Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Gideon's birth story

"And the Angel of the Lord appeared to him, and said to him, "The Lord is with you, you mighty man of valor.""
Judges 6:12

Well, my baby is one month old today and I'm finally getting around to typing up his birth story...better late than never, right? :)

We found out we were pregnant with baby number 2 last winter, just days before we left my family who we had been visiting for a month and a half.  We were so excited!!  We had been praying for quite a while that our family would be blessed once again and we were thankful!
The pregnancy was a breeze and I loved it once again !  Loved feeling those tiny kicks and squirms.  Loved feeling my belly grow larger and larger.  Loved guessing whether it would be a girl or a boy (we decided to be surprised this time around).  Loved trying to explain to Adelyn that she would soon have a little play mate.  Pregnancy and birth is such an amazing experience and one I'm so blessed to be a part of!!

My mom was given a special anniversary gift from my dad back in August.; she had received tickets to come see me for almost 2 weeks right around when we thought the baby was due!!  I was so excited to have her here and hoped baby would make his/her appearance during her visit.  The days rolled by with no baby but we stayed busy cooking, preparing meals for when the baby would come, walking, and just enjoying each other's company while praying baby would come soon.  I was so blessed to have that time with my momma...it had been a while.   Unfortunately the day arrived for my momma to go home.... with no baby :(.  Of course the next day I started to have signs of labor (pressure, a little bit of show, and some contractions off and on).  I went to bed Friday night, October 14th, pretty sure a little one would be here soon!  Just like I thought I was awakened around 2am Saturday October 15th with pretty consistent contractions (about 7-10 minutes apart) that were painful enough to keep me awake the rest of the night.  I kept in touch with my midwife and she decided to make her way to our house around 9am.  By the time she arrived I was a little disappointed that I hadn't progressed more as nothing had really changed since during the night.  We took our midwives' advice and tried to go about our day as normally as we could.  Dylan was right by my side assisting in whatever way he could, for which I was very grateful.  He's an awesome husband!
We went for a walk, tried to nap, ate some food, and took a shower.  Things finally started to pick up around 4PM.  Still totally bearable but I could tell we were finally moving!  By 7 I was ready for this baby to be here!!  I was having terrible back labor that was super intense, especially as we approached the end (just like with Adelyn...which I've always thought is weird since both of my babies were not posterior.  I thought anterior babies weren't supposed to cause back labor but later I read that it can also be because I have a short torso...next baby I'm definitely looking into that).
 Anyway, I made sure to move as much as possible during labor and tried sitting on the birth stool, hands and knees, and sitting on the floor in a butterfly position.  At the end though I really needed to stand and have someone pressing on my back and hips during contractions (so thankful for Dylan and my midwife and their help in that area!).  Finally around 9pm the midwife offered to check me and said I was 9cm with a slight cervical lip on one side.  She then inserted some evening primrose oil to help soften that lip and hopefully get me to full dilation.  Sure enough at 9:08 I had the urge to push and seconds later my water broke just before the head was born.  Only one or two more pushes and baby was out!!  Yay- I was done!  There is nothing like the relief of finally being done with labor!  Pushing is the easy part for me and I was blessed with no tears and very little swelling afterwards.

I ended up delivering in the bathroom, standing/squatting, and holding on for dear life onto our bathroom sink (Dylan told me later he was a little concerned it might fall off the wall due to how hard I would hold/lean on it during contractions :d).  Its definitely not where I imagined I would deliver but I found that I really needed something sturdy to hold onto as I wanted to circle my hips during contractions and that was the only thing my height safe enough to cling to :).
My dear sister in law caught our precious baby and laid him on the floor where I looked down to discover it was a boy!!  We were thrilled, although we hadn't totally settled on a name.   It didn't take us long to finalize it though.

Gideon Stephen was born at 9:11pm, October 15th.  He weighed in at 8lb1oz and was 21 inches long!  He's been a good boy so far...a couple of fussy nights but generally due to something I've eaten :).  I've recovered almost 100% and we're finally settling in to being a family of 4!  God is good and I truly feel my cup is overflowing!

The Lord gave me the name Gideon a couple months before he was born and I was impressed by the man in Scripture.  He was humble.  He didn't think he could do much but he was willing to follow the Lord's direction even though he was obviously frightened.  I pray that our Gideon will do the same when the Lord calls him to do something perhaps anti-cultural or frightening!
Dylan really liked the man Stephen in Scripture (I do too but I have a lot of Stephen's that I know so I didn't want it as a first name).  Just like him we pray our little man will be bold and willing to stand for Christ no matter the cost!
We would covet your prayers as we raise these little arrows for God's glory!  Parenting is not easy but I'm thankful that the Lord gives wisdom to those who ask!!

God bless,
Hannah :)

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Book Review: A Life That Says Welcome...and an update :)

Well, we spent the month of January and some of February with my family in VA.  We had a wonderful visit and we were even able to bring a little someone special back with us...that's right, I'm expecting baby #2!!!  We're so excited and can't wait to meet this new blessing sometime in early October 2016!  Anyway, I say all that to say that I didn't really have a chance to write out my goals for the year until we got home.  One of my biggest goals for this year is to read a new book every month (or review an old one :d).  This book was the first of many (I hope) in 2016!

A Life That Says Welcome by Karen Ehman is a wonderful reminder on the importance of hospitality, especially as Christians, and includes some practical ways to prepare your home and heart for guests!  Karen starts out by giving you a little bit of background into her own life and journey from clueless cook to welcoming hostess.  Turning to the Scriptures she presents examples of hospitality and the importance of making sure your heart is right first before you open your home to others.  Also she shares "Our families need to come first as the recipients of love, creativity, and handiwork."pg.44.  Its so easy to get into the mode of serving and impressing others that we forget about our own little brood and how to serve and bless them.  What a great reminder!  From there the book proceeds to cover practical ways to stay on top of dirt and clutter, ideas to decorate your home, recipes for big crowds or picky eaters, and how to take hospitality on the road.  All together I was inspired to become more hospitable to the people around me and to be open to however the Lord may want to use me in this way!

I hope you all had a blessed Resurrection Sunday celebrating the victory our Lord had over death, hell and the grave!  All glory to Him!  What a joy to be His child!
Learning to delight in Jesus,
Hannah :)