Thursday, February 25, 2016

childhood // two months of dandelion

We wake. We nurse. We move, snuggle, settle. 
The morning light comes in, your brothers sneak into our room to "check" in on us, and the day starts.

I'm groggy and slow; you're nestled and sweet - per usual. Your big brother opens the window blinds to really wake our hearts and I try to mosey my way out of bed as cat-like as possible to keep you still and sleeping sweetly. Daddy is bustling around getting ready for work and life is starting again, anew.
On good days, I head out to get your brothers started with their day. On slower days, they join us in bed for some snuggles or are encouraged to read books in the room quietly instead of their preferred play of dragons and knights.
Once my sleepy-mama brain starts functioning at better capacity, I herd your big brothers out of our bedroom, down the hallways, and to the living room pushing back window curtains throughout our home. I get to the kitchen and juices and simple breakfasts are served. All is well.
These mornings and days and nights with you have been good. You make mothering three, easy. And believe me when I say, it's not me. I make things hard. Mothering in the morning is not my forte. But you and His Grace, sweet girl, make me feel like I've sort of got a handle on this transition.
Baby girl, you are two months! Time just continues to fly. You continue to grow into the sweetest of sweet hearts and I continue to be in awe of that goodness. So does Daddy. He loves you so. All of you! 

Oh, sweet girl! These boys! How they love and adore beautiful you! They truly do. It's so lovely and inspiring, really!

They check in on you often, ask to hold you, give you night-time kisses and pray for you. They tell you that they are your big brothers and that they love you. They tell you these sweet things often and it's the sweetest. You usually stop stirring when you hear them near. Pretty sure you love them too in your own little new baby way.
I'm still learning about the world of cuteness and bows and cardis, so bear with me little one. I'm trying!
These sleep smiles are the sweetest! and, In this last month you've started smiling when you see our faces. It's so fun!
You've been showered with so many lovely gift from family and friends! It's been amazing and we are all so very grateful! 
You love a good snuggle, especially in mamas, daddy's arms. Let's be honest though, you really just adore being held and are open to sharing your snuggles with all who want to love ya!
Here you are with the man who kept us both alive. He's all kinds of wonderful and I will be sure to tell you the story of how he blessed us. He's a good man, sweetheart, and we are so very grateful for him and all he does.
I love capturing you while you are sleeping. Honestly, you're such a little beauty while asleep or awake or crying, even (your cry is gentle, sweet, and it just amazes me)! A sweet cry? I never knew that even existed.
You are gaining weight well and are quite the healthy little bundle. You are a nursing champ, but I will say that you are the messiest little nursing champ I ever did know.
You aren't always so sure what to do when your big brothers are loving on you.
Your hair! Love! It's some kind of magic in the way it stands and we have yet to figure out your eye color. For the longest time they were this grey-blue color and now they're getting hints of gold/tan. Could you be the first to have your Nonna's hazel eyes? Only time will tell, sweet one.
These last 8 weeks have been wonderful with you in them. You've been practicing lifting your head, you love to grab onto mommy and daddy's clothes while we hold you and it's adorable, you nestle into me while I sing our sleepy songs, and you sigh. Yes, you read that right, you s i g h.

I never knew babies could sigh!? Now that I do, I have to say that your sigh just makes my heart skip a beat with all the love for how adorable you are.
Mama loves you, precious Dandelion, and can't wait to get to know you more! So keep on keeping on, littlest love of ours, and we'll be here all along the way doing our best to share His Love back with you!

Friday, February 19, 2016

childhood // linus turns 3

Joining for some quick-takes: Linus birthday favorites edition!

1. Family, pizza, and red balloons

2. Getting sung to, birthday candles, and Dragon cakes

3. Gifts filled with Dragons, Knights, Books, Horses, and Legos

4. Being the Green Knight and conquering Dragons all the live long day

5. Drawing, coloring, and building Dragons

6. Pinata Dragons that have Sweets Surprises

7. Being silly, lovable, and absolutely wonderful

Happy birthday to our Linus who has a knack for silly, a gift for artistry, and presently, a love of all things imagination, dragons, books, knights, and legos!

Ugga Mugga, little one!

We all love you more than you'll ever know!

Friday, February 12, 2016

mommyhood // a birth story for dandelion - when hearts meet

I'm back to finish this story of love, crazy, and ultimately/most importantly, His Will and Protection!

If you haven't read the first two parts, go here for the first installment, here for the second, and now let's begin the third.

After I read the prayer again, again, and again, things started to pick up. Life started happening at full speed and nurses, anesthesiologists, assistants, et. al. started bustling around us.

One person in. One person out. Poke here. Poke there. Questions about this, questions about that. It all just kept swirling around us.

I tried to keep eye contact with my husband because his presence grounds me in a special way. He's my person. Internally, prayers were being whispered and aspirations were being shouted from the depths of my heart. Externally, I was looking to him. 

The anesthesiologist came in. Unfortunately, Mr. Big Needle was casually chit-chatting with one of the nurses about how he was so tired and had already had a long day and was ready to go home and, and, and...

He was making me nervous! It was already super late! By this time, I want to say it was around 12:30AM or so. Honestly, I was hoping his assistant was going to be the one to come and do the big needle deed because he seemed so much more alert, engaged with me during our interactions, and up-beat! Only, I wasn't so lucky.

Owie! Ow! OW!

Haha. Apparently I say owie now when I'm in pain. Anyways!

Mr. Big Needle: Sorry. Did that hurt? Let's see...tell me which side hurts most?

Right..Ow..right side! shooting pain..down my Leg! Ow! Leg!

Mr. BN: Okay. Let me try and adjust it. Tell me when it stops hurting..

Oww..still hurting..down the leg! Right. still! Leg, back! Ow!

Mr. BN: Okay. Just hang on. 


Mr. BN: How's that?

I'll spare you the rest. He did end up getting me numbed on both sides but as we would come to find out during the cesarean, he over-corrected which meant I was having a bit o' pain on my right side. Not cool, Mr. BN. Not cool.

After I was getting to fully numbed status, our God-send of an OBGYN entered with his bright, cheery, and (Thanks to the caffeine he had in his hand!) energetic self. He was excited and ready to deliver our sweet Dandelion. He was positive and encouraging and reminded us that we were soon going to meet our newest family member.

Off he went to tend to some things while my husband and I had a little time together. Trying my best to hold back tears, we talked and tried to ready ourselves for all that was about to happen.

The nurses came in, and off we went to the operating room. Music was playing, staff were moving, my husband was on his way...

Mother Mary, hold us in your prayers. St. Anne, pray for us. Jesus, I trust in you. Mother Mary, bring my heart to your Son. St. Anne, pray for us. Jesus, I trust in you.

Waiting in the operating room alone with staff is my least favorite part. Husband's aren't allowed to come in till you're all ready and prepped and I just hate that little bit of time that he's not there. So aspiration after aspiration it was till he entered and came to my side.

Mother Mary, hold us in your prayers. St. Anne, pray for us. Jesus, I trust in you. Mother Mary, bring my heart to your Son. St. Anne, pray for us. Jesus, I trust in you.

Finally, my husband was by my side. We looked at each other, me with tears in my eyes (You know the ones. The very same ones I had been trying to hold back since I first saw red.) and him gazing back at me with his masculine strength, confidence, and love that only a husband can share with his wife.

Dr. B: Let's get started, shall we!?

Deep breath.

Mother Mary, hold us in your prayers. St. Anne, pray for us. Jesus, I trust in you. Mother Mary, bring my heart to your Son. St. Anne, pray for us. Jesus, I trust in you.

Chatter was happening. Some tugging here. Some tugging there. Questions were asked by me. Answers were given by whichever staff I directed them to. My husband holding my hand, looking at me, and reassuring me that all was and would be well.

Then came time for Dr. B to bring our little one out from my womb. I had started struggling with pain due to the over-correction of Mr. BN, but thankfully, Mr. Assistant BN was striving for rockstar status throughout the surgery and was really trying to keep me awake (rather than knocking me out fully due to the pain) by keeping the meds flowing as quickly as he could.

Mother Mary, hold us in your prayers. St. Anne, pray for us. Jesus, I trust in you. Mother Mary, bring my heart to your Son. St. Anne, pray for us. Jesus, I trust in you.

Staying awake was something I desperately wanted but was struggling to do even had they not knocked me out medically. It was late. I was exhausted, but I didn't want to come all this way to be knocked out completely if all could be helped! We were moments from meeting our little one so I did my best to bear it because I wanted to see our baby. I wanted to hear his or her cry. I wanted to touch our sweet little one and hold him or her if at all possible. I wanted nearness. I didn't want to miss a thing.

My thoughts were focused and racing all at the same time.

Mother Mary, hold us in your prayers. St. Anne, pray for us. Jesus, I trust in you. Mother Mary, bring my heart to your Son. St. Anne, pray for us. Jesus, I trust in you.

Soon. Soon. He or she was almost here. Almost.

Dr. B: You ready?

Us: Ready? 

Dr. B: To find out the gender!? To see your baby?

Us: YES!

Dr. B: Pull the curtains!

Wahhhhhhhhhhhh! Wa wa wahhhhh!

Cue my tears. He or she was breathing on his or her own. I hadn't even seen the little one yet, but at that moment all that mattered was that our little one was well enough to belt out the sweetest cry I had ever heard. His or her lungs were strong! 

Bleary eyed, I was looking through the clear plastic curtain trying to decipher whether our baby was a he or a she. Funny enough, so was my husband. We couldn't tell at first. 

I think we couldn't tell because we were just anticipating another boy. Till...

Dr. B: Well?

Taking a better look. Haha, at this point we were just taking too long to figure it all out!

GeekMan: It's a.. girl?

Dr. B: YES IT'S A GIRL! Look!

Cue crazy tears of joy, happiness, love, thankfulness and more.

Is she alright? Is she okay? Everything okay with her? and me?  are we okay???

Dr. B: Yes. She's perfect! and you're good.

And cue some more tears.

They brought her to me. She was the most beautiful baby girl I had ever seen. She was perfect. She was healthy. She was amazing. So amazing at just 37 weeks. So strong and not even phased by the imperfection of my womb and the placement of my placenta. Un-phased by the potential danger that lingered over both of our hearts. Un-phased and ready to be held in her mama and daddy's love.
My husband and I were beside ourselves in love and in complete confusion at the fact that we had a baby girl. Our little Dandelion.
7 lb. 9 oz. and 20.5 inches of loveliness that only God could knit together.

The moments when the hearts' of Bigfoot and Linus meeting Moriah's is one of my absolute favorites.
Bigfoot adored her, and still does. From the moment he set eyes one her he had so much love for her. Meanwhile, Linus adored from afar for the first few weeks, then proudly went up to her one day out of the blue. He put his hand on her chest and told her that he was her big brother and that he loved her.

You can't make this beauty up, y'all! You just can't!

Grandparents came from afar to soak up her goodness and share their hearts and love too. It was beautiful and so very good.

Dandelion's Uncle and his fiance came (Shame on me for not grabbing a photo of them!) to meet her, hold her, and enjoy her. Her Uncle A and Aunt Bekah, came a few weeks later to meet our newest little heart and fell in absolute love.
So much love when hearts meet like this! So much love it's absolutely incredible and intoxicating in the most magical and wonderful of ways.

His Grace, Love, and Protection were overwhelming through all the beautiful vessels He shared with us throughout her birth. It's really amazing how everything worked out. My worries were squashed. My anxieties were replaced with peace in knowing that she was well. And our hearts met as they were intended to, thanks be to God.

Happiest of birthdays to you, precious Dandelion, and many more! Mama is so very very very thankful for your beautiful self. So very thankful for all that you are and ever will be!

May God bless and keep you always.

So there you have it, friends. A birth story for our Dandelion.

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