jake's first father's day.

wanted to give a shout out to mr. menz for being who he is.

these past two weeks, he's been what i call a "well oiled machine", as we've settled into blindly tried to figure out parenthood.  he was an amazing support during labor and delivery and couldn't have been more present.

most nights, i wish i had his patience.  most days, i wish i had his stamina.

he's a dynamite diaper changer and superb swaddler.

and he sure loves his girls...me, drew and remy.  and i love the way he calls drew his little sweetie poops.  with a dad like that, how could you not be a daddy's girl?

a card from drew | talking with daddy | daddy's girl | that's his nose and lips.


sorry to leave you hangin'...

so, i left off talking about the contractions...

i forgot to mention that somewhere in there my nurse told me that my doctor was "in house".  yay!! i was very relieved my doctor was there and she'd be delivering our little one.  then, nurse jess came in and told me she was in an emergency c-section then had to go to a different hospital to deliver another little one.  okay, fair enough.  we have plenty of time and she will be back.  so in came the on.call ob [who just so happened to be my friend's doctor...loved her].  she was cool, calm and collected.  checked me.  i was at a 3 and 100% effaced.  and my cervix was completely to the front.  she also confirmed that i was 'grossly' ruptured ...but i could have told her that. we were certainly having a baby.  i thought, ok.  i know how this goes.  we might have a baby by lunch time.  then i asked jess about that epidural again, because then things got pretty serious.

i've been trying to explain serious, intense, full.blown contractions to people who have never experienced them and that is very difficult.  then, a fellow blogger described them perfectly.  she said, "i felt like a giant had picked me up, given me a wicked indian rugburn all over my stomach and back, and then kicked me with steel-toed boots just for good measure".  and even that doesn't explain it fully.  while i wasn't necessarily prepared to handle contractions this intense [i had planned on that epidural], i tried all the techniques i could think of.  the 'hee-hee-hoos', the focal points, counter pressure.  nothing worked.  all i could do to get through them is lean on my side, grab the rail of the bed and move my legs in a motion similar to riding a bicycle.  and just when you get relief from one...you can't help but think about how another one is just two short minutes away.  

nurse jess came in to let me know that both anesthesiologists were still in surgery.  i'm pretty sure i cried at that point and maybe let out a few french words.  poor jake was trying so hard to make things better, but there is just nothing on this green earth that he could have done to help.  jess informed me that she needed to place an iv line, at this point.  typically, i hate this part.  but, i have to say...having her poke at me twice to try to find a vein almost felt good compared to those contractions.  when she couldn't get a good vein, she brought in another nurse who had to poke me twice as well.  and while i had absolutely no concept of time [remember, we haven't been to sleep yet], we believe i got my iv somewhere around 2:30 or 3 am.

the next hour to half hour was a total blur.  more contractions, tears, swear words, breathing...begging jess to go wrap up one of those surgeries.  and then finally....he walks in!!  an anesthesiologist sent from up above.  foreign as he ever could be and i couldn't understand a word he was saying, but i had watched enough episodes of a baby story to know how these things went.  i didn't feel the giant needle one bit between my contractions [which are a gazillion time worse when you're sitting up and someone is telling you to sit still].  all i remember is that he told me i would have one more contraction and then i shouldn't feel a thing.  and he was right.  and i was in heaven.  and i could have kissed him.

again, not sure what time that was but we're thinking sometime around maybe 3:30 or 4 am.  jess wanted to check me and place my catheter.  i was at a 9!  we decided to make some phone calls to parents to let them know that we were probably going to have a baby sooner than we thought!  jess told me she'd check me again in an hour and we'd go from there.  oh, and my doctor was still back at the other hospital at this point.  after making some phone calls i started to feel an e n o r m o u s amount of pressure in my behind.  the only possible way to explain it is like you have to go #2 like no other, but a bathroom is nowhere to be found so you're doing everything you can to hold it.  i started feeling this pressure regularly [like contractions].   and they were just teetering on being painful.  jess told me she would check me sooner than an hour unless i started to feel constant pressure.  well, just as soon as she left the room, that pressure went from intermittent to constant and i experienced that 'need to push now' feeling.  and the more pressure i felt, the more that pressure became painful.  painful?  didn't i get an epidural?   i swear.  i pushed that epidural button as often as i could, but...nothing. 

jess scurried back in, and checked me...and i was at a 10!  problem was, my doctor was still at the other hospital but soon to be on her way.  i was aware of the driving distance from one to the other and i really did not think there was time.  i think jess could read the desperation on my face and all of the sudden there was another anesthesiologist in my room.  i'm not sure exactly what she gave me but it was through my epidural and was supposed to be more localized to the nether region...specifically the perineum.  in fact, i think it was called perineal anesthesia.  she gave me the one dose, and nothing.  so much pressure.  she gave me a second dose, and still nothing.  now, might be a good time to also note that i could totally move my legs at this point.  i had complete control of them, which made me nervous.  i was afraid i was going to feel everything.

the pressure continued to intensify and i asked the nurse if i could push.  in fact, i pretty much just begged her to have the house ob come in and deliver our baby.  i didn't care who it was at that point.  i would have even taken that anesthesiologist that i couldn't understand.  finally, she let me do a few 'practice pushes' [it's tricky to get the hang of that pushing stuff].  suddenly, jake became leg holder and lead counter.  he would count 1-10 three times during contractions [which i could feel].  i think this all started happening somewhere around 5 am.  then, finally...somewhere around 5:30 or so...in comes my doctor!!  in a total fog and state of exhaustion...i pushed for about 30 minutes, practically sleeping in between.  i had almost forgotten that we were about to get the most awesome surprise of our lives.  was he a she or was she a he?  the last leg of the delivery went pretty quickly.  i remember one big push, then a little snip [yep]...then out she came!  

my doctor shouted, "it's a girl!".  and jake and i errupted into laughter and tears.  we were so surprised.  we were both pretty convinced it was a boy.  a girl!!  she was here.  exactly four weeks early.  at exactly 6 am on the nose.  she was ready to be in the world.  everyone asked us her name and i felt terrible telling them that we didn't know.  throughout my pregnancy, jake and i said that if it's a girl, and she's an itty bitty thing...we'd name her drew olivia [for some reason, we felt it would fit her].  and when they put her on the scale and she tipped it off at a whopping 5 lbs. 2 oz., we knew...drew olivia she was!

and that's the story of how she came into the world.   

nicu nurse checking her out. 
and baby makes three.
my dad was ready for a second grand.baby
p.s. we did not get the name drew from jessica simpson.  we've gotten that questions a lot.  drew was on our list far before maxwell drew was born!  



drew's story [a long post].

i will try to make this as brief as possible, while including all the details.  i'm actually kind of doing this for myself because i don't want to forget any of it!  thing is, a little piece of me is sad the labor and delivery is over.  in the moment, i couldn't w a i t for it to be over, but now....i want to go back.  and it boggles my mind that she's been ours for over a week now.  scary how time can stand still and fly all at once.

her story | so, my in-laws were kind enough to come over the evening of june 2nd to spend the night and then spend all day on sunday, the 3rd, helping to deep clean our house.  that evening, we made a bon fire and relaxed before going to bed around 11 ish [i had just taken the procardia]. at some point in the evening, my father.in.law said "you can't go into labor tonight, i need some good sleep".  he should have knocked on wood.  i remember that as soon as i got in bed, i felt a "pop" in my belly.  i kind of thought that it was weird, but thought maybe it was a different kick or something.  i fell asleep, and then about 15 minutes later i wake up to....a gush.  i thought to myself, "certainly, i did not just pee myself that much".  then, my heart started racing because i knew exactly what it was.  i turned on the light and woke jake up.

jake was just a little out of it!!  he just stared at me for a little bit and then asked if i was okay.  to which i replied, "are you okay?  we need to go to the hospital!"  he woke up my in.laws to let them know that this was the real thing and i called my doctor to explain the situation.  we had originally planned on delivering at a brand new hospital really close to our house, but my ob wanted me to go to a hospital with a nicu [just in case].  so off we went.  oh, but don't worry...first we had to pack that bag that we never packed and...get gas.

and the contractions begin...

i tried timing them on my way to the hospital, but then i gave up and i realized that it might not matter since my water broke.  at this point, the contractions were slightly worse than menstrual cramps and definitely manageable.  we got to the hospital and had to do some serious walking because the main entrance was closed.  upon entering, we had to pick up a red phone, like you see in the movies, and talk to some voice somewhere in the air so we could be let in.  it was funny to hear jake fumble his words a bit; "hi.  my wife is, well...in labor and we need in".  so we gain "access", make the long trek to the side of the hospital we need and then up to labor and delivery.  all the while, contracting more and feeling like the baby could not have been any lower.

getting to the hospital late at night is odd.  this is the second time we've done this [remember the false alarm].  we approached the nurses station and they all happened to be eating.  they looked at me with full mouths and said, "can we help you?".  to which i replied, "i am fairly certain my water broke".  jess [who turned out to be the sweet sweet wonder nurse] hopped up and said, "let's go check things out".  and we were off to room 12.

unless you're unconscious or bleeding from the head, nothing at the hospital moves swiftly.  before even being checked, you must 1) change, 2) leave a urine sample, 3) wait..., 4) hand over your insurance and license, 5) wait..., 6) answer a gazillion questions and 7) sign your life away and wait... through all that waiting, the painful contractions came on faster than you can say "ouch".  and before i knew it, i was crawling up the bed in pain.  nurse jess asked me if i was an epidural kind of gal, to which i replied, "let's just say that i will take it just as soon as you're allowed to give it to me".  i figured it would then be just a snap of nurse jess' fingers and the anesthesiologist would come skipping on in.  very few of my friends who have had kiddos talked much about the contractions.  and if they did, they said they had pretty much gotten an epidural before it got really bad.  i figured i'd be the same.  no.  apparently, the almost full moon that night had caused quite the influx of emergency situations at the hospital because both anesthesiologists were in surgery.  and i was just that lady in labor.  [breathe in, breathe out] it's okay...i can wait.  ......or can i? 

to be continued...
 ....i have a baby to feed.


some quick answers.

thought i'd answer a few questions i've gotten lately...before i'm able to sit down and write the story of how drew made her appearance.
  • did you get off the medicine? - no.  i was exactly 36 weeks and was to continue the medicine until thursday, june 7th.  i had just taken it that evening, before we went to the hospital.
  • did your water break? - yep.  no mistaking it this time!
  • did you have a c-section? - nope.
  • did you get an epidural? - yes.
  • are you breast feeding? - yes, but i will go into this more in another post.  it's been quite the process.
  • is she considered a premie? - miss drew is what they call a "late term premie" [36 weeks]
  • did she need any special attention? - just took a little time to get that body temperature up before we could really snuggle her.
  • what did she weigh when you left the hospital? - 4 lbs. 14 oz., then at the doctor the following wednesday, she weighed 4 lbs. 14.5 oz. and then again that friday...she was the same.  last report, on monday, she was 5 lbs. 1 oz.  so close to that birth weight!
  • what percentile does that put her in? - miss drew is a peanut.  1st percentile for weight and 3rd for length.  thing is, i can't remember if that is compared to other 36 weekers, or other babies who were 4 days old.  either way, we just want to see her grow on her own curve.
these past few days we've taken many trips to the pediatrician, and our first family walk.  we've enjoyed having jake home for a week and a half and we've done a little tummy time.

 i promise to sit down and write the birth story 
within the next two days.



newborn pics

who doesn't like pictures of babies?

i happen to think that drew is precious, so i'm in love with these perfect images by amy over at glory photography.  amy is my sister.in.law's sister.in.law [if you can follow that] and she has been amazing.  we were lucky to have her take our little drewbie's pictures.



no words.

i can't believe she's here and she's ours.
it's no joke that you think every little coo, cry, smile and toot is the most precious thing ever.
i can't get enough.
i love every ounce of her more than i thought possible.
and jake...he's amazing.
and the second he held her i loved him even more.
such a proud daddy.

just a few things to share today and then stay tuned for other posts about all the questions:  the birth, sleep, breastfeeding and all that.

clockwise from top left:  daddy time, drew's cousin hudson, totally in love, a tiger snooze on our first day home.
and here are some amazing things that my gal pal, audrey, made for me.  i can't wait to frame them for the nursery.  she rocks my socks off.  and no, she still doesn't have an etsy page or website :(



we made.a.menz

 our itty bitty baby girl.


5 lbs. 2 oz. 18 in.

born at 6 am

on 6.3.12


our perfect baby GIRL… drew olivia menz 6.3.12 5 lbs 2 oz of itsy bitsy baby 18 inches of sweetness she just couldn't wait until july to make us happy. but our 36 weeker is healthy! more to come soon. I'm blogging as I nurse (hence the 3 am post) and I can't get a pic to load from my iPhone.


no baby...yet

baby is still staying put and we're just 2 days away from 36 weeks.

i had my weekly appointment yesterday, so here's the details:

-well, i said "hi" to my doctor as she was scurrying out for an emergency c-section.
-that's ok, because she'd be there for me.
-so - i had to see the nurse practitioner [who i love] instead.
-got checked [not as bad this time] and...
-2 cm and still 90% effaced.
-officially off bed rest sunday!
-waiting to make the call on the procardia until i can see my actual doctor on thursday.
-the n.p. didn't want to make that call without being checked out by my doc.

my feeling...once i get up and moving, things might move right along.  i'm still contracting on the procardia but only regularly if i'm up and about.

it's june...and i think we're going to have a baby this month!!!

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