Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Pregnancy Update - 30 Weeks and some Change

I'm sorry I haven't been very good about sending out email updates.
It is now official... we know how we will be spelling our little girls name. Abigail... Abby for short. (Steve says these are the only way to spell the two names... you can ask him about that later!)

Things have been pretty good before we hit about 30 weeks. Before then, I had been having some contractions everyday, but nothing serious. As long as I took it easy, there wouldn't be that many. A few weeks ago I had even asked for help in doing some of the heavier house chores so I wouldn't be overexerting. Abby has been growing and growing and moving around like crazy. Its been a lot of fun to see different parts of my belly moving around. She's been getting the hiccups regularly for several weeks now.

Last week we took a bit of a turn. Wednesday morning I had a regular appointment with my midwife. She had already known about the contractions, but I told her that in the past week or so I'd been feeling some pressure on my cervix. So, just to be safe, she performed a Fetal Fibronectin test (a positive result is an indicator that a woman may go into labor in the next 2 weeks), and checked my cervix. We discovered I had dilated to a 1 and was 80% effaced. So I got hooked up to a machine to monitor contractions and waited for the test results to come back. When the result came back positive, I was sent to the hospital for 24 hour observation and to get some steroid shots in order to help Abby's lungs develop a little faster in case I do go into labor in the next couple of weeks.

Thursday afternoon the on call Dr. came in with the nurse to let me know they were a little concerned because Abby's heart rate was dropping too much, so they decided to keep me overnight again to monitor her. They performed an ultrasound to ensure that she was growing properly and that her heart rate was normal. (I also had the technician double check her gender - definitely a girl!). Early Friday morning, my midwife came to check on me and said they were going to have the Perinatal Dr. take a look at Abby on the high tech ultrasound machine. So, that afternoon, the Perinatal came in and measured her head, heart, lungs, and body size... he said she was in great condition, growing the way she was supposed to be growing, but they wanted to keep me overnight again to continue to monitor her heart rate. At this point, I was having the contractions I'd been having previously, and they were hardly there at all.

Saturday morning I started having some regular contractions but after changing positions, they stopped. I saw the on call Dr and the Perinatal Dr. and they both told me that Abby's heart rate hadn't been dropping like it was before, but that they wanted to keep me overnight again to continue to monitor her and the contractions I had had. On Sunday morning I started having some contractions that were 5-10 min apart and ended up getting a shot of terbutaline in order to stop them. Around 1115, the Perinatal Dr came in to do another ultrasound on Abby... and gave her a clean bill of health. Told me that if the on call Dr. approved, I could go be on bed rest at home. The on call Dr. came in shortly after, gave me a prescription for terbutaline in order to stop contractions while at home and gave me some other instructions; I was home by 130 on Sunday.

So far things are pretty good. My Mom came in Friday afternoon to stay and take care of me. I've been getting more than enough help from my friends, Relief Society (more friends), and Priesthood (more friends). Everyone has gone above and beyond the call of service!

Since being home, the contractions have been off an on and I've had to take the medication to stop them a few times. Early this morning they wouldn't stop with the meds, so we went into Labor and Delivery. They had stopped by the time we got there, but they monitored me for a few hours then released me. So, I'm on bed rest for the next 4 weeks. Steve comes home in 5... hopefully we can wait till then!
I want to thank everyone for being more than generous in your support and help. Thanks to all those who have visited me in the hospital and at home. I feel a deep sense of gratitude for everything everyone had been doing for us; thank you for making me (and Abby) feel so loved! I love you all too! We are grateful for your thoughts and prayers.
Thank you, Thank You, Thank You!!
Christy Stephensen

Friday, April 10, 2009

Joshie's Legacy

This will be the 3rd Annual March for Babies for our family team, Joshie's Legacy.For those of you who may not know, two years ago I started this team in our son Joshua's name in order to preserve his memory and bring about good things on his behalf. Joshua was born premature and lived almost 12 hours.

For those of you who live in the Reno area, you may join our team and come to the March; a 2 mile walk around the Sparks Marina. This year it is Saturday April 25th. Registration is at 730am and the walk starts at 9am. There are lots of fun activities for the kids! For those that join our team, I do not ask that you raise money, but you may if you like. You can copy this email, adapt with your own words, and then send it to your friends and family.

For those of you outside of Reno, you may choose to donate to our walk and/or find a walk in your local area and represent out team there!

To join our team and/or donate, click on the link below.

Thanks to all those who have participated and/or donated in the past!Hope to see you at the walk!
Christy Stephensen

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

My Great Grandma Christy's Blanket

I had a very special experience today.
First, a little explanation. I am named after my great grandparents. My name is Christy May and I was named after my great grandpa H. Russell Christy and Mildred May Christy. Great Grandma Christy died when I was 6... but she has always been my favorite grandma. She was an amazing woman. Sometimes I'm not really sure why, I just know it. Whenever she is talked about in our family, it's always with reverance. She was the most kindest person and caring and talented too. My memory of her and the idea of her is part of who I am.

So, today I was getting ready to leave the house when I saw my Mailman pull up and then walk to my front door with a package in hand. I wasn't expecting a package today... but I knew that it must be something for our little baby. I read the return address and learned that it was from my Aunt Patty. She's been really excited (as everyone else has been too) about our little one, so I knew that there would be some great practical stuff for our little girl. I opened the box, everything was wrapped in tissue paper. I unwrapped one thing at a time, admiring what she sent; a 12 mo. creeper shirt, a pink 0-3 month gown, the beanie baby bear Hope who is kneeling in prayer, and some burp clothes that look like she might have sown up herself (she's talented that way!). So far I was most excited about the burp clothes; the pattern of the fabric is so darn cute.

But that wasn't all... oh no, there was still one more thing in the box, and there was a letter on top! I love letters! So, I start reading this letter lovingly typed by my Aunt telling me a little story about a blanket my Great Grandma Christy croched. As I'm reading this letter, thinking about my grandma Christy, tears are falling from my eyes. Aunt Patty proceeds to tell me that Grandma had given her the blanket to give to her second child, which they thought would be a girl. Turns out, the baby, my cousin Nathan, was a boy! Skip to now... in my box, wrapped in white tissue paper is the blanket; a yellow blanket, croched by my Great Grandma Christy. I unwrap the blanket and hold in to my chest and just sob and sob. What a special gift for our little girl. All day long, I've been pulling the blanket out of the box and just holding it and nuzzling it. I can hardly wait to wrap my little girl in it! In the picture below is the blanket... as well as another blanket she made which my mother gave to me from her collection of Grandma Christy blankets... it's home has been my rocker since Steve put it together last time he was home.