Jackson (Jack) Mills Kennington: Birth Story

Hello! It’s been quite a while since I’ve blogged. Almost 2 years to be exact! I’m not going to give my excuses for why I haven’t been writing. I just want to jump right back into things! Now that Chad and I have a baby in our lives, I want to blog to document our journey. I also want to write about my attempt at getting back into running and strength training after almost a year off.

I’m starting off my return to the blog world with Jack’s birth story!  It’s been almost a month since Jack was born, so I may not remember every single detail, but I will do my best.

My Pregnancy:

Thankfully, I had a very easy pregnancy. I only had about 2 weeks of morning sickness in the beginning. Other than that, the worst of my symptoms was the heartburn, swelling, and some sciatic nerve pain.

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Labor and Delivery

Because I wasn’t dilating and had reached my due date (August 7th), my doctor and I decided to schedule an induction for the following Monday. At midnight on August 10th, Chad and I went to the hospital to be checked in and start an iv and take cytotec which was supposed to help my cervix thin. I started taking the cytotec at 12:30 a.m. and took it every 2 hours until 6:30 when they started an iv drip of pitocin. I tried to get as much sleep as possible during that time, but I was way too excited and anxious!

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Chad managed to get some shut eye though.

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Before starting the pitocin, the nurse checked to see if I had dilated, and I was 1 cm! After weeks of disappointing OB appointments and being told there was no progress, this was exciting news for us! Not long after the pitocin was started, I began having mild contractions. They weren’t very consistent, so my nurse kept having to increase the meds.

Sometime mid-morning my doctor came in to try and break my water. He was unsuccessful and told me he would come back in an hour to try again. If he couldn’t do it, then we were going to have to talk about the possibility of a c-section. When he left, I told my nurse that I needed to go to the bathroom. Because of my iv and monitor, I had to have the nurse help me any time I needed to use the bathroom. Well, I REALLY had to go to the bathroom. Even though I couldn’t drink anything, I was being pumped with a lot of fluids! Apparently, it was enough that my nurse went and got my doctor to come back and try to break my water again. He said that sometimes a full bladder put pressure on the cervix, so maybe this time it would be easier for him to break my water… and he was right! A few minutes later my water had broken, and the intensity of my contractions increased dramatically. They were pretty uncomfortable, but still bearable. I wanted to wait until I dilated more before getting an epidural. I had read that labor usually slows down once you get the epidural, and i didn’t want to slow anything down! So I waited…

Well, it didn’t take long before the contractions were coming on FULL FORCE. Chad tried to distract me by talking, but I wasn’t having it. He tried once to massage my back, but the look I gave him told him to back off. haha All I could do was grip the bed rail and breath through each one. Every part of me wanted to tense up and hold my breath, but I knew that would just make them worse, so I tried to relax. It took over an hour to get the epidural once I asked, during which I was given pain meds to help me while i waited. It took the edge off, but only for about 20 minutes. Finally, the anesthesiologist came in to give the epidural. At the point, I am in so much pain i can barely sit up. My contractions seem to be coming one right after the other with very little time between. The nurse helped me sit up on the edge of the bed. If you’ve ever had an epidural, you know that you have to sit up and lean forward kind of slumped over so that the needle can go in your back easily. I was having to do this all while having contractions, so it was not easy. The anesthesiologist kept asking me where I felt the needle and even asked if I had scoliosis. He was having a hard time with me for some reason. He ended up having to try three different times, and thankfully the third time worked. Now, remember when I said the my doctor broke my water? FALSE. He may have cause a leak, but my water didn’t truly break until I was sitting up on the edge of the bed getting that epidural. And it broke all over my poor nurse’s shoes! haha I was so embarrassed, but I didn’t care. I needed that epidural stat! After about 20 minutes, I couldn’t feel a thing and was finally able to relax. The nurse checked me before leaving, and I was 3 cm dilated.

I slept on and off after that, but everything seemed to be moving so fast. My nurse came in to check me, and I was 7 cm! Then maybe an hour or so later, I was 9 cm! Before I knew it, it was time to push!! We seriously couldn’t believe that we were about to meet our little boy! Around 3:15 I started pushing. By this time, the epidural was starting to wear off. I could feel my feet and pressure from the contractions but no pain. I had no idea how long it could take to push a baby out? I thought it would be quick, but I ended up pushing for almost 2 hours. It was so exhausting. I actually kept falling asleep in between contractions. After what seemed like forever, my doctor came in to deliver our baby! He had me push normally a few times, and then I had one slow, easy push. The nurse told me to look down, and there was Jack!! I couldn’t believe it! The doctor got Chad to cut the chord, and then they put Jack on my chest. I wanted to have that skin to skin time as soon as possible. I held him for a while before letting them clean and check him.

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Jack was born at 5:03 p.m., weighed 8lbs 3oz, and was 20 and 1/2 inches long. They put him back on my chest for more skin time. Chad and I just stared at our little boy for the longest time! During this time, I tried nursing Jack. My plan was to exclusively breastfeed for as long as possible. More on the topic later! Then sadly, it was time for Jack to go to the nursery. I was taken to another room where I would stay for the rest of our time at the hospital. They had to keep Jack in the nursery a little longer than normal because his blood sugar was low, but Chad got to go back to the nursery to see him while we waited.

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He was perfect!!

The nurse finally brought him back to us with a clean bill of health!

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I don’t know what we ever did without him! I’m so in love with my perfect little family.

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I’ll have more posts on our new lives with baby Jack, but this one is already long enough.

Thanks for reading!

September 4, 2015 at 6:15 pm Leave a comment

Faster Than the Speed of Light

Well, my life is currently traveling faster than the speed of light, so of course blogging has to get put on the back burner. But hey, at least it’s HUMP DAYYYYY. YEAH.

Here’s what’s been going on!

Saturday I had 12 miles to run, but since I was doing a 5k mud run I scaled it back to 10 miles before the race. It was raining when I woke up, but I sucked it up and got out there in the dark to start my run. I made it to the bluff along the river in Sheffield around the half-way point. It was the perfect place to stop and stretch before going back towards Tuscumbia. :)

Run1

I finished my run at Spring Park which is where the mud run started, so it was perfect! I met up with my team (Team Trenholm), and we got registered and ready to go.

It was such a fun experience! We ran the first 1/4 mile through the creek. Literally water was up to our waist the entire time, so it was more of a wade through the creek instead of run. lol There were tons of mud pits, hay bells to climb over, ropes to pull ourselves up slippery muddy hills, but the best part was the gigantic water slide. Our group went down together “train style.” The video was posted to Facebook, and it’s the most hilarious thing I’ve ever seen!

Mud Run

Our team ended up placing 2nd, even though it took us an hour and sixteen minutes to finish! haha I was still proud.

Medal

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On Sunday Chad and I took the youth to the fair! It was a beautiful day and perfect weather. I don’t particularly enjoy fair rides, but what I do enjoy is fair FOOD! ;) These guys especially loved their food.

Fair

My favorite thing to get at the fair is the lemonade and funnel cakes. But this time, I passed on the funnel cake and got something even better and more fattening… fried oreos! I shared with Chad, and we ate them up in no time.

Oreo

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On Monday, Chad and I finally went back to the gym! We picked up where we left off in the New Rules of Lifting for Abs program. Hopefully this wont set us back too much.

After work, I had a little bit of time to rest at home before having to go to the stadium for our JV game. The game ended around 9:00, and I went home, had some dinner, watched too many episodes of Grey’s Anatomy, and went to bed way too late.

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Because of that late bed time, I slept through my morning run yesterday.

I had oatmeal for breakfast before heading off to work.

Oats

After work, my cheerleaders had to get pictures taken before rushing to Florence for an extra gymnastics class with the varsity. We’re getting ready for homecoming which is next week!

After dropping one of the girls off at her house, I made it home around 6:15 and at that point, I just wanted to eat and go to bed. So, I fixed something quick, and we ate on the couch while watching more Grey’s and then went to bed.

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This morning, I woke up at 4:30, let the dogs out, had some coffee, and then drove to the gym. I had 6 miles to run and hate running in the dark for that long, so the treadmill was my only other option. It wasn’t too terrible because I had my iPad and, you guessed it, Grey’s Anatomy. Obsessed.

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Breakfast was oatmeal again because I can’t get enough of it ever. You don’t need to see another picture of oatmeal.

Work was work.

Cheerleaders practiced until 4:30.

And now I literally have 5 seconds to get this post up before I have to be at the church.

Happy Wednesday!!

September 25, 2013 at 7:00 pm 1 comment

Short and Sweet

Hey there! This post is gonna be short and sweet.

Yesterday was pretty uneventful, so I wont talk much about the day. But, one kind of interesting thing that happened was the free running form clinic I went to last night. It was at First Place Athletics in Florence and was really helpful. The guy leading the clinic put us through different drills that help improve running form, and then we went out on an easy mile jog to put the drills into practice. I really enjoyed it!

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Since I was already in Florence, I decided to stop by Publix to pick up something I’ve been dying to try.

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Cotton candy grapes!!! I ate half the bag just last night! bahaha They are SO good.

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This morning I got up at 4:30, let the dogs out, had some coffee, and then drove to the gym to try to fit in 5 miles. I made it to 4 miles and then realized I wouldn’t have time to get ready if I didn’t leave right then, so that was that.

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I also bought Barney Butter at Publix last night (ummm holy expensive nut butter Batman) and tried it in my oatmeal this morning. I honestly don’t know why it’s so expensive or why people rave about it, because it was not that good. I mean, I’ll eat it…. but I really like Maranatha almond butter much better!

Work today was pretty exhausting. Those kids were hyper. I’m pretty sure tonight’s a full moon.

Tonight I’m finally getting a chance to cook dinner! I just haven’t decided what that’s going to be yet. ;)

This was such a short post, I probably shouldn’t have even bothered. lol Oh well!

Happy Tuesday! :)

September 17, 2013 at 7:39 pm 1 comment

MIMM [The Weekend!]

Hey there! Happy Monday! Hope your weekend was good! Mine was awesome, and here are some pictures for proof! :)

Friday

Cookies at work

cookie

NEW SHOES!!

Shoes

Saturday

10 mile run

Run

Outside all day

Lounging

Afternoon skeet shooting

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Dinner

Oh Bryans dinner

Treat for running 10 miles :)

Chocolate

Sunday (funday)

Also known as the day I don’t really take pictures. But I do have one…

While on a mission to find pumpkin spiced M&Ms, Kayla, Rick, and I found these!!

Candy

Other Sunday happenings included:

Church

Lunch at my aunt and uncle’s

Grey’s Anatomy by myself on the couch

Church again where we played kickball for an hour and a half. (My team beat Chad’s team lol)

Fiesta for dinner

Back home to watch Orange is the New Black on Netflix before bed.

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Has anyone else been watching OITNB?? I didn’t want to at first, but it’s actually really good!

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After a weekend like that, I think it’s time I linked back up with Katie today for Marvelous in My Monday!! :)

September 16, 2013 at 4:07 pm 6 comments

Friday Feelings

I actually meant to post this earlier, but forgot. Sorry!

Hey guys!

I’m still over here working on this whole “no more diet” thing, but I’m still struggling. There are times when I feel good about what I’m doing, but a lot of times I get discouraged and feel like I’m just making things worse by eating what ever I want. I wake up every morning feeling bigger and bigger. So yeah, it’s a struggle. I’m just trying to give all my worries and anxiety over to God because I know He loves me enough to take it all. (By the way, how freaking awesome is that??)

I’m so used to being an “all or nothing” person, that it’s hard for me to find balance in being healthy and not dieting. If I’m eating healthy, then motivating myself to exercise isn’t as hard. I’m working towards a goal, and all of these things will help me reach that goal.

If I’m not eating healthy (ex. on vacation), then I don’t care if I exercise at all because I’ll start back to being healthy (and exercising) tomorrow, or next week. That’s been my mindset for the last 5 years, so it’s hard to break that mentality.

It’s also really hard to shake the guilt I feel after eating things that aren’t healthy. I usually wont feel this guilt until the morning (or a few hours after I eat), but when it does hit, it hits me hard. I hate that feeling, and poor Chad had to deal with me busting into tears the other morning because I just didn’t feel good about myself. He really is the best for dealing with me, and he knows how to make me feel better. I thank God for putting us together. :)

Wow. I have got to stop being so depressing on the blog. I’m usually not the kind of person to constantly write about her feelings, but today and the past few weeks, it was needed. Thanks for reading and for your encouraging words, both on the blog and in person. I just wanted to be completely honest about all of this. I would hate to act like everything was going fine when, in reality, it’s not. But that’s life, and I’ll get through it because I have awesome people surrounding me and supporting me along the way. Chad is definitely my #1 supporter. :)

Happy Friday!! :)

September 13, 2013 at 10:06 pm 2 comments

All Caught Up

Hello, and happy Thursday! Hope your week has been good so far! :) I want to back up a bit… well a lot, and catch you up on all that’s happened…

Friday

Friday was DATE NIGHT for me and Chad! :) He planned it all out, and it was so sweet!

First up was dinner at Umi Japanese steakhouse. I ordered two boring sushi rolls (California and Alaskan) and had a ginger salad as well!

Salad

Sushi

After dinner, we went down to the old train bridge that’s connected to the TVA trail that I run a lot. It was different walking across the bridge instead of running. ;)

train birdge

We drove towards home afterwards but made a pit stop at Wendy’s first. Chad wanted to get us frosty’s for dessert, which was A-okay with me! I love frosty’s. Then he told me we were going to the park, and I couldn’t help but laugh a little. Not because it was funny, but because the park is where he proposed after dinner on our 3 year dating anniversary. He also had frosty’s delivered (by a friend) to the spot he had set sup. So basically, he was recreating our proposal. It was super cute.

We went home and layed in bed watching TV until we got tired. It was a perfect night! :)

Saturday

I was supposed to run 10 miles, but because I had a super long meeting during the day and a 5 mile mud run scheduled for the afternoon, I decided to save this one for next Saturday (which is only supposed to be 7 miles).

Chad and I had a meeting from 8-1:30, which was good. Then, I rode with my fellow teammate Jessica to the race!

Swamp Romp

We had the very last wave of the day at 2:30. It was so so hot, but definitely worth it to get to experience this race! Our team plus 3 other guys ran with the coordinators of the race, and it was pretty cool to get to talk to them about the course throughout the race. I don’t have any kind of recap on this race. It was purely a fun experience for me. The course is supposed to be 5 miles, and it took us a little over an hour to finish. I don’t even care about time though because it was so. much. FUN! I can’t wait to do another one!

Swamp Romp 1

Saturday night, Chad and I went to Casa with Drew, Suzanne, Rick, and Kayla. Then we all went to Mom’s house to hang out and annoy her and Dad. ;)

Sunday

Church

Lunch and Mom’s

Nap/binge watch episodes of The Office on Netflix

Church again

Mexican for dinner again.

…..pretty much my typical Sunday.

Monday

3 mile run in pitch black darkness and 94% humidity. YES.

run

WORK 7:30-3:00 which is fun of course but completely draining.

Cheer practice until 4:30. Love those girls, but they were crazy on Monday. haha Not in a bad way, just super hyper.

Walmart.

Home to cook dinner. Wait whhhhaaaaaa????? Did you say cook dinner??

YES! I cooked dinner. haha It was just a simple chicken stir fry using a bag of frozen veggies, but after a day like yesterday, it was a wonder I found the strength to put the skillet on the stove.

Chad and I both ended the night with a bowl (or two) of frosted mini wheats spooners. We like the off brand.

Tuesday

I think Monday caught up with me, because I skipped my run and slept until almost 6:00. I never sleep that late on a weekday. I’m usually up at least by 5:30 even when I don’t workout, so I knew I was tired.

I got ready quick and fixed a breakfast that I haven’t had in a long time. Greek yogurt! I picked up some containers of plain Chobani and topped one with granola and some almond butter this morning. I had also mixed in some sugar free maple syrup to make it a little sweeter because plain Greek yogurt can be sour tasting. It was so good! But I’ve been bad about taking pictures lately, so I’ve got nothin’ for you, sorry. :(

WORK 7:30-3:00

Cheer practice until 4:30

Home.

Dinner was stuffed peppers!

peppers

I stuffed them with a mixture of quinoa, shredded chicken, and black beans.

pepper

They were good, but sadly, I found out that Chad doesn’t care for quinoa. More for me! :)

Wednesday

Woke up late and missed a workout AGAIN. What is wrong with me?? I’m having the hardest time getting up in the mornings!

Breakfast: Oatmeal, blueberries, and almond butter.

breakfast

WORK 7:30-3:00

Cheer practice until 4:00

Gym to fit in the run that I missed on Tuesday.

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Church. We had a Duck Dynasty themed service tonight. Don’t ask why, lol. It turned out pretty awesome though!

Home to crash into bed.

I think I’m all caught up now. I’ll be better about pictures next time so that these posts aren’t boring. ;)

Happy Thursday!!

September 12, 2013 at 7:01 am 1 comment

Five [Awesome] Things Friday

My emotions are alllllll over the place these days. (No, I’m not pregnant) But I did feel like I need to talk a little bit about the good in my life to reassure everyone that I’m not depressed. :)

I have plenty of times when I’m feeling down and discouraged, but I’ve also been having random, overwhelming feelings of freedom and happiness.

Even though my life is busier than ever, I feel okay. Thinking back to one year ago, if I would have had this much going on, I would be SO stressed out about missing my workouts (from sleeping in because I was up late at a JV football game for example), not having time to make healthy dinners at home, etc.

But, since I’m working on myself and trying to live a little more of a normal life, these things don’t stress me out as much. Actually, I think it’s making my life seem more exciting. I’m even feeling happier throughout the day at work because every day there’s something different. I don’t wake, workout, go to work, go home, cook dinner, go to bed, all at the same time anymore. It changes just about every day.

I’m not saying that I enjoy not being able to cook dinner for me and Chad every night though (the last time I cooked was over a week ago). It’s just that I feel like I’m doing more in my life than just being healthy.

So with all of that said, here are 5 things in my life that are awesome! :)

Running

Even if I miss a day at the gym, I won’t miss a day of running! I’m really loving it right now, and I’m even getting used to not having music. With all the stuff I’ve got going on, it’s a time for me to just be quiet and alone with my thoughts.

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I did 4 miles yesterday morning (in pitch black darkness if you can’t tell) in my new pair of Mizuno Inspires. My left foot is still feeling kind of funky and going a little numb, but I’m going to try them out one more time this weekend (and loosen the laces) to see if they work. If not, then I’ll send them back and order them a half size bigger, but I really want these to work!!

Tomorrow is going to be a crazy day for running. I’ve got a 10 mile long run on my training plan, but I’ve also signed up for a 5 mile mud run called The River Bottom Romp. It’s just like all those other mud runs/warrior dashes where you run through mud and water, go through obstacles, and all that jazz. My team is made up of some fellow GWT teachers, so it should be a pretty fun race. I just hope I can keep up with them after a 10 miler! (Maybe I’ll scale back my morning run a bit? Thoughts?)

Spending Time with Family

FAM

Sunday lunches, watching football together, sibling hang-outs, Labor Day get-together, etc. All this time spent with my family is making me seriously happy. :)

My Church Family

Nothing puts me in a better mood than being at church and worshiping God with people I love. I love that I got to sing with Drew this past Sunday during our Awaken service. While singing “Blessings,” the lyrics just kind of hit me and got me all choked up at the end. It was a little embarrassing to cry while I was singing, but the message I got from the song was well worth it. :)

Rest from Workouts

I know that getting my workouts in this week would have been great, but I sure did enjoy getting some extra sleep on the morning I was supposed to go to the gym. :)

Chad, duh ;)

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I really don’t even have the words to describe how awesome this guy is. :) He hasn’t had a cooked meal in over a week and hasn’t complained to me once. He washes the dishes for me when he can and keeps the house clean when I won’t. ;) He tells me every day that I’m beautiful and makes me feel loved. And most important, he waits until I get home to watch the “Threat Level Midnight” episode of The Office.  I just love that guy. :)

So, even though things are pretty hard right now, I still have plenty of awesome to keep me going. Thank you so much for your comments, Facebook messages, texts, etc. Knowing that there are people reading this and reaching out to help me is so encouraging! You guys are awesome! I guess that makes six awesome things for Friday. ;)

September 6, 2013 at 4:06 pm 1 comment

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Hello, I'm Grace! I'm a 24 year old living in a small town in Alabama. I'm married and have the most amazing job teaching music to elementary students. I blog about healthy eating, exercising, running, and the random things that happen in my life. I've recently completed my second half marathon and can't wait to pursue that 26.2!

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