Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Suzanne Claire

Since my last post, our family has grown by one sweet, quiet baby girl. Here is the story of her arrival. At my 38 week appointment, Dr. Dulaney told me that we could schedule an induction if I wanted to. I always get super antsy towards the end...I always think that if everybody is doing well, we should be born before things go south. Crazy how losing a baby will change your views on "babies come when they are ready." I still want to believe it, but I just can't. Anyway, we scheduled her birth for Friday, September 20th. We called the grandparents, made arrangements for Thomas, and settled in to the notion that we'd have a baby in our arms so very soon. A few days later, I got a call from Laura, Dr. Dulaney's nurse, saying that the hospital was booked that day and we'd have to wait until Tuesday, September 24th. I was pretty okay with it at first, you know, no big deal. A few hours later, after the news sunk in, I completely lost it. I had made it so far...was so close to meeting my girl, only two or three days out. Now I had to wait even longer...more time for things to go wrong. Too close to the 40 week mark for me to feel even remotely comfortable. We scheduled a checkup appointment for Thursday, September 19 just to check on her. Unfortunately, I live in a world where babies pass their Non-Stress Tests with flying colors one day and die the next. I spent the few days between that Thursday and the following Tuesday counting every movement and worrying constantly. Tuesday morning, September 24th started early early. We woke at 2:30, I showered, put on my cutest maternity shirt, and we headed to Germantown around 3:45. Thomas was tucked in warmly at home with his sweet Mamaw & Papaw. We were slated to check into the hospital at 5:00am. We arrived, all excited and full of nerves. The lady at the front desk began the check in process and then got a worried look on her face. She said I wasn't in the system to be checked in that day. I was seriously not prepared to hear that news. The charge nurse came out, assured me that there had been a mixup somewhere, and that I would be able to deliver at some point that day. I just had to wait until there was room. So, Austin and I got comfy in God's coldest waiting room. I was thankful that I cheated and had smuggled a banana in my purse. I went to the bathroom, hid in a stall and ate it. Later on, I bought a Sprite and hid in the same stall to drink that. I'm a rule breaker. Around 7:30, we finally got checked in and hooked up to the monitors. Baby girl was doing great...I was having a few mild contractions on my own, but nothing to get too excited about. We started Pitocin soon after, cranking it up little by little every thirty minutes or so. I could tell that the contractions were getting going in a decent pattern, but I still wasn't too bothered. I think I got checked somewhere around lunch and I was only dilated to about 3 cm. Family came in and went out, Austin ate quietly in the corner with my blessing. He was sweet and was planning on skipping lunch since I couldn't eat, but it really didn't bother me. I stayed in the bed until around 2:30 or so when the contractions were getting really much that I was really unable to speak to anyone normally and they required all of my concentration. Corinne and Austin were in the room with me...Momma came in around 2:45. That is when I remember hard labor really starting. I went back and forth between the bed and the bathroom. I really only felt any comfort when I was in the bathroom. I guess holding onto the bar and resting my head on the cold wall of the bathroom helped. I don't remember ever ever feeling so hot. Looking back, I realize how similar my labor motions were to Andrew's birth. Bathrooms are a laboring woman's friend...the only place I felt any comfort during Andrew's labor. The contractions were coming hard, one right on top of the other with barely time to rest. I don't know how I would have made it through had Corinne not been there, reminding me to breathe through it and to let it go once it was take them one at a time. I asked to be checked, feeling very very near my breaking point. I remember hanging onto the sink, thinking, "Why am I trying to be a hero?" I remember thinking that if they checked me and I wasn't past 7, I wanted an epidural. She checked me around 3:20 and I was at a 7. I told them I wanted to call for the epidural. Corinne assured me that I was near the end, but I knew how long I had pushed with Thomas and Andrew and I just couldn't see being in anymore pain for the hours of labor I was sure I had left. I assume they called for the epidural, but immediately after I had these crazy bad, super fast contractions...probably the worst I'd ever had. I started making these insane birthing noises and my body started pushing. I heard them call for the doctor (who was still at her office because no one had alerted her to how fast I was going), I pushed twice and out came my Suzanne at 3:34pm. No one was prepared for her to come so quickly. They hadn't even set up the little isolette for her. The poor nurse barely caught her with one hand. I don't even remember looking at her or really even thinking about her for a good two minutes or so as I was so relieved to be out of the pain. When I did finally look up, I saw my beautiful girl, full of life with a head full of hair. Her head was perfectly round since she was only in the birth canal for a very short time. Dr. Dulaney rushed in a few minutes after she was born. I regret she missed the birth since it is certainly my last. I am still shocked at how hard and fast the labor was. She was the most painful, but by far the easiest of my births if that makes any sense. I am super proud that I had her with no epidural...even though I was a big, whiny mess. We're settled in so nicely at home. We had a rocky few weeks with Thomas who wasn't sure how to react. He has always been very loving and sweet to his sister, but he wasn't sure how to feel about me anymore. He wouldn't really come near me and CLUNG to his daddy. That didn't last too long, but shortly thereafter we moved into the tantrum phase. He was misbehaving at every turn and testing every limit he'd ever had. We think now that we've gotten a good handle on it. It's still a moment by moment road with him, but it is definitely easier and totally manageable. Suzanne Claire, you are a joy. You have a quiet, peaceful temperament and have added so much light to our home. You are mostly sleeping through the night and have been for a few weeks now. You rarely fuss and you almost never cry. I can't believe how lucky we are to have you. You complete our little family. You look just like your oldest brother, Andrew. I wish with every breath I take that he was here with us, could know you and your brother. I love you, little girl and I am so thankful for your life.