Monday, March 16, 2009

My Daughter

I have committed to several people on several occasions to update my blog more regularly. Maybe now that I'm not working for a few months I'll actually do it :D

World's biggest update: We had a baby! She's beautiful and we love her a lot. And for those who are interested, here is the story of the labor and delivery and all that jazz:

Tuesday I went to the doctor for my 39 week checkup and was told I was dilated to a 1. Woopee! Maybe I'll have a baby soon! I told Richard and he got really excited even though I was sure it was still a good week or two before anything would happen.

Wednesday (one week before due date) I went to work like normal, still feeling like I didn't want to be there for very long but not feeling anything too exciting. I left work early and came home and did my normal thing. I mentioned to Richard early in the day that I was having cramps and thought they might be contractions, but there were only like two of them and several hours apart so I didn't get too excited and told him not to. He left in the evening to go do an install and I played on facebook until the cramps kept coming back to the point of making me nervous. I got on google and looked up all these forums about what a contraction feels like and decided I was definitely having lots of them. I thought I should start keeping track just in case someone asked, but I really didn't expect anything to happen that night.

By the time Richard came home they were about 20 minutes apart and I was thinking about when to go to the hospital. Weird! Surreal! I was not at all expecting a baby that day. The whole thing was weird. We went to bed around 10:30 when they were still 15 minutes apart, but I of course couldn't sleep because they were getting closer together and actually starting to hurt a little bit. We waited until about 1 when they were 5 minutes apart and hurting pretty good and then went to the hospital to get checked out. My only complaint about the visit was that the nurse who checked me had short fingers. We were there for an hour and were told I wasn't dilating past a 2, so they gave me morphine and sent us home. I was very grateful for the way things turned out because really I just wanted to sleep and I couldn't because the contractions were so painful. We went home and I slept for 6 hours! It was very nice. Richard didn't go to school because we were sure we'd be back at the hospital that day.

Thursday I just slept all day. Richard was so nice and helpful and really ambitious about being productive instead of just sleeping like I was :D We watched a movie and I was actually able to sleep through most of it and then a few hours afterwards, so really I slept most of the day. We had called a bunch of family to tell them I was having contractions, so my mom stopped by around 5 to see how I was doing. At that point I was really wishing my water would just break so I could go to the hospital and have drugs, but I knew it wasn't going to so I was just dealing with life. Well right as my mom got ready to go I had a contraction followed by a weird popping sensation and then wetness and another MUCH worse contraction. So we went to the hospital :D

We got there and I don't think there was any question in anyone's mind that I needed to get to a birthing room because I was definitely in labor. My nurse was amazing and just got busy right away ordering me an epidural and getting me all hooked up to the monitors and everything. They didn't even check to see if my water had actually broken until the epidural was coming. It was fairly obvious though because she came in as I was changing and she saw my pants were soaked (and I was dying). Contractions HURT!! I think it was just under an hour before I got the epidural, and that was the best moment of my day. Wow. After that I just slept and relaxed while my body did all the hard work. I went from a 4 to a 10 in less than 4 hours. My doctor had another delivery at the same time in a different hospital, so it was kind of touch and go as to whether he would actually be there or not. They called him as I finished dilating and he was on his way so we started pushing. Well, I started pushing and everyone else helped count and watch the monitor and whatnot. The doctor came after 3 pushes, and I pushed 3 times with him and then out came my baby! It was only 20 minutes of pushing, and Rachel was born at 10:33 p.m.

One of the best parts of the whole experience was watching Richard become a father. He was counting while I pushed and he stopped suddenly and said "Love! You can see her head!" He was so excited and happy and then she was born and he just freaked out. He was so happy and so in love with his little daughter. He held her all night while I was healing and sleeping and just loved every second of it. I think he got less sleep in the hospital than I did because of how helpful he was. He snuck off on Friday morning while I was sleeping to buy me a beautiful boquet of flowers. He told me later that we probably shouldn't spend money we don't have, but he said I deserved it :D

We were able to leave the hospital on Saturday afternoon and we've just been adjusting and enjoying each other at home since then. I'm so amazed at the human body and the abilities it has for creation and healing and growth. I love watching my baby grow each day and seeing her develop her senses and habits. I'll love it more when she figures out how to sleep at night instead of during the day, but we'll get there :D