Friday, December 24, 2004


"I guess this baby creature isn't all bad."

Friday, December 17, 2004

First Vacation with the Baby! Well, at least a Mini One

Last weekend we decided to go to the Rideau Vineyard christmas party. We are members of

their Cellar Club, so it was only $30. We left on Saturday afternoon around 11 and got
all the way to the Refugio offramp before Orion started crying. I parked under the overpass and let him eat for awhile, then we took a short walk.(Ron was sleeping in the car). Orion was a bit fussy the rest of the way, but our destination wasn't far from there.

Our overnight spot was called the Meadowlark Inn, a bed and breakfast style place. When Ron heard they had jacuzzi rooms, he decided to spring for the Garden Suite, which was like a little house with a fenced in yard. Ron ended up working in the room that afternoon, but at least we got to spend a little time in the jacuzzi.

The party was lovely. All the wine you could drink,a crazy group of people and some pretty tasty food too. I had brought some milk that I had pumped and frozen and it ended up with that same funny smell when it thawed out.I had heard it won't hurt the baby so I went ahead and gave him some. He seemed less than thrilled with it, but it calmed him down for awhile. By the time we got backto the Inn, I hadn't had any wine for awhile, so I decided to go ahead and breastfeed him to put him to sleep. I figured one night of a couple glasses of wine wasn't going to hurt him.

The night went well and Ron worked some more in the morning while I shuttled the breakfast selections back to the room for us. Our room had a door that went into the dining area so that was very convenient. We hit the road fairly early as soon as Orion seemed to start getting sleepy for his morning nap. It worked like a charm because we made it all the way home with no stops. Overall it was a very successful first trip.

Thursday, December 9, 2004

Tuesday, December 7, 2004

These are a few of my favorite things...

Orion started doing a number of really cute things a little after 2 months. (Yes, I am getting behind). One of them is being more huggy. He now grabs me around the neck when I am putting him down or picking him up. He also throws his arm across me when he sleeps with me. There is something just adorable about that.

His favorite new skill is holding on to things like plastic rings. He is getting good enough to keep one for quite awhile. Just a couple days ago I gave him one on the way to the market and he kept it with him in the car and carried around Trader Joe’s.

Changes are so subtle that sometimes you don't even notice the things that aren't major milestones. I can't believe it has already been 3 months. Each day he seems to sleep a little more comfortably and he will sit by himself for a good stretch on most days in the morning as long as he can see me. He likes to be propped up so he can see around and I give him different things to look at and talk to him while I try to get a few things done.

You can almost always get him to smile with a tickle or a kiss and he even is making laughing sounds sometimes now. Quite the little man.

Friday, December 3, 2004

Wednesday, December 1, 2004


Today somebody asked me if Orion was 6 months old!

He is about 16 pounds now by the way.

Friday, November 26, 2004

Thanksgiving/Sarah's Birthday

Sarah’s Birthday fell right on Thanksgiving this year, but we still went to my brother’s house for dinner as usual. My mom brought some presents that she had received in the mail. One of them was from Brittie, my ex-husband’s mom. Great to have awesome inlaws. She sent a book with Thomas Kinkade art and inspirational quotes, as well as a card with 40 bucks, the part Sarah liked more I’m sure. The other one we weren’t even sure who it came from – a box from Amazon was all we knew. That turned out to be the strangest gift ever. It was from my ex Rusty and he sent Sarah every CD the Beatles ever made. Really weird considering he never even talks to her. My brother was sure excited though. He offered her $100 for the whole box- not too bad of a ripoff – the bill was in the box for $183 and Sarah was much happier with the money. Orion was a good boy. He even let me sit at the table with everyone and eat. He sat on my lap most of the time and with Sarah at the end.

Saturday, November 20, 2004


Now we think our giant son may be teething already. For the two weeks or so after he got his shots, he kept running a low grade fever. I finally took him back to see Dr. Krumian , He checked him over and pronounced him fine and said to not bother with any more Tylenol. He said sometimes babies just don’t regulate their temperature very well at first. But considering the excessive drooling he is doing and the constant gnawing of fists or whatever else he can get in his mouth, early teething seems to be a likely culprit. Hopefully the actual teeth won’t appear too early. I don’t want any surprise chomping during meals.

Monday, November 15, 2004

First Play Already?!

Orion went to his first play yesterday! Frank at Buena High School adapted The Nightmare Before Christmas for the stage and a number of people Sarah knows were in it. She had asked me to take her awhile ago and then Ron’s sister Chris planned a dinner party the same night as kindof a housewarming. Plus Sarah had to work until right before the play started, so a bit of confusion, but it worked out pretty well. Rose was cooking the turkey because Chris doesn’t have an oven yet. So I went and visited with the family there for a little bit before heading over to Buena. The play was surprisingly good and Orion was pretty quiet through most of it. I stood in back with another mom who was bouncing her boy around for part of it. It was a pretty short play so Sarah and I were able to stop by afterward as well and see the new place. Right on Poli with a view of the ocean supposedly – it was dark so we didn’t see that. The inside is quite lovely, with wood floors and some nice stained glass pieces. A great investment no doubt.

Friday, November 12, 2004

Another Outing

Last night Orion and I went to a Baha’i gathering with Fanny. She was born in Columbia, but raised in this faith, which originated in Iran and fosters brotherly love and peace through a belief in the unification of all religions. In November they celebrate the birth of their founder, Baha’u’llah, and they hosted a nice dinner at a local community center. The people were all very nice and Orion was a pretty good boy. There was a presentation by the children about the life of Baha’u’llah, and I had to stand up with him through part of that, but overall he was a quiet boy.

Sunday, November 7, 2004

Holiday Tamales!

I went to Fanny’s house today for the annual holiday tamale making. I love tamales and have always wanted to see how they are traditionally made. They vary all over Latin America and the Columbians do a great job I must say, or at least Fanny's family does! She makes them with chicken or beef and capers, bell peppers, garbanzo beans, cilantro, onions and raisins soaked in red wine. Yumm! Also, they wrap them in plantain leaves instead of corn husks. Her whole family is really nice. Her sister, daughter, nephew and nephew’s girlfriend were all helping. I got assigned the same job Fanny was doing – the hardest job – which was forming the masa around the filling and wrapping the finished product up in the leaves. Orion was pretty good. I did a few with him still in the car seat, but of course that didn’t last long. Then I fed him for a bit and put him in his sling. He settled down in there so I got to make quite a few more. They cook for a long time, so I had to hang out awhile to wait for some chicken ones to be done. (They had started the beef ones first - yuck). Fanny was nice enough to give me 6 chicken ones and a couple beef for Ron and Sarah as well. Lunch for a week!

Thursday, November 4, 2004

Two Month Doctor Visit

So Orion had his 2 month appointment with Dr. Krumian. Everything went pretty well, except for the shots. :( He did confirm that Orion probably has some food allergy. I have been excluding different foods, but haven’t figured out what it is yet. The other red flag that came up was a “click” in his left hip. Sometimes this can indicate dysplasia. It is extremely unlikely, but we will see a specialist just in case. His shots were really sad. I had been reading about spreading out vaccinations or delaying them, but Dr. K didn't seem to think there was anything to be concerned about. He has pretty tough skin so the nurse had to jab the needle in really hard. Sarah was freaking out. He tensed up a lot after the first one so some of them really bled. When we got home, within a couple hours his temperature was up to 100.5. The doctor had said to call if it went above 100.3, but when I talked to him, he just said to stack acetaminophen and ibuprofen and that now we will know to expect a high fever next time. Great. I am thinking this was not such a good idea.

Monday, November 1, 2004


Well, nothing too eventful to report here considering Orion’s young age. We ordered a bat costume for him. It definitely looked cuter in the pictures. It came with wings but no way to attach them. Would have been great if he was a baby that hung out in a carseat, but getting carried they didn’t really work. It was still pretty cute. I took some pictures that have disappeared somehow so we need to put him back in the costume and take some more. The only place he wore it was a Day of the Dead themed celebration our church did on Saturday night. That was cool. We built a community altar and did some singing. There was a potluck after the service.

Sunday night we were all set with a ton of candy. There are so many kids in our condos and yet we got about 4 groups of trick or treaters??? I was sad about that. At least I got to make my traditional dinner. I bought these spider goblets at the drugstore that were pretty cool and went well with the spider napkin rings I had picked up last year at an aftersale. I didn’t quite get to make all the dishes I had planned, but I did pretty well considering all of the breaks I needed to breastfeed. The menu:

Pumpkin cheese ball for an appetizer
Salad – tried to dye the cauliflower orange, but that didn’t work out too well LOL
Chicken with pomegranate walnut sauce
Spiced carrots
Pumpkin Pie

A little scarce I know, but I had to cut some corners because of other stuff that came up. Really looking forward to next year when he can run around in some little costume and maybe even have a few sweets.

Monday, October 25, 2004

Trying to Catch Up

Let’s see… some random stuff to get caught up.

Orion’s first “real” outing was to Carpinteria for my cousin Julie’s wedding reception when he was about 3 weeks old. She got married on a cruise ship, but decided to have a family get together at the state park there. The trip went surprisingly well considering he was not a fan of the car at all in the beginning. He would scream almost every time we went anywhere, but he didn’t cry hardly at all for this trip. It was nice to see so many people that I had not seen for a long time.

Some milestones:

At 1 month he started making all kinds of g and b noises, which apparently is very early. Along with the classic goos and gaas, he said baaay beee one day. It was pretty funny even if it was an accident.

He also started his social smiles at 1 month and is now quite a smiley little guy. Eskimo kisses, tummy tickles and peek-a-boo games are usually sure winners.

Right at 5 weeks his hand gestures became noticeably purposeful. We bought him one of those “gyms”, the things that arch overhead and have stuff that hangs down. He consistently swats at this one rattly thing that dangles down.


Little Man – this one started right after birth. Not sure where it came from. It was just the first thing that came out of my mouth.
Eyeballs and Bright Eyes – Daddy started calling him these when he was in quiet alert states.
Bug – this was one from Fanny that has really stuck – don’t ask me why. Maybe it is because it is short and easy to stay. It has also evolved into bugaboo sometimes
Big bruiser – another Fannyism
Then there are the 1001 names that go with him being in a fussy mood. They have either the root grumpy or fussy and go something like this…
Grumpilufigous, Grumpy Gus, Grumpy Britches, Grumpyhead…
And the related Fussilufigous, Fussy Gus… you get the picture

Boy, this kid has a lot of nicknames.

Well, now I have noted down everything I wanted to up until this point. Now this can become a real journal hopefully.

Thursday, October 21, 2004

A Visit and some Buddhist Musings

My friend Darcey came to visit me today. She is somebody I know from the CUUPS group at church and is also the minister that married us! And she officially rules because she is the only person who brought me something when she brought the baby a gift – a nice bath collection. It was great to have a visitor, especially one who has raised 2 boys. We had an interesting talk about the whole family bed concept. All the “experts” seem to be supporting it these days, including Dr. Sears, who says it builds greater trust and better sleep habits in later years. But it seems to me that a balanced approach might be the best way. Both of Darcey’s boys continued to need her help to fall asleep until they were about 10 years old after having slept with her for an extended period in the beginning. It is really too early for me to be worrying about it regarding Orion, so I guess I will just play it by ear for now.

Back to the past:

There is something that happened when Orion was exactly 13 days old that I want to be sure to remember. A lady named Dee had been there during the day. She was another reference from Octavia and I really liked her, but she wasn’t available full time. One of the things she showed me was the best way to hold a newborn and when she left that day I sat in the rocking chair with Orion like that for awhile.

As my mind drifted about I had two separate but related thoughts. I was already sleepy and my arms started to get tired and I couldn’t help but starting to wonder about how many hours I would eventually spend in that rocker. I decided that was not a very good way to look at it, so I changed my focus and started to think about being in the moment. It came to me that my son is 13 days old and will never be that age again. From that perspective, just sitting and rocking him became a magickal thing and I thought that no matter how much he cries or fusses in the future I will be able to recenter this way.

Being in that focus of the moment reminded me of an article I had read recently in The World magazine. There has been a very Buddhist slant to much of the writing there in recent years. The author was talking about the concept of mindfulness and gave the example of doing dishes. The proper mindset is not to do the dishes in order to make them clean, but do the dishes just to do the dishes. It occurred to me that rocking the baby was a perfect parallel. Instead of rocking Orion in order to get him to sleep, I should be rocking him just to rock him.

These concepts are so simple, but the simple things in life are often the most profound.

Tuesday, October 19, 2004

Things Noticed Around 2 to 3 Weeks

Orion’s vision seemed to be better than is expected at that age. He really spent a lot of time gazing at certain things, especially the black metal spirals that are inset in our headboard and make a contrast against the lighter wall. He also loved looking at the pictures I had hung over the changing table. I didn’t think of it when I put them together, but they are perfect for a newborn because they are black and white. The changing table has become one of his favorite places to hang out. He is also definitely attracted to orange and red. Oh yeah – one other black and white thing he liked to look at was the heating/AC vent on the ceiling above our bed. That was another way I knew he could see farther than the 8 inches that is standard for newborns.

We were able to hire a doula to stay with me during the week. At the end of 2 weeks off for Ron, he was planning on taking at least another week off. His boss decided they were desperate for him to come back and offered to pay for full time help for the next 4 weeks! We got some references from Octavia and chose a woman named Fanny Brown. She was perfect for us because she was willing to do whatever we needed and even has 3 dogs of her own at home. Our puppy, Kona, was just over 6 months at this point, so we needed somebody who could deal with that energy.

One of the first things Fanny commented on was how Orion would suck on his own fist for comfort. Supposedly babies are not supposed to start doing that until they are about 3 months. He did like getting swaddled though as most newborns do. Ron didn’t think he did, but we had just never done it right. Fanny showed us how to do it so his arms were held better and it definitely made a difference for sleeping. Newborns tend to wake themselves up because of the way they jerk their arms and they end up sticking their hands in their faces. One problem though was that he was pretty much too big to be swaddled in the standard size receiving blanket! Fanny knew of a certain brand that was bigger, so we got some of those and had some success for awhile.

Fanny also taught me a number of other tricks – some baby related and some not, such as:

Use a Q-tip to apply cream to the babies bottom – sterile for him and no mess for me.
Viva paper towels are amazingly absorbent and make great changing table accessories, especially for boys…
Put your sponges in the dishwasher to sterilize them. Gets rid of that yucko stink they always get right away.
Tuck a receiving blanket very tightly around a baby right after you put them down to sleep in a crib - this makes them feel like they are still being held.

There is a little bit more that relates to the first few weeks, but I want to get another entry in so I will save it for next time.

Monday, October 18, 2004

Friday, October 15, 2004

First Week or so - Trials and Tribulations

One of the first things I noticed about Orion was that his frenulum was very long – all the way to the end of his tongue – it actually pulled and made a dent if he tried to stick it out. I was surprised Rasmia didn’t say anything about it and I was kindof out of it so I didn’t mention it. I thought I had remembered reading something in the Dr. Sears book about that interfering with breastfeeding, so I looked again and sure enough that is what it said. He seemed to be latching on OK, but I was still worried because I had gone through such a hard time with Sarah when I thought I was doing it correctly then as well. Our wonderful DO, Razmig Krumian, had agreed to pay us a house visit and when he saw it he said that this was about as bad as it gets. He definitely recommended having it clipped and gave us the names of a couple ENTs.

The first couple of days seemed OK although he didn’t sleep too much. He seemed to only be content sleeping on my chest and I couldn’t sleep that way. Maybe I had gotten too used to sleeping on my side at the end of pregnancy. It also seemed like I was just wound up because I couldn’t sleep anyway. I remembered being the same way the first day or two with Sarah. With a newborn you just worry about every little sound they make. After a few days I got seriously tired and then I was falling asleep sitting up even! So at that point I was able to lie down after a feeding at night and usually get him to go to sleep with me. Actually he started sleeping at night almost right away. I did the same thing I had done with Sarah, which was to keep all the lights out or low and no talking. Somehow that seems to communicate that it is sleep time and it is the only thing about Orion that has stayed consistent.

The biggest trial we faced turned out to be connected to breastfeeding. Within the first week Orion started to get into inconsolable crying spells at night. I thought he was already starting with colic and was getting mentally prepared for dealing with it for a few months. I have to admit I felt bad because I thought I had done every possible thing recommended to avoid colic. Once he started crying he would go for a few hours and not eat the whole time. One night, out of desperation, (or call it mother’s intuition) I said we should try to give him a bottle of some of the milk I had pumped. Ron got it ready and Orion sucked it down in about 30 seconds. I was shocked. Here we were rocking and singing to our baby and it turned out he was starving. Not only did he drink it down but he ate more from the breast and then slept for about 4 hours straight afterwards. The poor thing was sleep deprived because he had to spend so many waking hours eating to try and get enough food. I had been to so many breastfeeding seminars, La Leche League meetings and read books about breastfeeding and not one of them ever said a baby might refuse the breast with a bad latch. All I had heard about was possible soar nipples, low weight gain and increased air intake. So at this point I knew the frenulum was a much bigger issue than we had realized and we really stepped up the efforts to get it clipped.

I made an appointment with Dr. Mikaelian. The first one got cancelled because he was called away on emergency. I was getting a bit panicky at this point because we kept needing to give Orion bottles and I was worried about running out of pumped breast milk. He also seemed to be getting increasingly fussy at the breast. At first we only needed to give him about an ounce to take away his frustration and then he would go right back to the breast, but sometimes it would take more than that or not work at all.

We decided to consult a lactation consultant and she turned out to be very helpful. She gave me some good tips about how to get the baby going and how to get some extra milk into him. Through this whole time, Octavia was also very helpful and made herself available at any time. She also put me in touch with another consultant who talked to me over the phone. I also spent some time talking to the La Leche League people. Although nobody could really solve our problem until the procedure was done, it was just comforting to talk to other women who were encouraging. I felt like giving up at some points knowing that I was frustrating my son. It seemed like it would be easier to just pump and switch to bottles, but I kept pushing through. The day finally came to see the doctor and of course it turned out he would only do an office visit. I had just assumed the procedure would happen on the same day because it was so minor. At least he squeezed us in at the next available date and we only had a few more days to wait.

There was not an overnight difference because I think Orion was so used to being frustrated at the breast, but things did get slowly better over the next few days and we were getting by with no extra bottles. Some of the other things that really helped me were listening to music I found really moving, especially the Leap of Faith album by Kenny Loggins. Babies can sense frustration and tension, which I would experience every time he refused the breast, so I needed to focus on calming things. Certain songs made me very emotional and I noticed that would often trigger a letdown. The other thing that was a huge help was keeping an image of The Star card from the tarot in my mind. This card represents to me a sense of channeling the positive energy in the universe through myself and out to the rest of the world. When meditating on thid image I could relax better and picture sending that calmness to Orion. I would physically lower my shoulders to release the tension. Ron would usually hold his hands if they were flailing around and send him calming energy as well. Sometimes I found it depressing to think I needed breastfeeding to be a two person job, but I mentioned this to the consultant and she said it is surprising how often that is the case in the early weeks.

Despite all the frustrations, I was often filled with a sense of overwhelming joy and love. Sometimes it would be so strong that I would just sit there and cry. I telling Ron that I was crying from happiness because I was worried he would think I was depressed. Above it all, I know how fast the first few years disappear, so no matter what the trials are, they will be gone before I know it.

Saturday, October 9, 2004

Friday, September 10, 2004

Orion's Birth Story

My son, Orion Lawrence Prague, was born on September 3 at 1:15am, weighing 10 pounds, 2 ounces.

I want to start by writing about the labor so I will remember it well. We chose to have a waterbirth at home. Our midwife's name was Rasmia Tebo, and we also had a doula in attendance named Octavia Lindlahr. I had a pretty uneventful pregnancy besides a few aches and pains. The due date had come and gone and I was getting worried I would have to be induced, like I was with Sarah. My midwife seemed unconcerned and kept saying he just wasn’t ready. I think she was convinced my due date was wrong, and he wasn’t really late, but my intuition told me something different. I had a feeling I was going to be late again.

So when it got to be a week past my due date, I decided to get acupuncture to move things along. I went into a local clinic to ask if they had any experience with inducing labor, and the lady told me she was 4 for4, so I booked an appointment for the coming Thursday. (I felt weird - like I was booking a scheduled Csection – picking the birth date and all ). The day of the appointment, I went in at noon. I had been having some contractions that made my belly very hard, but they didn’t seem too different than the Braxton Hicks I had been having all along, and they were still mostly painless with just a little cramping. I had also been spotting and seeming to lose my mucous plug over the last couple days, so maybe things would have moved along on their own, but I didn’t want to take any chances.

After the acupuncture things seemed about the same for awhile, with the contractions being a bit more crampy. By 3 pm they seemed to be getting a bit more regular at about 5 minutes apart, but still very mild as far as any pain was concerned. We called Rasmia anyway, just to put her on alert. At this point, I still wasn’t sure if I was really “in labor” after all I had heard about false labor. After a couple of hours, the contractions got to about 3 minutes apart, but still were not too painful. Then the pain started increasing, and it looked like my labor was going to follow the pattern of contractions staying at the same timing while just the sensations increased. Fortunately, I wasn’t having hardly any back pain, which I had expected since I had so much with Sarah.

Time to get things ready, just in case...

Kona wonders, "What the heck is this thing in my living room?"

Poor doggie is not going to get much chance to find out. Out you go, spaz.

We were starting to get a little nervous, because 3 minutes apart seemed so close together considering we were told to call the midwife at 5 minutes. So we finally decided to have Rasmia come over to check things out, and she came around 8pm. We had also called my friend Taira, who is pregnant right now as well, and Ron's mother, Rose. They both got here a bit before Rasmia. I had a pretty good feeling things were not too far along, even though I had been 3 minutes apart for quite some time. Sure enough – only 2 cm dialated. Rasmia predicted I would have the baby around 6am, but I hadn’t told her about the acupuncture.... I felt bad that I had kindof gone over her head. Also, my water broke during the internal exam, which made me think things would start rolling because that was how it had been with Sarah. Rasmia didn't think things were going to pick up, so she left, and so did Rose.

Taira was undecided and stuck around a bit as Ron offered to go to Wendy’s, and she wanted a Frosty haha. Well hurray for the pregnancy appetite because things definitely started to cruise along. She was a great support and also the one who took all the awesome pictures! I was getting a bit worried because the pain was increasing to a place I was having a hard time dealing with it and I thought I was going to have to go through it all night. I was using the O sound with long breaths because I had read that would help open the cervix. I tried some of the breathing we learned in class, but the O seemed to work better for me.

I kindof lost track of the time at this point and was just concentrating on breathing. I have no idea when I was at 4, 5, 6cm, etc. because there was nobody there to check me. According to Ron, things seemed different around 11:30 as far as the sounds I was making, so that is when he thinks I hit transition. Funny enough, I had gotten in the tub just after 11. You are not supposed to get in until at least 5 cm because it can slow things down, but I didn’t know where I was and the pain was bad enough that I just didn’t care. Looking back, I wish I had known I could get in sooner. I think I would have enjoyed the water much more. Everyone says the water makes the pain less, but that was not my perception. I think it just made the pain easier to cope with in a sense because I had more freedom of movement. But maybe the difference would have been more noticable earlier along.

Taira called Rasmia at about 11:45, and not long after that I started to feel a little bit of an urge to push at the end of the contractions. I couldn’t believe it was real because everything seemed to happen so fast. I remember saying to Ron I wonder if I am imagining it because I just want it to be over with. He said I hadn’t imagined it with Sarah, so I probably wasn’t imagining it now. I asked Ron later if he was getting nervous at that point because we were without the midwife, and he said he had been. He never acted like it though. And to think, he almost had to catch the baby!

Rasmia arrived at 12:40, and as soon as she got through the door and heard me, she knew I was ready. She set up her stuff, checked me to make sure and said to start pushing. Wow, was I relieved. I was so scared she was going to say I was only 5 cm or something. Pushing definitely seemed harder than it had with Sarah. She seemed to almost fly out with no effort as my body pushed involuntarily. Maybe it was because I had the epidural then. I think because I could feel everything, I was a little more apprehensive about the pain of crowning. I had heard alot about the "ring of fire", so I was nervous about experiencing that. Also, the sensation of the baby coming down the birth canal was more painful than I expected. Every time I had a contraction, Rasmia would reach inside me and it felt like she was pulling my insides apart. Come to think of it, she probably was! In between contractions, I still felt no pain and was totally lucid.

Here is my pushing face...

...and my resting face. In this picture I was almost fully crowned! Ask me to see the unedited version sometime haha.

At some point, Rasmia said I was almost done and that the head wasn’t moving back anymore in between contractions. I remember thinking she couldn’t be telling me the truth because I couldn’t feel any stretching sensation. Looking at the pictures later, I was amazed to see myself totally relaxing in between contractions with Orion's head almost fully crowned! Then after a couple more pushes she said the head was out. I couldn’t believe it. I had never felt the “ring of fire”. It turned out I needed 2 stitches, so I don’t really understand how I didn’t feel myself tear. I have seen videos of women screaming "I'm tearing!" even when they aren't. The only pain I felt was inside. The biggest shock I had was after Orion’s head was out. That was supposed to be the worst part, so I figured I was over the hump. Then I heard Rasmia saying, “Would you look at that – he is holding his head up in the water!” He was moving his whole body around while still inside me, and that was one of the worst pains I had and different than all the others. But then the rest of him was out before I knew it.

I remember when Rasmia held Orion up, I felt this look of disbelief spread over my face. Of course, I knew there was a baby coming, but somehow seeing him for the first time was still a shock. It was like I couldn’t believe something that big just came out of me! She did a little bit of suctioning, and then I got to hold him. Ron and I were both overcome with emotion. You can see it in our faces in the pictures. We stayed in the water for a bit and kept pouring water over the baby to keep him warm.

Here he is, moments old.

After a little bit, Ron got out and took Orion because it was time for me to birth the placenta. Rasmia kindof tugged on it to get it out, which surprised me because I remembered reading somewhere you are not supposed to do that . Oh well – nothing bad happened. I got out of the water after that and all of a sudden started shivering uncontrollably. It was really strange because I didn’t feel cold, but it was like having a chill you just can’t get rid of. They said it was because of hormones. (Those mysterious hormones - they get blamed for everything in a women's life.) I got on the bed and they piled towels on me. I was in there for a while because Rasmia had to put stitches in and one of the tears was in an unusual place which required her to put a catheter in.

Here is dad having some bonding time while I get stitched up.

And sister having her time.

Orion gets his first checkup.

Sarah started calling relatives, and I am not even sure when Rasmia left. It must have been pretty late – around 3 or so. Here is Orion checking out the nunus.

We are in awe...

And finally, the first family portrait. Yes, that is a chicken leg in my hand. Gogo Pollo Loco.

Tuesday, September 7, 2004


Just checking to see how far back I can backdate.

Sunday, August 29, 2004

Tuesday, August 17, 2004

Sunday, August 8, 2004

Monday, July 26, 2004

Saturday, July 17, 2004

Thursday, July 8, 2004

Tuesday, June 29, 2004