We had no idea if Hudson was a boy or a girl. I found out I was pregnant right after we went on a family vacation to Myrtle Beach. Jules just turned 13 months old and I just started weaning her from breastfeeding. It was bittersweet, but I also knew I couldn’t nurse her for much longer if we wanted another baby. Howie and I talked about it and wanted one, but not soon. I realized in this process of motherhood, you can’t plan anything ever. And if you try, you will most likely be disappointed.
We went on our annual Coro summer vacation and had a blast- drinking wine, laid at the pool, Howie’s parents watched Jules, one kid between all of us, sunshine everyday, eating all we wanted, kind of blast. I flew with Jules and everyone else drove. I flew home, which was a nightmare because our flight kept getting delayed and my little strong-willed queen baby never wanted to sleep, especially when she was in a crazy airport. A few days after we came home from our vacation, I started not to feel well at all; nausea, dizziness, sweats. I had a whole bunch of ghetto pregnancy tests in the bathroom so I took one without any doubts that I would be pregnant. It was around 11am and I peed on a stick and ran around chasing Jules forgetting it was even there. When I saw it, there was the tiniest line, but I figured it was a false positive because it’s been sitting there for hours. I took another one and another light line appeared- really light. Jesus Christ, no. This can’t be true. I remember being in the bathroom with Jules playing at my feet. I immediately broke down crying, grabbed her and hugged her and wouldn’t let her go. I remember thinking so many things- This would be my last summer with Jules just her and I. How the hell am I going to tell Mr. Finance? When would I be due? How am I going to leave Jules for another baby? Is it a boy or a girl? Will I miscarry? Is this real? All of this was the end of August and I was going back to work (#TeacherLife) in a week. How could I process all of this and not tell a soul?
I didn’t tell anyone except for Jules that day. I didn’t bring her to daycare that day- I just snuggled her all day long and cried. I didn’t act weird to anyone, but I was so nauseous and tired for that week. I remember being at Target and seeing a “Big Sister” shirt on the clearance rack. I wasn’t going to get it because I didn’t want to jinx anything, but I bought it anyway. I was so conflicted with emotion. I felt like it was way too early to be pregnant. I wanted to enjoy my time with Juliana for longer. I kept saying I wanted to be pregnant, but didn’t think I would be for awhile since I was still breastfeeding. I decided I wasn’t ready to tell anyone for a little while. I also became a psycho and tested 50x a day to see if the line would get lighter because I had this big fear I would have a chemical pregnancy or a miscarriage. But I also had this weird feeling of not wanting another baby just yet.
I remember going to teach my Zumba step class one morning and Renee, my sister-in-law, watched Jules for me. I couldn’t eat a thing and I kept feeling dizzy. She looked at me and knew. Ugh, she knew before Howie. I felt guilty for being pregnant before her- with my second baby. Oh the emotions were so strong. I just can’t explain it! I still wasn’t ready to tell Howie. We started back up at work again and I remember having a tough kiddo in my room and I would just cry at the end of the day. I missed Jules and I was petrified to get hit so early on in my pregnancy. I broke down and told my paras that I was pregnant. According to my crazy ass googling the crap out of this pregnancy, I was due end of April, beginning of May. God help me get through this.
After wanting to puke and fall asleep at 4pm every night, I had to finally tell Howie that I was pregnant. The lines were getting darker and the symptoms were ramping up. I didn’t call the doctor yet, but it was time to tell Daddy. I was giving Juliana and bath and had her clothes picked out for Daddy to change her- the big sister shirt. I finished cleaning up the bathroom and Howie got her dressed. He didn’t even notice the shirt!! When I tried to gesture to the shirt, he thought it had to do with Koko. Dude, Juliana is going to be a big sister. Howie had no idea how to take the news. It wasn’t exactly how I wanted him to take it. Of course, his first reaction was how we would afford daycare. After I cried and showed him the 50 tests that were positive, we finally embraced the news.
The first trimester kicked my ass- I had to take Diclegis for major nausea. I puked a few times, but mostly it was insane nausea that would wake me from my sleep. I actually fell asleep in my bean bag chair at work a few times. I battled sciatica and had to go to acupuncture throughout my whole pregnancy- which worked wonders! The second trimester was a different story. Physically I felt amazing, but I couldn’t stop eating. I craved Cheetos, Diet Coke, cheese sticks for one week, Reese’s peanut butter cups…everything BAD. I got diagnosed with Gestational Diabetes. I cried and cried for days. I was teaching Zumba and going running almost everyday. How could I have GD? I remember getting a pamphlet welcoming me to Maternal Fetal Medicine that warned me about big babies, stillborns, NSTs, and next steps. I had to essentially prick my finger every day 4x a day to measure the glucose 1-2 hours after I ate and send it to the nurses weekly. I had my first meeting and my numbers were in range. I did everything I could to keep them in range- balanced out my carbs with proteins and was fortunately able to maintain all my numbers. Most of my numbers were actually low so I was dismissed from maternal fetal medicine within a month, but since I’m a hot mess crazy mom, I stayed with the controlled diet and cut a lot of carbs, still pricking my finger about 2x a day.
At our 20 week scan, we decided not to find out the gender of the baby. After everything else checked out healthy, we decided to wait. It was killing me, but when you’re chasing a hyperactive toddler and working full-time, you don’t really have time to obsess over wanting to know if it’s a boy or a girl. I read up on all the myths about boys and girls- most signs pointed to boy. The biggest sign was my clear skin…not a zit or a spot. But my gut kept thinking girl. Part of me wanted 2 girls because I never had a sister and I wanted Jules to have a best friend, but part of me wanted a boy to have one of each- best of both worlds. I was petrified to have either. I joined a nub theory group on Facebook and tons of people guessed boy based off the nub.
Between 11-13 weeks, all babies are said to have a ‘nub‘ between their legs called the genital tubercle, and according to this theory the angle of the nub will indicate whether it’s a boy or girl. It’s said that if the nub is over 30 degrees up from the spine, it’s a boy – but if it’s under that then it’s a girl.
I gained tons of weight in the second trimester, but I slowed it down during the third and ended up gained about 26 pounds total. I was pregnant with Jules on the left and my surprise gender on the right. Not much of a difference, but definitely lower and smaller boobs with my surprise babe.
I went for a 4th scan at 34 weeks to measure the baby since I had GD and he/she was measuring on target so far. My midwife wasn’t convinced I actually had GD, but I wanted to treat it like I did and just keep eating healthy and doing whatever I could to protect baby C. I was never checked for dilation until I went into labor.
I took a personal day from work on Friday, April 21 and got my last prenatal massage with my favorite masseuse, Dru. Then I taught my last scheduled Zumba step class Saturday morning. Right before I taught, I lost a little bit of my mucus plug. It would have been kind of cool to go into labor teaching Zumba. Then on Sunday morning I tried to run on the treadmill hahaha. I was 38 weeks and 1 day and I felt like I would never go into labor. I actually wanted to go into labor late because I wanted to savor as much time I could with just Juliana. I was having a really hard time prepping to part from her to go to the hospital to love another baby. Just a bittersweet feeling that I will never forget. Jules and I went to Target Sunday morning bright and early- went shopping, played in the playscape, took a walk, got a shake at Panera- had a girls day. I cried all day long because I didn’t want to have another baby just yet. I felt like I was cheating on her. My parents came around noon and we did our weekly trip to Costco. It was really hot that day and I was overheated quick and felt humongous, dizzy, and gross. My mom was acting weird and insisted we go to Costco. Little did I know Renee, Cora (Howie’s mom) and my mom were planning a mini shower at my house for when I got back. I was waddling all through Costco and peed 4x, each time my mucus plug came out more. I had some back pain, but nothing out of the ordinary since I battled sciatica with both pregnancies. I was surprised by my mini shower with random friends, but just wasn’t feeling it. I was tired and feeling gross, but was thankful for amazing friends and family. That night, I woke up around 3am with weird pains, but not entirely convinced it was contractions, although this time around I was much more nervous because I experienced labor before and knew was to expect. I was much more aware this time around, so I took a hot bath for an hour and couldn’t go back to sleep. I thought my water broke, but I think it was the plug still coming out. I called the midwife and my parents around 6am. The night before this whole thing I had a weird feeling it was soon, so I held Jules and prayed to God for a long time. I will never forget that moment.
Renee came over with Noah to keep me company Monday morning April 24. I was on no sleep from the night before and just said goodbye to Jules because she went to daycare. That was the worst goodbye ever, but I didn’t cry in front of her. My midwife wasn’t convinced I was in true labor because the contractions were inconsistent, but definitely getting stronger just not 5 minutes apart- it was like 11 mins apart, then 2 then 15, etc. Howie mowed the lawn and I packed my bags with Renee. The midwife scheduled me an appointment at 10am to be checked for dilation with the intention she would send me home. I wasn’t really nervous about going, but on our way in I decided to just go straight to the hospital because the contractions were becoming more stabbing. They checked me upon arrival and I was only 4cm so they told me to take a walk and come back since this is my second baby. The weird thing is that when they hooked me up to the contraction monitor, the contractions stopped when I laid down but were intense when I was standing. I racked up about 7,000 steps in the ugliest hospital gown and flip-flops around the hospital with my parents, Howie, and our photographer. I always wanted a photographer at birth. We decided to stop for lunch at the hospital cafeteria and the contractions came so fast, they took my breath away. I had doctors coming up to me asking if I was okay. I think I swore to my dad at one point and anyone who knows my dad knows swearing is NOT allowed. When I checked back in 1.5 hour later, I was almost 8cm dilated. I went up to labor and delivery and wanted so bad to bypass epidural, but when my midwife told me it was my last chance to get it, I knew I had to do it, especially if I needed an episiotomy again. I kind of felt like I could handle these contractions a little better, but that pain was still so fierce. I can still feel the contractions now. In both pregnancies I never experienced Braxton Hicks so these contractions were intense- piercing in my ass and my back. I had back labor for both. When they came to do epidural, I was so dehydrated they couldn’t find a vein so they cycled through 2 nurses and eventually found one. I was 9.5cm when I got it- Mother Effer. Time to push. OH MY GOD, we were about to meet a girl or a boy. I didn’t really think about that at the time, but how exciting?! This labor was so chill- my midwife was around my age and was just so passionate about her job and this birth. I had a paramedic student in there shining a bright flashlight on my baby maker. I remember yelling to everyone that if I shit on the table don’t tell me since I did with Juliana. Howie was so into this birth- he was more at my feet than my head. He watched everything. I felt my whole left leg and I could still feel the contractions, but not as intense. I was scared shitless since the epidural didn’t work all the way. You feel so vulnerable on the table in just a gown with your legs wide open to strangers while you are soaked in sweat pushing with every part of your body to deliver a life. It’s soooo insane, but I love it so much. I pushed a few GOOD pushes- about 25 minutes and as the baby was crowing, Kirsty, the midwife, asked if she wanted Howie or her to announce if it was a boy or a girl. I gave one last push and felt the baby slide out so I got to reach down and pull it out. “IT’S A BOY!” Those words resonate in my heart. That was the second best moment of my life. I totally suggest waiting until birth to know the gender because it is such an emotional feeling. Hudson Grey Coro was born on a Monday night at 5:06pm and stole my heart. When they say you’re heart doubles. it’s true. It’s an unimaginable feeling.
He swam up to my boobs and latched the most perfect latch. My nipples weren’t sore at all since I nursed Juliana for so long. Everyone was at the hospital waiting and dying to find out the gender. I had my skin to skin time with Hudson and Howie and had to wait for a recovery room. Our poor families had to wait 2 hours after HE was born! One of the nurses came in and told me I had to pee on my own before I transferred rooms. Ughhh, but I did it and got wheeled out to our new room while I hid Hudson in my shirt. Everyone came in and met Hudson Grey! It was the most beautiful and memorable day of my life.