Saturday, November 12, 2011

Baby Lars and such

What a ride that last week has been! It all started a few weeks ago when my blood pressure began to creep up.  Because of my experience with Anders we began to monitor it and it got up to worrisome levels. I was checked into the hospital a couple of times both on weekends just for monitoring and the second time my doctor had me stay overnight just to rest and try to get it down. I began taking a blood pressure medication and it sort of helped but then it started going back up again.
So last Saturday while I was getting ready for the day I had a  moment where I saw stars. My blood pressure was 165 over 100. I called my Doc and we agreed that it was time to have this baby! She told me to get child care lined up for Anders and come into the hospital that afternoon for a C-section. I originally had expressed my desire to have a normal birth with no surgery and she was very supportive of that. But in the end it was becoming dangerous to keep carrying the baby with those BP levels.
I called my parents and they started the hour drive to our hospital and I packed whatever was left over to pack and off we headed! Anders was super excited about meeting his little brother AND about having a sleepover at Grandma and Grandpa's house. There was lots of fun things to look forward to.
Once we got to the hospital the wheels started turning fast and the surgery was scheduled for 6:00. It was a surreal feeling knowing that this was the baby's Birthday and that I was facing another C-section. I was feeling pretty shivery inside.
My parents came and visited for a little while and then took Anders with them. Then we just sat around waiting.

One of the fun things about the day was that November 5th is a holiday in England called "Guy Fawkes Day". It's one that we Americans really know nothing about but I had heard about it a day or two before and then a friend from Scotland made mention of it on Facebook that morning. When we got to the hospital my nurse was English and I mentioned it to her and she was so surprised that I would even know about the holiday. I'm sure that our little guy will know about "Guy Fawkes Day" too. =0)

I gave birth to David Lars Jensen at 6:47 pm on Saturday November 5. I got to watch most of the surgery in the reflection in the light over my head. I made up my mind while I watched that I'm pretty much done with this whole 'birthing' thing. It was fun to see the doctor hold Lars up over the sheet to say hello. He was screaming and healthy even at 5 pounds 15 ounces. Chris and I both happily noticed that he had reddish hair since we were hoping for another red head.
Our doctor is an amazing women who is doing what God put her on earth for. She was so supportive and kind and she did a fantastic job with the c-section. She also brought a camera for Chris to take video and pictures just in case he forgot his. Sure enough his iPhone was in his pocket underneath his scrubs so we needed to use hers. He got some great footage of Lars being born and he loves showing it to anyone who wants to see.  Just ask him and he'll whip out his phone to show you!

I stayed in the hospital until Wednesday afternoon. Thursday was his first doctors appointment and when the pediatrician got the labs back that afternoon he called the house to say that we needed to admit Lars into the NICU to get treated for Jaundice. Unfortunately we were gone all afternoon and didn't get the worried messages until 7 in the evening when we got home. What a yucky surprise! Our neighbor Eva came over and got Anders to spend the night with them and off we headed to the hospital. I was already exhausted and had over done it that day so I was in tears at the thought of having to leave our little guy in the hospital.  It was a long night and since then it's been a bit crazy. Lars is doing great. His jaundice is gone and he's eating and pooping like a champ. I've been having to pump my milk to take to the hospital and trying to breast feed him when I am there. We're hoping to bring him home tomorrow.

One more little complication has been that even though I have had Lars my blood pressure hasn't gone down yet. So I've needed to get extra rest which is really hard to do. I've had a bit of a constant headache and my energy is not back to normal. I'm really struggling with discouragement and it's been emotionally taxing to not have our new baby at our side. Anders has been extra whiny and grumpy and he misses his new brother. We've all been little on edge to say the least. Yesterday my friend Rachel came and visited with her three kids. She took all the kids out to the new Chick-Fil-A for some fun playtime. She also tidied up our little house and folded a basket of laundry. Chris and I got to go and visit Lars and have some dinner out. What a blessing that was!

We're looking forward to tomorrow and the possibility of bringing our little guy home again. I'm also looking forward to feeling better and not being afraid that I'm going to have a stroke if I just do normal mom stuff. We have lots to look forward to from here on out.
Our sweet little Lars

Chris all ready for the birth!

Every mama needs a horribly unflattering "after the fact" photo. Lars looks pretty cute though. This picture was taken moments after I was rolled into recovery and I was so shaky and out of it!


Ariana said...

Thank you so much for filling us in on the details, Gretchen! I am so thankful for your wonderful doctor, and that everything went relatively well with the delivery. I am so sorry that you haven't had Lars at home, and for all of the stress of worrying about your stress levels-- such a Catch-22! All four of you have been through a lot this week, and you are all entitled to so much grace. It's OK to be cranky and/or weepy. We are really wishing we could visit you and meet Lars, and Amelia says she's really happy for Anders that he is a big brother now. Much love to you all!

Erin said...

Thanks for the great update, GG! I'm so sorry you're still having to lay low and praying that you'll be back to normal SOON. We're all excited about sweet Lars and can't wait to see him at Christmas! I'm glad he's doing so much better and eating so well! Lots of love from all of us.....:)

Mom said...

We really enjoyed our days with Anders while some of this was going on... he is just so in love with Lars! We were super delighted to hear today that you have taken Lars home and can now just love on him and feed him whenever he needs it. Wonderful. Congratulations Gretchen, Chris, and Anders!
Love you guys...

Great Aunt Gretchen said...

Thanks for all of the details! So glad Lars got to come home today. And we heard that you'll be coming out for Thanksgiving. We can't wait to meet & hold Lars!!

Katie Truelove said...

We're praying for you guys and for little Lars! It sounds like you still need lots of rest and comfort so that is what we will pray for. Hope he is able to come home tomorrow!!!! Can't wait to meet him at Christmas:)!

Laurel said...

So glad to see pictures and hear the story of his entrance. My brother and sister in law had twin girls last week. Both tiny like Lars but equally precious. Congrats!

Willydee said...

So exciting Gretchen! Lars is sure to be a wonder. I am loving that pic of Chris with the hat and the look. He should consider updating his profile pic.