Friday, June 26, 2009

The short version - literally!

7:00 am - arrived at hospital, 4cm

8:45 am - doctor arrived and broke my water, 5cm

10:34 am - no contractions, so pitocin was administered

12:35 pm - epidural received, 6 cm

1:44 pm - complete, 10 cm

1:50 pm - doctor H arrived

1:55 pm - 3 minutes, and 3 pushes later, baby James is born

This is the LITERAL timeline, written down for me by the nurse because I just couldn't believe it!

Right after the epidural. I had a "walking" epidural, so I could still move and feel pressure. I knew when to push, I knew how, but I couldn't feel the pain. Marvelous!

Time to push:

Here he comes:

The doctor let me reach down and pull him out - amazing:

Jared cutting his cord:

Here's our baby boy!

7 lbs, 15.7 ounces, 21 inches long. 3/10 of an ounce away from 8 pounds? Put a little gel in his hair, and you have an 8 pound baby! Let's just say he's 8 pounds:

Sweet boy:

First bath:

So happy to have a son!

Our nurse, Natasha. She was from South Africa, and just as sweet as could be. I personally think your nurse makes all the difference!

More pictures to come when he's got cute clothes on, and such!

What an amazing experience, and I'd do it over again in an instant.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

And We're Off

Yes, it's 5am.

Yes, I'm showered, packed, and ready to go.

No, I can't sleep.

Jared and I are off to eat a peaceful breakfast, and then it's off to the hospital.

Last pictures of me pregnant. WAHOO! (39 weeks + 1 day)

Wednesday, June 24, 2009


Tomorrow is induction day.

I am so excited, I can hardly describe it.

What will he look like? Hair? Baldy?

Who will he look like? Sariah? Daddy? Can't place him just yet?

Will my body still be able to do this naturally, so pitocin doesn't have to administered?

So many questions will be answered tomorrow.

Say a prayer for us, and I'll post as soon as I can!

Love to you all.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

No Envy, Please

I'm not a sewer. I'm usually not a fan of home-made things such as dresses, etc.

But when I saw THIS cute dress on my niece, I had to make one for Sariah.

So, I made 2.

I tried 2 different styles - one with a thin bottom piece, and one with a thicker bottom piece. The one with the green bottom actually needs to be hemmed, but I thought they turned out great. Especially for a novice!

Friday, June 19, 2009


***DISCLAIMER*** This post talks about dilation of my cervix. If that is offensive to you, then you may skip this post. =)

NOTE: Looks fakely square, huh? I don't think I really look pregnant - I look abnormally oblong.

With Sariah, I started dilating at 37 weeks.

At 37, I was a 1.

At 38, I was a 2.

At 39, I was close to a 3.

When my water broke at 39 +2, I was close to a 4, and 75% effaced. Thus, my labor was quick. My body was ready.

So, when my doctor told me at 37 weeks: "Nothing is happening. No dilation, no effacement.", I was disappointed. My body hasn't started doing its job.

Then I went to the doctor on Thursday. 38 weeks + 1 day. I broke down in tears. In between sobs, I explained how bad my back really was, including the shooting pains down my legs coupled with the feeling that my legs were going to give out. I expressed my innermost turmoil about not being able to fulfill my duties as a wife and mother because I can hardly walk in the evenings.

She handed me Kleenex, and then chuckled. "Amber, I never have had to give you Kleenex. You must have been holding this in for a while."

I had been.

She then gently reminded me that I could be induced at 39 weeks. WHAT?!? No way was I going to be induced. I want a natural childbirth because I know I can do it, and I wanted the experience of being in charge of my own birth (granted things go normally). Plus, I explained my hesitations of being induced when I hadn't started progressing. That would make for a very long induction.

So she checked me.

"Oh Amber, you're 4 cm dilated, and about 80% effaced." I could hardly believe my ears!!! 4 cm in 1 week??? Maybe there was hope, and an end in sight.

So, I caved. I scheduled an induction date for Thursday, June 25, given that he doesn't come before then. Do I feel like I have let myself down for scheduling an induction? Nope - and it's because if you could spend 24 hours in my body right now, I promise that you would do the same thing.

As I left the doctor's office, I called everyone and told them the fantastic news. I was starting to move in the right direction! Shoot, I was almost half way there! I celebrated by getting a pedicure and pampering my swollen piggies.

Anyone heard of cohosh? Does it work?

Monday, June 15, 2009

I love baby blessings

Yesterday, my sister and her husband were able to bless their little girl, Makenzie.

There were 12 priesthood holders in the circle. Amazing. It was truly a sight to behold. I have to admit that my heart leaped as I watched my husband join them in the circle. Handsome as ever.

NOTE: Jared was actually really sick. He thought he had strep throat, but that was ruled out when he visited the doctor. He did have a nasty tonsil infection, and had just gotten some antibiotics in his system when he left. He still helped me in every way he could, and was such a trooper.

This is Makenzie, and she is wearing the dress that my sister wore when she was a baby, 26 years ago. My mother made it, and Sariah was also blessed in it.

Isn't she sweet?!?!

Because the blessing was in Mesa, we took advantage of this and actually went up on Saturday (as did most of our family). We hung out, went to Peter Piper Pizza for dinner, slept in a hotel, and had a marvelous time!

One thing that Jared and I did, which we have never done, was take Sariah to the temple. Jared and I try to go every month, but we leave Sariah at home in Tucson. Thus, we have NEVER taken her! As we realized this, we made the decision to get ready early and galavant on the temple grounds for a little bit before sacrament meeting. The day couldn't have been prettier. I don't think I can describe the feeling of having my small family on the temple grounds, together, as Sariah sung "I Love To See the Temple."

After the blessing, we had an AMAZING lunch of enchiladas, chips, salsa, and yummy dessert. No one throws a family party like the Porters!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Arguing With Myself

Yesterday, I was 37 weeks. I had my doctor's appointment today, and things still really aren't happening. This is frustrating to me because by this time with Sariah, I was already dilated to a 2, and my cervix was almost gone. I know each pregnancy is different, and it is just starting to hit home about how true that is. I am not yet dilated, but my cervix is starting to soften - which I guess is better than the other way around.

During my appointment, my doctor had to run across the street and deliver a baby. Thus, I finished up my appointment with her nurse, whom I LOVE as well. She was a L&D nurse for 19 years at the hospital, so she's the doctor when the doctor isn't around.

We got to talking about my sciatica. How painful it really is (because I can be real with her). Here is how our conversation went:

NURSE: I see that you're wanting to do this naturally. Would you consider an epidural?

ME: Not really. I don't feel that I will need one, and I know I can do what my body was made to do.

NURSE: I love hearing women who are comfortable with what their bodies were made to do because it makes birth a much more significant experience. I don't want to sway you, but I would like to tell you something that you may want to think about. You are already having severe lower back pain. Women who are in labor experience this kind of pain. But you are a special case because you will have labor back pain, along with the sciatica. This CAN make labor excruciating for SOME women (emphasis not added - she really said it like that).

ME: Oh dear, I didn't think of that. I guess that does give me something to think about. I appreciate your honesty, and I am thankful for your honesty.

So there you have it - we just don't know what is going to happen. So, here are some of my thoughts thus far.

1. My doctor goes out of town on June 29. My due date is July 1. This means I have until Friday, June 26 at 5pm to deliver my baby if I want my doctor to be the one to do it.

2. IF I am going to consider an epidural, then I MAY consider being induced. Truth be told, there are a lot of positives to being induced!!

3. IF I am induced, then my doctor will definitely be the one to deliver James.

4. BUT, I don't want to be induced on my doctor's schedule.

5. If I choose not to be induced, then her partners will probably deliver James. I've never met them. Will they treat me, and my desires, the same as my doctor is?

I am having a serious internal battle. I am just not sure what to do. I know what I want, but hearing that my lower back discomfort may make my wants a bit unreachable makes me a little frustrated.

Here's what I THINK I'm going to do. Wait 1 more week. I'll pray really hard, and not take it easy anymore, and see if I can help my body along with some change. When I am checked next week, I'll see what my doctor recommends and we'll make a decision from there.

Any advice?

Monday, June 8, 2009

"That" Point

I've reached "that" point in my pregnancy.

You know the one I'm talking about.

With my aching back - I don't walk. I hobble. Like an elderly woman with scoliosis.

Yesterday at church, it was obvious that I was uncomfortable. I am the chorister for sacrament meeting at the moment (I'm really the organist but I can't sit on the bench so the chorister and I traded places until after the baby is born). After sitting on the uncomfortable church pew for an hour while the sharing of testimonies took place, I gingerly got up and hobbled my way to the front of the congregation. Kind of embarrassing, actually, because I get these pittied looks.

"Poor thing," they whisper. I don't like being a poor thing.

Alas, I reached "that" point yesterday when not 1 but 6 women in the ward asked me, "Are you just about done being pregnant? You're going to have that baby any day now, aren't you?"

Hardly. I have 3 weeks left. I'm going to have to endure these questions, comments, and pittied looks for another 3 weeks.

I guess that means the end must be in sight. THAT is the point I'm looking forward to the most. Knowing that it was all worth it, and being able to finally hold this little boy.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Welcome Grandma Franklin!!!

Every summer, my M-I-L visits from Illinois. She spends anywhere from 6 weeks to almost 3 months, and we LOVE having her here! She was able to be here for Sariah's birth, her first birthday, and will now be here for the birth of James and Sariah's 2nd birthday. This is her 5th summer staying with us, and we hope she continues it every year.

And yes, I love my M-I-L. Some can be monsters. Mine isn't. If she was, I wouldn't let her stay in my home for so long. =)

Today is the day that Grandma Franklin arrived! To prepare for her arrival, Sariah made her a "Welcome" poster.

This is how it started out:

And when Sariah started adding her finger paints:

Of course, half ended up on the paper and half ended up all over Sariah.

What's the easiest way to wash all that paint off? Why, fill up the pool, of course!

And the finished product, with foam sticker animals and all. The gift basket is full of Grandma Franklin's 2 favorite things: new towels, and soap:

NOTE: The reason it says "Welcome Grandma Franklin!! (from Illinois)" is because whenever she calls and leaves a message on the answering machine, she HAS to say: Hello Sariah. This is your Grandma Franklin...from Illinois. It's very endearing.

We are looking forward to 6 wonderful weeks with Grandma Franklin!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Yes, she is mocking me.

Yes, that is Sariah with a ball under her shirt.
If you ask her what it is, she giggles and says, "Baby."

Yes, that is my offspring propped up on almost all the pillows on the bed. Some under her head, some under her legs, some just sprawled out for comfort.
If you ask her who she is, she giggles and says, "Mama."

Yes, that is my daughter acting as her pregnant mother.
Where did she get it?
Ask her cousin, Parker. =)

Yes, I do sleep with 4 pillows. Some under my head, some under my legs, some on either side of my belly. My back is grateful for so many pillows!

Monday, June 1, 2009

My dear husband:

Today has been a little bit of an "Alexander" day.

It all started when I woke up with this very funny orange/rust/red stuff all over my hands. I have no idea what it is, or how it got there. All I know is that 1) it won't wash off, and 2) it wasn't there when I went to bed. I thought it might be dried blood, but I can't figure out where I would be bleeding from (because I checked myself head-to-toe), and the bed. None of this mystery residue on the bed, either.

It continued when Sariah woke up at 5:30am when you left, screaming and crying at the thought of you leaving for work. She settled down and slept for another 35 minutes or so, but was up unusually early at 6:10.

The day culminated when Sariah decided to investigate Emerson's formula on the counter. She was sitting atop the counter while I was making a bottle for her sweet cousin. She leaned over a little too far, and fell. Taking the entire brand-new can of formula with her. She had formula powder in her hair, up her nose, in her eyelashes, and all over her clothes.

Here is the part that makes it tough for me: I cannot clean this mess up. My large pregnant belly, and very fragile back will not allow me to bend over and clean up the powder. I am afraid that this is what you are going to have to come home to, and clean it up for me.

I apologize for the scenario that you will be walking into this evening, but I also know that you will do it with a smile on your face and happiness in your heart. You will also probably chuckle at the thought of your wife trying desperately to clean up this mess, but cannot due to a belly being in the way. You have a way of finding joy in otherwise unpleasant situations.

For this, I love you.