Saturday, December 18, 2010

Thinking back...

     So, I woke up this morning at 8:30 and all was still quiet in my house.  I rolled from my right side to my left and felt my baby girl shift sides completely in my belly.  : )  I must have woken her up because she immediately began to bump around.
     This flashed back to 2 years ago last night...I was 36, almost 37 weeks pregnant and after a bathroom trip I realized I was leaking blood.  They say some spotting is normal during pregnancy, but since I never had, and the blood was leaking at a somewhat fast pace, I called for Brent and with shaking hands I called the Dr.  He agreed that due to the circumstances I should go to the emergency room and be examined.  It was a Wednesday night, probably close to 9:30, when all of this happened.  I remember grabbing my purse and rushing out the door.  Brent drove and I can remember reclining my seat and feeling for signs of movement.  There were no tears but there were prayers on the way to the hospital that night.
     After all the normal tests, temperature, blood pressure, baby heart rate, etc. I was hooked up to monitor contractions.  The screen was going crazy.  Mountain after mountain on the screen and yet I was feeling nothing.  The nurse informed me that it's normal to be having contractions and not feel them.  Ha, this is glorious I thought.  I can handle this...I wasn't very dilated so there was no need to worry about labor just yet.  They said even with all that was going on, I could still carry until my due date- January 8 and it was only Dec. 17 and that all was well.  Relief!  We headed home around 11:30.
     The next morning, December 18, I returned to teach my kindergartners, and Brent returned to work in Sumter.  I had noticed tiny spurts of fluid throughout the day and told a few teachers on my team.  I felt completely normal, I just had these little spurts of fluid.  I went through the entire day until my planning period, which was the last period of the day.  My team : )  oh, they were so cute..."what in the world are you still doing here?"  "It's OK, I feel fine.  Let's get some planning done."  With their pressure, I went to the principal and told her what was going on.  She said my class would be covered for dismissal and I should go ahead and get things checked out...again.  I called Brent so he could start the hour drive from Sumter and meet me at the hospital.  I'm thinking they rolled me around in a wheelchair, which I thought was silly, but it is nice to be pampered every now and then.  : )  I remember they had trouble finding an examine room for me.  They wanted to do a swab to see what the fluid was.  She came back about an hour after the first swab and said it was inconclusive and she wanted to swab again.  Second swab and they discovered it was amniotic fluid.  "Looks like you won't be going home" the nurse said.  My thoughts: "What?  My class' holiday celebration is tomorrow.  I have no bag packed.  I was about to be on 2 weeks Christmas break and had a long list of things that I wanted/needed to get done.  I am a planner!  One thing on our list was to buy the car seat!"  Calls were made to family and friends.  I was brought to a room, a delivery room!  I asked for a doula, which had been part of my "plan."  They informed me that there had been a lot of births that day and all of the doula's had already been used.  I expressed my desire for a natural childbirth and that I really wanted to delay pitocin.  I had heard, and they agreed that it can make labor pain more intense.  One nice nurse who was going off duty used a marker to draw a black dot on my foot.  This was a known pressure point, which may help induce natural labor.  She also gave me a sucker and said something about the sucker on the roof of my mouth helping induce labor.  Well, you can bet, I was sucking that sucker and Brent was massaging that pressure point!  : )  We realized we would have a little time on our hands.  Brent went home to pack the essentials, my parents and brother weren't there yet, it was about 8:30 that night and the Dr. came in to inform me he'd like to go ahead and break my water to get things progressing.  They also wanted to go ahead with the pitocin.  : (  Apparently, once you're leaking amniotic fluid, they want to have the baby out within a certain number of hours or your risk of infection goes up significantly.  Well, I'd already been leaking since early that morning.  And let me just tell you, after realizing quantity, I'm so glad my water did not break in front of my little 5 year olds!  There could have been possible traumatizing.  : )

There were times I was like, I can handle this...women throughout time have been able to handle this...





Followed my moments like this...





Although Brent says there were times I asked for the epidural, I met my goal of a natural childbirth.  And at 1:30 am on December 19, 2008 I gave birth to Asher Fielding Petersen, 6 lbs. 2.3 oz.

I had moments like these...








(Thank you to my family, who were troopers through the night.)




(Meghann & Troy, thanks for making the middle of the night trip!)

And FINALLY I got to eat!  : )


(Kristen R., thanks for chatting at approx. 2:30 in the morning)

Monday, November 15, 2010

What's this? I have a moment!

     So, I decided to travel to Orangeburg for the day.  Actually, Asher decided by saying, "Nah Nah's toys?" as I got him from his crib this morning.  I had planned on finishing dusting and vacuuming the upstairs but I liked Asher's idea a little more.  : )  So, after breakfast we headed to see Nah Nah, Papa, and Uncle Troy.  Lunch at House of Pizza is always a plus.  Oh, and I guess I'm officially showing because I had a lady say, "I thought you were pregnant but I was afraid to ask."  Yes, I'm 4 months along and at that in between, awkward, "is she just pudgy?", stage.  I don't mind though because the elastic waistbands are out and they're glorious!
     There's something so wonderful about coming home.  It's kind of like a mini vacation.  Food is prepared and provided for me.  Love is abundant- not only for me but also for my son.  My "To Do" list goes out the window.

     Haha, OK, that was all from Nov. 10.  I'm going to guess Asher woke up or my ADD kicked in and I moved on to something else.  Actually, I just remembered...mom told me that she had taped the Oprah episode where the family lost their 3 children in a car accident and then they were blessed with triplets.  I was in Cape Cod when that episode was on and had missed it.

     It's actually now, Nov. 15 and I'm in Orangeburg again!  Brent, Asher, and I made the trip yesterday for lunch.  We brought the trailer with all of our palms and seasonal outdoor plants to put in my parents' greenhouse.  Brent and I drove separately so that he could leave early this morning and head to work while I get the day to spend with family (and have Brent's car serviced at my dad's station).  Mom, Asher, and I enjoyed breakfast together; mom, dad, Asher, and I enjoyed lunch; and mom and dad have meetings tonight so Troy, Asher, and I are going out for dinner before I head back to Lexington.

     I guess I want to take a moment to Thank God for so, so many things.  I am thankful for an amazing family who loves and supports me, for a husband who works hard and supports the freedom I have with my days, for a beautiful son who loves life and adventure, and for the new baby who's now not just bumping but kicking around in my belly.  As I pray for others whose family members are ill, I am so thankful for the health of all of those who mean the most to me...  

Out at my parent's property...






And, one of the bump just for fun.  : )
19 weeks and counting!

    

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Welcome Fall?


Ok, we're excited about all the seasonal changes and (somewhat) cooler weather.  I'm actually really excited about our electricity bill because our air/heat has not had to turn on.  We decided to take a family trip down the road to a local tree farm for some great fall photos.  Poor Asher...in the photo below I had him in a sweater and it was 85 degrees outside!  Don't worry, we were quick and I brought a shirt for him to change into.  As you can see, he didn't seem to mind the temperature...



Welcome Fall, we're glad to have you and look forward to all of the changes you bring.  (I, personally, am looking forward to the elastic waistbands)  : )

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Oh my, Oh my...

Asher lifted Mickey off the potty, looked inside, and said, "Nope." : )

     Ok, let me begin with saying we are against Asher watching TV.  Fortunately, he's never been very interested.  I think watching TV means being still and he's just not into that.  Well, at some point I must have shown him Mickey Mouse and now he requests it if the TV is being turned on.  I do let him watch the 8:00 morning episode while he enjoys his morning milk.  I actually love this time because we cuddle and enjoy the show together.  My mom even found a Mickey Mouse that's about Asher's size that he enjoys.  So, when it came time to consider a Halloween costume, it only seemed right that we let our little guy be Mickey Mouse.  Well, last year I went with the already put together store bought outfit and decided to get creative this year so I'm piecing together parts from different stores but I think he's going to be super cute- as always.  : )
     While searching for parts to his costume, we came across this lion outfit.  I honestly can't remember the last time I laughed until I cried.  Well, this lion costume had me rolling.  Asher wasn't a huge fan so we let him take it off before I realized I must have it on film.  So, here's a video showing Asher in the lion top.  He was probably wondering why we had freed him only to put him right back in it.  I kind of wish we had purchased it just to have a good laugh later on. 

video

(Scroll to bottom of screen to pause music.)

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Just for fun...

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A little overstimulation at Babies R Us.  He first began doing this unprompted.  I believe he would have continued down the row had there been more.



video

This is from early August but just thought it was funny...



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This is from a day I wasn't feeling well and had to create additional entertainment.  He did it over and over (when he wasn't using the cushion as a slide).

Football time!

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(To hear video, pause music by scrolling to the bottom of the screen)

So, our family pulls for the Gamecocks.  Am I anti- Clemson?  No.  Does Asher have a cute shirt that says, "I eat tiger and my veggies?"  Yes.  Again, it was a cute shirt!  : )
Ok, after viewing the video you can't hear Asher's sweet voice as clearly on the blog as you can in the video.  : (  Guess I'll search through more video.  He really does have the cutest voice and pronunciation.

Friday, September 17, 2010

One year later...

I've been putting off this blog.  I wanted to post on August 7, which would mark the one year anniversary since Asher had surgery.  I guess I knew it would be painful to go back there, to look over pictures, and to re-live what we felt and saw.  The bright side is that we are now on the other side.  God watched over Asher, the surgeons, the anesthesiologists, the nurses, and all hands who were laid on our amazing boy.     

Actually, this brings me to another point.  I claim Asher as our own.  Our preacher mentioned on Sunday how with the birth of his first born son, he raised his son in the air and said to God, "He is yours.  Do with him as You will."  We spoke of Abraham and Isaac and the sacrifice Abraham was willing to make.  Our preacher mentioned how this promise, which he made to God, became more difficult as his son grew and felt more like his own.  This is something I will also be working on. 

Leading up to Asher's surgery, there is one song that moved me more than others.  The first time it truly hit me, I was actually sitting in the Zaxby's drive-through and I do believe I was hiding tears behind my sunglasses by the time I got up to the window. 

(You can pause the music by scrolling to the bottom of the screen)
The song is Blessed be the Name.  Please take time to listen, think of the words, and be amazed at how Mighty our Father is.  The part that got me the most was, "You give and take away, You give and take away, my heart will choose to say, Lord, blessed be your name."  It was God's will to bring Asher out of surgery without complications.  But...even if He hadn't, He should be praised.  I still can't sing this at church without being emotional.  Actually, I love all of our music at church, and I am quite often emotional regardless.  : ) 
Some of you may not know what exactly went on during surgery, and I'll spare some graphic details.  I will say that the incision goes from ear to ear over the top of Asher's head.  A large portion of Asher's skull was removed, cut apart, and then placed back together in new locations to create a smooth forehead and room for Asher's skull to expand with his growing brain and body.  The CT scan shows hundreds of tiny dots.  Each of these dots represent a screw.  Asher has dissolvable screws and plates and I now know how strong they are because Asher has truly tested them in the past year.  Immediately after surgery, Asher had a drain tube, which was removed after 2 days or so.  His orbital bone was also altered and contains screws.  By the night of surgery Asher was so swollen he was unable to open his eyes (this is normal).  Swelling continued for 2 more days but on that 3rd day it went down and Asher was able to see through tiny openings; regardless, he was a happy baby at this point.  We kept ointment on his incision, his stitches dissolved, and even with his white blonde hair you have to look VERY close to notice the scar.  Asher still has some soft spots and with our next CT scan and Duke visit  they will let us know how they are filling in.  Just to show the amazing healing power of our Father and prayer...

The morning of surgery





Immediately after surgery




At this point the swelling was so bad, Asher was unrecognizable.  I choose not to share photos of the swelling at its worse.  I posted a picture just so that all who came in knew what our little guy looked like.


Eyes are open just enough to go home!!



God's miracle and gift to us, 1 year later...













So, right now, all is well!  And I'm not trying to be pessimistic, but as our preacher has said before, "If you aren't in your storm now, I can guarantee one day you will be."  Take time to listen to track 10 below or for lyrics click here and remember who to turn to in your time of need. 

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Baffled....

Ok, there's nothing that will drive you to blog than an experience that just blows you away.  Unfortunately, this blew me away in a bad way.  So, after a great weekend of visiting with friends Friday night and driving to Orangeburg to visit and spend the night with family on Saturday for my 30th birthday, Brent, Asher, and I are heading home around 6 this evening.  We take Hwy. 1.  Brent remembers he needed something for work from Lowes so he runs in while Asher and I wait in he car.  We're pulling out of Lowes and see a "clearly" homeless man sitting on the curb across the street.  By "clearly," I mean this man could have been cast in a movie.  Thin, gray hair, shirt that looked as if it were once white, sandals, beard, and dirty all over.  I think to myself, what if that's Jesus or what if this is a test.  I mention to Brent that that man sure looks homeless.  He responds, "He does, do you want to buy him a meal?"  I'm thinking WOW, I'm so glad he thought that too.  I mean, the man was sitting on a curb right beside a Popeye's Chicken so we decide to head through the drive through.  We decided on a three piece chicken meal with mashed potatoes and gravy, a biscuit. and sweet tea.  Sounds yummy and filling to me!?!  So, the man is sitting on the curb beside a stop light on my side of the car.  I roll my window down and say something like, "We thought you might like something to eat" while holding the bag and drink out of the window.  I had planned on ending the conversation with something like, "God bless you, have a great day."
     Ok, this is where things get interesting....his reply is something like, "What do you got?"  Me: "Chicken and mashed potatoes with a sweet tea." Him: "Hmm, no biscuits in there?" Me: "Um, I believe there is one biscuit. Sir, do you not like chicken?" Him: "Not really" (I believe that at this point Brent chimed in with something like "We were trying to do something nice, don't take it if you don't want it."  Brent was a little more perturbed than me.  I was still in a small state of shock.)  So, I had already handed over the bag while he's telling me he doesn't like chicken.  He said, "Well let me see" as he begins to open the box and I stare at his black hands, nails, and crust in the inner corners of his eyes.  Me:  "Sir, if you don't want the meal please hand it back to me and I'll get out what you'd like" because as I mentioned before, I like chicken and Brent and I had planned on eating left-overs at home but I wouldn't mind eating chicken instead.  Well, too late, he's in the box and I knew at this point the meal was all his because I was not taking it back.  I still held the tea in my hand as Brent had had too much.  I'm not sure if we said anything or if we just pulled forward to pull away as he said, "wait, I want the tea!"  As we continued to pull out he screamed, "F*** Y** B****!"  All while swinging the bag of food over his head into the near by flower bed behind him. 
     Oh my goodness...first of all, I've never been told the F Y part.  Second of all, I don't believe I've ever been called a B!  I'm SO non-confrontational and do not like friction or disagreement.  I was in shock!  Brent drove down the road a little ways and turned back around to see what the man was doing.  Well, as we went back by he was enjoying the mashed potatoes.  So, here's where I'm lost.  Did we really intend to bring joy and nourishment and cause anger and hatred in the process?  Was Satan using this man to make us think twice about doing good deeds for strangers in the future?  I just don't know where everything went wrong?  If it were just me, you bet, that man would have his tea and I would have pulled away in shock for his lack of appreciation.  Brent's opinion, the man needs to be taught a lesson on gratitude.  I don't know who's right out of Brent and I but I do know that this man was wrong.  As I mentioned before, this incident just has me baffled and saddened so I just had to share.  Please don't let this story stop you from thinking, "What would Jesus do?" in certain situations.  I do, however, hope that your story has a much happier ending...    

Friday, July 30, 2010

Where does the time go?

Goodness gracious it's been a while since I've had the leisure time to sit and type! My last post was about Asher waking in the night. I ended up calling the pediatrician and speaking to a nurse. I guess I was looking for permission to let him scream it out.  : (   We had let him do this some as an infant but I guess we felt now he really knew what was going on. She said they've had them cry for 4 hours before and that toddlers are smart enough at this age to know that if they wake and scream, mom or dad will come and give them undivided attention. So, Asher cried from 2:50 a.m. to 5:10 a.m. Brent and I pretty much stared sadly at the monitor as Asher cried and cried. This story does have a good ending however...Asher has not woken up and cried during the night since that night and I'd say it's been 2 weeks or so?
The issue has now transitioned to nap. My normally 2 1/2, 3 hour napper has decided he will now nap for 45 mins. to maybe an hour.  Anyway, I don't want to just purge my problems so I'll just stop there.

I'll move on to all of the good things that are going on. Asher loves to run (especially away from, or to, mommy and daddy)! He talks all day long and says new words daily. He now lets his daddy give him his nighttime milk. He has always enjoyed books but especially now. He sings with pretend words and uses the granite in front of the fireplace as his stage. He loves anything that goes "broom broom." He has this new thing where he gets close enough to you, throws his arms up into the air, and then falls into your arms. He thinks it's so funny and I appreciate his trust but just have to be ready to catch at all times. He loves to say "bye bye" so much that he sometimes says "bye bye" to his toys when he leaves the room. Today he even went up to a full length mirror, said "bye bye," gave himself a kiss in the mirror and then said "hug" and wrapped his arms around the mirror before walking away. Oh how I love that little guy!!! : )   Now just a few photos to show what we've been up to...

Asher plays drums at the Lexington Peach Festival, where we also enjoyed peach ice cream, peach cobbler, peach tea, peach zinger, peach honey, and even brought some peaches home.



 
I love these guys...






The 4th of July on Lake Murray




At my parents' pond property...


He does always seem to be the center of attention...




At Ansley's 2nd birthday, there was a little jumping on the bed before going to bed.




Riley and Asher's misplaced kiss goodnight.




HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my amazing brother and Asher's Uncle "TOY!"

Thursday, July 8, 2010

HELP! Sleep Regression at 18 months?

Oh my, how our little one has changed at 18 months.  So, we're going from 3 hour naps to 1 1/2 some days to 3 hours others.  From sleeping through the night since he was teeny tiny, to waking up screaming almost every night like he's had  a bad dream.  I don't understand.  I'm writing now because I'm getting frustrated and I don't want to be frustrated.  I googled, "18 month sleep" and many parent comments came up about sleep issues at 18 months.  Why is this?  He also went from waking up and just rolling around talking to himself to now standing and calling, "mommy" "daddy" even "Na Na" right away.  I'm looking at the monitor now and he's laying down but I've already gone in there twice to put everything back in his crib.  Now, I'm just leaving it out because I don't want him to use that as his fishing technique to reel me back into his room.  I just don't understand what's going on!?!  Some nights he cries briefly and goes back down on his own.  Other nights he screams uncontrollably and we have to go in there.  He's great while we're holding him but then clings to us and begins to scream when we try to lay him back down.  Moms and dad's out there, any similar experiences?  Should we be doing something differently?  Is it just a growth spurt?  Fortunately, I read that he will get through this and go back to his normal amazing habits.  I just hate going to bed at night dreading what the night holds and also that his 12 hours of good sleep is being disrupted.

This is a first from yesterday...Asher has never fallen asleep while eating lunch!  After I cleaned him up and changed his diaper, he slept for more than three hours.  So obviously, there are still good days.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Asher turns 1 1/2

So I wanted to go ahead and get these on here before too long.  They were taken June 19 when Asher turned 18 months.  We did something special when he turned 6 months only it was a strawberry cupcake with icing because that's what I wanted so obviously, at 6 months we wouldn't allow him to eat it but his mommy did.  It was just a good photo opportunity.  Basically, we don't give Asher sweets or things with added sugar.  Brent and I just feel there is so much growth and development going on that we want to make sure he's getting his nutrients from foods that count.  I made his one year birthday cake, which was an apple cake with whipped topping.  So for his year and a half, I made a blueberry muffin with whipped topping.  I agree, the whipped topping surely is not as good without the added sugar and as you'll see later on, he wasn't a huge fan.  He actually ate it upside down so that he didn't eat any whipped topping.  


My Masterpiece



Sampling the whipped cream



"Hmm... maybe if I turn it over I can bypass the white stuff..."



"Oh yeah, now we're talking.  Hey, thanks mom for finishing off that top layer for me."  : )



Who knows what he was thinking here.  Probably, "Why do you guys have to take pictures of everything..."



Now, just a few to show the many precious faces of Asher...


He finished the day by "going PP" in his own potty.  You guessed it... I have a photo, I just chose not to include.  : )  I know, for those old John & Kate Plus 8 fans, I'm a little like Kate when it comes to documenting firsts! (No matter what they are.)