Monday, March 9, 2015

Life with 2 little boys

Having two little guys under the age of two and a half is not for the faint of heart that is for sure! Liam is doing great and has embraced his role as big brother beautifully, we are really proud of him. But it is not without its challenges. He is definitely testing the boundaries and although he has accepted Grayson and showers him with love and affection, he is not always the most happy with us. Its hard sharing mommy and daddy. Some of the funnier moments from the past 2 weeks include the following:
It has finally warmed up and we have been taking lots of walks. Today Liam fell face first in the mud so when we got home I stripped him down naked to avoid mud all over the house. Just at that moment Grayson started wailing. When I went to tend to him and started nursing him thinking Liam would be fine naked for a few minutes,  Liam who is 90% potty trained started waddling over to me with his hand around his back and cupping his butt. Immediately I realize he has caught a poop coming out and was trying to hold it in!!! Try cleaning that up while nursing. (Sigh)
Liam who is a great sleeper has been waking up at 5:40 am every morning without fail, Grayson on the other hand sleeps in to 7am!
There has been lots of talk about anatomy in our house since we are constantly changing diapers and Liam is very intrigued about what makes someone a boy. So today Liam came up to me and told me underneath his weener is his balls... oh man, boys...
In a very cranky and childish moment in the car on the way to church, I poutingly told Andrew "I don't even want to go to church." Liam says to me from the back seat, "Excuse me mommy, I don't want to go to church either." Parenting fail!
Although I feel like I am literally up to my elbows in poop, I couldn't be happier : )

And now for an obnoxious amount of photos....

Family of Four

I have been thinking of how to post next after the whirlwind of the past 2 weeks and I think I will just go ahead and write one long post. Grayson willing of course.
Well we did it! We had another baby. It is the funniest thing, I just already can't remember what it was like before there was 4 of us. Thats not to say I feel totally comfortable yet with two kids, or that Grayson seems so familiar, but I just can't remember what our routine was even like before it was so full! Full in so many ways, full of laughs, full of tears tears (from both the kids and us), full of endless diaper changes, full of kisses, and just full to the brim busy trying to get used to our new normal. 
I have been trying to decide how I want to write about Grayson's birth. Do I just give the facts? Is it too much to even give the facts on a blog? Who besides my relatives really wants to hear it anyways? But the more I think about it I think it is something I should share with people because it is more a story about God's grace than about me or my baby.
I think that every child's birth is special because at the end of it you get your child!! And isn't that really the only part that matters in the end? Its like a wedding. A wedding is very important but the point isn't the wedding, its the marriage that matters. But I think the birth is more about the parents than the child. Liam's birth will always be beautiful and special because Liam was born... my perfect 9 lb 4 oz, first born, dark haired, little boy. But for me the events surrounding Liam's birth where less than ideal. He was way overdue and I had to be induced and thankfully had a fast but sort of rough pitocin induced labor that involved a lot of throng up and a final somewhat defeated surrender to an epidural (not at all against epidurals over here by the way! I was very glad I had one then). But the whole thing just felt very out of my control. A lot about our life felt very out of control around that time. It wasn't meant to be, it just was. Shortly after Liam's birth our family went through a ton of huge changes (that is a definite understatement but that is not the part of the story I'm wanting to share) all of which have turned out for the better. God grew Andrew and I in ways I never imagined, and probably never would have asked for, but we are a stronger, more in love, deeper, and a securer family for it. 
Now skip ahead to Grayson's birth. I started to get closer to my due date and as the day approached I really started to lose mental ground. Something about drawing near to that day caused all of my hope and trust to slip away. I started to just believe that it would somehow all go haywire. That I would go overdue and that I probably would have to surrender again to a forced labor and that things would probably get all crazy afterwards again. I knew better but I still doubted. I also started to think that because I was doubting that that would surely guarantee that it would all go off course because I didn't believe in something better. Oh man, the mix of anxiety and pregnancy hormones is just not a good cocktail. 
On the day after my due date I went in to my midwife and she could just tell I was done. (By the way the story about my midwife in itself is amazing. I go to a small OB practice in a small town outside of Minneapolis and she just happens to be from Laguna Beach! What are the chances? She is so awesome and totally gets me and was definitely a God send.) The hospital had said they wouldn't be able to get me in until later that week but she pushed to get me in that day because I was already really dilated and having lots of contractions but just not going into active labor. I hadn't been sleeping at all and was just very stressed. We decided to break my water to try a more natural induction. Even at that point I was so negative, I just thought to myself "it probably won't work, here it goes again, labor probably won't start on its own and I will have to go on pitocin. "
We got to the hospital at noon and they broke my water at 1:30. We decided for this birth it would just be Andrew and I and no one else there. We started walking the halls and within an hour and a half I started having consistent contractions. I couldn't believe it, my body was actually do this on its own. They definitely hurt but felt totally manageable. But even then in my mind I told myself "just pace yourself it is going to get so so much worse you probably won't be able to take it". At that point I decided to labor in the tub from then on. Another hour and half went by of somewhat painful but really totally manageable labor in which I was able to stay completely relaxed and composed. I just kept thinking "this can't really be "real" labor". At that point I felt that deep pressure sensation and asked my midwife to check me. She was shocked, I had made it through transition and was ready to push!! I couldn't believe it!!! From that point on I had the most painful 5 minutes of my life in which I may have dropped some F bombs (sorry little baby!), screamed, and thought there was no way I could do it, but in 2 contractions and one push of all my might, Grayson came into the world and into my arms with his daddy by our side crying tears of joy. It was the most amazing surreal moment of my life, I couldn't believe it was really over and he was out and in my arms. 
The point of sharing all this isn't to advocate for natural labor, although in my experience it was really amazing and Im so thankful I got to experience it. The point for me is this: even in our doubt, GOD IS FAITHFUL. Even in all my pessimism and questioning and wavering God is there. This may sound so weird to say but I really felt him there in those moments saying, trust me. And even when I grabbed onto hope but let go 5 minutes later I felt him gently saying again, trust me. There was no anger or disappointment in the urging to trust, He was just there, waiting with an open invitation. And I don't know if this has been some life altering experience that has rid me of anxiety and doubt, surely it hasn't. But it has reminded me that God is the redeemer, and he makes all things new, and he loves us. And when we look to Him, He is always waiting there faithfully saying "come, enter my rest, trust me and I will give you rest." And I truly believe that God does not only want to give us rest and peace but he truly wants to bless us and give us the desires of our heart. God knew how much I wanted to be able to have a beautiful birth experience. And I just want to give God all the glory for what He alone has done. Im so thankful He blessed me with such an amazing experience, and another beautiful, 8 lb 15oz, blonde haired, perfect little boy. He is truly good!
I also just have to say that I am so thankful for my amazing husband who faithful stood by my side and labored along side me, in my doubt, and never stopped encouraging me to hold fast and hope. Im so thankful for my family and this life I have been given.