Charlotte's Birth Story

Things to know before reading:

1. Charlotte was breech
2. I had a version preformed to flip her
3. She flipped back

When I last left off, I was waiting on our planned c-section. I had a list of things to do and by the Thursday before her Saturday arrival, nearly everything was finished. All of our school work for the semester was complete and all of the laundry in my house was washed, folded, and put away. The only major family thing I had left to do was packing. I never got around to packing.

Thursday afternoon I noticed I was having about 4 contractions an hour. I paid no attention to these because in my previous pregnancies, I had weeks and weeks of contractions prior to actual labor. This pregnancy, I had NO "practice" contractions. I just assumed it was because she was breech and so there was nothing to get ready for. My cervix was also closed at every appointment in the last weeks which is also not normal for me. I normally am between 3-4 cm before I go into labor. So back to the few contractions, I just assumed these where the ones I had been without for the last 6 weeks.

I started cooking dinner on Thursday night and got about halfway through cooking when I felt the first painful and long contraction. It was at 5:15. From that point on, they were coming every 2-3 mins without stopping and lasting over a minute. They went from 0-60 immediately. I couldn't finish making dinner so I really have no idea what the kids ate that night. Rick walked in the door at 6 and I asked him to take Kate to dance and take all of the other kids with him. He asked if it was "time" and I said, "No, I just need to try and make them stop." I had 2 times with Luke where I had similar contractions prior to labor that lasted 2 hours and then stopped. I was assuming that's what was going on here. So from 5:15-9:15, I walked around my house, laid down in my bed, took 2 baths, but nothing was stopping them. It was the same pattern, 2-3 mins apart and lasting from 1-2 mins. I wasn't getting any relief or downtime in between contractions. At some point during this 4 hour period, Rick picked Kate up from dance, printed and folded the bulletins for Sunday, and took them to the church.

I told myself if they were still going at 9:15 that I would call my doctor. My doctor told me to come on in and get checked out and that they would probably keep me overnight to monitor me and decide what to do early Friday morning. I still wasn't sure if I was in labor or not and really didn't want to go and then get sent home so I was relieved that they were going to keep me and that Charlotte would probably be born the next day when my doctor was on call. (He delivered all 7 of our other kids.)

I texted my sister to come stay with the kids and started packing my bags. I always wondered why people packed their hospital bags early. I thought you would have plenty of time in between contractions to get what you needed. Haha! I ended up at the hospital with 6 shirts and 1 pair of shorts. :) I guess I really was in pain.

The ride to the hospital was horrible. Every bump magnified the pain. The contractions didn't slow down and that was when I finally realized that I was actually in labor. It took us about 45 minutes to get to the hospital. I think we arrived around 11:00pm and I was taken to triage to get things checked out. I had never actually been to triage so that was something new. They monitored me for an hour and I had to lay on my back that entire time. That was horrible. I'm pretty sure you are not meant to lay on your back without pain relief during labor. :) They also did an ultrasound to check her position and she was in fact, still breech.

Around 12:20am, Friday morning,  the doctor on call came in said it was time for Charlotte to be born and that we couldn't wait any longer. My contractions were not stopping and my cervix was opening.  From that point on, everything moved quickly and slowly at the same time. The anesthesiologist came in and said I would be getting a spinal because they couldn't wait for an epidural to work. He told me all of the side effects but I'm not really sure what he said. I had to sign about 20 pages of release forms and they I was wheeled off to the operating room while Rick waited in triage to be called back.

I remember the operating room being very, very bright and there were a lot of people in there - I think 10. I'm used to the quiet dark delivery rooms with just one nurse and the doctor so this was a change. I moved from the triage bed to the operating table and was given my spinal. I do remember the anesthesiologist saying that if the spinal didn't take for some reason that they would immediately knock me out and that when I would wake up I'd have a baby. I was hoping that didn't happen. He poked my arm with some kind of sharp object and then would poke on my stomach to make sure I didn't feel anything. The first 2 times he did it I felt it but by the third time, I couldn't feel anything. At that point Rick was let in the room and they began. They had been prepping and draping me during this time as well. Charlotte was born at 12:50 am. She was born toward the beginning of the surgery and it seemed that the bulk of the time was spent getting stitched back together.

She was immediately shown to me over my drape and then taken to get cleaned up a bit. About 2 minutes later she was brought over to me and placed on my chest and I held her for about 5 mins. She was then taken away (in the same room again) to be weighed, etc and Rick went with her. She was then brought back to me all bundled me for a few kisses and then Rick was able to carry her to the recovery room to wait for me. I was in the recovery room for 2 hours and during that time my parents came up to see her. I was able to nurse her which was great. I was also given a pump for my pain medication. The nurse sacred me because she told me to push the button every 8 mins and to stay on top of the pain. She warned me not to fall asleep because if I did and then woke up an hour later, I would not be able to handle the amount of pain I would be in. It was 2:00 in the morning and I was drugged up on morphine and she was telling me not to fall asleep! I guess it worked because I didn't sleep until later that morning, after the pump was turned off. :)

I was in love with her from the moment I saw her. My main concern with having a c-section, prior to having it, was that I would somehow feel like I missed out on the birthing process. I never felt that way. I carried her for 9 months and she arrived in the safest way possible for both of us. It was perfect. The only thing I was sad about was that my doctor missed delivering her by 5 hours. However, that was the Lord's will too. He was on call all weekend so he checked on me everyday while I was in the hospital. C-section recovery is painful. That's all I want to say about that. I just want to remember the hours and minutes before, during, and after her birth. I am thankful for every moment of it.


Charlotte's Pictures From the First Few Days

Here are a few pictures from Charlotte's first week. I'm planning to write up the story of her birth in the next few days so I will not forget anything.

This was about 30 mins before Charlotte was born. Rick was most proud that this was his 2nd "selfie." I was in severe pain at this point. They were monitoring Charlotte and I was waiting on the anesthesiologist to come and talk to me. My contractions were 2 minutes apart with almost no downtime in between. 

Right after Charlotte was born. She was 7 lbs and 15 oz which puts her as the 4th smallest baby. 

Kate and Claire are completely in love with her. 

First picture with her 5 big brothers. Can you even imagine? She is going to be one loved and protected little girl. They all ask to hold her multiple times a day (well, not Luke.) The boys only hold her for about 30 seconds and then they are off to something else.  :)  

 First picture of all 8 children. I cannot believe all of these sweet little ones are ours. 

Kate - 10, Claire - 9, Henry - 7, Jack - 5, Sims - 4, Miles - 2, Luke - 1, Charlotte - 1 week


Charlotte Emma-Faith is here!!!!

Charlotte arrived quite unexpectedly and very early on Friday morning!!! Here are her stats and a couple of pictures and I will post her birth story once I get settled in at home. The boys are in Gadsden and have not met her yet. I'm posting these pictures from my phone so I hope it works!

Charlotte Emma-Faith
7lbs 15 oz
20 1/4 inches
12:50 am

It looks like my pictures are not showing up. Will try them again later. 


Well, she flipped back.

I just returned home from seeing the doctor and sweet baby girl has flipped again. I guess she just likes being breech. So, we have decided it's best to have a csection. There were many factors I discussed with my doctor before making this decision. He delivered every single one of our kids and I'm so glad it appears that he will also be taking care of Miss Charlotte. We have our date and, Lord willing, she will be here end of next week. Hopefully, the next post will have a picture of our new little one!


It worked!!

The version was successful and Charlotte is now in the correct position. I checked into Labor and Delivery  at 6 and was discharged around 8:30. It was painful but quick. Now I feel like we are in countdown mode. Lord willing, we will be meeting Charlotte face to face in just a couple of weeks!!


Breech baby, breech baby

I am nearly 37 weeks now and baby Charlotte is still breech. She has been for as long as I can tell. I feel kicks in totally different places than I normally do and I'm not experiencing some of the late term pains that the others have given me. I think she just likes being up close to my heart. :) I will be admitted to Labor and Delivery early Wednesday morning and my doctors will attempt to manually turn her. Claire was also breech and I had the same procedure preformed with her. Since Charlotte and Claire have the same initials, I'm just assuming she's trying to be like her big sister.

Honestly, the procedure hurts - a lot. Two men stand on either side of you and basically pick the baby up and push to get her in the right position. It hurts - a lot - did I mention that? However, it is fairly quick and they can immediately tell if it is going to work. Either way, we will both be monitored during and after for signs of stress. If need be, an emergency Csection will be done but my doctor has never had to do that. If successful, we will then wait a few more weeks until she is ready to be born. If unsuccessful, we will schedule a Csection for 39 weeks. 

It might be a quick update but I will post again on Wednesday as to whether or not she turned for us. 


First Day of School

We started our 2015-2016 school year today! I know July 13th is early but I wanted our first semester to be completed by Charlotte Emma's due date. We finished last school year mid-May so we have had a 2 month summer break.

I have a regular Elementary School this year. :)
Kate-5th, Claire - 4th, Henry - 2nd, Jack - K, and Sims - K4

And every school needs a mascot or two. Here are ours:
Miles - 2, Luke - 8 months
I'm sure they will provide plenty of comic relief to our days.

Today was probably the best first day we've had. Everyone was excited, worked hard, and there was still plenty of time to play all afternoon.


21 weeks

I am 21 weeks now and amazed at how fast time is progressing. I still cannot believe we are having a GIRL!!! We gave away almost all of our girl clothes and one of our cribs when we found out Luke was a boy so I am currently going through what we do have to see what we actually need. I smocked several dresses for the girls when they were little (that was when I had more time) and thankfully kept all of those. I also have some gowns/dresses that Kate, Claire and I all wore as babies so it's fun to pull them out and know that little Charlotte Emma will be wearing them soon. My sister, Sarah, and another friend have already bought her a few sleepers and outfits which was so kind.

One thing I want to remember is how the Lord was extra gracious to me with my morning sickness. I always feel terrible for 6 weeks with every pregnancy and it normally lasts all day. This time I did feel sick everyday, but it was always after 2:00 in the afternoon. I was able to get our school work completed, some housework, and start dinner before it set in. This was a tremendous blessing.

Kate and Claire are beside themselves with excitement about a baby sister. For as long as Claire has been able to talk, she has been asking for one. She and Charlotte Emma share the same initials and that was partly to honor Claire. They ask me everyday about who will be able to hold her first - I'm not sure how we will decide that.

Baby girl is due November 19th and Luke's first birthday is October 21st. Our babies have never walked before their first birthday so we will most likely have 2 non-walkers for a few weeks. :)

We are starting school on Monday, July 13th, to accommodate our newest little one (or really me.) This will allow us to complete the 1st semester of school by mid-November, when Charlotte Emma is due. It will be good to get back into our routine and I know we will all be glad in November when we will break for the remainder of the year.


Charlotte Emma

You can't spell Hutchinson without the final "n"! Our little "n" is expected to arrive in November and - it's a GIRL!!! We are so very thankful for the Lord's abundant blessings. 


Alexa echoes through our home (Thanks Amazon)

When Amazon announced the Echo, I immediately requested access to purchase one. I read some skeptical blog posts about it, but had high hopes. We received ours back in December and since then it has become increasingly useful.

I will not list out everything we love about "Alexa", but I wanted to highlight one thing we do that has proven helpful. We have one iPad to share among the entire family and that can be problematic with 7 children. My wife came up with the idea of having the kids set a 20 minute timer on Alexa each time they begin using the ipad. It is simple and has changed our lives. The constant questions, "Mommy, can I have the ipad now," stopped immediately. And the amount of time on the iPad for each child was reduced without parental intervention.

Children are happier when they know their boundaries. This makes parents happier too. Alexa was just the tool we needed to reduce the amount of time kids were spending on the ipad and to ensure everyone has a turn.

The kids have also had their eyes opened to how easy it is to stay on the ipad for a really long time without noticing. It's a win all across the board. Thanks to Amazon and "Alexa". And thanks to my wife for the ingenious idea.



I really do want to try and post more frequently. This is meant to be a place of memories. Hopefully, I will write an update post soon. For now, I wanted to make sure I recorded the sweet names that Miles (2) calls everyone. He is the first child to have "nicknames" for everyone. I'm sure he'll start calling everyone by their real names sooner or later and I just don't want to forget this time.

Kate - TT
Claire - CC
Henry - Ree-Ree
Jack - Yack
Sims - Lolly for (Ollie)
Miles - Me
Luke - Luca

And here he is, sneaking cheese. :)


Pictures from the Park - November 2014

We went to the park back in November to enjoy the nice weather and because Rick took the day off of work. This is one of my new favorite pictures of the kids. Little Luke (exactly 1 month old at the time) was in his little car seat. Maybe he can climb on the slide with everyone this summer. :)

Claire - 8, Miles - 22 months, Kate - 9, Sims - 3

Kate and Miles

Jack - 4

Sims, Jack, Henry - 6, Miles, Kate, Luke - 4 weeks, Claire

Claire and Kate

Christmas 2014 Pictures

Kate - 10, Claire - 8, Henry - 7, Jack - 5, Sims - 3, Miles - almost 2, Luke - 2 months
I couldn't figure out how to turn the self timer on so we didn't get a family picture - maybe next year.



Why we have 7 children

The 2015 Daxko kick-off is complete and the size of my family was an unplanned recurring humorous theme this year. I expect many people left last Friday evening with a few unanswered questions. Questions only I can answer.

Seven.  That's how many kids I actually have.  Comparing us to the Duggars is an insult to Michelle!

Yes. I know "how it happens"

No.  I am not "Roman Catholic"

Yes. I do have cable.  It doesn't help.

No.  I have no idea how we will send them to college…but neither do you.

Yes. We know about and have used birth control.

Why do my wife and I have so many children?  The Lord has given them to us.  He has entrusted them to us.  It is our great joy to teach them about Him.  We believe the purpose of our lives is to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever.  No, bearing and raising children is not the only way to honor and glorify God, but it is a rewarding work.  It is edifying.  It is sanctifying.  It brings me joy.  There are so many things people could laugh at me about so I'm glad they choose this.

Consider this. Everything we do on this earth will pass away. Very few people in history "make an impact" or are remembered for very long.  Human souls are eternal.  We have been given 7 eternal souls to care for and to teach about the Lord.  It is not always easy.  It often reveals my sin, but  I do this work with the hope that they will one day stand eternally before the Lord with me in peace.

All the work I put into their lives has eternal value.  This is HUGE!  Most people miss this point.  All the poopy diapers, long nights, sickness and general frustrations of parenting are not offset only by the happy moments captured on instagram.  One great joy of parenting is the hope that the child you brought into this world will one day pass through death to an eternity with their creator in perfection and joy. Children are truly a blessing from the Lord!

Some may still think I am crazy.  I am ok with that.  Remember this.  I have a really good chance of not ending up in a nursing home!