about his reaction. What 10 year old little boy wants to share his room with his baby sister? Not many. It took a while for him to get used to the idea. After a few weeks of talking about it, last night seeing it for the first time, I thought we might be in trouble.
    I prayed and prayed and prayed for a good outcome, and last night, he was like a different child.
    I STRONGLY believe God had A LOT to do with his attitude.
    He was in the best mood, respectful, polite...
    ...yes ma'am, no ma'am, yes sir, no sir, please, thank you...
    He talked about Emerson so sweetly. She is so very lucky to have a big brother like him.
    I see how he treats Mia, his other sister, and I can't wait for Emerson to have someone to look up to like Mia does.

    Once we get finished with the room, I'll post pictures.

    On my side of things, activities are getting harder and harder to complete.
    For example walking. Haha No, I'm kidding. Actually, it's more like, wobbling.
    But apparently, that's one of the latest dance moves, so I'm good there.

    Turning from one side to the other in bed. It takes mental preparation and lots of strength to do.
    Who would-a thought?!

    The saying is more meaningful now-a-days.
    "When you gotta go, you gotta go!" Even the thought of "pottying" makes me almost want to wet my pants! Always know where the restrooms are! lol

    Oh, my feet. I forgot to mention.
    From the first day that it was hot in SC, you know, that first day and it never cooled off here! My feet have blown up so badly from that day, on. I truly have "cankles." You know when you get a pedicure and they put the things between your toes to help allow them to dry? That's how my feet feel, except surrounded by fluid. Lovely.

    I still have lower back pain, but that's never eased up.

    It's hot, everywhere, all the time. I'm just thankful that I'm not pregnant throughout the summer!

    Hello Heartburn. Zantac is my new BFF.

    I heart chocolate milk. Mmm:)
    The saltiness craving has pretty much gone away. 

    "You look ripe!" says the cashier at Hobby Lobby.
    "Oh. thank you." says the hot, waddling, ripe pregnant me.
    Folks. They always have the correct words.