Archive for Motherhood

Charlie’s Birth Story 1.5 yr later

Birth Story; Charlie

I wasn’t going to write up by birthing story for Charlie. I’m not sure exactly why, but I guess just because I’ve been there before. I changed my mind because I had a request to hear my story from a friend. Since it was different from my labor and delivery with Thor, I decided to go for it!

I was more stressed this pregnancy than with my last one. My husband, 1yr old son, two dogs and I have been living in a room at my parents home since March. Our plan was to move to a different state in June, but with family issues and not wanting to switch doctors for prenatal care, we ended up staying longer.

The hospital where I was set to deliver was NOT at the top of my list. A friend of mine had delivered there a few months prior and I was not happy with her experience at all (although she didn’t have any complaints).

I went into labor with Charlie the night before she was born. I knew it was labor, but I wouldn’t consider it “active labor”. I was just uncomfortable with cramps and decided to go to bed early to sleep through it.

After an uncomfortable night of not getting much sleep, my labor pains were the same as they had been the night before. As long as I was sitting or laying down, my contractions were about 7 minutes apart, and felt more like strong cramping than labor pains. When I stood up though, my contractions were around 45 seconds to a minute apart, and very strong.

I was so confused about what was going on, that I left Thor at home with my younger brother, and the hubby and I headed out to the hospital.

Once we got to the hospital, which was less than ten minutes away, I was brought into a sectioned off room (where they take the moms who are clearly not far enough along to get admitted so they can check them, and send them home), while I waited for the midwife who was on call to come check me.

At this point, I didn’t look like I was in any pain at all so I can see why they thought I was going home. If they knew anything about me, they would have known that there was no way I would spend more time in the hospital than absolutely necessary for the situation I was in.

The on call midwife came in with her “student” to ask if it was okay if he could get some practice in and check me. If you haven’t had kids yet, I’m sure in your mind, you are screaming “OH MY GOSH, NO”, but after that first one, things get less “who are you touching me” and more “as long as you stay out of my way”.

The “student” proceeds to tell me how he is going to check my cervix to see if I actually need to get admitted, or if I can be sent home for a while longer, and asks me questions about how far apart my contractions are, jotting things down real casual like he’s planning on sending me home. It’s not until he finally checks me that he realized I was already at a “6” and that he did indeed need to find me a room in the completely full Birthing Center.

I’m going to tell you now that I sincerely wish I had done a home birth, and that I will not ever have a baby in a hospital again (unless I can go to Fargo and see Terry who delivered Thor), and even then, I would ask him to do a house call since we would only need him for around an hour anyways.

I was not happy with my experience at this hospital, and would not tell anyone to plan for a birth there if they had any other option.

Once I got moved to a room, my mother came and I was able to get settled in. I had the most phenomenal nurse! I loved her and wish I could have kept her through my entire experience at this hospital, but she was only there for the delivery process, and I get that. Most large hospitals are like machines, each person has their job on the assembly line, and it keeps them efficient.

I was told that I had to get an IV with antibiotics since I tested positive for type b strep during my pregnancy. I would usually have fought over this, and I honestly have no clue why I didn’t. The IV would have had to be in my system 4 hours before delivering the baby in order for it to make a difference, and there was no way I was going to be in that hospital longer than two hours without having a baby so the meds wouldn’t have mattered anyways. In hindsight, I should have told them no, and stuck to my guns. I’m thinking at that point, I really didn’t care anymore.

I hate the part the hospital when they make you lay in the bed to get a good reading on the baby’s vitals. Any time I have to be laying down during my labor is not for me. Probably why I prefer to labor at home. I went back and forth between the bathroom and the bed since it was as far as I could go with the IV in my arm, and after an hour of very intense labor (the longest hour of my life I swear) the nurse wanted to check me again.

-I have to add a little story in here because I thought it was so funny. My mom wasn’t there for my first labor/delivery, so this was her first time experiencing me like this. My husband was a seasoned vet by this time since we had done this together once before. He was on his iPad doing lord knows what while I was in pretty intense labor. I know they teach the husband how to help his wife through labor, especially when she is doing it without the help of drugs, but he was on his iPad. Now if you haven’t been here before, you probably have this vision in your head of the husband gently rubbing his wife’s back while she goes through contractions, offering up words of support. I think my mom had this mindset too. She was clearly concerned, and was wondering why on earth he was just doing his own thing when his wife was in an extensive amount of pain, and about to give birth to his second child. So she asked him about it. She asked him why he was just sitting there on his tablet while I was doing labor on my own, and he told her there’s nothing he can do at this point, and I don’t like for him to be in my way.

I love my husband. He knows me, and even if he doesn’t get me all the time, he doesn’t question it. He just goes with it. I like to do pain on my own. I like to be in my own head, and I like to get it done my way. That’s how I am, and I’m grateful for a husband who just let’s me.-

Anyways, once I finally get back into the bed in between my 15-30 second apart contractions (seriously, I could not catch my breath), the nurse was able to check me and said I was at 9.5. I didn’t want anything to take place that wasn’t 100% natural, but my water still hadn’t broken, and she asked me what I wanted her to do. I told her just to go for it, and almost instantly, my contractions changed from the “cervix opening” kind to the “time to push” kind. You other moms who have gone without drugs will know exactly what I mean when I talk about the different kinds of contractions.

I was on the bed and ready to push, my husband was holding one of my legs, and I had to call my mom to come over and help with my other one, because guess what? There wasn’t a single midwife in sight! Not even the “student” one was around, and I was pretty sure my nurse was going to be delivering my baby. Which would have been fine with me, because I was planning on telling whoever delivered the baby how to do their job anyways, and I had instructed the husband to takeover if they weren’t doing it properly.

Finally, after I had already instructed my nurse in the proper way to deliver my baby so that I did not have any tearing, in walks the midwife and her shadow. AND she has the nerve to ask if he can deliver my baby! Do you really think I freaking care at this point? I told her that’s fine, but he better assume the position and I proceeded to explain again about the whole stretching so there was no tearing thing since he missed the first lecture. I’m glad I explained to him too because he clearly didn’t have any expertise in this area and my hubby almost had to jump in.

After what felt like 3 or 4 pushes, he was pulling a perfectly yucky Charlie out of my vag and handing her to me. I remember saying to her “Sweet girl, I’ve been waiting so long to meet you!” As my husband took his signature “right after they came out” picture to send to everyone, even though the baby still looks like an alien at this point.

Charlie’s umbilical cord was extremely short, so we cut it pretty quickly. She could barely reach my chest for me to hold her before we cut it. We cleaned up a little, and were able to move upstairs to an “after birth” room where Thor got to come to meet his new sister (even though he was more interested in the buttons on the bed).

That’s about it! I did not have them put the gunk in her eyes, or get s vitamin k shot since she obviously wasn’t having a circ done. We did do the hep b and the foot prick to do the blood tests, but that’s it. That’s my Charlie story.

Forgot to add, my main reason I did not like this hospital was because I chose a certain midwife for a reason. Even though it was during business hours during the week, if it wasn’t my midwives day to deliver babies, then it didn’t matter. No matter what, I ended up having a stranger that I didn’t choose delivering my child. At tho hospital where my son was born, the midwives worked in the building so they would just come over if you got admitted, and be there to deliver your baby, then go back to business. Plus, no one compares to Terry.






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This busy life of mine…

Wow. What a year our family has had! We finally moved from Fargo (which was our plan for some time) and moved to St Paul for what was supposed to be a 3 month layover on our way to our final destination (Colorado Springs).

Well life did what it does best, and our 3 month stay at my parent’s house turned into a 9 month crowded living situation. I think that if it wasn’t for our children, and their sweet smiles, we would have been sent on our way a long time ago!

Here is the breakdown of our year for each of us:


Joseph Family 2013

Daniel kept working for United Airlines through our move, commuting to Denver a few days a week to work. He ended his journey with the airline in August, and since has been focussing on his marketing company. We have missed our flight benefits, but LOVE having Daniel home and being able to spend time with him.


Catherine left her job at The Children’s Place in March when the family moved. It has been bitter sweet transitioning from being a retail mom to being a stay at home mom. In September, Catherine became an Independent Beauty Consultant with Mary Kay and has been loving her business! She took a break in October to have baby Joseph #2 and loves being able to set her own hours and spend time with her kiddos!


Thor has had quite a year! He learned to crawl, then walk. He travelled to 5 different states (California 3 times to see his Uncle Caleb). Thor got to celebrate his first birthday, and also became a big brother (a role which he has embraced like a pro!).


Adalia Charlotte (otherwise known as Charlie) came into the world on October 9th at 12:47pm. She weighed 6lbs 8oz and was 19inches long. She is a fabulous eater, and prides herself on being a better sleeper than her big brother. Charlie is still unsure how to feel about her brother, but she does let him kiss her even though he is extremely rough.


Jackson and Kira are enjoying being in Minnesota. They have made friends with the two dogs across the fence, and have had a blast chasing other animals (ranging from birds and squirrels to ducks and wild turkeys) throughout the year.


We are looking forward to the coming year and the challenges it will bring, and we are so grateful for our friends and family that are so supportive of us.


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Making Decisions Today For Tomorrow

This last week I came across an article someone posted on Pinterest, by a mom who was attempting to be helpful to new mothers. She was informing them about decisions they would have to make at the hospital after the baby was born. The article was well written and informative. This mom gave all the options when it came to certain decisions without taking a side in any of the situations.

At the end of the article, in the comment section, women offered up their very diverse opinions (which i have no issue with. That’s what the comment section is for). These women (I’m assuming most of them are moms) all felt very strongly about the opinions the were offering up, and told their stories with pride.

The issue I had with all the comments is that instead of supporting each other as women and as mothers, the moms who felt very strongly about a certain decision went about tearing apart the mothers that made the opposite decision. No one bothered to ask why someone made a certain decision, or how they feel about it now that it has already been made.

I feel such a strong sense of pride in being a mother. I also feel like as a mom, part of my job is to support other moms, share and accept advice, and be understanding of how incredibly different it is to parent every child.

Obviously, this is just how I feel about the situation, but I do not think its okay for moms to attack one another and make other moms feel poorly about themselves because they chose to make one decision or another when it comes to parenting.

In my mind, so long as you do the research and make the decision that feels right for you and your family, that’s all you can do. If things don’t work, most of the time you can change it. That’s what parenting is about, and no one can make decisions for your children better than you. No one knows them better, and every child is so extremely different that you have to take things one day at a time just in order to not go crazy!

I guess the whole reason for this post is to say that we, as mothers, should be a universal support system of advice, war stories, and most of all, full of understanding for one another. Mothers come in so many different styles and colors with different cultures and beliefs, but if you are being the best mom you can be to your children, no one should be able to make you feel down about it.


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Teething Ugh…

9 months after my Thor was born, now his body is deciding its time for teeth!

What did you do when your little one started teething? Were they uncomfortable? Were they irritable?

There are so many different things people do to keep their children comfortable during this time when they are so frustrated and annoyed with the itching going on under their gums. There are medications, oils, people freeze just about anything that their child will chew on to help with numbing…

We have silicone chew toys, one that vibrates even, but they don’t SOLVE anything. These toys are only a temporary solution until he gets tired of chewing on them.

Just like most moms, I can’t stand to see my kiddo in pain, so I went on a hunt! I knew I didn’t want to give him any medicine if I could help it, so checking on natural options was the plan.

I was considering purchasing a teething necklace for myself to wear with silicone beads first since I had seen them in a few boutiques around town. They are chunky, they are bright fun colors, and they get slobbered on. For me, that means I would have my kiddo’s spit dripping down my shirt all day, cause he does not stop chewing… EVER!

Finally when I was just going to purchase a silicone teaching necklace to hold him over, I came across a review for a Baltic Amber teething necklace. Off I went checking out reviews , watching videos on YouTube, all those things someone would want to do before making a purchase for their child.

Here’s what I found out…

The beads are really tree resin. They release an oil when heated by our bodies which is absorbed into our skin. The oil contains an acid that act like a natural swelling reducer, fever reducer, and pain reliever among other things. THEY ARE NOT FOR CHEWING!

The link below contains more info and also offers the best selection of both Baltic Amber and Hazelwood jewelry for both adults and babies. I suggest you read the info on this site if you are even a little curious about these products.

To make my long story a tiny bit shorter, we went first thing yesterday to a boutique in town and purchased a strand of non polished Amber beads for my son to wear as he goes through this teething process. I’m hoping to see changes in him or at least a lack of discomfort within the next week or so. He’s such a happy kiddo that I’m not sure if I will be able to tell, but we will see! I will give updates as I remember.

If you are in the Twin Cities area of MN, I would advise you to stop into the boutique I grabbed his necklace from. It’s called Baby On Grand and has two locations. Website link below. I forgot my card when I went to pick up the necklace and the owner let me just take it and call with my card number when I got home. Talk about customer service and MN nice all wrapped up in one. Needless to say, I will be shopping there again!



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