Monday, July 9, 2012

Introducing Aniston Kate

What a CRAZY past few days! There is absolutely nothing on earth that can prepare you for having your first child... NOTHING! I had loads of people giving me advice for months ahead of time, and I did appreciate the advice, but when it came time to start pushing and to have this little miracle... none of that advice mattered. So without further ado, I give to you the story of Aniston Kate Ahlstrom. ***WARNING*** I'm not skimping on the details so it may or may not gross you out.

We spent most of the 4th of July in the hospital. I was having crazy bad contractions within 2 minutes of each other and was dilated... however I was not dilating more than a 4. Even after hours of hard contractions my body remained solid and would not dilate. So they sent us home. I was pretty much a wreck and hated life and was having a hard time seeing the positive. We did have this AMAZING nurse named Marie when we were there who helped us so much and I seriously wanted to have the baby right then just so she could be the nurse there to help me. So the doctor prescribed me some Ambien, and they said that this would either stop the labor if it was false, or kick things into gear. So I went home and around 4pm and took an Ambien. I only slept for an hour before I woke up and helped Mom make dinner. I was kind of upset... I get super annoyed when I take a medication and it doesn't work the way it's suppose to. After dinner I started feeling super dizzy and sick and from there it was all down hill. I don't remember anything at all, but apparently it was one of the most terrifying nights for Spencer ever. I was so drugged I couldn't walk or stand without falling over, he said I was talking nonsense about a little man's party that I needed to attend, I kept drawing pictures with my fingers, and at one point he looked up at the bed (he was lying on the floor so he didn't get in my way... what a guy) and I was sitting up straight facing the wall... just sitting there, you know Paranormal Activity style.

After 12 hours of sleep I woke up on the 5th and realized that I kept leaking... It wasn't the usual urine leakage that occurs during pregnancy (super annoying) but it felt different. I called the doctor to make an appointment after a few hours of experiencing this, and luckily they had an appointment available at 10:40am. After I hung up the phone I realized that I had asked for the wrong doctor. My doctor works at a practice where there are several OBGYN's and if one is delivering a baby you get to see someone else. So I felt let down because I was sure I was going to be able to convince my doctor to get things started, but this other doctor seemed a little more strict. We got to the office and he checked me and told me that my water had not broken... then asked if I wanted him to strip my membranes. Since I had already had that done twice and we obviously saw no results, I didn't really want to put myself in unnecessary pain, but told him to go ahead... it couldn't do anything worse. Then a miracle occurred!!! My water broke... all over the doctor. He was pretty surprised and sent us straight to the hospital. I was thrilled to be going to the hospital knowing that they couldn't send me home this time and also knowing that the next time I would be going home, I would be going home with a baby!

When we got to the hospital, my doctor came in to talk to me and was surprised to find out the strict doctor broke my water while stripping my membranes... apparently he didn't tell him that, and he wasn't suppose to have done that. Oh well. Good thing I didn't tell him about the Nurse in his office who did it twice before. After being there a few hours I got my epidural while watching Les Miserables.... AMAZING!!! I highly recommend this and loved every second of it! I was a little bummed because I hadn't eaten breakfast and I heard that when you're in labor you can't eat. So I asked my nurse and she said it was up to me whether or not I ate, but if I did eat I could throw it up. Since I had already spent 9 months throwing up, I decided one more night wouldn't kill me and chowed down on a cheeseburger and fries and then some Cheetos. Best part about it... I didn't throw up! I was convinced at time during pushing I would, but it never happened. Around 6pm, super awesome nurse Marie walked in. I was on cloud nine. Spencer and I seriously were so happy to see her and that she was going to be with us while we had our baby. She is my favorite! I stayed dilated at a 4 for quite a few hours and began to get pretty upset about it. I couldn't understand why my body wasn't doing what it was suppose to be doing, but after I got that epidural I got up to a ten pretty quickly. Around 9pm they said it was time to start pushing... people had always told me that you'll know when it's time because you'll feel it, and I thought they were nuts! Well sure enough, there is a very distinct "pushing" feeling. Let's just say I'm not looking forward to my first bowel movement... in fact I'm pretty much terrified of this happening. Anyway, right before I go to push my doctor warns me.... his exact words "your baby doesn't have the smallest head I've ever felt." Really? Why would you say that to a pregnant woman about to give birth? Why? I can't say I was surprised because my family has a history of big heads, but still. After 1 1/2 hours of pushing, the nurse and Spencer were so helpful and amazing during this time and really tried to keep my spirits up, at 10:33pm on July 5th a little baby girl appeared. Pushing was a lot harder than I expected, and took a lot more work. I really have never sweated that much in my life ever! It didn't help that my heartburn was absolutely killer during the labor, but it was brutal. I have a new respect for every woman who gives birth more than once. It wasn't until the last 3 or 4 pushes that I felt like giving up, like I just couldn't do it anymore. I started crying and shaking my head, but the doctor just wouldn't give me a break. Normally I would push 3 or 4 times during a contraction, but at the end there are no breaks. The doctor just kept saying, "keep pushing, keep pushing." My anger I think is what got me through it and kept me pushing. Poor Spencer... I thought he was going to pass out, but he was strong and kept me focused.

From the time they placed my baby girl on my chest, until her first cry seemed to take hours! I was so worried about her and so shocked and amazed that she was actually here. The horrible nine months that it took to get her to our family didn't even seem to matter, all I wanted was to know that she was okay. She wasn't though. She had swallowed a significant amount of fluid and had to be taken away and put on oxygen and I couldn't hold her. I was able to watch from my bed, but the hospital staff did a pretty crappy job of keeping me informed about what was happening. Spencer called my Mom and she came right over. She was able to stand by the nurses while they took care of her and watched her. I kept myself distracted by exhaustion and the doctor who was lovingly sewing me up.... (note the sarcastic tone). I only tore to a first degree, thank goodness, but I tell you what... OUCH! (More on that to come). I wasn't prepared for the amount of blood that I would see in the upcoming days, or just how painful recovery would be. Once they brought the baby back to me, they wanted to try breastfeeding right away. This was one thing I was terrified for. I wasn't sure how it would feel, if she would latch, or how it worked really. But my little girl jumped on that bandwagon right away. It was a little painful at first but nothing crazy awful. I was able to get showered and they moved us to our new suite, which was pretty nice. Spencer and I stayed up talking about names, but just couldn't decide what to name her. So she was nameless for her first night on earth.

The first night was awful. I couldn't go to the bathroom by myself, I couldn't get out of bed or move by myself. After breastfeeding several times I began to experience pains I have never felt in my life! It was then that I noticed the bruises! My beautiful baby girl loves to eat, and eat aggressively! Every time it was time to feed it would take me a few minutes to brace myself. But as painful as it was, I wanted to push through it because I only want the best for my little girl and breastfeeding has such amazing benefits. My second night in the hospital however, I totally broke down. The pain was unbearable and I couldn't stop crying and Aniston was so upset because she was starving, so I asked Spencer to go find a nurse because I needed to figure out my options and how to feed my baby. When my sister had Cortney, she also had some complications which forced her to supplement with formula, so I thought that maybe I could do that and work up to be able to strictly breastfeed later on. When Spencer came back into the room after looking for the nurse, he was so mad! Apparently when he went out to talk to the lactation specialist and told the nurse at the desk about what was happening and what we were thinking about doing, she started yelling at him and telling him that there's no other way to feed Aniston except for breastfeeding, and that supplementing wasn't an option and that I just needed to buck up and do what every other mother would do. Basically she told him I wasn't being a good Mom and that I was being selfish... Spencer didn't hold back when it came to telling her exactly how he felt about what she said (love him). Another nurse quickly came to our rescue after overhearing the conversation. She quickly came into the room and apologized and gave me amazing advice and taught me how to supplement and set me up on a plan to be able to slowly build up to feeding my daughter more and more. She was my life savor and such a crutch for me that night. The next morning before discharge we found out that even our doctor heard about the exchange between Spencer and the nurse and apologized. Everyone's situation is different, and the only thing I was concerned about was making sure my daughter is eating enough and is healthy and happy, and whatever I have to do I will do it. If that means supplementing for a while then so be it. Since I have started supplementing I haven't felt like an unfit mother because I couldn't do what I originally wanted. I feel like I am doing the best thing and providing for my daughters health. And she loves it! She is so happy when she eats, and to be honest, I'm not sure I could produce enough milk at this moment to fill her needs. Spencer asked me the other day which was worse.... labor or breastfeeding, and I couldn't answer him.

I was so blessed to have some of my cheerleaders and fellow coach come visit me in the hospital, which made me happy. I really feel blessed to be able to be involved in that program and it was just amazing for them to come and say hi. I was also blessed to have my Mom there. I was so blessed, and continue to be blessed that she is here everyday. I have so many questions, and Spencer and I don't know all the answers and we need advice. My Mom is a GREAT Nana and Aniston loves her already. I admire her ability to change diapers so quickly and to calm and relax her. I always knew my Mom was smart, but I now I'm learning that she has an entire other level of information that I need access to and that she is willing to share. The emotional support she has given me has been amazing! Than you Dad for letting her come stay for a month. It is a HUGE blessing!

So the morning of my discharge I began to be extremely sick and dizzy and in a lot of pain. It was kind of scary and we weren't sure if I had an infection or what was going on. After the doctor checked my stitches and everything, it looked great, so he drugged me up. The pain is still pretty intense and I'm in bed a lot, and we have learned that even 2 percocet isn't even enough to ease the pain. But I know it will get better and I have and AMAZING husband and Mom who have been helpful and deal with my crying and pain. Aniston had her final check and everything looked good and we were cleared to go home. Leaving the hospital was a little intense... I couldn't believe they were letting me leave the hospital with a baby. With my baby! But coming home was awesome!

I always knew that I wanted to be a Mom and have children. I wish people would tell you how painful recovery actually is... but I wouldn't change my pain for the world. I feel so blessed and lucky to have this beautiful daughter in my life. Watching Spencer with her has been one of my highlights of this entire experience. He is so amazing with her and she absolutely loves him! She is definitely Daddy's little girl. I knew he was going to be a great Dad, but I had no idea how good. I feel lucky that as much as he loves and adores her, his first priority is still helping me. When I was crying and unmovable from the pain, he makes sure my Mom or a nurse was there to take care of Aniston and then he only focuses on me. He cheers me on through breastfeeding, constantly telling me how good I'm doing, and he lets me know that I am doing a good job. That means the world to me. I am definitely a lucky girl!

We love watching Aniston grow. She has changed so much already it's unbelievable. We love how she sings when she sleeps. It lets us know she's okay and it's just so darn cute! We love her dark hair, and her cute chubby cheeks! She has the same coloring I had as a baby as well as my hair and nose, but the rest of her is all Spencer! That boy has got some strong genes! But my hair gene won out on this one. Haha. She's adorable... but I might be a little biased.

So I know this post is super long and maybe boring and TMI, but I use this blog as a journal also and so it was important that I wrote everything out. Be prepared for lots and lots of pictures!!!! Also, thank you to all of you who have expressed congrats and prayers for our family! We feel blessed to have all of you in our lives.


  1. Loved your story sweet girl!!! I was in tears by the end. Not sure why... oh yeah cause I'm a ball bag and motherhood is the most beautiful and precious thing and I am so happy you are now experiencing it!!! I am one that doesn't lie to people about the pain AFTER labor. If I had to rank pregnancy horribleness it was sickness, after labor, pushing, breastfeeding, getting big. I had a horrible recovery and I was like you and just cried cause it hurt so bad. Be so patient with that first bowel movement!!!! Ask your doctor if you can take miralax. I was not patient and I paid!!! I was so tired of feeling constipated that I pushed like I was honestly giving birth again... Bad idea. 2 months ago I had to have surgery to remove the lovely hemroids from that. So be patient! I would have rather felt constipated for weeks over what I dealt with for 7 months. It will come. Promise. Drink lots of water and eat lots of high fiber foods. I loved warm baths with just hot water. Some doctors say you cannot take them, but mine allowed and they were heavenly. Helped ease my pain. I tore a lot more than you so I am so happy to hear you were only a 1st degree. I think mine was like 100th degree ;). And I cannot believe that nurse said that to you! I would have punched her. Each mom does what is best for their baby and formula is not bad and doesn't make you a bad mother! I stopped breastfeeding at 5 months because it was best for me and it doesn't make me a horrible mom. Sleep when baby sleeps! I'm so glad your mom is there for a month! What a huge blessing. I only got mine for a week and bawled my eyes out when she left. Just enjoy every second with that sweet girl. They grow so fast. I know you will be the most amazing mother!!! And she is gorgeous just like her mama!

  2. Love this post so much!!! I am so happy for all of you. Aniston is truly blessed to have you two for parents. Love you guys so much, can't wait to see you!!!

  3. Such an awesome post! I love your honesty. I think the whole experience is just so....unique. What a sweet baby you have. She is a doll. Good luck getting back into life with that'll love it! Congrats again!

  4. Don't feel bad about supplementing. I got a BAD double breast infection when Beck was 2 months and after that I couldn't produce. It was the worst feeling ever knowing I personally couldn't help my baby and after that we had to go to formula and if you see his pics he is definitely not suffering. Congratulations!

  5. I love this post you are such a Srrong person And have a beautiful baby! I am so happy for you! I just wish we were closer so I could see her! Enjoy your little girl and lots of pics she will change so fast!

  6. She is so beautiful and you are amazing!