If you're following along with the 2016 Scripture Memory / Dwell Richly printable, here's the verse for week 18:
"Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love." Ephesians 4:2 (NIV)
Our sweet little girl has officially been alive for one entire month! Whew! And what a month it has been...
I hope to write out my labor and delivery story soon but a few simple details include a 26-hour labor with 30 minutes of pushing. Mia Kai arrived Tuesday, April 5th, at 2:48 a.m. weighing in at 6 lbs, 15 oz and measuring 18.5". She came out with one hand stretched out by her face - we like to say she came out praising Jesus. It also means that the episiotomy wasn't quite enough to handle her sweet little hello. Yikes. The healing process has been lengthy and painful, but my body is slowly getting back to itself again.
We attempted to breastfeed but due to some difficulties with my anatomy and her inability to latch, it proved to be unsuccessful. (I say "we" because JD and I had to use a syringe to feed her after the first day of trying so it was a tag team effort, for sure.) I plan to also write a post about this in the upcoming weeks. ;) After four days of syringe feeding, we decided to break out the bottle. Between all three of us being -beyond- frustrated, we felt that for our family, it was the absolute Best. Decision. Ever. We were afraid to use the bottle before speaking with our pediatrician but we just couldn't take it anymore. When we went to our follow-up appointment the next morning, our doctor walked in and said, "USE THE BOTTLE!! Syringe feeding is the worst and so frustrating. If you decide to try breastfeeding after your milk comes in, go for it. But until then, feel the freedom to use the bottle! And even after that, you can still pump and use the bottle if you'd like to stick with that." We felt so much relief and freedom!! We're currently still bottle-feeding with my breastmilk and it has been glorious. :) More details to come later...
The first week at home, I got sick from food poisoning (or an intensely severe stomach virus) then JD got sick with nausea and fatigue two days later. After this, I believe the bottle feeding was God's provision so that JD could feed her when I was sick. Haha! To top it off, I had a chalazion (basically a more severe stye) for six weeks and had to get it surgically removed last week. It was the second most painful experience of my life, coming in second only after labor.
On top of that, the doctor diagnosed Mia Kai with sagittal synotosis. Many of you have probably kept up with everything via Facebook and Instagram but I also hope to write a more detailed blog post of our experience with that so far.
Needless to say, it's been a very challenging month for the Todd Nest. But the greatest gift of grace God has given us is our sweet Mia Kai. She has been the perfect baby. We have been able to get her on a 3-hour schedule so she basically only cries when JD and I are off schedule or if she has gas pain. She's super chill and the best little snuggler. We try to lay her down in her crib or rock 'n play rather than let her sleep on us for her entire nap time and she's only gotten upset about that a couple of times. If she wasn't such an easy newborn, I know this season would've been 100% tougher. Through each moment, God has been so generous in showing us His grace, strength, gentleness, compassion and peace. So many of you have been a part of that. We can't say enough thank-you's for your prayers, encouragement and love through this. Have I cried? Yes. There have been a couple of those 'hormonal drop crying sessions' but most of the tears throughout this month have been tears of awe and gratitude. Even seeing the word 'Praying' over and over again under photos we've shared on FB and IG have made me stop in my tracks, cry and praise Jesus. I wish I could respond to each and every one but for now, we're going to take that time and love on our precious baby. Just know that we thank each and every one of you so, so much!