Sunday, August 26, 2012

Peter's first photo shoot

My sweet friend Selena came over a few days after Peter was born and took some photos of Peter for us. Isn't she talented?

Saturday, August 25, 2012

The First Days with Peter...

...have been rough. I want to chronicle things here for reference later on, but mostly because I think it is therapeutic to write out the emotional toughies.

I have to say the biggest emotional hurdle for me is my guilt.

Guilt that they talked me into an induction. Because I was fearful of a terrible labor on pitocin, I opted for an epidural for the first time in 20 years. As I reached the transitional phase of labor, Peter began to be distressed. His heart rate plummeted and there was a great commotion to try and help him. Luckily, we got him here quickly and safely, but I immediately felt guilty for having chosen this path.

When we came home two days later, Peter had lost half a pound. Not unusual for a breast-fed baby, but as my milk became more abundant, Peter was not plumping up like I expected. It took him forever to feed and was still hungry. At a weight check on Saturday morning, he had not gained any weight. He had not lost any more, but neither had he gained. I decided to call the lactation consultant the hospital had available for us to ask her advice. I got no response for two days. Finally on Tuesday, she returned my call and we planned to meet the next day.

However, right before she called, I was laying Peter down after a feeding. I am pretty sure I witnessed him have a 7-10 second seizure. This was around 5 in the afternoon. I knew we had an appointment for another weight check in the morning and I could wait until then or I could take him into the ER. After discussing it over with Tony, the lactation consultant and my sister who is a pediatric nurse, we decided it would be best to take him on in that evening to be safe. Cue the guilt.

Guilt because they put him through so much only to send us home to wait for our morning appointment. They kept trying to draw blood and they kept failing. Peter cried and cried. I cried and cried. Tears of fear, tears of frustration, so many tears. It was horrible for both of us and I was exhausted by this point.

The next morning, the lactation consultant worked with me for two hours. She determined that Peter was tongue-tied and put in a referral to the ENT to have his tongue and his upper phrenulum clipped. We did that on Friday. Tony was with me this time for emotional support. I decided to let the nurses hold him for the procedure so he would not associate what was happening to him with me in any way. Of course he cried again. But I was not prepared to see how much they actually clipped his tongue. It frightened me to look at it. And then, we got home. And he could not nurse at all. He couldn't figure it out. He just rooted and rooted and could not latch on. My heart broke all over again and the tears flowed for my sweet, sweet boy who was enduring so much. Finally, Friday evening he figured out how to use his tongue and drank his fill. He even got so much in a mouthful that he choked. Sweet relief for the mama, I tell you. Some of my guilt subsided. Some.

All I want is to batten down the hatches and stay at home with my new baby and enjoy every single second of this precious newborn age. We are far from done with the doctor visits though. Monday we go back to see if his weight is improving. Thursday, we head to the neurologist for an EEG. I am so thankful that Tony has this time off and can help me. Olivia went back to school this past Monday and Sophie leaves for Franciscan this weekend.

The kids all love Peter whole-heartedly, even Therese, who I was slightly worried about. She leans over the basket he sleeps in and kisses him (maybe that's why he doesn't sleep for very long), saying "My Peter". As soon as he awakens, they beg to hold him. They are going slightly stir-crazy though and I am thinking of trying to do some partial school days next week to help us ease into the school year.

That is about all for now. I expect he will awake very soon, and I want to lay down for a few minutes before he does.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

He's here at last!!!

Jenny is still at the hospital, safe and sound. So, I, Tony, the husband, will have to give all of you J. Reosti blog followers who are in suspense the initial report on Peter Louis Reosti, the newest Reosti. We're 95% solid on Peter. Charles is option, though. But Louis is rock solid in the middle.

He was born 5:52pm EST, 7lbs 11ozs, 19.5ins long. The smallest of our 7 babies. No complications as of yet.

I am sure Jenny will post all the details when she gets home. But for now, here are a few pics:

Pete all cleaned up.

Mom resting very happily.
The rest of the gang saying hello.

Monday, August 13, 2012


Tomorrow morning at seven o'clock, I will walk into the hospital to be induced. To say that I am nervous is an understatement. Your prayers are most welcome. I have never been induced before, and the only stories I have heard about induction include such phrases as "labor twice as painful" and "only to end up in a c-section". But the doctors have me fearful of a stillbirth given my age.

Here I am a few days ago. Do I look ready?

Tomorrow is the feast day of St. Maximillian Kolbe and I have been saying a novena to him for a safe delivery. I love how devoted he was to Mary Our Mother. I am praying that she will be with me tomorrow too.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

On this day...

...we have been remembering the good times and memories of our sweet Ben. He died five years ago today.

Tony wanted us all to go on a bike ride to the 7-11, since Ben and Tony would ride to the shopette on post and get themselves a "bracer", as they called it. Most everyone else would call it a slurpee. It was a tradition for the two of them. However, the weather did not cooperate. It has been pouring rain all day.

We had a Mass said for Ben today. We took up the gifts. The wonderful lady who "runs" things gave Therese a tiny wooden cross to carry so she didn't feel left out. She walked so solemnly up to the altar and handed the priest the little cross.  I do believe she melted a few hearts, including mine.

After Mass, Tony suggested going out to eat at a wing joint to honor Ben and his favorite restaurant. Our little folk choir would all go out for dinner together quite often. Ben would order and consume ten barbeque wings most Saturday nights after Mass.  Ben would not allow anyone to clean him up until all ten of those wings had been eaten. The sauce was usually past his wrists and from ear to ear. Tonight, Tony did not wipe his face or hands until he had eaten ten wings. It was quite comical and made us all laugh.

I will admit to also shedding a few tears today. I miss him so dearly. It makes me sad to think that Therese and the new baby will never have known their brother. They will only know the stories. But we will never stop telling his stories.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Savoring the Moment

Yesterday was spent preparing meals to freeze to make it a little easier over the next few weeks. I collapsed into bed last night exhausted but at peace. But sleep proved fitful at best. I got out of bed in the early light of the morning. It was just light enough to find my way downstairs to my Magnificat and the morning readings. Not too long after that, I heard heavy footsteps overhead and knew my husband was getting ready to go to work. He came down and we went through the mail and what the day might hold before sending him off with a kiss. I got the laundry started and puttered about the house organizing a little bit. I went back upstairs and laid down to do a little reading while the house was still quiet. One by one, the little ones wandered in and snuggled around me. By then, it had started raining outside. I opened the back door to let the sounds and smells of a gentle morning rain drift in and around us as we started our day.

The rest of the morning has been less than ideal, but I think I will cling to the good part and carry that with me today.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Summer on a plate...

is a tomato sandwich. Fresh picked tomatoes right out of the garden, sliced nice and thick, a little salt and pepper, and a healthy dollop of mayo on each slice of this homemade bread. I made this bread yesterday for the first time and Tony declared it my best ever. It is that good. The only changes I made were to use vegan butter and I only used one tablespoon of yeast. Believe me, it rose beautifully. I am sorry there are no pictures. My sandwich did not last that long.

I made the dough before leaving for my non-stress test. The baby is not stressed, just head up. The dough got a nice two-hour rise thanks to some other babies who were stressed, so I had to wait. I prayed for those mamas and their babies.

Last night was the weekly outdoor concert on Ft. Eustis. I made some peanut butter cookies to take with us to share and we met some friends over there. Minus the bugs, it was a lovely evening. On the way home, the moon rose to greet us and guide us home. It was ever so big, red and glowing as it first peeked through the trees, then fading to orange and finally it took on a golden hue and we all were in awe. Wisps of clouds hung round it like the rings of Saturn. I never grow tired of the wonders of nature.

Early this morning, Tony and I tip-toed out of the house before dawn to go to Mass together. The sun, not wanting to be outdone by the moon's magical performance last night, came bursting from the horizon a pinkish red.

I am trying to savor these last days of pregnancy, spending extra snuggle time with each of the kids. My emotions and senses are heightened, I am sure. At Mass this morning, I wept for Ben, who will have been in Heaven for 5 years this next week. I miss his presence daily, but this year will be the first time I have not been able to go back to Georgia and tend to his grave, or just sit there with him for a while.

Enough rambling on for now, I must go and not let the laundry get the best of me.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Going 'round in circles

Well now. I went in for a growth scan for this little baby this morning. Somehow, between the non-stress test on Monday and this morning, he decided being head down was no good. He is breech. AGAIN! Maybe the other kids did this too and I just didn't know (sometimes technology is not all it's cracked up to be) that they were little gymnasts. At the same time, technology has brought me much comfort throughout this pregnancy. I can see him moving. I can listen to his heartbeat (two times a week at this point) and know that he is happily hanging out in my belly. I also know that he is growing quite like he should. He is now over 7 pounds and plumping up nicely. He also has a head of hair already.

Emotionally, I am going in circles too. I am soooo ready to meet this little baby and I am so tired of not being able to reach things like the kitchen sink (I have to turn sideways to do the dishes) or the laundry soap, which I wasted a goodly portion of  yesterday when I dropped the box while attempting to get it down from the shelf. I am thinking I will have to sacrifice my need to have everything in its place and will leave the detergent box on top of the washer for a couple of weeks. I am ready to not be pregnant and yet, am I ready for sleepless nights and the adjustment phase that comes with a bringing a new baby home?

Finally, for more circles, look at this:

We have officially put 100,000 miles on our little mini-van. Did I mention I would love to have a full-size van? One day, we will. I just have to be patient and wait for the right one. (meaning: in our price range). Till then, I am more than grateful for our little van that gets good gas mileage and keeps on trucking with relatively few problems.

I am trying to focus on all the positives and good things and be thankful for all that God has given me. For truly, I am so blessed!