Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Sunday, December 22, 2013

One Month Old

Yesterday our baby girl turned one month old.

Normally, I would be expressing my disbelief at how fast time is flying and would you just slow down already.  But it honestly doesn't feel that way.  I have soaked up every single second I have spent with my sweet one, that arriving at this first milestone feels just right.  Of course she's one month old...what else would she be???

In the last week or so, I've noticed exactly how much Ruby is growing.  I don't know her exact measurements (she has an appointment with her pediatrician after the New Year) but she is certainly lengthening and gaining weight.  She is stretching out her legs, spending less and less time with them curled up into her tummy.  She has outgrown the few newborn sized clothes she had and the little knit hats I bought for her before she was born now pop off her head shortly after I put them on.  

She is eating three ounces of formula every three hours (we had a few formula issues early on but those seem to be resolved, at least for the moment).  Much like the boys, she was easy to set on a schedule and she does a really good job sticking to it.  She's almost like a clock; she wakes almost exactly on time in order to eat.  If her bedtime bottle is late enough (11:00ish) she'll wake only once during the night to eat, and then wake again in the early morning.  She is sleeping really well in her crib, and *thankfully* falls back asleep easily after her midnight feedings.

After sleeping much of her first two weeks of life, she now has longer periods of awake time throughout the day.  She'll tolerate "play time" (lying under her play gym, tummy time, talking with her brothers) for short moments and then will want to be held again.  Speaking of being held, she seems to think she needs to be cuddled in order to stay asleep.  She'll fall asleep in our arms, and within 10 minutes of putting her down (either in her bouncy seat, the swing, or in her crib) she'll wake up.  We'll rock asleep again, only for the cycle to continue.  I'm thankful this isn't the case after dark!

This last month, she celebrated her first Thanksgiving.  And we're fairly certain we saw her first smile on Friday night.  That will be confirmed when we see the next one.  (Her smile, by the way, is beautiful.  It starts in her eyes before you see it cross her lips.)

She is a wonder.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Ruby's Birth Day

Three weeks ago, our sweet angel came into this world and immediately stole our hearts.

Her arrival day was planned.  I saw my doctor on Wednesday (the 20th) and very politely asked if we could go ahead and have this baby (hey, I never claimed to be a patient person).  I was ready, both physically and emotionally, to be *done* being pregnant, and taking into consideration a tremendous amount of anxiety surrounding the unknowns of when this little one would come on her own, I really wanted to be induced.  I was hoping for either Friday or the following Monday (my actual due date).  So when my physician said he was free on Thursday - the very next day...  I got a little nervous!  I was feeling really ready to have this baby, but maybe not quite that quickly!  Regardless, arrangements were made, and Brad and I made our way to the hospital at 7:00 the next morning.

Here is a rough rundown of our day, and how things progressed.  I didn't keep a close eye on the clock, but I have a general idea of when things happened.

7:00am - Arrived at hospital, checked in, settled into room, paperwork filled out, signatures given, questions answered, IV placed.

8:00am - Pitocin started.

8:30/9:00am - Sometime in there my doctor arrived and checked me.  I was dilated to "barely a two" which is what I was the day before at the office.  He broke my water and I waited for the contractions to begin.

9:00/10:00am - At some point within the next hour, Jeff, the anesthesiologist (and the man at the top of my *favorite persons of the day* list), came in to place the epidural line.  I had made it quite clear that I would be wanting drugs as soon as I could get them (I marvel at women who can go without, I really do.  But I cannot.  No no no no no.).  So one of the things that I found quite awesome at our hospital here is that they'll place the line so that when it comes time to administer the meds, they don't have to take the time then (when I'm in obvious pain) to put the line in.  Five stars right there, people.

This is when things get a little blurry.  It was maybe around 10am when I started to feel the contractions.  I'm not sure how long I labored before I decided it was time for the drugs {contractions hurt, ya'll}, but reflecting back on the timeframe of what happened later, most likely it was a couple hours.  I was checked again, before given any meds, and I was at a three.  Oh Lord, only a three.  And I thought to myself, "it's going to be a looooonnng day."

My most favorite person returned to administer the drugs, and after waiting the 30 minutes it takes for the drugs to take effect, I had total relief on my right side...but could still feel every contraction on my left side.  It should be clear that, given my need for an epidural in the first place, this was not fun.

{I want to interject here that every single person at the hospital that helped me through the whole having-a-baby process was amazing.  I loved each and every one of them, and they honestly made this experience the best.}

So I labored like this for a good hour, I'd say, before deciding that my body wasn't going to fix this problem on it's own.  Let me note that this same thing happened when I had Drew - epidural numbed one side but not the other.  They gave me a "booster shot" (for lack of a better word) and it worked.  This time, it did not work.  So our only option was to re-do the epidural.  Giant needle #1 removed; giant needle #2 inserted.  {This is not a big deal to me.  The procedure for having the line placed doesn't bother me in the least, so having to do it twice was fine by me.}

And thankfully, it worked.  Almost immediately, I felt the tingling go down my left side, and within 20 minutes, I was pain free.  Woo-hoo!  It was about 2:30, and as I was finally comfortable, Brad left to go have lunch.  Within 10 minutes of him leaving, I started to feel pressure, and with each contraction (now about two minutes apart, it seemed to me) the pressure just increased.  Like a lot.  Thank goodness the cafeteria wasn't busy because by the time Brad returned (15 minutes, tops) I knew it was time.  We called for the nurse.  She entered the room stating "So you feel like you could push?" to which I replied "Uh huh!"  She checked me and immediately said, "Yes you could!  Don't!" 

My doctor was in the hospital, so he was able to get to my room quickly, and once he was prepped and the equipment table had arrived, I could start pushing.  About 30 minutes later, our little lady had arrived.

And this is the moment, people.  For those of you who ask or can't understand or wonder why on earth we would choose to not find out the baby's gender at the 20 week mark, this is why.  Because when nine months of anticipation and wonder and waiting comes to an end, and the baby arrives, and finally - finally - we meet...the only way to describe it is as pure magic.

Ruby's arrival was extra magical because - I'll finally admit it publicly - she was a girl.  I had only fully confessed my deep deep desire to have a baby girl to a few people.  How I wanted a girl so so badly!  And both my nurse and my doctor knew it so when Ruby came and we saw that she was a she - there was a lot of excitement!!

A moment I will remember forever.

And she was perfect.  And beautiful.  And I thought she looked so small!  I thought for sure she'd be in the seven pounds range, so I was surprised when she weighed nearly eight and a half pounds.  I later decided that she looked small because her features are so delicate - small face, small ears, fine lips, tiny cheeks.

Around 6:00, the boys were brought to the hospital (they had spent the day with a dear friend of ours) and they met their baby sister for the first time.

They were both tentative - not totally sure what to expect - but very curious and very very happy.  And oh, how they love her!

This girl is something special.

We love her so, so much.