Friday, October 14, 2011

Abigail's Arrival

You'll have to forgive the scattered nature of this post. I actually wrote the majority of it 14 hours after Abigail's arrival, so I could remember everything. I have edited it some, but left my random thoughts in as well.  As I use this blog also for her "baby book", this will be a long detailed post...feel free to just skip ahead to pictures.

We headed in at 7:30am on Thursday morning.  I was so nervous, I barely slept the night before.  I was so anxious that the delivery go well and anxious about becoming a mom of 2 and super anxious about leaving Wyatt (not knowing how long it woud be before I got to see him again).  Although I didn't sleep much, I did finally fall asleep early in the morning and woke up at 6:30am. Of course we didn't set an alarm b/c Wyatt has been waking at 5:45am and this morning when I REALLY wanted him to be up so I could spend some time with him, he was sleeping in.  I jumped in the shower quickly and hollered at JB to get up.  JuJu was arriving at 7am to take over care of Wyatt.  I threw on some clothes quickly, knowing I'd be taking them off as soon as I got to the hospital and they gave me my gown and hustled JB along.  I threw the last of my toiletries in my bag and finally heard Wyatt waking up.  JuJu arrived and we headed out, without too much godobye fanfare to upset Wyatt.  In fact he would barely even give us kisses, the little toot.

We arrived and they got us checked in.  Nana and Grandad texted to say they had arrived but were grabbing a breakfast taco at Fuzzy's while we checked in. We were shown to our room and I was given a gown. The room was ENORMOUS with two small loveseats and a rocking chair (3 times the delivery room we had for Wyatt).

Here are my last "belly pics" at 39 weeks exactly.

I am still in awe of how fast the amazing day went.  More than anything I was grateful for God's guidance and Him helping me give the day over to what it was to be - a day about YOU.  I had been praying constantly that He would help me be able to release my anxiety about everything, especially how your arrival would affect Wyatt and to be able to be in the moment with you.  God granted me so much serenity that day.

There were some power outages/surges going on at the hospital so it took a bit of time before they "got us going".  They also had to do my lab work to check my platelets.  I was at 104 and the anesthisiologist was good to do the epidural.  The LD floor was a buzz...they were totally full and Abigail was going to share her birthday with lots of friends.  Dr. D came in and met with me and we got things going.  They broke my water at 10:30 (I was at 3cm) and started the pitocin.  The contractions started coming, but not super strong or quick at first, so they finally started up'ing the dose.  We hung out, I updated my Fantasy Football team and played soduko on the iPad to keep my mind off the contractions.

I went ahead and asked for the epidural at around noon.  I asked for it fairly early as I was already close to 4cm at that point and didn't know how long it would take to get it (it took an hour with Wyatt). Dr. Leach came super fast (even though our nurse Cathy, made the comment she didnt call it in until 15 minutes after I asked her. Uh, why??).

The epidural was uncomfortable - it is a needle in your back- but I did well only let out one little squeak when they first put it in.  I started getting instant relief and apparently it also relaxed my body so the contractions could do their job. They checked me after the epi and I was a good 4.5 cm.

We were joking I should have Abigail by 3:19pm (which was the first pitch time for the Rangers game). Around 1:30pm, I started telling everyone that I was really feeling a lot of pressure, everyone kept asking if they should get the nurse as maybe my epi wasn't working. I, it is not pain just pressure. Nurse came in probably around 1:45 and I tell her about my pressure. She checked my IV fluids and said she'd be back in 15 minutes to check my progress after she moved someone to post partum. At 2pm she checked me and laughed - I was at 10cm and baby girl's head was right there. My sister, Amanda, had come up to the hospital and they told me that I could have 3 people in the room.  We tried to convince Dad to stay, but he said he prefered to wait outside, so JB, my Mom and Amanda got to be with me as Abigail came into the world.

She went and got the doc and Dr. D came in and looked at us curiously as they had just now started to setup and she asked why Cathy hasn't started me pushing "because we'd have the baby if she already pushed!" said Cathy. " I have heard that before!" said Dr. D. I start pushing at around 2:15pm. They told me to push with each contraction but I did not want to take a break. They say I pushed 3 times (basically 3 times of holding my breath and bearing down).  She came out super fast.

Abigail Jane Strong was born on Thursday, October 13, 2011 at 2:19pm. She weighed 7lbs, 6 oz and was measured to be 18.5 inches long, but we don't think they stretched her little legs out.  And her head circumfrance was 33 cm.  She scored 9's on her 1 minute and 5 minute apgar test.  Healthy baby girl!
JB cut the umbilical cord and they handed her straight to me - she looked so tiny, but Dr. D commented she was a good 7 lbs. She had so much dark hair and my mom ran down the hall to grab my Daddy, who had barely made it down to the family waiting room. Dr. D says I have only torn a small bit and put two tiny stitches in and said she even debated about doing that.

She was crying some, but pretty mellow. They gave her a bath in the delivery room as they were still waiting for my epi to wear off so they could move me. Abigail fussed so much when they were scrubbing her hair, but when they let her sit in teh tub, she instantly relaxed.  She is going to love her baths like her big brother. 

After Grandad got to hold her a bit, he had to head back home for work the next day and we didn't want him exhausted so we put him on the road.  Nana went home to switch out taking care of Wyatt, so JuJu and Doc could come meet their new granddaughter.  Everyone was so excited to meet you, sweet girl!  And we were so proud to show you off!

Aunt Amanda

JuJu (I never have pics of Doc b/c he is always buzzing around with his own camera).

Proud Daddy

NaNa, so excited about her dark-haired girl

Grandad and his 5th little granddaughter.  Whew, my poor Daddy puts up with SO many women :)
Abigail, sweet baby, you are beautiful and I am so excited to have a little dark-haired baby that just might possibly resemble her mommy!  Wyatt was so short and stocky, but you are long and lean.  My pain was very minimal...more of just a discomfort when I sit as I am pretty dang swollen around my bottom (normal for having her so quickly). You were good to your Momma! I am still in awe of how easy and quickly everything went.  Thank you God for a beautiful, fast and healthly delivery.

14 hours post partum..........random thoughts to my daughter.........

To My Sweet Girl:

I am awake, it is 4am and I am wandering the halls of the post-partum wing in my pajamas.  I just weighed myself....120 lbs. I am so swollen and pufffy from all the fluids and I slept for a couple hours, but was on one side, so I am significantly pudgier on the right side now. You and daddy are sleeping soundly.  I walk the floors but stop periodically to check on the two of you.  I looked at a lot of babies in the nursery. Harris SW has a policy that babies should room in 23 of the 24 hrs a day but I think some mommies have sent their babies to the nursery so they can sleep better. I chuckle at the signs in the hallway that say "Here at Harris, mommies and babies room together". I think " Nope, daddies and babies sleep while mommies walk the floor". Your night nurse, Stacy, is super sweet and came out to visit with me when she saw me at the nursery window. You are a noisy little thing, you grunt and make " puppy yelping noises in your sleep". I am still not decided on your name...I think you might look like Caroline. Your daddy just keeps rolling his eyes at me. I just want you to have a name that fits you and is worthy of you.  In the Bible in 1st Samuel, I remember reading that Abigail was "discerning and beautiful".  I have filled out most of your paperwork with 'Jane' as your middle name and leaving your first name blank.  I just need to think on it a bit more. 

You are already nursing well and I am SO proud and pleased with that. 

It feels like here at the hospital is one world and back home with Wyatt is another. I know the two will merge tomorrow afternoon and that makes me excited and also very very scared. You still don't seem real to me. You are mine. I love you so much already, you resemble your big brother but with dark hair but somehow your place in our family seems fantasy to me. It will all come together tomorrow when I take you home. I am so thankful that Nana will be here the next week to help me with the transition. I am so scared of not being able to give you and Wyatt all that you need of me. I will learn to have to let things go and so will you and Wyatt. You will have to learn to share me and you will never know a world where you didn't, but I have been solely your brothers for almost 2 years now and he will need you to be patient while he figures that out.

I cannot wait to take you home and have you meet your lifelong friend and protective older brother, Wyatt.


Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Big Brother, Wyatt!

Ready or not, we are bringing you home a bathtub buddy in a couple days!  Better get ready to share those fun water toys soon!  We love you so much, Wyatt and know you are going to be a great big brother!

38 Weeks & 6 Days

How far along: 38 Weeks and 6 Days

How big is baby: Who knows at this point.  So far she has measured much bigger than Wyatt, but I think she'll actually end up being around the same birth weight.

Total weight gain: 35 lbs.

Last Dr's Appt: Monday - Still a good 2cm dilated and did blood work.  Got the call on Tuesday evening that we are being induced Thursday, October 13th at 7:30 am.  My platelets have again dropped and it is imperative we move now so that I can still get an epidural (drugs?  yes, please!)

How am I feeling: A big rush of emotions and a ball of nerves.  Dr. S will be out of town tomorrow but did not want to wait any longer.  Dr. D who was actually my OB/Gyn for the 3 years before I got pregnant with Wyatt will be delivering.  When I found out I was pregnant, she had just gone on maternity leave, so I switched to Dr. S.  Dr. S is like having your Dad take care of you.  I have complete confidence in Dr. D, but am also more than a little nervous not to have Dr. S by my side directing the delivery.  I wasn't all that nervous with Wyatt's delivery - ignorance was bliss.  This time around, I remember how smooth and easy my delivery with Wyatt was and I desperately want it to go that smoothly again.

Those are just my feelings on Abigail's upcoming birth...I can't even explain all the craziness going thru my mind about being away from my little man for a day or so (we are NEVER apart) and also when I do come home, that I am not going to be able to give him 100% of my attention. 

I have been praying a lot that I am able to surrender my anxiety about not only the way the birth goes, but also surrender my anxiety of being away from Wyatt (knowing he is in good care of grandparents and we live 5 minutes from the hospital so JB will be spending a lot of time with him at home). I know God will provide and I just want to be able to be in the moment with Abigail as we welcome her into the world and be able to focus solely on her at that time, like I did with Wyatt. 

One of my very best friends and confidants, Amy, wrote me these words this morning and I was very encouraged by them:

"We can follow a plan and pray that God lays it smooth. He is so good to deliver us through the hardest of times and always brings us closer to him if we let him. He to will help deliver baby abigail no matter who the doctor is who catches her. I am so glad that you will be surrounded by those who love you and that you have had a good experience prior to this delivery to focus on. You are so strong Emily. It is ok to be scared but know that there are people praying for you and your growing family." 

What I'm looking forward to: Meeting Abigail Jane and holding my precious little girl in my arms.  Seeing her Daddy meet her for the first time and watching her being welcomed into our family by our parents and all her aunts, uncles and cousins that will love her so much and teach her to be an amazing little person. 

Abigail Jane,

To write to you all I feel about your upcoming arrival and knowing that I am being blessed with a little girl to raise, would take a full blog on it's own. 

So just a few have been snugly protected in my belly for the past 39 weeks and as much as I am ready to meet you, part of me also mourns a bit that you are headed out into this crazy world where I can't always protect you.  I vow to prepare you to take on this world though in the best way I know how.

More than anything, I want you to experience all that life has to offer. I want you to be a passionate person who lives life to the fullest, loves with her whole heart, maybe gives your opinion a little too often, sticks by your beliefs and values, learns to trust in God, always remembers all you have been blessed with and holds dear the essence and importance of family. 

Our journey together begins tomorrow my sweet girl and I can't wait to see your face, hold you in my arms and kiss your cheeks. 

I love you,

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Girl Drama

Well, they always say girls are a bunch of drama and even though Miss Thing hasn't even arrived yet, she is no exception.

Just got the call from my doctor - my levels have dropped another 10 points, but they are NOT inducing me this week. My OB was good with it but the neonatalgist says it is too risky for the baby's lungs and wants her to bake another week.  The anesthesiologist did say that I can drop another 15 points or so and they'll still be fine giving me an epidural.

SO, the plan is to go to my regular appointment on Tuesday and probably do a heavy couple days of steroids and then induce on Thursday.  Craziness.

In the urgency though, we were forced to pick a name. So, we are happy to announce she is no longer "baby girl" but.......

Abigail Jane Strong

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

37 Weeks & 5 Days

How far along: 37 Weeks and 5 Days

How big is baby: According to she is about 6 1/2 lbs or a bit more and about 19 inches long.  Wyatt was 6 lbs 11 oz and a little over 18 inches long.  I guess she'll be approximately the same.

Total weight gain: 33 lbs.  I have packed it on this time.

Last Dr's Appt: This morning and here is the big news people - we are 95% sure BABY GIRL WILL BE COMING THIS WEEK.  We have been watching my blood platelets the entire pregnancy and although they went up by a point last week, they are still sitting pretty low (another 15 pt drop and I wouldn't be able to get an epidural).  So we did blood work again today and after getting the results tomorrow afternoon, we are thinking we are going to induce her now, before they drop any lower.  If they have severely dropped, we'll talk about whether we want to induce with no epi or try a steroid treatment to get them back up (but that is risky as it might continue dropping and then could lead to a c-section).  Oh, and I am about 2 cm dilated already.

How am I feeling: Physically I feel fine.  Mentally and emotionally I feel a little overwhelmed.  I wasn't expecting her to come so early and in fact was planning on hosting a shower for a sweet friend at my house this weekend (so I am leaving my girlfriends scrambling for a new location).  My house is fairly clean, most laundry is washed, but I thought I was going to have a little more time with Wyatt, just he and I and that is where a lot of emotion comes in.  I am not ready to take part of myself away from him yet - but ready or not, here comes baby girl (no, we are not 100% sure on a name yet - AHH).  JB keeps saying we are not taking anything away from him, but instead should be excited to give him a sister - a sibling - a partner in life that will share his whole story. I know what a blessing my sisters are to me and just continually remind myself of that.  He is still just a baby though and needs so much of my attention. I was telling Dr. S about my guilt today and he said that it is totally natural to feel this way, but be excited about baby girl and don't let it overwhelm me.

Food Cravings: HAHA.  Well, I had been trying to up my protein and less "junky foods" to maybe help with the blood platelets although there is really nothing you can do and apparently it hasn't been working.  SO, for the next 2 days I am going to eat CRAP as apparently it doesn't matter now.

Milestones: Well, I hit "full term" last Thursday so Dr. S is confident she is fully baked and ready to come meet her family.  Honestly, we have been saying my due date is Oct. 20th by the method of my cycles that my doctor does, but I really thought I was a week further along and by my sono a few weeks ago, I am probably accurate.
What I'm looking forward to: Meeting Baby Girl.  Not being pregnant anymore.  Getting into a normal life routine with my two babies.  Seeing my Daddy. I haven't seen him in a few weeks and he and my mom will be headed up here on Wednesday night when we get the induction time.  I am very happy that my Mom (who I am also happy to see, it is that I saw her last week, so I haven't been missing her as bad ) will be staying for a bit after Baby Girl gets here while I learn to juggle 2 kiddos.  I know she will spoil Wyatt rotten and we'll have to do some Nana-detox when she does leave, but he will need that extra spoiling as things in his world are about to severely change.

Preparations and decisions being made: So, we are having a serious NAMING discussion tonight over dinner obviously.

During nap time today, my weekly to do list will be completely things like "work on recovering dining room chairs" will change to "pick up stool softeners and ibuprofen at the drug store" (sorry if that was TMI - if you have had a child you understand, if you haven't but are going to - ask me about it). 

**I'll try to post a pic tonight of my big belly and some nursery pics**