Thursday, July 30, 2009

Camera Lady

Thank-you for taking amazing pictures of the journey that got me here. You know, mom tells me you were so much more than the 'photographer'. Your words & guidance carried my mom through the many days.
Since I don't know your face too well, you will have to remind me of who you are as I grow, there's often this 'thing' in your face. Mom says you document everything quite nicely...can't wait to see all the photos one day. :)

Thank u Doula

Thank-you Doula for guiding & supporting my mom. It was a long journey, I remember- I do. But thank-you for being there. With hugs, prayers & more hugs. I did take my time entering this world, but now i am here & loving every minute of it.
Well, not baths- I am so not a fan of baths.
I love to eat, sleep & be loved. I like to make lots of faces, I'm good at this so far.
Thank-you for sharing the journey w/me!

Is Honesty TOO honest

We don't share this part of our lives. I was taught, well-- really NOT taught how to manage money. I am ashamed to say, I've never made a budget. Never have I done this. I've always paid my bills, never late--in my early twenties, immediately out of college, i had loans. I paid them off, paid rent, shopped. I enjoy shopping, I enjoy clothes. Is this Christian of me, shallow of me--
Now in my thirties--i have a mortgage, have car loans, we now have a child. No school loans, but the bills are piling up, and I am overwhelmed, but remember, we don't talk about this.

But I need to talk about this, Eli & I have talked about this. I more so have brought it up. I've done the bills, is it my fault, where did we go wrong. How can I make it better.

I am ashamed.
Do I post this, will you think of us differently, what do I do?

I want to be open about this, I need to be open about this. This is who I am...who we are. If I post this is it gonna be awkward, can I really be who i am without you knowing this about me.....
Somewhere did I go wrong. Please don't judge, if you're reading this, you have to KNOW I've taken a huge leap of faith by posting it. please don't judge.

We all must come to our knees & look for guidance, I am there............

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Up & Adam

By 8am, yeah!! I am a true @ heart morning person. & we were up & went for a walk this morning. I probably won't be ringing this tune, when either I'm back to work or she's on a new schedule in a few months.
But this am was lovely. We strapped on the Moby & when for a walk. Thank-you for a good night's sleep....
I love you MOBY....creator person!

Monday, July 27, 2009

BIRTH STORY~ 3 weeks out


My heart, body, mind will NEVER be the same again. Women may tell you how amazing birth is, going through labor experiencing it all.
Each story is already written yet so unique. My body was made to labor the way I did. I'm not sure why but it is. I was created to give birth to Lilana Ilys Rodriguez.
Did I know this years ago NO.
My body, I thought was suppose to be thin & muscular. Not thick & sore. I enjoyed being pregnant though. Having nothing to base my experience on, not knowing my birth mother, I was walking in it with no precedence. I felt a good about this, nothing to live up to, no standard to follow.
Being adopted is special, I feel I am my own person, the only expectations that are set are self inflicted.
I knew I wanted to keep this birth experience as natural as I could tolerate, as long as baby was tolerating it too.

When one labors for hours, with minimal sleep & food--or shall I say days. Their mind eventually will pause & say I can't go on, can I truly go on & do this?
Strength must come from somewhere deeper inside than I ever imagined. The external support I received was nothing I've experienced before. When I revisit the photos that were taken, my heart swells. Thank-you Doula-a-la Stacy, Holly for being there for the long haul & to Mel & Amy for what I so deeply needed on Sunday.
These days were amazing I felt so connected to Eli--all I had to do was look his way & he knew what I needed. Whether it was a hand on my body or a sip of drink to fill me up. He was so in tuned to my needs.
The friends, who I'd like to call family knew when to be there & when to release. How did this beautiful dance transpire with some people that have known me less than 2yrs..? With God's guidance.
He truly knew what I needed & we all just followed.

Parts of Labor that are clear to me are; Early morning 'cramps' with the begining of emesis on Weds., Bloody show early am on Thursday, vomiting a lot (unfortunately), many walks up & down our stairs, a birth ball, tub-to-toilet, Child's pose, massage, hip press, heart burn (papaya & the Tums to my relief), neighborhood walks, silent moments, contractions, pumping to bring on more contractions, a mix of castor oil, black & blue cohosh, primrose oil, Raspberry tea.....& LOVE. Trust in the process, in my body. Willing & prayers that were so mindful in bringing about a healthy baby. Yearning to be closer to the end, to the actual birth.

Monday approached quickly, as I labored through Sunday evening. Thankfully my body never slowed down that evening & we all made our way to the hospital. Stacy, our doula, Holly & Eli. They all knew it was coming. I just felt like this passenger to the amazing process that was about to take place. The events at the hospital are a bit misplaced in my mind. All I had imprinted in my mind was get to the birth, breathe, take on the contractions. You can make it, you have to do this for our child. I was again in the tub, on the bed for some monitoring, back to the tub....hours passed for me. 6cm, 8cm, 8 1/2, 9cm. Try pushing, still that last cm to go. Back labor, pain more intense than ALL the contractions summed into one. What do I do, do I submit. I tried pictured myself pushing through. I couldn't find comfort in any of this. I knew what my body could not tolerate pushing at this point. One of the difficult decisions I made, I accepted the aid of Pitocin & an Epidural. For moments I felt like a failure, this wasn't what I wanted, I expected so much more of myself. I didn't want this to be the end of our birth story.
I found solitude & peace, but when I could feel my body again, hear my mind after the back pain diminished. I was at peace again. Next Dr. Fetko
walked in & she was my angel. She performed our D & C on July 23rd 2008. I was content in knowing that she would deliver our baby. Thank-ful more than anything. So I pushed, aided on by Eli on my left, nurse Becky on my right & my team responding how far & quick the progress we were making. One discussion I do remember before I started pusing was the nurse asking, "How do I want to push," all I could think was to get her OUT. She asked if we had gone to classes for this--um no, I read plenty & I was counting on them to guide me. :)
The pushing last a bit over an hour. It went quick, it seemed.
The kept asking if I wanted a mirror, no- honestly I didn't want to be discouraged if this was to transpire for a long amount of time....At one point I was encouraged to put my hands down & feel, it was amazing~all I could feel was her head w/soft hair. At the beginning of pushing, I remember Fetko looking @ the nurse & state that she saw meconium. Being a NICU nurse, I know too well--how sick mec. babies can be. I immediately went to a place in my mind to PUSH, PUSH & get this baby out. The Pediatric team was there, I also knew what that ment. It was in preparation of a sick baby. They were there for the entire delivery, a doctor I work with at Duke was there. Was this for real, what's happening. Desats, decels, oxygen on me for my baby. There would be no cutting of the cord, no catching of babe by dad, no immediate skin-skin contact.
No crys were heard, I didn't see my baby.
I did see the team working on her, and Eli watching. Did I do something wrong, so many questions & a lot of silence went through my bed. Holly, was next to me supporting me-thank-you. Did I say much, don't remember, I don't hear her. I don't clearly remember when I was told it was a girl, it must have been by Eli...

Apgars 3, 7, 9. Thank-god I didn't know this that day, I've learned a lot since her birth. She was NOT vigorous when born, she was pretty covered in Meconium. I was thank-ful to be there.

When she was handed to me, its fuzzy now. That night I do remember laying in bed w/her in disbelief & with no sleep. We were in our little bubble, a perfect place. I love my cluster of three!:)

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Travel w/a baby

A babe that is not even 3 weeks is not advised. I must remember this. For all practical reasons. This post is a memory for me, for Eli & Liliana.
I loved the opportunity of being able to take a road trip. It put me in a place of adventure, feeling free & happy. But very different this time. WE are sooo blessed to have Liliana, but all the emotions that come w/being a new mom, I gotta be honest, I cried a good portion of the trip.
For reasons that I miss Eli, to be together for 10+ yrs. We are so used to traveling together. For all the places we have been. He's the packer, surprise-he organizes food for our road trips. To the mountains, beaches, National Parks. We are so truly blessed.
So when the opportunity came to visit family in Asheville- I knew Eli wanted to go, & I placed my faith that he knew best, me- not so sure I would have gone, if I didn't know how truly Eli needed a respite amongst nature. His favorite place to be, & mine too.
Liliana, not even 3 weeks--& a momma still working through a lot of emotions, wow--it was an emotionally packed weekend on my part. We made it out there in about 4 1/2 hrs. With a stop for breastfeeding (a first for me @ a rest area, not horribly bad just new & different), then a massive poop were taken.
I prayed a lot while there, please give me patience, grace & God please let us not wake the house of a family of 5 plus Eli's niece & husband. Its different being a mom. My worries are so different. Before, I would have been concerned of what to wear, seriously. Now its about her, what can I do to please her. But I do have to step back & remember she's a baby.
I also cried for memories- of what I remember of my old life. Eli & I got some time out on the balcony the night we arrived. We saw the most amazing shooting star. It was beautifully. But I also felt like I've lost a bit of myself. The old me would have nestled in early to make an early start for the am, a run--to watch the sunrise.
Now I breastfeed & felt like I wasn't even doing that right. Lili was not a happy camper, didn't seem like herself, for what its worth...of all of 3 weeks. I feel like I know my babe.
These emotions were strong, overwhelming, scary, and not that we are back home, I feel safe, good & loved.
Thanks Eli for being so supportive. We walk this journey together. :)

Thursday, July 23, 2009

July 23rd 2008

A year ago, I remember too clearly. Not many days do I remember vividly. My wedding, the last time I hugged my best friends' dad at our college graduation, the birth of our sweet baby year ago the miscarriage that happened.

Now I nourish this baby, hold her, love her. I hope the baby that I never got to meet knows I sill cry for them. So if this day passes, & I don't remember anything else from it--I know I gave birth to this blog 1 yr. ago for the emotions I couldn't speak of, & yet all are so fresh in me.
I love you!

Monday, July 20, 2009

2 weeks

Is that how long we have known our baby? Wow, what a difference 2 weeks makes.
*So to be pregnant for 41 weeks
*Labor for about a week
*1 1/2 weeks of initiation as parents
*Last 5 days of sleep for baby & the parents.

I am a mom now, Eli is a dad. I love Liliana & can't & don't want to know life w/o her. I could say I wish I didn't wait to have my first baby @ 35, but she is what God blessed us w/now. & so I can't & don't want to have regrets for could have been.

She's asleep & has been since 8am, ok- probably should wake her to feed since its 11:30 am This wasn't the case a week ago.

Ok, rambling thoughts....BIRTH STORY still to come. :)

Tuesday, July 14, 2009


Relax, relax & breathe & enjoy. Is what I kept telling myself as Anne began her work on my body. I was given a 1 hr massage from one of my main support persons during my labor. A labor that took place in the same spot, as to where the massage table over took this afternoon. As she began, tears started to well up. I was brought back in my mind to what I experienced for 5 days at our home. A long labor. The feelings, emotions are still raw from everything that I experienced in my home, but today felt like a day where I could reclaim what belongs to me. Last week~ Liliana being born @ the hospital on Monday night July 6th & we arrived back home on Wednesday seems longer & shorter all at the same time. The first few days were all surreal. Walking up the stairs, remembering the discomfort & frustration that accompanied the contractions. The bedroom, where most of my time was spent; walking, stretching, trying to find a comfortable position & then to our bathroom. A place I found solitude in the tub, out of the tub, back in the tub~ a dance I did over & over to bring about some sort of relief. The first few nights, trying to find the 'best' rhythm with Liliana. When to feed, where to feed, how long to feed. Will she sleep, will I sleep...will I be able to sustain this lack of sleep.
These feelings mirrored Labor, can I do this, how am doing this, how much longer can I do this, I know I can do this!

Today, as I layed on that table, I breathed--not the chanting breathes that carried me through labor but a releasing breathe that allowed me to begin to heal, just a little bit, knowing I will a lot more as the days pass..............

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Say Cheese

& in color...

These are only 2 of the many beautiful shots from Holly!!

Friday, July 10, 2009

I wouldn't do without....

Beautiful baby coos
Sleepless nights
Spit up
Snuggly times
Beautiful baby Girl

I love you

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Oh What a Night

Seriously, body--I thought I was gonna cry. I'm kind of afraid to eat at this point. At first it was the period like cramps that woke me up @ 11:30, then it was the gurgling of my stomach/intestines--wherever they are in my body at this point. After peeling myself back into bed for the 3rd time, I really wanted Eli to be awake, but at the same time, I thought wow, if this is the start of things, he'll need his rest.
By 4th time to the bathroom, now 2am--he quickly came to the door, I was retching & by the 3rd time, it was kind of loud.
Plus, the floor was soaked, pretty sure it was just urine, no bladder control when you're hugging the toilet bowl @40+ weeks pregnant. :)

Made my way back into bed. Thanks for cleaning up Eli, you are truly my loving husband. More period like cramps continued. We just laid here, I was freezing, but I know we finally fell back to sleep.
It was a long night & Eli somehow got up a few hours later for coffee w/the guys & work. I slept & continued to sleep, which was what I needed.

Now just more cramps. I can admit it...I AM SCARED. What if this is bigger than I can handle, what if I just want to crawl up & die. I so want to be strong, please let me be strong.