Saturday, March 1, 2014 | By: Melody Joy King

The Story of Avaleigh Grace's Birth Part 2:

     On October 3rd at 2pm, I began having minor contractions. I really hadn't had any contractions or even Braxton Hicks up until that point. They started coming every five minutes. After about half an hour of this I called my Mom and asked her what she thought. She said to just track and time them for a while. As Providence would have it, Justin was off that day. :-) I tracked my contractions the whole afternoon into the evening. They went from 5 minutes apart to 2 minutes apart, but they still weren't very painful. I called the Hospital at 7pm and a nurse said she would have a Dr. call me back. Dr. McNulty called me within 10-20 minutes. Once she found out I was 11 days past my due date, how far apart my contractions were and how long I'd been having them, she said to take a shower and then come on in, but that there was no need to rush. I called my Mom to let her know she could meet us at the hospital and texted a few friends. I had been anxiously awaiting our baby girl's arrival, so of course our bags were packed and ready to go. I took my shower and off we went. The contractions got a little more intense in the car. We got to the hospital, and they put us in triage. The nurse checked me, and I was still only 2.5 centimeters. I definitely was not in hard labor by any stretch of the imagination at this point, so they still weren't sure that they were going to keep me. After they left the room, I turned to Justin and said, "I am not going home until I've had this baby!" I was also determined not to have any pitocin to speed things along. This was at about 10pm.

Within the next hour, everything changed. I became extremely restless and could not sit or lie still in the hospital bed. I could feel everything shifting in my body, and it scared me a little bit. Suddenly I became very nauseous and threw up. After that the contractions became extremely painful. Dr. McNulty came in and checked me, and I was three centimeters. They decided to officially admit us to a regular labor and delivery room at that point. They moved us into said room, got me hooked up to the contraction monitor, and my IV for hydration, and then I remember they let my Mom come back. At that point the pain of the contractions took all of my attention. I was tensing a lot when each would come and gripping the side of the bed. The nurse told me not to do that, and I rememeber thinking "Leave me alone!" :-P

At one point my main nurse looked at the contraction monitor and said, "I don't know why you're acting like these contractions are hurting so much because they're not appearing very big on the monitor. I remember gritting my teeth and thinking "Well maybe your monitor is BROKEN." ;-) My Mom told me after all was said and done that she checked the monitor several times, and my contractions never tracked very big throughout my entire labor.

At one point they had me get up out of the bed, and I cannot remember why. I remember as I was standing up, a contraction hit and when it subsided, I said "It feels like I am breaking in half." My Mom said: "Yep, that's about right." At that point the nurse asked if I wanted an epidural. I said yes, and she went to call for the Anesthesiologist. Everyone had to leave the room except for he and the nurse. I got the epidural, and the pain subsided. I relaxed and Justin and my Mom came back into the room. We talked for a few hours, and then I laid down and took a nap. I continued to dilate thankfully and at 6am, Dr. McNulty came in and checked me. She said I was fully dialted. :-D. They turned my epidural off at that point, so that I could feel to push. The shift changed at 7am, so I got a new nurse and a new Doctor. Around 8-8:30am, I began pushing. I was so excited and pushed hard for an hour and a half. Then I hit a major wall. I was so tired and felt like I had been pushing forever. The Dr. and my nurse (who was amazing!) kept telling me that Avi's head was right there and that I was so close. My response: "You keep saying that!" Justin, my Mom, the Doctor and nurse assured me that it was really true, and that I was so close. I got back to work and sure enough a half an hour later, out Avaleigh came!

I will never, ever forget how I felt when I first laid eyes on her. She was so tiny, and so beautiful and perfect. I was in love instantly. They laid her on my chest and Justin and I just cried and took her in. It was incredible. The pain and hard work of giving birth went out the window instantly. I felt wonderful and in complete awe. They bathed Avi right there next to me, and I just stared at her in wonder. There was a flurry of activity in the room, but I don't remember much of that. Avi was waling pretty good during her bath, so Justin went over and started talking gently to her. She immediately stopped crying and turned her head toward his voice. I cried again at that point!

Words could never adequately express how incredible it has been to become a mother, and I am incredibly humbled and grateful that God has given us the incredible blessing of our Avi Grace. Becoming her Mama has been pure joy! <3 p="">
Friday, April 12, 2013 | By: Melody Joy King

The story of Avaleigh Grace's birth....Part 1

I have been meaning to write this blog post for a while now. The main reason being so that I don't forget the story of how God brought our precious baby girl into the world. I will never forget the incredible excitement and anticipation my husband and I felt the moment we saw that second pink line pop up on that pregnancy test. But alas, I am getting ahead of myself here.....

Justin and I had some goals we hoped to meet before we started our little family. The first goal was for him to finish college and pass his boards so that he could begin his career as a nurse. The second was for me to have gone a full year having been able to manage and function well for a full year with bipolar disorder. As of September 2011, both of those goals had been met. We decided to go ahead and have me go off of my Bipolar medication in June. We wanted me to have been off of it for a full three months before we started "trying" to get pregnant. We knew that there were no guarantees that God would grant us our desire to become parents, and we tried not to assume anything. You can imagine our great joy when we discovered that I was pregnant on January 21st, 2012. I remember that we had gone out to dinner at Red Lobster thanks to our friends, Shawn and Renelle giving us a gift card for Christmas that we had been saving. On the way home I asked Justin to stop at the Dollar Tree so that I could grab a pregnancy test or three. (FYI: The $1 tests are just as accurate as the $15 dollar ones. ;0) I honestly really didn't think I was pregnant. I was only 2 days late, and just figured I'd take a test just in case. I had myself convinced that I was not pregnant as I was trying not to get my hopes up. Even though we had tried really hard not to assume anything I found myself feeling keen disappointment every time a pregnancy test came up negative. We got home, and I went in and took the test. A second line appeared on the test almost immediately and it was bright, bold pink. There was no question that it was positive. I immediately clapped both hands over my mouth in disbelief and excitement. For once in my life, I was truly speechless. I walked out of our bathroom into our living room and still had my hands over my mouth. Justin looked at me, grinned, and said "It was positive wasn't it." I just nodded, frozen in place with eyes as big as saucers. Justin chuckled and said "Well come give me a hug." We hugged and laughed together and our excitement grew. God had answered our prayers for a baby, and we were overjoyed. I had known since I was a little girl that I very much wanted to be a wife and a Mama when I got older and God was granting me the desire of my heart. I felt very humbled and blessed by this incredible gift. I of course wanted to call our families and tell them immediately. Justin wisely advised that we  wait a few weeks. I was about 5 weeks along when we found out I was pregnant. Within the next 4 weeks, we had shared our news with both of our families and when I was 11 weeks, we made the "official Facebook announcement." I remember typing the simple status that said: "....and then there were three." :0)

I am thankful to say that I was blessed with a very healthy and uneventful pregnancy. I had nausea, minor vomiting and exhaustion during my first trimester as many women do, but other than that, I felt great. I got uncomfortable at the end as most women do and impatient for our girl to arrive, but really did feel great.

We found out in April that we were having a baby girl. I was initially terrified to have a girl, but was fine either way. I absolutely LOVE having a baby girl now and wouldn't trade her for a million boys. Little girls are a LOT of fun, and as my Mom encouraged me....they'll only become high maintenance, entitled drama queens if you raise them that way. ;0)

On October 3rd, I began having minor contractions. I was 11 days past my "due date" at this point and was very ready to have this baby. However, I did not want to get my hopes up prematurely.....
Tuesday, May 8, 2012 | By: Melody Joy King

Oh Pregnancy, you can be gross & hilarious...

Welp, I am officially halfway through my very first pregnancy. This of course hardly makes me an expert, but I have gained a few funny stories along the way. ;0) Please STOP reading now if you are easily grossed out and/or have a weak stomach. :0P During my first trimester, I threw up...a LOT. I think I became somewhat of a pro at it, lol. There were many times I would cook dinner, take 2-3 bites then be racing for the bathroom. I also learned that sometimes when feeling nauseous while prego, you might as well just go stare at the toilet until you throw up. It expedites the inevitable process, and you feel so much better afterward. The only upside to all this "morning" sickness is that I lost ten pounds. I figure that can't be all bad, since you're supposed to gain 25-35 pounds throughout the course of your pregnancy. I figured this would help me not gain too much weight in the long run. Thankfully, now that I am well into my second trimester, I am a lot less sick, and I'm feeling better all the time. This brings me to the most hilarious (and gross) thing that has happened to me during this pregnancy. I was at my parent's house last week, and was having much difficulty with my spring allergies. I was sneezing really hard quite often. At one point I sneezed so hard that I ended up with a little bit of pee running down my leg. I was shocked at first and then just started laughing really hard. How can something be so gross and so embarrassing, but so hilarious all at the same time? I am just REALLY thankful that I wasn't out in public somewhere! I can only imagine what my 3rd trimester is going to be like! Now I realize many of you may not share my humor or find any of this funny....perhaps you can chalk the fact that I do up to my having 5 brothers and nannying 3 boys for a living. :0P