Monday, July 11, 2011

The 5th kid!

Hello All! I know it has been an extremely long time since I have posted anything. That is primarily because it has been a hard year in the Z family. Many of you have probably seen on facebook the posts I've shared about my health and pregnancy this year. Well it all started......

With my stupid gallbladder! So, many of you will remember my unfortunate Clare pregnancy. Here's a little reminder. She was born 5 weeks early because of my high blood pressure and thyroid problems. I spent 2 weeks in the hospital being poked and prodded. During that time they were doing ultrasounds of my liver because my liver enzymes were out of control and found that I had a bunch of gall stones. Well after Clare was all safe and sound outside in the world the doctors told me I should have surgery and get my gallbladder removed.

It is, by the way, very common for women who have just given birth to have their gallbladders removed. Well I was really tired of doctors doing things to me by that time and wanted nothing to do with surgery. So, I found some alternative treatments and was doing very well without surgery. However, enter pregnancy #5 unexpectedly, the gallbladder kicks into high gear and I acquire more stones than my body knows what to do with.

So, I start passing ALOT of stones and we head to the emergency for the 1st time. They send me home after the stones have passed and 3 or 4 days later I'm back after having passed more stones. During that time the pain intensified enough that I passed out three times at home. Once in the bathroom, once in the kitchen (where I sprained my tail bone and hit my head pretty hard), and a third time on the bed and luckily David caught me before I rolled off. I was also throwing up uncontrollably and totally dehydrated. Thankfully, I have super awesome friends that took my kids and allowed us to go back to the hospital really early in the morning.

By the time we got to the hospital I was pretty out of it and so they gave me alot of drugs both to stop the pain and throwing up and did alot of tests on me. What they found was that one of the gallstones had jumped into my pancreas and given me pancreatitus. They also hooked me up to a bunch of heart monitors to see why I was passing out all the time.

During that first hospital stay they kept me off of any food and I was only IV liquids and alot of pain and nausea medicine. The stone eventually made its way out of my pancreas and they decided it would be safe to remove my gallbladder during pregnancy. The hang up a the time was that I wasn't far enough along. Going under anesthesia isn't safe for the baby in the first trimester and they wanted me to wait until I was 16 weeks along to do the surgery. At the time I was only 10 weeks and waiting 6 weeks seemed like a daunting amount of time.

They also found that my heart does something called a Vagal response. Which means that when I am in extreme pain or having severe nausea my heart slows down enough that I pass out or my heart kind of stops for a second. Apparently it scared the nurses a couple times in the hospital and I had now idea why they were suddenly checking on me immediately after I had thrown up. I never actually passed out in the hospital, but every time I threw up there my heart monitor freaked out. So the doctor was joking about it the next day.

After the first 5 day stay I was sent home and my wonderful cousin Melissa Thorne came to stay with me and help take care of the kids. That was wonderful because I was not doing that great. That was the first time in my life I realize I could not function on my own and take care of my family. Very hard for me. I was on a very low fat or no fat diet and really I could barely eat anyway because my digestive track was all messed up from these stones. But I was hungry all the time because I was pregnant.

I went back into the hospital a week after I was released from the hospital for my 2nd stay. My pancreas still wasn't super happy and I was passing more stones all the time. They had to rehydrate me and remove me from food again. There were two great things about that stay. First I got the same room and nurses I had the first time I was there and second I got a new surgeon. The new surgeon said she would do the surgery on me when I hit 12 weeks of pregnancy. It was a full month before the other surgeon would perform the surgery and that was fantastic. They also sent me home after 3 days with pain medication, so I could pass stones at home and take care of the pain myself.

I saw the surgeon the next week and we scheduled the surgery for the following week. In the meantime my husband, ward and friends took care of my kids daily because I was totally incapable. I was very week and couldn’t eat much, plus my pancreas and gallbladder were still painful. I passed more stones and just tried to hold out for surgery.

Surgery finally came and I was ready! I had never had surgery, but the surgeon was great and my surgery was laparoscopic and since I was 14 weeks along the baby wasn’t large enough to be in the way of my gallbladder. My surgeon had actually performed the surgery on several other pregnant women and I was just thrilled that this was coming to an end. My mom arrived the day before the surgery and we were ready to go! It took an hour to take that stinking gallbladder out and an hour and half later I woke up in recovery gallbladder-less. Yay!

It took about a week for all of the residual nerve pain to go away and a couple extra days to wean myself off of the pain meds. My mom stayed for two weeks and by the time she left I was on my feet and doing really well. My pain was totally gone, I was sleeping well and miracle of miracles, I could eat! I bounced back pretty quickly from there. I was still having some morning sickness, but I had all kinds of nausea medicine which kept me doing well.

By the time 4 weeks, post surgery, had passed I was back in the saddle again. The only worry we had was the baby. My OB wanted to make sure that nothing had injured the baby during all the drugs and surgery. I was definitely concerned about that. I received a super fancy ultrasound and they found that everything was great! What a relief after everything that happened. The baby is still growing strong and I’m doing really well and I feel great.

So here are some pictures from my fancy ultra sound! I did not include the one of the boy parts, but yes we are having a 3rd boy. Enjoy!

This is the sweet thumbs up I got from our boy. It was actually two thumbs up!

I took it as a sign!

This is the front facial view. Notice the Jake size head!

Here is the first footprint. That is one long foot!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Moving Right Clarissa!

Shortly before the 4th of July my sister Clarissa came to visit us! She came for a whole month and we all had a fantastic time during her visit. She got to watch our spectacular neighborhood fireworks and light a few of her own. Fireworks are against the law in our hometown, so this was a new thing for her. She really loved that! This picture was taken at the zoo. We have a family pass for the zoo and we had a really good time there with the kids.

The Point Defiance Zoo has a room full of parakeets. You can purchase a popsicle stick with bird seed on them and feed the birds. Sammy actually held onto her stick while this bird had a snack. The kids love this stuff!

We also went strawberry picking with Clarissa. I try to go every year and make freezer jam from the berries. We had a good time and Clarissa had never been berry picking before, so it was a good out door activity.

We also went beach camping at Pacific Beach while Clarissa was here.
Pacific Beach has a small camp ground and a quiet and remote little beach. It is the perfect place to go camping and have some beachy fun with the kids. We had a great time. Our good friends the Roeths came with us, which made it super fun! We all got sunburned, as you can see, because as I completely forgot, you get the worst sunburns in overcast weather! Ahhh...

Clarissa and Jake getting ready for a hot dog over the fire.

Sammy with Becca, Eleanor, and Rachel Roeth

The whole gang roasting hot dogs with sand on them. Not the finest meal I've ever had, but definitely the most challenging. We should have gone to the hamburger stand in town! The kids had a great time though and thought our many mishaps were funny, until they had to eat crunchy hot dogs!

Back Again! A Summer of Fun!

After a very long hiatus, I have decided to start blogging again. I have had several requests and will try to do some catch up. My first effort will show the super fun weekend I had in Cali for my birthday.

Baby sis Clarissa and I on the train to the Getty Art Museum in LA.

Mom and I in the gardens at the Getty. It was a really beautiful day!

My sweet little neice Jillian in her blessing dress. She was blessed while I was visiting and I was extemely excited to meet her and be there for her special day. She is my very first
neice and a special little gal!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

The Many Costumes of Jake

I have recently been going through all of my digital pictures in an effort to try and complete my boys' baby books. Whilst making that effort, I have stumbled upon a wide variety of pictures of Jake dressed in strange and wondrous costumes. I thought you might enjoy the trip down memory lane with me.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Sammy's Baptism

So, here are the pictures you've all been waiting for. The day that Sammy has been waiting for finally came and she was baptized. We had a whole bunch of family come from So. Cal. for the blessed event and it was a really fun week. Granny arrived first and kicked off the festivities. The kids love having her here and spending some quality Granny time!

Then my Dad, brother Chris and sister Clarissa joined the group. We spent Saturday in Seattle at the Science fiction museum and EMP. We also hit the Crab Pot on the water front for a little crab cook goodness, as you can see below.

There was much tickling to be caught up with. As you can see Papa was a primary target. Even during his nap. I admit, I suggested it, but the boys thought it was a great idea. They tickled my Dad for a good 5-10 minutes before he actually woke up!

My inlaws arrived Friday night with David's brother Ben and David's sister Erika rounded out the party goers on Saturday morning. Saturday evening we had another pizza party and opened presents from all of the family. Sammy got her first set of scriptures with her name on them from David and I. She loves them and spent the entire 2 hours of stake conference reading them and pointing out scriptures to me. Love that girl!

This funny little picture of Clare was taken after she opened her present from Granny. She got Abby Cadaby from Sesame Street, which she loved, but she hates the flash on cameras and always closes her eyes (just like her Granny), so I caught her winking in this picture and thought it was too cute to exclude!

Here is the family gathered before Sammy's baptism. The baptism was fantastic. David is a great dunker and got that girl completely under on the first try. Grandma Z. gave the baptism talk, Grandpa Z. gave the opening prayer, Uncle Chris sang Baptism accompanied by a harp (very cool), Papa gave the Holy Ghost talk, Granny directed the music, and Aunt Biss gave the closing prayer. It was very fun and a really nice afternoon!

Here are Sammy and David in their white clothes. Sammy is wearing a replica of my baptism dress. She tried mine on and decided that she wanted one just like it for her own. So I made her one. Luckily my mom had given me the pattern years ago and pack rat that I am, I still had it! She looked beautiful and told me after the fact that her soul felt sooo clean. I can't believe that my baby has gotten baptized, but here we are. She did a great job and is a wonderful girl!

Sammy's 8th Birthday

Sammy's Birthday was a day to remember. She is such a crack up! She wanted French toast for her special birthday breakfast and wore her old soccer t-shirt because it has an 8 on the back. Here she is after breakfast with her brothers, wearing the birthday head piece she made out of pipe cleaners in the shape of an 8. She did alot of fun things for her birthday. She and her sister got their ears pierced. We have been trying to talk her into it for years and this time when we paced the store at the mall that pierces ears they had Hello Kitty piercing earrings. That apparently tipped the balances and so it was done. She cried more than Clare, but she is very excited about it.

Since her birthday was on a Friday she got to have her birthday party on her birthday. We invited 10 friends over for a Dinosaur themed birthday party. Leave it to my 8 year old girl to pick a dinosaur themed party! So here is the cake I made, which she and all of her friends loved.

We had a really good party and I got alot of feed back from parents saying that their kids had a really good time. The boy sitting next to Sammy in the picture below it Hunter. He is in her class at school and she has promised to marry him when she grows up. He followed her around the entire party. Really cute stuff! Anyway, we had pizza, a pinata, pin the tail on the dinosaur, a dinosaur egg hunt, and a find the dinosaur game. All in all, I think it went pretty well!

Clare's First Birthday

Clare's first birthday was a fun time. Here she is holding her favorite birthday gift, her baby from Granny. She sleeps with it every night and loves it all the time. Baby was her first word after Mom and Dad.

We had a party on New Years day for her birthday and had some friends from our ward over. I made her our favorite 4 layer lemon cake and she loved it!

Over all it was a fantastic day for our girl Clare and she had a really great Birthday!