Sunday, August 10, 2014

A Beautiful Agony

Two weeks ago today, the most life changing event of my life took place. It's a story I feel I must tell in detail and yet I feel completely inadequate in expressing the depth of pain and beauty in the story.  It's like taking a picture of a sunset.  No camera can capture the incredible beauty in that vibrant sky.  And yet, we all continue to take pictures of the sunset, hoping that just this once we'll be able to capture the glorious sky and be able to take it "with us". I feel the same way about this story.  I hope that as I write and then read and reread the story later, that I can in some way encapsulate the wonder of it all and take that with me for life. 

It all started nine months ago with a positive pregnancy test, followed by eighteen more positive pregnancy tests (to confirm the status of the first).  I was finally convinced that I was indeed pregnant. Isn't it funny how we are so quick to doubt the very things we hope and dream of?

The next three months were spent trying to find something to eat that my stomach wouldn't revolt against. All scents except laundry detergent were repulsive to me.  Netflix and the couch were my two best friends. After three months of this misery, the morning sickness cloud lifted and I could breath and eat in peace again.  From that point until week thirty-six of pregnancy, growing a human being was for the most part, a breeze.  I had a good reason to take extra good care of myself.  I ate well, walked a few miles every day, relaxed in the sun every afternoon and went to bed early.

At week thirty-six Jadon and I found out that Baby Girl Ross was in the breech position.  Since day one of pregnancy, I knew I wanted to give birth to this baby 100% naturally.  I was working with Treasure Valley Midwives and was planning to deliver this little bundle in the comfort of my own home.  My reasoning for doing all of this is more that just a preference, it's a belief, a conviction, something I've poured hours of time into researching and learning about. Finding out that "Kugupu" (our name for Baby Girl Ross until we got to meet her in person) was breech was very disheartening.  For starters, the midwives don't deliver breech babies, and vaginal breech delivery is not routinely practiced in hospitals in Idaho.  Every state is different and we just happened to be in a state that defers all breech deliveries to a C-section.

There are many things you can do to try and turn a breech baby and so I dutifully did them all.  I tried 2 External Cephalic Versions,  chiropractic adjustments, acupuncture, Moxibustion, head stands, inversions, ice on the baby's head...everything.  
Hooked up to monitors, getting ready for my first External Version
Pregnancy headstand 

At 38.5 weeks I was feeling desperate.  This baby was going to be here soon and I didn't know where I was going to deliver her.  I called hospitals, birth centers and midwives all over Idaho, Utah and Oregon.  I had a very promising lead in Portland and started moving in that direction. In Portland, Vaginal Breech Delivery is making a comeback.  Doctors and Midwives are actively pursuing making these deliveries more normal in all states.  They are training doctors to deliver breech babies and one midwife I found teaches clinics on breech deliveries all over the state of Oregon.  After much prayer and investigation, Jadon and I planned to head to Oregon in week 39.5 of pregnancy so that I could have a natural breech delivery.

With this plan in place, I went to bed on July 26th with not a care in the world.  I was dreaming of my "destination delivery", thankful to have found this option and excited about the outcome.  The morning of July 27th started too early.  Jadon got a phone call at 5:00 a.m. from the funeral home he works for as a part time job. Within the next 15 minutes he was up and out the door headed on a body pickup.  I had been chilling all night long and so I got up and put a blanket in the dryer and then crawled back in bed with the hot blanket, hoping to sleep another hour.

6:00 a.m. rolled around and it was time to get up and start the day.  Jadon planned to be home from the body call by 7:00 a.m. so we could take our normal morning walk together.  As I got dressed, made the bed, took the dog out and all the normal morning stuff I realized I was having some legitimate contractions.  Not just Braxton Hicks.  Slight pain would radiate through my lower back and into my legs.  The pain would build and then ease off and be completely gone.  I knew that contractions like this could go on for hours or days and I was sure it was just a fluke that I was feeling them today.  By 7:00 a.m. Jadon was home and we left the house to walk the dog.  About 1/4 mile into our walk as I was just telling Jadon that I had been having some contractions I felt a POP and then a GUSH!!!  I froze and looked at Jadon wide eyed, "I'm 100% sure my water just broke." I said.  We were both taken off guard.  We were supposed to be in Portland for this.  We debated continuing our walk, and then another GUSH gave us our answer and we quickly headed home.

Once home, I quickly called the midwives I was working with and they directed me to come in and be checked to make sure it was my water breaking and confirm the position of the baby one last time.  By 8:00 we were meeting with them and they confirmed that it was my water breaking (which I was already 100% sure of) and then they checked to see how far I was dilated so Jadon and I would know how soon this baby was coming.

To our utter shock and amazement, the midwives told me that I was dilated 6 cm. I don't think we even responded to that information; just stared back at them in disbelief. They told us, "You're not going anywhere else to have this baby, you are going to have her right here, and she is coming soon!" All of my hard work in searching for the right birth location flew out the window as we only had one option. That was to go to the hospital, decline a C-section, and pray for a doctor that knew how to deliver breech babies.

Treasure Valley Midwives were wonderful in supporting us. They quickly printed off all of my records and called the hospital to let them know that I was coming in for a vaginal breech delivery. I think the words, "Prepare yourselves," were part of that conversation. If there had been time Jadon and I both would have had a melt down or a freak out. But since there wasn't... we had to quickly change our plans to get ready to head to the hospital, St. Luke's Downtown.

Before heading home to pack up what we needed, we bought some snacks and stopped to get some breakfast at River City Cafe. I wasn't about to go through labor without having something good to eat! I got a Raspberry Muffin and a Peach Scone. This may have been my attempt to Carb-Load in two hours. I also insisted on taking a shower once we got home and doing my hair and make up before we headed to the hospital because I wanted some good pictures during the labor! In my head, I equated this venture to a race, where feeling confident about how I look plays into my performance. Labor really is a mind game, and I think in the future I will use this tactic as well. We snapped a few parting pictures of my "baby bump", knowing that it wasn't going to be around much longer. Then we jumped in our VW Jetta and headed to the hospital.
Making plans with my mom before heading to the hospital 
Packed and ready to go
Another complication to this whole endeavor was that my mom, who is my birth doula, was 4 hours away in Utah finishing up a birth with another woman! The moment that she found out I was headed into the hospital she started driving our way in hopes of making it on time to help me through part of labor. The entire scenario was far from how I had anticipated Kugupu's birth going. Without my mom, I felt a bit alone.  She was going to walk me through this.  We had talked about it and I KNEW she KNEW what she was doing, even if I didn't.  Well, God knew this too and so He provided.  Paula, the head of Treasure Valley Midwives, called before we reached the hospital and said she had done some investigating and found out that the on-call doctor was the best doctor at St. Luke's, she was even familiar with breech delivery. WOW! God is good!  Then she even offered to meet us at the hospital and be with us until my mom arrived.  WOW again! Of course I said, YES!!! I started this journey with Paula and I trusted her.  The thought of having her there at St. Luke's was SO comforting.

By 11:30 we were walking into St. Luke's.  I remember stopping multiple times on our way in, to breath through a contraction.  They were starting to get stronger and talking or moving during them was out of the question.  I remember telling Jadon that I didn't want to have to "rate" the pain if they asked me too.  I didn't know how bad the pain could get, so "rating" it was only setting myself for failure.  What if, this felt like a 6 on a scale of 1-10, but then it became so severe that it was way off the chart...say, a seventeen, I'd be overwhelmed by it and want to stop fighting.

Thanks to Treasure Valley Midwives calling ahead, our check in was quick.  We were escorted to our "labor room" and our nurse came to introduce herself.  Her name was Jennifer and she was immediately TOO CHATTY for me.  She rambled on and on about the room, the lighting, how the bed worked, where the ice machine was, yadda yadda yadda.  I was just trying to breathe through the next contraction and wasn't feeling very friendly.  I tried to be pleasant but honestly have no idea how I responded to her.  Finally, she left and we had a few minutes with Paula who was already there.  She was reassuring of my decision to decline a C-Section and a calming influence in general.  The next visitor to our room was Dr.  Marietta Thompson.  She was all business and didn't mince words when it came to telling us that St. Luke's wasn't a fan of our decision to have a vaginal breech delivery.  She told me she knew I had already made up my mind but still had to tell me the risks involved.  Jadon and I listened to what we already knew and then signed the papers stating that our minds were still made up about the breech delivery.  Once we had done that, Dr. Thompson's "vibe" changed.  She told us she was familiar was breech deliveries from years of working in Iowa before she came to Boise.  She let me know that the baby and I were ideal candidates for this, and she was very optimistic about the outcome.  Now THAT was encouraging!

The next two hours were filled with mild contractions, questions from nurses, paperwork, baby position checks and other hospital protocol. We were probably told the same thing by 4 different people and asked the same questions six different times.  

One moment, that stands out is when the nurse asked me if there was anything they could do to help bring my Christian beliefs into the room. I told her I wanted all the nurses to sing hymns. She didn't really catch the sarcastic humor and just did an awkward laugh. Then she asked Jadon how I learned things best, and he said, "flannel-graph". I wanted to bust up laughing but I was in the middle of getting through a contraction. Once again she didn't catch the humor. Her loss... 

At 2:00 p.m. My mom arrived. I've never been so thrilled to see someone. She was exhausted from being up all night at the previous birth, but so glad to have made it on time. 

One crucial part of a successful breech delivery was that I would need to progress in a timely manner. Because of that, I started doing everything I could to use the contractions for my benefit. From 2 o'clock till 4 o'clock I went from doing squats and lunges during contractions, to being down on the floor in a frog position.
My mom taking notes while I worked through contractions
Trying to get things moving
In between contractions
At 3 o'clock I felt a noticeable difference. The contractions were starting to get harder and every one took a little bit more out of me. I kept my eyes closed through each one as they were getting worse. I had to put myself in another place mentally to handle it. At this point I could still talk some between contractions. They were lasting almost 3 minutes with 90 seconds in between. Despite the pain, I definitely didn't want anybody to touch me; and I yelled to Jadon  to make that clear. 

At 4 o'clock another doctor came in to see how far I was dilated. I got up went to the bathroom and then laid down on the bed.  Moving even that much was excruciating. To our relief I had dilated to a 7. After moving to the bed there was no way I was going to get up to move again. So that's were I stayed for the next 4 hours.

If you choose to go through labor naturally there's no way of knowing how you personally will deal with the pain. From what I've heard some women cry, some woman scream, some women cuss, some women writhe in pain, and some women run around... I'm sure the options are endless. I started by choosing to do something I'd like to call "the running man". I was laying on my back with one hand holding onto each bed rail, when a contraction would hit I would start running my legs while holding onto the bed rails for all my life. I was pretty much unaware that I was doing this as all of my concentration was on breathing. This "running man" Scenario repeated itself every few minutes as a contraction would hit until about 5 o'clock. 

I thought the transition from 3 to 4 o'clock had been hard but the transition at 5 o'clock was much more difficult. All of my labor had been back labor and now I was about to experience pain starting in my back and radiating through my body that I didn't even know existed. I rolled over to my right side and held the handle the right hand rail with both hands. My eyes were still closed at this point as they had been the entire time. 5 o'clock to 8 o'clock is pretty much a blur of pain. My legs started shaking uncontrollably, I started to sweat, I puked after every single contraction. My mom taught me in our birth class that breathing is the most important thing to get through pain. Boy was she right! Breathing and mental stamina were my two greatest weapons. I had to completely separate myself from every other aspect of life in order to get through the pain. I refuse to allow myself to attach to the pain to emotion. I couldn't be angry or sad or overwhelmed. Those thoughts would start to creep in and I had to push them away. There was nothing I could do to change the situation I was in, so labeling them would only make me feel it more. 

The calm between the storms.
There was no time between contractions to do anything other than puke and collapse in exhaustion for a few moments. At one point I was trying to sprint ahead of my contractions in an imaginary race... Trying to get ahead of them with each breath. I also pictured myself climbing a mountain as a contraction would build and then come back down. I am told that I was pulling on the bed rails so hard they looked like they would fall off. Others in the room stepped in to help me get through every moment. My mom was in front of me coaching me through every breath. Jadon was behind me, breathing and rubbing my lower back. Paula was holding onto one leg lifting it as a contraction would hit to help things continue to progress.  Jennifer was holding my other leg and helping me to relax as soon as a contraction was over. When even one person was gone from their station I felt alone and the pain became even more overwhelming. It really was a team effort at this point. Because this was a breech baby, it was of ultra importance that I didn't push at all but only breathe through every contraction. I can't begin to explain how difficult that is. It truly is torture. By blowing your air out after each breath you can keep yourself from pushing, but it's the most unnatural an uncomfortable feeling in the entire world. Some contractions I would kill, I would breathe perfectly through them, and the team around me would would bolster me up with praise. It was hard to do two of these contractions perfectly in a row though. The mental strength that it would take was completely exhausting. 

I know ultra runners speak of entering the pain cave, but I doubt there is any cave as dark or as deep as the labor pain cave.  I wanted to cry so badly. I wanted to crawl up into my mom's lap and have her hold me like a little baby. I prayed to God in my head that He would give me more time to catch my breath after every contraction, but He never did. As the pain would begin I would think to myself "I can't do this",  then I quickly had to change my thinking into "I will do this"... I had no other choice. Then after far too long the pain would ebb, I would puke and crumple, already dreading the start of the next wave. 

Time seemed to stand still, and yet  eventually it was 7:25 p.m. and Dr. Thompson came in to check me again. I was complete!!! I had finally dilated to a 10!!! Bad news followed though, Dr. Thompson said she wanted me to breathe through another 30 minutes of contractions before they would let me push. If I'd had the energy to cuss her out I would have. I moaned somewhere deep inside myself, and then had to stop as my feelings were cut off by another wave of pain. 

Going from breathing to pushing is like shifting gears, there comes a point where the engine is going to SCREAM for you too shift if you keep speeding up. Being fully dialated and not allowed to push was like trying to drive down the interstate in 1st gear. I felt like I was going to explode inside.  Despite the amazing discomfort, Dr. Thompson was wise to have me do this. She wanted the baby to shift down on her own so that when I did push the baby would come out quickly. There is a risk of breech babies getting stuck in the birth canal. So allowing that extra time was the right thing to do. 

At this point  things started to get exciting. Jadon, my mom, Paula, and everyone else in the labor room started putting on scrubs. I had to go into the OR room to push and have the baby delivered. Dr. Thompson was just doing this as a precaution. She wanted the anesthesiologist and NICU present in case there were any complications. My team of four helpers did an amazing job of changing clothes while still helping me through every contraction. 

At about 7:40 p.m. I was being wheeled into the OR room. The room was white and sterile and filled with people. Everyone was standing by waiting to make sure everything went okay. Talk about an audience. The worst part about being switched to the OR room was having to move on to a different bed. I hadn't moved since 4 o'clock and just lifting my body from one bed to the next caused more pain that I was already dealing with. The operating table was flat and didn't have any bed rails, there was no longer anything to hold onto. Even at this point Dr. Thompson told me not to push yet. I was okay with that though because I knew we were close. This pain would not last forever. I assumed there was a baby on the other side and yet doubted it at the same time. Pain so all-consuming can make the prize seem irrelevant. 

After three or four contractions I was finally given the go-ahead to push! Hallelujah!!! Never have I desired more pain so badly. I knew a baby coming out couldn't feel good but anything to relieve the pressure of contractions sounded better than I was currently dealing with. 

If I could make light stream down from heaven and Angels sing, this is the moment that would start. Jadon and my mom would lift my shoulders up off the bed to give me a little more umph. Paula was holding one leg and some guy I had never seen before was holding my other leg. As the contraction would start I was allowed to push for all I was worth.  I managed to fit three or four pushes into one contraction. After two pushing contractions, Dr. Thompson said you can reach down and feel your baby. I put my hand down and sure enough, there was something coming out of my body. It felt like part of me but yet I couldn't feel it. I was in awe and horrified at the same time. Another pushing contraction and Dr. Thompson said now you can see your baby. "No I can't!", I yelled, "Someone's hand is in the way!" Paula quickly moved her hand and there sticking out of my body was something about the size of a loaf of bread. The baby was Frank Breech, meaning she was folded in half, with her butt coming out first. I gasped out of both pain and disbelief.  It's very unreal to see something like that coming out of your own body. Once Baby Ross was out up to the bellybutton, Dr. Thompson pulled her legs out and around. Another push and everything was out but her head. I haven't mentioned the pain yet associated with pushing, but as my sister once told me, imagine pooping out a watermelon... Okay you get it. 

We all waited breathlessly for my next contraction to hit, knowing that this would be the final one before Baby Ross was all the way out. At last that contraction came and I pushed again with everything I had. Burning pain was quickly washed away by the sound of a little girl's cry. Within seconds a crying little baby, covered in Vernix, was handed up to me. Immediately every glimmer of pain was gone and I was utterly in love with this little girl. She was trembling, I was trembling, but as I held her I think we both knew everything was going to be okay. Jadon leaned over and hugged us both. I think we both were crying.  What a glorious moment! Her little hands, her little feet, everything about her was perfect. She clung to me and I clung to her, both of us glad that the pain was over and we were at last together. This instantaneous transition to motherhood was more than just a label. I was ready to do anything and everything to love her, protect her and take care of her. 

Dr. Thompson took care of medical things on the other end of my body. Delivering the placenta, making sure my uterus was starting to contract, checking for tears and stopping the bleeding. All of this took second fiddle to this beautiful little girl in my arms. The aftershocks of pain were now background noise. This little girl had my full attention. 

An hour later and I was back in my room, nursing with Jadon by my side. We were both exhausted and hungry but very happy! Our little Charlotte Timber Ross was here, in our arms...what a Beautiful Agony this had been!

Friday, July 11, 2014


Let me be completely week 37 of pregnancy, I feel completely DONE with this.  I'm guessing most women do (those who don't, should consider being evaluated by a psychiatrist).  It feels like the last 6.2 miles of a marathon...only much worse.  You're so close, yet so far from the finish line.  The worst part is that the finish line isn't even a known's just a guess.  It would be equivalent to running a marathon and at mile 26.2, being told that you actually have to keep running, you're not quite there yet.

Maybe you've been there, or maybe you're wondering what it feels like.  Let me sum it up in some meme's.  They say it better than I ever could!

First, you're completely exhausted.  Good luck being productive.  Writing To Do Lists is probably a waste of time at this point...unless your wonderful other half is going to take care of that list for you. 

And yet...although you are exhausted, sleep eludes you EVERY NIGHT.  It's probably practice for the night shift you're going have to swing for the next 3-18 years.  

And so you lie awake in bed thinking....

...which doesn't help the sleep problem at all.  So you wake up the next morning feeling like this.

You also start to feel very needy and yet completely irritable at the same time.  You're poor husband is probably in a lose lose situation here.  

Then there are the physical things. You're sinuses become all stuffed up, you're voice changes, thanks to lovely hormones. In general, you're quite sure this isn't your body but only a bad dream. 

And so you put on your husband's oversized t-shirts and basketball shorts in an attempt to hide the discomfort from yourself.

You've been wearing YOGA pants for the past 6 months and now even those feel tight.  You dream of the day when your athletic apparel will once again get to fulfill the roll it was intended too.  Wait though, you'll have to buy all new clothes first though because even spandex has it's limits (which you've long since pushed past). 

Did I mention, you have no idea what your feet look like anymore.  Do you even have feet???

There are days when the whole pregnancy still seems unreal.  Is there really a baby in there? This will mess with your delirious mind and you'll wonder if possibly this bump will turn out to be a litter of puppies or if you just need to work off that burger you ate. 

No matter what that bump is, people will still want to touch it.  If only they'd like to carry it for a stint as well.  You wonder why you never bought this shirt at week 22 when all this baby bump rubbing time...if there is a next time. 

Not only will people touch you're baby bump, they'll comment on whether it is too small, too big or just right.  It's like Goldy Locks and the Three Bears everywhere you go.  Don't let it get to you though because...

You consider journaling about all your pregnancy woes but realize that if anyone every got a hold of it, this is what they would say...

So instead you push it out of your already forgetful mind and go back to napping and dreaming of the day when this precious bundle will say...

Until then you'll do all you can to be ready for that day.  I suggest know so you're ready to "throw" that baby to your husband to catch.  

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Keep Your Eyes Peeled

Koda and I taking in our surroundings while we stop for coffee on our morning walk 
A while back I heard a pastor tell the congregation that we often don't truly notice the things around us. We step outside and don't hear the birds chirping or notice the breeze blowing through the tree tops. We rush through life without seeing God's creation and workings all around us. I remember thinking, "Not me, I always hear the birds and notice the sky."

This thought wasn't based on my perception of my perception (see how I did that??? Tricky!) It was based on everyday experience. Every morning Jadon and I take a walk together. No matter how early we have to wake up to make this happen, we make it happen. Before I was pregnant, it was a morning run, but now it's a walk. So every morning I step outside and notice the birds, or lack of birds chirping. Not a morning goes by that I don't notice and mention the beauty of the sky or the stillness of the air or even the size of the moon (since our walks are often before the sun comes up).

Last week my sister came to visit and I was telling her about this realization and she said, "I always notice God's creation around me too." We talked about why this is and why the majority of people probably don't notice these things. We boiled it down to one thing...we were taught to greatly appreciate these things over everything else...let me explain.

I grew up in Wyoming with very non-conventional parents. We didn't go to movies on a Friday evening, we drove through the hills looking for Elk, Antelope, Deer or Wild Horses. I remember bouncing along in the backseat of our old Suburban peering out the window looking for an animal on the horizon. I was barely big enough to see out the window and so I would get up on my knees to get a better view. My Dad would turn around and say, "Peel your eyes kids, this a great place to see Elk (or another animal)." My mom always had an old bird book stashed in the glove box and she would pull it out to identify any bird she was unsure about.

Our family spent vacations camping, not going to Disney world. Laying awake at night and listening to coyotes yip or wolves howl wasn't disconcerting. It something to lie awake and marvel at. In the morning we would discuss how many we thought were in the pack and how far away we thought they were.

Some of my favorite trips were backpacking trips with my Dad. He's always had an uncanny ability to know directions in the wilderness. On one particular trip, He brought a map of the mountain range we were in, not because he needed it but because he wanted us all to learn the names of the mountain peaks around us. We would sit around the camp fire and identify the mountains. To this day I can see those mountains from a distance and still identify some of the peaks.

When we were hiking we were taught to notice the smells around us. Did we smell deer or antelope or elk (you know they all have a unique scent that they leave if they have been in the area). We watched the ground for tracks and then identified what animal the track belonged to.

All of these things are so precious to me and I'm forever grateful to parents who made God's creation the priority, not media or technology or whatever the "new cool" kid's activity or toy was.

As I think about having my own little girl in my arms soon I know I want her to have the same experience I had. I hope I can be just as unconventional and wonderful as my parents were. I know that there will be times that baby girl #1 or any of the other children Jadon and I may have, will complain about this (I know I did); but I also know that it's the eternal things that matter. People we truly SEE people around us? Creation's God's handiwork all around us. I believe being perceptive to nature also teaches us to be perceptive to people. It means that we are tapped into our surroundings, whether that be people or nature. Jesus was always fully present and I want to be the same way as well as teach/model that to my children.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

How To Make Your Pregnancy More Uncomfortable?

I know you've always wondered the ONE thing that books and websites on pregnancy never cover..."How can I be more uncomfortable during pregnancy?" I mean, really...thanks for covering the...
"How To Throw The Best Party For Your Baby Bump"
"10 Things Your Mom Won't Tell You About Pregnancy...But Grandma Will" 
"How To Keep Romance Alive While You Have A Bump That Keeps You An Arms Length Away From         Everyone and Everything, Including Your Shoes" and
"99 Things To Never Say To A Hormonal Pregnant Woman Unless You Want To Be Punched"
...but could ya step outside the box and answer this ONE looming question???

Well, I'm here to step in and fill this much needed answer void!  It's really simply actually.  There's only 1 step.


It works wonders! You'll instantly be drastically more uncomfortable.  And to make it even better, this discomfort doesn't wear off; it sticks around for a long time...possibly the rest of your pregnancy.

I'll tell you about my recent experience with this trick.  I bought a hammock about a week ago and I'd been waiting for Jadon to hang it up so I could lounge in sun in this comfy, swinging contraption.  Well yesterday Jadon got around to doing just that.  It took a few tries to find the right location but finally he did and I decided to give the hammock a try.  In retrospect, I should have made the dog try it first.  Anyways, not more than 5 minutes into climbing into the hammock, one rope came undone and I pulled a Humpty Dumpty and had a great fall.

I landed on the upper part of my back and instantly saw black spots and had the wind knocked out of me. I've been sarcastic about this entire ordeal but it really did hurt and was incredibly scary.  I was sure I was going to end up like Joanie Erickson Tada and be have to learn how to paint with my mouth.  Being 36 weeks pregnant didn't help with scare. I could barely move or even stand up and since I was long overdue for a trip to the E.R. so we decided this was the time to go.

There is nothing "Emergency" about most of the Emergency Rooms I've been in.  We waited a good hour to even be moved from the waiting room back to a random supply corner that they partitioned off to make a spot for us. At this point I was starting to feel a little better, super sore, but I could at least move.  I had also felt the baby kick a few times which was reassuring.  Since I was past the point of panic I could fully appreciate the ridiculous things that happened at the E.R.

First, there was a man in the waiting area that was sucking down a hot cup of coffee.  Either it was the best coffee in the world or he was the most expressive guy in the world.  He "ahhh'd" after every slurp and then made little kissing noises in between taking drinks.  I couldn't turn my head to see him, but the noises he was making were enough to make a good 8 minutes of waiting totally entertaining.

Then while we were taken back to the makeshift room, the male nurse noticed that I was carrying the neck brace that the reception nurse had given me.  He loudly calls out (as if there is an old woman in some corner sitting at a typewriter taking "minute notes" on the entire workings of the E.R.")
     I said,
    "No, I didn't refuse it.  I just took it off when it became uncomfortable."
    So he says even louder,
     Once again, I reply
     "No, I didn't refuse it; the nurse said I could take it off."
      And then, in case Matilda typing in the corner didn't hear, he yells
At this point I just gave up.  Clearly my responses were going nowhere. Apparently I was now liable for my own if I wasn't already.

The next ridiculous thing was the Doppler they decided to use to try and listen to the baby.  It was a about the size of a razor.  The nurse goopped my entire stomach up and then rolled that little thing ALL OVER trying to find a heartbeat without any success.  She turned the volume up till we were all "static'ed out" and then turned it back down.  After trying this for quite awhile she said,
   "These dopplers aren't very good", and decided to try a larger one which was sitting RIGHT THERE. Why she didn't start with the larger Doppler, I will never know.  Anyways, we heard the baby's heartbeat almost immediately which was a relief. gets even better.  While I'm laying there waiting for the doctor to see me, one of the doctors pops his head around the corner of my partion and says,
    "How's that breathing treatment I gave you working?"  Hmmmmm...breathing treatment? For me?
    I said,
    "Well, if I had one I'm sure it would have worked wonders."
That's when he realized I was the wrong patient and excused himself.  Hahahaha!!!! Jadon and I busted up laughing after he walked off.

So....long story short, the doctor finally saw me and felt around on my spine to confirm that nothing was broken.  He suggested an X Ray to confirm no fractures but since you're not supposed to get X Rays when pregnant, I declined.  Three hours later we left knowing that the baby was OK most importantly, and also that I didn't have any broken bones.

Since then, I've been very as you can see this method REALLY DOES WORK!

My "Emergency Room Pose"
Notice my sweet outfit.  Somehow I didn't have time to put on a respectable outfit before my fall. Crazy, I know!

Monday, June 30, 2014

Three Years Later

Has it seriously been 3 years since I've blogged??? I can honestly say, I think I've been "too busy" to blog for 3 entire years.  That's right...3 years of too much to do.  I'm not saying that's changed today, but I'm making time for this regardless of the ever growing to do list sitting next to me.

In so many ways I feel like I just blogged yesterday.  I'm still sitting at my laptop, headphones in, listening to Hip-Hop as I feels so normal.  However I look down at my belly that's been growing for 36 weeks and realize that actually A LOT has changed.  Here's a quick recap on the past 3 years...if that's even possible.

So my last post was written in Kemmerer Wyoming, where Jadon was the pastor of Valley Evangelical Free Church and I was just getting started as a Personal Trainer.  From Kemmerer we spent a few months in Haviland KS, where Jadon grew up.  We were catching our breath from life while in Haviland. Sometimes you need to do that.  Once our breathing normalized and our heart rate came down we moved to Boise Idaho where Jadon is the Associate Pastor of Meridian Friends Church.  That move brought the most changes.  First, we couldn't keep our 2 wonderful/beautiful/hilarious dogs.  Believe me, I cried many tears over this and occasionally I still do.  I can honestly say, it's the hardest thing I've ever had to do.  Maybe I'll tell you the entire story in a blog someday.  Once in Boise I had to start working full-time to supplement income (remember I mentioned being "too busy").  I started working at Shu's Idaho Running Company and quickly moved from selling running shoes on the floor to manager.  I loved working there!  I was experiencing my dream job.  I was surrounded by running shoes, runners and the running lifestyle ALL DAY!  The perks of shoe and race discounts more than made all the work worth it.

About 2 years into working at Shu's, Jadon and I were surprised with a positive pregnancy test! Actually, I'll confess, it was more like 15 positive pregnancy tests.  What is it in human nature that makes us SO skeptical of the good in life?  Anyways, after forking out more money that Jadon was happy with on the most expensive pregnancy tests; I was finally willing to admit that I was pregnant...that, and the almost instant nauseousness was enough to convince me.  My first trimester was a bizzzzz to say the least.  I was sick, sick, sick (that deserves an entire post as well).  I had to quit working and when the puke cloud finally lifted I decided not to go back to work at Shu's.

Now I'm 36 weeks along and ready for this baby girl to be out of me. I'm tired of peeing every 15 minutes, listening to people's comments about the size of my baby bump, grunting when I bend over to tie my shoes, getting heartburn from foods as mild as bananas and rice, and being tired all the time but unable to sleep. Between long stints of laying in the sun while I crunch through cups of Sonic ice (my biggest prego craving) I'm busy getting the house ready for a baby and building a playlist for labor (instead of a race as usual).

So...that's life at this moment 3 years later!  We've also added a new dog to the Ross family.  Koda is a 1.5 year old Husky/Wolf mix.  I'll tell you more about him later too.

Well, I've got to go chew some Tums and pee and so.... goodbye for now!

Sunday, August 28, 2011


Check out my video on the Altra youtube site.  I get the most views, I win a free pair of shoes!!!


Thursday, June 23, 2011

summers taking over

it's finally summer in Wyoming - 75 degrees, cloudless skies, long trail runs and evenings spent sitting on the porch.  It also means blogging must take a backseat.  I've waited far to long for this beautiful weather to not spend every waking hour outside playing (I wish that was reality) or at least as much time as possible.  So, that being said my blogs may be very sporadic and few and far between. 

In the meantime go ahead a read about one major reason you need to visit Wyoming this summer
 - Oyster Ridge Music Festival & Burn Your Lungs 5K, 10K, and 1/2 Marathon