Wesley's Timeline

Lilypie Second Birthday tickers

Saturday, February 27, 2010

1 Month Old!

My baby is one month old (according to the 4 week lunar cycle anyway) today! I can not believe that just four weeks ago they handed me my son for the first time in the hospital. We have all learned so much about one another in the last four weeks...

I want to remember each little thing that you do Wesley and I know that I won't. But I thought I would try to document some of the things that you are doing right now so I won't forget.

You have never known a world where you were not loved by more than two adults. In fact, your maternal grandmother has been with us waiting for your arrival since Christmas. She was in the delivery room for your arrival for which I will always be grateful. It was only afterwards that she told me that you are the first baby she has ever seen delivered as she did not have a mirror to see either my sister or I. What a blessing to have her here.

Relaxing on grandma...

Yeah... we like relaxing on grandma!

Your maternal grandfather came this past week and got to meet you as well... how tiny you look in his big hands.

Look how little you look!

I look forward to taking many more pictures of you in his hands to see you growing!

Grandpa Doty with his first grandson

Both grandma and grandpa drove away towards home in Indiana on Friday morning. It was certainly hard to let them go.

Your aunt Sarah and cousin Raley also came for this past week. Raley was very sweet with you frequently checking on you when you cried and patting you while you slept. I can't wait to see the two of you growing up together, no doubt a "recipe for disaster" as the years go on!

Meeting your aunt Sarah and cousin Raley (while being supervised by Albie the westie)

Raley loving on Auntie Jenna and Wesley

Mommy dropped Sarah and Raley off at the airport this morning... and for the first time since your arrival it was just mommy, daddy and you in the house. But... I think we're ready for it! And in just two weeks your paternal grandparents will arrive to shower you with even more love!

Now, for the things you can do...

You are a great nurser. You had a little bit of trouble in the hospital but the day we got home it was like a switch went off in your head and you have become a champ. You have gained weight (we will see on Tuesday how much since your last checkup). You are filling out. I love your little milk tummy that was not there when you were born. You are not incredibly patient when it comes to waiting for the breast to be yeilded. But as soon as it is in front of you, you instantly quiet down. Sometimes you like to take your time latching on and sometimes you bite down with ferocity. At this point I am practicing on-demand feeding rather than trying to pressure you and me into a schedule. There will be plenty of time for that in coming months. I am so proud of you and your breastfeeding achievements.
You sleep for short and long stretches. The longest you go is four hours but those are very infrequent. Three is more common at night and two hour stretches during the day.

You have quite a few periods during the day that mommy calls your "lucid" periods. During these you look around. You love to stick your feet straight out from your body, especially while lying on your back. You also still pull your legs in tight to you (what we call the frog leg position) especially while getting your diaper changed because it makes it more challenging for the changer!

Speaking of diapers, you are filling a lot of them! You frequently "announce" the need for a clean diaper with a loud noise that accompanies your dirtying of the diaper... the noise just makes me laugh, even when it comes literally seconds after placing a clean diaper on you.

You have just started really focusing on faces and objects. You had a staring contest this morning with the hanging animals in your bouncy seat. I'm afraid they won. But you put up a good fight!

"They are staring at me!"

You are reaching for objects already in your bassinet, a feat that both of your grandmothers have said you are awfully young to be doing. We have hung toys on the edge of your bassinet and then watched as you focused all of your might on reaching out and moving them. And the frequency with which they move lets us know that it isn't sheer coincidence.

You smile the most beautiful smiles, usually while sleeping or nursing. You also have an adorable half smile where only one side of your mouth lifts, almost like a smirk. I can't wait to see you smile at us.... that will be a real thrill.

The hematoma on your head has caused us concern but all of the healthcare professionals tell us that there is no need. You were a trooper during your ultrasound and the bump is slowly going down (now it is a bump with a divet in the middle... but the edges will eventually go down too). You have also survived the first round of flu that hit our house (and both your daddy and mommy) this week. Somehow you miraculously did not get sick (knock on wood and say a prayer that you won't still come down with it) and were very accomodating with a mommy who was loopy on anti-nauseau medication. You even got your first bottle a few days shy of today so that we could avoid giving you breast milk tainted with the drug as it made you sleepy. And, like everything, you took the bottle like a champ.

You are a master of funny faces already... a master.

"Arrgh, matey!"


You will sleep for short periods in your bassinet. But your favorite place to sleep, by far, is in someone's arms. And I admit, I let you do it alot. Because I know how quickly these tiny baby days are flying by and I want to cherish every single minute. The laundry and the housework in general will still be there... Let's snuggle now.

Eating your sleeve... but looking adorable in your 0-3month sleeper and hat that now fit!

Sleeping on daddy's chest... right where we want to be! (taken just a few minutes ago)

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

The Past Week

Here we are, all wrapped up in the blanket sent to us by Reid's cousins Joanie and Keith... and he slept in it last night! Thank you!

Sorry that it has been almost a week since my last update... what can I say except time flies when you have a newborn? And how long do you get to call a baby a newborn? The first month? The first three months?

At any rate, last week we had his 2 and a half week check up on Thursday. The great news is that at that check up the pediatrician generally wants babies to have regained their birth weight (which for Wesley would have been getting back to 6lbs 14oz). He not only did that, he surpassed it! He weighed 7lbs 4 oz! What that means is that breastfeeding is obviously going well. I have had no trouble with him latching on or with production or pain. I know for a fact that I am very lucky!

On the downside, the hematoma on the side of his head had not really gone down. So we went ahead and scheduled an ultrasound for Friday morning just to have it scanned and to make sure that nothing else is wrong. The ultrasound went off without a hitch (he amazingly enough slept through the whole thing) and the radiologist really did not think there would be any trouble. We should hear from the pediatrician sometime later this week with the results. In the mean time Reid thinks that it is going down... since I look at it all day every day I can't be sure. Either way, if it is indeed a hematoma it will go down in its own time (which according to the other pediatrician in the office can take up to 8 weeks).

All wrapped up on the table for his ultrasound... he had lots of gel on his head by the end but didn't seem fazed by the process at all!

Wesley has also had a few full baths now... and he likes them! Certainly more than he liked the sponge baths on the table!

In our first "real" bath!

In other news, my sister Sarah and neice Raley flew in on Sunday to spend the week with us and to meet Wesley. Raley has mainly ignored Wesley though she has given him a few sweet pats and brought him things from time to time. We are having fun having the two of them in the same room with three dogs! There is always something exciting going on! And tomorrow my dad flies in to add to the excitement. Of course that also means that my mom will be leaving in just two short days... but I'm going to try not to think too much about that now!

Three generations... mom, Raley and Sarah!

Sweet, dreaming baby...

Aunt Sarah with nephew Raley!

Grandma and Raley reading together

Wesley looking very grown up for a three week old I think!

And a gratuitous adorable sleeping baby picture!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Up Close and Personal

What can I say? I love the macro setting on cameras!
"What? You want close-ups of me?"

"Oh, okay... as long as you let me hold your finger..."

An up close mouth...

And up close eyes and nose...

And finally a full, up-close face... Adorable!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Happy Valentine's Day

Happy Valentine's Day Everyone!
But especially, happy valentine's day to two important men in my life... I love you Reid and Wesley!

Reid, watching you with our son makes me fall even more in love with you. Thanks for being a terrific daddy!

Thursday, February 11, 2010


Mainly for the grandparents in Indianapolis, here are a few pictures from the last few days:

What is that lurking in the bassinet?

On closer inspection, you can see that there are two of them...

Aha! They are feet! This is the position that had us fooled into thinking that he was still head up at 35 and 36 weeks... I had his butt wedged under my ribs on the right side and one or both of those heels wedged across my middle into my left side for most of the final weeks of pregnancy! He still really likes to lay with his feet stretched out all the way in front (or above) him!

Mommy with her baby boy... I am most definitely in love.

Mommy with one of her other babies... Winston. In case anyone was wondering, Winston's bloodwork came back completely normal, which means that he most likely just has epilepsy. We are going to hold off on putting him on medication as he has only had the three seizures and all of them were "mild" in comparison with what they could be. The medication has potential side effects so we really only want to give it to him if he NEEDS it. So, for now, we'll just wait and see and hope he doesn't have another one for a long time...

Oh so comfy in our bassinet!

Rocking our hoodie and matching cargo pants on our way to the pediatrician's office yesterday. We found out that Wes has gained back all but two ounces of his birth weight (he was 6lbs 12oz yesterday, 6lbs 14oz at birth). This is a great sign meaning that breast feeding is going really well! The doctor also looked at the big bump on his head and stated that she still feels like it is a hematoma that will go down on its own. But they did take a head circumference and if it hasn't gone down at all by next week we'll do a scan just to make sure that nothing else is a miss. It certainly doesn't seem to be affecting him in the slightest as he is growing, alert and super cute!

Here is our serious thinking (okay, sleeping) baby... and you can sort of see the bump that I'm talking about on the left side of his head.

And I love these up close pictures of baby parts... baby fingers and baby ears. And he is starting to fill out all of that extra skin he was born with!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Wesley's First Doctor Visit

Wesley had his first pediatrician's visit this past Thursday (yes, the blogging is going a little more slowly than it has been in the past).

As it was our first trip out of the house since coming home, we had to get all dressed up! Here we are in our safari outfit, and crocheted booties! He was rocking it out in his car seat and ready to go!

Wait a minute! No one said coming to the doctor's officce meant getting undressed! We HATE getting undressed! This was just before we got his weight taken. His birth weight was 6lbs 14oz. He weighed 6lbs 7oz when we left the hospital and he was down to 6lbs 5oz at this appointment. All of that is quite typical. We hope that he will have gained weight by the next time he is weighed (and with how much he is filling his diapers I will find it hard to believe if he hasn't).

Getting all of our vitals checked out... everything looked good, with the exception of a bump of fluid on his head. More on that later in the post...

Here we are with mommy, much happier all bundled up! Mommy also met with her midwife at this visit and had her blood pressure meds upped. I am happy to report that as of this writing the medicine seems to be working and hopefuuly as postpartum continues my levels will also continue to settle.
As I said above, the only thing of concern is the liquid-filled bump on the left side of his head. We are not sure if it was formed during the last few weeks of my pregnancy when his head was low in my pelvis or if it was formed during the birth process. But as the rest of the swelling on his head has gone down the bump has not. And as Reid and I are proud card carrying members of the over-protective and paranoid parent society, we called the pediatrician today and made an appointment for a check up tomorrow rather than waiting for another week and two days until his two week appt. She will probably take one look at it and say, "yeah, it's fine and will go away on its own." But that will at least give us peace of mind. And... we might even get to sneak a peak at his weight while we're there!

All snuggled in and ready to head back home!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Wesley's Birth Story

I know... it took awhile to write, especially as for half of it I had Wesley laying on my right arm! But here it is. Just to warn you, don't read it if you don't want to know at least a few intimate medical details about me/Wes' birth. I want all of these details here because I don't want to forget them but you may or may not want to know them. Okay, there... you've been warned.

Wesley Isaiah’s Birth Story

Little of this pregnancy has gone according to how I thought it would (the finding out we were pregnant, that it is a boy, that my blood pressure put me in the hospital once before his delivery and put me on bed rest for a month). Wesley’s birth was no exception. And yet, like all of the other pieces of the pregnancy it ended up being exactly what we needed.

Right after we checked in... don't we look eager?

Wesley’s labor started on Friday, January 29th. Because of my high blood pressure it had been decided that we were going to induce labor at 38 weeks rather than allowing things to take their natural course (which could mean a potentially life threatening spike in my blood pressure for Wesley). Jayne, our nurse midwife, felt that by 38 weeks he would be well developed, completely in full term and ready (if not willing) to be born. As my cervix was not dilated or effaced the plan was to check into the maternity ward Friday morning and start a drug that would “ripen” my cervix (I love that term! It always brings to mind a peach in a brown paper bag!). I took my first dose, a tiny quarter of a pill, at 11am. Just as the nurse was about to take me off the monitors to let me walk around, which often helps things progress, Wesley’s heartbeat started dipping after every contraction. A normal healthy heartbeat is between 130 and 160... After my contractions his beats were dipping to around 100, with an occasional dip even lower. We tried various positions and found that on my right side his rates didn’t drop… laying in any other position did. So… from about 1pm I laid on my right side and was on the monitors to keep an eye on his levels.

Because the cervix drug is given orally they were not inclined to give me a second dose (as there is no easy way to stop the effects once it is in your system). So, we switched gears and they hooked me up to a low amount drip of pitocin. Jayne checked me about 5pm and found that I had dilated at the most 2cm and was mildly effaced. Because of Wes’ heartbeat drops coupled with my history, the doctor on call decided to turn of the medicine, in order to let us “all get a good night’s rest” and we would start again in the morning… Good night’s rest, yeah right! J I did get to come off the monitors for about an hour in the evening when Reid and I were allowed to walk around the hospital which was really lovely! They also took me off the monitors for about an hour and a half in the middle of the night which was the best sleep I got. And though I was no longer on the pitocin I was still having contractions which made it seem like we were moving in a good direction. On a pain scale, however, I was placing the contractions at a 1 or 2 out of 10 and was able to sleep through most of them.

Morning came. I got to take a shower and watch the news (and eat breakfast… my midwife knows I like my food!). Then it was back onto the monitors and we started the pitocin drip at 7:15. Miraculously Wesley’s heartbeat was not dipping after contractions and my blood pressure was being very good and staying in the range it was supposed to. Again, I was rating the pain in the 1s and 2s, thinking “wow, if this is labor, I am handling it great!”

Jayne checked me at 8:30 and with little change from the night before she decided to “move things along” by breaking my water. No going back now! Wesley was being born one way or the other today! The actual breaking of the water surprised me because it didn’t hurt at all. I think part of the reason for that is apparently Wes’ head (and thus his fluid membrane) was very low. At any rate, we were in business!

Reid told me afterwards that he saw Jayne at this point also turn up my pitocin. That I did not see but within 10 minutes of having my water broken, my labor really swung into full speed! My contractions were coming like clockwork every 2 minutes, each lasting around 40 second and leaving me very little time to recuperate before the next one came on. They were now in the 8 to 10 range of pain. During them I tried diligently to use the breathing and relaxation techniques that I had read about and studied. But through most of them all I could really do was scrunch my eyes shut, curl up my toes and try my best to crush every bone in Reid’s hand… he took it like a man and never once complained! J No one had told me that I could be in any other position besides on my right side and I just knew that I could not labor all day with those contractions and not being allowed to move. I tried as hard as I thought I could to get through as many as I thought I could before asking Reid to get the nurse to discuss an epidural. It was, perhaps, 40 minutes. I really do think that had I had more natural progression of labor (ie, not 0 to 100 mph in 2 seconds) I could have handled the pain more effectively. Of course, I’ll never know.
The anesthesiologist arrived about 15 minutes later and his first words were “Now there is a woman who looks like she needs an epidural.” They got me sat up, with my feet on a chair and thank the Lord they did not make Reid leave the room like they do in some hospitals. I honestly could not have made it through what happened next without Reid’s hand to crush.

Laying on my side with oxygen... mastering a smile between contractions

It took the anesthesiologist (whose name was Yodi and who was a good southern boy that I am sure is really nice in any other circumstance) almost thirty minutes to get the epidural drip in. This is a procedure that is supposed to take five. He had to stick my back three separate times. Apparently, I have a “vascular back” (his words, not mine). So though he got the first two in, both of them nicked blood vessels. So, when he tested them with whatever drug he test the placement with they made me horribly dizzy and queasy feeling. For the third stick he actually started a whole new kit and moved up two vertebrae. He told me after the birth that if he had not been able to get it in that try he was going to suggest other pain medication options. He said that my epidural was one of the hardest he has ever done. Hooray for me! And of course, through this all, my pitocin is still pumping and I am still having those massively strong contractions every two minutes… all while trying to hold perfectly still so as to not have the man poking needles in my back paralyze me for life! It was also during this process that I started dry heaving, again difficult to do with little to no movement.

Once he got the epidural placed, Jayne checked me again. This was probably about 10:15 to 10:30, though time meant very little to me. I had progressed from 2 to 5 cm. At this point I had Reid call my mom and tell her that labor was going quickly and that she needed to come to the hospital now. Yodi gave me a drug through the epidural that was supposed to quicken the pain relief as I was still feeling a fair amount of my contractions. Unfortunately, it worked too well and I started to lose feeling in my chest, with tingling in my arms. The worst was that it started to effect my lungs and I was having trouble taking a deep breath. So… he came back and gave me a different drug to counteract the first one. He ended up giving me two doses of that drug in order to get my breathing and feeling back to my upper body.

By the time we had sorted out the “extra” drugs going through my epidural, it was 11:30 and Jayne checked me again… I was 9+ and ready to push. It seemed surreal that I had progressed from 2 cm to 9+ in the span of three hours but here we were. Even Jayne commented that this was all going a lot faster than she had thought it would. My mom made it to the room just as I was about to start pushing which I am so thankful for! Reid held one leg, the nurse Debbie held my other and my mom supported my head so that I didn’t have to hold my neck up for each of the pushes.

About midpoint through pushing, they turned off both the epidural and the pitocin. I was contracting well and strongly on my own and I wanted more feeling as we got close. Jayne brought in the mirror so that I could see what was happening which I really appreciated as it made it more real and doable to see what needed to be done. At some point they had put the monitor on his head, though I honestly do not remember that happening at all. I pushed for about an hour and forty-five minutes. The last five to ten pushes were intense, making me whimper in between contractions because I wanted to keep pushing. But Jayne, of course, knew what she was doing and only let me push during good, solid contractions so that I stretched. In fact, I only had three very tiny tears, all of them repairable by a single stitch each. Thank you Jayne!

And with a final push, Wesley made his arrival into the world at 1:14pm. They pulled him out and held him above my chest, giving him some fierce rubs. We whipped my oxygen mask off and held it over his mouth while Reid cut the cord. Wesley’s nose had been really smooshed, either by the birth or the last couple of weeks riding against my tailbone, and he was crying but in short little gasps rather than strong cries. So, they whisked him over to the warmer where another nurse attended to him. I watched from across the room as they gave him air and then put a tube down his throat to suction out all that he had swallowed into his lungs in delivery (which was a great deal). As soon as she suctioned him, he let out a big and angry cry and I breathed a big deep breath. One of my greatest fears going into an early delivery was what if his lungs weren’t as developed as they should be and they had to send him to Denver to be treated. With that big cry it made that possibility very unlikely.

Just after birth on the warmer getting oxygen

Most of the aftermath of giving birth is a bit of a blur. I delivered the placenta which Jayne showed to me… it’s really pretty darn cool. She did my stitches and then they handed me my baby. They let us keep him in our room while we stayed at the hospital, taking him out only to do periodic assessments, a bath and a hearing test in the nursery. Reid went with Wes for his bath and hearing test around five in the evening and I took a quick nap.

We spent two more nights in the hospital, checking out Monday morning. We had a few successful feedings in the hospital and few unsuccessful feeds (he didn’t nurse for an almost 8 hour stretch because he was sleeping on both Sunday and Monday, so I expressed colostrum and we fed it to him via a dropper). All of our nurses were great but I had particularly effective nurse named Denise who was Wesley’s night nurse both Saturday and Sunday night. She really helped me, answering many questions about nursing and Wes’ care. We got home about noon on Monday and something clicked in his little brain (and probably in my body as well) because he has done a terrific job of latching on since.

And that is our birth story… I certainly didn’t expect my labor to last only 4 hours and 45 minutes from the time my water broke. But it did. I had taken things to do during labor to pass the time… none of them were needed. It was fast. It was hard. And it was perfect for Wesley and I. His heart rate never dropped once on Saturday and my blood pressure stayed right where it belonged. And in the end, Reid and I were left with the most precious person we had ever laid eyes on. We are so grateful for the people and facilities that cared for us. It was not the labor and delivery that I had “planned” but, for us, it was perfect.

The happy family (please ignore my hair!)

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Random Pics of Wesley

Since I don't know when I'll be able to write a full blog post I thought I'd just post pictures and let them speak for most of our last two days. Pediatrician's visit to follow.

I love this picture... just look how little his fingers are! Of course this picture also shows how swollen my fingers still are. I am still battling with my blood pressure... not sure why but it is actually higher now than it was when I was on bedrest and pregnant. So, we've upped my medication amounts and are hoping that will bring my numbers down. Prayers/good thoughts are appreciated! :)

Here we are, ready for safari and showing off our adorable booties that great-aunt Amy gave us!

This is one of our favorite looks... burrito baby!

Did you know it takes two parents to change a diaper? Well... for the first especially dirty one it did!

"Baby Power!"

"Will I make them dance?"

One of our favorite places to sleep... on mommy!

See? I do exist in pictures! It's just that most that have been taken involve either me without a shirt on (and thus not quite appropriate for the internet) or I am doing this in them! And yes, Wesley is laying on his side. When we put him in the bassinet he was on his back. He has now done this, on his own several times...

And I love this picture too! This was this evening... just lounging on mom, he is completely relaxed!

On an unrelated note, please say a prayer or think a good thought about our 2 year old beagle Winston. He had another seizure today (his second in three weeks) while Reid and I were at the pediatrician's office today. Luckily my mom was home with him. He went to the vet this afternoon and got blood drawn. Unfortunately as he hates needles they had to sedate him. He is now laying on the sofa sleeping it off. We won't have the test results until Monday after which we'll be able to make some decisions about how to proceed with his care. Poor little guy...