Thursday, May 23, 2013

Brodie's Birth Story

'So, I am killing 2 birds with 1 stone.  In my 6th grade class, the students work all year on their autobiography.  They have different entries that are submitted throughout the year for me to check for content, spelling, grammar, etc.  Then, around April, their final autobiography is due.  Since Brodie is heading into 3rd grade next year, I want to get a head start on giving him information about his birth (in case he has the unfortunate luck of being in my class).  Brodie was due August 5, 2005.  However, because I suffered from gestational diabetes, my doctor really encouraged me to have a c-section a couple of days earlier.  I didn't want any part of that.  I was determined to have a vaginal birth, and Brodie wasn't about to have any part of that.  My last doctor's appt. was August 2, which was a very painful one.  I think my doctor had a secretive agenda that day because the probing and prodding that day was VERY painful (I think he was trying to make some manual labor progress without telling me).  After the appt. when Scot and I headed out to the car, I started bleeding.  So, I went back inside and told them, and my doctor's response was nonchalant.  I was scheduled to head to St. Agnes that evening to be induced.  Scot and I planned to have a last fabulous dinner together at Red Lobster before we headed to the hospital.  Well, our plans were shot to hell when we received a call from St. Agnes saying that they had no rooms available. How dare they!!! ;) They said they would call us the next day when they had a bed ready.  At around 11:30 pm, I got up to use the restroom (which I did often, as every pregnant mother has experienced), and as I "hopped" back into bed, a large amount of blood came out.  I started to panic because of my previous miscarriage.  As I got in the shower, Scot called my doctor, and he sent me to the hospital.  We arrived at St. Agnes a little after midnight.  I was given the wonderful IV and enema and was hooked up to all the machines.  About 7:00 that morning my doctor entered my room and poked and prodded me.  He said he was willing to do the c-section on his lunch hour, but I was still stubborn and wanted that vaginal birth. So he gave me the infamous pitocin and I waited and waited and waited.  I S. L. O. W. L. Y. started to feel contractions. About 11:00 am, I decided to get some pain meds, which were really not needed.  Scot left the hospital to make a Starbucks run for a white chocolate mocha for himself.  I didn't have any caffeine during my pregnancy, so I wanted a sip of his coffee.  You will never guess what happened!! Brodie's heart rate shot up within minutes of me taking a sip (I really only drank about a tablespoon sip) and it stayed elevated for about 10 minutes.  It was the craziest thing ever!!!! After that, we waited and waited some more.  My doctor visited me around 5:00, and recommended the c-section again.  At that point, I was sick of waiting, so I agreed.  He said he would be back in a couple of hours.  I was prepped... I won't go into the details of that.  I was wheeled to the surgery room and had to sit on a bed that seemed to be about half my width for my spinal.  Then I had to lie down and put my arms out to the side and was strapped down.  I felt like I was going to get a lethal injection for the death penalty.  I was completely prepped, my doctor and Brodie's pediatrician was there, now we were just waiting for Brodie's dad to be present.  Well, little did I know at the time that he had to be physically forced down the hallway because he was just strolling down to the room.  The nurse had to physically push him down the hallway because he was too slow getting to the room.  I have to laugh at that now because Scot is so damn slow, and unfortunately Brodie is just as slow!! ;) Anyway, once Scot got there and hid behind the curtain, the doctors proceeded to take Brodie out of me.  He apparently wasn't ready to be born because he hadn't even dropped into position. (I firmly believe that Brodie would not have lived if I had been pregnant back in the 1800's when stillbirths were common).  Thank God for technology.  The doctors had to perform what seemed like CPR just to push Brodie into position to be yanked from my body.  Finally, Brodie was out... His pediatrician showed him to Scot and me before taking him to perform all the necessary tests.  Brodie face was extremely swollen, and my first thought was, " Oh my God, I have an ugly baby." I know that sounds mean, but he was over cooked from what I was told.  When I was getting sewed up, the spinal medication caused me to uncontrollably shake and shiver.  I was absolutely freezing and was shaking horribly.  I thought it was because I was nervous about my baby being healthy, but I was told that my reaction is common with that particular medication.  Scot had gone with Dr. Jones (Brodie's pediatrician) to assist with the procedures being performed on my sweet little innocent baby.  He weighed 7lbs. 15 oz.  The doctors joked that he would have weighed 8lbs. even if he wouldn't have "peed" when he was taken out of me.  Scot recently told me that he actually saw that happen, so Brodie's pee actually went high enough for Scot to see it over the curtain.   Anyway, I was transferred to the recovery room where I continued to shake severely.  I was reunited with my baby, and he was starving.  He immediately was searching food, which I needed help with since I was still shaking so badly.  I will continue with the hospital stay on another post.  Of course, Brodie is not going to use all of the TMI info. in his autobiography, but I wanted to get all of this down before I forgot it.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Cut the Cord, Mom!

Recently my sister-in-law had a baby boy. Scot decided this was a perfect opportunity to get rid of some of the baby clothes that we had been harboring. Scot brought in the four totes of clothes, bedding, etc. and I started to go through each one. My goal was to pick out the items that didn't have special meaning or were hand-me-downs. The first one I came to had Brodie's infant clothes. I saw onesies that I can only vaguely remember him wearing, and I started to get rather sad. There were blankets and onesies and socks that that had special meaning to me. I'm sure some of you think I'm crazy for having a special place in my heart for my child's old socks, but all of the happy memories of having an infant came flooding back. Don't get me wrong, I love the age that Brodie is at now. But to know that he will be my one and only makes me somewhat sad. Let me repeat something... I DO NOT WANT ANOTHER CHILD!!!! I just wish I could go back in time for a few hours and play and cuddle with my baby... Just once. At this point, Scot kept bringing in the totes and kept smiling at me without a clue as to how heartbroken I was. About halfway through the first tote, I start tearing up (as I am now) and realize that I MUST get through this. As I look over each piece of clothing, it gets harder and harder to contain my emotions. By this point, Scot notices that I'm crying and tells me that I don't have to get rid of anything if I don't want to. How sweet!!! Little does he know that I am sad because I am reminiscing about the last 7 1/2 years. There's really no point in keeping clothes that don't have any special meaning to me, so I forge ahead. Long story short, I was able to condense our treasures of our only child down to 2 totes. My moral to this story is... Brodie will always be my BABY, even when he is 20 years old!!!

This is Brodie and daddy in 2007.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

I Won't, I Won't, I Won't... Raise a Spoiled Brat!

One stereotype of an only child is that he/she is spoiled. In some cases, yes that is true. In my second year of teaching, my class contained mainly only children. The problem with that was many of them had a problem when I told them, "No." That class was a major turning point in my decision to have more than one child. I wish I had known at the time that the child behaves as a result of how the parent interacts with their child. It is very difficult to have only one child and not give them anything they want. After all, he/she is your only child. There is a huge difference between being spoiled and being a spoiled brat. Brodie is spoiled, in that he gets a great deal of what he wants. For birthdays and Christmas, he gets pretty much what he asks for. But, when it comes to being a spoiled brat... that he is not!!! I'm surprised Brodie's first word wasn't "No." He has boundaries with us as parents, and we discipline home when he crosses that line. At the beginning of this school year, Brodie wasn't performing at his level. His French teacher talked to me, and she said that Brodie was messing around in class. Scot and I took away his TV, wii, iPod, and anything electronic. Let me tell you, Brodie made a complete turn-around. We haven't had a problem since. You're probably thinking, "Wow, that's harsh. Just for one little problem." Well, we can handle things in school that Brodie has no control over, but messing around in class I don't tolerate. As a teacher, I can deal with not understanding material, but when students don't even make an attempt to do the work or mess around in class, that is unacceptable. So, when my child messes around in class, I'm not a very happy parent. Scot and I have been able to do the best we can to find the right balance in raising a healthy, yet spoiled child. ;)

Brodie at Shaver Lake 2013

Sunday, March 24, 2013

The Perks of Grandma

As I sit here writing this, I am anxiously awaiting the hour and minute that Brodie goes to Grandma's house to stay the night.  Scot and I are so lucky to have a relative (Scot's mom) who absolutely adores and loves Brodie.  Aside from her teaching job, she is willing to watch Brodie any day, any hour, any time.  Now, I think that if we had more than one child, that would be different.  Brodie is so easy going and a VERY good child.  Yes, he has his moments... But, overall he is a darn good kiddo. In my experience as a teacher, I have seen all too well the different personalities and character traits of siblings.  One sibling is usually the "good" one and one is the "handful" child.  Well, since Brodie is such a good child, I have to assume that our next one would've been a handful.  If we had a girl, she would've had an attitude.  If our hypothetical girl acted like me when I was in junior high and high school, let's just say, one of us would not be alive to see the future.  I am so grateful that Grandma is so willing to take in Brodie on a spur of the moment decision.  It's very easy to pawn off one child as opposed to two or three.  I've noticed that in my classes as well.  When I have had 7 great easy going students, teachers are more than willing to keep an eye on them for an emergency doctor's appt. or something else as opposed to 10 unruly students. It's like the students have the plague and it's impossible to get rid of them for a few minutes. But, all I all... I am thankful that Brodie is such a good child so it can be easy to get Grandma to watch him for an afternoon. And on that note.. It's time for Brodie to go visit Grandma!!!

Brodie and Grandma camping!!!

Monday, March 18, 2013

Homework and Helicopter Parents

One of the hardest things as a parent (aside from keeping my sanity) is knowing when to keep my nose out of Brodie's homework.  I am a it is VERY difficult to sit back and watch him do things as his own individual person.  I am also a person who likes to complete tasks quickly.  Scot & Brodie are two of the slowest people I know.  They DON'T know how to hurry.  Watching Brodie do homework can be one of the most nerve-wracking things I do all day...and really, I don't sit there and physically watch him.  It's more of a I can feel that he's not doing his homework.  That drives me crazy!  I could not imagine having to keep track of two or three children's homework.  As a teacher, I see all kinds of parents.  I have even had the parent of a 6th grader write his name on his homework for him.  I was determined not to be a helicopter mom.  I believe in keeping close tabs on your child(ren), but hovering over them and not allowing them to make mistakes is detrimental to their growth & development.  Yes, it is very difficult to sit back while you know your child is going to make a mistake, but that is what learning is for.  Brodie started doing book reports last year in 1st grade.  I had to help him through each one, but he wrote each and every last word.  This year he has already completed 3 book reports and by the end of the written portion, I want to pull out my hair.  But, I do not tell him what to write; I help him with the structure of the sentences.  I really and truly have no idea how parents of more than one child can give that much attention to each of their children.  Well, some parents don't.  They are either lazy or are too busy, and in that case, stop having babies!!!!

Monday, March 11, 2013

How Our Only Came to be: A Background

My husband Scot and I have one son named Brodie.  He is our pride and joy; our ONE and ONLY pride and joy.  Here is a bit of history of how our only child came to be.  Brodie was yanked into this world at 8:52 pm on August 3, 2005.  When I say yanked, I mean 2 doctors practically did CPR on my upper abdomen to pull him out forcefully via c-section.  Fast forward a week through the hell of recovering from the surgery, and I began suffering from severe postpartum depression(I was put on medication for a few months).  My pregnancy and Brodie's first year were HELL, to put it mildly.  Before having Brodie, I wanted four children... in the first year after Brodie, that number dwindled to 2.  I wanted at least 2 children so Brodie would have a "playmate."  Well, in February of 2007, I became pregnant again.  Much to my dismay (at the time), that one ended as my 1st pregnancy had... as a miscarriage.  I was devastated.   I couldn't figure out why this was happening to me.  But, after the D & C, I had the attitude of everything happens for a reason.  At the time, I just couldn't figure out the reason.  I played around with the notion that maybe having the miscarriage was for the best and maybe we were only meant to have one child.  Have I mentioned that my husband and I have NO patience and slight anger problems?  One example of this is... when we were driving home from the hospital, Brodie was screaming and ScReAmInG.  Scot didn't tell me until some time later that that was the moment when HE decided he only wanted one child.  I sometimes feel bad that Brodie only has us to play with at home.  One day, recently, I asked him, "Would you want a brother or sister?"  He told me that he would.  My response was, "Well, you would have to share your toys with him/her and we wouldn't be able to go on as many trips, like to Disneyland.  So, would you want a brother or sister?"  His response was an immediate, "NO!"  Until next time!!!
Brodie (now 7 years old) on his 1st hike to the Vernal Falls Footbridge in Yosemite