You and Me & Chasing Little G

Coming to Terms with My C-section

MotherhoodSabra GilbertComment

Wow. I really never thought I would have to write that title. I spent months insisting that everything would go the way I planned it and that medical intervention wouldn't be needed in my birth. No thank you, I was going to be fine on my own.


Oh how wrong I was.


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If you've already read my birth story, you know that I ended up with almost every intervention that there could be. I needed pitocin, which lead to needing an epidural, and when both of those didn't work. I ended with a cesarean section. Everything that I'd been terrified of having to use the entire pregnancy. Everything that was against my well thought out birth plan. The one that I took a 12 week birth class to be able to write out knowing the exact details of all my decisions.

But Gemma had other plans for me. And lucky for her, she was worth it. ;)

For the first few days after Gemma was born. I was perfectly fine with my birth. I guess I was maybe just blocking out how I really felt about it. Gemma was here, healthy and perfect. How could I be upset with the way she came into the world?

But then we got home. We settled into a routine and I finally got to think about everything that had happened. To finally realize the danger that Gemma and I had actually been in. And the lengths that had to be done to get us through Gemma's birth. To feel disappointed in the fact that I couldn't do it. I couldn't do what millions of women have done before me and bring my child into the world on my own. That I didn't get to be the first hands to touch my child. That I didn't get to see my child for minutes after she was born. I didn't get to hold her until longer after that. That I didn't get to nurse her until even longer after that and the first hour that was supposed to be our time, me and my Gemma, was eaten up by me being stuck in a bed while my husband was escorted to the recovery room with my daughter. I don't even know if my wishes for her chord to stop pulsing before being cut was honored. I was in pain, exhausted, and had no idea what questions to even ask after my surgery.

See, I hadn't even done any research into how to handle a cesarean section or what it really was, other than I didn't want it. I was clueless about what would help my recovery. In what I could or couldn't do. About what I needed. 

I panicked. I cried without knowing exactly what I was crying about.

I was jealous of the bond that my husband already had with our baby. I couldn't soothe her like he could since she loved bouncing and I could barely walk. He could jump up to her every cry. He could get up and change her outfit or diaper without even a wince of pain, unlike me.

I was terrified that our breastfeeding journey had been hurt by the pain medications I had to be on and the time that we had lost in the beginning.

I was terrified that Simeon would hate my scar and I refused to look at it. And I hated it myself.

Honestly, I hit a point where I wondered if I had postpartum depression, which scared me even more than everything else that was also happening. (Perhaps that's a post for another day).

And then I admitted how I felt about it to Simeon. That yes I was upset and didn't feel like I had actually given birth to our daughter. That I hated that he was able to do more with her and I was terrified that I couldn't do things with her because I'd drop her from being in pain. That I didn't get to hold her in that time.

Admitting your feelings is so much better than trying to hold them in and deal with them. It's always been something that I've struggled with. Even if Simeon and I have an argument, he has to pull what I'm actually upset about out of me. I usually try to say that I'm fine with everything even if I'm not.

But I always feel a million times better about things once I do.

I've recovered knowing that I grow stronger every day after my surgery. That I've actually had a faster recovery than most. I hold my baby and am comfortable in knowing that I can soothe her just fine on my own now. Simeon calls my c-section scar one of my battle scars from pregnancy along with my few stretch marks which makes us both laugh. And I've checked it out finally and am pleased that it isn't as dark as I was terrified it would be. 

I know that all my fears in the first few weeks have been solved and have been just fine. I wish I had spent more time enjoying my baby than being terrified of what was happening. But all I can  do now is sit here cuddled with her in my wrap loving her like crazy now and know that what happened doesn't make me any less her mother. She's a healthy little girl whose alive and in this world because of me. And in the end, that is really all that matters.

Getting Ready for Little G || Maternity Photography

Gemma Josephine RoseSabra GilbertComment

One thing that I have always looked forward to for during pregnancy was to be able to take maternity photos. I've always thought they were gorgeous and I couldn't wait to be the one in them caressing my baby bump. And of course, there was no way I was going to be able to do that without our fur babies as well!

Looking back on these, I can't believe I was actually so big! Everyone always told me I was tiny and I honestly didn't feel like I got that large of a belly! But as you will see, I was wrong! Though when I hold Gemma, I still can't believe that there was any way that she ever fit inside me.


Well, here they are! Along with a sneak peak of Gemma's Nursery!


Photographer is Alyssa from Three Dot Studios

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Bringing Little G into The World || July 20th, 2018

Gemma Josephine RoseSabra GilbertComment

Bringing our daughter into the world was one of the hardest things I've ever had to do, and I never even got to push!

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Starting the Wednesday morning before Gemma came into the world, I woke up to contractions finally starting. I say finally because I had passed 40 weeks on the 13th. After spending the majority of this pregnancy absolutely positive that she was coming early, it was driving me nuts that she wasn't in my arms yet. I was walking and walking and walking and eating spicy foods and pineapple and walking some more. I was so ready for those contractions to start after being told that I was still nowhere dilated the week before and had just been told that I had hit 1 cm the day before.

They seemed to come fast and hard and long. And since I was up for the majority of the night, I called into work and then they slowed down again. Making me walk more and more and eat dates and eat pineapple and roll and roll and roll on my exercise ball like crazy to get the contractions going again.


And on Thursday, they did the same thing. Intense all night and then lazy during the day. Except for that Thursday afternoon, I had another doctor's appointment to check in on Gemma and see where I was. 


It was the most stressful ultrasound that I've ever gone through this entire pregnancy. We spent a half hour in that room and while heart rate was fine, amniotic fluid was ok. Gemma was deciding not to move. At all. 

So after that horrible half hour, I then saw my doctor and my blood pressure was way higher than it should have been. So my doctor decided that between those two things that Gemma needed to come today. I was finally at 2 cm so she figured that we could just break my water and that would hopefully get my body really get serious.

So Simeon and I walked over the Labor and Delivery excited with the thought that we were going to get to see our Gemma soon. What we didn't know walking over, was that our doctor thought this was a much more serious situation than what she had let on to us. We got into our room and were told that I was going to be hooked up to monitors and my blood pressure checked continuously, which was not in my birth plan!

But after a few blood pressure checks and Gemma kicking off the external monitor multiple times, our nurse gave me the ok to walk around instead of laying down while dealing with contractions. So I started trucking the halls. Which unfortunately was a U shape so I was literally just walking back and forth constantly.

By the time my doctor came in to break my water, we were at 3 cm. 

Having my water broken was the weirdest feeling I've ever had. I expected a giant gush, and it was more like just a trickle. Until I stood up. Then I wished that I had laid down towels first.

A few hours later, I was at 5 cm and extremely excited that we were going!!


And then the progress stopped.


The contractions got worse and worse, but I wasn't going anywhere. I was barely able to handle them and asked for one last chance to relax in the tub to see if relaxing a bit more would help me dilate instead of pitocin right away.

It didn't help that Gemma wouldn't flip. She was face up and to the side and just wouldn't drop. She's a stubborn girl and has proved it the entire time I was pregnant. We had a wonderful nurse that reminded Simeon of the things that we had learned in our Bradley Method Course to try to manually move Gemma, but especially once my water was broke, it seemed impossible. 

The tub helped me mentally, but I still wasn't dilating more. And I knew that if I couldn't labor in the tub, then there was no way I could handle pitocin making the contractions worse. My body was acting like it was in transition with double peaking contractions and extreme and quick coming contractions, but nowhere near where it needed to be. So I gave in and got the epidural that I had insisted on the entire pregnancy that I wouldn't do. Simeon tried to talk me out of it, just like I asked him to, and we talked about the reasons I was deciding that I need it instead.

I have to admit that after getting the epidural. I don't remember much. I know my heart was racing enough that they didn't know if the external baby monitor was picking up Gemma's heartbeat or mine. Which meant that they needed to use an internal monitor for her. And that 2 hours after my epidural (which I slept through) I was told that I would need a c-section. That baby wasn't doing well with my contractions and Simeon had already been told that my contractions weren't really doing anything anyway. They had already stopped the pitocin because Gemma's heart rate was no longer fluctuating.


At this point, I remember panicking a bit and throwing up as I was being wheeled into surgery. This was the very last thing that I had wanted to happen and it sent me into a bit of a panic.


Then I was staring at a blue sheet. I had been asked if I wanted a see through one and screamed no. I don't do blood and the idea of seeing myself cut open didn't sit well with me. I wanted to see my daughter, but the idea of surgery was messing with me. After a bit of panic in the surgery room (I could still feel some pain after the epidural was at it's max, but luckily had a wonderful doctor who had the idea to use lidicain), I finally got to hear my baby girl for the first time.


Simeon even admits to almost crying and I know that I did. 


Getting Real About Blogging While Pregnant

BloggingSabra GilbertComment

   After years of blogging, I always thought my first pregnancy was going to be one that I was all over. That I had a game plan in the bag and it would just be so easy. Since pregnancy is a plethora of learning new crazy things.

And then I actually got pregnant.

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And the first trimester was practically traumatizing. I was constantly nauseous and couldn't eat or drink. So with that, I constantly had migraines and headaches. And I slept constantly. I got up and maybe would have an hour in the morning before work, and then would fall asleep right after dinner (if I could get anything down that is!

So that left no time for blogging.

And even though I started by trying to take photos every week., that eventually tapered off as well while I was so much more distracted by sleep than wanting to look nice for pictures of my bump.

Then I finally started feeling better! Which was amazing and I was so excited about that! So then it was time to buckle down and get baby things done.

Which still left no time for blogging.

Sometimes, I've missed it. Blogging like I used to back in the days of Crazy.College.Life. (yeah that was seriously the name of my first blog.) I would just jump on my laptop whenever I had a spare moment and loved every second of it. I didn't pressure myself to make money on my blog or to have a million readers. I just enjoyed getting my words out there.

And that was the part of me that I thought would blog wonderfully through a pregnancy.

But in the last few years, I've tried to push myself too much in blogging. I tried to schedule ahead of time, make posts actually useful to people, and figure out social media. Which, if I'm being completely honest, I don't really like to do. Sometimes it's fun. But with those things, I put a lot of pressure on myself to follow deadlines that maybe aren't actually that reasonable with the time that I actually have to do these things.

Oy and making sure to have the perfect photo for a post. Oy vey!

Now I'm not saying that I'm not going to do these things anymore. These days, many of these things are what is needed to have a successful blog. One that not only is a wonderful hobby, but one that helps pay the bills as well. Which, if I'm paying to blog, it's nice if the blogging helps by paying for itself back.

What I'm wanting to say is that I don't want these things to dictate when I do or don't blog. I want to make a place full of fun writing and serious writing. I'll still have posts here and there that will be like this one and be completely words and not considered perfect. But I also want to strive for some posts that are useful to you as well, the reader. Which if you are still here reading this, thank you.

Thank you for  your continued patience with my absence. Thank you for sitting through this rambling post. Thank you for being awesome.

"Pregnant!"

LIfe, InfertilitySabra GilbertComment

Written in December... But finished now. Oops!!


 

When I started blogging about my PCOS, I thought I was going to have a while to really be able to talk about it and the changes I was making and how it was affecting me.

But. . . Surprise, Surprise! PCOS didn't hold me down for long once I figured it out!!

Little G will be joining us in July 2018!

That's honestly while I've been MIA forever. I've had barely enough energy to work my full time job. Simeon has handled everything else and there is no way I could ask him to try to write a blog post for me on top of everything else. That poor man hates to write. 

I've finally started to get a little more energy now that we are starting into the second trimester! I can at least do things during the day without feeling like I'm going to die, though I still crash out by 10 any day that I work. 

How did we find out?

So in October, I was determined to try to figure out if I at least ovulated or not. Luckily my step-sister, who has also struggled with infertility, had gifted me her boxed kit of ovulation and pregnancy test strips after she found out she was expecting my little niece who is about to make an appearance! So I discovered that I did ovulate after only a few weeks of changing my diet around and using oils to support my hormones. But I didn't expect anything to come from knowing that I ovulated because it just felt too early in our journey to get that kind of a miracle.

But along came the time for my period to start, and I decided to take a pregnancy test anyway. Which was negative as I expected it to be.

And for the rest of the week, I was once again period-less but with a new crazy pain in my hips. LIke someone was shoving a knife through my pelvic bones constantly. It didn't matter if I sat down, laid down, stood up, I was in constant pain. I started googling like crazy what this could be. EVERYTHING I pulled up kept saying that I was pregnant and my pelvis was just expanding. Which I thought was crazy right after getting a negative test. So I ignored it for a few more days and kept googling "pelvic pain, NOT PREGNANT"

After nothing would even come up then, I decided to just take another test just to get it off my brain.

And it was postitive. 

It was about 7 am and Simeon was still dead asleep, but I ran into the bedroom and crawled back onto the bed, snuggled right next to Simeon's ear and whispered "We're pregnant."

To which he promptly replied "No we aren't. Go back to sleep."

He honestly didn't beleive me all day long! We ran to Target and got a Clearblue test (one that would say PREGNANT or NOT PREGNANT) so that there would be no confusion. I took it as soon as I got home (which Simeon was against) and after a minute I ran into the living room waiving a test with the giant word PREGNANT. And had to copy that annoying clearblue commertial where everyone says pregnant in a high pitched squeal (maybe it's only annoying if you've been TTC forever, but it drives Simeon and I nuts).

And finally Simeon beleived me.