Wednesday, August 31, 2011

I Don't Miss The Single Days

  Nope.  Not one little bit.  There have been times when I thought I did.  But I really don't.  Why? Because it's not who I am anymore.  I am not just "Misti".  I am Misti "Coleman" - wife - and I am "Mommy".  That is who I am.  That is my identity.  I've often wondered if I really did miss the single days, but now I have my answer.  How did I come to this conclusion?  Because for the last 3 days my identity has been in Tennessee.
  There was a death in Jacob's family earlier last week, prompting a last minute trip to Tennessee.  Now, since I am so close to D-Day, Jacob and I decided it would not be the best idea for me to travel to Tennessee right now.  Can you imagine how much MORE swollen my feet and ankles would have been after 8 hours in the car up there and 8 hours back?  I probably would've had permanent cankles...and I shutter at the thought!  But Jacob needed and wanted to be there with his family.  However, he didn't feel comfortable - nor did I - about leaving me here alone with the girls, just in case I did go into labor (which was highly unlikely).  And he wanted me to have a "break" and to be able to get some "rest".  So, he and the girls left Sunday night about 8 and arrived at his parents house in Tennessee at 3 am.  They were able to spend all day Monday and Tuesday with his parents and both sets of grandparents and they are headed back today.  I am grateful that he and the girls have had this time with his family - I just wish it could have happened under different circumstances.
  Anyway, I've tried to make the most of my few days alone.  I got some things done around the house, bought the last few things I needed for Creek's arrival, ate lunch with a friend, went to a movie with another friend (to see The Help - have you seen it? No? Go NOW and watch it.  Truly, awesome, amazing movie!), did some birthday shopping for Lynnsie, and watched some TV.
  I did a lot of these things (except for the lunch and movie date!) because they needed to be done and I had the "time", but I was also bored and wanted to get out of my way-too-quiet house.  We don't usually have the TV on in our house when the girls are up, yet it's been the first thing I've turned on the past 3 mornings to try to drown out the quiet!!

  I did appreciate Jacob's thoughtfulness of taking the girl's, too, and giving me a break.  I've had the "single life" back for a few days, but I seriously don't miss it.  Because when you miss something, you long to have it right now, I miss my husband and kids and I can't wait to have them back...but I don't want my single life back.  Nope, not one little bit!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Bringing Home Baby Part 2

  Here's Lynnsie's story:
  September 6, 2009 = my due date.  Just as my doctor told me a couple of weeks before AB was due, she thought Lynnsie was going to arrive "any day".  I continued going to my appointments weekly and she kept telling me she didn't know how or why I had not gone into labor, yet.  I couldn't help but get impatient because Anna Beth was so early and I had always heard that the rest of your babies tended to deliver earlier than your first baby.  I was sure I was going to have an August baby and with every passing (blazing hot and humid) day, I just knew she was would be here soon.
  August 26, 2008 = I had been having some Braxton Hicks contractions for a couple of weeks.  No biggie, right?  Well, this night, after church, they were a little more intense and seemed to be a little more regular.  My doctor had instructed me to head to the hospital when my contractions were 10 minutes apart because I lived an hour away - and we had no way of knowing of how quickly I would deliver once labor started.  My mother-in-law had been staying with us for about 3 weeks, helping with Anna Beth so I could get some rest, and, of course, she'd be there to stay with Anna Beth when I went into labor.  So, I told her and Jacob what was going on and we decided to head to the hospital.  These contractions weren't all that painful, but they were intense and they were regular.  We get to the hospital about 9 pm and they asked me a series of questions...mainly, "How much have you had to drink today?"  I told them a glass of milk, a small glass of water, and I'd munched on some ice earlier in the day (I've never been a big drinker)  They hooked me up to an IV to get some fluids in me...and the contractions stopped completely within an hour.  Did you know that when you're dehydrated, it can make you think you're in labor because your muscles are actually contracting - but not labor contracting.  Yay.  False labor run.  We got back home about 1 am.
  September 2, 2009 = I'd still been having contractions, they weren't painful - but didn't feel good either.  I went for my weekly appointment, where Dr. C was still surprised I hadn't delivered this baby yet!  I had some contractions in the room with her, so she sent me over to pre-natal testing for a while to see if they would do anything.  We called my parents (again) and they started to head down (again).  After a couple of hours, still no real contractions, thus no labor, resulting baby that day.  UGH!!

  September 4, 2009 = I wake up with an energy like I haven't felt in months and I had to get out of the house.  So me, Anna Beth, and Mrs. Gaye (MIL) loaded up and headed into New Orleans to do some shopping.  We walked around the mall for hours.  Literally, hours.  At one point Mrs. Gaye suggested we get AB some frozen yogurt...just so she could me to sit down!  We headed back to Slidell about 4:30, when I noticed that my "contractions" were changing.  After two false runs, though, I didn't say a word to anyone.  I just silently timed them myself.  They continued to get closer and little more intense, but nothing big.  We go to bed about 10 and I finally tell Jacob that I'd been timing contractions for 5 hours and they were slowly getting closer together and starting to hurt.  He suggested we go to the hospital.  I told him I didn't think it was real labor!  I showered for a while and got back in bed...10 minutes apart...I tell Jacob that and he says it's time to go.  I still said no.  He told me when I came to my senses to wake him up, but that he was not delivering our baby on the Twin Spans (a bridge going across Lake Pontchartrain)!!
  10:45 pm = I finally say, "Okay, let's go."  9 minutes apart. 
  11:00 pm = After letting Mrs. Gaye know, we head out the door.  8 minutes apart.  I tell her I refuse to come home without a baby!  We called my parents and the hospital.  They asked how much I'd had to drink that day...seriously! Did they think I would make the same mistake twice? 
  11:10 pm = Jacob asks me to lean down and listen to a funny noise his truck is making on my side...I gave him a "look".  He said nevermind :) Ha!!
  11:45 pm = We get to the hospital...5 minutes apart...and park.  By the time we got the L&D floor, they were 4 minutes apart.  They check me and admit me into triage and tell me they're waiting on a room.  I'm begging them to hurry so I can get my epidural.
  1:00 am = I finally get into a room!  I'm still begging for my epidural and they say anesthesiology will be here soon.  Not soon enough, though.  They're every 2-3 minutes.
  1:45 am = Anesthesiology finally gets there!  And she tells me I haven't had enough IV fluid that she'll come back later.  NOOOOOO!!!!!  My nurses start pumping my IV bag and tell her to start setting her stuff up and by the time she's ready, they'll have me ready.  My nurses work hard, my anesthesiologist moves at a snails pace...then asks me to move to the other side of the bed because she can't reach me...I reminded her that her cart had wheel and I was in labor.  She moved to me :)
  4:20 am = Sweet Lynnsie Dale Coleman came easily into my arms.  Sweet little thing.  And, again, my heart exploded with a love I couldn't have comprehended before that very moment. 

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Bringing Home Baby Part 1

  This is Anna Beth's story...(minus the ghorry details)
  June 6, 2008 = my due date. When my doctor told me 3 1/2 weeks prior to that she thought I would go early, I really doubted her.  I mean, I'd heard of people walking around dialated and "ready to deliver" for weeks, only to be induced a week after their due date.  I was sure this was our fate to meeting Anna Beth, too.
  May 22 = Dr. C told me she would see me that weekend and to make sure my bags were packed.  "Okay, okay, whatever", I thought.  I already had some clothes in my bag, but I didn't rush home and finish packing by any means.  The next day I had a pedicure appointment and the girl insisted that it would probably send me into labor because she massaged my ankles...yeah, right! 
  Saturday, May 24 = Jacob and I were looking forward to our friend's baby shower that night...well, I was, anyway.  We were going to play Bunko!  We went to the shower, it was ridiculously hot, and I was almost miserable.  But I was still having fun so I stayed. Everyone was just hanging out under the pavilion at Sunshine Park and all of a sudden Jacob looked at me and asked if I was okay because I looked like I was about to freak out.  I realized then, that no, I did not feel well at all.  So, I got the keys, went home, ate some cereal, showered, and went to bed.  I thought the heat had just worn me out!!  Jacob got home just a few minutes after I got in bed and he came to bed, too.
  1:30 am = I woke up thinking I had just wet the bed...seriously.  I went to the bathroom, cleaned up, and got back in bed (sheets were still clean, btw).  I was almost back to sleep when I did it again.  I thought, "Seriously - I am an adult! I don't care that I'm pregnant and there's a baby on my bladder, there is no room for this!"  I get back up and repeat the above process.  Then I realized that maybe, just maybe, I hadn't wet the bed and maybe my water had broken.  I woke Jacob up and told him.  He said, "Well, maybe you should call the hospital."  I called, explained what happened, they told me to come on in.  I still wasn't feeling any contractions, though...praise the Lord!!
  2 am = a quick e-mail to Jacob's parents (in Africa) and a call to my parents (in Tennessee), we were out the door.  When we got to the hospital, they told me that my water had broken and I was admitted.  "Holy cow. She was right.", I thought ("she" being my doctor). 
  7 am = I'd had a few contractions, but they hadn't done anything to move along the delivery, so they gave me some pitocin to try to get the contractions to do something...they still weren't even hurting me, really.  The pitocin worked, I asked for my epidural STAT, got it, it began to wear off, and I started pushing that little button as often as I could to get those meds in me!! Finally, the anesthesiologist came back and gave me another dose and this time, it took.  Praise the Lord!  I was in no mood and had no desire for a drug-free labor and delivery. 
  8 am  = called our friends to let them know we were at the hospital.  My friend, Candace, was going to be in the delivery room with us until my mom got there.  She and Brent arrived soon after we called and she gave Jacob a break from the room while I took a nap (Aren't epidural's great? Ahhh, sweet relief and a nap!). 
  11 am = Dr. C arrived and said it was time...I said, "Time for what?"  Yes, I really did.  We called my mom to see how far away they were and they were still 30 minutes away.  I really wanted my mom there, too.  My doctor said we still needed to go ahead, so we did.  Turns out, Anna Beth was a stubborn little thing and my mom made it there in time.  Anna Beth kept turning to the side (which apparently she wasn't supposed to do) and my doctor would turn her the right way for me to push, then when the push was over, Anna Beth would go back to the way she wanted to be...funny how that little "I wanna try it my way, myself" determination is still existent today :)
  11:30 am = Mom got there while I was still in the L&D room, but AB was not budging.  After talking with the doctor, we decided for me to push a few more minutes, then we'd have to head to the surgery room.  She wanted to try to the forceps (ahhh!) before having to do a c-section, but she didn't want me to use all of my energy before we got in there.  After a few minutes and still no progress, we headed down to the surgery room.  It was a much different atmosphere and I was thankful I was not alone! Jacob doesn't do well with hospitals and stuff, and he just was not able to come into the surgery room with me, so my mom came in.  It was completely okay with me because I knew that Jacob wanted to be by my side, but couldn't - and I really didn't want to worry about him while I was trying to deliver our baby!
  12:19 pm = I gave three good pushes and little Miss Anna Elizabeth Coleman finally graced us with her presence.  When they laid her on my chest, she literally looked at me and smiled.  I am not exaggerating.   She smiled.  I have the picture, but I will not post it for "ghorry detail" reasons. 
  That was the day I met my sweet Anna Beth, held my child in my arms for the first time, and felt my heart explode with more love than I honestly believed it could handle.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Mommy Stops the Tears, Daddy Brings the Smiles

  I definitely have two daddy's girls on my hands. And I'm really more than okay with this...even though I carried them both for 9 months - with one bringing me a ridiculous amount of vomiting and one through the extreme heat of a South Louisiana summer - and birthed them in the middle of the night, fed them from my own body for months and months (in the middle of the night) and I spend my days wiping their noses and bottoms repeatedly throughout the day. Why am I so okay with this? Because I am a big daddy's girl, too - always have been, always will be. Love you, daddy!
  We both play different roles in our girls lives, though, and I thought about that yesterday. Lynnsie and Anna Beth were playing in the other room, spinning and twirling around, when the inevitable happened - AB twirled right into Lynnsie, knocking her not only down, but into the door frame...upper lip first. Poor thing. She cried. She screamed. And there was blood. Jacob got to her first, scooped her up, and tried to apply a wet cloth to her lip. But she wasn't having any of it.
  She just kept reaching for me and saying, "I want Mommy!" So, I took her. Bloody lip and all. I was wearing an old t-shirt, so I really wasn't worried about the blood. The blood finally stopped and we moved to the living room, per her request, to rock. Then the tears finally stopped. As soon as they did, she wanted down and wanted to go to daddy.
  Of course, he didn't refuse his sweet little Lynnsie. She climbed into his lap and just sat there. Very content. All it took was one little look from her daddy and a HUGE smile spread instantly across her face.
  She loves her daddy. And I love their relationship.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Two Little Onesies Hangin' On A Net...

  In my last post, Down By The Creek, I told you about the amazing baby shower my friends gave me and you saw this picture:

  I also told you that the top two onesies were a post all its own.  Well, here it is.  But, first I have to rewind to a few days before the shower.
  Jacob offered to take the girls to the pool or just out and about to give me some quiet time alone at home.  Normally, I jump at this chance, but really wanted to get some things done around the house that I needed his help for and I wanted us to spend the day together as a family.  Plus, the last time he took them out and left me in the house....they drove to the beach and I missed out!!  I could tell he was a little...agitated?...about this, but I didn't really think anything about it.  That night, he got a phone call - I could hear it was a guy's voice on the other end, but Jacob was talking with quick, general comments and not really "saying" anything.  So, being the nosey person I am, I asked him who it was.  I thought maybe he was trying to plan a fishing trip that he hadn't mentioned yet...b/c right now I really want my husband to go fishing all day when I'm so close to my due date!!
  Anyway, he wouldn't tell me.  So I kept asking :) He finally, said, "It was someone who wants to do something nice for you." That made me happy.  And confused.  What guy friend wanted to do something nice for me, right now?  Weird.
  A few days, later, two of my friends come into Sunday school way late - and totally got called out for it :)  There was something very funny about it, apparently, as they kept giggling.  But who really knew.  Then, after church, Anna Beth keeps telling me she made a shirt for Creek.  But, really, kids say anything so I just brushed it off.
  And then I walked into my totally awesome baby shower and my friends pointed out the two onesies at the top of the fishing net.  They had pulled Anna Beth and Lynnsie out of their classes and helped them to make special shirts for Creek.  I could have cried.  I did tear up.  How precious!!  Apparently, Lynnsie didn't really get into it - she even refused to acknowledge that she was having a baby brother or that there was a baby in my belly!  But it was super sweet, anyway. 
  So, Jacob was supposed to have taken the girl's to make the shirts that one morning, the phone call was Mary's husband - who then passed the phone off to my Mary - and Mary and Holly were late to SS - and got called out (and even had to sit in the "middle" part of our circle b/c we were so full that day!) - because they were helping my little girls make special shirts for my little boy.  I can't wait to put them on him!!
  The one Lynnsie made is has a turtle and the word "hop" on it.  Anna Beth's has two big trucks on it and a red frog.  LOVE!!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Down By The Creek

This week my friends gave me an AMAZING baby shower.  From the decorations to the food to the friends in attendance, it was all so perfect!! I have pretty awesome friends.  Keep reading and you'll see why:

These were the hostesses: Holly, Karen, Jamie, (me), Becca and Mary.  You definitely want them planning something special for you! 

This was one side of the cake...a "Creek" bank.

The other side of the bank...the "Creek".

"Bait" for fishing at the Creek cake...way too cute!!  There was another one that had little fish in it and a third that held the forks.  Such an adorable table decoration and they sent them home with me to use in his room...or to bang on :)

The perfect backdrop for the gifts...a fishing net with 3 precious onesies.  The top two are a blog post all their own.  And, of course, what's South Louisiana without an alligator onesie for a baby boy?!

It was very special to me for my mom, grandmother, and both of my sisters to be able to be there.

This was the MOST fun.  Since we have two girls and we're getting ready for our first boy - and lots of our friends have little boys - they made cutouts of fish, frogs, caterpillars, and dragonflies...lots of things you'd find down by the creek...and everyone wrote some advice for us about boys! Here's what we learned:
- Nothing like a boy.  Boys pull at their momma's heartstrings even more than girls do!
- Have a diaper ready...don't leave it exposed!
- Boys are so sweet.
- You will probably be on a first name basis at the ER :) Boys are rough and tough.  (If Creek is anything like his daddy, this will be very true!)
- Keep lots of ice packs, band-aids, and neosporin on hand.
- A little dirt never hurt anybody.
- Boys smell like wet rope when they sweat! lol
- Boys don't sit still and have one volume...LOUD!
- Boys mature a lot slower than girls!
- Hot wheels are flushable! (I think this is good to know :) )
- Keep lots of ice packs on hand. (Hmmm...same advice from two different people,
I should probably get some ice packs!)
- Don't take too long changing his diaper!
And I think the party favorite...
- When potty training, teach him to "shake" not "wipe" after he pees (or he will get
made fun of, according to dad)

When I got home after the shower, I couldn't wait to go through everything again and show Jacob all of the great stuff Creek got!  Lots of clothes, diapers, some toys, a super soft blanket, a tub with his name on it filled with clothes and diapers and the book "One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish" - perfect for the theme, right!, a diaper bag, some burp cloths, some bibs, a beautiful monogrammed quilt, and yes, I count the big blue bag of leftover tissue paper as a gift. Ha!

With the gifts, advice, and friendships, I think we're ready for you...


Wednesday, August 3, 2011

"Mommy, Why He's On the Cross?"

  This past Easter, our wonderful preschool ministry at church gave each of the girls a book about Easter.  It's not a story book about bunny rabbits and pretty colored Easter eggs, it's a storybook about new life and how it's all around us and how we can have a new life.
  Tucked into the pages of this short little story book is a picture of Christ, nailed and dying, hanging on the cross.  Anna Beth loves to have this book read to her and I will read it to her a thousand times a day because it shares with her the story of Christ's death, burial, and resurrection - and how because of that, we can have new life in Him. 

  Often times she will bring the book to me with the picture of Christ on the cross and say, very sadly, 'Mommy, they put nails in His feet and His hands.  He's on that cross, mommy.'  I tell her that yes, for a little while He was on that cross because He loves her, but then he got down from that cross and now He lives in heaven. 

  Today, she brought the picture to me and said, 'Mommy, why He's on that Cross?'  I repeated to her what I've told her over and over again...because He loves her.  She seemed satisfied, until she came back a few minutes later and said, 'Mommy, let's pray for Jesus to get off that cross and get better.'  I smiled and said, 'Okay.  Let's pray.'  She prayed, "Dear God, Thank you for my food (smile) and thank you for Jesus on the cross.  Please get Him down and make Him all better. Amen."  I can't tell you what these words did to me. To hear my 3 year old voice a prayer this sweet about Christ.

  I asked her to hand me the book and I showed her the next page, where the tomb is empty.  I told her that Jesus got down from that cross and He went into the tomb for a few days.  Then I turned the page and showed her the picture of Jesus...awake and "all better"!  I told her that He was off that cross and He was all better and He lived in heaven.  The look on her face said it all.  Her eyes lit up, a huge smile came across her face, and she just started clapping.  He was off that cross and He was all better.

  So, why was He on that cross?
  John 3:16 - "For God so loved the world (that's you and me and everyone else) that He gave His only Son (Jesus), that WHOEVER (that's anyone and everyone) believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life (in heaven with Him)."  He love you and me and everyone else.
  "...for ALL (that's you and me and everyone else) have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God." Romans 3:23. We've all messed up.  None of us are perfect.  None of us can stand on our own in front of a holy and righteous God and say, "We deserve heaven and a wonderful life with you forever."  We're only fooling ourselves if we think that.

  "...for the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life."  Romans 6:23.  Since we know we don't deserve heaven, then what do we deserve?  Eternal death.  In hell....a very real, very horrible, very dark place where people are forever separated from God.  No turning back.  BUT....praise God, He gives us the gift of eternal LIFE with Him in heaven. 

  "That if you confess with your mouth, 'Jesus is Lord', and believe in your heart that  God raised him from the dead (He's not on that cross anymore!), you will be saved (from eternal death.)"  Romans 10:9.  That's all.  He loves you.  He wants you to love Him.  He wants to be your friend.  He wants to have a relationship with you.  He wants you to cry on His shoulder.  He wants to rejoice with you.  He wants to spend FOREVER with you.

  And that, my friends, is why He was on the cross!!

* For further reading, the book of John in the New Testament of the Bible is an excellent account of Jesus life, death, burial, and resurrection.  If you have any questions about any of these, I'd love to talk to you (email me at jmalcoleman).  Or you can talk to a pastor at your local church or anyone you know that loves God and can help you better understand.