Sunday, September 3, 2017

Paul Augustine Avery... just a tad late ;)

So Herman is almost 4, and hey, we've had another baby since then! Paul was born on December 7, 2015. He is now 21 months. A few friends have been posting their recent birth stories and I remembered that I never even wrote down any details from Paul's birth. So here's my attempt to capture some memories.

December 6th, 2015. 
My pregnancy went well, and he was due on December 12th. In spite of everyone praying that he would be born on the 4th, he did not choose to make an early appearance. (Lucy was born in the 1st, Adam, the 2nd, and Herman, the 3rd.) We decided to do an elective induction because my brother was getting married in Georgia soon after, and we were all excited to travel down and be a part of it.

Early in the morning on December 7th, we went in to the hospital and got all hooked up. Pete's family came in to town from Saint Louis to watch the other kiddos for the day. Things went very slowly at first, and their was some anxiety on my part because I'd done everything very naturally before and couldn't shake the feeling that I was forcing him out before he was ready.

In reality, everything was just fine, and progressed normally. It was very similar to Herman's birth, maybe even a little longer. Everyone told me it would be quick because of the induction... but we got to the hospital at the crack of dawn, and didn't have him until 5:39 pm. I'm pretty sure Pete and I watched "The Lord of the Rings" in the hospital while laboring. The nurses got a kick out of that.

I managed to do it without meds, but really thanks to Pete, who kept my head straight during the hard part. Only a few pushes when it came time and he was out! The doctor almost missed it. My body tends to stay in transition until the last second and then uncontrollably pushes the baby out.

Paul Augustine Avery, 7 lbs 9 oz and
19 3/4 inches long, born at 5:39 pm.
I hyperventilate when I have babies, so they put me on oxygen.
We didn't name him until a couple hours after he was born, Apparently we have a hard time with boy's names. Paul means "humble" and Augustine means "king." Our prayer is that his life would follow after and glorify the true humble King, Jesus.

He had a lot of fluid in his ears, and failed his hearing test twice before finally passing a couple days later. He also had fluid in his throat and nose which made it hard for him to breath. They had to use the suction machine several times. Other than that, nothing too scary! We certainly praise God for a healthy pregnancy and baby.

A couple days before the wedding, I flew down to my parent's house with just Paul. It was pretty easy considering I only had one small baby who slept all the time. He was 10 days old. Pete is the real champion, who drove down a day later with the three other's in tow.

Big sister, Lucy, taking good care of her new
brother. She still takes great care of him!
Just tonight, she read to him while I
put the other boys to bed.

Here's our family of six when we finally made it to Georgia
for Luke and Leah's wedding. This is the rehearsal.
Paul was only 11 days old. 
Here's us at the wedding. Pete was a groomsmen,
 Lucy was the flower girl, and Adam was the ring bearer.

Here are a few photos of Paul in the present. He is very active, loves climbing, exploring, running, laughing, yelling, and doing anything his siblings are doing. A lot has changed since we had him back in Normal, IL, 21 months ago.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Herman? Really?!

Yep, we did it. We named our child Herman. Here's why:

1. We like it.
2. It was Pete's grandfather's name. Herman Honigfort was a wonderful, hard-working man who loved his family and laid his life down for them. He worked two full-time jobs for decades to provide for his family. We love this example of counting his life as one for the service of others. We hope that our sons would grow up to emulate these characteristics.
3. We love the meaning. Herman means "Army man" and we hope and pray that our little guy grows up to be a warrior for God's kingdom.

Thomas is Pete's middle name.

Monday, December 9, 2013

Labor Story

When I woke up Monday morning (Adam's birthday) I already had a couple early labor signs (lost mucous plug and bloody show first thing) but hadn't really experienced any contractions that I knew of. Throughout the morning I had a few light contractions and probably averaged about one per hour the rest of the day.

Since I thought I'd go into labor soon, I decided to take a nap. Again, I was so thankful for my mom who watched parts of "The Sound of Music" with Lucy while Adam and I took our afternoon naps. Pete was at work by the way.

When I woke up, I felt funny. Not good. But I wasn't exactly sure it was labor. I was suspicious that it might be the stomach bug since Adam had had it two nights earlier. I didn't eat dinner. Adam was acting funny again too, so while my mom and Lucy finished up dinner, I gave him a bath. During his bath I threw up. A lot. That was around 7 pm.

For the next 4 1/2 hours I threw up four more times, all while progressing pretty fast with labor. I think vomiting kicked my contractions in to full gear.

After 11 pm, there was nothing left inside my stomach, and I felt pretty dehydrated. I was trying to sleep but realized at some point that my contractions were 3 minutes or less apart and over a minute long. They were getting painful and I was anxious about being dehydrated and scared I'd push the baby out if I threw up again. So, I told Pete I thought we should go to the hospital.

I think we showed up at BroMenn around 11:45 pm, bowl in hand. We got checked in. I was 6 centimeters dilated. I basically begged for an IV because I knew I was dehydrated. I also knew I didn't want to be up and about. I asked for anti-nausea medication too. By 12:30ish I was in a room with everything hooked up, not feeling nauseated, eating lots of ice chips, laboring away, with Pete next to my side. I didn't throw up again.

The next 4 hours were pretty normal painful contraction after contraction. I think I did a little better this time around with handling the pain. Pete did such an awesome job coaching and encouraging me.

There were a couple things that kept me going. One: not knowing if it was a boy or a girl. We kept on talking about that during labor and that made me excited and able to get through another contraction. We'd get to meet our baby soon! We were also pretty excited that it was the morning of the 3rd, so indeed our third child followed that trend. (Lucy was born on the 1st, Adam was born on the 2nd...) Also, only a couple hours in, the nurse tech brought in all the equipment: the baby warmer and everything. So I thought "Wow! am I really that close?!"

At 3:15 AM the nurse checked me again and said I was at a 7 and my water was bulging (hadn't broken yet), and that it would break soon with a contraction and things would go quickly. So I continued on in transition for another hour. Finally at some point, I couldn't help pushing a little with the contractions, and my water broke. I was at 8 centimeters then, she said.

Also, at this point, they gave me an oxygen mask because I was hyperventilating. Apparently I'm good at that since I got yelled at for it the last two births. The nurses and Pete were good at reminding me to breath and it was more controlled while I was pushing.

From then on I couldn't help pushing. I don't remember how long I pushed but it seems like it was only a few pushes. The nurse urgently called Dr. Nord and told him I was "at 9 and feeling pushy" and then immediately called all the people to help deliver, including the "on call" physician, since she didn't think Dr. Nord would make it.

Herman's head came out pretty slowly and after it was all over and done with I was praised for my self-control. Ha. I didn't feel very in control. But, I was glad to have a more slow and controlled delivery. I only had a small tear. Dr. Nord came in the room, according to Pete, just as half of Herman's body was out, and took over.

At 4:30 AM, he was born! 8 pounds 1 ounce and 21 inches long. It was fun to hear "It's a boy!"

After some skin on skin contact with my new little boy, Pete cutting the cord, and stitching me up, Dr. Nord came over and prayed with us and for Herman. Then, Herman proceeded to nurse for an hour (he's turned out to be great at eating) and Pete went home to get some sleep before visiting with Lucy, Adam, and my mom later that morning.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Stomach Bug Update

A week ago, Adam had a 12ish hour stomach bug that kept him and us up all night. Two days later, I got it and was also in labor. By the time I got to the hospital, around midnight, I had ceased throwing up and then gave birth at 4:30 am. Two days later, Lucy got it and Pete stayed up all night with her since it was our first night home from the hospital with new baby. Two days later, my mom got it while traveling home to Georgia. And finally, to top it all off, Pete got it yesterday and threw up in the middle of the night. Phew.

Needless to say, we are all very tired. We are praying that this is the last straw and we won't see this virus again.

God is good and he is gracious, even in the midst of this chaos. He's given me what I need: enough sleep to function, help from family, friends to watch the older kids, and meals from people from church. We are so thankful.

Currently it is snowing outside, Pete is sleeping, the kids are playing quietly, and Herman is napping. We are in a warm house and God gave me energy to make a nutritious breakfast for me, the kids, and Pete's family before they left.

I can't say I will have this peaceful mood in all moments today or this week, but I pray that God would continue to give us much grace and we would rely fully on him.

"You keep in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you. Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord God is an everlasting rock." Isaiah 26:3-4

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Herman Thomas Avery is here!

In case you hadn't heard through other social media outlets, Herman was born at 4:30 Tuesday morning after a relatively short labor. He was 8 pounds 1 ounce and 21 inches long. We are doing okay. Actually, Herman is doing fabulous. I'm doing okay. I got some sleep last night. Pete was up almost all night with Lucy throwing up. Lucy is miserable. Adam is overjoyed every time he sees the baby. We are in a little bit of survival mode at the moment and praying no one else gets sick.

I will post later with pictures and labor story, but right now there are more important things to do.