Friday, April 30, 2010


Wardrobe meme

Megan tagged me for a wardrobe meme, listing my 5 "can't live without" pieces in my wardrobe.

These days I'm in an very in between sort of clothing stage - I'm small enough that the maternity stuff is not wearable - (or I refuse to wear it anymore) but still bigger than I used to be so my pre-pregnancy stuff, for the most part, doesn't fit yet.

(But I did go on my third post-pregnancy run today, so we're working on that....)

So here they are:

1. These skirts. I got two similar ones last year, from Target, but a few weeks ago I got two more from Old Navy. I love them. I wear them most days. This time of year I'm not a fan of pants, and skirts look so nice. I love that they are super comfortable, but still look nice. I can wear them to work with a nice shirt, or around the house with a sweatshirt. And only $15!!

2. Good running shoes. When I started running consistently, I went to a running store and got fitted for running shoes. They taped me running, measured my foot two different ways, and assessed my arches before telling me what kind of shoe to buy. Since I run sort of on the outside of my feet, I needed what they call a "neutral" shoe. The first pair of shoes I bought at that store, and were $120. Which seemed like WAY to much money at first. But that was some of the best money I've ever spent. The difference between running in good shoes and running in bad shoes is dramatic. Since then I always buy the exact same kind, but I find them online for much less money. And I only use them to run in. I don't walk in them, I don't take them to the gym, I only run in them. I didn't post a link because although I run in saucony shoes, you should go get fitted somewhere for shoes and buy the kind you need.

3. Cute low cut socks. I love wearing cute socks. Especially anything striped, with dots, or argyle. Even though I'm certain I'm breaking numerous fashion laws, I even wear cute colorful socks with my skirts to work. I'm very picky about socks, though, and they have to be fairly thin cotton.

4. My dansko shoes. Yes, I know they are not the cutest shoes around. But when you are running around the hospital all day on your feet, you will regret wearing other types of shoes. I have two pair - solid black, and some cuter brown sandals I wear in the summer.

5. My hooded sweatshirt and some comfie pants - perfect for when I get home from work or, these days, most of the day since I'm not getting out much.

So, there you have it.

I will tag anyone who feels like doing this and needs something to post.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Our boy in church

....With his proud papa.

Road Trip.

Sadly, I forgot my camera and so all the photos from our trip are on my mom's camera.

We had a great time - Judah really is a great baby and did so well in the car. He mostly just slept, until the very end of the trip home yesterday, when he decided he was done being in the car seat.

I always forget how beautiful it is in middle Tennessee - everything was blooming and green. The town my mom grew up in is in the middle of tobacco country, and there are farms everywhere with these beautiful red barns surrounded by cows and dark green fields, hollows with creeks flowing through them.

I love my family - everyone was so excited to meet Judah. I guess I knew they would want to meet him, but I was very touched by their excitement. Of course, they all have also been praying for us throughout much of our ordeal. We are truly blessed to have such a wonderful, loving family. Jeff and I will probably visit again in June, so it will be great to see them all again in just a few months.

It was also wonderful to get home. Judah and I really missed Jeff, and I know he missed us, too.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Just Jeff Here...

Well, its just me here, me and the dog that is. Aubrey and Judah are away on their first road trip together. They are in Tennessee, accompanying Aubrey's mom to a conference, and visiting some extended family. They will be back either tomorrow or Wednesday, depending how things go.

So. In the mean time, its just Jeff and the dog. We are missing that little boy quite a bit. At least when we're not sleeping in a delightfully quiet house for long stretches of time. But when we are awake, we are definitely missing him.

The absence of Judah also means there are no new pics to post today for his adoring fan base. So I am picking two of my past favorites that haven't made it to the blog.

This first one is so close to being a great shot. But if you look closely, you can see that his face is slightly out of focus.

This second photo would be a pretty mundane shot, except for one cute little surprise near the bottom which totally makes my day!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Not to neglect the dog

Lucy was worried that she hasn't been fairly represented in pictures on the blog lately, and she would like to let you know that she is still here, and doing well. She sniffs Judah from time to time, and occasionally licks him. He doesn't seem to mind.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Three Weeks

He has impressive eyebrows. This is his serious face. He usually only makes this face when he needs to poop. Jeff says he gets this furrowed brow from me.

He smiles in his sleep. I love it.

He's got great hands.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Big day.

Yesterday was a momentous day - at least for me.

I took Judah to the grocery store. By myself. For the most part, until now, I've been nervous about taking him places, mostly because I worry about what happens if he starts to bawl, or how I'll manage everything. But I was feeling adventurous, so I decided to go.

I used my moby wrap that I finally got in the mail yesterday. I put it on before leaving the house, and then just stuck him in it once I got to the store. It worked great - he slept the entire time. And my hands were free and I didn't have to cart around his car seat. I have a feeling I'm going to get a lot of use out of it.

After we got home and he ate, I actually cooked dinner. Sometime I haven't done since before he was born. It was great. I made salmon and asparagus and then baked these chocolate cakes - which are delicious.

It was a nice night - it felt like things were getting to what our normal is going to be from now on.

I like the new normal.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Back to Intern year....

So you want to know what it feels like to be an intern?

Have a newborn. Seriously.

Intern year, I was on call every fourth night. Which felt very frequent. That meant that every fourth night, my sleep would be interrupted by the less-than-pleasant sound of my pager going off. Of having the experience of laying in bed, trying to sleep, but wondering when I'd hear that sound again. Of not being able to think clearly during the day because I was chronically sleep deprived.

Now, I'm on call every night. My sleep is interrupted by the sound of newborn cries and poopy diapers. I get in bed and then hold my breath, hoping that the little sigh he is making won't turn into a scream. I don't think clearly - as evidenced by my posting of the same photo twice. And not realizing it.

The only difference is that waking up to feed my baby is a joy - for the most part. Waking up to go to the ER in the middle of the night is not nearly as enjoyable. And I get to be on call with my husband - which, as much as I love the people I work with, is much more fun. My first few weeks as a doctor were great, but occasionally overwhelming. My first few weeks as a mom? They've been wonderful but just as overwhelming. I mean, I have a son. I have a son. Part of me still can't believe it.

Just like it took a few months to get used to saying, "This is Dr. Tell," it's going to take a little while to get used to calling myself "Mommy."

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Friday, April 16, 2010


Before Judah was born, I made a promise to myself that this blog wouldn't turn into a blog where I only post pictures of my kid and how much he weighs or what milestones he is hitting.

What I didn't know is that:
1. I don't go anywhere. At least not really. So pretty much all I do is feed him and eat. And take a daily walk. Yesterday I cleaned the bathroom and did some laundry. So there isn't much exciting going on. Except finding out how much he weighed.

2. Since I'm not working right now (which is wonderful) I don't really have any patient/medical stories to tell. Although I did go sit in on a c-section after his doctor visit on wednesday - one of my more special patients had her c-section and she really wanted me there. Thankfully, it was possible for me to go - and I got to see her sweet baby girl. It was a little bit weird being back in that room. But I realized I have a whole new empathy for my patients now that I've actually gone through a c-section. I know what it's like to be laying on that table, feeling like you have to puke, and feeling them push on you to get the baby out.

3. I can't even really post any recipes since we're still being brought meals. I knew I would appreciate meals, but it's been really wonderful not having to worry about cooking. Last night we got some super delicious chicken pot pie and frozen chocolate pie. Yum.

4. My kid might be the cutest ever. So of course the whole world wants to see lots and lots of photos of him. :)

So eventually, hopefully I'll get back to posting more substantive stuff. Until then, here are a few more random thoughts:

1. I talked to the doc who did my c-section and he told me I could start running as early as this weekend. If I want. I don't think I do, right now, but maybe in another week or so. I cannot wait.

2. I've never been one that has to shower daily, but these days I feel so gross unless I do. I get really sweaty (my sister in law tells me that happened to her to) and then with the breast feeding, the shower feels. so. good.

3. I don't know how people have babies without lots of help. How they do it if they're single. Or don't have parents/friends/ and a great church family. I think I'd be a puddle of tears without Jeff and everyone else who's been so great.

Check it out.

My dad has finally followed through on a long standing threat to start a blog, and it already looks quite promising! It is called Formed By Grace, and will showcase the fruit of his now 38 years in full time ministry. It will focus specifically the last ten years of studying and meditating on the doctrine of grace and how the entire Christian life is shaped by it. I've been looking forward to reading these thoughts for a long time.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Two weeks.

Judah is two weeks old now. He's still an eating champ, and sleeps fairly well, too, although last night he decided he wanted to do a little more staying up than usual. We had his first doctor's visit yesterday. He already weighs 8 pounds, 14 ounces - which encouraged me since it's just hard to tell with nursing how much he's getting. I knew he was getting fatter - his little chicken legs are slowly filling out - but it's nice to have an actual number to prove he's getting enough.

His head was in the 95%. (Something else he gets from his mama.)

He definitely likes the bath.

and his swing.

And his mama.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010


I think maybe my favorite time of day with Judah is when he's up in the middle of the night.

I figured it would be hard to want to feed him then. But I love the quietness of the house, how still everything is when I nurse him at night. He makes the sweetest faces when he is excited about getting his midnight snack. (Honestly, the faces he makes when he is starting to eat at every feed are probably my favorite faces that he makes. He just looks so happy. My second favorite is when he smiles in his sleep.)

It surprises me that I usually wake up before him when it's time for him to eat. I didn't know that my body would tell me when it's time. I've always been a very deep sleeper, but now just about 3 or 3.5 hours after his last feed, I suddenly wake, and hear him make his breathing noises as he starts to wake. He is usually still sleeping, but starting to stir and smack his lips together.

He usually falls asleep while he's eating, and then I change him, and he wakes up for a little awake time. Thankfully, I can usually get him back down pretty quickly. I fall asleep to the sound of him breathing and wriggling in the cradle.

It's wonderful.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Some thoughts.

1. I've been amazed at exactly how much laundry such a small body can generate. Last night we had to change his clothes three times because he either wet or pooped past his diaper.

2. Judah seems to be a fairly happy baby. He does occasionally have some fussy times, but mostly he is fairly content. Right now, he's just swinging in his swing, looking around and enjoying the motion.

3. We're going to try to go to church tomorrow. Jeff is definitely going (thankfully he doesn't have to preach this week), and Judah and I will hopefully make it, too. We may end up spending the entire time in the nursery if he's fussy, but I'm ok with that. Everyone at church is antsy to meet him, and it will be nice to get out of the house for a little while.

4. My mom left on Thursday - she was such a huge help. Our house hasn't been this clean in a long time.

5. It's nice fitting into all my shoes again. I'm thankful finally to be swelling-free.

Well...I think that's all the semi-coherent thoughts I can manage right now. And just when I said that Judah was a happy baby...he started crying. So more to come later.

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

A Birth Story.

We named him Judah, which means praise. And I've been thinking a lot about his name, and thankful that I've had that reminder that we praise God for him, and we want to keep praising God through good times and bad.

The day he was born might be both the best and worse day of my life.

My water broke Tuesday at 3:30 pm. And it was meconium-stained. (This can often be a sign of distress in the baby.) Unfortunately, I wasn't really dilated and so I knew immediately there would be no laboring at home, no showers or walking the halls, and that I would almost definitely need pitocin. After your water breaks, you have about 24 hours or so before you need to get the baby out. After that, the risk of infection goes way up, both for mom and for baby.

I had started having some contractions, but they weren't very bad. I wanted to wait to start pitocin until I knew for sure I wasn't going to change with my own contractions. We ended up starting pitocin around 8pm or so. I was doing pretty well, just breathing through them. I had to stay hooked up to the monitors since I was on the pitocin, but I could still change positions. I used the birthing ball, sat up in bed, and moved around as much as I could. Around midnight they got me on the maximum dose of pit, so now I was contracting every 2-3 mins, and they were pretty strong. I still wasn't making much progress. I could tell I wasn't really relaxing very well. Around 3 or 4 am, I decided to take some IV pain meds. I was finally able to rest a little, and felt like maybe it helped me relax more. I finally dilated to 4 cm, and so thought that maybe now I'd really start to change. I was so exhausted I thought that getting the epidural might actually speed things up at this point - I've definitely seen it allow people to relax enough that they finally get their labor going. So I got it. Except it only worked on one side. And then Judah's heart rate starting going down with every contraction. They had to turn down the pitocin. And then the contractions slowed. So then I didn't change much. Every time they'd try to turn it back up, his heart would start to dip again.

Eventually, they tried to infuse some fluid back in to my uterus to see if that would help, which it did for a while, but eventually we ran into the same problems. Around 5:30 or so, my cervix was still only 6-7cm, where it had been for hours. Daphne, one of my attendings, just told me that even though she felt like I could have this baby vaginally, she didn't think the baby was going to tolerate it. It had now also been almost 27 hours since my water had broken. I hadn't really slept. And even though, more than anything, I didn't want to C-section, that was what needed to happen. I feel like even if I had been able to get to complete, pushing would have been nearly impossible considering how tired I already was.

It was a painful realization. I realize now I had a lot of pride that I wasn't going to need a C-section, that I had exercised my way through this pregnancy and tried to be healthy and so a C-section wouldn't be needed. I viewed c-section as a personal failure. Which I realize, of course, is ridiculous. Most of wednesday afternoon I was praying, pleading with God that my body would cooperate. I was also weeping because I was already feeling like we were heading for the c-section.

It still makes me sad to think about. I wish things had happened differently. But I keep learning that I do not know what is best for me. Would I ever have chosen to struggle with infertility? Of course not. Would I have opted for the miscarriage? No way. But all those experiences have allowed me to see God's goodness, have shaped my worldview, have given me greater compassion and chipped away at the sin that still is lodged so deeply into my heart. When I finally got pregnant, I decided that I was NOT going to complain about pregnancy. I would not mind the nausea, the heartburn, or the regular aches or pains because I was so thankful to finally be pregnant. I realize how blessed I am to even get to experience any of it. And I feel the same way about the delivery.

When I heard that strong, loud cry and they told me it was a boy, when my friend Karissa turned around from his initial assessment to say that he had hair, that he looked like me, when I got to hold his hand and kiss his head before they took him out to meet his daddy, that was one of the best moments of my life.

And so, I continue to praise God - for the sweet boy he gave me, for the experience of giving birth, and for continuing to work on the sin in my life.

We had our first sponge bath yesterday. I think he sort of hated it, but he was awfully cute in the ducky towel.

Monday, April 05, 2010

Sunday, April 04, 2010

Saturday, April 03, 2010

What I've learned so far...

1. My kid doesn't like to be dirty. If he is the least bit dirty he will scream his head off and refuse to eat.

2. My mom is awesome.

3. Baby poo gets everywhere. But I never knew I'd rejoice so much to see a dirty diaper.

4. Nursing a baby is maybe the most wonderful thing I've ever done.

5. I love my baby's soft head. And sweet feet. And skinny little legs. And how he'll open his eyes up and just look at me.

6. My husband is a wonderful daddy.

Friday, April 02, 2010


We came home today, and Judah seems to be adjusting well.

I love being a mom.

There are lots of things I'd like to write about, but for now I'll just leave a few more photos. He just keeps getting cuter....

Thursday, April 01, 2010

And Then There Were Three!

For all those who have been looking for news... we have news!

It's a boy!!!!!!

Judah Anthony Tell was born last night at 6:15 PM. He's a healthy baby boy with light brown hair and bright blue eyes. He was 8 pounds, 4 ounces, and 22 inches long.

Both Judah and Aubrey (and Jeff) are doing well.

"She bore a son and said, 'This time I will praise the Lord.' Therefore she called his name Judah."

Genesis 29:35