Thursday, December 22, 2011

Perfect Christmas Madness

I wish that one year I will have Christmas all wrapped up. A craft ready each day for the children to do, Cards sent out, decorations up, presents made, brought, and wrapped, meals sorted, a clean house on top of all that and a partridge in a pear tree!

It seems like I fail at many of those things on my list, this year, and in fact most years. But I still live in hope that I will make the perfect Christmas happen. I wonder if anyone else suffers from that pressure, to have the perfect Christmas, buy the perfect present that .... is going to love, to make the perfect meal, to be the perfect host.

I must admit that I'm not perfect at anything.... so why is there still this idea in my head that I can be perfect at all those things. Instead I think I need to resolve myself to the fact that I am not perfect nor will I ever be (this side of heaven). So why not then create my own new ideas of Christmas. Let it be a fun time together doing things when we can, while we can. One day my children will be all grown up and I may not get to see them for Christmas. So stop worrying about making everything prefect and just enjoying being together while they are with me.

I Pray that you too have a blessed Christmas, and don't get pulled into this idea of the perfect Christmas and enjoy being together with your family, and friends, spending time, sharing a meal and playing together. Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

The Little things.

My how the little things can change the day or how you feel about it. Today was a busy day cleaning up after our adventures with the vomit bucket. While my husband did a great job of looking after everyone, he didn't manage to catch all the vomit. So with 5 people in the house vomiting you can imagine we had lots of washing of sick towels, bedding, vomit buckets, to do. So on the scale of things I like doing with my day, this is going to be full of things that are not my favorites.

Needless to say my emotions were a bit on the gloomy side. However after a short stint in the garden, a quick water, and look, I felt so optimistic again. Seeing the new life, new fruit growing that is going to soon be feeding my family and keeping us busy, preserving and processing, more work, but enjoyable work. I felt hope that is too will so pass. The washing will get finished, as long as we keep washing.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

More Children!

Yes more children! I would love to have more children! I get asked a lot if we are done yet or will we keep going? My simple answer is Yes! My long answer is I'm loving this sooooo much, why would I want to stop. When I cuddle my baby, kiss him, feed him, spend time with him, I am so in love. Plus the more I have the better I'm getting at it. As I go along I learn more about myself and about loving, caring and bonding with my babies. The joy that they bring into my life is astounding! Yes there are times when you are sleep deprived and weary, we all have those hours, days, weeks, sometimes months, but the joy and delight they bring is so worth any of that.

There are longer answers to this question. However my simple answer is, why would I want to give this up, I'm just getting good at it. :)

Monday, December 19, 2011

One sick, all Sick

One of the more challenging things about having a bigger than normal family is when you are sick. If one get something, everyone gets it mostly. This weekend has been one of those weekends for us. We had Christmas early due to some of the family being in the country. So we had Christmas lunch at my husbands Grandmothers house, which is about an hours drive from our house. On the way home one of our daughters vomited. Now this was the same night as the carols by candle light that we like to attend. So we pulled Ervy the van over, and cleaned up some of the mess. Thinking that her vomiting may have been caused by the long drive home after eating too much food we decided to take her home and put her in the bath a long with her little brother who was asleep in the back. The other children were really excited about going to Carols so talked me into taking them along on my own. So we went, put our rug down near some friends and enjoyed sing and waving our candles. As the night progressed Elijah announced to me that he wasn't feeling very well. We had had a long full day and Carols where nearing the end, so I suggested that he lay down on the rug. He was happy to do that for a while. However his friends were there and enjoying the fun of dancing over near the corner of the stage. So he joined in.... Well then it began.... He started vomiting.... right there in front of everyone.... Oh gosh the embarrassment....But slightly funny at the same time. Another child had come up to him amd stood there watching him vomit..."Your vomiting!" Really? The minds of children can be so funny at times, vocalising the obvious.

So that was the end of Carols, I packed the rest of the children up and took them home. While it was the end of the carols it was not the end of the vomiting! I phoned my husband on the way home and told him to get the bath running for Elijah to get in, and explained the situation. Mean while he is wetting himself on the other end of the phone about it all. Not so sure he would have been laugh if the situation was reversed. So after getting home and cleaning everyone up, we prepared for the long night.

My Marvellous husband was the king of catching vomits. That night we have 5 of our 6 children vomiting, and I was as well. At one point Isaac and I were sharing a vomit bucket. And trying to get a 2 year old to vomit into a bucket is a feat in itself. He would start crying then do a small vomit, while you were cleaning that one up, he would walk off and start vomiting somewhere else.

If we didn't laugh we would have cried!

Thankfully the worst of it is over with, and now we are on recovery and clean up. I think we have a few clean towels in the house. But tomorrow hopefully we are feeling up to a good clean out.


Sophie (our first) pregnancy and birth was quiet a drama, and filled me with quiet a lot of fear about birth. A little while before we got married someone shared with me about some of the abortive effects that the pill can have, so before starting our married life we discussed it and talked about how we didn't want to abort any of our babies even unintentionally, so didn't want to go that route when it came to birth control. So we decided to leave it to God and let be what would be.

So 4 months after Sophie's birth we were expecting again. That news was both really exciting and scary at the same time. We know from the start that we wanted a big family, or at lest have the option for a large family, so have a c-section with the first baby wasn't really going with our plans, and I definitely didn't want to have a second one with this baby. Hence having Doctors tell us that we could only have one or two more children.

Again I had bad morning sickness, and a baby to look after. However because Sophie was still only 4-6 months during the worst of it, she was still in that stage of sleeping lots and I was able to sleep with her. We made to the second trimester and the sickness eased quiet a bit, and I was finally about to enjoy that stage of being pregnant and having a lovely baby that I adored. The pregnancy went fairly smoothly and at my first anti natal doctors appointment I talked with the doctor about what happened during the last labour and how I wanted to try and have a vaginal birth with this baby, and I was very blessed with a Doctor that didn't see any problem with that, in fact they gave me the option to choose to have another c-section but didn't see any reason why I shouldn't be allowed to try. As the pregnancy went on I again deleveloped Gestational Diabetes, and was able to treat that with diet and exercise again. We had our 20 weeks scan and were very pleased to see we were infact having a ....Baby... and it was a girl.

As the pregnancy went along, I had it in my mind that I was determined to have this baby naturally but was getting increasingly fearful that it would end the same way that Sophie's birth had. Those questions about whether I was even able to give birth?, can my body do this?, Do I even deserve to have the achievement of giving birth? So many questions and so many fears, and during all that time the option was still very open for me to choose to have a c-section.

So with Fear at the door knocking the only solution was Faith... Faith overcomes fear. I remember going to our home group at the time and sharing that I was really scared about what was to come... and the group prayed for me that I would feel peace about it all, and one of the group gave be a word from the Lord. He sang it to me..."Fear Not!, for I am with you, Fear Not! Fear Not! for I am with You, Fear Not! Says the Lord!" Those who have been christian for a while might know this song.

While the hospital was happy for me to try for a natural delivery of this baby they did have a heap of rules.

I was advised to come in as soon as labour started.
I needed to be monitored for the whole labour, that ment being on the bed with monitors attached. Which ment I wasn't allowed in the bath, which really helped with pain in the first labour.
I need to give birth within 12 hours of labour establishing.
If I hadn't gone into labour on my own by ten days over then it would be an automatic c-section.

So there were a few things to overcome, as well as my mental state of half believing that I wasn't worthy of being about to deliever naturally.

My due date was 2 days after Sophie's birthday. Not wanting to take any chances I planned Sophie's first birthday two weeks early. Ben was quiet sick that day, and spent a fair bit of it vomiting in the bushes. Besides that Sophie had a great first birthday party, with friends and family.

Well wouldn't you know, the next day I went into Labour. Ben was still recovering from the yesterdays vomiting adventures. This time it didn't start with contractions, my waters started to leak. At first I thought I was wetting myself, it was horrible I was crying because I couldn't control bladder, as time went on I realised that I wasn't peeing myself, I didn't even need to go to the toilet. So I told Ben, who of course freaked out, as men do sometimes. We dicided since contractions hadn't started that I would put a pad on and go out and have some dinner, as we might be in for a long night. While eating out, I could feel more Leaking happening, so I went to the toilet and checked, this time I had a show. We phoned Ben mother to make arrangements for Sophie to be looked after, and we rang someone to take us into the hospital.

When we arrived they were really busy. Our hospital has about 5 birthing rooms, that night 11 babies were born. Having started Labour with contractions with Sophie, waters leaking was definitly a much nicer way for labour to start this time round, as I was easied into it. Due to the hospital being so busy that night, the midwives quickly Checked me out and made sure I was in fact leaking fluid and by that time light contractions had established. After that the rush of birthing mothers started.
Due to the fact that I was only in the beginning stages of birthing and there were more pressing cases, the doctors didn't see us at that point. So I asked the midwives if I could hop in the bath (Knowing that I wasn't allowed too) being that no doctor had told them I couldn't the midwife cheekily let me in. It was great! releaved the pain and was so relaxing. Four hours later the Doctors discovered I was in the bath, and ordered the midwives to get me out. So Thankfully I go some the time in there. By the time I got out and monitors were on I had dilated to around 5 cms, which was amazing news for me, because I stopped dilating at 3 cms with Sophie for about 10 hours, to be 5 already was a great relief mentally for me. Once on the bed things got harder, I was given the gas to help me through, and an cannula was put in, just in case I went for another c-sections, which is what they totally expected. That night they were training staff, and had student midwives and doctors on, they hadn't bothered to ask me if they could attend my birth because they fully expected me to go up stairs for a c-section later that night. As it turns out everyone that had a student on them that night did end up having a c-section.

On an interesting side note, After reading Ina May Gaskins book, it made total sense to me, why I struggled so much to dilate in my first birth. I'm one of those people that hate going number 2 in public toilets, in case the person in the next stale can hear, or I'm taking too long. So why on earth would I be able to birth with people I don't know all looking at that area of my body in bright lights. In Sophie's birth the lights were never lowered and I went through 3 midwives, so Ben was the only there that was with me from start to finish.

Anyway back to the story...At around 11pm that night my midwife came in and asked me if I wanted an epidural as the doctor was going home for the night and that it would take a while before they would be able to get someone else to come and do it. After speaking to my midwife and her checking how far along I was, 7cm but she could stretch me another 1cm, she said no, you can do this, your nearly there. Having her beleieve in me was Amazing! and JUST what I needed.

I should also say that Ben was awesome during all this time, even though he was still sick from the day before, rubbing bits that hurt to help with pain releif and playing music, that he had prepared ahead of time. Praying and singing, and joking with me, communicating with the staff on my behalf, He really was my rock. The Lord was awesome during this time as well. All my fear was gone, and I could feel His presence with me. I also understood more of what He went through for us, when dying on the cross. There was only one way out and that was through it. But for an awesome cause, Us! and Her, my baby.

A couple of hours on and it was time to push.... it was at this time that I realised what I missed with Sophie's birth... the feelings of pushing... During her birth I had an epidural and while there was a sensation there I couldn't really feel all that well, and had no idea how hard I had to push. So it took some pushing to get baby out. I would push and she would move down, and as soon as I stop she would go back in... So after some practise at it, I finally got her down enough for Ben to see her head. When He said he could see her, that really helped me know I was getting somewhere and nearing the end, and it was On! I wasn't going to stop pushing til this baby was out.

As after pushing for about an hour our baby was born. She of course was gorgeous. I had a small rip that need stitching up. Before baby was born we had choosen a name for our baby, she was going to be call, Charlotte Victoria-Iris. While I was being stitched up by the doctor Ben was holding our baby girl and started Calling her Charlotte, as soon as he did I knew it wasn't right for our little girl. Her name was Faith... I had to have Faith to overcome my fears in birth, and God was very Faithful in helping bring her into the world.

Ben agreed and there she was Faith Charlotte. An adorable new member of our family. We both needed time to heal, and she spent some time in ICU being monitered for the any effects of the Gestation Diabetes and Jaundise. We got feeding up and running fairly quickly and got home from Hospital 7 days later on Sophie's actual Birthday. What a surprise for her, and an extra special birthday present.

(The Living Bible) What is faith? It is the confident assurance that something we want is going to happen. It is the certainty that what we hope for is waiting for us, even though we cannot see it up ahead