The Birth.

I've been meaning to write down Zooey's birth story, so here it is from memory. Might be a little rough in some places, but hopefully I get all the details right.

I was induced August 11, 2010, at 6 pm with cytotech, due to increasing blood pressure and rapid growth of the baby. My midwife was concerned that Zooey was growing too large for me to deliver her naturally and that if I waited much longer, I would need a Cesarean. At this point, Zooey was five days past her due date, and I was growing exponentially by the minute! Ok, not really, but it felt like it!

After about 18 hours of cytotech administration, I was only dilated to a three, and Zooey was beginning to climb back up into my uterus rather than dropping further down into the birth canal. I had already received as many doses of cytotech as was allowed (four), and at this point was committed. I had to have the baby, no turning back now. My midwife recommended that we move things along by administering pitosin. I agreed, since waiting for labor to spontaneously begin would probably mean at least 24 MORE hours of labor, and probably a c-section due to lack of energy and therefore lack of ability to push her out when it was finally time. Nick and I took a little time to think and pray about the decision, and agreed that pitosin was the way we would choose to continue. The pitosin was administered and instantly my contractions, which before had been bearable, despite 18 hours of back labor, became unreal. The back labor intensified, and because I hadn't slept in over 24 hours, I was unable to handle the pain. After only 3 contractions following the pitosin administration, my midwife told me through my screams that I needed to find a way to handle the pain and control my breathing, or I needed to consider an epidural. I tried everything I knew and a few things that my midwife suggested to handle the pain, but nothing made it bearable. I knew that if I continued to try to cope with the contractions on my own, I wouldn't have enough energy to push. I decided to go ahead with the epidural. The anesthesiologist came in and quickly administered the epidural, at which point I felt immediate relief.

Up until this point I had been having mild anxiety attacks, but hadn't mentioned them to my midwife because I thought them to be irrelevant. I had been coping just fine, but when they gave me the pitosin and the epidural, my anxiety attacks increased in frequency and intensity. I had a monitor on my finger recording my heart rate, and when my heart rate began to spike because of the anxiety attacks, I was given an oxygen mask to regulate my rapid and shallow breathing. Finally my heart rate regulated itself, and my breathing became more regular. I was unable to get up because of the epidural, so a catheter was also installed.

I quickly dilated to a 10, and felt an overwhelming urge to push. I informed the nurse, and she called my midwife to the room. The catheter was removed, and everything was set up for a normal delivery. Zooey's heart rate and position were good, and my midwife told me to go ahead and push, after giving instructions for how to do so properly and effectively. At this point, it was August 12, 2010, at roughly 6 pm. I was so exhausted at this point that while I was pushing hard and strong during the contractions, in between each one I passed out and slept for about two minutes before the next set of pushes. This went on for about an hour, and we were making great progress until Zooey's right shoulder got caught under my pelvic bone. The doctor above my midwife was called in, and he said that if I couldn't get her out in the next two pushes, they would do an emergency c-section. My midwife, bless her heart, said firmly, "No! We are giving her more of a chance than that before we give her a c-section! She has been really strong up until now, and she can get this baby out on her own!" The doctor agreed to give me a little more time. At this point, a Code McRoberts had been called, which meant that every available nurse was to drop everything and run to the room where the code was called. It is one of the most dangerous situations, as the baby's oxygen supply is cut off, and the shoulders are stuck. The doctor and midwife reached inside with their hands and squished her shoulders just a little, just enough to get Zooey free. At this point, I was so out of it that I simply thought, wow, it takes a lot of people to birth a baby! There were about ten more nurses in my room than when I started. I was unaware until now that there was any problem at all, and even then I wasn't very worried, probably due to ignorance (I had no idea that anything was actually wrong), sheer exhaustion and confusion. My midwife spoke to me and said that I needed to push harder than I ever had before, and that I needed to get her out immediately. I bore down and gathered up all the strength I could find. I pushed as hard as I possibly could, and felt a burning sensation as she came out. The Lord was so faithful, and in a few minutes, Zooey Michaela Dertinger was born.
As a result of her shoulder being caught, her right clavicle was fractured. Due to a lack of oxygen, she was little blue, and they had to bag her in order to help her start breathing. Zooey responded very well and quickly. She spent the night in the nursery and wasn't allowed to leave the area.
I found out later than I had been given a "generous" episiotomy, and wasn't allowed to get out of bed.

Zooey snapped around quickly and started doing quite well very soon. I was recovering well, and we were discharged after a few days.

Zooey's clavicle is now healed completely, and she handles herself quite well.

That's all I can recall for now, and I am falling asleep. Perhaps more will come to me eventually but for now it is bed time before Zooey decides it is time to get up.


T minus any day now...

It's the waiting game! (:

Nicholas and I are currently staying with his parents in Joliet, IL, until D-Day, by our midwife's request. Had one of our last checkups yesterday, and the baby's head is in the birth canal. We are go for launch! We just don't know exactly when launch is yet, haha! The midwife says that any day now could be the day. Could be tonight, tomorrow, two weeks from now, anytime.

Nick is working hard every night, and we are slowly getting accustomed to the new schedule.

Sorry the update is so short, but there is not much to tell just yet. All is going well, and we are SO EXCITED to meet our little girl!!!!

Love. (:


Contractions Are Fun.

Just kidding. They're terrible. Not fun at all. But I think that if the right people were here right now, I could be having a lot of fun. Mostly because I slept about a grand total of two hours last night. I get really painful contractions every time I lie down. So I don't lie down. They subside/cease when I stand up, walk around, sit. Anything that's not lying down, and I feel much better. BUT. Sleep is supposed to happen WHEN YOU'RE LYING DOWN. So please, please, if you have a heart, pray that I can get some sleep. I would love to lie down again. The real kicker is that I don't even know if these are real contractions or Braxton Hicks/false labor. Who knows for sure.

On a happy note, my sister gave birth (albeit prematurely) to healthy twin girls yesterday! Yay! We are very happy that everyone is doing so well, and it sounds like we will continue to have good reports. (:

More praises: We have been blessed with a car to use, and a much better job for Nicholas! He is starting work today, and will make more than he did before, which is great! Praise the Lord for His provision! We are so grateful and thrilled. Nicholas will be working nights, so during the day our little family will be home together. I am thinking that there will be a designated family "naptime", about which I am very excited. (: Everyone sleep!

That's enough for now. I'm going to pee for the thousandth time.


Life Lived in June

I'm pretty sure it's a summer thing, but I always feel so hopeful and strong, so awake and alive when June comes around. That is how I feel now, in our new apartment, confidently typing my heart out onto this little blog, and determinedly munching raisin toast. I have a kitchen table and a potato bin. My dishes all fit in the cupboards, as do my silverware, and i have a place to put my canned goods and my toaster. My microwave is set up. I planted herbs last night, Rosemary, Thyme, and Basil. I can't wait for the Basil especially. Basil is my friend. I like to add Basil to almost everything, and when Basil is fresh, I get all excited about it. It makes me sprinkle it all around the kitchen, and then hurriedly salvage as much of it as possible, because I don't know for sure when I will get more fresh Basil, so I had better use it wisely.

My fingers and toes are no longer swollen. It's because I'm sitting in an air-conditioned room, I know. But it makes me feel good to know that they are not swollen anymore. I'm alive, and I have a healthy baby growing inside me. I can't believe I am seven months pregnant already! So much has happened since we've been married for these ten months...

"The book of love is long and boring; no one can lift the dang thing. It's full of charts and facts and figures, and instructions for dancing. But I, I love it when you read to me. And you, you can read me anything. The book of love has music in it, in fact that's where music comes from. Some of it's just transcendental, some of it's just really dumb. But I, I love it when you sing to me. And you, you can sing me anything. The book of love is long and boring, and written very long ago. It's full of flowers and heart-shaped boxes, and things we're all too young to know. But I, I love it when you give me things. And you, you want to give me wedding rings. And I, I love it when you give me things. And you, you want to give me wedding rings."

Peter Gabriel, you know how to make my heart cry.

Anyway. This was supposed to be an update on our new place, not a sappy rambling. So. About the new place. We moved in Saturday. And my parents, lovely parents, stayed and helped us set up for many, many hours after everyone else had left. They stayed until 8 o'clock that night, and by the time they left, we had vertical blinds hanging, the kitchen completely set up, the living room completely set up, the bedroom nearly completely set up, and the nursery a little better organized. Oh, and the bathroom was completely unpacked as well, and decorated to boot! My parents have already been SUCH a blessing. Nicholas went back to the city Sunday and painted the old apartment back white for the new tenant, and my parents let him borrow their car to get to the train station, too. As if they hadn't already done enough, they had us over for a cookout yesterday, and let me make a mess of their kitchen in my first attempt at spinach-artichoke dip (which is one of God's greatest creations, I'm telling you), and helped me when I didn't have enough hands for it, and complimented me on it all over the place when it was done, even though everyone in the house had helped me make it. My dad, Nicholas and I scraped the artichokes, my mom continually cleaned up after me, and helped me know what a "slow" boil was, checked the artichokes for me, Nicholas mixed the cream cheese and mascarpone cheese mixture when my arms were too sore, my dad grilled the bread and showed me how to chop fresh spinach (it's harder than it sounds--flimsy little buggers), and my mom helped me with the spices. Nicholas helped me wring out the lemons. My mom washed all the dishes. Poor mom. What a mom.

Anyway. The new place, not sentimental ramblings about cookouts and parents. Though they do deserve a tribute.

Ok. It is HUGE! I am loving it already. It's quiet. So lovely to be able to sleep at night without people shouting and screaming right outside your bedroom (or living room, as is the case right now. We haven't received our mattress set yet, so we are sleeping on an air mattress in the living room. Why the living room? Because it's the coolest room in the place, and has an air conditioner in it.) It's shaping up very nicely. Sometime I will think to post pictures. (: But not until after it's COMPLETELY organized.

Things we are still praying/looking for: a car and a sofa. We have a bus, but it only runs once an hour, so that's not the best for getting to work, and it stops running at 9 pm, which means that if Nicholas works late, he has no way to get home. Also, groceries on the bus while seven months pregnant is not very easy. We also need a car for my prenatal visits, one of which is the day after tomorrow, and we have no way to get there as of right now. At this point especially, I'm not really allowed to just skip my appointments. So please pray extra hard for the car.

And as for the sofa. We have a small recliner and a rocking chair, the extent of our living room furniture that can be sat upon. (: Please pray for that, but not half as hard as for the car. HA! (: But seriously. We really need the car worse.

Alright. The day is ready to sort. And the chicken thighs need to come out of the freezer to thaw out for dinner tonight. Thanks to all of you who helped us move, and gave us lovely gifts in the two short days that we've been here, already! We are blessed.

In His love and ours.


The Current Status of Things.

Our apartment is a wreck, filled with boxes and partly-packed things; but it means that we are getting closer to moving, for which we are grateful. Nicholas has a part-time job secured at the Best Buy in DeKalb, and would love to be full-time, but they are not accepting full-time transfers as of right now, so we will figure out a way to make it; Nick may wind up working two part-time jobs for a while, and I will probably start babysitting.

Sidenote: I can't believe that some women run while they're pregnant! I simply waddle fast, and that's even an accomplishment.


Back to what's important. We will be moving Memorial Day weekend, and would greatly appreciate your prayers, as that is right around the time that Nick will end his position at the Chicago Best Buy. We are sad that he has to go, and are praying for something good to replace it. He has continued to impress his employers and managers with his excellent work and honesty, so please pray that the good vibes will be carried over into the DeKalb store.

I am working on finishing up the semester, trying to get it all done in the next two weeks! Wow. I can't believe that's all there is left of this semester, but I am incredibly grateful that it is such. I have a few loose ends to tie up, such as intermission forms and overcut appeals (please pray for those--I had to overcut a few classes due to illness and prenatal checkups, and have to appeal to the school to excuse the cuts without penalizing my grade). Tomorrow is the last day to turn it all in, so I am going to be running around quite a lot tomorrow, from office to office, trying to get my forms all signed. Please pray for me as the workload is all coming to a close, but there is still so much to be done!

We are continuing to grow together, Zooey and I, and Nicholas and I can't wait for her to get here!

Until further notice, we are here...



A Signed Lease and About Ten Boxes Later...

And Nicholas and baby Zooey and I will be moving. Our lease begins June 1, and we will be moving shortly before, as long as we get approval to put things in the apartment a few days early. Today I am recovering from a nasty illness and packing up books. The boxes are all lined up like little soldiers underneath our tall countertop separating kitchen from living room, and as I look around, I think I might just miss this place a little. We have some very fond and ridiculous memories stored here, in these counters and walls and windows.

But I think our new apartment will hold just as many nice memories for us--more, even. We will have little Zooey Michaela there, and she will come home to that apartment, not this one, and that will be our home for a year. Even more time than we will have spent here at this place. My heart does still ache a little for this place, though. It was our first home, where we learned so much about each other, and have had so many disastrous dinners and mistakes...many of them mine...and where Nicholas set up our very first Christmas tree, and learned that we are living on love.

Enough sappy stuff. (: Time to pack the boxes! And have some chicken minestrone soup. (:


The Play.

It feels like hot candle wax is pent up inside my face. That's about how this head-cold feels. Uncomfortable. But it will be over soon enough.

We finished our closing show last night. I hadn't realized how much of a creative outlet it had become for me until today, when I corrected my thoughts, reminding myself that I didn't have play practice tonight or tomorrow night, either, for that matter.

Instead, I am gearing up for a whole new life. Motherhood. Continuing in the role of wife. Living in a small town, rather than a big city. Having a car again? I'm not sure I know how to drive anymore! Staying home with our little girl, Zooey, and cooking dinner for my husband when he gets home from work. A lot less out-and-about...just as busy? Maybe. Probably. I can't imagine being mother to a newborn and not being just as busy, if not more so, than I am now. But I don't think I will dislike my time off from school, either. I am already dreading the spring semester when I will return. And I haven't even experienced the break yet. I don't want to leave my little girl home with someone else. I want to be a mom, a stay-at-home mom, and already have my degree, and have already done my internship, and not have to think about whether she is being taken care of according to my specifications, or be sure to make my train.

But this will come in time. I will need to finish, to persevere, to have strength until the end. It is very daunting.

I'd like to start painting more again. Today is not the day for it, because I'm quite sure I would come out with a brown mess on a ruined canvas, simply because my brain is far too fuzzy. I can't quite tell if my fever is going up again...I would really rather not take more tylenol. I'm biased against the stuff. But soon, I will paint again. Very soon. I can't stand to not paint. It makes me crazy.

Maybe someday I could sell a painting or two. It's doubtful. But I've always dreamt of selling an art-form of some kind. Maybe someday.

Waiting for Nicholas to get off work, I tried to study for a little. Yeah, right. Because I'm lucid enough for that. Everything I tried came out wrong. Even the homework I did for Dr. V today was so messed up. I hope that he remembers my inability to focus today. He probably will. What a great professor. He always asks how I'm doing. Always asks about little Zooey. Always tells me to rest. It is nice to have a professor say that, as opposed to, "You're late!" or "You've over-cut!" or "Why do you need so many prenatal checkups?" or my all-time favourite, "I can't do anything to help you." Truthfully, though, I think I need to experience all this. So that someday, when I may be a professor, I can be strong in my convictions, and yet understanding enough to recognize when a student just plain out needs a break. You'd think that being a pregnant wife who attends school full-time would be a pretty good reason for that, just like someone who breaks their leg or gets pneumonia.

This post is going to be way to honest, I'm sure. It's the fever talking. I had better go find a thermometer.