Jul 31, 2009

Welcome to earth, Miles Ryan McDaniel

Better late than never, right? I know I'm kind of a slacker when it comes to blogging, but 7 months is bad for even me. Since I don't want to spend two hours trying to remember and write it all down, I'm just going to take a page straight out of my journal. Hope you enjoy, but if you don't finish this I don't blame you.

Becoming a mother is the most wonderful that has ever happened to me. I was terrified, all the way until the delivery, that something would go wrong and I wouldn't get to keep my baby. Maybe having a miscarriage made me paranoid. But the big day arrived and things could not have gone more smoothly!

The last week or so of December, I was feeling pretty bad. I was so tired and uncomfortable and just ready to be done. I was feeling particularly achey on New Year's Eve, and Matt almost called in sick at work but decided to go in at the last minute. Not wanting to be alone, I went to my parents house and had sort of an early birthday dinner for my mom, whose birthday was the next day. I remember telling them about how badly I wished Matt was there. My dad told me that they would take me to the hospital if I needed them to, but Matt was the only one I wanted with me. Around 10 pm, I figured I would feel better if I went home and got some sleep. Shortly after I got back, Matt came home from work and we watched TV for a whille. We tried to find a New Year's Eve specIal but there was nothing on. We turned to some random rerun instead and I slept right through the new year. About quarter after midnight, I remember waking up with a strange pain. I got up and when I got into the bathroom I lost my mucous plug and my water broke. I started vomiting right after that and then came the real contractions. They were very uncomfortable. AFter ten minutes or so of uncontrollable retching, my stomach was empty and I was feeling really weak. The contractions were getting stronger and faster, about four minutes apart at that time. Being a first-timer, I still wasn't sure if I was truly in labor, so I called the hospital to ask what I should do (I'm amazed they understood me in between the panting and moaning). The nurse told me to come in and get checked, since they couldn't see me through the phone (obviously). By this time I was so uncomfortable that I was pacing frantically around the house, so when I got off the phone I ran upstairs and threw some last minute things into my hospital bag. Matt kept telling me to sit down and breathe, but there was no way I could do that.

When we had everything together we jumped in the Jeep and headed for St. MArk's. We left the house around 1:30 am and I was worried the whole time that because it was New Year's Eve, we were going to either get hit by a drunk driver or get pulled over because Matt looked like one. Matt actually was very calm and in control, but I kept yelling at him to drive faster. Every stoplight was torture! The contractions were so intense and close together that I really believed I might have the baby in the car.

We finally made it to the hospital just after 2 am, when the nurse took one look at me and decided to wheel me into a delivery room right away for an exam, while Matt did admission papers. I changed into a hospital gown as quickly as a girl can when she is doubled over and shaking from pain. As soon as I got up onto the bed the nurse examining me announced in shock that I was dilated 8 cm already. It's a good thing I had already decided against pain medication, because it was way too late to get it anyway! When the nurse realized how fast I was progressing, she hurried out of the room to find an on-call doctor. MAtt was still out in the lobby, filling out papers and calling our parents. We had decided not to call them until we were admitted, just to make sure we didn't wake them up for a false alarm. Fortunately they both live within 15 minute of the hospital and they were able to make it just in time. What I didn't know was that I had accidentally called my mom when I was trying to call the hospital, and she was so worried when she answered the phone and I didn't say anything that she stayed up for the next two hours waiting for the phone to ring. Sorry Mom. When Matt finally did call her, she was ready to go in an instant. Pam, on the other hand, wasn't home yet from a party in Orem, and Cal was leaving the house right as she pulled in the garage. Lucky for her she didn't miss it.

Back in the hospital while I was alone in the delivery room, waiting for Matt and the nurse, I was trying to just breathe through the contractions when all of a sudden I started pushing. I knew I shouldn't yet, but I could not help it, my body was so much stronger than my will. I was afraid that I would hurt the baby or myself by pushing too soon, so I started to panic when I realized that I couldn't control it. I yelled like a mad woman for Matt, who came running in looking very nervous. I barked an order at him to go get the nurse, so he ran out. When she came in to examine me, she found I was at 10 cm and ready to go. I think it had only been about 15 minutes since the first exam, so she was pretty surprised.

It was time to start pushing but the doctor still hadn't arrived, so the nurse told me to start pushing gently and working the baby's head down. I was totally unprepared for this part. Everybody says it's a relief to finally be able to push through the pain, but let me just say that pushing was soooo much worse than the contractions. aFter enduring probably 20 or 30 minute of very slow torture, the doctor came rushing in and said I could give it my all. I did, and a few minutes later out popped my beautiful baby boy (aren't you glad I'm sparing you the details of the episiotomy?). Miles Ryan McDaniel was born at 3:03 am on January 1, 2009, weighing 7 lbs even and measuring 20 inches long. When I felt that warm rush of blood that came with the final push, the first emotional was relief. The next was awe. When they held up my tiny, screeching, wrinkled baby I was so overcome. It was incredible knowing that child was mine, just sent from his Heavenly Father. Right away I felt the mantle of parenthood placed on my shoulders. It's such a tremendous responsibility to have to provide everything for a helpless little infant, but what a gift!

There is so much more that I could say, but let's just leave it at that. I love you Miles!

Jul 22, 2009


So the official blog of the Utah Jazz put out a call for bloggers. They are having a contest, and the winners get to be official bloggers for the Jazz. I thought it might be a cool thing to do, so I entered this:

The Neighbors
by Matt McDaniel

I can still remember the first game in our new seats. Our season seats were off center, upper-bowl. Not too bad, but not good enough. Not for die-hard fans, anyway. We had season ticket holders on each side of us, both couples twice our age.

“Why on earth won’t these people shut up?!” I kept asking myself that same question. Were they drunk? Was I wearing some special uniform that said “Hey! Talk to me!”?

I guess since it was a Friday game and they wouldn’t have to get up the next day, they figured it was okay to drink a few. They were taking the bus home, of course. I’m not a drinker but I didn’t mind them drinking. It’s all fine and dandy, just as long as they didn’t spill it on my shoes when they walked by.

I looked over at the husband, trying my best to avoid eye contact, just so I wouldn’t have to engage in another ridiculous conversation about how this Blake Griffin character from Oklahoma was the best thing since corned beef. I do like a good corned beef, though. But I digress. Well anyway, it didn’t work. He grabbed my sleeve and seemed to try and squeeze some juice out of the fabric. I just bought that shirt. Now...tainted. Personal space was hard to come by up in the nose-bleeds.

Either way, I was there to see the Jazz. The Jazz. The one team I have loved since my childhood. Even my years in Florida going to the Magic games, seeing Shaq and Penny, Dennis Scott, Nick Anderson, even Horace Grant! Truth is, I only really wanted to go to see them play the Jazz.

Even though at every game we would sit by the same people, every game a different couple would show up. They showed up as the same semi-drunk loud mouths we first met, or tired, uninterested sour-pusses. When would I ever get an idea of what these people were really like? Maybe next year they would switch seats, or give up their tickets. One could only hope.

We stuck it out the whole season, though, even watched the playoffs next to these people. We shared some stories with them, we laughed, we cried (the Jazz will do that to you). By season’s end we had actually learned their names! October rolled around and it was time to go back to the games for a new season. During the off-season we had come to miss our fair-weather, beer-laced, season ticket neighbors. Would they return? Maybe that wasn’t such a bad thing after all.

January 1, 2009. 3:03 a.m.. Our baby boy just missed being the first born in the hospital. He was born to be a Jazz fan! We missed several games, but when we returned we were greeted enthusiastically by our neighbors, who couldn’t wait to hear about our little boy. Did they genuinely care? I think they did.

After missing a few more games we sat down in our usual seats, not without passing the guy on the end of the row who was determined to give us crusties every time we arrived. Suddenly, a bag fell on my lap. A Fanzz logo strewn across the front. A big smile came across the face of the giver. Our season ticket neighbor said, “This is for your little guy!” I opened the bag to find a tiny blue onesie, with a Jazz logo and the words, My First Jazz Tee.

Boy, did I feel like an idiot. After all of that time, throughout all of those games, I never took the time to care about them. Here they were, drunk or not, listening to our stories, and taking the time to get our sweet baby a gift.

I guess I can handle a few more Blake Griffin conversations. Thanks you guys.

Jul 4, 2009

The Golden Bear

Whether you are a golfer or not... most likely you have heard of Jack Nicklaus. (not to be confused with Jack Nicholson) Until Tiger proves him otherwise, he IS the best golfer to have ever played the game. Now in his late 60's, he doesn't compete anymore, but continues to influence golf with his line of clothing and golf equipment. He also is well known for his course designs. His newest design, The Signature Course at Red Ledges, Utah opened yesterday, and I got to go get an interview with him! Here's a couple Q's that I asked....