Jul 16, 2010

Matthew's Dinner Prayer

Now I lay me . . .

For our food . . .

Christ's name . . .


Jul 8, 2010


In 2 weeks and 2 days, Michael has gained 2 pounds and 10 ounces.

He was born at 7.4. He is now 9.14.

When he was born, he was 19 inches long. He is now 21 inches long.

I'm thinking it's safe to say this kid is going to be a chunk!

Jul 2, 2010

A Home Birth Story

This post is the story of Michael's birth. It may be a little too much information for some, but I want to remember the events of his birth. So read at your own risk.

I love having babies at home. Mandie was born in our home in Pearland. Matthew was born in our home on Royal Rd. And Michael was born in the home we are in now. For each pregnancy and birth, I have had a different midwife. Not because I was ever unhappy with any of them, but because either we, or our midwife, seems to move away when it's time to have a baby. Mandie's labor and delivery was very long and very difficult. Her little baby body had to pave the way for the rest of them, which were much shorter and much easier deliveries.

The list of reasons why I prefer a home birth over a hospital birth is not short, so I won't go over all the gaping details and statistics here. However, if you would like to know more about home birth statistics (which are very impressive) you can read about them in a wonderful book entitled The Thinking Woman's Guide to a Better Birth. Or you could probably just google them. For me, homebirth means peaceful, calm, dark, and quiet labor. It means I get to choose where and with whom I labor. It means I get to be in complete control of my atmosphere. It means a very low drama delivery. And don't get me wrong . . . I am one low drama mama!

Michael's birth was different than the other two in a number of ways. For one, he came 11 days early. In fact, his due date is today, July 3rd. Mandie was born two days late, and Matthew was born on his due date. Two days before Michael's birth, I spent the better part of a Sunday afternoon and evening having contractions. Luke and I were celebrating our seven year anniversary. We were staying the night at the ambassador, which is where we spent our first night as a married couple. I started having contractions at about 5 o'clock, just as we sat down to eat dinner at TGIF. They continued through the evening. We went to medi park to walk around, we went to marble slab for ice-cream, we walked around the hotel. When we finally settled in for the night, the contractions stopped, but they had certainly done some work. The next day Leah, my midwife, came over to check me. She informed us that I was about 90% effaced and three centimeters dialated. Also, she was concerned because Michael's hand was up by his head. This is called a nuchal presentation, and it's not what you want because it can easily translate into long and hard labor and delivery . . . and tearing. Leah tried to move the hand, but it didn't work for more than a few minutes.

The next day (Tuesday) I took the kids up to church because we like to be up there helping out on Tuesday mornings. I was on my feet all morning at church, and then I joined a friend from church on a visit to Splash (that's Amarillo's water park). We had a great time. Everyone at church and at splash was a little concerned that I was doing all of this at 3 centimeters dialated, but I was not having any contractions . . . and I was thinking I was still a day or two away from birth. Later that afternoon, Leah came by to try to move that pesky hand away from Michael's face again. She was successful, and we put a belly band around my tummy to keep the hand down. Well that really did the trick! Soon after Leah left I began having mild contractions that lasted the rest of the day. At around 10:30 I decided to hit the sack, and I assumed the contractions would probably stop when I went to bed like the had done before. I went to the bathroom before going to bed, and noticed some blood in the pot. I called Leah to tell her and she asked if she could come check me. I said sure. She arrived about 15 minutes later. During that 15 minutes I had several more serious contractions on the birth ball (this was my first time to labor with a birth ball~that ball was my best friend!) When she checked me I was 8 centimeters dialated. It was at this moment I realized I would be having a baby that evening.

The next hour and 10 minutes went very quickly. I labored on the ball for a few more contractions until I decided a salt bath would be more comfortable. I got in the bath for some REALLY intense contractions. I remember doing a lot of groaning, and saying "Help me, Lord" about a hundred times. I knew I was very close at this point, and I could not wait to feel the urge to push. Those last few dialation contractions are the worst part of labor (besides crowning of course!) but they are short lived.

Finally it was time to push, so push I did. Michael came out looking a little purple to me. I expressed my concern to Leah, and she assured me that he looked perfectly normal and that he would turn pink very shortly. I made the comment that purple or pink, Mandie's going to love him! At this point I replaced "Help me, Lord" with "I love you, baby" and spoke it at least a hundred times as well. Before long the placenta was out. Michael was deemed healthy and perfect, and soon both of our parents were over to love on our newest blessing. When they left, we hit the sack. We woke up the next morning as a family of five. M&M brought Michael all of their favorite toys for him to play with. It was a wonderful, joyous day in our house.

We were filled with gratitude to God. Awestruck by the process of pregnancy and birth, by the creation of family, by the means the Lord uses to accomplish his tasks! We praise Him for Michael. We respect what it means to be a family. We feel the weight of the responsibiltiy we have to teach our new son to do what's right, and to love and fear the Lord. We thank God for the health and safety of Michael and I.