Seneca Sands Up

It’s exactly a year that Seneca has been with us and this week she really figured out how to stand up. She popped up for the first time and held it for a few seconds during the week then quickly got the hang of it and was doing it all the time by the end of the week. She understands ‘stand up’ as well as ‘clap, give me five, say hi, and give me a kiss’ now. She points at things, she is learning a few signs from baby signing time. Things will really start to come along quickly now. She also got a new bike, and she loves it! I love to drive her around inside of the house on this thing.

Growth Spurts

This year has definitely been a humbling one for me at work. The last three years have been simply amazing and I was easily one of the top reps on the team and always consistent on my numbers. About March I started to struggle with keeping them up and dipped into the yellow on my target, then by summer I was in the red and have been there ever since.

It has been a frustrated experience to say the least but one that I feel will create a lot of personal growth. It has been very humbling to go through this and very hard to understand why I haven’t been able to produce the numbers that I have in the past. I’ve seen other reps go through this and hoped it wouldn’t happen to me. This year I’ve changed so many things and tried to think about it in so many different perspectives. Mark Robbins took over as my direct leader which has been amazing and he has helped me grow so much and it may just be more simple than I imagined, it may have just been that I haven’t been working as hard as I should have been.

One of the most humbling parts of this journey is admitting that I might be wrong, and that has to do with making phone calls. I’ve always pushed back and felt like they don’t make a big difference but I finally got to the point where I hate where my business is at so bad that I’m willing to do anything to get it back. Since I’ve started upping my calls and actually believing in the process I’ve seen a lot of progress. I also realized that I used to make more calls back a few years ago and perhaps I’ve just been surviving on residual business this entire time. I promised myself to commit to 150 calls for 4 weeks and see what that brings and I’m just about at the end of that.

Another thing that has been in my head is looking at other jobs, yes, I’ve been that frustrated. At the end of the day i realized I really don’t want to go to any other company unless I absolutely have to. I will do everything in my power to stay where I am at, I will learn to work harder and smarter. One day I’ll look back on this post and realize why I went through this and what it has taught me. I’ll be the best employee that I can be and come through for my company.

November 6 Update:

Things have been a lot better the last 2 weeks, I had some solid weeks 4 of the last 5 weeks which has me a lot more motivated and hopefully seeing the light at the end of the tunnel.  I have definitely grown so much over the course of the last several months and will use all that I have learnt to keep me going

October happenings

This past two months me weekend has been spent building a playhouse for Liam and Seneca. It has been a great experience and has allowed me to start collecting tools and learn about building. I’ve also added Trex decking to my porches. I’ve also started doing Jiu jitsu again with Eddie Edmunds at Fusion Academy. I had fun on Saturday and got to roll with another blue belt, I did well and tapped him out several times but injured my ribs and have been in a lot of pain.

Disneyland 2017

This is the third year that we have taken Liam to Disneyland and the first year that we took Seneca. Last year during our Disneyland trip we found out that we were having a girl. This year we decided to go a little later in the year so that we could hopefully avoid the busy lines, but with it being the first week decorating for Halloween, there were long lines and plenty of crowds. Our vacation was shorter this year, no additional days to explore, just spending most of our time visiting the 2 parks. Liam was a little bit of a handful, probably because he was so excited. We had a great time eating at the Blue Bayou, which is the restaurant that you can see when you are riding on the Pirates of the Carribean, I’ve always wanted to eat there. It was fun for Angie to ride on some of the roller coasters since it had been such a long time since she had been on any of them (due to being pregnant or trying to get pregnant). The decorations were great, Cars Land had some awesome Halloween lights and decorations and Space Mountain had ghosts. The Haunted Mansion was completely re-done as a Nightmare Before Christmas theme. I had an absolute blast hanging out with my baby Seneca.

Oh dear Seneca

Oh dear Seneca, this past year has been simply amazing. You have made my life so enriched and I am so very thankful that I get to be your daddy. You will be a year old in just a few weeks from now. You have such an awesome personality and have fun making us laugh. Your baby crawl by scooting your butt is ingenious and allows you to carry something in your hand while other babies have to use both hands. You love music and you love to dance. I look forward to getting off work every night so I can see you and play with you. Love, daddy.

State TT Championship 2017

This was an awesome win this season, I felt great and never went too deep, just a solid pace for 36 minutes. I ended up winning by 1 minute. The weather was perfect and no tail wind or disc wheel, just a great ride on my old Orbea.

Trip to San Francisco for Presidents Club

This was my third year at Presidents Club and this time I was able to bring the kids, and it was Sececas first ride on a plane and a boat. We were able to go to Alcatraz on the first night then there was a cruise around the bay with dinner and dancing.

On Friday we visited the Wharf and then took Liam to the Arcade museum, then went to dinner at Aliotos and then had a sundae at Ghiardelli Square. On Saturday we went on a Bay Cruise with Liam then went to the aquarium. Later that night we went to a party right in the middle of Union Square, after that we went to Ruby Skye for about an hour.

On Sunday I took Liam to the Museum of the Sciences in Golden Gate park, then when we got back we walked to Chinatown for dinner. On Monday I got up early and went walking with Seneca and took her to the point on Broadway that overlooks the city and Bay. Later we went there again and did photos with the kids. We then walked down to Columbus street and had some lunch then went back to Macy’s for a sundae and then went home. Great trip with the family!

 

Warm November Weekend 

The weather was absolutely amazing this weekend and I was able to ride a couple of times, although my Saturday ride was full of flat tires and a broken hub. On Friday we did a photo shoot with Moka and got some great shots of baby Seneca that I am very excited to see . We went to dinner at CPK with Lolli and Roger as well as had visits from Stevie, Luis and Tiffany . 

2 weeks off of work 

Tomorrow I am heading back to work after two weeks of paternity leave. It has been great to have this time to spend with my family as well as getting some work done around the house. I was able to finish up the pavers that line the back yard as well as the big project of paintings the inside of my garage. I spent some good time with Liam and did a lot of house work. Now it is time to get back to work.







The Birth of Baby Seneca

Friday October 28th was the happiest day of my life as my baby girl Seneca was born at 8:19 in the morning after a long 15 hour labor by my wife.

This has been a long year and a half for Angie, we had been trying to get pregnant for the last several years but became more deliberate after we starting seeing a fertilization specialist who gave us some different options but ultimately at Angie’s age, we needed to go for the option with the highest possibility of success which was IVF. Luckily Angela’s insurance was able to pay for up to 6 rounds of IVF, but even so, at 40 years old we had a small chance of success, less than 15% chance but the way I thought of it was that we had a 90% chance if we did it 6 times. The first two times were unsuccessful and Angie had to take a large amount of very specific hormones to make it work, she definitely went through a lot to make it happen. Finally, in February we got the news that we were pregnant and were so happy, but in for many months of worry as we knew how fragile those little cells could be. In the first trimester, we had a big scare because Angie lost a lot of blood but after we went to the hospital we found out it was a cyst and not a miscarriage. I felt so lucky but all along I have been anxious about her birth.

Baby boy or baby girl?

I would have been just as happy with either a boy or a girl. On one hand, it was nice to have Liam and I love bonding with a boy and love having a little side kick, also I would have loved to have a boy to carry on the Parsons name (hopefully Liam can do that for us). On the other hand, Angie really has always wanted to have a little girl, and it would be so nice to have one of each in our family. I have also wanted to have a girl just so that I would have an opportunity to give this little girl everything in the world that I think Angela should have had when she was a child. Well in the first part of April we were allowed to do a test that determined our baby’s sex and also run some tests for chromosome disorders. When we were at Disneyland we were in our hotel when we found out that we were going to have a baby girl, it was so exciting and I love that Angie has the opportunity to have a little girl.

Baby’s name:

We played around with a few different names, at first we thought we were going to name her “Maya” or “Maya Rey”, after that we started thinking of “Aviana”, Angie also liked “Zaylee” but I never really got interested in those names. One day I mentioned Seneca, who was a friend of mine since high school, and Angie also met Seneca in a yoga class. We both really liked that name and decided that would be our baby’s name. When my old friend Seneca learnt that would be our baby’s name, she said she looked forward to meeting her because she has never met anyone else with that name. We always get compliments on how beautiful that name is and know that it will be quite unique.

Hypnobirthing Classes

Angie decided that she wanted to do the birth naturally and through a few recommendations, decided to do ‘hypnobirthing’ which I didn’t quite understand until we went to the classes which consisted of 5 x 3 hour long classes during August. Once I got into the classes I started to understand what hypnobirthing was and was very fascinated with the idea. The classes talked about a peaceful way to have a child naturally and that using visualization, meditation and coaching could help with the natural birth. I enjoyed doing these classes and the teacher did a great job. Also during August we did an 8 hour child birthing crash course on a Saturday, as well as a Friday night hour long class for Liam on being a ‘big brother’.

 

The pregnancy:

Angie did well for the entire pregnancy, she was somewhat sick during the first trimester but never threw up. The second trimester was during the summer and I remember Angie feeling really hot all of the time. The last trimester Angie struggled with her mobility and her sleeping. During the last few weeks, she had a couple of times where she didn’t feel baby Seneca moving and went to get it checked out. Baby was fine but they said her fluid levels were low so she needed to drink lots of water.

The baby’s due date was November 4th, but Angie and I were doing our best to be prepared ahead of time. We had an idea that Seneca would come early and on October 27th, I got a call from Angie saying she was going in because she had not felt Seneca moving very much. When she got in for her checkup, they said they wanted to head over to delivery and get ready to have the baby because she wouldn’t be safe with such low fluid. It took a while for it to really hit me and I had some stuff to do at work to be able to leave for 2 weeks, also I had to go home and get Liam and drop him off with the neighbors. I didn’t know if they mean that we would have to do a c-section or have an induced labor.

Angie is starting to feel her labor wearing on her.

It took me about 2 hours to wrap up my work and then I left around 5pm and headed over to my house to grab all of the things we needed for a hospital stay. I also dropped Liam off at Tiffany (our neighbors) house around 6pm, then headed over to the hospital and arrived around 6:30pm. When I got into the delivery room, Angie and our doula Kristen were hanging out just casually talking, and let me know they were going to induce her with some Pitocin. From there it was really just a long waiting game and several hours went by where we talked and listened to casual music as Angie got dilated. They inserted a catheter that would help push on both sides of her cervix to help open it up, but it was extremely painful and she had to endure that for several hours until she reached a 4cm dilation.

About 2pm they removed the catheter and Angie felt some immediate relief, but then the started upping the Pitocin and the contractions became stronger and stronger. We laughed and joked around for quite a while, and went on walks around the hospital hallways. Kristen and I took turns taking short little naps and massaging Angela, but neither of us got much sleep. I was so concerned for Angie getting tired, and in the back of my mind I wondered if she would consider getting an epidural, but by 3 or 4 in the morning I knew the contractions were growing so strong that we were likely past the point of no return. As the contractions got stronger and stronger, I spent a lot of time trying to help her get her mind off the pain by helping her visualize being in a peaceful place and using some of the techniques I learned in our hypnobirthing class.

Around 5am it seemed like the dilations were not going as fast as we would like and the nurses and doula agreed that it would be a good idea to break Angie’s water. It took a little bit to get the resident OB to come in and break her water. I remember my stomach was sick and I had to go to the bathroom, by the time I came back from the bathroom, Angie was in a full labor. Angie’s OB was just getting in by this time and would help with the delivery. At this point, Angie could no longer keep her mind off the contractions, each one lasted about 10-12 seconds but it must have felt like a lifetime. I was holding her hand and she would pull so hard on me and then she started screaming, it was hard for me to watch her go through this. I tried to get Angie to focus on the sunrise that was coming up over the mountain but there was no way she could put her mind on that.

When the OB came down, she could tell the baby was stressed because her heart rate would drop during each contraction. She inserted an electrode onto the baby’s head to help observer her heart beat better. I sensed something was going wrong because the staff and OB seemed to become a lot more ‘serious’. The OB started getting stern with her guidance and started to yell at Angie to push and push harder. The scariest part was when she told Angie that she had to push hard because the baby was stressed. Angie pushed and the head started to pop out and the OB told us she had a hairy head, which gave me some relief. A few more hard pushes and finally the baby popped out, they put her right on Angie’s chest and before I knew it, I was cutting the cord. It was such a relief to have her out and such a miracle after almost 2 years of work.

Seneca was born at 8:19am and weighed in at 6lbs 8oz. I was so emotional and so happy to have my baby girl born and I just soaked it all in. The sun was just peaking over Mount Olympus when it happened. I took some photos and put the word out to my parents and Angie’s dad. He was the first to arrive around 9am when Angie was recovering and with the baby. Kristen, with a job well done, left after an exhausting night. I stepped out of the room for a few minutes when they were giving my baby her shots because she was crying so hard, but I wasn’t worried, just full of emotion. After an hour, we were transferred upstairs to a recovery room where we have been for the last few days. Angie and I were so exhausted, I had been up for over 24 hours and Angie had been up for nearly as long but with a full 15 hours of labor, what a champion.

The support we have had:

The support for our baby has been so unbelievable. We have had some amazing friends and family helping us out. We had many beautiful baby showers that provided us with so many great gifts to help our baby with a great start. Angie was a little worried about some of the showers because invitations  went out so late, but they really all were great and shows how many amazing friends we have. My parents have been helping to watch Liam while I am here in the hospital helping Seneca get her strength and eating up. We had some good visits from friends such as Alexa, Lisa, Angie’s dad and Lolli, even Marcus came by to bring some gifts for both Seneca and Liam.