Sunday, January 12, 2014

Weston Hayes----Birth Story

Two weeks ago today, our journey with Weston began and it brings tears to my eyes thinking about how much we love him already. When I got pregnant, I was adamant that I wanted another girl. I just thought I loved Aubrey so much, another girl was what I wanted. I was so wrong to question the Lord. He gives us exactly what we need and want... even if we don't know it yet. The moment I laid eyes on Weston, I was head over heals in love. He was complete innocence and perfection all rolled up into this tiny little body. My heart swelled with pride as I gazed into the eyes of my son. We locked eyes for mere seconds, but in those moments I knew this little boy would steal my heart.

At my 34 week doctors apt, I was alarmed to find out I was already dilating and almost fully effaced. My doctor told me I needed to start preparing for an early delivery. She prescribed steroid shots for the baby to help better develop his lungs. White, baby boys do the worst as preemies and she wanted to give him the best possible chance at having mature lungs. I did the steroid shots and began preparing for an early delivery. My body almost immediately felt like labor was imminent. I told Christian it could have been psychological, but I felt like I could deliver any day.

I continued to teach and work, but we had our families on stand-by for when I might go into labor. I have to say it was extremely frustrating because my doctor kinda led me to believe it would be mere days when in reality it ended up being another 3 weeks. I'd say those three weeks seemed longer than the previous 34 weeks.

I was also very uncomfortable and ready at this point. On one hand, I wanted him to stay in as long as possible for development, but I was so miserable and in constant pain. At my 36 week appointment, I was shocked to learn I was 3 cm dilated. I never dilated at all with water just broke, so I couldn't believe I was up and walking around being that far along. Again, my doctor told me it could be anytime...and she was surprised herself that he had hung in there that long.

That was the week of Christmas, so we were very anxious that he would be born on Christmas Day, which we really didn't want. We also had family going out of town and desperately wanted him to come when they would be in town. It was a very stressful week...just not knowing can drive you crazy.

We celebrated Christmas with Bre and tried our best to make it special for her. I was extremely uncomfortable and having contractions on a daily basis. Thankfully little man didn't make his appearance on Christmas Day and for that I am very thankful. Thursday, Friday, and Saturday of that week I made it my goal to not think about going into labor but just continue doing normal things. We went shopping, ate out, visited with friends and tried to keep calm!

Saturday night, Christian brought home some fresh pineapple because we had heard that it helps with labor so I ate about half and prayed, "Lord, let this little guy come soon!"

Sunday morning (37 weeks to the day) I was supposed to go to church and lunch with a friend because Christian was working and I was determined to continue doing normal things. Early that morning, Bre and I went for a walk in her new wagon and we discussed how special it would be for her to be a big sissy. She told me, "Brother, coming soon." Boy was she right.

We got in from our walk and I began having pretty regular contractions. They weren't terribly painful but I knew they were regular and so I started timing them. They were about 7-10 minutes apart...but again...not very painful so I kinda shrugged them off.

Around 10:30 we were just about to head out to church when they started getting a little more intense and closer together. I called my friend and cancelled our plans and then called Christian at work to tell him I thought things were getting real!

He immediately came home and we headed to the hospital around 11:30. I still wasn't convinced I was in labor and in the back of my head I kept thinking, "they are gonna send me home and I'm gonna be so embarrassed!"

We checked into the assessment center and were brought back for a check. It was like the moment I laid in the bed in the assessment center, my contractions went through the roof! I was hooked up to the monitors and were told my contractions were about 3 minutes apart. The nurse checked me and to our surprise said I was 5 cm dilated! HOLY COW!

I was immediately admitted and I joked to Christian that since I was already half way there...maybe I should try and go all natural with my delivery. By the time I was wheeled up to the labor and delivery floor I started having intense contractions and that thought quickly went out the window. I was given my epidural (which hurt 10 times worse than with Aubrey) and I was able to relax and enjoy visiting with my family and friends.

After about 2 hours, I was given Pitocin and the doctor broke my water. I could still feel my contractions but they were very manageable (with Aubrey I felt absolutely nothing). Around 4:30 the sweet nurse (Jessica was her name and she was a friend of Christian's from OLOL) checked me and said, "it's go time baby!" She scooted everyone out and called the doctor to come on in. She had me push once and then told me to stop because his head was right there.

The doctor arrived shortly after and the room quickly turned into a hustle and bustle of nurses and everyone preparing for baby! I felt nothing but peace and tried my best to savor the precious moments leading up to meeting my baby. My sister in law stated it best when she said that delivery day is one of the highest, most euphoric moments in one's life...and she is so right. It's a day that physically and mentally exhausting, but also a day of the most intense emotions known to man. (well not man...sorry only woman)

I literally pushed one more time and my sweet angel appeared! They laid him on my chest and I was crying from complete elation and joy. He was so perfect and healthy and everything I ever wanted in a little one. C cut the cord and then he was whisked away to be weighed and cleaned up. We were shocked to hear that he weighed 7 pounds 4 ounces! What a big guy!

Up to this point we still weren't 100% on his name. I really wanted us to see him just to make sure the name was a perfect fit. We went back and forth and finally decided his name was Weston Hayes. It was the name his daddy loved the most and I agreed it fit him to a T.

I was so overwhelmed by the love I had for him. It's absolutely amazing how you can fall so deeply in love with someone you've never met before. The fact that this little helpless being can capture your heart in mere moments is an overwhelming feeling.

We proudly introduced our little guy to Bre first and then all our family and friends.  We relished in the love and support we received from everyone. There is nothing sweeter than new life and getting to share it with the ones you love most is absolute perfection.

Weston has been the easiest, most laid back baby ever. He eats like a champ and sleeps like it's going out of style. Aubrey Lane has done a wonderful job of taking on the role of big sister. She has shown no signs of jealousy and is constantly wanting to hold/help with the baby. Don't get me wrong...she is definitely a challenge and giving us a run for our money, but overall the transition from one to two has been pretty smooth.

Christian and I are sometimes moved to tears when we look at the amazing blessings we have in our two children. We know life is a miracle and a true gift from God. We will never, ever take those gifts for granted. I feel Weston has brought Christian and I even closer together and strengthened our marriage even more so than before. We both know that tough times and difficult moments lay ahead for us as the parents of two tiny souls, but we have committed to raising these little guys up in the Lord and we are determined to do our best. We will mess up, we will make mistakes, but we are both willing to do whatever it takes to put God first and show our children that He alone is what makes a family work.

As I look back over the course of the past year and I think about the miscarriage and the loss of that tiny soul, I'm convinced that God holds our pain and tears in His hands. I know that no struggle or pain will He allow to come our way and be in vain. He has an incredible plan for each of our lives and if we are just steadfast and hold tight...He will reveal the beauty to us. He allows us to walk through tough times because He longs for us to experience the beauty of healing and restoration.

Weston Hayes you are proof that God is a God who restores and I know your little life is going to be a mighty one. God has already used you to teach me so many valuable lessons and I know your life will continue to be one that brings glory and honor to Him alone. You are my precious little man and I can't wait to experience life with you. I'm so thankful God chose you for our family. You alone could fill that spot and already we can't imagine life without you!

Two weeks ago today my life changed forever. Two weeks ago today my little man was placed in my arms and I'll never be the same again.

Friday, January 3, 2014

A year in review 2013

One of my most favorite things to do when it comes to blogging our story is to look back over the past year and remember where we have been and recall what life's journey has been like for the previous 12 months.

Looking back and seeing how my family has grown and changed can sometimes leave me feeling sad and full of sorrow over the quickness of life's pace, but it also fills me with joy and satisfaction in knowing we have accomplished so much on our journey. Not one day passes that I don't thank God for this journey of life and the blessing of being able to walk it with my precious family.

2013 has been a year full of the lowest of lows and the highest of highs. It's been filled with months of tears and sadness and then months of anticipation and joy. I'd say this past year has been the most unpredictable and rollercoaster-like year we have yet to encounter, but it was also a year that we have learned the most. Difficult times have a way of forcing you to learn valuable and life-long lessons...lessons that only strengthen you and make you appreciate the good times so much more.

There have been good days and bad...days when I feel like I have it all together and could accomplish any task thrown my way and days when I can only crumble into my pillow at night and plead with God for another day. A fresh day...I'm learning that each day is a fresh start and I don't have to be defined by the day before...our journey moves on and with that gift comes the ability to start again and be redefined. And for that I'm so thankful...

So we go

In January, we were surprised to discover that we were expecting baby #2. We were thrilled to be adding a new addition to the family. We spent that month keeping things quiet because we wanted to make sure baby Moots was ok. We spent lots of time with Bre at the park and doing what she loved best...swinging! I remember spending hours outside in the was by far her favorite thing to do!

In February, we had a blast celebrating Valentine's Day and showing our love to all those who are dear to us. On Valentine's Day, Christian and I celebrated with a date to our very favorite restaurant, Flemings!  I continued to work part-time at VCA and we were moving and grooving with our schedules. Bre was only 16 months...a fun but very busy age!

We also announced to our families that we were expecting. This was such an exciting moment for us as we rejoiced over the new life that was inside me. We started preparing Bre for life as a big sis!

In March, I was going about cooking dinner one night and all of a sudden I started bleeding. I immediately went to the hospital and we were told that no heartbeat could be found. We were told to come back in another week to double check, perhaps it was still there...just early. We spent that week on our knees, praying for the life of our unborn child. Praying God's will be done, but pleading with Him that we would get to meet this baby this side of heaven.  The next week at our ultrasound we were devastated to learn that the baby was not there. Our world came crashing down as we experienced loss like never before. A matter how still a mother's baby. My heart ached for this child that I never got to hold in my arms.

I underwent a D&C that next day and spent many, many weeks following in a deep, dark place. A place of sorrow and pain. A pain that only could be healed by knowing God's plan for our family was not complete, but that He had more in store for our lives.

In April, still with fresh wounds, we tried picking up the pieces and moving on with normal life. My heart was broken and grieving, but I clung to the hope that God would show us his plan.

We also held Aubrey a little tighter and cherished those simple moments with her even more.

May brought warmer weather and much brighter spirits for our family. We celebrated Mother's Day and spent a fabulous weekend down in Mississippi with our friends. We absolutely loved getting to spend the weekend at my friend Kayce's family's amazing camp. It was a refreshing weekend with just nature and our family...a time we desperately needed to get back some of our strength and drive. Christian and I vowed that one day...when we strike it rich...we will buy a camp in the country and spend weekends with our kids and grandkids.

June, July and August were jam packed with wonderful memories. I had the blessing of being able to stay home full time with Aubrey for the first time and it was absolutely priceless. We spent our days going to the zoo, the pool, playdates, the name it...we did it!

I'll cherish last summer as a gift with Bre...a time when she and I bonded like never before.

We celebrated Father's Day, took a wonderful trip to Arkansas with our family, went to the beach a few times and just enjoyed being with one another.

It was in the summer that we also found out that we were expecting another baby. Our broken hearts were overjoyed at the chance to welcome another baby into our family. I spent many weeks in fear over losing the pregnancy, but through much prayer and support of my family, we made it through and were over the moon excited to see our baby grow and flourish! God truly worked a miracle and we gave Him alone all the glory for the miracle of new life.

We made the big announcement to our families and waited eagerly to find out what we were having!

In September, we joined together to announce what baby Moots would be...A BOY!!!

We also took a fabulous trip to the beach with my family and soaked up a week of the remainder of the summer sun. What a way to close out the summer! I started back at VCA and Christian was promoted to a new position at work...meaning much better hours and more pay! Holla!

September also was when my big girl started a new school (two days a week) and had a difficult time adjusting. It was extremely hard for me to put her somewhere when she was clearly not comfortable or at ease. It totally broke my heart. However, she and I both pushed through and now she absolutely loves her school and is thriving like never before. She loves her teachers and actually asks to go to school!

In October, we celebrated Aubrey's 2nd birthday. A day full of Minnie Mouse and tootles of fun. Aubrey had a blast and we truly spent time celebrating her precious little life and all that she brings to our family. She is one of a kind and more precious than anything I could have ever imagined.

November was a busy month as we prepared for the holidays. I was growing  increasingly tired and pregnancy was starting to take it's toll on me. I cherished my second pregnancy no matter what because I knew the miracle that was inside me. I was so thankful for an easy complications, pains or troubles...mostly easy sailing.

We celebrated Thanksgiving with our families and ate the heck out of some turkey and dressing!

December was filled with so much fun and memories. We tried our best to keep up with Christmas traditions and have lots of fun even if I was nine months preggers! Bre had a blast getting to meet Santa and participating in all things FROSTY!!! HAHA!

We had no idea that December would end our year with a due date wasn't until January so we weren't really sure if December would be baby month or not. I kinda figured I'd have him early...but there is really no guarantee!

On December 29th our little world was blessed beyond measure.
We welcomed a precious baby boy into the world. Weston Hayes Moots was born weighing a whopping 7 pounds 4 ounces and was by far the most adorable little boy I have ever laid eyes on.

He was the absolute "cherry on the top" ending to our year and we are soaking up the days with our new addition.

This year has been an incredible year, jam packed with precious memories that we will cherish for our entire lives. We are looking forward to what lies ahead for us in 2014 and all that God has planned for our journey.

 With our precious family and His loving will...we continue writing the pages of our book.