Sunday, September 25, 2016

Rebecca's Birth

Rebecca is 5 weeks old today, and I'm just now sitting down to recount her birth. I don't know why I  think it's so important but I want to remember it, and I want her to be able to read it when she's older.
So backing up to August now, actually further. When Kenny left for his trip to Alaska at the end of July (Yes I need to blog about that too) I asked him to give me priesthood blessing before he left. I wasn't super concerned that the baby would come while he was gone, because I never have my babies early. But of course it was a possibility. So one night after the kids went to bed he gave me a blessing. Wow! I don't think I really realized how much anxiety I had about the baby coming. But I just started crying and felt such peace and relief that I would be able to handle yet another child in our already busy home. It gave me strength and reassurance to remember that Heavenly Father is keenly aware of my situation and my needs.

Now to August...she was due on the 4th, and my due date came and went. I was huge and very uncomfortable. Going past my due date this time wasn't nearly as awful as it was when I went over with Briggs. Probably because with Briggs, my mom and Sarah had come with the intent to help out after his birth. They had been there for about 12 days, and he decided to be born in the morning on the day they flew home. So that made me very upset. Thankfully I didn't have that pressure this time since my mom is just 1 hr. 20 min. away! :)

On Saturday night we watched TV after the kids were asleep. I noticed I had a few contractions about 15 minutes apart and told Kenny. He said that if I was in labor we should go on a walk and get things going. But I said that I would rather get some rest while I could and that if it was labor, then it would happen on its own. So we went to bed and I would sort of wake up to contractions and go back to sleep. But I finally got up around midnight and got in the shower. I blow-dryed my hair and packed some stuff in a bag for the hospital. I sat in my rocking chair and listened to soft music while the contractions came. I called my mom around 1 a.m. I think and told her I was in labor. She drove out to our house and we drove to the hospital. Kenny gave me a priesthood blessing before we left, which I'm, always very grateful for. I had a lot of peace throughout this whole experience and I attribute that to the countless prayers I'd said in the preceeding months, and the priesthood blessings I'd received from my husband. I was prepared for whatever and knew that everything would be fine. We got there around 3 a.m. and it took a little while to get checked in. I told Kenny on the way to the hospital that maybe this time I would just get an epidural. I hadn't planned on that, I had been preparing for another natural birth. But the pain always gets to me and makes me question my decision. So I said it would just be a lot easier this way. My contractions were getting pretty strong at this point and by the time we walked up to the labor and delivery unit, I was having to stop walking to breathe through them. The nurses were all pretty chill until they checked me and realized I was at an 8, and that it was my sixth baby. I asked if it was possible for me to get an epidural still, and she said it was too late.  I had gone there with the thought that soon all the pain would go away, and then I had to quickly change my mindset. Surprisingly I was still very calm about it, and just thought "Alright let's do this!"

They all started moving really quickly and called the doctor and got things ready. One thing I really hate about the hospital is how they have so many stupid procedures to go through. They have to give me an IV and get me all strapped up to the baby monitor and sit there asking me a hundred questions and having me sign papers, etc. while I wish they'd leave me the heck alone and just let me focus on having a baby! It didn't last long though. The doctor came in and introduced herself. I'd never met her before, but I really liked her. She was calm, confident, and helpful. This was my fourth natural birth, and I think I felt more in control of my thoughts this time than any other time. I had continually prayed for angels to attend me there and I really felt strengthened by that. I knew I had women on both sides of the veil praying for me and helping me. I knew my body was capable, and this time I stayed in check mentally, and was much more positive. I kept repeating the scripture in my mind, "I can do all things through Christ, which strengthens me." Kenny was super helpful, too. He held my hand through it all and repeatedly told me I was doing such a great job and reminding me how strong I was. He loves when they have the baby monitor on me because he loves watching the chart as it rises and falls. I think it helps him feel more involved when he can get a visual of what's going on with my body haha. I don't know how long I pushed for, but it seemed a little longer than other babies. My mind sort of checks out sometimes while I'm pushing and it's like I'm not in my body. I don't know how to explain it, except that I have no memory of certain parts of it and I don't know how much time passes. Probably only like 1 second, but it's still weird to "come to" during those times. She was born at 4:20 a.m. just as perfect as can be. She had a full head of dark hair, and a good pair of lungs. There is just nothing like the euphoria of when they place that brand new baby in your arms. Once the cord stopped pulsing they let Kenny cut it. I put her skin to skin and started nursing her and she took to it immediately. Then they weighed her and we found out how very big she was! I was expecting in the 9 pound range like Briggs, but she was 10 pounds 5 ounces and 21 inches long! Such a perfect, big baby.

Here's an interesting thing with my kids' birth weights. The first 3 were in the 7 pound range, and have gone up a pound every time since then. So Madison was 7# 10 oz.. Kelsey was 8# 1 oz. Briggs was 9# 8 oz. and now Rebecca 10# 5 oz. I told Kenny we'd better stop because I don't think I could do an 11 pounder! Yikes. Once all the nurses and everyone left the room we finally got to decide on a name for her. We chose Rebecca Lindsay Weston.

Kenny went and got me some breakfast and chocolate milk--which is my victory drink after having a baby. :) He didn't stay too long because my mom had to get home since Kim's kids were at her house and Kim had flown out that night (of course! haha we know how to time things). So Tim had gone over to my parents house to be with kim's kids, so that mom could come out here to be with my kids haha. But they all had church duties so Kenny went home and my mom left. He brought the kids by that day to see their new baby sister. They were so excited to see her and hold her. It was just the sweetest thing. My heart was so full of love for my family. Such tender moments.

I was able to go home on Monday afternoon. We are so blessed to have her in our home and as a part of our family. Of course there's a lot of adjustments and challenges that come with a new baby. But it's all part of the journey. Learning to gracefully accept the good with the bad, the easy with the hard. They seem to always go hand in hand. Some of life's biggest lessons to be learned amidst childbearing/rearing. Mostly we are so grateful to God for entrusting another one of His beautiful spirit children to us. We are all "healthy, happy, and terrific".

going home! love these big kissable cheeks.

Sunday, September 11, 2016

More Visitors!

***I wrote this post like 6 weeks ago or something. I still never got the pictures, but I'm just going to post it and move on since I'm so behind.***

My computer is being too slow and dumb to load pictures, so I'm just going to have to write down what I want and add pictures later.

My cute sister-in-law Kerri, and her two darling girls Jane and Lyla flew all the way from Germany BY HERSELF. We were lucky enough to have her down here in Texas from the 12th-18th. On Wednesday, the 13th I drove into Houston and my mom babysat our kids while Kerri and I went to the temple together. We did initiatory work instead of  regular endowment session. I had a really neat experience while in the temple. During one of the names, I could feel my daughter's spirit so strong! Not as like a baby though. It was just her, but her spirit was mature and older and equal to mine. I knew she was right there with me, and it felt like those words in the blessing were just for me, and tears were just streaming down my face it was such a sweet and powerful experience. Not only me, but the temple worker who was there giving the blessing was also crying really hard and told me afterwards that she had just felt this really strong connection to the early saints and when they used to give each other blessings before they gave birth. It was so memorable and I was really grateful for that tender mercy. I'm getting so excited to hold and meet this sweet babe.

I went home later that afternoon so Brynlee could make it to her dance camp. I had signed her up long before. She had a fun time, and I love it because it's about 5 minutes from our house! :) I am thinking I want to sort of only give my kids two options of extra curricular activities. We have soccer fields and a little dance studio super close to our house so I'd like to just say you can pick one of those two things and then I don't have to drive all over the place. Anything and everything else is a half hour away. Anyways...they did a different dance style each night for 4 nights and she had a lot of fun. I wanted her to get a taste of each of them so she's sure of what she wants to do if I enroll her in anything.

Thursday the 14th, my mom and Kerri and Cami and their kids all came out here to our house! We got to celebrate sweet Lyla's first birthday! They all stayed the night and we had fun swimming and playing around the next day. They left in the afternoon. I was so glad I got to know Kerri a little bit better and now the kids will have real memories of playing with their Germany cousins instead of just google hangouts on Sundays :).

That evening we had been invited to go swimming with a couple families in our ward. The couple that invited us doesn't have any kids, and the other family that came has one little boy in nursery with Briggs. I felt bad that we severely dominated their pool, but it was fun to get to know them better. We're still trying to make friends and get to know people in this ward. Then we went home and put the kids to bed. A couple hours later my cousin Elise and her family arrived! They're on their way to Virginia for a family reunion and I was so glad they stopped here on the way. I haven't seen her in years! Our kids were getting along so well and it's only too bad we couldn't be with them longer. It was a short but sweet visit.

Madison is currently obsessed with becoming a police officer when she grows up. She and her cousin Sam really got into the movie Zootopia and each take one of the main characters and role play the movie out. My mom has been so nice to further indulge this fantasy with getting them police officer costumes. She can often be seen wearing her hat and badge around the house, even the pants too. The other day we got pulled over by a cop because he wanted to let me know one of my brake lights was out (which Kenny had told me a couple days before we just hadn't gotten around to getting it fixed). But Madi was very happy to see a real live police officer in action. Then this weekend we had another cop show up at our house looking for one of the daughters of the people that used to live in this house before us. I gave him the information I had and that was it. But as soon as Madi saw him she ran and got her hat and came back out to the door. He laughed when he saw her and complimented her on her "nice hat" haha. She was so pleased!