Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Birth Story

Okay.  I have Reese in the Moby, so I am hoping I can get this out before she wakes up to eat next.  Bear with me if I only get through half!

4/11/12 - J's parents came down from Mesa (about 2 hours away from us) Wednesday night.  We went to dinner with my parents and J's parents to one of my favorite Mexican restaurants, knowing that I probably couldn't eat very much the next day.  It was kind of a pre-birth celebration!  My parents went home and J's parents came home with us.  They would be caring for the house in our absence at the hospital.

4/12/12 - We had to be at the hospital at 5:30 am, so I opted for bed about 9, although I truly don't think I got to sleep until maybe 11 pm (but I got up at 11:30 pm to drink a bottle of water, because after that I couldn't eat or drink), and then I was awake at 3:45 am, even before my alarm went off at 4 am.  I got up, showered and washed and dried my hair, knowing I probably wouldn't for another couple days.  J was up almost right behind me and we were out the door at 5 am, right on schedule.  Of course, no traffic at 5 am on a Thursday, so we got to the hospital about 10 minutes early, parked and up to the Labor and Delivery floor at University Medical Center.  They knew we were coming, so handed over our paperwork and away we were taken to a cubical to start monitoring me and her.  A little blood work, a little IV, a little change, and then just lots of monitoring.  I had one monitor on my belly for Reese's heart beat and one for contractions (which there were none, except when she chose to hit the monitor with some part of her body, which was kind of funny).  Mom and Dad came in quickly to say hi and they loved us.  It was very late in the game that they did an ultrasound to make sure she was still breech, and my fear was they would say "nope, she turned" and send us home.  But in fact, she was still breech.  From that point we went from very little happening, to all of the sudden there was a lot happening.  I swear, 5 docs and nurses walked in all at once and we were in a flurry of activity!  Explaining procedures, signing forms and prepping me.  J was handed his scrubs and away he went to change.  I opted for the bathroom at that point before we went to surgery, and when I walked out both sets of parents were in the hallway.  So there are a few pictures to share of that.

 Jason in his scrubs that could have fit 3 of him in them.

My 2nd to last walk as a preggo.

Dr. OB came in to say hi, and then it was time to go.  Here's our walk to the operating last walk as a pregnant lady. And look at the team behind me.  Lots of people!

We went into the operating room, and J stayed outside while they got me prepped and put in my spinal.  That was probably the worst part.  You have to sit perfectly still while they put a needle in between vertebrae in your back.  They told me if I had tingling in my legs to let them know which side because that would tell them where was the right place to be.  And it seemed to take forever and hurt.  I finally started to tear up because it was frustrating me and hurting.  Finally, got it in the right place and almost immediately my feet started to tingle and go numb.  Now was time to lay down, and get blood pressure cuff hooked up.  J came back in and pretty soon the screen went up and there was cutting.  Didn't feel a thing, except pressure sometimes.  

Previously, Dr. OB had told us it would only take about 5 minutes for them to get Reese out, but it took them a lot longer.  She was lodged in by my ribs and was hangin' on for dear life.  J told me after that he could see them tugging on her to get her out because my whole body was moving with their tugs.  I didn't have any pain though.  J kept telling me I was doing great and the anesthesiologist was right by my side monitoring if I felt nauseous at all, which I did a few times, so that was fixed. Finally, she was out and Dr. OB said, "she's a big girl!!"  That immediately made me think of J when he was born because he weighed 10 lbs and I just hoped she wasn't that big.  We finally heard a little itty bitty cry and both looked at her.  J teared up, and I did too in that split second and we were all of a sudden parents at 8:15 am on April 12, 2012.

The docs called him over to see her and she was weighed and measured while he watched.  Here is the first official picture of her. 
She weighed 8 lbs, 1 oz and was unofficially 20 inches long, later to be determined 19.75 inches long.  And very healthy.  To me that isn't big, but they all said it was.  J stayed with her for a very long period of time, and I finally got to meet her.  At this point, I was really tired and ready to be done.  But the docs still had to stitch me back together.  J said that as they measured her, they were holding down her arms and she reached up with her foot and stuck her big toe in her mouth.  Well, she was breech in the belly and probably did that a lot.  J held her and a nurse held her, and then it was time to roll out as I was stitched up and ready to go.  

We went to recovery and I got really tired then.  We breast fed for about an hour, all said and done, and then we realized that she'd been sucking on not the nipple, so I had a hickie on my right breast, which proved to be very painful the rest of the week when she would try to nurse.  More on that later.  Intermittently, they would come get her to take her to check her vitals, etc, and then bring her back.  My Mom and Dad snuck in to say hi and try to see her, then were quickly out because only 1 person was allowed in recovery with me.  J finally changed out of his scrubs, and then it was time to go to our room on the Maternity floor, one floor down from Labor and Delivery.  We passed the parents again, with a short stop to see the baby that was trailing behind us, and then we were in our room.  Number 29.

Finally the parents were allowed in to see us and the baby.  And here's a few pics of that.  

J (Daddy) and Reese.

I think I was simply in awe of her.  No, I know I was and still am simply in awe of her!  And then the rest of that day is a blur to me.  I don't know that I slept much, but I know I was surely tired.  At some point, J and his dad went down to get our luggage out of the car so we could get settled in a bit.  I was allowed to finally have some clear liquids for dinner, which were great.  And I couldn't stop looking at her.  We got some sleep that night, but it wasn't easy.  The bassinet was at just a height that I couldn't get her out of it, so J had to get up to give her to me to nurse.  He slept in this awful chair that turned into a bed, but not a very comfy one.  

4/13/12 - Our first day as a family.  We got some sleep, but not enough.  Fed some and was in pain with that, so the Lactation Consultant came in - however they always seemed to come in at the wrong time - while I was eating, after she'd just eaten, etc.  My nipples were starting to get raw and the first minute of feeding was pretty agonizing.  Finally remembered someone (thank you whoever you were) had told me to bring Lanolin to the hospital, because they wouldn't provide it.  So that helped a bit.  Was able to eat a bit more.  And we had this photo taken.  
I do love this photo.  

At some point that day, I think the professional photographer for the hospital came in to take photos, and we had a mini-photo shoot in our room.  I'll post some of those after I order the disc.  But here's one we took while the photographer had her all set up.

There was also one with J holding her head, which is way cute! Will post when we get those.

We had few visitors, which I became thankful for as I wanted to take naps during the day.  As you can imagine, moving was rough and I think it was Friday (4/13/12) that they took out my IV and catheter.  I was thankful, but also not for the catheter because it meant I would have to get up to pee!  But also meant I could take a shower, which I very much longed to do.  That was an experience.  The shower was TINY so bending over wasn't really an option, and I couldn't have if I wanted to.  J had to come and dry my legs off because I couldn't bend over that far to reach them.

Sleeping was always hard at the hospital because just about the time I would get to sleep, someone would come in to check my vitals, give me meds, check the baby, or ask questions about how I was feeling.  About 5:30 every morning, the doctor parade began.  Some of the surgeons that had been in my surgery would come in and ask how I was doing and check my incision, usually a young guy first, then what I deemed to be his resident, then my nurse, then my patient care technician, then the housekeeper, etc.  It was quite the show.  

Breast feeding wasn't being an issue, except she seemed a little fussy at times, but most of the time she was pretty mellow.  We were supposed to go home on Sunday, and while I was hesitant, I was getting ready.  However, when they had taken Reese for vitals Saturday night, they noticed that her weight was down 12.8%, which was more than the allowed 10%.  So we started supplementing with formula and this crazy annoying device.  Essentially, one part of it was an upside down bottle, with the other part being this tiny hose that went from the bottle and to the baby's mouth, along with my breast.  So she still thought she was breastfeeding and probably was, but also was getting formula.  It was a very aggravating process, and that was where I lost my modesty.  So many people had handled my breasts by then, that I didn't care who was around when I fed.  They got to see it all.  Even my Dad and Father-In-Law.  Sorry guys!  But working with the S and S (that's what they called the crazy device), and the breast and the baby, the cover was just too much.  So away it went!

Saturday, we were both monitored more and told that if her weight was up Monday morning, we could go home.  It was only down 9.6% Monday morning, so we were allowed to go home, if we continued with the S and S and formula.  We got our final shots, and supplies and were checked out about noon on Monday, which was our 8th anniversary.  I had already made the initial pediatrician appointment for Monday, so that got moved to Tuesday. 

And I'll leave you with our going home picture before I go take my nap.

More to come, soon...I hope.


  1. Congratulations! She's adorable!!

  2. Thanks for the detailed story.. my turn very soon! But seriously she is so adorable. Enjoy your time :)


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