Coco Loco

Colleen, Colleen….you have no baby book and hardly any blog posts, but I will try to make up for it!  It’s so incredibly cliché but having 2 kids AND working full-time…well, sorry, kiddo. 😦

So.  Where do I begin with our little Coco?

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When Colleen first came into our lives almost 2 years ago, it was too long after her arrival that it was hard to imagine our family without her.  Now she has grown into a spunky, curious, active, ADORABLE (I mean…I know I’m biased, but MAN she is cute!) little toddler.

Some funny (and not so funny) things Colleen is doing currently:

She’s been taking off her clothes for quite some time now, and this has become a problem especially at bedtime. We’ve probably gone in to find her naked in the morning maybe 10 times or so?  Thankfully she hasn’t resorted to what her father did at this age – smearing her dirty diaper all over the wall….(Needless to say, we’ve been putting her jammies on backwards and cutting off the “feet” on her footie pajamas).

When you ask her, “where is __?” sometimes she’ll do the raised hands and shrugged shoulders. It’s just the CUTEST thing you ever saw.

While she’s still not saying many words, she LOVES to jabber quietly to herself. I love when she plays with her toys and “talks” or hums.  Makes me laugh!

She might be incredibly busy, but this girl sure loves to “speed snuggle”! She’ll come up a give you a huge bear hug and it’s enough to brighten anyone’s day.

She’s had quite a few haircuts already (maybe 4 or 5?). It’s so hard to keep out of her face (and with cold/runny nose season? Ughhhhh….), but I love her hair so much.

She loves to “dance”, or really just walk/run around in circles.

While she’s getting a bit pickier with food (I know it’s this age), overall she is still a GREAT eater!

Coco, we love you to pieces.  You might always be looking for ways to destroy our house, but you sure do love life (and THAT is contagious)!

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Kate-isms

Kate and Colleen have begun the struggle of sharing toys…oh, what fun. 🙂 The other day, Kate was saying (yelling?) to Colleen: “You can’t play with this! It’s mine!” I looked at Kate and gave her the look, and she repeated the same phrase in the same tone. I looked at her sternly and said, “Kate! You CANNOT speak to your sister that way. Be NICE.” She promptly looked at me, smiled, tilted her head, and said to Colleen in a “southern nice” voice, “You can’t play with this. It’s mine.”

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Our friend, Steve, has been staying with us for a bit as he completes his cross country road trip (so jealous!). Kate’s formed quite an attachment to him, and he’s been so good to do puzzles, color, and play with her.  The other night we were leaving our house to head to my parents’ house, and Kate asked, “Where are Steve and Dacks?” I told her they were staying at our house but coming to Grandma and Grandpa’s soon.  She immediately frowned, looked out the window, and said, “Oh. I love them.”

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Kate finally has gotten the hang of Facetiming, thankfully. Well, for the most part. 😉 She loves to Facetime with Grammy, Gramps, and Aunt Katie. The other day she was Facetiming with Grammy and proceeded to put the phone on a little box lid (facing up). She then had a crazy Dance Party with Grammy, randomly popping her head back over by the phone. It was the funniest thing!

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Yesterday we headed to the Doctor for Colleen’s 1 year checkup, and I had been telling Kate the past few days that we need to give extra love to Colleen when she gets her shots. When I laid Colleen down on the table to hold her arms down, Kate immediately scrambled and pulled up the stepping stool. She climbed up and grabbed her sister’s hand, then nuzzled her face down by Colleen’s. It was one of the sweetest moments as a parent, to see her truly comfort her sister.

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Lately Kate has just been so sweet. At times so very ornery, but then she’ll turn around and say the sweetest thing to make up for it. I’m easily reminded why I love this age (even with its trials and tribulations) in these moments. She’ll randomly say to me, “You’re my friend, mommy.” It makes me want to cry!

Oh, how I love this little girl.

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Colleen Erin: One Year!

As cliché as it sounds, I really cannot believe Colleen is already 1!  It goes by SO much faster the second time around…it’s unbelievable.

Weight & Height: Colleen weighs 19 lbs. 3 oz. (41%) and is 29″ in tall (43% – same as her sister at this age!). Her head measures 46 cm (79%).

Eating:  This girl LOVES to eat!  She also loves cow’s milk which we started introducing just before her birthday.  I’ve only found a few foods she doesn’t like – bacon being one of them.  (Neither of our kids like bacon….whatttt?!)  In fact, she isn’t a huge meat eater at all, but she’ll usually eat chicken, ham, and turkey.  She also isn’t super keen about foods with a lot of spices, which is hard because…that’s mostly what we eat. 🙂  She’s drinking about 16 oz. of milk each day, as well.

Sleeping (naps):  Two naps a day, each anywhere from 1-2 hours long.

Sleeping (at night):  She was going to bed between 7:30 and 8 p.m., but here in the last month or so it’s moved up to 7:15/7:30 p.m.  After a few attempts at sleep training and some regressions with teething, she FINALLY started sleeping through the night around 10 months!  Praise the LORD.  She’ll usually wake on her own between 6 and 6:30 a.m., but occasionally I have to wake her up in the mornings at 6:30 or so.

Clothing:  Mostly 12 month size, Size 3 diapers.

New this month:  Saying “mama”…a lot!  And I’m loving it.  She started saying it maybe around 10 months old or so.  She’ll also say “ba” and “da”.  She was waving a month or two ago, but now you have to work for it. 😉  Still crawling (LIGHTENING fast!) and most recently has stood up on her own without holding onto anything.  I’m so surprised we don’t have a walker yet, but it’s also…kind of nice.  We’ll need to get her over to the convertible car seat soon (which means…buying her big sister the next one!), because her little feet are almost dangling over the edges.

Nicknames:  Co-lene, Coco

Colleen likes:

-Her blankie…just like her sister!  They sleep with them the same way–with their faces nuzzled right into them.  So sweet.

-Music–she LOVES to dance, and even if you sing a measure or two, she’ll likely start bouncing along right away.  It’s just the cutest thing!

-Food/bottles.  All the time, any time!

-Mommy.  I’m not gonna lie…I love when I pick her up at Michelle’s and she speed crawls over to me!

-But no one can compete with her favorite person in the world–KATE.  She just giggles and laughs and adores her big sister.

Colleen dislikes:  

-Sitting in her high chair too long…which is often difficult to avoid, because it’ll often take her 30-45 minutes to finish a meal!  She’ll let you know when she’s done, that’s for sure.

-Her teeth have been bothering her, but she’s usually good to go after some ibuprofen/tylenol.

-Getting into her car seat.  THANKFULLY she’s usually okay once we get going, but we definitely have the back arch going on while trying to get her in.

 

Oh, Colleen….you have brought such immense joy to all of us.  It’s truly hard to imagine our lives without you!  You are such a curious, busy, easygoing, happy, FUN little girl.  I cannot wait to see what the next year brings!  We love you more than you’ll ever know.

Things I’ve Learned as a Mom

With some new friends and family members (!) in my life having babies, it’s really gotten me to think about the things I wish I would have known going into parenthood.

  1. Don’t compare your child to someone else’s.  This is probably one of the hardest things about parenthood for me, and something I’m continually having to work on.  I have a friend whose daughter is Kate’s age, and I remember comparing every.single.developmental milestone as they hit.  Kate isn’t talking yet…what is wrong?  Kate doesn’t know her numbers….holy shit, she’s never going to graduate high school!  Seriously…it’s ridiculous.  Kate was a late talker, and now she’s talking up a storm.  It took her a full month to really walk full-time after her first steps, and soon after she was running (away-ha).  Every child develops at a different pace, and if you compare them to everyone else….well, you will go crazy!  So just don’t do it.
  2. Find a group of mom friends-ones with babies about the same age, if possible.  Three of my girlfriends had their first babies within a year of me, and I can’t tell you how helpful it was to text and meet and “bounce” things off of them.  Any mom friends are going to be incredibly important, but I found it so helpful to have all of our babies around the same stages.  Everything that we’re going through is fresh in our minds, and we share big tips or ideas or frustrations all around!  Also…play dates!
  3. If you delivery vaginally, prepare to not feel “normal”…for awhile. Especially if you have big babies. Or babies with big heads. (Or both).  I knew it would take awhile to recover after delivery, of course, but I wasn’t quite prepared to be 6 weeks out after delivering Kate and still uncomfortable.  It wouldn’t say I was still in pain at that point, but at my 6 week check up, I was incredibly uncomfortable being examined.  Thankfully, over the next few weeks, I started to feel more like myself again.  And with Colleen, I felt completely normal after only 2 or 3 weeks!
  4. Get out of the house.  Often!  And not just to Target.  I think this was the hardest part for me during my maternity leave.  With Kate, it was a. during the summer, and b. I “only” had one child-so it was 100 times easier to get out of the door.  With Colleen, it was still cold and rainy that first month…and man alive. It’s obviously MUCH harder to get a toddler and a newborn out the door.  But for me, this was crucial and had a HUGE impact on my mood.  I know some people are content at being in their homes for days, and that is completely okay–but my mood is drastically improved with a little fresh air.  Plus, kids LOVE to be outside.  And it’s good for them! (Also, nothing against Target–sometimes, that’s your only option!  But seek out parks, go for walks, go visit a friend, even just go for a drive).
  5.  You must rely on your partner–and do NOT be afraid to ask for help.  I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I don’t know WHAT I would do without Brian.  Now that I’m “older”, I’ve seen far too many of my friends assume traditional stereotypes in their marriages after kids come along.  You know, the wife does most (if not all) of the cooking, cleaning, and child-rearing.  The husband is only “on call” for those desperate moments when she is going to lose her shit.  I’m sorry, but it’s 2017.  This should NOT be okay, in my opinion. Yes, I understand it’s hard for some moms (including myself…) to “let go” of some of those tasks.  But honestly, it is much better for your marriage in the long run to be a PARTNERSHIP.  When you’re out to eat with a fussy baby, take turns with who walks around with him/her.  Take turns with diaper changes while at home, bath time, bed time, clean up after meals, the list goes on and on.  This is something I’m VERY passionate about, and I often have a hard time keeping my mouth shut when I see friends close to me slowly losing their minds because their partner won’t pitch in to help.  Trust me…it won’t do you (or your marriage) any favors by trying to do it all on your own.
  6. Breastfeeding is HARD. This is something I’d heard but didn’t realize just how difficult until I was in the thick of it. It goes beyond cracked, bleeding nipples–at least there is a fix for that.  It’s painful, it’s different for every person AND every baby, and don’t even get me started on how hard it is to work and breastfeed/pump.  That being said, I am SO thankful I was able to do it for as long as I did with both girls.  Knocking on wood, but neither girl has ever been on an antibiotic in their lives…and I know the benefits of breast milk have had a lot to do with that.  On the flip side, I’ve had friends who’ve been unable to breastfeed after trying, and of COURSE you have to do what is best for YOU and the baby.  It’s not worth weeks of tears and beating yourself up emotionally.  “Fed is BEST” – no matter how you do it.
  7. You will be doing a shit ton of laundry. (<– see what I did there?)  I’m very particular about the girls’ clothes and work hard on alllll of the stains that we come across.  First you have blow outs, then baby food, then table food, then mud/dirt/the marker they someone found hidden in the junk drawer….you get it.  I’ve learned it’s important to work on stains QUICKLY and never, ever, ever put clothes in the dryer unless you’re able to completely wash the stain out–the dryer “sets” the stain, and then it becomes almost impossible to get out.
  8. People will always suggest your baby is teething, tired, hungry, etc. whenever he/she is crying.  Sometimes, they are just fussy!  And fussy is okay and completely normal.  Both our girls experienced “the witching hours” for a few weeks:  between the hours of 4-7, they were more likely to be fussy.  We knew this and were just prepared to walk around with them during those times.  Yes, crying does often indicate one of the above issues, but NOT always.
  9.  There’s no “perfect formula“.  If there was….wouldn’t we all be not need to read lists like this? 😉  But really.  What works for one parent may or may not work for YOU.  Take advice, talk to others…but know that YOU have to make the decision for your child in the end.  It’s scary to someone like me who struggles with even choosing what to wear each day, but it does get easier.
  10. If you aren’t friends with a doctor or nurse….become friends with one. NOW. I cannot tell you how many times I have texted my cousin (a school nurse who previously worked at Riley) and friend (an excellent ER nurse whose dad is a doctor/mom is a nurse). Of course I always called our own doctor with the big concerns/questions, but you’ll have approximately 1,000,008 questions/things that come up where you’ll need advice.  I still continue to bounce things off of these 2, and thankfully they are ever so happy to help!

Transition to Two

All during my pregnancy with Colleen, my number one concern (other than the baby’s health) was–how on earth can I love another child as much as I love Kate?  Well, funny how what EVERYONE says is true–as soon as you see that baby, you forget that was ever even a concern.  I can honestly say my heart grew in that moment I met Colleen, and I absolutely love both of my girls with all of my heart and soul.

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One thing I didn’t really think so much about was how the transition to two would go.  I mean…yes.  I knew it was going to be difficult.  I knew we’d be drowning in diapers for several months.  I knew the house wouldn’t be as clean and our laundry would seem to double overnight.  But I really, REALLY couldn’t have prepared myself for how hard it was going to be.

Whether it was Kate going through the terrible two’s early, or our difficulty breastfeeding, or Kate just being bored AF sitting at home rather than playing with her friends everyday–those first few months were HARD.  I knew this maternity leave would be drastically different, and it absolutely was.  It wasn’t until the end of my leave that I felt like I was fiiiinally kind of pulling things together.

Honestly, I think a lot of it came from our breastfeeding issues with Colleen.  I could write a whole post just about that (and just might), but basically, she gained weight evvvver so slowly those first few months.  It took her 3 weeks to get back to her birth weight when they like to see it at 2 weeks, and when we met with a lactation consultant, she only was getting a couple ounces at our feeding.  I gave her a few ounces of formula each day, but the rest I was able to supplement with pumped milk.  (Usually about 10-12 ounces extra of pumped milk and 3-4 ounces of formula).  At her 4 month appointment we FINALLY got the okay to stop supplementing unless she seemed hungry in the evenings, so that has made the world of a difference!  Especially after going back to work–the last thing I wanted to do in the evenings and weekend was to spend MORE time pumping.

Yesterday I took the day off of work unexpectedly as our sitter had to close, and let me just tell you.  It was a VAST difference in staying home with them now, at these ages.  We had the best day–we played inside, went for a walk, went to the store (where the girls were ANGELS), went to the park, I was able to make a nice lunch, they both took good naps…I tell you what.  I just couldn’t believe how much easier it was at this age…even though it’s only been a few months!

I’d LIKE to think that, if we have a third child, the transition won’t be as bad or difficult.  Mainly because a. we’re already used to chaos, and b. the oldest will help to play with/distract/occupy the middle child.  But…who knows. Only time will tell that. 😉

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Kate: Two Years Old

Our fun, lovable, sweet, sassy, hilarious, life-loving little girl is now TWO years old!

We have officially entered toddler hood over here, and I would describe it similarly to how Brian describes our dog:  the most fun (dog) he’s ever had, but also the most challenging.  Two is really SUCH a fun age, but it’s definitely the most challenging that I’ve encountered so far.  Give me a crying newborn that can be soothed, or a bratty eight year old that can be reasoned with, but a TODDLER?!  Hmmm.

Temper tantrums and the stink eye aside, I absolutely LOVE getting to see Kate’s personality emerge.  She is freakin’ hilarious, and obviously she gets this from me.  Also?  This girl is excellent at entertaining herself.  Sure, she gets bored at times (we struggled with this a lot after Colleen was born), but she is really so great at playing on her own and just blabbering on and on to herself about one thing or another.

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What does she like to do?  Well, for starters, she still loves to read books…and I’m hoping this lasts.  She has a horrible habit of trying to EAT the books, however, so we’ve been trying to work on that.  She loves anything “neigh neigh” related, and I’ll admit–I have totally let her watch her fair share of horse videos on YouTube while I’m been nursing Colleen and/or pumping.  She thinks running around the house is hilarrrrious, and most recently has started running around while shouting, “Go fast! Go fast!”  She likes puzzles, coloring (this is a new one), playing with her baby, getting dirty, playing in the water, and going for walks, to name a few.

She ALSO loves her sister, Colleen, which absolutely melts me every time.  I was incredibly concerned at having to split my attention between both girls, but Kate has really taken it far, far better than I thought she would.  Every morning she’ll usually ask, “Where Colleen?” and then we have a race to go find her in our bedroom.  Yes…it’s pretty much the cutest thing ever.

At her doctor appointment, I brought up some concerns regarding her speech.  I’m so used to my incredibly smart nieces who spoke so fluently by 2, that I told the doctor it’s hard to understand her a lot of the time.  She is able to say a LOT of words–I’m too lazy to count–but she doesn’t always pronounce them correctly.  Water is “wah-ee”, Colleen is “Cow-ee”, Gram is “Gam”, etc.  Some of this I know is normal, but I still wanted to see what the doctor had to say.  At first she said she’s probably fine, but as I asked Kate to say “thank you” as we were leaving (which comes out as “ank ew”), the doctor suggested maybe seeing her again in 6 months just to check up on her. 😉  I will say that having her home with me has helped a LOT, I think because the older kids at her sitter’s were probably doing  a lot of talking for her (since she was the youngest at the time).  In the mean time,  I’ll continue to roll my eyes at those moms who brag about their kids speaking complete sentences at, like, 6 weeks old or whatever. 🙂

All in all, I couldn’t love this little girl any more.  Her growth in this last year has been absolutely incredible, and I’m excited to see where this next year takes us!

Kelly, thank you so much for these pics! (Taken on her 2nd Birthday). I will treasure them, always!

Two Year Stats:

Weight: 25 lbs. (28%), Height: 34 1/4 in. (72%), Head: 65%

 

 

 

 

The Arrival of Colleen Erin

If you’d asked me about my pregnancy with Colleen, I would have told you 3 things: it was a very different pregnancy this time around (less sick in the beginning and much more uncomfortable in the end), I was obviously having a boy, and I was DEFINITELY going to go late again/possibly end up needing an induction.

So needless to say, I was in denial for quite awhile when I actually did go into labor on my own, right on my due date!
It worked out perfectly that I had my due date, Friday, March 25, off of work for Good Friday. I fully planned to return to work the following week, but thankfully my temp was there the week prior and was fully capable of taking over my duties.
Kristy suggested going to Conner Prairie, as they have a great indoor section for kids.  So off we went that morning, and we spent maybe 1-1.5 hours there.  Kate was able to run around and play, and we were both exhausted by the time we left!
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40 weeks pregnant #2
Late that afternoon, I texted Brian around 3:30 asking if he was going to be home anytime soon.  I let him know I was having contractions, but really I had been having contractions the last few weeks of pregnancy off and on…so I really didn’t think anything of it.  It was always hard for me to tell in that last month if they were just Braxton Hicks contractions or the real deal; I could mostly tell by my stomach tightening and some *slight* discomfort.  (Now I know…the contractions I was having alll throughout the last trimester with Colleen were NOT BH, but the real deal!)
We heard that our friend, Eva, was going to be stopping through and wanted to stop by and visit, and Brian was going to get home right around the time she was set to arrive.  It was so nice to have her around, as she really entertained Kate and help take care of Montana.  Around 6 or so, Brian suggested I should keep track of my contractions.  I thought I’d humor him and agreed to do it, but inside I thought it was a little silly because “SURELY I wasn’t in labor.”  My contractions were inconsistent (or so I thought), being about 3-5 minutes apart and lasting 20-45 seconds or so.
As the evening went on, they started to seem slightly more uncomfortable. I laid down on the couch and chugged some water (as being dehydrated can often lead to BH contractions), but they still kept coming.  After a few hours of them not letting up, I slowly began to wonder if this was really it?!  Even though I knew what the doctor would say (“labor at home until it gets unbearably uncomfortable”), I decided to call around 6:30, anyway.  I left a message and they were supposed to call me back within 30 minutes.
When it was time to put Kate to bed, I told Brian that I wanted to (we take turns), since it would be the last time I tucked her in as an only child.  I was a HOT MESS.  Crying, couldn’t hold back the tears…so worried about how she would react to the split attention that was ahead of her.  I asked Brian to take our picture so I’d have one last picture with my first baby.  (It’s funny…I was SO worried about Kate during my pregnancy, and looking back, I worried for nothing!  Imagine that)…
in labor with Colleen
Three hours later and still no word from the doctor, so I decided to try and call back.  I left another message and this time she called back fairly soon, around 9:30 p.m.  It was Dr. Cline, the doctor who delivered Ryan and Reid, who is just the sweetest!  She said exactly what I thought: to try and labor at home until it got pretty painful.  Brian and I put on a show  (“House of Cards”–one of my favorites!) to try and shift my focus, but I knew when I couldn’t really pay attention that it was time to shower up.  So at 10:30 I headed upstairs to shower and finish packing–because you know this procrastinator wasn’t done with that, yet. 😉  I texted Michelle that it was almost “go” time, and we’d be headed over soon with Kate!
At 11:30 I texted Michelle that we were headed out the door, and the contractions were getting more intense (and closer together-3 minutes apart).  When we got Kate out of bed, she was so confused, poor little thing.  On our short drive to Michelle’s, she shouted “BUS!” and Brian and I immediately started laughing.  She must’ve thought it was the morning, and we were headed to Michelle’s for the day (she always looks for buses).
We dropped off Kate at Michelle’s (aka…the sweetest person alive–man, am I lucky to have her as a friend!) and I wiped the tears from my eyes as we drove away.  Thankfully (or not thankfully) the contractions were serving as a huge distraction at this point.  I knew when it was not possible to talk through them, we’d made the right choice in heading to the hospital.
We checked in just after midnight and immediately headed up for them to check me.  At this point, it was still so surreal.  One of my fears in both pregnancies was thinking I was ready to have the baby, going to the hospital, and getting turned away because it was false labor.  I didn’t think I’d have to worry about that this time!
The nurses at our hospital are all absolutely incredible, and the one to check me first was no exception.  I was 3 cm and my cervix was totally “thinned out”–a.k.a., it was definitely “go” time!  They got me to the delivery room and Brian and I settled in and waited for the doctor.  When she came in, she told us pretty much what we already knew-just to continue through the contractions and to ask for an epidural when necessary.
They checked me again when we got to the room and I was at 4 cm…movin’ right along!  The next few hours were an absolute BLUR.  (It couldn’t have been more different than my labor with Kate!  With her, we checked into the hospital Sunday evening around 6 p.m., was induced the next morning at 8 a.m., I labored all day the next day, and had Kate at 11:11 p.m.  This time…we only had 7 hours from the time I checked in until baby was here!)  We didn’t even watch a movie like last time, as the contractions were so painful that that was the LAST thing I wanted to do.
My goal was to make it to an 8 or 9 on the pain scale (whatever the hell that is–basically, until I was gagging/wanting to throw up because it hurt so badly) before I got my epidural.  One regret with my labor/delivery with Kate was that I felt pressured by the nurse to get my epidural too soon, because the anesthesiologist was going to be in surgery for a couple of hours.  (Also…pitocin.  Nothing scared me more than pitocin contractions).  This time, I was so proud of myself for riding it out as long as I could.  It was INCREDIBLY painful and definitely the most pain I’ve felt in my entire life.
Around 2 a.m. the contractions were so bad that I was gagging and wanted to vomit, and I knew it was time to ask for my epidural.  Epidurals do make me nervous, of course, but I was in SO much pain I didn’t freakin’ care at that point.  The anesthesiologist was very kind and efficient, and sure enough…a few minutes later I started to feel the best relief in my life.  I’ll never forget that “cold” wave coming down your spine.  Ahhh….women who don’t get epidurals during labor, I praise you!
I’m not sure how dilated I was at that point (I wish I knew, but I would have to guess at least 7 or 8 cm since I was progressing so quickly)…because the next time they checked me at 5:30 a.m., I was 10 cm and ready to push–HOLY COW!  I learned from the nurse that there were 4 women who had been in labor at the same time, and of course, all of us were ready to go at the same point.  The nurse asked if I felt the urge to push yet and I said no, that I was okay to wait for a little bit.
They ended up calling in another doctor to help out, and soon enough Dr. Del Rosario popped into my room at around 7:30.  She is so incredibly sweet and bubbly, and while I was at first a bit disappointed to not have Dr. Cline, it worked out so perfectly with Dr. Del Rosario…she had a smile and was laughing the whole time–who could ask for a better doctor to deliver your baby?!
When it was “go” time, they had me do the practice pushes.  I remembered this with Kate, and I was more than determined to get the ball rolling.  At my first practice push they said, okay–I actually made some progress and this baby was coming sooner than we thought!  The nurse and doctor both commented on the head of hair that they could already see.  I was already getting giddy just thinking about meeting the new addition to our family!  They asked if I wanted to use a mirror–I had used one with Kate, but they whisked it away towards the end.  I was scared of seeing myself tear and mentioned this to the doctor. She said, “no way! You’re not going to tear-at least I don’t think so!”  I ended up using the mirror while I pushed and am SO GLAD that I did.  Coolest thing ever!
My contractions actually slowed down and were a good 4-5 minutes apart at this point.  2 pushes and 5 minutes later, out popped our new little baby!  When the doctor announced, “It’s a girl!” I honestly couldn’t believe it. (I swore up and down it was a boy this time–not at all because that is what I preferred, but because my pregnancy was different.  Well….needless to say, I’m glad I didn’t place any bets this time!)  My eyes immediately teared up, as obviously I LOVE the experience of having a daughter, and also secretly I did want Kate to have a sister.  It was (and is!) an INCREDIBLE experience that I’m blessed to have had, and now these two have each other for life!  For better, or for worse. 😉
I heard her cry and they whisked her away to make sure she was breathing okay.  (She had a bowel movement in utero, so there was a WHOLE team of people–maybe 4 or 5?–waiting on the sidelines to make sure everything was okay.  A part of me was a little nervous, but I feel like SO many people had experienced this with their babies, as well.  Needless to say, once again, I was SO thankful for an outstanding group of doctors and nurses and the incredible care they were able to provide!)
When they placed her on my belly, tears came to my eyes.  This was our DAUGHTER.  Colleen!  I really couldn’t believe I had another girl.  Having sisters has been one of the biggest blessings in my life, and I immediately envisioned these two having that same special bond.  (Yes, I know…along with all of the fighting and stealing clothes, too).
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Meeting her sister!

 

Typing this out makes me really how incredibly lucky I was to have a wonderful experience.  Colleen, you were loved immediately at first sight–we love you so!