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Archive for the ‘Baby V’ Category

Ok, we’ll go with the good.

We had our follow-up visit with Jane last Thursday. Good news is Canyon is continuing to gain at a normal rate now (up to 10 lbs 4oz as of Thursday! woohoo!), I am continuing to produce more and more milk (and Jane says it is high calorie, high fat milk, so that’s amazing), and my sweet boy is happy to take a bottle when I offer him one.

Bad news is- my baby boy can’t nurse. Or more specifically can’t nurse productively. Which means that as of right now it looks like we will be pumping and bottle feeding for the long haul.

We spent an hour and a half with Jane this time. And though Canyon’s suck had improved slightly from the first time she observed him, it has not improved nearly as much as she was hoping/expecting. Still he cannot create a strong enough suction to ingest the volume that he needs.

So at 4:30 on Thursday afternoon Jane gave us our final instructions and sent us on our way.

Instruction #1) Keep pumping. Pump 8 times a day until you are producing at least 24oz in 24 hours. At that point you’d be safe dropping to 6-7 times.

#2) Nurse. Nurse as long and as often as you like. Nurse for comfort. Nurse for connection. But follow with a bottle for nutrition.

#3) Continue his suck strengthening exercises at least 3 times a day and any time he nurses or takes a bottle.

#4) Consult with his pediatrician about seeing an Ear Nose and Throat specialist at Vanderbilt. (Unfortunately, Jane suspects that there may be a bigger issue than what she is able to diagnose and treat, that may be preventing him from sucking properly- an issue that could continue to affect him beyond just his nursing abilities.)

So I have been experiencing a gamut of emotions since Thursday’s conclusion.

On the one hand, I have so much to be thankful for. My boy is happy as a clam, sleeping like a champ (well, for a seven week old. don’t get too jealous), and he is growing and healthy and full of huge smiles for his mama. My body is able to produce the milk that he needs and he is happy to take that from a bottle. We have the means and the resources needed to diagnose our problem and search for/find our solution. And we are surrounded by an incredible support group of friends and family who have blessed us immeasurably since Canyon was born, making this crazy journey so much more manageable than it would be otherwise. And there is still hope that continuing to follow Jane’s advice as well as consulting with an ENT doctor could have my boy nursing properly at some point in the future.

But I am also so disappointed. Disappointed that Canyon and I are not able to share the sweet simplicity of a successful nursing relationship.

And overwhelmed. Overwhelmed because how do I keep doing all that I need to do on such precious little sleep and while hurting, still, every single day?

And jealous. Jealous of the women who’s pregnancy/birth/infancy stories sound so much easier and less complicated than mine.

And ashamed. Ashamed of feeling all of this in the first place. Ashamed of how much I am struggling when I am so very blessed. Ashamed at how much I suck at the whole pregnancy/birth/infancy phase of life.

And then I remember my friend Jennifer who lost her baby girl just 3 weeks after I got to bring my baby home. And I think that I really don’t have anything to complain about at all.

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So, long story short: Two weeks ago I visited A Mother’s Place with my youngest because he still (as of a 4 week old check-up) had not regained to his birth weight. While we were there we discovered that he has mouth issues that were causing milk supply issues, that were in turn causing weight gaining issues. My poor boy was hungry and I didn’t even know it! 😦

We spent 3 hours with Jane and came home overwhelmed (well I was, he probably wasn’t) but with a plan. This has become our routine since then:

5ish: nurse, both of us back to sleep

8ish: nurse, give 2oz bottle of my pumped milk, change diaper, “play”, nap (him, not me), take herbs and vitamins (me, not him), eat breakfast with older two, drink 20oz water, pump

11ish: nurse, give 2oz bottle, change diaper, “play”, nap (again him, not me), take herbs and vitamins, eat lunch with older two, drink 20oz water, pump

2ish: nurse, give 2oz bottle, change diaper, “play”, nap (him, and if I’m lucky, me)

5ish: nurse, give 2oz bottle, change diaper, “play”, nap (just him this time), take herbs and vitamins, eat dinner with older two and hubby, drink 20oz water, pump

8ish: nurse, give 2oz bottle, change diaper, “play”, in bed (just him, not me yet), take herbs, eat snack, drink 20oz water, pump

11ish: give 2-3oz bottle, in bed (us both this time. yay!)

Some days it seems to take all day just to do the things on this list. Other days I might fit in about 10 % of what’s on my other “to do” list like laundry, dishes, school with Meadow, making dinner, reminding Granite not to whine, errands, baths (or hygiene in general for that matter), answering the phone, replying to texts, etc., etc., etc……

Yes, I am overwhelmed. Yes, I am doing my best to extend grace to myself every day, sometimes many, many times a day. Yes, I am ready for a good night’s sleep, a day without physical pain/discomfort, enough strength and healing to be able to run and hike and workout and wrestle with my kids and make love with my husband. Yes, I am ready for “normal”.

But I am also savoring this short time I have to cuddle my youngest before he is too busy to be cuddled, to kiss his bald head before it is covered with hair, to enjoy his huge smiles while that is his only means of communicating how much he loves his mama, and to nurse my sweet baby while that is still his favorite way to be comforted.

Every day is a challenge for me right now. But it is also a miracle. And for that I am so very, very grateful.

His and Yours,

~Echo~

P.S. Canyon gained 1/2 a pound after one week of our new plan. His pediatrician said that is perfect, that was what she was hoping for. Thank you, Lord! And thank you friends and family for your prayers.

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Canyon and mamaHe is here, he is home, he is healthy. Thank you, God! And he is already one month old today. How can that be?? It has been a month of change and adjustment and emotion but my baby is here and I am grateful for his life every single day.

Our second son, Canyon Boaz Vetter, entered this world 5 days past his due date and after 15 hours of labor at 2:37pm on September 21st, weighing 9lbs 9oz and measuring 21 1/2 inches long. He joined 6 1/2 year old big sister Meadow Grace and 3 1/2 year old big brother Granite Isaiah and so far both have shown nothing but complete adoration for their baby brother. My mom told me that it is with baby #3 that you learn to really stop and savor the sweetness of those early moments. And she was right.

I have many stories I would like to tell (as much because I don’t want to forget them as anything) including a few from my pregnancy (still need to finish my 300 series, among others…), Canyon’s birth story, what I experienced while he was in the NICU and some of my thoughts and emotions and experiences from this past month of being a new mama of 3. But seeing as I have barely figured out how to even get all 4 of us dressed each day…well, you get the picture. 😉

Stay tuned, my friends. I do hope you will hear from me again soon!

His and Yours, ~Echo~

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August 10 at 2:47pm

Walked a little over three miles on the trails in Gatlinburg this past weekend. So gorgeous! And a little over two at Radnor today with Meadow and Granite. They were little troopers. The walk wore us all out! 5 more down…63 to go!

August 12 at 2:55pm

Just walked the neighborhood with Summer and my munchkins. 2 more down…61 to go!

August 15 at 11:48pm

Took a walk with the munchkins around three this afternoon and it was warm but not hot! Praise the Lord for this cooler weather, I love it!! All three of us walked the first mile, I pushed Gran in the stroller while Mead rode her bike for the second mile then just Gran and I did the last mile (with him still in the stroller) while Mead went across the street to our neighbor’s house. The walk was challenging but also energizing and enjoyable. So proud of my kids for being active with me. 3 more down…58 to go!

August 16 at 2:30pm

Walked a 10k (not an official one. just our own.) with M and G this morning! It was challenging but amazing! They both walked the first mile with me, M rode her bike the second and third mile while G rode in the stroller then they both rode in the stroller for miles four through six (while listening to music, eating a snack and practicing letters, numbers, shapes and animals on the magnadoodle!). The weather was glorious, their attitudes were amazing and though it took FOREVER I loved it!! So proud of my munchkins (especially Meadow, her first time to go three miles without stopping!). 6 more down…52 to go!!!

August 18 at 12:20am

‎4 more down…48 to go!

August 19 at 11:31am

Ran/walked a 5k (an official one this time! haha. not just around the neighborhood) last night in 41 minutes with Meg, Chassi, Lauren and Summer! 98 % of the crowd was under 18, under 120 pounds and/or exceptionally tall and muscular (which was hilarious to us old, pregnant people) BUT we had a great time and the trail was gorgeous (even if it did take me 2 1/2 times as long to finish as the guy who came in first place!) So glad Meg told us about it, so thankful for Summer who stuck with me the WHOLE time, really enjoyed my fun evening with good friends! I feel so blessed. 3 more down…45 to go!

August 20 at 11:52am

Had a GREAT walk at River Park with Chassi this morning!! It wasn’t easy but felt so good to start my Saturday that way. Thankful that she was willing to slow waaay down for me. And we saw Jamie and her fam and Corinne and her munchkins while we were there! 6 more down…39 to go!

August 22 at 9:32am

Had a quiet three mile walk last night after my family was in bed. Was a good, much needed hour of prayer and clearing my head. 3 more down…36 to go!

August 22 at 11:36pm

Walked 1 1/2 miles with my girl tonight (per her request to join me. such a cutie.) then another 1 1/2 listening to my ipod. I am slow as Christmas but feeling decent and LOVING this amazing weather! 3 more down…33 to go!

August 24 at 12:22am

Took a walk around the block again tonight. Walked the first mile with my two little troopers. Walked the second mile and a half pushing my two troopers in the jogging stroller while G slept and M and I played learning games for the half hourish. Then finished with another 3 1/2 after Chaz and the munchkins were in bed. Had more prayer time and calibration once I was alone and it was dark and quiet. Seem to need that more than ever these days. 6 more down…27 to go.

August 24 at 9:46pm

Walked at River Park this afternoon with M and G. Meadow rode her bike all three miles, her longest bike ride to date! Still blown away by how much walking/running/riding she is able to do. Gran sat surprisingly quiet and content in the stroller the whole time. Was a hot day for a walk but with the breeze and the shaded trail it was completely bearable. Love River Park. Love my munchkins! 3 more down…24 to go!

August 29 at 10:21pm

Well let’s see, after a three mile walk LATE Thursday night (during which I ran into Luke and Anna on their way to the store and had to admit that yes I walk at all hours of the day and night and yes, I know that makes me a little bit crazy…), another three mile walk through the neighborhood Friday evening while Chaz ran errands with the munchkins, a hot and challenging but somehow still enjoyable six mile walk on Sunday afternoon at River Park (followed by 130 oz of water), and a three mile walk tonight (with Summer and Meadow during the first mile and a half), I’ve got…15 more down…9 to go!

September 1 at 12:42am

Walked two miles last night while Chaz put the munchkins to bed. Did NOT want to…but made myself do it anyway. Then walked three more today…the first mile this afternoon with M and G, the second mile several hours later with G in the stroller while M helped the hubby fry up some farm fresh veggies for dinner, and finally the third mile after the hubs and kids were in bed for the night. (G ran A LOT of the first mile without being prompted or encouraged to and would stay just ahead of his sister and me while he was running. Super cute and impressive. He walked the rest of the mile in between us, holding our hands, which I LOVE. And though my second mile would normally occur immediately following my first mile, my Garmin died, which just enough discouragement to cause a rearrangement of our plan. Plus it was super hot at that point in the day so waiting a while to continue just sounded way too appealing. And then dinner ended up being ready after the second mile and the kids’ bedtime routine followed right after that causing the additional delay between the second and third…) So yeah, after this crazy day of walking I’ve got…5 more down…only 4 more to go!!!

September 1 at 11:45pm

Completed my 300 miles this afternoon with my two sidekicks and my one in utero! LAST 4 down…0 more to go!!!!!!

Part 3 of 300 Miles will be coming soon so stay tuned for 300 Miles: The Ups and Downs of The Final Four!

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A Rare Good Night’s Sleep: Had.

Mug of Decaf Coffee: Savored.

One Year Bible: Read.

Sunshine: Admired.

Beds: Made.

Breakfast and Lunch: Served. And Eaten.

Blog Post: Posted.

Google Reader: Perused.

Grocery List: Started.

Phone Calls: Made.

Indoor Plants: Watered.

First Grade Bible, Reading, History/Geography, Math, Science, Writing/Spelling, and Piano Lessons: Taught.

Preschool Letters, Numbers, Colors, Shapes, Animals and Potty Training Lessons: Taught.

Most Dishes: Washed. Dried. Put Away.

Counters and Tables and Chairs: Wiped.

Living Room and Dining Room Floor: Swept.

Some (but Not Enough) Laundry: Washed. Dried. Folded. Put Away.

Toys, Games, Puzzles, Movies, Art Supplies, School Supplies: Picked Up. Put Away.

Piles: Er…Improved.

Crockpot Chicken and Potatoes with Organic Farm Fresh Squash and Zucchini Casserole and Giant Bowl of Organic Farm Fresh Watermelon: Prepared. Served for Dinner. Thoroughly Enjoyed.

Leftovers: Refrigerated.

Food Scraps: Composted.

Heat: Avoided.

100 Ounces of Water: Downed.

Pandora: Turned Up.

Baby (Still in Utero): Nourished. Held. Protected. Eagerly Anticipated.

Children: Hugged. Kissed. Held. Dressed. Fed. Taught. Trained. Reminded. Assisted. Reminded Again. Disciplined. Listened to. Read to. Laughed with. Snuggled with. Prayed with. Comforted. Adored. Enjoyed. Marveled At. Appreciated.

Husband: Missed. Appreciated. Kissed. Cuddled with. Enjoyed.

Friends and Family: Texted. Facebooked. Emailed.

Three Mile Walk: Taken.

Pregnancy Journal: Updated.

Labor: Anticipated.

Many Prayers: Uttered.

Blessings: Counted.

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June 27 at 10:08am

I committed to Chassi on June 2nd that my new goal was to walk/run 150 miles by the end of August and to hit 300 miles for my entire pregnancy. I’m at 193 miles so far. That leaves another 107 to cover over the next 11 1/2(ish) weeks. I walked 3 early this morning. (which felt amazing! great weather and prayer time and gorgeous rising sun!) We will see how the rest of the week goes!

June 28 at 11:14pm

Walked two miles and ran 1 mile tonight! Beautiful night, amazing hour of prayer and meditation…3 more down, 104 to go!

June 29 at 10:35pm

‎2 more down…(first 1 of 2 with Meadow on her bike beside me…then she ran a second mile with Chaz!…such a cutie!!)…102 to go.

June 30 at 2:22pm

‎”Dead Last Finish is greater than Did Not Finish which greatly trumps Did Not Start.” – saw this quote last week and loved it!

July 8 at 7:44am

6 more down…96 to go! Walked 2.5 miles around our block on Tuesday. And walked/ran 3.5 miles this morning. It rained the whole time. I must say though, rain feels much better than heat! Good times.

July 13 at 7:41pm

Walked 2 more miles Monday night…94 to go. My hubby and kiddos joined me for the first mile. Granite ran most of it! So proud of him! (and Meadow too…she is a stronger runner every month it seems) And Meadow rode her bike beside me for the second mile. I am getting pretty discouraged though. Even 2 miles feels like a lot at this point. I so much want to stay active but with this heat, frequent fatigue and my heavy belly I’m wearing down/slowing down. :/ Will keep walking (and running a mile here and there) but not confident I will hit 300! I’d even be happy with 250 at the rate I’m going…

July 17 at 9:19pm

6 more down, 88 to go! Ran 2 1/2 miles and walked 1/2 mile Wed night and walked 2 miles and ran 1 mile tonight! (Including a 1/4 mile where I carried Granite because he fell and got a pretty good scrape on his knee! Whew! THAT was a good workout!) Still struggling with motivation but not feeling as discouraged as last week. Making it my goal this week to walk or run at least 2 miles every day. We will see how it goes!

July 18 at 6:24am

Walked 1 1/2 miles, ran 1 1/2 miles this morning! Beautiful morning. Not too hot. Sweated a lot. But a good, cleansing sweat. Felt amazing. Had a much needed 45 minutes of prayer. 3 more down…85 to go!

July 19 at 8:51am

Walked 3 miles this morning. It was a bit warmer and thicker than yesterday. But not too bad. Saw Sky and Devon and Ben while I was walking! Funny how often that happens. Listened to Mumford and Sons for most of the hour…soooo good. 3 more down…82 to go!

July 22 at 1:11pm

So the commitment I made this week has been way more challenging than I expected. Because of our schedule this week, my options have been set the alarm for 5am and walk/run before Chaz leaves for work (what I did on Mon&Tues), wait till our evening plans are over and my family is in bed and walk/run after 11pm (what I did on Wed&Thurs) or go at some point during the day pushing a 100+ pound stroller when it is 8,000 degrees outside and 100% humidity (what I did today). Sunday wasn’t bad, the kids and I went right after dinner. And tomorrow should be good, I’m gonna do 3-6 miles in the morning before it gets too hot (but not at 5am!). But yeah, this walk/run everyday commitment has flat worn me out! I’m glad I did it (always am) but next week I’m thinkin will be more like a 3-4 day commitment to give me a week to recover! 6 more down…76 to go!

July 26 at 9:07pm ‎

4 more down…72 to go. Will I hit 300 or will I not hit 300…that is the question…

July 30 at 5:42pm

Ran 2, walked 2 today! Last run I did was unsuccessful so I thought I was done with running but I guess not! Today’s walk/run felt great. 4 more down…68 to go!

Stay tuned for my next 300 Miles post to find out if I reach my goal of walking/running 300 miles before giving birth to this baby!

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15 weeks preggers

04/06/11

Well life has been on hold for several months now as my body has tried desperately to adjust to the demands of the little person growing inside my belly.  From the middle of January until the middle of March, most of the hours in my day were spent eating, sleeping, crying, and/or parenting my 5 year old and 2 year old from the spot on the couch where I was laying with my eyes half closed, trying not to vomit. Admittedly, not the most impressive two months I’ve ever had. As I told my husband about six weeks ago, “I would not make a very good chronically ill patient.” No, beauty and grace have not been my middle name.

It is humbling to know I am always a pregnancy away from completely falling apart.

But the last few weeks have been better. I am still deeply and utterly exhausted (When I say deeply and utterly, I mean it feels like there are tiny suction cups covering every inch of my skin, sucking every ounce of energy I have ever had out of every single cell in my body.) But I am down to more occasional bouts of nausea and my hormones have balanced out enough so that the fog of depression feels like it has lifted. (Both things for which I am extremely and constantly grateful.)

And since I have done little more than lie on the couch these past few months, my brain has been given more time than usual to think (a bit too much time, if you ask me), so I have many, many thoughts to share. With all of my pregnancies I have found myself in a state of restlessness, evolution, even discontentment. I don’t know if it is the hormones, the months of sickness or the sense of entrapment that comes with feeling like a victim of my own body, but pregnancy always gets me thinking, dreaming,  scheming of new ideas, new questions, new plans and ideals. Oh yes, I am often dreaming and scheming, pregnant or not. But that part of my brain seems to stay on hyper-drive when I am pregnant. Which has got to be the hormones…

So let’s see if I can get my “pregnancy brain” in gear, and get some of these thoughts down on paper (and by paper I mean 2echoEcho.wordpress.com) before I forget them just as I forget everything else I try to remember these days. (Which has been proven, really is the hormones.)

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