Thursday, July 29, 2010

Andres' Birth Story

Andres just turned four months old and I feel it is time to tell his birth story. I have been wanting to write this for a while now but every time I started I began to cry and I started to feel the pain. It is time. So here it goes friends.

Somewhere around 21 weeks pregnant I went for a Genetic consultation.  It is advised that women over 35 do this. I was 38 at the time. I went not thinking anything was wrong with my baby, I just wanted the 2D sonogram. The genetic doctor asked if I wanted THIS test and THAT test and the other and I said "no, just the sonogram please".  I felt and still feel there is no point in doing all of those test. If something was wrong, I would worry the entire pregnancy.  So, I had the sonogram and everything looked great.  The doctor said I was having a healthy baby boy.  I went home happy.

The next time I went to see my OBGYN, the nurse asked if I wanted to have the quad screening test. This is a blood test that will test for a genetic disorder. Many women who experience an abnormal test result go on to deliver healthy babies. I had this test with my other two kids and so I did it with this one again feeling 100% sure that nothing could be wrong with my baby. Thinking this is just procedure.

Less than a week later I got a voice mail from the Nurse at my OB’s office that the Doctor needed to talk to me about my quad test. I called back but the Doctor was busy, it would be a few hours before she could call me back. NO, I thought, there is something wrong and I need to know now. I asked the nurse to please tell me what was going on. I could not wait for the Doctor to call me back, I was anxious. She told me my quad screening came back positive for Down syndrome. She kept talking but I heard nothing. I hung up the phone and called my husband at work scared. He said not to worry, everything would be OK. Later that day the Doctor called and said she had talked to the Doctor who did my 2D sonogram and that he had not seen anything wrong with the baby. She said I could go on to have an amniothentisis. My husband and I had already discussed this and without a hesitation had declined the test. We wanted this baby no matter what. We did not need any more tests. So with that, I put it out of my mind and did not think about it again. Not for ONE minute did I think about it again.  Everyone finds it hard to believe but I just though the blood test was a false positive.  So I went on to have the most WONDERFUL pregnancy.

Sunday, March 28th, two weeks before my due date, I just knew the baby was going to get here early.
You just know these things. I went into panic mode to get everything done that needed to get done. We cleaned the house and got everything ready for the baby to come home.

At 3:30am on Monday March 29th I started to experience labor pains.
Since this was baby number three, I knew the drill. The contractions came every 20 to 30 minutes. I was so excited. I had everything ready for my perfect little boy. I could hardly wait to meet him. I remember the joy I felt when I heard my two other children cry when they were born. Such joy! I was ready to meet him and hear him.

That morning I decided to just wait at home until the contractions came closer.  
Even though I was having a c-section, I did not want to be sent home once I got to the hospital. I wanted to make sure I went in and stayed in! My husband went to work (he only works 5 min away) so he could get things ready for his substitute teacher. 

I called my Mom that morning and we all went into exciting, “OH baby is coming mode!” I asked Mom to pick up a few things I needed before she came to pick up the kids and I packed for the kids to stay with Mom. A friend of mine in the neighborhood just happened to stop by and she stayed with me and the kids until Mom got there. We all had a great time getting through my contractions!

Once the contractions got a little closer I called my husband at work and said it was time to go! The baby was coming! We took our time getting to the hospital. No rush, things were progressing very slowly. As we were walking into the observation area I heard a woman screaming through a contraction. I thought, “Wow, I don’t feel THAT bad”. When we opened the doors the woman looks up at me in tears, it was a neighbor of mine! She also had gone into labor!

Quickly I got hooked up to the observation machines and within an hour they told me the baby was coming today! My c-section was scheduled for 6pm that evening. (There was a lady before me delivering triplets!).

As my husband and I waited for the c-section we texted all of our friends that the baby was arriving today! We laughed and goofed around and were anxious to meet our little man! We were just two happy parents with no worries.

The triples took longer so my sweet Andres came at 7:07pm. It was a sweet birth, same as the others. The doctor filled us in play-by-play and within a few minutes I heard his cry. SO SWEET!

When I saw Andres I thought “Wow, he is more beautiful than my other two children” I suspected nothing. He was beautiful.

We were taken into recovery were I got to nurse the baby and my family and children came in to see us. Excitement and joy was all we experienced.

I went to sleep happy that I had a healthy, beautiful baby boy.

The next day the nurse takes Andres away to the nursery for the doctor to check him. The normal check-up. My husband and I are happy, talking on the phone and texting everyone about Andres’ birth. A few hours later the Doctor came into our room, introduced herself and asked a question that I can’t remember but something to the effect “if there had been any problems during my pregnancy or if we knew if there was anything wrong with the baby or maybe it was did I see anything wrong with the baby”. I did not think anything of this question and said “No, everything was fine”. Then she said “We think your baby has a Chromosomal condition.” I just starred at her unsure of what she meant. “We think he has Trisomy 21”, continued the Doctor. “What is that?”, I asked. “Downs Syndrome”, she said. And my world stopped.
My eyes watered but I held back. In my mind I made the decision to not feel. I needed to remember this conversation. My husband was behind me so I could not see his face. I did not turn to look at him. I couldn’t let myself cry, I needed to talk to the Doctor. Nothing existed in that room except the Doctor and I. I kept eye contact with her. She kept talking saying that they had sent a test to a special lab but the result would not return for a week. A WEEK? I exhaled as I thought, “I can’t wait a WEEK to know”. I proceeded to ask her why she thought he had Down Syndrome. She told me the signs that she had seen and so after telling me everything she had seen my heart felt heavy and I then knew there was no point on waiting for the test. She knew and now I knew. The minute she left our room, I broke down crying in my husbands arms. I could hardly breath. It felt like a bad dream.

I cried every time I thought about it. My husband was so sweet and positive. But no matter what he said it did not make it better. I just wanted to hold my son and protect him. Those 4 days in the hospital and weeks after were very difficult for me. Finally, the test results came back and even though I did not need to see them I got them and as I read them all of the pain came back. My father was with me. He said nothing, just sat with me in silence.

As the days, weeks and months passed, I slowly started healing.  I saw my son grow healthy and acting just like any other baby. Andres is very healthy. The only physical problem he was born with was three small VSD's which the Cardiologist says will close within a year.

We started calling Andres our Angel. We felt we had been blessed with an Angel.

God trusted us with such a special person.
We knew our world had changed never to go back to the way it was.

Our children will also be changed.

When I look into these Angels eyes, I know he knows who I am.
I feel the connection between us. I feel his love.

I miss him when he sleeps.
I love him so much.

Our family is now complete.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Baby Activities

What is the baby due ALL day?


Sleeps A LOT
(Baby at 3 months)

Lets brother and sister read to him!

Hangs out in the play pen enjoying the scarf!
(safe from brother and sister!!!)

Works on rolling over!

Works hard at reaching for objects.

Lays and stares at strange things Mommy puts in front of him!

Hits those strange things Mommy keeps putting in front of him!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Another Great Resource: Primary AND Elementary Downloads

Here is another great resource.

Kyle, a former Montessori teacher has created TONS of materials for Primary AND Elementary. I love ALL of her downloads. This is an incredible price for ALL that you get. There is lots of materials to work at the elementary age level which is difficult to find.
Thank you Kyle!

Montessori For Learning

You will see my kids using these materials this year!

Friday, July 23, 2010

Loteria: Game Night!

We are ALWAYS together! But, we thought it would be fun to start some official family nights!!
We started family movie night, game night, and book night. The book night is where we all read together not just me to the kids or my husband to the kids.

Here is a picture of us playing Loteria, a Mexican Bingo game. This was SOOOO much fun. My husband is Mexican so he actually played this as a child. The deck is composed of a set of 54 different images, each one in a card. To start the game, the caller (cantor, or singer) randomly selects a card from the deck and announces it to the players by using a riddle or humorous patter instead of reading the card name. The riddle is the fun part. For example:

El paraguas
(The Umbrella)
Para el sol y para el agua. (it stops the son and it stops the water). You sing out "EL PARAGUAS"!!

47 La corona (The Crown)

El sombrero de los reyes. (The kings hat)
The following two have rhyming words so I will not translate.

48 La chalupa (The Canoe)

Rema que rema Lupita, sentada en su chalupita.

49 El pino (The Pine Tree)

Fresco y oloroso, en todo tiempo hermoso.
Here is a link to the riddles that go with the cards.

I found the game at a Fiesta Supermarket for a few dollars. The kids really enjoyed playing the game and most of all, they are really enjoying family night!!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010


I baptize thee in the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.

The Proud Godparents!

We just returned from a trip to Brownsville. We had a private Baptism for Andres arranged by the Godparents, my sister in-law Rosie and friend Father Franco. It was beautiful.
We are so blessed to have this wonderful priest in our life! I only wish we lived closer.

After the Baptism
we had a beautiful dinner at Father's house enjoying our time with the family! A special thank you to my sister in-law for doing all of the work!!

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Homeschooling Transition

I loved the post Homeschooling the First Year: Transitions from the Homeschool Classroom Group Blog. It had me laughing because Michelle could have been talking about me!!! Read it, you will love it! She is doing a series on homeschooling the first year.

The panic attacks are less these days!!!

Last year was a piece of cake. I was schooling half days and it was pre-k 3 and kinder. So, simple, so easy. Now, it is ELEMENTARY...dum, dum, dummmmm. 1st grade should be easy, RIGHT? Nope, not with Montessori! You've got Language Arts, Mathematics, Geometry, Fractions, Botany, Zoology, Geography, History, Physical Geology, Art, Music, and Religion. I am a teacher but I have had to teach maybe three subjects at a time NOT 12. They really should pay Elementary school teachers more money!!

Also, the days I play referee all day, I don't want to homeschool and the smooth days where everyone is cooperative I feel that I can do it!

When my daughter tells me "Mommy what can we learn? Let's go into the school room so you can teach me something" or I see my son writing, writing, writing, adding, adding, adding, I know I want to be part of this!!


This happened yesterday. Sweet Boy started using the moveable alphabet. He has been doing lots of writing for the past month, all on his own. Just wanting to write and copy stories from books.

He got the moveable alphabet and started to make words

and then decide to make a little story. This is a sentence written right to left and bottom up. "A cat had a hat." I then talked to him about left to right and top to bottom.

He fixed it and wrote another sentence. "His name was chad."

He then decided on his own to write the story on a piece of paper! I was very excited because Sweet Boy is 6 1/2 years old and up to this point had hardly any interest in the moveable alphabet and did not show a lot of interest in writing either.

And are you asking what is Bella doing when all of this is happening? She is doing exactly what he is doing! Sometimes, she will take his papers and trace his numbers and letters. She will ask me to help her make a word with the moveable alphabet and she will then trace the letters.

Both kids make pretend lists, after lists and check off what they have "accomplished"! Lists are part of my life so they have made them part of theirs!!!

So, as far as today, we are schooling at home!
Happy Sunday!