Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Where do we really live?

I just have an intense urge to write a blog entry tonight...

Tomorrow, our family will travel for the millionth time. Let me take you on a tour of our "family travel history."

February 2011- married, living in Fort Worth
November 2012- moved out of apartment and into parents' houses for holidays, living in Kansas and Carrollton
January 2013- moved to Richmond, VA for 2ish months
April 2013- moved to South Asia
May 2013- moved back to Kansas and Carrollton because of medical reasons
October 2013- moved back to South Asia, in a city we will call "home city"
February 2014- moved to D-ville for 1 month (after flying to a neighboring country for 3 days for a visa run) for language school
March 2014- moved to D-city for 3 months for baby's birth
May 29, 2014- moving back to "home city"

Our family is exhausted. My daughter, 2+ years, has never lived in one place for more than 6 months. My son who is 26 days old will go on his first plane tomorrow, and his 2nd and 3rd flights will be in another month. The plane ride tomorrow will be Corinth's 17th flight. Every time we pack our suitcases, my daughter is so upset. Tonight when I put her to bed, she said, "Don't go bye-bye Mommy." I told her she needed to go to sleep and that we were all going bye-bye tomorrow. Her response was, "Don't leave me, Mommy. I go with you." Break my heart, child. It's hard enough on adults to travel and live out of a suitcase as much as we do, but when I know that it's hard on my kids, I feel so helpless. I feel like I'm dragging my kids through mud, and they are being drug with NO CHOICE. I feel like a bad mommy. I know that doesn't make me a bad mommy, but I sure do feel like one sometimes because of the life we've chosen for our family. I know we are trusting in God, following Him, and abiding in Him, but it's still hard. Please pray for our family as we travel tomorrow and as we transition back to what I have been telling Corinth is our "other home." Thank you!

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Noah's Birth Story

I have been encouraged by a friend to write Noah’s birth story. I think this is a great idea! If you are not interested in ALL the details, don’t read it!

Thursday, May 1, at about 1:30pm, I told Kyle that I hadn’t felt the baby move but once that day, and I decided to call the doctor. The doctor said that it was definitely concerning and that I should come in right away, so we got Corinth and went to the hospital. (I tidied the house first, because when Corinth was born, my house was not perfect, and it bothered me that someone else had to tidy up for us!) We went to the doctor, and as soon as she did the ultrasound, the baby started moving around like crazy! And then, the doctor looked at me like I was crazy! “Did you feel that? Did you feel that?!?” (in a kind of sarcastic tone…) So, she said everything was fine, but she checked my cervix while I was there to see if I had made any progression from the last appointment. After she finished checking, she said, “your uterus was twisted, so I just twisted it back for you. And I think you will be back tonight or tomorrow for delivery.” So, we went home, and then contractions started. Whatever “twisting my uterus” means did something!! My contractions were 30 seconds long, about 5 minutes apart, and lasted through the night. They weren’t too bad, so we didn’t go to the hospital. In the morning, I decided not to have language class, and called the friends who were giving us a ride to the hospital and the friend who was going to watch Corinth to let them know that I’d like to go to the hospital about 9am. They were all ready! I also called my doctor and told her we would be there about 9, and she arranged everything to be ready for when we arrived! We got picked up about 9am, got to the hospital about 9:30am, and the hospital staff was ready for us when we walked in! One great thing about doctors in India is that most of them give out their personal cell numbers and you can call them ANYTIME, no matter what. It is awesome!

So, anyway, I labored with 30 second, 5-minutes-apart contractions until about 1pm. They were a little painful, but not terrible at all. Basically, for those 30 seconds, I just closed my eyes and didn’t move, and I was fine.  I had not changed in my dilation (a 3 when I checked into the hospital) at all, and the doctors said I should consider doing something to help my labor along. (The contractions weren’t strong enough or long enough at that point to move the baby, so it was basically just exhausting me and the baby without any benefit to the labor.) They gave me 3 options- Potossin (IV), a pill form of Potossin, which is a new product, or breaking my water. At 1pm, I told them I really wanted to do everything naturally and that I’d like to wait and see if I made any progress on my own. They came back at 2pm and I said the same thing. I called the medical supervisor with our company, asked her about the different options they had given me, and asked her what she thought was the best. She told me the benefits and risks of each, and after talking with her, I felt more comfortable about them helping my labor along. I still wanted to be as natural as possible, though, so at 3pm when they came back I let them know that I understood that my labor wasn’t helping push the baby down and out, and that they could break my water to hopefully get things progressing a bit more. So, they broke my water, and BOOM… big difference. It was like immediate, in your face, painful labor.

And there I was. I was so incredibly uncomfortable. I couldn’t find a position that was comfortable, so I was squirming around on the bed, sitting up, laying down, on my side, and everywhere in between. The contractions were back to back, longer, and so much stronger than before. The pain was so much worse than I imagined it could ever possibly be. (If you’ve never had kids and want to one day, please know that you are probably stronger than me. Don’t worry, you can do it!) I had an epidural with Corinth, and had the most awesome labor experience ever, so I had no idea that natural labor would hurt as much as it did. (Tangent, follow me here…) I read a book on natural labor, but good night, it was so much more intense than they described. The book had pictures of women laboring, hugging their husbands and smiling. Put that image in your head. Now, put a big red circle over it and a line through it. It was NOTHING like that! Now, put another image in your head… the lady in the movies who is screaming at the top of her lungs and clinging to her husband’s shirt as if it were her last grip on life. That was me!

After about ½ an hour of the much more intense labor, the doctors checked me again, and I was dilated to a 5. Are you kidding me?! I’m only halfway there?! How can I do this for 5 more centimeters!? At that point, I needed to use the restroom, so Kyle and a nurse walked me to the restroom (inside my labor room.) The contractions were so intense and so often that I couldn’t use the restroom, and I told Kyle I wanted an epidural. This was such a let-down to me. For some reason, I really wanted to labor naturally this time. Not because I think a mom is any better or more fantastic for having natural labor, but just because I wanted to experience it that way. But there was NO way I could handle more time laboring as intensely as I was. Kyle said, “Are you sure?” and I’m sure I looked at him like I was going to attack him. J So he and the nurse walked me back to the bed and he told the doctor I wanted an epidural NOW. They brought the paperwork in for me to sign, but my contractions were so intense and without any breaks that I couldn’t even sign the page. I scribbled with my right hand (I’m left handed, but scribbles look the same from either hand) and they wheeled me to the “operation theatre.” Here’s another image for you- remember that crazy lady screaming at the top of her lungs? Now, she’s being wheeled through a waiting room with other people in it, probably waiting for their own little grandchildren, nieces, and nephews to be born. You should have seen their faces as I was wheeled by! But I couldn’t help it- I had to scream! I got to the operation theatre, where the anesthesiologist was prepping me on what she was going to do. I didn’t care, and wasn’t really listening to anything she was saying. In my head, I thought, ‘they can do a c-section- cut me open right here and take this baby out now, and that would be better than this terrible pain.’ Anyway, while she was talking I felt an intense urge to push. (Because I had an epidural with Corinth, I had never felt this before, but it concerned me…) I told the doctor that was with me, and she checked me right away. She said, “she’s ready! Fully dilated! Roll her back now, she’s pushing the baby out!” I was somehow really excited that she said that! (Scared, too, but so relieved that it was almost over.) So, they wheeled the screaming lady back through the waiting room to the delivery room, where I was met my 4 doctors and 5 nurses. Yes, it was like a really terrible reality show that they were all watching. At that point, I didn’t care. I had my husband on my right, and my angel nurse on my left, and I was pushing.  (This AMAZING nurse, who spoke very little English, told me after delivery that she prayed for me the whole time. I couldn’t have done it all without her!) I pushed 4 or 5 times (probably like 3 minutes worth of pushing) and Noah was born! The doctor held him upside down by one leg and passed him off to the nurses to do his vitals. She said that the cord was wrapped twice around his neck, but everything was fine. And after that, everything was better. It was amazing! I had a healthy baby boy, Noah Coleman Ferguson, and everything was wonderful! God is good!

You know that verse in Genesis where Adam and Eve sinned and God said, “I will surely multiply your pain in childbearing; in pain you shall bring forth children.” That is totally real! But, it’s totally worth it, and I would do it again for my sweet baby Noah!

Noah’s first name means “rest.” We chose this name because we both feel like we are in a place in our lives where God is teaching us to rest in Him. We have so many challenging things in our life (mostly because we just moved to a very rough country to live 6 months ago), and we are continually challenged to trust in, rest in, and rely on God alone. Noah’s middle name, Coleman, is also my maiden name. I really wanted to honor my dad in this way, especially since he’s got two girls whose names did/will change. This way, the Coleman name is still passed down! And of course, the poor boy is a Ferguson as well! J

Noah Coleman Ferguson was born at 4:44pm on Friday, May 2, 2014. He weighed 3.67 kgs (8.1 lbs) and was 51 cm (20.1 in) long. And for all my nursing friends, his APGAR score was an 8 and then a 9!

Thank you to everyone who prayed for Noah and for me during pregnancy, labor, and delivery. You are a blessing to us, and I am so thankful to God for you and your prayers, encouragement, and support. To God be the glory, great things He has done!