Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Then vs. Now

Ethan and Hailey are at school. Lauren is watching "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang" for the fourth time in two days. Devin is in his crib and is supposed to be sleeping, but I hear a lot of playing going on in there. I should be up doing things to mark of my daily to-do list, but instead I am sitting here writing. I have to leave in 55 minutes to go get Hailey from school and I guess I'll get things done eventually.

Lately I have been pondering what life is like now compared to seven years ago when we were anxiously anticipating Ethan's arrival. Life has for sure gotten more hectic with the birth of each baby, and I find it funny as I compare life "now" to life "back then". I thought it would be interesting to do a little comparison.

Life surrounding our 1st baby's birth-
-The baby was a total surprise. We were not ready to start out family yet, but God had other plans and Ethan came about four years sooner than we had envisioned. However, we would not trade the timing for anything.

-I took my prenatal vitamin everyday and drank four glasses of milk everyday...even though I loathe milk. I also ate balanced meals and frequent healthy snacks.

-I kept a precise pregnancy journal and a baby keepsake book for him.

-I exercised. Our apartment complex had a little workout room and I was pretty good about utelizing it. Also, I was in school full time at the U of U and walked the campus all day burning up lots of calories.

-I still gained 70 pounds.

-I felt tiny flutters for the first time at 19 weeks.

-I started purchasing baby items when I was about ten weeks along. By the time the baby was born he had a beautifully arranged layette complete with coordinating blankets, booties, hats, onesies, and all kinds of outfits. All of them were prewashed and perfectly organized in his closet and dresser. Bottles, binkies, burp rags, bassinet, crib, car seat, stroller, breast pump...it was all ready and waiting months before he was born.

-I sterlized everything. And I mean everything.

-His bedroom doubled as a guest room/storage room. His crib was in there along with my old full sized bed and a big shelf unit which was used as our food pantry.

-When we had his ultrasound done at 20 weeks, I carried his pictures around with me and showed everyone who would humor me. It's like his penis was the first one to ever exist. I was proud of it.

-My OB was Kent Farnsworth MD.

-Upon learning he was a boy, we headed straight from the OB clinic to Babies R Us to buy his crib bedding and a bunch of boy clothes.

-I had one of those store bought dopplers and I would listen to his heartbeat a lot during my downtime. (Downtime...ha ha ha. See comparison below)

-I worried about EVERYTHING...but not legitimate risks. I worried about swallowing moutwash or cleaning the kitchen without wearing a mask to protect the baby from the 409 cleaner fumes. I never worried about the baby getting wrapped in the cord or being stillborn.

-I hooked headphones up to my belly and would play music for the baby on a daily basis during my downtime.

-I spent hundreds of dollars at Motherhood Maternity on a very cute and fashionable wardrobe. I even had stylish maternity sleepwear.

-I rarely counted kicks, nor did I care. I figured him moving every once in a while was good enough. I didn't know how vital it was to track his movement.

-I read every pregnancy and baby book I could get my hands on, and even cut out articles from my favorite baby magazines. I started a file for those articles and I still have that file stashed away.

-We attended a six week birthing class.

-I could always tell you exactly how many weeks and days pregnant I was.

-Doctor's appointments were a joy and I looked forward to them. I loved going over to the clinic after school was over and sitting in the waiting room, browsing through parenting magazines, daydreaming about becoming a mom. Sometimes I'd sip on a smoothie in peace that I'd purchased before leaving campus. I didn't even mind waiting around for an hour during my glucose test because I only had myself and my own thoughts to contend with. Aaaaaah, peace and quiet.

-I prepared the entire nine months for a natural, medication free birth.

-We had his name picked out when I was about 35 weeks along.

-We were a two car family. Cody drove a 1986 Toyota 4-Runner (which he drove all through college too) and I drove a 2001 silver Ford Taurus.

-We lived in nice little two bed/two bath apartment.

-I never worried about what would happen if we suddenly had to rush to the hospital at 2:00 in the morning. No other kids to worry about.

-We had enough extra money to not worry about buying what we wanted, getting in a lot of last minute babymoon dates, etc.

-I worked part time in at at risk middle school program and went to school full time at the U of U. I continued to work (mainly from home) until the baby was a few months old. Quit to be a full time mom during the summer.

-Cody was finished with his masters in public health and was employed full time with Abbott Laboratories.

-My hospital bag was packed with everything imaginable from the beginning of the third trimester. It was a beast of a duffle bag, sitting in the corner of the baby's room...ready to be grabbed at a moment's notice.

-I had a typed up, specific birth plan. It was laminated front and back.

-Baby was approximately eight days overdue. I spent days and days in false labor. Finally at 3:00 a.m. the morning of February 9th I started "real" labor. Labored at home all day, just the way I'd planned. At 7:00 that night we headed to the hospital. I had only dilated 3 cm during that entire time. Spent the next three hours walking the halls of LDS hospital. Finally caved at about 10:30 and had an epidural. Baby went into distress after my water was broken. Emergency c-section and Ethan was born at 12:37 a.m. on February 10th. 8 lbs 8 oz 22 inches long.

-Stayed in the hospital four days. Ethan breastfed like a champ.

-Came home and had many meals brought in. I thought I had to stay in bed and rest as much as I could while being waited on hand and foot. Life seemed to stop. I had all the time in the world to recover.


And now...life surrounding our 5th baby's birth-
-This last baby was more of a surprise than not.

-I am so busy that I often times have to remind myself that I am pregnant. I never remember exactly how many weeks I am. I always have to stop and think about it and I am usually wrong. I have absolutely no real downtime.

-We live in a four bedroom, three bathroom house. 2200 square feet, and it still feels incredibly cramped at times. Actually, that fourth bedroom and third bathroom are in the basement and are under construction.

-We are still a two car family. The 4-Runner is living back at his parents' house and Cody now drives our 2001 Ford Taurus. It needs a paint job. I drive a 2005 puter Toyota Sienna LX and love it. It seats eight which is just right for our family.

-Cody is employed with Cephalon Inc. and has been there since 2005. They have been exceptionally good to him and our family.

-There seems to be more month than money and things are very tight at times. Feeding, clothing, and taking care of all these people is draining. Going out to dinner is a huge luxury.

-I have been horrible about taking any vitamins or supplements this pregnancy. Way too many other things running through my mind to be good about remembering to take them. I am horribly anemic (five kids in seven years can do that to a person) and I need to be better about taking my iron.

-I dread my ob visits like the plague. I always have at least two other kids in tow, often times all four. It's quite the nightmare keeping everyone happy and quiet in the waiting room and then in the exam room. The medical assistant always has to hold Devin while I use the bathroom at the beginning of each appointment.

-My OB is Michael Draper MD. He has been my doctor from my second baby on down.

-The baby keepsake book is currently a banker's box that contains everything having to do with this baby so far. Everything gets thrown inside it.

-I have since realized how little a baby actually needs. I have one box that has the newborn clothes in it, which were just barely stashed away from Devin's use when I found out I was pregnant in August. I will pull it out in the next couple of weeks, give everything a quick washing, and throw it in a drawer.

-I have been a full time stay at home mom since quitting my job when Ethan was a baby. I have never ever regretted it or wanted to go back to an outside job.

-I count kicks all the time. I think the more baby "experience" I have, scares me because I know too much. I know too many people who have had horrific things go wrong in pregnancy, so I am very cautious about monitoring his movement. I become alarmed if I haven't notcied him move in an hour.

-So far I have purchased three packages of newborn sized diapers and four boxes of breast pads. I realized long ago that you never know how quickly a baby will graduate from a size newborn to a size one diaper, so stocking up on too many newborn sized ones is a mistake. Other than diapers, we need nothing at all for this baby. Nada. Zilch.

-I noticed his fluttesr for the first time at 15 weeks (I have noticed it earlier with each baby).

-The only exercise I get is running around after kids and walking up stairs a million times a day.

-His u/s pics are on a magnet on the fridge with a million other drawings and pieces of kid artwork piled on top of it.

-I have gained sixty-five pounds and will likely gain that last five in the next four weeks.

-I am always on alert for contractions and labor. I have a plan in my mind everyday of what we'll do if I suddenly have to go into the hospital in the middle of the night. What to do with the other four kids is always in the back of my mind.

-This baby doesn't have a name and will likely stay nameless until he is forty-eight hours old.

-I don't worry about the stupid things anymore, but I over-worry about real, uncontrolable things like the baby passing away in utero or one of the kids jumping on my stomach and damaging the baby.

-My hospital bag won't be packed until a few days before the scheduled c-section.

-This will be my fifth c-section and granted that I and the baby have no complications, I will likely stay in the hospital for four days.

-When this baby comes home from the hospital, he will have no choice but to blend right in. We will be in the middle of soccer, baseball, and swimming. Life goes on!

1 comment:

Beth said...

What a great comparison!

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