Sunday, October 21, 2012

When the Anesthesia Starts to Wear Off...

This was probably the longest summer of my life. Suffice it to say, I didn't go much of anywhere or do much of anything since my last blog post. I hid away from the dreaded Arizona heat, just about everyone in it, and survived. There's something to be said for surviving, right?

As I mentioned previously, my due date for our little girl, Kylie Marie Smith, was September 18th, but we were scheduled for a repeat C-Section on September 13th. I was feeling pretty darn miserable during the last leg of my pregnancy and we finally found out why; I somehow ended up with preeclampsia. The last 3 weeks or so of my pregnancy my blood pressure sky rocketed out of nowhere. I have never had blood pressure problems, pregnant or not. My doctor didn't think it was preeclampsia at first as that is apparently more common for a first pregnancy so we had a bunch of tests run. After being forced to go back into the doctor more times than I would like to remember, on Tuesday, August 28th I went in to get my blood pressure checked AGAIN. Finding it was still high, I was told the doctor "wanted to see me." I felt like a kid being sent to the principal's office; it sounded ominous. So I waited and waited...and waited for the doc (I didn't have an appointment with her) and when she finally came in, she told me that I did, indeed, have preeclampsia and that we were going to have to deliver the baby either the following day or at least before the weekend, depending on how bad it was. I had to go to the hospital to get another test run on Wednesday, the 29th and they were to get the results back that day. In the meantime, I was not allowed to have anything to eat or drink (not even ice chips- give a girl a break!) that entire day on the off chance I would be going in for surgery...

The waiting game began; by 3:00 p.m. I was cranky, hungry (or perhaps those should go the other way around as I'm sure the hunger contributed to my foul mood), and anxious to know what was happening. Nick and I frantically tried to get last minute details pulled together (you know, like finding someone to watch Tyler earlier than expected) as we waited. Finally, I called the doctor since I hadn't heard from them; she told me she definitely wanted to deliver the baby that night as the results of the test were not as good as she had hoped...we went in for surgery that night, but it wasn't that easy. Apparently, EVERY room in the labor and delivery section of the hospital was in use (9 months previous must have been a busy time! ;) so we had to be bumped to the next day. But did they let us go right home and let me eat?! NO. They made me stick around (in spite of my attempts to escape) to monitor me for a while and run more follow up tests. Depending on the results, I was either going to have to stay there and have surgery at 5:00 a.m. or I could go home, eat and come back at the more reasonable hour of 10:00 a.m. to have surgery at 11:00...Finally, we were allowed to go home; we were very much ready and excited to leave by that time. We didn't get home until around 11p.m.

August 30th proved to be the lucky day; they didn't kick us out that time. We had great staff- a BYU graduate was the anesthesiologist (I guess Nick and family knew him, but I can't remember his name). We had a very amusing surgical assistant who delighted in giving me crap the whole time. He came in beforehand to meet me because he "had to meet the woman who wrote 'cut the baby out of my belly:)'" in the paperwork where I was supposed to describe what was going to be happening in surgery. Well, it's true, isn't it? We bonded over that. As we were prepping for surgery, he asked me how tall I was and when I told him I was 5'3" he became very adamant that there was no way I was that tall- during the ensuing debate, I told him he was a punk. This, before he was going to be operating on me, hahaha. Probably not my best move. He had me laughing as they were starting and I had to apologize as it probably wasn't appropriate to be laughing while they were cutting me open. He laughed and said, "it's okay, the incision is just a little crooked." It definitely took some of the pre-surgery/middle surgery jitters away.
About to go into surgery

At least until I started to feel things I wasn't intended to...When they were testing to see if I was properly numb, I answered their questions and told them how/where I felt things. They didn't ask about my feet. I don't think I ever lost the ability to move them entirely. I was a little worried about it, but didn't want to make a fuss. So they cut in. About mid-way, or perhaps a little before, things started to get a tad uncomfortable. Apparently, I was scrunching up my feet/face due to the pain because the assisting nurse noticed (I guess I wasn't supposed to be able to move my feet after all) and, surprised that my feet were moving, asked if I was okay. I told her I was a bit uncomfortable (a slight understatement!) so the anesthesiologist gave me something in my IV to "take the edge off"....and take away the nausea resulting from the pain. I suppose it must have helped a little, but since the pain was progressively getting worse, I was just trying to keep breathing and survive so I didn't pick up on it helping all that much...

Let me just say, it freaking HURTS to feel them operating, then pushing a baby out of your stomach, cleaning things out (or whatever it was they were doing- it felt like they were scrubbing my innards out with some VERY uncomfortable tools), and stitching you up when your anesthesia is no longer much help. The anesthesiologist said my body must metabolize medicine very quickly- if only my body metabolized food so quickly!!!

Finally, I heard Kylie cry. All is well that ends well, right? She was 6 lbs 11 ounces and 18.25 inches long; tiny compared to Ty's 8 lbs 4.8 ounces and 22.25 inches long, but I guess she is a girl and was 3 weeks early. I was forced to stay in the hospital from Thursday until Sunday (ugh!), not counting our Wednesday night jaunt. Can I just say I hate hospitals? However, the endless wake up calls in the middle of the night were still less exhausting than taking care of two under 18 months!
Holding Kylie for the first time...Still in excruciating pain.

In the recovery room; our new addition:)
This explains our family rather perfectly- Tyler always on the move.
Since then we have been trying to adjust as a family of four; we like to say "we have become that family." The one with multiple kids! So weird. It has been a bit of a struggle (especially since Nick went back to work) trying to keep up with a very active/high maintenance 1 year old and a newborn. But we have lasted 7 whole weeks so that's got to say something...Tyler was a bit upset with mom and dad (especially mom! WOW!) at first, but always seemed to love his little sister. Hugs and kisses are a regular event; he is always worried about her when she cries- he will run to the door of the room she is in and look up at me like, "mom, let's go help her!" He knows to rub her hair, pat her back, give her pacifier to her (with my help-it gets interesting when he tries to do it before I catch him and help- let's just say he missed and got her eye one of the times;), and give her hugs and kisses (and the inevitable "dadadadada" that always comes just before the hug- I really wish I knew what he was saying to her!) to help her feel better. It is so cute- it could break my heart with adorability!
Finally I have my little girl! These photos were taken by Marriott Photography 

See what I mean about the kisses? So sweet!
Luckily, Tyler seems to be doing better toward mom and dad...for the most part. Now all we need to do is survive the long nights and perhaps even longer days. I miss the days when I felt well rested! Oh, and my anemia post-delivery probably wasn't helping. I should find out soon if my iron levels are better *fingers crossed*...Fun times!

In other news- Nick is super busy at work. He has a TON of projects that are keeping him busy. Job security I guess, right? He obviously does a great job in his field for his bosses to give him so much work. We are grateful he has such a great job and a boss he respects and enjoys working with.

Tyler is up to his usual antics. This post is already long enough that I won't try to recall them here. But he is a regular crack up. He can be the sweetest kid sometimes and quite the challenge at others; he's at that age. I am doing my best to be consistent with what I am trying to teach him and not give in when he is stubborn and does not want to listen. It becomes quite the battle of wills. I am proud to say, I think I usually win. Usually. I think he is learning and for the most part does quite well. We have our days where we are both in tears by the time poor Nick gets home, however, haha.

As for me? I am surviving one minute at a time! It is exhausting work, but I wouldn't change it for the world (in spite of what Nick may think on those days he comes home to a household full of tears;). I finally ventured forth to Target ALONE with both kids in tow the other day and went to lunch with an old friend and her new baby. I am a brave woman, indeed! It is getting tough taking just Tyler out, depending on his mood, so braving both at the same time? Yeah, THAT'S right. :D

I have finally felt up to taking pictures again and Nick surprised me by insisting I get the new lens I have been wanting for a while. I anticipated saving up for this puppy for some time! I have been having a blast taking pictures with it, especially with it cooling down outside and me not being encumbered by a growth in my belly! (Now she is just in the Baby Bjorn! ;) I am focusing on my kiddos right now, but plan to start doing portraits (official ones anyway- I will be snapping some here and there along the way) in November and have a few families lined up already. I am excited! This is something I am passionate about and I don't think I will ever tire of it, even if my husband and kids do get sick of me pulling out my SLR, point and shoot or my iPhone camera, depending on what I have on hand at the moment. Too bad they are stuck with me!

Here are a few pictures I have been playing around with, using my new 24-105mm f/4 L IS USM lens and trying out some new techniques I have been reading about (you really have a lot of reading time when you are up for hours at night feeding a newborn- if you aren't half asleep yourself, that is).

These first three were taken using VERY little lighting; this type of shooting is known as "low key" lighting photos. I just think Nick looks so handsome here! I'm pretty sure this was one of the ones he was being a goofball in. I have to try hard to get him to be "normal" for pictures, haha.

I miss my skating days!
I can't wait to get this boy playing baseball...He already has a little plastic t-ball set that we play with sometimes.
Slightly more window lighting was used in this one. I love the look of fascination on his face.
I will try to regale any readers with some of Tyler's recent escapades next time. Until then!

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