Welcome to the World Lila Rose

BIRTH STORY_2

It was Sunday, April 10th. I woke up that morning with a few braxton hicks contractions. My mom had just got into town the day before and I was debating if we should go to 9am  church or not. I got up and the contractions went away, so I decided to go to keep myself distracted and get my body moving. It was the most uncomfortable day of church ever. I don’t know why I thought it would be a good idea to wear heels while 40 weeks pregnant. I made it for 2.5 hours and then I was done. I was getting more of what I thought were braxton hicks, but I still thought I had at least one more day to go before little Lila was going to enter this world.

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After we got home, I put Haven down for a nap and hung out with my mom for a bit while Cory went to lay down for a nap. I’m not much of a napper, but that day I had a feeling that I should try and get my last few naps in that I could. I only ended up getting an hour nap before my brother and sister were calling for us to meet them at the park for a picnic. So of course we went! I continued to have sporadic contractions, and they were starting to get stronger as the day went on.

We had a picnic, fed the ducks, played with the dogs and reminisced with my family. It was  a breezy and cloudy day. Every day that got closer to my due date, I cherished the little moments I had with Haven. I was so scared that everything would change, that my little girl would feel left out and sad, so I made sure to tell her how much I loved her as much as possible. I would crawl/flop into Haven’s crib when she would try to pull me in and I would lay down with her for a while. (I don’t know how I didn’t break all the springs) She would pat my back and whisper “I love you” and we would laugh and hold each other tight. I’ll never forget those days. 🙂

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After the park, we put Haven down for bed and started watching Fixer Upper (always a good Sunday watch) around 9 o’clock my contractions were getting more regular so we decided to time them. By the time 11 rolled around they were lasting for about a minute (sometimes longer) and were about 2-3 minutes apart. So we grabbed our hospital bags, said goodbye to my mom and headed off to the hospital!

The drive there was anything but pleasant. Luckily the drive was only about 15 minutes, but every little bump we hit was like a knife twisting in my uterus. Once we got to the hospital we had to stop 4 different times as I put my arms around Cory’s neck and had the longest contractions ever! I remember we were almost to the front desk to check in and I was having a contraction for what seemed to be 2 minutes long, the nurse yelled from the other end, “she’s still having a contraction?”

We got checked in and they put me in a wheelchair (I was actually able to sit in one this time, where I couldn’t when I was in labor with Haven) We got to the room and luckily the nurse on shift was a midwife on the side, which is exactly what I needed since I was planning to deliver naturally. I was 7 cm dilated and the intensity of my contractions escalated so quickly once we got there. After about an hour of laboring I wanted to give up so bad. I wanted the pain to go away. It felt as if someone took a serrated knife and stabbed me in the top of my stomach slowly, then slowly sawed downward to my pubic bone, and then stopped for a minute and started all over again. I felt like I couldn’t do it any more. I knew I was strong enough to do it, but at that point I just didn’t want to feel anymore. I just wanted to relax, but the nurse knew I was so close and since I told her I wanted to deliver naturally she told me to labor for another 30 minutes and if I really wanted one after that I could get one. She had a very calming voice and spoke softly, which helped me to calm down a bit. Cory was behind me pushing my hips in to help relieve the pressure, and that helped a little bit too. By this point I felt that I couldn’t take the pain any more, I kept saying “I can’t do this, I can’t do this.” The nurse said we could switch it up by moving to the shower for a bit. I didn’t want to move, let alone walk anywhere, but I knew it would help. So I mustered up my strength and walked over to the shower, they had me sit on a medicine ball while Cory sprayed water onto my lower back. At that point, I knew I couldn’t run away from the contractions, I had to embrace them and remember that each contraction is one moment closer to getting Lila out. After being in the shower for about 20 minutes I was done. The pain was getting to be too much to bare, so I decided I was going to get an epidural the moment I got back to the bed, so I stepped out, ready to tell the nurse when I started having another contraction and all of a sudden my water broke! It actually scared me. I remember yelling “my water broke! What do I do? Oh no!” I got so scared for some reason I lost my cool. The nurse looked down and said that I was crowning as she called for the doctor. I was walking back to the bed, with Lila’s head about to pop out, while a team of nurses and doctors ran in.

I got on the bed on all fours and pushed her out in two pushes! I wanted that baby out. The first push was her head and the second push was her shoulders. Cory told me that she flew out like Superman, the doctor literally had to catch Lila. I obviously wasn’t messing around. The pressure and the pain was gone for a moment. I was so relieved and so happy! I remember them putting her down on the bed below me. The first words were “she’s so tiny! My baby girl!” They had me turn around so I could hold her. She was so sweet and little, but she came out with a cry that I’ll never forget. It was loud and she meant business. I laid her on my chest and talked to her and it took a little while for Lila to stop crying. She had a head full of black hair, her face was perfect. It wasn’t swollen at all, except her nose was a little crooked from being squished inside.

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My precious girl weighed 6lbs 11oz and was 19 inches long. She was born at 1:45am on the 11th of April. She was finally here, she was mine to hold, she was healthy and that’s all that mattered. The human body is an amazing thing. You go from experiencing the worst pain you’ve ever felt, wanting to die, scream and cry at the same time to feeling an immense feeling of love and happiness. All the pain goes away for a little bit and the amount of love that fills you is unexplainable. It is the best feeling in the world, to finally hold your little baby that you fought so hard for.

As I adored my baby girl, I had a bad cough that I was starting to get over and as I coughed very large amounts of blood was spewing out of me like a broken fire hydrant (sorry TMI). Any movement I made just made more come out in puddles. Blood began running off the sides of the bed in more puddles. Obviously this wasn’t normal so they tried to hook me up to an IV, but for some reason my veins kept collapsing. After poking me six different times, they decided to bring a specialist in to do it. It took her two different tries until she finally got it to stick in on the third try. The doctor said that a piece of my placenta was still inside which was what was causing me to bleed so much. She told me that she had to manually stick her hand up inside me to try and get it out. She said that because it was going to be very painful they were going to put Morphine in my IV to help ease the pain. At that point, I was so over feeling pain that I was all for it! First she stuck her whole hand in with a piece of cotton and pushed on my stomach with the other hand from the outside as she tried to get it out by swiping her hand all around, but it didn’t come out. I felt like I was having a baby all over again, the pain was excruciating! She had to try a second time, but nothing came out. So the third time she took some gauze and wrapped it around her hand and tried again. I couldn’t believe how painful it was! Luckily she got it out that last time. I was trying so hard to be strong and brave, but after one traumatic experience after the other, tears began rolling down my face and my whole body started shaking. For some reason I kept apologizing over and over again. I felt bad for crying. They reassured me that everything was okay, that I was doing great and gave me some warm blankets.

Looking back, I am proud of myself. Us women, we are so amazing and strong. We go through the first 9 months of pregnancy feeling like we have the flu everyday for 18 weeks (at least I did), then we have to deal with weight gain and so many body changes and hormones all over the place. The last few months we get little sleep and half of our body goes numb throughout the night after sleeping on one side for too long. We take one sip of water and feel like we are about to pee our pants. We waddle around with back pain and sciatic nerve pain shooting down our leg and up our backs. We get swollen and when we get sick we can’t take much to feel better, we basically have to tough it out. Then we push a baby, a human body out. Some women break their tailbones while delivering, some have to get a caesarean, and some rip and have to get sewn back up. But then we have this amazing life in our hands and all the pain is excused. Our hearts grow and we feel a love that we’ve never felt before. But that’s not the end of what our bodies go through after birth. We feel more contractions after giving birth as our uterus shrinks back to its size. If we breastfeed, that is a whole other pain that we have to get used to. Our milk comes in and our boobs feel like they are going to explode, you are bleeding heavily for days and then you continue to bleed for about 6 weeks. Your skin is stretched and flabby, your body is very much out of shape and your hair begins to fall out. Your body is the source of living for this new baby, they are dependent on you, and if you have more children those kids are depending on you as well. It is a HUGE adjustment and a lot to take in. But the best part about it, is that WE GET THROUGH IT. We survive and we are blessed with this beautiful life that we get to watch grow and learn and it is the best gift you can be given. Some of the best rewards come from of the most difficult experiences. Children take work that isn’t easy, but when that love is shot into your heart the moment they are born, that love is what keeps you going. It keeps you learning about what patience, love, strength, courage and selflessness is.

I am so thankful for a healthy baby and a healthy recovery. I know that we are so incredibly blessed. I know there are many people out there who haven’t been able to bear children or have a family, so I will do the best I can with these precious gifts I have given and not take them for granted. Thank you for joining our family miss Lila Rose.

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And it’s a…

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We are so excited to welcome another little girl into our family, I know that her and Haven are going to be best friends.

We decided to have the ultrasound technician write the gender down on a piece of paper and my friend Nicole got it for our gender reveal party. We went in for our apt on Friday, Nov 20th and on Saturday we were having a Friendsgiving so we decided to combine it with a little gender reveal.

So in the spirit of thanksgiving we decided to have everyone vote if they thought it was a boy or a girl by choosing a hat or feather headband. If they thought it was a boy they wore a pilgrim hat and if they thought it was a girl then they put on an indian feather headband.

After we all made our votes, Nicole gave us cans of silly string that had the color of the gender. It was so much fun finding out it was another little “indian” :).

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Dad here. One more little sweet little girl is on her way to hang out with the Rush’s. Couldn’t be more excited to play with another little sweet. To me it was a win win whatever decided to be the next one. On the pink side of the coin I wouldn’t have to buy all new girl stuff. Kid clothes are expensive and become irrelevant very quickly! I’d also get all the sweet little gestures that my little Havey baby is so good at. On the blue side of the coin I’d have gotten a little buddy to show the ropes. Someone to hunt with and show how to be a lineman just like his pops. But now that we know it’s a lil’ miss I’m excited to move on to the next battle, settling on a name. Way WAY harder than you’d think.

BABY #2!!! EXPECTED ARRIVAL APRIL 2016

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(9 weeks prego)

November 17, 2015

Well… I am very VERY behind on updating my blog with this HUGE announcement but, we are expecting another baby in April!! The due date is April 12th, so it will be an eventful birthday month in our family. Haven’s bday is on the 20th, mine is on the 21st and then Cory’s dad is also on the 21st, my sister-in-law’s bday is on the 16th I believe and then we also have lovely tax day on the 15th, so the wallet will probably be crying at the end of the month, but we will be party animals all month, that’s for sure!

But back to baby… she was actually not planned, we were planning on trying in August or September, but this babe decided that July would be the month that she/he wanted to begin growing in my belly. I was in complete shock when I found out.

I remember finding a pregnancy test in my bathroom one night, and I was bored so just for fun I decided to take one. As I waited to see the result (in my head I already knew I wasn’t pregnant) only one line showed up, but as I was waiting to see if the other line had popped up or not Cory walked in with some elaborate story he wanted to tell me. So I grabbed the test and hid it. He was still talking and as I was walking out I took a quick last glimpse at it before I threw it in the trash and saw another line!!

After seeing that I was speechless and every word Cory was saying had turned into a bunch of gibberish that went in one ear and out the other. I couldn’t believe it, so many thoughts were running through my head. Then I interrupted him and just blurted out… I’M PREGNANT! And of course the first words that came out of his mouth were, “you’re not supposed to tell me like this! You’re supposed to surprise me in a cool way!” haha

We are both very excited and can’t wait to find out if Haven is having a little baby sister or a baby brother!

For the first two weeks I wasn’t sick at all and had a TON of energy, so I thought for sure it was a boy since I wasn’t sick at all, it was making me very happy not to deal with nausea all day. But then those two glorious weeks came to an end and I was welcomed with horrible morning sickness. I am 19 weeks now and the sickness finally started to go away around 18 weeks, just like how it was with Haven. So now I’m thinking it may be a girl, but we will see!

We find out the gender next week and we can’t wait!

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Flash Back to Halloween 2014!

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As you know… I didn’t blog at all after Haven was born, but I still have so many great memories and pictures that I never posted. This is pretty much my own little journal as well, so I figured I’d add in some pics from last years Halloween; our first Halloween in a home and as a family of three!

We dressed up as The Little Mermaid! Cory was King Triton and I was Ursula and of course Haven was the little mermaid and Curly was Sebastian. It’s so crazy to see how much Haven has grown since last year. One year makes a HUGE difference when they are brand new baby’s. It kind of makes me sad.. I guess it’s bittersweet.

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My little Mermaid was such a good little model! Not to fool you all though… we probably took about 100 pictures and I was standing right behind her and holding her up with my arm and then pulling my are away really quick and then putting it back after we got a quick shot. Somehow we got really lucky on the posing with this pic… the things you do for a picture.

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I made this little crown for Haven and I’ve got to admit, it turned out better than I thought it would. I just got some wire measured it around her head and made a pattern out of seashells, hot glued it to the wire and then spray painted it with a pearly paint and wallah!

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She was not liking that wig

She was not liking that wig

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Zombie Nicole and poor Haven

Zombie Nicole and poor Haven

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Curly looking so majestic in her Sebastian costume.

Curly looking so majestic in her Sebastian costume.

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Haven at 6 months old!

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Batman heading off to work!

Batman heading off to work!

On Halloween Night we stayed home and passed out candy, it was so fun being able to do that for the first time since we’ve been married. We were always in apartments so it was fun to be able to do that this year.

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Here are some pictures from “the party that never was”. We ended up having it on the worst day ever, because everyone who was invited had other plans or couldn’t make it, so it ended up being just us and another couple that night. We still talk about that night, but we’ve made up for it for all the other holidays that came after.

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Lion’s and Tigers and Bears… OH MY!

This year for Halloween we decided to have Haven be Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz. Mainly because I had these adorable Yosi Samra red sparkly flats and I thought they would go perfectly for a Dorothy costume. I couldn’t find a dress that I really liked for her, so I sewed my first dress for Haven! I was pretty proud of myself, considering the fact that I’ve never really made a dress before. I also made Curly’s costume out of felt. Her hat was the best part! I found a gold curtain tassel and used it for the top of her hat, then I found some white angel wings and spray painted them black. Cory’s costume was the tornado, so we went to Lowe’s and got some piping and to use as the top of the tornado and then wrapped him in tulle and leaves and he was good to go!

I was basically a witch 3 times during the week of Halloween, once for a witches night out with the ladies, the second time was for a trunk-or-treat and the third time was on Halloween. I didn’t paint my face that time.. plus my skin was already pretty much dyed green anyway from the previous days. Later that night we had a Halloween party with a bunch of our friends and Cory and I dressed up like Fat Monica and Chandler from FRIENDS.. Unfortunately we forgot to take pictures, but we did get a video of us doing our Chandler and Monica dance.

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I love Haven's big cheese in this pic

I love Haven’s big cheese in this pic

Halloween 2015

Halloween 2015

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Haven was so funny when it came to trick-or-treating.. We were using her Toto basket as her candy basket as well, but anytime we would try to put it in the basket she would not let it happen. Apparently only the dog was allowed in there.

Haven was so funny when it came to trick-or-treating.. We were using her Toto basket as her candy basket as well, but anytime we would try to put it in the basket she would not let it happen. Apparently only the dog was allowed in there.

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This picture was taken right before I left for a Witches Night out with some friends.. Haven was in her diaper and bib, wearing her Dorothy shoes and when Nicole and I were walking out the door saying bye, Haven turned around to Cory and said “Bye!” and began following us out. She just wanted to be witch with us that night and go out with the girls so bad… maybe in a few more years Havey girl.

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OCTOBER!

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These are just a few pictures from this month, I probably had about 200 pictures on my phone for October and it was hard to just pick a small amount.

My sister, Deanna came in town from Arizona with her two girls and we had a great time going to the Pumpkin Village at the Dallas Arboretum and the Taylor Swift concert! It was finally starting to feel a little more like fall when they arrived (high 70’s).

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Haven’s very first masterpiece… she is already writing too!

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One day I was feeling domestic before a pumpkin carving party we were going to so I baked up these cookies and 4 hours later I had about a dozen and a half decorated. Although, I will admit that decorating them was kind of therapeutic.. until Haven woke up from her nap.

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Haven and her buddy Quinn at the pumpkin patch! I couldn’t get Haven away from those tractors.

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Haven wanted didn't want Quinn in the picture this time.. so she decided to stand in front of him and do a big cheese. haha

Haven wanted didn’t want Quinn in the picture this time.. so she decided to stand in front of him and do a big cheese. haha

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This was a picture of the day we were all just getting over the stomach flu. Haven caught it first, but luckily she only threw up once and then had some green poops. Then Cory came home from the gym and threw up, first I thought it was just from his protein or working out too hard (he has a weak stomach), but then the next day I caught it too and we were all out for the next 4 days. Poor Haven had a bunch of energy and Cory and I were dead while she just played around the living room. I’m soooo glad it’s over though, it was hell.

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UPDATE…. a long time coming

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Well today is August 24th, 2015 and boy has a lot changed! As you can see, my last post was the story of Haven’s birth story. This was before we made the big move to Texas and all the many changes to follow in the last year. Let me just give a quick list of all that happened in between, I’m kind of sad I didn’t update this blog at all since then, but as many people know, blogging takes up a lot of time and effort that I just didn’t feel like adding onto my plate be honest.

So here it goes… After Haven was born, Cory graduated dental school on May 15th, Haven was blessed on Sunday, May 18th. We moved from Charleston to Dallas and drove for a week with a very packed car and trailer being towed behind us. I got mastitis the day we started our road trip and Haven and I were packed like sardines in the backseat with a cave of stuff around us. We arrived in Dallas on June 5th, 2014 to our new rental home and started our new lives together in a nearly empty house without water for a few days.. which is always so much fun!

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On Monday, June 9th my mastitis got so bad that I couldn’t take it anymore (After seeing a doc in the box on the way to Dallas, she said I had to wait until it gets better) so we went to the doctor a few days after we got to Dallas and it had gotten so bad and big that he had to cut the abscess (sorry this is gross) without any pain meds or anything and drain it out. He did give me a shot to numb the area, but he missed and I felt every bit of it. So we started off being in the new place on a great note! I the moment we got out of the doc’s office I went straight to the pharmacy to get some drugs to help with the pain.. which meant that I had to temporarily stop breast feeding. But just because I stopped breast feeding I had to pump and dump, which was a very painful thing since the cut was right where the pump would pull.. again, sorry for the TMI, but it was not a fun time.

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Humble beginnings. When we moved into our rental house the only furniture we had was our sofa, bed, Haven’s pack n’ play and a little mirrored console table.. it’s always fun to look back and see where we were. 

Cory started his new job in July and things were going pretty great until the end of October when Cory was informed that he was being let go due to a lack in patients at the office. So we were on the hunt for a new job again, but luckily one of his friends got him a job at his dental office and he was able to get straight back to work in the beginning of November. The unfortunate part is that we didn’t end up getting a paycheck until February (long story), so we were running off lots of savings and many pizza date nights at home.

My good friend, Nicole moved to Dallas right around the same time we did which has been the best thing ever! We were roommates in college and she was actually one of our first friends made my freshman year. We started our business together in October and went live in November. It’s called Be Bona Fide, it’s a movement to try and help our social community to live more authentically in a world that promotes perfectionism. You can check it out and read more here >> http://www.bbonafide.com.

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We celebrated Haven’s first birthday in April and it was a fun little backyard garden party! On her birthday we made her pancakes with whipped cream (she was in heaven), then we went to the zoo where she got to feed the birds and watch the elephants take a bath. Then that night she devoured her very first birthday cupcake and it was pretty epic.

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I painted and designed Haven’s 1st birthday invitations, since I failed on making her birth announcement through all the moving and graduating, so I thought I’d make it up for her birthday. 🙂invite1

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Come June our lease was up and we decided we wanted to be a part of the action of downtown living, so we moved the the heart of downtown dallas in the Medical District which is right down the street from Nicole (my biz partner) and my brother and about 20 minutes from Cory’s work. We are very happy here and love living close to good restaurants and all the happenings that a downtown city can offer you.

At the end of June we headed out to Utah for a family reunion, where we got to see many friends and family that we haven’t seen in a while. Then Cory and I headed out to Cancun, Mexico for the 4th of July weekend (ironic I know) and Haven got to stay here in Dallas with my Mom and little sister. We all had a great time and didn’t want it to end.

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July flew by and now here we are in August, which is also flying right by! So until next time… hopefully I can keep up on my updates.

The birth story

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Haven Mae Rush graced us with her presence on April 20th, 2014 which was Easter Sunday and the most exciting, painful and beautiful day of my life. I had pretty much convinced myself that my Haven would come late so I wasn’t anticipating her arrival anytime soon..  

My mom was supposed to come in town on Saturday the 19th, but a family emergency came up so she wasn’t able to make it, which I was told on Friday evening. I was pretty bummed that she wasn’t going to make it but, like I said, I didn’t think that Haven would be coming on my due date so I thought she would have extra time to get here before I went into labor. Saturday night Cory and I decided to go out to celebrate him passing his final part of boards as well as our possible last weekend as just a couple. So we went to Tsunami sushi (don’t worry I didn’t get anything raw) and then walked down the big dock that has swinging benches by the water. It was raining a little bit and it was windy so we sat there and swung a bit and talked about our lives and how much it was about to change. Then we went home and I was ready for bed! I was so tired I felt like a giant whale, so I just wanted to lay down and let my body relax.

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Eventually I fell asleep and around 1:00 am I woke up to what I thought were some Braxton Hicks, I didn’t think much of it and tried to go back to bed but they kept waking me up, so by the time 3:00 rolled around I couldn’t take just laying there anymore so I got up and walked around our tiny little apartment trying to “walk it off” but they just kept getting worse, so I woke Cory up and told him I was having some pretty bad contractions, but I told him not to get his hopes up because it may be a false alarm. So he rubbed my back a bit as I tried to relax, but I couldn’t really relax. So we started timing my contractions to see how far apart they were and they were which was about 5-7 minutes. I went back to what we learned in our Bradley Method class and they said to eat something, go for a walk, and take a shower and see if the contractions go away. At this point I was still not convinced that I was in labor, I thought it was just a false alarm for some reason. So Cory made me a peanut butter and jelly sandwich while I bounced on our exercise ball. I ate the sandwich, and my contractions just kept coming so we decided to call our doula, Kassie Anderson and let her know what was going on. So she told me to try to relax and get a little sleep while I still can, so that is what I tried to do, but the contractions were just so uncomfortable and I couldn’t lay still, so I took a nice long hot shower for as long as I could stand it.

I was feeling a little better, so I climbed back in bed with Cory and I actually fell back asleep for maybe 30 minutes, but was awoken again by more intense contractions. So it was probably around 5am by the time I was up and continuing to have contractions about 5 minutes apart. We hung around the house timing contractions on and off and just trying to relax. Around 7:30am we decided to go for a little walk around the block, with a few stops during contractions as I hugged Cory and tried to relax through them. When we got home I told Cory that we still needed to open our Easter baskets! So at least we got a little Easter celebration in as we opened each others baskets to one another.

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By the time 10:30 rolled around Kassie (my doula) came over and that is when the ball started rolling on my contractions. They began to get worse and worse as Kassie stood behind me and put pressure on my back as I leaned over our bed and Cory was there holding my hands coaching me through each contraction. Haven was posterior, meaning that she was facing my stomach when she should have been facing my back, which leads to a longer more painful labor. So we were trying to get her to flip over during my contractions which was a very uncomfortable and quite painful thing to do. Kassie was so knowledgable and comforting during the whole thing and she knew exactly what to do with the posterior situation. She had me stand up against the wall during a few of my contractions and when each one started I would follow my hip bones down to my pelvic area and lift Haven’s head and then press down on my stomach to try and get her to flip, it was not a fun thing to do at all during a contraction. We did a few other different positions during contractions as well to try and get her to flip. The rest of our time at home laboring was kind of a blur, but it was so incredibly painful! There were times when I would have contractions back to back four times in a row, where a contraction would peak and go down a little bit and then peak again and go down a little bit and peak again and again where I just didn’t get a break. That happened a few different times and I remember thinking I was literally about to die. Towards the end I didn’t think I could take it anymore, I kept telling Cory and Kassie that I was done and I couldn’t do it anymore. I wanted to run away every time I had a contraction. It felt like someone had taken a rope and squeezed it around my insides while 5 knives were stabbing me in the stomach over and over again. This went on for a little longer until I just couldn’t take it anymore. I told them that we needed to stop and go to the hospital, I was done. If I didn’t have Kassie and Cory there supporting me the whole time and giving a little relief to my back while I labored I wouldn’t have been able to do a natural labor. Seriously, having a doula and taking the Bradley Method classes with Cory was one of the best decisions I could have made. Cory and Kassie were the best help to me and they were there to support me and cheer me on, when I felt like I was going to die.

So after I told Cory and Kassie that we needed to leave, Kassie had me go to the bathroom before we left. I could barely sit on the toilet seat the pressure was just so painful. As I was about to break down, I was in there alone, when I thought to myself, that I can’t run away from this pain, there was nothing I could do to make it go away and I just needed to embrace it and let my body work. As I got up I realized that I lost my mucus plug, so I walked out slowly and quietly told them I had lost it. Then Cory ran out and pulled the car up to the door, I just remember dreading getting in the car and driving to the hospital because I knew it was going to be so painful driving over the all the bumps and uneven roads downtown. So I got in the back seat and hugged the headrest as I kneeled on the seat. I COULD NOT sit down, it was not going to happen. So I held on to that headrest for dear life and tried to just focus, I went inside myself I couldn’t even talk I was in so much pain. I remember Cory asking me if I was doing okay and I couldn’t even say a word to tell him yes or no. I’m sure it scared him a bit that I was so silent, because just before I went to the bathroom I was very vocal about how I was feeling and how much I couldn’t take it anymore.

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We had left the house around 1:45pm for the hospital and got there at about 2:00. After we parked, I remember just having the hospital room on my mind, I was determined to get there as soon as possible. We had to stop a few times as I turned to hold on to Cory as I had more contractions, we walked down the white hallways and were greeted by a nurse that just happened to be walking down the hall. She ran and grabbed a wheel chair for me to sit it, when she told me to sit I really really didn’t want to because I knew it would be so uncomfortable but once again, I couldn’t speak, I couldn’t tell them how I was feeling so I sat on the edge and held myself up with my arms. We finally got into the delivery room and the nurses were asking me a bunch of questions about when my due date was, who my doctor was (which we forgot to call the OB to even let her know I was in labor and that we were on our way to the hospital) and other questions that were a blur, but the whole time they were asking me I just looked at them, I couldn’t get a word out. I just looked at Cory hoping that he would answer the questions for me. I continued to have my contractions over and over again, it felt like they were within seconds apart, it was killing me. They checked to see what I was dilated at, which was about 8cm, then they hooked me up to an IV and by the time they were done I felt like I was about to poop my pants. So finally I spoke up and the first thing that came out of my mouth was that I felt like I needed to go #2! So they took the IV off so I could go to the bathroom, I tried to sit down but I couldn’t,  I had another contraction and lost more of my mucus plug. As I stood up I remember yelling “I’M GOING TO POOP ON THE FLOOR!” I just felt so much pressure and I could hardly stand it! I took three more steps and the next thing that came out of my mouth was “I’M HAVING THIS BABY NOW!” I didn’t really know I was having the baby but that is just what was coming out of my mouth, it’s crazy how your body just knows and somehow I was able to vocalize it. So the nurses told me to get on the bed so they could check to see how dilated I was, once again I couldn’t lay down because the pressure and pain was so intense so I was on all fours as the nurse checked to see where I was, and apparently she got half of her finger in there and then she said “yup, that’s a baby’s head!”. Next thing I knew, people were scurrying around and metal trays with instruments were being wheeled over and things began to get real serious. The doctor came in just in time and had me lay on my back, I told her that I couldn’t do it, I just couldn’t. She told me that I couldn’t deliver the baby on all fours, it was too dangerous (which I think would have been fine, because they say it is one of the birthing positions) so I mustered up my strength and courage and turned around and all of a sudden the doctor was saying that the baby was still intact with the bag of waters, so she had to pop it. Next thing I knew I felt a gush of water, as if someone had poured a gallon of water all over me. The the doctor told me to push, I was determined to get Haven out, I was so done with this labor, so I pushed as hard as I could. I could feel everything down there stretching so much it burned! So the next contraction came along and I pushed again with all my might, by the third contraction I yelled “get this thing out of me!” I was going crazy, so the doctor told me to give one last big push and that she was so close to coming out, so I gave it one last hard push and she was out! My umbilical cord was so short that they could only put Haven on my stomach and I just remember saying “my baby, my baby! She’s here! My baby!” We finished letting the cord pulse so that baby could get as much of the cord blood as she could and then Cory cut the cord. Everything was such a blur and seemed so surreal. I remember the nurse stuck a huge needle in my leg to help stop the bleeding because I guess they said that I bled as much as someone who had a c-section, so they had to give me something to help stop the bleeding. Then I remember being so cold I was shivering like crazy and my whole body was shaking, during this time I birthed the placenta and then the doctor stitched me up. Luckily I didn’t tear that bad, I only needed three stitches. I was just in such awe of my baby girl I couldn’t believe that she was really here! I had her laying on my chest, and they asked what her name was and Cory and I had two names in mind, either Sienna or Haven, but we both knew it was Haven. Haven Mae Rush. Our beautiful baby girl weighed 7 lbs 9 oz and was 19 inches long, with a full head of black hair and cheeks for days.

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It took a little while for it all to set in for me and it is still setting in, but seeing my baby girl for the first time, with her black head of hair and her sweet little cry was something I wouldn’t trade for anything. I have never felt so much love and eagerness to protect and care for this little girl, she has brought a whole new meaning of motherhood to me. With everything you go through for this little one including the nausea from early pregnancy, the discomfort of later pregnancy, the hours of labor, the birth and all the pain that follows after from stitches, bleeding, cramps, pain from nursing and little to no sleep it is all worth it and you deal with it all with love knowing that it is all for your new child. I can’t wait to see my little Haven grow and develop. She is my everything and I love the little family that Cory and I have created.

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Everybody always hears about the woman’s birth story, but the fathers side is never really told… so I had Cory right his own little version of the birth of our Haven.

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For me the birth started in a haze at 3 a.m. There was Laura, on all fours and breathing hard trying to relieve the stress of her random contractions. This wasn’t the first time that she’d been dogged by cramps at the most un-godly hours imaginable, but with every day one day closer to the due date I was a bit anxious. Laura told me to not worry about it and to go back to sleep, that she’d get me up if anything different happened. It was like that for a few hours until I got up and started checking times every now and again. The contractions were still sporadic but had been going on all morning.

We started the labor process with me trying to keep Laura relaxed, fed, and hydrated, and Laura being a champ about every contraction. It wasn’t until about 10 a.m. that we called our doula friend Kassie to come over and give a hand. The contractions got more and more steady and harder and harder on Laura. One particularly hard part about her labor was that the baby was posterior, meaning that her face was facing forward instead of towards Laura’s back. When babies are posterior they tend to make for longer, more painful births. With Laura trying to do this birth naturally it wasn’t going to help her to have it be either longer or more painful, so our doula started having Laura do some exercises and moves to get the baby to turn around. From my perspective, there is nothing harder than watching the pain of a contraction compounded by the discomfort of trying to manipulate the baby’s positioning. It’s hard to witness the grimace of pain on your wife’s face and not be able to do anything about it but reassure her that this is natural and that contractions are a good thing leading us to baby’s arrival. Laura labored until about 12:30 p.m. without her pain becoming overwhelming, but then she hit the wall. Her contractions started stacking on each other, leaving her with no or reduced breaks between each one. Couple that with the fact that they were getting so hard that she started saying that she couldn’t do it anymore, that it was too hard, that she was going to die, and the whole thing got so hard to witness and stay positive. I only knew that being positive was the only thing I could really do to help so I was going to do it.

She labored until 1:45 p.m. and gave a couple more heroic efforts to rotate the baby before she called it and we headed off to the hospital. Laura didn’t talk at all the entire ride over. She just kneeled on the back seat, hugging the headrest like a lifeline. Just as a side note, downtown Charleston is NOT conducive to comfortable driving in high stress situations. Ironic, then, that it has two hospitals. Would it kill them to make the roads EVEN and fill some potholes? Anyways. We arrived at the hospital and checked in at 2 p.m. Laura walked into the hospital on her own steam and an arm thrown over my shoulders. She had at least 4 contractions on the way into the hospital and at least 6 before they finally put her in a room. She was quiet, and couldn’t sit down to be wheeled in because it was far too painful for her. The nurses were very gracious (but kept trying to ask the incoherent pregnant woman questions that they could have EASILY asked the anxious, yet coherent, husband standing by her side).

They got Laura into a room and then into a gown. They then strapped her to a fetal heart monitor for what they said had to be at least 20 minutes, but try telling that to a woman 8 cm dilated who needs to get up to go to the bathroom. Laura got up, with us wheeling her IV bag along for the ride, and announced to the room at large that she was “going to crap on the floor”, eloquently put. She made it to the toilet, luckily, and passed her mucous plug. Now things were getting moving. As Laura was walking back into the room she stopped, had a contraction, and then following the contraction slapped a hand on the wall, leaned against it, and yelled “I’m about to have this baby right now! She’s right between my legs!” which caused the already flustered nurses to be extra flustered. From what I’m told it is pretty common for women in the later stages of labor to yell something like that, even when the baby is still a ways away. Not the case, as we were about to find out. Laura then climbed onto the bed on all fours because it hurt too much to lie on her back. The nurse went to check dilation and all I hear is “Oh, that’s a head. Thaaat’s the baby’s head. Baby coming now!” The other nurses seemed a bit confused until it set it that it was magic time. They had Laura roll over, which by the looks of things was VERY unpleasant, and prepare for the doctor. We, in our anxious/excited state, had completely forgotten to call our OB, which is just as well because she wouldn’t have been there on time anyways. Luckily, however, St. Francis recently began having an on-floor OB at all times due to circumstances such as ours. She was scrubbed and gloved just in time to tell Laura to push. Laura had some choice words to say while pushing, including “get this thing out of me!” But who could blame her? The bag of waters was still intact when it came time to push so the doc decided to pop it to help Laura out. I can’t imagine it’s much fun to try to push out a baby inside a water balloon. The pushing wasn’t long, only 4 contractions, but with each one I could see our sweet little girl’s jet-black hair a bit more. I got tears in my eyes as I saw her. My voice broke a few times when I turned to Laura to tell her how close she was and that I could see a head full of beautiful black hair like hers. After only 4 contractions, little Haven Mae Rush came into the world bawling and using her new little lungs to full effect. I’ve never been so proud and elated and relieved at the same time.

My wife amazes me, and I have a respect for her strength and steadfast nature that will never be rocked. She is awesome, in that she fills me with awe and wonder. I love her and I love my sweet little girl more than I ever knew I could. I’m so excited to see her grow and watch her progress in life.

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PHOTOGRAPHY BY: Jenna Miller >> http://www.jennamillerphotos.com/

 

39 weeks!

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HOW BIG IS BABY? 19.96 INCHES WEIGHING AROUND 7.25 POUNDS  – ABOUT THE SIZE OF A WATERMELON!

DEVELOPMENT: MY BABY GIRL’S DIGESTIVE SYSTEM IS NOW CAPABLE OF DIGESTING LIQUID FOODS AND SHE IS PEEING AT REGULAR INTERVALS. HER SKIN IS NOW A PINKISH RED COLOR. MOST OF HER BODY HAIR IS GONE AND ANY AMOUNT LEFT WILL FALL OFF AFTER BIRTH. CAN’T WAIT TO MEET HER!!

WEIGHT GAIN: WELL WHEN I GOT WEIGHED AT THE DOCTOR I HAVE NOW GAINED 29 LBS!!

SLEEP: I HAVE BEEN GETTING MORE BRAXTON HICKS CONTRACTIONS THIS WEEK, OVER THE WEEKEND THEY WERE PRETTY CONSISTANT THROUGHOUT THE NIGHT, BUT NOW I HAVE JUST BEEN HAVING A LOT OF LOWER BACK PAIN WHILE I SLEEP. THEY SAY IT IS BECAUSE BABY IS POSTERIOR SO IT GIVES YOU A LITTLE EXTRA BACK PAIN (OH JOY). THE OTHER NIGHT I SWEAR I ONLY GOT ABOUT 3 HOURS OF SLEEP, I WAS UP ALL NIGHT WITH CONTRACTIONS AND BACK PAIN.. I AM NOT LOOKING FORWARD TO THE REAL THING!

MISSING: WELL THIS BELLY OF MINE IS NOT GETTING ANY SMALLER, I MISS NOT FEELING STRETCHED ALL THE TIME AND I MISS NOT FEELING SO MUCH LIKE A DISABLED WHALE WHEN I TRY TO GET OUT OF BED. (WE SOLD OUR BEDSET FOR WHEN WE MOVE, SO OUR MATTRESS IS CURRENTLY ON THE FLOOR, SO IT MAKES IT THAT MUCH HARDER TO GET OUT OF BED)

CRAVING: I HAVE A DIFFERENT CRAVING EVERYDAY IT SEEMS… AFTER THE BABE COMES OUT IT IS CLEAN EATING OVER HERE!

FEELING: AS MENTIONED ABOVE, I AM NOT FEELING AS GREAT. I AM STARTING TO SWELL A LITTLE BIT IN MY HANDS, FEET AND LEGS. I FEEL LIKE MY LEGS ARE TURNING INTO TREE TRUNKS AND IT KIND OF SCARES ME WHEN I SEE MY VAINS STICKING OUT OF MY FEET. I REALLY HOPE I DON’T GET VARICOSE VAINS.. MY MOM GOT THEM WHEN SHE WAS PREGO. 

GENDER: IT’S A GIRL!

BEST MOMENT OF THE WEEK: WELL WE FOUND OUT THAT CORY GOT THE JOB IN TEXAS!!! I WAS SOME VERY EXCITING AND MUCH ANTICIPATED NEWS ON MONDAY! IT IS SO NICE TO ACTUALLY KNOW WHERE WE ARE GOING AFTER HE GRADUATES IN MAY AND NOW IT IS TIME FOR ME TO START HOUSE HUNTING (RENTING)! IF ANYONE KNOWS OF ANY GREAT PLACES TO LIVE AROUND DALLAS PLEASE FEEL FREE TO LET ME KNOW! IT WAS SUCH A RELIEF TO HEAR THAT WE FINALLY HAVE A PLAN, BUT IT WAS A LITTLE BITTERSWEET AT THE SAME TIME, BECAUSE THEN WE KNEW THAT ARIZONA WAS NO LONGER GOING TO BE HOME FOR A BIT. BUT I KNOW THAT THIS IS WHERE THE LORD HAS GUIDED US TO GO, AND I BELIEVE THAT IT WILL BE A GREAT THING FOR US! 

LOOKING FORWARD TO: WELL OF COURSE I’M LOOKING FORWARD TO FINALLY BEING ABLE TO HOLD MY LITTLE GIRL IN MY ARMS AND LOOK INTO HER EYES. I CAN’T WAIT TO SEE CORY HOLD HER FOR THE FIRST TIME, IT IS GOING TO BE SUCH A WONDERFUL DAY WHEN SHE COMES. I AM ALSO LOOKING FORWARD TO MY MAMA COMING TO STAY WITH US AND HELP WITH THE BABY, AS WELL AS EASTER COMING THIS WEEKEND, MY BIRTHDAY ON MONDAY AND THEN CORY’S GRADUATION IN MAY! WE HAVE A LOT OF EXCITING AND LIFE CHANGING THINGS COMING UP SOON!

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So we have some pretty big news that we found out this week and the news is…

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We are so excited to finally know where we will be moving to at the end of May! It was a stressful few months but we are so grateful things are finally coming together. Just in time for our sweet babe to get here! I can’t believe I only have one more week until our due date! But we found out that Cory got the associate position as a dentist in Dallas on Monday and when he told me we were both jumping up and down and smiling from ear to ear. I have never been to Dallas before but one of my good friends and old roomie lives there and loves it. Her name is Caitlin and she has an awesome blog so you should check her out >> here <<  If anyone has some great places for us to check out feel free to send   some info over! I have never been to Texas so it will be a great and new adventure for us.

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We sure are going to miss living downtown Charleston and our walks, they never get old no matter how many times we walk down the same street. 
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Still workin’ away, waiting for this babe to come!!

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We enjoyed a beautiful day at Battery park on Sunday with our good friends. I sure am going to miss them when we leave!

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We had a garage sale on Saturday and sold a lot of stuff, but still have more to sell! We are going to try and have another one next week, so lets hope we can sell everything before we move! Our house was out of control while we were getting everything out, I have no idea how we stored so much stuff in our tiny 600 sq ft apartment.