Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Counting down till Surgery

I haven't really talked about my upcoming surgery. I haven't had much of a chance to blog and was debating on if I was going to even post about it but I figured I share everything else, from infertility to health to life and babies so why not. Just a warning, this is totally TMI and partially involves girly stuff so if you don't want to know don't read on.  

My children have destroyed me. lol I say this with the utmost love and affection and of course in a joking matter because it's not really that funny. I'm really nervous ad anxiously awaiting surgery on March 11th. I have been given an official diagnosis of 3rd degree Cystocele (vaginal) and Urethrocele (bladder/urethra) prolapse and 2nd degree Rectocele (rectal) prolapse. Instead of giving long drawn out explanations here's some quick bullet points.The scale goes 1-3 with 3 being the the worst case.  Yup, that's how I roll. 

  • Cystocele (bladder prolapse)—Occurs when the wall between the bladder and the vagina weakens, causing the bladder to drop or sag into the vagina.
  • Urethrocele (urethra prolapse)—Occurs when there is loss of support for the tube (urethra) that carries urine from the bladder to outside the body. It results in the tube sagging or bulging into the vagina.
  • Rectocele (rectal prolapse)—Occurs when there is a bulge in the lower back vaginal wall caused by the front wall of the rectum sagging and pushing against it.

I'm not going to post stock anatomy images b/c i'm sure you get the point. Definitely don't google b/c you'll see some extreme stuff that is definitely and thankfully NOT what I am dealing with!! 

Some background on me: 

 Those close to me know I have always had some bladder issues. For years I had chronic UTI and kidney infections due to "bladder sphincter dyssynergia", aka the muscles didn't work properly and I was essentially retaining and having recurrent infections. I had tons of testing end ended up trying this "trial" course of medication to help with things. It seemed to make a little difference with the frequency but I thought it made me not able to "hold it" as well from then on. 

Fast forward to having kids. Pregnancy definitely takes it toll on your body and bladder. But for me, of course, it had to make things interesting. Little did I know that I would be delivering a 9lb9oz baby which put a lot of extra pressure on things down there. Also the course of his delivery would forever change things "down there" in more ways than I anticipated. His delivery, for those who don't remember  was not a great experience. 34.5 hours of high dosage pitocin induced labor, two non working epidurals and 4 hours of pushing because he decided to roll while laboring.  (here's where we get real personal) Needless to say he was stuck and even with an episiotomy he needed to be forcepted out leaving me with a prolapsed bladder and 3rd degree vaginal to rectal tearing.   With in the following week I ended up re-tearing so that was a weekly process of dr's appts to help fix what was going on down there. Healing was brutul but in the end i can honestly say he was more than worth all the birthing "trauma" and I would do it 100x times over to have him in my arms.  

Jumping ahead we decided when Brayden was about 5-6 months old that we would start trying for another baby. We weren't "preventing" anyway but hoped we would be one of those people that got that surprise baby after IVF... haha the joke was on us. I went in june for my annual appointment and we also set up a consult with the RE to do another frozen transfer to try and have baby number 2. Unfortunately that's when y pap came back abnormal and after testing we found out i had CINIII cervical cancer cells. I had a LEEP procedure to remove them in July, which set back out IVF but I was glad to get clear margins and get a clean bill of health so we could proceed in three months time.  I mention this because the procedure itself drastically effected my pregnancy with Bella. I had some major cervical incompetence issues because the LEEP procedure removed a piece of my cervix. by 22 weeks I was having major vaginal pressure and starting to contract off and on, by 24 weeks I was on modified bed rest and 26 on full bed rest. Being 80% effaced and having Bella engaged in my cervix so early put a lot of extra pressure on my already prolapsed bladder. Needless to say I lived in Poise pads. Yes I'm classy like that but those things are awesome! 

When it came time to deliver bella as soon as i hit ten centimeters that girl flew on out. Great because it was barely 4 pushes but bad because my body didn't have time to naturally stretch. Thankfully i didn't tear like anything compared to Brayden. Just 2nd degree vaginally but it definitely didn't help things. 

Since having Bella I have continued to do my kegels and do the exercises I learned in biofeedback sessions years ago but nothing has helped. My dr explained that the straining issues I have are counter productive to the kegels so they are not going to help no matter what I do.  I did have additional biofeedback testing done in January to see the muscle functionality so he knows exactly what needs to be done. At this point my bladder leaks all the time. Even if I have to go just a little I feel like I'm going to pee myself. I always hae the sensation that I am not completely emptying since my bladder is collapsing on my urethra and I am not completely emptying.  Activity makes it worse and "intimate time" is just painful. Not a very good situation for only being 30!  

I can say I am looking forward to having the surgery done and being "normal" again but I am dreading the procedure itself. The dr said it will take about 4+ hours. They are essentially permanent stictching my bladder up in its correct place, at the tops and sides and are using a mesh to support the bladder. it is NOT the mesh kits that you see on those law suit commercials. My dr does not like the kit and would only use proponents as he seems fit. I LOVE my dr and implicitly trust him after everything we have been through together, so i know he is going to do what is best. For the vaginal and rectal prolapse, they are doing a full reconstruction. The way it was explained to me was is that they will be essentially taking me apart and putting the muscle groups back together to strengthen and correct things. Apparently I'll be like an 18 year old when he is done with me, not sure how I feel about that one lol  

The recovery time for the surgery is 6 weeks. The first week or so being the worst. The first night I will be staying in the hospital just to make sure everything is okay.  Then I can come home and crash. I think my biggest concern about being in the hospital is the kids. Specifically bella. Bray will do great and will have a great time with my mom during the day and Jason will be home with them at night. Bella is an obsessive nurser. She only takes breast milk from a sippy cup b/c she hates the bottle and even then she still fights.  It'll be my first over night away from her so I know I will have a hard time emotionally. But I know one night in the long run to have better health is more than worth it. 

The doctor did say that if we do decide to have another baby i will HAVE to have a c-section. With the kind of repair that are doing a vaginal delivery would not be a possibility later. Since we are not sure if we will get to have another due to my cervical issues, we figured I might as well just get it done and deal with that later.  

So the countdown is on.  12 days till surgery and I am not going to lie, I am nervous about the recovery. If it was just an elective surgery I would probably feel better because it was my choice (not that my dr is forcing me to do this but it's the best option).The recovery is suppose to be much worse than when I had Brayden, and at this point I can't fathom what that is going to be like.... wish me luck!! With two kids to take care of this should be interesting!! 

Happy 6 Months Bella Rose!

Happy 6 months Princess! How is it that we are celebrating your half birthday already! Seriously it feels like just yesterday that I held you in my arms for the first time.  You have gotten so big and have changed so much!

Here are a few pics from your 6 month photo shoot! 

6 months is a fun age! So many milestones and so much to look forward to.  Bella is getting so big! She is 19lb 6oz (96%)and just shy of 28"(98%)!  Chunky Monkey for sure! She seriously has the sweetest personality. She is only fussy when she is over tired or just wants to nurse. She had the cutest little laugh and the best smile where she smiles with her eyes.  

One of my favorite milestones this last month is she says MAMA!! MELT. MY. HEART! She was mumbling mama previously but she finally got the connection around 5 1/2 months. So when shes upset or wants something she cries out the saddest little "maaaa maaa" and reaches for me. I think she is going to be a talker. She loves to "talk" and babble and screech in delight, she's such a girl!!

Bella desperately wants to crawl. She is not quite there yet with the arm strength to hold up her body on her knees; instead she launches herself head first in to things. Lucky her she has her mothers coordination and tends to smack her head on things. Yup she is definitely my kid. Despite the head dives she is strong and loves to stand at her play table, holding on to the couch or holding on to your hands.  She is so smart. I love this stage because they are like sponges at this age. She analyzes everything and is learning how to use her toys the correct way. I'm sure having an older brother helps but it never ceases to amaze me what babies can pick up!  

Sleep. Oh where has my good sleeper gone. I swear a sting of things has killed Bella's great sleeping habits. RSV killed her good sleeping habits and then when she was finally feeling better and getting back on track she got her first ear infection. Ugh. It's tough going from waking one time a night to nurse to waking every 2 hours and wanting to stay up for hours at a time in the middle of the night.  Here's hoping we can get back to her amazing sleep habits.  She normally takes a cat nap in the morning, takes long nap in the afternoon from 1-3 or 4, then a little cat nap at dinner and bed at 8.  It's a great schedule and thankfully she is still young enough that she is flexible with her nap time schedule. 

I am proud to say we are 6 months in to breastfeeding and its going strong!! Of course I give Bella all the credit, she is an amazing nurser.  I will say it's not always easy when all she wants to do is comfort nurse and it tears me up, but overall it's a great and easy experience. I only brag because I wasn't so lucky to have this experience with Brayden and i'm glad it's going so well. By her size you can definitely tell mama's milk is doing her good! She is still nursing every three hours. She will go longer at times and has times where she cluster feeds. I feel like a pro at nursing on the go. I breastfeed modestly but I have no qualms nursing where every I have to even in public. hopefully people aren't "oh you're one of those". I guarantee you, you would prob never know I was even nursing her 95% of the time. :)  Bella still HATES the bottle. She will barely take it for Jason or anyone who is watching her. Thanks to other moms recommendations we tried her sippy cup, which she loves to drink water from, and she does great with it. So we have officially nixed the bottles and are going with cups all the time. I'm thrilled! It'll be one less thing to have to transition and break later. 

We did get more serious with solids this month.  She was having them here and there but not consistent till she hit 5 months.   We are doing a lot of baby led weaning and some puree. Based on her preferences she would much rather eat what we are eating, or what I'm eating since it's all allergen free for her. So I have a feeling she will be on all table food even earlier than Brayden was. We did a combo of BWL with Bray and he was on on all table food by 8-9 months. Honestly  I think this approach is why he loves foods, strong flavors and even spicy things.  Here's hoping she follows suit!! 

SO here's to a happy half birthday Bella rose! The countdown is on till your first birthday...and that kinda makes me sad!! 

And of course the monthly onesie stickers! 
She wasn't really "up" for it and kept taking off her sticker but we got a few cute pics even though smiles were hard to catch! 

 I'd rather eat my hand mom! 
 It is uncanny how her expressions match Brayden's! 
 "back up i got this!"

 STRIKE a pose!

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Happy 5 months Bella Rose!

Yes I am almost exactly a month late.. i know mother of year over here. But i wanted to get this posted before she turns 6 months!  

Happy 5 months Bella Bug! It has been 5 amazing month! You are growing up too fast and amaze me every day.  

 Bella is getting so big!!!! She now weighs 18 pounds (93%) and are 25 1/4 (90%) inches long! Needless to say we had to pack up all her 6 month clothes and pull out the 9 month stuff. Pjs' and anything one piece are an issue. We had this problem with Brayden too. Because she is so tall she tends to outgrow things in length so fast. We still call her our little chunky monkey! She has those chubby baby rolls and thick thighs, i could eat her up.  Apparently the mommas milk is doing her good!!

You are still a champion breast feeder! She still eats about every 3 hours during the day. Sometimes she will go for longer stretches.  If i were to guess based on how much i pump she has to be drinking 4-6 ounces at a time.  We have started some solids. She is showing interest in anything we are eating and tries to reach for it. We are doing a combo of baby led weaning and puree and she really seems to love it. She will eat puree but definitely favors chunkier/table like foods. I love watching her try to hold her food and eat it. She gets SO excited she misses her mouth and makes her share of messes!

Bells has always been a good sleeper but we have definitely hit that "4 month wakeful period". Sigh...its rough going from waking 1x a night to every 2-3 hours. She has been really sick so I know that is not helping. She started on the 16th with what we now know is RSV. Thankfully we were aggressive with treating her symptoms early on and it didn't get in her chest to the point where we needed nebulizer treatments. Regardless I still felt awful she was so sick.
Bella seriously so much fun! she rolls both ways, love to sit and play and stand at her toys(with assistance). You have great hand eye coordination and are really good at passing things back and forth from hand to hand.  Brayden is her best friend! She could seriously sit and watch him all day and loves interacting with him. I think they have a secret language b/c they just "talk" and crack each other up.