Tummy time....

We just started letting little Miss have some tummy time.
Ben was thrilled to help entertain her!

The best part was the view from behind...

A lil' monkey found her bottom!
How sweet!
I love this girl!


Maybe...just maybe.

Almost a year ago, some things happened in my life.
And I'll be honest, I shut down emotionally.
I built up walls.
I didn't want friends. 
I didn't want to talk on the phone to anyone.
You see, if you have a friend, they can hurt you. {Amen preachers wives?  Been there?}
I had been hurt.
But I wasn't going to be hurt anymore.
I didn't need a friend.
I didn't want to go to the park, or out to eat...
I'm fine by myself.

And then the blood clot.
I can't say for sure that this is why God brought me to this place.
But I can say that this is one good thing that came out of this particular circumstance in my life.
I learned something.
People love me.
I'm not saying that to be conceited.  
People care.
And I have missed out on friendships...
the taking and the giving side, because of the walls that I had built up.
I'm not saying this won't ever happen again, but for today, I am thankful to have learned this lesson.
I need friends.
I need family.
And I hope that when they need me, I can be there for them, like they have been here for me.

No more walls.



Her namesake.....

We have always liked the idea of naming our children after someone who meant something
to us.
A significant name.

Proverbs 22:1
A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches, and loving favor rather than silver and gold.

Benjamin's middle name is Allen after my father in law..
Chloe's middle name is Madalyn after my grandmother..
Isaac's middle name is Justus after his daddy and I loved the meaning of his first name: Laughter.
He came just after my Mom had died and we needed a little laughter.
Titus' middle name is David...my maiden name was Davidson...and we just love the name David.
And then there is Annaleah...she gets the Ann from my Mom and the Leah from my husbands Mom.

This lady.  Who stepped in and took care of my family for a week while I was in the hospital.
She did devotions every day with my kids and they are still talking about it.
I may never know why God let me have the trial of my blood clot, but I am so very
thankful that my children got to know their Grandma.
They have never had such special time with her before.
And for that, I thank God.



Trying to get a good pic with 5 kids!

The reason I haven't taken many pics of baby.

"Ok, everyone get around the baby!"
"Titus, I can't see the baby!"
"Isaac pay attention!"

"Isaac smile right!"
"Chloe, where are you?"

"Ben, look at me!"

"Now we are getting somewhere!"

"Turn the baby's head this way!"



"Isaac, you aren't modeling for the cover of a magazine!"

"K, nevermind.  Everyone go to bed."
Here are a few pictures of lil' Annaleah.
I am sad to say that I haven't taken as many as I would like to take of her.
But we have time for that.

I love Ty's facial expressions in the family one!
He's so funny.

And that is just the same pic just a close up of Annaleah.
I wub her lil' chubs!
So sweet!
I will try to get busy this week!



Progress with my leg...

I went to the Dr yesterday for some blood work and the Coumadin got adjusted again, but it is working.
I am anemic.  Which kinda goes with the territory, I think.  So, I will start on Iron.
I have arthritis in my hip.  Oh joy.  He gave me some medication to take when it acts up, unfortunately, I can't take it while nursing {apparently they don't count on nursing mothers to get arthritis.}
I am walking quite a bit better!  I still have to have a scooter when we go shopping...but seriously, who doesn't want to ride one of those around Wal~Mart?  I might just keep that tradition.

I'll tell you what is odd to me.  Several of my friends are going through now, or have been through health scares right around the time that I went through mine.  It's kinda neat to be able to pray for them and on some level, know what they are going through.  I never imagined myself going thru something so drastic as this blood clot has been at such a "young" age.  Prayer is so important.  I am thankful to have friends who prayed diligently for me and whom I can pray for now.  It does seem to bring a closeness that maybe you wouldn't have otherwise felt.

Hope you are having a great Saturday!



Birth story part 3 {{the grande finale}}

Perhaps this all shouldn't be lumped together as "birth story", but it is all connected in an odd sort of way.
We got all the kids into the van and started driving to the ER.  We were at a hotel, not by any family or anything, so all the kids just came with us.  Unfortunately, that means they had to see a lot of crying and worrying on their parent's faces.  We finally get to the ER and they take me right in and begin the sonogram that tells if there is a blood clot.  In comes my Dr about 2 hours later to give us the bad news; somber face and all.  He told us that I had an 8 inch blood clot in my thigh.  It would involve lots of medication the next couple of days and a 3 day hospital stay.  All I heard was the medication part.  I asked him if I could take the meds while nursing my 2 week old newborn.  He got out his little phone, looked it up and said "No, you'll have to stop nursing."  And that is all I heard from that moment on....I didn't hear that I would have to lay very still for a 24 hour period so the clot wouldn't break free and go to my lungs.  I didn't hear that I would be on meds for the next 6- 9 months.  All I heard was this baby that I was holding on the hospital bed in my arms, I would have to quit nursing her at 2 weeks of age.  I bawled...Justus cried and then I bawled some more.  They asked me if I wanted to feed her "one more time."  So they closed the curtain and I nursed my baby for the very last time.  You better believe that I bawled through that one too.  Finally it became overwhelming to even think about it anymore so I handed her to Justus.
They came in and wheeled me up to my room that I would spend the next 5 days in.  And so began the shots in the stomach and a lot of pain.  I had never really known anyone with a blood clot before and didn't know a whole lot about them, quite frankly.  But I started looking things up online ~ this saved me later....
A red headed nurse came in {I never saw her before or after this particular meeting}  she said "Ma'am, I was looking up breastfeeding and Coumadin online and I didn't find anything that said you would have to stop nursing your baby.  I would look into that if I were you before I stopped."  And she left.  I had already kinda decided to pump for a couple of days and just throw the milk out....just in case I was ever allowed to nurse her again.  I called Annaleah's Dr, I called my Ob/GYN, I asked the Dr who came in to see me every morning, I had 2 of the nurses call the pharmacist and ask and they all said "No, you can't nurse while on Coumadin."  I searched the internet...I had nurses searching the internet pulling for me to be able to nurse.  Everything I found online said that coumadin did not transfer through breast milk.  I was perplexed.  Why were these Dr's telling me no if there was no proof?  A nurse finally found a paper from the American Academy of Pediatrics on a study they had done that said it was NOT TRANSFERRED!  I was pretty excited.  So, long story, kinda short, I started nursing her my first day home!  I've never been so happy and felt so blessed.
Looking back on my days at the hospital {all 5 of them.}I can see God just blessing me and watching over me.  My first day nurse came in the second day and was surprised when she opened my door.  She said "I didn't think I'd see you here today."  I just looked at her and said "why?"  They knew the Dr had said 3 days at least....  She said "honey, I've never seen a clot that big, I didn't think you'd make it through the night."  All I can do is praise God.  I know that I had tons of people praying for me..  My mother in law is a great prayer warrier and I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that she spent sleepless hours praying for me.  My husband, who just took over with the baby when i couldn't, he prayed his heart out for me.  Even Ben and Chloe would come out of the boys bedroom at Grandma's house with moist eyes and when asked what they were doing, they said "praying for Mommy."  I know many of you were praying.  And, I thank you from the bottom of my heart.  God was merciful to me.  And He wanted me to go through this valley for some reason.  I hope I learn everything I can through it.

And so, me and Annaleah are doing just fine.  I am still in much pain, but I do feel a decrease.  I hobble around like the hunchback of Notre Dame, but that is okay.  This too shall pass.  Annaleah is nursing like a pro....she doesn't even remember those yucky bottles.   And she's gained a pound since birth.  And!!!  She's beautiful.

That's my story.



Birth Story part 2....{{{the saga continues}}} *insert music*

And it went awesome!I didn't panic. She came out big as we had suspected, but she was perfect.  Absolutely perfect.And it was a beautiful birthing experience.Everyone worked fast and hard to get her out quickly and to keep my mind occupied through it all.The Dr's and nurses made sure that I saw her as much as I was able.And my sweet husband sat by my head the whole time chatting away as though we were on a date and just had nothing better to do; which kept me completely calm.
They finally took me to my room, which was a beautiful room with a huge window, nice view, and a sitting area that was separate from the bed area. It was really nice!
I got a bit of an infection 4 days after and had to be on antibiotics.Not a big deal, but could have done without some of the side effects of antibiotics.
AND then....the big whammie....We decided to take a trip to see my mother in law and husband's family over the Fourth of July.He had the Fourth off and so, what better time to come?We traveled the 5 hours it takes, spent all day Saturday there with my mother in law and some other family members that popped in here and there.Saturday night we went to the hotel room we had reserved.I was feeling pretty sick but thought that maybe I had just over done it that day.My newborn is only 2 weeks old....I should be tired, right?So, during the middle of the night, I woke to feed Annaleah and change Titus (he had a lil' accident on the hotel floor.  ewwww!and I noticed that my hip hurt, excruciating!I tried to move it around, wiggle it, etc.I figured maybe I had slept on it wrong...I went back to sleep for a few hours and woke at 7.Justus was getting the kids ready to go swim.I was in some serious pain and I just thought that maybe a nice hot shower would relieve some pain.I got in the shower and looked at my leg (that would barely work at this point)and my stomach just dropped. My leg was HUGE and purple.I knew right away that I had a blood clot.I called the DR, they said get to the ER quickly.And, so off we went.We were both pretty panicked knowing that blood clots kill...

To be continued....{again}


Birth story part 1...{{{who knew there was so much to say?}}

I was just sitting here pondering the events of my life since last October.The majority of my time has been spent sick.Wow.
The beginning of the pregnancy was the sickest I have been while pregnant. Wasn't that nice of God to save the best for last?  Ha.Then we had a bleeding scare.I've had those before while pregnant, but this one was a bit more serious.The Dr said there was nothing I could do but wait and see if the baby made it.My husband happened to be in Indiana when this all went down and I was here alone with all four children.We had decided that since he didn't have any work, he would go and work for his brother for a weekand I would stay home.So....this particular time, I called my sister in law and asked her to come watch my kids while I went by myself to the ER.  I knew that my other SIL would come be with me if I needed her to, but I am so independent. {{Which is laughable to me now.}}And so, finally the baby survived that and I did too and I thought, "glad that is over, the rest should be smooth sailing."All the comments began about how big I was, etc.I began worrying about having a delivery or c~section.And dealing with normal pregnancy stuff.
Until about 28 weeks.I got gestational diabetes. Boy that was fun.I'll never forget....I took my kids to the park after visiting with the Dr who had given me my first test kit.I knew I had to poke my poor wittle finger.I do not like pain.I do not like inflicting pain upon myself.AT ALL.My kids wanted to go play so they were counting it down for me..."Ok, Mom, ONE...TWO....THREE...."And I just couldn't do it.hahahah!I don't know how long we sat in that van, but I finally did it.And for the next 11 weeks, I dealt with all the complications from high sugars and low sugars and "what am I supposed to eat?""What am I not supposed to eat?""What do I do if my sugar is 236?""Or 76?"I have great respect for diabetics now.I have never felt so crazy trying to figure that all out.
And then...I decided to go ahead with a c~section.We knew she would be big and the risks that came along with the diabetes and her being big just weren't worth it to me.  I hated to have a c~section, but I did feel better once the decision was finally made and the date was set.
What's funny is that all this time, the only thing I worried about was my c~section...

To be continued.....