Please welcome David Moshe Haykin

It’s true! He’s here! David Moshe Haykin was born at 5:43am on 6/12/15. (I was always skeptical of how moms remembered the birth times of their babies… I am no longer. 5:43am will be burned into my mind forever now, in the best way possible.)

DMH property of Talia Haykin I will write more about his birth and him but he had his bris today and I know people are anxious to know his name and the stories behind it. I will share pictures of him on this blog but they will be protected posts so contact us if you would like access to them. We will be sharing images with the general public in a VERY limited way for his safety and to protect the images from people who steal that sort of thing.

So here we are – David Moshe Haykin. Here is why we named him as such:

Moshe – After Talia’s Paternal grandfather Maurice Davis:

We choose to name David Moshe after two very important people.

His middle name, Moshe, is after my paternal grandfather, Maurice. Moshe was his Hebrew name. He was my best friend, pretty much since the day I was born. I was the very first grandchild on either side and my father tells me that I quite quickly had grandpa wrapped around my little finger. It was in him who confided all my secrets, he made up and played silly games with me… like when we would pretend our fingers were people and they would get lost in his copious chest hair. He would play rock, paper, scissors with me for hours on end and then tickle my back with a feather he pulled from his pillow while we watched M*A*S*H* and Murder, She Wrote together. As I grew older, I learned that he was more than just a hairy and fun playmate. He was a very well respected rabbi within the Reform Jewish movement. If you picture a classical Reform Rabbi, it would be a picture of him with his pulpit robes on, commanding the attention of hundreds, thousands on the High Holy Days.

He was the kind of man who, when called, jumped on a plane to Selma, Alabama in March of 1965 to stand and march with Martin Luther King, Jr. and the kind of man who, with crippling blisters on his feet from marching for 12 hours in dress shoes, found a way to his father-in-law’s bedside in Cincinnati as soon as he found out that he was gravely ill. He was the kind of man who when he noticed young people from his congregation disappearing into the cults of the 1970’s he studied the commonalities of these kids and used the information to council parents and assist in the deprogramming of the children. In my memory he will always be a dichotomy. A respected and stately rabbinic presence who was mourned greatly when he passed away and a giant teddy bear who would throw me on his back and let me play horsey with him. I hope that by giving our David Moshe his name, our little boy will find the balance of responsibility and playfulness, be well spoken and kind, and stand for what he believes in.

But, as my grandfather would say, My Dear Friends, this name is so much more than that. The letter M or Mem comes up over and over in my life. My other dear grandfather, Milton’s Hebrew name was Menachem Mendel – for David Moshe, I hope he has the gentleness of Poppa Milton. And the man who became my surrogate grandfather, and who married us, Reb Zalman’s Hebrew name was Meshullam Zalman. For David Moshe, I hope he has the wisdom and insight that Reb Zalman brought to each encounter.

David – After Daniel’s paternal grandfather David Haykin:

We chose to name our son David after my grandfather, David Haykin.  I would like to wish my son a healthy dose of my grandfather’s best virtues: his mischievous and fun loving attitude towards life, and his bravery.

When I was a little boy, my parents went to work and I spent all day with my grandparents.  My grandfather David would take me for long walks, we would whittle wood and get into adventures.  One of my most vivid memories from childhood was the time I watched Granpa David fall out of a tall tree.  We were on one of our walks and he said, ‘Daniel, look up there in the tree, there is a bird’s nest.  And inside that nest, Daniel, there’s an egg.’  I was intrigued.  ‘Grandpa, what color is the egg?’  He said, ‘let’s find out!’ and started climbing the tree.  He was probably 70 years old at the time.  When he reached the top of the tree, the mama bird spotted the interloper and flew back to defend her nest. She pecked my grandfather’s face and hands, he was startled and lost his grip.  I was only three years old and utterly astounded to watch an old man fall from a tree.  It seemed like he fell for a long time and when he hit the ground, I thought he was hurt.  But he stood up smiled and said, ‘Daniel, the egg is blue.’

My memories of grandfather David were full of smiles, adventures and fun.

Among his many virtues, was my grandfather’s bravery.   He was a paratrooper during WWII on the Soviet side.  Over the course of five years, he participated in countless jumps behind enemy lines.  He was the second highest recipient of medals for bravery in the entire Red Army.  It was because of his military past that we ended up in the United States.  My father originally wanted to resettle our family in Israel, but my grandfather refused.  He has seen too much war and he didn’t want that for his family.

David was a teenager when he left his large, seven-person family to become a soldier.  When he came back from war, he learned that the Holocaust had claimed his entire family, leaving him only one brother. Had it been otherwise, the Haykin family would be overflowing with cousins, uncles and aunts.  But before this last week, I was the last male Haykin.  We name our son David praying that with God’s help and blessings this will be the beginning of the repopulation of the Haykin family.  So that when my son David is a grandfather himself, his extended family should seem to him just as God’s promise to Abraham – they should seem as numerous as the stars in the heavens.

The birth of Baby Haykin

Wow. What an intense thing, to have a baby. Doesn’t that feel like an understatement? Not only the labor and trauma of birth but the first week of trying heal while trying to learn about this little creature you have created and brought into this world. It’s been a whole week since I had my son (MY SON!!!) and every time I sit down to write this, he wants to be held or fed or changed or loved and I want to oblige! :) But here is the story of his birth:

I went in to be checked at 38 weeks and I was already 80% effaced and 1cm dilated. The doctor was excited and anticipated I would have him within a week. I came back for a cervical check and she knew that I was in the early stages of labor. She was going to be out of town that weekend and with everything we had all been through together (she’s been my doctor through the two losses and did both of my D&C surgeries), we all (Dan, the doctor, and I) really wanted her to deliver this baby. We had been on this journey for 15 months with her. We had a choice to make. We could see how it goes and likely deliver that weekend with a doctor we never met or let her induce me on Thursday morning and have her deliver him for sure. She felt that every sign pointed to an easy induction and healthy birth (based on objective measurements on universally recognized scales). We decided to strip my membranes in the office and if I didn’t go into labor by Thursday morning at 6am, we would go in for the induction.

My contractions increased but they were having trouble getting organized. I was really feeling labor but not consistently enough to call it active labor and go in. So Dan dropped Soba off at his parents’ house on Wednesday evening and we went to the hospital Thursday (6/11) at 6am. They got us settled, checked me (3cm) and started me on pitocin at 8am. Until about 2pm I labored on but I wasn’t progressing. At 3pm everything ratcheted up several notches. The contractions were excruciating and so I tried pain meds… they did nothing but make me emotional. Finally, I asked for the epidural. As the anesthesiologist came to give me the epidural, things went haywire. She barely got into the room when the baby’s heart rate plummeted and so did my blood pressure. Immediately there was a team of people in the room. They rolled me to my side, gave me oxygen and a ton of fluids, and then gave me a shot to stop labor. I was having contractions right on top of each other with no break and a very high intensity. We got it under control but that was a scary moment and the moment that Dan and I, if asked, would have said maybe not having our doctor would have been better. Once it was all under control, I got the epidural and that made life a lot better. No amount of movement or breathing could have made those contractions better.

Now we have to restart labor. I was 4cm and 90% effaced. It took hours to restart the labor and to get the contractions to where they were before (2-3 min apart). At 10pm ish, I felt my water break with a little pop. We had been dozing and called the nurse. She confirmed it was my water but there was meconium in it. That means that baby had his first bowel movement while inside, likely from the stress earlier. She told us what was going to happen during and after the delivery because of this and had me go back to sleep. She checked my cervix and I was 6cm at midnight. Around 2 or 3 in the morning, they came to check me and I was 10cm! That meant it was time (ish) to have a baby. We did some practice pushing and he was moving down fast so we stopped. The resident checked to see which way he was facing and he was in a poor position. Still head down but face up and his head wasn’t tucked. She kept trying to turn him and he would keep turning back! That stinker! She finally started holding him in place between contractions but he would still turn around each time. My doctor came and we talked about it. She was concerned that the labor would take longer and with the meconium, that’s not a great idea. Plus his heart rate would dip after every contraction and she was worried. She discussed forceps and a vacuum… that made me work harder. I couldn’t feel my pushes (thanks epidural) but Dan looked and me, and I looked at him and … frankly … we treated it like a CrossFit workout. Three pushes and a rest, three pushes and a rest.

Then during a routine check, they found my temp was above 101 degrees… a sign of a Chorioamnionitis infection – an infection of the amniotic fluid. They immediately gave me antibiotics and now we knew that when baby was born, he would have to have IV antibiotics too.

Finally, at 5:43am he came out very quietly. He was suctioned to prevent issues with the meconium and then began singing! His cries sound like he is say “Laaaa Laaaa” like a little singer. He was perfect. I had a second degree, internal only, tear but I was quite swollen with necessitated a catheter for the next 24 hours. We got an hour of skin to skin but he was being very lazy (their term, not mine) and wouldn’t eat. He was whisked away to the nursery for medicine and tests. He got his meds and showed low blood sugar so was given bottles of donor milk. After three feedings, his sugar was up, thank G-d. But he had his big old IV in for 36 hours, poor little mite. They struggled getting it in and it ended up in his elbow. It was awful to see. Within 36 hours, both of us were in great shape and all tubes were out.

At the end of the day, 7 days later, he is back up to birth weight (5lb 15oz) and perfect but it was a bit of a road to get here. I am just glad we are all healthy and safe. :)

Full Term

Uh… can you believe it? I am considered full term. Meaning, if this guy decides to show up, barring any physical problems, he could come home with us and would be considered a totally normal, full term baby. WOW! That milestone is 37 weeks for those of you playing the home game. We hit 37 weeks last Thursday and are actually on our way to 38 now. I can’t actually believe it. Both Dan and I have been in a crazy rush to finish things before this guy gets here. Dan is focused on his work, apple pressing, and setting up the garden. I have been focused on getting my work to a place that I feel comfortable taking maternity leave for 3 months, putting together baby furniture and accoutrements, and organizing our home for his arrival.

At this point, pregnancy just keeps getting more and more uncomfortable. Some time last week, I tweaked something in my back and now laying on my side hurts a lot… well when I try to lay on my back, even propped up on pillows, I get tons of Braxton Hicks contractions. So… I am basically in a no-win, no-sleeping situation. That definitely makes me more ready for Baby Haykin to show up!

But really, now at this point, the anticipation is getting intense… He could come any day, any time and we really can’t wait to meet him. So I say, with slight “OMG IS THIS FOR REAL” trepidation – Baby Haykin, we are ready! Come out and play!

35/35

I can’t believe it! We made it to 35 weeks! This kiddo is nearly fully cooked. There is this funny milestone at 35 weeks. You are 35 weeks pregnant and have 35 days until your due date, so you are 35/35! All of these silly things that I am just so thrilled to be reaching.

So where are we in our preparations? Well, we were taking it slow until a friend in our Jewish Baby University class delivered 6 weeks early… she was due the day after us!!!!! That put us in fast forward. Dan has been cleaning up his projects and I have been washing and organizing baby things. The one outstanding issue is the car seat. We choose the UppaBaby system based on very positive reviews from experts and people we know. We received the whole stroller set as a (very generous) gift from the Haykins and the bassinet that comes with it will be Baby Haykin’s bed until he can sleep through the night. Now we needed the “Mesa” car seat.

My folks offered to purchase the car seat for us so my mom and I went to the store… only to find it gone. We went online… not one available! What is GOING ON!? Too much stress for me! It turns out that they discontinued the old one because they were launching a new one… except, the new version was delayed. Well… this guy is planning on showing up in June (G-d willing) and we can’t wait for the new one to be released. So I went on an online hunt. I found literally ONE seat left in (what felt like) the world. So we bought it (wrong color but at this point, who cares). The next day we get a call from the place where we purchased it, Stroller Depot, to let us know they actually don’t have one. AHHHH!!!! But the very nice guy on the phone said he had just taken one out of the box and would be happy to give it to us since we are all located in Colorado and he can’t ship it.

So we are headed down there this week to get ourselves an infant car seat! WHEW! I know it’s not the end of the world but I was looking to steer clear of buying adapters and such.

Now all we have to do it pack bags for the hospital, sterilize some bottles, and wait for little man to arrive!

3/3/15

Today was a hectic day. Meeting after meeting. Project after project. Email after email. I cranked all day. But there was something that was never far from my mind today.

Today, our little girl, our second baby, was due. I felt such hope about that pregnancy. Surely after our first loss, G-d would help us keep this baby. All the signs were there. We found out we were pregnant on Dan’s birthday. The baby was due on 3/3, one of the alternate dates we picked for our wedding. But also, if the baby was born on 3/3, we would share a hebrew birthday 13 Adar. We would both be Purim babies. And if this baby came two weeks late (just like I did) we would share an English birthday. My in-laws, my stepmother and I all share March birthdays. See?! So many signs.

I carry you in my heart But that little girl was not meant to come home with us. She was very ill, we found out after we lost her and it was (we learned from the doctor) better that she wasn’t born. But she and her older sibling (due 12/13/14) are never far from my mind. I wear a little heart necklace all the time now. It reminds me of the two little hearts that aren’t here with us. I know that they are in our hearts though and their little brother who, G-d willing, will join us in June will be a very special part of our family.

A loss mom said to me once, “I was so sad about my miscarriage but after I had my son, I realized that without that loss, I wouldn’t have the amazing boy I have today.”

So I was sad on 12/13/14 and 3/3/15 but I am so thank-full and joy-full that this little man is growing perfectly inside me. Baby Boy Haykin – we can’t wait to meet you! (But stay safe in there as long as you need to!!)

Cross posted from TaliaSheWrote.com

Blink of an eye

Life can change in a blink of an eye. Everything is so delicate. We may not realize it because our world is hard and fast but it’s not always. And in the most tragic times, we often close up on ourselves and stay quiet. We create a safe space and control that space. But as I think about this, I am reminded of an episode of the Dennis Prager show’s “Male/Female Hour.” He discusses the importance of having ‘couple’ friends that you can open up to. Often we lie or ‘vaguebook’ or pretend that the world is so perfect for us when in reality we are struggling just like everyone else. And why can’t we share? Well we are afraid someone will exploit this knowledge of us or we won’t be seen as perfect. Continue reading

Our Engagement Story

How we got engaged:

To read the full story, click here

We are currently sharing a car as his blew up prior to a camping trip. He needed it yesterday for work so he dropped me off at my job in the morning. He came to pick me up after work. We had talked about maybe working out that afternoon but first we HAD to stop by the garden. It had been a rainy and cool few days and with Yom Kippur, we hadn’t been to the garden in a couple of days. He lured me there with the notion that our watermelon… yes we grew a watermelon!!! might be ready.

That day I had forwarded him an email from the minyan (a lay led synagogue) that we had been attending, suggesting that we should join and do a couples membership. He told me “Whoa, lo0k you have to give me a night to think about this. Joining a synagogue as a couple is a big step. I mean, it says something, especially if we aren’t even engaged!”

I could kick myself! How could I do that?! Scaring off the Sweet Boyfriend is NOT a good idea!

So we proceeded to the garden. I flitted around… picking zucchinis and patty-pans while Sweet Boyfriend is off in a corner. La la la… no worries in the world.

Sweet Boyfriend says: “Babe! Come here! You have to see this!”

I come running. Is it a awesome squash? A yellow patty-pan? I come running. Just as I get to him, he turns around, looks me in the eyes and says: “I want to spend the rest of my life with you.

I froze. Holy crap. That isn’t a squash. That is a ring. A beautiful ring.

“Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes,” I said.

“Can I put this thing on your finger before I drop it in the dirt?” Sweet Boyfriend said.

Of course. And though, after a touch of canoodling in the garden, I was ready to get back to picking… he informed me that it was all just a ruse to get me there. And there is champagne on ice at home. And we are going out to dinner.

Whoa, can this man plan!

When it was all said and done, he has been planning this for a while. He spoke to my father at break the fast after Yom Kippur, the day before, to get permission. His folks have seen and approved of the ring (and me).

He became a diamond expert and purchased me a stone cut in a vintage style… to match my vintage style… and he proposed to me in the garden we grew together.

2013 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 10,000 times in 2013. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 4 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.