Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Visitors and the rest of our hospital stay

During our stay at the hospital, we had several visitors.....
Gigi was waiting for Brooks in the hallway along with his other grandparents.  B is the first to make Gigi a boy grandma.
Cody's parents arrived shortly after Brooks made his arrival.
And Grand dad and Mimi T were there with a very excited big sister!
Aunt Lindsay works at the hospital so she stopped by while on break.
I believe most of those visitors were present during my not so prettiest hours of having my head buried in the pink bucket.  
My aunt Margaret arrived while I may have been at my loopiest state!  I remember going in and out of conversation with her and Cody, and also paying a visit to La La land.
Soon after she left, the room was finally empty and I was able to take a quick nap.  And then I remember waking up to Cody visiting with one of his co-workers Mrs. Sherry.  I vaguely remember looking in her direction, I might have said hello, but I don't remember the rest.
Cody did later tell me she went back to the bank and told the other girls they might should wait till the next day to visit because I wasn't feeling so good, ha!
After a quick nap, my grandparents arrived.
Brooks is their first great grandson.
Later that evening my sister and her family arrived.  And I think our hospital room may have been at max capacity.  Our pediatrician stopped by after seeing Brooks in the nursery and I remember my head was spinning because there were so many voices and conversations going on!  
My friend Melissa brought her little girls by and Laiken brought NG a balloon and candy (just like we did when Macy Kate was born)
Cody's sister and family came by.
Uncle Jeremy
Cousins Macy and Layla.  Nora Grace stayed with her Gram and Papa for the two nights we were in the hospital.  Layla is so good with her and so she stayed as well to help with Nora.  Papa Joe had school drop off duty both mornings.
Uncle Eric came by to meet the boy.
The room finally cleared for the evening and we were soooo ready to get some rest!  Unfortunately nurses were in and out of our room every few hours taking care of me and bringing Brooks in to feed.  We tried multiple times throughout the day to get Brooks to nurse but he just never seemed interested at all.  The nurses said this was normal and sometimes it just took awhile for the baby to want to eat.  I think it was around 11 p.m. when he finally decided he was hungry!

One day old
The next morning I was super anxious to get out of bed and shower!  I felt completely disgusting after sweating and laying in that bed for nearly 24 hours.  I constantly asked the nurse how much longer until I could get up and shower.  But we had a few guests come in that morning to help pass the time before my ob doctor came by and cleared me for a shower.
Mrs. Coral is one of Cody's former co-workers and is just the sweetest.  Nora asks about her often when we drive by Arvest because she knows Mrs. Coral will give her popcorn and suckers when we visit!
I was finally able to get a shower and I just have to say I have a huge appreciation for the nurses who have to bathe and take care of patients.  I don't remember this particular nurses's name but I can see her face.....she was so sweet and patient.  I asked for a chair to have in the shower with me in case I got light headed and so she knew I was going to be a little bit more difficult!  
At this point, all modesty was out the window and I didn't care who saw me at my worst.....I just remember how kind she was as she handed everything to me in the shower as I needed it and then helped me get dressed once I was done.....the Spongebob squarepants mesh undies and all.   At one point as she was helping me get dressed, I noticed some blood got on her arm and she quickly wiped it off and kept on assisting......if it were me getting someone else's blood on me, I would have freaked out and had to hop in the shower myself.  I say this because I now have a huge appreciation for nurses.  Everyone was sooooo good to us during our hospital stay.
We had a few hours at the hospital to try and rest and recover from the busy day before.  
So Papa Joe dropped Nora off at school Tuesday morning (we tried to leave her schedule as normal as possible) and then that afternoon she got to ride to gymnastics with her best buddy Kate.  Shay offered to let Nora ride to Russellville with them and it was a tremendous help!!!  I hear these two had the best time riding together....not sure how Shay managed to drive with all the noise coming from the backseat!
After gymnastics, the Morgans came by the hospital to meet Brooks.  I look forward to many adventures with these sweet friends.
We had more family and friends stop by to visit that evening but it was not near as crazy as day one!
During our hospital stay, Cody and I both got really stuffy noses and it was less than pleasant.
Hospital bed snuggles on Wednesday morning.  Poor little guy was circumcised earlier that morning so he needed a few extra snuggles. 
I was able to take another shower that morning and get ready to head home.  Discharge nurses came by to give us instructions and sign all the paperwork.....
and then we were all ready to go!
 His going home outfit is special to me because Nora Grace helped me pick it out. It was our first boy purchase after we found out the gender of baby Black #2.
Nora was at school when we arrived home midday Wednesday.  Cody made a quick trip to pick up a few groceries and I set up fort on the sofa with all my supplies within reach....pain meds, giant cup of water, remotes, ect.  
Up next.....those first few days adjusting as a family of four!

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Welcome Brooks Harrison Black

I wanted to blog about Brooks' arrival before I forget any more details of the big day!  I was scheduled for a cesarean section ever since like our twelve week appointment.  Nora was born via c-section since she was breach so we knew this baby would arrive the same way.  It was kinda nice to mark 11.13 on the calendar and plan accordingly.  We were actually able to announce to family and everyone at 16 weeks that we were expecting a little boy and he would be born Monday, 11.13!
So we prepared Nora for Brooks arrival the best way we thought possible.....we talked about him a lot, told her how cool it was going be having a little borther and told her how much he was going to love her!  I got a little sad the closer we got to delivery day because I worried how she would respond to such a big change.  We let her sleep in our bed the night before, which was a special treat because this rarely happens!
November 13, 2017
5:15 A.M. ish-loaded in the car and headed to Russellville as a family of three.
We dropped Nora Grace off at my dad's house on the way to the hospital.  My dad and step mom brought Nora to the hospital to see brother and then kept her the rest of the day.  She got to tag along with Grand dad and go by all his stores, and she came home with a back pack filled with junk food.....pretty sure she was spoiled a little and did not feel attention deprived.
Cody and I arrived at the hospital at 6:00 A.M. to check in and prepare for surgery which was scheduled for 8:00.  We came in through the ER as directed, did a little paperwork, and then headed to the labor and delivery department.  The nurses showed us to the surgery prep room and I did a quick wardrobe change into my hospital gown.  While I nervously waited, Cody ran down to the car to grab our bags and leave them in our hospital room.  Nurses came and went, hooked up my IV (it took a few attempts and two and a half weeks later, I still have a bruised vein and swollen hand.  And it actually hurts more than my c-section incision) and did other surgery prep.  I almost felt like a lab rat at times because I had so many students involved during this pregnancy.  At almost every appointment, I was seen by a student prior to the doctors visit and then I had a nursing student present during the entire day of delivery.  I remember him well.....his name was Cody and he was super sweet....but I did request the actual nurse practitioner do the IV because I'm such a baby with needles. My doctor came in to run through a few quick things and I started to get reeeeallllyyy nervous.  I actually told Cody I didn't want to ever have any more kids because I didn't want to go through this again.  I got chilled and shaky and asked for a chill pill.  They basically told me that was a no go, and I was having a minor panic attack!
So at 8:07 a.m. they wheeled me back to the operating room alone and told Cody he could now change into his surgery prep attire and wait for them to come back and get him.  So while I was getting a spinal epidural, Cody was taking selfies and posting them to facebook!
Once I got the epidural (and could no longer feel anything) I started feeling a little better.  Cody came in the OR and sat next to my head and was able to distract me from everything that was going down on the other side of the curtain.  The anesthesiologist was awesome.  He was very encouraging and made me feel a little more calm while I was laying on the table.  I made Cody talk to me but I honestly couldn't tell you what was even said.....I mean really, what are you supposed to talk about while your stomach is being cut open and your insides are all over the place.  

Brooks' official time of delivery was 8:32 am.  Dr. Clark gave Cody plenty of time to get his camera ready and then held the boy up for his first picture!  I love my ob doctor.  She delivered Nora and there was no question I wanted to use her again for this pregnancy. We met with her at our very first prenatal appointment in April and then she was out on maternity leave until October.  I was very sad to not see her throughout most of my pregnancy but I was soooo happy that we never had to switch doctors offices throughout the crazy moving process we went through over the summer and that she was back for Brooks' delivery.  I can not say enough good things about Dr. C.  And note the guy in the left of this picture.....that's Cody, the nursing student.  
This picture was taken by (my) Cody at 8:44....Brooks in the OR warmer.  He cried and cried and sounded like a little piglet.  It was cute.  
Brooks weighed 7 lbs. 7 oz. (exactly the same as Nora) and was 19.5" (.5" shorter than Nora)
8:44 A.M. Cody brought the little guy over to me.  It didn't seem real to have a little boy that was mine!
I suppose the anesthesiologist must have taken this picture....I honestly don't remember.
While they continued to sew me up, Cody took Brooks to the makeshift hospital nursery.  It seemed like I laid on that OR table forever!!!!!  Maybe it just felt like that because I knew I was missing out on so much with the rest of our family meeting baby boy for the first time.  
So I said makeshift hospital nursery......when we arrived that morning for check in, they told us the actual nursery was closed that morning because they were repairing sprinklers.  I was not happy!  We had lots of family, and a big sister, who were prepared to see Cody carry the little man into the nursery and show him off through the nursery window.  Some of my favorite pictures from Nora Grace's arrival were the ones Cody took in the nursery with all our family looking on from the other side of the window.  So instead of walking into the nursery, Cody carried baby from the labor and delivery unit to a hospital room right across the hall from the nursery and all of our family was standing right at the door and were able to get an up close and personal look at the brand new baby.
Nora got to see and touch him a lot sooner than if the hospital nursery would have been open.  Her first response was "I wanna hold that baby!"  
After tons of pictures taken by the paparazzi,  Brooks made his way to the makeshift hospital nursery warmer at 8:50 A.M.
8:58-the nurses did whatever it is they do.....
and Cody and Brooks bonded.
And all our family present was able to be in that room and watch it all, and capture a few special moments on camera.  They commented that the makeshift nursery was way better because they got to see and touch him so much sooner!
9:19 A.M.
While everyone was meeting the new little guy, I was moved to the recovery room and having a very in depth conversation with Cody, the nursing student.  I was high as a kite on drugs but I remember him telling me he's from Kingston (I always see the sign on the way to Branson but have never known anyone from there) and he told me all about his studies as a nursing student.  Super nice guy to pass the time with, hahaha.
At 9:50 A.M. they finally brought me my baby in the recovery room and we attempted to nurse but he wasn't interested.  We had some skin to skin time and Nora was able to be in the room with us as well.  She was a little "busy" so Cody took her back to be with family.
I remember being wheeled from the recovery room, passed the hospital nursery (which now all repairs were complete and people were standing by the windows waiting on their babies to arrive) and feeling like I was in a one woman parade down the hospital halls.  
 At 10:43 A.M., we were nestled into our hospital room and the madness ensued.  Nora couldn't wait to get her hands on little brother.  So we let her climb into the bed and get a closer look.  The kids also exchanged presents.  Somehow Brooks knew his big sister would love an Elsa barbie doll.  Once she opened her gift, she was too busy playing for much else.  My dad picked up donuts on the way to the hospital so we could have a "big sister" celebration to go along with the sibling gift exchange.
 11:10 A.M. First picture as a family of four!
After picking out a donut, I started to feel sick.  So I spent much of the next few hours feeling like poo and didn't even eat that donut I had been looking forward to.  I would barf in the plastic tub ever so often and Cody would take it to the bathroom for clean up and rush back for the next round of sickness.  Obviously, I hadn't eaten anything in the last 16 plus hours so there wasn't much coming out.  The hospital brought my lunch, and I attempted to eat some saltine crackers and a roll but that all ended up in the little pink tub.  Cody took really good care of me.  The only thing he failed to do was re-apply my make-up.  I checked into the hospital hair fixed, and with a full face of make-up and swore I wouldn't hide my face in a towel, like I did during the epidural with Nora Grace, and rub it all off.  So I was successful in that aspect but the anesthesia made me so sick and itchy this time that I literally rubbed all my make up off while scratching my face and being sick.  And no one cared to tell me I looked like garbage while they were snapping pictures of me to post all over the internet.  Oh well, I still treasure these photos!  
We had lots of visitors and I was so miserable.  Cody's parents made a trip to Whatta-Burger for lunch.  It's tradition.......that was their first meal after Cody's birth so we had that as our first meal after Nora was born.  But I had no desire for anything other than a nap so I decided to fore go a burger and fries.  People came and went, I remember sleeping a little here and there and carrying on conversations while feeling like I had smoked twelve doobies (not that I actually know how that feels)

The hospital has a policy now (that they didn't have when NG was born) that the baby will receive a bath at least six hours after birth.  Studies have shown it's better for baby's health to wait.  
So at 3:21 p.m., Brooks went to the nursery for his first bath.
 3:26 p.m.  Cody went with him to hold his hand......and capture these sweet little photos.
When the boys came back to the room, I finally felt somewhat human and was ready to take his announcement picture for facebook!
And then I found out the world already knew he was here because everyone else in the family had already posted his picture all over social media, ha!
The rest of the day, we had more visitors and it was very chaotic!  
Nora dressed up in her doctor's outfit (given to us after completion of the Good Siblings Class) and got out her doctors kit to give little brother a complete check up.
I plan to post more pictures of all the visitors we had and more details (at least the ones I can still remember) soon!

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Baby Update

So I was horrible this pregnancy and didn't take any belly pics for comparison.  
Things are so different with the second child.....we are very excited to meet the little guy but our focus has been split between preparing for his arrival and preparing his big sister for this life altering event!  Our bags are all finally ready to go, and I am getting really nervous!  I probably won't sleep a wink tonight!! 
Nora and I went to the hospital last Friday afternoon for the check in process and to have blood drawn. I'm so scared of needles/blood/anything painful in general and it really was a bad experience! I know most think that sounds silly but I was wiggling around in the chair, and fanning myself to keep from passing out.  The lady had to try in more than one vein and it left a pretty large bruise on my wrist that makes me nauseous to look at!!!  So I can not wait to get this surgery over with and meet our boy because I know then, it will all be worth it!!!
The last few weeks have been miserable at times....but thankfully cody has stepped up and taken care of me and elsewhere when needed.
I'll miss how sweet Nora is to baby brother in my belly!

Total weight gain:  Way.Too.Much- I started this pregnancy 20 pounds lighter than I was with Nora Grace.  I had a trainer the entire first trimester until moving but then it all went downhill and I gained as much as I did with Nora.  I lost the weight once, and I'm determined I can do it again!
Maternity clothes?: Yes on the pants but I wear loose or bigger shirts and dresses
Sleep: We have Tempurpedic mattresses now and I'm sleeping pretty well, considering.  I'm able to elevate my feet/legs if they're bothering me and it's nice to sit up in bed to watch tv. Rolling over has become somewhat of a challenge but I really can't complain.....I've heard pregnant people talk about way worse!
Movement: This boy is wild!  His movements hurt and are really uncomfortable at times but I'll take it if that means he's healthy!
Gender:  It's a boy!
Labor Signs: I felt a few Braxton Hicks contractions a few weeks ago.  I had been shopping most of the day and done more walking than usual.  I felt sick, like I wanted to throw up, so I came home and rested and was fine.
Belly Button In or Out: Out......I have a weird belly's been out for awhile now!
Cravings:  I haven't had any particular just sounds good....all the time!
What I miss:  Being much smaller!  
Milestones: Tomorrow is the big day!!
One more belly pic from a few weeks before birth.  The Halloween candy was hard to avoid and I'm pretty sure my belly was half made up of candy, and half baby!

Saturday, November 11, 2017

The Nursery & a Big Girl Room

When we found out we were expecting, I was living in our house with Nora and Cody was living in a tiny little apartment in Fayetteville.  Then we all three ended up living in the tiny apartment which worked out pretty well since we had two bedrooms but we weren't really sure where the new kid would go!  I had a feeling all along things would work out and we wouldn't have to be in the apartment once the baby arrived and thank goodness, the best case scenario happened and we're all back in our house!!!  I was elated to get to work on a nursery!  
I knew I wanted to keep the room simple and use dogs as the theme, but not dogs in a tacky way.  So I searched Pinterest for a few ideas and got to work!
The dresser belonged to our spare bedroom furniture set and I painted it white and added new hardware.  The two pictures above the changing pad are silhouettes of our dogs Priscilla and Sydney.  I took them outside one afternoon and snapped a few pictures of them while they were acting natural.  Next, I pulled the pictures up on my laptop and then traced them from the screen onto a sheet of paper.  Then, I traced the sheet onto the fabric which I used as the background of the frame.  I just used a black marker to color the silhouette in.  It was so easy and I love how they turned out.  
The crib belonged to Nora and it was already white so I didn't have to do anything to it.  
The recliner used to sit in our living room but when we moved back into our house completely, I talked Cody into letting me get matching chairs for our living room so we moved this chair into the nursery.  Plus, it matched the color scheme.
I found some super cute pillows from Restoration Hardware (the left picture below) that  I loved on Pinterest  I never even looked to see the price, because I knew they would be more than I wanted to spend.  So I went to Hobby Lobby, picked out some material I liked, and grabbed a needle and thread and sewed the pillows myself by hand.   Each of the dogs from my pillows belongs to one of the grandparents (the blue heeler is my grandparents, the dachshund is my dads, and the bichon frise and yorkie are Cody's parents dogs)

I love how his room turned could still use a few decorations and things on the wall, but I'll eventually find things I like to finish things up! 

So since the crib had to be moved to the nursery, Nora Grace needed a new bed!  We really talked it up and I'm super surprised at how well she adjusted to sleeping alone in her big girl bed.  There have been very few nights where Cody or I have had to sleep with her but we got some pretty comfy mattresses just in case we had to join her more than we would like!  She has a night light and sleeps with about 101 babies in her bed so she usually does fine!
I found bedding to match the decor we already used in her nursery and I didn't change anything in her room besides taking out the crib and changing table and having to re-arrange the four pictures above her headboard.  Every time we have guests, she asks if they want to see her new bed!

Nora is a super light sleeper so I'm not real sure how well she'll do in this big girl room once her noisy new neighbor arrives....we will see how it goes!
But I can't wait to have both rooms with my babies in them!