Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Contractions Contractions Contractions...

I am so beyond grateful to my Savior for allowing sweet baby Jude to be in the womb this long, and preterm labor no longer being a threat! What an answer to prayers!! I am not the least surprised because I know that I serve a BIG GOD!!!! :)

The last couple days I have been having consistent painful contractions about 2-3 minutes apart. I took two trips to the hospital. One on Monday and one on Tuesday. I was extremely upset on Monday because my doctor who told me that she wanted to get me to 36 weeks, and once there she would take me off of all medications and bedrest. She told me at 36 weeks she would not try and stop labor. When I went to hospital I was contracting hard and 2 min apart. So she tells the nurse to give me a shot of terbutaline to stop the contractions. I was quite confused and upset that she wanted to stop it after telling me she wouldn't. I refused the shot and so I was sent home, and the hospital had me sign a paper saying that if there are any risks to me or my baby, or I deliver at home it is my own fault because I chose not to be treated. Apparently, choosing to not receive the shot meant I was refusing treatment.

I refused the shot because terbutaline has negative effects on both me and Jude. Also, I am so exhausted from being in preterm labor for 5 months and I no longer want to fight my body especially because we are at a safe gestational age. I am almost 37 weeks - FULL TERM YAHOOOOOO!!!!! After coming home from hospital I only slept a short amount of time because the contractions kept me awake. So all day yesterday I contracted 2-3 minutes apart, and they progressively became more painful. I called the doctor on call, and she sent me back to the hospital.

This time the nurse decided to give me her unwanted opinion by telling me that I am in fake labor and they weren't real contractions since I had not dilated anymore since yesterday, and I should take the terbutaline to stop them and get rid of pain. I told her my husband and I have decided not to take any more medication so she proceeded to tell me, "well, I guess you will be in pain then." She told me other things like no one will induce me at 36, 37, or 38 weeks, which I DID NOT ask for so I don't know why she was telling me that. She continued to lecture me, but I am not surprised because it is the same nurse who made me feel stupid for coming in for preterm labor a few weeks back. I will say that I was a little confused because I didn't realize "fake contractions" were 2-3 minutes apart and extremely painful?? I did notice that I was effaced more yesterday, but not dilated anymore. I do know that with Josiah I dilated EXTREMELY SLOOOOOOOOOW. So I am hoping this is not the case. The doctors had to break my water dilated to 1 with Josiah because I just wasn't dilating after 20 hours of labor. Once my water broke I was ready to go within a few hours. Since I was induced and had epidural early with Josiah I did not experience much pain so this early labor is a whole new experience for both me and Taylor.

I will be honest. I am EXHAUSTED and the PAIN SUCKS!! I am miserable and tired, and still contracting 2-3 minutes apart so I am hoping I will dilate more in the next few days. Hopefully by August 1. By that time I will be full term! I just don't want to be in pain, miserable, and exhausted for weeks from these contractions. I don't sleep because the contractions keep me awake, especially because I have a lot of back labor. I do not do well with pain, and yet I am having a baby ahahahahhahaha!! I will say I am so thankful and blessed for everyday Jude remains in the womb!! The pain and exhaustion is worth it especially if it means a healthy little boy. The Lord knows Jude's birthday now only if HE would tell me what day that is hahahahahahahahha!!!

I know that delivering this baby is all on GOD's timing and not on mine. He is teaching me patience waiting for the arrival of this sweet boy. I am so ecstatic that I will be able to hold my sweet little baby boy soon!! :) 

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Bittersweet weekend!! :)

This weekend is going to be so bittersweet!!

Tomorrow (Friday) is going to be the last day we will have women from our church serving us by caring for me and Josiah, and this weekend is my LAST weekend of bedrest! I have been so beyond blessed. I will miss having such godly women around everyday, but at the same time I am going to be so happy to be able to be back on my feet caring for Josiah and being able to do things that I have not been able to do for a while. Some of the things such as cleaning I have not been able to do since I was 7 weeks pregnant, and other things such as walking since 30 weeks.

I have been having a lot of contractions and pressure this week so I am hoping that it continues and when I am off of bedrest that Jude comes quickly. I really hope he is here by August 1st, but I know that my GOD has a birthday already set for my little guy and I will be content with whatever day that will be! I love being pregnant and feeling what God is knitting together move inside of me. Even though I do love being pregnant the complications I have endured this entire pregnancy has made this pregnancy really hard to enjoy, and to be honest I am just so tired that I am ready to hold this little boy in my arms and kiss his sweet face. I am tired physically and emotionally from the complications as well as from my body trying to go in to labor for so long. 

I am so beyond grateful that I have made it this far!! I will be 36 weeks on Monday. Seems like just yesterday I was 7 weeks and was not sure if I would miscarry or not. I know that all the credit and glory goes to my  big amazing GOD!!! <3 He truly did answer our prayers and the prayers of all who lifted my family up during this trial. 

This trial was definitely challenging for me and my family, but nonetheless rewarding! I can say rewarding because it tested our faith, truly brought us closer together, and more importantly drew us closer to the Lord. It taught me patience, reliance on HIM, and it humbled me. Satan tried to attack in many different ways, shapes, and forms, but our Savior delivered us from satan's schemes every time. This is one verse that I absolutely love because it reminds me of how amazing the Lord is, how satan is ready pounce and devour, and how our God is BIGGER and more POWERFUL than the devil and has delivered me!! 

1 Peter 5: 6-11
Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of GOD so that at the proper time He may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on Him, because he cares for you. Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world. And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you. To Him be the dominion forever and ever. Amen. 

As much as I can say never wanted to have a hard pregnancy, what I will say is it truly has been a blessing in disguise. I am extremely thankful for what the Lord has taught me during this time. Going through trials it is hard to remind yourself that God is with you and is good even in the midst of the storm, but it is so true. I saw God's goodness, grace, and mercy upon my family in numerous ways. For example, here I am almost 36 weeks and Jude is still in my womb growing!!! My church family stepped up and completely lifted our family up in prayer and served us above and beyond what we could have ever imagined, my husband was able to have the strength to endure having to work full time, care for Josiah full time when he's home, cook, clean, grocery shop, serve me, and the list goes on. 

I am excited that this bittersweet chapter of our lives is coming to an end soon. I am so excited to meet our sweet boy!!! Thank you again to all who have been praying!! :) Please pray for a smooth and safe delivery and that Jude is healthy!! 
                                                                    35 weeks!!!!

Monday, July 9, 2012

good news! :)

I went to my OB today and am so excited to report my cervix has remained unchanged. I was sure by the amount of spotting, mucus plug lost, and hard contractions I have been having that I definitely made cervical change. So I was quite surprised when the doctor said I had not progressed, but it was a good surprise! My only explanation is GOD!!! Thank you Lord for answering mine and Taylor's prayers. Not only our prayers, but the prayers of all those who have been fervently praying for our sweet baby boy!!

Matthew 18: 19-20 "Again I say to you, if two of you agree on earth about anything they ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. For where two or three are gathered in my name there am I among them. "

All I can say is amen!! Thank you LORD! :)
I am also very excited to report that I am 34 weeks today! Woohoo!! Thank you Jesus!! Only 2 more weeks of bedrest and medication! :) I am almost there!

Please continue to pray for our family during this time. Pray for Taylor that the Lord would continue to sustain him and give him the strength he needs to continue to carry the burden of working, caring for Josiah when he is home without help from me, cooking, cleaning, etc. Pray for me as I have become extremely uncomfortable and exhausted. The medication wears off within 2 hours so I contract for 2-2.5 hours and the contractions are usually about 2-3 minutes apart. The contractions have gone from just being uncomfortable to causing the following: pain, nausea, hot flashes, achiness, and overall they make me feel miserable. I am uncomfortable especially because my body is trying to go into labor, but I am taking medication to slow the process. As uncomfortable as I am I know that this pain and misery will be all worth it in the end when I hold my sweet baby boy, Jude! I cannot wait to see what birthdate my good GOD has chosen for Jude! :)

God has been so faithful thus far and I know that He will remain faithful to the end and beyond! <3


                            Photo Copyrighted by April Harnish Photography

On another note:
Please be praying for our sweet son Josiah. He has been extremely sick. He began having severe diarrhea last Thursday, followed by high fever of 104, vomiting, fatigue, fussiness, congestion, cough, lack of appetite, and an ear infection. Well, here we are 5 days later and he is still running a high fever, barely eating, and still has diarrhea (not as severe). His fever seems to be staying around 101-102, but I have been given him tylenol every 4 hours so I am not sure if it would actually go any higher than that. The doctor wanted to see him again today. Praise God his ear infection has cleared already since it was so mild and we caught it early, but the doctor is unclear if he has a viral or something more.

At this point she is thinking viral, but is slightly concerned he is running a high fever for so long. She ordered a chest xray today, which came back clear. His urine sample also came back clear. Thank you Jesus. Although, she did say that if he is still running this high of a fever by Wednesday than she may decide to have him admitted to hospital to do further testing to make sure he does not have any kind of infection, anything that is going undetected, or an infection that is antibiotic resistant. Please pray that it is just viral and that his fever and other symptoms will be gone right now! Pray that he wakes up healed in the morning. Also, pray that Taylor, me, and all those who have served my family recently who were around Josiah do NOT catch this illness.


                                 Photo Copyrighted by April Harnish Photography

Thanks again to all of you who are continuing to cover our family in prayer!! :)

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Regardless of another night in hospital...

So I went to labor and delivery last night. This time, Praise Jesus, I was only there for 3 hours instead of 8! :) I was having contractions about 5 minutes apart, and while I was there they grew closer together. I took my Procardia at 11:30 PM while at the hospital, and they gave me 2 shots of terbutaline. The first shot of the terb. did not slow the contractions enough so they gave me a second dose. 

Thankfully, the contractions did not change my cervix so I remain at the same dilation and effacement! Thank you Jesus. I am super ecstatic about the non change to my cervix and the ability to slow the contractions, but I did find myself a bit frustrated with the nurse. I found myself a little frustrated because she said well, "yes, you are contracting a lot, but they may not be changing your cervix so you may just be one who contracts for 2-3 weeks consistent like this and does not change." She also told that I don't need to come to the hospital every time I am contracting unless they are painful and stronger. This may be true because I very could not progress, but this was frustrating to me because I contract 2-3 minutes apart, and my contractions are sometimes painful but not always.  I do know they do not always have to be painful to cause cervical change so now I have no idea if I should just ignore them or still continue to go to the hospital and have them stopped?   

My doctor is the one who tells me to come in, but it is a little frustrating when the nurse says oh you didn't really need to come in because it didn't make any change. Although, I do not expect much change if I am getting the contractions stopped quickly.  I guess I am just a little confused on when to go in to the hospital and when not to. I fear that if I ignore the contractions regardless of how close together they are with the thought of, "well they don't hurt so they are not doing anything" then I will find myself giving birth at home because I was making change and didn't know. 

Regardless of my slight frustration with some of the medical advice I have been receiving it would be great if Jude stayed in there a few more weeks. At least 2 weeks and 6 days!! I am counting the days because EVERY day counts!    

A sweet friend reminded me of this verse yesterday. 
Psalms 121:1-2 I lift my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come from? My help comes from the LORD, who made heaven and earth. 

My help does come from the Lord!! The Lord alone!! All glory be to Him!!  

I am so blessed and beyond thankful for the grace that my good God has shown us through this challenging pregnancy. It has been amazing and such an encouragement to see my family, church family, and friends cover my family in prayer. 

                            Photo Copyrighted by April Harnish Photography 

These verses reminds me so much of our trial through this pregnancy. 

Romans 5: 1-5 Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God. More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us. 

James 1:2-4 Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. 

These remind me of our situation because I really do feel like my faith is being testing through this time, and I have been able to press through these muddy waters with the strength of the Lord. The Lord is building endurance in me and my hope in Christ has been increased during this trial. I have my moments of weakness, but I know through my weakness His power is made perfect (2 Cor 2:9-10) and my weakness reminds me that I am not sufficient. My sufficiency is through Him! 

I have seen His grace and mercy for my family so much it has truly been incredible. You know I would rather be going through this suffering with the strength, love, grace, mercy, etc of my Savior than to go through this suffering not knowing Him. If it were not for Christ I would completely have fallen apart by now, but He is my rock, my glue! 

So please continue to pray for God's perfect timing for the birth of sweet Jude. Please pray for strength and endurance for Taylor and myself as we battle through this trial. Thank you! 
                                                   Photo Copyrighted by April Harnish Photography 

Monday, July 2, 2012

Hard day today.

Today is an extremely hard day. I woke up this morning and noticed that I am losing my mucous plug. I know it can still be a couple weeks before I have this sweet boy, but when you factor in I am already dilating, effacing, and still contracting often it is scary. I have been cramping, having lower back pain, and contractions off and on. I will be honest as much as the Lord is in control and knows the perfect timing for Jude's arrival I am scared. I am really really scared. I am scared to have a preemie. I am praising Jesus that Jude is 33 weeks gestational age and not any earlier, but I so desperately want him to be at least 35 plus weeks.

I have been really emotional this morning feeling like I am going to burst into tears every 5 minutes. I have had lots of encouragement from family and friends this morning, which has been helpful. I went to the doctor and saw the midwife because my doctor was not in. She checked Jude's heartbeat, which was strong, and told me that being on bedrest and taking procardia every 4 hours is all they can do at this point. She told me if he comes than he will come,and there is not much they can do at this point. She told me she is glad that he is 33 weeks rather than 27 weeks. I know that there is not much more she could say or do, but I was so hoping for something more. I don't even know exactly what I wanted her to say, but I do know I left the doctor office feeling even more dismayed. :(

Through my fear I am meditating on a few scriptures and crying out to my God.

Isaiah 41:10 fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

Deuteronomy 31:8 It is the LORD who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not leave you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed

1 Thessalonians 5: 16-18 Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in ALL circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

Psalms 112:7 He is not afraid of bad news; his heart is firm, trusting in the Lord.

Psalms 56: 4 In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I shall not be afraid. What can flesh do to me?

I am really trying to lay my fear at the feet of Jesus knowing that He is so good, but today it is hard. I am really struggling. I am trying to rejoice in the fact that Jude is 33 weeks, he appears healthy on ultrasounds, and that he has had steroids to boost his lungs. Pushing through my fear today has been one of the most challenging things for me thus far in this pregnancy. Not to add that lately I have been feeling anxious about giving birth since my last delivery was not exactly a pleasant one. So my dear family and friends please be praying for me. Pray for my anxieties and fears to be lifted right now. Please pray that Jude stays in at least another couple weeks. I know that if he is born early the Lord will give us the strength, courage, grace, mercy, and peace to get through it. He has been so faithful thus far and I know it is not going to change.

Copyrighted by April Harnish Photography