Friday, August 23, 2013

Jude's Birth Story

May 21st, 2013. Well there I was. Large and in charge... and 1 week overdue. I had been at a 1 and about 95% effaced for 5 weeks and that's as good as it was getting. My OB (who, by the way, is FANTASTIC), was humming and hawing and trying to tell stubborn ol' me that he wasn't sure if we would see much more progress. I had been trying EVERYTHING. I cannot even tell you how many miles I had walked, stairs I climbed, midnight tangos we had *ahem* danced... etc!! Nothing was working, and this little kid of mine was holdin' on for dear warm-womby life in there!!

So the time came. Dr said I needed a kick start. I said "no way, José! I want to do this on my own. No meds." (Well maybe I didn't say it like that, but he got on the same page pretty fast). So we discussed ways that we can help start the labor without using pitocin. Stripping membranes wasn't an option, because I had tested positive as a carrier for Group B Strep. So he suggested cytotec. I had heard not great things about this drug on some crunchy granola birth things I read/watched, but all were about using cytotec to induce labor when the woman wasn't dilated or effaced. I was ready to go, I just needed a little boost into labor. Matt and I prayed about it, and felt like we should really trust our doctor. I chose him because he has a reputation of less intervention and of being pro-unmedicated birth. This was important to me. So he called the hospital to see when they could have me come in. He said that they were just going to give me a little bit (25 mgs) of cytotec and then I was to walk and walk and walk the hallways. He was pretty confident that I would start dilating and that my own oxytocin would kick in and and start those contractions up in a big way!

We checked in to the hospital at 8:30pm.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

The New Me

 How can it be that I am shadow of my old self, yet an entire different being, bright and new?

How is it possible that I can be ashamed of my scarred and soft body, yet stand in awe at the power and strength it possesses? How can it be that my once quick and strong, yet clumsy hands have become gentle and tender – my athletic body has transformed into a sleep-deprived dance of grace, with limbs loose and waving in desperation for a moment of rest.

My scheduled-to-the-minute days have turned into to a Helter Skelter collection of yawns and giggles and tears and quick glances and long stares that hold the whole world and heaven in my living room. My days drag by, but time slips past me, quicker and quicker as I grasp frantically after it. I am overcome by weakness and shortcomings, but have a deep and resounding might that exhausts and invigorates me.

My name. It has been on the lips and in the ears and in prayers and on papers in the hands of teachers and professors, coaches, peers, lovers, friends, family, and strangers. It has been lost in the cracks of the floor, and yet hung on a banner that blows in the fierce winds of change, as it takes shape into a foreign, yet natural identity:


Back Again - This Time with a Baby

My last post was on May 22nd, 2012. One year to the day before our lives changed forever. Our sweet little boy, Jude Malcolm Merrill, was born on May 22nd, 2013.

Our blog will be taking a big shift -- first of all, I hope to post more often than once a year. In fact, I was thinking about trying to post once a week, as a reward for finishing a week of online classes. It's my online break -- and my way to share with family and friends the wonderful new adventures  of the Merrill family. I will try to keep the blog full of variety, but let's be honest... we'll be seeing a lot of Jude.

Posts to come in the month of August:
- An update on our lives in Pasco, WA
- Jude's Birth Story
- Life since Jude's arrival
- Adventure in Canada (we'll be spending a weekend in Nanaimo with David and Chelsy)

SO! Stay tuned, I'll probably post on Saturdays or Sundays. I'll make one more post today... A little reflection piece I've written.