Monday, March 15

eleanor's birth and three weeks later. edit!


after i took the home pregnancy test, i went to a clinic by our house to have another test done. it's impossible to describe all the emotions. they confirmed the pregnancy. i knew it was early, so i was shocked when they asked me if i wanted an ultrasound. there she was, a tiny little spot with a tiny beating heart. each time her heart would beat, the little spot would flicker. it was amazing. the girls at the clinic gave me a little packet of information and a tiny knitted hat. it was the hat that finally got me. she was a little person who would eventually need to wear little clothes and have little toys and . . . a million other things. here she is, wearing the very first thing that she ever owned - that hat:

the day she was born

after my due date came and went on saturday the 20th, i think i actually felt a little better. sure, she was "late" but i had an induction date and the end really was in sight. on sunday morning i stretched my dress over my belly and we went to church. she always moved the most during church, maybe because i was sitting still for three hours on those not-so-comfy chairs. during sunday school she really let loose. it was probably visible from across the room. husband grabbed at my tummy and ended up with a fistful of foot. she was telling us she was ready come out, we just didn't know it.

husband had to work after church. late. ten p.m. i settled in for a long nap. i had some cramping the week before, but until later that evening i didn't have any contractions. around seven that night, they started and i knew it was for real. i called the midwife around nine and asked her if she thought i should have husband come home early (we had heard about a dozen stories of women not making it to the hospital in time and we weren't having that). we decided to wait, but by the time he came home i knew we had to get ready to leave. i couldn't stand up during the contractions anymore and i was starting to get nauseous. we packed up and headed for the hospital around eleven p.m. on sunday.

i honestly thought they would send me home from the hospital, but they didn't. i've never had a worse elevator ride - nauseous in a wheelchair and in labor. i got some medicine for the nausea and tried to relax a little on that awful, awful bed. seriously, could they make it any more uncomfortable? husband was there, holding my hand for most of the night. he turned on the olympics, but unfortunately ice dancing was the only thing on that late at night. i remember being in and out and seeing the russians dressed as trees and cowboys. at one point, he tried to get some sleep on the couch. i wanted to let him sleep - he'd been awake for over 24 hours and i knew sleep wasn't happening again any time soon. i had to wake him up after a few minutes, though, because i had to go to the bathroom and i needed help. he was the best.

(edit: somehow, i forgot to mention this part. i did not have an epidural, but i did have small doses of the i.v. painkillers. that should explain why i was in and out and confused about ice dancing. the jury is still out on whether i'll have an epidural next time.)

at seven or so, there was a shift-change. new nurses, new midwife. i was actually glad. they first shift of ladies was nice enough, but i really liked the morning girls much more.

most of the early morning was a blur, really. i would fall into a semi-sleep between contractions, wake up and breathe through them until i fell back into the weird sleep again. it wasn't until nine in the morning that i was ready to push. the nausea medicine wore off just as i started pushing and i felt extra horrible. i actually had to "labor down" for a little while and try not to push, which is really, really hard when you've already started pushing. finally, around noon, i was almost there. they had to break my water. the midwife held up the hooky-thingy and i nodded like crazy. her heart and my heart were really having a tough time by then and they told me i had to get her out of there immediately. i think they were only giving me a couple more chances to push her out myself.

if you ask husband, he'll tell you that it was the best show he'd ever seen. he says that he could see about a quarter-size piece of her head. he thought: "i know babies are bigger than that." then her head really started coming out and he thought, "okay! that's a baby!" he says when her head came out, she looked right at him with the most shocked expression he'd ever seen. he was pretty shocked, too. it was 12:25 in the afternoon. he was supposed to be at work at 12:30 - he hadn't called in yet. we were a little distracted.

they put her on my chest right away and she looked at me.
there's nothing i can say to explain how that feels.
i still can't really believe that she was ever in there. it feels like she's always been here.

daddy took her for her first bath while i got . . . fixed up. really fixed up.

we got a lot of pictures, but most of them aren't really appropriate for anyone's eyes. there was a nursing student who was there observing and she ended up being the photographer. i'm so glad we got pictures, though. too bad i can't remember anything about our photographer.

anyway, i tried to make it interesting but it really is a pretty mediocre birth story. there weren't any races to the hospital or emergency this and thats.
the only amazing part is the beautiful baby that we brought home.

three weeks later, she's fantastic. she officially has a belly button now! she's very alert a lot of the time and she loves to kick and wiggle. she squeaks and growls, but doesn't scream much. she hates sleeping in her bed - she wants to be with mommy and daddy. she still loves her swing. she makes the silliest gas faces. i love her sneezes. she's gaining weight and eating very well. she's beautiful and happy and we love her!


Serene is my name, not my life! said...

Oh yea for birth stories!
So did you get an epidural or go naturally. I've done both and I'd definitely choose the first option. =)

I'm glad things went so well! And she is just gorgeous!

..M.. said...

giving birth is the most incredible thing imaginable. way to go!!! and she hs beautiful. she looks just like you!!!

Ash said...

I found your blog flipping around your facebook looking at pictures of Ellie. Not gonna lie, this made me tear up. Seeing her grow and then that day was so neat.

Sunny Brynn said...

YES. I love it. I love all your words. :)

Madalyn said...

What a doll!!! Job well done!