A week past hatching.

“Let me ‘splain. No, there is too much. Let me sum up…”

I last wrote mid November. Really, there wasn’t much going on because, let’s face it, the holidays were approaching. The due date was approaching. Nothing was happening and why get too excited over something that may or may not happen when it was supposed to.

Until it did.

I could write my birth story, but again, I will sum up. On Monday the 26, I went for a dose of Cervidil. We packed bags just in case, nothing happened. I went home and had a fabulous steak dinner. Who knew that’d be my last meal for over 24 hours. That night around 915, my water broke. The trip to the hospital included shakes, contractions, and singing along to Justin Beiber. As the next 26 hours progressed, it included walking laps in the labor ward, stadol, pitocin, epidural, cervical regression, and finally a c section.

I didn’t have the birthing experience I wanted, even though I said I had no expectations. But once the water breaks and you have a ticking clock to get the baby out, it’s just time. I was exhausted, not having eaten in over 24 hours, not having slept more than 2 hours over the course of that day… there was no way I could’ve physically pushed out a baby at that point anyways.

But what happened was the most amazing experience of hearing a baby cry as she was pulled from me. And having her snuggle up on my chest. And coming home and looking at Mr. Lulu and saying “Can you believe they let us bring her home?”

The Raptor is a week old now. She was born November 27, 2012 at 11pm. She was 17 3/4 inches long and weighed just 7 pounds 3 ounces. She’s a tiny raptor.



Election Day, A Shower, and a Nursery

Today is election day and on my way to the polls I realized who I vote for will set up the first four years of the Raptor’s life. Kind of a really neat thought.

So third trimester…it stinks. Bad. I mean, I’ve tried really hard to maintain a positive outlook on the pregnancy and take things as they come, but OHMYGOODNESSMYBACKHURTS and HOLDONIHAVETOPEE. Really, I need to know how one pees so much. Where does it come from??? Besides the back pain, and the peeing, and the sciatic nerve issues, and the not sleeping (or sleeping too much) bit, it’s going really well! Way better than I thought it would. And as of today, we are (approximately) 23 days away.

Over the weekend, ladies from my church threw Mr. Lulu and I a baby shower. It was absolutely sweet as pie. I have always felt loved at St. Andrews but there is something wonderful about knowing you are surrounded with comfort and love and grace by others in your community. The Raptor was again spoiled with hats and toys and books and everything she needs to start out her life. I don’t have photos yet, but when I get them, I will post them. I know that no matter how I say thank you, it will never fully express my gratitude towards these ladies (and the church all together). And I have a whole roster of baby sisters and mama’s helpers!!! That’s a great gift in itself!

We’re just waiting now for the Raptor. I’ve started my third trimester nesting HARD, both at the house and the office and I’ve been running around like a mad-woman trying to clean up all the loose ends. I’ve also been told I “look like she’s dropping” but who knows. I go to the doctor again tomorrow, so maybe we’ll have an idea of what’s going on. I know, as of last week, she was just under 6 pounds. She was breech but flipped again, so who knows. She’s definitely opinionated and shares her frustrations when she has the hiccups. Not only do I get the rhythmic bounce from her spasms, but she flails her arms and legs if the hiccups don’t stop in a timely fashion.

Her nest nursery is all finished. I’m pleased with it. I really am. Here are photos for you to see! You know, before toys are thrown everywhere and she has drawn on the walls with permanent marker. Honestly though, Mr. Lulu and I are expecting her to walk out of me with a pair of Doc Maartens on, go in her room and hang anarchy posters. It’s just kinda how I see her.



Anyways, while it’s still sweet and pretty and put together…She has a decent size room, I love the purple. We still have to hang the blinds but we’ll get that done before she comes. Other than that, I think we just wait!

Comfy chair and bookshelf

Crib, mobile, and wall decal. Of course there’s a twilight turtle and her crib quilt!

Dresser & changing station. Though it’s my baby, she won’t poop.

Close up of bookshelf, shoes, Glitzy the Piggy Bank and her little lamb!

Over the door towel rack for her blankets

Close up of mobile-slash-hanging garden. These are real plants in the glass balls.

Closet and his & hers diaper bags


No barometric baby here!

This is just a quick little update letting you know (I know, you are very worried) that Mr. Lulu, the Raptor, and I survived HURRICANE SANDY OF DOOOOOOOM!

In all fairness, we did deal with wind and rain for about 24 hours and it’s still going, but not as bad as what we had expected, or prepared for. We lost power twice, once for about five or ten minutes, the other for about eight hours. Now I have two cases of water and batteries and candles for the next weather event. At least we were prepared. Mr. Lulu can put the chainsaw away, the propane cooker away, and the buckets away. We did find out we have one slow leak in the roof, but I’ll take that over the gushers we’ve had in the past. And at least I don’t have to rip out the crown molding that was just put back up to fix the dry wall again. The bradford pear tree, that we were sure was going to go, is just a little lean-y and needs some V-8, but other than that, it’s ok.

I took yesterday off and this morning but I think I’ll go in this afternoon. Mr. Lulu took a ride and said all is clear, so there’s no reason to use precious leave sitting home on a cold and rainy day.

I’m very thankful that the Raptor decided to stay inside where it’s warm and comfy instead of being one of those hurricane/barometric/full moon babies I was often told of. She has dropped a little lower, which is fine, it’s about time for that journey to begin. As far as I’m concerned, she can wait until the next full moon to make her arrival. And the next full moon is November 28th, by the way, one day before her official due date.

So I hope everyone else faired as well as we did! From the sounds of it, all the local folk are doing well. And that’s great to hear. Everyone be safe and stay warm and dry.

Child Birth Class and stuff

I’m good at coming up with titles for my blogs. I like this one in particular. I mean, “child birth class and stuff.” I mean, that’s so articulate.

Well, articulation is the KEY my friends when you are graduate school educated, like I am. Words. Words are good. Words are hard. For example, this past Sunday in my Sunday school class while discussing lying with a bunch of teenagers, one of our students said “Mr. Lulu, you are so articulate using big words and Ms. Friess, you’re all like ‘lying is bad.'” The conversation went something like that. But it’s true. Out the window. Words are hard. I did so well my second trimester with remembering things and my brain being on top of everything and now…no. Did you know that frozen food is kept in the pantry? And that to take someone coffee, you should probably put the cup of coffee in your hand before walking up the steps? Craziness.

So Mr. Lulu and I went to 8 hours of childbirth class this past weekend. I was praying I wasn’t going to freeze up like I did on the hospital tour. There’s even a photo of me floating around on the interwebs of me after the hospital tour. Here it is…See…completely frozen. Same look on my face and everything. I never expected to be that person who couldn’t deal with watching a bed break down, but hey, apparently I am!

The good news is that at class, I was my normal, happy, laughing self who was joking along with everyone else. Not to say there weren’t parts of me that twinged (did you HAVE to show us the photos of degrees of tearing during a delivery???) and there were times when I felt a little faint (again, uber descriptions of the steps of an epidural were probably not necessary). However, I feel a little more confident and a little more in control of the situation. I mean, as much control as I can have when it comes to a baby popping out of me in some way, shape, or form. Because, I kind of assume that it’s all going to go down like this… or maybe not.

I think my favorite part of class (as an aside), was when another mom-to-be sat there with her eyes getting wider and wider and wider and finally said “WHY DOES THIS HAVE TO BE SO HORRIBLE?!?!?!” Agreed.

I was comforted by the fact that if I feel like I need to try different positions, I can. I’m not sure I entirely understand why most of the labor and delivery process is about the convenience of doctors. And maybe if I had a little more forethought into this whole thing, then I may have chosen to go to a  birthing center, but because of the complications I had getting here, I do find comfort in knowing that I will be at a full service hospital.

OH! something I forgot about, but the nurse who taught the class was SO KIND to remind me of…I’m a redhead. And in the last 33 years, I’ve taken pride in being a redhead. And while South Park and others (*ahem* my Sunday school class *ahem*) like to make comments about redheads, we are very special people. So special, my nurse said “I’m worried about YOU bleeding.” Riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiight. I forgot. We’re bleeders. Usually once you get us bleeding (not necessarily an arm prick, but when things are injured, we bleed. We also feel pain differently. We tend to require more anesthetic but tend to respond well to morphine (I can concur with that statement).

So I hope when I go to the hospital to deliver the Raptor, we’ll all have the understanding that I’m a bleeder who requires more pain meds. And I do hope that they don’t go into explicit detail on how they are administering those pain meds. *shudder*

But all is well and going well and I can’t complain too much. Or if I do, I save that for Mr. Lulu to hear. And then I feel guilty about it. Terrible cycle… But anywho. All is well.

A really gushy catch up (no my water didn’t break)

Riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiight. So all I did was post photos of the shower with no shower commentary.

OH MY GOODNESS IT WAS THE BEST TIME EVER! No really, my sister threw us such a pretty shower filled with cherry blossoms to match her nursery and everthing was wonderful. We had friends come from near and far (I think Sue & Missy won as “who travelled furthest” but we had friends come from Georgia, North Carolina, New York, Illinois, and Indiana.)

It’s been extremely emotional for me to see how many people are supporting Mr. Lulu and I as we prepare for the Raptor’s hatching. It’s one of those things where you just say “oh my goodness, how are we so loved!” but we’ll take it! Absolutely. I couldn’t believe the outpouring of love and support One thing my sister did was create a “wishing tree” with cherry blossoms for people to write us or the Raptor wishes. I cried when I sat down and read them. We have the absolute sweetest friends ever. I use these gushy adjectives beause I cannot find better ones to use. My heart swells when I think of the love shared with us (cue emotional pregnant Lulu).

Mr. Lulu and I are incredibly indebted to Missy for her help after the shower. She helped organize, put things away, take things out of boxes…just moving baby gifts upstairs was a feat!

I was so sad to see everyone go, though. I wasn’t ready for people to leave, either after the shower, at the after party, or two days later when those that were left travelled home. It just made me sad, but I’m sure the next time I will see many of them, we’ll have the Raptor with us, in all her glory.

Speaking of, she’s magnificent. I say that because she measured four weeks ago at 4 1/2 pounds. We had another ultrasound and got to see her, this time getting a 3D photo of her. I have to admit, she’s darling. She’s also a world class flip flopper, tap dancer, and wiggle worm.

I go back to the doctor on Wednesday for a check up, but Mr. Lulu and I have questions about her size and her hatching, so we’ll see what the doc says. I’m so excited though. I can’t believe we have about six weeks left before we get to meet her.

I admit though, it’s getting difficult to move around. I’m exhausted and don’t have as much oomph to get out of the bed or chair as I used to. There’s not a whole lot of spring in this step!

And before I end this post, I do want to say that I had a fabulous weekend this past weekend with Mr. Lulu. We celebrated our 10th anniversary on Friday and I am not sure there is a better way to capstone a 10th anniversary than with the Raptor coming. And there is no one else I’d rather have spent the last ten years married to. Mr. Lulu is an awesome guy. He’s put up with A LOT (especially these last few months) and when I see him, I melt. 🙂

K, enough with the gushiness…

32 weeks

Wow! OK, so I’ve made it to 32 weeks! So much has been happening and yet nothing at all has been happening!

Since my last post, I turned another year older. Yup, I hit the big 33. Half way to 66, a 1/3 of the way to 99. The age of Jesus at his crucifixion. Mr. Lulu thinks it’s weird that that’s the first thing I think of but hey- 33 just feels like an odd age (no pun intended!) This year, because of the incubation of the Raptor, there was no table dancing, no delicious gin, no lampshades on head craziness. It was REALLY quiet, which is good because, well, I don’t have a whole lot of oomph in me anyways. The birthday weekend started by eating Indian food with my mother in law and father in law. They had never eaten Indian and we went to my favorite, Bollywood Masala. I love going there. Raj has no problem telling you to order something different or making you something extra special (HELLOOOOO SPINACH PAKORAS!) MIL brought cake! YUM! And we hung out at the lounge afterwards. It was such a lovely time!

My sister and her family came over the day before my actual celebratory day and we had a late lunch. They brought babka. Which I LOVE. Here is me blowing out a candle in my birthday babka! In the background is a picture of my niece (or mini-me) celebrating the birthday song. Her birthday is just two days before mine. She DID celebrate with complete raucous behavior by having seven girls spend the night at my sister’s house, complete with cake and ice cream and pizza.

Hubby and I celebrated with dinner at home, which is always nice. We grill a mean steak (c’mon, I need my iron!) and made brussel sprouts with bacon and roasted potatoes. There was fresh herbed bread and cajun crab dip too! Instead of the obligatory birthday cake, we split the most amazing eclair ever. mmmm…

Today was my 32 week check up with my OB. Everything is going just fine and dandy with the exception I’m still measuring big. Like two weeks big. Now, I’m not a TALL person. I have learned to embrace my ridiculously short stature and am hoping that it just means that there isn’t a whole lot of room in the torso for the Raptor and not that she is a mega-huge Raptor. We are going Tuesday for another sonogram just to make sure. With any luck, she’ll be a fine size and not an abnormal size.

Other final news…this weekend is my baby shower. YIPPEE!!! I get to see friends and family from near and far and I am so looking forward to celebrating with everyone! I’ll leave with a parting picture tonight- me at my 33rd birthday.