Kinsley Estelle June 🌸

I want to share a piece of writing that means more to me on this day than any other words have in my life:
“As you do not know the path of the wind, or how the body is formed in a mother’s womb, so you cannot understand the work of God, the Maker of all things.”  Ecclesiastes 11:5

I have no understanding, and there is no logic to what I feel, but if there is anything I am certain of, it is that she is ‘the work of God, the maker of all things.’


Welcome to the world, beautiful baby girl.

Kinsley Estelle June Hoebeke
06.25.17
7:37pm
6lbs 11oz
19.5 in long


 

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39

It’s officially been 39 weeks as of today. What a wild ride.

I don’t think my belly has really grown or changed a whole lot in the last few weeks. I have been at 132.4 pounds for the past 3 weeks at least, which means I’ve gained 14 pounds since the first time I was weighed at the doctors during my 12 week appointment. I still have no stretch marks.

This will be my last “weekly” belly post, because we won’t make it to 40 weeks due to being induced Tuesday at 39 weeks and 4 days. If I end up having the baby on that day, Tuesday, June 27th, that is as far as my pregnancy will reach, and your last belly photo ever with Kinsley on the inside will be Monday the 26th.

That’s the day after tomorrow.

It’s still sinking in.

I was at Starbucks yesterday and one of my favorite baristas asked me when I was having my baby and when I told her I added, “the next time you see me here I will have a tiny baby with me!”

I left the store, chai tea latte in hand, thinking, holy shit, the next time I come here I’m going to have a baby with me. 

I think that’s when it really sank in for me. The next time I do just about anything that I’m used to doing, it will be with a baby.

I’m so excited and so scared and so nervous, but I’m as ready as I’ll ever be and I have a feeling that once I hold Kinsley June for the first time, nothing else will matter.

So, now for a little information on our induction:

Monday night I will go to the hospital at 5:30 pm and they will give me a pill that should thin my cervix the rest of the way (I was at 70% last Wednesday) over a period of 12 hours. Around 6am the following morning, if I haven’t started having contractions on my own, the doctors will give me pitocin to start hard labor and complete dilation and I should have my baby sometime after that…who knows if it will be 5 hours or 25 hours. Only time will tell. If her heart rate is stable through the pitocin and contractions we will continue until natural birth, if not, I will have an emergency c-section.

When Kinsley is born I am planning to allow visitors when I am ready, but there will be no cell phones and absolutely no photos whatsoever, except on mine or Nick’s cameras. I know a lot of people who posted photos to Facebook and other social media sites immediately following the birth of their child, and that’s fine for them, but Nick and I have decided that we want to control what goes on the internet, as this is OUR child.

Initially I was worried that relatives and friends would be upset that they couldn’t leave with photos of their own on their mobile phones, but a few things as of late have strengthened my perspective on the whole ordeal, so I am standing firm with my rule: no cell phones or photos taken in the room.

There are people on Facebook who have recently had babies who I am not even friends with and was still able to see a dozen photos of their child not 2 hours after it was born. This is a very special event and the privacy surrounding it is very important to me. In my opinion it’s not meant to be shared with people who aren’t friends or family, yet I was still able to see tons of photos from way outside the box without even trying. I’m not allowing this to happen with my child, and the only way to know for sure who the birth of my daughter is being shared with is to limit it to only myself doing the sharing.

At this point, everything is ready, washed, sterilized, organized, put away, set up, in place, cleaned, looking perfect. I have my breast pump, the hospital bag is in the car, the carseat is installed, the changing table is ready to go, the bottles are on the counter in their basket just in case, all newborn clothes are ready for wearing.

I’m ready. Nick’s ready. She’s ready. We’re all ready. I promise to share one photo at least 😉 I hope you guys are ready.

 

 

 

Countdown to Kinsley: Leading up to the final days

In my first countdown to Kinsley post I chronicled the first two weeks of the countdown. Now we’ve been given our induction date, so instead of posting the second and final two weeks of the countdown together in one post, I’m going to post the third week, and then the last few days before induction will be in another post.

So! Here are countdown days 17-10!

June 15, Day 16:
-try something new

June 16, Day 15:
-do absolutely nothing (except wash baby clothes and sterilize bottles)

June 17, Day 14:
-take a hike (with nick and merlin)

June 18, Day 13:
-go grocery shopping alone

June 19, Day 12:
-make some homemade food

June 20, Day 11:
-take the jeep for a drive

June 21, Day 10:
-spend time with Berlin

So, that sums up what I’ve done for the third week of my countdown to Kinsley, and with induction occurring early next week, we don’t quite have 9 days left, but we have a few. In my final countdown to Kinsley post I will chronicle the last days of my pregnancy and non-parent journey, and include a cumulative, running list of everything I got to do during my last month of pregnancy.

 

Update

It’s Monday, and I think Nick and I were really hoping for a father’s day weekend baby, but she is still tucked away safely in my belly, doing her own thing with no real intention to come out according to any schedule we make.

That’s okay, though. The weekend was a little frustrating, because even though she obviously had no intention of making her arrival, she sure made it seem like she did.

I had an appointment on Thursday, June 15th where we underwent our second stress test and passed with flying colors. The doctor checked me for the first time and explained that I was 70% effaced and dilated to 1cm. She explained that while she has no special calendar that tells her when a baby will be born, based on what she knows and what she’s seen, she would say that Kinsley could arrive sometime within the next week or very shortly after.

To me this made sense. I was 37 weeks and 5 days at the appointment, and a week from then would put me at just about 39 weeks- a good time to have a baby.

She explained that if everything looked good and we were still moving forward without any real danger or complication, she was okay with talking about the possibility of inducing the last week of June, any time after my 39 week marker, which is June 24th.

I left the appointment hopeful that we could have a baby in the next week, but things seemed like they might be going faster than the doctor anticipated when I started having contractions the following afternoon.

The contractions I had Friday were inconsistent and not painful, so I chalked them up to braxton hicks or maybe early labor, knowing that it wasn’t time for her to come yet. The following day Nick and I were up before 8 am and the contractions had already started by 7:30.

I kept a running list the entire day Saturday of each contraction and how long after the previous one it had occurred, keeping in mind that the doctor said if they are 5 minutes apart consistently for an hour or more it might be a good idea to come to the hospital.

There were several periods where the contractions were 4 and even 3 minutes apart, but they still weren’t super painful, and even after 45 minutes of contractions 4 minutes apart, then the contractions would suddenly be 7 or 8 minutes apart for the next hour, so I knew that things still weren’t as consistent as they needed to be for us to go to the hospital.

We decided at around 1:30 pm that maybe we should take the dog for a walk to try to speed things up, since contractions from 7:45am till 1:30pm aren’t exactly the most fun way to spend the first half of your Saturday.

We walked for an hour and a half and toward the end of the walk, especially when we got home, the contractions seemed to be stronger, so we decided we should go to the hospital and find out what kind of progress my cervix had made and if we were close to Kinsley’s arrival.

We spent the next 4 hours in the hospital. I was checked again, and to my surprise I was still only 1 cm dilated. The nurse explained after hooking me up to the monitor that while I was having a lot of contractions, no labor was being done on my cervix, so I wasn’t dilating any further. She told us that there was a good chance I’d been having contractions for so long because my uterus was irritated and I may have been dehydrated.

She had me drink two glasses of water and monitored the baby’s heart rate for a little while before offering us a solution.

She said that everything looked good but that these contractions were not active labor, so if I wanted to go home and be able to relax and get some sleep, the best thing they could do is give me a shot that would relax soft muscles like my cervix so that the contractions would let up. She explained that if the contractions were true labor then the shot would do almost nothing, and in two hours the contractions would return.

I really don’t like medicine of any kind. I’m really not into taking things that my body doesn’t create itself, especially when the benefit to taking said medication isn’t outstanding. So this was tough for me, but we decided that we really wanted to know if this was true labor, and the only way to do that was to have the shot and wait a few hours.

She put the needle in my left arm and whatever was in the syringe made its way into my bloodstream. Within 18 minutes the contractions had almost completely stopped. She unhooked me from the monitor, but not before telling me how absolutely adorable my bump is and saying five times how exceptionally healthy Kinsley must be because of the results she was getting on her monitor. She sent us home and told us that if the contractions started again and occurred 5 minutes apart and were increasingly painful, then I should come back, but until then drinking plenty of fluid was the best thing I could do, especially if I wanted the false labor contractions to stay away.

I wanted a chicken sandwich, so we went to BK and got one. Later that night I had a few contractions, and Sunday morning they began all over again just like the day before.

Since it was raining, and there was nothing we could really do outside, I decided to go grocery shopping, hoping it would loosen things up further and maybe the contractions would become real labor pain, but I had no luck.

I went to bed last night and woke up around 1:00 in the morning with really painful contractions that lasted about 5 hours, but were irregular so there was nothing to be done.

And now it’s Monday and I’ve had a few contractions but nothing like the weekend. My next appointment is Wednesday and hopefully then there will be some talk of inducing since they are legally able to this Saturday. The sooner we have Kinsley, at this point, the better, because Nick would really like to work 4th of July week for the overtime and holiday pay benefits, rather than end up taking it off for Kinsley’s arrival. Obviously he is prepared to do whatever, but the extra cash from working the holiday would be nice.

That being said, if we can schedule accordingly, it won’t be unlikely that Kinsley be born the beginning of next week. Fingers crossed that I can be induced as early as June 26th, one week from today!

We were totally ready for a father’s day weekend baby, and now we’re even more ready than before! 

Kinsley June, feel free to join us any time. 🌼

 

 

What you need will find you.

For some reason this morning I decided to take a little journey back in time using my Instagram feed. If you’re close to me you know how much I love taking pictures, and even if you’re not, you only have to be one of my followers to know what an Instagram whore I am. Contrary to belief, I don’t post these photos for anyone but myself.

A lot of people use Instagram to promote popular brands or mainstream labels, but for me Instagram is like a diary, a way to quickly blog something that’s just happened with a photo and caption so I can revisit that slice of my life at a later time.

Trust me, it works really well. I got a taste of just how well this morning.

I had just taken the dog outside, it was our second time out since 5 am, and I was really grumpy. I was tired. I was annoyed, ‘how does he have to poop again?!‘ I kept saying over and over again in my mind.

But we got outside, and we walked for a while, and when we got to this little field that we visit sometimes behind the association we live in, I just kept looking at all the tiny daisies and how nice they look in this field and I started feeling sort of strange.

I started feeling really grateful.

I was out there, letting this little dog drag me around through these weeds, but at least they were pretty weeds, and at least he’s a sweet, cute little guy, and at least I’m well enough to be out here in these weeds breathing this air and standing on this soft ground, looking out at these apartments I’ve come to really like the past six months.

A year ago I don’t know if I could say these things. I don’t know if I could look at all this with the positive perspective that I have now. One year ago I was a completely different person, an extremely unhappy person, pretending to have it together, and I was in a totally different, miserable place.

When we got back into the apartment I sat down and pulled up my Instagram feed just to see what exactly I was doing, to the day, a year ago. I found these two photos, among several others, that mark the early summertime period we’re in now, 365 days ago.

It’s hard for me to look at these photos.

To someone else it looks like I was reading Game of Thrones at the beach during the day, and snuggling my kitty in my comfy bed at night. But I know better than that.

I was extremely depressed. My close friends knew it and they kept telling me that I should talk to someone, I should see a doctor and get help trying to take care of it. But I didn’t want to. I wanted to be normal and okay and I wanted to be able to figure it out myself, on my own, like everything else in my life. I wanted to feel in control.

I was trying so hard, but the longer I waited to see someone the worse it got, and the more out of control things became. I never ended up seeing a doctor. Instead I wound up pregnant, which was probably the best thing that could have happened to me, even if I didn’t realize it then.

Last summer was a scary time for me. It was dark and exhausting. I was drowning but I wanted to be the one to pull myself to safety, not realizing that sometimes you can’t do it- you need help. I can look back at the photos from my Instagram feed during that time and know exactly what I was going through. I can remember exactly how I felt and the pain that I was in like it was yesterday.

But I haven’t felt like that in several months (the first few months of my pregnancy were really terrible, as bad as the summer was, because we were in such a pickle and just couldn’t grasp what was happening, but we finally did and since then everything turned around). I’m so thankful for that. It was like becoming pregnant gave me a totally different perspective on life, and gave me the strength I needed to pull my head out of the water I was drowning in.

Friends of mine have told me that they haven’t seen me this happy in a really long time, maybe since high school. I know that every day I wake up feeling okay is a good day, and I rarely have bad days anymore. I’m glad I kept going, and got to see things turn around in my life. I’m not saying everyone who feels depressed should get pregnant, but you should definitely keep going, because some way, some how what you need WILL find you. If you’re struggling, just keep going. Everything I went through was worth it.

Here’s why: It might be a strange thing to say, but I’m so grateful for that hard time I went through, because it really helps me appreciate how amazing my life is turning out to be now. I don’t feel sad every day anymore. I don’t feel like sleeping every second because I don’t know how to deal with the next several hours. I don’t hate where I’m at and what I’m doing. I’m not so distracted by how much I’m hurting that I can’t notice things like daisies in a field. I don’t feel like I have to pretend to smile, I just do it- without thinking.

Maybe that’s what I’m most grateful for. The chance to finally smile, and feel like things are exactly right.

The more I think about it, even when I’m grumpy in a field and the dog is pulling me through the mud and I’m panting and annoyed, I realize that things are still hard, there are still struggles in my life and times when things don’t go according to plan. Things are not perfect or easy by any means, and once this baby is born things will only get harder, but I’m still grateful. No matter how hard it is, I am grateful and I’m genuinely happy. And that’s how I know I’m better; that’s how I know things are exactly like they should be right now.

Everyone deserves this feeling. So if you’re in a tough place, just keep going. What you need will find you. It found me.

#30DaysBeforeKinsleyJune

Today is the 14th of June, and two weeks have gone by since I began my countdown to Kinsley. Two weeks. Gone. Already. How? I don’t get it.

That being said, I thought now would be a good time to compile the photos I’ve taken of my countdown thus far and show you guys what I’ve done on the list and what still remains to be done before baby Kinsley is born.

June 1st, Day 30:
-pick fresh lilacs
-enjoy a casual Thursday
-make note of the sun and summer smells

June 2nd, Day 29:
-deep clean without interruption
-listen to a new album
-go on a date with Nick (El Ranchero)
-take the dog for a long walk

June 3rd, Day 28:
-enjoy quiet breakfast with Sam
-visit the state park with Nick & puppy
-picnic at the park
-go to starbucks
-explore bayview


June 4th, Day 27:
-have roast and toast with Nick
-relax together
-run errands alone


June 5th, Day 26:
-meet for cookies and lemonade with Carly
-tackle long monday to-do list

June 6th, Day 25:
-tour hospital & have carseat checked
-take a long bath
-eat ice-cream on the deck


June 7th, Day 24:
-pack hospital back
-reorganize closet


June 8th, Day 23:
-organize planner
-update calendar
-work on college course

June 9th, Day 22:
-craft baby shower center pieces
-pick tons of lilacs


June 10th, Day 21:
-celebrate baby shower
-enjoy day with friends and family

June 11th, Day 20:
-sleep in
-put away all baby shower gifts
-make breakfast together
-visit state park, swim with Nick & merlin

June 12th, Day 19:
-deep clean entire apartment
-move furniture
-reorganize reading nook

June 13th, Day 18:
-play Sims 4
-watch criminal minds

June 14th, Day 17:
-spend morning reading
-finish to-do list

With 16 days or less remaining until we have a newborn baby I feel a lot of different things. I feel some part of me not being ready, thinking I have so many things I need to do even though we are very much caught up and if Kinsley came today we would be totally (i think) prepared, which brings me to the other part of me, that is ready right now, and has no idea what I will do for the next two weeks if she’s not ready to come yet.

I have nothing to worry about, here’s the rest of the things that will keep me busy before I become a parent.

-go on a motorcycle ride with dad
-color for a few hours
-bake pumpkin muffins
-get a pedicure
-watch a sunset
-prepare dinner with Nick
-do absolutely nothing
-write a blog on kids before marriage
-buy and read the newspaper over coffee
-look for petoskey stones
-lay out at the beach
-clean out email inbox
-take a hike
-spend time with Berlin
-try something new
-get down comforter out
-go grocery shopping alone
-take the jeep for a drive
-binge watch season 5 GOT
-get ice-cream in town

This seems like a very completable list to me. We’re so close now. Every night I go to sleep thinking, “Is this it? Is this the night I’m going to wake up, go into labor and come home with a tiny baby in the morning, forever changed?”

Only time will tell…(:

Baby Shower 🌸

So we (finally) had our baby shower today!

What a beautiful baby shower. I am in awe of the generous outpouring of love (and gifts- holy cow!) that we received today. The time and money that people put into this to make sure we had an amazing celebration did not go unnoticed. I could not be more grateful or have a fuller heart. ❤️

The people who showed up to the shower today brought food & gifts & smiles & laughter & warmth, and really made me realize even more that I have the most amazing family. There is no doubt in my mind that we will have more than enough support if we ever need it. 

I’m so glad that all these special people were able to come together to help celebrate Kinsley June and our growing family. I could not be happier. 

So now we just have one thing missing: a baby! 

Any time now Kinny Jay- we’re ready for ya 😉 (as soon as I get all these gifts put away! She is one spoiled girl).