Thursday, July 31, 2014

The First Month

{Written 7/31/14} You guys, I have been a mom for 8 weeks... whaaa?! So crazy. Sorry that this post is getting published WAY LATE!!
Honestly, nothing has been so wonderful and comfortable and instinctual and emotional and scary and amazing as these last few weeks have been. I wish I was able to completely remember every single detail. Capture every look, every snuggle, every day in it's simple perfection. 

{Written 7/7/14}
The first day in the hospital, we just enjoyed Izzy, and had more visitors. We also had a photographer come and take some absolutely gorgeous photos of our little family. Everyone was in awe of her beauty, and one nurse even thought that the pictures of her were stock photos of  the model baby used on all the hospital brochures, and was shocked when I told her that it was in fact, not the model baby, but MY baby. /self five for making a stinking gorgeous baby.

We were able to be discharged at 6:00pm the next day! I was so happy that we didn't have to stay in the hospital longer than a day and a half. We left, and made our way promptly to Barros, where we had our first family meal :)

The first night home went great! We were all alone, since my mom didn't come to stay with us until the next day. She slept great, gave us a good solid 3 hours between each feeding. We had decided that we were going to have her sleep in her crib, in her own room from night one. She looked SO CUTE in the big crib. Just a tiny little peanut. 

On June 6th my parents came over and planned to spend the next few days with us. We gave Izzy her first bath at home! She absolutely LOVED it. We have this cute little tub and she just kinda hung out in the water and her eyes got huge and so excited when we washed her hair. That girl knows whats up. We wrapped her up in this amazing froggy towel and I just about ate her up, she looked so yummy!

We spent the next few days just hanging out with friends and family. We had so many wonderful people bring over meals and come to visit. It really helped keep my spirits up and my emotions in check being surrounded by so much love and support. I never really got too crazy or experienced too many baby blues. I did have one meltdown in the shower on the day my milk came in. My body was just in so much pain. I was having a rough recovery and everything just kept piling up on me, and the pain was just too much at times. But I survived, and I'm stronger for it.

It is amazing to see her changing everyday. Amazing, and tragic. I always heard other moms tell me how fast it goes and to cherish every singly solitary second. And I believed them, but man, it goes even faster than I can keep up with. I feel like I look away for a few seconds and she is bigger and different and older and cuter than she was a few seconds earlier. It's a stressful situation really. But I have so enjoyed every single moment. 

Alex got to enjoy his first real Father's Day, and he just soaked it up so much. He is such an amazing dad, and just spent his day snuggling his little baby.

Izzy, here are some of my favorite little bits from this first month that I absolutely do not want to forget about you.

  • The way you snort when you cries. It's so adorable and funny. We call you our little piggy. And we even bought you the cutest little stuffed pig, and look so cute lying next to it in your crib! I just love it.
  • I love nursing you. It's such a special time that we share. I love looking at your adorable little profile while you eat, and I LOVE that it's a view that I alone get to enjoy. Also, when you eat you grab onto my fingers so tight and it's my favorite thing! I can't stand the thought of knowing that someday we wont share these moments and there will be a time when you won't want to hold my fingers. So for now, I am soaking in all of these moments as much as possible!
  • I also love that you always cry when you are done eating. It's only for a few seconds once you realize that all the food is gone. You just love eating so much and it makes you sad when it's over. 
  • I love getting "kisses" from you whenever you are hungry. I can put your lips up to mine and you make the cutest little pursed lips, and kinda suck on my lips or cheeks and I consider those to be you little kisses to me or your dad. 
  • You have never been a fan of being swaddled, and from the very beginning, you have always slept with your hands up by your face. Sometimes straight above your head, and other times, just rest on your cheeks. It's the sweetest. Also, whenever anyone picks you up while you are sleeping, you arch your back so much and make the cutest squishy face I have ever seen. I'm still trying to capture a photo of it, because it's basically my favorite thing.
  • You are still just so tiny and perfect. At your one month appointment, you weight 8 pounds 10 ounces and were 21 inches long! You still wear newborn clothes and use newborn diapers! I love my tall skinny little munchkin. 
  • You sleep SO WELL. Literally you've been a great sleeper from the very beginning, and the older you get, the better you sleep. You consistently give us at least 5 ours straight, then you'll eat real quick, and go right back down for another 3-4 hours. It's perfection. You also give me 3 really solid 2-3 hour naps throughout the day. I get lots of snuggle time in with those naps. I love it. I'm not too quick to put you down while you're sleeping. I just love having you curled up on my chest, feeling you breath so slowly. I may have laundry to do, and floors to mop, but it's just not important enough... I just love you too much.

Izzy baby, thank you so much for making me the happiest mommy in the world. 

Monday, July 14, 2014

Isabel Paige McHardy {Birth Story}

This post has been in the works for a long time. I keep trying to write it, but then end up deleting what I write. This story is one of the most important and special and I want to remember it all in perfect detail.

2 weeks leading up to June 4th, I had a few dr. visits and I was dilated to a 1, but there was no change. My dr, Dr. Huff, asked if I wanted any help getting this little one into the world. I asked to wait one more week to see if things would progress on their own, but if there was still no change then I would be induced. We scheduled the induction for June 4th and 7:30 am.

Over the next 7 days, I kept having very irregular contractions and there were a few moments where I thought we might have this baby the natural way, but obviously that didn't happen.

So on wednesday morning at 5:30am I woke up and called into the hospital to see if there was a bed ready for me. They gave me the go ahead, and told me that it was time to have a baby! I hung up the phone and immediately started crying. If you read my previous post, you will know how absolutely terrified I was to become a mother. So the fact that I was willingly going into the hospital and going to be leaving with a little human was pretty much terrifying to me. I went upstairs and woke Alex up and told him that it was time to get showered, eat breakfast and pack up the car. He was so excited and jumped out of bed! We showered and ate, and right before we left I asked Alex to give me priesthood blessing of comfort. I bawled during the whole thing, but it was so sweet to hear Alex bless me with strength and a calm heart and to hear him tell me how much he and the Lord love me and how he cannot wait to hold our sweet baby and see me be a mother. I stood up from that blessing and felt much better. I kissed Alex, and thanked him for being such an amazing husband, then we jumped in the car and drove off to the hospital. That drive was one of the craziest of my life. I held alex's hand so tight, and knew that the next time I sat in the passenger seat of our car, there would be a baby in the backseat!

We showed up at the hospital right on time, and my mother in law, Lorri was waiting there for us. Since I was already registered, we were able to go into our room right away. We met our amazing nurse, Tiffany, and went through all the paperwork with her. We signed about a billion forms and learned about all the risks and different scenarios that I could possibly face. I knew immediately how lucky I was to have Tiffany as my nurse! She was perfect. Funny and easy going, but super informative and she gave me my space and didn't hover in the room more than she had too. She was also really great at maintaining my privacy, always asking if I needed space from my family who was visiting. We even had a code word! If i ever needed people to leave to room so I could get some rest or just be alone I would just ask Tiffany for some ice cream! haha and then she knew to get everyone out. Haha, I never had to use my code word, since my family is awesome, but it was so nice to know that if i needed to, she was there for me. Tiffany really was such a blessing in the whole delivery process.

At 9:00 I got my IV in and it hurt SO BAD. seriously, getting my IV in was the most painful thing to happen to me all day, if you can believe that. Tiffany checked to see how far along I was and I was only at a 2. Right after that, around 10, Dr. Huff came in and broke my water. I was so nervous that it was going to hurt a lot, but honestly I didn't even feel it. It just felt so strange afterwards, like i was peeing my pants. So that was weird. But right after that, the pitocin kicked in, and the fact that my water was now broken, things started happening so fast. My contractions got stronger very quickly, but I powered through for a few hours. To keep my mind off of things, my family and I played cards. It was so fun, and definitely helped keep my spirits up when things got super painful.

After a few hours, the contractions were getting passed the point of being tolerable. I had told myself that I wasn't going to suffer through the pain any longer than I had to. In my opinion, we have modern medicine for a reason, and there is no point in being in pain when there is a wonderful option for having relief. I wanted to enjoy my labor and delivery, and I knew that if I was crying from the pain, and being exhausted from trying to get though the contractions, I would not enjoy it. So at 12:30 I told Tif that I was ready for my epidural. She immediately went and got the anesthesiologist, and they asked my family to leave the room. Alex was allowed to stay, and the Dr. started to prep my back. He had me lay on my side and Alex sat in front of me, and held my hand. I was really nervous about getting the epidural put in, but it was over before I knew it. I barely even felt any pain. Everyone says that it feels like a bee sting, but it just felt like a regular shot. A tiny pinch, but no long lasting pain whatsoever. The dr. finished up and I started feeling relief almost instantly. My family came back in and I told them how great I was now feeling. The epidural was PERFECT. I couldn't feel my contractions AT ALL, but I could still lift my legs, and move around in the bed to get comfortable. My family left to go get lunch, and I took a nap for a good hour and a half, and it was just what I needed after our early start that morning.

playing cards and having contractions!

Tiffany came back in at 3:30 after I had woken up to see how far along I was. I was so glad that she just let me sleep, and waited until I was awake to check me. By this time I was already dilated to a 6!! Tiffany was AMAZED that my body had responded to the pitocin so well, and the epidural hadn't seemed to slow down my progress at all. She upped my pitocin, and said that she would be back in a few hours to check me again. Nothing much happened between then and 6:00pm. We just watched a little tv, and talked. My whole family was there and it was nice to have people around to help pass the time.

Around 6 I started having a bit more pain, and called tiffany in to ask her if maybe I could get a boost in my epidural. She went to call the anesthesiologist, and then came back in and checked to see how dilated I was, and was shocked when she realized I was at a 10! She said that she could feel the baby's head. Apparently, the pain I had been feeling was not my epidural wearing off. I was feeling the urge to push! At this point, things get a little blurry for me. Things started happening so fast. Tiffany ran out in the hall and called for Dr. Huff, and of a sudden there were about 8 nurses in my room. Some transforming my nice bed, into a pushing stirrup device, and some were prepping the warming table and getting it ready for baby.  Dr. huff came in at 6:10 and wanted to do a practice push. I had my mom hold one leg, and Alex held my other leg, and Mother in Law was there for moral support. I was so glad that they were all there. Well, my 'practice push' ended up being a real push. Her head started to come out, and I had to get an episiotomy. After that I pushed two more times, and everyone kept telling me how great I was doing. I don't really remember much about it. I just know that I kept my eyes closed the whole time and just found my zone and pushed like my life depended on it. She was born after those two pushes and I couldn't believe how quickly it was over. I started pushing at 6:15 and she was born at 6:35.

It was so amazing having her placed on my chest, but like I said, I don't really remember much from about 6:00-7:00... it's all a blur. But mostly, they had Alex cut her cord, then took her to get cleaned off while I got my stitches. The nurses helped get me cleaned up and put my bed back together. Then finally I was able to hold her. She was so beautiful. She wasn't too squishy, or bruised or cone headed. Her lips were perfection. But above everything, I could not get over how much hair she had! It was so so cute! I just enjoyed snuggling her and my family was taking pictures and videos, but I was just in my own little world. I couldn't stop staring at her. We did skin to skin for about an hour, and then all of the rest of the family came and so did our friends Mark and Hope, and Ali and Andrew. Everyone was so in love with her. It was so fun because as soon as she was born we turned on the Diamondbacks game, and she watched her first baseball game! To top off a perfect day, the d-backs won! What more could we ask for ;)

It was so great to celebrate with everyone, but I was happy when it was finally just me and Alex and Izzy. We just couldn't stop staring at her. It felt so natural to hold her and kiss her cheeks. I about melted into a big puddle of love when I watched Alex hold her and kiss her. We snuggled all together for a while, and then finally got some shut eye after a long, amazing, perfect, hard, wonderful day.

At 6:35 pm on June 4th, a 7lb5oz 20in long baby was born. And my heart was so full.

Dr. Huff delivered my youngest brother, and my youngest brother in law, and now he delivered my baby girl! 

i'm so sad this picture is blurry. i still love it though.