Friday, December 31, 2010

Our Baby Boy!

Introducing Ethan Cameron Fox. He came to us at exactly 6:30 a.m. on Thursday, December 30th 2010. He weighed 6 lbs 11 oz and was 20 inches long. He has been such a good baby and is so patient with us. We can't get over how sweet he is!

The Birth (from Terral's perspective)

I thought it would be fun to write the birth story from both my perspective and Mary's. It all started on Wednesday the 29th. Mary was tossing and turning in bed that morning. We had slept in although we were both planning on getting up. Right now I know it was divine intervention that led to our sleeping in since we haven't had much sleep since. She was uncomfortable and was apparently having very small contractions. She didn't tell me about it until later that day when she had a few random contractions. We both passed them off as Braxton Hicks contractions and didn't think they were actually leading to anything. That night I was working late on a project and Mary came in and said she had what they call a bloody show. The description isn't pleasant but it basically means that real labor is right around the corner. She also told me that she had been having regular contractions for a little while. They were about 8 minutes apart.

At this point we didn't really know what to do but since it was kind of late I thought that we should go to bed while Mary would be able to get some sleep before she couldn't. She, of course, began to worry about all the things we would need to get ready for the birth since we were planning on having him at home. She wanted to clean the bathroom, at least since she would be laboring in the bath tub. I protested a little bit because I though that rest was more important for her than a clean bathroom but she said she probably wouldn't sleep if she was worried about it. I knew from experience that this is true.

After we cleaned the bathroom the contractions had continued to strengthen and were more regular at about 7 minutes apart. We decided to call our midwife who lives in St. George so that she would have a heads up. She told us to call when the contractions were 4-5 minutes apart and about 40 seconds long. We went to bed at sometime after 12:30 a.m. but between the excitement and the contractions getting stronger it was impossible to sleep. We finally just got up to prepare. It wasn't long that Mary couldn't do much because the contractions were getting strong enough that they took most of her concentration. I was supposed to be coaching her though them but there were so many things that we needed to do and she seemed to be doing perfectly on her own so I went out and shoveled snow so the midwife would have a place to park. I also began getting out all the baby stuff and preparing towels, etc. Right when I got done with the snow Mary had called the midwife because the contractions were getting less far apart and longer. The midwife thought that if she left right then, she would have to wait here for a long time (which is not that unusual). She said just to call back when the contractions were more intense.

Mary had labored in and out of the bath tub, but decided that the tub was better so at this point we were pretty much in the bathroom the whole time. She was working pretty hard with the contractions and I could tell that they were intense. She looked at me and said, very sternly, "call Janae!" I called her and she began getting ready. From there the labor was getting pretty serious pretty fast. I thought that there would still be several more hours so I wasn't too worried about the midwife getting here on time. I was, however, worried about the snowy roads since the weather was so bad. Mary had begun making a little bit of noise though the contractions and she would squeeze my hand but she handled it very well. What I didn't know at the time was that the urge to push had begun. Soon after that she was pushing and I thought it was just some hard contractions.

We had read all about the different stages of labor and the last stage usually accompanies self-doubt. They all said that the mother would say something like, "I don't think I can do it!" Mary never said anything like this. The only thing she said was, "where's Janae!?". This was part of the reason I didn't think that labor had progressed as far as it really had. Our midwife finally came and checked Mary. She told us that she was dilated to a 10 and that he was well on his way. Only a few minutes later he was crowning. Janae asked us if we wanted to drain the tub and have the baby in the other room where we had everything laid out and ready to go but by that time it was too late to move. Little Fox was almost with us. Janae asked Mary to straighten out a little bit and either lean back or squat. As soon as Mary got on her knees to straighten out he started coming. Mary made some smaller pushes and then one big push and he was out. Our midwife was there to guide us but we pretty much delivered the baby by ourselves. Mary reached down to get him but he came out so fast that he sort of slipped through her hands and into the water. We were not planning on doing a water birth but that's just the way it happened. I picked him up and handed him to Mary. I can't exactly explain how it felt but we were both very happy. After that I got the shakes so bad that when I put weight on my toes I bounced up and down like Tigger!

We are very grateful and we feel very blessed to have him with us!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

More on labor...

Just a quick update: (5:15 am)
Mary is in the tub right now laboring. She is doing great. I am supposed to be helping her with coaching, etc. but she asked me to set up the camera and get some other things ready. I decided to write an update. We called Janae back since the contractions are getting pretty strong now. It takes most of her concentration and she needs to be lying down during the contractions. I'm not exactly sure how far apart they are but they are getting closer, stronger, and longer. She seems to be progressing rather quickly.

It Begins

So much for catching up on things before the baby gets here. :)  I can hardly believe it, but I'm in labor.  I kept passing it off as prelabor or Braxton Hicks or something, but it's continued for about four hours now, so I guess I just have to accept it!  I can hardly believe that by this time tomorrow our little boy will be with us.

Last Thursday (the 23rd) we had a midwife appointment.  She checked to see if I had dilated or effaced, and there wasn't any progress.  So we traveled to Delta the next day to celebrate Christmas with my family.  Terral was quite nervous about that at first, but then we both felt good about it.  We ended up staying until Tuesday.  On the way home I was quite uncomfortable and I knew something was in the works.  Up to that point I hadn't experienced any Braxton Hicks or anything.  Even though I could tell the process had started, I was still expecting it to be at least a week before I really went into labor.

This morning (or rather, yesterday morning) I woke up quite a bit because of an uncomfortable crampy feeling.  At one point, I thought, "I should look at the clock in case this turns out to be something."  When I did finally look at the clock it was around 10:00 am.  We somehow slept in quite late because we hadn't slept all that well at my parents' and it was very overcast this morning so we didn't have sunlight to wake us.  I guess it's a good thing we did, though.  It's probably the last long sleep we'll have in a long time!

I had mild contractions the rest of the day, but they were really sporadic and I didn't keep track.  Finally sometime after 11:00 pm I decided they were coming close enough I should probably start tracking them.  We called Janae (our midwife) at about midnight.  The last set had been about 8 minutes apart and we thought we should give her a heads up just in case.

I told Terral I really wanted the bathroom clean before we went to bed, so he suggested that I read the Book of Mormon out loud while he cleaned.  (We were on 3rd Nephi chapter 18)  We finished cleaning together, and then Terral gave me a wonderful blessing.  Finally we went to bed to try to get some sleep while we could.  I almost drifted off a few times, but eventually I decided the contractions were intense enough and close enough there really was no way I was going to sleep.  Especially not when I kept thinking of things we needed to do before Janae got here.  So we got up, and now Terral is out  shoveling snow while I write this post. :)  Of course our baby's birth coincides with a winter storm when we've been having such mild weather.  I think the majority of the snow has passed though, so traveling should be manageable for Janae.

I can't explain the emotions I have right now.  I've done as much preparing as I could in these months leading up to the birth, but now I feel so unprepared.  Well, I guess that feeling has mostly subsided since the blessing Terral gave me.  We've got all the essentials.  The projects I wanted to do will just have to wait.  I've got something more important to concentrate on now. :)

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Merry Christmas!

We want to wish everyone a wonderful Christmas!  

We took the pictures for this card when we were in Oregon with my family, so my belly was quite a bit smaller.  I definitely look pregnant now (pictures coming soon!), but I don't really look like we're at 38 weeks.  I blame it on my long torso. :)  We visited the midwife today, and she checked me to make sure we are okay to travel to Delta for Christmas.  I'm not showing any signs of progress, so she gave us the go-ahead.  The due date is in just two weeks, which is mind-boggling to me, but most first-time moms go past the due date, so we think he'll be joining us a little later.  Hopefully that will give me enough time to finish all the projects I want to before he gets here!  But babies don't read calendars, so we're just excited to meet him whenever he's ready!  Hopefully soon I will feel caught up enough at home that I can do some catching up here.  

In the meantime, we hope that you all find the magic of the season as you celebrate the birth of a baby boy--our Savior.