You guys!! We’ve been in newborn heaven, this glorious, precious little bubble for the last week and a half and life feels so magical. How we ever lived without this little boy is a mystery to me. He is such a mild, sweet and easy little guy. We are feeling overwhelmed with the blessing that he is to us. He’s here! Finally!! My perfect little man.
Eventually I’ll tell you about his birth and gush about him some more, but for now I just wanted to tell you that he’s here and perfect and smoosh as can be and we are both doing really well and feeling great! Life is good.
I shared about my ECV with my third baby a couple of years ago but now we’re back with my ECV experience with my fourth baby! First of all, isn’t it crazy that I’ve (almost) had four babies, and three of them have been breech? My doctors predict that I have an odd shaped uterus that causes it to lead my babies to be more comfortable in a head-up position as opposed to the desirable head-down position. Lucky me, huh?
So anyway. Lets chat about this ECV, shall we?
First of all, ECV is short for External Cephalic Version. What does that mean? Basically, it means…ouch. Haha. But for real. Owie. Ok, but really an ECV is when a doctor externally moves your baby from a head-up to a head-down position. Essentially, they just push on your stomach really, really hard, moving your baby to the position they need to be in.
Now onto the story.
We got to the hospital about an hour-ish before the procedure was to begin. They get you all set in your hospital gown, check one last time with an ultrasound to ensure that the baby is indeed breech, hook you up to the monitors, put an IV in you and talk you through what’s going to happen. Finally, its time for the actual ECV.
My doctor came in, checked the ultrasound again to sort of make a game plan and began. My baby has been sitting at a bit of a diagonal angle, so this whole time I’ve believed the route from head-up to head-down would be slightly shortened since his head wasn’t completely straight up. Buuuuut turns out the safest way to move him was around the other way, so it was actually a longer turn. However it was what was safest for our baby, so obviously it was all ok.
Now it was go-time. I got a shot in my arm (I can’t completely remember what its for – maybe its a muscle relaxer? you want that uterus nice and relaxed so its not quite as difficult to move the baby) and just like last time I got this, it stung so dang badly. Then a small group of medical staff gather around, and in my case I also had a few students in there to watch, and then my doctor got to work.
My baby was very stubborn this time around. My last ECV lasted maybe five minutes. This one was a little over twenty, I believe? His little bum was nestled comfortably in a spot that he did not want to move from so my doctor had to first lift his bum out of that spot and then start moving him with his hands.
He had to push really hard. Craig said during the whole procedure my doctor was white knuckled he was pushing so hard and after the procedure he showed us that he’d actually broken a sweat! Like I said, baby boy really put up a fight!
Every once in a while we had to pause and wait because babies heart rate would drop lower than they wanted – something we hadn’t experienced before. One of the medicines they’d given me made my heart rate go really high, so they said monitoring our hearts was kind of interesting because mine was so fast and his would drop down so slow. Luckily though, every time we’d pause, his heart would go back to normal and there never was a real issue there. It did make me nervous as we’d sit and wait for it to get back to a regular pace, but I found a lot of peace in knowing I was in good hands (I quite literally trust my doctor with my life…and my babies) and I knew if it got real bad, I’d be taken right into a c-section and it’d be ok.
Finally, he was head down. The doctor had got his head in a nice, snug place where he’d be able to settle until it was time to deliver him! As he told me, with how hard it was to get him into that position, he was sure it’d be nearly impossible for him to move out of his new position (spoiler alert: he stayed head down!)
After everything was done, they kept us for an additional two and a half-ish hours to monitor us, but mostly baby. With my last ECV they only kept us an hour, but this time with babies heart going up and down every once in a while during the version, they kept us just a little longer to watch. Thankfully everything looked just as it should and we were freed to go home.
Recovery from this is a bit uncomfortable for sure. I describe it as feeling as if my entire stomach is a very sensitive bruise. It hurt to touch, especially in a couple of spots he had to push particularly hard on. It also took me a good 24 hours to stop feeling the effects of the drugs they’d given me, but other than that it was really just fine!
Then finally I allowed baby watch to officially begin with the hopes that I’d have another successful v-bac!
I had a doctors appointment yesterday and I have another one next week. This period of pregnancy is so exciting when the appointments are so frequent and you keep yourself up every night just wondering if you’ll even make it to your next appointment, or will you have a baby instead? In all honesty, I think I’ll definitely be there next week, but still, its exciting to know we are so, so close to meeting our baby brother we’ve been daydreaming about for what feels like years.
There was no surprise to find that baby boy is still breech. I mean, I can feel his adorable tiny little head up in my ribcage 24/7, so I sure wasn’t shocked at all when they confirmed it. But now I am far enough along that it was time to schedule an ECV! An ECV is the external Cephalic Version – I did this with Flora, too, because so far Harrison has been my only head-down, obedient baby and the rest have been breech. Thats where my doctor will manually move my baby from head up to head down by basically just pressing into my belly. Real hard. Real painful. Its a party. However, its super worth it to me. My c-section with Emmett turned out to be just fine, but I sure prefer vaginal deliveries, so if I can give myself that chance, safely, then we’ll give it another go!
All this to say, my ECV is scheduled for next week. I’m in a weird headspace of being so excited to hopefully get him to go head down and with the excitement of knowing he’ll be here in the next couple weeks, but I’m also a wee bit nervous about the pain. I’m a baby when it comes to pain, ok? But we are going to focus on the positive, friends. I feel really grateful that I have such skilled doctors who I know keep me in good hands. I know they’ll monitor me and baby closely and ultimately what will keep my baby the safest is what will be done!
A few months I was looking on Amazon for comfy clothes to wear postpartum and I happened upon these and proceeded to buy…six pair.
The patterns and the designs are adorable and they seemed super comfy and the reviews backed that suspicion up. I was so happy when they made it to my house to find that they are so comfy and even cuter than they looked online.
Will I ever wear different pajamas again? I don’t know why I’d ever need to!
I’m in all kinds of denial about this, but somehow today my first baby started FIRST GRADE!! Where in the world does time go, friends?! Like, were we not just starting Kindergarten a couple of days ago? Goodness..
In all ways. Physically, mentally and emotionally.
Thats the end of pregnancy, right? The magical waiting period where you wonder every day, ‘will this be the day I meet my baby?’
I’m stretched physically – obviously. Like, my belly can’t possibly get bigger, can it? My boobs are starting to feel a little stretched too but I know that becomes an even bigger thing after baby is here. Oh, engorgement.. Haha.
I’m stretched mentally. My mind is being pulled every which way and I have a hard time focusing on just one thing. My to-do list is big, my nesting instinct is raging. My mind is constantly going while trying to also stay calm in the midst of all this.
I’m stretched emotionally. I mean, hormones will do that to you. But emotionally also because I think all day about my three kids becoming big siblings to their new baby. I think about holding my new baby for the first time. I think about the emotions that come with a newborn. I think about watching Craig hold his tiny son. Emotionally, I melt. I’m so excited and my heart-strings are being pulled constantly.
Its such a magical, stretching time and I’m doing my best to soak in every last moment as we’re on our final countdown to Baby Brother!
Sometimes good, amazing things happen and are just too good not to share. In fact, this past week at church we were kind of challenged to share our testimonies or spiritual experiences with people. As I pondered how I could do this, I kept thinking of my social media platforms and wanted to think of a way to share on those. Then Tuesday happened and I knew exactly what I could share.
I have two quick stories that will really stick with me for a while and I am excited to share!
Lets start at the beginning.
On Monday evening and all through the night, a lot of Utah, our area included, was hit with a crazy thunder and lightning storm accompanied with TONS of wind and rain. The boys and I had stayed up late that night watching the storm and listening to it from their bedroom window. The next morning it was evident that the wind had done some pretty significant damage around our town. For some reason our area was spared from much damage, but as we drove to the grocery store that morning we drove through a neighborhood that had been hit hard by the wind. Some streets you couldn’t even drive down because trees, huge ones and small ones alike, were strewn across the road. Fences were ruined by these trees, some light poles were down, play houses and trampolines weren’t in their original spots.. It was a mess.
But it brought about some amazing sights. There were so many trucks pulling trailers coming into this neighborhood and trucks and trailers already there. People, strangers, friends and neighbors scattered these neighborhoods and were helping chop these trees into smaller pieces and haul them out of the neighborhood. I watched a man standing in a yard with his arm around a little frail old woman who seemed pretty upset about the damage to her big front yard trees. I saw people working together to lift big heavy tree trunks into trailers. It was really incredible and humbling to see.
It was a beautiful reminder that there are so many good people in the world. It was amazing to see these people coming together to help their community. I felt really honored to witness it.
I have been (pretty silently) stressing out about body image this pregnancy. Not necessarily my pregnant body – I’m actually really confident in my pregnant body. I love what its doing and I’m truly proud of it. I’m more obsessed and nervous about my after-baby-body. If you remember, before this pregnancy I’d got my body to a place I was super proud of. I’d lost weight and got into great shape. I know very well that once Baby Boy is here I’ll very likely be starting back at square one with my body. I know I’m gaining weight and I’ll have to put in a lot of work again to get my body back to that spot I loved before I got pregnant. I keep getting so fixated on this. I’m not in a bad mental state or anything, its just frustrating and consumes my thoughts from time to time.
So on Monday evening, pretty casually in my prayers before bed, I asked Heavenly Father to help me accept my future post-baby body. I know it sounds kind of silly, but I knew God knew what I was talking about.
The next day we went to the grocery store (where we saw all the amazing stuff from story one). While there, I ran into a girl I knew from an old neighborhood. We hadn’t seen each other in a while, but one thing I remembered about her is that she isn’t able to have children of her own. However two months ago, she and her husband were able to adopt their first baby – a beautiful little baby girl she had wrapped around her chest. It was exciting to see her be a mother and we had a nice little brief conversation and caught up.
As she turned and walked the other way after we chatted, she ended up running into someone else she knew. I remained on the aisle trying to find salad dressing that was taking forever to be located (something I know now was no coincidence). I could hear my old friend and this lady she knew chatting for a second and then the adoption was brought up.
Clear as day during their conversation, I heard the girl start talking about how she’s still having a hard time accepting that her body will never look like…and then she pointed down at me. Then she told the woman she was talking with she would kill to have her body “look like that,” one day.
The brightest, most amazing lightbulb went off in my head then. My post-baby body, whatever it may look like, is something that some people would do anything to have. And I’ve been taking it for granted. I’ve been dreading it. I’ve been disrespectful to it. But in that moment, my prayers were answered and I was reminded of just how special, sacred and wonderful my body is – even the body that I’ll have in those following weeks and months after giving birth to my fourth child. I love how the Lord works.
So now I’m going to do my best to hold tight to those feelings I had in the grocery store. I’m going to try to remember the epiphany I had and the reminder I was given that even a post-baby body is absolutely beautiful and worthy of lots of love and respect.
I can’t believe it. You are almost here. Only a few weeks stand between now and the day I finally get to hold you. Touch you. Love on you. Kiss you. Feed you. Swaddle you. Stare at you. I’ve been looking forward to it for so, so long – and now its almost here.
You’ve saved me, buddy. I know the power a rainbow baby holds and the healing they can do for a mama’s heart. Already you’ve eased so much in me and I can only imagine the peace you’ll bring when you are physically in my arms. Oh, I can’t wait.
I can’t wait for you to meet your big brothers and big sister. They have been so eager to meet you. They’ve daydreamed about you for so long. They’re so ready. They can’t wait to be the very best helpers with you. They can’t wait to hold you and smother you (hopefully semi-gently, at least) with all of their big, big love.
Keep on growing sweet little boy. Keep on wiggling. Hey, if you feel like it go ahead and go head down unless being breach is what truly brings you joy 😉 I hope you’re just as excited to meet us as we are to meet you!!