Saturday, July 16, 2011

Two Weeks - Surviving and Thriving

Dear Isadora,

It's been two weeks since we brought you home from the hospital.  Two weeks since the hospital deemed that we were fit enough to take you home and keep you alive.  Two weeks since we officially became a family.  We've had a lot of help since coming home, too, and we've been so appreciative of all the food and goodies people have been dropping off for us.  All of the meals people have prepared for us have been so yummy and delicious.

Izzy Pot Pie

Even Mimi came to stay for a week to help mommy and daddy during your first week home, and your Grandma Joyce Irene is coming next week to help, too.  Even though you're an itty bitty person, taking care of you is a big responsibility.  Mommy is so glad to have the help.  Speaking of help, your daddy has been the best helper of all!  He really shares in the responsibility of taking care of you -- and I know he does it because he wants to.  I've seen nothing bring him more joy than taking care of you.  You're his pride and joy!

Although it has only been two weeks since we brought you home from the hospital, we have already learned so much from you.

Daddy Rocking Izzy to Sleep

Here are some things we've learned about you and parenting so far:

  1. No matter what we read in the parenting books, there's nothing like trial and error to teach us what you really need or want.
  2. No matter how weird mommy and daddy think the consistency of your poop is, your pediatrician says it's normal.
  3. When being held by daddy, you like for him to be standing, not sitting.  (And if he tries to sit, you have no qualms about letting him know he's doing it wrong.)
  4. You're a night owl and you think sleep is overrated, no matter how we try to convince you otherwise.
  5. You like to kick daddy in the gut while he tries to change your diaper.
  6. Never ever change your diaper without a new one already in place ready to go.  You have been known to projectile poop and pee while a diaper is being changed.
  7. You like to pee while being bathed and you like to poop while we're toweling you off.
  8. You love to stare at the ceiling fan, lights, and picture frames.
  9. Smiles induced by gas are just as real to us as ones not produced by gas.
  10. You can be fickle.  Last week you preferred my right breast.  This week, you prefer the left.

Sleeping on Mommy's Chest

Granted, we haven't learned any monumental lessons in parenting yet (other than sleep is a precious, precious thing), but we are enjoying learning who you are.  Even after a rough night of changing you, feeding you, and trying to get you back to sleep, seeing your sweet little face each day makes all the tears and sleeplessness worth it.



Thursday, July 7, 2011

The Day You Arrived

Dear Isadora,

Today's post is brought to you by a very special guest blogger -- your Daddy.  The following is the story of your birth as told by your Daddy.  Enjoy sweet pea.




It had been almost an entire week since your due date. Mommy and I were getting sick of waiting around for you and started to think you had decided that you were just going to stay in there forever. We had tried everything to get things moving. We tried taking long walks.  We tried spicy foods.  We tried swimming.  We tried playing Pink Floyd’s “Dark Side of the Moon” to the Wizard of Oz.  We tried everything everyone said would work… They didn’t. 

Mommy and I had decided that it wasn’t going to happen that night either.  We settled in for another lazy night of watching television and waiting for you. 

And then it happened. Mommy let out a grunt and held her tummy. I did what I always did when Mommy did this. I asked, “You ok?”  She said, “Yes,” but this felt different. We started timing her pains and soon realized that the length of the pains and how far apart they were (12-15 minutes) could be contractions. Mommy and I played it cool. I think we both thought that if we didn’t think about it too much, maybe this would be the day.

An hour went by and then something else happened. Your Mommy fell asleep. Since I have never heard of anyone sleeping through labor and birth, I figured it was a false alarm and took your mother to bed for another night of wishing you were here.

A couple hours later, Mommy woke me up and said she thought it was time to go to the hospital. I didn’t know what was going on. I had just woken up, your Mom was yelling at me, there was luggage on the bed, and for some reason Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs was on the television. I got it together quick, looked your Mommy in eyes, and told her something that I don’t think she will ever forget -- “Before we do anything, I have to go to the bathroom.” Once that was taken care of, I moved on to the next step on the action plan I had come up with while going to the bathroom. I texted your Uncle Josh and told him, “It’s go time.” Your Uncle lives hundreds of miles away and wasn’t going to be able to help at all, but I thought this was the next right step. 

Mommy and I got into the car and headed to the hospital. We got to the hospital, and we had to wait in a room for a couple of minutes before the nurse came to get us. They brought Mommy into another room and gave her a gown and a cup to get a urine sample. Mommy went to the bathroom and I waited. And waited… And waited… And waited. I was starting to get worried that Mommy had fallen asleep in the bathroom, or, even worse, that our little miracle was coming NOW! It turns out it was a miracle -- for the first time in four months, your Mommy didn’t have to go to the bathroom. After that, Mommy and I settled into our room and waited for the next contraction.

Your Mommy was doing great. Every couple of minutes she would get a contraction, and we knew you were getting closer to being here. Your Mommy and I would sleep for 3-4 minutes at time between contractions and wake up all of a sudden and breath together and then go back to sleep. Your Mommy wanted to try and have you with no drugs involved, and, so far, she was doing great. She was in a little pain, but nothing she couldn’t handle yet. And then it happened. For the first time since we have known each other, your Mother gave me a look that made it pretty clear that if given the right tools, she could rip my head off and disembowel me in under 20 seconds. Your Mom said she was starting to rethink the use of drugs. I told her maybe we should wait a little longer to see if the next contractions were that bad. Your Mother “respectfully disagreed,” and the drugs were brought in. It didn’t take all the pain away, but it made it a little easier on your Mommy.

By this time your Aunt Barbara and Obaachan (Grandma) had arrived at the hospital. But you still hadn’t arrived, and, to be honest, it looked like you had changed your mind. The contractions were getting further apart and your Mommy wasn’t dilating at a very quick rate. That’s when we were faced with a very difficult decision. In order to keep the labor moving and get you here, we had to break Mommy’s water. It hadn’t broken yet, and it meant you weren’t able to get to where you were supposed to be.  The pain of the contractions was going to get worse once the water was broken. The nurse asked your Mommy if she wanted an epidural. Your Mommy was dreading this moment for weeks. She was very nervous and scared about getting one. We finally decided that we should do it. It was the first time I cried that day. It was so hard to see your Mommy that nervous and worried, but we got through it.

Post Epidural

Mommy Post Epidural

That’s when we entered the phase of labor I like to call “smiling, happy, reading magazines labor.” By this time, your Grandma Joyce had arrived at the hospital. So your Mommy, me, Aunt Barbara, Obaachan, and Grandma Joyce settled in to wait for you to arrive.


Grandma Joyce Irene and Obaachan Suemi

At 4 o’clock p.m. the nurse checked your Mommy. She had been checking her every hour or so and there was very little change. But this time when the nurse checked your Mommy, she said you were on your way and that it was time to start pushing. Everyone in the room was shocked. We thought it was going to take longer than this.


Excited to Become Your Parents

Your Aunt and two Grandmas were actually able to stay in the room while your mommy was pushing. I am going to spare you the details of the next hour and 15 minutes. Some of it was pretty ugly. I thought I was going to throw up or pass out, mostly from being so nervous. Your Mommy was doing a great job of pushing and your family cheering section was rooting you on.  Your Aunt Barbara was the first to see you as your head started to come out and go back in.

And then IT happened. You came shooting out. Mommy and I started crying right away. We were so happy. Our little dream come true was here. That is partly why your middle name is Yume (it means “dream” in Japanese). I didn’t know what to do. I was going back and forth between hugging your Mommy and running to you to make sure you were ok. I actually hit my head a couple of times on a light going back and forth. You were so big! 9 lbs. and 1 oz. to be exact, and 21 inches long. Your Grandmas and Aunt Barbara were so happy, too. There was a lot of love in that room for you. And there always will be.

She's Here!

Daddy Checks on Izzy

9 lbs. 1 oz. !!!

Izzy Meets Mommy and Daddy

By the way if you ever have a friend who is pregnant and is trying to figure out a way to speed up going into labor, tell them to watch Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs. Trust me, it works every time.

Izzy and Daddy

Sunday, July 3, 2011


Miss Isadora Yume Patten!

Isadora Yume

  • Born June 30, 2011 at 5:14 p.m. EST
  • Weighed in at 9 lbs. 1 oz.
  • Measured 21 inches long
  • Likes (so far) include mommy and daddy, Kangaroo Care, and sucking the back of her hand or her two middle fingers
  • Vices include screeching like a pterodactyl and trying to claw her own eyes out
  • Hidden talent: looking like a sweet, precious baby when her eyes are closed; looking like a confused, old Japanese man when her eyes are open
Birth story coming soon... once mommy and daddy find the energy and the time.
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