Monday, August 31, 2009

Home Again Home Again

We're home, and loving life. Amos had a great first night at home, and only woke up twice during the night. Eli woke up a little upset this morning, but the present that Amos brought him (a wagon filled with big Legos) is smoothing things over. And having YaYa to play with constantly helps a lot.
Just before leaving the hospital.
Amos in his acorn outfit.
Another brotherly introduction.
The best family shot we could get. We took about a dozen, trying to get everyone to look at the camera. Amos gets a pass, since he was about 23 hours old at the time, and can't be expected to follow directions.
This moment lasted about 6 seconds. Then Eli was off to play again.
All buckled up and ready to go.
When we got home, Amos was sleepy, so he spent a little while in his crib (which he won't sleep in at night for a while). He likes it in there.
Amos LOVES the sling. This is something Eli didn't care for much early on, so the fact that Amos is so happy in there is great news.
Late in her pregnancy, it was tough for Jessa to read books to Eli at night, because there just wasn't any lap for him to sit in. So last night, Amos, MaMa, and Eli read some books. Everybody involved loved it.
Burrito baby in his crib.

Eli had a great time out on the porch this morning. He likes to pretend the airplane flies. It's just a matter of time until he throws it over the edge. But he hasn't made that connection yet.
I tried to teach Eli how to take a picture. This was the resulting shot.
One little game we play with Eli is getting him to do as many different "bumps" as we can. It started with a fist bump (inspired by the Obamas, of course), but he now does finger bumps, elbow bumps, and nose bumps. This was just after a nose bump.
Sweet child.
Eli and YaYa have been building towers and robots with his new Legos.
Out cold.
Mama and Amos.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

The Arrival of Amos

Wow. What a whirlwind. After the 31 hour epic delivery of Big Head Eli, I was ready for a long battle to birth Amos. Twas not so.

At 3:00 a.m. on Saturday morning I was awoken by some differently painful contractions. I got up and sat on the birth ball, listened to The Weepies on the ipod and started paying attention. Eric found me there and we decided to walk laps around the top floor of our building. I was having painful contractions regularly so at five we called my Mom and asked her to come up. She thought we were probably in labor and should go to the hospital. I called Kaiser and they said to come in. So in we went.

I kept contracting until the second I hopped up on the hospital bed. Everything fizzled out. But I was already 4 centimenters so they sent us to walk for an hour. I'm sure they meant for us to walk the halls of the hospital. But it was a gorgeous morning, so we left and walked around the neighborhood. We walked to starbucks and got breakfast. And my contractions were firing off one after another. At our next check I was 4.5/5 centimeters, so the sent us to walk again. At 9:15 we came back from our walk and got admitted.

Contractions were coming hard and heavy as we got settled into our room. Our friend relieved my mom watching Eli so she met us at the hospital at the same time we got admitted. I was already needing some help managing the pain. Mom talked me through the contractions and Eric rubbed and soothed and kept me calm. They were, once again, an amazing support team.

We considered walking and getting in the tub, but things were happening so fast that all I could do was sit and breathe through contractions. We got into our room at 9:45, and by 12:00 I was 8 centimeters. There was hardly a minute between contractions, so we sent off for the epidural. Anethesiologist Rick came in and wasted no time administering a perfect epidural. I got comfy, but could still move, and we rested for a few hours.

At 3:30 I was checked and was complete. They gave me the option of pushing or waiting and letting the uterus work on while I was comfortable. We decided to give pushing a try.

Pushing with Eli was long and energy-sapping and futile. He didn't budge for hours. Pushing Amos out...well...surpisingly, it actually worked. Every push made progress that I could feel. And in twenty minutes everyone was buzzing around getting ready for his arrival. Amazing. And once everyone was ready, I got down to it once more and watched as out he came - beautiful, pink, warm and squishy.

That moment, the first moment of contact with the sweet tiny body that has been wiggling inside of you for so long, there is nothing like it. It passes so quickly, but is so so sweet. Wet, slippery, warm perfect life in your arms. Nothing comes close.

And now he's ours. Sweet Amos is here. At every phase of his birth I kept saying the same line, "It's crazy how fast/smoothly/well this is going." Painful...but smooth.

And he is a prince. All this time we've been harboring his name, I knew it was a name for an earnest and kind person - a good soul. It fits him perfectly. He is a sweet sweet snuggler who squeaks and grunts his pleasure at being in the arms of his Mama or Dad. Eric and Amos are in their perfect father/son happy place right now; both asleep snuggled up against each other. Perfection.

Oh - and he must've been reading his Nursing 101 textbook for the last few months. He came out and went straight to it.

And now we just can't wait to get home and get this party started. We both miss Eli so much, and want to start aquainting these two boys for the fun and adventures they have in store. Their first introduction went as well as could be expected - but at the end when Eli said, "Night, night Amos." Oh...I had to clutch my heart and melt. Perfection.

So we're checking out early. We're staying the required 24 hours after birth and then we're blowing this pop stand. That means Amos will be born and home in the same amount of time it took just to get Eli delivered. Wow, I love second child deliveries!
Here we are chilling on day 2 of Amos' life.
Our first diaper change, which occured sometime in the middle of the night.
Oh what a good snuggler. Notice that we scored a queen-sized bed in the recovery room. Sweet.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

The Afternoon

Amos is now almost five hours old, and he's already had lots of adventures. We've moved down the hall to the mother/baby unit, and he's already had his temperature checked about a hundred times. He learned how to eat, almost immediately, and so far he's spent most of the time sleeping or eating.

Here are a few photos from the afternoon.

This was about 2 minutes after birth. It was love at first sight. I'll let Jessa do a blog sometime to explain the many differences between a first baby and a second baby, but let's just say she's in great spirits.
3/4 of the fam.

Amos has amazing little monkey fingers and toes. Here, he holds my finger while getting poked and prodded by nurses.
Snoozing under the lights.
He loves to hold his hand up by his chin, just like his brother did.
The aforementioned monkey toe. Seriously, look at that thing.
Stop messing with me!
Coooooooooooone head.
Amos and his YaYa.
Dad and Amos.
Dad and Amos, again.
The family. When Eli got to meet his baby brother, he was much more interested in seeing Mama and getting "a bite of Mama's ice, please" than hanging out with the Bro. This was the best attempt at getting everyone to look at the camera.
We like this one.
Eli hearts hospital ice.
At the end of his visit, Eli was saying his goodbye. Unprompted by anyone, he looked at his little brother, who he'd ignored most of the time, and said, "night night, Amos." I thought Jessa was going to cry.

Amos Gray Decker-Smith

Amos Gray Decker-Smith was born at 4:01 p.m. He's 21 inches long and weighs 8 pounds, 15 ounces. Everybody is doing great.


We're gonna push.

The View From Jessa's Bed

They checked things at the appointed hour, and we're not ready yet. They're re-checking when Jessa feels increased pressure, or in 2 hours, whichever comes first. So stay tuned.

This is the view from Jessa's perspective. She's watching the episode of Friends where Rachel has a baby.

Where Things Stand

The epidural is in, and we're waiting about an hour to re-check things. Things are moving pretty quickly, and the thinking is that all systems may be ready to go by the next check-in (around 1:30 mountain time). So this is probably the last blog entry until the birth announcement.

I'm reading Jessa all the comments, so please keep them coming!

Jessa: "It's crazy how fast this is going," about 11 times a minute.


Jessa just got her epidural, which is making her a lot more comfortable. She got to 8cm without one, which was awesome. It won't be long now!


Hi everyone. We're here, in a labor room. It looks like TB will definitely be here today. Updates are coming here and via Facebook.

We're Heading To The Hospital

Jessa's been contracting since yesterday (Friday), and they woke her up at about 3 a.m. Since then we've been walking laps around the top floor of our apartment building. Now the contractions are about 4-6 minutes apart, so we're heading to the hospital. Wish us luck!

On the ball.
Early morning labor walking.
The camera is fuzzy in the dark. This is looking west towards the foothills.

Thursday, August 27, 2009


Congrats go to Russell and Priscilla, our friends in Asheville, who welcomed Abigail last night! They were due three days after us, but....alas, still no baby here.

At our appointment this morning, there was really no sign of any progress, so we've sort of resigned ourselves to an induction on Sunday. If something happens before then, that's great, but if not, we know something will happen Sunday. Since my prediction (today) doesn't seem to be working out, here's on more poll to see what folks think:

In the meantime, we're waiting. And what better way to wait than at the playground?

That's Eli with his YaYa-made walking stick, and Mama's labor ball, which has so far not produced much labor.

Big blue eyes.
I love this one.
If he's not with his Harry, he's with his bulldozer.
He loves climbing through the tube at the playground.
Scraping mulch with the bulldozer.

As we were leaving, Eli first told the playground bye-bye, and then told it night night. By the time we got to the car, he was talking about "see Keisha tomorrow." That's one of his teachers. He's catching on to this school thing.