Well, it's time for a reel life update, pun intended. This blog post is a little different than my usual and will be pretty video heavy — a look at the first six months of having our first baby, Everson Lawrence Rainey. But here's what I'm going to do along the way: while you watch (what I think are) the picture-perfect clips I put together of our life over the last several months, I'm going to simultaneously share some of the less-than-glamourous realities going on behind the scenes.
And before we jump on in, here's a fun fact I found appropriate for a post about parenthood: although not cited well, the worldwide web tells us that we make about 35,000 decisions in a day! And I'm going to bet (with zero scientific backup) that new parents make double that per day. Multiply that times two parents and man-oh-man it's a wonder we can get anything accomplished in a day, and yet, here we are.
And I thought creating a baby registry and a birth plan was a lot of decision-making...
MONTH 01 - A Painful Pain Relief Procedure & An Absent Anesthesiologist
Jumping right into what this first video doesn't show is how during the birth "experience" the epidural failed to fully activate on the first try, leaving only my right thigh numb instead of the entire lower half of my body as it should have. For hours on end, the anesthesiologist was in serious high-demand and getting the epidural scheduled to be reset seemed to be taking an act of congress. But finally, he came and attempted to reset it, heavy on the attempt, because I had the exact same outcome: no pain relief and just a numb right thigh.
When Kyle magically hunted down another physician to do this very painful pain relief procedure hoping that 'third time's the charm,' this doc decided that an (apparently) even more painful procedure, the spinal tap, was the call. And thankfully after having labored for nearly 24 hours and said spinal tap later, pain relief did come and so did about two hours of sleep while unknowingly to my pain receptors, contractions and progression had continued.
I woke up from that two hour nap thinking "okay this is doable" just in time to realize the machine sending the pain relief was malfunctioning! The nurses shared that only the anesthesiologist was able to reset it using his apparent secret code... and that would've been fine if all the anesthesiologists on staff weren't unavailable at the time! So a-hunting my hubby would go. And boy did he deliver during this delivery! He brought the doc back, who input the secret code, signaling pain relief to resume. Of course, in the meantime, I was beside myself thinking I was about to go au natural (not what I had planned) for the birth.
Just as the nurses were leaving the room, Kyle asked a question he pretty much knew the answer to: "Umm did anyone hit START on the machine?" The head nurse gave him a look of "Oh my gosh, thank you for catching that." To which I then gave my hero of a husband the very same look.
The moment I looked out the hospital bedroom window to see the sun rising, I knew it wouldn't be long. After certainly, the longest, most rewarding night of our lives, we got to meet our perfect boy. Seven pounds, fourteen ounces, born on Flag Day, Tuesday, June 14th at sunrise which just so happened to be exactly ten years from the day we said our wedding vows. Yeah, you could say it hit us pretty hard that night as we had our 10 Year Anniversary steak dinner in the hospital room with our firstborn child. Talk about a mental and emotional time-lapse. Whew.
MONTH 02 - Saying Hello, Goodbye & How The Heck
Another set of emotions uncaptured by my phone camera, were those bittersweet feelings as we welcomed this new human into our world, we were also farewelling our haven of a home we'd made our own. You can read more here on how we sold our hillside home in the most unconventional way ever.
In addition to being brand new parents, who decidedly just sold our biggest asset, planning to build a homestead, we were also feeling the extreme growing pains of being business owners. That's the 'How The Heck' part of this segment. During most of what they call postpartum, or the fourth trimester, we battled in our careers like our lives depended on it, and in fact, our livelihood did depend on it.
It looked something like this: Figuring out how to get a newborn to latch while having team calls about collections and new project launches. Learning the ideal number of wet diapers to avoid dehydration while developing an incentive program for employees as the economy trends pointed towards recession. All while coming to grips with the fact that we were MOVING at the end of August! You could say it was a lot. It was a lot.
MONTH 03 - Moving Madness Mayhem
Behind the scenes of this "Eversode" was a young couple all-consumed with the packing and moving process, a mother seeking a new-normal that unknowingly wouldn't be found in even the sixth month of having a baby and we had a lovely serving of family drama coming at us from several angles, because why wouldn't we?!
A slew of questions filled our days like, "Where did we pack the linens?" and googling things like, "What is an appropriate newborn age for a first date night?" If you read the blog post highlighted above, you'll see we actually moved just down the street and sold pretty much all our furniture to the new owners. Many a trip was taken using our golf cart to transport our belongings from our sold home which was measured in the thousands of square feet to our brand-new rent home measured in the hundreds. But did we have to get a storage unit like everyone challenged me we would? We did not! Let's just say the attic is bursting at the seams and that many of my decor treasures are tucked away until our new house is built.
MONTH 04 - Settling In But Not Settling Down
Here you're seeing life as we settle into our new semi-tiny home. What you're not seeing is all the ways we played Tetris with each room to finally make it functional. I have a desk on wheels that has lived in every room of the house, not even kidding. Also, not pictured is what went into traveling since the holidays were approaching at this point. I'm sure any new parent knows of the inevitable car seat meltdowns paired with dirty diaper blowouts. Glory be to the glamour that is child rearing, said no one ever.
After dark, on our last night planned to be in the old house I realized (too late) that I had scheduled the disconnect for the wrong day! So we were without power in the dead heat of a Texas summer... not cool. Literally, it was so hot and to add insult to injury, there was over one hundred ounces of hard earned breastmilk stored in our freezer that was well on its way to being defrosted into ruin! Kyle to the rescue once again in finding "the guy" that came out and reconnected the power just in the nick of time. There was truly no need to cry over spilled milk.
MONTH 05 - Millennial Motherhood
This was the month where I named Everson my little trout because at this age carrying him was like lugging around a 15 pound fish out of water, always wriggling around, it doesn't hold onto you and you can't leave it unattended. It amazed me how fast he kept landing back in my arms when he'd fuss while others were holding him. My back was killing me and my wrist was border lining carpal tunnel syndrome from the extra strain during our breastfeeding journey. In the age of information overload I will certainly say that behind the eyes of this confident new millenial mother was one second guessing and google searching a laundry list of "when's" and "how-to's" pretty much around the clock.
MONTH 06 - Project Pushback
Figuring out where to put the parents house, learning the permit process and also transitioning from the cradle to the crib, the amount on our plates just seemed to keep growing. As we neared the end of a crazy year it wasn't one where we could say things would be simpler or easier in the New Year. On the contrary, we braced for impact as we knew soon we'd be hitting plenty of walls of opposition. And that we did. Our downtown renovation project was hung up in permitting and so was our new construction project for Kyle's parents. If you know anything about us, you know limbo land is not where we like to live.
On repeat, we kept saying something has to be eliminated, something has to give... but in looking at our "life list" the question being begged was "But what? What do we say no to? We had been in serious launch mode since Everson was born and it was like asking a plane that had just had liftoff to land... pretty much impossible, at best detrimental. Do we stop the downtown flip house we were heavily invested in? NO. Do we stop building the Rainey parents dream house? NO. Do we walk away from patenting an industry-changing product for environmental construction? NO.
Self-pep talks were on replay and while one of my shoulder angels kept whispering, "It's only a phase, just a little longer, and it'll all be worth it," while the other seemed to scream "This isn't working, I can't do this and this will never sustain!"
I found myself fantasizing about our past when things were easier and simpler. I kept trying to "get back" to that place of peace only to realize it isn't a place you can visit. Peace is a moving target that you have to be in constant pursuit of as you move your life in the direction of forward. It's a state of mind. It lives amidst the wars inside us and not on the other side of victory or defeat. Choosing peace is finding peace.
As always, be sure to stay tuned by joining my email list below so you never miss an update, because I have at least three biggies to share that are just around the corner - including the downtown project we are flipping - the foundation is being fixed as we speak. Next is the parents homestead being in the framing stage and there's another big reveal I've been keeping secret (no I'm not pregnant)!