September 03, 2014

Freshly Picked Moccasins | Review & Giveaway

I have to admit, one of the most fun parts about having a baby girl is shopping for her and dressing her! There are just SO many more options for girls. Skirts, dresses, tutus, leggings, sweaters, bows and of course SHOES! A girl can never have too many pairs of shoes, right?!

Speaking of shoes, a few weeks before I had Chayse I was sent a pair of Freshly Picked Moccasins to review and I am very excited to finally be sharing my review with you! (I actually meant to share this review over a month ago but somehow time got away from me. I kind of forgot how crazy those first 6-8 weeks with a newborn are. I feel like we are just barely coming out of the newborn fog and she turns 8 weeks old on Friday!) :) 

When I was asked which pair of moccasins I would like to review I had a hard time narrowing it down to a favorite. There are so many fun colors and patterns to choose from. I finally decided to go with the Heirloom Limited Edition pair and when they arrived, they did not disappoint.

Not only are the moccasins absolutely adorable, but they are really well made as well. (Plus, it doesn't hurt they came in awesome packaging).  They are 100% genuine leather and you can tell a lot of thought was put into the construction and details of these moccasins.

These moccasins don't fit baby girl yet since I ordered them a size up to fit her in the fall and winter. I am sure they are going to get A LOT of use though once she grows into them. In fact, if I'm being completely honest when I am clothes shopping for her 3-6 and 6-9 month outfits, I always have this pair of shoes in the back of my mind and look for outfits that will coordinate with them. :)

I think literally the only downside to these shoes is that they do cost around $60 per pair. Which, for our budget is pretty high for a pair of shoes that baby girl will probably only fit into for 6-9 months. That's definitely not an amount I could spend repeatedly for shoes for an infant. And, it's not that they aren't well made or worth the price, I mean they are genuine leather like I mentioned above and the quality is amazing. We just don't spend that much on her entire 3-6 month wardrobe, so I couldn't really justify that amount for a single pair of shoes with each growth spurt too. They would be more of a time time purchase item for us. (And then she'd be wearing those amazing shoes every single day until she could no longer squeeze those adorable little infant feet into them any more!) ;)

Ready for the good news though? Whether or not that price point is in your budget, it doesn't matter because one person has the chance to win their very own pair of Freshly Picked Moccasins for their little one!

That's right. Freshly Picked has very generously offered to host a giveaway for Live to be Inspired readers. (The winner will get to select the size and color you want for your little one. Or, if you don't have a little one of your own, these would make an awesome baby shower gift).

To enter to win, simply follow the directions on the Rafflecopter below! Good luck!

Now for all the fun fine print....

The winner will be announced in this post on the Rafflecopter, as well as on Facebook and Twitter. Once the winner is announced, they will need to contact me within 24 hours with their information. If I do not hear from the winner within 24 hours, a new winner will be selected. So make sure to check back next Wednesday to see if you are the winner. Also, to be eligible for this giveaway you need to live within the United States and you may not have won any other giveaway including a pair of Freshly Picked Moccasins within the past 60 days.

Special thanks to Freshly Picked  for providing the moccasins for me to review and for sponsoring this this giveaway. Of course, while this post is sponsored, all opinions are 100% my own. 

September 02, 2014

Chayse's Birth Story - Meeting Big Brother & The Hospital Stay

** To read "Chayse's Birth Story - The Delivery" please go here. This post picks up where that one left off ***

After Chayse finished her four hours of monitoring, she was allowed to come back to the room and be completely off all the monitors. Despite her rocky start, she was doing AWESOME. In fact, the only thing they were concerned about at all at this point was that she might have hip displasia from being breech. (Note: All babies who are breech are at risk for this no matter how they are delivered.) 

She wasn't showing any sign of having issues with her hip joints but just to be sure they did want to set up an ultrasound at the Primary Children's Hospital location just outside of Pittsburgh for when she was one month old. (That's I guess the best time for them to be able to see anything on the ultrasound.) 

I was so grateful that was the only thing we had to be concerned about. :) 

Here is the rest of our hospital stay in pictures... 

Chayse hanging out with Dad. 

Eric and Andrea (our friends who were watching Titan) brought Titan to the hospital around 6:30pm to meet Chayse. He was a little unsure at first but warmed right up to her! 

While they were visiting they were really nice and took some photos of our little family all together. 

First family photo! 

I can't believe we are a family of four now! :) (And...gotta love Ti's "smile" in this! LOL - You never know what your going to get lately when you ask him to smile.) 

I also should point out the little mini Ty Unicorn toy in the photo by Chayse. While we were in Disney World back in May we had Titan select a present to bring Chayse at the hospital. While he was at lunch with Andrea though he saw the little toy that comes in the McDonald's Happy Meal and he thought that would be the perfect size for baby girl. He was SO excited to give that to her instead. I have no words for how cute it was that he was already thinking about his baby sister. He told me that he would just save the Minnie Mouse he had chosen earlier for her to grow into. He thought this new option was much more size appropriate. :)

Daddy's little girl!

One of the nurses came into my room during the four hours Chayse was being monitored and said that she was just in the nursery and couldn't believe how sweet Broc was with Chayse. (He stayed in the nursery with her the majority of the four hours.) 

She said she walked in and was really confused because they don't usually have the doctors in the nursery holding and cuddling the newborns. One of the nurses quickly explained though that he was the dad and Chayse was a breech delivery that was being monitored. :)  

Introducing Titan to baby sister. 

LOVE these two! 

(Just ignore the no makeup look I'm sporting in all these photos. I meant to do my hair and makeup before we took any photos but time got away from me and really when it boiled down to it, I had just had a baby and a rather exciting/exhausting morning and afternoon so I didn't really care at the time.) :)

Such a proud big brother! 

Enjoying some cuddles with baby girl after everyone left. This hospital stay was SO different from my hospital stay with Titan. Since we had just moved here to Pennsylvania and we don't have any family living here, our only visitors were Eric and Andrea the first night when they brought Titan and then some of the other residents Broc is working with who stopped in after their shifts. 

Other than those two visits, the room was quiet and I just got to enjoy this precious girl. While I do wish we had family living closer, I must admit I did really like having a much quieter room this time around and time to rest and just enjoy this new addition to our family. It made recovery, figuring out nursing, etc. all a whole lot easier not having people in our room all the time. 

Chayse still a little unsure about all the changes she had experienced! ;) 

Friday night Titan stayed with Eric and Andrea at their apartment. Then Broc picked him up in the morning to take him to his T-Ball game and to come spend the rest of the morning and afternoon at the hospital with us. Broc took Titan home after the game to grab some things and didn't realize that Titan was still in his Sonic pajama shirt. (I guess he snuck out of the house with it under his T-Ball game shirt as an "under"shirt.) LOL 

While he was at the hospital with us he was so sweet with Chayse. He would randomly sneak over to give her little touches. :) 

Chayse spending some "quality" time with Dad and brother. 

When it came time for Broc to take Titan back to the Stevens' he didn't want to leave. He wanted to stay over night with us. I think it was because he was able to watch lots of videos with dad and the nurses would take him to raid the snack room. (Not sure if that's a perk all the siblings get or just those who have dad who works at the hospital.) ;) Siblings aren't allowed over night though so luckily we were able to talk him into go back with Eric and Andrea. 

Morning snuggles with this peanut. 

The view from our room. I learned from one of the nurses that the room we were in was a highly requested room. I guess since it's a corner room and away from the main corridor it's a quieter room, has a better view than most and has a much larger bathroom. Plus, they said all the older siblings usually love being able to watch the helicopters take off and land right outside the window. The landing pad to the left is just one of the hospital's helicopter pads we had view of.

I must have looked a little surprised when she was telling me this because she said, "You didn't know you got this room on purpose?" I told her when I checked in Broc wasn't with me and so I didn't know if they even knew that he was my husband. I thought I just lucked out with the room. Her response was, "Oh no. We knew you were coming. And who your husband is." - I'm hoping that was a good thing?! ;)

Of course, after delivering Chayse breech I was no longer Dr. Parker's wife but "The doctor's wife who did a breech vaginal delivery at the last second." Seriously. Different hospital staff would come into the room like the Human Resources rep, the lactation nurse, etc, look at the name on my chart and go, "Oh, your the doctor's wife who delivered breech." Two people even said, "That story was going around the hospital all day yesterday and even at a retirement party earlier today! You had quite the exciting delivery."

Yep. That's us. Our children apparently like to come fast and with a little excitement and surprise mixed in. :)

Pennsylvania sunrise!

It took us until late Friday evening to decide for sure we wanted to name baby girl Chayse and then after that we couldn't decide between Chase or Chayse as the spelling. So for a while she was just "Baby Girl Parker". 

For those wondering about the name, Broc and I just both really like the name Chayse for a girl. We always have. We were a little undecided on it though because it's more typically known as a boys name. Then my sister pointed out though that it's a family name (my fifth great-grandfather is Heber Chase Kimball) and so we decided to go with it and ultimately (like as of two or three weeks ago) we decided to keep the spelling Chayse to make it a little more feminine when written out. (That was the spelling we put on her birth certificate but then once we got home from the hospital we both kind of went back and forth on switching it to just Chase so it's spelled like that a few times on social media, etc.)

For her middle name we went with Cambria because 1) It's a family name. 2) It's super girly and a good balance to Chayse and 3) We live right next to a Cambria County here in Pennsylvania and so it ties her to her birth place a little bit. In fact, every time I introduce myself here in PA or whenever people ask about Chayse's middle name they said, "Oh, so like the county? Were you named after the county?". 

The food at the hospital was actually better than most. And they let me customized my order for each meal! Don't get me wrong, it was still hospital food, but it was nice to be given some options and to be able to decide what I was in the mood for rather than just having a mystery tray delivered. 

Of course, I also had Broc pick me up a couple things here and there from the cafeteria as well like these Cadbury Caramello Ice Cream Bars. Um, where have these been all my life? SO ridiculously yummy! (Pretty sure I've asked Broc almost weekly to bring one of these home from the hospital since I was there.)  

Saturday morning I asked one of the nurses if they by chance had Dr. Pepper (They had mentioned they had Pepsi products earlier and while I can't stand Pepsi or Diet Pepsi I don't mind Dr. Pepper so I thought it was worth a try.) She said they didn't on the nurses floor and I told her that was totally fine and could I please get a sprite and some ice water. 

Next thing I knew, she was bringing me in six cans of Dr. Pepper that she had brought up from the Doctor's Lounge/Area. :) She put them in one of the cupboards and then just told me to let her know whenever I needed ice! 

I seriously had the BEST nurses ever during this hospital stay. With Titan's delivery and that hospital stay I remember liking the nurses well enough and not having any issues with them but I wouldn't say they were outstanding or especially memorable. (And I do remember my night shift nurses not being very personable.) 

The nurses I had here at UPMC though were INCREDIBLE! They seriously went above and beyond the entire time we were there. Of course, to be fair to the nurses at Ti's delivery, maybe it's just easier to give more personalized attention in an area where there aren't TONS of births every day? I think they had 4-5 births the morning/afternoon I was induced here and that was a pretty busy day for them. Pretty sure hospitals in Utah do that many deliveries sometimes in one hour... ;) 

Sunday morning Broc had to do rounds. (He was off Friday and Saturday but decided to trade for the Sunday morning shift because he figured he'd be at the hospital any way and it's only a couple hours.) While he did rounds I hung out with Chayse, showered, relaxed and enjoyed my few remaining hours of having nurses and hospital staff around to take care of everything. 

Another thing I enjoyed about this hospital stay is that they weren't kicking us out at 9:00 or 10:00 am. (I know someone people don't like staying at the hospital but I like the quiet, the help, etc.) They asked if I wanted lunch and I was surprised because I thought we would have to clear the room before then. The nurse told me I could stay as long as I wanted and even stay for dinner and the 10:00 pm news if I really wanted. (Again, not sure if that's how they are with all patients or not, but it was nice not to be stressed about having to get out of there by a certain time.)   

While the thought of staying longer was enticing, especially since Broc had to work a 16 hours shift the next day, we decided to leave right after lunch. We missed Titan and figured we had imposed on his babysitters enough already. Plus, I knew I'd only be on my own Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday and then my mom and sister would be flying in to help! YAY! 

Getting ready for the car ride home. Chayse was not a fan of her car seat (and still really isn't)! 

Luckily she calmed down once we got her all in and settled. 

First photo at home with big brother! 

On the way home we swung by the Stevens and grabbed Titan. Apparently he had just gotten home from going to church with them and changed into his "comfy" clothes immediately upon getting back to their place which is why we are seeing the Sonic pajamas...again! :) Our little man took full advantage of the fact that mom wasn't around to tell him that we only wear those in the house...and at night...and one time per week! ;) 

And that is the end of the Chayse's birth story! It took almost eight weeks to get written and it's not perfect, but at least it's written and most the details are recorded. 

If you have mad it through the last post and this one, thank you for sticking around and reading. I'll admit, both of these posts were more for our sake than anyone elses. So thank you for humoring them.  

August 31, 2014

Chayse's Birth Story - The Delivery

All right, I finally found some time to sit down and write down Chayse's birth story. Fair warning, this is a LONG post. (And I talk about all things pregnancy and birth related. So if that makes you queasy or uncomfortable, you may want to skip this post and and wait for Part 2 tomorrow.)

Any way, time to grab a Diet Coke (or another beverage of your choice) and get comfortable...  :)


While we were living in Colorado I absolutely LOVED my OB doctor. I was sad that we were going to be moving before Chayse's due date and that he wouldn't be my delivery doctor. 

With that said, about a month before our move I started looking for a doctor here in Pennsylvania and I decided on the largest practice in our area with five doctors on it's staff that all deliver at the hospital Broc is working at. 

Here's a brief history of all my appointments here in PA leading up the the delivery: 

June 12th (36 1/2 weeks

My first appointment at the new practice and it was actually with the Physicians Assistant. It was more of an in-take appointment than anything else. At this appointment I was at a 2 and about 10%.

June 19th (37 1/2 weeks)

At this appointment I was seen by Dr. K. It was a routine appointment. He said I was about a 3 and 10%. And when I asked him which position baby girl was in he said she was head down. Dr. K encouraged me to think about being induced sometime after 38 weeks. I told him we prefer to give baby girl as much time as we can for her to come on her own. His reasoning for inducing was that "you may as well" and "most women are just ready to be done being pregnant by this point." Not really valid reasons in my book (or Broc's) for inducing.

June 22nd (38 weeks)

I look up in church and see Dr. K walking into the chapel. Come to find out he's in the Stake Presidency of our stake out here in PA. Small world! During the last part of church I started to feel some pretty strong contractions and thought maybe baby girl was coming on her own...but no luck. They were just braxten hicks contractions and they got close but not close enough to go to the hospital. We joked though that at least if she came, my OB was already in the building. ;)

June 26th (38 1/2 weeks)

I was seen for another routine appointment. Dr. K strongly encouraged me to be induced again and wanted to set something up for Monday, June 30th. Broc and I didn't feel comfortable with that. (My due date was July 6th) So I just scheduled another appointment for a week out.

July 3rd (39 1/2 weeks)

Time for another appointment but this time it was with another doctor in the practice, Dr. L. He said everything was looking good and said that if I wanted to wait and let baby girl come on her own that was ok by him. At this appointment he estimated she was about 7 lbs 6 oz. (so we didn't need to worry about size or her getting too big) and when I asked, he said that she was head down. 

My view at my last appointment! 
July 10th (4 days past my due date)

For this appointment I once again met with Dr. L. At the appointment everything was looking good but Dr. L said that he would prefer I be induced no later than Sunday. And, since they prefer not to induce on the weekend, we decided to try to schedule an induction the next morning, Friday, July 11th. Dr. L said he had already scheduled a couple though and so he didn't know if there would be room at the hospital. If there wasn't room, the plan was to induce on Monday. I texted Broc to let him know that we were possibly scheduling it and Broc texted back, "I know. I can hear them talking to him now. And, they are making room." (I guess I should insert here that Broc's first assignment as a resident was the OB/GYN floor. So he was on that floor all of July.) :)

At this appointment I was 4 days past my due date, still taking a Unisom every night for nausea and at a 16 pound weight gain. I was sleeping pretty well and other than two really strong sets of braxten hicks contractions, my only other complaint was that I was swelling and retaining some water. 

July 10th (In the evening...)

Broc got home from work and we were talking about the next day being the big day. I mentioned that I really liked Dr. L and was glad he would be delivering the baby. Broc mentioned that he didn't think Dr. L was actually on the schedule for the next day. He thought it would be Dr. Z or Dr. B. - two other doctors in the practice. I said I hadn't met either of them yet, but at this point, what can you do, right? I mean I had already seen two different doctors since moving to PA, why not see more? :) Plus, the plan was to have Broc actually do the delivery any no big deal.

Figuring it was going to be our last chance to eat out for a while, and wanting to do something fun with Titan as his last night being our only child, we decided to go to dinner at Outback Steakhouse. We walked in and as they were seating us, Broc walked up to the table right next to ours and said, "Hi, Dr. Z". As luck would have it, there was Dr. Z with his family. Once again, small world! :) We talked to Dr. Z and his family and mentioned we'd be seeing him again the morning for the delivery. I honestly cannot believe that out of all the restaurants here in our area, there was one of my possible doctors for the next morning.

July 11th (The BIG Day!) 

The boys hanging out on our porch swing while I finished gathering things for the hospital.
The morning of July 11th I woke up around 5:00am to finish putting our bags together, shower, etc. I'll admit I started to have a mini panic/hormonal attach while I was getting ready. Thankfully, the anxiety only lasted for a little bit and it completely went away after we woke up Titan and had our family prayer.

At 6:15 am we dropped Titan off with our friend's, Eric and Andrea. They were SO nice and offered to watch Titan while I was in the hospital. I cannot even begin to say how great it was to know that Ti was in such awesome hands. (Andrea also watched Ti during all of my appointments as well!) Andrea always had fun things planned for Titan (swimming, art projects, visits to the library for guest speakers, etc.) and he so he was really excited to be staying at their house for a lot of the weekend.

Headed up to the OB floor. Amazing how from this angle you can't really tell I'm pregnant...
Oh wait...there's the baby bump! ;)
By about 6:35 am we were at the hospital. Broc dropped me off by the doctor's entrance and then went to find parking. Since we weren't driving our car with his permit sticker in it he couldn't park in the doctor's lot. I got a little turned around trying to find the elevators (They figure the doctors using the entrance already know where they are going I guess. So things weren't very well marked in that part of the building.) Luckily, as soon as I found the elevators and went up to the OB floor I was able to find right where I needed to be. (I also had not done the hospital tour figuring Broc would pretty much be able to tell me where everything was.)

Room #11
I may be a slight over packer... :) To be fair though, this was all of my stuff, Broc's stuff (he stayed with me both nights) and all the stuff for baby girl as well! 

Last baby bump photo! 
By 7:15 am I was checked in, in my room (room #11), changed, and my nurse was starting to get me hooked up to everything and doing all the paperwork you have to do. I'll admit, while the nurse was doing all my paperwork it was SO weird to have her referring to Broc as Dr. Parker. To us at home, he's just Dad and Broc. ;)

From 8:00-9:00 we were hanging out, watching things on the monitors, and I was actually having A LOT of contractions on my own. It was also during this time that my nurse did a quick check and that Dr. Z came in to do his first check. He said he wanted to hold off on breaking my water because he thought it might break on its own and because baby girl was still really high up. He did say though that we could start the petocin but right after he left he got called into an emergency C-section. So, they started me, but on a very low dose because they wanted to keep my progression as slow as possible in order for him to have time to finish the C-section and be out to deliver.

Watching a little Kelly & Michael to pass the time. They were actually discussing a new story about a pregnant women who was driving herself to the hospital and literally had the baby on the way. HILARIOUS to listen to and watch as I was in the hospital having my own baby. :)
9:00-10:30 - My contractions started to get stronger and I went ahead and asked for the epidural. :) When the anesthesiologist came in, I had to remind Broc that he needed to be over in front of me acting as "husband" and where I could hold onto him instead of behind me and acting as "doctor". If Flight Medicine ends up not being his thing, anesthesiology is the next runner up and so naturally he gravitated toward wanting to observe everything. I am not a fan of the epidural at all though (I actually stress more over it than the actual delivery) and so I needed him as my husband at that point and not as my doctor. It was a good thing he was there for me to hold on to because it took two tries for the epidural go in correctly. Apparently, "I was so slender it was hard getting it in where it needed to be." I told the doctor that he was forgiven for causing excruciating pain TWICE for saying I was slender. :)

11:00am - 12:00pm Sometime during this time I told Broc that I thought it might be time to get the doctor and to do another check. I was feeling a lot of pressure and thinking it might be go time. Broc watched the monitors for a couple minutes and then decided go get my nurse. My nurse did another check and said that I had a "bulging water sac" but that baby girl had dropped and was right there. Apparently a bulging water sac is not something you get to feel every day so she had Broc go ahead and do a check as well. They couldn't believe the my water hadn't already broken on it's own with how bulging it was. I was fully dilated though and ready to go other than that so they decided to bring the doctor in to get things going. Apparently even with them trying to keep me "slowed down" I was still progressing pretty fast. LOL I can only imagine how fast things would have gone if they hadn't been trying to slow them down.

Around about 12:30 Dr. B came in (Dr. Z was supposed to be off at 12:00 and Dr. B was taking his place.) and she reviewed with Broc how to break my water since we were planning on Broc doing the whole delivery from start to finish.

After Broc broke my water, Dr. Z asked him to do a check and tell her how things were looking. Then she decided to do a quick check for herself and this is when it started to get really interesting because all of the sudden she is saying to us, "Um guys? Who checked her? That's a bum. Not a head. She is breech!"

The next thing I know we have Dr. Z in the room, Dr. B still in the room, a ton of nurses are coming in and out, some medical school students are showing up to watch (they were paged and told to come in because "you never get to see this!") and our friend Eric was in the room as well. (He is also a doctor and he took a break from his shift in pediatrics to come take pictures for us)

And Dr. B is saying to me, "Ok, you have two options. You can either push like you have never pushed before. Like push for your life. Or we can do a c-section. But you need to decide. This baby is ready to go. And, sorry Dr. Parker but you're not going to be doing this delivery." I immediately turned to look at Broc because I figure he is better suited to make that decision than me with his medical knowledge. He said he thought I could push her out and I remember my nurse saying, "You can do this. Dr. B wouldn't have even given you the option if she didn't think you could do it." So I said, "Let's push her out."

Immediately an "All hands on deck!" alarm was called (I didn't know about the alarm until after) and everyone was called to our room for an emergency situation.

"You don't always need a plan. Sometimes you just need to breathe. Trust. Let go. And see what happens.” Mandy Hale

After I was instructed to listen to Dr. B VERY carefully and do EXACTLY as she said to do, I began pushing. All in all, it took six pushes to get baby girl out and it all happened in less than twenty minutes from my water being broke to her arriving. It literally felt like it happened in about half that amount of time though. There was so much going on. It's amazing though in situations like that what you remember and notice.

I remember Dr. Z cheering me on like you would cheer on a football player you were rooting for and my nurse cheering me on as well. I couldn't believe the sense of support and strength I felt from complete strangers or people whom I had barely met, you know like at Outback the night before. :) These were people who didn't know me yet they were giving me the support you would give a family member you wanted to succeed. Even though it was a very intense couple of minutes, there was a very positive and good vibe in the room and for that I am SO grateful for that!

I remember Broc making a really stressed out face as they were having to manipulate Chayse's arm and shoulder to get her out since she basically was in a cannon ball position. (Imagine someone doing a cannon ball with their one hand covering their mouth and nose and the other up above  and behind their head.) And my nurse saying, "Dr. Parker, your face. Remember your poker face." This was after she saw me looking at him wondering what in the world was going on that he would looked that worried. Apparently it looked to him like they may have had to dislocate her shoulder. They didn't, it was just looking that way. Clearly something that would be difficult to watch if it's happening to your own child. (Side note: I learned after the fact that occasionally in all deliveries if the baby is not coming out they have to break their collar bone because you can get to the point of no return where a c-section is no longer an option but baby has to come out and so they are left with no other option. SO happy they were able to manipulate Chayse enough that and that I was able to push hard enough that she came on her own and nothing had to be dislocated or broken!)

I remember looking at the two medical school students and thinking, "Well, at least now they'll have an interesting story to tell."

I remember thinking about and focusing on the texts that my amazing and intuitive sister had sent earlier that morning before all the chaos...

"Nothing is impossible. The word itself says, "I'm possible."

"There is a power that comes to women when they give birth. They don't ask for it, it simply invades them. Accumulates like the clouds on the horizon carrying the child with it." 

and "Just envision Conner (my brother with a big sense of humor) saying 'Push her out, shover her out, waaaaaay out!' :) " 

I remember being amazed that I wasn't needing an oxygen mask.

I remember thinking, "Am I doing enough? What if it's not enough? No. Wait. I can't think like that. It has to be enough."

I remember thinking, "I wonder how many babies have been delivered and had not one...or two...but four doctors in the room?!"

I remember Dr. Z saying, "Agh, I should be headed to my appointments but I can't miss this. They'll just have to wait." and then Dr. B saying, "Now the next time your waiting in a doctor's office you'll know why. There are some things you just can't miss."

I remember the last push and Chayse suddenly being placed on my stomach/chest but there being what felt like a million arms in the way between me and her. I also remember that she was blue and not crying. Which probably would have terrified me but I had an overwhelming feeling that she was in good hands. (So grateful for that feeling!) After that I didn't know what to do though other than to put my hands in the air up by my shoulders trying to keep them out of the way so that the nurses and doctors could get to her. Dr. Z was trying to race her off to the nurses and Dr. B was saying she had a cord around her neck and they needed to wait and get that untangled first.

I remember after hearing the cord was around her neck Broc and I joked that she had to one up her brother. He had the cord around his neck which made a super fast delivery a necessity at his birth and apparently baby girl decided to not just have the cord around her neck but to come out backwards as well! Crazy girl!

And like was over for me. The hard work was done. But it wasn't over because I couldn't really focus on anything until I heard a cry from where the team of nurses was working on Chayse. While all the pushing and events leading up to her arrival seem to go really fast - the minute or two between her arrival and that first cry felt like forever. When Chayse came out, she wasn't breathing and so they did have to resuscitate her and then continuing resuscitating her for a while after. She let out a brief cry and was gasping for air but not breathing on her own for a few minutes.

I should explain here that at every delivery a newborn is given an APGAR score. That is a score given for appearance, pulse, grimace, activity & respiration. And it is a test that is given at one minute, five minutes and ten minutes. Most newborns at one minute score around an 8 or 9. Chayse scored a 2 at one minute which is considered critically low. Our best guess is she scored a one for pulse and probably a one for grimace (otherwise known as irritability). Clearly not a good score!

A few seconds after they were able to get Chayse breathing and a cry from her, the head nurse came over to tell me that they were sorry I couldn't hold Chayse because they needed to take her to the nursery and do some more resuscitating and monitoring. Eric looked over and asked Broc and I if we wanted him to follow her and we immediately said, "Yes!". It was comforting to me to know that he was with her and keeping an eye on her since we couldn't.

When it was all said and done, Chayse Cambria Parker was born in room #11 on 7/11 at 1:11 and weighing in a 7 lbs. 11 oz. (Looks like her lucky numbers are going to be 7 and 11!) Oh, and she was 19.5 inches long.

Our special girl! 
This little one apparently is going to take on the world in her own way! :)
Thankfully during all the pushing I only tore a little and so the whole "after" part wasn't too difficult. In fact, it was a lot more pleasant than I remember it being with Titan. I guess if they are positive the entire placenta came out they don't have to reach in and do the check where it feels like they are checking your tonsils. :) This time they knew everything was out and so we avoided that. YAY!

I should also say that I was so grateful I had gone with an epidural at this point. I can't even imagine trying to do this delivery without the help of that! We probably would have had to go with a c-section. Which was definitely not our first choice and something we were glad we were able to avoid.

As soon as it was clear that I was ok, Broc went to be with Chayse and I got recovered and cleaned up to the point that I could go to the nursery. Then, within 30 minutes of delivering, Broc came back and helped me into a wheel chair so I could go be with Chayse. (Thankfully I seem to do really well with epidurals and I had pretty good use of my legs and was able to maneuver around better than most at this point to get in and out of the chair.) Broc wheeled me into the nursery and I was able to see our baby girl! She was hooked up to a bunch of monitors but she was alert and we could hold her. I was SO glad that she seemed to be doing ok after such a rough start and I couldn't believe out baby girl was finally here!

Chayse had to stay on the monitors for about four hours just to make sure her pulse, temperature, etc. stayed ok and then they told us she could come back to my room. I stayed for about 30-45 minutes with her holding her and nursing her and then headed back to my room to eat and rest. The nurses were amazed I was already up and coming to visit her. Truthfully, I was exhausted but how could I not visit her? It would have taken a lot more to keep me from heading down to that nursery. I was definitely ready though for some food and a little less action once I got back to my room.

I passed the remainder of the four hours eating lunch and calling family members and was SO thrilled when she was finally wheeled into our room having been given the all clear! She is one very special little girl who apparently wanted to make quite the entrance.

Still absolutely amazing to me that four different doctors and two nurses all missed that this little girl was breech. As Dr. B said the next morning though on her rounds, "Clearly someone (as she motioned upward) had their own idea of how her delivery needed to go."

Holding Chayse for the first time in the nursery. 
Words cannot even describe how grateful I am for the nurses and the doctors who took care of us and who did all that they could to ensure Chayse's delivery was successful. Apparently breech vaginal deliveries aren't that common any more (a nurse said she had only seen one other one in the 8-10 years she had been at the hospital!) because most doctors now usually do a c-section instead and don't even give the option of a vaginal delivery.

I am SO grateful I had two doctors in the room who were experienced and who had delivered breech deliveries before. I am grateful for their knowledge, their experience and their ability to do what needed to be done. (And I am grateful Broc and I trusted our feelings/gut and didn't go with inducing earlier in the week when we would have ended up with a different doctor and probably a very different outcome.)

I am grateful for a strong and healthy body that was able to carry this baby girl and do the work required to bring her into the world.

And, I am also VERY grateful for the many incredible nurses who ran to take care of Chayse and meet her needs. I really don't think we could have asked for a better team!


And if you are wondering what a baby looks like when being delivered breech - we have a picture that looks just like this photo with Chayse's legs and bum dangling out. I figured you'd all enjoy seeing the "G rated" giraffe version though versus our version that (while an amazing photo) is not a photo that ever needs to see the internet... ;) 

Stayed tuned for Part 2!