This season has been a whirlwind with so many new adventures and activities… Jake’s birthday flew by and we haven’t even had a free day to plan a party! On his birthday which was September 25th, we ate pancakes and sang happy birthday and then we made his favorite supper, ate too much chocolate cake, and watched him burst with excitement when he opened his gift… a new lego build. After that we looked through old photos of him throughout his short 8 years and then mama rocked him off to sleep while snuggling his soft cheeks ever so tightly.
It doesn’t seem possible that he’s this big already… but if I’ve learned anything so far about having children, it’s to embrace every single season and dance right along with it. There’s so much to love in each new phase of life and it really never gets old watching our children grow into the next thing in store for them.
I mentioned in the last small talk I did about Finn’s birth story that I committed to dedicating a post to each of my children’s birth story’s in honor of their special day this year. So here we are ready to tackle Big Jake’s… I call him that because if you haven’t ever heard before, my son weighed in at a whopping 11 lbs 7 ounces! From the beginning, his name was fitting.
We found out we were expecting Jake during my second year of teaching when Dakota was just turning one. It was right after Christmas break when I noticed those funny feelings… dizzy spells, the need to eat with urgency, no period -the typical pregnancy symptoms. I recognized them right away since I had now done this once before. I didn’t even feel the need to take a test, but of course just to make it all more real and exciting I did! I was so excited to tell Jared because we had just experienced our first year with Dakota and we we’re still in the baby bubble with such joy and love. I knew he would be super excited to add another bouncing baby and of course add the anticipation of him possibly getting his BOY! I’ll never forget his smile. He was a tiny shocked, but at the same time so happy. He loves children and although he always gets a bit nervous when we discover we’re having one, he welcomes it as a great honor and blessing.
We quite quickly decided that I’d put my notice in at the school and become a stay at home mom. With two under two it was going to be a handful and also not exactly worth rushing around to work only to pay for the childcare. I finished out the spring semester and was able to relax through the summer in preparation for the delivery. It was nice timing because my grandmother was becoming very sick with cancer and so it also aloud me to be close to her during her last days. Dakota, “Jake”, and I were also able to keep my grandpa company through his grief when she passed away. We were a little gang Papa, Dakota, Me and the baby bump… Jared was working long hours during that stage of our life and so papa became our main man!
He was with us most always although I don’t remember him going to the gender ultrasound. I do remember Jared being present however… I remember him shooting up out of his chair and punching his fist into the air yelling as if he’d just won the super bowl as he high fived the doctor and hugged me and Kody. He was having a boy : )
He couldn’t have been more happy. I had never cared about the children’s gender or even longed to know what we we’re expecting but he had something inside of him screaming for a boy. He says it’s just as simple as wanting to pass down a name… I guess I never understood until that day. Now, I must admit it is a proud moment when you can hand a daddy his little boy. There’s something very special about that I can’t put into words and I know to never take for granted.
After that it was time to give this boy a first name… Papa and Jared and my dad of course had plenty of ideas to choose from 😉 They wanted a strong, old fashioned name that represented a boy well. It didn’t really matter what I wanted, he was destined to be Jake. A classic name for a boy with lot of expectations to live up to. I had secretly always loved the name Jake too, but I wanted to add a touch of something unique and a little outlaw, so we made his middle name Wyatt. Jared has always been big into researching his ancestory and many men in his heritage went by their first and middle initials so this was important to us when we named him as well. We wanted his name to be able to be expressed through two letters as a nod to the lineage. So J.W. O’Brien it was! It wasn’t until he was born that we realized just how perfect a name we’d picked.
Jake Wyatt O’Brien was due to deliver on Jared’s dad’s birthday which was also an extra special thing, but since I was trying to let his birth come naturally we didn’t find ourselves in labor until 5 days later. I was in the shower getting ready for bed when I felt some tension and tightness that I thought might have been the beginning signs of contractions. We lived an hour away from the hospital and I had given birth to Dakota, my first, in three hours so we felt like we should load up and head to the hospital. We we’re experienced, but not that experienced. We didn’t want to find ourselves on the side of the highway having a baby. Jared and my papa were both already prepared for that if need be though as they thought they might have to deliver a baby apparently! My papa printed some pages from a google search he’d done!!
Jared and I drove down the road to tell papa and pick up my mom and dad and off we went! I remember it being late at night and my whole family carpooling down to the hospital. I remember laying in my bed getting hooked up to all the moniters and my papa sitting over in the chair waving his little google article in the air at me and teasing about how glad he was we made it ; P We did make it, but we didn’t know what was up ahead.
It started really smoothly. It was nighttime and all was dark and calm in the room. I had been practicing my breathing and muscle relaxation from the Bradley Method (mentioned in this earlier post.) Since having a bit more knowledge of what to expect and do this time around, I felt like it was going very good and I was maintaining my composer much better through the laboring than I had with Dakota. I was extremely focused and relaxed.
And then came the 8ish centimeter…. Haha! That’s always the tough spot, but this time it was mega tough. I was already starting to bear down and feel tons of pressure as if I were at a 10. I couldn’t find comfort even in the contraction breaks… It was as if a watermelon was wedged between my pelvis bones. Low and behold it was, we just didn’t realize how large he was yet. I had gained the same amount of weight with this pregnancy as I did the first and my doctor had monitored and measured the baby to actually be smaller than Dakota. He had anticipated this labor and delivery to run well, even better than my first. Unfortunately that wasn’t the case. I started vomiting suddenly without notice which was also a new thing. I kept telling the nurses I needed to push and they were trying to check me which was horrifying during those moments because they said I wasn’t dialating but I sure felt that baby trying to come down.
It felt like time was standing still yet there was a major urgency. I was heavily distraught and feeling lots of pain and confusion. I was beginning to loose control and I could feel the crazy woman giving birth personality taking over. I could see it in Jared and my mom too. They were trying to comfort me and remain calm, but they were getting worried quickly too. They starting getting serious and demanding answers from the nurses. The nurses were wonderful and were also trying their best to help me. Finally after what seemed like 2 hours, but was only about 30 minutes I transitioned to a 10. This was with a lot of the nursing staffs help… pushing and pulling the baby down. Not fun.
Once we were there I started pushing and it took about 10 minutes before his head came out. Normally that’s such a great part and it makes you have the energy to push once more and get the baby out, but when I pushed again only his shoulders came through. The doctor then had me keep pushing and out came his chest. Still stuck there, I pushed more and then his hips. After that more pushing to get his chunky legs through. Finally, we had our boy. Our insanely BIG boy. Jared and mom were so different this time around. They were on pins and needles making sure me and Jake were okay. The doctor was in shock too. He kept apologizing to me and telling me how good I did. He felt so bad for not knowing the baby’s size. I felt so amazing once he was out. I want to remember being instantly fine and I will say it didn’t take me long (like a few minutes) to be okay which I credit to natural child birth, but in those first seconds I was worn, I was weary, I didn’t know what just happened and if I or the baby were going to be okay from it. I kept thinking to myself, I couldn’t have done that alone. I wander often if I would have been delivering him in a different time and place if I would have survived or if he would have. It was definitely a humbling experience to deliver him.
Once we all gained our composure a bit from such a tramatic birth we celebrated! The whole room was on a high! The staff was carrying on about his size and everyone was making guesses about his weight. When they announced it though we were all amazed. How on earth did he weigh that much? The doctor said this was a new record for him personally and the for the hospital to deliver a baby of this size naturally! Jared was in absolute coma still! He was just videoing and smiling ear to ear . Not only did he have his boy, but a little manly man at that : ) We held him in our arms and said hello to Big Jake.
When baby’s are first born they’re bodies are swollen from the experience and change so he also looked even bigger than he was! The funniest part was when the nurses came in to conduct his circumcision and they went through the process of how it was going to be done with us so we’d understand everything. When they finished and brought Jake back into the room they were laughing and told us how they couldn’t do the procedure the traditional way because he was too big! The supplies they typically used were too small to fit around him. We couldn’t help but chuckle a little at that. It’s a story I’m sure he’ll enjoy telling when he grows up one day ;P
Once he was cleaned up and I got recovered a bit, we walked down to the nursery window to view him. We laughed so hard to see him next to all those other tiny babies. I smiled looking at my baby and I knew there was something very special about him. The doctor, surprised to see me walking around in the hallway stood beside me smiling too. There was something special about a lot of things that day.
Every since then he has been a bundle of joy for us! Oh yeah, and a little tough sometimes too ; ) It wouldn’t be right if he wasn’t- Hehe! Jake lives up to all the expectations we ever had dreamed of in a boy. We love him so dearly and we are so proud of him.
Here’s a little small talk about things he’s been saying and doing lately that I want to cherish…
- He loves reading the “I Survived” series of books
- He loves to run and runs everywhere! This summer he ran 3 miles a day at 10 minutes a mile! He is a great runner and we are going to get him involved in some kid races soon
- He has fallen in love with baseball. He practices with Jared almost every night and they watch highlight reels and look through old baseball cards. He’s soaking up every ounce that Jared delivers. They’re obsessed!
- He’s really coming into his boyhood. He loves being with Jared and he’s a sponge around him
- He loved listening to me read aloud the Jocko Willink navy seal kids books- Way of the Warrior Kid and the sequel
- He loves his brother. Two peas in pod. The world needs them both and together is better : )
- He started school again and loves his teacher, Ms. Warford
- He likes helping Finn with his schoolwork
- He’s a morning person and a night person. The energy is immense!
- He loves waffles and pancakes, but gets mad when I buy the log cabin syrup instead of aunt jemima’s
- He could eat a mountain of chocolate if I let him and that hasn’t changed throughout the years
- He loves my dad- they go together like peas and carrots
- He likes late nights in the rocking chair with mommy- a calm and deep happiness comes over him in my arms
- He often has very little self control when he feels something’s not fair. He can’t let it go. If he’s this upset the absolute only thing we can ever do to help him is pray over him.
- He loves building things and designing things- which I’m a little excited about : )
- He loved creating his own business for the fair this year and making a profit
- He saves his money… never spends it all- usually gives any extra he has to his siblings to go towards their purchases!!
I’m sure there are many things I’m forgetting to note. So much to remember.
Living for the Most