Emmanuel's Birth Story

Hi loves!
Finally getting around to posting Emmanuel's birth story. I thought I better put pen to paper, well in this case fingers to keyboard before it becomes a sparse memory. I wasn't sure if I wanted to do this post this time around but after reading the one I did for Eliana here and remembering some little details I had forgotten already, I decided I wanted to document Emmanuel's just the same. 
There's something about going back to read these stories later that makes it worth writing.

So, here goes. You know what they say about every pregnancy and labor and delivery being different, that certainly holds true. Although I didn't get to blog much about my pregnancy experience with Emmanuel, it is different in all kinds of ways from Eliana. I did a first trimester recap here and that was about it. Second trimester was blissful and third trimester kicked my behind in all kinds of ways. I felt pain/discomfort in places I didn’t even know I could, which meant majority of the time towards the end, I was uncomfortable and I was just ready to go once we hit the magic 37 weeks.

Given that I had Eliana 2 weeks earlier than my due date, I was anticipating the same was going to happen this time as well. So, mentally and physically, I was begging for it.

I think the idea that the second time around you're supposed to be more familiar with the process, so you should know what’s going on and when it is time; but that couldn't be more farther from the truth for me. I was even more confused as to if I was in labor or not for good reasons I should say, NO pain!

When I went on thanksgiving break from work, I was hoping something would happen that weekend which would have made it the perfect timing in my eyes so I wouldn't have to go back to work but I was wrong. God’s timing Is everything. Thanksgiving came and passed. The weekend rolled in and rolled out and the reality of going into work that Monday punched me in the face.

Thankfully I had a doctor's appointment that Monday morning so that was at least something to look forward to. I had not been check prior to this point so I was excited about this appointment and finding out if anything labor related has started as I was already 38 weeks.

So, on Monday the 27th, I went in and I was told I was 4cm dilated, you should have seen the look on my face (beyond happy). Excited the process has begun and it was only a matter of time given how it went the last time and knowing myself/body. The bad news however was that being that I hadn't been checked before now, we didn't know if I had been 4cm dilated for weeks as that is possible or if all this just started in the last few days or hours and is progressing. The doctor said she will still send me home as I was not too far along and I wasn't really feeling any 'real' contractions, at least not anything distinctive/painful or consistent. 

Prior to the appointment on Monday, over the weekend and most especially on Sunday, I was feeling something but not sure if it was braxton hicks or real contractions. It must have been the mildest contraction ever now that I think about it, and second it wasn't consistent at all timing wise, so that didn't give me any useful information. That would be the case throughout this process.

After the appointment, I dropped Eliana off at school and went into work and surprisingly, a lot of people were surprised to see me. My sentiment exactly.
Told my boss and co-workers if I don't show up tomorrow not to be surprised. For the rest of the day I continued to feel the mildest lower back pain I had been feeling. They were sometimes unnoticeable that if I'm focused on sometime else, I wouldn’t notice and they remaining inconsistent so I wasn't sure if they were real contractions or not. My next scheduled appointment was for the following week and I was secretly praying and hoping I wouldn't make it till then.

Anyways, Monday rolled in and out with the same feeling and unsure of whether I'm truly in labor or not and worried that since the contractions doesn't seem to be getting any strong or consistent I would wait too long before heading to the hospital because that was supposed to be the signal.
Well, I gave up on that and I started praying to God for a different sign to know when it's time to go to the hospital because I did not want to have this baby at work or home or in the car on the way to the hospital.

Woke up Tuesday morning and I got my sign, I saw the mucus plug.  So now I know for sure I’m in labor. All that is left is knowing when to head in to the hospital. I didn't want to go in too early and be sent back home.

 I got ready and went to work. Contractions which I'm convinced I'm having now although they remain low to mild but having it more often.  It was still not anywhere near alarming as a signal. Told one of my coworkers the update and she had the same fear that I was going to wait too long so she made me call the doctor’s office to go and get checked again which I did reluctantly. When I called the doctor’s office, around noon and told them all that had happened since they last saw me on Monday, I thought they were going to say come in right away but they gave an appointment for over 4 hours later. 
I mentally calmed myself down for the long 4 hours wait before I get any solid news and hoping nothing major happens before then.
Knowing how I was feeling and waddling around I decided if nothing happens tonight, I'll just work from home on Wednesday. So, I packed up all I needed from my office and headed to the appointment 4 hours later.
Finally got checked and was told I was 5cm dilated and 80% effaced. The doctor pretty much told me not to go home. She advised me to go the mall around the corner to walk around a bit to get the contractions more consistent and then head in to the hospital which was next door.
But what do I do? I went home. I have a daughter I needed to get situated for the night. I figured I'll get my walking done if needed at the hospital. I already had my hospital bag in the car but I didn't have an overnight bag for Eliana, so I went home to pack her one. Called hubby on my way home to let him know so we could meet at home and go to the hospital together as opposed to separately.

While I was waiting for hubby to get home, I did some walking around the house and up and down the stairs and I could feel the contractions getting just a tad bit stronger and frequent but still very manageable.

Hubby finally arrived just in time and off we went to say goodnight to Eliana who was still at school with her teacher/sitter. We dropped her bag off with her, said goodnight and took our last picture as a family of three. 
The hospital was just a few minutes away so within another couple of minutes we were there. We arrived around 6:45pm, got checked in once we told them the reason for the visit and might I add forced to use a wheelchair even though I told them I was ok but it's their policy. I don't know why, but that made me uncomfortable. After all that, I got wheeled up to Labor and Delivery, and just before changing I had to take my very last belly picture.

Got all changed, settled in, hooked up to the monitor and signed a few papers. By the time  the nurse checked me again, I was 6cm dilated and 90% effaced, that was around 7:20pm.
I think something about being in the hospital or maybe it’s being checked that made contractions a little more frequent and noticeable because by now I've gone from barely feeling them to mild contractions.
The nurse, who was the best I've ever had, so pleasant and super nice throughout our time with her asked what my plan was for pain management and I told her epidural. Her response was pretty much she thinks I could make it through without it given how I’m doing at this stage. I kind of agree but I wasn’t ready to find out if I could or not. I know these things are unpredictable and things could go from 0 to 100 in a second. Besides, my water was still intact, so that was helping. I remember from my prior experience as soon as they broke my water things got a little more intense.
She did the necessary blood work around 8pm and we had to wait for the result before the epidural can be administered. I remember thinking the whole time that I either wouldn't get it or would be cutting it close like the last.
My doctor finally made his way in around 9pm to check in. He said all was good and although my contractions are short and inconsistent he wouldn’t send me home at the stage. If it doesn't picked up he has a few natural tricks up his sleeve to help but it never came to that. He decided against checking me again, wanted me to rest up and just wait for the epidural.

Around 10:15pm, the anesthesiologist finally arrived to administer the epidural which we laughed through as everything from untying my gown to making the light fixture stay in his preferred location, to finding a working pen and computer scanner that works, just about everything went wrong. So, I said to him seriously, not jokingly at all, that he better not have any issue with performing this procedure on me and thankfully everything went well.
The nurse got me all settled in and comfortable, again. After the epidural, I pretty much felt nothing from the contractions. With that, I was able to take a power nap.

I started to feel a slight pressure so I called the nurse in. By 12:10pm she came back in to check, I was 9cm dilated, water still intact. She tried to wiggle her way around to break it but it wouldn't budge so she placed a call in for the doctor. 

By the time the doctor arrived around 1am, I was 10cm dilated at which point he finally broke my water and I immediately started feeling this intense pressure and an urge to bear down. The doctor was taking off his glove and explaining to me to let them know when I’m are ready to.....before he could finish his statement I raised my hands and yelled, I'm ready!  In that moment, they all frantically got themselves together, pulled up all the equipment, converted the bed and the whole time I was trying to hold back the huge to push as the doctor wasn't ready. He was still getting gowned up and barely got his gloves on when I started pushing. A couple of pushes later at 1:15am my beautiful baby was born and the room went into a big cheer, with, it’s a boy!!! I think they were all as excited to find out the sex as we are. He was born weighing 7.1lbs and 20inches long. 

He was placed on my chest for and we spent the next two and half hours bounding of which he spent about half of it nursing like a champ.
While I was still pregnant I would think to myself I cannot get lucky twice having an easy labor and delivery. I was worried the first one went so well and easily that this would be the opposite but thank God that couldn't be more farther from the truth. The delivery, and just as important the recovery was a bliss and even better than the first time.All praise to God!


Note: Not sure if it's just this hospital as I'm sure everyone does things differently but the norm wasn't wheeling the baby away to the nursery as soon as he was born here. It was the opposite, the baby gets to stay with mommy all the time except for when they need to do some test or procedure, then they take him but bring him right back. Even after delivery they had a little corner all set up for the baby so that was where the nurse bathed/cleaned him and did all the newborn stuff she had to do right there in front of us and he was handed back over to us as we transition to the recovery room where I was also blessed with the sweetest nurse ever.

Baby Boy Nursery

Hi Loves!
Today, I'm giving you a peek into baby boy's room. Although not completely done yet, and honestly speaking, I am not sure if it will ever be 'completely' done at this point. Nothing major left, just one or two more little diy projects I'm working on that I'm not sure I will ever finish as their priority on my to-do list is low right now.

Anyways, I thought I'll share with you the current state and if it evolves, maybe I'll update it. So, given that we didn't know the sex of the baby until he was delivered and my less is more / keep it simple concept, this is what I ended up with and I'm happy with it. I went with grey and white as the main colors and the neutral color on the walls plays in just fine. Would have loved to freshen up the walls with some colors/artwork, but didn't want to risk it been gutted later if the need be (new house/warranty issue). Mixed in some patterns and textures to compliment the neutrals and added a few diy's pieces to finish it off.
This mini-crib, yes you read right, mini-crib was what Eliana used till she was two, so I didn't see the point in buying a full size crib this time around. Prior to purchasing it, I didn't even know mini-crib exists so I'm glad I found out about that option as it was a life saver at the time. We were still in our one bedroom apartment in New Jersey when we had Eliana so there was definitely no room for a full size crib but this worked just as good, and I don't miss not having a full size crib at all.
The poms and tassel garland and stars above the crib was a diy project made out knitting yarn and stars cut out of glitter card stock.
If you've been following Baby2 pregnancy on Instagram, you're know I'm obsessed with stars when it comes to him. That was the main theme of his baby shower (Twinkle little star). During preparation for the shower,  I found this grey star print pillow, how perfect right! I just knew I had to carry the star theme along into the nursery as well.
The next little diy in the room is the animal photo wall. I thought that would be a great way to add some pop of color to the room. Bought the blank wooden pieces at Walmart, and with some paint, mod pod and print out in black and white, these came to life. Found the idea and how-to for this project on Pinterest.Thinking of adding more animals, maybe.
The last diy project is the wall hanging shelf. I bought the shelf which was original a distressed white and rustic brown color. I sanded and painted the whole shelf white removing the distressed/rustic look. I just love the idea of using an unconventional item in this way, to store the diapers and all the daily getting ready essential. I particularly like the hooks as I can pick out his daily outfit and hang them out. If it had been a girl, I was going to use it as the bow/headband holder.

The changing table was also used for Eliana. Again, another space constraint purchase so I needed something compact and multi functional and this foots the bill nicely, as storage, changing table and hamper. 
This armoire is also one we purchase when we had Eliana that we used as her closet at the time (we pretty much dumped Eliana's old room in here with a few new things). It's been with us ever since but I think it might be time to let it go or find a new location/use for it in the house, as it is not necessarily needed in this room. 
For now, it stays in baby boy's room and on top is one of the gift from the shower that I'm currently using as a decor piece. Since the diaper used in making this are a bigger size, I'm leaving the art intact for now. Although, I did remove the top layer which was made of blankets. 

On another note, I am surprised at how much we managed to fit into that one bedroom back in New Jersey.

Below I have linked exact or similar pieces of items in the room.

Ruffled Jumpsuit

Hi Loves!

Happy New Year!!!

Super excited and grateful to witness the beginning a new year and can't wait to see what this year has in store for me and my family. 

2016 was great to us, with the greatest highlight and blessing being the addition of Emmanuel to our family. Coming in close second is hubby joining us in NC and becoming a whole family under one roof again. Overall, I'm just grateful to God in all aspect of my life because He is always right on time and ever faithful.

 Outfit post have been lacking on here lately, so I thought I'll start off the new year with one. 
Currently, majority of my real clothes do not fit anymore (blame that on my top half, thanks to breastfeeding) and I need to go a size up. I am however being mindful of the styles I buy in a bigger size; making sure that when I do eventually return to my regular size, they will fit just fine as well.

The ruffle detail on this Jumpsuit was what made it stand out to me in addition to the rich color. Although I couldn't make up my mind if I wanted it or not at first, it has always been on my Wish List (located on the sidebar). I'm glad I eventually bought it because it's unlike any other jumpsuit I currently own; it fits great and I love the fact that the material has some stretch to it.

Looking forward to sharing more with you all in this new year.

Have a blessed day!

Jumpsuit: Asos
Coat: H&M (old, similar here)
Belt: Amazon
Shoes: VS (old, similar here)