It's been over a month since Isabella Rae made her appearance. Our lives have changed so much in these last six weeks! Our hearts are so very full and our bodies so very sleep deprived. And we wouldn't trade it for anything!
My doctor had warned me at my last appointment that her head was super low and my water could break at any time. It started to get really hard to even walk because I could feel so much pressure. My contractions began the morning of Mother's Day. I started having sharp and intense back pains before we left for church and by the time our pastor was preaching the message, I was gripping Nathan's hand through every pain and timing them. Ten minutes apart. All lower back pains, no stomach pain whatsoever. I made it through church and then we drove to my parents for lunch. The contractions seemed to ease up and as the afternoon went on, they stopped completely. I went for two walks about four hours apart, but had no more contractions, although I still felt a strange nagging ache until I went to bed.
Monday morning, at exactly 38 weeks, I headed off to work since I wasn't having any more pain. Around 10:45 I started feeling achy in my lower back again and started timing the pains. Still ten minutes apart. A coworker insisted I call the doctor, so I reluctantly did, and much to my surprise- they wanted me to come to labor and delivery!
My brother drove me home from work(he works for the same company I do) and Nathan drove me to the hospital....after going through the drive thru at Milo's and deciding it was too long of a line. Yes. He did. He didn't believe I was in labor! Haha. I asked him if he wanted me to cry or freak out so he would know I wasn't faking my pains. I guess he expected the ride to the hospital to be more....intense?!?
I was monitored from about 1 pm to 4 pm with no real progress. Although I was having back labor pains, the nurse said the monitors wouldn't pick up on it as much as normal labor. Joy. The nurse came in and told us they would keep me until about 6 just in case. Shortly after, the contractions really started and the back pain was extremely intense. I thought, "Hey, they are monitoring me at the nurse's station, so if they think this is real labor, they will come back in my room, right?!". Not so much. Turns out the monitor had slid down and wasn't even picking up all my contractions for a while! When the nurse FINALLY came back in, I had dilated to 4 cm and was told I was staying! I have never been so happy to stay in the hospital!!
So I wrapped up in my sheet(super attractive, indeed!) and marched down the hall to the delivery room.
We tend have all these ideas of how labor might go beforehand but I had decided not to have any sort of birth plan or ideas and just let everything happen.
Nathan called my parents and let them know what was going on(they also have a 30 + min drive to the hospital) and the doctor broke my water. I discovered why I was measuring 5 weeks ahead, and I'll leave it at that.The next hour or so was full of questions for paperwork and trying to answer through quick, shallow breaths in between contractions. I took full advantage of the squeeze-the-life-out-of-your-husbands-hand method of dealing with the pain. The next hour or so went by super fast, but I believe I was 7 cm when I got my epidural. I progressed very fast and soon the nurse had me pushing. Beforehand, this was the part I was a little nervous about. I wasn't sure I would know what to do and when to do it since I couldn't feel anything. Thankfully I had no trouble knowing when I needed to push and after about 30 minutes the delivering doctor was called in and said, "With one good push, this baby is gonna come right out.". I have never been so determined! Within minutes, little Isabella Rae came into this big, crazy world. Daddy had discussed with the doctor he wanted to cut the cord but when the time came, she needed her airways suctioned and he wasn't able to. Waiting to hear that first cry was scary for him. Somehow, I had no anxiety about it, and waited for noise. When she cried out it lasted for about fifteen solid minutes. Daddy grinned the whole time!
While they cleaned her up and suctioned more, Mommy had to get stitches. My mom had been able to get there in time for the delivery and so she and Nathan watched as they finished up. It was almost 30 minutes before I could hold her, but I understood she needed to be taken care of in ways I couldn't take care of her for the first little bit.
The feeling of holding her for the first time was surreal. No way to describe it. Joy and tiredness just flooded over me and I remember her smelling a certain way, most likely from the hospital blanket. She just lay there, sleeping like a little doll, worn out from the crying.
The nurse asked the doctor what kind of diet he recommended for me because of the gestational diabetes, and he replied very quickly and adamantly, "No diet! Let her have whatever she wants!". Oh, you have no idea how good that sounded! (Some of you reading this know Dr. Schulman, he is a VERY laid back, soft spoken older man :) ) I requested soda(it had been a really loooooong time since I avoided caffeine during pregnancy!) and asked if they had Dr. Pepper. The nurse replied no and gave me a list of what was available. Dr. Schulman must have seen the disappointment on my face and told the nurse to go get HIS out of the fridge in the lounge! I thought that was really sweet of him. It was an extra special Dr. Pepper and it was sooo very good! When you have gestational diabetes, you eat and drink tasteless stuff and dream about soda and bread all the time, so next on my list was a sub sandwich!
All in all, we had such a smooth delivery and hospital stay. For that, I feel extremely blessed.
Our first photo as a family of three! How blessed are we??!
Isabella and my dad, "Pops"
With her Aunt "Mel"
With Uncle Johnny
Her Aunt Kristen and cousin Adelaide
Getting our baby book footprints(check out the time on the clock- that's AM! We were so tired!)
Beautiful and perfect. God is so GOOD!
Daddy and Isabella, napping away!
This is Dr. Reddington, my doctor. She was so upset that she was not on call when I went into labor, so she stopped by every chance she got to check on us and hold Isabella. She has been such a blessing on this journey to our sweet baby. She has been so determined to help us have a family! She and her nurse called Isabella "their" baby too all throughout this pregnancy.
We expected a bigger baby so the coming home outfit was way too big- she ended up having to wear a gown(also too big!)
Aunt Mel made this super cute monogrammed bow for us!
Let's go home!
First time in her crib- hated it!
Also hated her first bath at home. She has learned to accept bathtime.
One week old