Thursday, October 24, 2013

Happy 1st Birthday Joshua!

On this special day, my sons 1st Birthday, I wanted to tell you about my  Natural Unmedicated Childbirth (NUC) using the Bradley method of Husband Coached Childbirth. 

First off with my daughter birth, I tried to wing it for the most part, I tried doing research on natural birth, and I knew the reasons for going unmedicated. Unfortunately I didn't have much knowledge or support or family near to help me through it. The Chambersburg Hospital, located in Chambersburg, Pa was not very good at natural measures and very pushy on offering drugs to ease pain. One as to which made me hallucinate about birds, which a nurse said happened alot!

Though I labor without medication for about 8 hours or so, since the hospital was so big on their technology and meds, they didn't allow me much time to try to walk it out and try to ease pain naturally. They wouldn't even warm my a heating pad up for me in microwave! 

So all in all after much pain of laying on my back during monitoring and not knowing my rights to walk, tell them to stop asking me about pain levels and meds, and much more...I gave into meds...the was told that there was not enough oxygen getting to daughter. Scared and stressed and unfamiliar to birth lingo ( though I did try to research it, during labor it pretty much all disappeared) I had an epidural...and eventually gave birth the my daughter. I don't remember much. Just holding her a few seconds, seeing her under a warmer and then walking up in a dark room with her next to me. 

So now on to my NUC. 

Justin and I both researched so much on a doula and midwives. We didn't have much money for them. Getting a doula we would enjoy working with was also very hard, since there wasn't very many in our area. 

So we found Kay and Brandon who taught Bradley Birth Classes/ Husband Coached Childbirth. 

We learned about every stage of labor, about how insanely harmful pain relieving medication was for a baby, healthy foods and good portion intake, relaxation  techniques and pregnancy exercises that are the best ever for preparing for the labor that was to come. 

Much of the learning was geared toward the father. For once a women is in labor everything she learned can pretty much fly out the window. The father is there to remember, guide, support and comfort and make sure that the birthing staff keeps with the birthing plan you prepared. 

You can also invite an assistant birthing coach to join in learning in the classes. I choose my Aunt Gladys and my sister Teddy. Gladys join a class or two and review the workbook with Justin and I. 

Birthing Joshua was a memorable and amazing experience!

October 24th 2012 

That day I decided to clean and do errands while Justin was home. Jazmine was already at school and we walked and picked up a few things and also grabbed some subway. After getting home I whipped out the mop and windex and went to town on cleaning and moving things around. Which was very unusual to Justin because I do not like cleaning with chemical cleaners much, gives me a headache. He asked, "Are you ok, you having any contractions?" I reaponed, "The usual Braxton hicks ones, why?" He said, "You seem all putsy putsy." (Which I think he meant nesting, because putsy putsy was sign for low-mild contractions and first stage labor in the Bradley lingo) So I said,"if anything Justin, this is nesting." And I giggled and continued cleaning. 

Eventually it was time to go get Jazmine from school. Justin gave me a relaxing nice back massage before heading out and I layed down to take a nap while he walked to go pick up Jazmine from school. While he was away I used the bathroom and noticed red discharge, most likely my mucus plug, I remember losing mine a day before giving birth to Jazmine. I figured I was going to be having Josh within the week. 

After they returned, I told Justin about it and went back up to try and nap. Justin started preparing dinner. I was having a hard time resting and started feeling a tightening around my sides, almost like side stitches from when your not used to running. I sat up and they continued then eventually subsided. Not log after they continued again so I stood up and sorta moved about, it continued wether I was sitting or laying or walking. I wanted to time them and asked Justin for my phone. I didn't tell him yet because I wanted to be sure first. 

Around 4:20 that day I started timing my contractions. They were 2 minutes apart. I couldn't believe it. So I continued timing for about 10 contractions or so in our room and eventually just went downstairs to us the bathroom again and also to change senory and see if they would stop. That maybe it was just Braxtonhicks being super charged. About 6 more contractions later I finally came out and told Jusitn. 

"So honey, I am pretty sure I am having contractions."

"How far apart are they?"

"2 mins"

Serious face...,"Really?"

Usually you would already be having very strong contractions and trying to make your way to the hospital by then. 

I was still in the early stages and able to talk and walk through them. So I was fine for now. 

Justin, "Well you should definitly eat something then, your going to need it."

I nibble at my food and we sat for awhile eatin and watching a Disney movie with Jazmine. 

It started to get strong and I was excited and nervous and just couldn't really focus on my food, no matter how much I knew I needed to try and eat something. 

After it finally getting intense, we called our sitter for Jazmine. Gave a call to Gladys and Teddy and told them I was having contractions. My sister lives in Philadephia, about 2 hour train trip to Lancaster, Pa, where we live. Keeping my figures crossed that my fast labor wouldn't be to fast, so my sister could make it here in time to be there for the labor an birth. 

So I didn't get a chance to even go through the putsy putsy stage. I went right past that. The contractions become strong fast and were still 2 minutes apart. 

I did alot of pelvic rocks, standing and rocking of my waist. I walked from the bathroom to our loft steps many times. 

Justin was cleaning and gettin our things ready for when we would head to the hospital. We called Kay our Bradley instructor for advice. I was having a harder time talking through contractions and wanted to know when we should start heading out. And also if my sister should definitly be catching the train sooner then later. She told me from what she can hear through my voice and my breathing (from what I can remember of the phone conversation) is it would be best for us to let her know to be headed here and that I could try and stay home a bit longer since I was still managing the contractions pretty well. 

Within the hour I tried to eat a banana and drink water. And continued much rocking and calling for Justin to put pressure on my back. We were going to try to go for a walk...but I could barely walk outta the bathroom at that point. That was a dead give away to Justin that I was going from first stage labor early labor into active labor and that it was time to head to the hospital. We let them know we were on our way. 

Triage waiting area at the Women's and Babies hospital was not to bad. I had to sign a few papers. The room and the experience itself in there was small, scary and the initial cervical check SUCKED. I cried through that, and every cervical dilation check, three in total, the only time through my whole labor I cried. 

Eventually we made it to our labor and delivery room. The prepared the Jacuzzi tub for me to labor in and I stayed there through pretty much all of my labor. Unlike my first birth where they kept making me lay in bed for monitoring and where the asked I I wanted something for pain. They stuck with our birth plan and even jumped in to help with putting pressure on my lower back to relieve pain. Rather then offer drugs. 

My Aunt and Sister got there while I was in triage and came to the room after the nurses setup me up. 

It was so great having them there. They were so helpful and motivating! Even for Justin. 

I pretty much labor in the tub on all fours while Justin put pressure on my back, my Aunt and sister timed and talked me through my contractions and let me know when I was at the peak (contractions are about a minute long for the most part. So around 30secs they start to subside) It helped me know when to start relaxing and when I could try and talk and when everyone around me needed to try and keep quite. Part of the Bradley Method. 

In my head and to my self I worried about my hair and I was hot and sweaty feeling  being in the tub but the water felt great on my back. I was enjoying the cold wall agaisnt my face and taking sips of water and cranberry juice between contractions. Thinking at times that I wasn't going to beable to get through it...hoping I wasn't going to give into meds and knowing even if I did Justin would be strong for me and not let it even happen. So many mixed emotions. 

My water broke after/during one of my transition contractions. 

(Transition – this is the shortest stage and most intense stage. It marks the complete dilation of your cervix. Typically only 10-60 minutes long, contractions are 70-90 seconds in length. Generally women only have between 5-10 transition contractions. Only 30% of women realize that they are even going thru transition.)

After awhile...not sure how long, I got the urge to push...I pushed a few times while in the water...I think...either way I eventually sorta shouted that I needed to push and they alerted the nurse and doctor and there was a huge crew laying down towels and prepping things, the tub was draining and they were trying to help me walk to the bed. 

My legs were far apart in a squat position as I made my way to the bed...I didn't want to move...I just wanted to push. 

The nurse or doctor said, "Come on now, you don't wanna be having thing baby on the floor do you?"

I made it to the bed. I was 10cm but a small lip of my cervix was swollen a bit over Joshua's head. The doctor had to help a bit to lift it away during a push. 

I literally thought that I was going to felt like a ring of fire as well. I was embarrassed and scared but then they said he was crowning and I pushed again and his head was out! I pushed once more and there he was. The lifted him into my arms. I was shouting joyously, "I did it, we did it, he is here!" Looking and trying to let out an exhausted smile to Justin and holding Joshua close and seeing my sister and Aunt. Then a nurse said, "Is anyone going to take pictures?" As she smiled as well in excitement. 

My Aunt and Sister took pictures. My aunt was in Awe at how well I got through the labor and birth. I felt so happy as she was so proud and joyous to beable to be there with me through it all. 

Justin's shy excited smiles and his glossy tired beautiful eyes glowed with so much emotion as he watched and held Josh. 

I could go on and on about the details. 

It was so wonderful! 

Just amazing to beable to remember so many exact details and to be ale to remember just about every moment after and even before his birth. 

The drugs from when I gave birth to Jazmine had me lost in time. I didn't get to cherish the moment to much. It was so rushed and so controlled by the staff.

Josh was 6lbs 14oz he was born a week or so before his due date. He was suppose to be a November baby. Instead he was born on my grandmothers birthday at 11:01pm Oct 24th. I was in labor for 6-7hours. 

We are so blessed and beyond Happy to have Joshua in our lives. It was and has been such an amazing year!

Thanks to Kay and Bradon our Bradley instructors, My aunt Gladys and Sister Teddy and to the most amazing man in my life and most wonderful father Justin. 

I love you all!

Happy Birth Day Joshua!

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Loving Mommy, Daughter time

I do not get much time with Jazmine. 

I am usually busy with Josh, dinner, cleaning, tired or she is at school. 

Recently I have has so much more time to color and create and go to the park with her. 

I feel like I run outta things to do...that or I just feel smothered by her love...hahaha!

Either way it's been nice. I hope as time progresses and as I get more rest (better sleeping habits by Josh) that I will beable to fully truely enjoy more time with her again. 

She is at an age were she needs my input and approval more then ever, I want her to know and see that I am always there for her. Without her asking. To just have that inner confidence that she can always come to me. 

Being a mommy, a parent in general, is full time job. She is around me 24/7 and I  am her example for EVERYTHING. 

Teaching her and guiding her to care for herself, respect herself and much more...

I hope I shine down a positive example. 

As I learn more through my renewed faith, I pray that God would shine through me to her. 

Proverbs 31:30, "Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the LORD, she shall be praised." 

True beauty comes from within!

Galatians 5:22-23, 26 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other. 

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Sleepless nights

So back a few posts ago I talked about Sleep training or the Cry It Out (CIO) method. 

Unfortunately teething got in the way of that. 

So now I don't know what to do.

The past week has been H E double hockey sticks for me. 

Josh has been waking up to nurse every hour and then usually after 3 or 4am he is up every 30mins to nurse or just be held or wide awake. 

I nerves are shot and I am exhausted. 

Usually I can go through this in and outta bed situation with Josh without waking Justin. But unfortunately I have been having to ask Justin to wake up and help. 

With summer gone and Jazmine not sleeping over multiple days at a time with friends or family...I am not sure if I can muster up trying Sleep training or CIO with him again. 

I am serious need of prayers and advice!

Oh what to do?

Any advice from a nursing mother?

Advice for past teething stage?

I don't know what other questions to ask, I just need help!

On a side note- Josh is turning one on Oct 24th and he has been taking steps with out holding on to things. He will be walking soon! 

Friday, October 18, 2013

He does not come to berate us...

Jesus wants to teach us, he doesn't want us to judge or hate ourselves or hate him. The world is evil and evil is trying to swallow us whole.

John 7:6-7 Therefore Jesus told them, “My time is not yet here; for you any time will do. The world cannot hate you, but it hates me because I testify that its works are evil. 

Yes, we are sinners, but he doesn't want to berate us for it, He gently nudges us in the right direction, our selfish pride causes us to get angry when our faults become visible to those around us. 

Genesis 3:10 He answered, “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.” 

Our, now, sinful nature causes us to be ashamed when our faults are laid out for all to see...we are exposed. But there is nothing to be afraid of, if we all know we are sinners...why be ashamed? We need to stand hand in and in prayer and give it to God. 

Genesis 3:21 The Lord God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife and clothed them. 

God clothed us, he in the beginning sacrificed an animal to clothe us. He was rescuing us from start. 

He does not judge, We should not judge.

He became what we are that we might make us what He is. 

John 8:1-11 8 1 but Jesus went to the Mount of Olives. At dawn he appeared again in the temple courts, where all the people gathered around him, and he sat down to teach them. The teachers of the law and the Pharisees brought in a woman caught in adultery. They made her stand before the group and said to Jesus, “Teacher, this woman was caught in the act of adultery. In the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say?” They were using this question as a trap, in order to have a basis for accusing him.But Jesus bent down and started to write on the ground with his finger. When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.” Again he stooped down and wrote on the ground. At this, those who heard began to go away one at a time, the older ones first, until only Jesus was left, with the woman still standing there. Jesus straightened up and asked her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?” “No one, sir,” she said.“Then neither do I condemn you,” Jesus declared. “Go now and leave your life of sin.” 

We can be clothed in His love and grace,I we just reveal ourselves to Him. We have nothing to hide. 

We all know we sin and make mistakes, we have seen it time and time again. There is no surprises! No surprises! What's to hide?...

Let us forgive and not judge, ourselves or others. Let us be more like Jesus and open ourselves up, humble ourselves and forgive ourselves and others. 

Romans 12:2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. 

Hebrews 5:7-9 During the days of Jesus’ life on earth, he offered up prayers and petitions with fervent cries and tears to the one who could save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverent submission. Although he was a son, he learned obedience from what he suffered and, once made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him. 

He cried, he was submissive, he learned obedience from His father, Our Father in heaven. Let us be obedient to the truth so we don't fall to the sinful ways of this earth. 

He became what we are that we might make us what He is. 

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Don't be Offended, He just wants to give you a life worthwhile!

We get so wrapped in not doing wrong, trying to get points for good deeds.

That's where I went wrong in my faith...that is what tore me from Gods graces. 

Our life is about trusting God and building an amazing relationship with him. So he will shine through our lives. It is hard to think about it that way, mind boggling.

Earnestly Seek Him!
Hebrews 11:6
6 And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him. 

We want so much physical proof, that was the hardest part for me, we can't just follow Jesus because of his miracles...we are sensation seekers, we get our fill and are distracted by it. Rather  then seeking spiritual truth. We want to show the world our good deeds, and how we memorize scripture, or proclaim and praise ourselves for mission trips or and such, there is nothing wrong with being/doing good, but some people get a high for getting praised for good deeds, when we should be giving all the glory to God and seeking his applause and rewards.

Follow in our Fathers foot steps!

He is wisdom, foundation, understanding and knowledge!

He wants to enlighten us, guide us, befriend us, not put on a show for us. 

We reap what we sow! Don't try to skimp on by. When we don't work for things we become weak, we don't get the full benefit of feeling good about what we have accomplished. 

Being a follower of Christ is a work in progress, but we are storing up so much more for ourselves when we work on creating that personal relationship with God and glorify Him not ourselves. 

So don't be offended, this life is temporary, we are storing up for the eternal. 

We need to give ourselves fully with out begging for something in return. He knows what we need!

It is about creating a personal relationship, you don't need to use be showy words with God (pagans were schooled and knew big words and were very showy trying to get attention for their  intelligence) be like a child, and keep it simple and sweet, humble yourself. A child seeks the simple love and adoration from their parents a hug and kiss, Look for that from your Heavenly Father, sit in his lap, let your little legs dangle and just talk and pray. We make it out to be a chore and such a complex thing, when all we need to do is talk to him.

Don't be offended,
He just wants to give you a life worthwhile!

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

(He) Made Himself Nothing

 What would you do? Would you ring the bell?

" Hell Week consists of 5 1/2 days of cold, wet, brutally difficult operational training on fewer than four hours of sleep. Hell Week tests physical endurance, mental toughness, pain and cold tolerance, teamwork, attitude, and your ability to perform work under high physical and mental stress, and sleep deprivation."

"Trainees are constantly in motion; running, swimming, paddling, carrying boats on their heads, doing log PT, sit-ups, push-ups, rolling in the sand, slogging through mud, paddling boats and doing surf passage. Being still can be just as challenging, when you’re standing interminably in formation, soaking wet on the beach, or up to your waist in the water, with the cold ocean wind cutting through you. Mud covers uniforms, hands, faces – everything but the eyes. The sand chafes raw skin and the salt water makes cuts burn. Students perform evolutions that require them to think, lead, make sound decisions, and functionally operate when they are extremely sleep-deprived, approaching hypothermia, and even hallucinating. While trainees get plenty to eat, some are so fatigued that they fall asleep in their food. Others fall asleep while paddling boats and have to be pulled out of the water by teammates."

"The Instructors make it easy, even honorable, for students to come out of the cold: simply ring the bell that signals defeat, and enjoy doughnuts and coffee in front of your suffering former classmates."

What does this have to do with anything?

For the past 3 1/2 years I have been searching for truth. 

I have been seeking a creator a god or gods or goddess's. 

I finally have found it. 

This time around I have fully truly come to know Christ. 

It is hard to explain. I have not yet answered the unanswerable questions. But I do know that God has been shining his light in my dark gloomy path. 

In all my relationships family, friends or lovers, I have created a wall, something to protect and guard my heart, my emotional and broken life. 

When I was in foster care, I became a Christian, I was baptized and everything. Yet I had a young new faith. 

I was selfish in my new walk. Wanting healing and help on my own terms. Seeking earthly treasures still and possessions in my prayers. A great job, husband, big house and hoping for fast money. 

God was trying to break down my wall. With that came my past flowing out, my worst nightmares, old, sad, depressing feelings that I never truly healed from, just blocked it with my wall. I got scared and started pushing away. Only picking and choosing how I wanted to be a Christian. How I wanted to believe. But in the pushed God completely out of my life.

I built a wall, God was trying to shine his light into my life, but I was blocking everything out and also blocking myself in. Dark, alone and numb to the truth.

Matt 19:26 "with man it is impossible, but with God all things are possible."

I lost faith in God. I wasn't letting Him take control. I was trying to do it on my own "impossible"

I was seeking God in all the wrong places. Looking into Big Bang, other religions, atheistism, freethinkers,Universism...and so on. Though I kinda found answers, I never felt convinced. 

Once I started looking at Christian sites for answers, things became more clear, insightful and meaningful. 

I felt like my dark, sad past of sexual abuse and past sexual relationships was starting to creep into my relationship. My emotions were finding a way to sabotage the relationship I am currently in. 

That is when it finally hit me!

When I finally realized that God was the only one that could heal me. 

His perfect love would teach me prefect love and how to love myself and in turn let that love shine out to the man I love. 

I thought I healed. I thought my past was over. But it was just hidden behind a poorly built wall. It was breaking down and God wanted to capture all of my past before it hurt me again and before I hurt someone I love. 

I used to think God was to good for me. How can He even understand all of what I had gone through in life? 

But now I know He has gone through just as much, even more then I ever thought possible! 

I didn't really know God...I just read from the Bible prayed and assumed that was all I needed to do to get on Gods good side. 
I always seeked that physically evidence. I needed to touch and talk and have a sign from God. I needed to truly know Jesus. This is what I learned... 

(He) made himself nothing. Philippians 2:7

Before He was even born his mother and father were living a difficult life. His mother, in those days, was to be captured and stoned to death for being pregnant before marriage. Joseph lost his reputation and was on the run for marrying Mary. They were on the run from the law in that day and age. 

Jesus was in a womb. He had to depend on Mary to carry him and birth him. He depended on her for nourishment and protection and was born in an animal stable. 

He nursed from his mother, learned to walk, talk, read and write. 

Joseph, Jesus' earthly father, had to teach him to be a builder at the age of 12 (Matt 13:55 Greek word teckon - builder so carpenter or stonemason in that day an age) (Jewish custom, fathers were required to teach the family trade at the age of 12)

As a 'builder' you would work in the sun, lifting heavy supplies, ruff hands, sweating, ragged clothes...

Jesus finally baptized and ready to do what he came to do, was sent into the wilderness (Luke 4:1-13) he didn't eat or sleep for 40 days. Satan tried to tempt him to give in, to tap out and use his powers to eat, to turn a stone into bread. But he didn't ring the bell. He didn't give in. 

Jesus get's exhausted (Mark 4:37-38) after days of traveling and preaching and teaching to thousands day in and day out, He falls asleep and doesn't even awake up during a horrible storm. 

Jesus cries out! Scared for what is to come of his future. 

Nervous, scared and longing for reassurance...escape. Longing for comfort from his disciples. 

Jesus was beaten, mocked, spit on, he carried his cross...he bleed, he was cut open. 

Philippians 2:1-8 "(He) made himself nothing...humbled himself and became obedient to death-even death on a cross!"

He never rang that bell, he never gave up. He trusted his Father, our God. 

God had a plan set in motion, he loved us before we even had Christ to turn to just as he loved his son Jesus before he even started his ministry (Matt 3:17)
And He will not stop loving us he will continue to work in our lives (Philippians 1:6) no matter what. He has made away for us (John 3:16) all we have to do is trust in His will for our lives (Hebrews 11)

We are not perfect...Believers in Christ are not better then anyone, they don't do everything right...we make mistakes, we get angry and we give into temptation...we have ups an downs in our lives. 

We need to be like Jesus. We are to love ALL. Whether they are sick, poor, of a different race, greedy, drug addicts, alcoholics...the list goes on. 

We are no better then our neighbors. Church, God, about love and compassion to those around use...not about how we dress or about the mistakes we make, we aren't here to judge, we are here to help free people from the burden of this sad world. We are to here to teach and guide and love and let Jesus' light shine through our lives. He is the only one that lived a sinless life and we need to let that shine through our lives. 

We are sinners but He wasn't. 

He didn't ring the bell and give up on us. He didn't give into temptation and fleshly desires. 

He became fully like us, so we could be like him. Philippians 2:6-8

His word, the Bible, is that physical evidence. I just wasn't seeing is clearly. I wasn't talking to God, I wasn't asking Him to reveal Himself and His will to me through His word. My eyes were clouded by my temporary earthly desires, I prayed for wealth and love. He was trying to answer my prayers and wanted to give me wealth and Heaven and His love. I was not seeking Him...I was selfish and looking for riches in this temporary life. 

I was blind...but now I (Truly) see!

So I am a believer in God, Jesus Christ. 

I was lost, uncertain...seeking and trying to find truth...but I am found!

Sept 4th 2013 in the middle of the night I let Gods light is shine in and through my life again. Truly shine!

For anyone is curious about how Jesus lived on earth, check out these great sermons.

Jesus The Man: Lowered

Jesus The Man: Loved

Jesus The Man: Empowered

Jesus The Man: Trained

Great books to read:

Kiss Me Again by Barbara Wilson

Welcome to the Revolution by Brain Tome


Thanks for reading!

Also a friend of mine recently shared this 
post and mentioned my previous post on my 
uncertainly of the Biblical God.
If you are interested in looking into when 
I was lost and uncertain and the change 
God has made in my life, here are the links to