The Labor

So labor, huh. Hadn't really known the word very well before this year. AT ALL.

With my first "labor" I heard/ felt my water break as I was drifting off to sleep one night. Mild cramping was felt in my lower tummy on the way to the hospital. Once checked in, all cramping stopped so petocin was involved. I would say there was discomfort, exhaustion from mild pain for too many hours, but an epidural brought relief before it got unbearable.

With my second, I was 10 days late and scheduled to be induced. I showed up already dilated to a 4. I remember some faint contractions throughout the prior days, but nothing too uncomfortable. I got the epidural before the petocin kicked in. Virtually painless labor and delivery.

With my third, it seems I spent much of May having uncomfortable contractions. 3 false alarms where I really thought true labor was happening: 2+ hours of contractions moving upward and increasing in pain. And then they would stop. For a few days.

But Friday. With my third time experiencing the birthing process. That was something new.

From about 2:30 in the afternoon on I noticed constant contractions happening. Like I had much of the month. Nothing to break my stride, but enough to pause and notice them. And that they were 10 minutes apart and not stopping for several hours. By dinner time I was holding my stomach through them and taking some deep breaths. Maybe some grunting through them. Richard and baby Roman stopped by for dinner, so it was nice to have company to take my mind off the discomfort. The following hours, however, got pretty ugly.

I kept thinking about what my doctor said about how bad they should be before I should go in to the hospital. She said I shouldn't be able to breathe. So I waited. I took a bath. I groaned. I rested on the bed sideways. And realized this was not false labor. I started to pee buckets every 10 mintues. Where on EARTH was all this pee coming from?! I waited for my water to break. It didn't. And then the pain got so bad I started to cry. That's when Mike and I knew it was time to go in.

So this pain, it was like nothing I had ever felt before. The mean glove-squeezing I talked about before was the precursor. Like the rumbling of thunder before a storm. I knew to brace myself into a sitting position. And then everything and everyone around me sort of faded into a distant world. As if a glass dome (or a cake plate cover) was over me. Voices, noises, people seemed muted and so far away as the pain set in. And the pain- it was a minute or more at a time and it was like a long dagger was slowly cutting me in half across my abdomen. From one side to the other in a smiley face motion. An evil smiley face. Like a clown. A mean clown.

And then it was crazy- after a minute the dome lifted and the pain was gone. It was so bizzare. I knew I then had 4 minutes to be completely normal and pain-free. And those 4 minutes were amazing. I would take a deep breath and remind every part of my body to relax from the top of my head, through my tense shoulders, to my toes. Then it would come back, a little harsher at times, a little less other times. But sheer pain nonetheless. And I would bury my eyes deep into the thickness of the carpet twine and feel the knife rip through me again. It was as if I could remove the top of my body from the bottom and set them next to one another. It was so confusing to me after the contraction that I was intact. That I didn't flop in half and break into two pieces.

I think the best way to describe harsh contractions- it's like that one minute of pain is a gory, cheap horror flick. And then the next four minutes you get to flip to Seinfeld. And it just goes back and forth between the two. It was such an odd experience.

And for the moms who don't get pain relief by choice or circumstance? I have a new found respect for them, extended even more beyond what it was before. They should have gold stars every day for life. I got drugs only dilated to a 5. So what on EARTH does it feel like after 5?! Those women on this earth who have and will feel the entirety of pain from start to finish in the birthing process should really have special privileges. Like a free trip to the Bahamas for 2 weeks every year of their life.


The Name

These were the names that were on our list:


There was one nurse in particular that ADORED my daugher, she couldn't stop telling me how beautiful she was. I commented on how this made it more of a challenge to name her as we could not find a suitable name. She looked deep and long into her eyes and said 'she looks like an Olivia' and also raved about the name Juliet had I offered. After she left, the name Sylvia popped into my head. It was 5am, too soon to call Mike. But the name rang in my head over and over as I looked at my nameless baby girl and out the window of a clear Sunday morning. I knew he would either immediately love the name with me or dismiss it, there would be no inbetween. He loved it. He imagined calling her 'Sylvie' down the hallway in our home. We sealed the deal when he came back to see her with the boys that morning. And that's how we found Sylvia's name.



Um. I have my daughter now.

And you know. I've seen shooting stars. Bright rainbows. Northern California. Paris. I've seen some amazing things with my eyes, but nothing prepared me for the feeling of looking into the eyes of a breath-takingly beautiful daughter quite as elegant as her. She's amazing. It was really hard to place a name that fit her beauty. Her special sparkle. It took us a couple days, but we found one that suits her perfectly.

Her name is Sylvia.

She was born Saturday morning (5.23.09) at 3:23am.

8 pounds 10 ounces.

Daddy's dark hair. Long, curly eye lashes. Bright blue eyes.

I couldn't be feeling more grateful. We are home and healthy and well.

Smooth and fast delivery with zero complications.


Harajuku Lovers Baby

I fell in love with this scent and packaging before I knew any of the awesome details about it. And because I'm such a Gothic Lolita.

Harajuku Lovers Baby is the one I liked. It's fresh, crisp, and clean. And has a touch of baby powder aroma. It's like Love's Baby Soft Perfume has an older, more polished sister.

Turns out it's one of the scents on Gwen Stefani's fragrance line! She explains on the site how she went to Tokyo for the first time in '96 and fell in love with the Harajuku scene. Found inspiration in the people as they were expressing mad creativity and unique style, mixing and matching all sorts of different clothing together.

Anyway- love the line even if it is targeting a much younger crowd. You can score some at Macy's.



I'm finding a WHOLE lot of creative inspiration looking at my favorite photos by Lowe Photography. Pretty much the most affordable, creative photographer in Arizona. I hope I can get on her calendar for my newborn photos! All of these are her shots.

I like how she is able to capture a mixture of feelings and emotion that seems to really represent her client. One shot could be Tender. Another sexy. Another innocence. Playful. Happy. Peaceful and serene. I think a photographer does a great job when you can look at a photograph and find that it emits a feeling without explanation. As if the photographer was a fly on the wall. That takes a whole lot of talent and experience and Lowe Photography is there.


girl room idea #2

My sister-in-law Beka introduced me to the fabric store this year. As soon as we walked in I spotted this dazzling fabric I can't stop thinking about. All I could imagine was how cute it would be for drapes in a little girl's room. It was the kind of fabric that looked like you would use it for the skirt of a prom dress. It was fluffy white with little blue sparkles all over it.

This is not the fabric, but I like it as well for a magcial girl's room. I saw this image on A Cup of Jo.

I remember when I was pregnant with Zane browsing at art and stumbling across a beautiful poster of a sweet fairy. If he was a girl, that was going to be his theme.

So here's another idea I wish I could pull together on my own. Vintage Fairy Theme Nursery. Again, somehow I keep imagining blue walls. I know, not very girly. Soft shades of blue, white, and fairies. Sounds enchanting to me.


image from here


the girl's ideal room

I still can't decide on how I will do this little girl's room. I am so drawn to this light shade of blue paired with red. I am seeing it all over the place now that I am looking for it. There are several variations of this blue/ red combo and I love them all.

My apron.

The kids' place mats.

Cute invites Sheri made.

This book (thanks to Katie's reminder, btw check her awesome dresses she made inspired by the colors in this book!). And ps. notice this same blue/ red color on her blog.
In the spirit of trying to be frugal, I am going to refrain from creating my ideal nursery for her. For now, anyway. But isn't that what's great about having a website? In my imaginary nursery I would paint her walls this light shade of blue. I would get white bedding with a matching bedskirt and curtains that have a little touch of of red (tiny cherries in a row or a simple red line). And she would have this really cool red bookshelf I saw at a furniture store along with the matching dresser.
And I would have chunky white square picture frames above the dresser of photos I took of red things. Shiny Mary Jane shoes, shiny red round gourmet lollipops, maybe some red balloons in the blue sky or a shiny red ball, etc.
You would have this awesome Eames rocker in her room (in white).

And a really modern and sassy white crib- I would try to find this in all white.
Your bookshelf would have white baskets on it with your rattles and toys in them. I would find a way to get the matching bed skirt/ curtain fabric to line the baskets. Or a coordinated ribbon to tie around them. And then I would get very special Blabla loveys to fill the spaces in your shelves. I love how it would tie the blue into the bookshelf in addition to these little guys being super soft and lovable.

Then I think your room would be complete. I know this messy way of putting images and words together doesn't really create the visual I have, but it feels good to get it out in one space and the way it works in my head looks really awesome.
BTW- If I guestimated the cost of putting this nursery together I would come to over $3000. If we painted it ourselves.