cuffed for life

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"Crash Carson"

Seeing as how Carson is over one month now, I figured it was ‘bout time to jot down some details about her birth, no?

As I was approaching my due date, the anxiety was growing as far as when and how labor would start. Would she be early? Late? Would my water break on its own again? Would I be home, at work.. or Target?!Gasp! How embarrassing!  I left each doctor’s appointment a little disappointed over the weeks leading up to April 10th because I wasn’t very dilated or showing signs of labor.

Monday, April 7th, I rushed to get ready and kissed my boys goodbye. They were playing in our bed, hiding under the covers, Brady grinning from ear to ear, screeching “BOO!”, loving the “hide” game with his infectious giggles. Before pulling out of the driveway, I sent a text to my good friend, Kathleen, wishing her a happy birthday and telling her it appeared Carson wouldn’t be sharing her birthday as we’d hoped. It was pouring rain. I was going with the flow of traffic on I-540 when all of a sudden my car was being forced onto the left shoulder and suddenly I had no control. It pushed me further and further and before I knew it I was sideways, staring into the wire median. Once I hit the median, my car begin spinning and finally came to a stop a little ways down the highway, still in the grassy median, but facing oncoming traffic. I was no longer moving, but my mind and heart were racing. Every frightening thought of what just happened and what could have happened played over and over. All I could think about was Brady’s sweet face.

A nice man traveling on the highway pulled over and asked if I was ok. As soon as he noticed my large, pregnant belly his eyes bugged out and he insisted on calling paramedics. I told him I was fine, but just to be safe, I’d agree to get checked out. Aaron finally arrived while I was sitting in the ambulance. I called my OBGYN and they told me to go to Rex for 6 hours of observation.

I’d been having Braxton Hicks contractions for weeks, but I was having so many while they observed me that they decided to keep me for 24 hours just in case it was due to the accident. The next morning, the doctor came in and said she just didn’t feel comfortable sending me home, being 2 days away from my due date, and not 100% sure the placenta wasn’t damaged during the accident. So at 10:30am they began to induce labor.

At 4pm they broke my water and I continued to tell the nurses I didn’t need the epidural yet; that the pain wasn’t bad at all. By 4:30 I was BEGGING for it. Everything happened so fast. At 5pm I told them I felt like I needed to push. I don’t think they believed me since an hour before I was only 5-6 cm, but the doctor checked me and suddlenly there as a little extra pep in her step. The labor cart was wheeled in and 7 minutes later I was pushing. At 5:26pm Carson Brooke was born with a full head of dark hair, weighing 8lbs 2oz and 20.5” long.

Everyone has been happy and healthy ever since, but poor Pearl (my beloved 4Runner) was laid to rest and we were test driving cars 4 days later. Not how I imagined my first week home, but so grateful she and I are ok. And I must say, everyone is right. The second time is SO much easier! And I’ve had no anxiety issues. None! —more on that later.

Aaron keeps calling her “Crash Carson” and told me if I wanted her to come early and wanted a new car I could have just told him — in a less dramatic way. :) I don’t endorse the nickname and am just SO thankful we are ok.

Post delivery to come… hopefully before she turns 1.

12 notes &

There’s so much to say about this day, and the few days leading up to sweet Carson’s birth day. Until I find time to write about everything, I’ll leave you with her birth video.

Brady’s birth is such a blur, heck, my eyes were closed most of the time, and there were no pictures from right after he was born. I was determined not to let that happen again. So before I even found out I was pregnant, I reserved Rachel to photograph the birth of my next born. Not three weeks later I got a positive pregnancy test and Rachel was one of my first texts. Once again, she captured the day and my little family perfectly.

I’m telling you. If you are thinking about having a birth photographer, do.it. Better yet, ask Rachel. She’s amaze.

More pictures on her blog here: www.rachelfarganisphotography.com

Warning: I’m spread eagle in a lot of it. Just sayin.

Filed under birth photography

17 notes &

Well, it’s been one eventful (and slightly dramatic) week but she’s here!!! Carson Brooke arrived tues, April 8 at 5:26pm weighing only 8lbs 2oz. Thank you sweet girl! Things are 100% easier this go round and we are all great. Pictures to come!

Well, it’s been one eventful (and slightly dramatic) week but she’s here!!! Carson Brooke arrived tues, April 8 at 5:26pm weighing only 8lbs 2oz. Thank you sweet girl! Things are 100% easier this go round and we are all great. Pictures to come!

4 notes &

39 Weeks

How Far Along: 39 weeks

Size of Babe: A small watermelon. 

Cravings: So one thing I haven’t mentioned much is how much peanut butter I’ve been eating. Since I’m not a huge fan of hot sandwiches I mainly eat peanut butter and jelly or peanut butter and banana when I have a sandwich. Or on apples. Or anytime on anything. Iloveit.

Sleep: It’s starting to kinda stink. When I first lie down I have shortness of breath. Probably because Carson’s using my organs as her personal Snoogle. I’m most comfortable on my right side so I end up laying in one position for hours. When I wake up feeling as though the Hoover Dam is about to burst I’m a sweaty mess and sore. It’s lovely. But I know I’m going to miss it so I try not to let any of it bother me.

Gender: A baby girl!

Weight Gain: Hello 40 pounds.. I was hoping we wouldn’t meet again but alas, here we are. I’m fine with it. Cuz really, what can I do about it? And no one at my doctor’s office has said a word to me about it so I guess they aren’t bothered. #Imightsmackthemiftheydid

Names: Carson Brooke

Symptoms: I don’t feel like much progress is being made, or that I’m any closer to meeting this nugget. I honestly can’t believe my due date’s a week from today. Nothing feels different. I have Braxton Hicks throughout the day but really that’s it. Hopefully when I see the doc tomorrow I will hear otherwise.

9 notes &

Layin’ it out there.

That face. I could just EAT it! 

Things are going well. I’m in love with my little man. I’m still recovering from the birth (I’ll spare you the details) but it brings anxiety because not only am I caring for this little sweet soul but I have to care for myself too. The help I have is amazing. My moms been here a week and Aaron’s moms coming next week so I’m in good hands but my anxiety levels been out the roof. I cry just thinking about Aaron going back to work and my mom leaving. It is the worst it’s been in years but I knew it was probably coming. 

I have to say.. My husbands been a saint. I can’t imagine ever getting through this without him. It makes me very attached and I hate him out of my site. Hopefully that’ll get better. Anyway just a small update but hopefully I’ll feel rested enough soon to blog more often. Have a good weekend!

I remember when I wrote this post, days after Brady was born. I was sitting it the bath tub, orders from Nurse Mama and Dr. Best Friend, in efforts to heal the train wreck down south, crying and posting from my phone. I can’t put into words the emotions going through my head. Overwhelmed. Exhausted. Frustrated. Terrified. I know it was hormonal. I know it was my anxiety going haywire with the exhaustion and hormonal trip I was already on. I expected it, some. But I had no idea just how intense it would be. 

I wanted to feel normal, myself, elated over this miracle that I was just blessed with. I wanted to be excited about everything around me and surviving off the adrenaline rush from just having a beautiful baby boy. But I wasn’t. I wanted to sleep. I wanted my nipples to stop hurting. I wanted everything to be healed. I wanted to be in a routine. 

I can’t lie. I’m nervous about going through it again. I HATED those feelings. It was a struggle to eat - my stomach was constantly in knots. It was a struggle to make it through a dinner without crying - and I couldn’t tell you why. I didn’t want Aaron to go anywhere - he was my security blanket to the max. More like a security snuggie that I had to have wrapped completely around me and double knotted so it didn’t go anywhere. 

Of course I was happy and in love with Brady but the mind can be a cruel, cruel beast. And sometimes I let it win. I gave into the anxiety and those first 2 weeks were not ones I want to relive emotionally. I don’t think it was PPD because after those first few weeks I was so much better. I honestly think it was exhaustion and anxiety. Why does it affect some people and not others? I hear it’s better the second time around and I hope that’s the case.

I am determined to be as positive as possible this time. To not let the anxiety take over or win. I’ve done this before and know what I’m doing, right? I want to enjoy each moment and it not be a blur. I want to feel like myself and have confidence.

I have Brady to focus on too, which is a wonderful distraction from the feelings of being overwhelmed and scared. I can look at him and see that 1) I lived through it and 2) I did something right because he’s an incredible little person. I can do this. Anxiety, I will sucker punch you in the face if I have to. You will not shadow my joy.

But I might need your help. And I’m ok admitting that. 

Big girl panties.. check!

Positive attitude.. check!

Confidence.. check!

Filed under post birth anxiety

11 notes &

Carson’s Nursery

When envisioning what I wanted for baby girl’s nursery, I knew it’d involve teal, coral and metallic gold. As with Brady’s nursery, I wanted to avoid too specific of a theme because I am always afraid those become over-the-top quickly. You tell one person that the crib sheet has a small elephant pattern and next thing you know all outfits, stuffed animals and picture frames you receive are covered in elephants. 

Brady’s room remains “rustic” and almost cabinish which is great because it’s grown so well with him. We’ve changed nothing in over 2 years and probably won’t until he starts having an opinion about it. I wanted the same for Carson and I believe we’ve accomplished it.

This is an awfully lit, panoramic view from the doorway. This room is oddly shaped and was tricky to decorate because it’s smaller in size, with a small room off of it. It’ll be adorable for her to have a room on the side for her doll house and play area, but from a decorating point of view it was a tricky little thing. Both rooms were the gray color, but I wanted to set the offset room apart somehow. Hellloooo stripes!

We got the dresser from my fave go-to antique store, Revival Antiques in Raleigh. I’ve raved about this store before so I’ll spare you, but we found this dresser in their showroom which was a major jackpot. One less project for the hubs. 

The initials came from Etsy, unfinished and I just painted them coral to match the birds in the mobile. I made the mobile which was so super easy. I picked up a birdcage on clearance from Garden Ridge and spray painted it gold. I picked up those small, wooden birds for $.50 each at Michael’s and painted them. Aaron drilled holes in them, we strung’em up and ta-da! Done.

We already had the lamp but it was silver. Spray paint is awesome.

I spotted this gorgeous thing on Target.com months and months ago, way before I knew I was having a girl. I knew this was the one and I’d plan colors and decor around it depending on what we were having. I gotta say, I was so excited it was a girl and that this beaut would be surrounded by coral and gold. Luckily, Target had bedding (that wasn’t flowers or animals) that matched and I really really wanted an ikat pattern. Way to deliver Target. You never disappoint. 

The sign! We acquired barn wood from our good friends, Jason and Christine, a while ago because I had planned on doing a sign for our living room and they had a bunch lying around. But then I spotted this quote on Pinterest and couldn’t get it out of my head. I needed more dimension on the walls so why not plop the quote on some boards?! Since her room isn’t so much rustic, I needed to somehow tweak the old wood look. I wasn’t sure how it’d look painted or if I’d like the gold on cream, but we got lucky. It turned out great and we love it. Aaron gets ALL of the handyman credit.

We had this bookshelf (old Craigslist find) but it was unfinished and crammed away in a corner. I knew all it needed was some paint and pizzazz and it’d function like a the true little bookcase it is. The princesses are from my childhood (I was so uh-bsessed with the Disney store) and the headbands were made at one of my bridal showers. The mirror was already hanging in that spot when the room served as the guest room so all I had to do was spray paint it. I realize it should probably be higher, but asking the hubs to put another hole in the wall is like asking him to remove a limb. No lie. 

Rug - Overstock. Side table - Home Goods. Lamp - Target. Pillow - Zazzle.com

Glider - Yall. Let’s discuss the glider, shall we? We couldn’t avoid buying another one since we still use Brady’s. But I mean goshdarnit I didn’t want to spend another $500 on one. So I admit it. I bought this glider from Walmart. There I said it. It was cute, it’s comfy, and it’ll do the job. Oh, and it was $300 shipped. I gotta say, I’ve never looked back. 

I wanted roman shades but could NOT find any with a fun pattern that again, weren’t $300 a piece. So I ordered blackout roman shades off JCPenny online, purchased 2 curtain panels that matched the crib sheet from Target, and had those puppies covered. 

That sweet little chandelier was also a Craigslist find. And it wasn’t so sweet when I found it. Old. Brass. Begging for some paint. I think we put a whole 25 buckaroos into it. 

I hope yall like it! I wasn’t too far off from the original mood board.

Now she just has to get here!

Filed under baby girl nursery

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There she is!! 

Can we TALK about those cheeks?! And she got the lips!! This made me even MORE excited to meet her. She looked beautiful and perfect. 

She measured 7lbs 14oz but the ultrasound tech said she was on the larger side of that and would probably estimate she’s pushing 8lbs. Carson, you DO realize you have about 2 weeks left in there right? As in have some mercy on your mama and please don’t grow much more. 

Dr. Deibel said “25% of babies are larger than she is at this point.” Which made me feel better for about a second, until I realized his clever choice of words, rather than saying “uh your chunky princess is in the 75th percentile.” I see what you did there, Doc. 

She said if I go to my due date there’s a good chance she could be 9lbs or larger. Well shucks. But I can do this. I lived through it before, right? 

And not much progress down therr. Only 1/2cm dilated and about 40% effaced. I go back and forth on how ready I really am. Of course I’m ready to meet her and love on her and see Brady with her, but I’m also going to soak up the present as much as I can, knowing how much is about to change. 

Hurry up Carson! But not too fast…

There she is!!

Can we TALK about those cheeks?! And she got the lips!! This made me even MORE excited to meet her. She looked beautiful and perfect.

She measured 7lbs 14oz but the ultrasound tech said she was on the larger side of that and would probably estimate she’s pushing 8lbs. Carson, you DO realize you have about 2 weeks left in there right? As in have some mercy on your mama and please don’t grow much more.

Dr. Deibel said “25% of babies are larger than she is at this point.” Which made me feel better for about a second, until I realized his clever choice of words, rather than saying “uh your chunky princess is in the 75th percentile.” I see what you did there, Doc.

She said if I go to my due date there’s a good chance she could be 9lbs or larger. Well shucks. But I can do this. I lived through it before, right?

And not much progress down therr. Only 1/2cm dilated and about 40% effaced. I go back and forth on how ready I really am. Of course I’m ready to meet her and love on her and see Brady with her, but I’m also going to soak up the present as much as I can, knowing how much is about to change.

Hurry up Carson! But not too fast…