When I found out that I was pregnant for Stephen, Nicholas was just 3 months old!
I was still breastfeeding, & on birth control...I didn't think getting pregnant was possible. One day, I came downstairs to the smell of coffee brewing. Anyone who knows me knows that brewing coffee is one of my favorite smells in the world! On this particular morning, however, it made me nauseous! I took one look at Hank and said, "I think I'm pregnant!" He said the look on my face was one of disbelief and terror! Two pregnancy tests confirmed my assumption.
Again, God must have known what He was doing. Hank & I were elated on one hand, and terrified on the other. How could we possibly handle a newborn when Nick would only be a year old? God had His plan and we were just along for the ride!
I wanted to breastfeed Nick for at least 6 months, but my pregnant body couldn't handle it. And I was afraid I would get cholestasis of pregnancy again, which I had gotten while pregnant for Nick at 7 months. Cholestasis is a liver disorder, where the liver doesn't excrete the bile properly and it winds up under your skin, causing severe itching. It drove me nuts! I had to take ambien during the final 3 weeks of my pregnancy for Nick so I could get some rest. Fortunately, I didn't have it with Stephen's pregnancy.
Because Stephen was coming so soon after Nick (and in the same season), we pretty much had everything we needed, except for another crib. We had it all worked out, even the epidural. My window of opportunity for an epi came and went with Nick, and I delivered without it. Yes, it was painful, so I wanted an epi with Stephen.
All was going well until I heard that the anesthesiologist was called off to an emergency. Oh no! Not again! I prayed that it wouldn't take long, and it didn't. I received the epi, & thought I could feel Stephen's head as I sat at the edge of the bed. When they laid me back down on the bed, I began feeling very sleepy. I could see everyone getting blurry. I noticed Hank seemed extremely aggitated & a worried look came over his face. I found out later that the anesthesiologist inserted the epi too far up my spine, & it was slowing my heart rate. He had to give me ephedrine to speed it up again. Meanwhile, Stephen was in the birth canal...
When Stephen was finally born, he was blue and unresponsive. Terror struck my heart! Why couldn't I hear him cry? Why can't I hold him? It was excrutiating to wait minutes, which seemed like hours! I learned later that the nurse had to give Stephen CPR. Then I heard him cry! Thank God! What relief and joy! And who would have guessed that you could feel so in love with your second child! Such amazing love!
Stephen wasn't a happy baby. He was colicky. He would be up at 11pm until 4am, screaming and screaming and screaming! This went on for months! I thought I would go insane! But I didn't. I just loved him. He eventually grew out of it.
Stephen became a very sweet, lively boy. Enthusiastic, curious, playful & messy. Where Nick hated to get messy, Stephen loved it! By the time they were one & two, I started dressing them alike. People asked me all the time if they were twins...and still do!
Stephen & Nicholas grew up never knowing what it was like to be an only child. I have a feeling that is how it was intended to be. They are the best of friends now.
At six, Stephen is astute, very sensitive, funny, still playful, and very detail oriented. He likes to draw, ride his bike, swim, play soccer & laugh. He wants his way all the time & sulks when he doesn't get it. Don't we all! He loves school and making friends. He's a bit hesitant at learning something new. However, once he starts, he dives right in. He seldom forgets anything. He loves flowers, animals, & dinosaurs!
I love Stephen's laugh. He doesn't hold anything back when he laughs. He's soft spoken in school, but makes up for it when he gets home. He also can be a bit bossy when it comes to his brothers...like a "mother hen!"
I love my stephen! I know he will go far in life. Hopefully, he will return home to visit often...and we can have our own "cafe mocha moments."