About Us

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The purpose of our blog is to share our journey through life with family and friends while we leave our mark on this world. Our 20's have been very kind to us and as we enter the 30's we are hoping to continue to enjoy our time in this thing we call life. I should have called this blog "Traveling through Life".

Friday, February 21, 2014

Post Delivery Thoughts

Wow it has taken 9 weeks for me to have the time to write another blog post. Life is crazy with a newborn but it is starting to settle down.

Every time someone has asked me if I would have another baby here are my answers.

Pregnancy - Easy and I would do it over.

Labor and Delivery - Easy enough for me that I would do it over again.

Bringing home a newborn - ......this was super tough and my answer was no. One was enough for me. Now that things are getting better I could change my answer down the road but we'll see.

My labor and delivery couldn't have gone better. Granted there were some things we had to modify from my birth plan but they were necessary and I was 100 % ok with the changes.

They say there are women who have pain free labors. I'd say I was pretty close to that. My contractions were not painful. It just felt like a lot of pressure.

I still laugh about how prepared we were with our bag of "Bradley Tricks" and I didn't need a single thing. Matt kept offering things to me but all I could do was focus in the moment and not think about anything we had brought with us. The hospital did a great job of already having my room dark when we arrived with music playing that the hours I downloaded on the iPod were not needed.

I've said it before and I'll say it again. I could not have done it drug free without Matt and I strongly feel that he did as well as he did because of the training we went through. Although the pressure I felt was not painful it was very intense and he was the only way I got through it. He massaged my lower back for hours. HOURS! I knew he was exhausted but I didn't care.

I regret only two things that I learned from the Bradley classes.

1. "Standing and pushing is more efficient." While this is true it did not work for me and I did it for hours. This only exhausted me and delayed my recovery a bit. If only I would have known how well I pushed while laying down.

2. "Pitocin is routinely given post delivery to help the uterus contract and it is not needed."
I discussed this with the doctor and told him I didn't want it. Right before it was time to push I got scared and told him I changed my mind and would leave that up to his professional opinion. He said he would see how things were going. My uterus had a hard time contracting back and they did have to give it to me. He tried for several minutes to get it to back and this was the most painful part for me. I think I lost more blood than I needed to and without the Pitocin I might have been in trouble.

I really really wanted my doctor to be there to deliver but I got the other doctor in the practice and he was amazing. He never tried to force anything on me and let us have our privacy.

I only saw the doctor for little brief moments so I have to say that labor and delivery nurses are AWESOME. Matt says they are just doing their job but I think it's a tough one. My labor nurses really had it easy with me because I asked them to leave us alone. The postpartum nurses were fantastic and I was sad that I had to leave their care and go home.

I completely underestimated how difficult breastfeeding can be for some women and I was one of them. I don't want to ponder on those first 6 weeks so I will just say it is better but still not perfect. I understand why women give up on it. I thought about it a lot but talked myself out if it each time. While I am still in discomfort 11 weeks later I understand why and will live with it. I figure if I can have a drug free labor I can manage this. I am producing milk, Jackson is gaining weight, this is a free and perfect food for him so I will carry on as long as I can.

I had no idea a condition existed called "mommy thumb" but I have it. It started as soon as I brought him home and my doctor says it will last until he is about 6 months old. It is from excessive use of my thumb and wrist from picking him up and nursing positions. It is very painful but there is not much that can be done so another thing I will manage.

Sleep deprivation. This is something I expected but I didn't realize how badly it can mess with you. I love my sleep a lot. The first ten weeks, I had a little boy that didn't know how to sleep on his own. So we were constantly needing to help him to sleep for it only to last 30 minutes and then we start over again. Finally we are making progress. He will put himself to sleep and I can count on 4 naps a day that are at least 90 minutes. We are still suffering through the nights and I thought better day napping would help the nights. NOPE!

All of this is worth it every time I get to snuggle on this sweet little boy.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Two Weeks Postpartum

Two weeks have gone by way too fast. I can't believe I have a newborn baby. He is doing really well according to his pediatrician. Once we worked through some breastfeeding struggles he is finally starting to gain weight. He settled in to a routine pretty quickly although as a newborn he is still unpredictable.
I am adjusting pretty well. The first week was rough because emotions were high and I was running off of very little sleep.  I would say my physical recovery has been fast. I really felt back to myself while we were still in the hospital. I have had the hardest time adjusting to the demands of breastfeeding though. It by far has been the hardest part of this whole experience. I would go through labor 5 times over than experience my first week of nursing again. Luckily I asked for help early and things are getting better.
I gained 33 lbs while pregnant and I am about 10 lbs away from my pre-pregnancy weight. I'm sure breastfeeding is responsible for a lot of it.
As they say things are getting better every day!


Saturday, December 14, 2013

Jackson Gray's Birth Story

On December 2nd I woke up at 4:30 am with what I thought were contractions. I stayed in bed for a while to make sure it was real. They were about 10 minutes apart and after about an hour I figured they were real. Matt was getting ready to get up for work and I told him he better stick around for a while just in case. I had a doctor’s appointment scheduled for that morning anyway so I was anxious to see what she had to say.

Four hours later on the way to the doctor my contractions stopped completely. She checked me and said I was 5 cm and I probably had a false start to labor. Typically she would admit someone to the hospital at 5 cm but she wanted to stick to my wishes so she gave me three options.  Go walk around the hospital for a while and be under observation, go walk around a mall for a while and see if they start back up, or go home.

I did not want to be admitted to the hospital with no contractions but I was afraid to get too far so we decided to go walk the mall for a while. I was the laboring woman walking around a mall for 3 hours. During that time I had a couple small contractions but the exercise seemed to have the opposite effect on me than it does for normal labor. We decided to go home.

Once we were home I took a very long nap and woke up at 4:30 pm. As soon as I woke up the contractions started again. This time they were 5 minutes apart and more intense. I timed them for about 30 minutes and they were getting closer and more intense. I told Matt it was time to go to the hospital and we needed to leave NOW. On the car ride they were 2-3 minutes apart. I was amazed how quickly they were coming already.

We were admitted to the hospital at 6:05pm after they checked me in triage and determined I was 6-7cm. I was shocked to hear I was so close to the transition stage however it didn’t feel like transition at all. The contractions were intense at this point but they were very manageable and felt like early labor pains to me. My contractions picked up to 1-2 minutes apart and stayed that way until he was born.

After we were moved to a labor room the timing of everything became very hazy. The doctor showed up to check on us. I met the nurses who would be on that night and the first thing I said to them is, “You have my birth plan right?” and “Please do not offer me pain medication”. All of them said they wouldn’t think I would need it based off of how I was already handling the contractions. One of the nurses said she has done hundreds of natural labors and she would not offer me anything. Then they left us alone for a while and we got into our routine.

I started laboring on my side. Around 9:00pm the doctor came in and asked if I wanted to be checked. I am against frequent checks at the hospital but I really needed to know that what we were doing was working. He checked me and said I was 9.5 cm and I had a small anterior cervical lip on the right side. I knew cervical lips could be an issue but he didn’t make it seem like it was a problem. The cervical lip was probably caused from me laying on my left side.

I then switched to sitting up in the bed when the back labor started. They brought me squatting bars so I could pull myself off the bed to relieve the pressure. I had Matt massage my back with all of the force he had for each contraction. The massaging was really the only way I could get through it. Without him my pain management would have been a different story. I couldn’t have done it without him!

Then I got up to go to the bathroom and I realized it felt so much better to stand up. I stood and used the rag doll position to hang off of Matt. This relieved so much pressure that I knew I had to continue like this.

The doctor came back to check on us around 10:00pm and I said I wanted to be checked again. He said I was 10 cm, the baby was +1 station and the cervical lip was gone. I asked what we do from here. He said my water still needs to break and the baby needs to be station +3. He said he wanted to give it more time and see if my water breaks on its own and brings the baby down.

Around 12:00 am he came back and said he would like to break my water. I felt safe with him breaking it at this point and I needed something to change. They told me to lie in the bed and I was wondering where all of the water was going to go. Breaking the water was not painful but it was the weirdest feeling having 3 liters of warm liquid all around you in bed. I just kept saying “This is so weird”. The nurses did a great job of cleaning it all up. We were then left to keep laboring for a while.

Around 1:00 am the nurse checked us and asked if I felt the need to push or felt any pressure. I felt no different. She had me start pushing a little to see if it would bring the baby down. We were still standing at this point and I started squatting. I remember from our Bradley classes that this was a very effective pushing position and I was confident he would be here in no time. It is very hard to push when you don’t feel the urge but I did it for 2 hours. I started to fear that he wasn’t going to come down and that they were going to have to go in and get him but the baby’s heart rate stayed healthy during all of this. I really thought that at 10cm with broken waters that I would feel some pressure to push. The nurse recommended propping one foot up on a chair and squatting like that for a while. This was very uncomfortable to me so we didn’t try it long.

At 3:00am the doctor came back to see if he could check me. I said yes because after two hours of squatting I needed to know if it was working. He said the baby was still at +1 station. I was getting discouraged after all that work.  I felt I had the energy to keep standing for several more hours but it didn’t seem to be working for me. He asked me if I felt the urge to push and I said I have yet to feel the urge. He asked me to go ahead and try and see if anything happens. I gave it my best try at pushing while in the bed, something I did not want to do. All of a sudden the room lit up with noise and the doctor said the baby is coming down. I was shocked! He told me if I kept pushing in this position he would be here quickly. I was thinking if I would have tried this 3 hours ago it would have saved me a ton of energy! Each time I pushed I didn’t feel like I was doing very well but everyone said I was pushing very effectively and making great progress. After 45 minutes of pushing Jackson Gray Sondgeroth was born at 3:48am on December 3, 2013 weighing 8lbs 6 oz and 21 ¼ inches long.

They placed him right on my stomach and he peed all over me. He was very alert and absolutely perfect!  

Sunday, December 8, 2013

39 weeks

Well our little guy let us enjoy the entire long weekend and we spent a lot of time relaxing and watching movies. At 39 weeks and 3 days labor started and he was born at 39 weeks and 4 days. I will do an entire post on his birth story.

Thursday, November 28, 2013


I just received the last little thing for the nursery so now it is complete. I really never had a theme in mind but stumbled across the animal decals and loved them. We painted the walls gray when we moved in and decided that we wanted to keep them that color. We did put up crown molding to add a nice finish to the room.

 I knew exactly what I wanted when it came to looking for the crib. Dark wood with straight edges and this is the one I fell in love with. Babi Italia Middleton.

I did not love the dresser that came with the collection because it was very short. Considering we would be standing at it several times a day I wanted one that was taller. Luckily I found one that was the same color from a different collection.

This little shelf we painted white and will hold his bath towels, video monitor, etc.
The sign is something that was hanging in Matt's room from when he was a little boy. The sheep and shoe are gifts from Ireland.
The glider is from Grandma Handy's house. I am thankful to have it. We will be spending a lot of time feeding, snuggling and bonding with our little boy in it.
This is the personal touch I knew I wanted in his room from the beginning. I took this picture on one of our many vacations. The quote is something I saw online. We hope in time that he finds inspiration to see the world and do great things.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

38 weeks

This week we squeezed in another date night but with friends this time. I stayed up way too late and paid for it the next two days by feeling yucky.

At my doctor’s visit she said I was very close to 4 cm and 100 % effaced. It’s only a matter of time before the show starts and I feel like I’m a ticking time bomb now. It’s making me very nervous to go to work and have Matt an hour away from me at his work.

Luckily we have reached the Thanksgiving holiday and will be cooped up in our house together for the next 4 days. This would be a great weekend to have a baby! 

Thursday, November 21, 2013

37 weeks

No change at the doctor this week and everything still looks good. This little boy is sending us on a roller coaster ride into the unknown. Hopefully my labor isn’t the same way. I thoroughly went over my birth plan with the doctor and she is fine with everything as long as I remain flexible in an emergency, which of course I will.

This weekend I made 5 large freezer meals which will actually count for about 12 dinners for us. My future self will be very thankful that we have them.

I also started chugging glasses of raspberry tea and hopefully it helps me have efficient contractions….when they start. No signs of labor yet.
Today I am treating myself to a prenatal massage. I haven’t felt like I needed a massage but I read they can improve labor so we shall see.