Friday, July 29, 2011

Fenway's Little Brother

On any given day during my pregnancy, Fenway refused to leave my side.  He loved that I was so lazy and spent a lot of time in the recliner.  Ethan's kicks never phased him, and he often spent time with his head resting on my belly.  We were hoping this was a good sign that he would have a lot of love for our new addition!

Fenway spent a few days with my parents while I was in the hospital.  After Ethan was born, the placed a small hat on his head and swaddled him in a hospital blanket.  After a few hours, I swaddled Ethan in a swaddle that I brought from home and also put a hat on his head I brought from home.  I sent the hospital blanket and hat home with my parents to give to Fenway, so that he could start getting used to Ethan's smell.  Fenway is extremely protective of new "toys" and his belongings.  Our hope was that when we came home, he would associate the belongings with Ethan and be protective of him as well.

We wanted Fenway at home as soon as we arrived at home, so my parents met us at the house as soon as we got home to begin allowing Fenway (and ourselves) to adjust to the new "whole picture."

He hasn't been quite so sure about Ethan yet...He likes to smell him...

 As soon as Ethan moves or cries, Fenway was been running away as if he were terrified.  He wasn't quite sure why we were holding this new "thing" so much and taking his lap space.  But without any ounce of aggression or resentment, he found new spots to cuddle (while keeping his distance from Ethan)...

He has slowly become more protective and loving to Ethan. He is finding new ways to snuggle with the both of us during feeding times without being in the way.  He wants to investigate everything that Ethan does now, but still manages not to get too close.

We have been so happy with Fenway's patience with us.  He waits for Ethan to be put down before immediately taking his "old spot" right back.  He waits patiently for those short, brief moments, and enjoys every second of them.  He is truly the most loyal dog we could ask for, I can't wait for when Ethan actually begins to play with him!

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Splish Splash, I Was Takin' a Bath

Ethan finally got his first tub bath last night!  We have been doing sponge baths for quite a while now waiting for the last little piece from his umbilical cord to dry up to give him a good bath in the tub.  We were so excited to finally give him a real bath, and he LOVED it! Prepare for picture overload.

He had a fantastic time splashing and having the warm water on him until I got him out to wrap him up in a towel.  Then he decided that it was warmer in the water and threw a huge fit! 

He settled quickly when I wrapped him up in his shark robe! My best friend from high school (along with her mother and boyfriend) made up the most adorable bath time fun kit for our baby shower.  It had his whale tub, some bath time toys, the shark robe, and lots of other things.  Allyson had purchased the shark robe in honor of Discovery Channels "Shark Week."  She will be back in town during that time, so Ally and Ethan will have their very first date on the couch wearing their shark gear. :)  Well, Ethan will be, I'm not so sure if Ally has a shark robe.  Sigh, my little man is dating already! ;)  Good thing Ally has a serious boyfriend, or I may have to give her "the mom talk" on protecting my little boy's heart!

I think bath time is definitely going to be one of our favorite activities in the Orlando house!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

1 Month

My Sweet Baby Boy,

You are one month old already! I cannot believe you have already been a part of our lives for this long.  In one way, I'm amazed at how quickly the time has passed, but it also hard to remember life before you.  You are such a sweet little boy, and it has been so much fun to watch to change daily.

At your very first doctor's appointment, you only grew a quarter of an inch to 20.75 inches. Leaving the hospital you weighed 6 pounds, 12 ounces.  Within two days (after a quick weigh in at the pediatrician), you were up to 6 pounds, 14 ounces.  Within 12 days (at our two-week check up) you were up to 8 pounds! This made your Mommy extremely proud that you were nursing so well, even while dealing with mastitis.

You are an extremely good eater, but my goodness you eat a lot! We introduced the bottle to you at 2 and a half weeks to allow you to get used to it in case Mommy has to go back to work.  You manage to take a bottle or the breast extremely well, although we usually only give you a bottle before bed.  When you do take a bottle, you take every bit of 5 ounces!  No wonder your weight gain was so pleasing to your pediatrician, you eat a LOT!  You still comfort nurse a lot, but are slowly beginning to find other ways to find comfort, including being held, rocked, or patted on your back.

You have decided that nuzzling into Mommy's chest or Daddy's neck is no way to go through life.  You would much prefer to be turned outward so that you can see the world around you. You also thoroughly enjoy being propped up with blankets and pillows so that you can sit up straight.  You are much happier sitting than laying even through you cannot hold yourself in this position by yourself yet.  You want to be able to look around at everything, and any type of equipment that restricts you of that results in an immediate stream of tears.

You are a great sleeper.  Within a few days of getting home, you started sleeping 4 hour stretches, and now often sleep for 5 hours at a time.  Daddy and I usually stay up late anyway, so we usually only have to get up once during the night with you before you are ready to get up for the day.  Thank you for not making us completely sleep deprived!

You love your baby whale mat that plays music and has lots of toys! It can keep you entertained anywhere from 15-30 minutes.  The lights on the sound machine really make you happy.  

This is what you looked like when we brought you home:

Part of your umbilical cord stump fell off a little prematurely, leaving a small piece in your belly button to  air out without falling off.  You are still receiving sponge baths because of it, but you LOVE them.  It seems that the remaining part of your umbilical cord has finally dried up and disappeared, so Daddy and I are eager to give you a real bath for the very first time tonight.

This is what you looked like just 5 days after you were born.  It was our very first picture together out of the hospital:

I love this picture of us.  You look so cozy and sweet!

I love the look on your face after you have finished nursing.  You have the cutest "milk drunk" face I have ever seen:

You love to cuddle on the couch with us, especially Daddy.

You got to celebrate your very first holiday! The Fourth of July came just a week after you were born, so we celebrated with a cute little outfit.  You didn't seem to mind the noise of our crazy neighbors that shot off fireworks for hours on end that evening, and the days to follow.  In fact, you slept right through them without even noticing.

We also survived our very first overnight without Daddy!  Daddy got a fantastic new job and began his new work when you were two weeks old.  For training, he had to travel overnight to the factory that will manufacture the basketballs he will design.  I'm sure one day he will design one just for you.  You were a perfect angel that evening and slept like a champ for me.  We took this picture and sent it to Daddy to remind him how much we missed him:

We also had newborn pictures taken of you! Jennifer Creed came to meet you and took some beautiful photos of you, and this was one of our very favorites:

One thing we have done a lot of is remember our time leading up to your birth, and feeling so incredibly thankful that you chose to fight with me and make your entrance into the world.  One day you will get to hear your very special story, but for now, a small video will have to do:

You do have your fussy moments, and days that nothing seems to satisfy you.  These can often be difficult, and those are the days that I cry with you.  I hate that there are times that I do not know why you are upset or what you need, or that you may be uncomfortable from gas (which, by the way, you are extremely gassy).  However, those are the times that Daddy and I remind ourselves that hearing you cry is a blessing to us, because we too closely remember a time that we were afraid that we would never hear you cry.  So your fussy moments rarely become moments of extreme stress, but rather moments of extreme gratitude that you are here to fuss.

Happy 1 Month Birthday Ethan!  We cannot wait to watch what you discover during month 2.

Mommy and Daddy

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Random Updates on Life

Oh my goodness, I cannot believe that it has been a week since I've blogged and given you guys any kind of updates!  Life seems to fly by when you are trying to sit still.  Ethan and I are enjoying every minute together, and we've even survived a night alone!

Jason has changed job positions within his company (huge plus for us, especially him).  Rather than designing t-shirts for hunting (something Jason knows nothing about), he has transferred to a sports department (totally his area of expertise).  He will be designing all specialty basketballs for the NBA.  For those of you that aren't sports nuts, this is a huge deal.  He is so excited that his design work will be used for the All-Star Basketball game and other big events.  He will also do some other smaller sporting projects, but the NBA account will be his main line of work.  We are so proud of him!   Anyway, because of this transition, he had to travel for a couple of days to visit some of the factories that produce the basketballs he will design.  Ethan totally went easy on his Momma that night and was a perfect angel.

Our birth announcements came in! Although I'd love to send one to each and every one of you, I'll just share on here.  This is a Jason Orlando original design as well.  I can't help but love having an artist for a husband and coupons for printing services! We managed to score 70 completely FREE birth announcements to send out!

Feeding Ethan is going extremely well.  I'm not going to lie, breast feeding is extremely painful to get started.  I have been nursing and pumping (just in case I have to go back to work part time sooner than I would like) and working up a good freezer stash.  This made my milk supply absolutely insane, and I began to fall short on pumping as much as I needed to in order to keep my breasts from being so engorged. Hello mastitis.  The first few days of last week were horrible with the chills, exhaustion, aches, sore breasts, and keeping up with Ethan.  I felt horrible. The antibiotic kicked in quickly and thankfully I am feeling much better now.  Thankfully, I have had virtually no pain nursing Ethan since getting over that infection.

Gasp. We introduced a bottle.  I hated to do it this early, because I wanted to exclusively breast feed for at least 6 weeks.  However, after discovering that Ethan gained 1.2 pounds in 12 days and discussing it thoroughly with my pediatrician, we feel that nursing has been established well enough to introduce the bottle.  I want Ethan to be comfortable with both nursing and a bottle in the event that I do have to return to work.  Anyway, he takes a bottle of breast milk at bedtime, and switches back and forth from the breast to the bottle like a pro.  I actually feel that his latch has improved on the breast since introducing the bottle.  We definitely want to stay away from formula for as long as possible (if not completely), but I'm so glad that Ethan is comfortable enough to nurse and take a bottle.

Thank goodness for my Mom and Dad, who came over for a few hours each day while I was sick to help me get my house back in order while I nursed and rested.  That's real help.  Sidenote: It is a pet peeve of mine for people to offer to "come hold" Ethan while I do my housework and other chores.  To me, that's making me feel like I have to entertain guests when I really need to be getting things done.  It's more helpful to me to have someone come help me fold laundry while I nurse him and get him situated.  I'll be happy to share Ethan with anyone that wants to love on him (well, almost anyone), but coming over to help does not mean come over and gush over the baby while I'm still running around like a chicken with my head cut off.  Anyway, thank goodness for my parents who understand that.  I don't feel like I have to entertain them, I don't feel like I have to sit and visit (although I really enjoy hanging out with my parents, they're actually a lot of fun), and I don't feel like I have to have it all together for them to come into my home.  They will come, give me real help, visit for 30 minutes or so, and head home.  

I am officially 7 pounds away from my pre-pregnancy weight.  I'm not too concerned with getting back to the specific "number," I just want all my clothes to fit again.  Sadly, I think my hips spread enough that even if I do get back to the specific "pre-pregnancy number" that most of my pants won't fit.  I'm back in a few pairs of pants, and ALL of my shirts and dresses, but I think I'll have to do some major jeans shopping later this year.  Either way, I'm very happy and feel extremely lucky with how quickly 23 pounds came off, and how most of my "shape" has returned.  However, I think at least 5 of those 7 pounds are in my boobs.  They're enormous now, and I hate them.  I'm glad they are doing what they are supposed to do for my sweet boy, but I hate the look of how big they are now!  I tell Jason they are out of control, who laughs at me and tells me it's like Mardi Gras in our house, since my huge boobs are constantly being whipped out.  He swears he's going to figure out a way for Ethan to give me beads when I nurse one day.  That jerk ;)

Ethan can officially roll over to his side like a pro.  I'm so not ready for his mobility.  I have a feeling we are in for one extremely active child.

I hope everyone is having a fantastic week! And hopefully I won't go another full week without blogging again! You forgive me, right?

Thursday, July 14, 2011

One Thing I Never Knew...

...was how much newborns MOVE! I thought all they did was lay there and sleep or stare at things.

Apparently, they don't just lay there...

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Riley and Ethan Meet

We had a lot of visitors while we were in the hospital with Ethan.  We requested that most people come to visit at the hospital rather than when we got home so that we could attempt to ease into a routine and make our adjustments without a ton of company.  We loved that so many people wanted to come and celebrate Ethan's birth, but we also felt that it was best for Ethan to have a few days at home adjusting to his new environment without a lot of chaos.  So we ended up with visitors from 7:30am to nearly 10pm. It was definitely exhausting, but I'm so glad we made that choice.  Our first few days at home were nice and peaceful as a family of 3.

One of our most special hospital visitors was sweet Riley!  We really wanted Riley to understand the process of Ethan coming into our lives, so her hospital visit was important to us.  She wore a "big cousin" t-shirt that my sister made for her, and Riley presented him with a "little cousin" onesie that my sister also made.  She was very proud to give it to him.

Luckily, we got their first meeting on film.

She was VERY excited that she was going to get a chance to hold him.

She was extremely gentle and loving, and didn't have to be reminded that he is fragile and cannot do a lot of things that she can already do.  She did, however, become slightly frustrated when she would speak to him and he wouldn't speak back.  She asked everyone why he didn't want to talk to her!

Although this picture looks like she's giving me the "thumbs up" on Ethan, I actually have no idea what we were talking about in this moment.  So we like to pretend she's giving her approval of Ethan being her cousin.

She's definitely smitten with him, although we are still working on helping her to understand that he cannot do everything she can because she is such a big girl and he is still a baby.  But she definitely enjoys watching him, laying next to him, putting him in his swing (with assistance of course), and giving him lots of kisses. 

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Taking It All In...

I seriously do not know how to sit still.  I never have.  I have always been wiggly, squirmy, rooting (the adjective given to me by my Mom), fidgety person that cannot sit still.  Literally and figuratively.

Jason couldn't get fidgety if he tried.  He sits still through everything, soaks in every detail, and just enjoys.  Literally and figuratively.  For 5 years, he's been trying to teach me to sit still, but he has been so incredibly unsuccessful.

I constantly think of things in the near future, the far future, and what is to come.  I couldn't wait for high school, I couldn't wait to be old enough to drive, I couldn't wait to graduate.  While I thoroughly enjoyed my high school years, my eyes were constantly looking past the current moment for something better.

I finally graduated, something I thought would make life so much better.  At the time, I was dating another boy very seriously and convinced he was the one I would marry someday.  He and I parted ways for different colleges, different dreams, and different states.  Yet we opted to try to make things work.  So the first year of college was wished away waiting for the time that we would be reunited, and wishing for college to be over so that the long distance portion of our relationship would be over and we could get on with our lives.  Yeah, life was great, but it would be better "when."

The relationship didn't last, and I met Jason.  He and I dated for quite a while, and actually broke up for a few months while I went through a "freak out, I'm not ready for this" phase before deciding that this was the relationship we both wanted to last.  I loved my time dating Jason, it was so special, so spontaneous, and absolutely full of laughter.  But I quickly became ready for more.  I was ready to be engaged, I was ready to graduate college, and I was ready to move on.  Things couldn't have been better, but my eyes were still set on "things will be even better when."

Jason proposed about 10 months before we graduated college.  We were so excited to enjoy that time together, but we both set our eyes on finding jobs, buying our first home, graduating, and getting married.  I loved that we chose an engagement that lasted a year and a half, and we were able to slowly find the pieces to "make life perfect."  We felt so blessed and happy to be together, but unlike Jason who just hangs out in the present, I was still set on the future.

We were married, and spent two fabulous years traveling, working on our home, establishing our careers, and enjoying the newness of marriage.  It didn't take long for those goals to be fulfilled when we began talking about children (nonchalantly at this point.)  While I fully expected to wait a little while longer, my brain was already set on the new goal of a child.

Discovering we were pregnant was definitely a surprise because we did not expect to be so blessed so quickly.  We were thrilled, but as you know the pregnancy time turned sour quickly with our fears and worries.  We were blessed with each day that I was still able to carry Ethan, but I was already focused on his birth.  I was fixated on the time that Ethan would finally arrive, the worries of his time in the womb would vanish, and we could enjoy him.  My entire 41w3d pregnancy became completely focused on the future points.

He's here.  He's finally here, and for the first time in my entire life, I have no agenda.  No other goals other than enjoying the very moment that he looks at me when I speak.  I'm focused on no other moment than the one that he buries his sweet little head into my chest and begins to snore.  I've always been so ready for time to fly by for new adventures, new experiences, and new circumstances.  The day that Ethan finally arrived, I've been so ready for time to just stop.  For the first time in my life, I'm sitting still.

It's taken Jason 5 years, and it took Ethan 5 seconds.  Too bad I didn't listen to his Daddy, because I'm thoroughly enjoying this time to sit still and just take it all in.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Happy 4th!

Best Fourth of July. Ever.

I'll return to regular blogging soon. Jason returns to work tomorrow, sniff, so for now we are enjoying our short time home together.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Saturday Morning Scene...

Click the button to link up too!

Friday, July 1, 2011

Ethan's Birth Story Part 2

We arrived at the hospital around 12:30am.  I was very nervous that the nurse would tell me I was insane, those contractions I was having weren't even contractions, and send me home.  She checked me immediately, and told me that I was thinning out and at 1.5 cm.  We were so excited to hear that there had been progress!  However, in my own naive thoughts, I couldn't understand how my body was only progressed that far.  Everything I read and tried to understand made me believe that contractions as close together as I was having would have be at at least a good 4cm.  

Shortly after arriving:
My sister was really really excited.

 Things started to get more intense and rough after about an hour.  Jason did everything he possibly could to make me comfortable, and my Mom would calmly talk me through each contraction and remind me to breathe properly.  It was a lot harder than I expected to breathe through a contraction and relax.
Around 4am, my nurse came back to check my progress.  My contraction pattern was looking better, even though it wasn't ideal.  I could definitely tell they were intensifying, and getting closer together.  I was hoping this meant a lot of progress, but my nurse had to break the news that I was still only at 1.5cm.  She decided to start my IV for my antibiotic (I tested positive for that carrying that stinking GBS) and see where we were going to go from there.  She mentioned pitocin, and I began to cry.  I really didn't want pitocin, especially after I had been laboring for so long on my own.  My nurse and I talked more about my risks of an irregular heart rhythm due to pain, and she encouraged me to take the pitocin to speed labor up.  I told her that as long as I wasn't in distress or Ethan wasn't in distress I didn't want any interventions.  She understood, but reminded me that as soon as my heart went into distress, I would likely lose my option for vaginal delivery.  I hated the pressure to speed things up, but I also knew that my heart was likely incapable of letting me labor for too long.  She and I decided to give my body three more hours to progress on its own and make the decision about pitocin then.

By 6:45 am, I was still at 1.5, which meant I had to make a decision.  I was feeling tired, hurting, but so afraid of taking pitocin.  I knew that with pitocin that I would likely need an epidural since I had been laboring for so long already, but my fears of a c-section outweighed my plans.  I agreed to the pitocin, but became very emotional and upset about it.  I told my Mom that I felt like I didn't even try before giving in to interventions.  She reminded me that I had been laboring for nearly 24 hours already, and that pushing myself to try that long was enough.  It wasn't about me, or my plan, it was about getting Ethan delivered in the safest way possible.  My heart distress would be too much for him, and we needed to avoid that.

Within an hour of pitocin, I was done.  Completely done.  Pitocin is seriously no joke.  My contractions compared to pitocin contractions just cannot compare.  It got ugly quickly...

There was a shift change, so I got two new nurses.  I absolutely loved one of them, the other one drove me insane.  She had wonderful intentions, but she made me nuts.  She was trying to talk me through breathing, which was helpful until it became redundant.  I'm one to be left alone during a painful time.  You can hold my hand, you can talk quietly, but I need to do my thing.  I was having to force myself into a zone to cope that took me completely out of my element.  Her voice was driving me insane.  Standing up, leaning and swaying against Jason through contractions seemed to be the most comfortable, and helped for a little while.  

 My OB appeared and took one look at me and said, "I know you don't want to do this, but I really think you need to talk to the anesthesiologist. " I began to cry again and tell him how afraid I was of an epidural, and he again encouraged me to just talk to the anesthesiologist.  He said that it wasn't a prison, it was 100% my decision, but I really needed to think about my options.

My anesthesiologist was the nicest man I could ever meet.  He answered all my questions, he addressed all my fears.  He told me that my fears and concerns regarding the intervention were absolutely legitimate, and I wasn't stupid for feeling afraid.  We talked for a long time, and I felt comfortable enough with him to trust him.  We decided to go for it.

My mental state was breaking down quickly, and as I sat on the edge of the bed, I asked Jason to stand in front of me and allow me to lean against him.  I needed his comfort to calm me down, and as soon as he started to rub my head I began to feel some peace.

My annoying nurse pushed him out of the way and said, "No honey, you're going to hold onto me because he will pass out at this."  I was furious, but way to weak to argue.  I needed Jason, not her.  She started her annoying/soothing voice, and was insisted that I relax my body.  I tell her I'm trying, and she tells me I'm not succeeding.  My back is prepped and ready for the administration, and I begin to have another horrible contraction.  I tell the anesthesiologist that I was having a contract and did not feel that I could be still enough for him to administer yet, and to please let me cope through the contraction before beginning.  My nurse says, "Oh no, we're not waiting on that, you're going to relax, and you're going to do this now."  Oh heck no.  I again demand he wait, and thank goodness he listened to me instead of that nurse.  He told me to just let him know when I was ready, and waited.  I was so relieved to have him listen instead of pushing me to do something I wasn't ready for.

After the epidural, things started to move a lot faster and I felt a lot better.  About an hour after my epidural kicked in, I realized that I couldn't feel Ethan move anymore.  I was extremely sad about this for a few minutes, because I had let those last few movements slip away without realizing it.  Shortly after, he kicked me in the ribs a few good times.  It was like he knew that I was starting to miss it, and gave me one last "hey" from the inside.  As much as I have hated the rib kicks, those were so incredibly sweet.
 By 1:45 pm, I was at a good 8-9cm, with the slightest anterior lip keeping us from being 100% complete.  Rather than pushing right away, my "good" nurse said she was going to allow Ethan to labor down and do his own thing.  There was no reason that we should begin pushing just because I was completely dilated, and we would let him take himself as far down as possible and only push a few times.  I was thankful for this, instead of feeling forced to wear myself out just for the sake of a shorter labor.  I napped during this time, hoping to get some energy built up before pushing.  My Dad came back to visit, and I told him that as long as he was comfortable, I didn't mind him staying.  My sister and I both had to be delivered by c-section, and he had been talking about how he has never seen a birth besides a c-section.  We gave him the job of videotaping from the side, and it is such a precious video.

Around 4:45, we decided to do a few practice pushes, and they went really well.  After a couple of small pushes, my nurse asked me if I wanted to touch his head.  I did, and immediately began to sob.  It was extremely surreal to know that he was literally RIGHT there, and ready to make his entrance.  I was ready to see him.  Jason watched him crown, and immediately became emotional.  This resulted in me becoming emotional, and I told him he couldn't make me cry while pushing.  2 minutes later, I had to tell my Mom the same thing.  She took some of the most precious pictures I will ever have to look at to remember this moment.

My OB arrived, and I told him that I had been waiting on his butt and to hurry up.  He laughed and offered to make me labor for a few more hours while he went to have dinner, and I told him I would deliver Ethan with or without him.  After a push or two, he said it was time to get the show on the road.

My heart rate was accelerating, and Ethan's was decreasing.  He told me that his head was extremely large and would require forceps.  I was not excited about this at all, especially when I saw that they looked like golf clubs.  Good grief!  I pushed a few more times, and my OB looked at me and said he was going to have to do an episiotomy.  I told him no, and he looked at me like I was insane.  If there were three things in this labor I didn't want, it was pitocin, an epidural, and an episiotomy.  I had already had 2 of the 3, but I was terrified of the cutting.  I felt as if my body would release what it needed to in order to deliver, and that the episiotomy may help or may be bigger of a cut than I needed.  He looked at me and told me I was going to tear, and I told him I really didn't care.

He tells me the situation regarding my heart rate and Ethan's heart rate, and says that I have one contraction to deliver.  If I don't deliver within that contraction, he would be forced to do an episiotomy to get him out quickly.  That's all it took.  Within that one contraction, I pushed with everything I had and delivered the sweetest boy I have ever laid eyes on.
 My OB was right.  I definitely tore, in multiple places, but thankfully I found out later they weren't very deep.  I didn't care.  He was HERE.  I could hear him cry.  I could see his face.  I have felt like that the moment Ethan would be laid on my chest would be the moment I felt that we were finally past the heart problems, past the fears of losing him in the womb, and that we had made it TOGETHER.  It was the one moment that I have been hoping for and waiting for to feel closure of that horrible chapter in our lives.  He laid him on my chest, and that moment was exactly what I had hoped it would be.  Instant relief, and instant peace.  Of everything we have been through together, his very first moment in the world was mine, and I knew that things were finally ok.  I have no idea what was going on around me with anyone else in the room.  For just a few seconds, it was just me and my sweet baby, crying together.  I wouldn't trade that moment for anything.  I wouldn't change anything about such a long labor or difficult pregnancy, because that moment was completely worth it all.

Official time of birth was 5:25pm.  After he and I had a moment, he was taken to the other side of the room to be weighed, measured, and checked for complications.  He scored a 9/9 on the APGAR, and was given back to me quickly.
 Jason and I loved on him for a few, and my Mom and Dad both took a TON of pictures for us.

 The Orlando family with my fantastic OB.

Ethan's official weight. 7 pounds, 2.5 ounces, and 20.5 inches long.
We got the opportunity to nurse immediately, and that boy is a champ! He latched instantly, and ate for half an hour.  We opted for Kangaroo Care instead of sending him to be warmed under heat lamps, and it was a wonderful few moments with Jason and I as a family of three.  Once he finished nursing and was able to be warmed just by blanket, it was time wait for a room and allow the rest of the family to come back for a glimpse.

This is getting insanely long, so I'll give you the rundown of our hospital stay soon!