Thursday, May 31, 2012

Bryleigh's 2 months already!?!

Believe it or not, our little Bryleigh is 2 months old today!  
She is as sweet as can be and she fits into the family flawlessly!

Here are some 2 month pictures.
By the way, if you like the onesie stickers, you can check out this review I did for Baby Smiles here.


Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Our New Bed Time Routine

Let's start by saying this- I love my son SO much.  He is funny, sarcastic, remarkably witty for a 2 year old, sweet, and waaaay too smart for his own good, which leads me to our issue.

Brennan has always been a high maintenance sleeper.  Some aspects of his sleep are improving (not getting up as often at night), but some are getting even worse!  Bed time lately has become the most dreaded time of our day.  Brennan has been taking forever to fall asleep!  I'll admit, his bed time routine was really lacking.  It went sort of like this- get him to eat as much as possible, play for a while possibly with one of his shows on in the background, get on night diaper and pj's, maybe read a few books, and sit on the couch watching TV with either Mom or Dad, drinking a bottle then cuddling until he was totally asleep.  Yes.  I know.  It was bad.  But believe it or not, we used to have a bed time routine.  We used to read stories in his room and then listen to music until he fell asleep.  At one point, it even got good enough that he would let us lay him down and he would put himself to sleep with little or no crying!

Then the evil genius in Brennan reared his ugly head and he started rebelling against his routine.  We would sit in his room, rocking for the LONGEST time and he still would not go to sleep.  He would be almost asleep and then he would just sit up and ask to go out to the couch.  If we tried laying him down, he would cry forever, to the point of making himself sick.  Finally, one night I just gave in.  I brought him out to the living room to cuddle with me on the couch and he was asleep within minutes.  Now he had us.  Every night he would fight us until we were on the couch and pretty soon that just became the routine because it worked.  He was always asleep within a few minutes. 

Now, this 'routine' is backfiring, too!  He'll lay with me for a while, and then start freaking out until he gets to lay with Daddy.  So then Daddy holds him... before you know it he is screaming for Mama again.  This goes on and on until he finally exhausts himself, or until we lay him in his crib and let him holler for a while.  Sometimes after that he realizes that we really mean business and bed time is BED TIME! 

He was also drinking his bottle and then begging and crying for more.  This problem has luckily already been solved.  One bottle of milk is all he gets (and that is only 1st thing in the morning, before his nap, and before bed) and after that it's water.  We're working on getting rid of the bottle, but it is TOTALLY his one security item and he is addicted to it... one step at a time!

Anyway, three nights ago we told him that bed time was going to be different from now on.  We explained that he is a big boy, and he doesn't need to fall asleep in the living room watching TV every night (like a 60 year old man).  We told him that from now on, we would have supper and play quietly with blocks or puzzles for a little bit.  Then it would be time to put on PJ's and brush teeth.  After that he would get to pick out a few books and we would read them in his rocking chair.  Then we would cuddle and I would sing to him until he fell asleep (for now).  That first night he did surprisingly well with it, though it took him a long time to fall asleep.  The second night went better, with him falling asleep slightly quicker.  Last night wasn't very fun, though.

We did the whole routine and got to the cuddling part.  We cuddled, and cuddled, and cuddled, but he would not go to sleep!  Most of the problem is that trying to cuddle comfortably in the glider is nearly impossible.  He is much too long now, so it seems that his legs and arms are flailing everywhere.  Finally, last night I convinced him to lay in his crib and I laid on the floor next to him and held his hand.  Surprisingly, this was more comfortable than sitting in the chair.  We did this for a while, but he still wasn't asleep and I could hear Daddy trying his hardest to calm down a ticked-off Bryleigh in the living room.  She needed me.  So I quietly stood up.  Brennan did NOT approve, but he settled down when I told him that Ryan would come in and take my place.  Eventually, he did fall asleep this way. 

I guess I feel like this is one step closer to a real big kid bed time, but we still have a long way to go.  We're going to keep working on it and TRY not to get discouraged!  It is really frustrating when bed time takes THAT long!  And for anyone who wants to just tell me to let him cry- NO!  First off, it's mean.  Second, you don't know my kid.  He is the epitome of stubborn.  It really is his way or the highway and though he sometimes can be swayed, he wouldn't budge on something like this.  Hopefully his stubbornness is a trait that will serve him well later in life!

Any ideas or even encouragement are appreciated!!!

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Boobs... A Blessing or a Curse?

This is the story of my life!  I found this here and had to share it with you!  Being that I'm a size 36DDD even when I'm NOT nursing, I can definitely relate. 

1. The Surprise Stain

The Surprise Stain

2. The Counter Dilemma

The Counter Dilemma

3. Airplane Turbulence

Airplane Turbulence

4. The Motorboating Proposition

The Motorboating Proposition

5. The Built-in Bra Issue

The Built-in Bra Issue

6. The Shoulder Strap Attack

The Shoulder Strap Attack

7. The Dishwashing Dilemma

The Dishwashing Dilemma

8. Ye Old "Boob Spillage"

Ye Old "Boob Spillage"

9. Seatbelt Sadness

Seatbelt Sadness

10. Ruffles!


11. Suspenders!


12. Stairs!


Thursday, May 24, 2012

Bryleigh's Picture Perfect Birth Story- LOTS of photos!

Note: These pictures are my personal property.  Please don't use them without my consent.

March 31st, 2012

40 week and 2 days pregnant!
6:15 am- I woke up feeling 'different'.  I was having contractions.  They weren't very painful, but they were a little uncomfortable, at least.  I'd been having a lot of contractions almost every afternoon and evening, but never in the morning.  Right away I started wondering, "Is today the day?"  I tried not to get my hopes up.  I was two days overdue and really thought that my little girl would have been here already!

7:00 am- Still having contractions...  Now they were getting stronger and I was starting to get excited.  I was really starting to think that I was going to meet my baby that day!

7:30 am- Ryan woke up and came out to the living room.  I told him that I wanted him to take Brennan and I out to the Galley for breakfast.  Not only was I really wanting pancakes, but I figured I should get a nice, big breakfast since I wasn't going to be able to eat anything at the hospital (IF we went today...).  I surely didn't want to be starving during my labor this time!

8:00 am- We quickly stopped to check out a garage sale before heading to the restaurant.  Nothing good there...

8:15 am- We got to the Galley.  I'm convinced at this point that I'm either in labor, or I'm having the worst Braxton Hicks contractions I've ever had.  They were getting strong and painful enough that I had to stop, lean against a building, and wait for it to go away before walking the rest of the way into the restaurant!  We ordered our pancakes, french toast, and hash browns and enjoyed them thoroughly before going back home.  On our way, we called our local clinic.  We were thinking about going in to be checked before heading to Rochester to the hospital.  Instead, they told us to skip getting checked and just get to the hospital.  

9:00 am- We got home, we packed up the rest of our stuff, got some stuff ready for Brennan and called my Mom to have here come and get Brennan.  With my ever-intensifying contractions, this was not an easy task!  Ryan did most of it while I ran around aimlessly and leaned over a bed, couch or counter to deal with each contraction.

10:30 am- We were finally ready to leave.  I just needed to have a couple of pictures taken before jumping in the car to go.  Smile between contractions!  Here's the whole family... at least for a few more hours!

10:45 am- Finally on our way!  I was in a pretty good amount of pain already, but I was also so excited and a little nervous.  My contractions were definitely getting worse, but they still didn't have any sort of pattern.  They were lasting between 30 seconds and a minute but coming at different intervals- 2 minutes apart, then 8 minutes, 6, 3, 5, etc...

11:35 am- We arrived in Rochester.  Ryan dropped me off at the front door of the hospital and I waited for him, 'enjoying' every contraction, while he quickly parked the car in the nearest ramp.  Needless to say, that wasn't something we had to think/worry about during our first labor at the small hospital only 2 minutes from our house!

12:00 pm- We just got checked in and put into an initial exam room so that they could see if I was really in labor (at this point... duh!).  I remember hoping that I'd be at least 3 cm.  I decided that I would be happy with 3 cm and thrilled with more.  Lucky for me, we got great news- 5 cm!  Already half way there!  Woo hoo!  At this point, they told me that they wanted to make sure my labor would keep progressing.  They asked me to go on a little walk around the hospital and come back in an hour to be rechecked before actually being assigned to a delivery room.  I agreed, but didn't get much walking done.  The contractions were too painful to walk through!  Instead, we slowly made our way to an open sitting area that was fairly nearby and waited for about an hour.

1:10 pm- Time to be rechecked.  More progress!  I gained another cm in that last hour and was now up to 6 cm!  In my first labor, I pretty much stalled out at 5 cm for a long time.  I was so glad to make it past that point this time.  Once they saw that I was still progressing, they moved us into our birthing room- one with a big tub to labor in, just as I'd requested.  They were already filling up the tub for me, which was awesome.  I was DEFINITELY ready to jump in.  Unfortunately, they do not do water births yet, just aqua therapy.

1:30 pm- After being hooked up with a couple of different monitors, they let me get into the tub to labor.  The water felt great and really helped relieve my pain.  Actually, it started to help too much and slowed my labor.  The main problem was that the water was too warm and relaxed all of my muscles too much. It sure felt good, though, and I didn't mind having a little break in the middle of my labor.

2:40 pm- After the water cooled down, my contractions ramped back up.  I wasn't feeling great and I was definitely beginning to consider pain medication- mostly an epidural.  I've gone into both of my labors with no expectations.  I figure I'll decide what I want during the labor. I have not major problems with pain medication, but if I'm handling my labor fine, there's no reason to have it.  At the same time, if I'm getting really uncomfortable, there's no reason NOT to have it.  I was a bit afraid of having the epidural administered, though. The one I had with Brennan was REALLY painful as they inserted, so I just assumed that's how it would be again.  I didn't want to feel that pain again, but my contractions were getting bad and I was at 6-7cm.

2:50 pm- We decided that I should at least get an IV placed in anticipation of wanting the epidural.  I knew that I was required to have one anyway since I was doing a VBAC- hospital policy.  I was not excited- I'm a major needle phobe, but I was prepared.  Even before leaving our house, I had applied my numbing cream to my arm in anticipation of having the IV placed.  By now, it was pretty numb.  They were going to do the one required blood draw while placing the IV to save me a poke, which I appreciated.  Ryan came over to talk to me and hold my hand while they placed it and I braced myself...  It seemed like it was taking forever!  I wasn't quite crying yet (or maybe I was... can't remember) and I kept asking if they were almost done.  They kept saying, "almost...". Then, they took everything out and told me that my vein had collapsed. I lost it!

3:00 pm- Until now I'd kept my cool, but after hearing that they were going to poke me AGAIN, I was so mad and worked up!  I couldn't stop sobbing...  I was already in pain and now I needed another needle jabbed in me!  The lady asked if she should just quickly place it in my hand and get it over with, expecting me to say yes. Instead, I adamantly barked, "ABSOLUTELY NOT!"  I think this was the only time I got a little mean to anyone throughout the whole labor.  I know she was trying to be helpful, but in my mind she was crazy for even suggesting it!  We started the process over...  Ryan had to go to the car to retrieve the forgotten numbing cream. We applied it, this time to both hands, and waited the hour it takes to numb me.

4:20 pm- Only 45 minutes after applying my numbing cream, my contractions were definitely bad enough that I KNEW I wanted the epidural.  Now I was at 7cm. They decided to get me out of the tub, changed and into bed to be ready for the IV and epidural. The second I began to stand up to get out of the tub, I started shaking uncontrollably!  My contractions were suddenly 10 times worse than before!  It's crazy what a lack of gravity does for pain relief!  I struggled to step out of the tub with the help of the nurse and Ryan, walked what seemed like a mile to the bathroom, and changed clothes while fighting through the horrible contractions.  Ryan helped me into bed and then they successfully placed the IV.  My skin was pretty numb, but to make me even more comfortable, they gave me a tiny bit of lidocaine to completely kill the feeling. I was able to sit through this IV placement really well.  For once, distraction worked. It was hard to pay attention to what they are doing and my crazy contractions at the same time.

4:30 pm- Now that the IV was in, I could finally have my epidural.  I was still nervous, but I was so ready to be done with such bad pain.  I was really worried about how I would be able to hold still enough during the placement, though!  The anesthesiology team came in quickly and for once, I was actually happy to see them!  I told them that I was in so much pain that I thought I'd wiggle too much during placement.  One anesthesiologist suggested that they give me one dose of Fentanyl to ease my pain and help during placement.  It was a great idea.  My pain was decreased substantially.  That stuff is awesome.

Since I was feeling better, they got working on the placement.  Saying that they were sympathetic and accommodating to such a needle phobe is an understatement.  Instead of making Ryan move out of the way like they normally would, they let him stay right next to me and actually draped him as along with me!  He had to kind of become like part of my body- moving the exactly the same way I had to, but it helped immensely.  Another anesthesiologist sat to my right and helped me, as well.  I didn't like the initial pokes of lidocaine, but I can honestly say that it wasn't too bad.  They injected quite a few spots with numbing medication and soon I was completely numb.  I'm shocked to be able to say that this was the worst part!  I didn't even feel ANY of the rest of it.  A minute after they had already removed the big placement needle, I was asking if they'd put it in yet!  I didn't even feel it as they threaded the catheter in.  It was soooo much better than last time and I'm so happy I did it.  They placement was dead on and within a few minutes, I was back to feeling great and could enjoy the rest of the labor... almost. :)  I was feeling good enough to be concerned with my looks again, so we needed to touch up my make up.  Since my right hand was more than occupied with IV's, my little sister helped.

5:10 pm- Ahhh... relaxing a little during labor.  My family came into the room to spend some time with me/wait for the baby.  It was nice to see everyone.  Now we just needed baby to hurry along!  Brennan helped pass the time by tickling my semi-numb feet.  We all just kind of hung out and anxiously waited.

6:30 pm-  The doctor told me that she thought breaking my water would be a good idea and might help to speed my labor along a little.  I figured that we might as well give it a try.  She quickly broke it and we were happy to see lots of clear fluid- another sign that the baby was healthy in there!

8:00 pm-  Well, baby wasn't here yet, but Brennan was just done.  He was exhausted, but there was no way that he was going to calm down and go to sleep at the hospital, so we decided that Mom and Dad would take Brennan home and Mom would spend the night with him and our dog, Emmy, at our house.  Brennan gave me the sweetest hug and kiss and they took off.  Haley and Joe stayed behind at the hospital, along with my cousin Christi, our amazing 16-year-old photographer.

I can't remember exactly how much progress I'd made by now, but I don't think it was much more.  However, the pelvic pressure I was feeling was steadily increasing and getting pretty uncomfortable.

8:30 pm- It hadn't been long since I was checked, but the pressure was getting increasingly strong and I was getting increasingly uncomfortable!  I asked to be checked again, hoping for more progress finally.  The results of the check were promising.  I was dilated to 8cm.  I wasn't far off and I was getting even more excited.

9:10 pm- By now I was getting awfully sick of the pressure, even with my wonderful epidural, and I was ready to be fully dilated.  I asked to be checked again and I had made more progress.  I was up to 9cm.  Only 1 left!

9:45 pm- The pressure was even stronger and was beginning to change from discomfort to pain.  I asked to be checked again and to my delight, I was finally at 10cm!  Stage 1: complete! The doctors and nurses quickly got everything set up and within a few minutes, they were ready for me to begin pushing.

9:50 pm- With the help of Ryan, a supportive nurse, and LOTS of other hospital staff, I began to push.  I hoped that I could be like my Mom and only have to push for a couple minutes!  I COULD NOT WAIT to meet my baby girl.  I just wanted to hold my sweet baby in my arms instead of in my belly.

10:00 pm- After pushing for a few minutes, baby's heart rate took a little dip.  It wasn't major, but it was enough to scare me.  Of course, I was very worried about the health of my little baby, but I was also worried about having made it so close to the end and having a repeat c-section.  Heart decelerations were the reason that I had to have my c-section with Brennan, so it was definitely an area of concern for me.  They started me on some oxygen just to give me and baby a little extra boost.

At this point, I started to become pretty paranoid.  The entire time I was pushing I kept asking, "What?" and "What did she say?"...  With the oxygen from the mask whistling in my face, I couldn't hear a lot of what the doctors and nurses were saying and it was driving me crazy!  I felt like I wanted to be COMPLETELY informed as to what was happening- both good, bad or otherwise, which was another thing that was lacking during Brennan's labor.  Apparently, they weren't even talking to me most of the time, but I didn't care.  I just wanted to be able to hear EVERYTHING, whether they were discussing my labor, the score of the WILD game, or political issues.  Off topic conversations wouldn't have even bothered me as long as they weren't whispered... JUST SPEAK UP- is that too much to ask!?!?  Ryan kept telling me that they weren't saying anything about me or the baby and that if they had anything important to say about us, they would tell me.  I still didn't care...

10:10 pm- I was slowly making a little progress, but not as much as I had hoped for. I asked if they could bring in a mirror so that I could see how I was doing with each push.  I thought that if I could see her head getting closer, it would give me even more incentive to push.  I definitely helped some, but there were so many people in the room that there was often a shoulder or head in the way.

They were beginning to have trouble finding baby's heartbeat with the fetal monitor because she was sitting so low in my pelvis. They asked if they could use an internal fetal monitor to try and get a better reading. The weren't WORRIED worried, but after her little heart decelerations they wanted to be able to watch her closely. I very reluctantly agreed.  It really was one of the things I most wanted to avoid.  I feel horrible about them screwing that monitor right into the top of the baby's head!  Poor little thing.

10:20 pm-  Still pushing...  I really figured I would have made more progress by now.  Especially if this baby was only about as big as Brennan was, or just a little bigger, which is what our doctor had predicted.  I felt like I was pushing according the the doctor's instructions, but she still wasn't moving down very quickly.  The pressure was beginning to get horrible and I wanted our little one out!  I remember being very worried about how crowning was going to feel.  I've heard about how much is burns and I was afraid of that.  I wasn't holding back on my pushes, but I was scared!  The anesthesiologist was my best friend when it came to this fear.  He gave me another little dose of pain killer through my IV and kept reminding me to press my pain relief button, making me more numb every time.

10:25 pm- Ok, by now I was starting to get irritated.  The doctors kept telling me, "Push her towards the ceiling! Push her towards the lights!"  What was that supposed to mean?!?!  How are you supposed to push something up when it can only come out straight?!?!  Were they going to give me pillow to prop myself up???  I don't remember it, but Ryan tells me that I finally hollered at them, "What the hell do you mean?!"  Yelling something like that, especially seriously and to perfect strangers is something I would never normally do, so I guess that explains how irritated I was, not to mention how hyped up on drugs and adrenaline.  One of the nurses finally explained that they were trying to get the baby to come down under my pubic bone and then up again and out.  Well, why didn't you say that in the first place!  After that I totally understood what they meant and was able to push much more effectively.  They should have told me to curl my back up as far as I could into the shape of a 'C' and push... I would have understood that better.

10:40 pm- It turned out that even though we tried using an internal monitor, we still couldn't get a good read on our little girl's heartbeat.  It was slightly worrisome, but only because we couldn't constantly watch for heart rate dips because she was sooo low.  She was definitely getting close!  I could see a good portion of her head with each push.  I couldn't look at the mirror much, though, because I was pushing so hard that my eyes were killing me, especially when I opened them.  You can see I'm holding them in this picture...

Ryan was holding up great.  I think a lot of women worry about their men in the delivery room, but I sure didn't.  No fainting for Ryan or my little cousin, Christi!
10:48 pm- I kept asking if how much further she had to come.  Finally, I just decided to reach down and feel how much of her head was really coming out with each push.  Besides during my IV experience I hadn't been very emotional up until now.  However, when I touched the top of her sweet, warm head and felt her long hair, it immediately brought tears to my eyes.  She was warm.  That might sound so stupid, but to me it was huge.  Suddenly it made everything real.  She was a living, almost breathing, baby and she was mine.  Along with this huge rush of emotion came the realization that I was going to have a successful VBAC!  This was the birth I'd always wanted and it was happening.  She was so close, doing wonderfully, I still had lots of energy, and it was actually going to work!  I remember saying those couple of things over and over for a minute or two- "She's warm!  She's so warm!" and "It's going work!"  I have tears in my eyes just thinking of this moment over again...

10:55 pm- Pushing was hard.  It took everything I had, but I didn’t want to give up; not even for a moment.  I thought the time during pushing would crawl by.  I though every moment would be so painful and seem like forever, but the time flew by.  I couldn't believe that I'd been pushing for an hour!

I can’t even explain the pressure I was feeling at this point.  The word ‘pressure’ can’t even come close to properly describing exactly how I felt. All I can say is that the fact the a baby can actually exit your body this way and you can live and feel back to normal so quickly is truly miraculous. I knew that I was getting close- REALLY close because I couldn't imagine the pressure being any stronger.  They said they could see part of one ear as I was pushing and they already had all of the baby stuff totally ready to go.

11:00 pm- Between contractions the doctor tells me that if I couldn't push the baby out within the next couple of pushes that they would need to do an episiotomy.  I had a simple response to that- "NO NO NO NO NO!!!!!"  (Yes- it was exactly 5 no's. I thought that would get the point across.)

11:02 pm- I guess the 'episiotomy threat' was good incentive, because on my next push, our perfect baby girl effortlessly slipped out into waiting hands! She was immediately flopped up onto my chest for me to hold, snuggle, caress, admire, and love.  She was beautiful- absolutely perfect in every single way!  I couldn't stop crying, smiling, comforting her, and telling her just how awesome she was!  It was unforgettable.  I don't think I've ever experienced a more amazing moment in all my life.

She didn't let out her first cry for a few seconds and I remember patting her on her back and telling her to breathe!  I remember beginning to get worried that she hadn't taken a breath and cried, but I KNOW it was normal.  The nurse suctioned out her nose and she let out the biggest, most beautiful shriek I'd ever heard!  You can see my reaction in the picture below...  It was a moment that I had been imagining throughout the entire pregnancy.  I didn't hear Brennan's first cry... hearing this new baby cry was a dream come true.

I let her Daddy cut the cord, after it had finished pulsing, of course.

Saying that I was proud of myself would be a huge understatement!  I couldn't believe what I had just accomplished- built and nourished a baby for 9 months before doing the hardest work I'd ever done in order to bring her into the world.  Ryan told me several times how awesome I'd been and how proud he was of me, and of course, that made me even prouder.

To my surprise and delight, they let me hold my new daughter for as long as I wanted.  I figured that I'd get to hold her for a couple of minutes and then they would whisk her away to clean her up, do APGAR tests, weigh, measure, etc.  But they didn't!  I held her for 45 minutes straight after delivery.  I asked Ryan if he wanted to hold her once or twice, but he kept telling me that I could keep her- that I deserved it.  Once again... so proud.

I was lucky to only sustain a few small tears. I don't know how many stitches it took to repair them, but it wasn't many.  They probably only spent 25 minutes to half an hour stitching me up. While my tears were being repaired, we had one of the nurses bring Haley and Joe back in to see our unnamed baby girl.  They were both so excited.  Haley couldn't hold back her tears as she first met baby.  Our conversation through our pouring tears must have sounded hilarious to the hospital staff.   Our new baby was Haley and Joe's first God child.

Finally, I convinced Ryan that I'd held baby enough and he could have his turn, but before I handed her off, we took our first official family picture, which turned out beautifully.  I couldn't wait to get one with Brennan in it, too.

Then Daddy got his chance to hold his little girl for the first time after patiently waiting for Mama to get her fill.  I sort of assumed that Ryan would maybe cry a little during the delivery or when getting to hold baby for the first time, but he was all smiles.  He was so excited, joyful, and relieved that everything went so well!

Daddy took his turn admiring this beautiful little face.

I took advantage of my free hand and took a few minutes to call my Mom and Dad with the fantastic news.  We were all so happy!

Finally, we turned her over to be weighed, measured, etc.  The nurse laid  her on the scale and we were all blown away to see that baby girl was almost 8 pounds- 7lbs. 14oz.!  So much for the doctor's prediction of maybe 7 pounds!  That is a big baby for a five foot mama with a small frame like me!  She was really long, too- 21 1/4 inches!  She did shrink a bit after her head un-coned a bit... :)

The nurse foot printed our little girl and we had them put foot prints in the baby book, too.   They turned out really well.  Baby feet have got to be some of the cutest things on the planet.  It really is no wonder why I take countless pictures of them and hold them all the time!
Next, they were going to make the final cut in the cord, closer to the belly button.  They asked Ryan if he wanted to do it again.  Instead, he suggested that Haley do it.  She was thrilled.  I think she 'made' a really nice belly button! After this was finished up they treated her eyes and gave her a Vitamin K shot- poor little thing!  And poor Mama listening to her cry... :(

Finally, all the commotion was coming to an end.  The nurses wanted to do a few more things before helping me with a first feeding.  I was trying to wait patiently for them to get finished and come back, but baby was obviously hungry and I wasn't a beginner at breastfeeding, so I began feeding her by myself.  They came back and were surprised to see how well we were doing.  Baby was a wonderful eater right from the start and we never had any problems with breast feeding.  I'm so thankful that it was this way with both of my kids.  We spent some more time admiring our still unnamed baby before finally being moved to our recovery room sometime in the middle of the night.  

We enjoyed the visits we had from family and friends over the next couple of days, and I was very ready to go home by Monday afternoon.  Still one thing left to do, though... NAME OUR BABY!  We finally settled on Bryleigh Kate Anderson.  Her first name has no significance- it is just beautiful and goes well with Brennan (and no... we didn't PURPOSELY name them both B names.  It just worked out that way.).  Her middle name is actually the same as one of her Great Grandma's middle names.  We hadn't even considered Kate as an option until we found out that Great Grandma Anderson's middle name was Kate for a family tree page in the baby book.  Once we heard it, we thought it would be a perfect match for 'Bryleigh' and a simple way to tie in family.

All in all, this birth experience was nothing short of wonderful!  My VBAC went better than I expected and I'm still proud of myself!  Being there for my daughter's birth was the most amazing moment in my life and I will never forget that miraculous feeling.  I'm not sure if we will have any more kids down the road, but if we do, I hope their births are as wonderful as Bryleigh's was.  Words really can't describe how much it means to me.

Welcome to the world and into our family, little Bryleigh!