Friday, July 29, 2011

Even better!!!

Just got back from the hospital and found out we can room in tomorrow and Sunday!! So tonight is the last night I will sleep away from my son!!! Oh my goodness I am soooo excited!!! Tomorrow night I can wake up to a child instead of a pump every three hours! How awesome!!!!

- Mrs.Pate via my iPhone

Day 11

Day 11 of this Journey

A week ago I had just gotten out of the hospital and had to leave my son there. I thought I would never make it to August 1st. I was numb most of that day. We slept and barely spoke... we were just spent from such a crazy week. Now here we are, one week and 25ish visits later. It has become my normal to walk into the hospital, take a right and get on the elevator, get off on floor 2 and push the intercom button to get into the NICU. That is pretty much my life this past week. But we are close!!! We are so close to an ending to this season. My heart could not be more excited. A few updates:

  • We are going to "room in" on Sunday! This means we will get to stay in a hospital room with Griffin. He will be off all of his monitors and in our care, like a regular nursery baby. The NICU nurses will still come in to check on him and give his meds, but other than that we have him! They do this to prepare parents to take their NICU child home, kind of a transition. I cannot wait!!!!!!! This means I really only have one more day and then I will be with my son!! Be still my heart!
  • Today I nursed at the 8am, 11am and 2pm feedings. Its the first time I have done back to back feedings. It went really well I think. We didnt do weighed feedings, so I do not know exactly how much he got. But I wont know at home either. He stayed content in between the feedings and didnt wake up hungry, so thats a great sign. We are doing much better at staying awake and just learning what works for him. Thanks for the prayers!
  • He gets out on Monday, but I dont know what time yet. I am sooo ready. 
  • He is the cutest thing ever. After he eats, he loves to just stare around and I could watch him do it forever. Today when we went in at 2pm he was still asleep. Everytime Mr.Pate would touch his chest, Griffin would throw his arms up but not wake up. He did it like 5 times- it was sooo funny! 
Thats us tonight. We are heading back up soon to see our little guy. Day 11... and almost done. Thank you Lord! 

Wednesday, July 27, 2011


This journey is definitely a roller-coaster. This morning Mr.Pate and I got up and went to feed our boy at 8, like we have everyday since we got out of the hospital. After we left I was thinking, we can do this. Monday isn't that far and he is healthy and I can live with this normal for a while. I felt like I was settling into this "normal" for us and doing just fine.

He will definitely be getting out on Monday, we found out from the doctor today! Yay!!!

My dad and sister came up and got to hold Griffin for the first time. They were pumped! Then I came home and got paperwork done to add Griffin to the insurance and send off for the birth certificate etc. Yay for productivity.

Later Mr. Pate and I went back up to feed again. The nursing has been hit or miss. It's definitely more work for him than eating from a bottle, and he has been falling asleep after only taking a little instead of getting a full feeding. So now we are working on keeping him awake- which is so hard! I can't be there to nurse every time, so he still has to take the bottle. It is getting a little frustrating and I definitely shed some tears. I have got to be patient with Griffin and just pray the he begins to take full feedings. Please pray for that!

Later, Mr. Pate's dad and I went back up. Griffin's nurse was at the door to greet me saying "Don't freak out". Not what you want to hear when walking into the NICU. My heart skipped a beating and sank... What happened??? "I had to restart his IV and it's in his scalp."

Oh. Looks way scarier than it is. Whew!!! Griffin has an IV port so they can give him his antibiotics. He is not continuously connected to an IV though. With babies, it is hard to keep an IV in place because they move and kick and squirm. He has blown his IV before (only 2 times so far though) and I knew he may again. The scalp is a good place to place an IV for a baby bc the vein is usually really easy to access and they won't kick it out.

So luckily nothing health wise had changed on Griffin, he just looked a little scary. So relieved! I have been very scared that I will walk in and suddenly have a sick child again. No matter how many times the doctor tells me he is well, I am just terrified. Pray that I would trust and not worry. So hard to do.

So tonight I am just heavy hearted and want him here with me so badly! This morning I felt like I was ok, and tonight I am brokenhearted that I have still not brought my child into my home. Roller-coaster.

- Mrs.Pate via my iPhone

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Day 9

Well today is Day 9 that our Boy is in the NICU. Thought I would share some pics of his setup:

First off, yesterday after his bath Griffin's hair stayed like this all day! Ha! Loved it! 
 This is his crib. 
 This is his weigh chart. Yep- all 8 lbs! Today he is 8 lbs 9.1 oz! 
 This is a picture one of the nurses drew for him to look at. He loves staring at it and is sooo cute when he does! 
 I love his face in this shot. 
 He like the contrast of my glasses with my face I think. He just stares and stares. I could stare back forever. 
 Such a sweet face! 

The doctor's switched shifts today (they do 12 day shifts) so we met his new Neonatal Specialist. She is really nice and was very encouraging. She said we are just waiting on him to finish out his antibiotic so he can go home. She said all of his behavior is normal, healthy baby behavior- his ability to nurse well, stare at things in amazement, etc. We had already been told this, but I do not tire from hearing it again!

So thats us today. We did a weighed feeding this morning and my boy ate 106 ml! Thats a lot. I dont think he knows how to stop himself! Around lunch he ate quite a bit less, I think he was full full full. Ha!

Thank you so much for the prayers and support. Please keep them coming! I cannot wait to have my boy home!

Monday, July 25, 2011

One week old!!

My son is a week old tonight! Are you kidding me? Last Monday at 8:21pm, Griffin was pulled out of my belly and entered into this world. His cry sounded like quacking! It still does sometimes and I love it.

The last week has been such a blur, with joy and heartache abounding. But I feel so blessed to have a healthy 8 lb 8.4 oz boy to hold and kiss, even if I don't get to bring him home just yet. I thought at this point I would be taking cute pics of him next to a stuffed animal to see how he grows. I thought his newborn pics would be this next week. But life so doesn't play out how you picture it, and I have no grounds for complaint. I am a blessed mom and wife, and I am trying hard to continually remember this.

Griffin is doing awesome. No news is good news, and he is just chillin. He is usually super alert in the mornings when we go see him, making the cutest faces ever. And at night he is completely knocked out after he eats no matter how hard you try to wake him.

He is nursing really well and I am so glad! We are still only nursing at 8am, 2pm and 8pm. Then he is bottle fed the rest of his feedings. Mr.Pate figured out that I needed to adjust my pumping schedule now that I have milk, and it is going to make things easier! So thankful for that man. I had been pumping every three hours, and not figuring the nursing into that at all. So it was getting to be a lot. Now I will be pumping or nursing every three hours, which will be a tad less than now and give me a break- woo hoo!

My mom and sister came up yesterday, and Mr.Pate's dad is here for the week. Those visits have helped the time to pass much better! It's still dragging by, but a little faster.

Griffin will prob get out on August 2nd, not the 1st like we first said. His last dose of meds will be 14 days after he was born- which was at night on Monday. So we just weren't calculating right.

Now for some pics:

He met his Papaw for the first time!

Uncle Dustin came back to visit!

Crazy KneKne got to come see him for the first time too! I love this pic! Ha!

- Mrs.Pate via my iPhone

Saturday, July 23, 2011

A short Update

Well I was discharged from the Hospital yesterday. So sadly, we left Griffin and headed home. It was good for me, and I knew it would be. I needed to be in my bed and see my animals and see the sun! Ha!

So we hung with our little guy until mid-afternoon then came home. And took a long family nap! It was lovely! Then Mr.Pate fixed me some dinner and we went up to feed griffin.

I am pumping every three hours, so that takes up a lot of our time too.

Today has drug by so slowly!! We got up and went to feed Griffin, had breakfast, came home to pump, went to church to work for a bit, ran some errands, came back home to pump, went to feed the boy, took a walk, watched some tv, pumped, dinner, a nap, and now we are headed back up there. Time
Is dragging!!!

Griffin is doing great! He passed his first hearing test. He will have to have one more too. With the antibiotic he is on, there is a risk of hearing damage. So far so good- be praying for that!

He is on a three hour schedule for eating, so we try to make it to three of those a day. We are trying to breastfeed, and so far we have had three pretty successful attempts! Since he was introduced to a bottle first, nursing is harder for him. But he is doing great.

Maybe soon I will update on the emotional side of it all, but it is hard to out into words the roller coaster I am on.

One thing is for sure- my husband is the most amazing person ever. I am so thankful for his care and guidance right now. The Lord is using him to carry me right now. I am blessed.

- Mrs.Pate via my iPhone

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Finally a Griffin Update & Pictures!

Well our little boy is finally here! It has been a whirlwind week to say the least, and I feel like I have run a marathon. I have so many things I want to share, but there is just no time right now. My days are filled with pumping, going down to see our little (big) guy in the NICU, visitors and trying to keep the family updated on how Griffin is. But we are settling in to a nice routine.

Soon I do plan to share my birth story, but I think I have a lot more processing to do over that whole experience before I can share a ton. I feel like I experienced three births. Ha!

Griffin ended up in the NICU shortly after birth because he was showing signs of a breathing problem. They put him on a breathing machine called a CAP and he was doing great. He breathes a little harder than he should, but nothing crazy. So as we have been here longer and they have been able to test things and assess everything, we have found out Griffin has meningitis. He was started on an antibiotic shortly after birth, so he is well on his way to recovery now. He will have to be on these antibiotics for 14 days, so we have 11 days left. If all goes well then he should get out on August 1st. But with these types of things, anything can happen so it is important to take it a day at a time.

Griffin does not look like a sickly baby. He was 8 lbs 4 oz and 21" long when he was born- he was a big boy for such a  small momma! He has improved everyday and is not showing signs of sickness anymore. These are all good signs that the infection is on its way out soon!

I will give more details later but for now- here are pictures of my fabulous son (if I do say so myself!):

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Well he is here!!!

Griffin Alan Pate was born on July 18,2011 weighing in at 8 lbs 4 oz and 21" long!!

I have no idea what has been shared on facebook but
I didnt want to leave you guys hanging! He was born via c-section after 24 hrs of labor, but I will share all those details soon.

He is in the NICU because of respiratory issues and will prob be there the rest of the week or longer. We are going in now to get some skin to skin time and see how he is. I will try to keep
You posted!

- Mrs.Pate via my iPhone

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Keepin it Real with How I am Dealing...

Many people have said they cant believe how patient I am being, etc. And maybe I am some of the time. But this is not an easy road. I have mentioned on here before that this is really an emotional and mental struggle. I can handle the physical discomfort with no problem, but it is a daily battle of the mind. I just want to keep it real for you.

I really desire to wait on my body and trust the Lord's plan. He designed my body to go into labor and we have no reason to think it wont. It has been making steps towards preparation. My cervix is soft and open. Baby is lower. Things are happening.


I am 42 weeks pregnant and have no baby. People ask me all day long when this baby is coming. They ask when the doctor will "take" him. They ask if I feel like it will be soon. They ask if I think waiting is safe, etc etc. And it wears on you. Badly.

1. I have no idea when this baby is coming. I have never done this before. It all rests on me identifying what is going on with my body, and I have no clue how to figure this stuff out. In case you didnt know, your body does all kinds of weird things during pregnancy.

2. You feel almost as if you are putting people out. They are waiting on you. And when it drags on its like you are just prolonging the attention. It seems like the world is revolving around me. When I go somewhere, all people can talk about is me having a baby. I feel bad, like I am stealing all the attention.

3. Hearing people tell me they are worried about me or tell me its not safe to go past 42 weeks is draining. Very emotionally draining. I have a great Doctor who is watching us closely and still feels we need to wait. I have read the research and know the percentage of things happening to me or baby because we are over 42 weeks is 0.5%. The risks that come with an induction are actually quite a bit higher than that. But when you hear this a lot, you start to doubt. You start to wonder.

This has by far been the hardest part. Today I broke down crying asking Mr.Pate the what if's. What if my placenta does stop functioning? What if baby is born stillborn? What if my body wont do this?? What if What if What if.... And the Lord blessed me with an incredible man who held me and reassured me of the Lord's control. We are not in control. We have no reason to think anything is wrong. We are being monitored. And ultimately the Lord is in control.

I know these truths, but in the midst of this time I can quickly forget. I was a very late baby. And I am fine. I realize now a days most people do not go over 42 weeks so we freak out when they do. But I think this also has to do with how much we push 37 weeks being "full term", so 42 weeks seems sooooo late.

So I just wanted to share how I am struggling. Most of the time I am feeling good and resolved to trust the Lord and wait for my body. But there are definitely moments throughout each of these days that I let the doubts consume me. I think more than not trusting the Lord, I am really not trusting in my body or my ability to figure out what my body is doing.

So please pray! Pray for peace and trust. Pray for patience and love for people, they are trying to care for me. Pray for strength and joy throughout this journey. Just please pray!

Oh and here is a great woman's journey with having her 3rd son at 43 weeks... it has some good info in it too. 

42 weeks

So I hate to disappoint all the people anxiously stalking me, and to continue to drag on the drama.... But the full moon did nothing for me. Today I am officially 42 weeks preggo.

I do feel like things are moving along though. I have more pressure lower, a pretty consistent lower backache etc. Baby is still moving good too, don't worry.

So looks like I will be cleaning the house, going to a wedding shower and softball games today. Have a great Saturday people.

- Mrs.Pate via my iPhone

Friday, July 15, 2011

The hair

I got requests for shots of the hair. Not the best pics ever, but here it is nonetheless.

- Mrs.Pate via my iPhone


So it's Friday. I have made it through another work week (unless I just go into labor sitting at my desk today! Ha!). And I had everything prepared for me to not be there after July 1... Ha.

I got my haircut yesterday. It is an ok cut, I don't think it looks bad. But it wasn't what I wanted exactly. Everytime I try to get my hair cut in an inverted bob, I can never get the people to leave the front as long as I want it. Ever. Yesterday she had it the right length in the front up until the last minute, then bam- she chopped it to! Ugh! So it's just a short bob, nothing special but not ugly either.

The nights are the hardest part of waiting on this baby. They drag on bc me and Mr.Pate are just ready to meet our son. We don't have much to do. So last night we went to dinner and then walked around the mall and target. We had a really good time and some great conversation. Which I am sure I will cherish in the next few weeks when ours lives revolve around a tiny screaming baby.

Now it's time to get ready and roll in to work. Happy Friday!

- Mrs.Pate via my iPhone

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

And the Dr said...

All looks great! We saw Dr.Gass today and it was a wonderful appointment. Very encouraging and motivating.

::: My nonstress test looked great, so that means baby's heartbeat and movement are wonderful.
::: My blood pressure is still at it's normal range (118/78) so that's great.
::: I am still dilated at 3 cm and effaced to 90%, so no change there.
::: Baby's head is lower and engaged now! So no more floating! Dr.Gass was thrilled with this.

Basically, Dr. Gass says everything looks great and we can just keep waiting. He didn't just say that, but it's what he prefers to do. He reminded me that everyones body will eventually go into labor (I needed to hear that!). And that by waiting for my body to do it's thing, we are really lowering my risk of issues arising. It was good to hear this because generally people act like going late is dangerous and a bad idea (there are situations where this is true I know). So I just felt refreshed after the appointment. Yay!! We love Dr.Gass! He is so nice and supportive.

I go back on Monday if Griffin hasn't decided to arrive by then. I am ok waiting, but I would love to meet him sooner! Come on Griffin!!

- Mrs.Pate via my iPhone

Wednesday thoughts

::: We won the softball game (first tournament game) last night. Not sure we really deserved it and we almost lost, but they pulled it out.

::: I got an new iPhone yesterday! When I say new, I mean a new older model. No iPhone 4 for me- I wish! Ha! Mine had finally quit holding a charge and it was uber annoying.

::: I have my doctors appointment with Dr.Gass today. I'll keep you posted.

::: Mr.Pate cooked dinner last night while I was at a meeting. Ranch burgers, oven fries and fresh watermelon! So yummy. He takes such good care of me.

::: I am actually sleeping pretty well these days, which is nice. I wake up every hour or hour and half, but I can go back to sleep quickly so that's super nice!

Well that's all I got... Happy Wednesday!

- Mrs.Pate via my iPhone

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Crazy maternity Photos...

Ok, dont click on the link if you do not want to see crazy people's maternity photos. But if you do, then I present for your afternoon entertainment....

Monday, July 11, 2011


Mr.Pate and I thought 7-11 would
be an awesome birthday for Griffin... But the Lord obviously did not. Ha! No baby yet.

The good news is Dr.Gass is back! So we are good to go whenever!! Now if only he would come.

I am feeling pretty good for a 41 week preggo. The chest pains have left and that is such a blessing!!! It is hard to go from sitting to standing, but I just go slow and wait out the painful stretching. I am walking very slow bc there is a lot of weight very low. And I have to pee at least every hour, if not more. Safe to say this kid has dropped. So that's progress people!

As far as contractions, I think I have had some sporadically, but I am not sure. Everyone says you will know, and maybe that's true. But a few people have told me that they didn't know what they were feeling was a contraction, and I think I may be the same way. Who knows?

At this point I am bored and ready to have a baby to make me tired and super busy! Tonight we were talking about how life is just on a standstill. Everything is ready, and we just don't have much to do. Plus it's super hot and I move like a snail, so it limits the options. The nights are going by pretty slowly!

If he doesn't come tomorrow, then we have our first tournament game for softball. So that should give us something to do!

We go back to Dr. Gass Wednesday.

We watched the first episode of design star tonight. It was ok. Better than last season, but I hate how everything is in teams! When they get their own show, they won't be working with design teams. They will have their own support staff that listen to them. It's annoying. Oh well.

That's all I got.
Peace out homies...

- Mrs.Pate via my iPhone

Sunday, July 10, 2011

41 Weeks and Counting...

  • How far along: 41 Weeks

  • Total Weight Gained: 34 lbs (started 107, currently 141) 

  • Sleep: Well it was very hard to come by most of the week! The chest pain decided to stay for 5 days straight! So I couldnt sleep laying down hardly at all. But it has subsided finally, and the last two nights I have actually slept pretty well overall. I am waking about every hour but I cant get back to sleep so it could be worse! 

  • Best Moment of the Week:  Playing in the Beech Bend wave pool with Mr.Pate and my nieces. It felt great and was super fun! Also Thursday night we went out to eat, to Starbucks and moseyed around Target, like a date. It was great!    

  • Movement: Still good movement.      

  • Food Cravings: Special K Chocolatey delight and Mr.Pate's smoothies.     

  • Food Aversions: N/A

  • Symptoms: Horrid chest pains that were apparently just pressure from no space, Huffing and puffing, lots of pressure on my lower abdomen and pelvic area, waddling majorly, sore tailbone, tired tired tired, pee all the time... 

  • What I miss: Having a body that didnt feel like it had been completely taken over by an alien! Ha! Walking faster than a snail... 

  • What I'm looking forward to: D-Day (as in delivery day!)! There are no more events and we are all setup, so now it is just a waiting game till Griffin decides it is time to make his debut! 

  • Other news: 

    • Well those that prayed Griffin would wait till Dr.Gass was back have some powerful prayers! ha! He comes back tomorrow, so as long as I dont have Griffin until later tonight then we should be good!
    • It has been a physically hard week. I think he has definitely dropped some bc I am having a hard time walking and he feels so heavy down low! When I stand up, I have to brace myself for a moment before I can begin walking because the muscles are so tight. 
    • It is becoming an emotionally hard time as well. This weekend I have just started to let worrisome thoughts creep in. Everyone worries so much when you go late these days, and I have been letting those "what if's" that could happen take over my thoughts. Mr.Pate is good about encouraging me and keeping me focused, what a blessing. It is also emotionally hard because I feel like understanding what is happening right now is all on me. I am the only one who can feel if I am having contractions, if he is still moving well etc. And its a lot harder figuring out what you are feeling than I thought it would be! Was that a movement or a contractions?? Who knows?? 
    •  I need moment by moment reminders that the Lord is in control, not me, and that He has a plan. I need to trust Him with my whole life, including this uncertain and crazy time. 
    • We sent a team from our church off to Mission Arlington on a mission trip yesterday morning. Dustin was part of that group. So he thinks I should wait till Saturday to have Griffin. Ha! I am not wishing for that. I am sad that Mr.Pate and I couldnt go, because it is an amazing ministry and they are going to love it!! 
    • Phrase said the most often when I walk into a room: "You still havent had that baby?"
  • Gender & Name: It's a Boy! Griffin Alan Pate

  • ***All my pregnancy week by week apps and sites have switched me over to "Your Baby" news and week updates at this point... even though he isnt here yet! Babycenter did have an update, but its a downer about why you shouldnt go past 42 weeks... so we are done with the milestones. 

    Saturday, July 9, 2011


    Hangin with my sister, nieces and mr.pate at beech bend today! The water felt great. Now I am sittin around watching them ride rides. Preggos never get to have the fun! Ha.

    - Mrs.Pate via my iPhone

    Friday, July 8, 2011


    Preggo brain!

    Tomorrow I will be 41 weeks, not 42!! I mistyped earlier- sorry for any scares!

    - Mrs.Pate via my iPhone

    Hello Friday

    ::: My work had a golf tournament today, so I didn't have to go. A whole day at home? Weird!
    ::: I have done two loads of laundry thus far, and hope to do two more.
    ::: I plan on dust mopping and vacuuming the floors. I could do this everyday at my house and it still need it. Love my animals but they are high maintenance!
    ::: Tomorrow I will be 41 weeks. Wow!
    ::: I am asked if I have had a baby about five times an hour...
    ::: So instead it's your turn to answer me please:

    - What do you do for fun on summer nights? (preferably cheaper ideas!)
    - What do you eat for dinner in the summer???

    - Mrs.Pate via my iPhone

    Thursday, July 7, 2011

    How I am Feeling

    I get asked this numerous times an hour now. So here is the update:

    - For the first time in this pregnancy I am definitely uncomfortable. It's a blessing that I have felt so well until now and I can't complain.
    - He must of dropped some, because I now have to pee every ten minutes. And walking around is a weird feeling, the bottom of my bump is heavy.
    - I can barely breathe. This is very tied into the chest pain I am experiencing.
    - I am walking so slowly! Ha!
    - There is no comfortable way to sleep. I can't really lay down, so I am mostly sleeping sitting straight up on the couch.
    - Getting going in the morning is the worst. Every part of my body hurts. But once I have moved around for awhile I feel much better.

    So overall I am uncomfortable. The Lord is letting me understand why so many women are begging for the baby to come out early. I get it. This is not super fun. But it is not unbearable.

    I still want to wait for Griffin to come on his own. I am still praying my body will go into labor naturally and not have to be induced. I am trusting God that ultimately He has a plan for Griffins birth, and I want to just accept whatever that is (even if it's totally different than the natural experience I am hoping for). Is it getting hard to mentally and emotionally cling to this, you bet! But the Lord said we would have many trials while living in this fallen world, and His word is always true.

    "For the joy of the Lord is your strength." Nehemiah 8:10

    - Mrs.Pate via my iPhone

    40 Week OB Appt

    Went back to the doctor yesterday. I had a non-stress test first then saw the doctor. I am just not a fan of the non-stress test at this point. You lay on a bed, and they prefer you to actually lay on your back slightly reclined, and they strap two monitor belts to your belly. One picks up baby's heartbeat and the other picks up your contractions. They usually want you to lay there at least 20 minutes.

    Griffin doesn't like this thing. I think he doesn't like when I am on my back. Anyhow, he moved a lot so she had a hard time getting his heartbeat to pick up consistently at first. To me, it would make more sense to have me lean up or even on all fours, bc gravity would naturally bring baby to the monitor. But what do I know? After she finally got us situated I had to lay there for around 40 minutes. Ugh! With these chest pains, laying down is the worst thing ever! (yes the chest pains continue on, griff has just run out of room)

    Griffin's heartbeat is great, so no worries. I only had two light contractions the whole time. So then it was time to see the doctor. I walked in, and the nurse told me to dress down. I barely had time to before he came rolling in. This doctor was on warp speed and I didn't like it one bit. He quickly checked me (like 2 secs) and said everything was the same. Then he measured me and said Griffin is still growing. He was practically out the door before I could get any questions in- 2 min tops! Ugh! I did manage to ask if Griffin's head was more engaged before he ran out the door. He said yes, but I don't feel like he was so very observant so whatever.

    I hope Griffin waits for Dr.Gass!

    - Mrs.Pate via my iPhone

    Tuesday, July 5, 2011

    My Fourth

    Still no baby, just for the record.

    I had a great weekend though! My family came up and we had a blast. Sunday we swam at the hotel pool. My mom found an inflatable bat and baseball at dollar general, and me, my nieces, my dad, mr.pate and Dustin all played. It was so fun! But I over did it and was hardcore hobbling the next morning. Then we grilled and played the wii (well they did, I conked out).

    Then yesterday we were going to go to Beech Bend park, but the weather wasn't so great so we did a movie instead. Then more swimming. After that we were all going to head to our house to cook dinner. I was there first by myself and the chest pains I had been having off and on came back hardcore. So bad in fact, that when Mr.Pate got there I was double over in pain and crying. It was stabbing pains in my chest that sent shooting pains down my left arm. Ugh!! So we called Dr.Gass and he set us to labor and delivery to get checked out. Happy Fourth of July!

    So we got there and they hooked me up to some monitors and did an EKG. Everything looked great and baby looked great. So it was either heartburn or pressure from me having no more space. They gave me some heartburn medicine and made me rest for awhile. It didn't help. Problem number one- they made me lay on my back, which made it hurt worse. Problem number two- they couldn't fix my problem so we just sat there for no reason.

    The good news of this trip? They had me on a contractions monitor and what I thought was him moving is apparently a contraction. Good to know. This doesn't match anything I have been told they will feel like. When it happened my whole belly was not rock hard, but there was just a part of my belly sticking out. I thought it was griff pushing. Who knows?

    But we went home and I proceeded to have the chest pains for the rest of the night and today. Which to me means it is not heartburn, but is just me running out of space. I didn't sleep at all. Blah! But I went to work today an I am learning to deal with the pain better.

    I mean my child will come sometime soon. I wont feel this forever. The Lord will sustain me. He had a plan for when Griffin should be born, and it will come to pass just as He wants.

    That was our 4th in a nutshell. Tonight we were supposed to go to a 4th party in Smiths Grove, but we ended up staying at Dustins school all night helping him move classrooms. It is making progress.

    Tomorrow I go to the doctor for my weekly checkup. I have a non-stress test (they will put a monitor on to check baby's heartbeat, movement, and contractions) and then I will see Dr. Stice. I'll keep you posted!

    - Mrs.Pate via my iPhone

    Monday, July 4, 2011

    Bradley Birth: Second Stage Labor

    Let's talk about the second stage of labor, shall we?

    Here are just some random things I learned in class about Second Stage Labor. Those that have experienced this, please feel free to add your wisdom. It is so important to remember that no two labors are alike, so take all of this with a grain of salt. This is just info to help you become familiar with the birth process and maybe make you less intimidated by it all.

    Some Definitions:
    • Afterbirth: The birth of the placenta and membranes after the birth
    • Episiotomy: Surgical incision made in the perineum (the skin and tissues between the vagina and anus) to "prevent tearing"
    • Cord Clamping: Clamping down on the Umbilical cord to stop the flow of blood and oxygen from the mom to baby so you can cut the cord. The baby then starts breathing on its own for the first time. 
    • Ferguson Reflex: When baby presses onto the Ferguson Plexus of nerves, creating Ferguson's reflex, the urge to push
    The Second Stage of Labor is when you are ready to push. At this point you are fully dilated (10cm) and fully effaced (100%), which means the cervix is completely thinned and open and ready to let baby out. Baby has descended down the birth canal and is ready to emerge. Some women will feel what is called an urge to push. This is generally caused by the baby pressed onto the Ferguson Plexus of nerves, creating Ferguson's reflex, the urge to push. It is important to note that some women may have a break between becoming completely dilated and feeling the urge to push (this urge feels the same as when you have to "go"). Baby may be getting into a better position. So use this time to rest and get ready for the next stage. 

    Upright positioning is usually favorable for the second stage, allowing gravity to assist the mother. There are numerous positions available in modern birth beds, including the squat bar, and foot pedals.

    Out of bed positions are wonderful and becoming more popular, particularly for women having trouble pushing in the bed. Including:

    Squatting (Opens the pelvic outlet an additional 10%)
    Birth Stools
    Birth Balls
    Water Pools
    Birth Chair
    Side lying positions are used to slow down a very rapid labor and are great for protecting the perineum during a rapid birth.

    Semi-reclined, or laying on your back with stirrups are still very common in many hospitals, particularly if you have regional anesthesia, or will be having a forceps or vacuum delivery. This position does not use gravity and increases the length of the pushing stage and increases the use of episiotomy, vacuum extraction, and forceps. You can request a different position.

    I would recommend googling "pushing positions for labor" or "positions for second stage labor" to get other ideas. Because all we ever see in movies and mostly in real life is women laying on their backs in the bed, it is hard to figure out what else you could do. 

    When you are asked to hold your breath to a count of ten, numerous times during one contractions, we call this purple pushing. Purple pushing came into play as the epidural rates increased and women never got an urge to bear down. We now extend it to nearly everyone having a baby.

    The options are:

    Laboring Down: Allowing your body to push the baby out on its own. Not really assisting the pushing efforts of the uterus, unless you have an overwhelming urge to push. This is particularly useful for women with epidurals because then they are not pushing against a baby who is still in a malpresentation.

    Spontaneous Bearing Down (Positive Pushing): Allowing your body to tell you when to push. When this technique is used we never find mom holding her breath more than about 6 seconds, allowing more oxygen for the baby.

    Bradley definitely recommends positive pushing so you are working with your body and contractions to be more effective. 

    When baby's head crowns, some people experience the "ring of fire", which is a burning sensation. After baby's head is through the rest of pushing is generally much easier. 

    Once the baby is born, the doctors will probably suction out their mouth and cut the cord. You have the option to cut immediately or wait for the cord to stop pulsing. (If baby is having any issues, they will cut immediately so they can move baby to the NICU station and tend to the issues.) Reasons to wait for the pulsing to stop would be that baby is getting the last bit of blood that was intended for them, they are still get oxygen from mom for a moment, and studies have shown the stem cells in the cord (ie why we cord bank now) can protect against lots of crazy sickness. You can ask that baby is immediately laid on mom to do skin to skin at this point (bonding of mom and baby skin to skin, which helps baby regulate their blood temp). 

    After this comes the birthing of the placenta. Some call this the third stage. It is when the placenta separates from the wall of the uterus, and is delivered through the vaginal canal. You will still be having contractions at this time, but they are much less intense than before. For some women, they’re still strong enough that it helps to use labor breathing techniques to cope with the discomfort of these contractions.  Some women are so enraptured with the baby that they barely notice the cramping. Your caregiver may ask you to push a few times to deliver the placenta. Again, this pushing is less intense than the delivery of the baby. Third stage usually lasts ten to thirty minutes. If it lasts longer than this, you may be given Pitocin to increase contractions to encourage the delivery of the placenta, and help the uterus to begin involution (shrinking back down to the non-pregnant size.) During third stage is also the time when your caregiver will clean your genital area, examine your perineum, and will stitch up your perineum if you’ve torn or had an episiotomy. A local anesthetic is used if you haven’t had an epidural. In this period after birth, most of the parents’ attention centers on the baby, and not so much on the final stage of labor. In the first hour after birth, you will want to begin breastfeeding.

    Ok moms that have been through this- what else can you share with us who haven't??

    Bradley Birth: First Stage Labor

    Let's talk about the first stage of labor, shall we?

    Here are just some random things I learned in class about First Stage Labor. Those that have experienced this, please feel free to add your wisdom. It is so important to remember that no two labors are alike, so take all of this with a grain of salt. This is just info to help you become familiar with the birth process and maybe make you less intimidated by it all.

    Some definitions:

    - Anterior Presentation: this is when baby is facing the back of mom, and it's the most common and easiest to deliver (its what you want)
    - Cervix: this is the neck of the uterus and at the lower end of it
    - Dilation: the opening of the cervix, which they measure in cm
    - Effacement: the thinning of the cervix, which they tell you in percentages

    So first stage labor is when labor starts until you are ready to start pushing baby out. To prepare for labor, your body may have Braxton-Hicks contractions (practice contractions), softening of the cervix, loss of the mucous plug, etc. If you are unsure if this is real labor or pre-labor, then when you get contractions do these five things: eat, drink, walk, shower and nap. If the contractions continue on after these things then this is the real deal baby.

    Once early labor begins, your uterus starts contracting. This could happen before or after your water breaks (for some women, their water never breaks on its own). When the uterus contracts, it tips forward. This is why laboring by laying on your back is supposed to be so painful, because gravity is pulling the uterus back down and causing a great deal of pain.

    Today, we tend to focus on the vaginal exams to see how we are progressing during first stage. But watching the outward signs can be very helpful as well. A woman will go from being able to talk during contractions and being a very busy body, to a very inward focus where she doesn't seem to notice all that is going on around her. This is a sign that labor is progressing well. Also, the further labor gets the more modesty a woman loses. Another good outward indicator that things are moving along. Most women are hungry during the early labor and then not hungry later on.

    Just before pushing, most women go through transition (but not all). Transition can suddenly change how the woman is feeling drastically. Suddenly she is defeated and saying she cant do this, talking irrationally and possibly very irritable. This is a good sign that pushing is very close! Transition is generally the hardest part of First Stage, but it usually does not last long. This is where she will need a coach who believes in her and can encourage her the most.

    Things Bradley Classes commend you do to cope with First Stage:

    • Change positions often! Try to get in positions that help gravity, so try not to lay on your back! Sit on a birth ball, sit leaning forward in the bed, get on hands and knees, squat, walk, lean over a chair, etc. 
    • Urinate often! This will alleviate discomfort and wont hinder baby from coming down the birth canal. 
    • Eat and Drink as needed. Not some big fatty meal, but small things that can give you some much needed energy. 
    • Dim the lights so you can concentrate. 
    • Abdominal breathing- not chest breathing. Deep breaths will calm you and short breaths will make you feel anxious. 
    • Shower. This helps with the pain. 
    • Try not to tense up! When a contraction comes on, try hard to relax all other muscles in your body. Tensing up makes the pain worse throughout. Having a coach that can look for tense muscles and gently remind you to relax will help.
    • Do not get caught up on numbers. So much of birth is a mental thing. Dilation does not happen in a regularly scheduled pattern ( a 1cm an hour or something). Your body can go from 2 cm to 10 cm in 5 minutes if it wants to. So focus on these other things and believe your body knows what its doing. 
    • Have a birth plan. This will help you remain focused during this time. To see ours, click here. (If you have any questions about ours, just let me know). Your birth plan can be very simple or complex. But having it will enable you to focus on the task at hand and not have to make decisions on the fly. Just google birth plan and you will get all kinds of info on this. 
    So, current moms- what else should be know about First Stage Labor? 

    Ill be back soon to discuss Second Stage Labor, which includes pushing baby out and delivering the placenta (yes you have to do this too and no one tells you about it!). 

    - Mrs.Pate via my iPhone

    Sunday, July 3, 2011

    40 Weeks and Counting...

  • How far along: 40 Weeks

  • Total Weight Gained: 33 lbs (started 107, currently 140) 

  • Sleep: The last few nights have been very rough! I cant sleep on my left side or back without getting this weird chest pain, so I have been sleeping on my right side until I cant take it anymore then sleeping sitting up. Fun! 

  • Best Moment of the Week:  Making it to 40 weeks! I know due dates can be off, but I think ours is probably pretty close (now whether he wants to come close to it is a different story). All along I said I really wanted him to stay in for at least 40 weeks to fully develop, and I am overjoyed that he did!   

  • Movement: Yes yes, little Griffin is still moving often. He moves all day, but typically when I lay down he kinda goes nuts! Ha!     

  • Food Cravings: N/A    

  • Food Aversions: N/A

  • Symptoms: Huffing and puffing, cannot bend over, waddling majorly, sore tailbone, tired tired tired, pee all the time, hardening of the stomach, lower back pain ... 

  • What I miss: Being able to bend over & breathe! Ha!

  • What I'm looking forward to: D-Day (as in delivery day!)! There are no more events and we are all setup, so now it is just a waiting game till Griffin decides it is time to make his debut! 

  • Other news: 

    • My due date has officially come and gone... and I am not gonna lie- I struggled yesterday. I do not know if it was just the anxiousness of knowing it was the "date" or because I wasnt feeling so great, but I did not like most of yesterday. It was just mentally and emotionally hard. I lost a lot of resolve and was just moping around wishing baby would come out. Mr.Pate was like, "What in the world? Yesterday you were fine to go another 2 weeks?!" And he was right. I am feeling back to normal mostly today. I still cant sleep on my left side, but if I have to deal with that for 2 weeks or so then it wont be the worst thing in the world. I think it was also because I didnt have much to do, so it just drug by. But by the afternoon we went and did stuff and went to a friends house and that helped a ton! 
    • As for labor signs, my belly is still randomly hardening up. But it is very sporadic and not something worth timing at this point. And I still dont feel it on the inside either. My lower back has been on and off achy, but again not in a consistent pattern. I'll keep you posted, dont worry! 
    • We got Mr.Pate a new grill yesterday! Yay! We have been planning to buy him one since Spring, but he was just slow about it. Well it turns out that was a good thing bc we ended up getting the one he wanted like $150 cheaper than its regular price. Woo Hoo! Our grill was pretty shot, so I am glad we got this one. I love when we grill, and I told him that before Baby came we needed a dependable one bc I sure wasnt going to be cooking! Ha! 
    • We hung out with the Winkler's last night, and that was very encouraging! Yay for last minute plans!
    • My family is coming up today & tomorrow to hangout and celebrate summer! We are just going to be swimming and maybe going to Beach Bend Park! Yay!!! It will be the first "Summery" activity we have done all summer. 
    • I have been reviewing notes and reading a book called "Active Birth" this week. I highly recommend it. I will try to get some main points and tips blogged soon. 
    • So we are basically rooting for Griffin to either come out today or tomorrow, or wait until next Monday the 11th, because Dr.Gass leaves on the 5th and gets back on the 11th! Pray for that! 
  • Gender & Name: It's a Boy! Griffin Alan Pate

  • Milestones:
    According to :  It's hard to say for sure how big your baby will be, but the average newborn weighs about 7 1/2 pounds (a small pumpkin) and is about 20 inches long. His skull bones are not yet fused, which allows them to overlap a bit if it's a snug fit through the birth canal during labor. This so-called "molding" is the reason your baby's noggin may look a little conehead-ish after birth. Rest assured — it's normal and temporary.

    Saturday, July 2, 2011

    Breaking the silence

    Today is my due date, and to relieve the inquiring minds I thought I would post to let you know that as of now- no Griffin.

    I know when I know someone having a baby, I start stalking their blog or facebook to see I they have had them yet. So I didn't want to blog to stay silent and keep you guessing. I really don't have much to say though.

    I tried hard to sleep in today. I figured I need to do that as much as I can right now. But between it being a beautiful sunny day and me being unable to get comfortable, I didnt end up sleeping much. But I laid there and went in and out of sleep a few times and managed to stay in bed till 11am. Pretty good.

    Today has dragged on. I don't feel all that great. My back is actually achy, and my stomach does keep getting rock hard- but I don't feel anything when it does it I just notice by feeling from the outside. I have also had random chest pains on and off all morning. Weird. So it's just a weird day bc I don't feel great like normal, but what I am feeling doesn't match any descriptions people give for contractions or labor. We will just see I guess.

    I am trying to clean and find stuff to do. Luckily, my family is coming tomorrow and monday, so they'll keep me plenty busy then!

    That's us so far on Griffin's due date. Let's see how this story unfolds...

    - Mrs.Pate via my iPhone

    Friday, July 1, 2011


    Just a random update on what I have been up to lately.

    ::: Working. I am going to work until baby gets here, so everyday I get up and waddle on into the office.
    ::: VBS. We had VBS this week at church. I love VBS, what a fun time! This year was less fun for me bc I didn't teach or anything, just in case I had a baby. But it went really well.
    ::: Cleaning. I have been trying to stay to date on my laundry and housecleaning. I will just feel better if the house is clean and I don't have to come home to a disaster.
    ::: Reading. I am trying to review my class notes on labor etc.
    ::: Tending to the last minute to-do's. We got Joey updated on his shots, and got his nails trimmed. He is pretty used to a crying baby at this point (I'll share more about that later). I have majorly organized the baby's closet. Clothes are now separated into sizes and then within the sizes separated into types (onesies, gowns, jumpers, overalls etc). I love an organized closet! All the cloth diapers and diapering accessories etc are organized. Batteries are installed in everything that needed them. And etc etc. We are ready basically.
    ::: Got my van detail cleaned on the inside. We haven't cleaned this van since we got it 2 years ago. We are just dirty car people. But there was prob enough dog hair in there to make another Joey! ha! Griffin deserves a little cleaner, so got that done today.

    That's about all I can think of right now .

    Yeah basically we are just trying to stay busy... Any suggestions?

    - Mrs.Pate via my iPhone