Monday, March 25, 2013

Pregnant 3- The fun deets*

First a funny from Lucas:
He was making us breakfast for us, fried egg sandwiches. He accidentally dripped a glob of egg yolk on Moose's back. We left it there all day and Lucas kept calling Moose "Yolkback Mountain" hahaha!
Did you know that I love being pregnant? I LOVE it.

I loved my other pregnancies. Last night I was reading my journal from when I was expecting Molly and I wrote something like "I was so thirsty at work today so I was drinking TONS of water. Then the air from the printer hit my face and it was horrible so I threw up all that water! I was so happy! 16 weeks and I thought I was done getting sick- Nope! Still makin' a baby!"

Sure, being sick isn't fun. It gets old to get headaches and to not be able to keep food down. But when your curled up on the floor next to the toilet thinking "WHYYYYY?!!!" you remember your little baby and you smile. And you grab your belly. And you think, "Oh yeah. It's for you. <3"

That feeling is still there the third time around. Even with the anxiety and the impatience. I still sleep with a hand over my tummy as if somehow I'm helping to protect our little one. I love it that Lucas puts his hand on my tummy when he talks to me. I bought a dress that makes me look more pregnant than I am and it's awesome. I like looking pregnant and being pregnant and talking baby names and all of it. I even like when people have questions about my other babies and I enjoy answering them. (What mom doesn't like talking about her kids?!)

Do I complain sometimes about feeling carsick all the time? you bet.
Do I hate the alarm clock in the morning even if I had a full 8-10 hours? Every time. I'm constantly exhausted.

 I have this vision in my head of the moment we meet this baby. I see it kicking those tiny legs and crying a beautiful cry. I imagine seeing Lucas holding his baby and for the first time and I hope our cheeks are covered in smiles and wet with happy tears. All of the messy pregnancy stuff gets us to that miracle moment, so I love it all.

Here are some of the answers to the common pregnancy questions:
  • I am 13.5 weeks pregnant- I'll be 14 weeks Friday.
  •  My due date is September 27th, however our delivery date will be around August 31st or September 1st. (at 36 weeks).
  • I will have a planned C-section because inducing 4 weeks early is really dangerous with 2 previous C-sections.
  • In  my dream world, I get to have an all natural vaginal home birth. I  know it's not in the cards for me, but if I could I would. Lucas isn't sold on home births, so he dreams of a birth center with a homey feel but the perks of being close to the hospital and  having midwives everywhere.
  • We found out I was pregnant at four weeks, I started getting sick at six weeks.
  • We are getting a gender ultrasound (among other things) on MOTHERS DAY WEEKEND! YAY!
  • How my pregnancies compare to each other:
    • MOLLY
      • Super sick the whole first trimester. I couldn't keep anything down.
      • Warm air (like from printers or walking into a room with no open windows) made me sick the fastest.
      • I craved Giant soft pretzels most of the time.
      • I lost ten pounds in the first tri from being so sick.
      • Jamba juice was the only thing that I kept down.
      • Started feeling better at about 14 weeks with random episodes for a couple months.
      • Acne got worse.
      • Started showing about 16 weeks.
      • Lucas knew she was a girl.
      • Delivered at 37 weeks.
    • KELLEN
      • Didn't really get sick at all. I think I threw up once because I was choking on a noodle or something.
      • I got a migraine about once every week and a half starting at about 13 or so weeks.
      • I didn't have any constant cravings, just day-to-day ones.
      • I gained a normal amount of weight.
      • Acne cleared up.
      • Started showing around 13 weeks.
      • It was so different from the last pregnancy that we both thought he was a boy and were right :)
      • Delivered at 30 weeks.
    • BABY #3
      • Started getting sick about 6 weeks.
      • Just starting to feel better at 13 weeks.
      • I've had a couple migraines.
      • I have been craving Wings for the last three months.
      • I haven't been as sick as I was with Molly, but way more sick than with Kellen.
      • Acne is worse.
      • Gaining a normal amount of weight.
      • Stated showing at 11 weeks. (mostly just water I think ?)
      • We both think it's a girl because of how similar this is to being pregnant with Molly, but who knows!
      • Delivery planned for 36 weeks!

(I left my phone at my in-laws house on accident. When I get it back I'll post the few belly pictures I have)

*Usually I am super turned off when people use words like "deets" and other abreevs. I always think- hey just say DETAILS. But my friend Brandilyn says things like that every now and then and I think it's cute and funny every. single. time. It made me want to try it haha.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Pregnant 2- Medical Stuff.

Before getting pregnant I had researched around and found a specialist that I wanted use when and if we did end up expecting a baby in the near future. Unfortunately, just before I got pregnant we switched insurance and were unable to go to the specialist I had chosen. I had never met him though, so I wasn't too heartbroken.

So a week after the big POSITIVE, the hunt was on. I hunted and hunted and found three places I wanted to check out and interview.

#1 About a 20 minute drive from us but had really great online reviews about how the doctor handles high risk pregnancy. It said it was a one doctor facility with his supporting nurse practitioners, midwives, etc.

#2 About 5 minutes from home, the second place was a health crazy, low c-section rate, high rated women's care facility. The doctor bios (all women --which I liked) were impressive and I liked that they had a mindset that being pregnant itself is not a medical condition but a natural one. They didn't like medical interventions when not necessary and told you about natural ways to help symptoms or to progress through childbirth. My kind of place.

#3 The perinatology department at a primarily high risk hospital that is right next door to option number one. I would go to the hospital for everything, they have the best equipment, the most specialists, and they make you apply to be a patient to see if you are high risk enough to not need a regular OB. Also the cost would be astronomical and it was unclear if our insurance would cover it.

So I set up an appointment with the first place for a meet-and-greet. It was a small office and I think I was the only person there who didn't work there. When I got there they greeted me by name and knew why I was there. They gave me some information on the facility. Then they immediately took me back to a room and I waited for the doctor to come in.

When he came in he was older than I had expected and had a pretty intense eye twitch. In an attempt to hide it he would blink a lot. I wish that my first thought was not, yikes, do I want him operating on me and maybe my baby? That twitch is pretty bad...  BUT- I was there to see how I felt and where I wanted to go and I was going to weigh every bit of information I had. He introduced himself and shook my hand so hard it shook my....chest. My thought was Okay he is unaware of his strength. Maybe I'm just looking for flaws. Maybe I wont trust anybody.

So I decided to stop thinking mean things about the Doctor and trust that he had been doing this for a long time, talk to him about my situation, ask him questions, and see what direction he would go for a situation like ours. That matters more than anything. He was really nice, but kind of abrasive. He didn't butter up his answers or take time to pretend to think about something when he already knew what his opinion was. At first that bothered me, but now I appreciate it.

Basically his plan was this:
   - I would come in for an ultrasound at 7 weeks or sooner. Then I would get an ultrasound at every appointment after that.
   -Anytime I wanted an ultrasound he wanted me to just come in and they would check for me to easy our minds and anxiety.
  - I would have more appointments than a low or non risk pregnancy.
  - He would work with the perinatology department at the hospital and counsel with them about our situation as he felt he needed it.
  - He would look at Molly and Kellen's medical reports with a fine toothed comb to find us answers.
  - He recommended that because it seemed that we aren't completely positive what caused us to lose our babies, he would want to deliver this baby at 36 weeks. A week before we lost Molly.
  -He would not allow me to deliver vaginally with two previous emergency c-sections, especially since we would probably deliver a month early. Inducing that early can greatly increase the risk of uteran rupture and his goal would be to get the baby here and keep me alive.

I left feeling unsure and nervous. I liked his plan, he gave me good and logical answers, but I was really worried about picking the wrong person. So I called to set up an appointment with the second place.

I waited on hold for like 15 minutes before anyone answered. Then I was told that the doctors and nurses will not do meet and greets. You had to just set up an appointment and become a patient because they were too busy. I decided that is a bad and a good thing. So Lucas and I decided to drive down there to see if anyone could talk to us or give us answers and to see how it felt there.

We drove over and went in to the office. It was packed with patients of all ages since it's not just an OB office. We talked to the receptionists but they assured us that nobody would be able to talk to us. SO we asked them questions and they would run back and ask the doctors and run back out and tell us things. They were REALLY helpful and had new newest ultrasound machines. Unfortunately, the receptionists could only get us so far. So we decided that we would just set up an appointment and see how it felt. So we set up a 45 minute first appointment. It took her about 20 minutes to even find a time in the next month when we could talk to anyone. They also said that if we wanted to ask the doctors a question that we should send an email and they would get back to us in 24 hours. They set the appointment and we left. Lucas said, "I dont like it." and I agreed.

I'm sure they are great and smart and have nice machines, but we needed a doctor who would answer the phone whenever we need them. Who would take us with no notice to listen to a heartbeat. We needed them to care about our situation and not just care about trying to fit us in to their overly busy practice. So that was out. (We forgot to cancel our appointment though and it cost us $50. Boo.)

The third option was the perinatology department at Swedish Hospital. I called and talked to the doctor on the phone. She heard our situation and said she would consult with the other doctors to see if they would accept me as a patient of the hospital due to our high risk. She was very friendly. She said she would call us in 24 hours, but we didnt hear anything for a week.

In the meantime, I got really impatient about wanting to know if this was a viable pregnancy. I had a couple nights when I was sure it was ectopic. A couple nights when I thought for sure I as going to miscarry. I was just a nervous wreck.

So, we decided to set up a first ultrasound at the first place and see if I would like the doctor better and if Lucas would like him. They would work with the third option anyway on the high risk stuff, so going there was like getting both option one and option three. So we set up that appointment.

When we went to the ultrasound I was a nervous wreck. We met with the Nurse Practitioner instead of the Doctor and she was WONDERFUL. She was so caring and understanding. When we got there they all knew our situation and names. They were prepared for us and we had such a good feeling that a small practice that worked with the specialists at the hospital was what we would need. And that was that. It felt so right during that appointment that we decided that we would go to them unless anything changed or we didn't like how they handled things moving forward.

The ultrasound was wonderful. The baby was two weeks smaller than we thought it would be, making our first ultrasound at 5 weeks instead of 7. It was just a tiny little blob with a beautiful flashing heartbeat. It was a viable pregnancy, but I was bleeding and everyone was worried I was headed for a miscarriage. They didn't have me fill out any insurance stuff or anything, but they set up a second ultrasound for a week and half later.

Well, a week and half went by and we went in and there was our baby and it's perfect little heart! This time they had us fill out all the paperwork, gave us their doctor goody bag, and Lucas briefly met the doctor. (he was more likable this day). Things looked good for me and baby.

After this ultrasound they had me and Lucas sit and go over our medical history with the Nurse Practitioner, she's seriously great. She answered all our questions, wrote down every detail of Molly and Kellen's history. After looking at our history that office had the opinion that we were "struck by lightening twice". They assured us that the chances of losing this baby the way we lost the others was so slim. They also said, "However, I'm sure that is what you were told with your second baby, we are still going to take every precaution. We will still deliver at 36 weeks just in case. More important than anything is not taking chances and getting you a baby." We agreed. We dont care about the statistics anymore. We dont fit into them. Something took our babies, and this time we need someone who cares about that. These people did.

So we feel great about the office. We set up an appointment for four weeks later.

At about eleven weeks I was nervous as usual. They checked for the heartbeat with a doppler. When they couldn't find it, they gave me a third ultrasound. I saw the baby but I couldn't see a heartbeat. After some adjusting Lucas and the Doc saw it but I had to be SURE. So he repositioned that thing like crazy until there it was, clear as day, a hearbeat flashing in our perfect little bean.

They set up an appointment for four weeks later but told us that if I felt I needed to to come in any time and they would show me the baby.

Well, a week and a half later, at 12ish weeks, I was having nightmares that we lost the baby. I was crazy nervous. I hadn't lost the baby, but I had horrible cramps. I also had this feeling deep down that I should prepare for the worst. I hate to admit it, but I started planning how I was going to handle losing this baby too. I decided who I would call first. What I would say. What I would post on facebook since we had already announced the pregnancy. I decided that I would let myself cry when they told us if I needed to cry. I prepared for them to give me an ultrasound and tell me that they were so sorry. I expected to hear, "There is no heartbeat".

Lucas was of a completely opposite mindset. Ever since his moment of happiness in the car when he knew that we would get pregnant the month we did, he has been so calm. He just feels confident that this baby is going to come home with us. He was still very sympathetic to my fears and agreed that if I was so nervous, he would come with me for an ultrasound anytime.

So we went in the next day. I was so nervous that I was sweating and chatting like crazy with Lucas. He held my hand. They gave me an ultrasound and when the put the want up to my abdomen I braced myself for the worst. And then, there was our baby. And it was moving. It was wiggling and waving. It no longer looked like a little blob, but it was a teeny tiny person. Two arms and two legs and we could see its jawbones, ears, and nose.

I started to cry as Lucas said, "It's waving at us! Look, hun, it's waving" I was so relieved that it wasn't over, because I was sure sure it would be. I covered my face and cried and cried. The Nurse gave me a long ultrasound and just let us watch the baby. I was so happy. And the rush of relief came with the greatest feeling ever....hope.

We kept our initial appointment which is on April 7th. And the appointment after that would be the big scan at the hospital with the perinatologists. (They eventually did call us back and we WERE accepted as hospital OB patients, but we decided to go through Dr. Gore and get the best of both worlds) At that appointment, between 19 and 20 weeks, and on Mother's Day Weekend!) we will be getting the gender scan, anatomy scan, and most importantly, checking the umbilical cord attachment. They will check the flow of blood through the umbilical cord, where it attaches to the placenta, and seeing if this baby have a velamentous insertion like Molly and Kellen. That will be a big day.

When we left, I was imagining buying baby clothes, talking baby names, and visualizing Lucas holding our sweet baby. I felt the calmness that Lucas has had the entire time. I was so happy. Lucas took me back to work and I showed everyone our little baby's picture and hung the ultrasound picture up next to my computer. I want to remember the feeling of peace and hope I had when that little baby waved at us.

That night Lucas gave me a blessing.  Having a Priesthood Holder in the home, one who practices listening to the spirit and lives worthy of it has blessed us many times. The anxiety got pretty intense before, and we hadn't prepared for it spiritually. If I was going to keep this feeling, I really wanted a priesthood blessing and I needed one. The rest is really personal, but I will share one thing he said,

"I bless you that you will remember this peace and recall it in times of fear. That the hope you felt today will carry with you through the remainder of this pregnancy. I bless you that you will know that that baby is safe and welcome in your body."

And I wept with joy.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Pregnant 1- Finding out (long)

THANK YOU for all your love and support when we announced this pregnancy! Everyone has been so excited for us and we feel so unbelievably loved and supported. I mean, people cried with joy when they heard! I was so touched with all your wonderful words of encouragement. It was so fun to also hear from some of the silent readers of this blog. Your comments helped me want to stop being such a bad blogger and get back into recording this amazing life we have. So to the silent readers, thanks for sticking around even when I'm super boring and dont blog, and for your amazing support.

This post is not about whales. But I like whales and it's my blog.

And now for the details on baby Taylor number three!!! (Still can't quite believe it)
Please forgive the absurd amount of detail. I care about details and I want to remember everything. This is, in a sense, my journal. I might just post a FAQ or something with quick answers to the things you are all wondering- haha) 

As you know, Lucas and I are getting certified to be foster parents. We hope to one day be able to adopt a child through foster care. In the meantime we hope to help families who just need a second chance. We did, and still do, feel that that is the right thing for our family. It felt more right than an adoption agency, and it felt more right than waiting around hoping that the right person would happen to hear about us and call to tell us they chose us to be the parents of their baby. (Though if that happened we would feel like the luckiest and happiest people in the world)

Prior to deciding to pursue getting certified as a resource family for the state, we also had a feeling that it was time to put our fear aside and learn more about if we would be able to be the biological parents of a child. If we would ever see me get pregnant again, and if we would leave the hospital with a baby.

So we began to search for answers. The only thing we could find said that what is presumed took Molly and Kellen is actually not genetic, but rather, they both happened to pass away due to the same rare and unlikely umbilical cord problem. Every doctor told us we just had BAD LUCK.

Since the medical road to answers ended so quickly, we took the spiritual road for answers. There was no grand feeling that its time to have a baby. There was no sudden relief from the fear that getting pregnant would mean we would be burying another child just months later.  We both just slowly became more and more open to the idea of getting pregnant. We became more sure that we were in an area with doctors and specialists who could help us.

I also kept hearing their voices in my head, "bad luck"... "Not genetic"... "Very rare"...  And even though you would think we would be the last people to believe them, it changed the way I thought. What if they are right. What if it was just bad luck. What if Molly and Kellen just needed to come get a body and now they are happy and together. What if we could have a completely healthy and normal pregnancy and we could bring a baby home? What if every day I'm not pregnant is just my allowing fear to be what keeps me from having a family? What if they are waiting for us and we are too scared to bring them here?

So we decided we would choose faith over fear, believe the doctors, and trust that our becoming more open to getting pregnant was actually our answer to prayers. It took four months, and the first two months we felt relief when I wasn't pregnant. The third month we were disappointed which surprised us both. We started having dreams where we were adopting AND I was pregnant, or I had a baby and then we adopted one.  It was the dreams that changed me completely. I reached down in my dream and felt a big belly and felt so much love and no fear. I held a newborn baby and felt a joy that made waking up a harsh reality. Lucas dreamed of holding a baby and woke up feeling so excited. We got serious- we wanted to be pregnant. But then again that third month, a big big negative.

By that time we were a few weeks into our foster care classes and feeling beyond excited about that part of our journey. We had a long drive to class every week, and we talked a lot about our family and goals and feelings. The week we found out I was not pregnant again I said to Lucas,
"You know, I feel so good about being a foster parent. It gets me so excited. We know it's right. So do you think we aren't getting pregnant because maybe its the wrong time? Do you think we should try again this month?"

And then I looked at Lucas and he had the biggest smile on his face, and he even let out a laugh. His eyes were even a little glossy. I said, "What?" and he said, "I dont know Amber. When you mentioned trying again this month I just got so happy and I felt like this is it for us. I just felt SO HAPPY!"
And so we kept going to classes each week. We kept praying that we would get pregnant and that foster care would be a good thing for us. And then, four weeks later, we find out that I'm pregnant.

I didnt think that stick would say yes. I hadn't even missed my period yet, but I just wanted to check (I just have to know, you know?). So one day, on the way to Lucas' parents' house, we bought a test. I got a cheap one figuring it would say no and then I would test again anyway when I actually missed my period.

When we got to the Taylor's house we walked around, greeted people, and then I said, "I'll go check" Lucas says, "Okay." Then I hear him and his dad sit in the room outside the bathroom and start talking. I turned on the water so they wouldn't hear me pee. Then I do my business.

Lucas and I have decided that when taking tests we like when I take the test and while it is "thinking" I sit and nervously wait around and Lucas actually checks it to see the result. Then he gets to tell me, because, hey- its good to get the dad more involved in the pregnancy. That was the unspoken plan.

So anyway, as I'm setting the test down on the counter, maybe THREE SECONDS later, I see a big dark and very obvious blue Plus sign. I didn't know it could even change that fast. I didn't expect a result yet and all the sudden, just like that, I'm pregnant. I'M PREGNANT!


I can hear Lucas outside the door, but only barely because my heart was beating so hard, I was getting clammy and my  hands started shaking. I washed my hands and then opened the door. Lucas was sitting in front of me. I didn't come out of the bathroom but just stood there and we looked at each other. I couldn't say it.  I was in the middle of an adrenaline rush that was making my whole body shake. I just nodded my head up and down and looked at his face. He looked confused and I just nodded again and mouthed, 'Yes'. He mouths 'really?!' and I just keep on nodding my head.

Sensing the conversation with Lucas was over and we needed privacy, my father-in-law walked out of the room. Lucas came over to me and saw the test. He says "Well that was fast!" and I say, "I know! I was setting it down and just saw it! I'm shaking! I didn't expect it to say yes, and I bet your dad knows or noticed now. I dont know what to feel! I'm seriously shaking so bad, look at my legs!"
Lucas touched my belly and smiled at me and said, "Well let's tell him then." I said, "Okay". We walked out into the bathroom and over into the kitchen where John was.

Lucas goes, "So, uh, Dad. Amber's pregnant!" His dad smiled and said, "Really? Wow! Congratulations!" and Lucas said, "We literally just found out. Like a couple seconds ago." John was happy for us and gave us hugs. Then we talked about it. I dont remember what we said, or if I even said anything.

I can tell you it was the scariest feeling in the world, but that I felt so happy and excited at the same time. I couldn't stop shaking and was pacing around because there was no going back now. No matter what happens, we have to choose faith now. The time for fear is over.

When Lucas' mom got home we decided to tell her too. Lucas wanted to do it in a funny way. So when we were saying dinner prayer an hour or so later, Lucas asked to pray. He said something like this, "Please bless this food and bless Mom for preparing it. Please bless Hayley that she will be safe while she is out. We also ask that thou will bless Amber because she is pregnant." He then quickly closed his prayer and I opened my eyes and looked at Susan.

Her eyes were still closed but she was squinting them together, her arms were folded, and she just stood there frozen like she didn't want to look up and have it be a joke. Then she moved her hand up and covered her mouth and  said, "Did I just- what did- are you- is Amber..?" and Lucas said, "YEAH! Amber is pregnant!"And my angel of a mother-in-law is suddenly in tears and hugging everyone. It was really cute and helped me calm down a bit and just be happy.

We decided that we wanted to tell my parents too, but we didn't want to tell anyone else because my sister, Sarah, was about to have a baby and we wanted this to be her month and to give her baby the spotlight she deserved. So one night we went over to my parents house and we were all sitting on the couch in the basement eating ice cream. I couldn't keep it in anymore and all the sudden I just said, "So, I'm pregnant." I looked at them as if I had not just said some huge announcement. My dad goes, " Nuh uh.... Are you serious?" and my mom sat frozen. (must be a mom thing) Then I smiled and said, "I really am!" and my mom starts crying and my dad goes "Oh No way! Congratulations!"

(It was funny how our parents had the same reactions.)

We let them know that I was SUPER early and that they would need to keep our secret for a long time. The agreed and my mom kept crying and smiling at me.

And now that the shock of finding out and the first announcements were made, it was time to get serious. This was scary. We had to be very careful, very prayerful, and make some huge hard decisions.

I read an article about a study...

Lately I have read lots of shared and re-shared articles about how women need more sleep than men.

I believe it. Lucas can get five hours of sleep and have a perfectly productive day. I need at least 7 but function best with 10. TEN HOURS. My whole life I thought it was just because my mom vacuumed around me when I was a sleeping baby to teach me not to wake up. She never quieted the house or my older brothers when I was sleeping and so I learned to tune things out <genius>. I can't remember ever not being able to sleep. I lay down, close my eyes and I'm asleep until an hour after I "wake up". 

Because of my inability to think or function in the early morning, Lucas doesn't wake me when, dark-and-early, he gets up and faces the cold to give Moose a loooong morning walk. (I love him for it every day. Even though I am often unaware that he got out of bed, got dressed, came home, and got back in bed. He does it faithfully just to give our little puppy a better day when we are at work.) Lucas never complains about it, and also doesn't make me feel guilty for my inability to wake up and walk Moose in the mornings myself.

 So, last night I said to Lucas "Guess What? I read a study that said they found out women actually NEED more sleep than men. They NEED it."
 He said, "Yeah I believe that. Your minds dont stop, its just go go go".
I said, "So, turns out there is a reason mornings are so horrible for me! It's not just the pregnancy. I'm a woman!"
 He agreed that I am, indeed, a woman.

The next morning, early early early, I woke up. It is unexplainable and rare. Lucas was waking up for his walk with the dog. I'm not usually "there" when he is leaving. I said, "Hi baby." and he said,
"Morning honey," He sat up and started scratching Moose's belly, turned to me and said, "Guess what?! I read this study that says women are supposed to get up early to walk their dogs!"

I laughed so much. I love that man.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

News :) :) :) :) :)

I'm Pregnant!
Coming early September 2013
 The day after we found out, we went out to eat and my fortune cookie said this:

 More details to come :)