Tuesday, December 23, 2014

5 and 6 months

I've really been slacking with everything but I figured I should do a quick update on Raleigh!

Raleigh is now 16lbs at 6 months.

She has learned to crawl backwards. She rolls all over the room.
She loves talking to Momma and being vocal.
She is scared of people with mustaches. (aka my Dad)
She loves Mesa and Kimber.
She loves her bouncer.
She LOVES watching TV.
She still hates carrots. She tolerates bananas. She sometimes doesn't mind rice cereal. She thinks pears are okay. She just loves bottles.
Playing with Daddy's beard is the best. Ripping out chunks of Mommy's hair is also enjoyable.
Playing on Mommy's Ipad is also cool.
She can hold her own bottle.
She can sit up on her own (When she feels like it)
Farting in church is a lot of fun (and having others blame it on Mommy and Daddy.)
Pulling her own hair/Playing with her own hair is pretty fun.
Putting everything in her mouth is great too.
Watching Aunt Bella do the "Happy Dance" makes her laugh.
Seeing other babies also makes her laugh (a lot)
Carseats are the devil.
Music is awesome.

(Pictures to come soon!)

Saturday, September 20, 2014

3 Months Old

Love this little cutie! She is now 3 months old! I know moms say this all the time but where does the time go?! She is nearly 12 lbs and is so cute!!! I can't believe how big she is now!

When previously I said she loved her tongue I don't think people will have any idea how much. It is almost always sticking out. She's also recently discovered holding her own hands and grabbing her feet.

She's also become a little talker and makes the biggest smiles. Love this little baby!

Friday, August 22, 2014

2 Months! *Updated*

Just thought I would do a quick post on Raleigh turning 2 months! This little girl is my whole world and leaving her to go to work everyday has been the hardest thing! Good thing she's the best smiler! We got to bless her at church last Sunday but I was so bad about taking pictures! ): I'll have to get some from the people that were there! 

Not sure how much she weights or how tall she is yet her 2 month check up isn't until two weeks! I will post an update when I get it. 

Some of her favorites: Mommy and Daddy, her swing, her binky and lately her tongue. 

I'm so grateful for this little baby!!! I love her so much! 

Raleigh is weight is perfect for her age says her doctor she weighs 11lbs 5oz she is in the 25% percentile for her weight. 
She is 22.5 inches tall. 
and her head is 15 3/4 inches diameter and in the 75% percentile. Can't believe that she has such a big head! Gets it from her Beckett side of the family! 

She is such a talker lately and has started to copy noises we make. I love her little giggles.  

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

One Month Old!

My baby is already a month old! Didn't I just bring her home yesterday?!

I've never been so exhausted doing something I love so much. Granted I don't love EVER aspect of it, I could probably live without the getting pooped on, peed on, having projectile spit up hitting me in the butt and feeling so exhausted that I can't imagine doing this ever again... BUT watching her grow and explore the world around her is one of the most thrilling things I have ever experienced. I love all the weird facial expressions she makes, how she can fart louder than her daddy, and how she coos to herself.

Heres an update on her!

Weight: 7lbs 10 oz
Height: close to 22 inches

Likes: Mommy, Daddy, being held, her binky, milk, her swing

Dislikes: Being in one place for too long, tummy time, and not being fed RIGHT when she wants to.

Heres her one month pictures! Hopefully I can remember to do this every month!

Right now her and her doll are the same size!

Monday, June 23, 2014

Little Miss "R": Raleigh Swensen

The FAQ's.

What's her name?
Raleigh Swensen

June 17, 2014 at 5:01pm

How do you pronounce her name?

Just like the city in North Carolina, Raleigh. If you want to add some southern flair accent that is also acceptable.

[Rah-Lee] to hear it out loud go here:

6 lbs 8 oz

21 inches long

What's her middle name?
She doesn't have one. She's just as cool as her momma as I don't have one! She's actually the 3rd generation not to have one my mom doesn't have one either but she took her maiden name as it.

Did you naturally go into labor or were you induced?
I had to be induced at 37 weeks because I had mild pre-eclampsia.

How are you feeling?
Well in a lot of ways not great, our first night Raleigh did great sleeping being swaddled but when they discovered she had jaundice and started treatment  she had to be on a special light so she couldn't be swaddled. She was moved into the Newborn Center Special Care Nursery basically a nicer less scary way of saying NICU. The type of jaundice she has/had results because of her being a little early on top of her having a different blood type than me. They say skin to skin right after birth helps and so I was hoping to avoid the jaundice!   Apparently though her type of jaundice is a little bit more of a big deal than other types.
"Blood group incompatibility (Rh or ABO problems): if a baby has a different blood type than the mother, the mother might produce antibodies that destroy the infant's red blood cells. This creates a sudden buildup of bilirubin in the baby's blood. Incompatibility jaundice can begin as early as the first day of life. Rh problems once caused the most severe form of jaundice, but now can be prevented with an injection of Rh immune globulin to the mother within 72 hours after delivery, which prevents her from forming antibodies that might endanger any subsequent babies." (http://kidshealth.org/parent/pregnancy_center/newborn_care/jaundice.html)
 It breaks my heart to not be able to hold her when she's crying or soothe her unless she is eating or needs to be changed. We had to stay in the hospital longer to take care of it. Right now it's not getting better, actually its getting worse and they're concerned that it came on so fast.

I cried today when they told me that we were going to have to keep her here longer. I just wanted to hold my baby and love on her!

Otherwise I'm feeling much better than I was the day after she was born. I was SO sore especially in my back due to complications with my epidural. It still hurts to lay on my back around my tailbone area and up.

Never in my life did I think getting an epidural would be more painful than actually delivering my baby. Everyone always makes it seem like it's such a walk in the park and that it takes only 10 minutes max. I guess if something were to go wrong with such a basic thing that most women endure it would be me.

I guess I should start at the beginning of my labor story though so here it is:

On Monday I had a consultation with the Women's Center of the hospital to check and see the best option for me whether that be induction or waiting until my due date. (July 8th)

My blood pressures had been very high, I had been having a constant headache since April and then the past weekend I had begun having noticeable vision changes.

The doctor for the consultation then sent me to the Labor and Delivery wing at the hospital  where they monitored me and did a urine analysis. They then also tried to track down my 24 hour urine collection I did a few days prior with my doctor. Apparently the doctors office lost my pee! The decision was then made to induce me since I was 37 weeks along and it was only going to get worse. They started giving me meds to help prepare me for labor by thinning me out and then at 4 am they began giving me pitocin. The contractions weren't very painful at the beginning not until the doctor came in at 8 am and told me he was going to break my water. Then complete back labor instilled and the only ways I could manage my discomfort was to rock back and forth, lay on my side or hunch over. All things that the nurse rapidly came in and yelled at me for doing because it was dropping my baby's heart rate. They told me I had to lay on my back! Since my water broke and they had to have me constantly monitored because of my high blood pressure I wasn't allowed to get out of the bed and walk around or do anything. My blood pressure then kept going higher and higher so they recommended I should get an epidural before it got dangerously high. (A side effect of an epidural is lower blood pressure.) So I finally decided to just go ahead and do it.

It took the anesthesiologist about 45 min from then to come in and start attempting to give me an epidural. By this time it was about 9 am. I've heard normally it takes about 10 min or so to get one so I thought I could sit still for at least that long... it took over 45 minutes for him to finally get the epidural in the "right" place. There are at least 7 marks going along my spine of where he continually poked me with his huge needle trying to numb me. He kept going to the right side and it felt like lightning going down my right side. On top of that pain I was having contractions less than 2 minutes apart, my arm was swollen and purple from the blood pressure cuff going off every two minutes, my blood pressure and pulse were sky rocketing, my back was cramping and my neck was stiff from keeping it down for so long. If that wasn't bad enough I started to feel like I was going to pass out. I continually kept asking if it was almost over and kept telling them I was going to pass out. Then I began shaking so bad and the anesthesiologist kept telling me to hold still. He said annoying things like, "Kathy hold still!" or "I can't understand anything she's saying" (when I'm obviously saying "ow right side!") Finally he puts it in the right place and only my right side starts going numb. So he then had to move the catheter which is very painful. My left leg slowly started to go numb but not all the way. By that point I said I was done and didn't care if it was totally numb or not.

From then it went pretty easy, my mom came to the hospital and just helped me when Luke couldn't or she talked to me it was really nice having her there. I started dilating about 2 cm every hour and by 4:30 they checked me and it was time to push. Pushing was so much easier than getting the epidural! The only thing that sucked was not being able to catch my breath. Right before my last push my final motivation was the doctor telling me "she has hair!" then I had to see her for myself. It only took me about 20 minutes or so to push her out which I hear is lucky.

At 5:01 my perfect baby girl was born. I cried and Luke was ecstatic.

For being 3 weeks early she is very healthy. All of my problems that I had with preeclampsia immediately went away. No more headaches, high blood pressure, vision changes or swelling.

Having Raleigh and being pregnant with her has taught me such valuable life lessons. The biggest is to go with the flow because literally nothing I planned happened the way I wanted it to go except for the outcome. I am so blessed to be the mommy of this little angel she has already become my whole world.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

FAQ and pregnancy update!

1. Are you getting excited? 
Yes. No. Maybe. Depends on the second? Most of the time yes, I can't wait to hold my baby.

2. Is it a girl or a boy?
It is a GIRL! And she still is a girl so far! 

3. What's her name?
Still not telling. You can just call her Baby "R".

4. How are you feeling?
Well currently I'm getting over having pink eye in both eyes, while having a cold/allergies and having high blood pressure concerns so not the greatest but it could be worse. Right now I'm on restrictions of moving too much, not total bed rest but close enough. No more fun adventures for me for a while! 
I don't want to be sent to the hospital again for having ridiculously high blood pressure (155/102) or any other bad thing I can avoid. 

5. When are you due?
I'm due July 8, 2014 but if my conditions worsen I'll be induced possibly in June. 

6. Isn't being pregnant just the best? 

Honestly, I don't love it. There are some moments where I'm super thrilled I am but most of the time no. Which makes me feel guilty sometimes because I know so many people who are praying to be in this situation of being pregnant. 

7. Where are you registered?
Target is where the cool kids go. ;) 

8. Do you have everything you need?

Crib. check
High chair. check
Stroller and car seat. Check check 
Baby clothes. CHECK. (Baby "R" has been so spoiled in this area!)
Play yard/play pen (whatever they call them now) check
Blankets check

Basically  we have been very blessed with awesome friends and family who have spoiled our little girl. All that's left now is the very practical (often "boring" but essential) things most people don't think about when you think of cute babies! (Bottles, wipes, pacifiers, crib sheets, booger suckers, random hygiene baby things, socks)

9.How far along are you? 

I'm currently 32 weeks (at the time of writing this blog post I was 32 weeks however by the time I posted it I'm now 33 weeks) 

10.Any cravings?

The blue baby bottle pops. I want them all the time. Oh and strawberries and oreos. At least the strawberries are healthy! 

11. Weirdest things I've done?

I cry all the time. About stupid things. Happy things. I just cry.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Update: Don't Get Pregnant on Your Parents Insurance

In January, I wrote a blog post detailing the sucky situation I found myself in having no maternity coverage on my parents insurance. ( If you have know idea what I'm talking about read the blog post) I can finally say I have an update on the situation! YAY (meaning I actually know what the heck we are doing!) Because of my previous blog post I have received so much advice on what to do this situation and so I thought I would pass along some of the things I have learned.

The most important lesson I  learned is if you're planning on getting pregnant (or even if you're not) is to check and see if maternity is covered on your insurance. READ the fine print and call the right people you don't want to get stuck paying everything! Even if you have your own insurance you STILL may not have maternity coverage! Or you may have some but will cover the bare minimum or "complications due to pregnancy" but not pregnancy itself. Insurances seem to be finding loopholes since Obamacare as I've found out through reading other peoples similar problems online.

My friend just recently told me that she was double insured on her parents insurance and her husband's while being pregnant with her baby (which she just had and is SO adorable!) Because of her reading my story her mother and her decided to check and see if maternity was covered by her parents provider. They called about 6 people and they all said yes she was covered until she called another person who they then found out in fact SHE WAS NOT COVERED. Thank goodness she was on her husband's insurance otherwise she would have been stuck with so much to pay!

Most people that have given me advice told me to apply for Medicaid, which I can't qualify for. Sadly, because of the huge blessing of Luke's job and the fact we have a lot of assets for our age (house, multiple cars, etc) we couldn't qualify for any help like that!

We next tried to find secondary insurance like some people suggested but it was proving to be an impossible task. Apparently, when you already have insurance other insurance providers don't want to cover you.

I then just decided that I was going to go to a low cost clinic and just pay for everything upfront. In Brighton there is one called Salud each prenatal appointment was only going to cost $81 without insurance. This seemed a little bit more manageable compared to the doctor I was going to before that wanted $2000 each appointment!

By happenstance I talked to my friend whose brother had been involved in a program that helped people with anything insurance didn't cover. It is called the CIPC or Colorado Indigent Care Program. This not only covers any maternity medical bills that are not covered by insurance but any medical bills in general! (However, it should be noted the CIPC is only at certain doctors offices and hospitals) For a fact sheet to see if you qualify click HERE. Knowing this information will save us thousands of out of pocket costs.

Yesterday, we got everything set up with the financial services at Salud and it is now going to only cost a $40 copay to go to the doctor and I called the Platte Valley Hospital to see how much it would cost to deliver the baby there, it will only cost us $630! Although, they told me that price doesn't include anesthesiology but I want to have a natural birth anyway. Luke thinks I'm crazy. The nice thing too is that the CIPC will go back 90 days and cover any medical bills from that! (If only I had figured out what I was doing much sooner) But at least one doctor visit will have a deduction added to it! WOOT!
A TON of hospitals in Colorado take the CIPC so even if you don't want to go to a low cost clinic you can still save thousands by going to the hospital financial services and applying for it. You don't have to be in the same situation as me to get into it. It can help with any illness, surgery, tests or whatever else. The CIPC is good for a year! We even added Luke on it in case he gets sick or hurt. It's free and it saves you money so why not!? When the baby is born she will be able to be added onto it too.

Obviously, this mainly has to do with a Colorado program! But you can easily see what state program is available to you!

We're not totally out of the water yet but we're more wading instead of drowning! Thank you for all your prayers and advice it really has saved us and made me actually start being excited to be a mom!
Now I can't wait to hold my baby instead of dreading the bills!

Thursday, January 30, 2014

My Cute Little Baby! and the FAQs.

I decided to write this post for many reasons. The first being my last post involving pregnancy was not exactly uplifting and may have made people think twice before getting knocked up. Which maybe that's good. But I actually am really happy about being pregnant and being a Mom! She's going to be coming regardless of the insurance issues!

Here's some FAQs:

1. Who is the father?
Haha just kidding no one has asked me that. And it's Luke by the way. ;)

2. Is it a girl or a boy?
It is a GIRL! YAY

3. What's her name?
It's a secret! Not even our families know it! I will say if you are reading this it starts with an "R". And I will also tell you we aren't planning on giving her a middle name so she can be cool like her mom. ;)

4. How are you feeling?
I feel fat. I haven't exactly got the bump thing going for me yet. I'm in that awkward phase. I'm not puking anymore (YAY) but some foods and smells really gross me out!

5. When are you due?
I'm due July 8, 2014 and I hope she comes on the Forth of July because that would be an awesome birthday! Maybe I just love America and Pyrotechnics a little too much.

6. Was she planned? Were you trying?
I find this question fairly awkward depending on who is asking but no we were not "trying" but I always knew I wanted to be a mom so I guess she was "planned" just not on our timeline.

7. Where are you registered?
So far Babies R Us and Target if you're looking it up online my last name is spelled SwEnsEn (Swensen,I'm just emphasizing the "e"s) . I'm not picky though if you have something to give to my daughter I won't turn you down. ;)

8. Are you going to deliver naturally?
I'm planning to, call me crazy. I don't really care what people think about it. I think the only way I won't is if it's because of a medical complication.

That's all the FAQ's I can think of for now!

I'm really excited to be a mom but it terrifies me at the same time! I know we have some big hurdles ahead of us but I'm excited for what comes.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Don't Get Pregnant on Your Parents Insurance.

I never realized how Health Care reform is such a much needed thing until I was screwed over by it. But let me start from the beginning, if you know anything about me you know I am probably one of the worst accident prone people you have ever met. Trying to list every injury I have had is near impossible and looking at all the scars all over my body would tell you the same story. I have been on crutches more times than I can count from breaking my ankle, cutting my foot open, breaking toes, ACL surgery and spraining my ankle so badly so many times. You will also know that I get in the weirdest situations, breaking out in horrible hives all over my body, having to get a tonsillectomy, breaking fingers, having this random disorder called Vocal Chord Dysfunction that makes it hard for me to breathe when running or smoke in the air. Yeah if you haven't gotten the picture I'm kinda a mess.
Health care has always done me good and I have obviously heavily relied on it. I was thrilled when I could stay on my parents insurance longer because it was 1000 times better than getting on my colleges health plan especially when my husband and I decided to do online school. My husband got enrolled in health care through his work but we had me on my parents because we thought the coverage would be better.
November 2014 I found out the best news that I was 6 weeks pregnant! It was very unexpected and stressful but I had health insurance I had nothing to worry about. First of all ever thinking that you have nothing to worry about is the first mistake you can make. More often than not, at least in my life, something will always go wrong.
Week 7 something went wrong, I had the WORST morning sickness. Calling it "morning" sickness is also the worst understatement in my case. I had all day, all night sickness. I couldn't keep food down and I couldn't keep water down. I hadn't gone to see a doctor yet but I had an appointment with a midwife through a hospital the next week. I called her and she told me to go to the ER so I could get IVs and such. Going to the ER was the best choice I could have made, I hadn't drank or eaten anything in days and I felt so much better after I left. I even got to see my baby on ultrasound which made everything so much better.
At 9 weeks I had an ultrasound to see my baby again and it was awesome.
The Holidays came and went and I was still having morning sickness but it was better controlled by a wonderful pill called Zofran.
Literally the day after I entered into my second trimester I got the worst letter in the mail saying I was declined from every doctor visit, ultrasound or hospital visit I have had so far. I have to pay the entire thing which amounts to more than $5,000!!!!! This might not seem like a big deal but being only a 1/3 of the way done was not a good thing.

The reason you ask?

My parents insurance company isn't liable to cover me for any prenatal or maternity coverage. They only have to do this for the spouse of the policy holder. Now because of the ER bill and doctor visits we owe so much. How can having a child be this stressful already!?

We tried to get me added to Luke's insurance but they can't add if it's not an open enrollment period or if there hasn't been a life changing event. They can however add me if I get dropped from my parents insurance. Problem solved! Nope! My parents company refuses to drop me unless there is a letter saying I have insurance with someone else. It's the chicken and the egg all over again.

Try applying for Medicaid you say? I did. I don't qualify and they won't let me have it since I have insurance.

Try government assistance? I can't. Again I don't qualify.

Try to get secondary insurance? I'm working on it but I can't qualify for so much and it's very frustrating!

I'm hoping that low costs clinics will be my answer for prenatal care but I am clueless of what will happen when I actually go into labor. We can't afford it!

Working with the insurance companies seems nearly impossible and every time I try to explain that my ER bill was a complication due to pregnancy they still deny me.

I decided since I can't get insurance I was going to have to be a cash patient. What the doctors and the hospital quoted me made my jaw hit the floor. EVERY TIME I GO IN FOR A PRENATAL CHECK UP IT COSTS $2000!!!!!!!! That is until I hit the $10,000 mark! Then the hospital and delivery fees are estimated to be $17,000 IF everything goes NORMAL forget if I have any complications.

If I was just some lazy person who wasn't married and didn't have a source of income and had no insurance I could be helped. But because I'm none of those things I'm screwed.

A really insightful article to read is Parents’ insurance covers children up to age 26 — but not for pregnancy

Right now I am actively looking for a job so I can help support my family. I'm willing to work my hardest and if anyone hears of any openings please let me know! I really would like to afford having a baby in a hospital instead of at home. ;) Your prayers would be really appreciated at this time.

I didn't write this blog to totally whine. I mostly did it because I know there has to be other people who might be in my same boat or have gone through the same. The more information out there the better and making sure people double check if they are covered before having a baby is important.