Thursday, November 6, 2008

Happy Birthday Sweet C!
According to C's first sonogram, she would be born on November 7th, 2004. And so it was, on November 6, after a week on mandatory bed-rest, at 8:00 in the morning the contractions started. They were mild at first, but consistent. Every eight-to-ten minutes they would come. I lay on the futon reading a book while B worked at the computer, writing down every time that I would have another, and another.
At noon I took a walk with my sister around my parent's neighborhood. Mostly unsure that this was 'it', but very hopeful. As we returned to my parents driveway, my water broke. At the time I was unsure that it was my water, as it wasn't a gush. I went home for more waiting and twiddling of the thumbs.
My mom was finally insistent that I should go to the hospital. She correctly recognized that my water had, in-fact broken. By 8:00 that night we were on the 45-minute long ride to the hospital and I was getting very uncomfortable. In order to distract me every five minutes when another contraction would 'strike', B would quiz me about state capitals...he thought it was fun, I was getting mighty nervous.

When we arrived at the hospital they confirmed that my water had broken, and we commenced the wait. The nurse would not give me my epidural until she could 'see it in my eyes' that it was time. Old nurses are not cool like that. When she came in and I had tears rolling down my face she conceded that the time had come. B watched in amazement at the 'huge' needle as I praised the marvels of modern medicine. The rest of the night was spent only mildly uncomfortable with five sets of eyes on me as both sets of grandparents were front-and-center ready for their first/second grandbaby.

At 6:45 a.m. the nurse decided it was time to start pushing, and they would call the doctor. Upon the first push they hollered "STOP! Just breath, no more pushing, we're calling the doctor NOW!" The doctor arrived after what seemed like an eternity but was probably just a few minutes. Since it was right at the shift-change, I had quite and audience of nurses all cheering me on, which I remember as being incredibly helpful and encouraging. At 7:12 a.m. on November 7th (right on time), a beautiful baby girl weighing 7lbs. 11oz. came into the world.

From those first moments I remember two things. First the gasp as the nurses couldn't get over how much she looked like her Dad. And second when they asked B, "Dad, do you want to cut the cord" and he quickly and firmly replied "NO". Then they asked me a question I wasn't expecting, "Do you want to hold her now Mom, or wait until we wipe her down!?!" In the mess of emotions and confusion I said "You can clean her up" and then felt my first pangs of motherhood guilt as I realized I should have probably wanted nothing more than to cuddle my precious child, goo and all. But in hind-sight, it was probably the right decision seeing how the goo would have soiled my gown and what-not.

C immediately knew we belonged together. The first night I asked the nurses to take her to the nursery (while this might sound like another terribly insensitive move on my part, I was going on no sleep and lots of visitors, I needed some rest). About 2 a.m. Brandon and I were awaken by a screaming baby coming down the hall. He whispered "Do you hear that baby!?!" Just as he said that the door opened, the light flooded in and the nurse said "Someone wants her mama". I thought, "Seriously lady, I'm exhausted and there is no way she knows who I am, can't you cuddle her" (admittedly that wasn't very motherly at all, but I was new to this and SO SO tired). But as soon as C lay her head on my shoulder she got quiet and slept and slept, it was something I'll never forget.

And we can't forget the visitors, lots and lots of wonderful friends and family to welcome our C to the world. And to take a peak at her gorgeous locks and incredible good looks. I think one of the biggest blessings in my girls' lives is the abundance of family and friends who surround us, as they will always know that there are many people to turn to if and when they need them.
As we got her ready to go home, we realized her going home outfit was WAY too big. She was in preemie clothes for about three weeks after that! As we were going down the halls of the hospital I saw a very elderly women being wheeled down the hallway, and in my emotionally unstable state I burst out crying. "What's wrong!?!" B inquired. "She's gonna get old someday!" I cried. And here we are, four years later and she is getting older, every day. Older, smarter, and more and more spunky!

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