Saturday, May 28, 2011

A New Experience: How Matthew Arrived

First baby: 3-month NICU stay
Mommy: 5-day hospital stay

Second baby: 1-week NICU stay
Mommy: 3-day hospital stay

Third baby: 2-day hospital stay ... in Mommy's room!
Mommy: 2-day hospital stay

We're headed in the right direction! : )

I just have to say how wonderful it was to have a cordless, take-out baby this time around!

It was, surprisingly, a thousand percent more restful having the baby in our room, rather than in the NICU down the hall. Yes, we were up a few times during the night for feedings of course, but I didn't have to mess with pumping and multiple daily visits to the NICU! That can definitely be a little draining while recovering from major surgery! : )

The c-section was planned this time, which was a really weird experience. Choosing your child's birth date is pretty interesting! At my last appointment, on Monday, my doctor explained that they hadn't even bothered to schedule my c-section since, from the way everything looked, I wasn't going to make in to 38 weeks. There was just no way. She was completely shocked that we made it that far! What a blessing!

So, on Monday the 23rd, we decided to go ahead and deliver the baby on Wednesday, the 25th, hoping to avoid me going into labor and requiring an emergency c-section versus a safer, planned one! My 35th week, I had four different bouts of contractions 2-4 minutes apart, but we were always able to slow them down. Once I got off of bedrest at 36-37 weeks, the contractions strangely seemed to stop ... despite a trip to the zoo, walks down our long muddy driveway, and just about every other non-bedrest activity. : )

Wednesday morning, we told Little Tait that later that day we were going to go "bye-bye" to see and hold the "baby in Mommy's tummy," who was going to come out! From that moment on, Little Tait was fixated on going "bye-bye." He didn't want to eat breakfast or do anything else; all he wanted to do was get dressed, get his shoes on, and go "bye-bye" to see the baby. :D

This was a much calmer experience than our previous two deliveries. We went in 2 hours before the surgery, perfectly prepared with our bags packed and everything arranged for us to be in the hospital for a few days. We signed paperwork and I got prepped for surgery. The c-section went well, even though I was pretty miserable through the last 15 minutes or so, and for the 20+ minutes in recovery. It was the weirdest thing: I got super antsy, felt like I desperately needed to stretch my legs (which were completely numb), and was honestly afraid I'd try to jump off of the operating table in spite of my best efforts to keep still. Thankfully, once I had a few ice chips, got to my room, and started nursing the baby, I felt a thousand percent better!

Tait's parents brought the boys and my sister (who's up visiting for a few weeks!) in to the hospital right before I went into surgery. The boys got to meet their new little brother within minutes of his birth, and got to see Mommy after surgery. It's always so comforting to get kisses and hugs from my little guys! : )

In the car on the way in to meet their little brother!

The next two days were spent snuggling Matthew and getting to know him (and dealing with the almost hourly interruptions seemingly inherent in any hospital stay). After just 48 hours, we were discharged! They very rarely discharge c-section moms in under 3-4 days, but for some reason they decided we were ready to go home! Maybe because my pain was under control so well with minimal pain medication (an Ibuprophen or two once or twice a day), and they knew we wanted to get home....

Whatever the reasoning was, it was good to get home!

We'd been living with Tait's family for the last 7 weeks while our driveway was undrivable due to the mud of breakup (spring thaw). Our driveway was finally passable by the time we were discharged however, and we were able to take baby Matthew back to his own little home!

It was so good to be home!

The Lord has been good to us! First, just after our marriage, He blessed us with an early baby and an extended NICU stay. Yes, it was a blessing! Those 3 months were a time of significant growth, and we were blessed beyond our expectations by the kindness and support of the body of Christ. Our experience inspired and motivated us to start the Little Tait Foundation for Preemie Aid, an organization founded to help families of preemies with their financial needs through Biblical means.

Next, just under 11 months later, the Lord blessed us again with a slightly early baby and short NICU stay. Miles has been such a blessing in our lives, and we are so thankful for him!

And then, the Lord blessed us again - this time with a full-term, healthy, take-home baby! What a blessing to have him with us from the beginning, and be able to take him home to his adoring big brothers so quickly!

(Just a note: For all of you who are wondering out there, we are huge proponents of natural-, midwife-, and home-births, and had planned to go that route from the beginning of our marriage. However, God had other plans, and it turns out the c-section route is what's required for us! Initially, it was disappointing (devastating even?), and very difficult to give up our dreams of natural childbirth. But God is good, and we have had to rest in His plan and welcome these little guys into the world in whatever manner is wisest!)

Thursday, May 26, 2011


Matthew Maury Zimmerman
Born May 25, 2011 @ 4:19pm
Weighing 6 pounds 9 ounces
Measuring 18 inches long
37 weeks and 5 days

Chubby cheeks and a double chin!

May 23, 2 days before he was born
37 weeks and 3 days along!

At the hospital a few hours before he was born by scheduled C-section
(due to a medical history I won't go into right now :D)

A few minutes before going into surgery!

A few minutes old!

Holding him for the first time,
while still on the operating table!

Meet the Brothers

First loving kisses

New big brother Miles (20 months) holding his baby!

He loves giving him kisses. : )

Sitting on the windowsill in Mommy's hospital room,
eating crackers and watching the helicopters take off and land outside the window. : )

A tiny baby burrito <3

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Baby Endurance Update: A Time to Mourn

I just received this heartbreaking e-mail from Endurance's church a few minutes ago:
Endurance passed away this morning. His heart stopped and the doctors were not able to get it started again after half an hour of trying.
Thank you all for your many hours of prayers and fasting, for your visits and calls and e-mails and gifts, and countless other expressions of love and encouragement to the Holstons. I know you will continue to show your love to them in the days ahead.
Please continue to pray for this dear family. We will let you know more details as we get them.
May the God of all comfort comfort us all as we grieve with the Holstons.

Our hearts go out to this family; we have come to love them from a distance as we talk with them and observe their unswerving faith in God and desire to glorify Him through the ups and downs.

Let us all keep the Holston family in our prayers as we mourn with them the loss of their precious son.

Ecclesiastes 3:4 - A time to weep , and a time to laugh; a time to mourn , and a time to dance....

Endurance and his mother, a few months ago

Endurance's blog: Run with Endurance
Endurance's facebook page:

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Urgent Prayer Request for Endurance Holston

Our family has been administrating a facebook page for a dear family whose 8-month-old son, Endurance, has been in the hospital (several hospitals, in fact) since birth with severe heart issues. For some background, visit their blog, "Run With Endurance." (This post gives some good background on his birth and heart difficulties.)

Endurance is currently in his long-awaited 8-hour surgery on his heart. Just finding a surgeon who would perform the surgery for him was a huge answer to prayer, and involved a cross-country hospital move for Endurance and his family.

The latest update from Mike & Heather (Endurance's parents) is as follows, and includes an urgent prayer request:
We now ask for prayer for this.....Dr. Galantowicz will take Endurance off of his heart/lung bypass machine when he's completely finished. This will tell the doctor if Endurance's heart will tolerate being on its own. If his heart doesn't accept being off of the machine (Seattle told us he'd never survive off of this), Dr. Galantowicz will put him back on for one hour. If he can't come off, Endurance will basically pass away there. He's in God's hands. May it please Him to have Endurance survive on his own.
Please be praying for Endurance as he comes out of surgery in the next little while. Follow his facebook page for regular updates, and visit his blog for more details!

Endurance's family has consistently glorified and trusted in the Lord through all of the ups and downs since Endurance's birth. Please pray for strength for them at this time!

Endurance with one of his 6 older siblings

Friday, May 20, 2011


For the first time in our three pregnancies, as of today (Friday), we've made it to the point the doctors consider to be full-term:
37 weeks!!!

Praise the Lord!

After 6 weeks on bedrest and a few bouts with regular close contractions, we've made it! Talk about excitement! It's so wonderful to head into labor with the reasonable confidence that, for the first time, our little guy won't be needing a NICU stay!

I'm enjoying the ability to actually "nest" this time around; our first pregnancy, Little Tait came early enough that I wasn't even thinking about nesting yet. With Miles, I was on bedrest and wasn't allowed to do any of those essential nesting activities like cleaning and laundry and such.

We've been staying with Tait's family for the past 6 weeks while I've been on bedrest, and while our driveway was undrivable, but we're hoping to be able to move back home within the next week - maybe before the baby comes! (We tested our driveway out yesterday and ... well, it wasn't quite ready. Two stuck trucks, some deep ruts, a tow strap, and lots of mud later ... yes, it definitely wasn't ready. :D)

My younger sister, Shannon, is up visiting from down South, and we've enjoyed showing her our house for the first time! We're working on cleaning it in preparation for the baby's arrival and our move back home (this involves a 1/2-mile walk down our muddy driveway just to reach our cozy little home)!

I'll have to say that I'm finally ready to have this little guy. It's not because I'm tired of being pregnant; it's just that we've been expecting him to arrive any day for the last 3+ weeks, and I'm just ready to meet him. : ) I'm expecting our next blog post to be an exciting announcement ... the exciting announcement!

With the gorgeous flowers my hubby gave me for Mother's Day - about 35 1/2 weeks along!

Taken about a week ago, at 36 weeks along!