Tuesday, August 31, 2010

back to school

not to brag or anything, but once upon a time, i used to be pretty good at school. back in the day i was a straight-a student, in all the advanced classes, and a general nerd. but that was waaay back in the day. that was before my arch nemesis reared its ugly head - homework. teach me something in class and test me on it next week and i'll do fine. but tell me to go home and not play sports or video games and instead do school work and we have a problem. school-work. home-fun. not home-work.
when homework was introduced into my life, coupled with the emotional roller coaster that is puberty, my success at school began its downfall. i went from a gifted young child to a failing goof ball. i would still test well for the most part, but my grades as a whole suffered. i took a state assessment test in high school one day and just about aced it. my high school counselor called me into his office. in one hand he had my test scores. in the other my failing grades. he was baffled as to why the two were so different. i suppose that is me in a nutshell - an average amount of knowledge but absolutely ignorant when it comes to applying said knowledge. i would not have even graduated high school had it not been for a church youth leader, my football coaches, and of course, my parents, who never gave up on me, even though i had.
it took a two year church mission for me to finally appreciate the blessings of knowledge. i returned home unsure of what to do next, but determined to seek higher education. my sights on schools weren't set too high because i knew i would still be hindered by my high school transcript. i finally enrolled at a small local college, angelo state university. i was determined that i would do my homework, study, and try my hardest. a year and a half later, i transferred up to brigham young university, proudly boasting a 4.0 gpa. unfortunately that 4.0 didn't last long.
byu started well enough. i was so excited to be going to such a prestigious university. but to pay for school, and rent, and food, and gas, and insurance, and all those other luxieries of life, i had to get a job. so i began working nights. i thought it was a perfect situation because i would be able to do all of my homework while at work. it was beautiful at first, but soon life set in. a full-time school schedule, a full-time job, a social life full of way too much drama, and of course, sports, left very little time for sleep. so classes began to be skipped.
i still passed my classes, but my gpa took a hit. the skippings only occurred more often the next semester, and even more the semester after that. finally, mid semester, i gave up on school all together. not wise, i know, but that's kind of the theme of this blog. i always figured i'd go back, as soon as i could get my life simplified. well three years later and life doesn't seem any simpler, but i am finally going back to school.
thanks in large part to my wonderful wife (you can do anything when you know someone believes in you), i reapplied at byu. i thought that there was no way that they would take me back, but for some strange reason they did. the plan this time around is to take school a bit slower. i'm still working full-time, and now i have a wife and newborn baby to keep me busy, and of course, i still have my sports (though much less now that i'm an old man), so i'll only be taking a couple evening classes this time around. sure, i won't be done with school anytime real soon, but i'm at least finally moving in the right direction again.
and don't you dare diss the superman lunch box. :)

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

3 Weeks Already!

Hopefully I can get this done before I have to change the title to my blog yet again. It's been a busy few weeks. :)So let me tell you a little bit about our little Eclaire, besides the fact that she's already 3 weeks and a couple days old! First of all, I was starting to suspect Emily was narcoleptic. She sleeps ALL the time. She was even sleeping 5 hour stretches during the night sometimes. At first I had to wake her up to feed her every 3 hours until the doctor said I could just let her sleep (so wonderful!). I knew newborns slept a lot, but this was a lot more than I thought. She is starting to be more awake now though. :)
Emily likes to be held and cuddled. For the most part, we both love it. I love holding her and having her fall asleep right by me or in my arms. I just hope she doesn't get too used to it and won't sleep unless we're holding her! :)
So the first two weeks were spent recovering from labor and trying to figure out breastfeeding (not the easiest thing!!). We were starting to adjust and we were doing well. We went to Emily's two week appointment, where they weighed her at 7 pounds 5.5 ounces. She had gained back all her birth weight plus a little, yay! They told us she was doing really well and we went home feeling pretty good. Right after that appointment though, Emily developed her first cold. It was sad hearing her all stuffed up. :( She started spitting up a lot. We weren't too concerned though, she was still eating and sleeping and seemed happy and I thought getting better. We spent her 3 week birthday though in the hospital. The night before she started spitting up and it turned into throwing up. She kept this up for like an hour and it really started to scare us. At first it was just the milk in her tummy, but the vomit soon became yellower and yellower as the night went on. We took her to the doctor's office that night and while we were there she was still vomiting, this time with a little blood in it. Since it was so late, they sent us to the hospital so they could monitor her through the night. They took a few tests and hooked her up to an IV and we waited there with her through the night. She did really well at the hospital, she stopped throwing up and she got fluids in her. She slept most of the night and in the morning we started feeding her again. One of the tests came back positive with a little cold infection. The doctor said her congestion could have caused the irritated tummy. We took her home the next day and since then we've just been trying to get her through this cold. It's sad to see her not feeling so well and there isn't much we can do. Hopefully she gets better soon!

Emily's First Bath

video

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

emily claire bryson

amber waited all day for the call. she attempted to keep busy, and thereby distracted, but her thoughts never veered from the approaching adventure, and her phone was never more than a foot away. after an agonizing day of pacing back and forth, we finally had enough and called the hospital in fear that we had been forgotten. we were told to gather our bags and come on in. thus began one of the most exciting, as well as ridiculously nerve-racking, journeys of our lives.
after 9 months and 1 week of waiting, we finally found ourselves in the room where our little girl was supposed to be born, though fate had other ideas. we got comfy, amber was given some medications to start the dilating process, and we then settled in for a long night of waiting. had we been wiser, we would have tried harder to get a good night's rest, but the excitement of it all left us wide awake, so most of the night was wasted away playing on the laptop and tv. the night passed and in the morning amber was checked to see what progress she had made. we entered the hospital the night before at a 1, and we began the next morning at a 2. for those of you who may be ignorant to pregnancy terms, such as i was, that isn't much progress at all.
the next day was spent playing with the meds, trying to get amber's contractions to work in our favor. unfortunately they did not. they were either too spaced apart, too close together (often one starting before the last one had finished), or simply just not strong enough. amber was given an epidural and her water was broken, both with the hopes that they might speed up delivery. both failed to do so.
between the crazy contractions, the constant examinations, being stuck in bed unable to move, a crazy tingling sensation caused by the epidural, a catheter, not being able to eat for a whole night and day and night, and being pricked and prodded since minute one, amber's word for the day was 'miserable'. thankfully she had her mom and sister lia there for much of the time to lend us moral support. but that seemed to be one of the few bright spots because after a full 24 hours in the hospital, amber was officially dilated to... drum roll please... a 5. it was progress, but it meant she still had a long way to go. and in the next 4 hours, amber progressed absolutely no further.
i suppose that a c-section was always a possibility in the back of my mind, especially considering that amber is a smaller woman, but when the doctor recommended it, we both were a little scared. surgery is not a thing to take too lightly after all. but it meant there was an end in sight. and after a day of non-stop torture for amber, that sounded too good to be true. while she got an increased dose of drugs, i was given an awesome white jump suit to wear, complete with all this year's must-have accessories - a surgical mask, hair net, and little booties. that gave amber something to laugh at before she was wheeled into surgery.
some of my friends have recently told me how cool it was to watch the whole surgical process of their wives' c-sections. not i. i found myself quite content to hide behind the little curtain the doctors had raised to keep amber from seeing herself cut open. but after only 5 minutes or so of amber being on the operating table, our little baby girl was introduced to this crazy world. she was immediately taken away so she could be cleaned up, examined, and monitored for a bit, but a short time later, our beautiful daughter was laid in her beautiful mother's arms. we are officially a family now.
she was born at 10:04 p.m. on the 4th of august 2010. she weighed 7 pounds and 2 ounces. she was 20 inches long. she has dark hair and a whole lot of it. she has big beautiful eyes and when you look into them, you instantly fall in love. she is beautiful. she is our angel. her name is emily claire bryson. you can call her eclaire for short, if you want. :)
and reader, if we didn't express it enough, we love her with all our hearts.